originally posted at https://canmom.tumblr.com/post/163231...

So, we’re almost at the end of episode 2. All that remains is the Tea Party, and probably a witch tea party after that.

Once again, we’re in Purgatorio. Rosa is here!

CW: This one gets really gory. Feel free to skip to the next one: there's a lot of torture here.

I checked the characters deaths screen. Battler and Beatrice’s entries are missing. Of the non-sacrificed, some of them mention that “the Idiot” has once again spoiled the magic, so instead of going to the Golden Land, they met grisly fates.

For example, Kinzo:

Kinzo’s death screen. ‘Missing. Finally reached the Golden Land he so desired. The Idiot was once again unwilling to accept that, so the magic was spoiled for a second time. Even so, he was probably happy. After all, he managed to be reunited with the Golden Witch, if only for a brief time. Afterwards, he was crunched to pieces and eaten by demons, and went to hell.’

and Rosa:

Rosa’s death screen. ‘Missing. In the Golden Land, she finally found a treasure more precious to her than gold. However, that was short-lived. Thanks to the Idiot, she would once again have to lose that which she had finally found. Afterwards, she was chewed into a pulp by demons, and went to hell.

So that suggests meta!Battler isn’t so keen to go along with Beatrice as narrative!Battler was.

Let’s see…

We meet Rosa as she wakes up in an unfamiliar place. Unlike the previous tea party, where characters were dispassionately discussing the events of the story, Rosa doesn’t know what’s going on.

Beatrice is offering a deal. Rosa is too brain-fogged to remember what Beatrice wants from her, but in return she can get anything she wants.

Beatrice states some Pure Ideology:

Beatrice, in her tea room: “I am commonly called the Golden Witch. Bestowing a mountain of gold, like I gave to Kinzo is no problem for me. ……After all, every pleasure of the human world can be expressed in terms of cash. Put another way, gold is human pleasure itself.”

She then acknowledges there are things that can’t be bought. But, she says, she can also fill ‘cracks’ in the heart. She says Rosa’s heart’s wounds go back to birth, and she will have to reopen them to properly heal them.

This means a flashback of Rosa being bullied by her siblings while a lullaby-like song plays. Beatrice suggests she could rewrite time so Rosa has no siblings, but then Rosa wouldn’t recognise the reward.

Instead, Beatrice offers… food? And tells her to spend the rest of her life eating like a pig. I agree with Rosa, that doesn’t really help for trauma and grief. [Note from the future: you would be surprised. It doesn’t solve the source of the pain, but everything is always far, far harder to face on an empty stomach. If someone is hurting, make sure that they eat, especially if they aren’t able to handle it themselves...]

Then she reveals the twist:

Beatrice: “If I had to give it a name, I’d call it a Bloody Krauss. The color comes solely from golden drops of your brother’s blood, obtained by placing him in a compressor.”

God, Beatrice. Cannibalism is your solution to everything. This isn’t Sunless Sea.

Beatrice explains that the ‘golden drop’ is the final drop: Krauss has been totally exsanguinated. She summons the compressor to demonstrate. She revives the remains of Krauss for another squeezing. She also reports that to produce the colour in Rosa’s wine, it takes ‘twelve people’s worth’, so she’s been doing that to Krauss over and over again.

The narration spells out the implication: against Beatrice, death is not final.

Beatrice suggests that somehow drinking her brother’s blood will heal the trauma of his bullying. What’s she getting out of this?

The rest of the meal is, naturally, made of bits and pieces of Rosa’s siblings. I won’t go into detail.

Beatrice continues: “It’s not just your siblings, see? I have lavishly arranged all of those who you have trusted and yet betrayed you. Why don’t we continue this banquet for all eternity, until your heart is satisfied. For all eternity.”

What is Beatrice getting out of torturing Rosa’s siblings and telling Rosa she’s really enjoying it? I mean, I realise Beatrice’s whole deal is pointless sadism, but still, this seems especially gratuitous.

For the dessert, naturally Beatrice is offering Maria, “that beloved daughter you had to keep pretending to love”.

A goat-headed servant appears with Maria.

Maria frowning in front of a goat demon. She says “…………Mama… ……Was I……a burden……?”

This is just completely unpleasant to read tbh? Like i hope there’s a point to all this sadism.

Maria keeps saying she was a burden, in the process describing numerous ways in which Rosa was a neglectful, terrible mother.

Eventually, Beatrice offers an end to the torment: Rosa must proclaim she accepts Beatrice is a witch.

Why is she so damn insecure? If she’s a witch, who cares who believes?

Once Rosa accepts Beatrice is a witch, and begs her to return Maria, Beatrice proclaims her ‘perfect victory’. Then she orders them to kill and bake Maria anyway, because of course she does.

At that point, meta!Battler interrupts and slams Beatrice’s face into the table. (He does this with a misogynistic comment though…)

Beatrice is like, I thought you submitted and became furniture. No, silly, that was only narrative!Battler?

Ugh, and then he fucking hits on Maria ‘in ten years’ to make a pun. It’s not funny. I thought we’d left that shit in episode 1.

This aspect of the writing is just so unnecessary, and detracts from - outright ruins - what could otherwise be a heroic scene or whatever. If very much a ‘male hero saves damsel in distress from bad unruly woman’ narrative.

[Note from the future: I think what I was missing here is that it’s rather the point that this is inappropriate. It’s also an incestuous comment, right? The crassness is the whole idea. Battler is just edgelording his way into the room, in a way responding to the woman who just made dinner out of his family. My whole reaction here is so strange, some weird kind of girlboss thing. Let women emotionally torture people by feeding them their relatives! ...ok, maybe I stand by that one after all 😳]

We get some narration from Beatrice’s POV. She ascribe’s Battler’s refusal to give up as his Ushiromiya blood showing. She’s pleased, she wants to break him again.

Beatrice looking straight into our eyes. “That is exactly what I expect from you, Ushiromiya Battler!! Try to deny me, I’ll completely and thoroughly smash you to bits! I will break you over and over again, and I’ll teach you, one who has licked my shoes, the taste of defeat over and over!!”

Battler declares every time he’s been defeated, he’s gotten back up and finished what he’s started. [Note from the future: I didn’t think to mention chumbawumba here? For shame.]

Beatrice tells her servants (’furniture’) to ‘prepare’ the next game. I wonder what that entails exactly..? What is a game?

In the mean time: time for Battler to solve the locked room puzzles.

My best shot—the Rosa accomplice theory—seems callous in the extreme after the final scene.

Beatrice in front of her own portrait. “The lock to the chapel, the lock to Jessica’s room, the lock to the servant room, the lock to Natsuhi’s room, the lock to the parlor!! Use all those things you humans are so good at pulling out of the blue, your delusions, rantings, daydreams, bluffs, all slanted with ridiculous, incredible turns of events, and show how you can thoroughly deny meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!”

None of these characters have an indoor voice.

Battler replies that it’s no good at all (as ever), but then we have a dramatic pointing finger. And the credits roll. There’s a new song over the top.

Curiously, all seven Stakes of Purgatory are credited, though only some made appearances. Rudolf and Kyrie are also credited, even though they were unvoiced for some reason - a bug or release error, maybe. [Note from the future: pretty certain I turned them off by accident lmao.]

Next, we can expect another cryptic discussion between Beatrice and Bernkastel, I expect.


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