The Unexplored Summon Blood Sign:Volume8 Afterword

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(Postscript Open ??/?? ??:??)


And that’s the 8th volume!!

This is Kamachi Kazuma.

This was a world tour battle that crossed the globe, as often seen in the sequel to a popular action movie. A cruise ship, deep under the ocean, space, and the border of the Eastern European Kingdom F. I hope you enjoyed seeing Kyousuke freely hopping all over the world in a single volume.

Kyousuke’s vessel was the same as last time: Olivia Highland. I knew I had to go all out on showing her charm, so I focused on her alone. Before she was possessed and before Bridesmaid left her eyes spinning, Olivia would cling innocently to Kyousuke’s waist like that. …And that is why Kyousuke was so shocked to see a changed Olivia stolen by his father in Volume 7. Oh, dear. Explaining it like that makes dandy Doctor S sound wholly immoral.

The original plan was not to have a Silver Resource War at Kingdom F. I had planned for the war to occur at South America’s Devil’s Island, for the enemy to be the fleet surrounding the island and the marines who had landed on the island, and for the battle to be like a game of beach flags where Azalea Magentarain in a blue swimsuit played the role of the flag. The story is in August and the setting would be an island of everlasting summer, so there would be no reason not to put her in a swimsuit!! Ahem. But anyway, she fit the bill for someone trying to build a Queen lookalike out of Repliglass and being able to write about the “original cute Azalea” freed from the Queen’s contamination seen since Volume 1 was an attractive prospect. But when I was putting Olivia in the spotlight, I knew the final stage had to be the Kingdom F mentioned in Volume 7, so I changed where the space station crashed and ended up with the story you read. Even if it was necessary, visiting a chilly inland mountain doesn’t show off the charm of August at all! What a waste! What a waste of summer break!! …Uuh, I definitely want to retry that Azalea idea sometime. The in-story calendar is still August 4, so our summer is only just getting started…!!

Olivia was always going to hold the main spot, so the character that got to appear instead of Azalea may have been Sinceria. Kingdom F was mostly just symbolic in Volume 7 (well, that was kind of the point), so did it seem to gain more life to it now that Queen Sinceria and Knight Rachel actually showed up? …Incidentally, simply referring to that mother as the Queen could get her confused with a certain silver twintails, so I tried to make sure it was clear who they were talking about. She did not appear much, but I hope I managed to get the main points in there and cover the whole story. Now, why is it that parent characters always end up being so strong-willed? In Dengeki Bunko battle series, beautiful older girls or student council presidents tend to be the strongest, so maybe a parent is seen as someone who is completely off the charts of the power ranking. You want a protagonist or heroine’s parent to have already saved the world three times over, don’t you!?

In the sense of being a guardian, Biondetta and Shigara Masami who showed up at the end also qualify. It might be interesting to compare them to Sinceria. Sinceria casually commits sexual harassment while also never removing the locket containing a picture of her family, so she has drawn a line with Kyousuke who is relatively chaste (for a guy). You could say she’s the type to attend a group blind date but only eat the food and not pair up with anyone or that she’s the type to casually seduce someone but become disillusioned if they show any serious desire. She’s just a really difficult and troublesome character. And since just being complicated would not convey her true thoughts, you can see how she refers to herself as “I”, “your/her mother”, and “we” when speaking as a woman, mother, and queen respectively. That should tell you how serious she is being about each thing. If she ever changes how she refers to herself in the middle of a sentence, that requires extra attention. You should be able to see how her statements contain more emotion when she scolded Rachel for preparing to die than when she was messing with Kyousuke. I mean, of course she isn’t serious about that when she’s doing it in front of her daughter!

…Although she takes her daughter’s happiness seriously, so she is serious when it comes to getting Kyousuke and Olivia together. You can’t let your guard down when she’s smiling and talking about herself as a mother and I think that is this character’s greatest charm. I hope you enjoyed a complexity different from the White Queen or the Colorless Little Girl.

Meanwhile, Biondetta and Shigara Masami are dangerously close to Kyousuke. That may come from becoming his guardian but not fully becoming a parent.

On that note, what did you think of the standard “shocking twist” at the end? It was different from the “usual” where Kyousuke is essentially folded up compactly and crushed to death. If anyone was going to utterly overpower the White Queen with words, I knew it had to be her instead of Kyousuke, the equally-powerful Black Maw, or the more powerful but extremely inexperienced Colorless Little Girl. I think that is because Shigara Masami is so very close to him as a guardian and can look down at teenage romantic feelings from a detached perspective. I think Sinceria would have stayed out of it and dodged the issue with nice-sounding words.

The ending may seem extremely harsh, but criticizing the White Queen while Kyousuke was not looking shows how tolerant Shigara Masami is. She lectured her to reveal her weakness but did not just tell Kyousuke herself. She is saying that it would be meaningless unless the White Queen works up the courage to do it herself. I think that is the strength of an adult woman, which has nothing to do with Awards or the Unexplored-class. That would be why “children” like the Queen and Kyousuke are no match for her on a fundamental level. After the Queen execution in Volume 7, I knew this had to be the point where I showed a meeker twintails! I mean, give her enough time afterward and she would be recharged with energy!! So I made use of this greatest opportunity by playing the Shigara Masami card I had been holding in reserve for a while. It isn’t quite the same as the Colorless Little Girl who obeys commands like “wait”, “sit”, and “shake”, but is the naïve idea that the strongest might be obedient (to me alone) a way to make them look cute? That is why Shigara Masami scolded that tsun tsun Queen for staying up on her throne without ever stepping down. She’s only making a show of being available while actually keeping her guard far too strict!!

…By the way, I compared the White Queen and the Colorless Little Girl there, but they were won over in completely different ways in Volume 8. Which one tugged at your heartstrings more?

By comparing her to Kyousuke who is the strongest yet ends up in tears and essentially crushed to death each time, I think you should have a good idea of how the White Queen is also the strongest but treats everyone coldly. Kyousuke honestly reveals his heart in battle and the Queen was never able to do that. So which of those is strong and which of those is weak? Did Shigara Masami’s reappearance change your opinion about that? And about the Queen indulging herself. Surely you could figure out that much. No, that’s asking too much!! Now that the White Queen has been so shy for so long, will she finally be able to show off all the dere she’s built up for so long? No one wants to see that surface-level strongest part. It’s time to test your true courage, Hedgehog Queen.

Oh, I just realized I’ve been talking about the characters instead of the theme and structure of this volume. This is a pretty rare kind of afterword for me.

We’ve finally reached the 8th volume, so maybe this is a sign that the setting and stage are solidly in place. Or maybe it’s because this is a love story that focuses on the relationships between people.

I give my thanks to my illustrator Ikawa Waki-san and my editors Miki-san, Anan-san, Miyazaki-san, Nakajima-san, Yamamoto-san, and Mitera-san. This was another chaotic volume with the stage constantly changing, one legendary god after another, and a new character who is the mother of a previous character, so it must have taken a lot of work. I am truly grateful that you stuck with me to the end!!

And I give my thanks to the readers. How did you like this complicated-looking story that is actually a love story between a boy and a girl? That it was Shigara Masami and not Kyousuke who figured it out was this volume’s biggest twist. Lots of misunderstandings is the key to a love comedy! Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the different sort of surprise this time.

And I will end this here.

How did Biondetta manage to steal the show with nothing more than “Squish squish☆”?

-Kamachi Kazuma

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