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\ovo/ Yey yey so here’s part two! Looks like I’ll have to do a part three because it’s summer and it’s hell sitting in my room with this heat (the a/c doesn’t reach me here). I had a bit more to say about some of these series though, so hope these are somewhat more insightful.

 Winter 2018 First Ep Impressions Part 2:

  • Beatless: Boy meets superpowered robot girl. Robot girl chooses boy to become her owner because… reasons? And suddenly becomes like a bodyguard maid for the boy and his younger sister. Something about this seems very familiar, although series about people (mostly guys but occasionally some girls) suddenly coming into “ownership” over a supernatural or inhuman girl aren’t that uncommon. I’ve heard that this is similar to Guilty Crown, although I haven’t seen that myself. I’m reminded more of Rozen Maiden, as I get the feeling there will be some clashes between the various special model robot girls. However, in that case the lead “girl” had much more of a spine – whereas Lacia is very docile. She explains it’s due to how she is programmed, but it’s obvious it’s just a convenient reason as to why they get to use the sexy robot maid trope whilst still trying to wax philosophical about the semiotics of human-robot interaction. Bleh.
  • Darling in the FranXX: Do you like Gurren Lagann? Do you like Pacific Rim? Do you like robot dinosaurs? Do you like mecha that can transform from a lion into a giant iron maiden that can shoot lasers? HELL YEAH, THIS IS FOR YOU! In some indeterminate future, the world is contained to giant metal structures known as Plants and robot dinosaurs rule the world. Only children known as Parasites can pilot the mecha known as FranXX, which require two pilots to use. And Hiro, the lead in the story has finally found his piloting partner – a mysterious girl with demon horns.
  • Okay, so the series isn’t quite as hot-blooded as Gurren Lagann, but I think it has promise. This is a joint collab between A-1 Pictures and Trigger so there’s some fantastic animation on display. Definitely worth watching, especially if you’re a fan of unusual mecha.
  • Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens: In the city of Hakata, 3% of the population is thought to be hitmen. And they’re kept well in business as everyone in the city is looking to kill another for some reason or another. However, with so many targets to kill and so many hitmen out there, there’s bound to be a few times where they accidentally collide. But if they’re unlucky they may end up running into the worst hitman of all – one that kills other hitmen. 
  • I had a bit of a hard time following this one due to all the characters involved but I made a LOT more sense upon a second viewing. The central character looks to be the private detective, who suspects something is going on with the mayor. However, he runs afoul of a nightclub owner after asking too many questions and has a killer sent after him – who ends up offering to be his bodyguard. I think I’ll give this a go because the first ep certainly interested me.
  • Hakumei to Mikochi: This one reminds me a lot of the storybooks from my childhood about tiny people living in a world surrounded by normal sized things. Kinda like the Borrowers, but with more of a fantasy element living in the woods along with other tiny people. I dunno if there’s much of a plot to this one – it seems to focus more on the everyday and exploring the world. Hmm… there’s not much to talk about with this one. It’s just fun little adventures between two very different girls and the art style is very storybook-ish… Soooo yeah =/
  • Hakyuu Houshin Engi: I am not familiar with this series at all, but this is another remake of an older anime series from the 90s/early 00s (which is pretty easy to tell considering the art style). From what I can tell this series is based on a piece of classical Chinese literature involving mythology. Tbh I found this episode… weird. Once the plot got going it turned out a bit more interesting than I thought it’d be (the MC goes straight to the big villain and gets his ass handed to him), but there was a point where when shit hit the fan things got skipped over a bit.
  • If there’s one thing that really makes this anime stand out though, it’s the backgrounds. Because wow they are really nice and capture the beauty of China’s landscapes and architecture pretty well. It’s a real shame then that the character designs interrupt that (I couldn’t stop looking at their giant goofy clown feet gdi). Idk what else I can say :V But it’s easy to just ignore this one without missing out on anything.
  • IDOLiSH7: This is based off a popular mobile game where you play as the female manager of a new idol group. It’s honestly pretty standard fare so there isn’t very much to say about it. Most of the characters are very stereotypical and span the usual range of idol type guys – short guy with height issues, the red-haired guy that’s talented but too normal, the weird but beautiful foreigner, the one that’s way too laid back, and so on and so forth. If you’re a fan of the game, watch it, but otherwise meh.
  • Karakai Jouzu no Takagi-san: Two kids with big foreheads play tricks on each other in an attempt to get each other to react. The end.
  • Koi wa Ameagari no You ni: This one may be a little unsettling for people. The story is about a high school girl who dropped out of the track team after a tragic injury. She now works in a family restaurant and is slowly falling in love with her manager – a 45-year-old divorced man with a son. Fortunately(?), it’s not executed as being creepy since the manager is largely oblivious to her feelings and she’s the one initiating (although she’s not really flirting or anything, just being super awkward). So I’m not as creeped out? High school girls crushing on older guys isn’t that uncommon, although if this show steps it up to the next level it may definitely start to get weird. At least the art in this is very pretty… lots of sparkles and bubbles. 
Part 3 will hopefully be out soon! 

Firstly, sorry for not being able to get to part 2 of last season’s anime. Things got way too busy in the lead-up to Christmas and my family had various trips and weddings to attend! I ended up not being able to watch very much at all overall – although I’m sorta glad I didn’t watch a few series because last season seemed to have had some pretty edgy stuff that failed to live up to its own hype.

Anyway, lemme quickly just recap on what I did end up watching completely from last season before moving on to the current one.

Fall 2017 Recap:

  • Blend S: I really ended up enjoying this. There was nothing too outstanding, but it was a nice little series with a lot of character and sweet relationships. Also, that OP is still catchy as hell.
  • Houseki no Kuni: Now here’s one I definitely recommend! A CGI anime that’s actually nice to look at visually and has good action without being a load of eye-overloading garbage (I’m looking at you Handshakers)? The entire series was refreshing, although it had a few pacing issues. But overall, it’s one of the best from the season.
  • Mahoutsukai no Yome: This one is continuing into the current season with 24 episodes, but it’s such a joy to watch. I love series that explore magic in ways which are more connected to nature. There’s a lot of danger in this series, but at the same time it’s relaxing and never feels too overwhelming to watch. I really like the dynamics of all the characters and want to see how they’ll overcome the challenges ahead. 
  • Net-juu no Susume: I finished the series, but in my own life I’m only a quarter way there… *sigh* Forever alone, forever a NEET. I loved this series though and I was so happy for all the characters at the end. It’s just a nice romance series about nice adults who like nice video games and hang out with other nice people. They’re definitely livin’ the dream. If only I could join them…
  • Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: I’m sooo glad this got both a prequel and sequel together to fill in the gaps before and after the original series because hot damn I cried like a baby. I really don’t want to give away much because so much of is important, especially in how everyone relates to each other and how the world they live in affects them. If you liked Madoka, you should check it out.
  • Ballroom e Youkoso: Finished completely last season and I’m glad it ended on a high note. The first half of the season was rather worrying, but it eventually found its footing (lol) and fleshed the main characters out with their goals. The introduction of a new character at the halfway point really helped a lot towards that.
  • Fate/Apocrypha: Yeah, I know most people think this one was kinda garbage (and I agree with the sentiment that the MC is a cardboard person), but I quite liked a lot of the characters and how driven they were to protect the things they cared about and what they stood for in their past lives. …Now if only Fate/Grand Order would release best assassin Semiramis I’d be completely satisfied.

Winter 2018 First Ep Impressions:

  • Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou: Uhhhh…. I have issues with this anime in both the way it’s animated and what the plot is about. Something about a ninja clan and politics? And keeping the bloodline pure so the elders are gonna try and get a brother and sister to, uh… yeahhhhh…. Don’t bother.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card Arc: Ahhhhhh!!!!!! A sequel to my favourite anime? HELL YES. I’ll just warn you that you NEED to watch the original (including the movies) if you’re going to watch this series because it’s hugely important to the plot. Just know that it’s one of the best magical girl shows out there and deserves a watch if you’re an anime fan.
  • Citrus: One does not simply watch Citrus for any meaningful reason. One can only hatewatch with the fury of a thousand burning suns as they realise Citrus is an undercover “luckily my imouto isn’t related to me!” anime. Sure, yuri shows are far and few between, but they deserve better than this trash.
  • Dame x Prince Anime Caravan: This an adaptation of a mobage apparently? I’ve never heard of it and I’m not sure exactly what’s going on but it seems like a reverse harem with only one best boi. The main girl is pretty damn cute at least, but the rest of the male cast are just kinda… eh? For the princes you got the overly pretty shota, the creepy purple haired one with eyebags (is this a thing because Diabolik Lovers had this sort too), and some guy that’s more in love with himself than anyone else to the point it’s not that funny and more uncomfortable when he calls the MC “Woman”. Idk how you’re supposed to get 12 eps out of this.
  • Death March kara Hajimaru Isekai Kyousoukyoku: Here’s your isekai for the season and at least it doesn’t try to set up any dramatic reasons for why the character is suddenly in another world? The MC is working on programming a game, goes to sleep and wakes up in the world convinced it’s all a dream and he may as well go with it until he wakes up. I think this will take more of a laidback position and try to have fun with it, though this could easily end up being like the ‘In Another World with my Smartphone’ show from the other season which tried to be a light-hearted isekai adventure but failed in execution to be interesting.
  • Gakuen Babysitters: CUTE BABBUS: THE ANIME. I read this manga quite a while back so I’m surprised it’s been adapted at this point in time. It’s a rather simple plot about an orphaned pair of siblings adopted by the headmaster of a school. The school happens to have a daycare centre, which the older brother finds himself taking part in. There’s really not too much to it, but sometimes those sorts of series are nice to watch. There is one part which hasn’t turned out that well in the anime version… so if you’re disturbed by what is comedically framed as child abuse (it’s a running gag that another boy hits his own little brother, yeah…) then maybe give it a miss. But the relationship between the orphaned brothers is quite sweet and heartwarming.
  • Grancrest Senki: I wasn’t too sure what I was going into here. Fantasy series can be seriously hit or miss in anime, with the majority of them scaling more towards the mediocre end. But I was somewhat surprised this time. The story revolves around a newly-graduated mage and her “support” of a guy that wants to make the world a better place. The world is covered in chaos and demons, which only the lord of an area can keep at bay with their magical crest. It looks like there will be some politics involved as the final part of the first episode had them taking over a lord’s castle and becoming the new owners, meaning they’ll have to deal with their neighbours who they conspire to start a war against. I kinda like the mage and her blatant manipulations of the situation, so I’m gonna give this a go.  
  • Ito Junji Collection: If you haven’t heard the name Ito Junji before, then you’d better get on board. Junji is known as one of the best horror mangaka out there with plenty of well-known works under his belt, many of which have been adapted for both film and television. Most people would recognise him from The Enigma of Amigara Fault, which has become something of a meme online featuring such classic lines as “This hole! It was made for me!” and “It’s slowly coming this way!”. Funny as that may be, however, Junji’s works are quite unsettling overall and are worth checking out if you’re into horror.
  • Killing Bites: Tekken meets Kemono Friends? Uhh… maybe not Kemono Friends because I can’t see Serval-chan tearing anyone apart in just her underwear… Anyway, the world is secretly run by zaibatsu groups who use animal-human hybrids to fight each other and bet on the outcomes. The main girl is a, uh… honey badger (feels like the author liked that meme a bit too much, huh?) and through some weird circumstances ends up being assigned as a bodyguard to a college student. This is definitely an ecchi series despite the violence, so be prepared. But you may get a laugh out of the random documentary clips that happen during the fights explaining stuff about the abilities of each animal.
  • Kokkoku: I’m a little lost on this premise so far but it seems to be about a magical stone that allows time to be stopped. A family uses it after two of their members are kidnapped and go to save them. However, it’s revealed there are others who can move in frozen time and are after the grandfather. There’s also weird monsters. Yeah, idk what’s going on. I’m presuming this will expand out into a plot about escaping the bad guys and figuring out what the time freezing stone actually is. Hard to say for sure though. Kinda wish they’d given us just a little more in terms of information.
  • Overlord II: Is more Overlord, is okay. It’s kinda lost its edge after the overabundance of isekai series but if you liked the original this picks up right after where it led off so eh.
  • Pop Team Epic: Look… I dunno if I just don’t get it, or it’s a bad adaptation, something that was just impossible to adapt in the first place, or I need to be a hardcore fan to get it - but it’s not funny to me and no amount of silly voice acting is going to change that. You don’t need to rerun the same clips twice in a row using different voices each time. And the clip with the fidget spinner has dated it already and put it into “Hello, fellow children!” territory. I don’t have the patience for this when I have like 30+ episodes to watch.
  • Sanrio Danshi: So…. This show has a bit of a silly premise. It’s about a bunch of high school guys that form what is essentially a Hello Kitty club and that’s it? I’m not that sure who this is aimed at… I doubt it’s aimed at fujoshi because I don’t think Sanrio as a company would be brave enough to go in that direction. Maybe high school boys so they can be told it’s okay to buy Hello Kitty merch then? Idk…
  • Toji no Miko: High school girls use magic swords to defeat monster things. Admittedly I thought the first episode would be a lot more boring than this and simply give everyone the “let’s spend the first ep letting every girl say their catchphrase so you can pick your favourite one” treatment, but it ended on a rather interesting note as during a tournament one of the contestants attacks a superior officer and her opponent intervenes to both save her and escape. I kinda hope the whole thing won’t just be forgotten and forgiven by the next episode, but I’m dreading that it will. Guess I’ll give it a few more eps then, although the characters themselves are rather cliché and stereotypical which does hurt things.
  • Zoku Touken Ranbu Hanamaru: Another season of comedy swordboys! I somewhat enjoyed the last season with its silliness so I’m glad its back. My only gripe is that my fav boi barely got any screentime and lines in the first episode ;o;

Well, that’s part one for now! Let’s hope I can actually finish everything this time =w=;;; Let me know your thoughts as well! 

Chapter 20: You Wrangle Pokemon, Not Wrestle Them


A quiet yet persistent hum from the air conditioning unit sounded through the somewhat musty hotel room. Faded wallpaper featuring a tacky flower print lined the interior, lifting off from where curious guests had picked at its edges. An old television set on a desk in front of the bed. Its remote sat nearby, the labels for each button impossible to read after years of grubby fingers touching it. 


Although the room was as clean as it could be, the march of time had obviously taken its toll. 

Eva stared at the ceiling, morning light filtering in through a gap in the beige curtains. A quick glance over at the digital clock told her the time: too damn early.

She let out a grumble – going to bed early last night had been a mistake. 

The bed creaked as she sat up, its frame shifting enough to make her feel like it was in dire need of replacement. Herc tumbled off her stomach and into her lap as she moved, causing him to murmur in his sleep. Eva picked him up, taking care not to wake him, and placed him next to Tsukuyo. Sometime throughout the night, the Froakie had given up on her competition with Herc for prime placement and created a nest using spare pillows instead. It meant that (for once) Eva had woken without her ears full of foam. 

She watched the Froakie for a few minutes, noticing how every time she breathed out, the foam from her mane would fizzle and pop with a quiet burble.

A sad smile crept across her face, growing worse the longer she stared. She had observed so many Pokemon sleep in the past and noticed funny little things about them. Whenever Atlas had a nasty cold, he would snore and blow bubbles into the air, creating a hazard for all those around him. And Rufus… 

That rascal. 

He’d wind up on his back as he slept, his giant orange and black legs twitching as he pawed at the air – chasing Buneary. Occasionally, he would let out increasingly louder barks until the dream excited him too much and he’d wake himself up. Bleary-eyed, he would come to her, placing his fluffy head on her lap demanding to know where the Buneary went. Despite her assurances, he was adamant she was hiding them from him. 

He wasn’t exactly a bright one but Eva had always liked that about him. 

Giving one last look at her dreaming Pokemon, she crept from the bed and into the bathroom. 

Herc and Tsukuyo were up and watching TV by the time she finished and stepped back out. Eva figured they would be – the water pipes had begun clanging and screeching the moment she turned the shower on. No doubt whoever else was staying in the hotel awake now too. 

She adjusted the towel wrapped around herself, thinking back to the hotel in Lumiose she had stayed in just days earlier. The ones there had been big, fluffy, and soft… but these? They were threadbare in comparison – almost embarrassingly so. She didn’t want to wear it any longer than she had to. 

She walked by the TV, blocking it momentarily. Her Pokemon barely acknowledged her, let alone notice her current attire (a blessing, really). Whatever was playing had them fixated… Oh, The Adventures of Officer McTuff the Wigglytuff. Of course… Though it seemed like his muscular human friend in the tight shirt was missing in this episode. 

A shame. 

Without anything on TV to distract her, Eva grabbed her backpack. She rifled through it, reorganising her gear and packing her pyjamas into the appropriate PokeCapsule. Pulling out her clothes for the day, she passed by the TV again.

Still no response. 

Fed up, she changed and returned, pushing the curtains aside to let the light flood in. She shielded her eye – it was one of those annoying days where despite the clouds looming overhead, the glare that cut through it was still enough to make you squint.

Reaching down, she tried the handles to the doors that led onto the balcony. They stuck, glass panels rattling when she pushed. It forced her to give up. The last thing she needed was to break something. 

Eva scrunched up her nose in annoyance – so much for that. 

She placed her forehead against the door in frustration. It would have been nice to go back to bed, but it was too late: her stomach was already starting to growl. 

“Okay, let’s get goin–” 

Before she could finish her announcement, a Squirtle shell hit her in the back of the head. 

*****

Eva wasn’t sure of the name of the river that ran through Camphrier, but it seemed like a popular destination for all kinds of people – tourists, trainers, locals… Each had their own purpose for visiting the river.

For trainers, it was using the wide bank to stage battles – their Pokemon interrupting the peace with the occasional flash of bright light or loud noise which echoed across the river.

For tourists, it was a walk along the footpath to admire the sights, a cup of coffee and a bagel in their hands. Eva would have done the same, but a ravenous stomach and two unruly Pokemon ruined the atmosphere. Her bagel was gone before she realised it, and Herc’s tail had knocked her coffee onto the ground. 

She disposed of the empty cup in the nearest trash can. 

If only she could put Herc in there as well for the day… 

Eva stared out across the river, the water running like quicksilver beneath the cloudy sky. She watched the reflection of the town skyline ripple in the current until she felt a tug on her hair. In the edge of her vision she saw Tsukuyo's hand pointing further down the bank. Following it, she noticed something she hadn't noticed before – an outdoor gym. 

Eva had never seen one before but it fascinated her. Gyms (not the Pokemon sort) were a rarity in Kanto, so the best exposure she’d had was through whatever bits and pieces she had ordered from brochures – mostly weights and the sorts of things you could install in your home and then have come loose and fall when you were using them. In comparison, the equipment here looked sturdy, colourful and simplistic with very few moving parts and no electronics. Unable to pass up the opportunity, Eva shed her backpack and jacket and jumped in. 

It had been some time since she had last worked out – not since leaving Vaniville. Even then, it hadn’t quite been the same as her routine back home in Kanto. 

Finding a set of monkey bars, she did a repetition of hanging sit-ups just for the fun of it (and perhaps to show off a little to her Pokemon). Herc encouraged her for each sit-up she did, his cheers causing her to pause halfway through. A small pang of homesickness rose up from her stomach. She may have been angry at first for him coming to Kalos to be with her, but… she’d missed him. 

As if sensing her Herc-centric thoughts, Tsukuyo leapt her at her, scrambling up her leg so she could reach the bars. She attempted to hang upside-down, flailing when it became apparent her legs weren’t long enough to wrap around the bar. Eva reached up, pushing her up with a hand to stop her from falling. 

The Froakie pulled herself up, perching atop the bars with a sulky expression on her face. “Why are you training? Aren’t Pokemon meant to do everything for their trainers?” 

Eva let herself dangle. “I’m not sure about younger trainers, but I don’t believe so.”

“If it wasn’t against the rules, Eva would fight all the gym leaders herself!” 

A dull clang reverberated through the metal bars. Eva glanced down, unsurprised to find Herc struggling to climb up the equipment. But unlike Froakie, Squirtle weren’t made to climb. She grimaced as he slid down the pole, his shell creating an unpleasant squeal along the way. 

Landing on his butt, Herc pouted up at them. 

Eva decided against helping him up. Despite her earlier thoughts about missing him, she was relieved that she had received Tsukuyo instead of him as her first Pokemon in Kalos – the gym battle against Viola would have been a disaster otherwise. 

She went back to her sit-ups, coming face to face with Tsukuyo as she did. The Froakie narrowed her eyes at her. 

“Would you really fight the gym leaders yourself if it wasn't against the rules?” she asked. 

Eva let herself dangle once more (was she ever going to finish this set?). “What? No, of course not. Even with our abilities, most humans can’t put up a decent fight against a well-trained Pokemon.”

Another dull clang reverberated through the bars, followed by an ear-piercing squeal. “But you wrestle Pokemon all the time back home! It's your job!” Herc retorted from the ground. 

Wrangle, not wrestle – big difference,” Eva corrected him. “I protect Pokemon, not beat them up.”

She glanced up at Tsukuyo, noticing her continued gaze of suspicion. The Froakie wasn't convinced. 

“I swear, I'm not going to fight any gym leaders by myself!” Eva exclaimed. She shot a stern look at Herc, sarcastically thanking him in her head for giving Tsukuyo the wrong impression. The Froakie had already made it clear earlier what she thought of her trainer’s reckless behaviour – she didn't need any other wacky stories (even if they were true) making things worse. 

Once again, she went back to her exercise.

“You didn't finish answering my question,” Tsukuyo reminded her.

Hastily, Eva finished off a few quick sit-ups and dropped down from the bars. There was no point stopping and starting again – not when the blood was already rushing to her head. 

“It’s just another old habit,” she finally replied. 

She leapt up, the tips of her fingers gripping around the bars, but they were too wide and smooth. She slipped and landed back on her feet with a thud. Bars were no substitute for a proper hangboard. 

“Pokemon can’t do everything, and neither can humans,” Eva continued. “Things happen, so we should try to do what we can where we can. I’m part of the team as much as you and Herc are – although I seem to be literally carrying both your weights at the moment. Either way, I enjoy it… The training, I mean, not the carrying you.” 

The silence that followed caused her to check on her Pokemon. Both Herc and Tsukuyo were staring off into the distance behind her. She turned, the smell of smoke entered her nostrils. A small fire had started further down the river bank, the result of either a battle or training session that had gotten too enthusiastic. A young woman was dancing around the flames frantically, water bottle in hand as she tried to put it out with the small amount she had left. 

Didn’t she have any water Pokemon? Well, obviously not if she wasn’t using it to put out the fire… 

Picking up Herc, Eva jogged towards the scene. The fire hadn’t spread far – luckily it had started right next to the river amongst a clump of long grass and reeds. It would have been easy enough to just jump into the river itself and splash water on it. At least, Eva considered that an easy choice. 

Looking at the young woman, however… Jumping into a freezing, muddy river wearing such a fancy dress was probably not an option to begin with. Some trainers just had no sense of practicality. 

Eva put Herc on the ground. “You know what to do.” 

A sigh of relief came from the young woman as the Squirtle set to work extinguishing it. “Thank you so much, I thought I was gonna be in big trouble. Ah, where’d my Pokemon get to…” She turned around, revealing a well-groomed Vulpix hiding behind her legs. “Geez, you’re such a little pyromaniac – first my skirt and now this? Thank the nice lady and her… Squirtle, right? I’m not used to seeing hybrids.”

The Vulpix gave a small whimper, his ears downturned despite the light tone his owner had used to reprimand him. “T-Thanks…” 

Eva waved the apology away. “Just lucky I was nearby. You should get yourself a water Pokemon or one that can learn water type moves in case it happens again.” 

“After all this, I will,” the young woman said. “I don’t need another skirt scorched, that’s for sure.” 

She reached up, readjusting her beret. A sparkle caught Eva’s eye – some kind of pin was attached to it. A stylised flame icon? 

“I better get going,” the young woman announced, looking down at her own dress with a frown. She crinkled her nose up at it. “Shoot, I got ashes all over me and they’re a nightmare to clean. Thank you again, maybe I’ll see you around? I owe you one!” 

Without waiting for a reply, she scooped up her Pokemon and left. 

Eva ran a hand through her hair. If the girl hadn’t of left, she could have gotten her to replace the coffee Herc had spilt earlier. 

She shot a quick glare at the Squirtle. 

“What?” he asked. 

“You owe me as well,” she said. “For the coffee.” 

“You know I got no money…” Herc paused, putting his stubby hands up to his cheeks in shock. “You’re not going to have me pay it back with my body, are you?” 

Eva narrowed her eye at him, wondering what other inappropriate things Iksel had taught her Squirtle son. “You know what… Yes. After I get a new coffee, we’re going to start your new training routine with Tsukuyo. You’ll pay me back by learning to carry your own weight.” 

*****

Despite getting up early, the morning and early afternoon went by quickly. The training routine Eva had devised was simple: Herc and Tsukuyo had to stay in step with one another as they either jogged along the footpath or swam in the river. 

Of course, it couldn’t stay simple. Whether it was competing for the space atop Eva’s head, or competing to see who could get the most attention, neither of them were able to keep pace with the other and inevitably it turned into a race.

Eva considered buying a ‘this is our get along shirt’ for them, but she doubted anywhere sold them in a small enough size. Instead, she had to settle for joining them – if they couldn’t stay in step with one another, they’d at least compete to keep in step with her. It defeated the purpose of the exercise, but it was some kind of progress. 

By the end of it, both the Froakie and Squirtle were too tired to even attempt to climb up Eva's leg. They flailed around her feet, tugging at her pants and woefully batting the other away until Herc fell backwards onto his shell. He laid there, limbs splayed either side, too exhausted to flip himself over. Eva took note. In terms of endurance they both measured rather even – although she did notice Herc had to put in far more effort when it came to running. Not that that was unusual for a Squirtle… but normally… 

Crouching down, Eva picked Herc up and set him upright. He wobbled, threatening to topple over again. 

She steadied him. 

“How'd… I go… Captain?” he asked between laboured breaths. 

Eva glimpsed across at Tsukuyo. The Froakie was flat on her back, but her breathing had already slowed. 

“You did well,” she told the Squirtle quietly. “Really well. I'm proud of you.” 

There was no smile from Herc.

Eva wasn’t able to muster one either. 

“I pushed you too hard,” she muttered. 

“You didn’t… I know… I’m still weak…” The Squirtle reached over, patting her arm. “If I… don’t push myself… I won’t get strong for you.” 

A silent sigh escaped from Eva’s lips. Silly boy. She should be the one reassuring him, not the other way around. 

She pulled out her Pokemon’s Pokeballs. “C’mon, I’ll take you back to the hotel to get some rest.” 
Boundary x Break: Chapter 20
Sorry it's been so long!! I've had so much going on this year that getting around to writing has been really tough for me. 

=w=;; I guess I really don't have much to say about this one... but I really like writing moments between Eva and her Pokemon. 


Oh! Strangely enough, I wrote this chapter quite some time ago so I had to do some research on outdoor gyms. We didn't have any in my town. But we had a section of the shoreline along our main beach done up recently and suddenly we have an outdoor gym! I was really excited to see it since I had no idea we were getting one, but I was too embarrassed to go over and try because there were so many people around and lots of kids climbing over it like it was a normal playground ;;;

Also, I realised I should announce that this chapter is the start of a new arc. I didn't originally intend for it to be, but I shuffled some things around and renamed the previous arc. I think it works a lot better now... so welcome to Arc 3: Big Trouble in Little Camphrier Town.

START: Boundary x Break: Prologue
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Previous: Boundary x Break: Chapter 19 
Next: Soon

If you'd rather read this on the Nuzlocke Forums, go over here. You'll find a handy glossary over there if you need it in case you're catching up at any point.
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Sorry, I haven't really gotten around to this so far, I've had a lot of pretty serious stuff going on at the moment. I still have quite a few series to watch so hopefully I'll get around to watching the first episode of everything I plan to watch. 

Firstly, I'd like to do a mini-roundup of last season and what I ended up watching either the majority of episodes or fully. 

Summer 2017 Roundup:
  • Action Heroine Cheer Fruits: I watched a good chunk of this, though I wasn't able to completely finish. I'm not sure I ever will though, since it did feel like it was lacking personality with the characters. Still - it was a rather unique show with the girls putting on their own sentai-inspired stage shows.
  • Ballroom e Youkoso: The best slideshow presentation about dancing I've ever seen. I joke, I joke (the best anime about dancing that involves actual dancing is Princess Tutu IMO). The lack of dancing choreography is rather disappointing, but now that the show has gotten into its second cour, I think it's picking up a bit more with the character relations - especially with the introduction of a new partner for the MC. 
  • Centaur no Nayami: I still don't know wtf I watched. A slice of life comedy about monster girls living in an openly oppressive society where they're not meant to talk about this stuff but do. It was.... weird.... And one of the episodes was just... yeah, I'm not gonna talk about it. 
  • Fate/Apocrypha: =v=b Lots of waifus and husbandos. Good show. (RIP me ever getting the waifu I want on FGO though)
  • Kakegurui: I'm still a bit unsure what I watched with this show, but it was fun. The last episode was a bit meh, but I think they just ran out of room to do what they wanted. Kinda hoping it'll get a second season. That OP still pops up in my head. 
  • Katsugeki Touken Ranbu: The fight choreography was pretty fantastic. I was kinda surprised that the characters got quite a bit more focus than I expected them to, but it was nice even if it felt a bit overly dramatic at times. The biggest thing that brought it down were the last few episodes - but I suppose with such a basic game they must have been stuck on what to do for it. Quite a shame. 
  • Made in Abyss: If you haven't watched this yet, go watch it. I think a lot of nuzlocke fans in particular would enjoy this due to its adventurous nature and how it doesn't shy away from showing the dangers of the Abyss itself. Some of the episodes had me crying so bad. ;w;
  • New Game 2: I don't think I'd mind if this was the end of the series. It ended on a good note - although it did a few things with introducing new characters right in the middle to spice things up once the old characters are run dry which is something of a pet peeve of mine. 
  • Princess Principal: Haven't finished this one yet, but I fully mean to. It's a great show about girls being spies whilst at school, but it doesn't do the boring thing of showing the girls at school all day. They're almost always doing something important and interesting. The animation was pretty good too, especially the atmosphere of the steampunk city. 
  • Vatican Miracle Examiners: Watch the first four episodes. It's the most fantastic fuckin' anime wild ride shit I've ever seen in my life. I was losing my mind trying to explain the plot to people when I first saw it. Sadly, the episodes after that don't come nearly as close to topping the insanity. 
  • Youkoso Jitsuryoku Shijou Shugi no Kyoushitsu e: I dunno why I finished this one. I was left with more questions than answers and so many of the characters were irritating and edgelord-y. Had an interesting premise, but didn't really go anywhere in the end. Doubt it'll get a sequel so we won't find out anything. 

Okay, onto the Fall season then. I haven't watched the majority of stuff yet (and pretty much just the first episodes even though some are up to about three episodes so far), but there's some stuff I want to address at the end about sequels and what I'm not watching first. =w=;;

Fall 2017 Anime Impressions:
  • The Idolmaster Side M: I'm rather excited about this one because Idolmaster is traditionally about all-girl groups, so it'll be interesting to see how things change with an all-guy group instead - and with guys that aren't all teenagers and some are even in their late 20s. Unlike many other idol anime, Idolmaster takes its time to focus on the production side of things so it's a little more realistic. You genuinely worry when there's tension in the group, things don't go well at concerts, or the bosses aren't happy because it can mean serious setbacks for the idols in their careers and dreams. Hopefully, Side M will be just as good as the previous seasons, but from what I've seen so far it's looking good since they've also decided to stick primarily with traditionally animated dance scenes instead of using tacky CGI like so many idol shows do.
  • Juuni Taisen (Zodiac War): This one caught my eye pretty early on when I heard about it. It's by the same author as the Monogatari series, so it's bound to be pretty wacky - and so far it has been. Twelve warriors representing the different animals of the Chinese zodiac take part in a battle royale, with the winner being granted a wish. Pretty standard set-up, but the characters seem like they'll be the ones which make this series as the author is quite well-known for his ability to fuel characterisation and plot through dialogue. You'll want to make sure to read every word.
    Graphinica is behind this one, which does make me worry a little since they're quite a strange studio without much of an established reputation or style. In the past, they've mainly acted in a support role supplying CG or inbetweening, so this is one of their first attempts at a full tv anime unsupported. The first episode was decent enough with the action and cinematography, though the colours were rather more muddy than what was presented in the key visuals and the character designs themselves have the same strange rough outlining as the Granblue Fantasy anime did (which was done due to the overly-complicated designs making it hard to animate). So I have my concerns about the series staying consistent. But I guess we'll see. I'm a bit of a sucker for battle royale series, so I'm gonna try and stick with it. 
  • Mahoutsukai no Yone (The Ancient Magus' Bride): The OVA for this came out a while ago so I had a basic idea of the story - an orphan girl called Chise is sold into the service of a mage named Elias. Chise is able to see strange creatures many others can't, which creeped her caretakers out and shuffled her around from one relative to the next, never giving Chise the chance at a proper family. Elias, however, is quite kind and finally offers her one with the request she becomes his apprentice... and possibly one day, his wife (that isn't a spoiler btw, it's right there in the title lol).
    The OVAs were quite nice, showing both a little of the future and the past compared to the present the series is currently exploring. I'm a bit of a sucker for magic stuff, though a lot of anime try too hard to make it high tech, so it's nice to see a different side of magic that's more European-based and uses nature as a catalyst. There's a kind of dark feeling to this series where you're not sure you're getting the whole story, so I'm hoping we get to explore the world a lot more and see Chise and Elias' relationship grow. If you don't want to spoil anything, save the OVA for after the series is done. 
  • Houseki no Kuni (Land of the Lustrous): Long ago something happened to the planet and now all that remains are a group of "gems" - beings made of different precious stones. Their world is not entirely peaceful though, as the Gems are often hunted by a race of strange beings that descend from the moon and seek to turn them into jewellery.
    A promo for this came out about 3 or so years ago, so I'm pretty hype that this has finally become its own series - and it looks even better than the promo! CGI anime series aren't always executed very well, but I'm happy to say this is one of the better ones out there and it was a good choice considering the gem-like nature of the characters. There are a few times where the CGI stands out a little too much, but it's easy to ignore. What's more impressive is the integration of traditional 2D. I didn't even notice at first that some scenes were drawn until I went back and replayed them. The traditional backgrounds are quite pretty, though I think people will be more obsessed with the hair of each Gem.
    There is a little something that bugs me about this story, and I think it may have to do with how self-contained it is. There's not really much of a wider world out there to explore and the villains don't have much personality beyond looking like something out of an artwork. So I hope to see more stuff get developed as the series goes on. 
  • Imouto sae Ireba Ii (A Sister is All You Need): Honestly, the worst part of this anime is towards the end of the first episode it inserts a sappy character moment. The problem with that is that it's simply trying to convince you to forget the last 20 minutes of crap where the main character is obsessed with little sisters and his romantic interest keeps dropping lines about his dick and that. Eromanga-sensei was bad enough, and I wish they'd stop with this shit, but... [link]
  • Net-juu no Susume (Recovery of an MMO Junkie): It's about a 30 year old NEET woman...... NO IT'S NOT ABOUT MY LIFE, SHH. For one, I don't play MMOs any longer and there's no way I could have this cute of a fateful romantic encounter IRL.... even though the MC reacts to cute anime girls the same way I do and cries at friendship stuff on the internet... OTL
    I feel uncomfortable reviewing this because I feel like it'd be a self-review of my life..... 
  • Black Clover: My ears, my precious ears. I've never heard an MC who yells as much as this (and never in such an annoying manner). Anyway, the story is pretty standard for a shonen series - Naruto Asta has nothing special about him but wants to become the Hokage Wizard King to prove himself to everyone else, especially to his rival Sasuke Yuno. He ends up finding out that he does have special powers though and adventure happens. If you want to know how the story ends, just watch Naruto. At least it'll save your ears from all the screaming. 
  • Tsukipro The Animation: There isn't very much information about this show out there, but I remembered that there was a similarly named anime from last year called Tsukiuta The Animation (the story of which I don't remember well at all). The overall project seems to be some kind of musical collaboration between Vocaloid producers and voice actors that expanded and branched off into its own multi-platform franchise. Tsukipro looks like it has introduced a bunch of new characters to the franchise. TBH the opening had some impressive 3D modelling for the dance scenes, but other than that I found the show so utterly charmless and devoid of emotion (I seriously mean it, the faces of the characters were so damn stiff a smile was actually a perfectly flat line) that I dropped it halfway through. Unless you're already a fan of this franchise, you're better off watching Idolmaster this season. 
  • Konohana Kitan: Cute foxgirls doing cute things whilst working at a ryokan. It's very Urara Meirochou meets Hanasaku Iroha (and of course it has a little yuri and fanservice thrown in). Not much to say about this series because it's pretty standard in this kind of sub-genre (to the point I feel like I've seen this show before), but I do have to wonder if there will be more added to the worldbuilding since it's set in a yokai town. Anyway, if you like gentle slice of life stories about cute girls and nice, light colour palettes you might just want to try this one.
Anime Shorts:
  • Osake wa Fuufu ni Natte Kara: Uhh... something about a woman who is a 'yoidere' and becomes very cute when drunk. I dunno lol. I get the feeling this is another one of those anime trying to encourage otaku to marry and have kids. :V 
  • Pingu in the City: PINGU IS AN ANIME NOOT NOOT 
  • Taishou Chicchai-san: Why are people suddenly chibis? Oh wait, it's a BL series so it probably doesn't matter lol. Watch if you like to see boys touching. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
Sequels I'll be watching:
  • Hoozuki no Reitetsu 2: Comedy show about demons running hell like it's an office. Lots of great characters, wacky situations, and there's always something interesting to look at. 
  • Shokugeki no Soma 3: Shonen sports series but it's about cooking. It got me hype enough to learn how to cook a few things... =w=;;
  • Kekkai Sensen & Beyond: Alternative world New York full of aliens and demons from another dimension and a superhero-like organisation that takes on threats. Surprised it got a second season after the budgeting screw up that happened with the first season's last episode taking forever to finally air, effectively killing off any hype it was building at the time. Glad it's back though since it had a lot of promise and it's by the same author as Trigun, so it's definitely a lot of fun and full of action. 
  • Love Live Sunshine 2: I've been trapped deep in idol hell for years now. Don't be me.
  • Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: Yuusha no Shou: Magical girl show with a definite Japanese aesthetic to it. Been a long time since I watched the original, but apparently, there was a lot of spin-off material like light novels I never looked at. People compare it a lot to Madoka, and they'd be right to do so, but I feel like this stands out enough on its own even with the similarities. 
Notable series I'm not watching:
  • 3-Gatsu no Lion 2: I've heard a lot of good things about this, and it's animated by Shaft so of course, it's pretty. I just have a petty problem with the way the mouths are drawn so they distract me too much. 
  • ClassicaLoid 2: Surprised this got a sequel... I watched the first episode a while back and thought it was the biggest waste of Tomokazu Sugita's talent. I'm sure some people like this, but I couldn't bring myself to continue. 
  • Garo Vanishing Line: Garo is one of those series I am completely lost on - which is kind of unusual considering it's a rather well-known tokusatsu series. However, Garo is also a rather complicated franchise with both live action and anime components (and then there's also the TV series and standalone or tie-in movies). I have no idea how to navigate the continuity either, so I'm just going to sit this one out. 
  • Himouto! Umaru-chan R: There is a point where we needed to stop and we have clearly passed it... But the producers decided to keep going and see what happens. 
  • Infini-T Force: This actually looks pretty cool for a franchise crossover (even though I'm not overly familiar with Tatsunoko Production's older IPs beyond the brand recognition). I've heard it looks good as well, but the problem is there's not really any decent way to watch it yet. 
  • Itsudatte Bokura no Koi wa 10cm datta: Uhh... this is listed on the charts, but the first episode doesn't come out for like another 40 days or something...
  • Osomatsu-san 2: I believe this came out at a time where I actually dropped a lot of stuff for some reason or never got around to watching them properly (and looking at it now, pretty much everything from then that I did watch fully wasn't at the time it was airing - even One Punch Man). I do have a lot of respect for this series because it was definitely taking a risk when it aired as it is a revival of a vintage anime series that started back in the 60s. It succeeded and gained a lot of fans, so I applaud it for that. I'm just too far back to catch up at this point though, and I'm not entirely sure it's something that appeals to me personally, but I know a lot of people who really love it and that's pretty cool. 
  • RoboMasters the Animated Series: There is seriously very little information out about this series beyond it being a Chinese/Japanese collaboration based on a real life robotics competition for students. As of yet nobody has licenced it and it's yet to air as I'm writing this, so I dunno if there is any reliable way to watch it. 
  • UQ Holder! Mahou Sensei Negima 2: Negima is one of those series I never got into back in the mid-00s because it had very little appeal to me (mostly because of the same face syndrome all the girls were suffering, but also all the girls fawning over a ten year old boy was somewhat uncomfortable). I don't think the series has aged well at all - if anything it feels way older than what it actually is. This seems to be a sequel set in the future, so I'm not sure how much it relates to the original series, but I'm not that bothered to find out. 
Hopefully I'll have the next part out soon =w=;; But it's a lot to watch! I may end up giving some things a pass if I get desperate. 

Sketchdump 2
Just some random stuff from the past couple months. =w=;; 
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:iconcalvin286:
Calvin286 Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2018
HAPPY BIRTHDAY AND TODAY SPECIALS, we hav- *Interrupted* (Mysterious man: We've meet again... Chan-san) ('oh no, that voice...') *turns around* (Amon, I don't have time to deal with you. Can't you see I'm with a customer who's having a birthday?) (Amon: I'm afraid I must end your journey, ONCE AND FOR ALL!!!) ('WHA?' M-Motherf**ker, I don't even want to get involved in your... whatever you called it, didn't I even told you the first time we first met? That I'm taking your challenge as a one-time thing? Look at me, I'm a waiter working in this luxury restaurant, for christ sake! I'm not a f**kin threat to you or your... Amon Clan or whatever) (Amon: That means that you are determined to end us all...) (I'm not even pla-... F**k it, Let get over with this sh*t) *ADVANCING TO BATTLE: youtu.be/caXaMMKKsnU?t=32s*
()=for japanese
''= thoughts
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:icongrazyfish:
Grazyfish Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2018  Student Digital Artist
Happy Birthday Rainey!!!!
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:iconraineyj:
RaineyJ Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks Grazy <3
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:iconantarija:
Antarija Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Happy Birthday, Rainey! Birthday cake  icon 
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:iconraineyj:
RaineyJ Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you!!!! :3
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:icongecko-nuzlockes:
GECKO-Nuzlockes Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RAINE!! Hope it's a good one :D
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:iconraineyj:
RaineyJ Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks Sora!!
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:iconalphashitlord:
AlphaShitlord Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
   𝓗𝓪𝓹𝓹𝔂 𝓫𝓲𝓻𝓽𝓱𝓭𝓪𝔂!
Will Smith Tada emoticonSuper Fantastic Golden Platter Cake 3D Will Smith Tada Emoticon But I Flipped It Over by AlphaShitlord 
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:iconraineyj:
RaineyJ Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks!!
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:iconshadeofobscurity:
ShadeOfObscurity Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2018
Have a awesome birthday and here's someone who will most certainly cheer you up: www.youtube.com/watch?v=aF7uls…

Happy Birthday.
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