[Posted @ 1:31 PM]
Holy crap, Strawberry Panic! Episode 18 by Serin’s out =O. This episode provoked a lot of emotion from me … but when I replayed it, I actually laughed lol.
Nagisa and Shizuma took a romantic long walk through the maple tree trail with the leaves fallen giving it an autumn feeling. [Duh, it IS autumn in StoPani world] Nagisa asked if the distance to resort’s still far, Shizuma replied that they could see it pretty soon. Shizuma added, anyways they could appreciate the surroundings and yes it’s pretty said Nagisa. In Nagisa’s mind, she’s thinking, step by step they were nearing Shizuma’s resort and closer to Shizuma’s past, the other Etoile for she really wanted to know, however … Still walking, I think Shizuma noticed Nagisa’s stare at the picnic basket she’s holding and suggested that they stop and have the sandwiches Tamao made. [I wonder if Nagisa’s really staring at the picnic basket or she was just thinking and happened to stare blankly at the picnic basket haha] Both of them started eating the sandwiches, Shizuma commented that it’s yummy, Nagisa probably deep in thoughts, took 2 seconds later to agree and reply lol. Shizuma then said that when they return to the Ichigo-sha, they should thank Tamao for it. Nagisa remembered to the scene where she apologized to Tamao because she wouldn’t be autumn leaf viewing or ‘Momiji-gari’ with her. In Shizuma’s mind, she’s thinking of that time where she spent it with her that short summer. However, she continued recollecting that it has been just as in the past … like a silent pile of fallen leaves [In contrast to the manga, Chapter 8, Shizuma said that remembering Kaori pains her heart so she doesn’t want to remember.]
After entering the mansion like building, Nagisa wanted to return the key pendent to Shizuma but before she could say anything Shizuma told Nagisa to wait for a moment while she prepares the bath for them. Staring at the key pendent, Nagisa tied and wore it around her neck then looked around the interior of the mansion. [There was the living room with the piano and the staircase to the second floor.] Shizuma gave towel and clothes to Nagisa and asked her to use it, Nagisa asked Shizuma what about herself then? Shizuma thanked Nagisa for her concern by giving her a million dollar and watt smile lol causing Nagisa to blush once again. Shizuma said that she’ll be okay as she would be using the second floor’s bathroom and told Nagisa to enjoy her bath. Before closing the door, Shizuma told Nagisa, after the bath, she’ll tell Nagisa about it [About Kaori]. Shower scene~ not much to describe XD too bad they’re not in the same same bathroom together haha, Shizuma looked like she’s preparing her heart about relating Kaori to Nagisa =O. Shizuma finished her bath and was out in a hot bathrobe and now she’s talking to a photo frame with her and the goddamn freaking light blinded the girl’s face but we know she’s Kaori, the other Etoile, saying it’s been a rather long time. A moment later, she apologized and flipped down the photo frame. [This kinda symbolized that Shizuma’s decided to stop thinking of Kaori and move on.]
It continued to rain heavily, while Nagisa had also finished her bath and was looking out of the window, Shizuma walked in and asked if she would like to have coffee. Nagisa was mesmerized by Shizuma’s natural sexiness in that hot bathrobe, perfectly accentuating that cleavage [O_O] and even thought to herself that Shizuma’s beautiful. Both of them sat in front of the fire place and slowly sipping coffee, Nagisa peered over Shizuma’s side, placed down her cup and told Shizuma that she’s curious, why her? [I think Nagisa meant why Shizuma had chose her to tell her about her past with Kaori.] Shizuma smiled at Nagisa and merely replied, ‘It’s because it’s you, Nagisa.’ Nagisa blushed and went, ‘Shizuma-sama …’ The moment was then spoilt by the thunder outside. At the Ichigo-sha, Tamao’s looking out of the window, murmuring Nagisa’s name and saying that Nagisa’s late. Similarly, Rokujou’s also looking out of the window murmuring Shizuma’s name. [Both of them probably realized that they were not coming back in this thunderstorm.] Back in Shizuma’s mansion, Shizuma remarked that the rain’s turning into a thunderstorm, so she didn’t think they could return so she told Nagisa that they would be staying for the night.
Nagisa repeated, staying for the night …? -Cue waves crashing against rocks- Shizuma continued, we could just return tomorrow, by morning the thunderstorm would have subsided. Nagisa said I see, but Tamao will be worried and also we had no permission from the sister … Shizuma replied that she’ll make a call to Miyuki and tell her about it then left. In Nagisa’s mind, she’s thinking, ‘With Shizuma-sama, both of us alone …’ In the Ichigo-sha, Rokujou told the sister about Nagisa and Shizuma who were staying out for the night. When Rokujou walked out and to the hallway, she told Tamao who was standing there about it and Tamao sounded worried over there [Oh no, my Nagisa’s with the seductive Shizuma-sama … how can I not worried?! LoL]. Back at the mansion, Nagisa and Shizuma proceed slowly to the second floor and Shizuma showed Nagisa the room she’s staying in other words … her room. Nagisa seemed shocked, ‘The other Etoile …’, she said. Shizuma added that, ‘Her name’s Kaori.’ -Cue thunder- Nagisa repeated, ‘Kaori-san …’ ‘Yes, Sakuragi Kaori.’ Shizuma continued. ‘Sakuragi Kaori.’, Nagisa repeated again. Shizuma then said that if Kaori was alive, she would be the same age as Nagisa. Moving over to sit on the bed, Shizuma told Nagisa that the room was once Kaori’s room and touched the beddings for a moment before she got up, walked to the window and said that it’s was the appropriate place to talk more about it. ‘That time, it was a thunderstorm night too.’ ‘That time?’, Nagisa repeated. ‘The time we were in love.’ -Cue thunder- Shizuma looked over to Nagisa who was looking a little crestfallen when she said that. ‘No, maybe it’s not accurate to call it love, till now I can’t tell if it’s really real love or was it simply compassion. I can’t tell. Even so, it’s without a doubt that we needed each other.’ -Cue thunder- Shizuma sighed [Probably after saying so much].
Nagisa looked a little stunned but thought to herself that she must continue listening to it because Shizuma’s seriously telling her about it. ‘But Kaori …’, Shizuma continued. ‘From that time on, my world became dull. The person who brought the colours back was Nagisa, you. ’ Nagisa seemed stunned. ‘Because Nagisa’s here, I could stand up again …’, Shizuma caressed Nagisa’s hair who was blushing. ‘Because you are here, Nagisa, I could again …’ Nagisa confessed that she too, after meeting Shizuma … -Cue thunder- [DAMN THUNDER] Shizuma stopped touching Nagisa’s hair and told her to change her clothes because they have more to speak about and left to get her night gown. Nagisa crossed her hands on her chest, probably feeling her rapid heart beat or the key pendent Shizuma gave her, whichever it was, Nagisa’s happy. Meanwhile, Shizuma’s back in her room, talking to the picture of Kaori and her not to worry as she’s alright now. ‘If it’s her, Nagisa, surely …’ -Cue thunder- Shizuma continued looking at the photo frame, repeating that she’s alright and walked out of the room, feeling not like the confident Etoile we know. Standing in front of Kaori’s now Nagisa’s room, Shizuma actually hesitated to turn the door knob but she assured herself by saying she’s alright now, stared ahead and grasped the door knob. -Cue thunder- The whole place became dark, there was a power shortage. Shizuma entered the room and told Nagisa that the lights will be back soon. Shizuma walked towards Nagisa and caressed her cheeks, saying she had brought the night gown over. Nagisa blushed and closed her eyes.
Shizuma moved her hand over to Nagisa’s chest then began fingering with the key pendent and suddenly Shizuma saw a vision of a ruby pendent flashing across. Nagisa opened her eyes and gazed at Shizuma. -Cue thunder- The light of the thunder created a vision of the naked Kaori wearing a pendent, calling Shizuma’s name [Probably the ruby one] in place of Nagisa. The vision faded away and back to Nagisa’s stunned expression probably shocked at the wide-eyed expression Shizuma had. -Cue thunder- Shizuma dropped Nagisa’s night gown and her tears started to flow down. Surprised, Nagisa moved towards Shizuma who was staring blankly above, suddenly Shizuma just collapsed into Nagisa’s arms crying out Kaori’s name. -Cue waves crashing against cliff- The more Shizuma cried out Kaori’s name, more tears began to form around Nagisa’s eyes. [It’s like stabbing little knifes into Nagisa’s heart with every Kaori Shizuma muttered. Probably it pained Nagisa’s heart that Shizuma’s hurting so much and she could do nothing to help. Oh yeah, I love the piano background music =D] -Cue thunder- Shizuma looked up at Nagisa and found tears threatening to drop down Nagisa’s cheeks and when the tears rolled down, Nagisa tore herself from Shizuma’s embrace and ran out. -Cue waves crashing against cliff + thunder- Scene switches to the photo frame, piano, the swinging door out, Nagisa had ran out into the storm. Shizuma slowly got up, muttering, ‘Nagisa.’, like she had just realized Nagisa’s presence.
Nagisa’s standing at the cliff, sobbing quietly to herself. Like a walking dead zombie, Shizuma toddled over to Nagisa’s side and waited for a moment before placing her hand on Nagisa’s shoulders. Nagisa turned back, gazed at Shizuma’s rather lifeless, sorrow and a little sorry expression [I can’t really described it … like she’s asking for forgiveness.] and Nagisa apologized. Shizuma’s confused, Nagisa continued, ‘I’m no good isn’t it?’, apologized again before running back to the mansion again. Shizuma stared confusingly at Nagisa’s running figure before walking lifelessly near the mansion, then pausing to stare with that motionless expression at the mansion. -Cue thunder- The next day, Shizuma awoke [Omigod, does Shizuma sleep naked?! LoL] and went over to Nagisa’s room but it was empty. The bed, robe and nightgown were folded and made nicely, walking down to the ground floor, Nagisa’s uniform was gone. Shizuma stared with a pained sorrow expression when she realized what happened. At the Ichigo-sha, Rokujou and Tamao were awaiting for Nagisa and Shizuma’s return but only Nagisa walked through the gates. Tamao called Nagisa’s name happily and ran forward to welcome her. Nagisa smiled grimly at them, Rokujou asked for Shizuma, Nagisa just apologized then wobbled unsteadily before collapsing in Tamao’s arms.
Tamao kept calling out Nagisa’s name while Rokujou went to get the doctor but not before looking back and uttering, ‘Shizuma, you are still …’. Back at the mansion, Shizuma’s back in her room, the photo frame had been straighten up and we finally caught a glimpe [Actually not really lol] of the other Etoile, Sakuragi Kaori who bore a very striking resemblance to Nagisa if she had red hair. [Shizuma looked really really really happy in the photo … looked so … couple-like so full of life and so chibi kawaii~~] – END –
God, such a wrecking emo episode lol, a little draggy for Shizuma’s part, she’s bidding time to reveal slowly to Nagisa, but overall it was ok when the information started to flow in. No doubt that Nagisa’s got the hots for Shizuma, with the holding hands part, blushing parts and the praising Shizuma’s beautiful part. After this episode, we realized that Shizuma really cared, I wouldn’t say love because Shizuma said she can’t tell and doesn’t know what is love anymore but it’s visible that she really cared for Nagisa a lot beyond the friends line. Shizuma’s not using or merely replacing Kaori with Nagisa, she really had feelings for Nagisa. Nagisa too had feelings for Shizuma but the ‘Kaori’s still important or still part of Shizuma’s heart’ kept lingering in her mind and she began to think herself as a replacement for Kaori. Take note, it’s NOT Shizuma who thinks Nagisa’s a replacement, it’s Nagisa who thinks she is.
This can be supported by the cliff scene, where Nagisa turned back at Shizuma, apologized and said, ‘I’m not good, isn’t it?’. Nagisa thought she’s not good for Shizuma compared to Kaori who probably completed Shizuma in the past. Nagisa kept comparing herself to Kaori, her insecurity and fears were exposed and confirmed when Shizuma broke down and cried Kaori’s name. It’s really not Shizuma’s fault that she broke down, it’s obvious that Shizuma really prepared herself very hard to accept Nagisa through the flipping down of the photo of her and Kaori, confessing to Nagisa that yes she loved Kaori and her world had dulled when Kaori died but now, she has Nagisa and Nagisa brought colours to her life now. I’m sure Shizuma didn’t count on the flashing vision of the naked Kaori in Nagisa, sure probably Nagisa might have some qualities Kaori had [We’ll probably see more of Kaori in episode 19] with the puppy red eyes. [Oh Shizuma did said that Nagisa’s eyes were innocently beautiful in one of the episodes … eh I can’t remember which lol.] Annyways, Shizuma chose the resort to tell Nagisa the memories of Kaori and her was both risky but truthful, worse come to worse, that might even be the very place they had their first times together haha. Nevertheless, I applaud Shizuma for being so genuine and honest with her feelings, it’s just so Shizuma-like. Hope Nagisa takes the next step to bring them closer, Shizuma might be too hurt or too fearful to be close to Nagisa again. Both of them are still too raw in relationships …
Oh yeah, speaking of the ruby and sapphire pendents, I think Shizuma had the sapphire one, while Kaori had the ruby one. I wonder if there’s any meaning behind the colour, I mean they could had got the same colour right? Meanwhile, the good friend, Miyuki gets the key after Kaori died. Shizuma did say her world was dull and probably gave her key/heart to Miyuki who was her trusted and best friend to both Kaori and Shizuma since she found no life in having the key to the mansion anymore. Oh, looking from the Drama CD, Tamao might really slap Shizuma when she comes back for hurting her Nagisa-chan. =O.
Art: 7/10 [I really like the close ups of Shizuma and her expressions]
Story: 6.5/10 [Actually there’s not much content, just a lot of emotions, but in the end, we just knew the other Etoile’s name, face and also Shizuma’s determination to let Nagisa in her heart.]
Characters: 7.5/10 [Shizuma suffered a lot.]
Sorry for being so late … cos I wanted to seriously think about the relationship between Nagisa and Shizuma and also Kaori. Then I tried to put my shoes in Nagisa then Shizuma and lastly Kaori … it’s a good episode, not much contents but filled with alot of emotions.
[Signing off @ 11:59 PM]