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For the first novel as well as information about how I organized this and the purpose behind it.

Book 2, The Sorcerer's of Atlas

Book 3: The Ghosts of Sairaag

Book 4: The Battle of Saillune

Book 5: The Silver Beast

Book 6: Vezendi's Shadow

Book 7: Gaav's Challenge

Book 8: King of the City of Ghosts, Part 1

Book 8: King of the City of Ghosts, Part 2

Book 9: The Cursed Sword of Bezeld

Book 10: Evil Devices in Solaria


This novel is an anomaly, especially in the latter half of the series, in that it does not move the plot of the arc much and could be easily skipped. Lina and Gourry are also the only recurring characters who feature in it. But does that means that there’s nothing to be gained from this novel, no deeper parallels, no flights of long range reaching? Read on to find out! Special thanks to pip25 and hlrespect for the translation!

After noting that there has been an increase in brass demon attacks, Lina and Gourry find a sign telling all sorcerers to report at the nearest Sorcerer’s Guild. She learns that a sorcerer in Crimson Town named Cairus has staged a revolt and the guild is sending people there to put it down. While having lunch, a woman named Aria asks to accompany Lina and Gourry to Crimson Town.

Aria explains her sister, Bell, was forced to marry Cairus and that she wants to rescue her. Along the way they pick up a merc named Dilarl who is always putting the moves on Aria. They travel to Crimson and get into numerous fights to get into the city, and eventually end up in Cairus’ manor.

They find Bell and get into a fight with Cairus and several minions. Lina decides to withdrawal, but in the process Dilarl is killed and they are separated from Bell. Aria notes that a lot of the minions had the names of people she knew in the Sorcerer’s Guild and they deduce that Cairus somehow transformed them into demons.

When they attack again they kill Cairus and when they meet up with Bell they find that at some point Sherra must have given her Dulgofa, because Bell was really the mastermind. After Cairus had killed her fiancé and threatened to kill Aria to get her to marry him, Bell decided to destroy him. Using Dulgofa she transformed him into a demon to do her bidding and revolt against the guild. Bell then completely merges with Dulgofa and attacks Aria. She is defeated when Aria deliberately allows herself to be stabbed by Dulgofa so Bell can be arrested by her love for her, which delays her long enough for Lina to use the Ragna Blade and kill her.


We get to see a side of Lina we don’t often in the books, that of a teacher/mentor to Aria. While Lina describes Aria as around her age or slightly older, Lina is a seasoned traveler and warrior, Aria is rather green. And throughout the novel, Lina describes her as a “girl.” In a lot of ways, this seems to emphasize how exceptional and precocious Lina is.

Lina’s experience is brought to the fore when Dilarl dies, and your faced with just how accustomed Lina is to seeing death.

However... in my arms, Dilarl’s body already began losing its warmth little by little.

I knew what that meant.

It’s like this... when a man dies.

Lina is familiar with death. Aria is not, and grapples with guilt after he dies.

Why did Lina agree to help Aria in the first place? That Lina would go to Crimson is a no-brainer. There’s trouble a foot and Lina, as always, feels obligated to stop it. Joining forces with Aria is riskier, though. As Lina notes, “In truth, while we were battling with the lesser demons earlier, she just stood there trembling, without a clue about what to do. To fight well, you need some experience, boldness and determination - but it looked like Aria lacked all of the above.”

Yet Lina does team up with her and mentors her through the book, and towards the end she notes with satisfaction that Aria is starting to get the hang of fighting. At odds with her reputation, Lina is a surprisingly patient teacher who never berates Aria for messing up or hesitating but calmly and matter-of-factly instructs her on how to proceed.

Why does Lina even bother to help Aria in the first place considering she is so green and more of a liability than asset to the group? For one thing, there are several parallels between Aria and Lina. They are both the younger of two sisters. Both studied sorcery while their sisters went with more domestics pursuits. And Lina agrees to travel with Aria after hearing her story. Yet there are also a lot of differences between them, and Lina is quick to point them out.

I also have a sister in my hometown, but I’m sure as hell she’s much, much stronger than me. She's the kind of person who can get through anything, no matter how hard or huge the problem is.

So, to be honest, I never really understood this ‘the troubled heart of a worrying sister’-thing, but...

So Lina has a hard time envisioning her sister in this kind of trouble. Still, she agrees to help. And at the end of the novel, Lina shows knowledge of just how complex the relationship between sisters can be. When Bell explains that she married Cairus because she was fairly sure he killed her fiancé and he threaten to kill Aria, Lina realizes

She has come to hate her as well.

She sent Aria away because she loved her. She did not want her to get involved in the fight.

She also sent her away because she hated her. She wanted her to feel guilty about leaving her sister alone in the town and also used Aria to spread information about Cairus leading the revolt.

So she quickly gets how complicated sister relationships can be. Does Lina have similar feelings with her own sister, where she loves her and hates her? On the one hand Lina has told stories of a sister who took her to see the fairy lights and traveling. And then there’s the sister who fed her poison and terrifies her. It’s hard to say for sure either way because Lina does not give us much to go on, but it does make you wonder.

Lina is also protective of Aria, even though she pegs Aria as being her age of slightly older. When Dilarl puts the moves on her, Lina tells him to back off or instructs Aria to tell him to get lost.

We learn some things about Lina’s relationship with the guild. For one thing, the guild can order all sorcerers to report to them. It’s unknown what the consequences would be if they don’t. It’s also worth noting that while Lina has shown herself to be cynical of organized structures, she still reports to the Sorcerer’s Guild.

Of course, it could have been curiosity. Something is afoot and Lina has to stick her nose in it. But it does raise the question of how beholden sorcerers are to the guild. Given that Cairus’ power grab caused neighboring guilds to organize against him there does seem to be a function to prevent abuse of power, which given how powerful sorcerers are compared to an average person would likely be needed,

Whether or not they fund Lina’s adventures (more on that in later novels) once again she mentions neglecting to make a report to them.

Umm... Come to think of it, I never officially reported to the Sorcerer’s Guild about what happened there...

Well, I’ll do that later.

So while she is wary of them, she does recognize the importance of working with them as well.

Zel gets a shout out in this novel.

There’s a person I know who was turned into a chimera by someone else and then wandered through the land to find a way to become human again. I didn’t hear news of him at the time, but it seemed obvious that he’s having a hard time with it.


The parallels between Lina and Aria bring some world questions up that haven’t been discussed much lately. Mainly how much freedom do women have in the Slayersverse. Lina and Aria both studied magic while their sisters did not and stayed at home for one thing.

“Okay, so she can’t use offensive magic, right?” I tried to push the conversation along.

“No, actually, she doesn’t know anything about magic at all,” she said. “I became interested in magic when I was little and went to the Sorcerer’s Guild, but Bell loved cooking and often helped out in our parents’ small restaurant instead.”

Their older sisters pursued domestic pursuits while Lina and Aria went to the Sorcerer’s Guild. This seems to enforce the dichotomy that becoming a sorceress opens up opportunities to women that ordinary girls don’t have.

Bell was slated to be married. It’s uncertain if Luna is in any sort of relationship. Aria is not, and seems to be distressed by Dilarl’s affections (though there could be a multitude of reasons for that, right down to simple dislike). While there’s nothing concrete, it’s worth considering that marriage could close the opportunities afforded to sorceresses to travel, thus explaining why Lina never lists her mother as an influence in her decision to study sorcery and the fact that, despite there being verbal and a few physical exchanges of affection between her and Gourry, it doesn’t seem as if their relationship has become fully romantic despite traveling together for 2 years.

And on the relationship from, this scene is worth taking a look at. After Bell and Aria die, Lina and Gourry are walking.

“...Are you crying...?”

“...Don’t be stupid...” I answered to Gourry with a small smile while glancing at him over my shoulder.

Likely she’s telling the truth, given the smile and she turns to face him without drying her eyes. However,

“It’s just... I have... too much on my mind, a bit...” Turning my eyes back to the city, I mumbled in a low voice.

Indicating that there was likely something in her demeanor to indicate that she was sad. Gourry asks her to explain what happened and she does. While she doesn’t say anything out loud to him, she indicates that she has been affected by the recent events,

I did not want... Aria’s sacrifice to save her sister’s mind to be in vain.

But still...

Gourry responds,

“Lina...” Gourry drew closer to me and put his hand on my head. “Don’t be sad... Whatever is on your mind, you can share that burden with me.”

“Gourry...” I rested my arm on his shoulder... right before I put it around his neck, and started to strangle him. “Of course you have to do that! Do you think I’d just stand idly by if you’d tell me ‘sorry, not my problem’?! I would choke the life out of you!"

Considering how when he first offered his shoulder to her she opened up after some persuading, she now seems to take it for granted that the shoulder will be there, threatening to choke the life out of him if he isn’t.

“But... khh... you’re already choking me!”

That he can talk indicates that it’s likely a playful choke hold and not anything serious enough to harm him. Though, now that I really think about this I wonder how this would work out given their height differential…

Anyway, what is worth noting here is even though there are heavy matters weighing on her mind, she doesn’t open up to him. When she opened up to him in The Battle of Saillune, it was about being worried about attacks on her life, not something she was likely to cry about. In this case, Lina had been mentoring Aria and seems to be stirring over what happened. And technically Lina had to kill her.

It could be that Lina didn’t want to talk about what happened because she was close to crying, which is not something we’ve seen her do openly in front of another person in the novels. And when Gourry asks her to open up she responds by teasing him.

So for whatever reason, she’s not ready to fully open up emotionally to another person…yet.


-According to Aria, Sairaag was destroyed 2 years ago. “…that city was destroyed by an unknown force two years ago...” Meaning Lina would be about 17-18 by this book.

-“Hmm... Wait... It’s not locked, only bolted. Then...” I pulled out a thin knife hidden under one of my shoulder guards, and stuck it between the door and the frame.

Not much here, except damn! What else does she keep in those shoulder guards? And is that where Gourry stores all of his stuff as well, under his armor?


Gourry does rather well smarts wise in this novel. He remembers what happened in Sairaag when it’s mentioned.

“Uh...!” Both Gourry and I let out an unwitting groan.

He also remembers Dulgofa.

“Aria... look at this. This is the... the power I received. Come to me... Dulgofa.”

“H-Hey, Lina! That’s...!”

His keen senses of observation also allow him to observe things that fly over Lina’s head…if only she would listen to him.

“By the way, Lina...” Gourry spoke to me as I chanted the incantation. “Something has been bugging me since a little while ago... Hey, are you listening?”

Of course I was listening. I just couldn’t reply since I was in the middle of releasing my spell.

“It feels like the texture of the earth became different...” he continued.

Oh, give me a break.

“Bephis Bring.” After lengthening the tunnel with my spell, I crouched down and muttered, “It’s no wonder it feels like that since, you know, the earth looks almost like mud right now.”

“No, that’s not what I meant. This feeling is--”

“Then what do you mea--” No sooner than those words left my mouth, my right hand sank deep into the ground with a wet sound.


At that moment, an overwhelming current of water blasted forth abruptly, and swept us away.

He’s actually a little ticked with her for not listening to him when he wakes up.

Ungh... Uhh...” As I shook him, he let out a groan, his body moving slightly...

…then he abruptly jumped to his feet, looked around, and finally chose to glare at me.

“This is what I’ve been trying to tell you just now,” he told me. “It felt like we were walking on really thin ice.”

And as always, he has a way of getting straight to the point.

“But Lina, wouldn’t it be dangerous to go up right now?” Gourry interrupted me with his opinion when I was about to chant a spell. The way he can stumble upon such crucial issues never fails to amaze me ever since I met him.

In fact, after a particularly good display of the working knowledge of physics, Lina notes, "He can be shockingly smart sometimes - although I suspect he was just following his intuition."

Wherever their relationship is, Lina’s happiness is important to him. As indicated by the conversation he has with her after Bell and Aria’s death, he checks to see if she is okay. After he gets a rise out of her he comments, “Well, you seem to be feeling better now, at least.”

Which seems to have been his goal, breaking through whatever fog of depression was clinging around her.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 27th, 2014 09:14 am (UTC)
This novel is really odd. As you said, it's pretty much self-contained, and also quite dark, with everyone we know of in Crimson Town except Lina and Gourry dying in the end.
The execution was done well, nonetheless, with the exception of one glaring plot-holeish problem that greatly annoyed me: Aira's death was actually totally unnecessary and felt more than a bit forced. Lina notes several times that her sister can likely absorb her opponent's knowledge using the tiniest injury - Aria getting herself impaled simply wasn't needed for the plan to work. Well, unless she was feeling suicidal, I guess. :/
Jul. 28th, 2014 03:00 am (UTC)
Hmm...may be Aria is just the type to overdo it, you know, make a 12 course meal when a single course would suffice. Other than that I've got nothin'.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )



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