What the hell did I just watch?
Things start out in continuation from the last episode with Maria explaining that Beatrice came to kill the last three sacrifices needed for her revival. She says that Beatrice told her to face the wall and sing a song, as it would allow Maria to be unable to hear the murders going on in the room. Apparently Beatrice would have gone after Battler & company but Kinzo’s magic doorknob kept her out. Being a witch must be pretty shitty if you can’t even break open a window to get in a room.
As Battler, George and Jessica talk to Maria they realize that Natsuhi is missing. Maria says that Natsuhi was reading another letter and they find out that she’s locked them in the room. Natsuhi confronts Beatrice’s butterfly form and aims her gun to shoot it, but ends up shooting herself in the head. My guess is that it’s a psychological illusion that Beatrice placed on her.
Maria rejoices (like the little twat she is) that Beatrice will revive now and Battler angrily shoots at the butterfly on Beatrice’s portrait. Unfortunately it just turns into more butterflies and Battler starts screaming that all that’s happening is impossible.
The next scene shows a two fisherman that find a bottle that holds a letter by Maria that “explains” the massacre that happened to the Ushiromiya family. However, to me it’s more like how Maria wants the story to be told. Then the screen cuts to a bunch of text that states that the Ushiromiya massacre was never fully understood.
Next thing I know the three teens, Maria, Shannon and Kanon are chillin’ out and talking about the deaths that they experienced. TOTAL mindfuck for me because I assumed that this story would be linear and not cyclical like Higurashi. They also skipped out on how Battler, Maria, George and Maria met their end, but I assume that’ll be saved for the end of the series. It’s a little annoying because it would have been more fun to try to figure the situations as it continued, but now it looks like the remaining episodes will be spent on explaining the deaths for us. Anyhow all of them except for Battler are saying that they should have believed in Beatrice’s existance from the start, but Battler calls bullshit and demands that she show herself if she’s real.
And here she is, Yuuko Beatrice! Just another big breasted witch for Sayaka Ohara to be until the next xxxHolic OVAs come out. Beatrice likes to tease in the same way Yuuko does, but in the end Yuuko likes to help people and Beatrice is the Endless Witch who can kill and revive a person as many times as she likes. Kind of a shitty power unless you’re extremely sadistic. Anyhow, Battler denies the existance of witches even with Beatrice’s arrival and he decides to bet that he can explain every situation under human circumstances. Since Beatrice’s existance relies on people believing in her, she’ll pretty much “die” if he can denounce her power.
Beatrice is plenty twisted and proceeds to kill everyone but Battler again. I found it interesting that Kanon and Shannon’s real deaths are depicted but George, Maria and Jessica just crumble away. Either they’re not really dead and all of this is in Battler’s head from when the clock struck midnight, or this is just another method of hiding their deaths until the end of the series.
Rika! Except it’s not. This is Lady Bernkastel who is the Witch of Miracles. I think that she has some connection to Rika’s more adult personality, but they’re definitely two different people. Bernkastel meets with Beatrice and decides to watch Battler’s bet since she has nothing better to do. After Beatrice leaves, Bernkastel talks to an unknown person and says that she’ll use her power to redo any situation as long as it’s not hopeless. I’m assuming that in the game it’s like she’s talking to the player, but in this case it’s Battler.
I think the biggest thing that threw me of with this story is Beatrice’s death guidelines, or more specifically the word “twilight”. When I think of twilight, I assume it means the once a day phenomenon so I assumed that the deaths would happen at a much slower rate or would take more days to all occur.