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Vanitas no Carte 13 — Glissando

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Laura writing a post on a single chapter?! Is the world coming to an end?!

[WARNING!] This post contains spoilers for chapter 13 of Vanitas no Carte! (duh)

Mémoire 13  「 Glissand」(滑奏) 36P

No my lovelies, the Earth is safe (for now), and with Vanitas no Carte officially celebrating its one year anniversary this blogger is going to finally be swapping over to monthly VnC posts! As such, there's obvs going to be a few changes; I'll still be pointing out curiosities, that's for sure, but my posts will start looking a biiiiiiit more like my comments on the other manga series I blog about, and they'll obviously be shorter.

Anyway, let's jam!

Quick Summary

Vanitas, Noé, Jeanne and Luca visit Lord Ruthven at Carbunculus Castle to hear more about his investigation on curse-bearers. Ruthven confides in them that the real target of the attack at the Bal Masqué was most likely little Luca, who is actually a Grand Duke — one with rank and power second only to the queen of vampires.
Vanitas goes on to question Ruthven about the state the queen finds herself in, saying he believes the outbreak in curse-bearers is her fault. This sends Ruthven into rage, as speaking ill of the queen is intolerable in the vampire, and Vanitas&Noé get sent back to the human world immediately. There we discover it was Vanitas's ploy to purposely anger Ruthven so as to check Luca's reaction... as Ruthven points out, the fact that Luca was agitated by his words rather than infuriated has practically proven that what Vanitas said is right.
Back at Count Orlok's study, Dante, Riche and Johans return with news: they tracked down a curse-bearer that just arrived in Paris, but got kidnapped. Dante managed to rip a button off the kidnapper, which reveals they were a chasseur — the church's anti-vampire unit.

Terminology

The order: Japanese term, followed by special furigana reading in parenthesis if there is one, followed by romanisation in italics if I consider it necessary, followed by the official English translation, followed by definition after the hyphen.
Terms with a red flag have appeared before, but now have new information!
  • ⚑ 狩人 (シャスール) kariudo (shasuuru) [ Chasseurs ] — The church's anti-vampire unit. Their crest seems to be that of a sword with six wings attached to it.
  • ダムピール / ダム[ Dhampir / Dham ] — Half-breed vampires, supposedly half-human half-vampire if MochiJun is fully following the use of the word. Riche, Dante and Johann are all dhampirs.
  • オリフラム大公 [ Grand Duke Oriflamme ] — A title with rank and power second only to the queen. It is rightfully Lucius's, though as he is yet to become of age it is his guardian and uncle, Lord Ruthven, officially takes care of his duties as Grand Duke. Grand Dukes are Her Majesty's closest advisers.


Comment


Vanitas, dear... you have a death wish.
Looks like this fucker doesn't mind putting his life at risk as long as it gets him what he wants. Stupid or genius? Hard to decide, really. We've seen proof of H.Vanitas's throw-away attitude since mémoire 1, and this masochistic trait of his isn't as surprising as it is jarring, because it inevitably leads us back to questioning whether H.Vanitas cares about his own life at all. Perhaps taking revenge on V.Vanitas by "saving" all vampires really is the only reason he lives for...


Salvation

And speaking about salvation, it appears we have ourselves a recurring moral dilema. What is salvation? A torturous question for poor Noé, who witnessed his best friend lose his mind and was unable to grant his last wish. It appears that Noé cannot fully compute this idea of salvation possibly meaning death. For Louis, salvation was dying at his friend's hands. For the lady at the Bal Masqué, it meant taking back her true name and returning to ash. So it seems the characters are thus far defending that death can also be "salvation". Noé's reaction to Lord Ruthven's words on Luca's brother are evidently causing him to ponder the question of salvation once more, and I can't help but wonder what conclusion of his own Noé will reach.
THAT ASIDE. Does Lord Ruthven not want Luca's bro cured, or is it bro's will not to be cured? Was Luca going against his uncles wishes by seeking out the Book of Vanitas, or was he going against his bro's wishes? MochiDevil don't leave me hanging here, I want to know moreeeeeee ( ≧Д≦)


Lord Ruthven

Why is he even wearing that eyepatch, anyway? Is his eye missing, or is it to hide his geass??

Well, what do we have here! A proper big fish! It turns out Lord Ruthven is considered a hero, and the central figure behind the peace between humans and vampires. He's the one who brought the war to an end, according to what Domi tells the clueless Noé... and judging by how he leaves both Noé and Jeanne (Jeanne, who's so fucking badass with her transformers arm) completely knocked out when he looses his temper, this guy is clearly someone you don't want to mess with. I'm having a some serious Jack flashbacks with all this "hero of the tragedy" stuff we're being fed about this guy, but I won't ponder on it too much for the time being.
On a sidenote, I can't help but wonder if Noé and Jeanne suffered the effects of Ruthven's anger because they defended Vanitas (unlikely, judging by how Ruthven later on points out that every vampire flies into rage when the queen is insulted), or if the reason why they were harmed and Luca wasn't is because Luca is immune to dear uncle Ruthy's powers... food for thought.
But what I find far more intriguing about uncle Ruthy is that it's clear from his office/hobby room that he's one big astronomy fanboy. Not only does he have a gorgeous celestial map on the ceiling, but also owns an armillary sphere of his own (as well as a difference engine running on astermite that he got from Marquis Machina, as he explains to Noé).
Anybody else wondering where the door behind that curtain in the back leads to?

It's hard to say whether his evident interest in astronomy has anything to do with his investigation on curse bearers, but it definitely follows the motifs of the series so far, what with formula reconstruction (or at least, what I¡m assuming is formula reconstruction) looking like constellations (x), and stars being prominent in all of MochiJun's illustrations.
It's rather disappointing that uncle Ruthy's time under the spotlight was so very short, as there are still many questions left to answer about his character, but I guess the itch has been scratched, if only temporarily.


The Queen & Oriflamme

Woman, that looks nasty!!! ((((;゜Д゜)))

The vampire queen at Carbunculus Castle is as dry as a mummy, and she looks wasted. If everything H.Vanitas said was true, and not all wordyness for show to get the reaction he needed out of baby Luca, then the cause behind the outbreak of curse-bearers lies in the queen's petrifying condition (I'm so very funny, har har har). H.Vanitas questions at the very end whether the queen is even alive, and the state she's in is everything but lively, if you ask me. However so far we have been lead to believe that when vampires perish they "return to ash", as we have seen in mémoires 4 and 10... so perhaps this woman isn't fully gone and something can still be done to de-mummify her (how about a facelift?).
Moving on tu Luca/Lucius, Grand Duke Oriflamme... with rank and power second only to the queen!! Boy oh boy, that sure explains why Jeanne referred to Luca as "votre altesse" (我が主, furigana "votre altesse" meaning "Your Highness") back in mémoire 3. It seems that in our universe, oriflamme was the sacred scarlet banner of St Denis, given to early French kings by the abbot of St Denis on setting out for war, and that the name derived from the Latin aurea flamma, meaning "golden flame" (x). It follows up with the meaning behind Luca's name, derived from Latin lux meaning "light", and his display of fire powers in mémoire 4.
Moreover, if Luca is something akin to royalty, whatever were those shackles on Luca's ankle? (x) He sure likes Uncle Ruthy, so I highly doubt he was kept chained........

Well then my lovelies, that's all I have to say about this chapter. I'm excited at the prospect of learning more about the chasseurs and the new character MochiJun introduced at the very end of mémoire 13, captain cry-baby. What's most intriguing is H.Vanitas's gloomy reaction to the button with the chasseurs's crest... Do they have history together? Because if they do, it doesn't seem like a fun one. And is the arachnid man that went around with Charlatan one of them??? (x)
I personally really enjoyed this chapter, despite how short it was. It's a pity it doesn't look like we'll be getting answers on Uncle Ruthy, Luca's bro and the Queen's condition anytime soon, but I'll be patient and take whatever water MochiGod gives me.

See you for mémoire 14 in January, and I hope you enjoy your holidays/have a very merry Christmas!


Posted on: 25/12/2016



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