My goodness, this was even better than the already impressive premiere! It starts so simply, in the parlor of Anisphila’s father King Orphans having some tea with Euphyllia’s father, Duke Grantz Magenta. They talk not as king and prime minister, but candidly, as friends.
Orphie complains about his daughter being a pain in the butt, but Grantz immediately ingratiates himself with me by saying quite astutely, that she wouldn’t be Princess Anisphia if she “settled down”. Throughout their chat, we are all too aware that the princess and Euphyllia are headed their way, imbuing the scene with some wonderful comic tension.
Once she does arrive, carrying Euphyllia on her back, from that point on it doesn’t matter in the slightest that the better part of half this episode is merely four people talking in a room—because everyone in that room, and everything they talk about, is so goddamn compelling.
After reporting what her brother the prince has so very publically done, and Grantz attempts to comfort his daughter (who believes she’s deserving of punishment), Anisphia makes her proposal: asking the good duke to give her her daughter, as an assistant in her magicological research…but also as a prospective lover.
Yes, Anis doesn’t really bother hiding the fact that Euphillya that, as the title says, her acquisition of an assistant is for both profit and pleasure. It’s even confirmed later that when Anis gave up her claim to the throne, she also declared (after seeing Euphyllia from afar) she wanted to marry a woman, not a man.
While delivered as comedy, Anis’ remarks carry a tinge of melancholy, as she asks her father what point there’d be in passing on her genes when she can’t use magic. Her father the king has never quite known what to do about his genius, magicless, gay AF inventor daughter, but there’s something to be said for the fact he never forced her to be anything other than what she wanted to be.
When Grantz watches this very different, roughhousing father-daughter dynamic of Anis and Orphie, he turns to Euphyllia and raises his hand to her, wondering if that was the “right way” all along. When Euphyllia recoils, he immediately withdraws his hand, then bows his head apology—a rare thing for a duke of his stature.
Euphyllia feels she’s failed her father and her family by not being a sufficiently desirable fiancée to Prince Algard. But Grantz doesn’t believe that for one second. If anything, it’s Algard who is unworthy of his beautiful magical genius of a daughter.
He rests his hand gently on her head as she tears up, telling her that she’s the most important thing in the world to him, and it’s his duty as father to ensure she lives the life she wants, even if it crosses the king’s will. Readers, I cried too!
After “Anis” and “Euphie” take their leave for the evening, Grantz and the king agree that Anisphia’s proposal has merit. What’s so great about Anis is that she’s not just an untethered ball of chaos. The chaos is controlled, and she’s actually quite sharp, both in how Euphyllia will benefit her research and how best to sell it to the brass.
Grantz, who is still speaking to the king as a friend, even brings up the possibility of Euphyllia still having a viable path to queendom should she stick with Anisphia. King Orphans may think his daughter on the throne would be a “nightmare”, but Grantz seems a lot more optimistic and progressive on the matter.
He also proves the more emotionally intelligent of the two dads. Anis would make an excellent queen precisely because she doesn’t want the power. But like his Euphie, she should be allowed to pursue happiness however she sees fit. Regardless, they are both treasures of the kingdom.
Anis and Euphie swap one parlor for another as they have some tea courtesy of both Anis’ maid Ilia and one of Anis’ inventions, the Thermal Pot. It uses a fire spirit stone in a manner Euphyllia would never of thought of.
Euphie also gets some sage advice from Ilia about there being “no stopping” Miss Anis at this point; the best thing to do is think of oneself as having been “bewitched by a demon” and submitting. Sure enough, Anis gathers Euphie in a princess carry and heads to her workshop.
There, Euphie is in awe of all the wondrous magical tools Anis has created, and her mind is suddenly opened by the possibilities and potential of magic she had never considered, as she’d always taken the existence of spirits and magic for granted. Anis tells Euphie that it’s a good thing, she focused on becoming as “OP” as she currently is.
Anis also lets Euphie in on a little secret: she envies magic users…a little bit. Euphie considers all that she’s seen that Anis is capable of, and sees a world in which magicology is a discipline distributed to the masses to give them more freedom. Rather than fear the loss of the royal family’s and nobility’s affinity for magic-as-authority, Euphie sees Anis’ efforts as a “medicine” for the kingdom.
Even if Anis would rather simple toil and tinker in her workshop, Euphie may have the vision and ambition to spread Anis’ gifts far and wide, curing a kingdom she deems to be ill—and judging from that soiree full of frilly milquetoasts from which she was rescued, she’s not half-wrong!
That night, Anis insists on having a sleepover with Euphie, lending her some pajamas (Euphie insists Anis withdraw while she changes) then playfully beckoning for Euphie to join her in bed before promising she won’t try anything. Ilia is right: there is no stopping Anis!
But Anis is true to her word, and the two just talk as they lie beside one another. She hopes that in time Euphie will see not only the appeal of magicology, but her as well. Euphie declares that Anis is just as crazy as the rumors say … but also even more mysterious. When Euphie asks “Just … what are you?”, it’s clear that she, an established genius, can tell there’s something unique about Anis.
One of this series’ many notable qualities is the fact it doesn’t shove Anis’ orgins in our face via inner monologue or flashes to her past. Instead, it’s apparent from the nature of her inventions that she’s from our own modern world. Euphie may not know the specifics, but she understands on a fundamental level that Anis is special.
That’s why she asks Anis why she, someone so clearly capable of living more freely than anyone else, helped the likes of her. Again, Anis is totally honest: she savied Euphie partly because she liked her, and saw the benefits in her becoming her assistant. But it was also because Anis deems her “perfect.” For Prince Algard that perfection was a flaw, but for Euphie it’s a gift.
Anis continues, saying people like her can laugh on their own and do what they want, but at that soiree, she could tell Euphie wasn’t able to do either, and so used her freedom to reach out to someone who needed it. After all, magicians (and by extension magicologists) should use their magic to make others smile. Anis aims to make Euphie smile, and together they’ll make the kingdom smile.
I’m rootin’ for all of it! This episode was so full of sweet and poignant moments between child and parent and between our two leading ladies (the yuru vibes are strong), but it was also funny as hell. Peeps, we’ve got a live one here!