DanMachi IV – 21 – So Warm, So Sweet

While it was surely nice to get a bath in the healing waters, those waters weren’t what you’d call warm, so Ryuu and Bell have to strip off their wet clothes and sit in front of a fire to keep their body temperatures up. DanMachi wisely keeps the comedy to a minimum here, while it ratchets up the romantic tension that’s been brewing between these two.

One she’s literally in his arms, Bell ceases to see Ryuu simply as some invincible idol and hero who has been protecting him, and sees her for the first time as someone he has to protect.

Ryuu is comfortable enough with Bell now that she wants to tell him the entire story of how she lost her familia, so while they have the time, she does so. Bell’s takeaway is our takeaway: they gave their lives to save her, so she’d better not die or they’ll be mad. Then Ryuu suggests they huddle even closer so they’ll warm up properly.

Ryuu may not think much of her body, but the fact is both she and Bell are very attractive. They distract themselves from that by talking about what they’ll do when they’re home. Ryuu wants a meal at the tavern (where she’s sure to get a tongue lashing from Syr and the others) while Bell wants to travel to Hestia’s mansion with the rest of his Familia so he can say “I’m home.”

I’m so glad the show slowed down a bit and let Ryuu and Bell simply exist with one another and think about nicer things than where they are and the challenges that lie ahead. But with no food supplies to speak of, they have to get moving once they’re warmed up enough.

As they continue on, they’re both relieved and a little weary of the complete absence of monsters. When they hit a dead end, Bell cuts through some brittle crystal deposits so they can climb to a higher level, where they find the fourth ring. That means they’re on the main route, and just one more ring from the connecting tunnel from the 37th to the 36th floor.

So of course when they’re so close to getting closer to getting the fuck out of this miserable hellhole, that ugly bastard the Juggernaut gets the drop on them. It’s seemed to augment itself by eating various other monsters, and while it’s much slower than the last time Bell fought it, those collected abilities make it arguably more deadly. Bell ends up getting stabbed in the kidney area by a giant spike, and has the sense of mind (and toughness) to close and cauterize the wound with a Fire Bolt.

Ryuu manages to drag the two of them into a narrow passage in the rock where the Juggernaut and his various appendages and projectiles can’t reach, and it wanders off, though I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of it. But Bell and Ryuu are once again in bad shape, having lost a lot of blood and mana.

Ryuu reverts to her fatalistic mode, but when she asks Bell to hold her again and he does without hesitation, she takes solace in the fact her final moments will be sweet. To borrow a Riri lyric, is Ryuu falling in love in a hopeless place? Perhaps! Hestia would never approve, but who cares? I’m loving this ship!

Of course, Bell has no intention of dying, nor will he let Ryuu die. When she nods off from exhaustion, he gently strokes her hair, then stands up and considers all the pain he’s in to be a blessing, because it’s a sign he can still feel pain and thus isn’t too far gone. I just hope those Xenos can find them soon. Maybe they can use their myriad abilities to finally take the Juggernaut down…

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