Episode 6: The Capitol of Intrigue

Was it all a dream? Or was it an illusion? We managed to rescue Van from the Floating Fortress. While he was there, Van had an unexpected reunion with his big brother, a man who's now apparently become some Goth-dressing Zaibach bigwig.

Hitomi: And now we're heading for Palas, the capitol city of Asturia. I think my "seeing into the future" schtik has freaked out Allen. I don't think he likes me anymore. I notice he hasn't tried hitting on me for at least....oh....ten minutes now.

Van: Don't mind me. I'm just working my way through the Five Stages of Grief for Betrayed and Bereaving Bishounen. I'm at the "Pouting" stage now...

Paile: Allright! Smell that salt air! It's good to be back home! Hey, fellow shipmates! How about we go into town and have ourselves a good time? Maybe lose an arm in a cantina barfight or catch a social disease or two?

Merle: So that big blue wobbly thing's called an ocean, right?

Van: Yeah. I guess. Never saw one before.

Hitomi: I have. And I guess if you've seen one you've seen every single one in the entire universe. Bo-ring...

Young Blonde Woman: Allllllleeeeeen! *gallop*

Allen: Princess Millerna. Hi. Hey, what's with the fancy knickers?

Millerna: Oh please. I'm a standard-issue anime tomboy princess. I don't DO side-saddle... Ooh. Please introduce me to your friend. The pouty kid with the punk haircut.

Allen: This is Van Fanel, King of Fanelia.

Millerna: Oh yes. Fanelia. Beautiful country. I was there once. And everything was all bright and shiny and pastel-colored and just BEAUTIFUL. And I saw your brother there. he was SUCH a nice guy. You must be SO HAPPY to come from such a beautiful country and have such a nice brother.

Van: Yeah. I sure am, Princess Sensitive.

Allen: Princess. I want to go on ahead to the castle first.

Millerna: Fine. My old man wants to have a talk with you anyway. Take my horse. And you! Skycap! How 'bout you handle Allen's luggage, K?

Hitomi: What th--? You talkin to me?

Van: She's not a servant. She's with me.

Merle: Ahem. She's with ALLEN!

Millerna: You're kidding. Allen would never allow himself to be seen with someone wearing such weird, lower-class clothing as that which YOU are wearing.

Hitomi: Grrr. I'll have you know, Back where I come from, the Mystic Moo--**STOMP* OWTCH! Merle!

Merle: You almost blew your cover Miss Talky McTalkstoomuch...

Allen: Zaibach put the smack down on my fortress and broke our treaty. And they attacked Fanelia! They're a bunch of low-down dirty dogs! Something must be done about them!

King Aston: 'Fraid not, Al m'boy. You're forgetting the First Rule of War. "The Gods always tend to favor the side with the biggest artillery."

Folken: --And WE'VE got the biggest artillery of anyone on this planet...

Allen: What th--? Who the hell is tall, dark and creepy here?

Folken: I'm Zaibach's #1 Spin Doctor. Hand over Escaflowne and the King of Fanelia and we won't have to get all Machiavellian on your ass. I'm leaving now.

Aston: Hear that? I'm afraid, Allen, that chivalric ideals have about as much pragmatic relevance here in the cut-throat, dog-eat-dog political landscape of analagous, pseudo-Earthian fantasy worlds as they have...well... anywhere ELSE in the universe. So you will hand over the boy.

Allen: Grrrr.

Millerna: There. You look beautiful. Don't you feel better knowing you're no longer dressed like some lower-class skanky ho?

Hitomi: Urge to kill stuck-up tomboy princess. Rising.

Millerna: Is it okay if I toss out these old rags of yours? Frankly, it's hurting my eyes just to look at them.

Hitomi: Hey! Don't throw those out! They have...sentimental value. Not to mention monetary value. Nothing in Japan comes cheap...and that includes school uniforms!

Millerna: You people seem interesting. I'll have to ask "Allen dearest" all about you later when the two of us are...y'know... alone together....

Handmaiden: Message for you. From "Allen dearest".

Millerna: I'm being stood up? Typical male... All men are lying scum. And by that I'm implying that you are too, Van. I'm such an insensitive bitch, aren't I? Let's go shopping, everyone!

Van: Here, Hitomi. Take your duffelbag. THIS IS ANIME™ so there's no telling what shit might go down while we're out there wandering around.

Gadeth: Heh heh. I'm SUCH a clever bastard! No one will ever be able to tell that we've got Escaflowne here with us!

Teo: Yeah, I'm sure no one will be able to tell what this huge-ass, 30-foot-tall spiky guymelef-shaped object is if we just throw a tarp over it.

Asturian Royal Guardsman: Halt! We hereby capture this huge-ass, 30-foot-tall spiky guymelef-shaped object in the name of the King!

Gadeth: Damn. The jig is, it would appear, up...

Millerna: Yes. Nothing screams "high fashion" like a purple nun habit. If Princess Di were still alive she'd be eating her heart out. So then... What do you think, guys? Our bazaars totally rock, don't they?

Hitomi: I guess.

Dolphin Guy: 'Scuse me, meess...

Hitomi: Daaaahhh! Okay, I am now officially, trippin'. I am thrrooough the looking glass, man....

Merle: Gee, you sound as if you don't have 7 foot tall walking dolphins on your planet. Y'know, for someone who's both an alien AND a psychic, you sure are highly strung.

Van: Hey, Slow Sisters, pick up the pace a little...... What's this? There are Zaibach soldiers standing on that bridge over there... And walking towards them is....

Folken: ...That's right, Van. It's me. I've slowed down the frame rate just so you'd get a good look at me. Go on. Drink me in.

Wolf Man: Hello, miss! Feel free to peruse my selection of rare and valuable objects, some of which might have possibly come from other worlds.

Hitomi: What's this? A J-POP CD? What a shameless plug to promote the TV soundtrack miraculous coincidence. Here. I'll play it in my "Discoman" CD Player. (Welp. We now know that Sony didn't sponsor the making of this anime...)

Discoman: WHIRR!

Hitomi: Gee. Another vision... There's Yukari sitting on a bench....*sigh*.... Yukari... And there's Amano running...*sigh*...Amano...and there's Van getting struck by lightning and dying a horrible electrocuted death...*sigh*...Van--- HEY WAITAMINUTE!!!! Oh no! Looks like I've gotta go save his ass. Again!

Merle: Wait for me, Hitomi! If there's shit going down! I wanna be a part of it!

Van:O Brother, Where Art Thou?....Oh THERE he is. Walking onto that bridge.

Folken: My ride's here. Oh, and so's my brother, I see... So, brother. Have you decided whether or not you want to hook up with me yet?


Dilandau: My wound still hurts. I can't imagine why. Poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke poke...

Gatti: Um. You might want to stop poking it. It could get infected.


Gatti: Not much, but I find I'm rapidly becoming an expert on the subject, sir...Ow.....

Van: So Folken, just why are you working for the Evil Empire now?

Folken: The brother you knew is no more. He died long ago when his arm got torn off by a dragon. But then Dornkirk gave him a snifty new arm and he became a whole new person.

Van: I'll say. The Folken I knew never used to dress like a gay vampire...

Hitomi: Gotta go save Van. *pant pant* Gotta go save Van. *pant* Gee. It makes me wonder. *pant* Who the hell did Van have to pull his bacon out of the fryer *pant* before I came along? *pant pant*

Shester: Wait! Master Dilandau! Folken said we weren't supposed to cause any trouble while we were here!

Dilandau: He only said we weren't supposed to leave the Vione. He never said anything about not causing trouble. Heh heh. Just call me Mr. Loophole. Open the pod bay doors, Hal...... Ah, I have you in my sights, Dragon Boy!

Folken: We share the same blood and the same mind, Van. (Although not the same skin color, apparently.) That is how I know that you're a wuss and you hate killing. But we're fighting to bring about a New World Order. We're fighting a War to End All Wars!

Van: Yeah, but doesn't history always show that that kind of thing, like...doesn't work?

Folken: Oh, be a sport. Come on over here and give your brother a big hug!

Hitomi: *pant* Must hurry *pant* Well, after all the running I've been doing on this planet, breaking my 13 second record for the 100-meter dash ought to be child's play by now...

Dilandau: Here you go, Van. A nice, heapin' helping of Crima Claw! Served up fresh! Pucker up, buttercup! *shoot*

Hitomi: Damn! I'll never make it if I try to run all the rest of the way in this prom dress! RRRIPP! Uh-oh. Millerna'll probably get mad when she sees that I tore her dress all up. Oh well. She's an insensitive bitch so nyeah.

Dilandau: Faster, Pussyclaw! Kill! Kill!

Seagull: *spinch* AIIIEEEE!!! Somebody call PETA!




Dilandau: D'oh! Missed! Unh.... Is it hot in here or is it just me?

Shester: Uhm. Master Dilandau, I know you like to burn things and all, but don't you think setting your guymelef and yourself on fire might be going a little too far?

Dilandau: YAAAAHH! *MELT* *FSSSHHHHOOOMMMM* That was a narrow escape. I'd have gotten Van if that bitch hadn't saved him. From here on in, she's number two on my shit list.

Van: Gee, Hitomi. This whole "your saving me at the last minute" thing is getting to be quite a habit. I guess this means I'll have to stop being a jerk to you, eh?

Folken: D'oh! Looks like Pyro Boy wasn't taking my orders very seriously. Again.

Van: So Folken... THIS is how you want to play from now on...

Folken: No. I may be a manipulative bastard with a fanatical devotion to a Fascist-style political system which routinely kills hundreds of people in the ruthless pursuit of its goals, but I certainly wouldn't stoop to capping my own brother. At least not yet...

Van: Shyeah, right!

Merle: VAN-SAMAAAAAA!!!! *glomp* I'm so glad Hitomi's latest freaky vision about you didn't come true!

Asturian Royal Guardsman: Come with me. King Aston wants to see you.

Folken: My work here is done. Whatever the hell it was. *rides away*

Van: Uh, Millerna, why has your father asked me to put on Escaflowne and stand in the middle of this collesseum? Is this his typical way of welcoming fellow heads of state?

King Aston: Okay, Van! As my guest, I hereby grant you full rights and freedom under the law,---providing you can show us what this bitch of yours can do. Here. Fight these three extremely creepy bounty hunters. (Heh heh. I'm so clever, aren't I, Meiden?)

Meiden: You said it, your majesty. By the way, have you any idea what pseudo-Earthian ethnic group I'm supposed to be representing in this analogous fantasy world? I'm thinkin' maybe I'm the Gaean equivalent of a Greek, or maybe even an Indian...

King Aston: Well, you've got a big nose and you're good with money, so that must make you the Gaean equivalent of a Jew.

Meiden: Right. Ah, but doesn't that put kind of an Anti-Semitic spin on all of my compulsively greedy and underhanded behavior?

Aston: This is ANIME™. You were expecting Political Correctness?

Meiden: Point. Well then, let's get this floor show started then, shall we?

Hitomi: I've said it before and I'll say it again: I've Got a Bad Feeling About This™

Van: YOU'VE got a bad feeling? YOU'RE not the one who's down in the arena about to fight three experienced warriors while wearing a mechanical suit of armor you can barely see out of and in which you've yet to win a battle. I'd say if there's anyone who should be stressing right now, it should be ME!

Thousands of Anime Fans: How about us? At least YOU don't have to sit through yet another cliffhanger!! Waaaahhhh!!!!

On to Episode 7: Unexpected Partings