Salvage (Part 3)
|←Chapter 73: "Salvage (Part 2)"||Chapter 75: "Salvage (Part 4)" →|
|List of Chapters |Image Gallery|
|Within the Book of Eibon, Maka and Soul's confrontation with their own envy of others may end their partnership. Elsewhere, Black Star and his peers face a truly maddening weapon while Noah orders Giriko to prepare to avenge Arachne's death.|
Salvage (Part 3) is the seventy-fourth chapter of the manga Soul Eater. It is collected as part of Volume 18.
The Book of Eibon, Chapter 3: Envy
The Table of Contents observes from a distance as Maka Albarn imagines the Envy Chapter as appearing like the Death Weapon Meister Academy. Maka, the effects of the Lust Chapter having worn off, is again a teenage girl. Maka now faces an image of that admirer who earlier was following her and Soul Eater outside the Death Room.
The admirer scolds Maka as being unfit to be Soul's partner, even if it was Maka who made him into a Death Scythe. When Maka responds with confusion and frustration at this person, the admirer calls Maka so "crude" and so weak that she depended on Soul to complete her missions. To illustrate her point, the admirer opens a nearby custodial closet and hands Maka a broom to twirl. Maka pauses but does as ordered, before the admirer orders Maka to twirl more quickly—until Maka drops the broom. "So," the admirer mocks her, "you're a scythemeister, but you can't even do a basic twirling move."
Maka then imagines the past, wielding Soul before he became a Death Scythe, as he instructs her to keep her grip light and to move her arms in the direction where she wants to swing. "I'll lead," Soul says, which reminds Maka when she asked Soul to lead during their dance within the Black Room.
As Soul had to lead, the admirer argues, Soul has been the person actually supporting Maka this entire time, yet Maka has not bothered to carry her weight in this partnership. For example, the admirer argues, Maka has never tried to understand the real Soul, such as his appreciation for music. Maka yells that she has "tried to get closer to Soul" by studying from all the music books she could find. The admirer notices that Maka had to study because she just cannot understand music by listening.
The admirer's mockery reminds Maka of meeting with Soul and Liz Thompson at a restaurant, listening to the two discuss a certain musician Liz heard in a New York jazz club. Soul is impressed, saying Liz is so lucky, while Maka nervously continues to drink. Later, at their apartment, Soul shows Maka the jazz album from that musician Liz mentioned. Embarrassed about her understanding of music, Maka deflects by claiming she hates jazz, especially when the library lacks any books about that type of music. Soul tells Maka to be patient, as the library will get some jazz books eventually. But Maka tells Soul to keep his music quiet so she can study. Confused, Soul asks what is wrong with Maka, telling her she has "to actually listen to music if you want to understand it." Maka sadly replies that even when listening she still cannot understand music.
The admirer smiles, mocking Maka for being envious of Liz, but even more ridiculously, being envious of music. More students surround Maka, their eyes blank and their mouths curled into disturbing, ghastly grins. The students mock Maka as a meister who cannot twirl even a broom, weaker than Patty Thompson, hardly unique, "just a study nerd" and "a coward." Maka lowers her head as she sees falling down numerous envelopes from students requesting Soul be their partner. The students all grab brooms to hand to Maka, telling her she had best practice her scythe-handling before Soul dumps her. Maka takes one broom and tries to twirl—dropping it. Tears fall onto the floor. The admirer, her face as maddened as that of the other students, complains that Maka's tears dirty the floor. Overwhelmed, Maka falls onto her knees.
A shadow appears on the hallway floor, as Maka looks up to see Soul Eater looking downcast at her. She quickly rises to her feet and wipes the tears away from her eyes, wearing a fake smile as she greets him. Soul realizes that the two of them were separated from the rest of Spartoi, asking whether anything has happened to her. Maka deflects with a smile, asking whether something happened to Soul. Embarrassed, Soul claims nothing happened.
But Soul remembers what he heard in his iteration of the Envy Chapter: applause and compliments for his incredible musical performance, as to be expected from someone of the Evans family. One audience member, her eyes blank, says Soul is as good a musician as his brother, Wes. But Soul's expression is blank, as he thinks this audience lacks an ear for music, while he realizes he is nowhere near as good a musician as his brother, nor will he ever be. "So," someone asks Soul, "is that why you chose her over your music?" It is an image of Wes, mocking Soul. Soul yells, "No!! No...It's not like that with Maka."
In the present, Soul tries to ignore the memory, offering a hand to Maka as he tells her that they must not be separated again. As she reaches for his hand, the pages of the Envy Chapter flip over, transporting Maka and Soul to a new chapter.
The Book of Eibon, Chapter 4: Wrath
The Wrath Chapter is red, fire exploding from the sky and ground, the ruined remains of sharp-toothed statues of exaggerated human faces dotting the ground. The Table of Contents explains the color is red so as to be most grating to the human soul.
Black Star, Kilik Rung, and Patty Thompson are back to their previous sexes, as the effects of the Lust Chapter are gone for them as well as Pot of Fire and Pot of Thunder. Liz Thompson, Tsubaki Nakatsukasa, and Blair still are male.
And Black Star, Kilik, and Patty are furious: they are hungry, Kilik's rhymes annoy Black Star, and Patty cannot stand their complaints. But Liz Thompson is upset with The Table of Contents that, of all members here, Liz and Tsubaki Nakatsukasa are still teenage boys. Black Star, Kilik, and Patty respond that Liz is a "horny-ass cougar" and a "typical blonde" with a "goddamn hissy fit," further infuriating Liz because she is only two to three years older than the trio. Tsubaki, upset as well, demands The Table of Contents change the sex back immediately.
Black Star and Patty shout for the noise to stop, as Kilik complains how red is the chapter and Tsubaki urges everyone to calm down. Black Star finally inhales, calming himself and realizing Maka and Soul are missing but no enemy in sight who could explain how their teammates were separated.
But an enemy of sorts does appear, his shadow falling along the floor as he introduces himself: "My, my, it has been a long time." As fire explodes around this annoying weapon, Black Star screams: it is the return of Excalibur.
However, Black Star quickly recognizes the humor of this situation: Excalibur was captured by Noah and deposited into the Book of Eibon. Excalibur immediately denies, beginning a long-winded explanation that he has always been itinerant even as he enjoys his home in the Eternal Cave. As Black Star realizes, however, Excalibur just admitted, in a roundabout way, that Noah indeed did capture him, but the Holy Sword is too proud to admit it. Black Star tries to criticize Excalibur as such—but Excalibur is so annoying that his own words take over Black Star's dialogue balloon!
Excalibur asks why Spartoi is in the Book, assuming they have come to seek his power and warning them such power is not given easily. Liz criticizes Excalibur for talking over Black Star, but Excalibur replies that no one but he has anything meaningful to say. This insult infuriates not only Liz but also The Table of Contents, who begins to speak in its arcane language, as if to open a portal out of the Wrath Chapter—only for Excalibur to interrupt again to explain that The Table of Contents appears as it does because Eibon modeled the machine on Excalibur himself.
When Liz shouts again for Excalibur to shut up, the Holy Sword permits the others to speak. As Black Star and their peers stand away—on the opposite page as Excalibur proceeds to dominate an entire half of the two-page spread, and Black Star's dialogue cut off by the page's gutter, making his dialogue hard to read. Excalibur explains that it is unfortunate that Noah placed him into the Wrath Chapter: even if many refer to him as "The Great Old One Who Lures People into the Madness of Anger," he claims he is also the one who brings the most joy to other people. Excalibur then proceeds to sing a song about his origins from the United Kingdom and his desire to go to California.
The Book of Eibon, Chapter 4: Wrath
The Table of Contents has had enough: an Excalibur face appears on its otherwise mechanical, immobile face! The Table of Contents argues that burying anyone's words, even Black Star's, goes too far. As to Excalibur's claim that Eibon based its appearance on the Holy Sword, The Table of Contents reasons that Eibon choose Excalibur as a design so as to mock the Holy Sword—but his point is interrupted again by Excalibur, who claims he is the Platonic ideal for all artistic literary creation.
Liz demands The Table of Contents stop the delay and take them to the next chapter. The Table of Contents responds it cannot do so when Excalibur keeps interrupting, so Black Star, Patty, and Kilik, infuriated, promise to distract the Holy Sword. But as the three try to grab Excalibur, the weapon leaps away, thinking the three are wasting time with a game. As the three yell that it is Excalibur wasting time, The Table of Contents completes its message, causing the Wrath Chapter to flip to the next chapter.
The Book of Eibon, Chapter 5: Pride
Black Star, while annoyed with what happened, is realized that this chapter looks differently: trees replace the red, broken, inflamed land, with a park full of pools around them. Along the horizon is a temple of Indian design. But as much as the setting looks differently, one thing has not changed: Excalibur stands before Spartoi, as its members scream in shock and agony.
But Excalibur is far more polite than before: he offers to lend his power to help Spartoi rescue Death the Kid, as one swing of the Holy Sword will transport the team instantly to the Hidden Section. Excalibur transforms into his sword form, taken by Liz, who desires to rescue Kid. Liz grips Excalibur, swinging the blade until it cuts a tall slit through the page—opening it to what resembles the Eternal Cave, as Liz tosses the sword away out of the Book of Eibon and out of Spartoi's misery. While Excalibur is shocked, it is too late: the Holy Sword is lost. As Spartoi realize they are now in the Pride Chapter, Liz cries, realizing pride beat out any desire to rescue Kid. However, the teammates tell Liz not to worry.
Noah removes a pen, writing notes into Chapter 6 with instructions to Giriko. Lounging inside that chapter on one of many comfortable seats, Giriko smirks at Noah's promise that the saw weapon will now avenge the death of Arachne.
The Book of Eibon, Chapter 6: Sloth
Seats and beds are everywhere, as Soul realizes this chapter must be the one of Sloth. He is holding hands with Maka—who releases her grip and takes a seat. Maka says she has something to discuss with Soul: she apologizes for holding him back, and while she thinks it is terrible to do so, she asks Soul to leave her. "I can't fight alongside you anymore," Maka concludes.
Manga and Anime Differences
- Although this chapter is the first to include Excalibur's song, that song premiered in Episode 17, an anime-only episode with no correspondent in the manga. Yen Press's English translation of the song is the same as that from Funimation's English dub of Episode 17.
- Based on the writing on the walls and the bowl Liz holds, it appears she met with Soul and Maka in an Asian restaurant.
- The album that Soul shows to Maka is Miles Davis's 1970 album Bitches Brew, a seminal jazz fusion record. This is not the manga's first allusion to Bitches Brew: the album's artwork and title appear on Soul's t-shirt on the cover of Chapter 26.
- Liz claims she is two to three years older than Black Star, Patty, and Kilik.
- In this chapter, Excalibur claims others have called him "The Great Old One Who Lures People into the Madness of Anger." The Great Old One of Power confirmed as much in previous chapters, and this point will be confirmed in a later chapter.
- The Table of Contents threatens Excalibur with the phrase "hanappashira o oru" ("break the bridge of the nose"), a Japanese idiom reprimanding someone's arrogance, similar to the English phrase "knock someone down a peg."