|Volume 17: The Senroh Family|
|Preceded by||Volume 16: The Last Night|
|Followed by||Volume 18: Confessions|
The Senroh Family (千鋃一族) is the seventeenth volume of the Silver Diamond series.
Chigusa was attacked in an unexpected turn of events. In order to save him, Rakan gathers his courage and prepares himself for the worst. At around the same time, Narushige, Tohji, and their other comrades are each facing some crisis?! It's a tension-filled Volume 17, with a 3 page-Extra Story "Silent" and a 4-panel comic called "Self-control".
Chapter 49: RelationshipsEdit
The chapter opens with the Prince mentally looking through volumes of books, Kinrei beside him worried about the Prince overexerting himself. Tohji (who is with Rakan and the guards) is briefly shown looking shocked.
As the chapter formally opens, Chigusa suddenly collapses into Rakan’s arms. Rakan fears the worst, that Chigusa is “withering away” as he once warned he might, and brings him into a nearby cave to let him rest. The Guards stay outside, as Kokuyo has appeared and must be fended off. They decide to try to use the pearl that Sae brought from Mitama to turn Kokuyo back to normal.
In the cave, Rakan, Narushige, and Tohji hover around Chigusa; Tohji suddenly recalls his vision at the beginning of the chapter of the Prince and Kinrei speaking. He rushes out, panicked the Prince might be spying on them through Tohji, and promises to call in one of the Guards to take his place. Chigusa wakes up, sounding delirious, and asks Rakan to cut open his chest before fainting again. Narushige prepares Koh, but senses a presence outside before he can do anything. Rakan convinces him to go and let him take care of Chigusa.
Left alone, Rakan cuts through Chigusa’s chest with his sword and, after steeling himself, grabs hold of Chigusa’s heart. Vines begin to grow from Chigusa’s chest, and he falls asleep. Behind Rakan, Hoshiminokoto appears.
Outside, Kokuyo crushes and destroys the Jamon while the guards set up their attack. Tohji starts to approach the Guards before deciding otherwise and runs in the opposite direction, afraid of looking at them. Kazuhi and a small group initiate their attack, goading the serpent into opening her mouth so that Rinrai can place the pearl inside. Mitama is able to sense Yukinoha’s presence and begins to cleanse her of Kokuyo.
Off by himself, Tohji tries to figure out what has happened to him, remembering Chigusa’s talk of connecting eyes and Kazuhi’s amazement that he didn’t need to learn how to read. He reflects on times the group mentioned that it was almost as if the Prince could see them and anticipate their moves, and remembers drinking something that tasted like blood when his eyesight was given to him; he concludes that his and the Prince’s eyes must be connected, allowing the Prince to spy on Rakan’s group unknown.
Narushige, investigating the presence, is suddenly confronted with his mother, Shigeyuki, and a man who appear out of thin air. Inside the cave, Rakan asks Hoshiminokoto if Chigusa will recover; Hoshiminokoto replies that soon, “that thing” will perish again.
Chapter 50: OrderEdit
Yukinoha has regained control of herself, and laments her part in Unohana’s death. Mitama steps in, however, and tells her that Unohana had reached the end of her natural lifespan, and so Yukinoha shouldn’t worry. Mitama has her own doubts about what happened, however, but before that line of thought can be followed further, the Guards notice that the cave Rakan and Chigusa entered now has red vines covering the entrance, forming a bush and preventing anyone from going through. Rinrai is unable to penetrate the plants, and Kazuhi is unable to see through them. Yukinoha doesn’t see this as especially unusual, as there have always been areas the great serpents have been unable to see, like the Kingen or Shigeka residences, or beyond the clouds. She considers them “areas of God”, as no other force would be powerful enough to prevent her eyes from seeing inside.
Inside the cave, Hoshiminokoto is telling Rakan that once Chigusa “withers” and his heart stops beating, Rakan must re-grow the bushes. This will renew Chigusa, wiping all of his memories. Rakan objects to this, but Hoshiminokoto maintains that it is necessary, as Chigusa’s mind is unable to contain so many memories and would quickly overwhelm him. Rakan quickly volunteers himself, asking to hold a part of Chigusa’s memory, and Hoshiminokoto agrees to try. He connects a “thread” from Chigusa’s head to Rakan’s and then disappears, leaving Rakan and Chigusa alone.
Off by himself, Tohji is connecting dots throughout his journey with Rakan, times where the Prince seemed to be able to guess their moves, or when Tohji was unaffected by certain plants. Becoming more and more paranoid, he begins to wonder if the Prince can even see into his mind. Tohji tries to stop thinking of any information he could accidentally send to the Prince, but quickly realizes that his plan won’t work, and that at that rate he would have to leave Rakan and Kazuhi. He pulls out his sword, reaffirming to himself that Rakan was his only prince.
The scene changes to that of a memory. A man has found a young Senroh child in the mountains, and has brought the child back to his village to raise as his own; he and his wife adopt the boy and name him “Chigusa”. Some period of time passes, and a young girl, Kasumi, is shown looking for Chigusa. She runs off to the Forest of Flying Stones, where she finds him looking at a strange plant that shines like stone. She reaches out to touch it, and the scene abruptly changes to show adults from the village talking about Kasumi’s sudden disappearance. A search party is formed to look for her, and Chigusa denies having seen her at the forest.
More time passes, and more stone plants have appeared in the ground. Another person from the village, Tsutayuki, has disappeared, and Kasumi still hasn’t been found; suspicion beings to fall on Chigusa because of his Senroh parentage. Meanwhile, Chigusa asks another girl, Rio, to go with him to the Forest of Flying Stones, and as they leave some villagers follow them. When Chigusa and Rio reach the flowers, she reaches out to touch one, before being suddenly grabbed by vine-like stone “arms” that rise from the ground; the “flowers” were the tops of the vines.
The villagers who followed the two children pull out weapons to try to free Rio, while Chigusa’s foster father asks him if he brought the girl here on purpose. The question seems to snap Chigusa into the moment, and he looks confused at the question before mentally denying the question. The villagers save Rio, but then ready their swords at Chigusa; he panics and runs into the area with the stone vines. His parents jump after him to pull him away from the dangerous plant, but are instead caught and skewered by vines before Chigusa’s eyes. Chigusa freezes, tears in his eyes, before being cut across the chest by one of the villagers. He falls to the ground, unconscious, and is eventually covered by dirt and leaves through the passage of time as flowers grow on his “grave”.
Some time later, Chigusa wakes up, confused about where and who he was, bandages covering his chest and physically older. He senses a nearby village and goes to investigate, overhearing some villagers talking about a disease ravaging Takarai village. Chigusa goes to investigate, and is questioned upon his arrival at Takarai. He tells the villagers that his name is Senroh; they begin to panic, remembering stories of a Senroh child killing people in Kinami village years ago.
Chigusa ignores them, instead focusing on the sick villagers inside the houses. He grabs someone’s sword and runs to a house of sick people, murdering them and setting the house on fire before running to the next house and doing the same. After finishing, he flees to the mountains, where a party hunting after him finds him and shoots him with bows and arrows. One young man asks him why Senroh had to murder his parents, but Senroh denies it inside his mind, saying that it wasn’t him who did it. He falls unconscious again, before waking some period of time later, older again.
Again, he asks, “Where am I? What is my name?”
Chapter 51: The Senroh FamilyEdit
The Sanome Guards try and fail to tone down their banter since some serious events are happening right now.
Rakan and Chigusa's thoughts as the former is literally grasipng the latter's heart