And so the past and the present meet with the return of Botan! There is a descendant of Hirari’s clan, the Abe, in the current timeline, but I don’t know if Hirari will somehow have lived that long (I doubt it) or if it will be a case of reincarnation. If it is reincarnation, then the analogous personality clash between the Abe descendant and the Kumou descendant will have flipped to some extent. Back during the Kamakura period, Kagemitsu was the more serious and suspecting one and Hirari was the seemingly frivolous yet skilled guy who brings about suspicion. Now, Abe no Sousei is the strict, no nonsense guy and Tenka’s the seemingly frivolous yet skilled guy who’s keeping dark secrets. I suspect Sousei wasn’t always like that and Tenka has something to do with that.
Botan is not the only thing from the past to emerge; her presence signifies the return of the evil (?) they faced back then. There are six volumes and already in this second volume my heart is breaking. Of course it goes along at a nice clip and then, at the very end, it was like my heart was pierced by a dull blade–it was so painful and not quick at all. If this is already happening now, it will be a test of wills to make it to the end without completely falling apart.