Negima! Vol 19 (Ch 172) *SPOILERS*

Thanks to AQS for the scans.

Chapter 172 Summary: Asuna returns to what’s left of the snow cave and discovers that the water that Kotaro had heated for a bath is frozen now. However, she refuses to ring the bell Eva left her and starts to fall asleep. Realizing the danger of that, she wakes herself up only to drift off despite knowing she’ll die.

Back at the castle, Konoka shows that she has the ability to knock over a couple of pencils with her mind (it may be a spell…I’m not sure). Everyone is impressed, but Paru decides to prove she can do it too by blowing the pencils over. When Negi and Kotaro, arrive to the surprise of Setsuna and Konoka. Negi explains what happened and Kotaro recounts how even he thought he was going to die when they trained there. Chachamaru assures Negi that while Eva is strict, she has a good heart, something Negi believes to the surprise of Setsuna and Kotaro.

Paru and Ku Fei get into a friendly squabble with Paru challenging Ku Fei. Despite create-summoning a powerful “Genie” (for lack of a better term, that’s what I’m going to call this creature of Paru’s since that’s what it reminds me of — a giant genie), Ku makes short work of it, proving that skill trumps raw, untrained power. The two promise to “level-up” and laugh in an evil way.

Yue shows off how far she’s come in training, sending the pencils farther than Konoka. Negi is impressed, wondering how she’s managed to come so far. She explains her artifact allows her to train and learn in a more efficient way. Negi states that at her rate of learning, it will only take 78-hours (of study?) to get to magic arrow and disarmament magic. Getting closer to Yue, Negi fondly remembers his time learning magic with the very book Yue is learning from. Nodoka thinks about Negi giving Yue a personal lesson, and causes herself to “short out” for a moment. She decides to give it her best and says this aloud, which the other interpret to mean the training, which they agree to give it their all as well.

Asuna hears someone address her as “Asuna-chan,” and it is a young, adult Takamichi (Takahata-sensei). He’s embarrassed, but asks her to show him how to use kanka. She says it is easy, but you have to turn yourself into nothingness. Takamichi states that this is difficult, but Asuna-chan disagrees and easily produces the kanka with her fingers a ‘V’ for “Victory” stance. He’s impressed by how easily she does it and wonder how. She’s puzzled by this, saying that becoming nothing is easy since she never had anything in her to begin with. He’s troubled by her remark and in his eyes, we see Asuna-chan’s reflection as he reminds her that right now, she has Nagi-san, Takamichi’s master, and of course Takamichi. She states she doesn’t like his master’s cigarettes, which amuses Takamichi.

Waking up, Asuna panics about having fallen asleep, then realizes she’s not cold. She’s using the kanka without Negi’s magic and is so proud of herself. Nearby, Eva and Chachazero are observing and Eva remarks that Asuna will soon be ringing the bell. She wants Asuna to realize her own weakness because those with a broken spirit will not go to Wales.

Asuna is relieved she won’t freeze to death, but seven days is a long time to survive, especially when you are hungry and have no food. Remembering that Negi and Kotaro were grilling fish, Asuna eventually finds a river but has no luck catching any fish. She thinks about maximizing the kanka, but reason sets in as she realizes it would run out and she’d freeze to death. Further, she doesn’t even know if the kanka could hold out for an entire day. So, she must build a snow cave by the river for shelter and find firewood to ignite to keep warm because she’ll need to recover from the use of the kanka.

It took many hours, but well after midnight, Asuna has her snow cave and a bundle of firewood. She has the large washcloth and giant towel from earlier and figures to dry out the firewood with the kanka. Unfortunately, she’s “run out of steam” as it were and begins to feel the effects of the cold. Wrapping herself in the giant towel, Asuna promises not to ring the bell and figures to go to sleep for a bit to recover some strength to use the kanka again.

The next morning, Asuna is covered in ice and is freezing to death. Her body won’t move and using the kana, she blows the ice and towel off herself. Observing Asuna now able to get up, a slightly disappointed Chachazero informs Eva that Asuna didn’t die.

Asuna again attempts to catch some fish but is unsuccessful. She’s growing weaker and decides she has to start a fire right away. By the third day, Asuna has her fire and so can sleep safely in the snow cave, but has yet to eat. She remembers the fish Negi and Kotaro had previously caught and finds them at the old camp fire site Negi had made. The fish are frozen, but Asuna eats some anyway. She thinks of Negi and starts to cry.

On the fourth day, the sun is shining brightly as a weak Asuna trudges through the snow. She collapses and Eva, from a distance, wonders where the obligation is for Asuna to go so far for Negi. Asuna is wondering the same thing and Eva is encouraging her to ring the bell from the distance. Asuna gets angry and her kanka fires up with a lot of power. She rises and angrily throws the bell a great distance. Then in anger, she screams about not giving up and insults Eva while taking off at great speed, to the stunned amazement of Eva and Chachazero.

Elsewhere, Chisame is in her sexy, cosplay, school seifuku with her loyal mice (who address her as Chiu-sama) and enjoying the air conditioning in her room. With her artifact, Chisame has the #1 blog on the web but now finds that this has left her feeling empty.

Thoughts: Again, we get another flashback to Asuna’s past and a tease of her time before with Takahata-sensei as a young man. I’ve heard some fans complain about this “training” arc for Asuna, but I rather enjoy it. Akamatsu-sensei is using the time to advance the story of who Asuna really is and showing that she really is quite powerful.

The advancement of the other girls isn’t as interesting, but I liked it just the same. After all, they all need to make some progress to be useful before going to Wales. Training arcs are common in shounen titles, but I find that as an “ojisan” in the anime-manga fandom, Akamatsu-sensei does them better than anyone else I’ve seen or read.

Also, just when you thought Chachazero couldn’t be drawn any cuter, Akamatsu-sensei puts her in a darling overcoat with a cat-ear hood. As they often have girls screaming in manga and anime, “KYAAAA! KAWAII!” What a scene stealer.

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One Response to “Negima! Vol 19 (Ch 172) *SPOILERS*”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Chachazero is pretty adorable. 🙂

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