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Episode II-I Middle Game is the sixth episode of the Anime adaptation, and the beginning of the Turn of the Golden Witch adaptation.

Synopsis Edit

Years before the murders happen, Shannon falls in love with George. But in order to secure his love, she must ask for help from the Golden Witch, Beatrice...

Plot Summary Edit

First Half Edit

Anime ep2 aquarium

Sometime before the murders, Shannon and George are on a date at an aquarium in Okinawa. Shannon thinks it wonderful how the fish tanks may not be the real ocean, but the fish inside believe it is. While eating, George asks Shannon if he can call her by her real name, Sayo, when they're together. Shannon meekly accepts, finding it difficult to talk with George since she's a lowly servant and he's an Ushiromiya. The two of them talk about how they've known each other for years, and how their strong feelings created magic to bring them together.

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Sometime before that, in December 1985, Shannon goes to a shrine on Rokkenjima. She pulls out a mirror inside and smashes it; with this, Beatrice will change her fate as promised.

Sometime before that, at one of the family meetings in 1984, Eva and Hideyoshi receive praise from the family for raising George to be such a fine young man; Natsuhi asks Jessica to learn from him. She leaves in a huff while Shannon arrives to serve tea. She drops a teaspoon and Natsuhi chastises her for her clumsiness. George helps lighten the mood by complimenting Shannon's choice of tea, sharing his own knowledge of black tea.

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In the garden, Shannon admits to Jessica that she has a crush on George. George arrives and Shannon thanks him for helping her earlier. Eva, who's been watching them, comes down to meet them. She mentions that George will be taking part in an arranged marriage, making a point to say that the girl in question is from a prestigious family. Shannon is visibly disturbed by this, to which Eva whispers to her that she's not good enough for George.

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Devastated, Shannon stands in front of Beatrice's portrait, asking why she was given a heart that can love if she's just furniture. Answering her call, Beatrice appears in person and starts extolling the virtues of love, citing it as the single element that makes up the world. She understands Shannon's condition, as she has experienced love and wants to be furniture no longer. To that end, Beatrice makes a deal with her: in return for smashing a mirror in the island's shrine that limits her power, Beatrice will guarantee George's love. Shannon refuses, believing that her peaceful days will continue if she leaves the mirror alone, and doesn't know what would happen if Beatrice regained her power. Beatrice accepts her choice and allows Shannon to change her mind later if she wants, when Kanon appears. He asks her to stop bullying Shannon; Beatrice starts walking over to punish him for speaking down to her when Shannon asks to forgive him. She accepts, and leaves Shannon with a magic butterfly brooch as a parting gift. As long as Shannon has that brooch, she will gain true love, but only if she breaks the mirror.

Second Half Edit

In August 1986, Jessica and Shannon are talking about her date with George at the aquarium. Jessica is annoyed that Shannon could get a boyfriend before her when she starts having a coughing fit, a result of her weak bronchi. After getting her inhaler, she asks Shannon if any part of her appearance or voice is a problem, which she interprets as Jessica having a crush on someone.

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Sometime later, Shannon and Beatrice are having tea on the beach, enjoying some sweets that Shannon brought from her Okinawa trip. Shannon pulls out the butterfly brooch and wants to give it back, not wanting to rely on magic to preserve her relationship with George, but Beatrice refuses. She wants her to keep it as a sign of friendship. Beatrice then talks about how Shannon and Kanon are the only ones that can see her. Kinzo wanted to summon and see her long ago; Beatrice, in her arrogance, appeared to him and mocked him, becoming trapped on the island. The mirror that Shannon destroyed was placed there long ago by a travelling Eastern magician, who wanted to seal away all the evil spirits on Rokkenjima; it also weakened Beatrice's powers when she became bound to the island. Gray clouds start to gather over the ocean, and Beatrice laments how the ocean is turning gray as well; Shannon still sees it as beautiful blue, which Beatrice takes as proof that Shannon is human, not furniture.

Later that night, Shannon asks Kanon what color the ocean is, to which he responds "black". She also wants to give him the butterfly brooch, which he objects to. As it turns out, Jessica managed to convince Kanon to come to her school festival and pretend to be her boyfriend.

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The next day, Kanon arrives at school and Jessica's friends start squealing over how cute he is, while she puts on a brass knuckle. During the festival, Jessica sings with a band in a very upbeat manner; Kanon is perplexed at seeing a different side of Jessica in public. Later that night, back at Rokkenjima, Kanon compliments Jessica on her singing. Jessica explains how the pressure of being part of the Ushiromiya family is a lot, and so she's created "another self" that can live the way Jessica wants to live. Jessica says that Kanon can do the same thing, and asks what his real name is. Kanon's forgotten it, and says it's not important because he's furniture. He goes on to say that furniture isn't allowed to have dreams or a future and cannot love humans. He then says that Shannon and George will break up, much to Jessica's dismay. He thanks Jessica for thinking of him as a human and leaves.

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Kanon then runs into Beatrice, who was so sure that she had gotten Kanon and Jessica together. Kanon had actually accepted the butterfly brooch from Shannon, but he then destroys it, accusing Beatrice of toying with people's emotions. Beatrice merely laughs and says that no matter what happens, her power will return and the path to the Golden Land will be opened. The episode ends with Beatrice monologuing over having sown three seeds of love: one in Kinzo, who's standing in front of Beatrice's portrait and calling her name, one in Shannon, who's looking at a picture of her and George, and one in Jessica, who's crying on her bed, sad that Kanon rejected her. Beatrice ends her speech, awaiting the "harvest" of fruit.

TriviaEdit

  • In chess, the middle game is the portion of moves between the opening and endgame.
  • Just like the VN, Jessica is wearing a Marisa Kirisame cosplay, with her bandmates cosplaying Reimu Hakurei and Sakuya Izayoi. However, they sing Dokkyun☆Heart instead of Tsurupettan.
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