Somali and the Forest Spirit Episode 8

Somali and the Forest Spirit Episode 8

Meetings and Bonds Prayed For

Last week we discussed what the “footsteps which stalk the witches” were, and it seems like we finally have our answer — sort of. There’s not anything literally stalking the witches, and it doesn’t even really apply to all the witches, just the head librarian Isolde Nebsolv.

I had mentioned that the secret which was following the witches probably had to do with the disappearance of humans from the continent. This turned out to be the case, although not in the way in which I predicted. I figured the witches either participated in the human genocide, or simply watched on as it occurred.

The truth isn’t quite as dramatic. Instead, the secret of the witches is the fact that Isolde blames herself for the destruction of the humans, even though she did nothing to directly cause it. All she did was write down a story passed down by her ancestors about the humans.

So, why does Isolde think this story being written down caused the destruction of the humans?

When her ancestor, Feodora first encountered humans, she learned that they both fear and hate anything unlike themselves. She then passed this story down to her ancestors because she thought the knowledge of humans wasn’t something to be forgotten.

However, Feodora didn’t think the Grotesques and humans were ready to accept one another. To solve this problem, she told her ancestors to wait 1,000 years before writing it down — Isolde broke this rule.

And so, the reason Isolde thinks the eradication of the humans is her fault is because the other Grotesques first learned about humans from her book. That’s what they formed their opinions of humans based on.

Witches’ Crest Library Alarm System

And here’s the part where rather than continuing the discussion of the humans, I take a detour and discuss the first part of the episode where Somali and Golem further explored the Witches’ Crest Library.

Before they met Isolde and learned the “truth” about the witches and humans, they had to get to her. Isolde’s chambers are located at the very bottom of the library, which is more like a labyrinth constructed around a massive ventilation shaft than anything else.

It’s basically the library from Halo.

And just like the library from Halo, the Witches’ Crest Library has an automated alarm system which alerts the librarians of intruders. The only difference is that instead of Sentinels, this alarm system is made of drone-like creatures which spot intruders, and birds which act as the alarm.

Senior Librarian Leigle from the anime series Somali and the Forest Spirit
Senior Librarian Leigle

Once the alarm sounds, the librarians (strangely enough, not the guards) jump into action. What’s the point of the guards? We were originally told they protect the library, but apparently only the outside of it. And the only guard we actually saw do anything was one who operated a ferry.

Anyway, the librarians are led by Senior Librarian Leigle, who I assume is going to take over as Head Librarian now that Isolde has died. It just makes sense to me that the Senior Librarian would be next in line, but perhaps I’m wrong. We haven’t seen anyone else higher ranking than Leigle though.

And, as a final note on the witches of Witches’ Crest Library, we learned that normal witches live to about 150, but Head Librarian witches live until about 300. Is it the role which makes the Head Librarian live longer? Or is it the longer life which designates someone as a future Head Librarian?

Haraiso Village

I don’t really have too much else to say about how Isolde may or may not have caused the eradication of all humans on the continent. Except, that it likely would have happened anyway based on what we see through Feodora’s flashback.

The humans were never going to get along with the Grotesques, so it was only a matter of time before their worlds collided in violence. Even if the Grotesques left the humans alone, as we know from the legend told back in episode 1, the humans would have been the ones to start the war.

It’s possible that the legend we were info dumped back then isn’t factual, and the Grotesques were the ones who started the war after reading Isolde’s book, but I doubt it. From everything else we’ve seen of the Grotesques, they’re a very peaceful society. It’s just humans they hate because the humans wronged them first.

Feodora and Miya from the anime series Somali and the Forest Spirit
Feodora and Miya

But, there are a few pieces of information we learn from the Feodora flashback that I think are more interesting than whether or not the war with the humans could have been avoided. The first is the simple confirmation that witches do, in fact, count as Grotesques in the eyes of the humans.

However, something somewhat contradictory is that the humans don’t view golem — or at least Haraiso — as Grotesques. Golem look much less humans than witches do, and yet the villagers have not only accepted Haraiso, but named their village after him and view him as a pseudo-god.

What I find interesting about this, and how Haraiso acts, is that he views humans as creatures which need to be kept in check. He’s a godlike figure to them because he “protects” them from Grotesques. But really, Haraiso is attempting to to keep the humans isolated because he knows the damage they can cause.

Where are the Humans?

The last time we got to see a map in this series was back in episode 3. So when I saw that a new map was included in this week’s episode, of course I had to compare it to the old one. Unfortunately, they aren’t the same map.

Episode 3’s map was a map of the continent, or more likely, just a piece of the continent. This map I’ll call a “world” map, but it too doesn’t actually appear to show us everything. It’s definitely zoomed out farther than the first map, but it doesn’t give us the entire picture.

Additionally, when comparing the two maps I couldn’t determine where exactly the previous map depicts on this one. I previously thought that the humans were from an island (or other continent) off to the West. However, this map clearly depicts them as coming from an island to the South.

The world map from the anime series Somali and the Forest Spirit
The world map

So, where are the humans in relation to Somali and Golem right now? Assuming that humans can still be found on the island, they’re either to the South or West of Somali and Golem’s current location.

It’s possible that the previous map depicted the Northern portion of the continent to the North of the human’s island, in which case Somali and Golem would need to travel south. But, it’s also possible that the previous map depicted somewhere along that coast to the East of the human’s island, in which case they would travel West.

We know they’ve traveled West in the past to cross the desert, so that option has some credibility. But the world map from this episode lends credibility to the other possibility. All we know is that at some point they’ll probably have to cross the ocean, and before that some snowy mountains based on the OP.

Conclusion

Where do you think the humans are in relation to Somali and Golem’s current location? Do they need to travel South? West? Or in a different direction entirely? And do you think Isolde is to blame for the eradication of the humans on the continent? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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