Title: Red River Vol 25
Author: Chie Shinohara
May Contain Spoilers
Returning from the battlefield, Kail and Yuri learn that Ilbani has captured their enemy, Urhi! With the incriminating letter written by Nakia, and now the evil Urhi in their control, can they finally rid the threat that Nakia represents? Things aren’t going to be easy, even with this undisputable evidence in their hands. You can bet that Nakia still has a few tricks up her sleeve, and the odds of Urhi helping with the trial against his master are slim to none. Nakia’s only ambition is to see Juda on the Hittite throne, and not even rumors that he’s Urhi’s son is going to stop her from achieving her goal!
Urhi refuses to cooperate with Kail, even when the young king promises to pardon him for his crimes, Nakia’s henchman refuses. During his continued silence, Yuri begins to suspect that he might be in love with Nakia. Kail shoots down her theory, accusing her of being a romantic. She can hardly dispute that, given her current circumstances. I think that anyone who is willing to give up their family and their past to be with someone that they love has to be a romantic. How else can you explain leaving behind everything that you have ever known for an uncertain future? When Yuri hears rumors that Juda is really Urhi’s son, she’s convinced that he and Nakia are lovers. What other explanation can there be for his unwavering loyalty?
I felt sorry for Juda here. He’s just a kid, but he’s under so much pressure. He wants to help his older brother and be as dependable as Zannanza was, but there’s his mother constantly getting in the way. Juda doesn’t want to be the king; he wants to serve the brother who he idolizes. When he learns that he might not even be Kail’s brother, he’s just devastated. He thinks that all of Kail’s troubles with his mother are his fault, and he’s determined to stop his mother’s scheming once and for all. I never thought very highly of Juda before this volume, but now I find myself reassessing my opinion of him.
Nakia and Urhi still have my scorn, but maybe I’ve softened my stance toward them just the slightest bit as well. They are both pawns of a political landscape they couldn’t escape. Nakia was forced to leave her home and become the concubine of a stranger to cement someone else’s political aspirations, and Urhi has been a servant his whole life. Is it any wonder that the two would find comfort with each other? Urhi’s a clever man, and having him on her side has helped Nakia broker more power than she would have been able to attain by herself.
At 25 volumes and counting, Red River continues to provide a pleasant escape from reality.
Review copy provided by Viz