The Throne of Roses III. Lord of Abyss

Picking up from last episode, Sister Esther waits patiently to hear some word regarding the Pope's safety. Meanwhile, underground, the Pope finally opens up to Vanessa. He says he didn't know what was happening and wants to know more about the people down here. Suddenly, Brother Petros and his second in command arrive. There is a skirmish. Just before the God of Destruction is about to end Vanessa's life, the young Pope begs him not to. He says these people should be heard. Brother Petros lowers his weapon...conceding that it will be up to Albion what punishment is necessary.

In another area of the underground factory, Leon has successfully destroyed the attacking auto jaegers. He radios the Professor who had a run-in with the automated hunters as well. Neither is aware that the Pope has been rescued.

The scene switches to Virgil giving Vanessa a good slap. He tries to convince her that a new era is coming. However, as he is speaking a transmitted message warns that unidentified troops are invading. Virgil believes a 3rd power may be responsible. "Could it be?!" he wonders.

Outside the Albion Palace, a powerful intruder is wreaking destruction. His appearance is familiar. He breaks into the palace despite Captain Spencer's best efforts. Sister Esther takes it upon herself to follow the man. He is making his way to the underground. At the same time, the auto jaegers are descending upon Father Petros and the Pope. They are surrounded when Vanessa comes to their aid.

In the underground control room -- Nanomachine Crusnik-02 (another way of spelling it) approve limited activation at 80% -- Abel faces off with the Puppetmaster. Dietrich sees Abel has become more powerful and says "You have sucked the blood of a Vampire, haven't you?" Suddenly, the mysterious intruder enters. Abel shudders in shocked realization when he sees the intruder is none other than "Cain!" (Aha! Recall the brothers Cain and Abel from the Bible.) For reasons unknown (except maybe pure evil), Cain destroys Dietrich. Abel turns in fury to attack his brother but sees Esther entering the room. This distracts him enough that Cain unleashes his power and strikes his own brother down for good. Esther's scream echoes through the underground.

NOTES FROM JULIE: Cain mentions an "Isaac" when replacing his fallen arm. Keep an eye out for that. Exciting episode!

The Crown of Thorns I. City in the Mist

At a church on the outskirts of Londinium, a distraught Sister Esther sobs over Abel's casket. (A flashback shows what Cain was looking for had been broken (by Abel). He says he'll find it elsewhere. He walks past Sister Esther leaving Father Nightroad in a pool of blood. A short time later, Leon and the Professor pull Esther away from his body.) The young sister felt she interfered, and therefore, caused his death.

While on their way to the Vatican, The Duchess of Kiev and Ion hear of Abel's death and are shocked and saddened. Ion wants to change course to Albion, but the Duchess convinces him that original mission must come first. That mission is to continue negotiations.

At the Vatican, Lady Caterina stands over the body of a beautiful woman who appears to be sleeping. "I'm sorry. I need this for the one you love.....Abel." she says. She then pulls a very large vial of dark liquid (?blood of a vampire?) from the woman. Father Tres is entrusted with delivering it.

A little while later Lady Caterina is reunited with her brother, the Pope. He says he wants to talk to her about what he has seen...wondering if there is anything that he can do about it. Lady Caterina thanks Father Petros and Sister Paula.

Meanwhile down in the Ghetto, Vanessa tells her brother that they have taken care of all of the Auto Jaeger's that had infiltrated. Virgil seals the Ghetto in hopes of keeping the Orden out. He then leaves saying that he is going to get the "Star."

A large flying vessel begins to obliterate the city. "The Excalibur System has been activated, my Lord." says Isaac to a bathing Cain. "Isaac, you didn't fix my body, so it fell apart halfway through!" Cain responds. Isaac apologizes. Then Cain reports that Abel....broke the rocket's control system, but he is not worried. He is going to use Abel's memories to access the rocket directly and control it.

After their conversation, Isaac figures he might as well destroy the town. The destruction sends thousands of citizens flocking to the Albion Castle begging for help. The Professor and Leon watch the panicking citizens. Hugue suddenly shows up.

Elsewhere, Virgil has arrived at the church where the body of Abel lies. He explains to Sister Esther the current situation in Albion. He tells her that she must do her duty. "You are the only legitimate heir to the throne, Lady Esther!" he says. "I looked for you for many years, as ordered by the former queen. The crown prince who originally was to take the throne, Prince Gilbert, was killed fifteen years ago by the servants of Contra Mundi. However, the Prince, just before he died, secretly sent his just-born daughter overseas. That is you, Sister Esther Blanchett....no Lady Esther Blanchett." Sister Esther hangs her head. She doesn't feel like this could be true. Virgil insists this country, and I need your power. Sister Esther gains strength remembering Father Nightroad's words, "I am your friend."
"Let's go" she says.

A helicopter takes the sister to the Albion Castle. Sister Esther speaks to the crowds begging them to calm down...telling them that an evil group is trying to get them to fight amongst themselves in order to destroy the world. It was their plan, she says. In the crowds Virgil meets up with Captain Spencer. He tells her that Esther is the "Star"!

"Father, I'll do everything I can just as you taught me that day," Esther promises.

Not far off, Leon is shocked when the Professor demonstrates his flying car. The Professor says he figured something like this might happen and admits that the car is his first true masterpiece. Leon becomes very very nervous. The car is equipped with missiles, and they begin firing at Isaac. A few moments later, Sister Kate's vessel arrives. Even her weapons have little effect. Isaac eyes his attackers. "Now let's play," he says.

SEVERED LIMB COUNT: None....how 'bout that.

The Crown of Thorns II. The Road of Oath

Picking up from last episode, Sister Kate's vessel is unable to harm Isaac due to a very strong barrier. On the other hand, Hugue has taken it upon himself to destroy the small deadly orbs of destruction. Those orbs only attack things with an electrical charge. Hearing this, Leon joins Hugue, but Isaac begins releasing even more. Captain Spencer radios the professor telling him the Methuselah (Isaac) is using a strong magnetic shield called an Aegis. It can repel attacks from the outside. However, when the ship itself attacks, it needs to stop functioning. They will have less than a second to counter attack at that time, and everywhere but the front and the abdomen will remain shielded. Father Petros and Sister Paula say, "leave the barrier to them."

Down at the Albion Castle, Sister Kate appears to Esther telling her to go to Abel now. Virgil nods his approval.

The scene switches to a brief appearance by Seth after she is given word of Abel. Then another brief scene takes place showing the Duchess of Kiev and Lady Caterina discussing their peace treaty. They talk of Abel, and then Lady Caterina asks where the Count of Memphis is.

On Isaac's ship, he declares today the day of judgment. "We, the Orden, are about to attain great power," he says. As he fires at the defenseless city, Father Petros and Sister Paula are on standby at the Tower Bridge. Sister Kate, on board the Iron Maiden, says she'll send a magnetic pulse throughout the airship. "Iron Maiden, charging main cannon," she says. Captain Spencer prepares to signal when Isaac's vessel is at it weakest. "Now!" Vanessa shouts. Father Petros and Hugue hit their mark! Isaac is shocked! "Impossible!" he shouts just as the Iron Maiden finishes the job! The vessel is destroyed, but the price of it's destruction is great!

Meanwhile Father Tres has arrived at Father Nightroad's casket. He has carried out the orders of the Duchess of Milan. The vial is emptied. Mission Complete! Sister Esther walks in. "Vital Signs confirmed," he says just before sensing danger. They turn to see Cain walk in casually. A force field blocks the barrage of bullets from Father Tres' weapons. Cain quickly sends him flying. "What do you intend to do to Father Nightroad?" Esther asks. "Were going to become one again...and live together forever." He says. Before he can get to it, the casket bursts open and out races Abel in powerful Crusnik (Spelling one of many ways?!) form. He heads for the sky crashing through a stained glass window. Cain powers up himself and gives chase.

Cain and Abel carry on a battle in the sky creating quite an electrical show. (Begin Flashback) It shows a young, disillusioned Abel. His mother and Seth ask if he's been in a fight again. It appears Abel caused some catastrophe. "If all those annoying fools disappear, the earth will feel much better..." he says. Cain says he was glad to be born in this world (seems like a role reversal). Abel says they were put together as experimental beings for the Mars Colonization Project... he sees no future. Cain, however, says you can make the future what you want. "What kind of future do you want, Abel?" he asks. (End of Flashback) The two continue to fight passionately....

Sometime later, a large crowd has gathered in Albion. Everyone is in attendance as Sister Esther is crowned Queen of Albion. The Pope gives his blessing and says, "For a new world...."
"For a world where everyone can live together...." Sister Esther adds.

Elsewhere, Father Nightroad slowly passes a familiar cloaked young man. "Are you coming with me?" he asks. "Contra Mundi, now that I know it's real, I'll fight with you no matter what dangers or trials await." Ion replies. "I cannot lose this battle," Nightroad responds as he stares up at the sky.

NOTE: Not much closure in that ending. Guess one must get the manga.