Shidima #4 - Fatal Allies
Investment Talk: Bulk resellers only. This is not a high value book and does not have much prospects to become so. It does have some cool art and characters though! Also condition will always matter in buying/selling comics as well. I'm not big on grading but I noticed the centerfold of this issue is loose at the bottom staple. Kind of disappointing but if you are buying comics as investments, always closely inspect them! Not just the cover as most tend to do, a loose or missing page is much worse than a slight blemish on the cover.
Thus Far: Aldaran and Karasu have been captured. A relief for Aldaran, sort of, but bad news for Karasu. Kameko has started the rebellion again and the Emperor is shutting things down just as quickly. Aldaran previously betrayed the rebels in response to them betraying him, so the Emperor is curious what his role might be this time around.
Karasu is somewhat of a coward and not very loyal. He already defied Kameko by torturing Aldaran as soon as she left with intentions on killing him. So he intends to give up the rebels in exchange for his life. Something Aldaran does not want to happen. Mostly because he wants to protect Kameko as always, but also they might just kill him as well if he is not needed.
Aldaran has a hidden dagger he uses to throw at Karasu hitting him in the eye. Then quickly dashing over to push it through his brain. A little bit of revenge for the torture but mostly to shut him up.
Aldaran's portrayal thus far has been interesting. He seems to be some kind of legendary outlander swordsman by reputation. But the fights he's been in so far have been pretty clumsy and he often gets knocked out or captured. This action seems a bit different though. He is able to kill Karasu before anyone can really react, and these are 3 of the most powerful people in the world.
Still, he is surrounded by them and no longer has the element of surprise. So the princes start to attack only be to be stopped by the emperor. They are obedient and leave the room.
Aldaran tells the emperor he was never going to get anything from Karasu anyway, so he saved him time. The emperor then talks about how he became emperor and how he and Aldaran are the same kind of people only he is destined for greatness.
Surprisingly the emperor decides to just let Aldaran go. Hakara is waiting to escort him to the gate. Somehow already knowing what the emperor was doing. Aldaran sees Hakara as potentially the most dangerous of all due to his unpredictability.
Aldaran leaves him with a 'piece of advice' to purpose try to get under his skin. Instead of worrying about the sword at his throat he should worry about the knife at his back. Saying this sows the seeds of doubt in his allies.
Aldaran heads to the capital city where he gets confronted by a man in a cloak. Turns out to be Kazuo in disguise! (His friend with the axe from issue #1) He had been following him the entire time. Though he does seem a bit surprised the emperor just let him go.
This page really shows the anime influence. With the chibi Kazuo and the surprised look on Aldaran's face. A lot of Dreamwave's books have a slight anime/manga look to them but occasionally go even more obvious like this. 😅
Aldaran intends to go back to exile and disappear. He wants no part of a rebellion and is disappointed that Kameko has landed back where she started even after all he did to save her life.
Kazuo points out that he is being an idiot basically. He wants to help Kameko and keep her safe. She will never accept being safe over the suffering of her people. So instead of taking the easy way out to accomplish what he wants, ignoring what she wants, why does he not do what she wants? Then he gets what he wants and helps her.
This convinces Aldaran the only way to really make Kameko happy and keep her safe is to overthrow the empire and kill the emperor!
With the end of issue #4 we are now over halfway through the series. Aldaran finally seems to have a bit of purpose. Will he remain on course and really help the rebellion this time? Also, just how powerful is he? The reputation does not seem to match the actions. Though things do seem to always work out well for him. And that quickness to kill Karasu was also pretty strong. Maybe he is one of those kind of goofy, lucky characters that only get serious when needed. Like Vash from Trigun or Kenshin from Samurai X / Rurouni Kenshin. Aldaran seems to be somewhat based on those characters.
Looking forward to Aldaran taking down the empire! Maybe... 😁
To Be Continued!