Title:Re:Zero, Chapter 4: The Sanctuary and the Witch of Greed Vol. 3 Author: Tappei Nagatsuki (Story), Haruno Atori (Art), Yu Aikawa (Adaption), Shinichirou Otsuka (Characters) Publisher: Yen Press Language: English Format: Paperback Pages: 164 Genre: Shounen, Battle, Fantasy Publication Date: March 8, 2022
Here in the third volume, Subaru confronts Roswaal and demands to know what he’s thinking. Here, we learn that everything that has happened up to this point has been orchestrated by Roswaal because he had some sort of foresight and believed that Subaru would overcome any hardships. Subaru is furious because many people died thanks to Roswaal’s whim but he’s still remaining tight-lipped on all other details.
Subaru wants to return to the mansion and speak with Fredericka. He ends up returning after receiving Garfiel’s pendant and being instructed to show it to Fredericka. However, when Subaru and Otto return, the mansion is empty and all of the doors are open. Suddenly, Subaru’s legs are severed, and standing before him is our favorite villain from the beginning of the series… Elsa! She makes quick work of Subaru and back in time he goes to where he had just completed the trial.
Here, he tries to take a different approach by telling Emilia he passed the trial and will take it in her place (something he hid from her the first time around). Garfiel, who said it was okay for Subaru to do that in the first timeline, objects to it here. Instead, Subaru confronts Roswaal and flaunts his victories up until this point but instead of asking for a reward, he demands that the villagers are released and he can return to the mansion. Roswaal grants that to him and assigns Ram to go with him instead of Otto.
When they get back, they confront Fredericka as they suspect her of having something to do with Subaru getting teleported upon crossing the barrier. Fredericka will not answer as she has been under a vow to Roswaal for over 10 years and has no intention of breaking it; however, she agrees to return to Sanctuary with all of them. Right before they are about to leave, they are confronted with another hurdle they are going to have to cross!
Garfield is softening up as a character… slightly. His concerns for the villagers and the fact that all he wants is the barrier lifted shows just how much he is warming up to Subaru; however, when the second timeline starts, the fact that he’s now opposed to all of that remains a mystery. Something along the way changed his mind but it appears that something hasn’t happened yet because Subaru jumped the gun and sped up the events.
Subaru being offered the title of knight was generous of Roswaal but the fact that he had forsaken that title the second time around shows how little he cares about it. Once again, Subaru is showing determination but his core character of more guts than brains is still apparent.
There was a nice scene with Ram when she was reunited with Rem. It showed that the power of the white whale seems absolute; however, the power of the mind to believe things that have been erased is even stronger. The fact that Ram feels that Rem is truly her sister, despite having her memories of her wiped clean was quite a touching moment. Outside of that, she’s still our favorite little devil when it comes to berating Subaru!
Roswaal got the most attention here. He is definitely up to something and only spilled a bit of his plans. Plus, there were a few key moments during both of his conversations with Subaru that suggests he knows about Subaru’s curse. Subaru slipped up and made as if something had happened previously and Roswaal caught onto it. He then played it off as if he understood what Subaru was talking about. That alone leads me to believe he knows about Subaru’s Return By Death power but is keeping himself tight-lipped about that and other things. He definitely is a mysterious character that is way more devious than we gave him credit for.
Another great volume of ReZERO! We have entered another death loop where Subaru is going to have to figure out how to get to the mansion, convince Fredericka to leave with them, question Beatrice, and then gather up everyone and get them out before Else shows up. This is not going to be an easy task as the second time around, it seemed as if their window of opportunity is tighter than expected. There’s also no telling that Else was already in the mansion when they arrived and was simply waiting for them. There are many unknown variables but that’s par for the course for this series.
I’m sure Subaru is going to die several times from here on out. The question is how is this going to affect him this time around? Can he handle seeing his friends die over and over again like last time? Has he grown stronger since then?
One of the things this series does well is really makes you think. Most of the time, the questions lie within the death loop but now there are also a lot of questions surrounding Sanctuary as well. If Subaru’s save point is back there, then we’re going to get two story arcs at the same time here as they intertwine with one another. Twisting stories like this isn’t easy but if one series can pull it off, it’s ReZERO! Can’t wait to see how it continues in Volume 4!