After saving an entire village from enslavement and/or genocide, Rudeus and his crew reach the next major stop on their route back home. However, Rudeus is a natural kidnapping magnet, because he sees one in progress while out on a jaunt. Deciding to be the hero, he saves the kidnapped kid but in doing so meets the ringleader of the kidnapping troupe, and it’s someone whom he’s uncomfortably familiar with.
Spoilers, but the uncomfortably familiar person is Rudeus’s father, Paul. It’s not the happiest reunion, since they get into an argument, which should make for butt-clenching tension, except it’s the most frustrating argument I’ve ever seen, and it’s so frustrating, in fact, that I’m gonna spend the rest of this review unapologetically dismantling Paul’s assertion that Rudeus could’ve searched for survivors of the magic spell that teleported an entire nation’s people across the globe.
Counter I – The Demon Continent:
An entire country disappearing off the face of the planet isn’t ordinary Tuesday morning news. Something big like that goes down, it’s all anybody talks about. That Rudeus never heard sound or syllable of the Displacement Incident is testament to what an undeveloped and isolated place the Demon Continent is, that it lacks the infrastructure to receive such literal world-changing news.
Counter II – The Lack of Chance:
Paul left a message at the guild for Rudeus to see, but the boy never got to see it because he got tied up in other stuff and swept along. Simple enough as that. Of course, Rudeus doesn’t bother explaining this bit, deciding he’d rather throw confetti for his own pity party.
Counter III – The Mailing Address:
Paul criticizes Rudeus for not writing letters to his relatives, which he had ten thousand chances to do but never did, so that’s on him, but I have this to ask: How in the holy name of ducks was Rudeus supposed to mail a letter to a country that doesn’t exist anymore? That envelope would’ve been returned to sender as soon as a sorter saw the mailing address. What, was Rudeus just supposed to write Paul’s full name on it and the courier was expected to tread hell and high water to find him, when Rudeus also mentions that they’re in the habit of losing people’s mail? If they were that great at their jobs, Paul should’ve been turning to the local post office to find survivors, not his eleven-year-old son.
Paul and Rudeus’s reunion frustrates me because it’s so goddamn stupid. They make up, but it happens immediately after their fight and has no emotion, since they never had genuine father-son bonding moments. The rest of the volume is fine, but it likes passing around the perspective to minor characters more than I care for.