- Mangaka : Shouoto, Aya
- Publisher : VIZ
- Genre : Fantasy, Romance, Shoujo, Harem, Supernatural
- Published : July 2018
Momochi-san Chi no Ayakashi Ouji (The Demon Prince of Momochi House) Vol. 12 Introduction
Only after Kagura uses a forbidden technique to revive his master can he and Amane talk honestly for the first time. Aoi helps the two cross over to bring peace back to Momochi House. With the threat of the dark Nue resolved, Aoi turns his attention to someone else who is unable to move forward. Hidaka is trapped in a repeating dream of a normal school day with no idea why or how to escape. Aoi tries to save his childhood friend but when Kasha appears, he may lose his love.
Amane and Kagura reconnect properly and we’re shown a flashback of their relationship and the kind of people they were. It’s clear that Kagura’s cold attitude convinced Amane that severing their relationship was for the best. It’s a shame to see how Amane wanted to spend every moment of his limited time with his shikigami but that neither said what they truly felt. As the Nue, Aoi creates the scenery Amane wanted to see while alive and Kagura carries him down a river where they will eventually disappear together. The shading and lighting used on these pages give it an especially ephemeral look.
Himari finally collapses from all she’s been through and Aoi apologizes for scaring her with his fake death. They both realize the importance of being honest with the person they love. Himari finds herself puzzling over the lanterns that appeared earlier and again leading Kagura and Amane away and Yukari remarks that the House probably created them in order to grant a passionate wish.
In the next chapter, we see Hidaka at school commenting on how monotonous his days are. Things seem relatively normal until we see Aoi behind him. His carefree attitude and the fact that he’s outside of Momochi House alert us that something is off. Aoi introduces himself as Hidaka’s best friend and reveals that he’s been reliving the same day. Aoi asks if Hidaka’s noticed anything but even the readers will barely notice the silhouette of a girl falling obscured behind Hidaka. The small panel of a falling shoe lets us know something has happened but Hidaka seems to miss even that.
Aoi spends a few days inside this dream trying to get Hidaka out while Hidaka becomes gradually more aware of the situation. Aoi seems suspicious himself with his overly friendly attitude and not revealing everything he knows, but he forces Hidaka to look out the window. This time, we’re given clear images and several panels of the girl’s silhouette falling. Aoi suspects the falling girl has something to do with their being trapped and offers to jump in her place and free Hidaka. He suddenly seems to not care at all until Hidaka reminds Aoi that he has someone he likes. Hidaka then demands they all jump together so they might change fate so either they all die or all are freed. Aoi suddenly gains his resolve back and remembers their time together as children. Feeling brave hand in hand with Hidaka, Aoi jumps.
Hidaka startles awake in his room, unable to recall the long dream he had. Aoi wakes up too, laughing that Hidaka’s bullheadedness is what saved them. Later, he hears that Himari wants a shikigami so he tries to create a bond using special rings between him and her which ends up looking like he’s going to propose. Flustered, he puts Himari’s on the wrong finger and they’re no longer able to separate their hands. Predictable comedy follows with Himari being shy while Aoi is just happy to be together. In a very emotional moment, he even asks Himari to marry him. Just when we think our hearts can’t beat any harder, Kasha appears and kills Himari.
You Sort of See Aoi and Hidaka Reunited
Even though Hidaka was robbed of his memories, the fact that he carries around the flower ring Aoi made for him proves those feelings didn’t vanish completely. In a way, it’s not just Aoi abandoned by the world. Hidaka feels Aoi’s loss if only vaguely. Even though Aoi calls himself Hidaka’s best friend, he’s still surprised and comforted when Hidaka refuses to abandon him and takes his hand.
There’s a Lack of Flow
The start of volume 12 finishes up the tale of Kagura and Amane with not much gained in regards to understanding Aoi or Momochi House. The next chapter is an almost spin-off story with Hidaka and Aoi that Hidaka can’t even remember. Once Aoi’s back, we get to enjoy more cute silliness between him and Himari with a sudden less-than-innocent insinuation by Aoi! But this moment is robbed of us as Kasha once again arrives suddenly to snuff out a life. This time, it’s Himari’s.
While there’s a lot that happens in volume 12, the cliffhanger is so jarring we can barely move past it. Kasha doesn’t just snatch up a soul or trap Himari or something potentially threatening. He straight up pulls out a gun and shoots her. We see Himari’s ghost hovering over her own corpse while Aoi clings to her. Whatever happens in the next volume, it’s going to be one hell of a ride.