Trembling Resolve – ふるえる覚悟
During their journey to the White Dragon’s village, Yona learns how to use the bow to support Hak and defend herself.
Yun’s huge bag was immediately put to good use as they used it to pretend that Yona is a bag of trading goods. However, Yona is far from happy about this arrangement and she asks for Hak to teach her how to use a bow. Hak must have given it a great deal of thought beforehand, and he begrudgingly agreed to become Yona’s bow teacher. I’m not sure why King Il didn’t want his precious daughter to touch weapons because I’m a firm believer of the importance of self-defense, especially for those in Yona’s position. Although it’s obvious that King Il was a kind and gentle person who didn’t want his daughter to handle something which is the symbol of violence, the way Hak put it just gave it so much emphasis and importance that it sounded like there’s more behind the late King’s decision.
Hak proved to be a terrible teacher, if you even consider him as one, when he couldn’t even instruct Yona on how to shoot the arrow at first. I guess such things came naturally to him so he might have had trouble putting himself in the shoes of someone who couldn’t grasp that skill quickly. He did give Yona an important tip though, which helped Yona realised what she needed to do to become a better archer. After countless nights of practice, Yona was finally able to shoot decently and Hak wasted no time in putting her to the test; he challenged her to shoot at him, a task which will be impossible if Yona weren’t serious about shooting at living-beings. I wonder why nobody worries about running out of arrows here, even Hak just nonchalantly broke a precious arrow when he caught it with his hands?! Although she wasn’t able to aim for Hak seriously, just the mention of Soo Won’s name got her arrow flying towards Hak with what I supposed to be the “killing intent”. Seems like Yona still can’t get over Soo Won’s betrayal, even after so long and I suppose she did spend almost 2 decades with that gentle and kind Soo Won whom she thought loved her.
We got to see a short scene between Hak and Yona which suggested that Hak’s feelings towards Yona were more than that of a friend’s, but it wasn’t given much elaboration. Shortly after, they set off to meet up with Yun, who had been captured by the villagers who harbour the bloodline of the White Dragon. Their reaction when they saw Yona’s red hair got me wondering, haven’t any of them seen the Princess of this kingdom before? I suppose this just goes to show that they did live in isolation in order to protect their own culture and their precious heir of the White Dragon.
I’m not sure if I’m feeling this way because I already know what’s about to happen, or that Akatsuki no Yona is just going at too slow a pace. Although I felt that nothing much happened in this episode, some might feel that it was a milestone episode where Yona showed us just how determined she is to become independent. Her strong spirit is starting to show and I feel that this independent and matured woman is so different from the blushing girl we saw in episode 1 that it’s easy to forget how girly and useless Yona used to be. That said, I would still like to see more plot movement within an episode; we aren’t watching Naruto here and we don’t have hundred over episodes worth of time to watch Yona defeat all evils on this land. Buck up!