Hayate no Gotoku! Ch. 450

Maria: "I am a main heroine too, Nagi."

Maria: “I am a main heroine too, Nagi.”

Let’s cheer for the 450th chapter!

Having a long life span and large chapter number doesn’t necessarily mean that the series is great – how would you compare Hayate no Gotoku! to, say, Fullmetal Alchemist (108 chapters)? Yet the series has also survived the death of other popular series – yes, I am looking at you, The World God Only Knows. Either those in charge of Shonen Sunday are incredibly stupid, or that Hayate no Gotoku! is still not horrible enough to warrant a death sentence yet. Either way, we shouldn’t fear too much for the series for now, as I am quite confident that it could live on for a bit longer – at least, we should be able to see Ch. 500.

Recent development of the series is not entirely bad anyway, as it sets out to please the (supposedly) two biggest fan bases in the series: that of Hinagiku and Athena. For Hinagiku, there was the short but interesting arc of her adventure with Hayate, which probably could quiet the “Hinagiku is not doing anything!” camp for a while. For Athena, her story with Ikusa continues, in this celebratory chapter which comes with a Hayate no Gotoku! magazine cover and a coloured crosspage (she doesn’t appear in either one, but whatever…). How about that?

Unfortunately neither Hinagiku nor Athena make this page.

Unfortunately neither Hinagiku nor Athena make this page.

One of the biggest talking point certainly is on the last page, in which Athena gives thanks to Ikusa, with tears and a blushed face. The still-not-yet-sailing ship between Ikusa and Athena has finally got the attention of the general public and the rage that comes with it has… well, signalled The End of the World (pun intended). While I certainly understand how those readers feel (Ch. 239, anyone?), I think it is too early to put a bounty on Hata’s head. After all, Athena is merely thanking Ikusa for saving her. She hasn’t confessed her love for him or even attempted to touch him gently. No matter how enthusiastically Doughnut Gunso is shouting “Good ship! Good ship!” there is no ship sailing yet, so why are people trying to kill Hata for something he has not done yet?

Anyway, let’s not allow the unwarranted rage blind ourselves from something we have been looking for: the advancement of the plot(TM)! Isn’t Athena here to push forward the plot(TM)? So why are we forgetting about the plot(TM) and get angry about trivial lovey-dovey when Athena is finally here to push forward the plot(TM)? Come on people!

Yeah, that's Athena for you.

Yeah, that’s Athena for you.

At least Doughnut Gunso is proven wrong this time like most other times: Athena has not chosen to return to her true self in order to get too romantic with Ikusa, but to do serious business with him. In simple terms, Athena wants to know if Ikusa was the one who took the Power of Royalty from the Royal Garden. Assuming that Athena would want the Power back, admittance to possession of the Power means either being robbed or being killed. Even if Ikusa had his memories intact, it may be smarter to deny possession of the Power.

Things get even more difficult for Athena as Ikusa apparently has indeed lost his memories, so before Athena could persuade Ikusa to share his knowledge of the Power, she must first help him to restore his memories. I am not sure if we should take Athena’s attempts as comic relief, but surely the hammer she summons are going to hurt…? I sincerely hope that this won’t lead me to a “Athena would hurt people in order to get her things done” argument, but what else can I say about that?

I guess this more or less suggests that Athena doesn’t have much care for Ikusa at the moment, so maybe we can say that there is no ship sailing at this point.

That one is true.

That one is true.

To add more weigh to the argument that there is no ship, we may point out that (un)fortunately, Athena doesn’t seem to be a particularly important person to Ikusa. Bearing in mind that Ikusa has a “saving people thing” that is obviously bigger than that of Harry Potter, and that he has in fact been saving people more often than the Boy Who Lived, it becomes hard to persuade ourselves that he would think Athena as someone particularly special. For Athena, it is one of those strange moments when you are saved by an “everyone’s hero”: it most probably is the most wonderful moment in your life, but for the hero it is nothing more than one item on his very long list of “accomplishments”. So, Athena would need to push very, very hard if she wants to be remembered by Ikusa as someone particularly important.

So we might take all those deadly hammers as Athena’s attempt to “push very, very hard”, I guess. Indeed, heroes do not really come across love interests who attempt to kill them very often. By making the hero think that you are “the girl who I saved and now is trying to kill me”, you are making a very unique impression about yourself. This alone is worth the remaining 10 minutes or so in your full form – and by using so much power to summon deadly weapons, my bet is that Athena’s 10 minutes will become tremendously shorter.

No lethal force is required.

No lethal force is required.

In all honestly, though, Athena is not too far away from achieving her non-romantic goal: to help Ikusa get his memories back, so that she would know more about what happened after Ikusa rescued her from the prison that is the Royal Garden – we might actually start calling it the Royal Prison, by the way. Ironically, it isn’t the hammers the recall any of Ikusa’s memories, but mere words. Yes, by merely talking in a civilised way, two fragments of Ikusa’s memories awake: one more important, one less important.

The less important piece of memory explains why Ikusa left a sleeping Athena with Shirosakura, instead of taking her to the hospital or the police. Here it is revealed that Ikusa, a not-your-friendly-neighbourhood sort of person who is holding a sword and an unconscious little girl who had just stopped crying, was highly suspicious in the eyes of the police officer. Ikusa didn’t really have a choice.

This woman is not at all simple, is she?

This woman is not at all simple, is she?

The more important piece of memory says something very interesting about the plot(TM). It is revealed here that Yukariko indeed entered the Royal Garden after Athena and Ikusa were out. So, Yukariko is our primary suspect to the theft of the Power of Royalty… wait, didn’t we know about that already since Ch. 260?

In fact, if we are to look for new talking points about the plot(TM), our attention should turn to Yukariko’s words. Obviously she knew Athena already, and she reckoned that Athena had been missing for a long time. It is also clear that Yukariko knew about King Midas, and that she was going into the Royal Garden in order to save someone. It’s less obvious, but I think it is certain that Yukariko had already been into the Royal Garden before Athena and Hayate were even there. The only question is: who could that person be?

Unfortunately, we won’t get an answer even if Ikusa gets his memories back, as he most probably wasn’t there when Yukariko and her friend first entered the Royal Garden. Yet I think it is not that difficult to make a guess either: we don’t know many “friends” of Yukariko, other than Wataru’s mother and Isumi’s mother. So…

7 comments on “Hayate no Gotoku! Ch. 450

  1. I find the fans immature reaction to the last page rather hilarious XD! Granted, while this is a love comedy, that doesn’t mean non-romantic feelings of caring can’t exist. I mean, is it really that hard to think that Athena is simply being grateful to Ikusa for giving her a second chance at meeting Hayate again?

    So far, while it may be a little too early to say this, I find Ikusa to be a rather boring character but hopefully his character will have more added depth as time goes on.

    I like that the moral of this chapter was a simple one; violence doesn’t solve all your problems regardless of how easy it seems and that sometimes, a little humility and compassion goes a long way, a lesson not so easily learned by someone as proud and powerful as Athena. Sort of makes her being a child again a good thing since falling down is a very valuable lesson. Of course, being a shonen manga, Hata still needs to at least show some action XD.

    • Well, they say that the bubbles at the back and Athena’s blushing and her tears all have this kind and that kind of significance that point to a ship. So yeah, I guess there is no “simply being grateful” for some folks.

      Sadly, for me Ikusa is one of those “come and go” character. Maybe he is no more than just “Hayate’s brother”.

  2. I’m with calamariluqe in finding the fan reactions to the supposed Ikusa x Athena ship amusing — to the point of me endlessly poking fun at them in various parts of the web… just because I can’t resist. For me, the biggest question regading Ikusa x Athena would be: will Hata survive this ship if he allows it to sail?

    With that said, I’ve always found Ikusa and Athena to be a pretty good match for each other (as I’ve elaborated on my blog). It’s actually easy to see them getting together. At this point, I’m not sure if Athena is really a good match for Hayate since his personality has changed substantially since they last knew each other ten years ago. Hayate hasn’t really been shown to have a very close relationship with Alice — granted that he might just be playing along with Athena’s instructions.

    • When I look at one particular forum (not in English), I almost can’t resist calling out their ignorance and hypocrisy. Then again it is stupid to forget about reality because somebody is wrong on the internet, so all I am doing is just jabbing at them on my blog.

  3. !.It is a bit surprise that AthenaxIkusa ship appeared from nowhere………….but then again people are interested in anything involving Romance (on a single hint)……What if there was no blushing while saying thanks to Ikusa….Maybe people wouldn’t think that way and newly appeared ship wouldn’t last ten seconds….

    2. Hata is expert at creating mazes in the story…so may be I should just wait for Hata to reveal it that who was person Yukariko was going to save…..

    3.Athena was just waiting all this time just to say thanks to IKusa for saving her……….I thought there is more to that……maybe we will see this in the next chapter..

    4.It was quite a mysterious way for Ikusa to disappear though a funny way…getting captured by the police…..I thought his disappearance was mysterious ….I really laughed after seeing how he got seperated from Athena after saving her….

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