Why isn’t Caules the main protagonist again?
The nineteenth episode of Fate Apocrypha opens at the castle with the Black Faction planning their assault on the Hanging Gardens. They’ve accepted the fact that they’re going to be taking heavy losses when Astolfo reveals that his Noble Phantasm could do something if he remembered its true name. He lugs the Anti-magic grimoire around because it works, but since he can’t remember the name its effectiveness is reduced.
He does guarantees he can use it in three days time since that’s the night of a new moon. However, by then it would be out of Romanian airspace and the Mage’s Association would be more than eager to jump on it. So if its the Grail they want, they need to go for it tomorrow.
Caules talks it over with his sister and they decide to wait for the three days, and when Jeanne brings this news to Astolfo she gets an eyeful of his manhood. That cracks Astolfo up until next morning, since she didn’t know he was a guy. He laughs about it as he and Sieg go out on their date (or hanging out if you prefer) and run across Mordred.
While they’re out, Caules and his sister are undergoing a Magic Crest transfer ritual. The process is incredibly painful, enough that he basically goes to a memory in his own head where he looks upon his younger sister. It’s there he symbolically takes the reins of Yggdmillenia by taking the leash of the dog she holds in her heart as a memory.
So then we cut back to Sieg having a talk with Mordred about the memories he had of Jack and questioning whether or not people are right. Her opinion is slightly less flattering, but she doesn’t exactly get on Sieg for his own thoughts. As she points out, there’s no right or wrong answer there.
Then the date comes to an end with Astolfo and Jeanne having girl talk, in which the former teases the latter and they discuss who likes him the most. Astolfo can see the writing on the wall and leaves them to talk. There are hints that he gets the message, but its not defined very well.
Night falls and we go back to Caules and Fiore. He naturally wants her to stay out of the battle that’s to come, but she wants to go as Archer’s Master. Caules will go as well, because he has some pride as a mage and feels he’s responsible. Then they split apart.
Chiron talks with Fiore and they restate she was too soft to be a mage and that this was for the best. That being said, he’s grateful for having a Master like her. Caules then has a memory of how Berserker died and, despite the pain, he’ll see it to the end.
Mordred is then given the spotlight as she questions what it means to be a good king. As she talks to her Master, she reveals she had no ideal on how she’s going to surpass her father in terms of kingship. Hecan only tell her that she’ll have to face him and analyze everything as he prepares a plane for them to fly onto the battlefield together.
The Red Faction then gets some screen time as Atalanta’s unraveling mind becomes apparent to Achilles, Karna stumbles upon the brain-dead Masters, and Shakespeare watches the dawn approaching to symbolize the story coming to an end soon.
I sincerely wish Caules was the main protagonist. He openly admitted he wasn’t a good mage, but he still did his best to protect his sister and care for Berserker, whose death still haunts him. Even his questioning of Fiore on whether or not she wants to be a mage or remain human was solely for her benefit, since she doesn’t have the stomach to be a mage, even if she’s talented.
He didn’t care to take power into his own hands, but because he didn’t want her to struggle over it. That memory was basically him taking away the burden it presented onto her. It was really touching, considering the only real brother-sister team we get is Shinji and Sakura, and that’s all kinds of messed up.
Onto Mordred, she’s a realist compared to Sieg. She thinks of humans as simply animals who are slightly smarter and in need of someone superior to them, which is why she’ll be king. And, despite that thinking, she believes she’ll be a good king rather than an evil one.
However, it becomes apparent that she has no ideal what that would mean in her discussion with her Master. She’s only gone so far as to think she should be allowed to pull the sword from the stone and rule as her birthright. So Astolfo’s question bring to light how shallow her own thinking is and that she should put some thought into it.
Other than that, it was mostly rehashing. Jeanne has a crush of Sieg, Sieg questions humanity, etc. Really I was kind of bored of it, wanting Caules to basically run the episode. But it is what it is and the finale is fast approaching.