Reborn to Master the Blade: From Hero-King to Extraordinary Squire, Vol. 4

By Hayaken and Nagu. Released in Japan as “Eiyu-oh, Bu wo Kiwameru tame Tensei su. Soshite, Sekai Saikyou no Minarai Kisi ♀” by HJ Bunko. Released in North America by J-Novel Club. Translated by Mike Langwiser.

I have stated before that the main reason I enjoy this series is that it has only one joke: Inglis is a meathead who only cares about fighting, food, and Rafinha, in that order. The trouble is that the author wants to hammer home to the reader that this is not entirely amusing and something to appreciate for the lulz. I say trouble because we’re introduced halfway through to a girl who lost her entire family when her village was destroyed and therefore has… sigh… been sold and is working “in servitude”. Rafinha is appalled that this is happening, while Inglis points out the political realities of trying to shut it down everywhere. The trouble is that Inglis does not care about any of this. She’ll support Rafinha if she wants to fight against slavery, but that’s because she’ll follow her anywhere, not because of any actual moral center. Inglis’ moral center is: I want a good fight. And she will cheat and manipulate to get it.

While working to help rebuild the school (and, more importantly, the school cafeteria), Inglis is called to the throne to be offered a position as Captain of the Royal Guard. A huge honor, but far too much work and would mean she would not get to do whatever the hell she wants, so she talks her way out of that one. More importantly, the acting troupe Inglis has met before are back in town, and they want her to play one of the roles and put on a spectacular fight scene. Inglis realizes that if she cons Yua into taking the other role, then she can get to fight the half-assed but equally strong women in a real (theatrical) battle. That said, there is a problem… the winner has to kiss the male lead, and the mere idea of this causes Inglis to flip out. That said, there may be even bigger problems… like an assassination attempt. Or an invasion.

I’m glad that Yua has essentially become Inglis Mark 2, because she’s just hilarious all the time, whereas Inglis occasionally has to play the straight man. Yua’s complete apathy to nearly anything extends even to her own self, as we discover that she may have a lingering side-effect from her death battle in the previous volume, to which her response is essentially “ah”. This is why it’s even funnier seeing her thirst for the girly-faced Ian, to the point where she spends most of the epilogue of the book carrying him around under her arm like a sack of potatoes. As for Inglis, she gets to have some really good fights here, so she must be happy. We also get to see the mothers of Inglis and Rafinha pay a visit, and it turns out that huge appetites definitely run on the mothers’ side, as between the four of them they terrify everyone with the amount of food consumed.

This series is never really going to get into Big Questions and Ethical Dilemmas, and even if it does it probably is not going to be Inglis having the dilemma. She gets why things are wrong. She gets they can be hard to fix. She doesn’t care. Fight now plz.

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