|Episode 255 (Manga)|
|Date Released||October 5, 2005 (tankōbon format)|
|Arc||Falcon of the Millennium Empire Arc|
The Colonnade Chamber →
|Volumes and Chapters|
The ball's venue is an enormous banquet hall, where the party is already underway. Among the attendees are Georgio and Politiano de Vandimion, along with Manifico and Roderick, who have escaped onto the banquet hall's balcony, where Manifico tells Roderick that the Vandimion Bank is currently the financial backer of many nations, all of whom are allied against the Kushan. According to Manifico, this will ensure that no matter which nation steps forward to take charge after the Kushan defeat will count the Vandimion Family among their allies.
The two men watch as, inside the banquet hall, one nobleman punches another for allegedly conspiring with Chuder. Though Roderick can find nothing wrong with being a supporter of Chuder, Manifico explains that the nations which are currently allied with Midland are secretly scheming to carve large chunks of territory out of it, in order to further weaken it. Because of this, many nobles of Midland have begun to ally with rival nations.
The two noblemen's fight is interrupted when a furious Owen steps in, ordering them to stop shaming Midland further than it already has been. Owen reaffirms the nobles' reason for coming to Vritannis: to seek out aid for Midland's cause. The Midland nobles concur with Owen's statement, but realize that their goal can only be achieved if the royal bloodline still exists. Owen stares up at the ceiling, thinking of Laban and wondering if he safely infiltrated Windham.
Manifico and Roderick discuss their own ambitions. Manifico's goal is to climb the social and political ladder as high as possible, while Roderick dreams of sailing out to open sea and discovering uncharted lands. However, both men's dreams are stymied by the efforts of those above them: Federico has forcefully halted Manifico's dream, while Roderick's ambitions cannot come to fruition due to Iith's isolationist attitude.
As the men vow to "seize the coming age", Farnese makes her appearance, wearing an elaborate dress, and dutifully followed by Serpico. Manifico reveals the reason that Farnese was made to attend the ball: she and Roderick will announce their engagement in public, preventing Federico from annulling it for fear of bringing shame on the Vandimion name. However, Roderick does not want to listen to Manifico's schemes and invites Farnese to dance inside the banquet hall.
Lady Vandimion meets a shocked Manifico on the balcony, him being unaware that she has returned to Vritannis. She surprises him further when she reveals that she knows about Farnese and Roderick's engagement. She tells Manifico that he is becoming more like Federico was in his youth, but warns that Farnese is not the type of woman who'll play the pawn in other people's schemes.
Lady Vandimion then catches sight of Serpico staring through the glass door, watching Farnese and Roderick dance. She remembers him from his days as her family's servant, and he says that he's remained by Farnese's side for as long as she had not been with the Vandimions. Based purely on this fact alone, Lady Vandimion comes to understand that he and Farnese have a special relationship, and that Serpico will always remain with her. With that, Lady Vandimion takes her leave.
The side entrance to the banquet hall is guarded by four sentries who warm themselves by a fire. As they complain about the cold and contemplate returning inside, they catch sight of an approaching Guts, Isidro, Casca and Schierke, the last of whom commands the guards to let them pass.
Characters in Order of Appearance
|Falcon of the Millennium Empire Arc|