Koezaru wa Akai Hana: Slen’s Route

This follows the Common Route of Slen and Nalan. Slen is the military commander of Nasula and takes an interest in Naala pretty much the first moment he sees her. However his attitude turns her off immediately.  R-18 game! But I will not post any R-18 CGs in my reviews and there will be spoilers.

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Naala decides to go check on Slen despite Nalan’s words, and asks him to get some herbs from Luji. Though she continues to talk sarcastically towards Slen, she’s also genuinely worried about his injury saying that she’s merely being kind to the patient. Naala also spots some of her favourite freshly picked fruit – the one Nalan used to make the juice when she didn’t have any appetite. She heard from him that it’s a rare fruit that only grows on the cliffs – meaning that Slen went to pick them for her. When Naala questions Slen about it, he eventually relates to how he once brought back an injured mountain cat which wouldn’t eat anything he gave, probably ‘cos it’s highly guarded. He decided to leave it alone for one day but came back to see that it had turned cold. Naala realises that he’s referring to her, and finally understands why he keeps looking at her during mealtimes. Though she feels touched, she suppresses her true feelings and insists that she hates Slen. He seems to understand her true words though, and agrees that he’s a detestable enemy. Naala finds herself tearing up and against her own expectations, she tells Slen not to do such a dangerous thing anymore. Slen gently wipes her tears and says that it’s okay to hate him, and wants her to smile before him. Naala smiles as she answers that she refuses to follow his orders.

A few days later, Slen recovers rather quickly and in fact is complaining more since he isn’t doing anything. He starts on about wanting to drink alcohol and Naala pretty much expected this and gives him the “okay” as Luji said that it was alright now that he’s taking lesser medication. After having spent even more time with Slen since she has been looking after him, Naala has observed that he doesn’t usually say what he truly thinks. Though she’s pretty much the same as she insists that she’s only being nice to an injured patient. Slen takes advantage of this excuse though and asks her to feed him the alcohol mouth-to-mouth. Naala knows that he won’t give up till he has what he wants and gives in, though Slen continues to kiss her even after the alcohol has gone down. In the end Naala bites on his tongue, and then threatens to add black beans in his meals everyday if he embraces her now lol. She noticed that Slen really dislikes them and her threat really works on him as he gives up and says that he’ll do her lots once he’s recovered.

After a short silence, Slen suddenly asks to confirm with Naala on the fact that she likes him. She’s taken aback and she hesitantly replies repeatedly that she doesn’t. Slen merely hugs her from behind and kisses her. As Naala sees the tattoo on his arm, which he explains is a protective symbol of the spirit of war, Naala says that she likes it. But she’s actually saying her true feelings for him using the tattoo as an excuse.

Choice

Naala is informed by a servant that a particular favourite vegetable of Slen’s is almost all out. Luji also said that it was good for his recovery so it’s pretty much an essential recently. Both of them were sure that there were plenty when they checked the other day though, and wonder if someone has been stealing them – though it wouldn’t make sense to offend Slen. Naala decides that perhaps ‘cos of the recent rain someone threw them away when it turned bad, and decides to go out to buy some. She knows that everyone else is busy ‘cos Slen is surprisingly stubborn and only allows a few trusted people to handle the work with him. Seeing her about to leave, Nalan sulks at the fact that she didn’t call for him – after all his work prioritises her. Just then, a servant informs Naala that Sarana is here to see her. Naala did meet her once before but she never got to ask about her love relationship. Sarana also mentioned that she’ll be bringing a dress next time. Naala decides to go see her and tells Nalan that they’ll go out after that. Seeing his honest reactions, Naala can’t help but comment on how he’s a good kid though he appears sad before brightly answering that he’ll have to get a reward then for being a good kid.

Sarana appears flustered when Naala sees her, and to her surprise she is told that Sarana is already married. She also gives Naala a dress sewn by her husband, as a congratulatory gift on Naala’s marriage. Naala awkwardly thanks her and Sarana understands that she has her difficulties since she feels a strong duty to protect the Rusu women. But recently Sarana also started to feel that she can fulfill a duty to Rusu even here – by having a child. If the number of children increase, hopefully Nasula won’t attack Rusu anymore and she’d like to raise the child to one day bridge the gap between the two countries. Even though they were kidnapped against their will, she wants to believe in the spirits’ words that there is no such thing as a useless fate. Sarana then worries over Sharu, as she shares that Sharu kept muttering over how Sarana is no longer able to make proper decisions but it’s okay ‘cos help will come soon. Sarana worries that Sharu will act on something while ignoring what Naala truly wants, and about the other Rusu women. She’s sure that she must be doing some preparations on her own and that’s why she hasn’t been meeting Naala at all.

Her words clearly bother Naala as her head is in the clouds when she goes out with Nalan later. When Nalan sulks over this, Naala apologises and comments on how he’s really straightforward and different from Slen. He sulks even more though, asking if she implies that he’s a kid. She denies this as she takes his hand and Nalan remarks that even he has his dishonest moments, and especially so recently. Just then, Naala catches sight of the vegetables and is reminded that some of them has disappeared recently. Nalan’s responses remain vague, especially when she adds that it isn’t all that bad though since she has the chance to go out with him like this now. Nalan abruptly suggests them splitting ways to go and buy different groceries, since they shouldn’t leave Slen alone for too long. Naala is reminded of a recent incident when one of the military men forcefully wooed one of the women. Though things were settled in the end, it is true that Slen has been up to his neck with a lot of work affairs recently.

They go separate ways though Naala is soon approached by Sharu. She explains that the girl from before is being approached by the same military man again. Though the king’s actions on him seemed to have worked so he’s talking more peacefully now and the other Rusu women are together, she’d like Naala to go there just in case since she’s the wife of the military commander after all. (Bad End: Sinner, branches off from here) Naala recalls Sarana’s words and knows that Sharu is probably plotting something. But she can’t back off here either since Sharu might disappear again so she decides to follow Sharu but remain on the alert. True enough, Naala senses something wrong when Sharu pretends to not see the women and wonders if they’re further in. Naala immediately questions her motives and Sharu soon drops the act – she failed to kill Slen and now she failed to trick Naala. Apparently, she had used her body to seduce a man, to get him to push Slen off the cliff since she found out that Slen goes there everyday. This naturally horrifies Naala, but Sharu insists that her body is worth nothing – and that it’s not for her sake but for herself, ‘cos Nasula stole and hurt her treasure.

A Rusu spy then comes in, prepared to take Naala away. He managed to infiltrate with Sharu’s help, and there’s no question that it refers to her sleeping with the Nasula men. The spy tries to persuade Naala, but she doesn’t want to leave the other women behind. Moreover she is no longer a pure virgin, though apparently Oli doesn’t care about that. But truth be told, Naala is most reluctant to leave ‘cos of Slen, rather than the women, and she feels guilty for this as it’s like betraying her country. Just then, Nalan comes to her side and he soon figures out the situation. For the first time, Naala sees him as similar to Slen in how he acts as he tries to protect her. As Naala tries to figure out her own feelings, she feels that both sides each have their own “right”, as they want to protect the thing they find as important. But she doesn’t want this hatred to continue and perhaps unlike Sarana, she was brought here to understand this and to end this. She tells the spy that Nalan is no enemy to her, and that she refuses to return now. If he can’t forcefully take her back, then she asks him to convey the message to Oli: that she won’t return until she has fulfilled her duty.

Sharu suddenly cries aloud and begs for Nalan to persuade Naala, since she heard that he was supporting Naala all along. Nalan is obviously confused but suddenly Sharu says that it was thanks to him, and all his fault too – before stabbing him. Alarmed, Naala quickly hugs the fallen Nalan, and refuses to let go even as Sharu asks her to leave. Seeing that she won’t return after all, Sharu can’t accept this reality and kills herself. Naala is clearly shaken, and the spy offers his hand to her saying that they should leave and to not waste Sharu’s efforts. (Bad End: Secret confession, branches off from here) Naala refuses to leave and so the spy retreats for now. Nalan weakly reassures her that he’s fine, and for now they can’t remain like this as the Rusu women will be in danger (since one of them stabbed a Nasula man). He tells Naala to get one of Slen’s subordinates and while saddened by how kind he is even at this stage, she tears herself away to quickly do as he said.

After that, Nalan was taken back, and Sharu’s body too. Naala remained outside Nalan’s room ever since and Slen approaches her, asking her to enter since Nalan wants to see her too. The doctor inside merely shakes his head and Slen tells her to get a hold of herself as he supports her. She then realises that Slen himself must be feeling much worse and quickly goes to Nalan’s side where she apologises to him. But he apologises back to her instead, since she could’ve returned to Rusu – but he’s happy that she stayed. Naala’s at a loss for words since she isn’t being blamed for anything. As Nalan weakly touches her lips, he asks Slen if he could borrow her for a bit. Slen replies that the only one who could lay hands on his treasure had always been Nalan and he distances himself from them. Nalan thanks him, and to Naala’s surprise he gentle kisses her. He chuckles at how she’s so defenceless and Naala can only cry as she sees the light fading out in him. He tells her not to cry as he feels the happiest now and asks Slen if he finally became a full-fledged man. Slen replies that he had long been one and Nalan thanks him for letting him stay by his side. He really liked Slen and thanks Naala too. With that he slowly closes his eyes and Naala can only desperately call out to his motionless body.

Ever since then, Naala didn’t eat and keeps blaming herself for both of their deaths. Even though she knows that she shouldn’t wallow in self-pity and regret she doesn’t know what else to do. Slen comes in, worried about her. When she provides no response, he sits beside her and strokes the area around her eyes. He remarks that he likes her eyes and reveals that when he first met her eyes he decided that she’ll be his bride. Even in such a situation of despair, she didn’t lose hope and her eyes reflected her strong will to protect everyone which he found to be beautiful and hence he desired her. Naala is surprised to hear this, since it’s the first time he’s spoken anything about why he wanted her. As if both questioning her and himself, Slen wonders what he can do to return that life back into her eyes. After a short silence, Naala remarks that she doesn’t hate his eyes either.

She asks why he doesn’t blame her, and he feels that it was his fault after all for forcing her to marry him. But Naala feels that blaming him will only make her despicable since she had a part to play too. Slen merely says that it’s ‘cos he’s her husband. But Naala finds it strange and starts to release her frustration as she cries, asking why no one blames her. Eventually, Slen says that she’s already punishing herself but Nalan’s death isn’t her fault. Every time she denies this so will he. As he gently hugs her, Naala calms down and she manages to fall asleep that night.

Bond

Naala starts gaining her appetite and Slen comes in to check on her every time to make sure. Naala has set her own resolution as she should return both Nalan and Sharu’s thoughts, and goes to find Slen that night to offer a proposition. Their deaths were concluded as an accident and though there were suspicions, they didn’t dare raise anything against Slen – plus Toya helped too. As Naala peeks into Slen’s room, she sees him drinking at the window side with a full moon in view. Though he appears expressionless, his figure looks sad and lonely – probably ‘cos the usual Nalan isn’t present. She goes in and seeing that his cup is empty, she promptly pours more alcohol for him, much to his surprise. After a long silence, Slen comments on how the dead souls head for the moon. As Naala confirms this, a few tears roll down Slen’s face. But that’s it, and he asks Naala to drink too. As they both drink, they both think of the same thing – that it’s like a wedding ceremony. Though Naala recalls how they only had one for their first night and Slen blushes as he apologises since he was kinda in a hurry. As they continue their conversation, Slen remarks that he would hate for their bond to be broken.

In Nasula, there’s a law for women to marry another man once she has had a child – only nobles are excluded from this rule and that’s a major reason why he wants to be one. He made Toya keep this from the other women as he thought that it didn’t matter to him since he was going to become a noble, and is only concerned about Naala. But now he has doubts about the law too and doesn’t even mind if she tells the rest. He’s sure that it would hurt if a couple was forced to break up. Slen recalls how his mother was one of the kidnapped women from a Southern island. She fell in love with his father and had him – and then wanted to escape when she had to be forced to marry another guy. Of course she couldn’t escape and one of the guards accidentally killed her. So their family was condemmed for being unable to follow the law and his father often berated him, saying that ‘cos of his mother his honour has been shamed. But thinking about it now, his father was also pitiful as he died alone in the end without being able to love someone from the bottom of his heart. Perhaps ‘cos he was raised by such a father, he started to hate all women as he would wonder why he had to be blamed for his mother whom abandoned him. In the end he thought that he had to regain back that honour – though in the end he finds women to be stronger than men.

For the first time, Naala feels the distance between them drawn closer and is happy that he is revealing this side of himself to her. Slen confesses that he can now understand how his mother must’ve felt, as it would be more painful than death to separate with her now. He kisses her gently, much to Naala’s surprise since he usually doesn’t so that. Slen guesses her motive for coming here, as he thought of the same thing too – to bring the future of both countries to the right path. He then draws her close to him, as he admits that he got horny lol. After touching her, he then asks for her permission first as he plans to respect her own will now. Best thing ever to happen is that Toya interrupts them, asking if Slen called him over to see the lives of a husband and wife pffft. Slen sulks since he could’ve waited for them to finish outside, but Toya asks if he doesn’t mind if he feels something from hearing Naala’s voice. Slen threatens to kill him at this though and Noor sighs at how thick-skinned he is as always, since he called over both himself and Toya.

There’s no question that they are all here for an important discussion, and in fact Toya reveals that he wants to create an alliance with Rusu. If their benefits are together it is highly possible that it’ll work – for example, women can choose on their own free will to come here and Nasula will send favours in return. In exchange, Nasula men can go over to Rusu too and it would benefit Rusu since they’ve lost considerable men in wars. Of course it isn’t perfect as Naala worries that people may send women over for money but Toya hopes that they can still work something out. He would like Naala to help him bridge the gap between the two countries. Noor is in favour of this, and Naala sees that he waited for her to willingly be Slen’s wife before proposing this – plus she is the king’s sister. In fact Slen already knew the truth of her birth, but he didn’t care for it. Slen also does not approve of this as he fears for her safety. He offers to go by himself instead, in place of Toya. Seeing his determination, Toya is willing to write a letter but Noor wants Naala to go together with Slen.

This surprises Slen since he thought that Noor would’ve wanted him dead and Noor merely says that he values his capabilities. As the two of them start exchanging biting remarks, Naala is reminded of the rumour that the beast was released on purpose to endanger Slen’s life etc. Toya merely laughs at how they’re on such good terms, and Naala secretly respects him for being able to sum things up so nicely. Toya leaves the final decision to Naala in any case, and won’t blame her for whatever she chooses. Naala agrees to think about it and Toya and Noor leave the room. As they’re left alone, Naala soon expresses her desire to go together with Slen – it’s not for his sake, but for her own sake as she’s like to go together for the sake of both countries’ futures. There’s no persuading her otherwise so Slen gives in.

Best End

Epilogue: A dear fight

A few days later, Naala and Slen took off late at night with only two other men. Only Toya and Noor are aware of this to avoid the opposition party making noise if they discovered that Slen is gone. They soon come to the borders where the red flower field is and though Slen remarks how it’s eerie at first, he later remarks that it does look pretty when he’s with her. The bantering between them continues till they’re near Rusu and Naala decides to go ahead first and the guards there recognise her immediately. They’re indeed taken aback when Naala tells them to let Slen pass as he’s her husband, and is here as an envoy from Nasula. Naala soon finds herself waiting for Oli, and the tension goes away once he happily hugs her, since he had kept worrying about her since then.

Their reunion is soon interrupted since the other ministers are present, plus Slen’s gaze can be felt from behind, and the atmosphere is stiffens again. As Oli lets go of Naala, he reads the letter from Toya and also recognises Slen as the one he fought on that day she was kidnapped. ‘Cos of him he couldn’t get to Naala and now she’s his wife. He draws his sword at Slen, remarking that it’s said that a wife is one’s life in Rusu so since he stole his “life”, it’s natural to take his now. Naala panics at this but Slen tells her to stay back. (Bad End: In a red sea, branches off from here) Naala holds the urge to interfere and when Slen attempts to talk to Oli, Oli interrupts him. He doesn’t want Slen to put on any pretense since he saw that he was like a beast the other day, and wants to listen to his true words. If he doesn’t and remains silent, he’ll kill him immediately and take back Naala. So Slen recollects himself and says that if he would feel better, he can kill him – but Naala’s heart won’t return to him anyway as their souls are already together. Oli replies that he’ll just cut their souls away and he’ll leave for the moon alone. To everyone’s surprise, Slen answers that he’d rather not go to the moon alone and suffer for eternity. His words carry weight and even Oli questions it, since the moon is like heaven for them and denying it pretty much means that you’re going to live a hell-ish experience worse than death itself. Slen says that he has no qualms with it as he wants to create a world where Naala can happily live in, since he didn’t treat her well. He isn’t throwing away his life, but giving up his soul for her.

In the end, Oli lowers his sword as he mutters that smart beasts like him aren’t likeable at all. He’ll give his reply tomorrow and tells them all to rest in the castle till then. But he holds Naala back from following Slen out and forbids them from being together without his permission. Later that night, Oli spots Naala constantly pacing back and forth and reassures her that he isn’t that despicable to do something underhanded to Slen. Naala knows this herself and Oli jokes that even when he’s trusted, he couldn’t gain her heart. He knew from the start that she didn’t like him in that manner plus he saw how she looked when he raised his sword at Slen – if only looks could kill. Oli remarks that probably only Slen could stop a wild horse like her, relating to what happened earlier. As he pats her head, Naala feels like she almost betrayed him. But she’s also delighted when he tells her that her husband is waiting inside her room and she thanks Oli.

Inside, the couple embraces and Slen remarks that he probably couldn’t have acted like Oli did, to put his personal feelings aside for the sake of the country – he would’ve killed the man who stole his bride away. Naala doubts this though and Slen frowns, asking if she’s thinking lightly of the depth of his feelings. He admits that he couldn’t stand the sight of them hugging and mutters that he shouldn’t have brought her along. Naala merely sighs, as she wonders if this was the true reason he didn’t want her along. You know where this is heading for and let’s just say that Naala takes the initiative for the first time which really trips up Slen pffft. It’s also apparent that Slen is still mindful of what Naala first said – that every time they do it it would be like torture for her so Naala becomes honest this time and tells him otherwise. Naala also realises that Slen didn’t……(use your imagination) inside probably ‘cos there’s a possibility that they won’t return together so he doesn’t want to risk her getting pregnant now.

And indeed the next day, Oli accepts the proposal but wants Naala to stay behind. With the news of the alliance it’s likely that there will be a lot of turmoil within Nasula so he doesn’t want to put her at any risk. Even if Slen says that he’ll protect her, conviction can’t protect everything. Slen can return to properly propose to her again – in other words he’s telling them to end their marriage relationship for now. Oli’s not requesting Slen though, but making a deal – if he refuses he’ll kill him. Naala doesn’t want this, or for the alliance to fall through, so she tells Slen that she’ll stay and to believe in her as she’ll wait for him. After a heavy silence, Slen agrees to this. Naala sees him off at the borders and the next time they meet they will no longer be husband and wife. They both realise that neither of them has told the other “I love you” as of yet, but saying it now will be like words of farewell. In place of that, Naala says inside of her heart that she loves him and will always wait for him. As if having heard her, Slen breaks into a smile and says that he does too. They briefly kiss and part ways.

Three years later, the alliance has been solidified especially with thanks to Toya having completed the cure for the disease. At the borders now, you can see people from both countries interacting. The Rusu women who wished to return home have also returned not long after the alliance was formed. Toya remains busy and only came to the red flower field, where she is standing now, once. She occasionally sees the flowers being carried away and wonders what the cure is made up of. Noor probably wanted to keep it all under the wraps but she decides that she’ll try asking Toya next time. Right now she’s teaching sword-fighting and though both Oli and the ministers were against it at first, they gave up in the end since they knew that she wouldn’t listen anyway. Just then, she sees two men fighting over a woman. It’s a common sight even though the alliance is in place and going overboard can get a death penalty. Naala goes to break it up but they refuse to listen and as they start to fight, one of their swords rebound and is sent flying in the direction of Naala. She doesn’t have any weapons on her though, and dodging it would risk the woman behind her so she decides to take the blow. To her surprise, Slen comes to her rescue and the men run away when they hear that he’s the top military commander of Nasula.

Slen apologises for coming this late since it took a while for things to settle down in Nasula but now he’s here to ask her out, with marriage in mind. They hug each other and he tells her that he loves her. They’re no longer husband and wife now so he thought of starting over as lovers. Naala feels that he’s chosen his words wrongly though, and playfully tells him the words she had prepared to say back to him when they meet again – “please impregnate me”. A certain someone in the past said that impertinent women like her should be made to say this to understand things easily. Laughing at this, he jokingly takes up her challenge.

Bad End 1: Sinner

Naala follows Sharu willingly and is knocked unconscious when they reach a deserted alley. She wakes up later to find herself crossing the boundaries of Nasula and Rusu, in the area where the red flower fields are. The guy riding the horse informs her that he infiltrated Nasula on Oli’s orders to take her back, and had Sharu’s cooperation. Naala demands to know what happened to the rest and apparently, the other women have been forcefully assigned to Nasula men. It appears as though Slen was furious that Naala was taken away and plans to attack Rusu soon. In Rusu, talks of war has been coming up too so it’s likely to go in that direction. He tells Naala not to feel responsible since she’s Oli’s wife after all. Despite the fact that she wanted to return home, Naala herself feels like she’s committing adultery since she already sees herself as Slen’s wife. She failed to protect the Rusu women, hurt many people, and now war is about to erupt. She feels that she has committed a sin worse than any other sinner could have committed.

Bad End 2: Secret confession

Seeing that she couldn’t protect Sharu in the end, Naala feels as though she has failed her duty. Confused, she takes the spy’s hand as if seeking support. A year later, she’s back in Rusu already but feels that she couldn’t protect anything in the end after all. After she left, a war erupted and Slen even killed Oli amidst it all. But being on the losing end, she also sees it as a form of release since she can end it all now. Slen comes to find her, with the intention of bringing her back as his wife. He doesn’t care what the others may say and promises to protect her. Though she’s touched to see how much he’s doing for her, Naala doesn’t plan to return with him. She plans to sleep here for eternity with everyone else’s thoughts. As she sees his tattoo, Naala remarks that she likes it (or rather that she likes him), before killing herself. Shocked and upset, Slen cries as he hugs her, saying that he didn’t wish for this and merely wanted to be together. As he repeatedly tells her that he loves her, the words never reach her and disappear as Naala passes away.

Bad End 3: In a red sea

Naala attempts to interfere though and so Oli dismisses Slen as only having “that much” to him and kills him. Naala is shaken by the sight as she clings to Slen’s dead body and a red sea forms before her eyes.

Bad End 4

This branches off right from the end of the Common Route of Slen and Nalan. Naala decides to listen to Nalan and as they continue to hold hands, she comforts him instead thinking that he’s even more worried about Slen than herself. As she hears that Slen isn’t in critical condition, Naala feels relieved. She realises that even she now thinks of Slen as important, though she isn’t sure if she loves him. She wonders if it’s really as Nalan said, that the physical relationship drew them closer. She doesn’t hate him like she did at first, and maybe it’s a form of attachment now. Hearing this, Nalan sadly remarks that it’s better for him to disappear – that way he and Slen can be on better terms. When Naala tries to convince him otherwise, Nalan exclaims otherwise and gasps as he realises that he just raised his voice. He’s extremely hesitant on saying the truth, but Naala pushes him to say it thinking that he’ll continue to torture himself like this.

Not being able to resist any longer, Nalan pushes her down and kisses her. Naala is unable to throw him off, and she is confronted with the realisation that he’s indeed a man after all for the first time. Nalan confesses that he fell in love with her at first sight and he did his best to erase his feelings. He decided that he would leave her side once she felt better but he ended up not doing so. Nalan does want for both of them to be happy but each time he sees them on better terms he can’t stand it either, especially when Slen embraces her. Naala realises that she didn’t think of his feelings at all this whole time, and feels sorry towards him – but even after knowing this now their positions won’t change. Putting aside her feelings for Slen, she doesn’t want to commit adultery. But Nalan doesn’t want to listen to hear and kisses her again, saying that he won’t do anything more than kissing. He starts to cry as he begs for her to save him from this pain. As he repeatedly says that he likes her, Naala slowly gives up resistance.

After Nalan stops, Naala tidies herself up and decides that she should go see Slen after all. Still she can’t help but feel sad for Nalan, especially considering how he supported her all this time. When Naala goes to see Slen, he wonders why it took her so long to come and Naala tries to hide her panic. She knows that she’s obviously shaken as Slen never told her that he liked or loved her, but Nalan desperately conveys this to her. On another day, Naala goes to get the wine for Slen and Nalan comes with it in the corridor. Seeing that he’s acting as per normal, Naala decides to pretend that nothing happened to. But when he passes her the alcohol, Nalan whisper that he hasn’t forgotten. He knows all too well that she’s Slen’s wife, especially when he can clearly hear her voice when they do it at night. Unsure of what to say, Naala quickly goes back to Slen’s room though her face is clearly red. Slen then asks why she’s looking after him and she merely answers that she can’t leave an injured patient alone. Slen jokingly says that she should just say it’s ‘cos she loves him. Naala goes quiet as she thinks of Nalan and Slen questions if she has someone else she likes. Of course Naala denies this so Slen tells her to say it then. After a brief hesitation, Naala says that she loves him as a man.

Rolling down

That morning, Slen teases Naala as usual and even tells her to wash herself tonight ‘cos he’s going to celebrate and love her lots. However, Nalan is clearly glaring over out of jealously and Naala quickly sees Slen off. After he’s gone, Naala tells Nalan that he’ll be found out soon like that and will have to be punished at this rate. However, Nalan is clueless as to what she’s referring to. Naala wonders if he did it unconsciously, and decides to tell Nalan to no longer attend to her, thinking that it’s for his sake to put a distance between them. Though Nalan doesn’t want to at first, he accepts this eventually. That night, Naala waits for Slen and hears him enter. But with her back facing to him, her eyes are suddenly covered. She wonders if he’s playing around but there’s no answer as she feels him kissing her from her feet and upwards. Naala eventually senses something off, when she feels that the arms around her are different and realises that it’s Nalan. But Nalan begs her not to reject him, for if she does so he can’t live on. He insists that she did nothing wrong as she thought that he was Slen, and promises that he will only kiss. Naala knows that this is wrong but ‘cos Nalan tears up, she can’t bear to reject him.

After Nalan is gone, Slen returns and Naala tries her best to act normal. But after they’re done, Slen says that he’d like for her to be pregnant with his child soon, adding that a person’s will is strong – if the person continues to not want a child the body won’t. Slightly frightened, Naala confirms with him that she can’t possible go to any other man. Ever since then, Nalan would go to her room every night when Slen would return home late, to kiss her. And eventually Naala realises that she no longer sees him as a younger brother but as a man already. That night, Slen suddenly comes home earlier than usual and it’s obvious that he’s been drinking – but he demands for more. He throws a temper at her, as he remarks that if someone has takes her he won’t let the person off. When Naala assures him so, he asks her to say that she loves him, and to confirm that no one else has touched her by showing him so. As this continue, Naala slowly feels both her heart and body rolling down, and further down.

Broken bird

A period of time has passed since then, and as usual both Naala and Nalan see Slen off that morning. But with each day Slen treats her more roughly and it’s like a slow poison slowing breaking her down. Plus his attitude switches sharply between a kind one, and one who keeps blaming her, she can never tell which one he is. Never did she expect that this would be the last time she’ll see Slen off like this. After that, Naala never saw Slen and it appears as though he ‘s avoiding her. She hasn’t seen Nalan either as he wants to avoid being seen coming to her room by Slen. But one night Slen suddenly comes to see her, as he remarks that after waiting for so long she should be wanting a man soon. Naala can only have a bad feeling as he uses aphrodisiac on her, and remarks that she’s no longer satisfied with just one person. As she struggles to resist out of fear, he’s reminded of their first night and forces himself on her anyway (from her behind…ugh). If that’s not enough, he even called Nalan over. It’s his punishment to them for having lied to him all this time. Nalan takes all the blame, and insists that Naala did nothing wrong. But Slen points out that she accepted his feelings and didn’t reject him, and that’s the worst form of betrayal. If she really wanted to reject Nalan, she would’ve consulted him – but she didn’t ‘cos she has feelings for Nalan. When Nalan tries to dissuade him, since Slen should love Naala and this isn’t like him, Slen angrily remarks that it was he who stained Naala and that their lies have twisted him. What he wants now is to hurt the both of them. He draws his sword and threatens the both of them to do each other, and if anyone resists he’ll kill the other one.

Nalan tries to persuade Naala not to do so, continuing to take all of the blame. But Naala herself knows that it’s ‘cos she got the words of love from Nalan that she allowed this, and it all boils down to her weakness. She doesn’t want him to die ‘cos of her own weakness and she obeys Slen. Well you can imagine that things progress to a 3P and Nalan is filled with guilt and despair at the end. After that, Naala is locked in the room like a caged bird, and Slen would often order her to say that she loves him. But of course he hates her empty words too but Naala has grown used to this treatment. Slen couldn’t forgive her the most for lying to him that she loved him and he points his sword at her. Naala doesn’t even flinch, and doesn’t even mind if he kills her just like this. But Slen drops his sword and he hugs her and cries out her name, as if begging her to love him. He whispers for her to say it and Naala does so like a broken bird.

Overall

I can finally what I thought of this couple since the Common Route: LizzieDarcy. Uh I mean, isn’t this like Naala’s prejudice and Slen’s pride? And well his issues of his upbringing too, since his parents had that going on. But yeah, I really got those vibes. ‘Cos of that I think I preferred Slen’s route over Toya’s. (Luji still remains my favourite though.) I think it has become quite clear that I like it when I see see both characters mature. Unlike Toya’s though, Naala hardly does anything for the Rusu women except towards the very end so I’m left wondering what did she do before that then? I heard that many have issues with Naala’s first night with Slen. Perhaps this is a weird thing to say but it feels as though it was unavoidable when you consider how both characters are at the start. Even if Slen holds himself back it feels as though Naala is going to provoke him anyhow with her sarcasm; that is shown when Slen ends up losing it and treats her roughly even though he said that he would be gentle. Well, that is not to say that I would approve of such behaviour and one can also understand the conflict within Naala. Let’s just say that both of them were too stubborn at the start, as Nalan aptly observes.

So speaking of Nalan, the Broken bird end was sad ‘cos essentially it’s half-hearted feelings that led to everyone’s misery. I think it’s more understandable than what happened in Toya’s Crimson end anyway. I felt that Bad Ends 1 and 3 were not necessary as they didn’t add much. As for Secret confession, I just like sad endings so yeah lol. Other than that, Oli was cool in this route. It’s a pity how he kinda never ends up happy. Also, ‘cos Slen brought it up I’m also wondering why Naala doesn’t get pregnant at all – so far she only does so in Luji’s bad end which is ironic. I’m pretty sure Slen and Toya (in his best end) do her at every chance they get so hmm. Anyway since I’ve unlocked Nalan’s route now I will be doing him next.

10 thoughts on “Koezaru wa Akai Hana: Slen’s Route

  1. Jerrie says:

    I can’t get the Good ending, no matter which choice I make when they cross the river I getting bad ending 3 Red Sea where Ollie kills Slen. It’s driving me crazy how do I get the good ending?!?!?!

    • Yume says:

      That’s strange. By right if you choose “スレンを信じる (believe in Slen)” it should lead to the Good ending. Perhaps one of the previous choices was wrong?

      Once you enter Slen’s route the choices for the Good ending are:
      やっぱり様子を見に行くわ
      わざわざ呼ぶのも悪いかしら
      そういえばサラーナが……
      間者の手を取らない
      自分で選んだことだもの。後悔は
      スレンを信じる
      (I used this walkthrough: http://otome.girly.jp/benibana/menu.html)

      Hope that helps!

  2. midoriha says:

    Thank you for this post! I think Slen and Naala are rather similar, personality-wise. They’re both pretty tough, though not very honest with each other. I liked the scene when Toya and Noor disturbed Slen and Naala, though! It was hilarious!

  3. Sena says:

    So I finally got around to finishing up Slen’s route after not touching Koezaru in ages. I really liked Slen. He’s extremely thoughtful and his conversations with Naala were amusing. It was a different type of banter than what she had with Nooru. It was really funny though, because even if it wasn’t a lot, whenever Toya made an appearance, it was nice seeing him (especially that funny one when he interrupts their sexy time), so I guess I still like him from his route.

    I liked seeing Naala and Slen’s relationship develop, but poor Nalan. I felt bad for him. Sometimes his voice would kind of annoy me, but I liked him. I found it sadder that he had to die in order for Naala and Slen’s relationship to progress (and not go sour like it did in “Broken Bird”), but I guess the part of me that’s like you and likes sad ends liked how it tied things off nicely and how even though he died, Nalan was happy in the end?

    I did feel bad for Oli again and I thought he handled things rather well all things considered, at least in the good end. Sometimes it feels like he’s so controlled by his desire to have Naala back at his side that he’s blinded a bit and doesn’t think of the good of the kingdom, like in the “Sinner” end. But Sharu. She’s crazy. I hope that she’s not this crazy all the time. I much preferred her in Toya’s route when she got back her sanity at the end and was actually helpful.I agree that both Bad End 1 and 3 weren’t really necessary. The first walkthrough I followed was flawed because it had one choice area wrong and another completely missing, so as usual, I chose the wrong answer so when Naala and Slen went to Rusu, I didn’t get the prompt whether to protect or trust Slen so Oli just killed him. “Secret Confession” was rather sad because they actually seemed to like each other at that point but everything fell apart because of Naala’s grief over Sharu and Nalan’s successive deaths and it ended up leading to war and destruction all around. I guess by that time she was already a shell of her former self and couldn’t bring herself to live (possibly happy) with Slen after everything that happened. I felt so bad for him in that end.

    “Broken Bird” was pretty tragic too because like you said, it was the half-hearted feelings. It wasn’t that she didn’t like and care for Slen, she just never got to that love part yet and I felt bad because it made me kind of annoyed at Nalan. I felt bad for him, but I suppose in the best end, I liked him because he was able to hold that love secretly and didn’t act upon it really so I admired him for it. In this route he wasn’t able to control it and Naala cared for him as well so she didn’t have the heart to stop him, but that just ended up causing grief on everyone. If people had handled this better (and I speak for everyone because Nalan totally could’ve continued the silent love, Naala could’ve tried to reject him better, and Slen could’ve not lost it) this end wouldn’t have happened.

    It is a good point that it’s interesting how Naala didn’t get pregnant in Toya’s or Slen’s routes when they probably did the mattress mambo way more often. Although when Slen brought it up in “Broken Bird,” it just seemed to be a means to tie her to him completely and not really what having a child should be about. I feel like I already talked about this for Toya’s route though so I won’t really go into it.

    And yeah, I thought the same thing about Naala and how she didn’t really do anything for the Rusu women. After playing Toya’s route and knowing how the cure comes from the flower, it just almost felt like she was more useless? That’s probably a bad way to put it because she did help slay the beast and had that whole diplomatic trip to Rusu at the end to propose the alliance, but it just seemed so minimal in comparison. I mean even in Nooru’s route she was like…stalking Orte there in order to win the bet to have Nooru help the Rusu women. I guess it was nice that they focused on the relationship, but in terms of the plot it fell short. I’m sure they could’ve done something to have her help the women more when she seemed to do such a good job of that in the other routes. Perhaps I’m asking for too much. But yeah, I did enjoy Slen’s route. It was really nice to see them change as they got to know each other more and how they both came out better people with a deeper bond at the end.

    • Yume says:

      Nice to see that you enjoyed Slen’s route! But yeah in terms of the whole main guy vs. secondary guy, Slen and Nalan have it the worst since they’re really close brothers in a sense – unlike the others. You’ll see that in Nalan’s route, it has that tragic spin too like how Nalan had to die in Slen’s route……

      Ahh yes, Sharu kinda lost it in this route. I think this is the only route where she’s like this so no worries about having to see her like that anymore!

      Yes Broken Bird was one of the saddest bad ends imo. Some see it as a…kinky bad end. It does look that way on the surface, but unlike some of Nooru’s bad ends for example, you could clearly see why everything fell apart here. Moreover, Slen was not happy at all. Everyone wasn’t happy.

      I agree, in Slen’s route it was clearer as to how both of them changed as the route progressed. But yeah, perhaps due to the focus being on that we couldn’t see Naala do as much for the Rusu women as she did in other routes. It just stuck out to me since imo, one of Naala’s greatest motivation in the game is to act for the Rusu women.

      • Sena says:

        I had a feeling something like that would happen, but I won’t say anything until I get there. I was actually not sure whether I should go with Nalan next or mysterious dude who doesn’t turn up unless you pursue him.

        That’s good to know. After playing Luji’s route, I don’t expect anything better for her than that.

        I don’t think it’s really a kinky end either because like you implied, it would have to show that at least Slen was happy, but he clearly wasn’t. I wonder what happened to Nalan after that. I either didn’t read it as carefully or it just wasn’t revealed. I guess it makes sense to focus more on Naala and Slen after, but since Nalan played a big role in how this end came out I was curious.

        That was one of the things that made her character so you’re right that’s probably why we both felt that way. I mean they had more personal issues to go through since, how did you put it? It was like pride and prejudice because they needed to get around those in order to progress. That’s a good way of looking at it so I agree with you. It’s pretty sad to me that Slen doesn’t always get given the best impression in other guy’s routes. He really is a good guy but that doesn’t come out at all except in his route (and maybe Nalan’s but I didn’t play it yet so I don’t know).

        • Yume says:

          Hmm Nalan’s route is pretty connected to Slen’s (quite obviously) while the other guy is relatively more different. Well, not sure if this helps with your decision haha.

          They didn’t really explicitly say what happened to Nalan after that. The final scene was just Slen talking to Naala if I recall correctly.

          Glad to hear that someone else feels the same way as me! I agree, Slen probably gives off a less favourable impression and you only see his true character in his own route – and yes Nalan’s route (as the relationship between Slen and Nalan is quite important, the other main + sub-characters don’t have this). He doesn’t appear as much in others.

          • Sena says:

            It probably did. I decided to just go for Nalan next because it was off of Slen’s route and I actually knew who he was. Hopefully I like the last guy because otherwise I essentially did the same thing where my play order was not the most effective way of having me finish a game, haha.

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