Image source: 神撃のバハムート VIRGIN SOUL on Twitter

Nina Drango, from Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul, has suffered a lot throughout the series. But, that’s only made her a stronger woman.

[This article contain major spoilers for Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul.]

Nina has fallen in love, been implicated in a slave revolt, imprisoned, seen an ancient super-weapon used against angels, and had her heart broken. But, Nina’s patience has worn thin after the man she loved had a close friend of hers assassinated. Now, she prepares for the final confrontation with the man who broke her heart.

Over the course of Virgin Soul we’ve seen the character Nina Drango go through lots of hardships—mostly related to love. While she’s clearly naïve about romance, we see her come to understand love in many of its forms.

Image source: 神撃のバハムート VIRGIN SOUL on Twitter

It all starts with Nina’s inability to look at handsome young men. It’s very much infatuation on her part. But, then she meets a handsome young fellow who she enjoys being with in an arm-wrestling contest. Unbeknownst to Nina, though, this young man is actually the villain of the series, King Chariose XVII, posing as a commoner.

Nina’s interaction with the king in the early episodes is essentially puppy love. She’s obsessed with and spends to much time thinking about him. Yet, when he comes around to visit she can’t help but hide away. It’s what we’d expect from a person who’s experiencing the feelings of love for the first time. And as the two spend time with each other, we see a distinct change in Nina. On a physical level, she stops becoming excited when she sees young pretty-boys. On a mental level, though, she starts recognizing the type of man she’s actually attracted to: kind and gentle—good-looking is just the icing on the cake.

Image source: 神撃のバハムート VIRGIN SOUL on Twitter

Yet, because Nina doesn’t realize the man she’s enamored with is the actually the king in disguise, this leaves her free to judge the king without the personal attachment she normally would. This is actually shown through Nina’s realization the city she lives in is built on the harsh treatment of demon slaves. It’s a shock to her a ruler would commit such heinous acts. But, when she’s caught up in a liberation movement she fully understands how callous Chariose XVII is.

In fact, during her trial when she meets the king face to face (and still doesn’t realize he’s the man she’s fallen in love with), she berates him for his brutal ruling style. It’s type of hatred we rarely seen from Nina, but it’s understandable because she’s being punished for being a bystander in a riot she had little to do with. It goes much deeper, though. In the middle of the series, Nina witnesses the atrocities Chariose XVII is willing to commit—namely the annihilation of angels—to further his mysterious agenda. It’s an act she’s hard-pressed to believe, but only furthers her anger towards the man.

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Herein lies an interesting fact about Nina’s relationship with Chariose XVII. She eventually finds out his true identity. It’s a traumatizing moment for Nina because here’s the man who she knows to be gentle and kind—but at the same time is also enabling slavery and the mass murder of angels and demons. Nina has to come to terms with how love can really blind a person and she needs to look far deeper into herself and Chariose XVII to see if she truly loves him. This culminates when she sees him visiting the grave of his mother and when they meet at a royal ball soon after that.

What Nina learns is twofold: Chariose XVII is truly a kind and gentle man, but his ambitions are far beyond her ken. For instance, after visiting the grave, the two walk around the demon slums in disguise. While Chariose XVII could act in a condescending manner towards the residents, we see he’s polite to the people. He even goes as far as playing soccer with some local children. But, at the same time at he demonstrates he has responsibilities Nina will never fully comprehend at the royal ball, thus breaking her heart.

Image source: 神撃のバハムート VIRGIN SOUL on Twitter

It all comes down to whether or not she can accept Chariose XVII for who he is. While she holds out hope he’ll be the compassionate commoner he was when they first met, she’s heartbroken when he chooses his royal duties. What’s worse is part of picking his role as king means Chariose XVII needs to eliminate Nina because she stands in the way of his ambitions. Think about this for a moment. Not only does Chariose XVII break Nina’s heart, but he tries to have has her assassinated as well. While it’s natural for Nina to be furious, even murderous, her calm shows how her feelings have matured. Where she was naïve about the romance and the world, she now understands the importance of comprehending the full scope of love and worldly issues before diving headlong into action. In other words, she’s become an adult.

While Nina’s love for the King Chariose XVII is born from innocence and a pure place, dealing with hardships makes her love virtuous. That’s why she’s willing to fight the man she loves.

Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul is streaming on Amazon Strike.

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