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Whoot! The chapter came out earlier!
Firstly, I loved the initial shadows of Renji, Byakuya and Rukia. Maybe it's a bit too soon to say if it was a dream or if it was some sort of connection with the Soul Society, but I felt like Ichigo's soul was still resonating with that world he left behind, even if he claims he's happy with the way he is.
The rest of the chapter was very peaceful and easy going. We get a glimpse of how everyone is living their lives. It was obvious that Tatsuki would end up working in a dojo. Everyone else from the gang has gotten a part-time job too. Ichigo is earning money by lending his services to the school clubs. Is he planning to leave the Kurosaki household when he graduates? It sounds as the kind of thing he would do, but it would also probably draw Isshin out of the picture, highly unconvenient.
We see Orihime's new look, and curiously, she's not wearing the Shun Shun Rikka. I'm very curious about this. Did she give up her powers, has she stopped using them? Probably she doesn't need them now that life has become so "peaceful" (does Ishida heal himself then?). Which makes me also wonder about Chad. Last week we saw Ishida is now taking care of the Hollow threats. Does this mean Chad doesn't participate in battles anymore? After all, he fought because to help Ichigo, now that Ichigo doesn't fight, what reason would Chad have to do it? BTW we have yet to see anything of Chad. We just heard Ichigo say he had some job. Well, we have time I guess.
The chapter ends with some dudes assaulting the school wanting to fight Ichigo and Ishida taking over the fight. Does the kid look hot with his hair's new do? Love it. Anyway, it seems like this is another chapter to show some sort of normality in Ichigo's life, starting to hint at how his bonds with the Soul Society are starting to resurface and the new threat for this arc that showed up at the end (doesn't Kubo love to make us speculate about a single foot?)
Something cool about this week was that even though Ichigo and Isshin are acting totally normal at each other, they can talk about Soul Society like it's normal, though Isshin pointed out that it's the first time Ichigo mentions it out loud. So it seems like they haven't talked at all about the topic in the past 17 months. We'll see how they sort things out.
I can't say how thrilled I am. Each minute I get more and more excited about what's to come, even if the chapters aren't all excitement or all super duper amazing, I feel completely wrapped up in the story and can't wait to see what will happen next. I think this is due to how nothing is predictable at this point, there's no "well, we know Ichigo is going to beat Aizen". I'm exhilarated.
I hope to see your opinions on how this arc is developping. Remember no spoilers, no crack theories, no flames or bashing. And I always love to read your comments and appreciate them, so thanks!