Rules of the Area is the 286th episode of the Fairy Tail anime, and the 9th episode of the 2018 series. It aired on December 2, 2018.
Natsu and friends set sail for the Alvarez Empire in order to rescue Makarov. They stop at Caracole Island along the way for supplies and information, but they instead encounter an explosive situation and one of the feared Spriggan 12, Brandish μ.
At the Magic Council, Levy has finally completed the necessary paperwork for the revival of Fairy Tail and hands it to Jura who, as a Ten Wizard Saint, is now a member of the Council, with him stating how it is a shame that Levy has to leave them. As Warrod jokes around with the Fairy Tail Mage, Wolfheim, one of Four Gods of Ishgar, appears and scolds the Wizard Saint for his silliness, especially during the current political tense with the western continent, Alakitasia. Suddenly, Hyberion, the current Chairman of the Council, stops the two, stating that as the new governing body they should be setting an example for the Mages of the country, whilst also acknowledging the escalating tension between them and the Alvarez Empire. This causes Levy to wonder about God Serena, holder of the first rank in the Ten Wizards Saints and presumably the strongest Mage in the continent. As the three Gods of Ishagr remain silent, Jura and Levy begin to worry, just before Hyberion reveals that God Serena has defected from Ishgar to the Alvarez Empire, joining the elite guards of Emperor Spriggan: the Spriggan 12, immensely shocking the two.
Elsewhere, the Fairy Tail Mages are sailing towards Alakitasia, in order to save their Master, with Natsu getting motion-sick as per usual. The Dragon Slayer then attempts to have Wendy heal him with her Magic, just to discover that the latter began having motion-sickness just like him. Meanwhile, Erza and Mest begin to talk, with Titania questioning the need Makarov felt to use such drastic measures, even if it was to protect the guild and shield Lumen Histoire. Gray and Lucy recall how the Master was close to finally activate it to stop Face during the battle with Tartaros, something only four Dragons were able to achieve, but was finally afraid to do so. Mest then explains the length of the trip to the capital, noting the need for extreme prudence, before revealing that they will stop at Caracole Island in order to get supplies and meet with an informant. Back at Fiore, the B Team have finally moved to search for Laxus and the Thunder God Tribe. Much to their surprise, Lily and Levy, who has just caught up with the group, stress that their chances of defeating the Empire in a head-on fight is naught, admitting to the strength of their upcoming enemy and urging the rest to avoid engaging with them.
Upon arriving at Caracole, the group is shocked to find the island roaming with the Alvarez military, looking for the Mages' spy. Disguising as Cait Shelter Mages, the group gain entry and try to keep a low profile. This, however, is proven futile when some of the soldiers threaten a little child, prompting the Guildmembers to save the boy and crush the military, while Wendy and Carla accompany the boy and Mest goes to find the informant.
After settling down to eat the island's famous Star Mangoes, the owner of the food stall shares with them his dream of bringing his business into Ishgar, just for his stall to be suddenly destroyed, much to his great grief. The culprit reveals himself as the member of the Brandish Squad of the Alvarez Imperial Army: Marin Hollow. Marin also reveals himself as a specialist of Spatial Magic and a user of Rules of the Area, proclaiming that space-based Magics can't affect him, nullifying both Erza's The Knight and Lucy's Celestial Spirit Magic and transporting the two girls away. Marin then suddenly changes personality, expressing great disgust against Natsu, Gray and, much to the latters' shock, an injured Mest, whom Marin drops on the ground. The Alvarez soldier then continue to overwhelm the two Mages with his Spatial Magic, before coming to a stop upon the arrival of his superior, the Shield of Spriggan: Brandish μ.
Characters in Order of Appearance
Battles & Events
- Makarov Rescue Operation (started)
Magic, Spells, and Abilities used
- Transformation Magic (変身魔法 Henshin Mahō)
- Spatial Magic (空間魔法 Kūkan Mahō)
- Molding Magic (造形魔法 Zōkei Mahō)
- Ice-Make (氷の造形魔法 Aisu Meiku)
- Dragon Slayer Magic (滅竜魔法 Metsuryū Mahō)
- Fire Dragon Slayer Magic (炎の滅竜魔法 Honō no Metsuryū Mahō)
- Fire Dragon's Iron Fist (火竜の鉄拳 Karyū no Tekken)
Manga & Anime Differences
- The following parts occur only in the anime:
- Erza's and Lucy's reaction to Natsu's ninja-like behavior.
- Image of Draculos' description of the Spriggan 12.
- In Draculos' description of God Serena, the former Wizard Saint has longer hair in the anime while in the manga his hair is shorter.
- Erza, Lucy, and Mirajane are among those whose attire differs between the two media.
- After taking the sick Dragon Slayers to their beds, Gray appears with only shorts on in the anime. In the manga he appears with only underwear on.
- Gajeel's bag includes a Plue plushie.
- Cana gropes Juvia in the manga after her comment on Gajeel and Levy, while in the anime she teases her normally.
- Lucy's hairstyle when undercover at the island differs between the two media.
- Lucy's whip became water-like in manga, while in the anime it did not.
- A close-up of Brandish's eye after she makes her appearance towards the end of the episode.
|Avatar arc||Alvarez Empire arc||100 Years Quest arc|
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