The final episode of this arc sees Reinhard and Kircheis crack the case of Karl Reifeisen’s death and the culprit would prove to be unexpected based on the last episode. The two head back to the crime scene where a bag of grain that nearly hits Reinhard proves to be what sealed the the case from his perspective. They then confront Steger and expose Hase before the conversation takes an unexpected turn.
The nagging feeling Reinhard had in the last episode led him back to the crime scene. While he looked for anything that would help him, Kircheis spotted a bag about to fall and pushed Reinhard out of the way saving him. As the automatic cleaning device sucked up the grain that had spilled out of the bag, Reinhard finally put things together. He figured out that Karl had died accidentally and someone had taken the empty bag away to cover up a possible investigation into practices at the academy by making it seem like a murder. After doing a little more research into one of the other students, Reinhard decided it was time to talk to Steger about what they had discovered.
Reinhard laid out the story of who had committed the crime as it would have been conceived in the previous episode. Hase had been discovered as colorblind and killed Karl and Bertz because they had figured out his secret. Reinhard then called Hase in to read a statement written in red on green paper. Since he couldn’t read it he admitted he was colorblind and lashed out for having his weakness exposed. Steger then admonished the top student for having killed a fellow student when Reinhard interjected.
Reinhard said that Hase was not the killer. Kircheis then carried a knife that was brought by an officer and Reinhard said it was found in Belburg’s room and that he had confessed to the crime. Steger was shocked and said that the knife was actually in Hase’s desk. With the plot now exposed, Reinhard turned the screws on Steger. He was trying to help Belburg by taking out the 2 students who ranked above him because he was Steger’s grandson.
Reinhard then laid out what happened. Karl had gone to the warehouse to find evidence of supplies being sold on the black market because it would help his military evaluations. He was killed by a sack of grain that fell onto his head. Steger came across the body on patrol and had a dilemma. Since he didn’t want his management questioned he took the opportunity to get rid of Hase and his colorblindness at the same time. He made the scene look like a murder and then set up evidence to try to point all of the evidence at Hase. Bertz was killed by Steger for the sake of his grandson. Reinhard put his downfall on the fact that the military police had sent him rather than someone more experienced.
As Steger reached for a pistol under his desk, Kircheis stopped him by pointing a pistol of his own at him. Reinhard then lectured Steger on the greater honor the Alliance men had over him and how Hase’s disability being a cause for expulsion should be something he hates. Steger defended himself by first minimizing Reinhard’s accomplishments due to Annerose, then arguing that he was trying to change the system from within. He knew Hase was colorblind because his superior told him. He put his hopes in his son-in-law, but he was killed in battle. Kircheis recognized something from this argument, that mainly Reinhard’s biggest enemies would be those trying to change the system from within. Reinhard would not be angry at that because he could understand where they were coming from.
Reinhard ended the conversation by asking Steger to give his reasons to Bertz’s family before officers came in to arrest him. Kircheis pointed out that the school would now be without its principal and top 3 students after arguing that Belburg would never be allowed to stay under the circumstances.
Outside, Hase was being escorted away and his fellow students took to openly calling him out for his disability and mocking him for it. Reinhard interrupted them and said they had no right to mock him because he was still the best student despite his colorblindness and that Hase had no say in his disability when he was born. Hase smiled slightly as someone defended him for one of the few times.
Afterward, Kircheis asked if discrimination must happen. Reinhard said it was because they didn’t know discrimination was built into the system. Kircheis then asked a more personal question on whether he hated people with small dreams. Reinhard replied by saying he didn’t hate those people who had small dreams, but rather those who chose to stay weak. Kircheis wasn’t expecting that answer, but he was able to share his simple dream of always being by Reinhard’s side even if it was indirectly.
Thoughts: This wasn’t exactly the ideal end to a detective story. It pretty much stayed in genre at the end. The only points of interest came during Steger’s defense that he couldn’t do anything different because he was ordered to and Reinhard’s philosophy on dreams. The next arc should see the action pick up as I start A Hundred Billion Stars, A Hundred Billion Lights.