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Book of Gap
Chapter 4 infobox
Chapter 4

Japanese Name

間隙の書

Romanized Name

Kangeki no Sho

Volume

2 and 3

Release Date

March 26, 2011

Pages

112

Adapted from

Chapter 1 (light novel 4)

Anime counterpart

N/A

For the Phantom Book, see Book of Gap.
For the light novel chapter, see Chapter 1 (light novel 4).

"Book of Gap" is the 4th chapter of The Mystic Archives of Dantalian manga. It's divided into three parts.

Hugh and Dalian visit a school to search for a Phantom Book. There, they meet student Jessica Elphinstone, who's trying to catch Benjamin Diffring, a serial killer who escaped prison.[1]

Summary[]

Part I[]

A student with a ponytail is waiting at a library. She’s supposed to be working on an assignment with her friend, but Matilda is late. She gets up to search for a book, only to find someone collapsed on the floor, covered in blood. Matilda is being injured by a man with a knife. The student with a ponytail screams in panic, waking up from a nightmare in the same library. The young girl wonders if what she saw was only a dream.

Hugh reads an uninteresting newspaper, trying to keep himself awake. He is tired after driving all night. Dalian is having lunch, eating Hugh’s portion. She demands more tea and complains about the sugar used on the bread. Although the backcountry town has clean air and peaceful atmosphere, the large collection of the school library is the only thing that makes her want to stay there. The students below are looking at the balcony, watching the strangers. Sat on a bench next to Dalian, Hugh is uncomfortable, unable to relax in that all-girls boarding school. He waves at the girls, but they react with disgust.

Suddenly, a student with a ponytail appears to question them, threateningly holding a cricket bat. Hugh eventually explains that Principal Roedean allowed their visit. Hugh and Dalian came to that school to search for something. After introducing herself as Jessica Elphinstone, the student asks if they are investigating the rumors about a serial killer. Benjamin Diffring had escaped prison and now rumors say that he's hidden somewhere in the school. In the past few days, a student and a teacher have disappeared. Jessica is carrying a cricket bat as weapon because she is trying to catch the criminal. Hugh affirms that he’s not aiming for Diffring. Dalian, in turn, mocks her effort. Her provocation angers Jessica, who runs away with teary eyes. Feeling the scent of human blood and the vestiges of magical power, Dalian tells Hugh to follow her. The Phantom Book they are looking for is probably connected to the elusive serial killer and it can explain how he broke free from prison. Jessica runs to the library, where she finds an opened leather bag with a book inside. The young girl screams when she sees, next to it, the naked corpse of a woman. The student fainted before Hugh and Dalian’s arrival.

Police officers interdicted the library that same night. Jessica was moved to the adjacent building to rest. Hugh is watching over her while reflecting about the body of the teacher. There was a meticulous cut from her abdomen down to her crotch. Her uterus was pulled out as if it was part of a sacred ritual. Soon Dalian shows up to push him and make some space in the chair. She sits next to him and gives some hints about the murder case. Hugh notices that the criminal left no footprints, something normally impossible since he had to move the corpse to the library after the killing. The serial killer could only accomplish that if he had a Phantom Book. Jessica shares the moment when she saw Diffring dealing with the body of her friend Matilda. He had folded her like a paper and taken her away inside a book.

Matilda Folded

Matilda is folded like a paper.

Part II[]

Jessica had tried to tell the others about the unusual phenomenon, but everyone acted as if she was crazy. Only Hugh and Dalian can believe in her story. They walk away to find the Phantom Book and catch the serial killer. Hugh particularly wants to solve the case before Wesley's name is involved. Jessica cries in gratitude as Dalian drags Hugh away by the ear. He waits outside, blocking the door and preventing Jessica from leaving. Since the student witnessed the murder, she will be Diffring’s next target. Although she’s protesting, wishing to look for Matilda, Hugh only wants to protect her.

Dalian returns with a book about the serial killer. The information was gathered by the students of that school. It says that his real name and background are unknown. The man seems to be in his late twenties. He committed his first murder eight years ago. Diffring took the lives of eleven people before being captured. His victims always had the same vertical cut. He read many advanced books while in prison until he found a Phantom Book and disappeared. Hugh does not think that the presence of a large number of young girls is the reason for Diffring to use the school to hide himself. Before Hugh can develop his theory, he notices that Jessica escaped through the window by climbing down a rope.

She wants to take Matilda out of Diffring’s book. Jessica hopes that Matilda is alive. Jessica somehow manages to evade the police officers and sneak inside the library, carrying her cricket bat. Matilda is found seriously wounded. The serial killer comes out from the book behind Jessica. He thrusts his knife at her but stops to dodge Hugh’s shots. Diffring is followed to a dead end, where he vanishes without trace. Dalian uses a Phantom Book to heal Matilda. Jessica now knows that Hugh and Dalian are related to the Dantalian's Bookshelf. The student heard about the magical library from her late grandmother. Dalian gets emotional when Jessica expresses her gratitude for saving Matilda's life. Diffring watches them from the bookshelf nearby, showing a malicious smile.

Part III[]

The serial killer’s past is shown. He’s wounded, running away from soldiers. Inside a house, he finds the corpse of a woman. The man believes that her body will be a safe place for him.

The students are discussing about the rumors about Diffring and the presence of the police after the body of a teacher was found. Meanwhile, Hugh and Jessica are sat on a bench, in the middle of a garden, where they can see their surroundings. Being alone with Hugh makes the student nervous, but since she became a target, he must protect her. Furthermore, Hugh is trying to keep Diffring away from the library. Dalian interrupts the conversation by pulling Jessica’s hair. Hugh and Dalian explain that the isolated school was ill-suited as a hideaway. Someone could easily identify him and warn the authorities. Hugh also adds that killing is not his goal. Before Jessica can learn the truth, a teacher shows up.

Apparently, Miss Roedean wrote a letter asking the teacher to deliver a book to Jessica. Hugh tells the teacher to put the book away, but it’s too late. A blade emerges from between its pages, severing the teacher’s right hand. Diffring appears out of the Phantom Book that fell on the ground. At first, he's flat like a paper, but he unfolds himself back to normal. The Void grants him the power to decrease the thickness of anything. He removes a shotgun from the Phantom Book to shoot Jessica. The bullets stop in the air, affected by the Book of Styx in Hugh’s hands.

Diffring, in disadvantage, runs away. Hugh and Dalian take their time to follow him, since they already know where he is heading. It’s a place where people won't be able to ascertain in which book he is hiding in. The library, however, is empty this time. The serial killer examines the empty bookshelves. Hugh, behind him, points the revolver at his head. In order to catch the murderer, Dalian had sealed the whole collection inside the Dantalian's Bookshelf. Diffring screams in despair before being knocked out by Hugh. The defeated man is restrained by police officers. According to Hugh, there is only one more thing to do.

A woman thanks Hugh for solving the case. Although an excellent teacher was lost, the students are safe. She affirms that Hugh looks more and more like Wesley. She also asks what he thinks of Jessica. Hugh wonders if he was called to the school only to consider marrying with the daughter of a rich family. Hugh’s aunt affirms that she won't force them together. After all, Dalian has been glaring at her for a while from the outside. Hugh drives off with Dalian soon after. Dalian is reading Diffring’s testimony. The serial killer is a former soldier who wants to return to a womb. It’s possible that the horror of war made him wish to be reborn. Meanwhile, Jessica is tasked to organize the library once again by herself. She plans to make Hugh and Dalian listen to her complaints during the next summer break. Matilda shows up to help her friend.[1]

Empty Library

Diffring has no place to hide in the empty library.

Light novel-manga main differences[]

Light novel[2] Manga[1]
- Hugh waves at the schoolgirls who are staring at him.
Jessica carries a lacrosse stick for self-defense. Jessica carries a cricket bat for self-defense.
A schoolgirl screams when she finds Nicola's body at the school garden. Hugh, Dalian and Jessica follow her voice. Dalian's rude remarks hurt Jessica, so the schoolgirl runs away. Jessica finds Nicola's body at the school library. Jessica collapses from the shock.
Jessica describes the moment when she saw Diffring attacking Matilda only after the confrontation between Hugh and the serial-killer. Back to conciousness, Jessica tells Hugh and Dalian about the moment she saw Diffring attacking Matilda.
Hugh and Dalian search the school library for information about Diffring. Dalian searches the school library while Hugh stays at the dorm, protecting Jessica.
Jessica sneaks into the school library to bring food to Hugh and Dalian. Jessica escapes the dorm and sneaks into the school library to save Matilda.
Hugh uses the Book of the Silver Well to heal Matilda. Dalian uses the Book of the Silver Well to heal Matilda.
- The adaptation explains that Diffring has a mental disorder. A flashback shows his tragic past during the war.
The police capture Diffring. The police capture Diffring after Hugh knocks him out with the butt of his revolver.
Hugh and Dalian meet Miss Roedean. Hugh meets Miss Roedean while Dalian waits outside.
Jessica has to organize the school library as punishment. Matilda helps Jessica organize the school library.

Trivia[]

  • The chapter opens with Jessica searching the library for the A Midsummer Night's Dream, a comedy written by William Shakespeare at the end of the sixteenth century.[1][3]
  • Diffring starts cutting the arm's teacher around the wrist. The next page inconsistently shows that he removed almost the entire cuff of her top.[1]
  • The panel showing Jessica uncomfortable after being teased by Dalian, who mentions the size of her legs, is probably inspired by a light novel illustration.[1][2]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian manga, Chapter 4.
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian light novel, Chapter 1, volume 4.
  3. A Midsummer Night's Dream. (2017, September 22). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 23:05, September 28, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=A_Midsummer_Night%27s_Dream&oldid=801881496
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Chapters

Book of Soul Exchange - Turn-Up Book - Book of Lifetime - Book of Gap - The Dictator's Book - The Perfumer - The Beautiful Woman's World - The House-Elf - Book of Wisdom - Timetable - Book of Wisdom II - Epilogue
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