“Azura,” Hecate began, “our paths have crossed only in battle. But today, I stand before you seeking an ally.”
This is not the same book we see her with in the first episode, but it sets up an adorable scene later, so I will forgive the discrepancy.
Luz: Azura is able to befriend everyone, even her biggest rival! I wish I had that kind of power.
Eda sends her off to return some library books, inadvertently reuniting Luz with her rival, Amity.
Who is reading to children and it is adorable.
“We’re your friends, and we want to help,” said the tin boy with a yelp.
Otabin smiled and paced the floor. “I’ve never had real friends before.”
“Then we’ll be your first,” the chicken witch clucked. Otabin couldn’t believe his luck!
So bookmaker Otabin, surrounded by friends, bound a book of friendship, and that’s the end.
Luz: Amity seems so nice, and smiley…maybe I can befriend her like Azura befriended her rival!
And this is where I think another influence starts to show – Little Witch Academia, another magic school story more firmly rooted in the magical girl genre, in which the plucky heroine befriends her blue-blood rival who just so happens to have green hair…
Amity: Ugh. You.
But through no (or very little) fault of her own, Luz has only been associated with disaster in Amity’s mind.
Amity: Human! Do you see me going to the owl shack and bugging you while you…fry up owls? Okay, I don’t really know what you do there, but every time you come near me, I get in trouble. Just leave me alone!
Then her siblings show up to bother her.
Ed: Hey, Mittens! Mom says stop forgetting your lunch. And stop being a jerk to your friend.
Amity: She is not my friend.
Em: Yeah, makes sense. She seems too cool for you.
Luz: Am I?
Amity: You can leave now. All of you!
Her older siblings act a lot like twins (or at least how twins are often portrayed), but as they never say they’re twins, I guess they’re just closer to each other than to Amity.
At any rate, they are troublemakers through and through, and promptly recruit Luz into their mischief.
Em: Don’t waste your time with Mittens. Me and Ed, we’re way more fun.
Before too long, they’re all kicked out of the library.
Luz: Amity’s even madder at me now. I didn’t think that was possible.
Em: You’re pretty fun, human. So hey, we’re coming back tonight. There’s a certain book we forgot to…check out.
Ed: And bonus! Rumor has it the Wailing Star is supposed to unlock some rare magical event. You in, friend?
Luz is having fun with their mostly harmless pranks, and enjoys the attention of older, “cooler” kids, despite the fact that Amity doesn’t generally approve of their antics.
Luz: This is great! First I befriend the siblings, then I befriend the Amity!
They discover that the Wailing Star event brings the books to life, and they have a lot of fun with using books about snowballs to have snowball fights and stuff. But then Luz takes a look at the book Amity was reading to the kids, evidently a childhood favorite of hers (she claims to be reading to kids for extra credit, but if she’s anything like me, she’s at least partly doing it to share a story she loves).
“Otabin spent his days alone, amidst the many books he’d sewn.
With needle and thread the pages he’d mend, but all the while he longed for a friend.”
Then Ed and Em get bored with just exploring the worlds within the books.
Now they’re drawing in the books, resulting in monstrosities like this.
Ed: Your turn, Luz!
Luz: I don’t know…
Em: Come on, don’t stop the fun.
They set aside the book before this can take shape, but it wasn’t closed…
Then they actually get to the point of this excursion.
Sadly, it is not hanging out in this cozy secret book nook.
Luz: Your clubhouse is like, my ultimate secret hideaway!
Ed: We don’t hang out in a library! […]
Em: This is Amity’s secret hideaway.
Ed: Mittens has gotten too full of herself. She keeps tattling on us when we cut class.
Em: She needs to learn not to mess with people like that. So we’re going to find her diary.
Ed: And post the pages all around school for everyone to see.
Luz: What? Isn’t that taking it a bit too far?
Em: No, see, we’re her family. It’s tough love. She needs to learn to lighten up.
Of course, this isn’t what Luz thought she was signing up for at all, and she’s even more loath to hurt Amity when she discovers her stash of Azura books. But she also discovers her diary, which in the light of the Wailing Star, promptly spouts Amity’s private thoughts.
Amity’s Diary: I saw that human girl again. I may have overreacted. I don’t want to come off as cruel, I just can’t show weakness.
Considering what her siblings classify as “tough love”, it’s hard to blame her for not wanting to appear weak.
But of course her siblings sniff this out after Luz discovers it.
Ed: Luz, were you hiding this from us?
Em: You see how she treats people – how she treats you.
Luz: I know Amity can be kind of cold, but no one deserves this! These are private thoughts. Let’s put it back.
But they’re not giving up on their plot so easily, and the resulting fight ends up scattering the pages of her diary across the room.
Amity’s Diary: Sorry I haven’t written in a while…wait, why am I apologizing?
I totally did that when I was trying to keep a diary. Maybe everyone who kept a diary had one of those days?
But Amity happens to find them right as Luz is trying to collect the pages of her diary.
Yep, that’s a pretty understandable response.
Luz: It’s not what it looks like!
Amity: You two are the worst! But you…I’ve been trying to figure out what your deal is. Are you a poser, a nerd…I know. You’re a bully, Luz.
This is one case where the writers are clearly responding to Harry Potter, because the “heroes” in that series are honestly jerks, especially (but not exclusively) to the students outside Gryffindor. And although Luz never meant to hurt Amity, she did, so it makes sense that she would start to perceive Luz as a bully.
Then Em and Ed decide to bounce (thankfully without taking Amity’s diary).
Luz: Look, you guys are cool, but I need to go talk to Mittens- I mean, Amity.
Amity: First you embarrass me, then you want to be my friend? I don’t get you! Pick a side.
Luz: Please, just listen to me.
Amity: Just go away, before things somehow get worse.
Then things get worse!
Otabin: With claws and fangs and breaking bones, I’ve found a friend to make my own.
Naturally, Amity is about as horrified as you would be if Winnie the Pooh escaped from his book and turned into a monster.
Otabin: But friends are what I’ve always sought, and now a friend my claws have caught!
Of course she would be in her element when books come to life.
I just can’t. This kid is such a dork and it is precious.
But sadly ineffective.
Otabin: Making friends, taking friends. Never be without my friends.
Luz: You fiend! You can’t rhyme friends with friends!
She is such a dork and I will protect her with my life.
Amity: Well, it doesn’t matter. We’re gonna be stuck together forever.
Luz: No we aren’t. Follow my lead.
They manage to work together, and they actually run away with the book.
Amity: Now what?
Luz: I don’t know! I didn’t even think that would work!
Amity manages to free herself, and realizes that all Luz needs to do is erase the doodles from the book (Ed isn’t such a monster that he would draw something in a library book with a pen).
Evidently they spend the rest of the night cleaning up the mess left by her siblings.
Amity: This never happened.
Luz: Wait! It doesn’t make up for reading your diary, but would you want to borrow this [Good Witch Azura 5]? I noticed you only had up to four.
Amity: Thank you. Maybe you aren’t a bully. I haven’t exactly been the friendliest witch, either. I’ll think on that.
They’ve still got a long way to go before they’re actually friends (Amity still has to make up for her behavior towards Willow), but it’s a start.
Until next time…