So there really is another ghost… or is there?
Before you read on, please note that I haven’t read the manga at all, so I have no idea what’s “really” going on. Anyway, I’ll start by saying that I don’t think the shrine we saw last time actually houses some sort of evil spirit. The only relevance that I think it has to anything is the fact that it indirectly caused Yuuko’s death. Someone must have strongly believed that building the school over the shrine would upset something, as evidenced by the large number of seals placed around it. But apparently the seals weren’t enough to put them at ease, so they threw Yuuko in as a sort of ”bonus” human sacrifice for insurance.
What about “the shadow”, then? Isn’t it clearly a being distinct from Yuuko? After all, she is definitely harmless while the shadow appears to be rather threatening and ominous. Assuming its image and nature haven’t simply been embellished by Kirie (she does scare easily), it would seem as if we really do have an “evil spirit” at hand, which would at first glance corroborate with the belief in the importance of the shrine. If you ask me though, there really isn’t “another” ghost. So far, all of the “mysteries” of the school can be traced back to Yuuko in one way or another, so I’m thinking that the shadow may end up being no different.
That’s not to say I think Yuuko is actually “evil” or malicious as Kirie claimed. She seems quite genuine in her simple desire to have human companionship, which is understandable considering she’s been alone for a very long time. However, there is a catch. The circumstances of her death are just perfect for the “creation” of a grudge-like spirit; one that kills indescriminately because of its own unjust death and suffuring. Yet, the Yuuko that we see directly contradicts this sort of ghost. Obviously something doesn’t quite add up, and I don’t think it’s as simple as her having a big heart and deciding to forgive what happened. The clue to the answer, then, may lie in the title itself: amnesia.
Just what are the implications of Yuuko’s amnesia? For one, it would help explain how she can remain so cheerful and benign. But that’s not all. Given the circumstances of her death, I wouldn’t be surprised if the last emotions she felt were that of fear and anger. Such strong “negative” emotions don’t just disappear conveniently when it comes to ghost stories. I’m thinking these emotions, along with the memories associated with them, separated from the Yuuko that we know and became a “separate” entity as a result of the trauma induced by the incident. This would tie into the recurring theme of all the supernatural mysteries of the school being connected to her as well as explain what happened to her memories.
In effect, I believe that the shadow is simply a manifestation of Yuuko’s negative emotions and memories. The sudden cuts to a “normal” and “scary” version of her and the random bells that we kept seeing seem to suggest this. It’s hard to say where things will go if this is in fact the case, but I’m guessing the main plot may end up being Yuuko facing and coming to terms with this “dark half” of herself, allowing her to finally rest in peace.