All the fans of Black Clover saw the Spade Kingdom as a major arc. After all, it not just involved different countries, but also a time skip. While we loved the characters as is, they needed development at a rapid pace against the Spade Kingdom.
However, the fruits of the development were set to come through in the arc itself. Ever since the arc began, it has graced us with some amazing moments.
But a significant part of this arc rightfully belongs to Noelle. A couple of chapters ago, the story revealed she got Undine. And in Black Clover chapter 301 Noelle (quite adorably) admitted her feelings for Asta!
Banzai! Our Noelle x Asta ship is sailing! Before we talk more about it, let’s look into their bond:
Asta and Noelle’s bond
While the anime tweaked its portrayal of Noelle and Asta, the hints were pretty obvious. Even before we look at them romantically, we should look at what it meant to both of them.
Asta and Noelle began their relationship from the ground up. Their bond is definitely a work of time and character development over several chapters.
Unlike some other shounen relationships between a boy (specifically the MC) and a girl, Noelle and Asta’s bond was built very gradually. It is sporadic to see such healthy and supportive friendships in shounen anime between a girl and boy. That is also what makes the bond incredibly special.
They both began as a tsundere weak royal and an ambitious magicless peasant. But they became more critical to each other as time passed.
You know the feeling when you enroll late in a class, but you see someone joining at the same time? Perhaps a sense like that brought them closer for the first time.
They both joined Black Bulls together and were both oddballs:
One failure of a royal who should have been anywhere but Black Bulls. And a country boy with not a drop of magic who should have been in the boonies instead of the Black Bulls.
Over time, we realize that Asta and Noelle have mutual respect for each other.
They both know the other’s desire to grow and respect each other for it. However, they also help push the other towards growth when needed.
The purity in their feelings for each other, foremost as nakamas and close friends, is really refreshing. In fact, their interactions are always a thing to look forward to!
These factors set Noelle and Asta apart; rarely do we see a story presenting a female character as an equal to the male MAIN character.
The very fact that they both battle and train with each other is proof they consider each other equal. I can see why Yuki Tabata said that Asta is an extremely ordinary boy.
He doesn’t have that MC halo even when it comes to romance. Well, if you don’t consider all girls except Sister Lily falling for him. Despite that, Noelle and Asta have a dynamic different from others.
They can be comic relief, sure, but sometimes, they also bring happy tears to our eyes. Be it encouragement or just a carefree conversation, you can make sure Noelle and Asta will live up to your expectations.
They both also care for each other in the most adorable manner. Asta being the baka he is, never realizes how he feels for Noelle or Noelle feels for him.
But even Noelle denied the feelings while getting all flustered over him. Well, what can we say? We love this dynamic!
Above all, Noelle and Asta bring out the best in each other. They both influence each other very subtly but substantially. This influence was quite crucial to Noelle particularly, which the next section details:
How Asta broke Noelle’s shell
Even though Asta is the MC, Noelle remains a core character in Black Clover. Her role is indispensable to not just the story but also the Clover Kingdom.
Thus, it was impertinent that she gets ample scope to grow.
We all know how she started. She was an emotionally reserved person who tried to be stronger than she was. Her family shunned her, and she had to live under the shadow of her mother, Acier Silva.
She probably thought of herself as an embarrassment. And what could she do? She was a royal who couldn’t even manage a measly spell to save her life.
What is worse is that she couldn’t even ask for counsel or help from anyone. Like they’d always done, they’d laugh at her spectacular failure as a Silva.
But as she was reeling in these thoughts, along came Asta. Asta was an unprejudiced person who understood the emotions of ‘not strong’ people well enough by nature.
All his life, he had worked with his power of never giving up just to keep up with his fascinating rival.
To someone with such ambitious dreams against impossible odds, nothing was “weird.” When Asta found Noelle struggling, his first thought was how to save her rather than who she was.
Even when Noelle tried to fortify her identity (and her emotions), Asta was the one to break through them without doing anything. Really, nothing special is what Noelle needed in her life.For once, she wanted someone to not see her as special, and it took a non-special boy to remind her that.
He took her hand (well, metaphorically until now) and led her to a better version of herself. Wait, scratch that. He showed her that SHE could find her own better self.
She didn’t need anyone to guide her there. In the Seabed Temple arc, too, Asta never tried to preach anything to her. Instead, he silently supported and waited for her growth.
He had absolute faith that Noelle could and would not let the Black Bulls down.
Starting from the first arc itself, Noelle found people relying on her. Someone found her worthy enough to protect them. She couldn’t save herself from her family, but maybe she could save someone else.
She had to, right? Asta was fighting without even having magic, so even if sloppy, she could use her magic.
Noelle learned the art of not giving up from Asta. I am pretty sure she had given up on the very idea that she could become strong.
But, day after day, Asta fought tooth and nail to move ahead even one centimeter (not referring to his height :p). It might be challenging, but it was the only road for Noelle. And look where she is now:
Through Asta, she also found great squadmates in the Black Bulls. They were weird as hell, but they would bear her tantrums and support her.
Asta showed that she might be an ‘outcast,’ but that did not mean everything was over. There was a place that she belonged to and trusted her strength.
Noelle’s confession to Asta shows her growth
All that said and done, Noelle was still shy about her feelings. There were a bunch of times I found myself saying: “UGH, just say it, Noelle!” or “Bakasta, WHEN will you notice?”.
Chapter 301 finally gave us what we wanted: Noelle coming to terms with her feelings. And man, what an emotional moment!
Noelle was alone in her fight against Megicula, and with her Saint Stage gone, she was feeling defeated.
But Asta once again proved that he would be there when Noelle needs him. With a single high-five, Asta lit up Noelle’s eyes, and the best girl even teared up a bit. :’)
Chapter 301 comes as a full circle to Chapter 103, where this happened:
So, so clever of Tabata! But, well, what does this confession mean? I would say that Noelle’s acceptance is a huge step towards her maturation and growth.
After hiding her true feelings for everything so long, it makes sense that her first acceptance comes for Asta. He has been with her every step of the way and is a little light of hope.
It was about time that Noelle grew out of her tsundere self. Not because of the fans’ personal preferences, but because she has learned to accept herself.
Noelle is gaining confidence little by little, and well, one grown-up tsundere *cough Charlotte cough* is more than enough. xD
Jokes aside, to accept her feelings, Noelle first had to accept herself as a capable girl and magic knight. The past few arcs have brilliantly shown her take baby steps towards that.
Now that Noelle has accepted her feelings, let’s ask ourselves this:
Will Asta accept Noelle’s feelings?
Tricky question, is it not?
We know how much Noelle means to Asta. But someone really needs to get his dense head back in place. (╯°□°）╯︵ ┻━┻
Asta is set on his goal to become the Wizard King and defeating Yuno
and marrying Sister Lily. With this musclehead, it is really difficult to know what will happen.
Will he realize his own feelings soon? And if he does, will he accept them as Noelle did?
Noelle and Asta both have a lot left to achieve, so will it even make sense for them to be in a serious relationship?
Well, all we can do is speculate and trust Tabata. In my opinion, now that Noelle has accepted her feelings, she would still be her usual self around Asta.
It is a little sad, but she may not voice her feelings. Perhaps it is not the right time to say so, and Noelle realizes it as well.
But I can definitely see them growing (this time age and hopefully height) together. It would be a very natural occurrence when they both act upon their feelings in the future.
What do you think of Noelle liking Asta? Did you like the progression, and do you believe Asta will reciprocate? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!