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After the invasion of the HQ(?) to get the egg, there is a scene where Bookman tells Lavi that if the Earl wanted, the Black Order would be destroyed, but he does not want, and there is something that makes him stop the ordering to destroy the BO.
What it could be?
Well I guess they have other concerns that can only be affirmed by keeping the Black Order if they leave them alone and let events continue as they have:/
Even now, the Noah such as Wisely and Tyki are not doing anything to Allen as he tries to fight his situation (well, before the ch218 where Earl goes insane and attacks Allen)
Even in the Alma arc they didn't kill nearly as much as they could have (or at all if I recall XD)
In principle I think its mostly just 2 reasons for which they haven't annihilated Black Order just yet...
1. The Heart appears to be a rather devious character or very well concealed character. If the Noah unleash chaos onto the Black Order, the Heart might just hide again for quite a while . Furthermore, I doubt the Noah can launch a full-scale attack on Black Order anymore without substantial loss to their side. There ARE arguably quite a number of powerhouses in the Order that have been hidden-even excluding the exorcists.
2. The 14th was successfully revealed to have been alive and the Earl confirmed so by starting the Alma incident. They couldn't have lured Allen or Kanda with a simple decimation of the Order perhaps.... I mean it could be difficult
I don't know if they have anymore secrets though; unless the Mana=Earl theory holds or some other complicated reason explains why the Earl has yet to destroy the Order altogether.
The generals with the exeption of Cross lost to a level 4.
KANDA at this point even if he's stronger than the rest of the generals he is not stronger than Cross even with his power boost he's stil weak compared to the real threats I will be suprised if he can beat a noah that's number is 5 and below(I mean Wisely K.Oed him pretty easily and he sayed he was not a fighter and I'm sure he can't beat Tyki beacause last time I checked Tyki lost to Allen only because he was caught of guard and because he suppresed he's inner noah, now toraidos and dezaiasus full powers haven't been shown but we can assume that they are among the strongest noah and there's no way he can beat the Earl)
LENALEE she's not that strong
APOCRYPHOS I dont think he will survive he's encountere with the rest of the noah family
THE HEART I don't know about it but since it's hiding we could assume it may be weakened I guess?????
Besides lets not forget the akuma I mean it took Allen,Lenalee and Cross to beat a level 4 that nearly destroyed the order and last time I cheked the Earl had around 15 of them (in chapter 188 I think) not only that but Allen left and Cross ''died'' so what powerhouses?
Now I don't know about the other reasons but I can assure that in terms of power the Earl can turn the black order to dust whenever he want's
I do agree about the level 4 part but even so Apocryphos, for instance, is definitely strong (Tyki is rather strong, yet he had trouble with Apo). Given that we still know little about the Heart, we still do not know what the capabilities are of the Heart :/
In addition, we don't know if Cross has been killed yet, and while Allen and Lenalee were fighting for the most part, all Cross had to do was use Judgement to eradicate the level 4 Akuma right?
I'm not too sure if the Generals "lost" to the level 4? More like they either were slow in retaliating (which I do agree is a sign that they are a little incompetent ) to me :/ [You're referring to the part where the level 4 invaded the Order right?]
Sure, despite these arguments, given the low number of exorcists, Earl could easily decimate the Order, but my point is the Earl couldn't have done that without expecting any substantial damage to their side. Allen for instance came back and was rather good at getting in the Earl's way before, and Tyki was rather blown away by his critical point in their second fight.
There's also CROW. If I recall correctly, we don't know their full capabilities yet. (But they have been trained since young as part of the Church)
Given that the Earl seems to have a number of plans and secrets every step of the way (what he claims Akuma actually are and hoping the exorcists don't realize that), even if he could destroy the entire order, it wouldn't be exactly easy to do that while tending to his various plans to destroy the world now would it? They seem to have alot of things to protect; while they do have the numbers and power to obliterate the Order, I don't they can do that AND continue whatever they're other plans are (to destroy the World, and search for the Heart for instance).
I do apologize if I came off saying that the Earl and the Noah as the opposing force were weaker than the protagonists of the series; I didn't mean anything like that
I was going to address the level 4- generals situation as well but crown clown beat me to the chase. The first time I read that arc I was thinking along the same lines as alexgamer155 but when I reread it I realized that any one of the generals could have probably taken the level 4 had it not caught them off guard with that akuma scream and the subsequent destruction of several floors of the black order. Allen was clearly outclassed, but he's a newby to generalship and perhaps doesn't even remotely compare to the general veterans in power, so it makes sense that he would need assistance from Lenalee, who's speed and aerial combat skills were exactly what were needed to at least hold the level 4 off. General Cross on the other hand clearly needed no assistance at all.Not only did he completely blitz the lvl 4 but he clearly outclassed it in a matter of seconds. If he wanted he could of destroyed it easily by himself. General Tiedoll recieved the blunt of the level 4's attack at close range, but impressively was still fast enough to protect himself and the remaining staff of the science division. At the time this happened directly after the akuma scream, which scrambled the exorcist's ability to synchronize with their innocence. Even then he stuck to his primary objective which was not to fight any akuma but rather protection. I don't have much to say on Sokarro and Cloud but it could be assumed that they recoverred just around the same time Cross did as they were ready and rearing to go when the akuma was attemting its escape.
Whats hilarious though is that even with all that they still don't pose much of a threat at all to the Earl. Personally I don't think the crow,s make that big of a difference offensively, however as Tokusa stated their major job is defense, which they were clearly very proficient at. What's sad though is that even the third exorcist battle initiative which was otherwise verrry effective is now being used against them (lol, sucks to be in th black order).
As to why the earl doesn't just kill them like he very well can. I'm personally leaning on the explanation of him not wanting to lose his only remaining clues to the heart aside from apocryphos- (who given his robotic loyalty to the heart I don't think he'll be giving any answers anytime soon). Obviously the heart being as cunning as it is isn't going to reveal itself to the big bad, however it could sure as hell reveal itself to the people who are closest to it. Even though that in itself is not a guarantee.
No I do apologize if my statement sounded like an attack and I agree with your opinion that apocryphos is strong and that the generals could actually defeat the level 4 but if one level 4 can immobilize the generals even for a sort amount of time imagine how would they fair against 3 or 5.
Now am not saying cross has been killed(heck there's no way that guy is dead he's probably trolling us) but even if he reveals himself the probability of him going back to the order is as small as the Millenium Earl becoming a general I mean he disapeared for a reason and by the looks of it he's on the 14th side rather than the orders.
Aa for Allen as much as I like him(he's one of my favs after the Earl,Cross and Nea) and as I said in my earlier post he won against Tyki because he was caught of guard and was suppresing he's inner Noah(he's true power)putting that aside yes Allen is a powerhouse but as I said he left the order and I dont't think he will return for a long time that's it if he returns.
Lastly it has been said by Lavi and some other characters thet the CROWS are defensive unit's for the higher ups and even though the can use magic spells they aren't offensive they are more like defensive since the don't posses innocence I dont think they could beat an akuma the only offensive CROWS have been the third exorcist's and there were only 5 two of which are dead and the remaining three serving the Earl
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