In the same panel, we are privy to Sapphire's thoughts of "I just ... feel weak in his presence ...." While the whole "girls get weak in the knees" philosophy is stereotypically used as a female reaction, men can have it too. Still, I was slightly annoyed to see that here. Thankfully, she immediately responds with "What?! You think I'll lose to you?" and disarms him, winning that round. More than weakness, her attraction to him is distracting her and his comment snaps her out of it.Author Sheena McNeil breaks down the manga part by part, panel by panel, and really takes a keen examined eye to Tezuka's most well-known shojo series. Don't read them until you've finished the Princess Knight manga!
Speaking of Vertical Inc. (that's the publisher that put Princess Knight in English!), read Ed Chavez on his company's digital manga strategy over at Good e-Reader. And then consider supporting them by buying a digital manga title for your e-reader/tablet (cough cough Twin Spica cough)!