Dragonaut – 20
Having abandoned the car, Jin and company are trying to cross over a mountain so that they can reach the ocean on the other side. Unbeknownst to the others, Gio suddenly senses something from Thanatos and disappears. At the ISDA base, Sakaki assigns Kazuki to take care of the operating experiment for something called the Aigis. Howling Star meanwhile has grown frustrated with his captivity and his inability to do anything about it. Itsuki and Otohime understand how he feels because they know that Thanatos is approaching the planet while they’re stuck there, and the ISDA is currently more interested with gaining mass popularity by hunting dragons than anything else. By now, Jin and company have reached the ocean and are met by a submarine piloted by Yuuri and Nozaki. Jin still doesn’t know what happened to Gio and wants to wait, but since they’re running the risk of being spotted for every moment that they’re out in the open, he follows the others into the submarine.
Once everyone is inside, Yuuri and Nozaki explain that they haven’t given up on the possibility of humans and dragons coexisting, so they want to stop the ISDA and help the dragons. The plan involves sending Jin riding Toa out to attack Tartarus while the rest of the group sneaks onto the island. Toa is willing to do it to save everyone and to protect the bonds between humans and dragons, and she transforms after Jin kisses her. Kazuki is thrilled when he realizes that Jin has come, and he quickly boards Widow so that he can go after his former friend. Surprised to hear that Jin is glad that he’s alive, Kazuki laughs and declares that he can’t die until he kills Jin. Kazuki is still pissed off about the scar he got from their previous battle, and it doesn’t help either that he thinks Jin is in Toa right now because he got tired of riding Gio. Kazuki also doesn’t believe it when Jin claims to want to protect the bonds between man and dragon because Kazuki still remembers how Jin originally broke the bonds between him and Gio.
Nozaki and the others have meanwhile made their way into the base and manage to find Raina and Itsuki. Guards had taken Amadeus, Howling Star, and Otohime away earlier though, and Nozaki quickly realizes that Sakaki intends to use Aigis on those three. According to him, Aigis is an ultra-high power directional CSS field generator that was developed to stop Thanatos, and living dragons stand no chance against it if they get exposed to it. Nozaki figures out that the only way to save the dragons is to take out the power reactor that’s supplying the facility. Before they can get too far though, the group gets attacked by Laura, and Nozaki decides to face her by himself while the others go ahead. He is wearing a CSS neutralizing device that allows him to use his powers against her, but she still proves to be quite a handful. When Nozaki breaks a hole in her helmet, he realizes who Laura really is and tries to tell her that Sakaki is wrong, but she doesn’t care.
At the reactor control room, Sieglinde has a hard time getting the system to shut down, but she finally succeeds after Raina reminds her to believe in herself. Free from the Aigis system now, Amadeus and the two dragons are able to save Sieglinde, Raina, Yuuri, and Yonamine Kou who had all just gotten cornered by ISDA troops. Sieglinde and Amadeus are especially happy to be reunited. Back outside the base, the battle between Kazuki and Jin appears to draw to a close after Widow knocks Toa out of the sky. Kazuki prepares Widow to fire off the killing blow, but Jin and Toa are saved when Widow suddenly gets attacked by Howling Star and Otohime. The others meanwhile make their way back to where Nozaki was fighting, and upon seeing everyone, Laura turns to leave. Referring to her as Raum, Nozaki tries to warn her against returning to Sakaki and points out that Sakaki will make her unhappy. Laura ignores him, but what ends up stopping her in her tracks is her sensing that something is coming.
At that very moment, Widow gets shot down by a massive energy beam that appears to come through the clouds. The culprit is none other than a transformed Gio, and though Jin is initially excited, his attitude changes when Gio proceeds to shoot down Otohime and Howling Star too.
Well, I literally yelled “WTF” out loud when the first thing that Jin said to Kazuki was that he was glad that Kazuki was alive. When is Jin going to realize that Kazuki isn’t his friend anymore and that he’d be a lot better off if he just killed Kazuki? At this point though, I think the chance of Kazuki dying by the end of the show are pretty low. He has a cockroach-like ability to survive, so I’m more inclined believe that Kazuki will reconcile somehow with his former friend before this is all over. That doesn’t stop me from thinking that Kazuki is a complete idiot for that stupid eyepatch though, especially since it turned out to cover just a puny scar (no third eye or anything lol).
As for Gio, it’s probably too soon to write him off as a bad guy since we don’t know what happened really with him and Thanatos. Given how they’ve spent the past 19 episodes building up his relationship with Jin and Toa though, even if Gio is indeed now evil, it seems pretty likely that he’ll eventually realize that friendship trumps all or something similar to that. For the time being, he makes the story a little more interesting because he’s neither on the ISDA’s side nor on Jin’s side anymore, and the preview for next week even shows him attacking Toa in his dragon form.