Shirou gets a phone call telling him that Fuji-nee is up and well. On this day, Saber doesn’t want Shirou to go pursue Shinji because his body hasn’t recovered yet, but Shirou wants Shinji to take responsibility for what he did. Along with Rin, the three start talking about Rider’s Noble Phantasm and how it’s anti-army instead of anti-personnel. An anti-personnel Noble Phantasms (like Saber’s) can be used limitless times in one go, whereas an anti-army Noble Phantasm like Rider’s is a one-shot missile. Shirou realizes that they need to defeat Rider before she uses her Noble Phantasm. But Rin won’t be going with them to search for Shinji because she has her own things to do. Shirou and Saber go to the Matou home, but Saber is unable to detect anything. The two figure out that they shouldn’t be looking for Shinji, but rather a barrier.
While they are searching the city, Shirou starts showing signs of fatigue. Saber takes him to a park and sits him down. She spots a couple on a nearby bench – with the guy’s head in the girl’s lap – and so she offers her own lap to Shirou. He’s of course too embarrassed to take it and ends up sleeping on his arm. Shirou again dreams of that day 10 years ago when his father found him. He wakes up one hour later; Saber hadn’t woken him because he needed rest. Shirou tells her about the past with the great fire, his old house burning down, and his adoptive father finding him. Saber thinks that Shirou want to prevent there being more victims of the war because he was a victim himself. But Shirou knows that it’s because he was the only one who survived that day and he wants to repay the dead by preventing it from happening again. Saber says that Shirou should think more of himself.
The two eventually sense something and follow it to an isolated area. A projectile comes flying out of nowhere, but Saber is quick to defend Shirou from it. They see that the aggressor is Rider. Saber tells Shirou to stay put and launches herself up the side of the building, transforming into her battle armor in the process. Saber doesn’t fare so well fighting on the side of a building, but then Rider leaps towards the roof. Shirou isn’t about to do nothing and heads into the building. The elevator stops short of the roof, so Shirou runs the rest of the way up. In the shadows, Ilya and Berserker are watching. When Saber reaches the rooftop, she sees a bright light surrounded a winged-horse on top of which is Rider. She eventually comes to realize that Rider isn’t the spirit of a great hero, but is instead the spirit of something more malicious. Saber gets hit by one of Rider’s swoops down, but avoids the next one.
Shirou eventually gets up top, but then he hears Shinji’s taunting voice. Keeping himself hidden, Shinji orders Rider to first destroy Saber. Rider rides high in the sky on her Pegasus as Saber starts channeling the power of the wind. Like a meteor, Rider charges downward while yelling “Bellerophon.” The winds gather around Saber’s sword and then dissipate to reveal a long golden blade. While yelling “Excalibur,” she fires off a yellow blast towards Rider. Before Rider gets vaporized, her mask shatters, revealing her eyes. The resulting explosion is huge and leaves a yellow trail in the night sky, one that is seen by Rin. For whatever reason, Rin seems to be at the Matou house. Sakura is inside, looking out of her window. She says something, but we don’t hear what it is. Back on the rooftop, Shinji’s magic book – and thus his command spells – goes up in flames. But before Shirou can go after Shinji, Saber collapses. Shirou cradles the heavily breathing Saber in his arms and screams “Saber!!!”
If it weren’t for the first quarter of this episode, this would have been absolutely awesome. Instead, it’s merely very awesome 😉 So yea, I really enjoyed watching the two Noble Phantasms go up against each other. The great animation made for some great fighting that eventually led to Rider’s demise (probably). I loved the music this episode too.
I kinda hope Rider didn’t die because I rather liked her character. I’m as curious as everyone else to what Sakura was saying though. Initially I thought she was saying “Rider,” but her mouth was moving too long for that, so I dunno what it really was. On the other hand, we do get a major hint about who Saber’s real identity is by the name of her Noble Phantasm: Excalibur. I won’t explicitly say it until they do, but if you don’t already know, then I’m sure you can figure it out fairly easily.
Next week, the focus switches back to Ilya and Berserker. It looks like Ilya will be kidnapping Shirou. Either that or Shirou enjoys being tied up while Ilya sits on top of him lol.