Syaoran is having a dream of himself with the left side of his face bandaged up. Looking into a mirror, he tries to figure out who he is. Syaoran wakes up and finds Sakura and Mokona watching over him. Though he smiles for Sakura, Syaoran knows that he doesn’t have any memories before that day, but he’s resolved to be “Syaoran.” The two are in a new world, but Kurogane and Fye are not with them. Mokona does say that they’re in this world though. The nearby opens and tons of girls flock through and start fawning over them. The owner of the place, a girl named Suzuran, appears and wants the others go back to work. She also says that even though Syaoran is a child, this is a place where men are banned. But then on the request of one of the other women, Suzuran decides after all to let Syaoran and Sakura stay as travelers.
Kurogane and Fye, on the other hand, have arrived at a shrine. They get jumped by a group of men, but Kurogane is quick on the draw and knocks one of them out with the back of his sword. From nearby, they hear a man call for them to stop fighting. He is Souseki, the priest for this shrine. Since they are travelers, he invites them to stay here. Back in town, the women led by Suzuran actually make up a circus and are giving a performance. Sakura remembers that a circus came to Clow Country too. In Syaoran’s memories, Sakura had wanted to tightrope walk. Even though he had tried to tell her that it’s dangerous, she had wanted to practice so that she could show it to Syaoran. The current Sakura takes the opportunity to thank Syaoran for returning her feathers, allowing her to get her memory back. As for the feather in this world, Mokona can’t sense it, but also can’t say for sure that it’s not here.
Suzuran tells them that the troupe travels and performs around Shara. Once a year, they return home here when the moon is most beautiful. The beautiful flames from the performance drift over, and Suzuran explains that these flames are granted by their guardian deity. At that same time, Fye and Kurogane are having dinner with Souseki when Fye feels a strong force protecting something. Souseki shows them what’s inside: a statue of their god Yasha. But the statue is crying blood – Souseki explains that this happens when the moon is beautiful during this season. It is connected to the other statue that is with the acrobatic troupe. That other statue is of the god Ashura and is what Suzuran is showing Syaoran and Sakura right now. When Sakura comments on how beautiful it is, Suzuran says that Souseki’s followers don’t feel the same way. Souseki, meanwhile, explains to Kurogane and Fye that Ashura is seen as a god of war and disaster while Yasha is the god of night and the underworld. According to him, Yasha’s tears serve as warnings for Ashura’s wars and disasters. After Souseki leaves them, Fye wonders if there’s not another reason why the Yasha statue is crying.
The next day, Syaoran gets dressed up as a girl so that he can stay with the troupe. Souseki’s followers are making trouble outside, so Suzuran defends her fellow troupe member. At the mention of Souseki’s name however, Suzuran freezes right as the followers are about to strike her. Fortunately, Syaoran uses some fancy footwork and scares them off. Seeing his skills, Suzuran invites him to perform in their troupe. Back at the shrine, Kurogane is asking Fye about his reaction to Souseki saying “Ashura” the night before. Kurogane had noticed that the color in Fye’s face changed. Fye doesn’t answer and the silence is broken by Souseki talking with his followers nearby. They tell him about what happened in town, and Souseki reminds them that they shouldn’t attack the troupe regardless of the reason. They also mention a child with an amazing kick, which perks Kurogane and Fye’s interest. But since it’s a girl, it couldn’t be Syaoran. Actually, Fye wonders if it was Syaoran dressed as a girl.
After some practice doing a performance for the troupe, Syaoran and Sakura go out to look for Kurogane and Fye. They follow a dark figure to the woods, and there they see Souseki and Suzuran meeting in secret. The two share an embrace; it’s been a year since they’ve seen each other. Souseki apologizes for the earlier incident, but Suzuran says that she’s already used to it. Their two gods won’t get along, yet Suzuran still loves Souseki. And since their gods oppose each other, they can’t unify their people. For now at least, Suzuran asks Souseki to keep her in his arms. After having seen that scene, Sakura wants to go to the Ashura statue because she has a request for Ashura to make those two happy. Syaoran takes her there, but suddenly an earthquake starts up. The sleeping Mokona wakes up, eyes wide open. Sakura starts to glow outside of the Ashura statue’s chamber. She holds out her hand and opens the door. Inside, the Ashura statue has started to glow too. At the shrine, Kurogane and Fye see that the Yasha statue has also lit up. What’s more, Fye notices that the sky has split open. As the rumbling continues, Sakura stops glowing and collapses onto the ground.
And so after much waiting (for me at least), we’ve finally arrived at Shara. As usual, they’ve taken some liberties with the story, including making Suzuran and Souseki’s relationship a lot more prominent than in the manga. However this airing the day after Fate/stay night, every time Suzuran talked, I thought “Saber” (both roles courtesy of Kawasumi Ayako).
For all intents and purposes though, this episode is basically setup, by introducing the opposing gods, for the meat of this arc, which will start next week. The preview makes next episode look really awesome, so I included some extra screencaps. Sakura in that third picture in particular has such a cool looking face.