While in the car, Kiyama reveals to Uiharu that the Level Upper’s real purpose is to create a network of brains that can do advanced calculations. She had originally wanted to use Tree Diagram for this, but her requests were rejected, so she’s using this now instead. Kiyama promises though that she’ll release everyone once she’s done, and she gives Uiharu the Level Upper uninstall program. Her car is then stopped by an Anti-Skill blockade, so Kiyama activates her numerous abilities and disposes of all her opponents. By now, Mikoto has arrived on the scene, and she tries to use her own abilities to stop Kiyama. Kiyama is able to counter almost everything Mikoto can throw at her, but Mikoto is very resilient, and Kiyama eventually underestimates Mikoto. It allows Mikoto to grab her and knock her out with electricity, but in the process, she experiences flashes of Kiyama’s memories.
In them, Mikoto learns that Kiyama had once been given by her boss the job of teacher to a group of abandoned children. Those children were to be used in an experiment, and although Kiyama initially hated children, she grew very fond of this bunch. However, when the experiment was finally run, all of the children’s vitals flat-lined, and the head scientist decided to collect the data and cover everything up. Realizing now that Mikoto has seen into her memories, Kiyama reveals that the true purpose of the experiment was to understand the conditions where stimulating the AIM dispersion field leads to runaway abilities. Those children never woke up, and Kiyama’s goal since then has been to try to get access to Tree Diagram to find a way to save them. She’s gotten rejected every time though, so she’s had to resort to all this. Before Kiyama can do anything else, she experiences a runaway network, and a giant fetus suddenly emerges from her.
That was one helluva episode; easily one of the best so far for the series, and it made up for last week. The battle between Mikoto and Kiyama was a great display of skills and power, but I was just as impressed with Kiyama’s emotional back-story and the revelation of her true goal. They were able to drive home the point that she actually cared for those children without overdoing it, and I ended up feeling very sympathetic towards her character. That’s what they were obviously going for, and it’s probably why, instead of Kiyama continuing to be the bad guy, this fetus monster appeared. I’m not sure how they’re going to explain its existence, but if the preview is any indicator, it appears to be a tentacle monster, and it should make for an interesting challenge. I’m also curious about what Kiyama hinted at concerning the real purpose of Academy City and developing abilities – something to be answered in a later arc perhaps.