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"Igura" (Kyōzen, 狂争)  is the third episode of the anime series. The ending theme for the episode is Don't Stare Me.

PlotEdit

Keisuke finally gets his tags, and while exiting the mansion is attacked by Takeru. Akira defends them and Takeru runs off. Akira picks up a cross, and is later dragged off by Takeru. Takeru is revealed to be an ex-Bl@ster and is playing the Igura because he wants to win and be rich. Takeru takes back his cross, which is a memento from his dead sister. Meanwhile, the Executioners look for Takeru to punish his tag stealing.

SynopsisEdit

The episode begins with Takeru running and cursing. Kiriwar’s pipe is shown dragging ominously on the ground, and the sound of Gunji’s laughter accompanies the sight of his claws scraping against a wall. The Executioners appear in pursuit, and Gunji tells Takeru to wait. Kiriwar replies, “Say that all you want. There’s no one who’d wait for you, you idiot!” Gunji tells the “old man” to shut up.

E03-takeru2

Takeru

Takeru breaks through some boxes and starts racing up stairs as Nano’s narration starts: “Blue. The color of danger.” Takeru pries open the door to the roof and catches his breath. “It’s… the color of your soul… as you try not to sink.” Then Takeru looks up at the sky with a pained expression. “Blue. The color of the vast sky. What we now see as colorless could be seen with color once before.”

After the opening, Akira and Keisuke are walking up the street. Keisuke glances back at Akira, who wears a serious expression. A flashback shows their conversation in episode 2 about Keisuke joining Igura. They round a corner and Keisuke’s eyes widen in surprise, because Motomi is leaning against the wall before them.

Motomi greets them and explains he was just passing by, but Akira points out the number of cigarette butts at Motomi’s feet and asks if he’s “a heavy smoker.” Motomi agrees and kicks at the butts before asking if they’re headed to the Palace. Akira asks if Motomi has business there. Motomi replies: “Yeah. Every now and then, I feel like paying a visit to that den of bad taste.” Akira looks suspicious, but Keisuke feels reassured about his visit. Motomi puts a hand on Keisuke’s shoulder. Akira walks ahead, leaving Keisuke to call after him and catch up. Motomi ruefully follows after.

E03-palace

The Palace

Faced with the Palace doors again, Keisuke swallows. Akira glances at him from the corner of his eye. Motomi puts a hand on Keisuke’s shoulder and asks if he’s ready. Keisuke agrees, and Akira closes his eyes. The doors open, and the white mask is presented.

The art inside the entrance hall is panned over, and Motomi calls the décor deranged. He mentions Arbitro by name when Akira asks, and smiles as he tells Akira he’ll understand soon.

Motomi stops and stares at the chained up black doors to the Coliseum. A guard opens a nearby door and tells Keisuke to wait inside. Keisuke hesitates, and Motomi gives his back a push while reminding him of his decision. Keisuke smiles and looks determined as he tells them he’ll be right back. Arbitro walks up, flanked by two of his men. He sees Akira first and smirks, but shrieks after he sees Motomi standing behind him. Arbitro stomps forward and demands to know why Motomi is here.

Motomi calls it a field trip, before he says: “I just wanted to see you all flustered, really.” Arbitro turns his head and decides Motomi has no reason. Motomi looks at the sculptures in the hallway around them and says Arbitro’s strange habits haven’t changed, but after seeing them so many times, Motomi might want one. Arbitro shouts that Motomi wouldn’t understand his art and tells him to step away. Motomi apologizes. Arbitro orders Motomi to never come back and walks off with a “hmph!” sound.

Akira confirms how they know each other, and Motomi explains that they can’t get rid of each other. He warns Akira to keep his guard up, because Arbitro took an interest in Akira. When Akira questions this, Motomi points out that Akira met the Executioners, so he must have seen “the dog,” too, and explains Arbitro’s love of young boys with pretty faces. Motomi also explains the doors that lead to the arena where people fight Il-Re.

Inside the room, Keisuke faces Arbitro over a desk. Arbitro asks if Keisuke is serious this time, and ready to take on the challenge. Arbirto pulls out tags and explains the rules of Igura. Just as Arbitro mentions breaking the rules, the door bangs open and a man with familiar scratch marks is thrown into the room. The Executioners step in, and Arbitro demands to know what they’re doing. Gunji explains that they’ve brought him a corpse to take care of. He berates them for bringing filth inside, and for not knocking before they entered.

Kiriwar notices Keisuke cowering in his chair, and asks if he’s a newbie. To Arbitro, Kiriwar reports that some people have been taking tags from newbies without fighting, and asks if they can kill them. Arbitro says Igura would fall apart if they allowed such injustice, and orders the Executioners to find the rule-breakers and get rid of them.

E03-gunji

"Blood festival"

Gunji shouts with joy and raises his claws, declaring, “It’s gonna be one hell of a blood festival! Let’s go get ‘em now!” Kiriwar agrees, and they start to leave. Arbitro shouts at them to wait, because they need to take the corpse with them.

Kiriwar agrees, and then orders Gunji to pick it up. Offscreen, Gunji demands to know why Kiriwar doesn’t do it himself. They bicker about whether Kiriwar is burdened by carrying his metal pipe, Mitsuko, and eventually the door closes. Arbitro apologizes to Keisuke for the interruption. He then explains the role of the Executioners.

Outside, Motomi and Akira wait on the steps for Keisuke, who finally emerges holding his new tags. Motomi points out this means Keisuke can’t back out of Igura. The only comment Akira has for Keisuke is: “You look like shit.” Keisuke awkwardly asks if that’s true.

Inside the Palace, more of Arbitro’s art is seen, before Arbitro is shown in his chair. Kau sits next to him and rests his head on Arbitro’s knee. Arbitro curses Motomi in an increasingly high-pitched voice, before picking up Kau by the neck and strangling him. Arbitro apologizes and embraces him after he realizes what he’s done. He then praises Kau as a masterpiece. Kau drools, and Arbitro tells him he’s making a mess before kissing him.

In a nearby alley, Takeru hides and watches from a distance as Akira and Keisuke say goodbye to Motomi. Keisuke waves and shows that all five of his tags are still in his hand. Takeru’s eye narrows and he chuckles. As they walk down a street, Keisuke wonders which tag he should wear. Just as Keisuke mentions being targeted for his tags, Takeru comes up behind him and puts him in a hold. His knife is close to Keisuke’s face as he warns Akira not to move, or Keisuke will die.

Takeru punches Keisuke and pushes him away. He holds up Keisuke’s tags and calls them suckers. Keisuke warns Takeru about the Executioners, but Takeru points out that it doesn’t matter because they’ll kill anyone they see regardless of rule-breaking. Keisuke picks up a metal pole and runs sideways, distracting Takeru as Akira pulls his own knife and charges forward. Takeru’s knife clashes with Akira’s, and Takeru’s eyes widen as he realizes who Akira is. His cross escapes his scarf, and Akira breaks it off the chian as he pushes Takeru’s knife back.

E03-crucifix

Akira finds the cross

Akira kicks Takeru in the stomach, and, as Takeru curls over in pain, he picks up Keisuke’s stolen tags. Takeru stands up as if to fight them both, but then flees. A glint catches Akira’s eye, and he picks up the fallen cross. Keisuke berates himself, because he’d promised to take care of himself and needed Akira to save him. Akira doesn’t respond to his words directly; instead, he returns Keisuke’s tags and walks away.

They return to the coffee shop, but Akira stops before they enter because he hears a noise inside. He peers around the corner of the doorway, and Rin greets him. Rin warns them that the coffee shop is a vulnerable hideout. He notices Keisuke’s tag and asks to see the others. After examining the tags, Rin pulls out his camera to take a commemorative photo, and the photos in his bag spill onto the ground. Akira picks up one that flutters near his seat and recognizes Shiki. Rin looks serious as he takes the photo away from Akira, telling him it’s not interesting before pocketing it. Then Rin smiles brightly. He tells them to follow him to a safer place.

Back on the street, Takeru looks for his cross. He realizes he lost it in the battle with Akira.

Akira, Keisuke and Rin exit an alleyway and see the Executioners on the other side of the street. Kiriwar greets them, and Gunji explains that they’re looking for a tag thief. Gunji leans in to peer at Keisuke and asks if one of them is the thief. Kiriwar reminds Gunji that the thief has blue hair. Swinging his claws, Gunji repeats this information as the Executioners walk away. After they disappear, Takeru runs past Keisuke and grabs Akira by the arm. Takeru says he has to speak with him before he drags Akira away. When Akira protests, Takeru hisses at him to shut up so the Executioners don’t find them.

Takeru takes Akira into a secluded area and slams him against the wall. He demands “it” back, and Akira pulls the cross from his pocket. When Akira asks, Takeru explains it belongs to his younger sister. Takeru then says he knows who Akira is: Lost, the Bl@ster champion. Akira earned his name because he never looked happy or content after his victories. Takeru explains that he was also in Bl@ster, and that he’s competing in Igura for the money and power. He taunts Akira as he asks why Akira joined. When Akira brushes him off without answering, Takeru grows angry about people “at the top.”

Takeru draws his knife and yells that he’s not afraid of Lost. Their blades clash, and they fight a little before Takeru drops his cross again. He jumps to grab it, and looks up to see Akira looming over him. Takeru says he’ll be the one to defeat Il-Re, not Akira, and runs off. Akira sheathes his knife and turns around, but then looks over his shoulder in the direction Takeru ran.

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