This was my 20-page thoughts/plans/over-detailed ideas for how Reformation would have run if it were the anime series.
Since it wasn't, most of this ZOINKS wouldn't be in any story or drabble collection. But hey, where's the fun in not over-planning?
I'll admit that this just got finished, and hasn't been properly edited/spellchecked/comprehension checked yet. I may (not) do that soon. If I keep calling Darryl Howard or Soma Louise (I found myself doing that a lot), or reference something written above when I meant below, just role with it. I'm pretty sure I caught most of those anyway.
Reformation Rough Episode Guide
-These are remarks on the cannon episode-
*This is the Reformation alternative*
-Setsuna stays, Nena joins CB crew-
-In anime, Nena left immediately and Setsuna and Lasse slowly made their way to space, presumably by way of orbital elevators, returning in time to see Lockonâ€™s death.-
-Having stayed the night at the island, Setsuna, Lasse, and Nena leave the next morning. In order to make up for lost time, Nena leads them to a conventional rocket booster system (ie, cargo shuttle before the Solar Elevators were complete) that Laguna had set up for the Trinity siblings. This cuts the time of traveling to and smuggling the machines into the solar elevator, and so they return to space sooner than they did in the series.
-In series, UN forces are fought off by Ptolemy and the Gundams with heavy losses due to Lockonâ€™s GN Arms. Almost half the UN forces, including Daryl Dutch, are killed, and Ali al Sarchez is heavily injured and the Gundam Zwei destroyed. Lockon Stratos dies after succumbing to his burning desire for vengance, the Dynames is totaled, and the Virtueâ€™s outer armor is destroyed.-
*Setsuna and Nena are ahead of schedule and approach the battlefield. The UN forces, led by Sergei and Kati, decide against fighting the Ptolemy and its Gundams and instead turn to overwhelm the Exia and the combat container (which is hiding Nenaâ€™s Drei) before they can reunite with CB. CB sorties to rescue the Exia and Setsuna, but face a delaying screen of UN troops (led by Daryl Dutch and Sergei/Soma). Ali and the Zwei lead against the Exia.
The battle goes as such:
The GN Arms allow CB to tear through the UN screening force, though not with the damage they did in series. While Lockon and his GN arms race towards Setsuna, Allelujah and Tieria are held back by Sergei/Soma and Daryl Dutch.
Setsuna, Nena, and Lasse fend off the enemy troops. Nenaâ€™s presence is a surprise to the UN forces, even though she isnâ€™t that skilled, and her composure is shaken when Ali appears, almost leading her to break off into a futile charge for revenge. Before falling for Aliâ€™s ploy, Setsuna reminds her to be like Gundam and she masters her temper.
Lockon shows up, and tears through a fair deal of the UN force that was attack Setsuna and Nena. Once again he races after Ali, even after the enemy has retreated. Nena and Setsuna pursue, and Lockon takes more and more damage from the UN forces, losing parts of the GN arms. Ali takes major damage from the GN Arms and flees behind the cover of the UN force, but Lockon tries to finish him off even if it means his death. Before he can, Tieria, panicked for his survival, activates the Trial System of the Nadleeh (succeeding because Ribbons and Alejandro did not expect it, and they see no reason to stop it on the battle field). As the UN rear guard tries to finish him off, Nena intervenes and pulls the damaged Dynames to safety.
Back at the ship, the crew comes to welcome and thank Nena for saving Lockon. Tieria hurries to check on Lockon, but Lockon is furious with Tieria for stopping him from claiming his revenge against Ali. Tieria tries to explain that he did it to save Lockonâ€™s life, but Lockon slaps him for intruding on his personal vendetta. From the door to the hanger bay, Feldt watches in shock and some horror.
!This is to be an important section, because it marks the lasting change in Lockon from the carefree man he was to the vengeance-obsessed man he turned into. Though Lockon survived, all is not well: he is obsessed with claiming revenge against Ali (who everyone knows and still alive), and his trust in Tieria hits rock bottom. He is, in short, a very angry man, and though he is still friendly with the rest of the crew he is often moody and impatient, is reckless on the battlefield, and his almost-budding relationship with Feldt is stalled. Though he will slowly improve over the years, it will be some time into season 2 before he and Tieria reconcile.!
Battle Review: Less than half the UN forces destroyed (several more alive than in the series), the GN arms destroyed, no major character deaths. Lockon is alive, Daryl Dutch is alive, Ali is incapacitated but known to still be alive. Nena finds initial acceptance with the CB crew, even though hard questions remain. The Gundams of Celestial Being are damaged; a leg here, an inoperable weapon there, damage to the Kyriosâ€™s shield, and the like.
-With Celestial Being on the ropes and the UN forces down to their last squadron of men, Kati and Sergei launch a final assault against the forces of Celestial Being, along with the reinforcement of Alejandro Corner and his massive, 10 GN drive mobile armor. Graham Aker comes to the battle late and after Corner reveals his conspiracy to Setsuna, and Celestial Being and the UN forces are both routed.-
*Celestial Being, though weakened with the loss of their GN Arms battle systems and damaged Gundams, remains intact and with the additional Gundam Drei (and, by extension, the Trinity mothership which Sumeragi intends to use). Kati and Sergei agree to hold back and regroup, awaiting reinforcements that are in-route.
During this time, CB regroups as it can. Hasty repairs and fixes are made, and the crew greets Nena. She is confronted for her actions, makes no excuses for herself, and states that she is a Meister who wants to end war, and not just because she was raised to. Setsuna backs her up, and she is more or less accepted. Nena vows to uphold the principles of a true Gundam Meister, and privately vows to be as strong as Setsuna.
On the downside, Lockonâ€™s change becomes more evident to the crew. His friction with Tieria is obvious, he snaps at Feldtâ€™s attempts to comfort him, and his friends are left wondering what has happened to distort him so.
On the UN side, reinforcements and resupplies are performed while the wounded (ie, Ali) are taken back. Alejandro Corner arrives with mystery, and Graham Aker arrives with his GN flag. Though Darryl tries to avoid him, Graham tracks him down and confronts him with why he transferred without a word. Darryl admits he wanted revenge for Howard too much to wait for a Flag to be remodeled, and apologizes for disgracing the spirit of the Flag Fighters. Graham waves off the apology as needless, says that he is proud that Darryl did it for Masonâ€™s memory and not because he was disgusted with being a Flag Fighters and with Graham himself (Darryl denies this vehemently), and the two reconcile, both reaffirming their vows against those who caused Howardâ€™s death.
Patrick arrives soon after and recognizes Graham: Patrick asks what took Graham so long to arrive, and Graham admits to wanting to use a Flag. Patrick laughs, Darryl almost punches him, but Graham stops him and makes a challenge with Patrick about who will be the one to defeat a Gundam.
Summary: A breather/interaction episode. Nena meets and has face time with the crew of the Ptolmy, and Graham arrives with the UN forces and reconciles with Darryl.
-Canon: Total annihilation on both sides. Ptolemy hit in bridge, everyone damaged/shot down, Corner killed by the Exia, and Setsuna and Graham have their final battle which ends in Grahamâ€™s heavy scarring and Setsuna going to the wilderness.-
*The initial start of operations is a feint by Celestial Being: Sumeragi sends the (empty) Trinity mothership towards the Solar Elevator, forcing the UN taskforce to divert a few units (Graham, Darryl, and the two remaining overflags) to stop it before it can get to the tower. Itâ€™s empty, of course, and by the time Kati recalls them they are going to be several minutes late. (Regular UN forces are tasked to destroy the ship before it approaches the Tower, where it is self-destructs and burns up in the atmosphere away from the tower.)
The battle generally goes much the same: Alejandro does major damage with his mobile armor, and the UN forces attack. Their greater numbers are countered by the still-active Dynames, and though a mobile suit still gets around Lockonâ€™s blindside and goes in front of the bridge, Nena saves them. When Lockon re-establishes the defense, Sumeragi bids Nena to go support Setsuna, as Grahamâ€™s team is soon to return and has been sent by Kati to support Alejandro.
Tieria still fights off Patrick and Allelujah Soma. Pretty much the same. However, itâ€™s actually clear that Allelujah ejected his GN drive (recovered by Lockon) and then gets captured (thanks to the more UN forces, who Lockon canâ€™t fight off). Tieria returns to Celestial Being, determined to eventually reconcile with Lockon. Lockon himself survives, but the Dynames is critically damaged and weaponless by the end after driving off Tieriaâ€™s remaining foes (Tieria is also overwhelmed by more numbers), and the Ptolemy is sunk, though the entire bridge crew evacuates to the container pod.
The major* change comes with the battle with Alejandro. Setsuna and Lasse battle him with Nena trying to help, and again he runs off his mouth, including telling Nena that he was the one who commissioned the Gundam Thrones and their pilots AND that he intends to use the UN to rule the Earth. But as he does (and without him realizing, because he wasnâ€™t aware that Kati had sent him reinforcements), Graham, Darryl, and their flight get close enough that they can hear the transmission despite the GN particles. They donâ€™t hear everything, but more than enough to realize that the Gundam Thrones that killed Howard were made and sent by Alejandro for his own gain.
It quickly becomes a fierce three-way battle when the UN forces open fire on Alejandro. The â€˜namelessâ€™ Overflag pilots and Lasse are shot down, but Setsuna and Graham, pushing Trans-am and their bodies to the max, work together to kill Alejandro, Setsuna because Alejandro is the source of the worldâ€™s distortion and Graham because Alejandro is the culprit behind Howardâ€™s death.
After Alejandro dies, calling out for Ribbonâ€™s assistance*, Graham and Daryl turn against the Gundams once again. Daryl and Nena occupy each other, stopping the other from assisting their friend/leader. Graham and Setsuna have their fight and a similar exchange of words (Graham is obsessed with the Gundams, Setsuna sees him as distorted, Graham claims itâ€™s because of Gundam, Setsuna claims itâ€™s only Grahamâ€™s ego, etc.).
When the two stab eachother, the explosion hurls their suits away from eachother. Daryl and Nena both unilaterally break off, risking themselves to rush to their respective partner. Both exit their suits to check on the wounded pilots within.
Daryl checks on Graham, and bandages Grahamâ€™s pilot suit with emergency tape, covering Grahamâ€™s visor and leaving him blind. Graham says that they have avenged Howard, and that their revenge is honorably concluded. Daryl urges Graham to just live now, but Graham says that he canâ€™t, not when Alejandroâ€™s co-conspirators (Ribbons, who Alajandro had called out for during the fight) are still alive. Graham swears he will not look himself in the face until he has brought the conspirators to justice, Daryl swears he will support him, and Graham thanks him for his loyalty and pledges to prove himself worthy of it.
At the Exia, Nena frantically tries to awaken Setsuna, who is dreaming of his letter to Marina. When he awakens she is glad and hugs him, but before she calls in to the Ptolemy he asks her not to. He explains to her that the world is still distorted, that even Celestial Being (Alejandroâ€™s conspiracy, Lockon) has been distorted. He asks that she leave him to find the true source of the worldâ€™s distortion, but Nena shakes her head and says (not asks) that she will come with him to find that distortion as well, and reminds him that she vowed to become like him, like Gundam. Setsuna accepts her, and the two quietly float into space, their Gundams holding onto each other much as they are.
Summary: Not too different from the first season finale except for the final battle. It is a much clearer UN victory through weight of numbers, with the capture of the Kyrios and the destruction of the Nadleeh, Dynames, Exia, and the disappearance of the Drei. Though Celestial Being is known to still be operating, the UN victory was more decisive, with more soldiers surviving. With Graham and Darylâ€™s report of Alejandroâ€™s CB/UN conspiracy, more officers and officials (including Kati and Sergei, who will keep contact with Graham as well) are suspicious of the happenings of the newly-formed Earth Federation.
All in all, the ending is the same but with slightly changed contexts for season two, mainly in the form of surviving characters and the hint at the Corner Conspiracy (and, by extension, the presence of Ribbonsâ€™ manipulations) in the UN/EF.
*Again, this is very important. It is/was going to be a very important reoccurring plot point: people know that Alejandro was a member of Celestial Being, that he had at least one co-conspirator (Ribbons), and that he was working through the UN. With the UN turning into the EF and producing the A-LAWS, suspicions that Celestial Being is really on top of the A-LAWS is important to more than one character.*
Post time-skip. (Drabbles already apply)
-Episodes 1-4: Setsuna is found at Proud and rescues Saji, Kati goes in A-LAWS, Setsuna recruits Lyle Dylandy as the new Lockon, they recue Allelujah.-
Most the plot remains the same, but with character differences. Tieria AND Lockon save Setsuna and Nena at Proud (Louise enters the fight at seeing Nenaâ€™s Throne), Kati goes into A-LAWS, etc.
-Sajiâ€™s relationship with CB is ever-poisoned by Nena, up to the point where he joins Sergei. On the other side, Saji represents Nenaâ€™s guilt over the past, and so she has a hard time dealing with him but also sees him as her personal responsibility: Nena, attempting to make up for her wrongs, is defensive of Saji, and nearly becomes fixated with earning forgiveness from him in order to forgive herself. Setsuna as well, sees Saji both as a friend heâ€™s harmed as part of CB and as a personal responsibility, because heâ€™s the one who brought in Nena.
In a planned but never written drabble, Saji is visited in his cell by Nena, who admits she attacked Louiseâ€™s family for no reason and doesnâ€™t make any excuses but apologizes. Saji, furious, tries to strangle her, but she doesnâ€™t even resist and he canâ€™t bring himself to do it and demands she leaves. Setsuna enters soon after seeing the marks on Nenaâ€™s neck, and Saji confronts him about why he let her enter the cell. Setsuna tells Saji that he believes Nena is sincerely trying to reform, but Saji says she has to be brought to justice for her actions as a member of Celestial Being. Setsuna tries to say that she wasnâ€™t a member of Celestial Being then, that the Thrones werenâ€™t part of them at that time. Saji says heâ€™s trying to believe Setsuna, but as long as Nena is on the ship he can only see them as one and the same.
-Lockonâ€™s own rehabilitation is another thread to be followed. Though he survived the war, Lockon was the vengeful man who wanted to kill Ali. Tieria stopping him with the trial system blew apart their friendship, and the abrupt change in personality brought a fight with Feldt that pushed them apart. As the series begins, Lockon is slowly returning to being Lockon as he was, and he slowly begins to trust Tieria again.
-The Ptolemy bridge crew is all alive. Millenia is onboard as an assistant mechanic for her father, while Christina and Lichty keep their bridge posts. Lichty and Christinaâ€™s (implied sexual) relationship is the most stable thing onboard the ship.
-Lyle Dylandy is a Kataron agent. When Setsuna goes to earth to retrieve Sumeragi, Lockon asks him to warn his brother of the impending A-LAWS sweep of Europe. Upon hearing of it, Klaus has Lyle (and others) retrieved to Kataronâ€™s HQ, where Lyle begins as a new mobile suit, to be instructed by one of Kataronâ€™s best: Darryl Dutch.
-Darryl Dutch is one of (if not the) top aces in Kataron, and is highly placed because of his skill and familiarity against GN suits. He is a trusted figure with Klaus, works as a tactical advisor beside Shirin, and leads the fight with the Custom Flag he deserted with. In secret, though, Darryl spies on Kataron on behalf of Graham, and presses them to dig from the outside into uncovering any Celestial Being relation at the top of the EF. He is the one who informed Shirin and Klaus of the Corner Conspiracy and its possible UN-ties to the EF, and presses them to discover any such proof (allegedly in order to turn popular support against the EF). He is strongly against the Gundams and the returned Celestial Being.
-Kati and Sergeiâ€™s underground network of officers who are suspicious of the A-LAWS is greatly expanded, with the (publicly hushed) indication of the Corner conspiracy. Such officers include Sergeiâ€™s HRL superior, Billy (though he retired) and Graham, still Mr. Bushido, who forwards the occasional piece of information in addition to his own personal crusade against all of Celestial Being. Suspicion of A-LAWS is high, but proof is low.
-Mr. Bushido, while still a lone fighter, talks and cooperates with fellow pilots (offering advice or political insight) while working with Kati for their goals of uncovering the truth behind A-LAWS. In addition to Sergei and Katiâ€™s network, Graham maintains contact with Darryl, exchanging information between them (Darryl doesnâ€™t share his source with Kataron, and neither does Graham with anyone). Though Mr. Bushido is still approachable and talkative without the loss of all his previous command, he remains dedicated to the ultimate destruction of all of Celestial Being and not just the gundams.
-Billy still joins the A-LAWS as chief weapons developer. However, he is also in Grahamâ€™s circle of informants/people who know that Corner had fellow conspirators who are likely involved in the EF, and he too includes that conspirator as responsible for Eifmanâ€™s assassination.
- CB makes contact with Kataron, but no alliance can be struck. Saji confronts Setsuna about how Setsuna is responsible for the orphans and the continued war, leaves, and gets picked up by Sergei. A-LAWS find out, tragedy results. *
-Nena stays behind at the Ptolemy, both to guard it and so that she wonâ€™t have to see Saji off (and vice versa)
-At Kataron, Lockon is reunited with Lyle. Meisters and Kataron both are surprised. Lockon is upset that Lyle got involved with the Kataron insurgency despite his comfortable job, but Lyle responds that it was his own choice and that he isnâ€™t his brother.
-Though most of Kataron cheers the Meisters, one man does not. Darryl, exiting his Custom Flag (which Lockon recognizes from multiple encounters), confronts the Gundam Meisters with killing is comrades, warning them that he will only tolerate them as long as they bring him closer to defeating the true enemy. (Most think he means the A-LAWS and Federation, but he only means the Corner conspiracy elements at the top.) Lyle intervenes before a fight breaks out, introducing Darryl as his flight instructor.
-No alliance between Kataron and CB is formed, and Darryl is openly hostile to the suggestion, but the two sides do agree to lend assistance when convenient. Setsuna asks Klaus to take in Saji as a refugee and suggests him as a mechanic, and Klause agrees.
-Saji confronts Setsuna, but the topic is Setsunaâ€™s choosing whatâ€™s â€˜bestâ€™ without giving Saji a choice. Saji leaves, is picked up by Sergei, and chooses to tell him about CB and Kataron in exchange for protection. A-LAWS donâ€™t find out. (Reformation ch. 4). Sergei shares his information with Kati, plans to attack (and withdraw quickly) in order to prevent a massacre, and Kati agrees to try and find a safe position for Saji. Sergei plans to attack during the night.
-During the night, Kataron and CB get some rest. Nena thanks Setsuna from the Ptolemy for ensuring Sajiâ€™s safety and tells that sheâ€™s bringing some supplies for Kataronâ€™s mechanics, Lockon and Tieria have a heart to heart and discuss Lyle and how different he is from Lockon (Lockon is jealous, Tieria disagrees), Lyle and Darryl talk over maintenance on their suits (Darryl doesnâ€™t blame Lyle for his brotherâ€™s actions, Lyle learns of Howard Mason), and Setsuna talks to Marina after not being able to find Saji. They agree to leave for Azadistan.
- After Setsuna has left, Sergeiâ€™s â€˜reconnaissance in forceâ€™ stumbles over Kataronâ€™s base. Everyone in Kataron and CB is taken by surprise, but the presence of the Gundams keeps the GN-XIIIâ€™s from penetrating the base completely (a GN-XIII gets to the base of the ramp and fires a shot before being destroyed). Darryl (surprised that Graham didnâ€™t warn him: Graham hasnâ€™t heard about Saji or Sergeiâ€™s plan yet) and Lyle (forced to jump into a Kataron Flag) also launch, and together they take down a GN-XIII while the Gundams push back the rest. Sergeiâ€™s goal of finding Kataron accomplished, he begins to retreat.
-At this time, though, Nena shows up as reinforcements. Taking Sergei by surprise and throwing the defense in disarray, she closes in to the battleship and attacks the bridge, cracking it open and hurting many inside. Before she fires the coup de grace, however, she sees Saji on the bridge, helping a wounded Sergei. Saji looks at Nenaâ€™s gundam and glares, and Nena is so shocked that she canâ€™t fire and is forced to retreat. The EF forces withdraw with only three lost suits (but several damaged).
-Even without the A-LAWS attacking, Azadistan still burns. Once the first reports of the discovery of the Kataron base comes in, Ribbons sends in Ali to start out the long-planned and already prepared Middle East reorganization. Rather than see Azadistan already burning, Setsuna and Marina see Azadistan in the process of being razed by Ali and Ali alone, at which point they retreat to Kataron.
The aftereffects of the A-LAW massacre. CB is accused of betraying Kataron, Saji is confronted, and CB plays cover while Kataron changes bases. Soma is convinced by the massacre to think of herself as a super-soldier, and decides against Sergeiâ€™s adoption. Soma meets Louise, they form a brief bond, and CBâ€™s battle against the A-LAWS begins with Sumeragi unconscious. *
-Celestial Being is hailed as heroes for fighting off the EF with so few Kataron casualities. Initial speculation of a spy or CB betrayal is passed over by Darrylâ€™s conclusion that an EF sweep got lucky (Darryl knows Graham would have warned him if he had known). However, he and Klause immediately see the need to move bases before A-LAWS attack
-Setsuna, after seeing that Marina is alive, tries to find Saji. Instead he finds a distraught Nena, who in the privacy of the Celestial Being transport tells him what she saw during the battle, and she begins to approach a guilt breakdown about how he wouldnâ€™t have joined the other side and the attack wouldnâ€™t have happened had she not been there. Setsuna awkwardly tries to comfort her.
-Lockon and Tieria, talking with Klaus, promise to assist Kataron in moving to a new base by engaging the local A-LAWS force. Lyle also volunteers to sortie to support them, and in doing so prompts Darryl to do the same. (Darrylâ€™s motivation is to both keep Lyle alive and to use the opportunity to send a coded message to Graham during the battle).
-The A-LAWS hear about the battle and plan to attack quickly, before Kataron can escape. Colonel Lindt arranges for the still heavily-damaged force under Sergei to join them, even though Sergei is still in intensive care. Graham reminds them both that he still has a license to fight as he wishes, and indicates ahead of the briefing that he wants to take on the 00.
-After Kati informs Soma of Sergeiâ€™s injuries, Soma stays in her room worrying about him. Upon receiving a email (typed by Saji, because Sergei canâ€™t use his arms to write yet) reassuring her of his survival and apologizing for making her worry, Soma realizes that she canâ€™t continue to pretend she doesnâ€™t have a heart and promises that, should she return from the next battle, she will accept Sergeiâ€™s adoption proposal. Relieved, she goes to check on her mobile suit* and has her encounter with Louise.
*Further explained below, but if you decide for Soma to remain with A-LAWS then this would be a point where a mechanic can go â€œoops, glad we found that or your GN-drive might have failed you.â€
-Over to Sergei, Sergei is recuperating from the attack in a hospital, Saji assisting him as an adjunct now that Sergeiâ€™s ship and crew have been drafted by the A-LAWS. Sergei thanks Saji for helping him write the letter, Saji apologizes for not being able to assist during the fight, and Sergei reassures him that even non-fighters have their role, and says that there are people he personally wishes werenâ€™t on the battlefield regardless of their skill.
-The battle commences. Nena in her upgraded Drei, Darryl in his Custom Flag, and Lyle in his own Flag roughly balance the few extra men and ship from Sergeiâ€™s command. This is where CB really gets to show off the new Gundams, and their kill-count can be inflated.
-While Lichty pilots the Ptolemy, Lasse and Ian handle the Ptolemyâ€™s guns.
-While Graham and Setsuna duel, Darryl uses a special transmitter to send data to Graham. Unfortunately this is right when Setsuna taps into trans-am, and Grahamâ€™s distraction loses him both arms to Setsunaâ€™s attack. Darryl watches in horror as Setsuna tries to shoot down the unarmed Graham.
Point of Contention
This is where the planning diverges, because at this point the most important branch yet is presented: follow the canon and have Soma join Allelujah (and abandon being Sergeiâ€™s daughter), or do Louise and Andrei fend off Allelujah and Soma returns to A-LAWS?
My planning revolves around Soma staying with the A-LAWS (after all, with no massacre she has even less reason to leave the A-LAWS, and the adoption theme is much more positive). The problem with this, though, is that it leaves much more in the air. Allelujah more or less has to be ignored, or at least given some reason to not say â€œMarieâ€ every five lines, and some reason not to try the exact same grapple every fight. While nothing Soma-dependent has come on air yet, itâ€™s only a matter of time until it does, and the loss of Saji already lowers CB one accessory pilot. Possible solution at the moment is that Lasse fills in for Saji as 0-riser pilot, and Lichty and Christina take gunnery and helm while Millenia gets bumped to bridge crew.
For the GN-archer, however, that depends on Anew Returnerâ€™s true loyalties: if sheâ€™s actually an innovator, then before long youâ€™ll need someone to fill her pilot seat. If she isnâ€™t, then thatâ€™s where she can go, but what other purpose is there for Soma at this point other than GN-archer?
From this point on, my planning reflects the assumption that Soma returns to the A-LAWS.
Battle continues. Graham is chased by Setsuna until the 00 burns out, puts the 00 in checkmate, and then leaves. Allelujah tackles Soma, their suits crash, and Marie is awakened and Sergei leaves her to Celestial Being. At this point, Saji has decided to do what he can to help Celestial Being.
- Darryl watches in horror as Setsuna tries to shoot down the unarmed Graham, until the 00 burns out. Graham retreats, and Darryl drags the 00 back to the Ptolemy so that other CB members wonâ€™t come and possibly kill the defenseless Mr. Bushido. Doing so, however, leaves Darryl under attack from other A-LAWS, and the Flag is damaged (but no limb lost) before Nena can provide covering fire and assistance. The under-maintained Custom Flag (which canâ€™t get Billyâ€™s level of maintenance in the desert from Kataron) begins to fail, and only with Nena covering fire and Lyleâ€™s support can Darryl and Setsuna fall inside the Ptolemyâ€™s hanger. In the attempt, Lyleâ€™s Flag is damaged by a stray beam.
-Allelujah does try and corner Marie, but Andrei and Louise manage to grapple him away from Somaâ€™s damaged machine. Trying to get Marie, Allelujah is damaged by Andrei as Louise tries to support Somaâ€™s machine, and he is forced to retreat. Louise begins to have a panic attack when Soma canâ€™t respond over the radio, but Soma finds herself able to use her quantum brainwaves to calm Louise (a hint at Marieâ€™s ever-awakening presence inside her).
-Lockon, Tieria, and even Nena do well, however. Lockon, better at sniping than Lyle was, is able to shoot down/damage a number of suits. Nena faces off with Louiseâ€™s commander before Lockon is able to cripple his suit with a snipe (Nena goes to help Setsuna and rescue Darryl after that), and with no one to duel him Tieria is able to do major damage to a number of GN-XIIIâ€™s and use the Seraveeâ€™s GN-field burst to heavily damage Sergeiâ€™s EF carrier (including one of the engine blocks) forcing it to retreat.
-With half of her forces damaged/down, Sumeragi launches the smoke torpedoes and takes the Ptolemy (and the remaining Gundams) underwater. With half of her forces damaged/down, including the EF carrier, and unable to fight the Ptolemy underwater without more aquatic MS, Kati signals her own retreat.
-With no one missing and no searching needing to be done, both sides focus on their next step. Kataron has already moved, and Marina is safe. The Ptolemy needs to find a safe landing spot to make repairs however, and so Sumeragi sends Tieria and Lockon to find a good place. That is where Tieria meets Regene, and hears of the Innovators.
Instead of an episode of Marie/Allelujah interaction, we getâ€¦
-Darryl and Lyle are effectively stuck on the Ptolemy thanks to their two damaged suits. Lyle serves as a contrast between the Lockon of old and the Lockon of present, and stimulates development with his brother, Tieria, and Feldt. However, his differences from Lockon are also a welcome relief.
-Darryl is the last person who wants to be on the ship, and consistently nearly comes to blows with all the Meisters over their role those years ago. The only Meister he doesnâ€™t almost punch is Nena, who he feels he owes from the last battle for allowing him to separate to recover Graham. Darryl spends most of his time with Lyle or working on the Flags: he and Ian get along â€˜bestâ€™ of all the crew members, largely because Ian admits being impressed with the Custom Flag and agrees to help repair it.
-Nena is still depressed about Sajiâ€™s leave being her responsibility as well, and even worries that Tieriaâ€™s attack on the EF cruiser might have killed him. Setsuna tells her that Saji made his choice on his own violation, but Nena isnâ€™t reassured and says she wonâ€™t be able to forgive herself if she canâ€™t make up for her past harms, which Setsuna has no reply to because he remembers his own past.
-Allelujah gets â€˜correctedâ€™ by Sumeragi for almost throwing his life away in battle, and in doing so endangering everyone else. This isnâ€™t to convince him to give up on Marie, but rather to drop the â€œOr die tryingâ€ part after Sumeragi forces him to understand that â€˜Marieâ€™ may not return the sentiment and have him decide her life for her.
-Soma gets permission from Kati for a brief leave to visit Sergei in the Middle East field hospital. She meets Saji sitting outside the Colonelâ€™s room and immediately can see him not to be a soldier, but her suspicions are deferred when he asks her if sheâ€™s Lieutenant Peries. When she says yes he opens the door for her, and she walks inside where Sergei is asleep. She sits by his side holding his hand until he awakes, during which she thinks of his initial offer for adoption, her own response at the time, and all the lessons heâ€™s taught her. When he eventually does wake up, she greets him as Father.
-And at the A-LAWS, Katiâ€™s has convinced herself that it really is Sumeragi sheâ€™s been fighting after she reviews the battle data with Mr. Bushido. Itâ€™s only after Graham starts listing CBâ€™s general blitz battle strategies that Kati admits she may know the type of forecaster. Graham asks if it is Leesa Kujo, and when Kati is surprised he admits that not only has he heard of her and the incident, but that a friend (Billy) had told him as well. He couldnâ€™t confirm it himself until this battle. Kati confirms it, and in the ensuing discussion they realize they share (old) friend: Graham knew Kujo by reputation, and Kati also knew a younger Billy Katagiri from college. When Graham admits that it was Billy who told him about Kujo and that he is going to take leave to visit A-LAWSâ€™ new head of MS development during the next battle, Kati asks him to ask a favor.
-In which Tieria dresses up and meets Ribbons, Setsuna meets Louise and tells her Saji is in space, and Ali makes a debut. On the A-LAWS force, Revive Revival arrive.-
-Tieria still dresses up in a dress, but now he faces some light-hearted teasing from Lockon (marking a return to friendship). Also a bit more mention of the female crew of the Ptolemy helping out, and the male half (and two visitors) being strangely disturbed by how effective it is. Setsuna is still his escort.
-At A-LAWS Revive and Patrick arrive. Kati is annoyed that Patrick ignored his warnings and came to A-LAWS, while the watching Mr. Bushido is highly suspicious of Revive.
-Louise is also due to go to the ball, and Andrei is her escort by default because Soma is still with Sergei. Through a video conversation, Soma admits she has just been officially adopted and apologizes that she canâ€™t escort Louise. Louise tells her to enjoy being with her new Father, and hangs up immediately before Saji walks into the room Soma is calling from. Saji at this point has become Sergeiâ€™s official aid, so that Sergei can keep him safe and use him as the proof of A-LAWSâ€™s atrocity.
-The party itself is unchanged, and the main difference is that Ribbons also admits to Tieria to have helped set the Thrones in motion to bring about the unification of the world.
-When Louise and Setsuna meet, she again asks Setsuna about Saji. Seeing her surgery scars and unable to say Saji is safe, and unsure of how to explain it period, he says that while he saw Saji in space, Saji was wrongly suspected by the A-LAWS of being a part of Kataron and and that Setsuna helped him flee, but that he doesnâ€™t know Sajiâ€™s current status. Setsuna also has enough time to tell her that Saji was still thinking of her.
-At this point, Tieria has just made his escape and sets off a panic beacon, which calls in the other Meisters for support. Nena, who had been hiding in the nearby forest, flies over the mansion in her Drei, inadvertently setting off Louiseâ€™s panic attack. Setsuna leaves Louise with Andrei to make his own escape, and because all the security guards (and Billy) are distracted by the Gundam, Setsuna makes his escape without being ousted as a CB member.
-Setsuna and Tieria fly away in their Gundams, with Nena close behind. Ali shows up.
-Ali kicks more ass, the Innovators discuss amongst themselves how Kataron isnâ€™t a satisfactory opponent, and Andrei reflects on Louiseâ€™s past, while Louise wonders about Setsunaâ€™s connection to Celestial Being. Mr. Bushido flies past her shuttle in his fully-repaired A-HEAD on his way to Billy, while Lindt, Kati, and Revive discuss the upcoming battle. On CBâ€™s side, Lyle differentiates himself from his brother by discarding long-term revenge, and after their escape into the atmosphere Sumeragi receives Katiâ€™s message confirming her as CBâ€™s strategist.-
-Ali kicks even more ass. Setsuna, Tieria, and Nena all take him on with thoughts of revenge and justice (for Lockonâ€™s sake, in Tieriaâ€™s case), and they get pounded. Nena gets nearly totaled except for the GN drive and cockpit when Ali reveals his feet-sabers; Tieria and Setsuna are unable to assist her.
-When Lockon shows up and sees that itâ€™s Ali, he immediately goes Trans-am to try and kill him. Ali, however, is just too good. All that saves Lockon is Tieria getting in the way to grapple with Ali, and trying to use his own hidden hands to kill Ali. This works about as well in the cannon, but seeing Tieria nearly get killed on his account snaps Lockon to his senses. With a 4-to-1 fight looming, Ali backs off and Setsuna carries the ruined Drei to the Ptolemy.
-Back at the party, Ribbons blames Regene for ruining it. Regene blames Ribbons for angering Tieria, and suggests that Ribbons did it to incite Celestial Being to further action. He suggests that Kataron is too weak a threat to convince an increasingly skeptical EF establishment, but that CB creates the perfect popular justification and support for the A-LAWS. Itâ€™s implied that the Innovators are aware of the presence of lower-ranking officials that suspect A-LAW atrocities, the Innovators very existence and involvement with CB, but that rooting them out would cause too much trouble at the moment and that without proof of connection or A-LAW atrocities (both controlled by VEDA) those officers are powerless.
- Louise recovers. Rather than immediately return, however, she goes to talk to Ribbons. The Innovators are surprised to see her back after the Drei overflew, but Louise asks a personal favor of Ribbons: to find out the status of Saji Crossroad, and if he really was wanted wrongly by the A-LAWS as a Kataron member. She doesnâ€™t explain how she heard he was unjustly accused, but Ribbons remarks that it is the first favor sheâ€™s asked of him and he will look into it.
-As they arrive back at the carrier, Louise and Andrei see Mr. Bushidoâ€™s (still damaged) suit fly past and wonder why heâ€™s leaving right before the next battle. They also see Soma return from her visit to Sergei. Mr. Bushido greets Billy and congratulates him on his promotion, and calls himself Mr. Bushido â€˜for nowâ€™ when Billy stumbles over what to call him. He still asks for the fastest speed and the strongest sword, and still promises to destroy all of Celestial Being, but he also does one more thing different from the cannon. He forwards Katiâ€™s request: can Billy find a place for a young engineer wanted by A-LAWS but whoâ€™s proven to be against CB and Kataron?
-Back at the Ptolemy, Lyle, Darryl, and Ian are trying to fix Darrylâ€™s Custom Flag. Ian is just telling Darryl that the Flagâ€™s main engine is scrap when the Meisters return. Everyone is surprised at the damage, especially to Nenaâ€™s totaled Drei. As Ian frantically starts repair on Tieriaâ€™s Seravee, the Meisters explain what happened in the briefing room. Upon learning of Aliâ€™s role in the murder of his parents (and Setsunaâ€™s admission), everyone else whoâ€™s fought for vengeance or the past (Nena and Darryl among them) are surprised when Lyle admits that he doesnâ€™t hold such views forever and that only the present and the future matter. Lockon is especially touched, and when Tieria later approaches him to apologize for interfering with his revenge once again, Lockon waves off the apology and thanks Tieria for looking out for his safety.
-Lyleâ€™s admission of not living in the past affects more than Lockon. Later Nena asks him if repentant criminals can be be forgiven even if vengeance isnâ€™t pursued, while Darryl differs with him and says that while keeping oneâ€™s perspective is admirable, crimes of the past arenâ€™t washed away with time and that even past criminals need to be brought to justice. Most impressed is Feldt, who Lyle catches watching him. Feldt admits that at first she thought he was just like his brother, but now sees that heâ€™s different and calls him a good man. Lyle thanks her for not comparing him to his brother, and asks about what Lockon is like. This starts Lyle and Feldtâ€™s own friendship, which depending on future (ie, Lockonâ€™s own) developments could turn into romantic tension.
-When the breakout to space comes, not much is different except that Daryll also â€˜predictsâ€™ (was warned by Graham) the usage of a number of A-LAW Trilobytes. The trans-am Ptolemy still breaks out to the atmosphere, but this time it is Patrick who, at Katiâ€™s request, sends the message to the Ptolemy. Soma, Andrei, and Louise are unable to prevent affect the Ptolemy from making orbit. About the only difference in orbit is that the A-LAWS are surprised when the Ptolemyâ€™s GN barrier lessens and turns gold but continues: Nenaâ€™s tau drive is enough to keep a modest barrier running when the trans-am true drives run out. Setsuna still saves the day, and Homer Katagiri resolves to bring in the Innovators.
-This is a breather episode, with a bunch of content that no longer applies. Sumeragi remembers college with Billy and Kati, and Sergei and the A-LAWS are both watching the kingdom of Suihr. The A-LAWS send a pursuit task force to Lagrange point 3, and Bring Stability engages the Ptolemy. Nena meets Ali. The Ptolemy arrives at the CB base and tests the 00â€™s trans-am just as the Memento Mori fires, and those with quantum brainwaves are affected. -
-Sumeragi still remembers Kati, Kataron arranges to meet the kingdom of Suihr, and Bring Stability still engages the 00 before retreating, but most every other event is different.
-Sergei, still recuperating, is preparing to see Saji off to his new spot as an assistant to Billy. Saji feels guilty for leaving Sergei without an aid while heâ€™s still recuperating and feels he owes Sergei more than he can ever repay, but Sergei tells him that that Saji will one day have to return the favor to everyone who helped arrange this by standing up to the world and telling of the A-LAW atrocities.
-Kataron meets, but even with their more intact forces they feel they donâ€™t have much aid to offer Suihr without their best ace, Darryl. Klaus assures them that when Darryl can return to them from Celestial Being that it will be worth the wait. They agree to the information strategy, in part because they too know that many EF officers are skeptical of the A-LAWS.
-On the Ptolemy, Ian writes off the Drei as good only for spare parts now, and that except for the GN drive an entirely new Gundam would have to be built from the ground up. Though Nena is distraught without her Gundam, Ian tells her that there isnâ€™t much that can be done. Afterwards, though, Ian finds a filled data pad in his room. At the very top is a single header: GN Flag.
-Nena is depressed, and she and Setsuna talk about being a Gundam Meister without a Gundam, and Setsuna tells her that being a true Meister it is more than just being the pilot. He points to Lyle as someone perfectly qualified to be called a Meister without ever once sitting in a Gundam because Lyle has a sense of justice and a willingness to put others ahead of himself, and that even Darryl, who hates Celestial Being, puts his friends and their memory ahead of his own desires and never forgets his pride. Lockon walks in and hears this, and wonders if heâ€™s worth calling a Meister even though heâ€™s put his personal desire for revenge ahead of his friends, his last family, and their mission.
-When Bring Stability attacks, Lyle and Darryl are working on Lyleâ€™s own Flag. Being ready to launch just when Setsuna does, Lyle sorties along with the 00. The standard Flag is hopelessly obsolete but Lyle puts up a fight, pestering Bring Stability and harassing him until the A-LAWS machine nearly tears off the main engine. Lyle is only saved by the timely arrival of his own brother, and Stability only retreats after the other Gundams attack. Lyle apologizes to Darryl for not living up to the Flagâ€™s reputation, but Darryl instead welcomes him back as a Flag Fighter.
-The Ptolemy arrives at the CB base. Millenia has her family reunion, Anew Returner is introduced, and the GN-Archer and 0 Riser are revealed (though no pilots selected yet). Darryl and Lyle are placed in a waiting room while the 00â€™s twin drive system test starts, and talk about how they really arenâ€™t trusted by CB yet, though Daryll expects it. On Earth, Sergei and and Saji are at a small desert airstrip outside of Kuihr, where a small plane is ready to take Saji to Billyâ€™s lab. Saji thanks Sergei for all his help and Sergei advises Saji to always be ready to listen to new things, even facts that are unpleasant. They shake hands, and Saji boards the plane. Overhead, the Memento Mori prepares to fire.
-The Memento Mori fires, just after Sajiâ€™s plane has left and right as the 00â€™s own test has started. The massive quantities of GN particles have their effect on quantum brainwave users in the vicinity: Tieria gets a migrane, and Allelujah begins to show signs of Hallelujah reviving. Nena has a flash of seeing Saji in peril and yells for him to get away, startling Setsuna and others around her. In their ships that have left Earth, both Soma and Louise have the same vision as Nena (seeing both Saji and Sergei), though not as clearly. Sajiâ€™s plane manages to stay up despite the turbulence, and Saji witnesses the latest A-LAW atrocity as the Memento Moriâ€™s beam hits the Kingdom. Sergei out in the open on the desert airstrip can only watch as the shock waves rushes towards him.
-Sergei is shown to be alive on his shipâ€™s bridge. Nena and Wang discuss after watching the show. Sumeragi implies Lasse has serious disease, Tieria reveals the Innovators, Louiseâ€™s commander is revealed to have had a wife who died. Innovators use quantum brainwaves to find CB base, Kati attacks. Big fight scene, Saji pilots 0 Riser and docks with Setsuna who kills Louiseâ€™s commander. From his rear seat, Saji and Louise sense eachother and realize that they are on opposite sides.-
-Sergei is found still alive, but not by EF troops. Unknown strangers find him half-buried, and mentioning an A-LAWS crackdown in the area they decide to take him to â€˜that place.â€™
- Wang Liu Mei watches the Memento Mori attack with Hong Long. Meeting Ali, she wonders about buying his services (and he doesnâ€™t refuse, but only suggests it would be a high price).
-After the Memento Moriâ€™s dust has settled (assume a day or so), the A-LAWS force is still in-route to the CB base. Louise receives a message from Ribbons and the results of his inquiries. Ribbons writes a letter along the lines of: â€œYes, a Saji Crossroads was detainedd in the company of a Kataron insurgent, and was sent to the Proud colony for detention for suspicion of collusion with Kataron. No evidence exists to confirm him as a Kataron insurgent. However, no confirmed record exists of him after Kataronâ€™s attack and the return of the Gundams. A DNA match of his name did turn up in the Middle East over a week ago, but the Commander of the EF ship submitted a report informing our systems that it was a mis-match due to an on-ship malfunction, and the matter was dropped. This Colonel Smirnov, legal guardian to one of your fellow fliers I believe, has recently been declared MIA and is currently presumed dead due to developments in the region near his field hospital and so we have been unable to contact him on this matter. I apologize for not being of any help, and assure you that should any mention of Saji Crossroads come across our attention we will immediately insure his safety and inform you. Yours faithfully, Ribbons Almark.â€
Louise is both relieved that Saji was uninvolved with Kataron but is worried for his current state, especially after her experience during the Memento Moriâ€™s firing. Soma, notices Louiseâ€™s reaction and comes over, and Louise sadly has to reveal Sergeiâ€™s status to Soma Smirnov.
-At CB, itâ€™s Nena who is in Celestial Beingâ€™s medical ward after her outburst, and Allelujah and Tieria are also there to testify of their experience. With the Ptolemy crew gathered (but not Lyle or Darryl, who are confined to non-sensitive portions of CBâ€™s base), Tieria tells of the Innovators and Quantum brainwaves, and reveals that Ribbons admitted to having a part in Nenaâ€™s creation. CB realizes itâ€™s real enemy isnâ€™t merely the A-LAWS, but the traitors who changed the Plan four years ago.
-Darryl gets a priority message from an anonymous router. Itâ€™s Graham using their pre-arranged communication means, and the message is simple: an A-LAWS task force is about to arrive at Lagrange 3 and attack, and Darryl needs to survive. Though he hates to help Celestial Being, Darryl alerts the Meisters, still at still at the infirmary. Though skeptical, Allelujah and Nena both sense quantum brainwave pressure from Revive Revival reaching out to Anew Returner and soon are convinced. An orderly and proper evacuation of the base is started.
-The A-LAWS arrive and find the base and attack, though by the time they do most of Celestial Being is already prepared. Casualties are much lower, data and equipment salvaged much higher, and only the 0 Riser is delayed. Without a Flag between them Darryl and Lyle are out of the fight and man turrets while Ian rushes to finish the 0 Riser. Battle plans are the same: Allelujah leaves with to escort the personnel to safety and rush back, while the rest of the Meisters bar Nena protect the Ptolemy, which has Nenaâ€™s Tau Drive supplementing itâ€™s shields and firepower.
-When the hanger is hit, it is Nena who answers first. Ian tells her to deliver the 0 Riser to Setsuna, and it is she and her purple Haro he get inside, while Lyle takes Ian to the infirmary. Nena goes to help Setsuna, and the mere presence of her quantum brainwave â€˜pressureâ€™ is enough to surprise Soma long enough for the hook-up to happen.
-Setsuna goes trans-am and kills Louiseâ€™s commander (Barack Zinin) while Louise and Soma trail helplessly behind. In the ethereal newtype-ish world, Nena hears Louiseâ€™s thoughts and picks up Sajiâ€™s name from Louiseâ€™s jumbled and worried thoughts. Nenaâ€™s own thoughts of him, and of the reason behind that guilt, reach Louise, and in the confused questioning about how the other knows Saji the two women realize who the other is: Nena recognizes Louise as the one she harmed most, and Louise sees the one who murdered her family.
Plans/Thoughts for rest
Immediate/short term (in next episode)
-The moment the ethereal newtype magic fades, Louise will go into a panic attack, and Soma will try and protect her when Setsuna tries to finish the squadron off. Soma will be overpowered, but before Setsuna can kill any of them Nena will tell him to stop and go to the Ptolemy. After the battle, she will tell Setsuna what she saw and realized.
-Lyle will be the pilot of the GN Archer, in order to help in the fight. Whether itâ€™s launched next episode or later depends when it is â€˜finished.â€™ Either way, Lyle more or less joins CB from Kataron.
-With Sergei missing and presumed dead, Soma is thrown into something close to a depression. About the only thing keeping her from one is her ever-deepening friendship with Louise, who is having the same situation with Sajiâ€™s status as missing with no hint as to dead or alive. Soma doesnâ€™t even know that the A-LAWS are behind the events of Sergeiâ€™s disappearance: when the official letter comes, it says that Sergei vanished after the Kingdom of Suihr attempted to instigate violence with the assistance of Kataron, leading Soma to formulate a grudge against Kataron for bringing about the events.
-Sergei is not dead: he is currently the â€˜guestâ€™ of a Kataron cell, and upon realizing they have the Wild Bear of Russia they send him to Kataron HQ. Besides meeting Marina and receiving a lot of grief for being a part of the EF, he will also meet Klause, who will try and turn Sergei against the Federation by revealing all sorts of A-LAW atrocities. Since gathering proof on the A-LAWS has been Sergeiâ€™s goal from the start, he will play along.
-Saji is working as Billyâ€™s assistant, and Billy takes to the younger engineer. They talk over working on Grahamâ€™s new machine, but Sajiâ€™s dislike of Celestial Being is tempered by his opposition to the A-LAW actions. Billy confides with Saji that heâ€™s suspicious of the A-LAWS as well, and that the suit theyâ€™re working is meant for a man who shares their suspicion. This lets Saji work with a clearer conscious on the mobile suit.
- Darryl gets his GN-Flag once Nena becomes the partner in the 0 Riser, using her quantum brainwaves to work with Setsuna. Using spare parts both from the ruined regular flag and Nenaâ€™s Drei, as well as more technology, Ian builds a â€˜completeâ€™ GN Flag, also armed with the Dreiâ€™s arm-slung beam rifle, a GN- small-shield similar to the GN-X and GN-XIII models, and a reinforced rotor shield. The beam saber can be used independently of the GN-drive, or the GN-drive can be shifted for increased output similar to the original GN Flag, a setup Ian calls a suicidally brilliant way to take advantage of the Flagâ€™s peerless speed and the GN-drives firepower. Ideally this will be finished when Grahamâ€™s own new suit is revealed, and Darryl and Graham will meet on the battlefield and duel.
Though he makes inroads with the Ptolemy crew and earns the respect of the Meisters, Darryl will take the first chance after receiving the GN-Flag to jump ship and return to Kataron, even if without CBâ€™s consent or without Lyle. It will be a bloodless betrayal (probably just not returning after a battle, and maybe faking his own death), and it will leave the crew shocked and with various emotions when they discover he just left. Doing so will give Kataron the chance to copy the Tau Drive, and give them a chance to build their own GN forces. It will mark a point at which Kataron really does become a credible threat to the Innovators and the A-LAWS, but by that point the EF will already be in tension with the Innovators.
-Allelujah starts combating Soma more often, and Marie starts coming closer and closer to awakening on her own. However, while Marie Parfacy cares for Allelujah, Soma Smirnov only wants to return home to her father and remain with her friend Louise. If/when Marie awakens, it will be in a Hallelujah/Allelujah dualist manner, with both striving for dominance. Allelujah will of course not kill Marie under any circumstance, but he will also put Celestial Beingâ€™s mission first and then come back once peace is attained.
-Nena and Setsuna are partners, but Nena is confronted by memories of Saji and Louise. Her drive to emulate â€˜Gundamâ€™ is checked by her guilt to them, and it increasingly becomes a contradiction of her development; she can proceed like Gundam and act with justice regardless of what others think and value, or she can feel guilt for her past and desire to be punished by those she hurt. While she is stalled on that, Setsunaâ€™s own development with Marina will also have ramifications.
-Bouncing around with various people and having spent time people from all the sides, Saji grows out of his hatred of Nena after seeing what bitter hatred has done to people like Billy and Graham. In their climax of a meeting/confrontation when Nena tries to save him from A-LAWS, Saji doesnâ€™t even try to kill Nena when she gives him the chance, but tells her that he doesnâ€™t hate her anymore and that he believes she is sorry. He also says he wants her brought to justice one day, but a fair trial. Hearing, if not forgiveness then at least understanding from Saji allows Nena to accept Setsunaâ€™s path, not pardoning oneself for past sins but living and acting with a sense of justice, even if others donâ€™t understand or accept. That is being Gundam: not in being popular or liked or strong and mighty, but living and acting according to your sense of justice and acting for what you, not others, think best.
-Louise will stick with the A-LAWS for her quest for revenge, but will also spend more time and resources trying to discover Sajiâ€™s fate. She and Soma form and keep a stronger-than-normal friendship with newtype-bond undertones. When Sergei is found with Kataron, Soma will make a point to ask him if Saji is alive, and in his surprise heâ€™ll admit that he knows Saji but he wonâ€™t tell where, how, or what happened to Saji. After the series turning point, sheâ€™s very uncertain as to her loyalties and susceptible to Sajiâ€™s words.
-Sergei â€˜joinsâ€™ Kataron in order to oppose the A-LAWS after what he considers unforgivable acts (Memento Mori terrorism). He also fears that, if unchecked, the A-LAWS wonâ€™t hesitate to use Soma against the weak. He doesnâ€™t oppose the EF, however, putting him at odds with many other members who doubt him, but his tactics, knowledge, and command skills, along with his contacts and reputation with the rest of the EF, puts Kataron in much better standing. With his influence, Kataron and the moderate Elements of the Earth Federation become more sympathetic with each other. Though Sergei tries to alert Soma that heâ€™s still alive, he is unable to contact her, Kati, or any of his EF contacts. Their next meeting will be a surprise on the battlefield, and will greatly shock Soma and lead her to feel that Sergei didnâ€™t try to warn her. However, if Soma does jump ship this will be when and where.
When Darryl returns with the GN drive, he and Sergei will work together and eventually realize they share a goal/comrade through Mr. Bushido. Darrylâ€™s means of contacting with Graham will be Sergeiâ€™s means of rejoining the Sergei-Kati-Graham informal information triangle, and will put Sergei back in touch (through Kati) with similar-minded EF officers.
-The EF increasingly becomes a third player and not under the control of the A-LAWS. Insinuations of Celestial Being influence at the top threatens the legitimacy of the A-LAWS and the Innovatorâ€™s hold on power, and A-LAW actions are increasingly unpopular with parts of the population. When Sergei is publicly revealed to have joined Kataron, many moderates and those who know him and his reputation start having second thoughts and quietly support Kataron.
-A political climax/victory would be for the public connection of all the information by the various players who by all rights shouldnâ€™t agree: the Corner Conspiracy to use the EF to control the world (related by the survivors of the last battle Graham, Darryl, EF officers â€˜in the knowâ€™, and Nena), A-LAW atrocities (Saji speaks in court, Kataron gives other proofs, and Louise/Kati could testify), and the revelation of the Innovators being tied to Celestial Being (Tieria, Louise, Wang Liu Mei). If all these threads can be put together and all these different people from different factions work together, the result would be the overthrow of the Innovators, the restructuring/dismantling of the A-LAWS, and the reformation/breakup of the Earth Federation.
Of course, most of these people hate each other, and so many people are hiding secret information/allegiances that not everyone knows who knows what, and some of these people want to settle scores first, and Ribbons will try and kill any witnesses he needs to in order to keep the secret, but if it happens itâ€™s a perfect storm victory. If it does happen, it would look likeâ€¦
Series Tipping point
Set up, if possible: some time after Sergei has joined Kataron, the EF begins to make moves on the A-LAWS behavior and privileges, especially the Memento Mori. A publicized proceeding in the Earth Federation assembly is started by Ribbons in order to officially find the A-LAWS in the clear, but many in the EF are unexpectedly critical of the A-LAWS and it soon turns into a public trial. Using their contacts, Sergei has it so his old HRL commander (the one who assigned him Soma) drop a bombshell on the proceedings: Saji Crossroads is called as a witness on the A-LAWS actions, and Saji steps out of obscurity and into the view of the world as billions watch the young man begin to answer questions by the (pre-warned and friendly) questioners.
Saji admits everything: starting with the loss of his sister while she was investigating CB to Louiseâ€™s maiming (a surprise association that quiets many otherwise hostile representatives) to his arrest at Proud, the hard labor, Kataronâ€™s rescue attempt and the automaton anti-personnel machines. He admits to being rescued by his old neighbor Setsuna, to finding that Setsuna was part of Celestial Being and his own brief stay with them. He mentions being taken to Kataron with the purpose of being left there, of taking a jeep and being stopped by Colonel Sergei Smirnov. He admits to having told Sergei of the location of the Kataron base in hopes of having his name clear, and how he soon found himself Sergeiâ€™s aid until Sergei arranged for him to be sent to safety. He gives an account of the Memento Mori annihilating the Kingdom of Kuihr and how he though Sergei had died, and how he has been hiding as an A-LAWS technician ever since. Billions watch as Saji recounts his experiences with both Celestial Being and the A-LAWS.
Ribbons, of course, tries to stop this with Veda. But prepared for it, Sergei and Kataron and the Moderates of the EF have arranged that the signal can get out despite VEDA, by radio and satellite and hard line and every possible means, modern or ancient. Radio stations around the world transmit the broadcast. So Ribbons sends in the A-LAWS to silence Saji and regain control; he tries to keep Louise back, but Louise launches without permission. Regardless, Kataron has prepared a defensive: Darryl leads in his GN Flag, Kataronâ€™s own GN suits are publicly revealed, and loyalties are revealed and established. Kati and Patrick, and even Mr. Bushido reveal their opposition to the Innovators by opposing the A-LAW attack (if she hasnâ€™t already, Soma would join Sergei here): itâ€™s a chaotic battle, loyalties and sides are proven, and of course Celestial Being shows up to defend the EF assembly and defeat the A-LAWS.
With Setsunaâ€™s assistance Nena is able to find and isolate Saji, away from the cameras and everyone else, and they have their final confrontation. Nena says she heard Sajiâ€™s address, and understands how he must hate her and all of Celestial Being. She apologizes, but says she knows that words are not enough, hands him a gun, and says she will not run away from him any longer. Saji throws the gun away, tells her that he doesnâ€™t hate her but wants to bring her to justice, and Nena has her moment of epiphany into Gundam and that Gundam acts as he or she judges best, not for support or understanding. She thanks him for being such a kind person, apologizes for what she has to do, and then knocks him out in order to evacuate him to safety from Ribbons.
Louise arrives just in time to see Nena gently carry an unconscious Saji into the 00 Gundam and for the Gundam to take off. Nena apologizes directly to her, promises that she wonâ€™t let either of them be harmed any more, and takes off. Louise is unable to stop her.
The post-battle implications are immediate. The Earth Federation moves to reign in tight control over the A-LAWS, and a three-way Civil War between the A-LAWS (the last bastion of the Innovators), the Earth Federation (the loose alliance of the former Three Powers and their members, all of whom have started reorganizing; still opposes Celestial Being), and Kataron (whoâ€™s goals include the devolution of the EF back into the Three Powers system, but prioritize the destruction of the A-LAWS; they are supported by the traditionally unaligned countries: Africa, the Middle East, Western Asia, and support Celestial Being). Celestial Being is also aligned against the A-LAWS and Innovators, but not for either of the other two sides in particular. Everyone is temporarily united against the A-LAWS.
With this, the series immediately turns to the End Game phase. The Innovators and A-LAWS reveal hidden secret weapons, characters make final commitments before the final battle somewhere in space (at Veda?) and everyone prepares for whatâ€™s to follow.
Sides/main characters into final fight:
Saji (actually a detainee, but Nena intends to release him after the A-LAWS are destroyed)
I'm sorry this letter is so long, but I did not have time to make it shorter. -Mark Twain
Official Jerid Fanboy