Chapter 5: That Which One Must Protect
Arriving in Bose
In Bose, Agate and co. immediately head to the Bracer's Guild after getting off the ship. In the Bracer's Guild, Lugran welcomes the party and congratulates them for solving the problem in Rolent. Lugran remarks how having all of the famous bracers and the new rising rookie in one place brings a tear to his eyes and Estelle is astonished by it.
Lugran replies that he is of course referring to Estelle and as to how she's being stopping the society all over Liberl. Estelle makes an un-amused face and bluntly states that she hasn't stopped anything at all because she's let the villain escape in each case. Scherazard interjects that she did do well in the Rolent case and she can afford to be a bit proud about it. Estelle gets embarrassed and Zin laughs and tells her to stop as she needs is to just live up to her reputation now.
Estelle then gets back to the topic at hand and asks if anything weird has happened in Bose recently and Lugran replies that there's been no sign of the society lately and that things have been relatively peaceful besides the rise of new dangerous monsters. Estelle replies that she noticed that the last time she was here and asks why Bose has the most wanted monster assignments. Lugran replies that its mostly due to the rough terrain, so its not unnatural for a few monsters to come down from the mountains, however..... Lugran then reports that there have been at least 10 cases of monsters coming down since the start of the month.
Hearing this, Scherazard becomes shocked by the number and comments that Sting and the rest must be having problems with them. Lugran agrees and replies that Kurt and his gang had to come and help out too just the other day. Lugran then asks Estelle and co. if they can handle some of the monster hunts too and Estelle and co. agree on the basis that the society might be involved with the monsters. Agate though has a distant look on his face which Tita notices. Tita asks "What's wrong?" and Estelle responds with the same question, Agate though passes it off as nothing and encourages everyone to go monster hunting.
Suddenly, there is a knock at the door and Mayor Maybelle and her maid Lila walk in. Greeting everyone with a further catch-up session, Mayor Maybelle greets Kloe who returns the response. Estelle asks Kloe if the two of them know each other and Kloe responds that Maybelle used to go to Jenis Royal Academy and that they met some time before Maybelle graduated. Maybelle responds that she was glad to have met her before addressing Agate. Agate responds with a lukewarm greeting and Estelle reels back in shock at this highlight. Maybelle explains that she has hired Agate for a great many jobs in the past and begins to mention about an event 10 years ago.
However, before she can reveal it, Agate interrupts and tells Maybelle to stop, and Maybelle gets back to business saying that she was just here to greet everyone and to offer them a hand with Ouroboros. Estelle and co. tell her that they'll appreciate the help and Maybelle takes her leave with her maid. After Maybelle leaves, Lugran chides Agate for his behaviour and Agate tells him to give him a break. Estelle voices that Agate can be arrogant at time, but he's always nice to clients. Estelle then chides Agate for his behaviour as well while a concerned Tita looks on. Agate responds that they're imagining things and gets back to the subject of monster hunting.
Agate then asks Lugran for the details and Lugran responds that they have 3 main cases: one in Krone Pass, one in Nebel Valley and one in Amberl Tower. Estelle jots down the details and Agate insists that he take charge this time. Estelle and the others agree, though Estelle is suspicious about why he is so gung-hoe on this. They then form the parties and head out for the first monster slaying.
Outside the guild, Agate and his party gather and Estelle suggests that the group visits Ravennue Village while they are at. The others agree, but Agate is reluctant and blatantly tells them "No." Estelle suggests they should because Tita is here, but Agate still says "No" because work takes priority and Tita butts in that Agate is right. Hearing this, Agate promises to take them later and the group sets off.
After killing the last monster on the roof of Amberl Tower, Estelle and co. gather around and catch their breath. Turning to the group, Estelle asks if those monsters seemed weird to the others. Zin agrees that the monsters seemed spooked and Kloe wonders what it could mean. Agate starts thinking and Estelle asks "What's up?" Still thinking, Agate replies that it could be a warning and replies that something like this has happened before. He then talks about what happened before, but then stops and passes it off as nothing. The group then decide to head back to the Bracer Guild.
Attack on Bose City
At the Bracer Guild, Agate and co. report to Lugran about the slain monsters. Hearing the good news, Lugran pays the group and Estelle and Agate begin their report about the strange behavior of the monsters. Meanwhile in the city, a woman (Mayor Maybelle) greets Mr. Jacob. Mr. Jacob returns the greeting and asks if the Mayor is heading to Mass, to which she replies that she is actually checking out the market first and that she'll pray later. Her maid Lila sighs at this and laments that she said that she was going to do that yesterday, but didn't.
Appalled, Maybelle asks why Lila remembers the trivial stuff and promises to go to church this time. Mr. Jacob laughs and strictly reminds Maybelle about taking time out for herself instead of always focusing on work. Maybelle laughs and promises to go, before heading straight into the market. After Maybelle leaves, Mr. Jacob recalls his concern over when Maybelle first nominated herself as mayor and remarks that her father would be proud of her if he saw her today. Suddenly, Mr. Jacob notices something in the distance and wonders what it is.
Back in the Bracer Guild, Lugran is summing up Agate's report and becomes bothered by it. Estelle agrees that it is strange. She then turns to Agate and asks about the previous incident that Agate mentioned. Seeing Lugran's shocked face, Agate replies that it was before Lugran came to the Bose Bracer Guild. Hearing that, Estelle becomes shocked and asks Lugran about it. Lugran replies that he moved to the Bose branch after the Hundred Days War. He then goes deeper into the backstory and tells Estelle that originally there was only the Grancel Guildhouse and that the other branches were established after the Hundred Days War and that he was the receptionist and coordinator at the Grancel one during the war.
Estelle recalls her father mentioning that and Agate replies that it was right before the "damn" war when the monsters first started acting strangely. Estelle and Lugran start to ask Agate what he meant by that, when suddenly a loud bang is heard from outside. Hearing the bang, Agate urges everyone to check it out and everyone runs outside. Outside, Estelle and co. become shocked when they spot a "dragon" on the roof of the Bose Market. Everyone inside the market then comes running out and rush to safety, while Estelle and the others are left dumbstruck.
Zin remarks that the creature is a dragon and Kloe remarks that it's the one from the legends. Agate loudly wonders if it's Ouroboros' doing and a 'silver-haired man' appears and declares it is. Shocked by the man's sudden appearance, Estelle and co. immediately recognize him as Lt. Lorence Belgar. However, the silver-haired man corrects them by saying that 'Lorence' is just an alias and introduces himself as Enforcer No. II: Leonhardt the Bladelord. Shocked, Estelle just repeats what Leonhardt says, while Olivier remarks that this must be why they call him "Loewe."
Hearing 'Loewe,' Estelle and co. immediately realize that he is the mysterious Loewe that all of the other Enforcers were referencing to. Leonhardt corrects the group again saying that he never chose that nickname, it's just what the other Enforcers call him and that he doesn't care what they call him. At this, Agate becomes upset by Loewe's arrogance, but before he can do anything, the dragon starts blowing fire.
Seeing this display, Scherazard asks if Leonhardt intends to burn the city down, but Leonhardt just responds by shaking his head and remarking, "What a headache." Leonhardt then jumps on the dragon's back and prepares to fly off as Estelle and co. call out to him. From the back of the dragon, Leonhardt remarks that this experiment is a bit irregular and warns them to leave it to the Royal Army as they won't be able to handle it. He then flies off with Agate yelling "Dammmiiiittt!"
After Leonhardt leaves, Estelle wonders if they should chase after him. Agate responds that he will chase after the lizard while Estelle and co. deal with the damage until the army comes. Estelle and co. try to interject, but Agate goes running off before they can stop him. Agate rushes over to Ravennue Village in time to watch the dragon fly off, but stays in the village to help out with the fire fighting efforts. After it is clear that the village was fine, Agate rushed over to Ravennue Mine to confront Leonhardt.
First Fight With the BladeLord
Arriving at the mine, Agate goes straight to the big mining pit and arrives in time to see Leonhardt pull out a device and use it to put Ragnard to sleep. Once assurred that Ragnard is asleep, Leonhardt remarks that they need more time to get more of the required data and whines about having this job pushed on him by Weissmann. Suddenly a voice rings out and Agate appears. Agate draws his sword as Leonhardt greets his guest and asks if he was the same 'Lieutenant' from before. Leonhardt responds by spurting out Agate's basic profile and rank and congratulates him for the promotion.
Agate is unsurprised by the fact that Leonhardt knew this and remarks how Leonhardt was always running around like a rat back then. Agate then asks if Leonhardt is going for something more showy this time around. Pulling out his blade, Agate states that he isn't interested in arresting him today and declares that he is going to wipe Leonhardt's smug smile off his face. Leonhardt just chuckles and declares that what happened today wouldn't be considered 'showy' in his book. Leonhardt then states that it was nothing compared to 10 years ago and goes on further to remark that he has read the records of every Bracer in Liberl and declares that he and Agate are more alike then they'd like to mention.
Hearing the words 'similar,' Agate becomes furious and declares that Leonhardt doesn't know anything about him. He then starts furiously exchanging blows with Leonhardt who remarks that he should already know the difference in their skills from their previous skirmish and reminds Agate of the dragon under his control. Leonhardt then asks Agate what drove him to attack him alone and Agate angrily declares that he doesn't care about his chances, it's just that he can't stand Leonhardt so he'll take any chance to kick his ass. Leonhardt laughs and mocks Agate for the extent of his strength declaring that he won't need the dragon after all.
Launching into a series of fast attacks, Leonhardt pushes Agate back and remarks that while they are similar, they are also different in one way; that is their reasons for fighting. Confused, Agate asks what he means by that and Leonhardt replies that he took up his sword to "discard his humanity and walk the path of ruin" and that Agate uses his "in a desperate attempt to fill the emptiness inside himself." Seeing Agate's confused face, Leonhardt continues his speech that "Swinging that lump of iron fills the void within you. For a brief moment, your rage lets you flee from your grief. But in the end, you are only deluding yourself."
Hearing this, Agate becomes angry and tells Leonhardt to "Shut up!" as Leonhardt badgers him further about how he'll never move forward at this rate if he keeps hiding behind his delusions. Leonhardt then continues his mocking by saying how Agate is unfit for enlightenment or Leonhardt's own path right now and that he will always remain incomplete. Furious, Agate yells at Leonhardt to "Shut up!!!!!!"
Back at the entrance of the mine, Estelle and co. hear Agate's booming voice and Estelle figures out that he is probably at the big mining pit. Estelle and co. then battle their way through to the pit. Arriving at the pit, Estelle and co. arrive just in time to see the conclusion of Agate and Leonhardt's fight. Seeing how much of a disadvantage he is at, Agate cringes while Leonhardt offers to end it quickly. Drawing on his power, Leonhardt strikes Agate, breaking his sword and causing him to collapse on his knees having left a wound on his chest.
Sheathing his sword, Leonhardt turns to Ragnard and remarks that its almost time. He then mutters to himself that he ought to modify the Gospel's control style while he still has time. Suddenly, a weak Agate's voice cries out for Leonhardt to wait. Turning around, Leonhardt sees Agate pick himself up and declare that it's not over yet. Over at the entrance, Estelle notes how bad the situation is and Tita runs over to Agate in a panic. Estelle calls out for Tita. Back with Agate and Leonhardt, Leonhardt asks Agate if he still insists on clutching that broken lump of iron and if he does then he'll just take him down with it.
A girl's voice then screams and Tita runs in front of Agate. In pain, Agate asks Tita "What the hell do you think you're doing!?" and Tita nervously tries to explain the situation. Suddenly, Estelle calls out to Tita and Estelle and the rest of her group run up to Agate. Seeing them, Leonhardt uses the Gospel to order Ragnard to stop them, causing Ragnard to breathe fire to block their path. Estelle and co. jump away in the nick of time and are pushed into a corner by the dragon. Back with Leonhardt, Leonhardt walks up to a scared Tita who prepares her gun and begs him to stop. Agate yells at Tita that using "please" will not work on him and begs her to run away.
Leonhardt though just repeats Tita's profile and remarks that despite being called a genius, a genius wouldn't have recklessly run in like that. Leonhardt then remarks that even though he is against killing women or children, he won't hesitate to do what he must and draws his sword. Leonhardt then asks Tita to move. Agate curses Leonhardt, but Tita just nervously declares that she won't move. Tita then starts explaining herself by saying that she has to repay Agate for always saving her, though Tita then later recants that. Tita then starts listing Agate's good and bad points and declares her love for Agate before dropping her gun and declaring that she won't move, no matter what!
Shocked, Agate just stares at Tita and Leonhardt remarks that she is a brave little girl, even though he can't believe that she cares about this 'blockhead' so much that she'd risk her life for him. Leonhardt then sheathes his sword and declares that he should probably leave now considering that there are more challengers now. Confused, Tita and the others are shocked when Ragnard gets fired on. Looking up, the group sees General Morgan's airship firing on Leonhardt and Ragnard. General Morgan then has his crew land his ship and Leonhardt remarks that they have finally shown up. Leonhardt then remarks that they can begin the final experiment now before jumping on Ragnard's back.
Shocked, Tita and Agate try to stop Leonhardt who just repeats his advice to Agate. Estelle then cries out for Leonhardt to wait and declares that after having to listen to all that, she is not letting him escape. Leonhardt turns to Estelle and offers her some advice too. That once this experiment is complete - it'll head to the next stage, so she'd better keep her wits about her otherwise she'll regret it. Confused, Estelle tries to ask Leonhardt what he meant by that, but Leonhardt just starts trying to fly off. General Morgan and his soldiers then arrive and General Morgan orders his soldiers to fire at the dragon. Leonhardt laughs and asks what cannons are supposed to do against a legend and flies off after saying Ragnard's name. Despite being hurt, Ragnard flies off into the sky amidst the cannon fire.
After Leonhardt escapes, Estelle and co. re-group with General Morgan and as they are discussing what to do next, Estelle asks why they are not pursuing the dragon and angrily asks if it is because of Morgan's "Bracer Grudge." Morgan replies that it has nothing to do with that and berates Estelle on how they should beat that dragon considering that cannons don't affect it at all. Kloe yells at Morgan, but Morgan refuses to yield and declares that there is a difference between courage and recklessness and that they should consider the damage done to Bose and Ravennue.
Kloe agrees that this has become a war now and General Morgan suggests to Estelle that she'd leave the dragon to the professionals and asks her to find Ouroboros' center of command. Estelle starts to angrily yell at Morgan, but suddenly a bandaged Agate then shows up with a concerned Tita following him. Morgan addresses Agate and mentions what Cassius told him about Agate, however, Agate tells Morgan to dismiss what Cassius told him and asks if he is serious about what he said. Morgan states that he is serious and starts mentioning the differences between Bracers and Soldiers and of a Soldier's duty. In the middle of his speech, though, Agate interrupts Morgan by grabbing his collar and yelling at him "Don't make me laugh!!!!" with all that soldier dribble.
Panicking, Estelle and Tita tell Agate to calm down as he angrily yells at Morgan about how the army is always late during a critical incident and can't be relied on at all because they always prioritize orders before lives. Agate then yells that it was the same 10 years ago and hearing this Morgan asks if he is one from back then. Agate continues yelling "Who...Who the hell could leave it you.....?", but then passes out after mentioning that he has gotta protect Mischa. Seeing Agate collapsing, Tita and everyone else starts to panic and Morgan responds by telling everyone that his wounds haven't reopened, so he's probably just exhausted.
Estelle asks what was wrong with him and Morgan replies that he should rest in his own bed and offers to escort the group there. Estelle thanks Morgan and asks in a surprised manner about why does he know where Agate's house is. Morgan replies that he met Agate once before and notes how much Agate has grown since then. Estelle asks Morgan what he means by "That day" and Morgan informs the group that he met Agate on the day when the villagers of Ravennue erected the memorial to Agate's sister and the other war victims right after the Hundred Days War. Everyone then gasps and the scene fades to later that evening with Agate lying in his bed being tendered to by Tita and Estelle and co. having a group meeting with General Morgan and Elder Reisen.
At the meeting, Reisen remarks that it has turned into a mess and apologizes to both parties for the trouble he gave them. Estelle replies that he shouldn't apologize considering that they couldn't stop the dragon and apologizes for being so inept. General Morgan tells Estelle that she shouldn't get down on herself as she and the others have been indispensable for calming the chaos that the dragon has wrought. Estelle giggles and remarks that its strange hearing that from General Morgan.
Suddenly, the mood changes and Estelle asks if its true that Agate's sister was killed during the war. Reisen replies that it is true and tells the group Agate''s backstory. That at one point during the Hundred Days War, Liberl's forces and the Imperial Forces were fighting on the outskirts of Ravennue village, and that during the battle, some incendiary rounds hit the village and some of the villagers lost their lives because of the fire and collapsing buildings. Reisin further responds that one of the victims was Mischa Crosner. Morgan apologizes and says that in a way, it was the army's fault that lives were lost that day as the defensive line they built only drew the enemy towards them. Morgan continues that large portions of the village was destroyed because of the army's and his own ineptitude - as the order came from his desk.
Morgan declares that the victims' blood is on his hands which causes Reisen to tell Morgan not to blame himself because it was the soldier's jobs and the tragedy was just several coincidences pilled on top of one another. Morgan rebuts and tells Reisen not to make excuses for his actions because those excuses won't alleviate the hearts of the victims' families like Agate. Morgan then explains that after the war, he came to Ravennue's funeral ceremony as a representative of the army and mentions how he met Agate there and how he remembered how sad his eyes were and how twisted with rage they were.
Morgan then starts blaming himself for giving Agate those eyes and Reisen tells Morgan not to blame himself. As Morgan goes to rebutt, Reisen tells Morgan that Agate never blamed the Erebonians, nor the army, nor Morgan himself and that he just blamed himself for being unable to protect his sister. Estelle asks Reisen what he means by that and Reisen responds by telling them that Agate always seemed to blame himself even though it wasn't remotely true. He then continues that Agate also stubbornly refused to believe otherwise and left the village after agonizing himself to death about it.
Reisen then finally admits that Agate may've wanted to find an answer,a way to earn MIscha's forgiveness. Reisen continues that he thought that Agate's time in the slums of Ruan was a testament to that because he never found his answer. Reisen then lamentably remarks that even though Agate's head finally got screwed on straight by Cassius when he became a Bracer, he doesn't think that Agate ever found his answer and that he's still trapped by all of that sadness and anger. Morgan remarks that its terrible, leading Estelle to ask him if he won't let the Bracers help with the dragon problem.
Taken aback, Morgan asks why and Estelle replies by mentioning all of the positive benefits that Bracers have that the army doesn't and that Agate may've decided to become a Bracer because he sensed the potential in those abilities. Estelle further comments that she now understands why men like Agate and her father became Bracers because they were trying to battle their sadness by doing something meaningful with their lives. Estelle then implores Morgan to let them help to her comrades' delight.
After contemplating for a bit, Morgan mutters to himself if things would've been different if Bracers had been around back then. Estelle looks on confused causing Morgan to declare its nothing. Turning to Estelle, Morgan informs Estelle that Cassius is busy with other army operations, so she'll be directly dealing with him against the dragon and that he needs to re-discuss their options with the others at Haken Gate for council over their next moves. Morgan then replies that he'll think about including them which causes Estelle to smile. Seeing her expression, Morgan tells her not to be hasty as he hasn't said "Yes." yet and that he'll contact their Guildhall later tonight with his answer and operational details.
Estelle responds that she understands and Olivier remarks he cannot wait. Morgan then excuses himself and leaves for Haken Gate. After Morgan leaves, Estelle decides that they should head back to Bose for now and suggests that Agate should probably stay here for now. Kloe agrees and mentions that its gonna take a couple of days for his wounds to heal and that they should probably let him sleep for now. Estelle agrees and suggests that they go see Tita now and inform her about what's going on. The gang then say their goodbyes to the Elder and go see Tita.
At Agate's house, Estelle greets Tita and asks how Agate is doing. Tita replies that he is still asleep, but his face is looking better so he'll probably be recovered after he sleeps some more. Estelle responds that she is glad and takes a look around Agate's house. Olivier notes that Agate's house is small, but warm and comfortable and Kloe remarks that it is so loving, so it must've been the place where he and his sister grew up in.
Suddenly, Estelle notices a photograph on the drawer set next to Agate's bed and picks it up. Looking at the picture, Estelle remarks that this was probably Agate when he was younger and Tita explains that the girl in it is probably Mischa. Olivier remarks that she's a sweet child and that she and Agate must've been close. Tita agrees and remarks that they've must've been happy. Estelle agrees and notices that Agate must've 14 and Mischa would've been 12 when the photo was taken. Estelle then remarks that he must've been a prankster and an interesting kid back then, however, she wonders why Agate kept his sister a secret and why did he act as if she were alive.
Tita agrees, but remembers that Agate never said that she was alive and that all the times that he mentioned "come back to visit" he probably meant that he was visiting her grave. Estelle agrees and mentions how Agate should've known that it would give people the wrong idea. Tita agrees, but mentions how Agate had promised to introduce them, so he was probably gonna tell them then. Estelle understands and says that they'll ask him later about it and tells Tita that they are going back to Bose now and explain what they discussed at the meeting. Tita responds by understanding and Estelle figures out that Tita is going to ask to stay with Agate, so she lets Tita stay after some teasing. Kloe and Olivier agree that she should stay and Tita thanks everyone. Estelle then instructs Tita to tell Agate everything that they told her and to stop him from doing anything reckless until he's fully healed. Tita then asks everyone to be careful and let's them leave for Bose.
Dreams From Days Past
Later that night, Agate starts having a dream about his sister who is making plans for Agate's birthday and proclaims that she has a present that will make Agate happy. A young Agate asks if the present is food and Mischa scolds him for thinking that saying that presents should be treasured for a lifetime. Agate asks if that is true and after some thinking asks if his gift is a hunting knife.
Mischa scolds Agate again for this and responds that he just got one from the village elder. She then happily declares that Agate's gift is an accessory that's been handmade by her. Mischa responds that its not done yet though, causing Agate to spaz about the type of accessory she's giving him (Because he doesn't want a 'girly' one). In response, Mischa tells Agate that guys can be fashionable too and he'll get all the ladies with this one. Agate tells Mischa to knock it off causing Mischa to ask with a sad face if he doesn't want it. Mischa then sadly remarks that if he doesn't want it, she can get something else.
Panicking, Agate tells her its fine just make sure it is not too cute or flashy and Mischa replies that it'll be simple and cool just like Agate. After a bit more banter, Agate ends the conversation with Mischa promising to make it cool. Mischa then thanks Agate for always being her big brother and the dream ends. Agate wakes up in his bed and looks around the room. Suddenly, he hears a girl's voice and turns his head to see Tita at the stove. Agate calls out for Mischa and Tita notices that Agate is awake.
Seeing the awakened Agate, Tita smiles and runs over to him - declaring how glad she is that he is alright. Tita then asks how his injuries are and replies that he's fine. Agate tries to get up, but cringes in pain causing Tita to panic and request that he'd sleep some more. Agate replies that it's fine, he'll just ignore it, but Tita screams out a big "NO!" and declares that she promised Estelle to keep him in bed until he fully recovers. Tita keeps on repeating "No" until Agate relents and lies back down.
Agate mumbles a bunch of complaints about getting worked up over scratches and turns his head to see that it is nighttime. Agate asks about everyone and Tita informs him on what they told her. After hearing Tita's report, Agate remarks that they should be hearing from the army by now and is about to move when Tita death glares Agate. Seeing her expression, Agate relents and declares that they will go to Bose tomorrow morning. Tita tries to rebut more, but Agate declares that he has slept enough and that his scratches will recover quickly enough. Tita asks if he is forcing himself and Agate replies that to give him some credit cause he knows how to learn from his mistakes.
Agate then sums up that he doesn't want to anger his nursemaid anymore and asks Tita to trust him. Tita pouts for a bit, but eventually relents and starts crying. Seeing her cry, Agate starts panicking and tells her to stop, but Tita continues that she's relieved and starts wailing. Smiling, Agate tells her to calm down while patting her head and apologizes for worrying her and putting her in that position to get hurt. Sniffling, Tita agrees and calls Agate "a dummy." Agate then holds Tita as she cries and admits that he is an complete idiot.
After Tita calms down, some time later, Agate asks Tita if she is better and Tita apologizes for crying so hard. Agate remarks how scared he was when she started wailing and Tita laughs. Remembering something, Tita asks Agate if he is hungry, Agate replies that he is and turns around to see that he is in a remodeled version of his house. Agate groans and remarks the slight differences between them, before spotting the picture of him and his sister on the drawer set. Picking up the picture, Agate remarks that he is amazed that it survived.
Noticing Tita's confused expression, Agate informs Tita that his actual house had completely burned down 10 years ago from being hit head on by a incendiary shell. Agate further remarks that after it was hit, it completely burned right down to its foundations and that he had heard that the elder had it rebuilt, but he didn't think that the elder would perfectly recreate it even down to the furniture. Turning around, Agate then remarks that he had never been in this place once and guesses that he's got to thank the elder now.
Tita then nervously remarks that Mischa died then and Agate smiles saying that he guess the secret's out. Sitting down on the other bed, Agate informs Tita that Mischa was working on his birthday present, but then the attacks started and Mischa ran back to the house to get it as they were running from the village. He then informs Tita that when Mischa reached the house, the shell hit and that's when she died. Agate then explains that when the villagers pulled her out, she was still holding the present even though she was so badly burned and that metal parts of her present were completely melted, but the stones were alright. Agate then brings out the present and shows it to Tita who remarks that it is pretty.
Agate claims that the rocks are just normal pretty colored rocks that she probably got from the river and comments on the many times that he thought that she died for just a stupid present, but couldn't get angry about it and kept the present with him after he left the village even though he didn't mean for it to become a memento. Agate remarks that its pretty pathetic for him to do this though and Tita proclaims that its not. Agate rebuts that it is because having it also meant that he could hold onto his anger as well.
At the mention of this, Agate starts berating himself and remarks how he put all of his rage into his sword, so he could at least try to hold himself together. But, it's just like Leonhardt said and Agate labels himself as a hopeless loser and a coward who runs away from painful stuff. Agate then starts laughing with tears out of his eyes and calls himself a whole bunch of horrible names, mostly "pathetic loser."
After hearing Agate's claims of self-hatred, Tita comes up to Agate and states that she couldn't possibly understand how Agate feels, but she should say something in Mischa's place. She yells at Agate "Don't make fun of my big brother!" before hugging him. In Agate's embrace, Tita declares that Agate shouldn't make fun of himself because he's a really good guy with lots of good points and that it makes her sad and angry when he berates himself like this. Agate then starts laughing and remarks how grown up Tita is.
At the mention of this, Tita gets embarrassed and tells Agate to stop treating her like a kid and that she is just sad and angry. He then remarks how on the nose Tita was about not knowing himself and stands up. Agate then thanks Tita for helping him see the picture and sums up that he shouldn't judge himself when he's only got his own vision to go on and that he has to just accept everything that he feels and that way he'll finally understand why he keeps holding onto Mischa's present.