The fighting at Rostroulan continues as Danazines attack Clanches in the air. Underground, Zeheart’s Wrozzo R destroys an Adele Mk-II before diving back into the water. A Wrozzo pilot asks why they have to wait 30 minutes until detonating the bombs, but Zeheart says they have to wait until their allies can retreat safely. He says they’ll stay behind as a diversion so that the enemy doesn’t find the bombs. On the ground, Danazines, Wrozzos and Reganners attack Rostroulan’s automatic defenses, along with Shaldoll Customs and Adele Cannons. Zanald is informed that Zeheart’s team has planted the bombs and declares that victory is at hand. Natora suggests docking the Diva inside the base, but Flit objects and starts issuing orders to the bridge crew. The Abis team fires at several attacking Danazines, and Seric comments that more and more keep coming. Natora tells Flit that she’s just slowing everyone down, and he tells her to have a good look. He says that she’s been working hard to become captain and has barely slept as she learns the ship’s details. Natora then starts issuing orders to reroute power and weapons systems, so the crew gets to work. Flit tells Natora that no one starts out by acting as a captain and just has to fulfill the responsibilities they’re given. Algreus called Flit and reports that they’ve repelled the Vagans and are chasing, but Flit thinks to himself that it sounds too easy. Kio’s AGE-3 Fortress maneuvers under a Reganner and destroys it from below. Kio comes under attack from Zeheart and blames him for what happened to Shanalua. Zeheart answers that spies have existed as long as humans have been fighting, so Kio has no right to complain. Kio has an X-Rounder reaction and pushes Zeheart away. Zeheart returns the attack and manages to destroy one of Kio’s SigMaxiss cannons. Derek wonders if the Vagans got scared, but Seric thinks something isn’t right because the Vagans aren’t taking assertive action. He believes that the Vagans are trying to distract them and buy time for something. Flit calls Algreus and tells him to search the abandoned enemy suits, and Algreus asks Flit if he thinks the enemies planted something. The Diva shakes when hit by a missile, and Wendy tries to keep the kids calm. Soldiers find a plasma particle bomb hidden inside the downed Wrozzo, and Algreus orders a sensor sweep to find more bombs. He wonders why the Vagans didn’t detonate the bombs immediately, and Flit says it’s the same as when they attacked Nora 50 years ago. The Vagans didn’t immediately destroy the colony, which allowed the citizens to escape, so Flit wonders if the Vagans are testing them. The sensor sweep reveals six bombs, and a soldier tells Algreus that there’s 10 minutes to detonation, but they can only disarm three bombs. Kio destroys one of the Wrozzo R’s arms, but Seric calls and gives him orders to help with the bomb disposal. Kio wants to stay and finish off Zeheart, but Seric tells him his job is more than that and reminds him of what Shanalua taught him. Seric tells Kio that everyone will die if the bombs go off, so Kio disengages from Zeheart and heads for the base. The remaining damaged arm falls off the Wrozzo R, and Zeheart wonders if Kio will find the bombs in time.
One of the downed suits with a bomb is loaded onto a Wayboard sub-flight system and destroyed in the air by an Adele Mk-II. With only three minutes remaining, one bomb is yet to be removed. Kio and the Abis team search the coordinates inside the base, but they can’t find a bomb. Flit calls Kio and reminds him that everyone will die if even just the one bomb explodes and sets off the energy plants. Flit asks Kio if he can find it, and Kio says he can. Algreus asks if Kio can do it even as an X-Rounder, and Flit answers that Kio has enormous dormant potential. Kio extends his X-Rounder senses and finds the bomb hidden in a bulkhead. With only one minute left, Kio takes off to remove the bomb. Danazines and a Dorado block the tunnel leading out, so the Abis team stays behind to fight them. With seconds left, Kio sees Shanalua telling him he can do it, and he tosses the bomb into the air just before it explodes. With no successful detonations, Zanald declares Zeheart a failure and orders a withdrawal. Later, Algreus tells Flit that they’re planning an attack on the Vagan mobile fortress from the Luna base. He adds that the Luna base is looking into ways to improve the AGE System, and Flit is surprised that it’s happening after so long since his suggestions were ignored. Algreus explains that it’s embarrassing to the military that its technology is inferior to the Asuno family’s, so their pride prevented them from making the best decision. Flit wonders what changed their minds, and Algreus answers that the top brass were terrified after the destruction of Big Ring. Algreus reports that the AGE-1 Flat is being loaded onto the Diva, and Flit comments that it’s a nostalgic machine. However, the AGE-1 Flat is being assigned to an ace pilot named Girard Spriggan, which upsets Flit. The Diva returns to its original configuration as it prepares to head into space. Kio looks out at the sunset and starts crying when Flit shows up. Flit tells Kio that what happened with Shanalua wasn’t his fault, and that even if she had survived, she’d have been executed for treason. Kio comments that it’s sad and asks if they have to fight anyway, and Flit tells him that a Gundam pilot has to fight to protect people from sadness. In Earth orbit, Zeheart asks Ezelcant if he’s testing the Earthers and giving them a reprieve, but Ezelcant responds that he’s always thinking of Vagan. A girl named Fram Nara from Second Moon enters the room and tells Zeheart that she’s been ordered by Zanald to help. Zeheart says he doesn’t need help and leaves, prompting Fram to wonder how much of a man he is. Algreus tells Flit that they’re launching a decoy operation to allow the Diva to reach orbit and head for the Moon. Flit comments that he’d never thought the Vagans would seize control of Earth’s orbit, but Algreus tells him it’s worse and that they now control 40 percent of the surface. The Diva then takes off and heads for space.
The battle at Rostroulan concludes in an episode that performs better than the last one. This battle should’ve been a bit more interesting, but it’s marred somewhat by copious usage of stock footage from the last episode. Kio is still affected by Shanalua’s death, as evidenced by his dialogue with Zeheart. He beats down the Wrozzo pretty badly, and it’s rather amusing to see a newbie like him accomplish so easily what his father struggled so much to do. The whole ticking time bomb cliche isn’t particularly exciting, and I found it bothersome that X-Rounder abilities can now magically find bombs too. Ezelcant’s plans make no sense, but this episode shows that Flit and Zeheart are wondering about that. Ezelcant’s cryptic answer to Zeheart doesn’t shed any light on what he’s really up to, and his actions make Zeheart look like a failure, even though Zeheart was just following orders. This leads to the introduction of new character Fram Nara, presumably as a minder/spy from Zanald. Given her youth and size, I don’t doubt that in the future she’ll have some encounter with Kio. Natora finally steps up and acts assertively, which is nice to see since she’s been useless up to now. Hopefully this will continue in the future and she’ll keep developing as a captain. Flit seems to have softened up a bit when he talks to Kio about Shanalua. As is often the case with grandparents, it looks like he probably learned from some of his mistakes with Asemu. If this situation had happened during Asemu’s youth, the younger Flit would’ve probably just told him that she got what she deserved, but he doesn’t take that route with Kio. The old AGE-1 Flat is coming back into action, but this time without Flit. I wonder what problems that will create in the future.