Nizon explains to Le Cain that V-MAX will be the core of next generation mobile weapons. He reveals that all next generation SPTs constructed in the last three years have an experimental V-MAX built in. Le Cain demands to know why this was kept secret from him, and Nizon answers that it’s a top level military secret. He then asks why it hasn’t been in use if it’s been available for years, and Nizon answers that they can’t implement it yet. Roanne listens in as Nizon explains that they attempted to create enhanced soldiers to control V-MAX, but all the test pilots died in combat simulations. In addition to being risky, Nizon notes that almost no situations exist that require V-MAX. Le Cain asks how it is that Layzner could unlock V-MAX, but Nizon doesn’t know. Nizon asks Le Cain if he’s sure he wants V-MAX unlocked on the Zakaal and mentions that it has a stronger “red power” that boosts V-MAX an extra 15 percent. Le Cain understands that more power means a higher risk, but he’s willing to accept it. On the street, a large crowd builds up behind Julia’s followers and marches to the Grados Tower to demand her release. Arthur tells Eiji and Anna that the security forces don’t know anything about Julia’s arrest, so Eiji decides to ask Le Cain directly. Le Cain gets into a V-MAX simulator and orders Roanne to start it at a higher level than what Nizon recommended. In the hangar, Nizon and his technicians unlock the Zakaal’s red power. Le Cain easily destroys the computer generated Bravers inside the simulation. Eiji travels through the sewer and meets up with Arthur, who tells him that Julia isn’t inside the Tower. Le Cain is tired of wasting time and orders Roanne to jump directly from level 15 to 20. Arthur gives Eiji a disguise, and they have a close call with a guard. Eiji decides to go off on his own to find Le Cain in the pilot training room. Le Cain successfully passes level 20, but he’s interrupted when Eiji knocks out Roanne and the two other men in the control room. Eiji demands to know where Julia is, and Le Cain calls him a fool for coming to ask that. In response, Eiji locks Le Cain inside the simulator and activates it. As Le Cain struggles with the high level of motion, Eiji states that Julia is an important person for both Earth and Grados. Le Cain thinks that Julia just got carried away after being deified by insects, but Eiji is sure that Le Cain wants to eliminate Julia since he knows about the connection between Earth and Grados. Le Cain warns Eiji that he should kill him now or he’ll regret it later. The Tower goes on high alert when an incoming SPT is detected, so Eiji runs off.
Eiji avoids several guards and breaks out of the Tower to escape in Layzner. Karla reports to Gresco that Eiji was here and that she locked up Julia as per his orders. Le Cain asks Gresco if he kidnapped Julia and why he’s hiding it. He mentions Eiji saying there was a connection between Earth and Grados, but Gresco feigns ignorance. Le Cain knows he’s lying and realizes that somehow everything connects to a secret hidden within Layzner. Arthur visits Eiji and Anna with info about Julia’s transfer, and David and Simone arrive separately with the same info. They think it’s weird that all of them know top secret intel and conclude it must be a trap. Despite that, Eiji is going to go anyway. Layzner flies above the desert and spots a Gradosian convoy that opens fire. The convoy disperses and leaves one vehicle alone, so Eiji moves in to inspect. The vehicle explodes, and Le Cain rushes in and opens fire. Eiji again demands to know about Julia, but Le Cain tells him he’s going to die here. Le Cain dodges Eiji’s attacks, so Eiji activates V-MAX. He’s then shocked to see Le Cain activate V-MAX and engage him on equal footing. The two crash into a forest and set in on fire with their V-MAX energy before returning to the sky. Le Cain activates the super charge, which makes the Zakaal glow red and move even faster. Nizon monitors the progress from the ground and concludes that Le Cain will win. Le Cain slams Layzner into the ground and presses his attack, severing its left arm. Le Cain asks what the secret relationship is between Earth and Grados, and Eiji realizes he doesn’t know. Before Eiji can say anything, he’s attacked by Karla’s Dimarge and several Bravers. Karla reveals that she’s on orders from Gresco to eliminate Layzner and tells him to stand aside. Le Cain is curious about the secret his father would go to such lengths to keep from him. Le Cain blocks their path to Layzner and threatens to kill Karla if she interferes.
The penultimate episode brings us back to the secret origin of modern Grados on Earth. We saw earlier in the series that Gresco is determined to keep that secret, and that includes even keeping Le Cain in the dark. But Le Cain is smart enough to deduce that some big secret is contained inside Layzner and is determined to discover the truth. He also puts his piloting skills on display and uses his V-MAX super charge to give Layzner the biggest beating it has ever taken in the series. As for Gresco, what is he doing other than taking too much enjoyment from all his smoky incense? The guy looks totally stoned, but he’s at least aware enough of what’s going on to have Julia locked up somewhere secret and obstruct Le Cain’s efforts to learn the truth. While this episode is entertaining and drives things toward a conclusion, there’s simply too much ground to cover in just one more episode. We’re in for a rough ride.