On the Minerva, Arthur delivers a damage report to Talia. He tells her that the Saviour Gundam and Gunner ZAKU Warrior have been severely damaged, but the ZAKU Phantom is still usable. Talia isn’t happy about having to go into port again for repairs, and she orders everyone to stay on high alert until they reach Gibraltar. In the mobile suit hangar, Vino and Yolant are amazed by how wrecked the Saviour Gundam is. Aboard the Archangel, Amagi tells Cagalli the last words of Todaka, including his orders for the Murasame squad to come to the Archangel. Amagi apologizes for violating Cagalli’s orders and fighting uselessly. Cagalli begins to cry and says he’s her fault for being powerless. The Orb soldiers begin to cry, and Kira says that everyone just wants to live in a peaceful world. Amagi explains that he and the others came to the Archangel because they want to fight for Orb’s ideals, not revenge. Kira thinks attacking ZAFT and the Alliance would be useless, but he doesn’t know what the correct path for them is. On the Minerva, Shinn sits by Stella’s bed. She coughs when she wakes up and says the ship is scary. She asks Shinn to protect her, and a nurse rushes in to treat her. In the recreation lounge, Meyrin tells Vino and Yolant how scary Shinn is when he’s fighting. With her arm in a sling, Lunamaria comes in and scolds Meyrin for not visiting her, but Meyrin says she was on duty until now. Lunamaria asks what Athrun’s condition is, but Vino and Yolant tell her that despite the damage to the Saviour Gundam, Athrun wasn’t injured. Shinn comes in for a drink, and when Lunamaria asks him about Athrun, he says that Athrun is probably sulking in his quarters. Because he was taken down in such an embarrassing manner, Shinn thinks that Athrun is weak and wonders how he got into FAITH. Shinn returns to the infirmary and overhears the doctor tell Talia that Stella will die regardless of what he does. He thinks that doing more will make it difficult to get good data from her autopsy. Talia reminds him that the Supreme Council wants a live Extended, so she wants him to work to keep Stella alive until they hand her over. She then asks him if Shinn still visits Stella, and the doctor answers that Shinn comes frequently and he doesn’t understand why he cares so much for Stella.
Athrun stands outside on the battered observation deck and thinks about the last battle, as well as events from the previous war. Shinn comes outside and comments that it’s very carefree of Athrun to be sulking outside. He tells Athrun that if he came back to fight the Alliance he should pull himself together. Late at night, Rey wakes up and asks Shinn what he’s doing with his laptop, but Shinn says it’s nothing. Rey goes back to sleep, and Shinn continues to examine detailed files on the Gaia Gundam. Later, Shinn goes to the infirmary and knocks out the nurse. He then wheels Stella’s bed out of the infirmary and takes her down to the mobile suit hangar. Several guards spot him and detain him, but Rey attacks the guards and together with Shinn knocks them all out. Rey asks Shinn if he’s coming back, and Shinn says he is. He wants to return Stella because she’s going to die and he doesn’t want her to end up a lab rat whether she lives or dies. Shinn takes Stella up to the Core Splendor while Rey prepares to open the gate for him. On the bridge, Talia asks what’s going on and is informed that Stella is missing from the infirmary. Shinn takes off in the Core Splendor and forms up to the Force Impulse before leaving. Rey is brought to Talia’s quarters and assures her that Shinn will return without being chased. He proclaims that what he did was at his own discretion. Shinn broadcasts the IFF code of the Gaia Gundam to get the attention of the John Paul Jones, which he does. He sends coordinates and tells Neo to come alone to get Stella. Neo isn’t sure if it’s a trap, but he decides to go and launches in his Jet Windam. Neo lands on a small island and finds Shinn waiting for him. Shinn asks Neo to promise to take Stella away from war and mobile suits, and Neo agrees. Shinn gives Neo the small shell and asks Stella not to forget him. He then runs off and returns to the Force Impulse.
Following the clip show, instead of really jumping back into the story, we get a very slow-moving episode. In the first half, Athrun sulks over his defeat while Shinn gloats over his victory. Shinn’s old attitude returns, along with his antagonism towards Athrun. That was something we didn’t need to see after having had so much of it in the past. The Archangel makes off pretty well with the addition of all those Murasames to its complement of mobile suits. There’s more of Cagalli’s useless crying, along with crying by the Orb soldiers. The sight of these grown men crying is pretty pathetic. The rest of this episode focuses on Shinn grabbing Stella and returning her to the Alliance, which is pretty similar to the episode in SEED where Kira did the same with Lacus. Shinn’s request to Neo is pretty naïve, though. Why would an enemy soldier keep such a promise? And who would trust a promise given by a masked man?