Maier, along with Sanger and Lily Junkers leave Elpis. Lily says she’s concerned about the Hiryu Kai since they lost track of it after a battle with the Troye Unit. Maier says if the Hiryu Kai attacks them, he’ll leave it to Sanger. Alder tells Bian the UCC Fleet have left for Earth and if they can take the Federation headquarters in Geneva their wishes will be fulfilled. Bian says the real fight starts afterwards. He asks about the Hagane and Alder says they have an estimate of its course, but doesn’t think one ship poses a threat. Bian says they need the Hagane and tells Adler to get it. Adler wonders why Bian wants the Hagane when they already have the Kurogane. He figures his position is in danger so he decides to use some one. Aya undergoes her T-Link link up and Rob figures complete conditioning can’t be done outside of Izu. Rob wonders why Aya has to do it and not Ryusei and some abnormalities are detected. Aya cries out in pain and Rob stops the system. Aya faints. Rob tells Ingram they should stop because it’s putting too much strain on Aya, but Ingram says no. He says it’s not possible in Aya’s case and that she’s prepared for the consequences. Rob leaves and Ingram looks at several people’s data, including Aya, Ryusei, Kusuha, Bullet and Rio. He says it’s best to have many substitutes. Alder gives Thomas Platt orders and Thomas says he was wondering what to do with the kid Adler gave him. Adler says he’s a good sample, but doesn’t have the fighting spirit Tenzan has. Thomas goes to the hangar where he meets Ryoto Hikawa. He tells him he’s lucky to be in his squad and that they’re going to sortie. He asks if Ryoto is getting cold feet and tells him war is just a thrilling game. He adds he should enjoy it like his Burning PT game. He says they need people like Ryoto to fight off the aliens. Rio uses the simulator and gets beaten when she uses up all her ammo. Ryusei says she did well but Latooni reminds her to be aware of her ammo. Irm tells her the same thing and says she has what it takes. Giado warns her that Irm is just making a pass at her, but Irm says he’d be more direct if he were. Ryusei wonders what Ingram was thinking letting Rio use the simulator but Rio says she wanted to be a pilot anyway. She says her father works at Mao Industries and he prevented her from becoming a pilot. She goes on to say she wanted to pilot because she looked up to Ring Mao, the president of Mao Industries and former pilot of the PTX team, but also because of the Aerogators. She also can’t forgive the DC for disrupting the peace, no matter how just they are. The alarm goes off.
Eita detects four Lions and a Guarlion, which Daitetsu thinks might be a diversion. Kusuha tells Ingram Aya hasn’t woken up yet, so Rio is to launch in her stead. Ryusei says she’s only had simulator training but Rio says that Ryusei jumped into real battle too. Ingram tells them to board their machines. The PTs launch and Ingram tells Rio to guard the Hagane with Rai. He orders Ryusei and Masaki to take point and they go ahead. Thomas orders Ryoto to take out the Hagane‘s engines and reminds him it’s just a game and to have fun. Ryusei attacks but the Lions dodge his fire. Masaki destroys a Lion and attacks Ryoto, but he dodges and heads to the Hagane. Ingram fires at him but Ryoto barely dodges. Ingram wonders if he can predict his moves and says he’d be a good sample. Ryoto gets past Giado and fires on Rio. She dodges and Rai damages Ryoto’s Lion. Thomas says there’ll be no point if Ryoto is shot down. He blocks an attack from Masaki and causes Ryoto’s engines to stall. Ryoto crashes into the water and Thomas retreats. The Cybuster chases after him but Shiro tells Masaki that he’ll get lost if he goes too far. They return to the Hagane and receive an SOS from Ryoto. Ingram says bringing the Lion onboard would be dangerous. Ryoto is brought onboard and Ryusei recognizes him from the Burning PT Tournament. Aya wakes up and Kusuha tells her Ingram wants her to rest. Kusuha offers to make her a health drink and the Lion explodes, rocking the ship. Daitetsu says it was probably loaded with a bomb so it could destroy the hangar if they brought it aboard. Ryoto looks in shock and realizes he was being used. Rio runs up and tells him that’s how underhanded the DC is. The Hagane continues on its way.
This episode introduces us to two new characters, another ‘war is a game’ guy, Thomas along with Ryoto. Ryoto does rather well in his first battle, managing to dodge attacks from Masaki and Ingram. Ryoto was on the screen Ingram was looking at, so he must have psychic powers as well. Adler’s plan was underhanded but was quite clever. Had the Hagane taken the Lion on board, they would have been toast. Not much of a battle this episode. Seems Ryusei still can’t manage to hit anything. The key to these battles seems to be speed and since Lions have a lot more of it than PTs do, it’s hard to shoot them down. Masaki’s the only one who manages to get a kill. Rio also gets her chance to pilot but doesn’t get to do much. Now that Ryoto knows how the DC operates, he’ll probably defect.