Nicholas is reminiscing about the first time he fired a gun, which was at age 7. He felt it gave him power to get rid of bad people with ease. The strange man from the previous episode is seen teaching Nicholas target practice. Later in life, Nicholas was able to escape violence by working in an orphanage. In the present, Vash is sitting in the city where Knives carved his name in red, still thinking about the past. He fires into the signature in anger. Meanwhile, Nicholas is trying to fix his motorcycle, but is distracted by guilt about the child he killed. He hears someone walking towards him, and stands up to see his former teacher, who identifies himself as Chapel the Evergreen, a Gung-Ho-Gun. He tells Nicholas that he is confused, and that he must kill Vash. Nicholas says that Knives only told him to bring Vash back, not kill him. Chapel tells him that the order has been canceled and he will still get his money. He also assures the safety of the orphans. He tells Nicholas that from now on, he too is a Gung-Ho-Gun. In the desert, another Gung-Ho-Gun, Caine, sets up a sharp shooting rifle. Nicholas enters the city where Vash is and walks right past him. Milly offers to bring him some sandwiches and coffee, but he asks her why she hasn’t said anything about the killing of Zazie. She replies that Vash and he were both right in a way, and she doesn’t know what she would have done in his place. Nicholas thinks to himself about how it was requested of him to guide Vash and protect him, even if it meant killing a child. He begins crying about having had to make such a choice. Milly comes to comfort him.
In the morning, Nicholas catches Vash leaving and apologizes for hitting him. Vash beings talking about the other day, but Nicholas cuts him off by drawing his gun. He says their lifestyles are too far apart, and to now decide that duel from the Quick Draw competition. He tells Vash to draw his gun, and fires a warning shot. Vash says it’s ok to kill him, as long as he stops killing when it all is over. Nicholas asks Vash what he will do upon meeting Knives if he refuses to draw his gun. Vash replies that he doesn’t know. Their argument is broken up by sniper fire, and they run for cover in a bar. Nicholas tells Vash of Caine and says he will take care of Chapel himself. Vash heads off and Chapel confronts Nicholas. Chapel’s gun splits into two rapid fire cannons, and they begin dueling. He tricks Nicholas into ducking into a bar, then sets the liquor on fire, causing a huge explosion. Meanwhile, Vash easily locates Caine and destroys his sniper gun. Instead of surrendering, Caine kills himself. Nicholas escapes the blast and finally cripples Chapel. He decides to spare him, turning his back and walking away. Chapel won’t quit, and the duel resumes. After winning, he finds Vash sitting on his car. Vash is depressed that Caine killed himself, and Nicholas tries to console him by telling him it is part of human life. He tells him Knives is in Demetery and departs. Vash sees a thick trail of blood behind him. Nicholas enters a church and falls to his knees from his injuries. He confesses that his sins are too great, but he still has so much to do and does not want to die. He lights a cigarette, but it falls from his mouth. He says if he is reborn, he wants to find a better place to live, with no killing. He slumps to the ground and closes his eyes. Back in the city, Meryl and Milly are bawling their eyes out.
What a real surprise this episode was. Nicholas was apparently hired by Knives to track Vash, but instead, he ended up becoming friends with him. When the order came to kill Vash, he couldn’t bring himself to even think of doing it. His death at the end was a total shock. It was also very well done. After being torn apart emotionally by killing Zazie, he decided to try Vash’s passive ways. In the end, passiveness ended his life. By trying to get Vash to draw his gun, he was preparing him for the fight with Knives. Maybe in the end, his death will finally give Vash enough anger and fury to kill Knives and break the rules he has been practicing his entire life.