"I just fix it up relentlessly Though I know it will be chopped off someday I just make it shine relentlessly Though I know it will be chopped off someday But it frightens me oh how it frightens me Because when it is chopped off That chopped off hair Will resemble the dead you"
Nel intervenes in the fight between Ichigo and Dordoni.
As Lieutenant Renji Abarai senses Ichigo's Reiatsu, he notices Dondochakka chasing after him, demanding to know where Nel is. Renji deduces that Dondochakka is lost and scolds him for picking Renji at random. Dondochakka wonders why Renji is still running, Renji replies that it's instinct and demands to know why Dondochakka is chasing him. As they two of them bicker about who is going to stop, Dondochakka calls out for Nel.
Meanwhile, Dordoni continues his relentless assault on Ichigo in an attempt to force him to use Bankai. Ichigo defiantly tries to fight back with just his Shikai, but his attacks are ineffective. An irritated Dordoni tells Ichigo not to take him lightly, as he kicks him away and fires a Cero. However, before the Cero can reach Ichigo, Nel intervenes. She places herself in front of Ichigo and swallows the incoming Cero before spitting it back out towards Dordoni. She then tells Dordoni to stop hurting Ichigo. Dordoni swiftly retaliates, prompting Ichigo to intervene — activating Bankai and snatching Nel up before Dordoni's attack can reach her. Dordoni comments that it is about time.
Ichigo admits that he has been a fool to hold back and he promises Nel that he won't let her get hurt anymore. He then resumes his fight with Dordoni Alessandro Del Socaccio. With his Bankai, Ichigo has little trouble keeping up with Dordoni, but the latter keeps pushing as he wishes to see Ichigo's Hollowfication. After trading blows, Ichigo agrees to Hollowify and proceeds to end his fight with one final blow.
As he's unconscious, Dordoni thinks to himself that he knew that he would be kicked out of the Espada once Aizen got the Hōgyoku, but he still decided to serve under him. He is suddenly woken up by Nel, who is drooling on his face. Dordoni gets away from Nel and asks her why she's doing that. Ichigo explains that her saliva has healing powers and Nel demonstrates by putting her finger down her throat and throwing up. Dordoni tells her that it's vomit, but she insists it isn't. Dordoni then tells Ichigo that he got trounced by him and that all throughout the battle he felt that Ichigo could win. He then states that he only wanted to fight him at full strength so he might get recognized by Aizen and be able to return to the Espada. He then admits that his feelings haven't changed and gets back up to fight.
Ichigo tells him he's too injured to fight, but Dordoni ignores him and goes to attack. Ichigo simply slashes across Dordoni's body while breaking his Zanpakutō as well and leaves the room he's in along with Nel to get further in Las Noches. Dordoni then says that he's just in time, and a bunch of people with skull faces. He welcomes them as the Exequias and they tell him they are under orders to kill the wounded intruders. Dordoni asks who ordered them to and they say that they cannot tell him. The Exequias then tell Dordoni that since his Zanpakutō is broken and his body is in bad shape, there is no way for him to fight them off. Despite this, Dordoni still tries to battle them. As he does this, he thinks to himself about Ichigo and thanks him for using his Hollow mask despite not needing to. He then thinks about things that Ichigo should do further in Las Noches before getting cut down and killed by the Exequias.
Meanwhile, Sado and Ishida are in their own battle against two other Arrancar.
An Arrancar messenger informs Aizen of the defeat of Dordoni. Aizen comments on how Ichigo found it more difficult than he had expected. He then wonders who sent the Exequias after Ichigo and raises his Reiatsu to intimidate the messenger, as the latter hold his tongue. However, Szayelaporro intervenes and informs Aizen that it was him. Szayelaporro falls on bent knee following the confession and begs Aizen's forgiveness, saying that he only made the decision to use the opportunity to eliminate the intruder as he was wounded. Aizen forgives him and tells him that since he had a good reason, Aizen won't hold it against him. However, as Szayelaporro goes to leave, Aizen tells him that, in the future, he should provide more complete reports. Aizen then asks the stunned Szayelaporro if the extract of the intruder's Reiatsu record he obtained from Dordoni would be helpful in Szayelaporro's research. Szayelaporro answers in the affirmative and leaves.
After Szayelaporro leaves, Gin comments on how Aizen seems to be enjoying himself, despite losing one of his men. Aizen wonders if it does look like he's enjoying himself. Gin asks if he is wrong, saying that those youngsters are winning and drawing closer makes for something fun. That, Gin says, is the kind of face Aizen is making. Aizen thinks on that and admits that he is feeling something akin to enjoyment at the unfolding events. He then wonders if Gin finds that strange. Gin replies that he does not. Indeed, Gin adds, he is feeling the same way.
In the meantime, Ishida faces off against a female Arrancar. She manages to keep Ishida on the back foot with her long ranged attacks. As Ishida struggles against his opponent, someone watches him from the shadows.
Renji finds himself upside down and being carried down the corridor by Dondochakka. His head is smashed down on the floor as Dondochakka falls down. Dondochakka then wonders why he's doing what he is doing, much to Renji's annoyance. Renji kicks Dondochakka on the head, before explaining that Dondochakka said something about feeling Nel's Reiatsu then getting excited and suddenly picking Renji up and carrying him there. Dondochakka agrees that he got excited when he felt Nel's Reiatsu and claims he couldn't help it. After yelling at him a little more, Renji tells Dondochakka that they'll go look for Nel. However, Dondochakka notices that Pesche is not with them and panics. Renji explains that Pesche was never with them, causing Dondochakka to wonder if Pesche was an illusion all along. This causes Renji to yell at him more, ending with Renji demanding to know what is wrong with Dondochakka.
Meanwhile, Pesche finds himself observing Ishida and Cirucci fight. Pesche panics as he comments that he has followed the weakest looking fighter of the bunch, with Pesche's ranking going Chad -> Renji -> Ichigo -> Rukia -> Ishida. Pesche also comments that given how strong Ishida's opponent is, Ishida will most likely get killed. About then, Pesche notices her dress and comments on how he can almost see her panties. As Cirucci taunts Ishida, she notices Pesche and attacks him. Pesche narrowly avoids the attack, but comes to Ishida's notice, who is able to recall Pesche's full name, despite having only heard it once. This causes Pesche to wonder if Ishida likes him, which results in Ishida yelling at Pesche in annoyance.
Based on their interaction, Cirucci determines that they are together and she attacks them both, despite Ishida's protests that they are not together — which only serve to upset Pesche. As Cirucci catches up to them, Ishida gets ready to counter attack, but Pesche pushes him away and tells him to leave Cirucci to him. Ishida points out that Cirucci is much more powerful then Pesche, but the latter states that he has a special ability — the power to spit out a liquid that makes everything super slippery. As Cirucci attacks again, Pesche spits his liquid and renders her weapon in effective — shocking both Cirucci and Ishida. Pesche proceeds to spit more of the liquid out, resulting in Cirucci losing her footing and falling down. Pesche explains that he calls his liquid "Infinite Slick" and he can spit it out forever. As Ishida and Pesche bicker, an angry Cirucci releases her Resurrección: Golondrina.
The released Cirucci continues her attacks, forcing Ishida and Pesche to take evasive actions. Ishida tries to counterattack, but his attacks fail due to the high speed vibration of Cirucci's wings. Ishida asks for Pesche's infinite slick, but the latter has run out, despite claiming that he can shoot the slick forever. As the annoyed Ishida yells at Pesche, Cirucci continues her attacks. Having no choice, Ishida gets Pesche out of the way by tossing him and then pinning him outside the room by his loincloths.
He then continues his fight with Cirucci, analyzing her and her attacks as the fights wears on. Determining that as long as Cirucci has her vibrating wings, he can't do anything. He decides that there is no other way. He puts away his bow and makes a stand. Cirucci attacks again as Ishida takes a long silver tube out of his belt. As her blade heads towards Ishida, he cuts them in half — shocking Cirucci. Ishida then says that it is unfortunate, but he didn't want to use that particular equipment, which appears to be a type of sword, yet. He then invites Cirucci to continue.
Ishida cuts through Cirucci's blade. He says that this is a new weapon that he has borrowed from the hospital's hidden vault with Urahara's help. The weapon is known as Seele Schneider, the only Quincy weapon that has a blade. Pesche calls Ishida a thief for borrowing without asking, and that leads to another argument between the two. Cirucci says that she knows about the Quincy: they are the sorry clan that was wiped out by the Shinigami. Ishida says that's correct and attacks her from behind. Cirucci turns back, asks him why is he throwing in with the Shinigami. Ishida answer that she should pay attention to her wings instead. The wings are falling apart. Ishida then explains what happened earlier: It wasn't a fluke or some temporary rise in his Reiatsu; it was him destroying high-speed vibrations with even higher-speed spirit vibrations. As far as its form goes, Seele Schneider is a weapon much like a chainsaw, the blade is composed entirely of Reishi, which are constantly revolving around 3,000,000 times per second. Quincy have an acute perception of Reiatsu, it seems to Ishida that the spiritual particles on the edge of Cirucci's wings go around 1,100,000-1,300,000 times per second, less than half that of the Seele Schneider.
Cirucci says that so in short, her wings won't work against him anymore. Then she removes the wings and arms from her body. Ishida is surprised and asks if every Arrancar can leave their release state at will like that. Cirucci says that it's not at will; she discarded it, and can never again return to normal. The official name of the Arrancar's sword release is Resurrección. It returns the Hollow power to their Arrancar bodies. Normally, Arrancar can only return to their Human form when they reseal their Hollow powers; doing so without resealing, though possible, is a permanent change comparable to amputating a limb. Her wings and arms consume a large amount of her spiritual energy, so if she can't use them, it's best that she discards them, saying that it is better to use that Reiatsu to wrap this up in one blow. The tip of her tail splits in half and projects a large, fan-shaped blade of spiritual energy. Ishida asks if this battle is something the Arrancar have to go that far to win. Cirucci answer that if it was okay to lose, then there wouldn't be a war in the first place. The Arrancar are warriors, and the Espada are their leaders. They were born to kill the enemy and win. There is no such thing as an acceptable loss.
Cirucci attacks Ishida, but he cuts through her blade with Seele Schneider. She jumps back, turns the fan-shaped blade into a sword-shaped, saying that if their swords has the same abilities, whoever has longer reach wins. Ishida tells her that she has small misconception, the Reiatsu vibrations of the Seele Schneider are not for cutting, it loosens the bond between the spirit particles of whatever it cuts. The Quincy fight by gathering surrounding spirit particles and using them as their own weapon, and the most powerful manifestation of that is the Seele Schneider. Now, her spirit particles are already the same as his spirit particles. Cirucci angrily attacks Ishida, tells him to quit messing around with her. Ishida tells her that she has another misconception. The Seele Schneider isn't a sword. The Quincy don't use anything other than bows and arrows. Ishida fires the Seele Schneider at Cirucci, saying that this is his victory, and it was certainly a matter of reach.
The Exequias finish off Cirucci while Sado shows off his true power to Gantenbainne.
Uryū puts away his Seele Schneider and Pesche tells him that Cirucci is still alive. Uryū states that since he's the victor he has the right to choose if she lives or not, and that even if she does get up she won't fight him since he shot through the source of her Reiatsu. After the two of them leave, the Exequias confront Cirucci and decide to finish her off.
Sado is pushed back by his opponent, who introduces himself as Gantenbainne Mosqueda, the 107th Arrancar. Sado charges at him, but Gantenbainne grabs his opponents head and pushes him back yet again, claiming that a Human who can't even use Sonído will never be able to reach him. Sado goes to attack him again, but Gantenbainne dodges it and begins firing off a huge flurry of punches at Sado's stomach. He then ends his attack by smashing Sado's head into the ground. He tells Sado that he's still hiding some of his power and tells him to use it so they could have a fair fight. He doesn't respond, though, and Gantenbainne decides to finish him off with one final punch. However, Sado grabs his arm and states that he wasn't hiding it, but that his power had gone from his grasp when he came here for an unknown reason. He then states that he's finally grasped his power and that he'll be able to use his full strength from now on. His armored arm is then shown, revealing it to look completely different from before and he states that this is the true form of his right arm, Brazo Derecha de Gigante.
Sado explains to Gantenbainne that his powers are more like a Hollow and begins to overpower his opponent.
Sado explains to Gantenbainne that ever since he entered Hueco Mundo, he felt his power inside him rustling, something he never felt in Soul Society. He then tells him that after he was hit by his barrage of attacks, the rustling inside him settled down and he speculated that the rustling inside him was the rustling of joy. He then states that his power has been happily crying out since he arrived here, as if it had come home. Sado then tells Gantenbainne that since he isn't a Shinigami or a Quincy, he must be a Hollow and that this is his arms true power. He then shoots out a beam of spiritual power at Gantenbainne, sending him into another room. Gantenbainne swings his leg at him, but Sado easily blocks it with his armored arm. He then sends Gantenbainne towards a pillar, but he is able to gain his footing off of it. However, Sado immediately attacks him again and sends him through the pillar. As Gantenbainne realizes that he can now keep up with his Sonído, Sado appears behind him and fires off another huge blast of Reiatsu. Gantenbainne tells him his power is incredible, but he's not the only one with a true form. He then goes into his Resurrección, Dragra, and fires off a huge blast of energy straight at Sado, but it does nothing to him. He explains to Gantenbainne that the power in his right arm is meant to protect people and it is only for defense, but the power in his left arm is meant to be his offense. Sado's left arm is then shown, and it takes on a completely different appearance. Sado calls his left arm Brazo Izquierda del Diablo.
Ichigo and Orihime accompany the Gotei 13 to the beach.
Jūshirō Ukitake declares the first annual art exposition open, going on to explain that it is contest where you make various things out of sand and then the judges would decide which is the best. He then instructs them to split into groups of two or three. Renji and Rangiku voice their dissatisfaction with the planned activity, but Ukitake informs them that the winner will get a cash prize from the Captain-Commander Yamamoto. This prompts the others to take things more enthusiastically, prompting Ukitake to call them all money grubbers in his head.
Team Orihime and Rangiku begin first, following a comment from Orihime that they need buckets of water, and Rangiku starts to teach her how to use her boobs as buckets. This causes Ichigo to yell at Rangiku angrily for teaching Orihime inappropriate things. Ichigo, himself, is in a group with Renji and Ikkaku. After building a castle-like structure, Renji and Ikkaku challenge Ichigo to a game to see who can open the castle doors first. At first, Ichigo refuses on the grounds that it is childish, but after being accused of being scared to lose, Ichigo accepts the challenge and as they stick their heads into the sand, Yachiru sticks a crab in Ikkaku's loincloth.
The next team includes the two Kuchikis, who are not working together, but each on a separate sculpture that stand next to each other. Rukia is making a Chappy sculpture and Byakuya makes a sculpture of the Wakame Ambassador. Rukia is impressed with Byakuya's skills and comments that the "likes of [her] still can't compare to him."
As the sculpture competition progresses, Ukitake starts to feel the heat and lies down for a nap, telling Sentarō to wake him when everybody is finished. After Ukitake falls asleep, Sentarō starts to build a wall of sand around Ukitake to protect him from the salt breeze. When Kiyone returns from the toilet to find Sentarō doing this, her rivalry with Sentarō kicks into gear and after berating him for not thinking about the sun, goes to pick flowers to softly defend against the rays of the sun. This prompts Sentarō to burn some incense so Ukitake can sleep more comfortably. The results of their work make it look like a funeral for Ukitake. Team Sentarō and Kiyone are declared winners for their sculpture involving Ukitake.
Tōshirō Hitsugaya is then seen sitting in the shade eating ice shavings with the caption "Slacker Hitsugaya," which prompts Hitsugaya to angrily respond that he's bad with the heat.
A profile book will be coming out at the same time as this volume. It's a collection of funny stories set in the Soul Society that ran in a Jump-related game magazine for a little over two years. But that just wasn't enough pages, so we created a real Seireitei Communication [v26 p128]. It's filled with all kinds of features like "Go! Gotei 13!!" and "Okay, Seireitei Men." You'll find new comments from me in every feature. It was a lot of fun to do and I think you'll really enjoy reading it. Please pick up a copy.