After laying waste to Soul Society, Yhwach retreats, stating the Royal Guard will likely show up now. Ichigo Kurosaki tries to stop him, but his attempts fail as Jugram Haschwalth succeeds in stopping the Substitute Shinigami by breaking his Bankai. As the medical units treat the injured, several of the Gotei 13 captains discuss their situation while Ichigo Kurosaki is called to Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi's office to try to repair his broken Zanpakutō. Once there, Mayuri informs Ichigo he cannot repair the sword because a Bankai cannot be repaired. As he is told this, Ichigo is tackled by Kon, who has a new and muscular body. When Ichigo initially does not recognize him, Kon tries to show off. Having been told he is needed elsewhere, Mayuri tells Ichigo to come with him to see the Royal Guard arrive.
Elsewhere in Soul Society, the other captains have begun to gather outside the walls of Seireitei. Upon arriving, Ichigo calls out to Captain Shinji Hirako. Asking if Ichigo is there to watch the Royal Guard arrive, Shinji says he does not recommend it. As Ichigo asks several questions about the Royal Guard, Captain Shunsui Kyōraku interjects by stating that they live in the Soul King Palace. When Ichigo asks where the Soul King Palace is if it is not in Soul Society, Kyōraku tells Ichigo to think back to when he first arrived in Soul Society and how the walls fell from the sky. Stating that the walls normally only protect Seireitei in times of emergency, but lately have been down all the time due to recent crises, he asks what the walls normally protect if they are only there during emergencies. Before Ichigo can speak, Kyōraku looks up and notes that the Royal Guard are present.
A large pillar then falls from the sky and lands in front of the group. When Ichigo wonders what it is, Kyōraku reveals it is their preferred means of travel, the Tenchūren. When he says all the members of the Royal Guard are inside, Ichigo wonders how they can all fit inside as it is so small. As the pillar begins to open, Kyōraku states there are no foot soldiers in the Royal Guard. There are only five members, all of them former captains, and their combined power is greater than the combined power of the entire Gotei 13. As he says this, the Royal Guard step out.
As the Royal Guard members step out of the Tenchūren, one member holds a flag bearing the Royal Guard insignia while another plays several instruments with her multiple prosthetic arms. Announcing their arrival, the one holding the flag asks the members of the Gotei 13 if they are eating and sleeping well, referring to them as kids in the process. Stating this is not what he expected, Shinji is slapped by a plump female member of the Royal Guard. When Shinji asks what that was for, the woman replies by stating it is so good to see Shinji again and notes it is rare to not see Hiyori Sarugaki with him. When Shinji asks who she is, she wonders if he truly does not remember her and introduces herself as Kirio Hikifune. When a shocked Shinji states she has changed so much, she laughs and states she has not changed much at all.
Going over to Captain Retsu Unohana, the flag-bearing Royal Guard member states it has been a long time. When he asks how she is and if she is using the healing techniques he taught her, she states she is. He then "taunts" Unohana by pointing out that many people have died and asks why. He is then grabbed by a large, bearded Royal Guard member, who states it has been such a long time that they must have a lot to talk about, but they need to do so later. Approaching them, Kyōraku, addressing the bearded man (Hyōsube) as "Oshō", states the members of the Royal Guard have not changed. When Kyōraku asks him why the Royal Guard have come, Hyōsube, looking over to Ichigo, asks if he is Ichigo Kurosaki. He states that under orders from the Soul King, the Royal Guard is to rebuild the Gotei 13, but first, they are taking Ichigo to the Soul King Palace. Angered over Hyōsube's announcement about how they are going to rebuild the Gotei 13, Captain Suì-Fēng asks how they can talk about rebuilding when they sat by idly as Seireitei was razed. When Hyōsube, ignoring her, continues, Suì-Fēng tries to reach out and stop him. The Royal Guard member who was talking to Unohana, appears behind her and tells her to shut up, leaving Suì-Fēng to wonder how he did that. Telling her that it is they who are to be upset if anyone has a right to be so, he states her organization is called the Gotei 13. Asking her if she knows what that means, he states the Royal Guard's duty is to protect the Soul King Palace, while the Gotei 13's duty is to protect Seireitei. As he says they come crying to the Royal Guard when they cannot do their job, Hyōsube knocks the man to the ground with a pound to the head, and scolds him by repeating his statement for them to talk later as the Royal Guard must accomplish their primary goal. As he says this, Senjumaru Shutara, the woman with the many prosthetic arms, announces she has already gathered all which they came for, holding the unconscious Lieutenants Renji Abarai and Rukia Kuchiki, Captain Byakuya Kuchiki, and the broken Tensa Zangetsu in spheres hanging from her arms. Unohana tries to stop her, stating it is too dangerous to take them out of Seireitei at the moment. In response, the flag bearing man, Tenjirō Kirinji states that is exactly why they are being taken. Stating Unohana cannot heal them, and if they were to stay, Byakuya would die, he tells Unohana what she must do now is not healing. Looking at the spheres, Mayuri, notices Tensa Zangetsu in one and asks Senjumaru if she broke into his lab. She says she did not break into it, but simply placed her hands on the door and it opened, stating the lock was much easier to open than it was the last time she was there. When Ichigo asks why he is coming if his injuries are not as serious, Hyōsube begins to state they are taking him for a different reason before they are interrupted by a call from Kisuke Urahara. Stating he was finally able to connect, Urahara asks if Ichigo was worried and is disappointed with Ichigo's reaction. Noticing the video is being streamed from Kon's mouth, Mayuri asks him what he is doing. When Kon states he is not quite sure, Mayuri orders division members to catch Kon as the Mod-Soul runs away. Interrupting again, Urahara states he is fine. Grabbing Kon, Mayuri begins to press on his eyes in hopes of controlling the video feed, which Urahara admits is where he put the controls, but states he disabled them. Noticing Urahara is talking to someone, Orihime Inoue, pushing Urahara out of the way, states she is happy to see Ichigo is okay. Coming in, Yasutora Sado expresses a similar sentiment. As Ichigo admits he was worried about them, Urahara, continuing, states he could not get the video up sooner, but as he says so, a mysterious person interrupts. As Urahara tries to push them away, Ichigo, noticing their voice, wonders who it could be. As the person tries to see if Ichigo is on the video, Urahara has Sado and Orihime push him out of their tent. As Ichigo wonders why that person is with Urahara, Urahara interrupts him, noting if he felt he needed to go to Hueco Mundo to save them, there is no need. Telling him to do what is best for himself, and to not worry about the person who was with them because he made a contract with him, Urahara turns off the video feed.
In Hueco Mundo, Sado asks Urahara if that was the best thing to say to Ichigo. When Urahara asks what he means, Sado states if Ichigo does what he wants, he may run away from all of this. Urahara tells him not to say such things, as if Ichigo does act from the bottom of his heart, he will protect everyone. He says Sado has known Ichigo longer than himself and therefore knows this better than him, but the person who knows it the best is Ichigo himself. He states he should not say things he does not believe in. Back in the Seireitei, Ichigo asks Hyōsube if they can fix Tensa Zangetsu if he goes to the Soul King Palace. Stating that is impossible, Hyōsube reveals there is a forge there where it is possible to reforge it into one similar to the original. Ichigo agrees to go.
Leaving the Sereitei, Ichigo and the Royal Guard members end up at Kūkaku Shiba's house. Less than amused, Ichigo wonders why they are there. Angrily asking if that is how he greets her after all this time, Kūkaku states she will not launch it. As Ichigo wonders what this means, Hyōsube tells him the Tenchūren cannot return on its own. When Ichigo asks Kūkaku where Ganju Shiba is, she looks up at her banner and claims he grew too tall and turned into stone. Thus, she uses him to hold up the banner. When Ichigo says it is too lame to be true, Kūkaku states she is going to launch it and tells them all to get on. She launches Ichigo and the Royal Guard out of her cannon and up into the sky.
As Ichigo and the Royal Guard are launched into the sky, Ganju comes out and asks if Kūkaku is okay with that. She states he must go because if he does not, it will be the end of Soul Society, so they must let him go even if it will make their uncle sad. As she finishes saying this, Kūgo Ginjō, Shūkurō Tsukishima, and Giriko Kutsuzawa arrive, and she tells them to get back to training since she saved them from Rukongai. She tells Ganju to put some effort into it, as they will all have to fight the next time. Meanwhile, Ichigo arrives in the Soul King Palace.
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 511, page 17
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapters 512-514
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 515, pages 1-10
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 516, pages 2-17
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 517, pages 2-5
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 517, pages 6-9
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 517, pages 10-16
- ↑ Bleach manga, Chapter 517, pages 16-18
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 518, pages 1-7
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 518, pages 7-10
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 518, pages 11-13
- ↑ Bleach manga; Chapter 518, pages 13-16