|Bleach: Fade to Black|
|Romaji||Burīchi: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu|
|Theme||Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezutomo by Porno Graffitti|
|Romaji||Burīchi: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu|
|Theatrical - Japan||December 13, 2008|
|DVD - Japan||September 30, 2009|
|DVD - US||November 15, 2011|
Bleach: Fade to Black (BLEACH Fade to Black 君の名を呼ぶ, Burīchi: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu; Full Japanese title "Bleach Fade to Black, I Call Your Name") is the third Bleach film. It was released in Japan on December 13, 2008, and on DVD on September 30, 2009. The film's screenplay was written by Natsuko Takahashi, who is a screenwriter for the anime series. The official film website gives the tagline of "Sayonara, Rukia".
To promote the film, the opening and closing credits of the Bleach anime from Episodes 197-201 use footage from the film.
In the Seireitei, as 12th Division Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi presses dozens of keys, several gauges fill up and pipes expel steam around him. Continuing to type, Mayuri leans toward his computer as he notices something and puts his finger to the screen. Electricity crackles from the system as Mayuri turns around and watches a flower-like machine emerge from the ground and open to reveal a vial. Appearing next to the flower with Shunpo, Mayuri ecstatically states that he has completed it. While a laughing Mayuri picks up the vial, the power in the building suddenly cuts off.
Mayuri demands to know who is there and looks around, Shizuku appears behind him and slashes through him with a large scythe. As Mayuri stumbles, the vial drops from his hand and falls to the ground, losing its glow. Looking up, Mayuri sees the massive machine in his laboratory and wonders what it is. Calling out to him, 12th Division Lieutenant Nemu Kurotsuchi runs up to him and asks if everything is alright, only for a shocked Mayuri to demand to know who she is. Confused by this, Nemu begins to approach Mayuri, who tells her to stay back.
Claiming that Nemu came here under the impression that she would apprehend him, Mayuri runs out of the room as Nemu calls after him. As he runs through the hall, Mayuri trips and falls while Nemu asks him what is wrong, and he begins screaming in horror while telling her to stay away before running to his computer. Mayuri turns around and tells Nemu to stay away while Shizuku smiles with the mysterious vial glowing in his hand. Suddenly, the power comes back on, leading Mayuri to back away from the console as someone stares at him from an alcove.
As the system crackles with electricity, Mayuri grabs his Zanpakutō and releases its Shikai, Ashisogi Jizō, while Nemu appears behind him and grabs him. Nemu asks Mayuri he is doing, but Mayuri tells her to let him go and begins slashing at the air in front of him before breaking free and stabbing his Zanpakutō into his computer. Several loud pops are heard as a voice states abnormally high levels of Reiatsu have been confirmed inside building seven of the SRDI before detailing that destructive activity has been detected on the top floor and an extremely dense cloud of Reishi is currently spreading.
Dozens of Shinigami gather around the building as the voice requests emergency assistance from all of the available Shinigami of each division. Running up to 9th Division Lieutenant Shūhei Hisagi, 6th Division Lieutenant Renji Abarai asks him what this is all about. As Hisagi admits that he does not know, a white substance oozes from the clouds above and coalesces into a snake crackling with electricity, which attacks the Shinigami below. Several more snakes form and attack, creating blobs of white ooze everywhere they strike, as Hisagi tells the other Shinigami to retreat.
Renji wonders what the snakes are as the assembled Shinigami move away with Shunpo to dodge an attacking snake while 7th Division Lieutenant Tetsuzaemon Iba tells the others to get back. Destroying the head of one of the snakes, Iba continues to slash at the snake before he is enveloped by the ooze. As the Shinigami flee from the spreading ooze, several SRDI members surround Mayuri as one of them begs him to put down his sword. Mayuri tells them to not come near him and begins slashing at them while demanding to know what they are trying to do to him.
As Mayuri pants, 11th Division Captain Kenpachi Zaraki greets him from behind. Turning around, Mayuri slashes at Kenpachi, only for Kenpachi to block with his own Zanpakutō. Mayuri continues to attack Kenpachi, who admits that he always wondered when Mayuri would finally lose his mind, and screams before leaping back and activating his Bankai, Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō, which extends blades from its chest and attacks Kenpachi. Blocking this assault, Kenpachi is forced back before being pushed out of the building as several snakes approach him.
A grinning Kenpachi sees Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō become enveloped by the ooze and wonders what happened before seeing the snakes coming at him. Slashing them away, Kenpachi is dragged down by the encased Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō. The ooze swells up from where Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō hits the ground as Kenpachi lands and becomes stuck in the ooze. While expressing his annoyance at this, Kenpachi looks up as several snakes crash down on him. The ooze pours through the streets of the Seireitei as more snakes rise from it and crash into nearby areas, prompting the Shinigami to flee.
The snakes move toward the center of the Seireitei as Rukia Kuchiki runs down a set of stairs and wonders what is going on. Putting a piece of paper in her shihakushō, Rukia prepares to join the other Shinigami, only to suddenly hear Homura's voice stating that she cannot go. As she turns around with her hand on her Zanpakutō, Rukia demands to know who is there and begins to draw her Zanpakutō. Homura rises up from the ledge in front of Rukia and floats in front of her while claiming that they came to erase her existence. As Rukia moves away, Shizuku appears and slashes through her when she turns around.
Elsewhere, as Captain-Commander Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto, 4th Division Captain Retsu Unohana, 8th Division Captain Shunsui Kyōraku, 13th Division Captain Jūshirō Ukitake, 7th Division Captain Sajin Komamura, and their lieutenants and 3rd Seats someberly watch the ooze spread from the roof of a building, the snakes attack more Shinigami and destroys several buildings, which 6th Division Captain Byakuya Kuchiki watches as well. Homura and Shizuku appear on top of another building, with Shizuku carrying Rukia under one arm.
Crouching down, Homura asserts that it serves them right and that she hopes every Shinigami dies, prompting Shizuku to claim that all the Shinigami have ever done is take and all the two of them have ever done is lose as he drops Rukia, whose pupils have dilated. In the Human World, as Ichigo Kurosaki looks out of his window, he senses something and notes that something seems odd tonight. When he sees Kon looking at a piece of paper, Ichigo asks him what is so fascinating, leading Kon to reveal that he is reading a letter which Rukia left behind.
Rukia is Forgotten
As Kon admits that he has no idea what is written because it is in some kind of code, Ichigo takes the letter and decides that he will take a look. Observing that it is a bunch of gibberish, Ichigo wonders if the drawing she provided is her clue and asserts that it is ridiculous before tossing the letter away, prompting Kon to grabs it and tell Ichigo that he needs to treat Rukia's message with more respect because it could be something important. However, Ichigo merely tells him to not be stupid before asking him who this "Rukia" person he keep referring to is.
Expressing surprise at this, Kon asks Ichigo what he is talking about and states Rukia is Rukia as he wonders if Ichigo has lost his mind. Ichigo claims that Kon is the one who has lost his mind and says that he is tired before deciding that he will call it a day and turning off the light. As he tells Ichigo to wait a minute, Kon asserts that he is not done here and that Ichigo cannot just ignore this, but Ichigo knocks him off of the bed, sending him flying into the corner. Lying down and closing his eyes, Ichigo suddenly sees Rukia and recalls the time he spent with her.
Remembering how he saved her from her execution and how she gave him her Shinigami powers, Ichigo bolts up in his bed and declares that he remembers. Ichigo turns the light on and tells Kon to wake up, and as Kon tells him to leave him alone and asks what he wants, Ichigo takes the crumpled note from him and looks at it. Reasserting that he remembers, Ichigo notes that he has gotten messages like this from Rukia before and the drawings she provided were used to decipher the code. As he decodes the note, Ichigo learns that Rukia is returning to Soul Society to take care of some business and will be back soon.
Kon looks at Ichigo, who expresses confusion at this. Soon afterward, at the Urahara Shop, Ururu Tsumugiya gives Ichigo a cup of tea, which he thanks her for. As a blushing Ururu takes the plate and leaves the room, closing the door behind her, while Jinta Hanakari watches, Kisuke Urahara notes Ichigo wants to know about someone whose name he does not recognize. When Ichigo reveals that her name is Rukia Kuchiki, Urahara pretends to recognize her before asking Ichigo who she is, leading a surprised Ichigo to ask him in turn what he is talking about because Rukia is one of his best customers.
Asking Ichigo if he is sure about this because the name is not familiar to him, Urahara pulls out his customer list and notes that there is such a name on the list. Though Ichigo triumphantly asserts that he was right, Urahara apologizes and admits that he really does not recall any such person. Ichigo wonders what is going on, leading Kon to remind Ichigo that he also forgot who Rukia was for a period of time. When Ichigo theorizes that something may have happened to Rukia, Urahara reveals that something incredible happened in the Seireitei last night, though he is not sure Rukia was involved.
While Urahara details how Mayuri went crazy and destroyed his own lab, Jinta, Ururu, Yoruichi Shihōin, and Tessai Tsukabishi listen outside the door as Urahara reveals that a massive amount of Reishi was released as a result and a third of the Seireitei has been heavily damaged. Wondering if the two situations are somehow connected, Urahara notes that it could explain why their memories are being affected because they may be under attack. As Ichigo expresses surprise at this idea, Urahara asks him what his relationship with Rukia is.
Ichigo asks him if this is really important, and when Urahara merely stares at him, Ichigo asserts that Rukia is a very close friend of his. Climbing up to Ichigo's shoulder, Kon demands that Urahara to help them because they are wasting time and need to go to Soul Society, leading Ichigo to grab him by the head and pull him off. When Ichigo asks him to open the Senkaimon, Urahara agrees to do so. In the Seireitei, 1st Division Lieutenant Chōjirō Sasakibe approaches Yamamoto and reports that the unusual leakage of Reishi has finally settled.
Revealing that they have begun investigating, Chōjirō details how each of the Gotei 13 has begun deploying inside of the grounds. Elsewhere, as a hole opens in the sky, Ichigo and Kon fall out and scream as they plummet towards the ruined section of the Seireitei, creating a small dust cloud on impact.
Ichigo and Kon Arrive
As the dust clears, Ichigo coughs as a screaming Kon lands next to him and is propelled away, where he spins several times in midair before slamming into a pillar of the solidified ooze that he proceeds to slide down. Declaring that he hates this, Kon sees a screaming face in the ooze and realizes the pillar he hit was an arm, prompting him to run around screaming and calling for Ichigo. When Ichigo appears, Kon tells him to look at this because it is terrible. As Ichigo agrees, Kon wonders what happened here and sees a wall composed of the ooze and trapped Shinigami.
An unnerved Kon tells Ichigo to look at the wall and wonders what kind of joke this is as Ichigo states that it is not a joke. When Kon asks him if he thinks everyone has been killed, Ichigo admits that it does not look good, and when Kon wonders if Rukia is alright, he states that he does not know and tells Kon to stay quiet before promising that they will try to find her. Moving around a corner, Ichigo and Kon see a mountain of solidified ooze in the distance. Meanwhile, 2nd Division Lieutenant Marechiyo Ōmaeda and several Shinigami guard one of the four gates.
As she and Shizuku appear nearby with Rukia, Homura notes that they have troops in front of the gate, which Shizuku states is too bad for them. On the ground, Ichigo and Kon approach a group of Shinigami. When Ichigo sees Hisagi and begins to move toward him, Kon asks Ichigo if he knows him, prompting Ichigo to assert that he is a familiar face before calling out to Hisagi and asking him what happened here. Above, Homura tells Shizuku to do it, prompting him to shake his scythe, which has the vial attached to it. As the vial glows, electricity crackles in Mayuri's lab.
While Ichigo continues to walk towards the Shinigami, the ground rumbles as a ball of ooze floats into the air before turning into a snake, which proceeds to fly toward the Shinigami. The Shinigami wonder what the snake is as Hisagi tells them to get ready, and as the snake attacks, Hisagi leaps into the air and uses Bakudō #62. Hyapporankan, which embeds itself in the snake. Continuing to move unhindered, the snake crashes into the group of Shinigami and moves towards Ichigo, who activates his Bankai, Tensa Zangetsu, and dons his Hollow mask in response.
Ichigo cuts the snake in half with a Getsuga Tenshō, leading it to crash into the buildings behind him and revert to ooze before two more snakes emerge. As Ōmaeda frantically states it is coming, the other Shinigami run away in fear, and he tells them to come back here before fleeing as well as the snakes crash into the gate, blowing it off of its hinges. The door crashes into the buildings on the other side as Homura and Shizuku appear with Rukia before the destroyed gate. When Shizuku asserts that their future with Rukia awaits them, Homura declares that they will go and walks forward.
While Kon wonders what the snake was and claims that it was weird, Ichigo agrees as several Shinigami surround them, leading Kon to wonder why they are doing so. The Shinigami draw their Zanpakutō, prompting Kon to asks what is going on here, and when Hisagi tells Ichigo to identify himself, Kon notes that he thought the Shinigami were Ichigo's friends. Removing his Hollow mask, Ichigo asks Hisagi what the problem is and identifies himself, but Hisagi immediately orders the Shinigami to seize him. After he dodges several subsequent attacks, Ichigo jumps into the air and launches a counterattack.
Landing on the back of a Shinigami, Ichigo proceeds to disarm and incapacitate five more before being confronted by Hisagi, who attacks him. When Ichigo blocks his attack, Hisagi slashes and stabs at him while Kon wonders how Ichigo's enemies treat him if these are his friend. Ichigo blocks another attack from Hisagi and asserts that he does not want to fight him before pushing Hisagi's blade to the side and leaping away. As Hisagi tells the Shinigami to stop him, Ichigo runs away and begins moving through the corridors, only to be forced to block Zabimaru when it suddenly crashes down on him.
Retracting Zabimaru, Renji declares that he has caught Ichigo as Hisagi runs up with several other Shinigami and tells him to not let Ichigo get away. Renji points Zabimaru at Ichigo and demands to know if he is responsible for all of this. When Ichigo asks Renji if he recognizes him, Renji claims that he does not know what Ichigo is talking about and attacks him. Blocking his slash, Ichigo tells Renji to stop messing around and asserts that he does not want to fight him because he is his friend, leading a surprised Renji to ask him how he knows his name before pushing Ichigo's blade aside.
Renji slashes at Ichigo, forcing him to jump back as Zabimaru cuts into the ground before demanding that Renji listen to him because Rukia is in trouble. Stating that he does not know anyone by this name, Renji asks Ichigo who she is, prompting a shocked Ichigo to note that he does not understand what is happening here and ask Renji if he does not know Rukia. As he repeats the name, Renji recalls going to the Shin'ō Academy with Rukia while Ichigo says there is no way he could forget about her and tells him to try to remember, but Renji tells him to shut up and stop babbling.
After Renji extends Zabimaru towards Ichigo, Zabimaru crashes into a building as Ichigo lands on top of a nearby roof while Kon wonders what is going on around here. Ichigo asserts that this is what he would like to know as Renji jumps up and attacks him. While Ichigo leaps away with Renji following him, Hisagi tells the Shinigami they will follow Ichigo. With Ichigo running, Kon asks him what they are going to do, prompting Ichigo to say they will run away for now. Suddenly, Komamura lands in front of Ichigo and tells him to surrender as Ichigo recognizes him.
Seeing Renji, Hisagi, and the other Shinigami approach from behind, Ichigo tells Kon to hang on tight and launches himself into the air with his Reiatsu. As he curses at this, Komamura activates his Bankai, Kokujō Tengen Myō'ō, leading a frightened Kon to tell Ichigo to get them out of there as Kokujō Tengen Myō'ō swings its blade at them. When Ichigo dodges, the blade crashes into the buildings below as Ichigo looks down at it. Kon tells Ichigo to watch out, prompting him to move away in order to dodge the giant's hand. Reappearing, Ichigo fires a Getsuga Tenshō.
With Kokujō Tengen Myō'ō pushed back by this attack, Ichigo continues to fire Getsuga Tenshō at the giant, only for Kokujō Tengen Myō'ō to suddenly slash at Ichigo, who is sent flying away, before collapsing, forcing the Shinigami on the ground to run away.
Elsewhere, Rukia wakes up and clutches her head. Looking around, she gets up and looks out of the window, where she sees that she is in Rukongai. As she notes that she remembers this place, Rukia recalls helping Renji and his friends steal water by tripping their pursuer and helping them get away, leading her to realize that she grew up here. Suddenly, Homura and Shizuku appear as Homura tackles and hugs Rukia, who demands to know what her problem is as she tries to push Homura away. Asking Homura who she is, Rukia sees that she is crying and wonders who they are.
Shizuku tells Homura that Rukia will not recognize her if she cannot see her face, which Homura acknowledges as she sits up and tells Rukia to look at her. When Homura asks Rukia if she remembers her now, Rukia expresses surprise. Meanwhile, at a captains meeting in the Seireitei, Yamamoto states that he needs a damage report from each captain, prompting Ukitake to reveal the destruction from the Reishi leak covers two hundred spirit miles, centered in the east-west direction, and extends over a third of the Seireitei, which leads Yamamoto to ask what the status of the casualties is.
Admitting that they have never seen anything like it because the victims were enveloped by the Reishi and turned into petrified stone, Unohana reveals that they cannot even confirm if they are dead or alive. When Yamamoto asks her what Mayuri's status is, Unohana details how he appears to be in some sort of daze because he cannot remember anything about the current situation or even important facts about himself before asserting that he appears to have lost a portion of his memory, though they are not sure how it happened. Yamamoto brings up Komamura's confrontation with a stranger wearing a shihakushō.
Confirming this, Komamura reveals that the intruder was wearing a Hollow's mask and his Reiatsu was equivalent to a captain's. When a shocked Shunsui claims that this is impossible, Komamura affirms that he is sure of it and admits that he was struck by the intruder's demeanor because he seemed very familiar with them. Komamura notes that it was as though he belonged here and details how he spoke to Renji as though they had a history together. As he states that they questioned Renji, Byakuya notes that he was adamant about not having seen the intruder before and him being a complete stranger.
When 10th Division Captain Tōshirō Hitsugaya asserts that this is very disturbing, Ukitake asks him what is wrong, prompting Hitsugaya to note that they are missing something here. Declaring that there is a crisis at hand, Yamamoto tells the captains to consider this the most serious threat in the history of the Seireitei and proclaims that all divisions are to coordinate their efforts to find the intruder.
Ichigo's Journey Continues
Elsewhere, inside of a well, 4th Division 7th Seat Hanatarō Yamada heals Ichigo's wounds. When Ichigo wakes up, Hanatarō apologizes and begs him to not kill him as Ichigo wonders where he is. Hanatarō reveals they are in an underground sewer passage and he was cleaning down here when Ichigo fell from above. Thanking Hanatarō, Ichigo states that his healing powers are as effective as ever, leading Hanatarō to express confusion as he asks Ichigo how he knows about him. As he looks at his hands, Hanatarō notes that he may have treated him before, to Ichigo's surprise.
Hanatarō apologizes and states that he probably just imagined it, prompting Ichigo to lean back in exasperation. As Ichigo clutches his head from hitting the wall too hard, Kon lies on the ground nearby and tells Hanatarō to not get their hopes up. Believing he understands now, Hanatarō theorizes that Ichigo is very troubled right now, leading Ichigo to admit that he is surprised Hanatarō can tell. Hanatarō claims that he is good like this and explains that he touches a person's soul when he touches them with his palms before detailing how he can feel the pain in their wounds and their heart.
When Ichigo gets up and says nothing will get resolved by staying down here, Kon asks him if they are leaving, which Ichigo confirms. As Kon climbs up to his shoulder, Ichigo thanks Hanatarō and expresses appreciation for his help before leaving, prompting Hanatarō to tell him to not mention it as he wonders how Ichigo knew his name. Meanwhile, Homura ladles soup into a bowl, which she gives to Rukia while telling her to drink it because it will make her feel better, which Rukia does. When Homura asks her if it alright, Rukia says it is great, pleasing Homura.
Pulling out the paper in her kimono, Rukia notes that she has the feeling of knowing the two of them but does not know why this would be. As she reads the paper, Rukia states that it says they will be waiting at the castle ruins and asks Homura and Shizuku if they wrote her this. Homura confirms this and points out how she mimicked the drawings which Rukia used to make for them before stating that she was sure Rukia would get the message immediately. When Rukia wonders why they did not write their names, Homura reveals they do not have any, shocking Rukia.
When Homura claims that Rukia promised to give them names, Rukia expresses confusion and asks her if she is really the one who made them this promise, which Homura confirms. Detailing how children in the Human World are always given names by their parents, Homura asks Rukia if she does not remember and asserts that this is why Rukia said she would gave them names before confirming once more that Rukia promised to name them. In the past, a young Homura and Shizuku run indoors on a rainy day, where Rukia dries them off while asking them what they have been doing out there to get so wet.
Grinning, Homura declares that they ran over as fast as possible and asks Rukia what she wants to tell them, which Shizuku echoes. Rukia states that she remembered neither of them have names yet and reveals that she would like to name them if they do not mind because not having names can be quite difficult. When Homura starts to cry, Rukia says they do not have to if they do not want, prompting Homura to state they have always wanted Rukia to give them names because they love her. As Homura thanks her, Rukia says she has some names if they are ready, prompting Homura and Shizuku to hug her.
In the present, Rukia states that it is all coming back to her now and reveals that she remembers Homura and Shizuku because they lived near her when she was young. When Homura asks her what names she gave them, Rukia wonders if they never got the names she picked out before suddenly recalling being attacked by a possessed Shinigami. Rukia falls to her knees and clutches her head, leading a concerned Homura to ask her what is wrong as Shizuku wonders if she is in pain. Stating that it is alright, Rukia says she cannot remember anything clearly as Homura apologizes.
Rukia admits that she is confused about what she has been doing, and As Homura begins to explain, Shizuku claims that Rukia was sleeping and has been doing so for a long time. As Rukia expresses confusion at this, Homura tells Rukia she was hurt and sleeping before asserting that she does not have to worry because they are here now. Promising that nothing will ever separate them again, Homura tells Rukia she can relax because they will always be together from now on.
Encounter with Byakuya
At the Kuchiki Family Manor, Byakuya walks into his chambers before suddenly stopping, which prompts his attendant to ask him if something is bothering him. Claiming that it is nothing, Byakuya goes through several rooms in his quarters before arriving at his study, where he sees a desk with papers on it and one of Rukia's drawings carved into the wood. Byakuya stands in front of a shrine and looks at a portrait of Hisana Kuchiki. When Kon voices his belief that this picture is of Rukia, Byakuya tells him to keep his voice down as he turns around, leading Ichigo to apologize for bothering him.
Ichigo asserts that he is trying to not cause a commotion here and notes that this is a picture of Hisana before observing that she looks a lot like Rukia. As Ichigo asks Byakuya if he has noticed something strange is going on, Byakuya's attendant sees him from afar and moves away. When Byakuya asks Ichigo what is talking about, Ichigo tells him to not play ignorant and affirms that Rukia is Hisana's sister, which Byakuya should know very well. While Byakuya says Rukia's name, Ichigo details how she is his younger sister-in-law whom he tried to protect even if it meant breaking the rules.
Walking up to Byakuya, Ichigo notes he does not remember her either as Byakuya turns to the shrine and asks Ichigo how he knew his wife's name was Hisana. As Ichigo begins to answer, the other doors in the room open, revealing Shinigami standing behind them. When the Shinigami move in, Ichigo moves outside with Shunpo. Byakuya tells the Shinigami to stand down as Renji calls out to him and asks why Ichigo is here. While Ichigo tells him to wait, Renji jumps down and tells him to shut up before sending Zabimaru at Ichigo, who deflects it.
As he jumps in the air, Ichigo notes that he should have remembered Renji was never the type to listen to reason while Renji sends Zabimaru at him once again. Dodging Zabimaru, Ichigo declares that he will have to force Renji to listen to him and jumps off of Renji's back before landing behind him and activating his Bankai, Tensa Zangetsu, prompting the surrounding Shinigami to shield themselves from the resulting energy storm and Renji to curse. When Ichigo wonders what is wrong and asks him if he will release his Bankai, Renji asserts that he has never had a Bankai.
Ichigo reminds Renji that he trained to develop one in order to save Rukia, but Renji declares that he has no idea what he is talking about and sends Zabimaru at Ichigo, who deflects it once more. As Ichigo appears behind Renji and tells him to remember, Renji slashes at him, forcing Ichigo to block as the segments of Zabimaru grind across the blade of Tensa Zangetsu. While Renji demands to know what Ichigo is trying to make him remember, Ichigo pushes Zabimaru away and proclaims that he is trying to make him remember his life as he raises his sword above his head.
Reminded of the end of their final fight by this pose, Renji strikes at Ichigo in the exact same way as he did in the end of their previous battle, only to be blown away by Ichigo's subsequent attack, which creates a large dust cloud. As the dust settles, Byakuya unsheathes his Zanpakutō and utters the release command, but after a tense moment, he reveals Hisana was born in the 78th district of Rukongai, Inuzuri, prompting Ichigo to thank him as he vanishes. Meanwhile, Rukia sits on a roof. As Rukia sighs, Homura calls out to her and asks if she can join her, which Rukia affirms.
Moving to Rukia, Homura asks her if something is wrong, prompting Rukia to admit that she feels like a stranger because she knows almost nothing about herself even though she has come home to this town for the first time in many years. Homura puts her head on Rukia's shoulder as Rukia notes that they waited for her and the names she promised to give them for many years. While Homura looks up with tears in her eyes, Rukia promises she will give her and Shizuku those names, leading Homura to thank her as the sun rises. Looking at the sun, Rukia gets up, prompting Homura to ask her what is wrong.
Rukia sees a hill in the distance and remembers standing with Renji beside the graves of her deceased friends on top of it. As Rukia says she remembers it now, Homura whispers her name. Meanwhile, in the infirmary, Renji feels his wounded shoulder and puts a hand to his head as he wonders what is wrong with him. While Renji recalls his fight with Ichigo, the spirit of Zabimaru materializes beside him and notes that Renji did not use Bankai before asking Renji why he hesitated. Renji expresses confusion as Zabimaru claims he is intimidated and asks Renji if he has no confidence in them after all this time.
Asserting that Renji is a pathetic man, Zabimaru declares that he has forgotten everything which he has been taught and has become a pathetic warrior, leading Renji to ask them what they are talking about before stopping in shock. Elsewhere, at a park, Byakuya sits and recalls his past with Hisana. In the past, Byakuya and Hisana walk over a bridge. When Byakuya asks if Hisana went to Rukongai again today, Hisana confirms this and apologizes, but Byakuya clarifies that he is just concerned about her health. Apologizing, Hisana states she feels she has to do this before suddenly breaking into a coughing fit.
As Hisana falls to her knees, Byakuya expresses concern, prompting her to say she is alright. Byakuya asserts that she is not and that she needs to get some rest, but Hisana merely smiles at him and states that she must continue her search, no matter how far she pushes herself. In the present, Byakuya notes she was searching everywhere but he does not remember what she was searching for. Getting up, he pulls back a panel to reveal a bookshelf, where he pulls one of the books out and reads through it before expressing surprise at something.
Ichigo Finds Rukia
Meanwhile, Suì-Fēng enters Yamamoto's office and announces that she is reporting in. When she reveals that the White Way Gate has been breached, Yamamoto asks if it is due to the intruder, which Suì-Fēng confirms before detailing that they already have a team made up of the 10th Division and other volunteers in pursuit. Expressing approval, Yamamoto wonders how the intruder became so familiar with their base. Meanwhile, in Rukongai, Kon stops running and asks Ichigo if he is certain this is where Rukia lived. Ichigo confirms this and reminds Kon that this is what Byakuya told him.
As Ichigo walks past two men gambling, Kon asserts there is no way Rukia would be in a place like this, only to sniff the air and hop onto Ichigo's shoulder as Ichigo confirms that he felt Rukia too before running towards the hill. Meanwhile, Rukia visits the graves of her deceased friends atop the hill and notes that this is the place where she grew up with her friends. Suddenly, Kon calls out to her as Ichigo runs along a path toward her. Upon reaching her, Ichigo expresses relief that Rukia is alright as a crying Kon claims that he was worried, only for Rukia to wonder if she is supposed to know them.
A surprised Kon inquires if Rukia is serious as Ichigo asks her if she does not recognize him before asserting that it is him. Suddenly, Homura and Shizuku appear in front of Rukia, and as Shizuku asks Ichigo what he came here for, Ichigo demands to know who they are. Walking past Homura and Shizuku, Rukia tells them to stay there and approaches Ichigo while asking him who they are, why they are looking for her, and how they know her name. As Ichigo expresses shock, Kon asks if she remembers him, only to faint in shock when Rukia tells him to shut up and insults him.
Asking Rukia if she really does not remember him, Ichigo tells Rukia to remember and tells her his name, leading Rukia to recall giving her power to Ichigo and Ichigo saving her. As she begins to recognize him, Rukia clutches her head in pain, prompting Homura to rush to her side and hold her while declaring that it is Ichigo's fault. Cursing, Shizuku vanishes and reappears in front of Ichigo, who tells him to wait before dodging as Shizuku slashes at him. While Ichigo calls out to Rukia as he continues to dodge Shizuku's attacks, Homura tells Shizuku to destroy Ichigo as dark Reiatsu emanates from her.
Suddenly, Shizuku disappears, prompting Ichigo to wonder where he went. Shizuku reappears behind him and slashes at Ichigo, who blocks with Zangetsu. Struggling with Shizuku, Ichigo notes he did not use Shunpo and curses as he demands to know who they are. As Shizuku declares they are his enemy, the blade of his scythe glows and begins to cut through Zangetsu. Noticing this, Ichigo moves away with Shunpo and wonders why it felt like the scythe was passing through Zangetsu. When Shizuku vanishes, Ichigo tells him to stay and fight as Homura disappears with Rukia.
Urahara Visits Mayuri
Meanwhile, in the Seireitei, Urahara holds a canister and walks along a corridor towards Mayuri's cell. As Mayuri wonders who is there, Urahara arrives at the cell, prompting Mayuri to note that he has not seen Urahara's face in a long time and that it is an unpleasant face. Thanking Mayuri, Urahara observes that he does remember him and claims that it is always a pleasure to see him as Mayuri inquires what has brought him here because there is always something else up his sleeve besides pleasantries. Urahara admits that he is right as always and reveals that he came down here to interrogate Mayuri.
When Mayuri asks him what will happen if he refuses, Urahara smiles and claims this will not be an option, to Mayuri's surprise, before detailing how Mayuri's memories became confused and their memories of a particular person disappeared shortly after this. Theorizing that Mayuri and this other person were both attacked at some point and both became victims of the same enemy, Urahara holds up the canister and notes that he had to search very hard before he could find this in Mayuri's room before pressing a button which opens the canister, revealing a brain connected to several tubes floating inside.
While Urahara observes that Mayuri probably has a difficult time remembering this in his current state, the bars of the cell recede as Mayuri looks at Urahara, who affirms that he thought so before stating that they will begin the process of regaining what they have all lost. Meanwhile, Kon walks around Ichigo, who is sitting on the porch of a ruined house, and concludes that all of the weird things they have seen were caused by the strange people they saw earlier. Asserting that they are the only wild cards, Kon theorizes that they took Rukia away and are probably responsible for her loss of memory.
Asking if Ichigo can believe that she does not know them, Kon asserts that it breaks his heart, but when Ichigo does not respond, a surprised Kon and tells him to say something. Ichigo admits that he does not know what to do and notes that Rukia and Renji are the same because he simply does not exist in their minds. As Kon expresses concern for him, Ichigo lies down and admits that he kept hoping Rukia would be different and not affected, prompting Kon to kick him in the face. With Ichigo angered by this, Kon headbutts him in the chin before landing as he demands to know what is wrong with him.
Asking Ichigo if he hit his head, Kon reminds Ichigo that he knew Rukia was in danger even when he was in the Human World and he was the only one who remembered her, even when everyone else had forgotten about her. When Kon claims that they were still connected despite what anyone did to try and break this bond, Ichigo narrows his eyes in response. Kon asserts that he does not need Ichigo anyway and declares that will save Rukia alone because she is still his best friend. Jumping down the steps, Kon tells Ichigo he can sit there forever because he will not wait for a decision before running off.
Rukia Begins to Remember
Elsewhere, Homura and Shizuku return to their house. As she wonders who Ichigo was, Homura runs over to Rukia and asks her if she is alright. Realizing that she knows Ichigo, Rukia asserts that she can feel it somewhere in her memory and grabs Homura's arm while demanding that she tell her the truth. Rukia declares that she was not asleep this whole time and asks Homura what she was doing up until this moment and why she knows Ichigo. When Homura states that she has no idea, Shizuku tells Rukia to stop as she angrily claims Homura is lying, only for Homura to assert that it is the truth.
Homura tells Rukia that they have been gone for a long time, to Rukia's confusion, and Shizuku moves to Homura as he says that they finally made it back. Affirming that they came back to see Rukia, Homura reveals that it took them one hundred years. As a shocked Rukia wonders if they did this for her, a crying Homura hugs her as Shizuku says all Shinigami are alike because all they do is take things away. Homura confirms this and claims that they took everything away from them, including the happy things, the fun things, and Rukia.
As Rukia remembers more of her past with Ichigo and begins to cry out, Homura asks what is wrong. Freeing herself from Homura's grasp, Rukia clutches her head in agony and falls over, and while a concerned Homura asks how they can help her, Rukia continues to writhe before falling unconscious. Homura declares that this happened because of the Shinigami as dark Reiatsu flares up around her. Meanwhile, Ichigo reads Rukia's letter and recalls his past with her. In the past, Ichigo reads a book in his bedroom while Rukia draws on a sheet of paper nearby.
When Ichigo asks her what she is doing over there, a startled Rukia tells him to not look over here. Affirming that he did not look, Ichigo asks Rukia why she thinks he was asking, prompting her to say she cannot tell him because it is a surprise. In the present, as Ichigo continues to look at the paper, Kon runs up and notes that he was looking all over for this letter. Jumping onto Ichigo's leg, Kon takes the letter and asks how Ichigo stole the letter when he was not looking before declaring Rukia is too good for a loser like Ichigo and hopping away.
However, Ichigo calls after Kon and apologizes. As Kon expresses confusion, Ichigo walks down the steps and admits that he never thought Kon could teach him anything before noting that he has a lot to learn. Demanding to know what changed his attitude, Kon tells Ichigo to come back here and proclaims that he is not done yelling at him yet, but when Ichigo thanks him, Kon blushes and admits that he is glad he finally got through to him.
The Shinigami Confront Ichigo
As Kon points out how Ichigo forgot about Rukia when this all started, Ichigo sees Hitsugaya, 11th Division 3rd Seat Ikkaku Madarame, and 11th Division 5th Seat Yumichika Ayasegawa standing atop three rocks nearby. Hitsugaya declares that there is no escape for them now and tells them to give themselves up quietly while several Shinigami surround Ichigo and draw their Zanpakutō. When Ichigo addresses Hitsugaya as Tōshirō and tells him this is an impressive show of strength, a confused Ikkaku asks Ichigo how he knows his first name, prompting Ichigo to state Hitsugaya is a friend of his.
Ichigo states Ikkaku and Yumichika are friends as well because he would never forget them even though it appears they have all forgotten him. As Ikkaku asks Ichigo what this means, Yumichika tells him it is just nonsense. Upon Hitsugaya asking him who he is and what his business here is, Ichigo asserts that he is the Substitute Shinigami Ichigo Kurosaki, and Ikkaku takes note of how he specified Substitute before leaping toward Ichigo and telling him to prove it by showing him his skills. Unsheathing his Zanpakutō, Ikkaku slashes at Ichigo in midair.
As Ichigo blocks his attack with Zangetsu, causing the ground underneath him to crater from the force of the attack, a grinning Ikkaku strikes at Ichigo with his Zanpakutō's sheath, only for Ichigo to block this as well. Expressing confusion at Ichigo predicting this move, Ikkaku continues to slash at Ichigo with his sword and sheath, forcing him back, until Ichigo jumps over him and lands on the porch. Cursing, Ikkaku leaps towards him and attacks Ichigo, which destroys the house behind him, before leaping back as the dust from the destroyed house settles.
Seeing an unharmed Ichigo standing with Zangetsu in his hands, Hitsugaya grabs his own Zanpakutō and tells Ikkaku to back off before asserting that he will take care of this. Hitsugaya appears behind Ichigo and attacks him. As Ichigo blocks, Hitsugaya notes that it appears the reports were correct because Ichigo seems to be extremely familiar with their style of fighting. When Hitsugaya asks him once more who he is and why he is here, Ichigo repeats his name, but Hitsugaya claims that it does not ring a bell and pushes Ichigo's sword aside as he kicks him into a tombstone, which is destroyed.
When Ichigo leaps into the air, Hitsugaya uses Bakudō #63. Sajō Sabaku, which binds Ichigo to a tree with glowing chains. While Ichigo struggles to free himself, Hitsugaya sends a wave of ice towards the tree, only for Renji to suddenly release Zabimaru, which blocks the attack, before appearing on the branch next to Ichigo, who asks him what he is doing. Retracting the segments of Zabimaru, Renji stares at Ichigo before slashing at his chains, destroying them. Ichigo falls to the ground as Hitsugaya demands to know what the meaning of this is.
Appearing next to Ichigo, Renji tells him to get up. When Ichigo asks him why, Renji grabs him by the collar and lifts him up as he tells Ichigo to not play innocent because this act will not work. Renji declares Ichigo disrupted the Seireitei and that he should be the enemy because of this before admitting that he cannot think of him as an enemy and his heart disagrees with his brain saying Ichigo is an enemy. Asserting that something inside of him is telling him that Ichigo is not the enemy, Renji reveals that he has decided to follow his soul even though he may regret it.
When Hitsugaya tells him to not do this, Renji turns around and apologizes as he asks Hitsugaya to let them go through. Staring at him, Hitsugaya is startled by an enormous and powerful Reiatsu. As Ichigo and Renji feel the Reiatsu as well, the ice around them shatters as Yamamoto, Shunsui, Suì-Fēng, Ukitake, and Chōjirō approach. Yamamoto asserts that treason will not go unpunished and proclaims that Ichigo must be taken into custody. As dozens of Keigun members appear in the clearing, Renji begs Yamamoto to hear him out and Kon claims that they can explain this.
Yamamoto declares that they are wasting their breath as Suì-Fēng tells the Keigun to move in. However, as the Keigun attack, Urahara appears above them and uses Kamisori, Benihime, knocking the Onmitsukidō members back and destroying their swords. While Urahara lands, with his Zanpakutō reverting to its sealed cane form in the process, Suì-Fēng sees him wearing his captain's uniform and tells him to turn around and identify himself. As Yamamoto recognizes Urahara, Ichigo asks him why he is here as a smiling Urahara notes that it has been a while.
Meanwhile, as Homura and Shizuku appear above the ruined section of the Seireitei, with Shizuku carrying Rukia, Homura points out that the Shinigami are completely buried in the Reishi. When Homura asks Shizuku why he is worried because they are invincible, Shizuku admits that he believes they may have gone too far, prompting Homura to express surprise. Shizuku observes that Rukia might never remember their names because they took so much of her memory and that this would be horrible, but Homura tells him that they must make sure that Rukia never remembers what occurred on "that day".
Reminding Shizuku that he knows what will happen if Rukia ever does remember, Homura asserts that they cannot take this chance and claims that it will work out because Rukia will be with them forever once the Shinigami are destroyed, even if she never remembers what their names are. As Homura states that they will go, she and Shizuku vanish in a burst of dark Reiatsu. Meanwhile, Yamamoto asks Urahara how he got here, leading Urahara to note that it is not like he did not have the means to do so prior to now before admitting that he just never chose to come here.
When Yamamoto asks him why he has appeared now, Urahara states that he came here because he sees that they have a crisis happening. Suì-Fēng asserts that they do not need help from traitors and runs at him, only for Yoruichi to suddenly appear in front of her and tell her to wait for just a minute. As Suì-Fēng recognizes her, Yoruichi asks the other captains if they have not forgotten something. Ukitake wonders what this might be and Shunsui admits that he would like to know as well because this commotion is keeping him up at night and he is hoping Urahara and Yoruichi will be able to enlighten them.
Noting that their time is limited, Yamamoto asks Urahara and Yoruichi what they know, leading Urahara to claim that he has discovered the root of all evil. As Yamamoto expresses confusion at this, Urahara tells Ichigo that both Mayuri and Rukia's memories were affected by the same enemy. When Ichigo asks him if he is referring to the two people with the large scythe, Urahara notes that Ichigo has seen them and that they had better hurry. Urahara tells Ichigo and Renji to go after them while they handle things here, and when Ichigo is confused by this, he reveals that Rukia is in grave danger.
Asserting that they are on their way, Ichigo tells Renji they will go and runs off, prompting Renji to tell him to not act like they are friends as he runs after him. When Suì-Fēng tells them to wait and begins to run after them, Yoruichi stops her and theorizes that they are all starting to feel something is not right. Yoruichi observes that they all think they have forgotten something and feel uneasy before asserting that this is why they came out to confront a single person in the middle of one of the worst crises to ever hit the Seireitei. When Yoruichi asks Yamamoto to tell her she is wrong, he does not respond.
Urahara Unravels The Mystery
Elsewhere, as Ichigo and Renji run through the streets of Rukongai, Renji asks Ichigo what they are trying to do here. When Ichigo says they are going to find Rukia, Renji notes that this will not be easy and asks him who she is. Grabbing Renji by the collar, Ichigo asks Renji if he still does not remember her and angrily declares that he cannot believe this because Renji was the person closest to her and they have been friends forever, prompting Renji to apologize and state he cannot help it because he does not remember. Suddenly, Renji stares at a vendor selling pottery, prompting Ichigo to ask him what is wrong.
In the past, Renji and his friends hold pots of water while running from a man, who says he will kill them before being tripped by Rukia, who tells them where to go. In the present, Renji recalls his entire past with Rukia but cannot remember what her face looks like. When Renji says Rukia's name, Ichigo tells him to say her name a few hundred times so he can remember. Looking at his hand, Renji shakes his head and asks Ichigo why he is doing all of this to save her, prompting Ichigo to state he is doing so because she is someone who came along and changed his world.
Recalling Rukia's involvement in his fights with Grand Fisher and Fishbone D, Ichigo reveals that she saved his family when they were on the verge of death by sharing her Shinigami powers with him. While Ichigo asserts that Rukia is the reason he is standing here today, Yamamoto demands that Urahara explain what happened to them. Urahara reveals that a portion of their memories has been erased and recounts how he was conducting the study of a certain Hollow shortly after establishing the SRDI that he notes was a very unusual creature because it lived parasitically in the souls of others.
As he details how the Hollow eventually took over the consciousness of its host, Urahara notes that it moved onto another host when its current host became debilitated and reveals that it could use its sickle-shaped tentacle during the parasitic stage to shear off its host's memory. Urahara theorizes that this parasite may have come into contact with Rukia and sheared off all memories of her life as a Shinigami, causing everyone else to forget about her in the process. When a shocked Ukitake claims that this is not possible, Urahara agrees with him.
Pointing out how the Hollow could only attach itself to souls with weak Reiryoku and erase a portion of its host's memory, Urahara notes that it is not strong enough to shear away an individual's existence. When Shunsui asks him if this could happen should a separate power join up with it to provide this strength, Urahara confirms this and states their memories are connected to each other, but those bonds can be broken if someone shears away a person's memory completely, which he reveals would cause every past event related to this person to disappear from the collective memories of the people around them.
However, Urahara notes that there was a single exception this time, and when Hitsugaya asks him if he is referring to Ichigo, Urahara confirms this and reveals that they all forgot about Ichigo as well because his Shinigami powers originally belonged to Rukia. Yamamoto declares that a transfer of Shinigami powers is a first-class capital offense, which Urahara states is correct before asserting that it is only right for them to find a way to overlook this crime because they owe Ichigo a debt of gratitude. Urahara expresses amusement that they forgot about Ichigo out of all the people they should not forget.
Admitting that he had forgotten about Ichigo as well, Urahara reveals that he had kept a log, which allowed him to overcome this lapse before the situation became critical. When Hitsugaya points out that there is still a problem and asks Urahara why they still have memories of Mayuri if he was attacked, Urahara notes that this is very astute of Hitsugaya and admits that this was puzzling him as well. Urahara observes that Mayuri has always been a very odd person, which led him to wonder if Mayuri had done something to protect himself against this possibility.
As he recounts checking around and discovering that he was correct, Urahara reveals Mayuri regularly made backups of his memory and kept them on file while in the past, Urahara appears in Mayuri's lab and presses several keys, causing the canister with Mayuri's backup memories to rise from the keyboard in a cloud of steam. In the present, as Shunsui chuckles, Urahara explains how everyone who knew Mayuri ended up being able to remember him because he did this. Looking up, Urahara notes that it is a universal truth and asserts that all memories are universally connected.
Elsewhere, as Kon sniffs the ground, Ichigo asks him if he is able to find Rukia, but Kon asserts that the Seireitei is too much territory to cover and reveals Rukia passed through this area a short while ago. While Ichigo wonders what they are going to do, Renji states that he has an idea and brings up how Ichigo said he received his Shinigami powers from Rukia before theorizing that their spiritual composition might be similar. As Ichigo expresses confusion, Renji says they might be able to find her by using Reiraku, and when Ichigo asks him if it is even possible here, Renji admits it is usually not.
Explaining how it is normally impossible to visualize Reiraku when everything in Soul Society is made of Reishi, Renji reveals Ichigo might be able to trace Rukia in spite of this because their spiritual compositions are similar. As Renji promises to help despite not being good at Kidō and points out how there is no harm in trying, Ichigo agrees and promises that he will put all of his effort into making this work. Ichigo asserts that he and Rukia are connected before declaring that he will find and rescue her, prompting a smiling Renji to state that they will do it.
Renji puts his hand on Ichigo's shoulder as Ichigo says he is ready, and as they concentrate, Ichigo glows while the colors of the world around him invert. As Ichigo sends out a pulse of blue energy, a red ribbon floats above him before extending towards a mountain of solidified ooze, where Ichigo sees Homura flying towards the center of the Seireitei while Shizuku carries Rukia beside her, with the ribbon following them.
Reuniting with Rukia
As Ichigo expresses surprise at what he sees, Homura and Shizuku phase through the mountain into Mayuri's lab. Landing alongside Homura, Shizuku sets Rukia on the ground and runs into the room with the large machine, where he shakes his scythe as Homura asks him if the vial works. Suddenly, the vial glows, causing electricity to crackle up the ropes connected to the machine as Homura expresses happiness at having done it. Shizuku walks forward and raises his scythe, only for Rukia to tell them to wait. When Rukia walks towards them, Homura moves to her and expresses relief that Rukia is alright.
As Homura asks her if the pain in her head went away, Rukia wonders what this place is. Shizuku begins to explain, but Homura asserts that they are going to chase away the Shinigami who have been making Rukia suffer, and a confused Rukia recalls seeing Homura and Shizuku watching the destruction. Realizing what they are going to use the machine for, she says they must not do this and asks Homura and Shizuku if they know how much destruction this machine can cause before asserting that they can destroy the entire Seireitei if they are not careful.
However, Homura merely claims that this is good and asks Rukia why she is standing up for the Shinigami because they want to take Rukia away from them again. Declaring that she does not want to be separated from Rukia again, Homura falls to her knees and cries while Rukia asks her what she is talking about and states that she is going to be with both of them forever. As Homura continues to sob, Rukia promises that she is not lying before asserting that Homura just has to trust her, only for Homura to look up and state that they cannot take any more chances because the Shinigami must be destroyed.
When Rukia asks her why this is important, Homura begins to tell Rukia what she is before dark Reiatsu surrounds her once more. As Shizuku notices this, the surging Reiatsu knocks Rukia away and begins to expand from the top of the mountain. Extending in multiple directions, the Reiatsu seemingly destroys any building it touches. As a Shinigami wonders what it is, the buildings suddenly appear overhead before falling to the ground, where they destroy other buildings on impact while the Shinigami flee. Meanwhile, Ichigo and Renji run across a bridge toward the mountain.
Renji admits that he does not know if this is connected to Rukia before observing that whatever is going on is not good. As Ichigo calls out Rukia's name and runs ahead, Renji tells him to wait and curses. While Ichigo runs, part of a building appears above him and falls on the structure in front of him, destroying it. Seeing the debris falling towards them, Ichigo prepares to activate his Bankai before Renji stops him. Renji leaps past Ichigo and declares that he has got this, and as Ichigo tells him to wait, Renji slashes 'Zabimaru around, creating a path of blade segments around him which destroys the debris.
When the building falls towards Renji, Ichigo calls out to him, but a grinning Renji reminds Ichigo that he said he will take care of it and begins glowing with red Reiatsu before Renji activating his Bankai, creating an orb of red Reiatsu which expands outward and destroys the rest of the debris. As the dust clears, Hihiō Zabimaru roars as Renji lands and Ichigo notes he used Bankai. Another building falls towards him before being destroyed by Hihiō Zabimaru, and while Ichigo tells him to watch it, Renji tell him to shut up as Hihiō Zabimaru rams into Ichigo from behind.
As Hihiō Zabimaru travels towards him, Renji leaps onto its head and stands on its skull, where he chuckles as Ichigo holds onto the mane and Kon wails. When Renji declares that Hihiō Zabimaru can be used for transportation, an annoyed Ichigo asserts that he knows this, to Renji's confusion, and tells him to get going and not mind this. Moving off of Hihiō Zabimaru with Shunpo, Renji appears on top of a gate and sends Hihiō Zabimaru forward. Hihiō Zabimaru moves towards the mountain as a large building appears in front of it, prompting Ichigo to activate his Bankai and destroy it.
Emerging from the smoke, Hihiō Zabimaru continues towards the mountain as the rest of the building explodes behind it. In Mayuri's lab, Shizuku appears next to Rukia and calls out to her. As Rukia affirms that she is okay, Shizuku pulls her up. Upon seeing Homura surrounded by dark Reiatsu, Rukia asks her what is wrong. Asserting that she despises Shinigami, Homura gasps as she remembers Rukia being attacked by the possessed Shinigami in the past, which causes her dark Reiatsu to intensify around her in magnitude and strength.
Suddenly, the wall behind Homura explodes as Ichigo and Renji step through. As a tearful Homura turns around, Ichigo declares that he has come for Rukia as Kon calls out to her. Renji asks if this is Rukia, who remembers her past with Renji and finally recalls his name. As a trembling Rukia puts her hand to her head, Homura tells Ichigo and Renji to go away. Moving in front of Rukia, Homura claims that Rukia does not know them and does not want to know them, but Ichigo declares that she is wrong about this and asserts that Rukia is a very close friends of theirs.
Homura states that Ichigo is wrong because Rukia is not like this anymore and does not want to be with them. As Homura claims that Rukia wants to be with her and Shizuku, Ichigo asserts that Rukia just needs to remember. Telling Rukia to think, Ichigo says she cannot give up being a Shinigami because it is a part of her. Ichigo reminds Rukia of how she put her life at risk to save him the first time they met and even shared her powers with him, which he states she was willing to do so Ichigo could protect his family. Recalling the event, Ichigo states that this is the type of person she has always been.
As Rukia clutches her head, Ichigo calls out to her, and Rukia claims that she cannot remember as Homura runs to her and tells her to resist. Begging her to not listen to them, Homura claims she and Shizuku need Rukia here with them. When Homura begs her to not go back to the Shinigami, a confused Rukia grabs her arms and asks Homura if she was a Shinigami before realizing that Homura lied to her. While Homura sobs, Rukia tells Ichigo to tell her his name and speak clearly. Ichigo says his name, with Kon stating his as well, causing Rukia to recall meeting Ichigo and being rescued by him.
The End Begins
While Rukia finally remembers who Ichigo is, Homura screams in rage as dark Reiatsu swirls around her and knocks Rukia away. Ichigo calls out to Rukia as Shizuku appears behind her and puts his scythe to her neck. When Shizuku tells them to not move, Ichigo demands that he leave Rukia alone. Screaming, Homura faces them and declares that they will not let her have Rukia before proclaiming that they would rather destroy her. As Ichigo realizes that she is serious, Homura tells them to go away or she and Shizuku will become one with Rukia.
Revealing Rukia will disappear if this happens, Shizuku asks Homura if she wants this, and as she continues to glare at Ichigo and Renji, he agrees as dark Reiatsu swirls around him as well. Shizuku notes that they will be together forever as he and Homura move towards Rukia while saying her name. As Homura and Shizuku kneel down, dark Reiatsu explodes around them, and Rukia screams in pain. Ichigo calls out to Rukia and Kon tells them to stop as Rukia is ensnared by tentacles of Reiatsu and dragged down. While the Reiatsu continues to swirl, Ichigo calls out to Rukia once more.
The Reiatsu fades as Rukia stands with new clothes, lavender hair and eyes, and Shizuku's scythe in hand. As Ichigo and Renji stare in shock, Rukia takes the vial from the scythe and declares that everyone will disappear before jamming the vial into its flower-like container, causing electricity to crackle as more snakes emerge. While Renji notes that this must be the root of the evil which has disrupted the Seireitei, Ichigo asserts that they must stop them. Renji tells Ichigo that he will have to do something about Rukia because she is what he came here for as the snakes move towards them.
Telling Renji to deal with the snakes, Ichigo moves towards the machine as Renji sends Hihiō Zabimaru towards the snakes. As Hihiō Zabimaru bites one of the snakes, Ichigo calls out to Rukia as Kon tells her they are here. When Rukia suddenly vanishes, Ichigo expresses surprise. As he lands, Rukia appears behind Ichigo and slashes at him, creating a torrent of dark Reiatsu which blasts him away. Ichigo lands as Kon, who was separated from him in midair, hits the hardened ooze, which envelops him. While the machine continues to spark, a large amount of the ooze bursts out of it.
As Renji is overwhelmed by the ooze, the top of the mountain explodes as the ooze surges upward. The ooze extends into the sky, and smoke covers it while lightning crackles in the clouds around it. While the Shinigami around the Seireitei watch, ooze drips from the clouds above. When the ooze begins to swell up, Hisagi and 10th Division Lieutenant Rangiku Matsumoto arrive as Hisagi tells the Shinigami present to evacuate. However, as one of the Shinigami tells them to look, several eyes open on the ooze as an enormous, tentacled monster rises.
As the tentacles begin firing streams of the ooze, which separate into smaller tentacles, from their mouths, Rangiku and Hisagi move away with Shunpo as the Shinigami around them are covered by the ooze. Meanwhile, Ichigo faces off against Rukia. As she slashes at him, Ichigo leaps back and call out to her. Lightning strikes in the distance as Homura tells Rukia to shear Ichigo away and Shizuku tells her to do so now. As Ichigo expresses surprise, Rukia speeds towards him. Slashing at Ichigo, who dodges, Rukia attacks him again. Blocking, Ichigo is knocked away by the force of the blow.
As he regains his footing, Rukia appears behind Ichigo and throws her scythe at him. When Ichigo deflects the scythe, Rukia stabs at him with the handle of the scythe several times before uppercutting him with it. Rukia stabs at Ichigo several more times and slashes at him as Ichigo leaps away. Turning around, Rukia attacks attacks, cratering the ground underneath Ichigo as he blocks. As the dust settles, Ichigo tells Rukia to stop this, but she continues to attack him before leaping into the air and slashes at him, leading Ichigo to block as he begs her to snap out of it.
Gotei 13 vs. Monster
While lightning strikes all around the Seireitei and monsters made of ooze attack, ooze envelops another building as Rangiku and Hisagi appear. As the tentacles fire more streams of ooze, Rangiku notes that the monster will completely swallow the Seireitei at this rate. Calling out to her, Hitsugaya appears behind them and reveals that they are regrouping. As he asks if they are alright, which Rangiku confirms, Yamamoto, Yoruichi, Chōjirō, Suì-Fēng, Ukitake, Shunsui, and Urahara appear behind him. The tentacles roar as one of the monster's eyes looks toward the Shinigami.
As Ikkaku and Yumichika run up, Ukitake wonders what the monster is while Shunsui states that he doubts it is here to sign a peace treaty. Walking up to them, Urahara states they have a problem and explains that the control lock for the Reishi convergence device which Mayuri created is likely in the enemy's possession before revealing that all of the terrible things which have happened so far are the result of this device going out of control. Urahara concludes that the only way to stop it is to destroy this device and turns around as he reveals Ichigo and Renji are already inside.
While Urahara asserts that they have to make sure the Reishi does not spread any farther than it already has, Ukitake notes Urahara makes it all sound very simple, which Shunsui claims is what Urahara has always been like. When a bolt of lightning arcs towards the group, Yamamoto unsheathes his Zanpakutō and blocks it. Taking off his haori, he moves into the air with Shunpo, where he hurtles toward the monster as he releases his Shikai, Ryūjin Jakka, and cuts one of the monster's arms off, prompting Shunsui and Ukitake to express awe as they watch from below.
Yamamoto declares that he is issuing an immediate order for everyone to stop the spread of this Reishi. As everyone but Urahara moves away with Shunpo, Shunsui and Ukitake appear on top of two buildings. Seeing several tentacles begin moving toward them, Ukitake draws his Zanpakutō and releases his Shikai, Sōgyo no Kotowari, as Shunsui pulls out his two Zanpakutō and releases his Shikai, Katen Kyōkotsu, before leaping forward. Slashing several tentacles, Shunsui lands on a roof as Ukitake appears nearby, and the two proceed to destroy more tentacles.
Destroying the building Shunsui and Ukitake were standing on as they vanish within it, a large tentacle plows through the ground before rising and being cut into shreds as it explodes, revealing Shunsui and Ukitake inside. Elsewhere, as Yoruichi and Suì-Fēng move through the air, Yoruichi asks Suì-Fēng if she is ready. Confirming this, Suì-Fēng discards her haori as they move towards a large tentacle, and when the tentacle's mouth opens, Suì-Fēng activates Shunkō and punches a large hole through the tentacle before running along it alongside Yoruichi toward the creature.
As several manta ray-like creatures approach them, Yoruichi moves to each one with Shunpo and destroys them. Continuing to run along the tentacle, Yoruichi looks back and sees a snake emerge from the tentacle before swallowing Suì-Fēng, whom Yoruichi calls out to. Suddenly, Urahara uses Nake, Benihime and cuts the snake in two, causing Suì-Fēng to fall out of the snake as Yoruichi moves to her with Shunpo and catches her. Urahara cuts the rest of the tentacle into segments, which fall on the ground next to him, as Suì-Fēng apologizes to Yoruichi
Suì-Fēng admits that she lost her concentration and blushes as she looks away. Laughing, Yoruichi helps Suì-Fēng up and affirms that it is okay before telling her that they must move. Elsewhere, Hitsugaya tells Hisagi, Ikkaku, Yumichika, and Rangiku to follow his lead as they all leap forward. With multiple streams of ooze approaching them, Hitsugaya releases his Shikai, Hyōrinmaru, and freezes the streams in midair. When the streams continue to move, Rangiku releases her Shikai, Haineko, and creates an orb of ash, which destroys the streams on contact.
As Hisagi and Rangiku leap into the air, Hisagi releases his Shikai, Kazeshini, and cuts off the heads of the streams before catching his kusarigama and landing beside Rangiku as the headless tentacles fall to the ground. A large tentacle creates more tentacles, which attack the Shinigami and lift Rangiku, Hisagi, and Yumichika into the air. As Ikkaku and Hitsugaya call out to them, a tentacle knocks Ikkaku away. Flying through piles of ooze, Ikkaku hits a hard, ooze-covered object, prompting him to wonder what he crashed into before looking up to see Kenpachi's silhouette.
A stunned Ikkaku realizes it is Kenpachi as a large tentacle clamps down on them, knocking Kenpachi's eyepatch off. Suddenly, the tentacle explodes as a column of yellow Reiatsu extends into the sky, dissipating the clouds above. Trying to hold on, Ikkaku is sent flying away as he calls out to Kenpachi. As his Reiatsu shatters the ooze around him, Kenpachi laughs manically and jumps towards the monster. Cutting one of the tentacles in half, Kenpachi lands on another tentacle and asks the monster if he is the one who messed with his hairdo.
When a giggling 11th Division Lieutenant Yachiru Kusajishi lands on his back and greets him, Kenpachi tells her to not fall off and destroys several more tentacles before one bites down on him. Yelling, Kenpachi cuts through the tentacle and falls to the ground as he and Yachiru laugh. Meanwhile, a tentacle crashes into Hihiō Zabimaru and is destroyed by it. Moving towards the machine, Hihiō Zabimaru destroys several more manta rays. While Renji notes that they keep coming, Ichigo continues to fight against Rukia and tells her to stop it.
As Rukia continues to attack him, Ichigo leaps away. Homura speaks through Rukia and says she must shear away all of his memories no one will remember Rukia once this is done. Cursing, Ichigo declares that they cannot take away memories so easily because Renji's soul remembered him even though they took away his memories. Asserting that Rukia will remember as well, Ichigo proclaims that they will never be able to destroy the memories which bind them all together. As Rukia leaps towards him and slashes at him, Ichigo moves away with Shunpo. Appearing next to Ichigo, Rukia strikes at him.
Rukia's attack envelops her and Ichigo in a torrent of dark Reiatsu. As Ichigo tells Rukia to fight back, her scythe phases through his sword. Cursing, Ichigo leaps back, only to express shock when the Reiatsu around Rukia separates into strands, revealing Rukia's eyes have turned completely black. Meanwhile, Urahara cuts another tentacle in half and faces the monster. As Yoruichi, Suì-Fēng, Ukitake, and Shunsui appear behind him, Yoruichi asks him how it is going, leading Urahara to admit that it is not going well because the monster is too big.
When Urahara asserts that they are not going to make any progress until they destroy the device in the lab tower, Yoruichi observes that they cannot get to the lab tower with the monster in the way. Suddenly, yellow Reiatsu flares up near the monster, and as Shunsui wonders what this is, Kenpachi laughs manically and destroys more tentacles alongside Ikkaku and Yumichika. While Ukitake notes that Kenpachi made it back, Urahara claims that this is their chance and states they will have to avoid the monster and get to the lab tower, prompting Byakuya to release his Shikai, Senbonzakura.
Byakuya creates a tunnel of whirling blades fragments, prompting Yoruichi to tell him that this is a nice move, and Byakuya asserts that he is going in first. While Urahara states that he is counting on him, Byakuya leaps through the tunnel. As the tunnel vanishes, several tentacles burst out of the ground around the remaining Shinigami, who dodge as Hitsugaya activates his Bankai, Daiguren Hyōrinmaru, and freezes the tentacles. Ukitake thanks Hitsugaya, who tells him to not mention it and declares that they must move as the Shinigami run off in different direction.
While Ukitake and Shunsui slash through several manta rays, Yoruichi and Suì-Fēng beat down two other tentacles. Using Ryūsenka, Hitsugaya encases a large tentacle's head in ice. Noting that he should get serious as well, Urahara uses Chikasumi no Tate, forming a hexagonal barrier in front of him. As a manta ray pushes him away, Urahara uses Kirisaki, Benihime, which fires a barrage of energy bullets from the shield, destroying the manta ray. Meanwhile, Rukia slashes at Ichigo, who leaps away. Moving to him, Rukia slashes at him again, cutting off part of Ichigo's shihakushō.
When she vanishes, Ichigo looks around in confusion. As Renji tells Ichigo that she is coming at him from behind, Rukia appears behind him and puts her scythe to his throat while grinning. Suddenly, Byakuya uses Bakudō #61. Rikujōkōrō, immobilizing Rukia with six yellow bands and throwing her away.
As Rukia struggles to free herself, Renji wonders what is happening. When Rukia demands to know who Byakuya is, Byakuya recalls Hisana and draws his Zanpakutō, prompting a shocked Ichigo to tell him to not do it. Byakuya states that he has no choice if what Ichigo says is true and asserts that it is his responsibility while Rukia screams as dark Reiatsu surges around her. Telling Byakuya to not do this, Ichigo claims Rukia is still in there because he can feel her soul and proclaims that they Homura and Shizuku cannot destroy the connection as Rukia continues to scream.
Ichigo declares that he is right here and tells Rukia to try to break through to him. As the bands restraining Rukia begin to shatter, Renji notes her Reiatsu is turning into a Hollow's and asserts that she cannot be saved, to Ichigo's disbelief. When Kon calls out to Rukia, Ichigo turns around to see him encased in ooze. Tears stream down Kon's face as he begs Ichigo to save Rukia. While Kon asserts that Ichigo has to save her, Ichigo recalls Rukia asking him if he wants to save his family. In the past, Ichigo states he does and asks Rukia if there is a way to do so.
Lifting her sword, Rukia asserts that there is one way and reveals that Ichigo will have to become a Shinigami. As Ichigo expresses surprise, Rukia admits that she is not sure if it is even possible, but confirms that they will both die if it is not. In the present, as Rukia continues to scream, Ichigo approaches Byakuya and tells him that Rukia sacrificed herself to save his life and the lives of his family. Asserting that she took a chance on him, Ichigo proclaims that this is why he will never give up and that he must save her even if it costs him his life.
Byakuya lowers his sword and states Ichigo may do as he wishes because he understands. As Rukia screams, the remaining three bands shatter, and dark Reiatsu surges from her. Ichigo readies himself as Rukia declares that she will shear and kill him, and Ichigo asserts that he is sharing his powers with Rukia this time while blue Reiatsu surges around him. As the two charge at each other, Ichigo tells Rukia to come back to them. In the past, Ichigo introduces himself to Rukia and allows himself to be impaled with her sword so he can receive her Shinigami powers.
In the present, Tensa Zangetsu impales Rukia through the chest. As Renji wonders what Ichigo is doing, an orb of light appears between him and a screaming Rukia, whose dark Reiatsu tries to constrain it. However, the orb of light expands and covers them, and inside, Rukia's white kimono fades, revealing her black shihakushō underneath. As the orb of light recedes, Rukia's dark Reiatsu disperses. Emerging from Rukia's body, the parasitic Hollow fades. Within the building below, Byakuya and Renji approach the machine in Mayuri's laboratory.
Activating his Bankai, Senbonzakura Kageyoshi, Byakuya destroys the remaining manta rays and creates a tunnel of blade fragments as Renji uses Hikōtsu Taihō, which destroys the machine, creating an enormous explosion. As the dust settles, Urahara breathes a sigh of relief and notes that it looks like they avoided another close call before seeing Ichigo holding Rukia.
Ichigo lets go of Rukia, who recognizes him, prompting him to smile and greet her. As Rukia notices something, Ichigo turns around to see Homura and Shizuku lying on the ground. Getting up alongside Rukia, Ichigo tells her to go help them. Rukia runs over to Homura and Shizuku, where she grabs Homura's hand while asserting that she is right here. As Homura asks if this is her, Rukia confirms this and reiterates that she is here. Homura notes that they were punished because they did not listen to her while Shizuku reaches out and grabs Rukia's hand.
As Shizuku begs her to not hate him and his sister, Rukia looks at them in shock. In the past, as Homura screams for Rukia to help them, Rukia frantically asks her where they are as she runs up the hill. Arriving at the top of the hill, Rukia sees Homura and Shizuku being confronted by a Shinigami, whom she tells to stop it as she runs at him. When the Shinigami slashes at her with his Zanpakutō, Rukia kicks him in the leg and hits him in the face before asking Homura and Shizuku what is going on. Bending down and hugging Homura and Shizuku, Rukia asks if they are alright.
When Shizuku tells Rukia to looks behind her, Rukia turns to see the Shinigami preparing to strike, prompting her to form a ball of Kidō and blast him away with it. Homura and Shizuku run up to Rukia, who tells them to stay behind her as dark Reiatsu surrounds the Shinigami. As Rukia wonders what he is, the Shinigami gets up and asserts that he wants their Reiryoku. Coiling around him, the parasitic Hollow declares that this body is useless to it. Rukia tells Homura and Shizuku to run as the Shinigami attacks her. After dodging, Rukia attempts to hit him with Kidō again, only for him to catch her arm.
As the Shinigami lifts her up by the throat, Rukia calls him a monster, and the parasitic Hollow brings out its tail while Homura calls out to Rukia. The Hollow puts its sickle in Rukia's mouth, only for Homura to suddenly stab the Shinigami in the leg with Rukia's Zanpakutō as she tells him to leave Rukia alone. Punching Homura away, the Shinigami declares that she is in his away and pulls Rukia's Zanpakutō out of his leg as he begins to walks toward her and Shizuku. As Rukia's vision blurs and fades to black, the Shinigami cuts down Homura and Shizuku.
In the present, Rukia reveals that she remembers and details how Homura and Shizuku were gone when she regained consciousness, which she forgot about for some reason. As Rukia wonders how she could forget something so important, Urahara asserts that it is not her fault because the Hollow was able to shear her memory. Noting that there was something else, Urahara reveals Homura and Shizuku possessed a special ability to perform teleportation and likely placed the Hollow into their own bodies moments before they died in order to protect Rukia.
In the past, the Hollow is torn from the Shinigami's body, which withers and disintegrates. In the present, Urahara states the Hollow did not realize it had become parasitically attached to a dead body and rushed back to Hueco Mundo. As Urahara reveals that Homura and Shizuku took over the Hollow's consciousness in the process, in the past, Homura and Shizuku's bodies dissipate, and they emerge from a cloud of dust in Hueco Mundo. In the present, Urahara notes that their overwhelming desire to see Rukia sustained them and brought them back to her.
Homura asks Rukia if she remembers now and apologizes for lying to her about what happened because they did not want her to be upset because they had died. Asserting that their lives have not ended, Rukia states that death is not an end and reminds Homura and Shizuku that they came back to see her and are a part of her life, which makes her very happy. As she notes that they wanted to see her again, Homura claims that Rukia is the only friend they have ever had, but Rukia shakes her head and asserts that they were never alone because the most important person of all was next to them the entire time.
As Homura and Shizuku look at each other, Rukia notes that it has all come back to her and that she remembers their names. Revealing their names are Homura and Shizuku, Rukia says it means "the two of you shine brightly" as Homura and Shizuku repeat their names. Homura states they are nice names, which are what they wanted to hear, and Shizuku tells Rukia that he is very happy as Homura reaches out to him. Grabbing Homura's hand, Shizuku thanks Rukia, who begins to cry while Homura states that it is time for them to say goodbye.
As Homura and Shizuku's hands fall from Rukia's grasp, Rukia calls out to them and begs them to not leave her. Rain begins to fall as Rukia declares that it is not fair and begs Homura and Shizuku to come back to her. With tears streaming down her face, Rukia cries out in anguish and sorrow. Later, Rukia holds the letter Homura wrote her and recalls Homura pointing out how she mimicked the drawings Rukia made for her and Shizuku. Hearing someone approaching, she turns around to see Ichigo. When Rukia asks him if he is going back, Ichigo confirms this.
Thanking Ichigo, Rukia notes that it appears he has saved her once again. Ichigo tells Rukia to not forgot it was her who originally saved him and theorizes that the first time they met might not have really been the first time if death is not the end before claiming that they might have been connected from long before this. Asserting that a bond cannot disappear once it is formed, Ichigo tells Rukia that they will be connected again even if they forget everything. While wind blows around them, Ichigo states that this will be true for Rukia, Shizuku, and Homura as well.
Rukia agrees as Ichigo notes he should head back, and when he refers to her as Shinigami, Rukia tells him to not do so before asserting that she is Rukia Kuchiki. As the wind picks up, the letter is torn from her grasp. Later, Kon calls out and asks if anyone is there. Calling for help, he asks if anyone is going to come and rescue him. As he wonders if Ichigo has forgotten about him, Kon asserts that Rukia did it and now he has as well. Cursing, he breaks free from the ooze and expresses anger at them forgetting about him.
- In the movie, Kenpachi Zaraki stands in midair momentarily before being dragged down by Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō, despite not knowing how to use Hohō.
- During the credits, Sajin Komamura's voice actor Tetsu Inada's name is spelled incorrectly as Tethu Inada.