634. friend 4
635. Hooded Enigma
636. Sensitive Monster
637. BABY, HOLD YOUR HAND
639. BABY,HOLD YOUR HAND 2
640. BABY,HOLD YOUR HAND 3 (Mad Lullaby no.7)
641. BABY,HOLD YOUR HAND 4 [When I am sleeping]
642. BABY,HOLD YOUR HAND 5 [Eyes Are Open]
520.5. WALK UNDER TWO LETTERS
FRIEND is the seventieth volume of the Bleach manga series.
Yhwach informs Haschwalth that he will become a part of the Sternritter, shocking Hubert and Argola as Haschwalth wonders why he was selected over Bazz-B before turning to see Bazz-B looking at him with intense hatred. Bazz-B notes that they both trained to kill Yhwach and that he was the talented one before mentally demanding to know why Haschwalth was selected. As Yhwach orders Hubert to bring a cart for him, Haschwalth claims he made the wrong decision, prompting Hubert to reprimand him for questioning Yhwach's judgement. Haschwalth explains how he has no skill with his Quincy abilities before stating that Bazz-B would be a better choice, shocking Bazz-B. However, Yhwach claims that this is as he has foreseen before revealing that Haschwalth shares his power-granting abilities. When Yhwach mentions that a Quincy who shares his powers is born every 200 years, Bazz-B recalls how there had not been an "incomplete" Quincy for over a century as Yhwach points out how Bazz-B must have been growing stronger while around Haschwalth before asking him if he really believed this was by his own power. Yhwach reveals that Haschwalth is the one who turned Bazz-B from a worthless Quincy to a prodigy before telling Haschwalth that he needs him with him. However, an enraged Bazz-B manages to stand up and fire a Heilig Pfeil at Yhwach, only for Haschwalth to catch it with his hand.
In the present, Haschwalth catches Bazz-B's Heilig Pfeil before slashing him across the torso with his sword.
Bazz-B is sent flying back by Haschwalth's attack and coughs up blood as Haschwalth states Yhwach gains nothing from them fighting. However, Bazz-B points out how he came here to kill Yhwach before activating Burner Finger 4. Angered by this, Haschwalth calls Bazz-B by his full name, Bazzard Black, as Bazz-B cuts through a pillar before telling him to get back here.
In the past, Haschwalth informs Bazz-B that he will not fight him because clashes between Sternritter are punished with the death penalty. As Haschwalth walks away, Hubert notes that it must be annoying to be pestered by a new recruit before offering to teach Bazz-B a lesson. However, Haschwalth merely repeats this being forbidden. When Hubert claims Yhwach will not know, Haschwalth points out that he is watching.
In the present, Bazz-B notes that Haschwalth had already become captain of the Sternritter by the time he entered and that he would never accept his challenge to battle. Haschwalth cuts off Bazz-B's right arm, but Bazz-B uses Burning Full Fingers, creating a huge torrent of fire; however, Haschwalth dodges the attack and slashes him down the left flank. Bleeding profusely, Bazz-B grabs Haschwalth's collar and notes that he lost before admitting he thought this would be more shameful. As Haschwalth walks away, Bazz-B collapses and recalls their first meeting.
Liltotto and Giselle are defeated by Yhwach. Elsewhere, the various groups from the Gotei 13 and its allies are attacked by the Schutzstaffel.
Liltotto realizes Bazz-B has been defeated as she stands bloodied next to a fallen Giselle. She then reflects grimly that the two of them could not even put a scratch on Yhwach as she collapses and Yhwach returns to his throne. Yhwach's powers then transfer to Haschwalth as the former sleeps and Haschwalth commends Yhwach on his power.
Gerard races into a dead end and looks around to find no enemies in sight. He then shouts in frustration at his three fellow Schutzstaffel.
Ichigo's group loses track of Grimmjow and Askin and split up to look for them. Meanwhile, Askin watches them from afar as he prepares to take a break, when Grimmjow confronts him. As Grimmjow attacks, Askin throws a ball at him, which is loaded with poison. Grimmjow comes into contact with the ball and collapses while Askin taunts him.
Several Shinigami race down a street, unaware that they are being watched by Lille. Lille then shoots Hisagi, and gets ready to pick off the rest one-by one.
Kenpachi, Mayuri, and Nemu come across Pernida, and Kenpachi questions what it could be, with Mayuri questioning to whom Kenpachi is speaking. Kenpachi decides to kill it despite Mayuri's warnings. Kenpachi then slashes its head while his arm is injured in return, when suddenly Pernida's head begins to grow. Kenpachi again questions what Pernida could be, and Mayuri again questions to whom Kenpachi is asking.
Mayuri incapacitates Kenpachi and deduces the nature of The Compulsory.
Pernida's head continues to expand as both Mayuri and Kenpachi wonder what is happening, with Mayuri noting it is creepy even to him. When Ikkaku notes that they missed their chance to jump in, Yumichika claims that they do not have to jump in, prompting Nemu to state that Mayuri and Kenpachi are not struggling enough for them to be called in.
Kenpachi notices his arm being twisted further and further by The Compulsory, prompting him to rip it off in order to protect the rest of his body, which Mayuri commends him for. As Nemu tends to his wound, Kenpachi wonders what his power is, only for Mayuri to once again point out that he does not know before stating that they should not get close to Pernida. Upon hearing Kenpachi wonder how they can slash it without getting close, Mayuri attempts to explain a way to do so, but Kenpachi claims he was talking to himself before attacking Pernida once more. However, Pernida warps Kenpachi's legs, prompting Mayuri to stab Kenpachi through the chest with Ashisogi Jizō. Noting that the paralysis is causing Kenpachi's bones to break, Mayuri uses Fear Factor 4, causing the baby face on his blade to begin opening its eyes as Nemu warns Ikkaku and Yumichika to cover their ears because they will go deaf in 4 seconds.
As Kenpachi collapses, Mayuri withdraws his blade and notes that Kenpachi may still come in handy before revealing that Pernida is using its nerves to infiltrate its enemies' bodies and control their movements, which he states is not surprising to him because he knows of Blut. Pernida extends several shadowy tendrils toward Mayuri, who merely states there is no need to be afraid of this as he releases a liquid onto the tendrils, causing Pernida to scream in agony. As Mayuri wonders what drugs he will test on it, Pernida pants heavily while its cloak begins to dissolve.
Pernida reveals its true identity as the left arm of the Soul King.
Noting that Kenpachi can still move his eyes despite being paralyzed, Mayuri admits he is impressed by this and resolves to improve the paralyzing power of Ashisogi Jizō. Ikkaku angrily states that Mayuri sent Kenpachi in against Pernida on purpose to get him out of the way, and when Yumichika claims that Mayuri is always the same, Nemu states that she hopes so, to his confusion.
Mayuri tells Pernida that Kenpachi's sacrifice allowed him to deduce the nature of The Compulsory and claims that noble victories are always preceded by noble sacrifices before telling Pernida that it should donate its body to his experiments to honor this sacrifice. However, Pernida responds by ripping its cloak to shreds, revealing itself to be a giant left hand with a dual-pupiled eye on the palm, which Mayuri identifies as the left arm of the Soul King. Pernida shatters the chains connecting its fingers and gains the rest of its arm, causing it to tower over the Shinigami. As Mayuri notes that its Reiatsu is similar to that of Mimihagi, Pernida releases more black threads from its fingertips, prompting Mayuri to defend himself with a strange shield while wondering why the left arm of the Soul King would work for Yhwach. Mayuri expresses his utter delight at having a completely new subject to research as Pernida begins to speak.
Pernida states its name once more, prompting Mayuri to claim he is the one who will name it because he found it. However, Pernida claims it does not understand before proclaiming that it will not forgive Mayuri because he is an enemy before sending its nerves into the ground, which Mayuri notes is proof that Pernida can control inanimate objects as well. Leaping to avoid the ground rupturing underneath him, Mayuri grabs onto a building with Jabarakaina, but Pernida throws him off by pushing out the side of the building facing him before crushing him between two giant hands made of stone. However, Mayuri escapes unscathed by having his luminescent armor explode, and as he falls toward Pernida's nerves on the ground below, Mayuri presses something on the backs of his shoes, causing him to stop and float in midair on Reishi. Mayuri reveals this is the Quincy movement technique, Hirenkyaku, before admitting that this is only the name that Uryū Ishida and Sōken Ishida use for it. Deciding to take a sample, Mayuri blows off Pernida's pinky with a remote explosive, causing it to scream in pain, before splashing it with a preservation fluid. However, Mayuri is caught off-guard when nerves extend from the pinky into his arm, and as his arm bursts, Mayuri quickly stitches it back together while rearranging its anatomical structure before claiming that Pernida cannot take control of him so easily.
Mayuri reveals his modified Bankai and seemingly defeats Pernida.
Mayuri admits that it has been a while since he operated on his arm, prompting Pernida to ask him if he is nervous as its severed finger grows into another hand that leaps toward Mayuri, who blasts it away. As Mayuri notes that it will be hard to take pieces of Pernida back if it keeps reproducing itself, Pernida removes its middle finger, which begins to grow additional fingers. Recalling how he once read that the right arm of the Soul King is responsible for "stopping" and the left arm is responsible for "advancing", Mayuri states that he never thought he would be able to prove this knowledge.
When Mayuri unsheathes his Zanpakutō and activates his Bankai, Yumichika realizes that they need to move Kenpachi away so he is not poisoned, but Mayuri refutes the idea that he will poison Pernida and claims that he now has enough information to give birth to "it" before revealing Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō: Makai Fukuin Shōtai. Explaining how this is a modified version of his Bankai that can give birth to other Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō, Mayuri has his Bankai create a Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō with visible veins across its body, which Mayuri reveals is a version with nerves on the surface of its body. Pernida attempts to take control of the Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō, but Mayuri explains how the nerves are divided into 70000 layers, which will peel off if taken control of, as the Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō devours Pernida and its clones. Meanwhile, Nemu watches from a distance.
Pernida turns the tables on Mayuri, prompting Nemu to intervene.
Asking Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō how its stomach feels, Mayuri notes that Pernida would have multiplied within it had it been bitten, only to be shocked when the Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō is destroyed from the inside. As Mayuri dodges a Heilig Pfeil, the dust clears to reveal Pernida with a Heilig Bogen as Pernida reminds Mayuri that it is a Quincy. However, Mayuri is amused by the left arm of the Soul King calling itself a Quincy, prompting Pernida to question what is wrong with this. Shocked by Pernida's momentary difference in speaking style, Mayuri realizes its vocabulary has been growing more sophisticated over time and wonders what this could mean.
Pernida creates a Heilig Bogen above each of its fingertips before firing the arrows at Mayuri, who leaps to avoid them before noticing that Pernida has attached its nerves to the Heilig Pfeil. The nerves in one of the Heilig Pfeil infiltrate and destroy Mayuri's left arm as Mayuri sees an arrow being redirected toward his back. However, he is saved when Nemu appears next to him, grabs the arrow, and cuts off her own arm, prompting Mayuri to grab her before moving to a safer location. When Mayuri berates her for intervening without his orders, Nemu admits that she does not know why she did this, prompting Mayuri to address her as Nemuri Nanagō before telling her that creating and raising another one of her would be exceedingly difficult.
Nemu hands Mayuri a flesh supplement with which to regenerate his arm and reveals that she rescued him in order to deliver it. After regenerating his arm, Mayuri is informed that he did not take any such drugs before the fight began like he usually does, causing him to note that Nemu really does watch him. Jumping off the tower he and Nemu are standing on, Mayuri presses the tops of his Hirenkyaku Shoes, causing them to begin propelling him forward toward Pernida. As he dodges Pernida's Heilig Pfeil, Mayuri sees the two clones of Pernida appear behind him and begin firing as well. Mayuri continues to dodge the arrows as he contacts Nemu, whom he informs of his plan to stop Pernida by injecting it with a coagulating agent that will render it immobile and unable to function.
After Nemu injects one of the Heilig Pfeil with the agent, the nerves connected to it transfer the agent to Pernida, who is frozen up along with one of its clones. However, when the agent begins coagulating the remaining clone, it simply rips off the infected thumb and informs Mayuri that this is not enough to kill it, prompting Mayuri to note that it sounds like Kenpachi before realizing that Pernida can evolve by absorbing information from objects which it touches with its nerves. As Mayuri deduces that Nemu's speed will not be enough to outpace Pernida if it has evolved to Kenpachi's level, Pernida sheds its infected skin like the modified Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō could. Seeing this, Nemu leaps toward Mayuri with a determined look on her face.
Nemu sacrifices part of her soul in order to defeat Pernida.
In the past, Akon expresses surprise at Mayuri not referring to Nemu by her name. When told that Mayuri calls her Nemu, Akon believes that this must be her name, but Nemu reveals that it is actually Nemuri Nanagō.
In the present, Kuna accidentally discovers three canisters in Mayuri's laboratory in Soul Society, causing Akon to berate her before recognizing the canisters as the remains of the Nemuri Project. Explaining how the contents are the corpses of the first three Nemuris, Akon reveals that they kept failing until the fourth one, which had a brain and allowed them to fix the head of one of their assistants, and that the fifth one reached the embryo stage and allowed Mayuri to become captain by modifying his Zanpakutō and achieving Bankai. Admitting that the sixth Nemuri only lived to the age of two because this was the life expectancy of godly soul cells, Akon states that Mayuri was extremely happy when the seventh one lived past this expectancy.
Meanwhile, in the Royal Realm, Nemu leaps off the ground while recalling how she asked Akon why Mayuri did not call her by her real name, only for Akon to claim that he did not know before theorizing that Mayuri was embarrassed because he believed the Nemuri Project was not the dream of a waking Shinigami. Akon went on to explain that Nemu was to grow and learn every day, which would embarrass Mayuri should she learn of it herself. When Nemu asked Akon if Mayuri would be happy should she remain ignorant, Akon stated that she was Mayuri's masterpiece. In the present, Nemu blasts through Pernida, whose hand is torn to shreds, and grabs Mayuri before hurtling away. When Mayuri demands to know where she got this power, Nemu explains that she manually increased the power of her body in exchange for speeding up its decomposition and that this is part of her mission to protect him. After being placed on a building, Mayuri admits that he never thought Nemu would be fighting for him. Rocketing toward Pernida, Nemu reveals that she is going to shoot 6% of her soul into it in order to destroy it before using Gikon Jūrinjū, which sends a blast of energy toward Pernida.
Shūhei visits Kanisawa's grave, where he meets Aoga. Aoga tells him that he visits every month on the anniversary of her death. Hisagi tells him that he wanted to visit before he left Seireitei with his captain to train. Aoga tells him to do his best and to come back after the battle. Hisagi thinks that Aoga believes he is a fearless guy and Hisagi thought all of his peers were fearless, but comes to the realization that everyone has their own fear and accept it, fighting together for the Gotei 13.