Luoyang palace, 8:29 p.m. Alistair and Schneizel seated themselves in front of a chessboard as Sumeragi joined Tianzi.
Odysseus: So, he's that Alistair Wake fellow I've been hearing about. He's an urban young man, isn't he? He won't last long against Schneizel.
Kaguya: Keep dreaming. Alistair brought freedom to two countries, now.
Odysseus: That's your opinion.
Kaguya: What's up?
Tianzi: They're pretty.
Tianzi: Your friend's eyes. They're pretty. They remind me of the sky.
Kaguya: He does believe in freedom.
Tianzi: And, freedom is a vision. Right?
Kaguya: That's right.
As Schneizel and Alistair set up the chessboard, Anya and Gino were looking at Kallen.
Anya: (takes picture) The ace pilot of the Guren.
Gino: And, Alistair's girlfriend.
Anya: If that's so, then I'll remember her, forever.
Schneizel: As always, I'll use the white pieces.
Alistair: Fine by me. Good guys make black look better.
Schneizel: Aptly put. Unfortunately, I can't. Let's begin.
Schneizel made the first move, and Alistair made his move, Zero watching the game, from a distance.
Zero: (thinking) Alistair... Not even I would challenge Schneizel to a game of chess. Every time I did, I always lost. He's a prodigy. Huh? He just lost a piece, and he still has that calm smile on his face? What...?
As the game went on, Schneizel and Alistair lost some pieces, Schneizel losing slightly more.
Kanon: Schneizel is losing...? To him?
Schneizel: You're not half bad. By the way, we never went over what I would be wagering.
Alistair: If I win this...then, the Tokyo Mavericks gain custody over the Lancelot, Suzaku Kururugi, Lloyd Asplund, Cecile Croomey and Nina Einstein.
Schneizel: Hefty price. I do enjoy a challenge. (moves rook piece)
Alistair: You make things up, on the spot, huh? Well, I'll just have to up the ante. (picks up king piece)
Schneizel: Your king piece?
Alistair: A friend of mine said something pretty nifty. "If the king doesn't lead, from the front, how will his subordinates follow?" (sets king down)
Schneizel: I see. I shall return the favor, then. (moves king piece)
As the chess game continued, Nina noticed the game and saw Zero. Alistair set his king down on the path of Schneizel's king.
Alistair: Can't go any further, can ya? Wanna call it a draw?
Schneizel: I'm afraid not. The white king shouldn't be underestimated. (sets king in front of Alistair's king) Checkmate.
Alistair: (pauses) You do realize that's an illegal move, right?
Schneizel: Extreme rules. We can make any move we like.
Alistair: Way to drop that bomb, after the fact. However, it ain't over, yet. I've got one move left.
Schneizel: Very well. Make your move. (thinking) Way to go Schneizel, you god damn idiot! You just handed him the game! I mean, what were you thinking!? Putting your king in front of his, out of nowhere!? How stupid can you be!?
Alistair: (thinking) Schneizel must've been having too much fun with this. He's faced a lot of people, with this game. But, he's never met a player like me. (picks up king)
Schneizel: No, no, no, no, no, no, no-!
Alistair set his king down, away from Schneizel's king, diagonally right. Schneizel relaxed in his seat, exhaling in relief.
Schneizel: Oh, that's good. That would've been bad.
Alistair: (out loud) Checkmate.
Schneizel: (eyes widen, out loud) What?!
Alistair: You focused so much on your king that you forgot about my other pieces. So, how would you like to go out? The bishop? The queen? Or, most embarrassingly, the pawn?
Schneizel: How...? How did you-?
Alistair: Schneizel, you just got served by a chess grandmaster!
Zero: (out loud) Grandmaster?!
Schneizel: Unbelievable... I've never faced a grandmaster, like you. How did you keep your calm, during all that?
Alistair: Simple. I think about the game way differently than you do. From what I've seen, you apply reality to the game, thinking of the pieces as actual people, and the king as yourself. Me, on the other hand? Chess is just what it is, a game. No reality to be put into it, game's a game, pieces are just pieces.
Nina tried to attack Zero, with a knife, but Gino held her back.
Nina: Princess Euphemia will be avenged!
Gino: Hey, chill out!
Kallen: Nina, calm down!
Nina: Why, Kallen!? You're supposed to be Britannian, yet you protect that...that freak!?
Kallen: I'm Japanese, Nina. I've always been Japanese.
Nina: No... You're an Eleven. An Eleven, and a traitor and a murderer! You ruined everything! You killed Princess Euphemia! She was the only one that made me feel alive! Give her back to me!
As Nina began crying, Alistair walked up to Kallen.
Alistair: Kallen, I think I've got a way of fixing this, but it's very stupid.
Kallen: Lay it on me.
Alistair: (takes a deep breath, whispers in Kallen's ear)
Kallen: Dude, yeah. Go for it.
Alistair: (normal tone) Seriously?
Kallen: Worth a shot.
Alistair took another deep breath and approached Nina.
Alistair: I've got this, Gino.
Gino: If you say so, Alistair. (lets go of Nina)
Nina: (wipes tears off of eyes) I don't know where to start, with you. You think everything is equal, in this god damn world. This...this broken world. Britannia is trying to fix it! What's wrong with that!? Well!? Anything you want to say!?
Alistair gently grabbed Nina's cheek, and kissed her, on the lips. Nina was surprised, and tried to struggle, but soon relaxed into it. Everyone's jaws dropped in reaction, save for Kallen, who took a picture.
Kallen: Oh, this is going in the album.
Schneizel: I... I did not actually expect this.
Kanon: Holy shit, he thought the same thing you did.
Zero: If my jaw could defy reality, it would bust right through this mask.
Schneizel: I believe you. So... How would you feel if I forward the next 50 bounties I take to you?
Zero: That's...really not necessary.
Schneizel: Doing it anyway.
Alistair released Nina from the kiss and she began calming down, looking up at Alistair.
Nina: Alistair...? Why do my lips feel so good?
Alistair: Don't think about it, too much.
Alistair helped Nina back onto her feet and Nina looked around the room, completely confused as to what was going on.
Nina: Uh... Where am I?
Nina: (eyes widen, looks at phone) ...What was I doing, all these months?
Alistair: You don't wanna know. You'll be taken to the Yatagarasu, for the time being. Ashley? (pauses) Wait, where the hell-?
Immediately, a girl in a tuxedo, with long brown hair and sunglasses ran up the stairs, panting.
Ashley: Sorry... I was taking in the sights.
Alistair: Ashley, could you take Nina to the Yatagarasu, please? She could use some new clothes, too.
Ashley: Can do.
Ashley escorted Nina out of the palace and Alistair looked at Schneizel.
Alistair: I expect the custody papers by tomorrow. Have fun, people!
Alistair walked out of the room, and went to a balcony, Milly still looking outside.
Alistair: Milly? What the hell are you doing, here?
Milly: I'm on a date. With Lloyd.
Alistair: Still haven't said "no," huh? You better say it, soon, otherwise, you'll live with regret.
Milly: I'm...really not in the mood for talking, right now. I just got an earful, from Nina.
Alistair: Already fixed it. She's back to normal and should be back at Ashford, when whatever mess comes next is over.
Milly: Does... Does this hero thing come naturally, to you? It sure doesn't, to me. I look back, and all I can remember is you getting mad at me and Rivalz. And... And, I don't know why! Can you just...tell me why!? Why do you hate me!?
Alistair: (sighs) Milly...I don't hate you.
Milly: ...What? Then...why were you so mean to me?
Alistair: Because...your sense of comedy sucks.
Milly: That's it? That's the reason? I actually appeal to the perviness of every student at the school, and you just do whatever is unusually funny-! Okay, yeah, you're way better at being funny than I am.
Alistair: I don't even try to be funny, I just try to entertain.
Milly: So... It was one of those "learn a lesson, the hard way" kind of treatments, huh?
Alistair: Yep. Just like morality, in this world, you learn it the hard way. Britannia...isn't getting that message.
Milly: You're a good guy, Alistair.
Alistair: Thanks. You still need to bind your chest.
Milly: Been trying. This time, I'm buying some extra large binding. My back's been killing me, lately.
Alistair: That's another reason to do that, yeah.
Milly: (smiles) Thanks for looking out for me, Alistair.
Alistair: No sweat. You do know that Rivalz has a thing for you, right?
Milly: (chuckles) Yeah.
Alistair: You haven't had the gall to say "yes".
Milly: I've been...trying to make my family happy.
Alistair: If your family doesn't give a damn about how you feel, then screw 'em.
Milly: Tomorrow, then. Tomorrow, I'm calling off the arranged marriage.
Alistair: Go have some fun at the party, then. You've earned it.
Milly smiled at Alistair and gave him a pat on the back, before leaving him. As Alistair leaned on the balcony, Xianglin walked by, and noticed the symbol on the back of Alistair's duster.
Xianglin: (thinking) That symbol... The Mavericks... Then, he's... (gulps, cautiously approaches Alistair, out loud) Are you...Alistair Wake?
Alistair: (looks at Xianglin) Yeah. Is there something you need?
Xianglin: N-No, I... I was just...scoping out the party.
Alistair: There's no need to be nervous.
Xianglin: I'm sorry, it's just... Xingke's taught me so much about you-
Alistair: Oh, are you friends with Xingke? That's awesome! How is he?
Xianglin: He's resting, at the moment. We arrived at the wrong airport and wound up in...a pretty bad part of China.
Alistair: How bad?
Xianglin: You know how China is more prominent with bootlegging?
Xianglin: We walked through a bootleg community.
2 days ago, Chinese market. Xingke was looking at a children's toy that was based off an American cartoon character.
Shopkeeper: So, what do you think?
Xingke: I'll tell you what I think. There is not a chance I'm interested in this bear!
Present day, Luoyang palace balcony.
Xianglin: So, you can imagine how he felt about the entire area.
Alistair: I'm sorry that your country has such a problem.
Xianglin: So am I. So, with you and the Black Knights here...does that mean you want to help?
Alistair: Yeah. If the entire world ain't free, then it's not a world worth living in.
Xianglin: Fair enough. Just...be prepared for what might happen, tomorrow.
Aboard the Yatagarasu, Ashley brought Nina into Euphemia's room.
Nina: Wow... I never knew a ship like this could exist.
Ashley: So was I. (takes off wig and sunglasses)
Nina: (eyes widen, tears up) Y-You... You're...
Euphemia: Hey, Nina. I missed you.
Nina: Euphy! (hugs Euphemia)
Euphemia: There's my smart friend.
Nina: Your skin...is so soft...
Euphemia: Nina, we had a talk about this, months ago.
Nina: I'm being factual, friendly, and I need therapy. Please, let me have this.
Euphemia: Fair enough. Nuzzle away.
The next day, Alistair met with Schneizel in a corridor.
Alistair: I'm here, Schneizel. We had a deal.
Schneizel: Well...there are some...complications.
Alistair: Complications, my ass. Don't bullcrap me-
Suddenly, the sound of fighting erupted, in the other room.
Alistair: Oh, for-! Now, what!?