Kota thinks Kaito still wants to duel, but instead Kaito de-henshins and is more interested in their surroundings. Also de-henshining, Kota admit that he’s been here before and in fact, this is where he got his Lockseeds from picking the strange looking fruit.
Kaito reasons that their way out may be with their bikes and that whenever they reach a certain speed, they can travel between the two worlds. He walks ahead to explore and says he doesn’t need to stick with Kota, no matter how dangerous he says it might be.
Back in Zawame City, Mitch heads home… to the Kureshima mansion. He gets off the phone with Mai, both of them worried about Kota. But once home he is greeted by his older brother Takatora of Yggdrasill Corp who brings up Mitch’s lower grades. Takatora reminds Mitch that one day he will be his right hand man at Yggdrasill and he needs to concentrate to getting himself ready to fill that position. He should not be distracted by useless things.
I know, Mitch says, “my life is full of useless things, after all.”
Mitch heads upstairs as Takatora gets an urgent phone call.
Back in the forest, Kaito finds the trees and begins pulling off some of the fruits hoping to find some higher class Lockseeds. A couple of Inves appear and he quickly henshins to take care of them.
Meanwhile, Kota tries to search for Yuya. Instead, he stumbles across a group of suited up people collecting samples. They quickly gather their things and leave when Kota approaches.
Kota suddenly gets fired at and he turns to see the melon looking Rider who tosses a Lockseed that gets eaten by an Inves who then evolves. It attacks Kota and he henshins while the white melon Rider watches.
Kota uses Pine Arms to finish off the evolved Inves. But the white melon Rider seems to want to fight as well.
On the other side of the forest, Kaito’s gathered all the Lockseeds he wants and hops on his bike and rides back to Zawame City.
Kota asks the melon Rider why they need to fight to which the melon Rider responds by saying Kota is not worthy of battle and that the belt carries much too much power for him. He then fires at Kota, wanting to take his belt.
“Why do you need to find meaning in battle? You’ll find death before you find an answer.”
The melon Rider pushes Kota towards a cliff and says if he hasn’t realized that the world is full of senseless malice, then he has lived a pointless life which should end right here and now. He knocks Kota off the cliff and into the river below, causing him to de-henshin.
Kota struggles out of the water while the melon Rider de-henshins. Takatora Kureshima.
At Team Baron headquarters, Kaito has called Ryoji of Team Raid Wild and Hideyasu of Team Invitto to propose an alliance. He offers them two of the Lockseeds he picked up from the forest. He’ll offer Lockseeds to them instead of Sid from now on in exchange for them aligning with him.
Ryoji isn’t too keen on being fodder for Team Baron, but Hideyasu says this isn’t a bad offer. Better they occupy the top 3 spots than Team Gaim. And with these Lockseeds, they’ll be unstoppable.
Akira opens the door for Mai and Mitch who she’s called over to help a distressed Kota who’s been sitting in the corner of his room.
Kota tells them about going to the forest and meeting the white melon Rider and almost getting killed by him. Kota realizes now that having the driver isn’t just for playing the Inves game. The belt’s power comes at a cost, it is life or death.
He doesn’t want to continue using the belt for fear he might meet the ruthless white melon Rider again the future. Mai says she understands and that they will keep the driver and Lockseed safe at the garage since it was acquired by Yuya to help the team.
She tells Kota to rest up and to come hang out when he’s better. But Kota can only apologize for not being able to help the team.
Mai and Mitch are at the park. Mai says they need to handle their problems on their own and to not involve Kota any more. She knows what kind of an ordeal Kota must have gone through in the forest based on what happened to them the first time. She doesn’t want Kota to get hurt for others any longer.
What’s wrong with getting hurt for the sake of others, Mitch asks. He doesn’t think Kota’s ways were wrong and he believes he’ll make a comeback.
Later that night in his room, he watches video of Mai from practice and thinks about what both she and Kota said earlier. He wants to change too as he hates who he is now. He wonders what he can do and the next day he meets Sid at Drupers.
Mitch places his Yggdrasill Gold Card on the table in front of Sid and says he wants Lockseeds and a driver to go with them.
Sid says there are things even money can’t buy and that only those chosen by him will get a Sengoku Driver. Besides, Mitch is Takatora Kureshima’s brother and if he ever found out that Sid had taught his little bro to play with fire, he would not longer be able to play in Zuwame City.
But Mitch isn’t taking no for an answer. He takes a seat and says yes, he is a member of the Kureshima family and would probably be promoted to whatever position he wants when he joins Yggdrasill. Maybe even higher than his brother.
Sid may be scared of Takatora now, but who knows who’ll be scarier in the futre, Mitch adds. So it would be in Sid’s best interests to make friends with him now that he has a chance.
Sid is amused. Mitch is indeed a man of the Kureshima family. He gets up with his things.
“Hey, as a well-mannered Kureshima rich boy, if I were to forget something, you’d send it back, right?”
“I would… if I were a well-mannered rich boy.”
Team Gaim is performing on stage when Hideyasu approaches to challenge them to a duel. Mai gets up with a Lockseed, but Mitch says he’s got this.
He calls Hideyasu out for using cowardly tricks, but this time he’s not going to be able to use any of ’em.
Mitch takes his Driver out to the shock of everyone. He pulls out his grape Lockseed and henshins into Kamen Rider Ryugen.
“Pain and sadness will never disappear. That’s why I’d rather get hurt than let it happen to those dear to me.”
Heading home from the store, Kota sees two girls watching DJ Sagara doing play-by-play of the latest battle featuring Team Gaim’s second armored Rider.
Kota can’t believe it.
Things are moving along pretty well.
There were a lot of things to like in this episode. First, I like Kota getting pulled back down to Earth after two episodes of pretty much playing around with the Driver before getting a violent wake-up call that no, this is not a toy. The whole premise is typical though, reminds me of those Red Ranger self-doubt episodes. But I can definitely see where they’re going with this and of course Kota will have no problem risking his life for others, yes?
I also liked Mitch’s character development. Without reading any character descriptions before the show (though I did), the slow reveal that he is not only a rich guy that attends a private school and goes to cram school in the evening, but he is a member of the Kureshima family who has big power in Yggdrasill.
His feeling of inferiority to his brother and his seemingly unrequited love for Mai are definitely legit pieces of motivation for him to acquire that Driver. And I am definitely interested in seeing if he goes down a darker path as the season goes along. I liked that transition of threatening Sid and then his happy-go-lucky smile towards Mai on the stage. It’s almost eerie. But in a great way.
Overall, another pretty good episode. I’m enjoying Gaim.