Episode 2 - The ultimate rivalry


Solemn atmosphere reigned in the Kamiya dojo, Megumi continues to treat Sanosuke who is lucky enough to survive. Saitou is having a meal when Akamatsu enters. He is displeased that Saitou has the job, which was previously assigned to him. Saitou tricks Akamatsu into fighting Kenshin, baiting him into thinking that Akamatsu will get the fame and glory after Kenshin has been killed. He smiles when the gullible Akamatsu walks away.

Kenshin read a letter (send by Saitou) and leaves, asking Yahiko to take of the household chores for him. He reaches out to an open field and calls out to Saitou to show himself. A chain sweeps among the grass from behind and smashes a rock in front of Kenshin. Akamatsu introduces himself. At the dojo, Kaoru becomes worried when Yahiko tells her about the letter. He teases her that the letter could be a love letter. Kaoru actually believes it but tries to laugh it off. A policeman officer appears, claiming to be Fujita. He informs her that he would like to ask Kenshin some questions since there is somebody who is trying to kill him. Karou becomes very concerned and invites Fujita in.

Akamatsu attacks but he is too slow for Kenshin who thrashes him up. He wants answers. Who is he working for? Akamatsu kneels and begs for forgiveness. He was set up by Saitou to fight him. Kenshin doubts it. Why would Saitou hire somebody like him? He walks away, having no intention to continue the fight. Akamatsu cunningly releases his chain. Kenshin is fast enough to hold his hand up to prevent the chain from wrapping around his neck but his hands are bound. Akamatsu proceeds to finish Kenshin.

At the dojo, Kaoru informs Megumi about the officer and what he had told her. Megumi thinks that it would be safe to stay here and wait for Kenshin to return. Saitou removes his sword from the sheath; it gleamed. Yahiko recognizes it as a Japanese sword. Saitou puts the sword back into the sheath and friendly tells Yahiko that he has special permission to use such a sword.

Akamatsu thinks that Kenshin is dead and spills the beads. He and Saitou are hired by a politician who wants Kenshin dead basically for his own selfish reasons. He is afraid that Kenshin might expose some dark secrets that could destroy his career. Kenshin opens his eyes and quickly finishes off the shocked Akamatsu.

Karou waits patiently at the entrance of the dojo while she watches the evening sun. Kenshin returns and Kaoru eagerly informs him that she is worried about him since there is somebody who wants to kill him. How does she know? She introduces him to the police officer Fujita. Kenshin's eyes widen. Police officer Fujita is actually Saitou Hajime himself.

Saitou comments that Kenshin's fighting skill has been degraded after 10 years since he took so long to defeat Akamatsu. Then, what Saitou himself? He too has changed, as the Saitou from the Shinsen-gumi has always been honorable and would never used sneaky attacks. Saitou laughs and points the fact that while he was fighting Akamatsu; he was at the dojo the whole time. He could have killed them all if he wanted but he has decided to let them live long enough to see Kenshin die. Kenshin shouldn't judge him. What about his oath not to kill? How could he protect someone without killing? This philosophy has weakened him and his thinking sickens Saitou.

"Evil must die." That is the motto that the Shinsen-gumi lived by and died for. Saitou prepares himself in attacking mode. Kenshin steps forward but is held back by Kaoru. He tells her that he has no choice but to fight. Kaoru tells him that she doesn't want to lose him. Both men approached each other, standing still, their eyes locked on each other. The grandfather clock ticks the seconds as the sun fades into the darkness.

Saitou makes the first move; Kenshin evades it and leaps up. Saitou follows suits and stabs Kenshin by surprise. Kaoru screams.