Episode 8 - An occupied village, Shishio's shadow


Misao continues to nag at Kenshin for his ignorance every time she talks about Aoshi. Kenshin is hoping to reach Kyoto as soon as possible. Then, they sense something. Kenshin goes off to investigate with Misao hot on his heels. They find a dying man under a tree. In his arms is a boy. The dying man tells Kenshin (who promises to doing anything for him) to look after his brother and save his village from Shishio.

Kenshin stands over a cliff and looks down the rundown village. Some time earlier, the boy, Eiji, awakens to find his brother dead. He tells Kenshin that Shishio has taken his village 2 years ago and the authorities have already abandoned them. To prove it, he shows a map. His village, the Shingetsu village has been crossed off. That is why his brother returns to get his family. But one of Shishio's men - Senkaku attacks him. He is the one who looks after the village when Shishio is away. Right now, Shishio is at the Shingetsu village.

Kenshin walks through the lifeless streets while Misao and Eiji follows him until they see 2 dead bodies hanging. They were hacked to death. Eiji screams - the dead bodies are his parents. His scream brings down Shishio's men at the scene. Their bodies are left to hang as a warning sign for all those who opposed Shishio. Kenshin takes out the whole group. During the fight, Saitou appears. Why is Kenshin wasting his time with a brunch of losers?

Saitou is here to investigate the disappearance of his man - Eichiro. Kenshin finds out Eichiro is Eiji's brother. Saitou comments him as a fool for not obeying his orders. Misao snaps him. Saitou asks Kenshin, "Who is this..." In his mind; he classifies Megumi as a cat, Kaoru a raccoon... Misao... "Who is this weasel?" Misao explodes and Kenshin tries to calm her down.

Eiji stands in front of the dead bodies with Eichiro's sword in his hand. He wants to bury them. The villagers make their presence and tell them to leave the bodies alone. If they don't, they may die. Misao becomes upset. Saitou explains that not everybody will do heroic things when it comes to survival. Kenshin cuts down the bodies. The angered villagers yell at them to leave. This is the situation that Shishio has created. The people will live under fear. This whole area, including the Shingetsu village belongs to Shishio. The Meiji government will not do anything about it especially using military forces because it may show the other countries that there is instability in Japan. The politicians are scared stiff after the assassination of Ohkubo.

While Eiji buries his parents next to Eichiro's grave, Saitou (who has information about where Shishio is staying) suggests to Kenshin that they should pay a visit to Shishio. Kenshin agrees. Misao is ordered to stay with Eiji.

At Shishio's place, a man begs for his left for letting Kenshin escape. Shishio, who is in a good mood because he is having a nice bath, decides to spare him. Soujirou comments that he is lucky and should take good care of his second chance. Another man enters and whispers something to Soujirou. Shishio is then informed that Kenshin and Saitou are coming. He orders Soujirou to get Senkaku ready...

Eiji has revenge on his mind and wants to kill Senkaku. Misao decides to help him since he won't stand a chance at the heavy security. At the entrance, Soujirou greets Kenshin and Saitou.