Episode 211: Village of Vengeance, Part 3 (The New Stage)
Yugi and the others run toward the palace gates. As they stop before the gates, Téa reminds Joey of what happened last time. Yugi says maybe this time they can get in. (Japanese Anzu says that finally, they're back there. Yugi says that the palace is the most likely place to find clues about his other self.) Looking up at the gates, he thinks to the Pharaoh that he knows why they were sent there. They have to find out the Pharaoh's real name, so he can beat Bakura at his own game. Asking the Pharaoh to please let them in, he reaches out his hand, and it passes through the stone. Staring at his hand in surprise, he looks at his friends, saying, it worked!
Joey and Téa ask if he's sure, while Bobasa celebrates—this place is known for its delectable food. Yugi tells them to come on—let's get in there and start hunting for clues! He runs through the gate, and Joey, Téa, and Bobasa follow. Chuckling evilly to himself, Tristan pauses before walking through the palace gates.
Inside, they run through the courtyard. Stopping in the wide pathway, Yugi suggests that they meet back there in an hour, then the four split up.
Meanwhile, Bakura stands, gasping in shock. His Skeleton Fiend disappears, leaving the Millennium Stone unprotected. Bakura insists this isn't over, and that the Pharaoh's empire will crumble, and the Millennium Items will be his. Zorc the Dark One will return! Then he collapses, face forward, onto the ground. (Cut from the US version is this long shot of Bakura lying at the foot of the steps below the stone tablet, then turning and beginning to crawl back up the steps.)
The Pharaoh tells Bakura it's all over, as Bakura crawls weakly up the steps to the Millennium Stone. The Pharaoh says that the land of Egypt shall once again know peace. (Japanese Pharaoh tells Bakura it's no use. They still have the remaining Millennium Items. Bakura can't break the seal on Zork.) Bakura struggles to place the Millennium Puzzle and Millennium Scale into their slots on the Stone. Never, he mutters, and sets the Ring in its place. The Pharaoh demands that Bakura return the Items to him. (Japanese Pharaoh tells Bakura to give it up—he lost.)
Suddenly, another voice says that the Items will stay right where they are. The Pharaoh and the others turn in surprise to see Aknadin standing above them on the steps, holding the Millennium Key. The Pharaoh asks, what is the meaning of this? Aknadin says that he is responsible for the creation of the Millennium Items, and he'll decide their fate. (Japanese Aknadin says that now all the Millennium Items are gathered in this place.) The Pharaoh sees that all seven of the Millennium Items are present in the cavern, and says, Oh, no! Isis notices that Aknadin has the Key, and Seto says that that Item belongs to Shada! What has Aknadin done with him?
Aknadin says that what's important is that his Millennium Item will be put to good use. As Aknadin walks toward the Millennium Stone, Bakura turns to them, laughing madly. A purple aura glows around him, then flies up out of the cavern, and Bakura staggers on the stone, asking where he is, and who are they? He stares at his hands, which are pulsing and glowing with streams of gold and purple, as is his whole body. (The glowing and purplish edges are added to Bakura's hands in the US version. Japanese Bakura is turning to sand.)
Bakura asks, what is happening to him? A voice that sounds like Bakura says that he was just using that fool as a pawn. (The Japanese voice thanks Bakura, and says he has no more use for him.) The Pharaoh asks who the voice is. Bakura calls out for help, saying that the Shadows are taking him. (Again, Bakura is sand in the Japanese version.)
Then he disappears, his cloak falling empty to the ground.
The voice laughs, and says it's time they learned the true nature of this Shadow Game. (The Japanese voice says, unnecessary chess pieces must disappear.) The Pharaoh asks the voice to explain itself. Then Shada shows up, clinging weakly to the wall, warning the Pharaoh that he must stop Aknadin.
Meanwhile, Yugi is running through the palace. He stops by a wall, covered with hieroglyphics, thinking that the Pharaoh's name might be carved somewhere on this wall. Of course, it would help if he could actually read ancient hieroglyphics. Frustrated, he runs on.
Joey walks through the marketplace. He tries to stop a young woman to ask her a question, but she walks right through him, and he freaks out again, saying that's not cool—these people treat him like he doesn't exist. (Japanese Jounouchi says he forgot that they're like ghosts in this place.)
Téa finds the palace library, and thinks she may have hit the jackpot. But when she reaches for one of the stacks of writings, her hand passes right through it. She sinks to her knees in frustration, saying they'll never find that name.
Bobasa, on the other hand, has found some baskets of fruit and vegetables, and is happily eating everything he can stuff in his mouth.
Tristan walks through the palace hallways, as the voice tells him to find that name!
Back at the cavern, Shada warns the Pharaoh to be careful—Aknadin is a traitor! He struggles with Aknadin, demanding the return of the Millennium Key, but he's too weak from his injuries, and Aknadin throws him down. Shimon asks if Aknadin has gone mad, and the Pharaoh says he doesn't know who's controlling Aknadin's mind, but this ends now. (Japanese Pharaoh asks Aknadin why he's doing this.)
Aknadin tells them that a new king shall soon rise. Seto tells him to hold his tongue—how dare he utter such venomous words in the presence of the great Pharaoh? Aknadin orders him to be silent, and casts a spell on Seto. The others exclaim that Seto can't move! Aknadin says he's frozen in time, and casts the same spell on the rest of them. He says, that will hold them long enough to complete what Bakura couldn't, and laughs exultantly. He's done it! As soon as he places the remaining Millennium Items in the Stone, the Dark One shall rise, and the Pharaoh's empire will crumble. (Japanese Aknadin says that, with Zork's power, time is paused. Now he's the only one who can move.) Taking the Rod from Seto's frozen hand, and the Necklace from Isis' neck, he says that he'll return the Millennium Items from whence they came. (Japanese Aknadin tells the Pharaoh that he's not qualified to be Pharaoh.) And now, the final piece—his Millennium Eye! As the frozen Pharaoh and guardians watch in horror, Aknadin rips the Eye from his own face. (Cut from the US version is this close-up of Aknadin pulling the Millennium Eye out of his eye socket.)
The voice tells Aknadin to return the Items to their resting place.
The Pharaoh thinks that Bakura was defeated—how can he be hearing Bakura's voice? The voice tells Aknadin that he's proven to be a worthy pawn. The ultimate Shadow Game is nearly complete! Aknadin kneels on the Stone, placing the Items in their slots. The Pharaoh thinks, he saw Bakura disappear into the Shadows with his own eyes! This Shadow Game should be over—unless....
Aknadin places the final Item into the Stone, and the entire cavern is engulfed in light. The Pharaoh wonders—is this all just a game?
The light shines from the village, which is now seen to be part of a playing field enclosed in a table suspended in space, with the Millennium Puzzle hanging overhead. Yami, struggling awake, is seated at one end of the table, while Bakura, at the other end, tells him he's sleeping through the most important game of his life. Yami asks where they are, and Bakura says they're in the Shadow Realm, of course, sitting before the playing field. He promised Yami a Shadow Game, didn't he? (Japanese Bakura says this is the arena of the gods, and this is the ultimate Dark RPG.) Yami says he's in no mood for games, but Bakura says it's too late, he's already right in the middle of one. The field is ancient Egypt, and the pawns are the people of Yami's past.
Yami asks if everything they do affects the events of the past. He says Bakura's sunk even lower than he thought, manipulating people's lives just to play out some twisted game. (Japanese Yami says that if he's playing the ancient Pharaoh, and Bakura's playing Thief Bakura, since Thief Bakura was defeated, Yami should have won. Why isn't the game over?) Bakura says it's not some game, it's the game. As soon as he resurrects Zorc from the Stone, the final stage of this game will begin. (Japanese Bakura says it's a pity, but when the seven Millennium Items are placed on the stone, a new stage of the game begins, the search for the name, with new requirements for victory. Cut from the US version is this freakish close-up of Bakura's face, behind Aknadin standing on the stone tablet.)
(Japanese Bakura says his soul is sealed to the stone tablet. He'll be revived as Zork.)
Yami asks, if he doesn't defeat Zorc, does that mean he loses the game? Bakura says he'll lose much more than that. He'll lose his friends. They entered a world where they didn't belong, so when the playing field disappears, they'll be trapped in the Shadows. Yami will never see them again. (Cut from the US version is this close-up of Yami angrily calling Bakura, "Kisama!" or "You bastard!")
(Also cut is this long shot of the playing field.)
If Yami wants to see his friends again, he'll have to win the game. But, at the moment, all of Yami's pawns are frozen in time, thanks to Bakura's hourglass token. As the game master, Bakura has three of them, and this one freezes time for every character in the game except for his.
It's not the first time Bakura has manipulated time. He shows Yami another hourglass token, saying he used this one earlier in the game to reverse time. Yami remembers—just as the Pharaoh had defeated Thief Bakura, time had reversed. So that was Bakura's doing!
Thanks to these hourglasses, Bakura says, he can rewrite history three times over the course of the game. Which means that Yami's life is under his control!
Téa stands frozen in the library, while Yugi is trapped in the hallway, thinking that Bakura must be behind this—he hopes the Pharaoh is all right. Joey stands frozen with a woman passing through him. He thinks he can think of worse situations to be stuck in.
Tristan, who's Bakura's pawn now, is still free to move. He's watching Bobasa, who continues to gulp down handsful of food. Bakura doesn't understand why Bobasa is unaffected. Bobasa looks down sadly, saying that his belly is so big, he can't see his slippers. (Japanese Bobasa complains that he just doesn't feel full.)
Aknadin stands upon the Millennium Stone, calling out to Zorc, offering him the seven treasures. The Pharaoh and the others can only watch, frozen. Isis thinks that she can sense the pulse of pure evil beating below them. The Dark One has awakened!
The shadowy form of the Dark One rises over the stone. It tells Aknadin to denounce his allegiance to Egypt and pledge loyalty to him. If Aknadin does this, everything he desires will be his.
Aknadin says that his only desire is for a new Pharaoh to be named—his own beloved son, Seto. Hearing this, Seto thinks, it can't be true! Master Aknadin is his father?
Zorc tells Aknadin that his transformation from sacred guardian to Lord of Darkness is now complete. He sends a blast of energy toward Aknadin, who screams as he's transformed. He turns to the Pharaoh, now a masked creature with shocks of red hair, robed in dark purple.
At the playing field, Bakura says that his Aknadin game piece has just doubled in overall strength. He is now the Great Shadow Magus. (In the Japanese, Aknadin's new form is called "Yami no Daishinkan," which means "Great Priest of Darkness." In the manga, his name is written with the kanji for "Yami no Daishinkan," but katakana written above the name indicate that it's to be pronounced "Zork Necrophades.") Yami asks what he's done to Aknadin. Bakura says he hasn't done a thing—all these events are reoccurring exactly as they did five thousand years ago, with some small modifications. Thanks to this Shadow Game, Bakura is able to influence certain events. In the old days, the Pharaoh managed to lock away his own spirit in order to seal Zorc away. But he won't be so lucky this time. There are still some holes in his memory. The Pharaoh doesn't even know his own name—a single word with the power to resurrect Zorc, and lock him away. Bringing another hourglass token onto the table, Bakura says he's discovered a way to bring back Zorc without the word, by using his third and final hourglass.
Yami demands to know what Bakura is saying. Bakura says that when the final grain of sand falls, the ruler of the darkest Shadows shall arise!
Tristan enters a hall with huge portraits of all the Pharaohs, each with a tablet of hieroglyphics at its feet. Bakura tells him that the Pharaoh's name should be located in this room. Tristan must find it before the others do, and destroy it. Tristan walks along the hall, thinking that every Pharaoh in history must be here, so the name he's looking for must be written on the last tablet.
Tristan stops at the end of the hall, only to find that the last tablet is blank. He protests that this doesn't make any sense!
Back in the cavern, Zorc tells the Great Shadow Magus to banish the Pharaoh to the darkness so that his son may take the throne. Laughing, the Shadow Magus tells Seto that this is what he always wanted for him, ever since he was a young boy. Flashbacks show Aknadin riding away from his wife and son. Seto wonders how his father could leave him, and then lie to him all these years.
There's something else he should know, the Shadow Magus tells Seto. The former King Aknamkanon was Aknadin's brother! Therefore, if anything should happen to the current Pharaoh, Seto is next in line to inherit the throne.
Shimon wonders why, after all these years of loyalty, Aknadin would turn on his own family. Bakura must have preyed upon the hidden jealousy Aknadin always felt towards his brother, and the incredible guilt he must have harbored after giving up his family.
Triumphantly, the Shadow Magus tells Seto that they will no longer live in the shadow of Aknadin's brother. They shall rise up and claim their rightful place on the throne of Egypt. As he raises a great power, he announces that the era of King Seto has begun!
The Shadow Magus sends an attack towards the Pharaoh, who can only stand frozen and watch it come. But suddenly, Hasan emerges from his sanctuary and flies to the rescue, coming to stand in front of the Pharaoh and deflecting the attack.
Bakura protests that this isn't part of the game! Yami laughs, asking if Bakura forgot that there were two people playing this game. Holding up a small figure of Hasan, he says he has a token, too. Bakura asks where he got that!
The Great Shadow Magus demands to know who stands in the way of his destiny. The defender says that he is Hasan, protector of the Pharaohs. For centuries, he has defended the honor of Egypt's kings. He tells the Pharaoh to fear not, for he will shield him from the darkness, just as he did for the Pharaoh's father, and his father before. (Japanese Hasan says he's come from Aknamkanon to protect the Pharaoh.)
The Pharaoh remembers Hasan appearing to him in the cave, warning him that Zorc the Dark One will soon awaken. But he thought he was just hallucinating!
The Shadow Magus says that if Hasan is truly the protector of the Pharaohs, he should be protecting Seto, the true king of Egypt. (Japanese Zork Necrophades tells Hasan that if he's Aknamkanon's messenger, tell him that Seto is the one who can rule Egypt.) Hasan commands the darkness to be gone (Japanese Hasan says that he doesn't trust the words of someone who's sold himself to the Dark God), and the Shadow Magus' attack is broken. Bakura screams, No! as the shards of the attack fall upon the playing field. One of them strikes his time-freezing hourglass and breaks it. Yami says that his friends are now free!
The Pharaoh and guardians are unfrozen. The Shadow Magus protests that he rendered them powerless! Not any more, says Hasan. The Shadow Spell has been broken.
Bakura says it's only a matter of time before the Shadows claim the Pharaoh's spirit, and everything he cares about crumbles. The Pharaoh's poor friends are running out of steam. Yami asks how, and Bakura explains that, attached to everyone's Duel Disks is a sensor that measures life energy. His Great Shadow Magus is at full power, but the same cannot be said for the Pharaoh's friends. Glowing meters on their Diadiankhs are all less than half full. Bakura says that once someone's life force sensor goes dark, their spirit is banished to the Shadow Realm. That goes for Yami, too—when he loses in the past, he loses here, as well.
Bakura asks if Yami understands the brilliance of the game he's created. Bakura and Yami are the game masters, manipulating the fates of people who lived five thousand years ago. At times, they're merely observing events exactly as they were played out in the past, and at other times they intervene, changing the outcome in their favor. They're like two sides of the same coin, playing out the ultimate battle between light and shadows. (Japanese Bakura says that everyone in this world has a sensor measuring out their lives, but if they don't have a Diadiankh, they can't see it, and don't know how long they have left. He asks Yami if he knows how many have already died.)
Yami protests that this must end! Bakura says that, of course, every game has an end. It's just a question of who the victor will be, and who will spend an eternity roaming the Shadow Realm. Here they sit, high above the rest of the world, deciding the future of mankind. The fate of the world rests in their hands! (Japanese Bakura says it's no good for Yami to pretend he isn't responsible. He's the one who started this war. In this game, they're both gods. The winner of this RPG can be the ultimate god.)
Yami says that Bakura may fight for greed, but he fights for the safety of his friends and the world. He defeated Bakura once, and he'll do it again. (Japanese Yami tells Bakura not to compare him to Bakura. He doesn't want to be a god. No matter what happens, he'll protect his friends and the world.) Bakura says that's all in the past. In this Shadow Game, he has all sorts of advantages he didn't have the first time. And Yami will never remember how he won. (Japanese Bakura says he'll be the Dark God and lay waste as much as he can. He'll show Yami the end of the world.) Yami says he still has time (Japanese Yami calls Bakura "kisama"), but Bakura, with his hand on his hourglass, says that the countdown to destruction has already begun.
The sands fall through the hourglass.
To Be Continued