In a Pinch with the Last Battle! (ラストバトルでピンチ！ Romaji: "Rasuto Batoru de Pinchi!") is the twelfth episode of Hai-Furi.
The battle to save millions of residents of the Tokyo Bay area rages on, as the Harekaze tries to delay the Musashi into entering the area. With the Blue Mermaids' reserve force in full retreat, Akeno and her classmates are the only ones standing in the way of uncontrollable destruction.
Episode Summary Edit
Delaying Tactics Edit
The Musashi was only 20 minutes from the Uraga Channel, having fended off Inspector Hiraga's reserve fleet, TU01, with three of its four ships unable to continue combat.
As the air above the maritime cities filled with the ominous echoes of warning sirens, Principal Munetani prepared to engage the Musashi atop a control tower. She received a transmission from the Harekaze, stating its overall plan to delay the Musashi. She agreed but reiterated that the Harekaze has only one shot at it, as ground forces were mobilizing to stop it. Three to five minutes would be enough.
Akeno ordered all guns blazing, firing everything the Harekaze has against the Musashi to slow it down. Shells rained across the vast expanse of water, with neither ship pulling away from the fight. All eight torpedoes launched hit their mark, slowing the Musashi down but at the cost of multiple indirect hits on the Harekaze.
Their mission accomplished, the Harekaze disengaged. But the Musashi continued firing full broadside, hell-bent on not just sinking the destroyer but obliterating it. With the damage worsening, Mashiro advised abandoning ship.
Reinforcements Have Arrived Edit
Akeno was about to give the order to abandon ship when the sound of shells flying overhead pierced the tense air above the battle. The Musashi was peppered by an unknown salvo.
An allied battle group had come to the Harekaze's aid. It includes the battlecruiser Admiral Graf Spee, the battleship Hiei, the destroyers Maikaze (designation number Y-471) and Hamakaze (designation number Y-470), and the Littoral Combat Ship Tenjin (designation number Y-089). They had arrived to pay forward their debt to the Harekaze for saving them.
Under the command of Instructor Furushou, now fully recovered from the virus, the battle group moved in to flank the Musashi from both sides, forcing it to divide its firepower. Akeno rescinded the order to abandon ship, now inspired to continue the battle with their friends.
The Harekaze raced to get close to the Musashi to board it and administer the antibody to its crew. Kouko suggested using a new weapon the Akashi had installed days prior, the Type 4 203 mm rocket, mounted on the stern along a rail system. Mei and Tama hurried to the stern and fired the rocket. It flew above the Musashi's bridge but created a smokescreen.
Taking advantage of a blinded Musashi, the Harekaze moved to the Musashi's starboard side and crashed into it. The two hulls became lodged in twisted steel, allowing the raiding party to board the battleship.
Mashiro urged Akeno to go to her friend Moeka, despite the latter knowing that a captain's job is to command from the bridge. Akeno eventually gave in to her excitement and hurried to the Musashi's bridge, while the battle to save its crew raged around her. The two friends were finally reunited, happy to see each other since the epidemic.
The Harekaze's Last Song Edit
The ships returned to Yokosuka to a heroes' welcome. One by one, the distinguished crew of the Harekaze walked down the plank, glad to step foot on solid ground once more.
Suddenly, a loud creak caught everyone's attention. The Harekaze, having completed its mission, began to sink by the bow, much to everyone's shock. The Musashi's relentless attacks earlier had taken their toll on the destroyer.
They watched and shouted helplessly as the destroyer that fought through several mismatches and survived to fight another day slip beneath the waves. As much as the loss saddened them, Akeno and several officers saluted the destroyer for its selfless service. The class stood in honor of the ship until it went to its final resting place.
Akeno gives a smile in the end, grateful for the journey.
- The Type 4 rocket was developed by the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. While normally launched from a standard mortar tube, it can also be launched via a rail system. Not to be confused with the larger, rail-launched Type 4 400 mm rocket.