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SynopsisEdit

At Hablog's house, he discusses Ozen with Shiggy and Nat. Nat asks what artifacts Ozen has, but Habolg says for security reasons, that information isn't made public until a White Whistle's whistle is returned to Orth. Inwardly, Habolg is worried how Riko's meeting with Ozen will go.

Ozen tells Reg that locals believe in The Abyss instead of God, because the bottom is unknown and they fear it. Therefore, if one could reach the bottom and return home easily, that faith and the value of artifacts would be swept away, as easily as Reg is when she pushes him. Ozen adds that treasures of “The Abyss” aren't listed, not because they're not found, but because they cannot exist, and decides to destroy Reg before he can regain his memories. Reg is amazed by Ozen's strength, but refuses to back down and ties her up with his extending arms. Ozen easily breaks free and grabs Reg's leg, slamming him into the ground repeatedly. Riko tries to stop her, but Ozen flicks her with a finger and sends Riko flying into the wall. Reg instantly jumps up to check on Riko, finding her unconscious and bleeding. Reg decides he cannot hold back against Ozen, and prepares to fire his Incinerator, though in a smaller beam so he does not destroy the Seeker Camp. Ozen grabs his Reg's arm while the beam is charging and points it at Riko. Reg knocks his arm aside just before it fires, piercing through the ceiling. Reg slams Ozen into a wall, tearing her cloak in the process. This reveals that much of her body is covered in Thousand-Men Pins, which greatly increase her strength and vitality. Ozen puts on her armor to continue the battle.

Riko wakes up to find Reg hanging limp in Ozen's grasp. Ozen tells Riko that they never should have left Orth, and that Riko will eventually stop moving, just as anything else revived by the Curse-Warding Box does. Riko says that she didn't come to the Abyss to have a long life, and Reg being with her is the most important thing. Riko begs Reg not to lose, but Ozen stomps him into the ground and says they are unfit.

Reg wakes up to something pounding on his head. He finds Ozen and her scouts surrounding him, and Riko flings herself on him, weeping. Reg is disgusted with himself for passing out and leaving Riko unprotected. It turns out Marulk defied Ozen's order to stay put, and ran to get the scouts, hoping they would intervene. Ozen praises his actions, but promises to punish him for disobeying later. Reg realizes the whole fight was staged, but Ozen says she wasn't holding back, and that threats deeper in the Abyss are more powerful than she is. As they are, Riko and Reg cannot hope to survive the Abyss. Ozen orders Marulk to help them recover, and plans to begin training them the next day. Before she leaves, Ozen confirms that Lyza's grave was empty, and that Lyza is waiting.

In flashbacks, Ozen's history with Lyza is revealed. Ozen explains that her peculiar hairstyle hides the physical scars from ascension strain on her head. A young Lyza sees these scars as proof that Ozen has repelled the Abyss, and asks Ozen to become her mentor. Over time, Lyza becomes a Black Whistle, vows to hunt down whoever injured Ozen, becomes a White Whistle, and finally marries Torka. Ozen is clearly not a fan of the latter. After Riko is stillborn, Ozen curses Torka for getting Lyza pregnant, dying, and leaving Lyza in such a miserable state. Ozen considers taking only Lyza and the Unheard Bell back to the surface, but suddenly hears Riko crying in the Curse-Warding Box.

Two years later in Orth, Lyza thanks Ozen for saving Riko, who is now very energetic. They discuss Lyza's apprentice Jiruo, who refused Ozen's invitation (thus becoming a "shameless brat" in Ozen's eyes). Ozen notes that Riko's survival is due to Lyza hiding her well, and concealing her parentage. Lyza has faith that Jiruo will protect Riko, and admits Riko is too important to her: Riko's life is the result of countless sacrifices, and no artifact Lyza has found is equal to that. If they stayed together, Lyza would want to leave the Abyss behind, thus taking away Riko's chance to explore it. She would rather they both have the freedom to make their own choices. Ozen laughs, saying that Lyza is trying to sound noble, but she really only wants to reach the bottom herself. Lyza asks Ozen to tell Riko the truth, if Riko should ever come to Ozen wanting to explore the Abyss. Ozen agrees in her usual cold manner.

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