Sword Art Online II Episode 6: Duel in the Wastelands
Beyond getting Sinon to notice him, having an avatar that looks like a girl has now served a second purpose for Kirito – it’s presumably deterred Death Gun from confirming that this is the same guy who was a clearer at the front-lines in SAO. Unfortunately, the resemblance is still pretty uncanny, and Death Gun has decided to go for his neck regardless. Whoops. Well, it seems like entering BoB was the right decision at any rate, as attracting Death Gun’s attention was in fact one of Kirito’s original goals. Though he’s managed to get himself spooked in the process. It’s nothing on the level of Sinon’s trauma, and I don’t think he’s ever displayed this sort of sentiment so vividly before, but the notion of actually having killed people is weighing pretty heavily on him even a year on. It’s always only been members of Laughing Coffin -the SAO flashback reminiscence was nostalgic- and it was arguably unavoidable, but those deaths were a far cry from the raid’s original objective – which was to subdue the members and stick them in the in-game prison to prevent more unnecessary deaths. As one of the primary people who cleared out a lot of Laughing Coffin, it’s no surprise that Death Gun would have a personal grudge towards Kirito – he’d be fairly intent on targeting him regardless of the strength he displays in GGO. And there’s no better time to do that than in the main BoB tournament, which will be operating as a battle royale.
Even when it’s a fight that doesn’t technically matter, Kirito still won’t concede victory – well, he was about to, but Sinon pulled him out of that. And even though it didn’t technically matter, it still turned out to be a great fight – really dynamic, especially that first missed shot (on purpose) and all those flying glass shards. As someone who you’d think would hold a lot of pride as a gamer in general, it should have meant a lot to Kirito just as it did to Sinon – the whole thing with Death Gun must have really rattled him if it’d make him lose sight of himself like that. Although the outcome of the match didn’t change the fact that both Kirito and Sinon would progress to the main tournament, it did achieve something nonetheless – I’d like to think that he got a little closer to Sinon this episode, both through holding her in an intimate distance as well as in emotional terms. Sinon must be feeling more sympathy (or at least less hostility) towards someone who’s displayed a vulnerability she’s only all too familiar with. And I’m sure she was impressed by how he managed to cut a bullet from the Hecate in two, from a distance that’s supposed to be a guaranteed hit – clearly, Kirito is an onii-sama in the making. An embarrassed Sinon really is cute!