As Giyu and Akaza face each other, Giyu comments on the reason he fights. He doesn't want to battle to his best ability and he doesn't like battle where opponents continually swing for fun. But now, he had never faced someone who overwhelmed him in the first clash. Giyu states that Akaza's senses are all finely tuned and polished, his own sense are now switched on to a state where only the strong battle. As he finally understands the moments of life and death in a battle truly tests their abilities, Tanjiro watches as Giyu unlocks his Demon Slayer Mark.
Giyu rushes forward and swings, the blade just missing Akaza's neck. Akaza tries to punch his head off but the Hashira ducks down and swings again, with the demon bending back to escape the strike. Akaza realizes the mark has appeared and his speed has now increased. Giyu uses his Water Breathing, Fourth Form: Striking Tide and slices through Akaza's forearm, the latter however had attacked as well and has struck the side of Giyu's head. Tanjiro watches the battle, commenting how despite Giyu and Akaza are now virtually as fast as each other, Akaza had immediately matched Giyu's newly found power. He knows in a battle of stamina, humans will lose and despite this battle taking place, the final goal is to beat Muzan. Tanjiro tries to think how Akaza's attacks manage to be so accurate and how he can also predict attacks he doesn't see immediately. Remembering the moments Akaza mentioned fighting spirit in battle with Kyujuro, he attempts to define it and recalls a conversation he had with Inosuke.
Inosuke claims that battle spirit feels like a stinging sensation where the enemy is aiming for, Tanjiro believing it to be the reason he could notice Gyutaro's attacks. Inosuke is asked to demonstrate and he asks Tanjiro to look at a part of his body, which he accurate determines is his right shoulder. As Tanjiro becomes amazed, Inosuke notes that someone looking at him with a murderous gaze is easier to determine where they will attack and his whole body will sting if said attacker wants to really kill him. However, he becomes angered that someone looking at him without the intent to kill become difficult to notice, remembering how the old lady at the Wisteria House suddenly appeared behind him without him able to notice. He then reasons that if he battled a demon without showing the intent to kill, it would be easy to kill them. But Tanjiro believes it impossible to kill a demon without showing it.
Despite remembering it as a childish conversation, Tanjiro notes of interesting points within it and tries to use them with the current battle with Akaza. He believes Akaza does sense something in his opponents and that gives him the edge in combat but Tanjiro cannot figure out what it is. He tries to think how he can interfere with the Destructive Death: Compass Needle he uses. Seeing Akaza open from Giyu's blow, he attempts to use the Hinokami Kagura: Dance on the Upper Moon's exposed neck but Akaza catches the blade without seeing it. As a shocked Tanjiro watches helplessly, Akaza mocks him for his open flank and uses his other hand to strike at Tanjiro's stomach, but only manages to cut him slightly. At that moment, Tanjiro figures out his situation.