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Set Your Heart Ablaze (心を燃やせ Kokoro o Moyase?) is the 33rd episode of the Kimetsu no Yaiba TV anime series, and the 7th episode of its second season.

Synopsis

The demon that appeared before Tanjiro and Rengoku after they defeated Enmu was the Upper Three, Akaza. While injured and on the ground, Tanjiro is almost attacked by Akaza and narrowly escapes death when Rengoku quickly strikes back. During the intense battle between Rengoku and Akaza, Akaza suggests to Rengoku that he should also become a demon. Rengoku vehemently refuses Akaza's offer, but his injured body is exhausted and being pushed past its physical limits...[1]

Plot

Kyojuro Rengoku continues to fend off Upper Three Akaza and sustains fatal wounds in the process, while the demon heals the damage instantly. After his Flame Breathing, Fifth Form: Flame Tiger is overwhelmed by the Upper Rank's Destructive Death: Disorder, Akaza backs away and leaves Kyojuro to soak up the pain. Tanjiro and Inosuke look on helplessly as the powerful Hashira is brought low by the Upper Rank, Tanjiro still too exhausted to move after using Hinokami Kagura and sustaining injuries.

Akaza attempts to goad Kyojuro again to transform. healing the gash in his chest, whereas Kyojuro's fatal wounds will inevitably kill him lest he becomes a demon. Without warning, fire engulfs Kyojuro's body, as Akaza looks on confused at his determination. Kyojuro raises his sword and takes a stance, stating he will fulfill his duties and won't let anyone die, as he plans to damage Akaza as much as possible in an instant. He uses Flame Breathing: Esoteric Art and strengthens himself for battle once more. Akaza becomes excited and declares he must become a demon, amazed at his continual spirit and determination despite his irreplacable wounds. Telling himself to, "Set your heart ablaze. Go beyond your limits", Kyojuro declares he is the Flame Hashira and uses Ninth Form: Rengoku. Akaza responds with Destructive Death: Annihilation Type.

Kyojuro rushes forward in a giant fiery dragon and meets Akaza's numerous shockwaves. In the ensuing chaos, Kyojuro slashes Akaza's arm in half and his chest twice. However, when the fire fades, Tanjiro looks on in horror as Akaza has manage to punch through Kyojuro's solar plexus. As his own slashes heal quickly, the demon urges the Hashira to transform, as this final wound will kill him. Kyojuro suddenly remembers his mother Ruka and sees a memory of her during his childhood. Shortly before her death, she had one last conversation with him about why he is stronger than others. When he responds he doesn't know the reason, Ruka tells him it is to protect those weaker than him, "It is the duty of those born strong to protect the weak". The promise becoming the drive that pushes him as a Hashira. Ruka hugs Kyojuro and tells him she is blessed to have such a strong and gentle son, as both mother and son tear up in a tender embrace.

Recalling her words, Kyojuro musters the strength in his hand and drives his blade into Akaza's neck, as he himself tells her he is honoured to have her as a mother. Kyojuro summons more strength and drives his sword deeper; Akaza attempts to punch him with his free hand, but the Demon Slayer stops his fist mid-blow, shocking the demon. The sun begins to rise, to Akaza's horror. He attempts to pull himself free but Kyojuro holds him in place and refuses to let him escape. Despite his warning, Tanjiro disregards his wounds and runs to grab his sword and help him kill Akaza.

Within sunlight about to emerge, Akaza fights harder to escape but Kyojuro maintains his hold, locking the two in-place. Tanjiro urges Inosuke to move for Kyojuro's sake. Not as injured as Tanjiro, Inosuke runs towards Akaza and leaps into the air, using Beast Breathing, First Fang: Pierce in an attempt to attack the Upper Rank. Suddenly, Akaza rips his arms off from Kyojuro's body and stomps hard onto the ground, creating shockwaves knocking Inosuke away and stalling Tanjiro. Seeing the sun, he blocks his face and runs into the forest to safety. In sheer desperation, Tanjiro chases him and empowers himself with the breathing of the Hinokami Kagura, hurling his blade at the Upper Moon and piercing his chest. Tanjiro angrily calls out to Akaza, telling him to not run and calling him a coward for retreating, making Akaza furious at his words. He mutters he was fleeing from the sun, not him, and declares the battle over since Kyojuro will die shortly anyway, as he successfully escape the sunlight.

Tanjiro proclaims the Demon Slayers have always fought demons when the demons hold the advantage at night, and they fight despite their wounds not healing quickly and being unable to regenerate limbs. He yells out Kyojuro is the true victor of their clash for being stronger, not letting anyway die and for fighting till the end, as he begins to cry uncontrollably. Inosuke becomes shakened seeing Tanjiro lose his composure but Kyojuro smiles gently at his young demon slayer's words. He urges him to stop yelling and risk reopening his wound. Kyojuro invites Tanjiro for a final conversation before his death. He explains that during his dream, his father often read notes made by the previous Flame Hashira and that the notes may contain information about Hinokami Kagura that he didn't know, instructing him to visit the Rengoku residence of the Demon Slayer Corps. With the sun fully risen, Akaza's torn arm burns to ash and Kyojuro's wound bleeds quicker. Despite Tanjiro urging him to stop the bleeding, Kyojuro calmly tells him he will be dead soon and instead decides to talk in his final moments.

Kyojuro instructs Tanjiro to tell his younger brother Senjuro to "follow his heart and to walk down the path he feels is right" and to tell his father to "take care of himself". He adds that he accepts Nezuko as a rightful member of the Demon Slayer Corps, as she fought to save the passengers while bleeding. Kyojuro encourages Tanjiro that despite his own feelings of weakness and uselessness, to "set your heart ablaze". Time will always move forward and he shouldn't despair in his death, as he was happy to protect them as a Hashira. Finally, addresssing Tanjiro, Inosuke and Zenitsu, he tells the trio he believes in them and to become the next Hashira of the Demon Slayer Corps. Suddenly, a vision of Ruka appears before Kyojuro. He asks his mother if he had fulfilled his duties; Ruka tells her son he has made her proud. Hearing this, Kyojuro smiles brightly and finally succumbs to his wounds.

Zenitsu approaches Tanjiro and Inosuke, telling them that Kyojuro had saved the train from becoming more damaged when it derailed. Shaken by what he sees, he asks if an Upper Moon really had appeared, to wish Tanjiro confirms had happened. Tanjiro begins to cry and sadly states that despite mastering one thing, another wall appears before him. As the three begin to tear up, Tanjiro asks himself if he could ever become like Kyojuro. Hearing his doubts, Inosuke angrily confronts him and tells his friend Kyojuro himself believed in them, telling him to stop whining. He tells them that crying for the dead won't bring them back and they should move forward, as he himself begins to cry. As Zenitsu tells him so, Inosuke headbutts him but doesn't stop the tears, as the three mourn Kyojuro's death.

Kyojuro's Kasugai crow tells the Demon Slayer Crops the news of his death and Akaza's appearance. The news spread to the Hashira, who are informed by their Kasugai crows. Shinobu and Kanao react with sadness, Mitsuri is shocked at his death, Muichiro doesn't respond and Tengen is in disbelief that even Kyojuro couldn't defeat an Upper Rank. Obanai refuses to believe it, Gyomei prays for his soul while Genya is stunned, Sanemi reaffirms his hatred of demons and a surprised Giyu quietly believes it.

Kagaya Ubuyashiki is informed that not one of the 200 passengers was killed. Relieved, he calls Kyojuro "a remarkable child" and states he is not saddened by his demise, as he himself will shortly join him in the land of the dead.

Characters in Order of Appearance

Anime Notes

References

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