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Muichiro Tokito, Genya Shinazugawa, Sanemi Shinazugawa and Gyomei Himejima vs Kokushibo is a battle that takes place in the Infinity Castle, that occurs between Demon Slayer Genya Shinazugawa and three Hashira, Muichiro Tokito, Sanemi Shinazugawa and Gyomei Himejima against Upper Rank One Kokushibo.

Prologue

Muichiro Tokito is separated from Gyomei Himejima by Upper Rank 4 Nakime's Blood Demon Art in which she manipulates a large column of the Infinity Castle and warps an opening to where Muichiro is teleported to where another Upper Rank is residing. As Muichiro is getting back up, he sees a petrifying six-eyed figure in front of him with a purple and black hexagonal patterned kimono and a long sword.[1]

The figure gazes at Muichiro and discerns that the Hashira is of familiarity to him. Muichiro sees the kanji for Upper Rank ( (じょう) (げん) Jōgen?) as well as the kanji for One ( (いち) Ichi?), realizing that he is looking at the infamous Upper Rank One, Kokushibo in the flesh. Kokushibo sees the muscles, ribs and blood flow of Muichiro identical to how Tanjiro saw that of Akaza and Giyu and determines that Muichiro is of similar blood to him. Muichiro on the other hand perceives that Upper Moon One is far more terrifying, dignified and majestic compared to any other Twelve Kizuki member as well as him having a sword similar to the Nichirin Swords believing that Upper Rank One was once a Demon Slayer. As he grabs the hilt of his sheathed sword, Muichiro's body begins to tremble due to the Upper Rank's horrifying aura despite this never happening once in his life.[2]

Kokushibo tells Muichiro that he is his descendant.

The Upper Rank asks the Hashira of his name, in which he stutters it out loud. Kokushibo finds out that the 'Tsugikuni' name has died out and is no more. This perplexes Muichiro as he has never heard the name Tsugikuni once and asks the Upper Rank what Tsugikuni is. Because of hundreds of years passing, Kokushibo knew that it was inevitable for his family name to die out in which he says out loud to be 'Michikatsu Tsugikuni'. He also states that he is a descendent of one of his children, thus making him his literal offspring. This greatly horrifies Muichiro that he is related in blood to an Upper Rank, thus him questioning if Kokushibo is a user of the Sun Breathing, the first Breathing Style. However, Muichiro attempts to calm himself down with his breathing which makes Kokushibo praise his mentality. Muichiro quickly dashes toward the Upper Rank, thus the battle begins.[3]

Battle

Muichiro trying to attack Upper Rank One, Kokushibo.

Muichiro attempts to behead Kokushibo with his Mist Breathing, Second Form: Eight-Layered Mist. The Upper Rank however dodges it elegantly and admires Muichiro's swordsmanship skills along with realizing that his descendant uses the Mist Breathing. Muichiro is not interested in another conversation with his so-called "ancestor" in the slightest and unleashes his Mist Breathing, Fifth Form: Sea of Clouds and Haze on the Upper Rank who which evades the attack again with no difficulty. Kokushibo calls Muichiro's name and that despite his incredibly young age of 14, his swordsmanship skills are this refined and beautiful.[4]

Connection Through Blood

Kokushibo using his Moon Breathing, First Form and cuts Muichiro's left hand clean off .

Muichiro says that despite him being his descendant, over the hundreds of years that have passed no drop of blood of them are connected anymore. As he is giving his articulation to Kokushibo, his Demon Slayer Mark appears once again to which catches the Upper Rank by surprise. Muichiro finally unleashes his original Mist Breathing, Seventh Form: Obscuring Clouds on the Upper Rank, in which he has never seen in the hundreds of years of him fighting numerous Mist Breathing users. Unfortunately, the Upper Rank evades the attack once more. Kokushibo finally decides to unsheathe his sword due to it going against his samurai code of respect and uses his Moon Breathing, First Form: Dark Moon, Evening Palace on the Mist Hashira.[5]

Kokushibo stabs Muichiro with his own blade.

Muichiro sees his left hand cut off from the attack, and realizes that Upper Rank One utilizes a Breathing Style he has never seen, the Moon Breathing. He also notes that Kokushibo's speed is in another dimension, him not even being able to react to his attack. Muichiro however still fights on and bites a strand of his hair in order to stop the hemorrhaging, in which Kokushibo praises him for. He uses the Mist Breathing, Fourth Form: Shifting Flow Slash in order to behead Kokushibo, but instead the Upper Rank grabs the Hashira's blade with his fingers and redirects the angle of the attack to stab Muichiro with his own sword through a column. As Muichiro exclaims in pain, Kokushibo requests him to become a Demon so he may become a member of the Twelve Kizuki, possibly an Upper Rank.[6]

Kokushibo gracefully cutting Genya's arm off.

The Upper Rank is moved that he has witnessed a descendant of his own cells after the centuries of living. He tells Muichiro that there is nothing to fear anymore once he is a demon. His arm would easily regrow and due to Kokushibo being the remaining Upper Rank to properly fight at the moment, he is certain that Muzan Kibutsuji would find some use of a Demon Slayer becoming a Demon. If he doesn't, he then wants Muichiro to accept his death as his fate. Thus proving that no matter how much one may try, they can only go so far. Genya is shown behind a curtain with a Nichirin Sword and his traditional western double-barreled shotgun. As he was about to pull the trigger, Kokushibo is seen right behind Genya and questions him if he agrees or not. Doing so, Genya's arm wielding his shotgun falls off his body with Muichiro screaming his name at the top of his lungs. Genya quickly draws his Nichirin Sword from his back but to no avail as his remaining arm gets cut clean off by Kokushibo. Kokushibo sees Genya's cellular structure realizing that he is a Demon Slayer who doesn't use any Breathing Style but rather consumes demons as his source of strength, thus making him have similar regeneration to one as well. With no hesitation, Kokushibo intentionally cuts Genya's torso in half with Muichiro knowing that Genya will be killed by his ancestor while not even wanting him to fully turn into a demon.[7]

Brothers In Arms

Sanemi using the Wind Breathing to save Genya from Kokushibo.

Kokushibo is surprised that Genya is not dead by his wounds even when he specifically went for the kill. He says that he met a Demon Slayer three centuries ago that ate Demons like Genya and killed him by slashing his torso. Since Kokushibo knows that any and all Demon-consuming Demon Slayers have to have a vulnerable spot, he tries to decapitate Genya. Suddenly, Genya's brother Sanemi rescues him by reflecting the Upper Rank's attack with the Wind Breathing, Fourth Form: Rising Dust Storm. Kokushibo makes his distance and sees that the Wind Hashira, Sanemi Shinazugawa has come in his presence. Sanemi agrees with the Upper Rank that he is indeed the Wind Hashira and that he'll be the wind that'll rip off his head. The Wind Hashira asks his younger brother as to why he would murder their own mother, in order to protect him. As Sanemi explains this, Genya remembers when Tanjiro told him that despite Sanemi being angry at him for joining the Demon Slayer Corps, he never had a scent of hatred from him. As a result, Genya should have no fear of saying anything to his brother.[8]

Sanemi using the Wind Breathing: First Form to attack Kokushibo.

Sanemi tells Genya that he should've never joined the Demon Slayer Corps and that he should've had a wife and children, and vowed to protect them. This makes Genya shed tears as Sanemi expresses his true feelings towards him. Kokushibo sees the tranquility between the two Demon Slayer brothers and gives him nostalgia for his own younger brother. Sanemi shouts in anger at the Upper Rank for him slicing his younger brother and dashes at Kokushibo while the Upper Rank attempts to behead him, but Sanemi slides underneath his legs in order to slash them off. As Kokushibo jumps into the air, Sanemi uses the Wind Breathing, First Form: Dust Whirlwind Cutter in which Kokushibo draws his sword in order to block the attack. Sanemi is disgusted by Kokushibo's blade filled with flesh and eyes.[9]

Sanemi using the Wind Breathing: Third form to counter Kokushibo's attack.

As both of their swords clash, Kokushibo uses the Moon Breathing, Fifth Form: Moon Spirit Calamitous Eddy on Sanemi, forcing him to backstep away from the attack. However Sanemi is confused as to how so many slashes are appearing even when the Upper Rank isn't swinging his blade. Sanemi counters Kokushibo's attack with the Wind Breathing, Third Form: Clear Storm Wind Tree which he praises both Sanemi and their attacks for being at their absolute peak. Sanemi thinks to himself that he can't stop getting goosebumps at Kokushibo's overall prowess and skill. He comes to the conclusion that Kokushibo's slashes are surrounded by miniature chaotic slashes that constantly change in change in size and length, thus making them have no set pattern making them even more deadly. He knows that he can't ward off the Upper Rank's attack completely due to its sporadic and warped behavior, and that if he didn't have the experience of a Hashira and a Demon Slayer it would be absolutely impossible for him to defend himself. And most of all, he uses Breathing Styles and that his speed and strength is still rising as he is still speaking. Thus Sanemi is having a lot of fun and that Kokushibo is a demon worth killing with pride.[10]

Sanemi attempts to stab Kokushibo with Genya's Nichirin Sword.

Sanemi assaults Kokushibo with the Wind Breathing, Second Form: Claws, Purifying Wind to which the Upper Rank reflects it off with a basic attack with the chaotic blades. As he was reflecting the Breathing attack, Sanemi falls from the air attempting to cut Kokushibo but fails as he blocks it with his flesh sword. He comes to Kokushibo's surprise as Sanemi attempts to stab him with Genya's Nichirin Sword through the bottom of his skull. The Upper Rank elegantly dodges the blade and slashes it off Sanemi's foot. As Sanemi and Kokushibo keep clashing, Sanemi notes that he can't even blink once and that he was near death due to him nearly mispositioning the tip of his blade, Kokushibo praises Sanemi which reminds him of the Wind Hashira during the Sengoku Period, proving that he either sparred against the former Hashira or killed him. He then overwhelms Sanemi with his Moon Breathing, Sixth Form: Perpetual Night, Lonely Moon - Incessant which knocks him back along with decimating the surrounding landscape.[11]

Kokushibo uses Loathsome Moon, Chains to attempt to kill Sanemi.

Cats to Catnip, Demons to Marechi

Sanemi is revealed to be heavily wounded with his torso having gaping wounds. Kokushibo venerates Sanemi's ambition and his desire to fight but knows that his internal organs will disgorge all over the floor if he moves anymore. Suddenly, Kokushibo's heart rate increases and he begins to stagger. Sanemi begins chuckling as his blood even affects the highest of the Upper Ranks of the Twelve Kizuki and compares the irresistibility of his blood to demons like cats to catnip. He even says that Demons receive a drunken effect just from taking a whiff of his own blood, with it being the rarest of the rare and once in a lifetime. Sanemi continues to attack with the Wind Breathing, Sixth Form: Black Wind Mountain Mist to Kokushibo's surprise as despite his near life-threatening wounds he still continues to engage in combat. Kokushibo even states that if he fought any other Hashira, they would certainly die if they had the same injuries as what Sanemi has. This comes to the conclusion that Sanemi is "barely even human".[12]

Gyomei using Stone Breathing, Second Form to attack Kokushibo.

Kokushibo then steps on Sanemi's Nichirin Sword and slashes downward toward the Hashira. Sanemi blocks Kokushibo's attack from hitting him with Genya's western shotgun and fires it at the Upper Rank but to no avail as he reflects all the bullets with his flesh sword. Kokushibo then uses his Moon Breathing, Third Form: Loathsome Moon - Chains on Sanemi. As the dust clears, Sanemi is nowhere to be seen and Gyomei Himejima appears and says that the Demon Slayer Corps will never stop until all demons are eradicated from the world. He immediately tells Sanemi to stitch his stomach wound and to stay out of the fight until he finishes. Kokushibo accesses the "Transparent World" to see Gyomei's structure and says that he is the greatest swordsman he has fought in three centuries. Gyomei keeps swinging his flail to gain more momentum and strikes it onto the ground where Kokushibo stood, to which he attempts to use a Moon Breathing attack but Gyomei's chained axe comes after and Gyomei uses the Stone Breathing, Second Form: Upper Smash. As Kokushibo dodges the spiked flail, the chains surround his neck and Kokushibo tries to cut the chains with his sword but fails. As the chains nearly close, Kokushibo ducks down and they only catch a small strand of hair and says that the ball and chain are made of pure iron and that it is an extremely high-grade weapon. Kokushibo's sword is made out of his own flesh so if he tries to cut the chains his sword will burn out before cutting it.[13]

Kokushibo and Gyomei's attacks clash.

Clash of the Titans

Kokushibo even implies that iron that absorbed sunlight to that extent wasn't discovered during the Sengoku Period where both swordsmithing techniques and the Demon Slayer Corps' might were at their absolute peak. Thus in order for him to not be able to get its full extent of damage, he goes close to Gyomei in order for him to not harm himself. Both Kokushibo and Gyomei use their respective Breathing Styles and collide with the Moon Breathing, Second Form: Pearl Flower Moongazing and the Stone Breathing, Fourth Form: Volcanic Rock, Rapid Conquest. After the clash with their Breathing Styles, Kokushibo states that when his sword breaks it'll regenerate immediately, thus making all of his attacks completely pointless and pitiful. Gyomei however does not care in the slightest, he crosses his arms and wishes he saved something for when he faces against Muzan Kibutsuji but knows that now he has nothing to lose using it in this dire situation, thus his Demon Slayer Mark is awakened.[14]

Genya eating Kokushibo's strand of hair.

Meanwhile, Muichiro finally unpins himself from the column that Kokushibo stabbed him to and pulls out his Nichirin Sword from his shoulder. Doing so, he shames his body for not being as durable as Tengen Uzui's and knows that he only has a few hours left until he dies from his wounds if he doesn't get any special treatment which none are around. Knowning his, he decides that if he dies will give it his all and lessen the burden for the other Hashira that are fighting the Upper Rank. He grabs the bandages that Kokushibo covers his torso with when he requested him to become a demon and covers his amputated hand. He picks up his Nichirin Sword and just as he was about to join in on the fight with Gyomei, Genya shouts out his name and appeals him to get the strand of hair of Kokushibo when Gyomei used Stone Breathing: Second Form. He says to Muichiro that he wants to protect his older brother at all costs and to fight until the very end, to which Muichiro completely agrees and joins Genya.

Sanemi's Demon Slayer Mark awakens as he stitches the wounds on his abdomen.

The Price to Pay

Kokushibo on the other hand notices that Gyomei awakened his Demon Slayer Mark and pities him, to the Stone Hashira's confusion. From him glancing at Gyomei, especially with the "Transparent World", he assumes that Gyomei's age is around 27 which still comes to his confusion. Kokushibo then explains that those who awaken their Demon Slayer Mark will die before they see the age of 25. He says that despite the mark increasing one's power, it exchanges them of their own lifespan. Kokushibo laments the Stone Hashira for him mastering his Breathing techniques and bodily functions to his highest degree and that they will disappear without a trace forever due to him unlocking the Demon Slayer Mark. He questions Gyomei that if he also believes that it is tragic as well, to which he disagrees. Gyomei elucidates that that information is old news and is outdated, he even accepts that due to him being a member of the Demon Slayer Corps there is no guarantee that he will see tomorrow even if he didn't awaken his mark. Gyomei finally demands Kokushibo to not promote his moronic notions to others, along with him reminding Kokushibo that there was an individual who bore a Demon Slayer Mark and lived past the age of 25. Angered by the demon underestimating his resolve, he again engages the Upper Rank. Meanwhile, Sanemi, who was able to patch up his torso injuries, also awakens his Demon Slayer Mark and enters combat with Gyomei.

Sanemi and Gyomei synchronizing their attacks against Kokushibo.

Side by Side

Kokushibo perceives that Sanemi has awakened his Demon Slayer Mark and questions if all the Hashira have awakened their Mark as well, if the Golden Age of the Demon Slayer Corps has been revived. Suddenly, Gyomei's spiked flail came behind Sanemi's head nearly catching Kokushibo by surprise, Sanemi takes this chance to then go for the Upper Rank's calves which he dodges. Kokushibo praises the Hashira even more due to their coordinated assaults despite them utilizing different Breathing Styles. Sanemi openly expresses his gratitude to Gyomei for them both sparring each other during their Hashira training.

Genya meanwhile as he consumes the strands of hair of Kokushibo, feels his body coming together near instantaneously. He also remembers that a chunk of Kokushibo's sword was separated by Gyomei and wonders how much more power he can achieve by consuming that as well but hears Muzan's faint voice again and questions if he is progressing more into a real demon. Kokushibo commends that two different Hashira using completely different Breathing Styles can combine their attacks in order to increase the devastation of their offensive capabilities. It is shown that Gyomei being blind uses a peculiar chained weapon in order to detect the rattling echoes from his chains. The Upper Rank thus swings his sword towards the blunt side of Sanemi's Nichirin Sword in order to break it, Sanemi however quickly reacts and righted his blade so it nullifies the impact from his strike.

Kokushibo fully extends his weapon against the Hashira.

With the Upper Moon's sword temporarily stuck, the two Hashira continue their offensive. Sanemi distracts the Demon with the Wind Breathing, First Form: Dust Whirlwind Cutter, then both Slayers combine their Wind Breathing, Seventh Form: Gale, Sudden Gusts and the Stone Breathing, First Form: Serpentinite Bipolar, managing to tear off Kokushibo's kimono. However, the two are suddenly injured by a mysterious attack. The Demon mocks them, saying that ripping clothes can't kill even an infant, before revealing his sword's hidden power: the ability to extend and branch its own blades.

The Power of a Weakling

Kokushibo commencing his bombardment of techniques toward the Hashira.

Now enraged, Kokushibo increases the ferocity of his attacks, and the Hashira, despite having their Marks unlocked, are being pushed back once again. Sanemi and Gyomei barely escape the onslaught, with Sanemi losing his index and middle fingers in his right in the process. Sanemi shames himself for not being able to react in time to avoid the attack. He also discerns that if Gyomei didn't change the trajectory of the attack with his chains he would have lost both of his arms as a result.

Back at the Ubuyashiki Estate, when asked by Kanata Ubuyashiki, Kiriya Ubuyashiki does not opt to send Tanjiro Kamado and Giyu Tomioka to the four fighters, trusting and believing in them to defeat the second most powerful Demon in existence.

Kokushibo completely overwhelming the Hashira.

In the battlefield, Kokushibo continues his

relentless bombardment, launching consecutive attacks toward the two Hashira first with his Moon Breathing, Seventh Form: Mirror of Misfortune, Moonlit, with Gyomei concerned that the Upper Rank's reach has increased even further along with the speed of his attack. Kokushibo releases another attack, Moon Breathing, Eighth Form: Moon-Dragon Ringtail which cuts one of Sanemi's calves and Gyomei's arms. Sanemi realixes that he cannot get close to Kokushibo's neck and that it takes all his effort just to dodge the attacks alone. The Demon follows up with his Moon Breathing, Ninth Form: Waning Moonswaths which cuts Sanemi's torso even further and shouts that Gyomei should just forget about him as he believes that he'll just be a burden. The barrage further injures the Wind and Stone Hashira, and the former is almost finished off by Moon Breathing, Tenth Form: Drilling Slashes, Moon Through Bamboo Leaves but is saved at the last second by a recovered Muichiro, whose wounds were patched up by Genya. As the three Hashira return to battle, Genya, mulling over at the back by Tanjiro's words that the weakest fighters have the highest potential to turn the tides of the fight, takes Kokushibo's discarded demonic blade and consumes it.

Kokushibo keeping his distance from the Hashira.

A Glimmer of Hope

As the battle rages on, with Gyomei's Stone Breathing, Fifth Form: Arcs of Justice preinterrupted by Kokushibo's Moon Breathing, Sixteenth Form: Moonbow, Half Moon, the Stone Hashira eventually realizes that the Demon's eyesight is unnatural, and that he can somehow predict the Demon Slayers' movements. In a moment of concentration, he sees through Kokushibo's body, realizing that he's entered the same "Transparent World" as the Upper Rank, allowing him, Sanemi and Muichiro to perceive the Upper Moon's movements and techniques. With this new development, the trio collectively charge at Kokushibo, aiming to press their newfound advantage and execute the Demon quickly and successfully. The Upper Rank attempts to cut them down at the same time using his Moon Breathing, Fourteenth Form: Catastrophe, Tenman Crescent Moon, but they manage to dodge the swings and close the gap. Gyomei distracts Kokushibo's attention by flicking a prayer bead, allowing Sanemi to approach with the Wind Breathing, First Form: Dust Whirlwind Cutter, stunning the Demon, and allowing Gyomei to rip his right arm off with his flail. Kokushibo notices the approaching Mist Hashira and attacks him, managing to sever the Demon Slayer's leg, but not before being impaled in the stomach with his Nichirin Sword. Unfortunately for the humans, the Upper Moon's head is still intact after the barrage, and as the Demon attempts to finish off the trio with the Moon Breathing, Sixteenth Form: Moonbow, Half Moon, Genya emerges from the shadows, now fully transformed into a demon, and fires his shotgun at Kokushibo and the attached Muichiro with this mutated double-barreled shotgun.

Kokushibo utilizing his Moon Breathing, Sixteenth Form to keep the Hashira away.

Genya fires his mutated shotgun at the Upper Rank with him deflecting all the bullets. However, despite him deflecting the bullets off they still bent back towards his body as if they had sentience. Genya's bullets puncture through Kokushibo's skin as he sees Genya's new appearance similar to him with his red sclera and flame-like Demon Slayer Mark on the right side of his forehead. As he gazes at Genya's new appearance, the bullets that punctured Kokushibo's skin transform into a large wooden tree constricting him to the ground and protecting Muichiro from his attacks. Gyomei takes this opportunity to engage at the Upper Rank, with the irritation piercing through Kokushibo's solar plexus down to his hair whorls telling him that his life is in danger. With his life being on the line, it gives him feelings of nostalgia of when his younger twin brother Yoriichi Tsugikuni would always triumph over him. He recalls to himself over 4 centuries ago during a total lunar eclipse seeing the one thing he would never believe happen, his younger twin brother alive and elderly. This greatly confuses Kokushibo as the last time they saw each other was when they both were still Demon Slayers 60 years ago, making Yoriichi an 80 year old man. Kokushibo can not fathom that Yoriichi has lived past the age of 25 despite him having a Demon Slayer Mark. With a hoarse voice, Yoriichi pities his older brother, the person he adored the most has become a demon and has murdered/consumed innocent people with tears running down his face.

Why must you be special and not me as well

Kokushibo brimmed with envy and self worthlessness due to Yoriichi's innate talent.

Kokushibo is bewildered beyond relief that the person he has never seen show any emotion in his live start crying in the flesh. However, he knows that due to his demonic morals from Muzan Kibutsuji if he sees any Demon Slayer point their weapon at him. The next moment, all of his "strange" feelings were blown away instantly when Yoriichi took his battle stance on the Upper Rank. With the weight of the air itself due to the pressure of Yoriichi taking his stance was comparable to Kokushibo having two enormous boulders rest on his shoulders. Because of this, even Kokushibo agrees that Yoriichi's stance was absolutely impeccable having no single openings or flaws whatsoever. Yoriichi warns Kokushibo for him to ready up, but he slices Kokushibo's neck before he could even unsheathe his blade. This angers the Upper Rank even further to him questioning as to why he was always the "special one" and that despite him being a very elderly man he still has the same skilled swordsmanship as he was in his prime (if not improved). Despite this, he knew that the very next attack will behead him but that attack never came. Kokushibo sees Yoriichi standing on his feet not moving a single inch, with Kokushibo realizing that Yoriichi died of old age.

Kokushibo releasing numerous blades from his flesh.

Remembering the loss from his younger brother, Kokushibo roars at the absolute top of his lungs in anger and frustration. As he roars, dozens of the chaotic slashes release from his body, cutting Muichiro's lower half of his body clean off guaranteeing his death along with cutting Genya in half vertically. Muichiro is amazed as to how with no swinging motion, so many slashes erupted from his body. On top of this, they had completely backed Kokushibo into a corner with little chance of survival for the Upper Rank but the tables have turned nearly instantly. Genya cut in half vertically still has his mentally to defend everyone with Muichiro also wanting to protect Sanemi and Gyomei from death against Kokushibo. With Muzan still being alive, he has to keep as many people alive in order for the Demon Slayer Corps to defeat Muzan Kibutsuji.

Protect Everyone

Muichiro tells himself to unleash a technique and/or do something in order to help save Sanemi and Gyomei. By gripping his Nichirin Sword with all the force he has left the entire blade turns bright crimson red burning the flesh where he stabbed Kokushibo. Kokushibo points out that the point where his body is stabbed is getting stiff and his internal organs are burning like fire. Sanemi is able to get his Nichirin Sword to make contact with the left side of Kokushibo's neck but doesn't even scratch his neck much like how Tanjiro couldn't cut Rui's head off.

Kokushibo is finally beheaded.

Genya realizes that his flesh bullets are still within Kokushibo's flesh and with him wanting to protect everyone from certain death unleashes his Blood Demon Art: Blood Roots with another flesh tree roots out of the Upper Rank's back coming to Kokushibo's patience. Kokushibo attempts to use a Moon Breathing technique to finish Genya off but nothing came out. This is due to the tree siphoning out blood from his body. Gyomei takes the opportunity to land his spiked flail on top of the Upper Rank's head attempting to crush his head similar to Muzan Kibutsuji. This however is not the case as Kokushibo's skull withstands the blunt attack of Gyomei's flail, coming to his praising. He swings his axe upwards to cut Kokushibo's neck but he blocks it with his flesh sword. With Muichiro turning his blade crimson red, it heavily reminds him of his younger brother's Nichirin Sword along with his belief that their generation is not extraordinary in the slightest. Sanemi swings his blade at Gyomei's flail in order to give it more momentum, but little did he know that due both Gyomei and him awakening their Demon Slayer Mark, both their Nichirin Swords turn crimson red as well. With their Nichirin Swords being crimson red, they are , thus Kokushibo has been beheaded. After he gets beheaded, he starts remembering the moments between him and his younger brother Yoriichi.

I cannot lose... I will not lose

Kokushibo regenerates his head and becomes a horrid monstrosity.

Even when Yoriichi genuinely smiles, it always sickens Kokushibo's stomach with no end. He asks Yoriichi what's so funny about people who don't let go of their blade who are completely cut in two, using Blood Demon Art even while being human and not dying from blood loss even after being cut down. Even when the current Hashira have never learned the Sun Breathing, they still dye their Nichirin Swords crimson red. Kokushibo expresses that the mere thought of losing makes him seethe with anger. Because of this, he suddenly stops bleeding and is starting to regenerate his own head similar but far quicker than Akaza. Gyomei is immediately aware of this incident and tells Sanemi to not ease up on his attacks, in order for Genya and Muichiro's sacrifice to not be in vain. Sanemi shouts out that he will hack and slash Kokushibo until he is nothing but ash and unleashes the Wind Breathing, Eighth Form: Primary Gale Slash while Gyomei utilizes the Stone Breathing, Fifth Form: Arcs of Justice.

In order to free himself from the barrage of attacks, Kokushibo chops off Muichiro's remaining hand, the last of his limbs. Muichiro's lifeless body flops to the ground and the Upper Rank pulls out his Nichirin Sword from his flesh and knows that he is still able to regenerate quick enough to not burn to ash. Gyomei and Sanemi continue to attack Kokushibo but the Upper Rank swiftly dodges their attacks. As Kokushibo dodges the Hashiras' attacks, he is revealed to have drastically changed in appearance: he has two horns protruding out of his head the right being far longer than the left, the roots from Genya's Blood Demon Art turning into pinkish-red tendrils that Kokushibo can willingly move and multiple hooks that were once the blades emerging from his body. Sanemi sees the Upper Rank's head fully regrown and panics as all the effort they have done to behead him were of complete waste, with Gyomei telling Sanemi to keep pressing the Upper Rank has just regenerated his head so his body must be more fragile than it was before.

"Why could I not leave anything behind? Why could I not become someone known? Why are we so different? Why in the world was I ever born? Tell me... Yoriichi."

Why do I exist... Tell me... brother

As the two Hashira keep pressing on Kokushibo, the Upper Rank congratulates himself for conquering death by decapitation from a Nichirin Sword just like Akaza. With him knowing that now only the light of the sun can defeat him, he becomes ready to face the Hashira once again. However, before they commence a new fight, the Upper Rank sees his own reflection off of Sanemi's Nichirin Sword. The moment Kokushibo sees his reflection, vague memories of young Yoriichi telling that Kokushibo's dream was to be the strongest samurai in the nation with himself wanting to be the second strongest behind his elder brother. From remembering Yoriichi's statement, Kokushibo becomes ashamed of how far he has descended downward from humaniy only to become stronger compared to his younger brother. As Kokushibo questions himself and his horrid form the spot where Muichiro stabbed him with his crimson red Nichirin Sword begins to burn to ash spreading throughout his body. Sanemi and Gyomei continue to maul Kokushibo's body in order to stop it from regenerating while the Upper Rank tries to unleash a Blood Demon Art but can't due to him losing an abnormal amount of blood but knows that he can still regenerate fast enough to survive. With that being said, old Yoriichi is still heart wrenched from seeing his brother as a demon and thus Kokushibo chooses to not regenerate anymore much like Akaza before him. As his final moments pass, Kokushibo questions and blames his own existence and asks his little brother why he was born in the first place with his clothes remaining along with the very flute that he gave his younger brother so long ago.

Aftermath

Muichiro finally meets Yuichiro in heaven.

After Kokushibo is finally defeated once and for all, Gyomei immediately shouts at Sanemi to stop attacking as Kokushibo is no longer regenerating. However Sanemi is still sprinting in random directions and swinging his Nichirin Sword. Gyomei grabs Sanemi to stop his flailing and yells that the battle is over and Upper Rank One is defeated. Sanemi goes completely limp on Gyomei's arms after hearing his explanation. Gyomei is completely surprised over how Sanemi lost consciousness and still fought the Upper Rank and lays him down on the ground.

"Because... my big brother... is... the nicest person... in this... world."

Genya weakly says his brother's, Gyomei's and Muichiro's names out loud to find out if they are alright. Gyomei comes within Genya's vicinity and tells him that they are all alright, except Muichiro with Genya immediately telling him to help the Mist Hashira. For respect and his wishes, Gyomei lays Sanemi's unconscious body in front of Genya proving him that he is alright. Gyomei points out to Muichiro's quadruple mutilated body that without both his and Genya's help, they would've had no chance at even beheading the Upper Rank. With him shedding tears, Gyomei closes Muichiro's eyes and vows to complete their mission to defeat Muzan. Sanemi opens his eyes and sees his brother fading away like a demon, with Genya's last words telling his brother that he is truly the nicest person in the world. Sanemi shouts at his brother to not die and calls God to not kill his only sibling left, with him screaming at the top of his lungs crying as his brother fades away. With Genya completely gone, Sanemi screeches and shouts his name in mental agony not wanting to believe that his brother is really gone. Gyomei interrupts Sanemi's grieving, telling him that the night isn't over and that Muzan Kibutsuji still has to be defeated.

References

  1. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 164 (Page 19).
  2. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 165 (Page 3).
  3. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 165 (Page 7).
  4. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 165 (Page 9).
  5. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 165 (Page 13-14).
  6. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 165 (Page 19).
  7. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 166 (Page 5).
  8. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 166 (Page 14-15).
  9. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 166 (Page 19).
  10. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 167 (Page 5-6).
  11. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 167 (Page 14).
  12. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 167 (Page 5).
  13. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 168 (Page 4-7).
  14. Kimetsu no Yaiba Manga: Chapter 168 (Page 19).



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