After the battle at Dardanelles, the Minerva returns to base for repairs. Athrun temporarily leaves the Minerva to contact the Archangel with the help of freelance photographer Miriallia Haw. Meanwhile, Rey Za Burrel and Shinn are ordered on a recon mission of an abandoned Earth Alliance base nearby, and are disturbed by what they find.
The Minerva is severely damaged during the battle of Dardanelles and she docks at the port on the Sea of Marmara for repairs and re-supply. While Shinn angrily blames Freedom Gundam and the Archangel for causing Heine’s death, Athrun decides to directly ask them to explain their true motive as to why they decided to get involved in the battle. Athrun tells Talia that he is leaving the Minerva and launches in the Saviour Gundam to find the Archangel.
Seeking for a clue, Athrun visits a certain town. There, he happens to run into Miriallia who is a photojournalists and former crew of the Archangel. She agrees to arrange contact with the Archangel as Lunamaria secretly watches them from afar.
Meanwhile, Shinn and Rey receive a new assignment. They head to investigate an abandoned research facility of the Earth Alliance. During the investigation through the building, however, Rey has a panic attack from an unknown cause.
Elsewhere, Athrun is finally reunited with Kira and Cagalli. But the two parties have each seen and heard different things and it seems the two points are at cross-purposes. Kira then mentions the near assassination of Lacus by a gang of Coordinators, which shakes Athrun.