The Ghost of Laplace is the third episode of Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn.
The Earth Federation and ECOAS begin their assault on the Sleeve fortress Palau, with the intention of rescuing Banagher and recovering the Unicorn. Mihiro Oiwakken told Captain Otto Midas that the ECOAS teams were in position. Otto informed the crew that Phase 3 of Operation Billiard would involve the SCVA-76 Nahel Argama breaching the defensive line of Palau and attacking it with the hyper mega particle cannon and that it would decide the outcome of the mission.
As an RMS-119 EWAC Zack searched the asteroid field, a team of D-50C Loto units stealthily landed on the asteroid, being led by Daguza Mackle. He informed his team to head to the 14th Space Gate where they would pick up Banagher. After picking up Banagher, Daguza's team and another were to head inside to pick up the Unicorn Gundam. On board the ship, Riddhe Marcenas explained the operation to Mineva Lao Zabi. He told her that the operation would be a "strike and fade", in the sense that after Palau's four connecting asteroids were split, the ship would fire its main cannon to seal off the military block while ECOAS retrieved Banagher and the Unicorn. Mineva assumed that Londo Bell would only attack the military facilities, and Riddhe told her that Londo Bell would never intentionally cause civilian casualties and they had spies on the asteroid base. Riddhe assumed that Mineva would go and tell her people about their plan, but he told her to trust him. The two entered the MS hangar, where Riddhe said that it would take them two days to get to Earth and that he could only get the minimum of supplies. Mineva told him that she was prepared to do whatever it took, when Micott Bartsch walked in on them. Riddhe tried to tell her to wait, but couldn't exactly tell her what they were doing. Micott grabbed the phone to call the bridge, but Mineva told Micott that they were going to Earth, and that Riddhe wasn't betraying Londo Bell or her friends and that she realized there was something that both of them could do. Micott hesitated but said she wouldn't believe the word of the Princess of Zeon. Micott prepared to dial when Mineva told her that their going to Earth would hopefully stop the war from escalating any further. Micott put the phone down, but said that Mineva owed her and that it didn't mean she was forgiven.
On Palau, Gilboa Sant is picked up by Suberoa Zinnerman and Marida Cruz when his son Tikva ran out of the house, wondering why his father had to leave suddenly. Gilboa told Tikva to look after the family while he was gone, while Marida apologized to Suberoa for letting Banagher get away. Suberoa is confident that the boy wouldn't be able to get off Palau but admtis that he's underestimated Banagher. Banagher ran through Palau's civilian block as explosives attached to Palau's connection axes exploded, signaling the Nahel Argama to make its move. The MS forces launched first, including Riddhe and Audrey in the MSN-001A1 Delta Plus. Mihiro reminded the units to stay out of the hyper mega particle cannon's line of fire. After the MS teams launched, there was a 40 second interval until the cannon fired. Meanwhile, Banagher grabbed a jetpack and traveled through Palau's military block. At the same time, Daguza launched his Loto to pick up Banagher. As the Sleeves MS forces launched, Lotos and RGM-89D Jegans intercepted them while Daguza and his team waited for Banagher, who had found the 14th Space Gate, but also the Unicorn Gundam. Referring to the Unicorn as though it were sentient, Banagher said that both of them couldn't stay. As Lotos, Jegans, and a group of RGM-89S Prototype Stark Jegan units attacked a group of suits, Full Frontal in the MSN-06S Sinanju shows up with Angelo Sauper and destroy two Lotos with ease. On board the Nahel Argama, Otto had the ship launch their ReZELs and asked if there was word from ECOAS, but their communications were dark. Alberto complained about how they had walked into a trap, and Mihiro confirmed the signal of the Unicorn coming from Palau.
While exiting Palau, Banagher realized that Londo Bell wasn't attacking with a large force, but suddenly came under attack from a AMX-009 Dreissen. He attempted to retaliate with a stolen beam gatling gun, but the gun wasn't fully converted. Banagher tried to reason with the pilot telling him that if he was let go, then Londo Bell would leave, but his plea fell on deaf ears as the gatling gun finally converted and fired, tearing the Dreissen apart. On the battlefield, Riddhe saw that they walked into a trap, but Mineva told him to carry out his duties as a soldier despite Riddhe's warning of fighting her own people. Riddhe told her that he would break away from Londo Bell once they withdrew. Riddhe transformed the Delta Plus and promptly disabled a AMS-119 Geara Doga as well as two MS-21C Dra-C units. The Delta Plus located the Unicorn on the battlefield, making Banagher wonder if she was piloting the Delta Plus. Riddhe opened the cockpit and introduced himself, with Mineva explaining their plan to go to Earth because Riddhe's father, Ronan Marcenas was a Federation Central Assemblyman who is an influential figure on spacenoid policies. Mineva wants to go to Earth and explain the situation to him, hopefully to bring an end to the conflict, fulfilling her duty as heir to the Zabi bloodline. A Geara Doga fired upon them, which Banagher and Riddhe promptly tear apart. As their MS go back-to-back Riddhe explained that he would take care of "Audrey" and that the Delta Plus was capable of unassisted reentry. Banagher asked if it was what Audrey truly wanted, and she told him yes. Banagher entrusted Riddhe's word as a man as they went their separate ways. Riddhe noticed Palau's mass driver pointing towards Earth and told Mineva that they would use it due to using too much propellant.
As Banagher got close to the Nahel Argama, a Geara Doga retreated. Banagher suddenly came under attack from the "quad wing", the NZ-666 Kshatriya. She talked to herself about how her mission was to secure the cockpit block of the Gundam and how no war would really be justified. Banagher then realized that the suit was being piloted by Marida, who promptly grappled the Unicorn and ordered Banagher to surrender the Gundam or die. Banagher asked what she was doing in there, and she replied that in the battlefield, they were only combat units known as pilots. Banagher doesn't buy it and still called her by her name, and implored her to let him go since the Federation would likely destroy Palau if they didn't. Marida said he had the Federation's perspective, while Banagher told her that "Audrey" was on the battlefield to stop the fighting. She told Banagher if he gave Mineva's location, then Neo Zeon would withdraw. However, she called him a hypocrite for saying that he wanted to end the fighting but was fighting for the Federation. Banagher said that Neo Zeon was too single minded and that was the reason why Mineva didn't want them to have Laplace's Box. Banagher called her an idiot and punched the Kshatriya as the Unicorn transformed into Destroy Mode.
On board the Rewloola, the bridge confirmed the activation of the NT-D, with Full Frontal explaining that the ship might need to move from behind Palau. Angelo noted Marida's performance, and Suberoa asked why Marida had been given a solo mission. Frontal explained that the job was only for Marida and that the NT-D would only activate if the enemy pilot was a Newtype and explained that they placed a psycho-monitor inside the Unicorn's cockpit to intercept any data pertaining to the Box from the activation of the NT-D. Since Neo-Zeon couldn't analyze the Laplace Program itself, they would instead have to gradually let Londo Bell break the seals on the NT-D for them. He went on further to say that they used the Federation's inside man to lead Banagher to the Unicorn and apologized to Suberoa for leaving him out. He asked Suberoa of the definition of a "pure" Newtype since Marida wasn't one and said that there was no answer to that, and they thus needed a phenomenon to activate the NT-D. Frontal said that there was more to the Gundam and that he was using Marida to draw out its full potential.
As their fight continued, Banagher destroyed more funnels, while the beam gatling gun was destroyed. Suddenly, the Unicorn let out a strange pulse, and Marida's funnels wouldn't respond to her commands. To Marida's shock, the funnels turned against her and were under the control of the Unicorn. The funnels started attacking Marida relentlessly as Suberoa wondered what if Banagher was performing those maneuvers. Frontal explained that Banagher was just using a mechanism that converted psycho-waves into hostility, and that the NT-D itself was driving the Gundam. He explained that the Newtype-Destroyer System worked by identifying the opponent as being a Newtype or having Newtype-like brainwaves. Thus, the limiters on the Gundam would be deactivated, turning the suit into an anti-Newtype machine that combined the interface with the psycoframe to take control of a psycommu weapon. Suberoa was amazed and thought that no human could handle that much power, and Full Frontal agreed and explained that it was the reason that Cyber Newtypes were created and that the day all Newtypes were vanquished by technology would be the day they would be tied to history. Frontal noted how the UC Project was aptly named as the Universal Century neared its 100th year. On the battlefield, the Unicorn continued to relentlessly rip the Kshatriya apart as Suberoa realized that Full Frontal used Marida as bait. Frontal referred to Marida as Ple 12, an artificial Newtype created by cloning and gene manipulation, which made Suberoa angry. The Unicorn continued to tear into the Kshatriya, eventually knocking Marida unconscious. As Banagher was about to make the final strike, the suit's psychoframes resonated, giving Banagher a glimpse of her past, including her fight at the Battle of Axis, the death of her master Glemy Toto, her pregnancies and time as a prostitute, and finally meeting Suberoa. Banagher managed to stop the Unicorn from making the killing blow as the Unicorn's NT-D shut off. Banagher said that Marida's life was too sad, and she said that kindness couldn't save people, nor wash away their sins or impurities. On Palau, the ECOAS teams regroup as one soldier noted how it appeared as though the Kshatriya was made to fight the Unicorn solo and worried that there was a bomb in the suit. Daguza thought that method would have been too roundabout for Neo-Zeon to destroy the Nahel Argama, but also thought that Banagher was allowed to escape. The soldier didn't want to think that the operation was for nothing, and Daguza agreed as they looked at the lost Loto.
Leaving Palau via a space booster, Riddhe told Mineva that the battle was over and that Banagher and the Unicorn had been recovered with the Kshatriya. He'd most likely be listed as KIA and that all they could do was move forward. On board the Nahel Argama, Aaron Terzieff talked to Otto about the captured Kshatriya, which had an older psycoframe belonging to a suit supplied by Anaheim Electronics during Char Aznable's rebellion. Terzieff went on and said that Granada was the only place that could have created the Kshatriya since development of the psycoframe was halted and kept in secret due to too many "unknowns" and that the Unicorn's glowing psycoframe happened when the NT-D was activated, but Anaheim themselves were unsure of why it glowed. Liam Borrinea interrupted the meeting to explain that Marida's vitals had stabilized. She said that she was too weak to question, but Otto wondered about the scars and burns all over her body, and Liam explained that Dr. Hasan's examination confirmed that Marida's reproductive system was too damaged for her to bear children. She went on to talk about Glemy Toto's Newtype clone forces, and Otto said that they were supposedly wiped out, but one survived. Otto had her interrogation left up to the Federation headquarters In the sickbay, Mihiro argued with Dr. Hasan over giving Marida her medication out of the fear she would go berzerk. However, Dr. Hasan told Mihiro that Marida was a cyber-Newtype built from scratch, and that she had some severe injuries and couldn't consent to putting her in a straitjacket. Banagher woke up and told Mihiro that Marida wouldn't hurt anyone. Banagher asked how she could think of placing an injured person in a straitjacket, but Mihiro said it was none of his concern. Banagher asked if there were rules for POWs, but Mihiro called Marida a terrorist even if she was an officer and wondered if Banagher had been brainwashed at Palau. She brought up the fact that she piloted the Kshatriya and caused destruction at Banagher's home colony of Industrial 7 and killed scores of Londo Bell soldiers.
After Mihiro left, Hasan reminded Banagher that Riddhe didn't return to the ship, and Banagher asked what a Cyber-Newtype was. Hasan told him that cyber-Newtypes were made from the delusion that Newtypes could be made artificially. Hasan said that it violated their own ethics as an excuse to create human war machines. Hasan inquired if Banagher understood the concept of Newtypes, and he told him that it was that when humanity moved into outer space, they were supposed to understand each other without misconceptions, but he then thought that wars wouldn't exist in that kind of world. Hasan explained that someone said that humanity was on the verge of a next stage of evolution and that if humanity was evolving into Newtypes, then Cyber Newtypes should be allowed. Banagher said that it was sad and Hasan agreed and said that people needed to work at understanding each other despite their limited abilities.
Banagher checked in on Marida who woke up and said their roles had reversed. Banagher asked her what happened on the battlefield and Marida explained that the phenomenon was a psycommu backflow, where the Gundam itself began controlling him even though he was piloting it. Marida said that she sensed the negative instinct of the NT-D System, which had the sole purpose of destroying all Newtypes, whether natural or artificial. She said that machines didn't have the capabilities to discern natural from artificial like humans did, She said that she had a Master, to whom she was completely devoted to. Banagher said it was a curse to slowly kill herself like that, but Marida said they were two of a kind and that she could see inside him during the phenomenon. She told Banagher that his own will stopped the Unicorn Gundam from killing her, and implored Banagher not to lose himself. She began to have convulsions, and Hasan was forced to restrain her.
Outside, Banagher runs into his Haro, which senses that he's unhappy. Banagher goes with Takuya and Micott to the break room, where they guess that the crew was keeping quiet about Mineva's disappearance and that they wished they could tell Mihiro that Riddhe was alive. Takuya suspected that they were a couple, and Micott noted how Banagher had changed since he would have never been cool-headed in dealing with her. Banagher said that she would be fine since she was with Riddhe. As the Delta Plus finished its descent into the atmosphere, Ronan's butler informed Ronan that Riddhe had flown to Earth; the Sleeves were informed of Mineva's arrival on Earth and how Delta Plus used assembly privileges. Frontal predicted that the Nahel Argama was heading for the remains of Laplace. The Garencieres crew observed a Vist Foundation shuttle, the Klimit, used for transporting works of art, heading towards the Nahel Argama's location. Suberoa knew that the ship would be vulnerable regardless of what they were doing, and Gilboa suggested to launch a mission to rescue Marida and leaves control of the ship to Flaste Schole.
In the Nahel Argama, Alberto talked to his aunt, Martha Vist Carbine, about transferring the Unicorn to Luna II to open Laplace's Box, and she saw that he wasn't looking good. Alberto said that the crew was exhausted, but Martha said he had probably become attached to the crew. She told him to come to Earth aboard the Klimit, along with Marida and have her taken to the old Augusta Newtype Lab in North America. Alberto wonder what her plan was, and she said that had their grandfather just told them where the box was, she wouldn't resort to dirty methods, and though she didn't know what his or Cardeas' plans were for the box, but if it was gone, so was the Vist Foundation. She told Alberto to get rid of his sympathies as the Federation was attempting to take the box for themselves.
In another room, Banagher talked to Daguza and another ECOAS officer about potentially opening Laplace's Box at Laplace. Banagher didn't want to do it, and Daguza explained that another seal of the Laplace Program would be sealed if the Unicorn was piloted to the coordinates and that it was an order. Banagher talked about Palau and said that since he wasn't a soldier, he didn't have to follow his orders. Daguza agreed but said that Banagher had a responsibility to the officers on board the ship as well as his friends since he had intervened in 3 battles and potentially saved many lives, but others had to be sacrificed. Daguza said that Banagher was changing the destinies of people around him, Londo Bell or not, and that Banagher had to take responsibility for his actions. Banagher asked if he was supposed to keep fighting until he died or continue the wild goose chase, and Daguza told him to think it over since he was just running away from reality though Banagher said that people would still die and that it wasn't easy deciding to kill people as a responsibility. Otto refilled Banagher's cup with tea and said that Daguza had to look at things in a certain way because they were soldiers and it was their job. Daguza lamented to Haagensen that if he had a son, that he would share the same feelings Banagher had.
On the bridge, Liam noted that it was the first time since grade school that she had been to the remains of Laplace, and Otto noted how it passed 0 Longitude and 0 Latitude every day. Alberto said that he had never been to the residence and thanked Otto for his services, and Otto begrudgingly shook his hand. After Alberto left, Liam thought it was suspicious that the Federation would allow a civilian shuttle to transport a prisoner. Otto said that the cover was that Luna II didn't have the facilities to take care of a cyber-Newtype. Mihiro told Otto that the Gundam had launched, and Daguza rode with Banagher, warning him that he needed to maintain a constant speed or risk being pulled into the atmosphere. Banagher recalled his conversation with Otto, who said that when they were given the orders to attack Laplace on their own, the crew was worn out, but Daguza spoke up and said that the crew needed to carry out their responsibility for Banagher as they would with anyone else. Banagher asked Daguza if he was ever uncertain, but Daguza said he was a cog in the large machine of the Federation and was a soldier that was given duties, and Banagher said that due to his uncertainty, he could never pick up a weapon, or desired to get back in the Gundam. Daguza explained that his actions would determine the fate of his friends once they got back to Luna II.
On the Garencieres, Flaste reported that another MS had launched, but they couldn't confirm if it was the Gundam due to the lack of response from the psycho-monitor. Their opening would be when all of the MS were away at Laplace .Gilboa was reminded by Suberoa that he had a family at home and not to get too eager to fight, but Gilboa said they would get back Marida. Inside the Gundam, Daguza theorized that the La+ program displayed recognized coordinates and displayed the data. Banagher remarked on how the space station was destroyed by terrorists, and asked if the box was at Laplace, then why had no one checked it. Daguza told him to focus on piloting as the two entered the remains of Laplace. Daguza explained that to save the human race from destruction from overpopultion, a God-like figure was created: the Earth Federation. It would punish those who disobeyed it and he said that the sabotage was the best thing for the Federation as it justified its authority under the context of preventing terrorism. Banagher asks if he's implying that the Federation intentionally destroyed the space station, and Daguza said that those things happened sometimes, and that no one from that time is alive today and that all they had was their fear of Laplace's Box and their relationship with the Vist Foundation that no one really wanted to change since they were expected to maintain the status quo. Though the La+ program initially does nothing, the Gundam itself begins to play the recorded inaugural speech of the Universal Century as the Unicorn's psycoframe begins to glow. Alberto asked about the NT-D's status and he ordered the Klimit to change their departure due to the nature of the situation. Being transported with them is Marida who began to move and said the name "master".
On board the Nahel Argama, the ship began to pick up Minovsky particles, and Otto had the hands ready for combat. Inside the Unicorn, Banagher saw The Lady and the Unicorn tapestry as well as his father and immediately jetted out of Laplace sensing that something was coming and the Nahel Argama was under attack. Otto wanted to use the Lotos as makeshift turrets and had the investigation team recalled. A team of Geara Zulus started to attack the Unicorn in formation, and Banagher retailated with the bazooka. Flaste wondered if the speech was the only thing that would play, and Suberoa noted that the NT-D hadn't activated at that point and told Gilboa to get out when he felt it was time. Daguza wanted Banagher to use the beam magnum, but Banagher thought it was too powerful. Daguza felt that Banagher was treating was as a game and that he had to shoot to kill when he had the chance, but Banagher said that he took life seriously and was doing the best he could. Gilboa used his Geara Zulu's beam axe and clashed with Banagher, saying that they didn't want the Nahel Argama, but only to take back Marida. Daguza informed the Nahel Argama, but a beam shot was fired at the Unicorn. Reinforcements came in the form of Full Frontal and Angelo Sauper, who left Marida's retrieval to Suberoa while he Angelo, and the Royal Guards tried to get the NT-D to activate. On board the ship, Alberto wanted to end Marida's transfer, but the battle had begun and the group needed to get off. Suddenly, Marida woke up and broke free of her bonds, but a blast tore a hole in the ship, sucking out most of the group. Alberto was about to be sucked out into space when he was saved by Marida. On the battlefield, Banagher switched over to the magnum, and felt like handing over the Unicorn to the Sleeves, but Daguza said that the Nahel Argama consisted of pros and that his friends were still on board the ship. Banagher said he knew and retreated back into the ruins of Laplace.
When they landed, Daguza opened the hatch to let Banagher pilot, and he explained that he saw the psycoframe glow before and said that the Unicorn wasn't just a killing machine against Zeon and that the suit itself was most likely powered by his will, and that the La+ program most likely tested the pilot's heart as a guidepost as it led the pilot to the box. He told Banagher to wait for his signal and said that the human heart decided who he was and that even a cog for the Federation had its day in the sun. Daguza retreated behind a large podium and said that he just listened to his own heart. The Sinanju arrived at Laplace and was hit by the Unicorn's beam vulcans. Daguza fired a bazooka shot at Sinanju's head, which slightly damaged it. He saluted Banagher as Full Frontal swiftly killed Daguza with his twin beam tomahawk. In anger, Banagher activated the Destroy Mode as Frontal and Banagher started firing through Laplace. The two escaped as Angelo and Cuaron started firing at the Unicorn but he evaded the shots. Angelo called Banagher an amateur, but the Unicorn promptly cut off the limbs of Angelo's Zulu and disabled Cuaron's. Suberoa wanted Gilboa to retreat since they had no chance of taking back Marida, but had the opportunity to recapture the Unicorn and ordered Gilboa's team to rescue Sinanju and Angelo. Banagher and Frontal continued their fight in the atmosphere as the remains of Laplace fell around them. Frontal implored Banagher to stop or they would both burn up in the atmosphere, but Banagher ripped off Sinanju's leg and formed a larger beam saber to cut a large piece of debris. Unicorn fired its beam magnum at Sinanju, but Gilboa took the shot instead. As the Unicorn fell into the atmosphere, Mineva arrived at the Marcenas estate and the Nahel Argama began its decent and the Klimit headed for Augusta. To Otto's frustration they had lost the Gundam again, but was shocked to see the Garencieres enter the atmosphere. Banagher began to cry as he saw Daguza's chair burn up in the atmosphere.
Notes & Trivia
- This episode was edited into three episodes for Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn RE:0096: The Battle of Palau, Laplace, Where It All Began, and Retribution.
|Gundam Unicorn Episodes|
Day of the Unicorn | The Second Coming of Char | The Ghost of Laplace | At the Bottom of the Gravity Well | Black Unicorn | Two Worlds, Two Tomorrows | Over the Rainbow