Shinra finally reaches Hibana’s palace where the Special Force 5 are stationed. As he approaches the doors, he remembers how she incapacitated him in their last encounter in episode 4. He easily beats the 5th Angels Three attack and ascends the steps of the palace.
The Spark of Promise
Hibana prepares to fight the Special Force 8 and tells Iris to watch. She has what I would equate to Survivor’s Guilt because she is still angry about her fellow nuns being consumed by fire. She is a 3rd generation fire user and can’t be consumed by flames. She made it out along with Iris, but the others burned and that changed her approach to life. She shuns Iris for still keeping her faith even after what she saw.
“A hunk of gravel like you doesn’t stand a chance of harming me. ” – Hibana
Shinra arrives to challenge Hibana. She uses a heatwave specialty move that gives Shinra vertigo. After she explains how she is incapacitating him, Shinra begins to power through to stand up to restart the fight.
Shinra says he’s going to save her from her delusions because she looks like she’s in pain. This fires her up and she knocks him out again. Hibana creates a blooming tree in the middle of her lair. The flower peddles burn him.
Exploitation vs. Salvation
Iris tries to appeal to her past with Hibana to get her to stop attacking Shinra. But Hibana harps on the fact that she was less committed to her faith and survived the massive combustion at their orphanage. As a result of the orphanage burning, she turned to selfish gain instead of faith.
Shinra claims he’s going to keep getting up so that he can help her. He ends up knocking her out with a punch. We see a flashback of her creating flame flowers with the rest of her sisters at the orphanage. A head nun tells her to use her powers cautiously because they could hurt someone, but they were a gift from God.
We see Hibana and Iris were not particularly close, but they walked in on the burning nuns together and that added to their relationship. The combustion even caused her to turn to a life of exploitation, believing that her gift was an abomination.
When Hibana wakes up from Shinra’s punch, Iris and Shinra are there. Shinra tells her he’ll be her hero and asks her to call him whenever he needs her. Hibana admits defeat and she and Iris rekindle a positive relationship. As a result, Special Force 5 and Special Force 8 become allies.