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Shield and Freedom (盾と自由) is the thirteenth episode of the Log Horizon anime. It covers Game's End, Part 1 chapter 3.

Plot

Cold Open

Demi-Humans is a blanket-term for non-human monsters in Elder Tale. Goblins for example, are low-intelligent prolific breeders that are weak when alone, but can become a formidable army. They cluster in the northeast of Yamato, but have been on the rise as of late.

Meetings

The Round Table representatives divide up attendances to various invitations. Shiroe will attend a dinner meeting with Count Kirino of Tsukuba and the Academic's Guild, Krusty will go to an evening party of young knights and Michitaka will attend a banquet with Lord Darte. Henrietta asks Krusty of he will endure the dialogue of the party, to which he says he's found a virtually unbreakable shield against such situations.

Krusty and Rayneshia

Rayneshia recalls her introduction to Krusty, where he immediately picks up on her annoyance of new people, making an impression on her. He proposes that they have tea breaks together as an excuse to skip uninteresting meetings, basically using her as a convenient shield against scrutiny from the palace folk. Her maid Elissa cautions about the uncertainty of adventurers, which is an especially important consideration for members of royalty.

Krusty defeats Knight

Krusty defeats the strongest Knight.

The next day, she ruminates about how her beauty is unremarkable, and the lack of substance to the affection she commonly receives. She visits Krusty in a exhibition match with the palace knights, where he craftily obligates her into accompany him to the evening party as a reward for defeating all the knights. Elsewhere, Akatsuki eavesdrops on two noblemen at the palace and learns of a group of Ancients called the Izumo Knights, who have apparently disappeared. Shiroe's meeting with the Academics Guild becomes a heated debate, forcing him to diffuse an incoming call from Minori.

At the next tea break, Krusty explains to Rayneshia the freedom of Adventurers living life to their individual resolve, which is opposite to the pampered upbringing of the nobility system.

Training Camp

Meanwhile, Tohya's Party had been fighting for the past hour, but are running from Skeletons yet again. During their break, Rudy starts complaining their healing is too weak to save him, and in spite of their relatively high level, they can't seem to defeat the Skeletons. Minori tries to speak her mind, but quickly backs down again. Tohya rebuts Rudy by saying he must fight better.

At the beach, Maryelle worries about Tohya's party being the last to finish the dungeon, but is reassured by Naotsugu's handle on the tough training. She and Shouryuu notice a bubbling activity on the ocean horizon that quickly disappears.

Ancient Palace of Eternal Ice

At a private dinner, Lord Darte informs Michitaka that the culinary revolution of Akiba has introduced new food to the land, influencing many improvements to agriculture. However, this has increased the monstrous hazards of imports and exports, which Michitaka anticipates an impossible request in adventurer bodyguard work. Dante refutes this notion, instead requesting seafaring technology.

At the evening party, Krusty picks up on Rayneshia's annoyance of flattery, claiming that his time here has instilled the same. They are visited by two young ladies, who swoon over his handsomeness and mannerisms. Krusty disclaims that he is a barbaric adventurer, and the princess was kind enough to accompany to him to save face. She is displeased over the flattery, but he later reveals his interest in her by comparing to his sister in the real world. He then promises to Rayneshia that he will repay her assistance sometime later.

Ri Gan

Li Gan appears

Elsewhere, Shiroe meets Akatsuki and listens to her report, but are intervened by a weird phenomenon: everything starts to vibrate and the flowers wither, putting the Enchanter and Assassin on guard. A mysterious man appears, introducing himself as Li Gan, the Mage of Miral Lake.

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