Osamu, who is worried about the rumors spread about his battle with Kazama, is approached by a boy, Shun Midorikawa, who challenges him to a simulated battle. Meanwhile, Yūma and Replica discuss money, with Yūma being unable to understand why is paper money worth more than money coins. He is then approached by Miwa and then by Yoneya, who is taking care of Yōtarō on Shiori's behalf. Yūma offers to help Miwa getting his revenge for his sister's death, but Miwa refuses his help and leaves to a reunion. Yoneya then challenges Yūma to a simulated battle and they and Yōtarō arrive in time to see Osamu's defeat in the hands of Shun. Yūma then challenges Shun to a battle.
Chika runs up to Yūma and Osamu, running a bit late from school. Osamu reminds her that she can tell the school about her new enrollment at Border and they will understand. As they walk down the hall, a young boy watches Osamu from around the corner.
During virtual training, Yūma once again amazes everyone with his skill, coming in first again. Arashiyama and Tokieda watch Yūma remotely, with Jun adding that Kitora says they owe Yūma one (see Episode 3). Tokieda says he was interested in Yūma and going to keep an eye on him anyway. Having done all the training he can that week, Yūma's score is up to 1100. Tokieda appears beside him and says that it will take 19 weeks to reach B-Rank with just joint training. Yūma says he can't possibly wait that long, so Tokieda takes him to the lobby for C-Rank Wars and explains how it works: these ranking matches are basically one-on-one combat in a virtual arena. The weapons and points are listed on a board, indicated the trainees currently participating but not their names. Tokieda informs Yūma that if he wants to gain points the fastest, he should choose opponents with the highest points, but if he loses, he will lose the greatest amount of points.
The loud-mouthed boy is earning points with his friends by targeting weaker opponents where they can be more assured of winning. When Yūma's score (which is much lower than theirs) shows up on the board, the loud-mouthed boy jumps up and decides to teach this "weak" rookie about the harshness of reality. The two fighters enter Cityscape A, and their battle begins. When Yūma appears, the loud-mouthed boy is not only terrified, but loses splendidly. Impressed at how much faster the Rank Wars will get him points, Yūma instantly prefers this method, but Replica cautions him from beating his opponents too badly.
Kido observes Yūma's progress and asks Kazama for his opinion. Since he is still a trainee and cannot be challenged, Kazama can only guess that if Yūma had a combat Trigger, he would most likely be at master level, around 8,000 points. Shinoda says that they should have started him at 3,000 points and raised him to B-Rank earlier. Inwardly, Rindō admits that he had wanted to do that, but was afraid Kido would reject his idea. Kido then demands to know why Yūma doesn't have his Black Trigger, since being S-Rank is the fastest way to be promoted. Rindō says that if Yūma had brought his Black Trigger, Kido would contrive some way to take it. Kido brings up the incident when Chika blew a hole in the side of Border HQ. Rindō explains that Chika's brother and a friend were abducted by Neighbors, and now Yūma and Osamu are helping her to get them back. Kido calls this ridiculous, but Rindō says it will be good for them to have a purpose, whether revenge or rescue. He looks to Kazama, who says he isn't seeking revenge for his brother, unlike Miwa. Kazama mentions that Miwa has changed since the mission last month when Arashiyama said something to him (see Episode 16). Just then, Jin walks in, and Shinoda begins their discussion on the future: a large-scale Neighbor invasion.
Yūma buys a drink from a vending machine and Replica attempts to explain metal coins versus paper money and the concept of change. Miwa walks up and confronts Yūma. Elsewhere, Osamu overhears trainees whispering about him and his composure. Contrary to everyone's perception of him and the fight with Kazama, Osamu wishes desperately that someone would ask him what really happened so he could admit the truth. He is approached by the young boy who was watching him earlier, who asks about his transfer to Tamakoma. Seemingly displeased by Osamu's mention of Jin, the boy asks Osamu for a Rank Battle and the two set off for a C-Rank booth with many trainees following.
Back at the vending machines, Miwa hands Yūma a coin from the ground and buys a drink himself. Yūma notices that Miwa seems depressed, compared to earlier when he suddenly shot Yūma without warning (see Episode 7). They are interrupted by Yoneya, who has Yōtarō on his shoulders and is caring for him and Raijinmaru as a favor to his cousin (Shiori). Yūma remarks that Tamakoma Branch and HQ seem to get along better than he thought. Yōtarō explains that Karasum and Shiori were at HQ about until about a year ago. Yoneya then asks Miwa why he isn't at the meeting, and Miwa says he told Kazama he was ill. Yoneya explains to Yūma that in reality, Miwa believes killing Neighbors is natural, but lately people around him have been saying things to the contrary and it confuses him. Yūma then asks Miwa about his sister who was killed by Neighbors and offers to have Replica find the country whose Trion Warrior killed her and help him go all out. Miwa angrily pushes Yūma away, saying all neighbors are enemies. Yoneya then reminds Yūma that they promised to have a battle, but not for points.
At the meeting, Shinoda explains that their information suggests that the invasion will be larger than the one four years ago (when the first Neighbors appeared). They do not know; however, which nations will invade. Jin says his Side Effect has a vague idea who it might be, but suggests a more "reliable" source. Both Jin and Rindō suggest using Yūma to find out information on the coming invasion.
Yoneya and Yūma, along with Yōtarō and Raijinmaru, head toward the virtual battle rooms. On the way, Yoneya asks Yūma how he would stand up against other fighters from the Neighbor world, and Yūma replies he would be pretty strong. Further, Yūma says there are a lot of people who are difficult for even him to kill. Arriving at the C-Rank War lobby, they notice an unusually large number of people. Yūma then notices that Osamu is fighting Midorikawa, and has lost all ten rounds. Osamu staggers out in total defeat and is confronted by Yūma and Yōtarō. Above, Midorikawa calls out to Osamu and says that now he knows Osamu's level he can go back. The spectators begin whispering disparagingly about Osamu, and Yōtarō says he will avenge his honor. Yūma asks Midorikawa if he purposefully attracted all the spectators, which he denies. Yūma uses his Side Effect and calls Midorikawa a liar. Yūma then challenges Midorikawa, saying he'll give Midorikawa all of his 1,508 points, and claims that his training Trigger will be enough to win. Midorikawa asks Yūma how many points he wants in return, but Yūma wins, he wants Midorikawa to start using "senpai." Midorikawa agrees, but Yūma says he was referring to his captain, Osamu. Yōtarō remarks that it seems Yūma is actually angry.