Alpha Stigma is the third episode in the Legend of the Legendary Heroes anime. It was first aired in Japan on July 15, 2010.
Opening Song: "Lament - Yagate Yorokobi wo (やがて喜びを)" by Aira Yuki
Ending Song: "Truth Of My Destiny" by Ceui
The man who gave the Eris siblings crucial information about Sion at the end of the last episode is murdered by Lucile, who claims that it would "sully the Eris family if we let a man like this live." Ferris covers the mouth of little Iris and knocks her unconscious to spare her seeing the decapitated head of the noble in her brother's hand, pouring blood, action that Lucile considers spoiling to Iris. Lucile, then, stops Ferris from running, again, to the rescue of Sion saying that if Sion is to be the king of Roland, he must survive and defeat the attack of the fifty magicians from Estabul. Ferris considers that idea too extreme, but Lucile does not since himself is capable of accomplishing that, and with Ferris disapproval of the plan, Lucile vanishes, as if suddenly turning invisible.
While setting up their war camp, Ryner refuses to lift a finger to help, so everyone asks Kiefer to put Ryner in his place; nevertheless, she looks depressed and uninterested. After being pushed by his comrades to cheer up Kiefer, Ryner limits himself to lay back and nap besides her, so Kiefer takes the chance to ask him to run away together. Ryner is confused with her words, and Kiefer explains with sex right here a confession of love. Ryner, either from awkwardness, because he doesn't believe her, or fear of his own power (as seen in the focus to his eye with the Alpha Stigma) laughs and tells her to stop joking around. Kiefer says that he is right, its a joke, she wanted to protect him; she stands up, and releases an Estabul spell into the air which answers to the chant of "I offer up this contract to bear the spirit beast of light which sleeps within the atmosphere!" A red glow rises to the skies and blows up. Kiefer runs away saying "Farewell."
We later realise that Kiefer's spell was a signal to the magic knights waiting in the field beyond. Seconds later, the upper half body of Tahile, one of Ryner's teammates, jumps from the tall grass and lands besides him in blood. The Magic Knights of Estabul attack. In panic, Ryner manages to see shadows moving through the grass and more of his comrades being cut in half. Sion, arriving on the scene, is informed by Rohl of the red armoured knights killing everyone right before his head is severed. The silver haired noble orders all survivors to retreat to the forest. There he and Ryner meet up with the only two remaining members of their group, Tony and Fahle.
Sion tells Tony and Fahle to go on ahead, while he and Ryner hold off the magic knights. When Ryner copies one of their spells (which responds to the same chant used by Kiefer earlier), they realise that he is an Alpha Stigma bearer, just before he destroys them with another of their spells: "I offer up this contract to unleash the magic beast which dances through the skies!"
Sion claims angry to Ryner for not using that power before in order to save everyone, but Ryner says that he has not used it in 7 years, so it is unstable for him. Rith then more knights appear, who, having arrived just in time to realise that Ryner is an Alpha Stigma bearer, seize him and show him how they have captured Kiefer and Sion, and killed everyone else, in the hopes of provoking him into madness. When Ryner initially resists, they beat up Sion and threaten to rape Kiefer before his eyes in the hopes of provoking him further. This mistreatment of his best friends breaks Ryner and he goes berserk. The voice inside him says: "People die. But it doesn't matter to you... Everything. Yours to toy with. Release it. Open up. Kill. Everything. Until everything disappears before your eyes. Don't defy me. Your molecules shall scatter like sand. God. Devil. Hero. Monster. What will you call me?"
He uses his increased power to destroy everything in sight, including the knights that try to resist with yet another spell: "I offer up this contract to unleash the power of the spirit which envelops the air," shooting concentrated beams of light. With a hollow thirst for eradication and nothingness, Ryner kills every single knight, and when Sion and Kiefer are the only ones left, just as Ryner is about to kill them, however, Sion manages to close his eyes, thus breaking the power of the rage and restoring Ryner to his previous self.
Soon afterwards, they are found by a group of Roland knights, and Sion is taken back to Roland as a hero, to the disgust of nobles, while Ryner is tortured for being an Alpha Stigma "monster." It is revealed to him that Kiefer was a spy in their unit. Years before, her older sister was killed in an intelligence raid and the other two were reeducated for Roland's purposes. Her younger sister was eventually taken hostage to ensure her continued cooperation. In exchange for his own imprisonment, Ryner is told that the king will grant him one request. He therefore requests that Kiefer be released, and his request is granted. When he goes to say goodbye to Kiefer, he reveals to her that her younger sister is dead, which is shocking to the red haired girl who thinks then that Ryner was mocking her all along under Royal orders. As Ryner guides Kiefer to freedom, she kisses him assures him that he is definitely not a monster, and explains that she fell in love with him because his unmotivation allowed her to relax and drop her guard, no, it was because of his kindness, and strength. She mentions briefly that she would do something, but never finishes the thought; then, she leaves.
The next day, Sion comes to visit Ryner in prison and offers to help him escape, but Ryner refuses, telling him that escaping is "too much bother," and that he'd rather be in prison anyway, with a free roof and three meals a day and as many afternoon naps as he wants. Sion leaves sad for he failed to save the only thing he had left, but he is reassured now to go ahead, start again from zero as Ryner smiles at all his free time.
- "I offer up this contract to bear the spirit beast of light which sleeps within the atmosphere!" Kiefer Knolles & Estabul Magic Knights.
- "I offer up this contract to unleash the magic beast which dances through the skies!" Estabul Magic Knights and Ryner Lute.
- "I offer up this contract to unleash the power of the spirit which envelops the air!" Estabul Magic Knights.
- "People die. But it doesn't matter to you... Everything. Yours to toy with. Release it. Open up. Kill. Everything. Until everything disappears before your eyes. Don't defy me. Your molecules shall scatter like sand. Monster. Devil. God. Hero. Call me what you will?" Alpha Stigma.
- "It must be the motivated guys who start wars. But the guys without motivation always get sucked into them." Ryner Lute.
- "People don't kill people. Monsters do. War is a monster. Kingdoms are monsters. Greed is a monster. And I'm a monster, too. But you're human Kiefer." Ryner Lute.
*Each quote is numbered so that conversations can be grouped together
1. (Voice inside Ryner’s head) People will die. But everything doesn’t matter. Let’s end everything. Everything— According to my wish. Release it. Open. Kill. Kill everything. Kill everything in front of me…
2. Ryner (taken over by the alpha stigma talking to the Mage Knights): ‘Don’t defy me. Your molecules shall scatter like sand.’
‘I won’t let you run away. I’m going to make all of you disappear. All of you, all…'
(About Sion and Kiefer): “You two…are too dangerous…die…damn it…my strength…disappearing…my eye’s…closing…’
3. Ryner to his captors: “You’re the ones who’re treating me as an idiot, right? I’m the one being treated as an idiot.
4. Ryner: “Congratulations on your release, Kiefer. And congrats to me for being locked up. Now I finally found a place where I can take naps without worrying about intruding on others. And there’s free provision of 3 meals a day here.”
In the DVD + Blue Ray, a version of this episode is offered with the comments of Miran Froaude and Kiefer Knolles English voice actors: John Michael Tatum and Brina Palencia in which they discuss interesting issues about the characters, their strengths, weakness, and their equally shared protagonism; the themes of magic, power and sacrifice; and the complications of voice acting.
For example, J. Michael Tatum admires the complexity of Ryner's character into his laziness provocated for his fear to unleash his full potential and compare it to real people who rather be lazy and live with the "what if..." instead of the failed attempt or the ruin that their attempt might bring. Nevertheless, Ryner wants to save the world that has forsaken him and Mr. Tatum agrees that the world cannot be blamed for hating a demon of mass destruction. In his mission to save the world, Ryner still needs Ferris to kick him from behind to keep him working, like the two of them can only work when they are together. On her side, Brina Palencia is a little unhappy with her character Kiefer and her selfish desire to sacrifice all her classmates only for her sister.
Now the conversation turns to magic, which they assure it is constant, unlike other stories where characters suddenly come up with spells or powers that come out of no where, but this series keeps magic ever consistent. When talking of power, each character is shown with the option of having it and using it and a main focus is in the sacrifice to which power comes. Another real life example comes with people who are offered power to do good or seek revenge and the questions of "will they really do it? Are they willing to pay the price?" To the amazement of Mr. Tatum, the series presents characters willing to pay such price, and he offers a spoiler example from episode 13 and Sion's example of his constant mental struggle.