|Original Air Date||December 6, 2006|
|English Air Date||June 21, 2008|
|Written by||Ichirō Ōkouchi|
|Directed by||Kazuya Murata|
|The Black Knights||Guren Dances|
Refrain is the ninth episode of Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion.
Told mostly from Kallen's perspective, her rocky relationship with her biological mother is revealed while the Black Knights are sent on a mission to take out the drug "Refrain," and find themselves to be popular among the Japanese. Kallen's mother is found among the Refrain users, and is arrested following the Black Knights' destruction of the drug stockpiles. Kallen promises to have changed the world by the time she is released.
Two weeks after the Lake Kawaguchi incident, Kallen is in her room, wearing only her lower underwear, and out of exhaustion has collapsed on her bed. She hears something shatter outside her room and goes to see what it is, finding a maid having fallen off of a stepladder and shattered a chandelier. She tells her to clean it up when the maid asks how school is for her. Kallen rebukes the comment and goes inside. She then breaks down and asks the maid, who is revealed to be her own mother, to leave to herself.
Meanwhile, a couple of men began loading boxes into a truck, which they intend to give to Elevens to "thin them out" and make a profit behind Cornelia's back, unaware the Black Knights are outside. The Black Knights proceed to break into the room and murder all of the henchmen. The next day, Kallen dozes off in class and accidentally blurts out "The Black Knights" in front of the whole class. Afterwards, Shirley and Rivalz talk to her about it, with the latter saying that she should get tips from Lelouch. Cornelia, meanwhile, begins strengthening her troops in the wake of the Europia United doing the same, and plans to not only stamp out terrorism but also punish the Elevens for their laziness. However, she also decides to let the Black Knights roam free for a bit for saving Euphemia's life, and tells her to stay out of harm's way while she goes to the EU herself. In a flashback, it is revealed that after Zero pulled the gun on Euphemia, he lowered it for the moment, and wonders what he meant and Suzaku's opinion on it all.
Kallen, meanwhile, comes to a Student Council meeting and discovers Milly, Suzaku, Shirley, and Rivalz have tied Lelouch to a chair to try and dress him in a ridiculous cat costume for Arthur's welcome party, and have even set stuff aside for Kallen. It is also revealed that, because of the hotel incident, the three girls have been hounded by both the students and reporters to the point where they can't leave school, and now the others can't leave because Milly has forced them to stick together. While Rivalz finds this "dark", Suzaku is happy to the point of tears about this, so Rivalz tries to cheer him up with a tackle-hug that even causes Nina to laugh. While this happens, Kallen reflects on the actions of the Black Knights since then, the group having become what Zero prophesized they would be - the weak have rallied behind them, corrupt people have been wiped out, and they even have Knightmares despite continued skepticism due to Clovis's death. It is revealed, however, that Kallen still wants to know who Zero actually is, yet believes if she did he would disappear, leaving them vulnerable; also, Rivalz hasn't seen Lelouch as much as before, and Nina seems to develop feelings for Euphemia.
At the Japanese Liberation Front, the remaining leaders question the Black Knights' legitimacy and why people would support them, deciding to take action. Meanwhile, Milly stops by to give Kallen something when Mrs. Stadtfeld, Kallen's stepmother, chastises her in front of Milly for staying up all night. Frightened by her presence, Mrs. Kozuki backs into a vase, smashing it. Milly and Kallen go to her room, where Milly gives her her middle school transcript, revealing her half-Britannian, half-Japanese family. Kallen reveals that her mother was ditched by her father for having no skills, but remained in the house to cling to her ex-husband, causing Kallen to resent her (even though she uses her surname in her revolutionary activities), but is fine with at least getting her daily necessities. Milly, however, questions if Kallen can really maintain that disposition, and promises not to tell anyone. Meanwhile, in her own room. which is littered with hate graffiti, Mrs. Kozuki hurriedly opens a drawer, revealing several pills and a medicine gun.
Meanwhile, Lelouch and Suzaku talk about Suzaku's crying, which was over the fact the girls survived. Suzaku wonders why the Black Knights didn't join the police force, and Lelouch says that they probably wouldn't be effective in there, and if they tried to change it from within (as Suzaku suggests) they would get involved in each other's messes. Suzaku argues that the very desire to save lives was enough, and that if the Black Knights can't accept actual honor, they're probably just being selfish. Shirley comes in, and Suzaku leaves to "go back to base", winking to Shirley on the way out. Shirley tries to ask Lelouch out, but Lelouch realizes that Suzaku feels more at home with the Britannians by his words. Meanwhile, Kallen talks with Ohgi about a drug targeted towards the Japanese called Refrain, which causes people to have illusions of the past. The Black Knights are planning an assault on a transportation of the drug, noting that others will follow their lead. As Kallen hangs up, she notices five Britannians beating a Japanese hot dog owner in public. With no one daring to confront them, Kallen tries to herself, but is stopped by Lelouch, who says they not only outnumber her, but that if she did, he'd get even more abuse the next day. The Britannians then approach them directly and ask them their opinion on the matter, but Lelouch uses his Geass surreptitiously to get them to leave. The hot dog man then offers to get Kallen and "her boyfriend" anything they'd like when they approach him, not showing any hatred towards them. Lelouch and Kallen then spend some time alone in the park. While sitting on a bench, Lelouch notes that, even if it's wrong, Area 11 has had benefits under Britannia, including an increased economy and the relative easiness to become an Honorary Britannian like Suzaku. Kallen questions what he thinks about the scenario, and when he says he has no opinion, she questions why he doesn't apply his obvious intelligence for anything. Lelouch says that it may be better to live an ordinary Britannian life than to die fighting for justice. Kallen is suddenly reminded of her mother for this, and promptly slaps Lelouch, claiming that he is arrogant and she thought he was better than that. She walks away, but Lelouch smiles at this.
Back in her room, Mrs. Kozuki goes back to her pill drawer, but finds it empty, causing her to go into withdrawal. Meanwhile, Jeremiah and Villetta are at a bar, where Villetta asks Jeremiah if he really has no recollection of what happened, then recalls that she suffered the same thing in Shinjuku Ghetto. She says she can't remember the teenager's face, but that they might be able to still find him. Meanwhile, the Black Knights prepare for the Refrain attack, with most of them having begun to trust Zero for getting them public support, but Kallen wondering if they are even doing the right thing. As they do, Zero signals them in, to their surprise. The Black Knights proceed to shoot down the door to the drug compound with only machine gun bullets; the drug dealers return fire, but Kallen, who is piloting a Burai, barrels through, sending them packing. She then breaks through another door and finds scores of Japanese people, including the hot dog man, all under the influence of Refrain. She then sees her own mother, who thinks she is trying to stop Naoto from running too fast, and views her as even more weak than she thought. Just then, a Knightpolice shoots off the Burai's right arm, forcing Kallen to flee while carrying her mother with her; Zero deems them "corrupted filth". As the Knightpolice continues to do damage, Kallen tries to drop her mother on the spot, but emotionally can't. Her hesitation allows the Knightpolice to immobilize her and repeatedly shoot her, in the process putting down Mrs. Kozuki in mint condition. As the Black Knights arrive to help, Kallen orders her mother to run, but still on Refrain, she walks towards Kallen's Knightmare and says she is here for her and always will be. This shocks Kallen, and she realizes that she stayed in the house not to be with her ex-husband but to be with Kallen, causing Kallen to regret having ever mistreated her. The Knightpolice then tries to stab Kallen, but she uses her Burai's slash harkens to drag both Knightmares into a shelf, presumably killing the policeman. While the other Black Knights go and retrieve Kallen, Zero looks on at Mrs. Kozuki and is able to identify her. Above, C.C. is watching the whole ordeal, saying that false tears bring pain to others, but false smiles bring pain to one's self.
Mrs. Kozuki is admitted to the hospital, where she is still on Refrain and will take a long time to recover, and is also given 20 years in prison. While at her bedside, Kallen vows to change the world with the Black Knights so that they can live in peace. Mrs. Kozuki then "tells" her to hang in there while grabbing her hand, and Kallen promises to.
Characters in Order of AppearanceEdit
Knightmare Frames in Order of AppearanceEdit
- Refrain Drug pin Bust (Concluded)
Powers or Abilities usedEdit
- "Just go... will you?" - Kallen Kozuki
- Conversation between the Student Council members
- Milly Ashford: "Good meow-ning!"
- Kallen Kōzuki: "Good... morning I guess. What is all this?"
- Rivalz Cardemonde: "What do you mean, didn't we tell you? It's our welcome party for Arthur!"
- Kallen Kozuki': "Sounds like fun"
- Shirley Fenette: "Oh, I left some stuff for you too - over here! Take your pick!"
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "She doesn't need a costume. You're already wearing a mask, aren't you?"
- Kallen Kozuki: "You know you're a real riot, you know that? You should be on television."
- Shirley Fenette: "Ugh, I can't believe we keep on getting asked about it!"
- Suzaku Kururugi: "Oh, I thought she meant Lelouch."
- Shirley Fenette: "The whole thing's a huge pain in the butt! We've been hounded with questions day and night! Even in the bath!"
- Milly Ashford: "We haven't been able to leave school grounds in a week..."
- Rivalz Cardemonde: "Not that I don't feel for you, but I don't see why we can't leave either."
- Milly Ashford: "That's the price of friendship. The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, 'it matters not that we were born apart. Upon this day, we die as one.'"
- Rivalz Cardemonde: "Is that your idea of a love quote?"
- Milly Ashford: "If I go down, then we all do."
- Rivalz Cardemonde: "That's a little dark. What do you think Suza- huh?"
- Suzaku Kururugi: "I'm just so glad, you know... that we could all be together like this..."
- "It's so funny to think I helped save their lives. Ever since we made our big splash at the hotel jacking, the Black Knights have taken the world by storm. We've become a friend to the weak, just as Zero proclaimed we would. Terrorists who involve civilians, an overbearing military, criminal syndicates, corrupt politicians and profiteers... If the law would not punish them, then we would. In the blink of an eye, we'd become heroes. Support for us has swelled. We've even got our hands on a few Knightmares again. 'Course no one could show that in public, because... Because our leader, Zero, had killed Prince Clovis. There are many in our ranks who wish to know his true identity, myself included. But if we push too hard, I suspect that he would vanish. And without him, I'm fairly certain we'd be finished." - Kallen Stadtfeld
- "Still, some things in life we can bear on our own, but - when you add them all up, they eventually break you". - Milly Ashford
- Conversation between Lelouch and Suzaku
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "I can't believe you teared up. It's so embarrassing."
- Suzaku Kururugi: "It's called honesty - ow!"
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "Well, good thing the Black Knights were there to save 'em. That's all I can say."
- Suzaku Kururugi: "If they wanted to catch criminals, they could've joined the police force, y'know. Why don't they, I wonder?"
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "They probably don't think the cops are up to the job. I tend to agree.
- Suzaku Kururugi: "The police may not be that effective right now, but they could invoke change from within."
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "Yeah, and in the process, the get all tangled up in red tape and bureaucracy."
- Suzaku Kururugi: "If they had done everything in their power to change things, that might hold water. As long as they don't, then all of it's just self-righteous posturing.
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "Self-righteous?"
- Suzaku Kururugi: "And what constitutes evil in their eyes? What standards are they using? It's nothing but self-satisfying gratification."
- Conversation between Lelouch and Kallen
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "In some ways, Area 11 is better off now than the old Japan ever was. Being made a colony of the empire has stabilized its military and economic position in the world. Elevens can even obtain full citizenship through the legal process. It's easy to become an Honorary Britannian, it's just a question of pride, really. Though, I can certainly understand why they'd resist."
- Kallen Stadtfeld: "And? Knowing all that, what does Lelouch Lamperouge think about it all? What do you want to do?"
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "Nothing."
- Kallen Stadtfeld: "You know, you've got a lot of brains but you don't seem to be doing much with them. It's all Shirley talks about; saying how intelligent you are but how you barely ever apply yourself.
- Lelouch Lamperouge: "That's why I don't do anything. That Eleven we saw back there could tell you, he can lead a better life as long as he bows his head to Britannia."
- Kallen Stadtfeld: [Slaps Lelouch] "You must think you're pretty cool, huh?! Just playing the critic and judging the world from the sidelines? Guess I was a fool to expect anything more from you. You know, I really thought you were a better man than this."
- Conversation between Kallen and her mother
- Kallen's Mother: "I'm here for you, Kallen. I'm here as I always have been."
- Kallen Stadtfeld: "Then that's... That's why you stayed in his house? You stayed there for me? You fool! ...Or maybe I'm the fool."
- Kallen's Mother: "I'm so happy for you. You can finally become a Britannian now, Kallen. Nobody will ever be able to hurt you now, darling. And you're free to travel and use the phone any time you want."
- "False tears bring pain to those around you. A false smile brings pain to one's self." - C.C.
- Conversation between Kallen and her mother
- Kallen Stadtfeld: "Mother, your sentence... You got 20 years. But you wait! I'm working to change things when you get out, I swear to you! I'll make a world where you and I can live a normal life again, so please, mother..."
- Kallen's Mother: "Hang in there... Hang in there, Kallen. My little girl."
- Kallen Stadtfeld: "Don't you worry. I will. I promise you."
- "Memories of the past? Those who indulge in them are foolishly happy. Because they assume that tomorrow is coming. But really, what guarantee is there of that? If Kallen is struggling to dis-spell such illusions, I'll stand by her. All we can do is live each day, one moment at a time." - Lelouch Lamperouge (Preview for the next episode)