Secret of the Rainbow Pearls is the twenty-first episode of Hanyō no Yashahime.
Kaede tells Towa the story about how their young teenage human mother, Rin, had mysteriously disappeared after giving birth to them fourteen years prior. While reflecting, Towa, who has been affected by the new moon again, is approached by Riku. He tells her the story of the demon female who had looked after him many, many years ago and how the seven Rainbow Pearls were created after her grandfather Tōga's demise a couple centuries ago. Riku finally puts his plan into action by luring Towa into a trap. Distracted, a defenseless Towa is attacked by Tōtetsu, which Riku does not take kindly.
Taking place 222 years in the past at Kirinmaru's Ship, Riku is sitting on top as he watches an island. Kyūki tells Kirinmaru that Tōga has been spotted at Kamakura. Kirinmaru hears that Tōga is greatly injured from battling Shishinki and Ryūkotsusei. Two of the Four Perils, Konton and Kyūki, urge their master, Kirinmaru to seize the opportunity to attack his rival when he is on the verge of death, so they maybe finally rule the entire land of Japan. Kirinmaru angrily refuses however, seeing attacking his rival when he is weak as cowardly and dishonorable, as he's telling them "a true battle must be one with honor and dignity". Kirinmaru calls on his retainer Riku. Riku teleports right in front of him within seconds of being called and upon Riku’s presence, Kyūki and Konton does not seem fond of him. Kirinmaru orders Riku to gather the finest medicinal herbs that he can find and to deliver them to the Lord of the Western Lands. Riku complies and uses the flick of his earring to teleport, following his orders. Kirinmaru tells Kyūki and Konton that “winning with underhanded tactics will only leave you empty” as he walks out. Zero appears before Kyūki and Konton and chuckles as she holds the Shikon Jewel in her hands. Zero tells Konton and Kyūki that if Kirinmaru wasn’t so obstinate they would already be ruling the land. Unfortunately, everyone saw Lady Izayoi's mansion is on fire across the lake until Riku arrives as he heard from one of the villagers saw the estate of Izayoi burning in the distance, he realized that he didn't make it to heal the Lord of the Western Lands and the Great Dog Demon's dead after his final battle with her old guardsman samurai Takemaru of Setsuna.
Back at Kirinmaru's ship, Riku delivers news to Zero that Tōga died. Zero, who held romantic feelings for Tōga, shows emotions of sadness while looking down at the Shikon Jewel asks were demons not fated to journey an endless path and to wander through an eternal destiny. Zero realized that the Shikon Jewel’s ‘ominous’ prophecy has come true. Riku tells Zero that Izayoi and the hanyō child survived. Zero tells Riku that she knows and those who are loved are fated to end in beauty before tears eyes ran down her face. Riku asks Zero what was it coming from her eyes as it's very pretty and tries to speculate her eyes up close. Zero becomes upset at Riku as she slaps his hand away from her face telling Riku that he has poor taste. Riku questions about tastes. Zero tells Riku to try and use that head of his. Riku wonders about his head as he moves his head from side to side. Zero is still emotional and speaks to the Shikon Jewel in her hand. Zero tells the Shikon Jewel that she doesn’t need demon powers, doesn’t want grief, nor does she want her heart. Zero wishes to never shed “wretched tears” again and makes that exact wish upon the Shikon Jewel. A teardrop from Zero’s eyes falls on the Jewel as she makes her wish and upon contact the 7 Rainbow Pearls are made from the Shikon Jewel as it sealed her emotions and powers. Riku calls the Rainbow Pearls “pretty”. Zero places the Shikon Jewel down as she tells Riku that the Rainbow Pearls contains her demon powers and the power of the Shikon Jewel and good riddance as she is no longer a demon. Riku asks Zero if she isn’t still sad. Zero asks Riku about what. Riku tells Zero that it's nothing. Back in the present time of the Feudal Era, Riku holds three Rainbow Pearls in his hand as he was recalling that flashback. Riku says madam as it won’t be long until he has all seven of the Rainbow Pearls as he holds up the Green, Purple, and Blue Rainbow Pearls up in the air.
At Kaede's hut, Hisui and Kirara are outside. Setsuna asks Towa does she understand and she orders her to not to go anywhere as she means it. Towa tells Setsuna that she knows. Setsuna comes out of Kaede and tells Towa that she'll be back as soon as she's done and to be as good as Kirara usually is. Towa tells Setsuna that she already she knows. Setsuna leaves Kaede's hut and goes toward Hisui. Hisui asks Setsuna if she's done. Setsuna tells Hisui 'yes'. Hisui calls out to Kirara. Kirara gets off Hisui's shoulder and transforms. Hisui and Setsuna fly off on Kirara. Hisui tells Setsuna that was more of a thorough warning than usual. Setsuna tells Hisui that because tonight is the night of the new moon and the night Towa turns human. Towa tells Kaede that Setsuna is treating her like she's a kid and she’s the one who's older. Kaede tells Towa that she reminds her of her. Towa asks Kaede who it was and wonders if it's Setsuna. Kaede tells Towa 'no' as she's just like her mother. Towa asks Kaede if she knows her and Setsuna's mother. Kaede tells Towa that she knew her mother very well and they lived together for many years. Towa asks Kaede since she and Setsuna are hanyōs then their mother was a human. Kaede tells Towa that her mother's name was Rin and she was a very kind soul however some time after she gave birth to her and Setsuna that she suddenly disappeared and she doesn't know if someone took her away or if she left on her own. In a flashback, Kaede wakes up when an unlit candle is knocked over and notices Rin isn't around and goes to look for her. Kaede tells Towa it has been about 14 years since then. Towa wonders if Rin died. Kaede tells Towa that may be so. Towa tells Kaede that it’s pretty cold for her to say that. Kaede apologizes to Towa and tells her that in their current day she’s all too familiar with life and death. Towa apologizes to Kaede as she really doesn't understanding anything. Kaede tells Towa just like her mother Rin that she's a kind child as she un-lights a candle. Kaede tells Towa that she hopes she at least get some good rest tonight. Towa tells Kaede 'okay' and 'thank you'. Kaede and Towa tell each other goodnight and goes to sleep. Towa has a dream of the Dream Butterfly taking dreams from Setsuna and the Sacred Tree, and a glimpse of Rin asleep in the Sacred Tree and wonders if she could be her and Setsuna's mother. Towa wakes up after the dream she had and realized that the new moon hasn't ended yet when she notices her hair. Towa notices a light outside and realizes it's the Dream Butterfly from her dreams outside and follows it. Towa calls out to the Dream Butterfly and notices the Forest of the Tree of Ages and it's just like what she saw in her dream. The Dream Butterfly lands on the tree bark of the Sacred Tree and fades away. Towa stands in front of the Sacred Tree and realizes she lost sight of the Dream Butterfly and says to herself that had always looked up at the Sacred Tree back in the modern era and wonders that the Higurashi shrine will be built here 500 years from now but she feels like this forest isn't the one she and Setsuna grew up in. Towa suddenly feels cold from the wind outside and sits down to look for some hand warmers in her backpack then sees strange small streaks of green light appears in front of her and wonders what they are. Towa sits down to look for some hand warmers in her backpack after feeling cold from the wind outside. Strange small streaks of green light appears in front of her. Tōtetsu is currently on his black smoke cloud and notices that tonight is a New Moon and recalls Konton telling him that Towa loses her powers on the night of a New Moon and tonight is a perfect night to take his revenge. Tōtetsu holds up the Orange Rainbow Pearl in his possession and tells it to lead him to Towa and realizes she's around below. Tōtetsu is on his way towards the Forest of the Tree of Ages.
Towa follows the multiple streaks of green light and wonders if they are fireflies. Towa stops and wonders how there can be fireflies in the winter. Riku appears behind Towa, who still looking at the fireflies. Riku tells Towa that he hopes she likes the fireflies. Towa notices Riku behind her and calls out to him in confusion. Riku walks towards Towa as he tells her 'good evening' and wonders does his eyes deceive him then tells Towa that she looks exceptionally beautiful tonight. Towa becomes nervous and asks Riku that thinks so. Riku places his hand in Towa’s hair and tells her that her left eye in particular is sparkling more than usual. Visibly flattered, Towa is taken further by surprise when Riku gently starts caressing her extended black hair with his hand in a seductive manner. Riku tells Towa the Silver Rainbow Pearl lies much deeper in her eye. Riku looks away from Towa and concludes to himself that he won’t be able to retrieve the Silver Rainbow Pearl tonight. Soon after, Towa and Riku sit together on a nearby log, where Riku uses his earring to heat some modern tea that Towa has brought with her. Riku tells Towa the tea is boiled as he hands the teapot. Towa tells Riku 'thank you' as it's handy and accepts the teapot and pours the water in cups. Towa tells Riku 'sorry' as they'll have to share one and offers him black tea as it's in a tea bag. Riku tells Towa 'thank you' as he accepts the cup. Riku drinks the black tea and becomes impressed that it's delicious as he's never had tea this delicious before. Towa tells Riku that it's Darjeeling and she actually likes Earl Grey more but it is good as she drinks it. After having some tea together, Riku and Towa stare at the winter fireflies together. Towa tells Riku that she thought fireflies were only around during the summer. Riku also confirms to Towa that fireflies don’t fly in the wintertime. Right in the moment one of the “fireflies” appears as a water droplet and pops right in front of them, disappearing. Towa realized that the fireflies are gone. Riku tells Towa that those who are loved are fated to end in beauty and calls the winter fireflies and the lives of humans “fleeting” because they burn up and vanish in an instant and wonders if that is what makes them so beautiful. Towa points out to Riku that he says some complicated things. Riku stands up and tells Towa that the madam who took care of him used to talk about it often. Towa stands up as she and Riku look at the night sky. Towa is amazed by the starry sky. Riku tells Towa that the one who used to be his master enjoyed looking up at the stars. A visual of Riku standing looking up at the stars changes into Kirinmaru looking up at the stars. Towa tells Riku that his master sounds like a romanticist. Riku tells Towa that he doesn’t know about that but his master holds a bit of reverence for the sky and right now they both want the same thing so he’s been distancing himself from his master. Towa curiously asks Riku what is it that he wants. Riku tells Towa that he wants the Rainbow Pearls. Towa questions the Rainbow Pearls. Riku shows Towa the three he has in possession: the Green, Purple, and Blue Rainbow Pearls and tells her there are seven in total. Towa asks Riku what happens if he gathers all of them. Riku tells Towa that he doesn’t know as all 7 Rainbow Pearls have never been gathered before and only assumes her powers would increase. Towa asks Riku if that's all.
Riku laughs and tells Towa that perhaps a devastating Degenerate Age could begin but she could say that their world has already become corrupted. Towa tells Riku that a lot of demons are after her, Setsuna, and Moroha and they've been attacked for their Pearls a few times. Riku informs Towa that the Rainbow Pearls are the tears of the madam who took care of him. Towa is interested how the madam's tears turned into pearls. Riku tells Towa that he wants to gather all seven of the Rainbow Pearls to return them to the madam. Towa tells Riku that she sees and wonders if he’s also after hers, Setsuna’s and Moroha’s Pearls. Riku tells Towa that she got him there as it seems it’ll have to be that way. Towa becomes defensive. Riku reaches his arm out towards Towa’s left eye and tells her if she remains calm he can remove the Silver Rainbow Pearl without hurting her. Before Riku is able to place his hand on Towa, Tōtetsu tells Towa there she is. Riku and Towa look to see Tōtetsu swiftly comes down from the sky with his blade. Tōtetsu says that he turns up out of the blue. Towa becomes surprised and wonders if that's a joke. Riku says what a complete lack of taste. As Tōtetsu strikes down, Riku pushes Towa out of safety as he jumps out of Tōtetsu’s way. Towa groans in pain. Tōtetsu questions Riku that he's here too and he should've just died. Riku calls Tōtetsu 'a wretched bug' and he got in the way of his and Towa's date and he won't forgive him for this. Tōtetsu tells Riku that he's the one who's wretched and a piece of trash and to not get cheeky with him as he lunges at Riku. Towa calls out to Riku. Riku tells Tōtetsu this is why he hates him before he uses the power of his earring to summon a sword of his own and accepts the fight before lunges at Tōtetsu. Tōtetsu and Riku clash swords. Tōtetsu asks Riku that he wonders what he would taste like and maybe he'd taste the same as Lord Kirinmaru. Towa questions about Riku and Kirinmaru would taste the same. Riku asks Tōtetsu that why doesn't he keep his mouth shut. Tōtetsu tells Riku that he guesses he'll find out by eating him before he uses his suction of wind. Riku uses his earring to not only teleport and protect himself from Tōtetsu’s suction of wind but also summons miasma bugs and throws them in Tōtetsu’s mouth to poison him and kicks him then makes him lose his balance. Riku tells Tōtetsu to have some poison bees instead and runs away. Tōtetsu gets up and becomes annoyed of the miasma bugs before he recklessly cuts down trees with his sword. Riku saves Towa from a falling tree that Tōtetsu recklessly cuts down and they land on a tree. Riku asks Towa if he was okay. Towa tells Riku 'thank you'. Tōtetsu turns towards Riku and Towa before he spits out the miasma bugs at them. Riku shields Towa from the miasma bugs, hitting his back. Towa calls out to Riku. Riku is injured by Tōtetsu and his back is dripping in blood from the miasma bugs. Towa holds on to Riku as she tells him to hang in there before running off with him to safety and away from Tōtetsu. Tōtetsu slows down due to inhaling the miasma bugs and is unable to catch up to Towa and Riku.
As Towa and Riku are walking together, Towa asks Riku if he was okay. Riku tells Towa 'yes'. Towa tells Riku who is Kirinmaru to him. Riku tells Towa that Kirinmaru is the one who used to be his master. Towa questions Riku that he means that romanticist he was talking about earlier. Riku confirms this with Towa and was thrown away by Kirinmaru. Towa says 'oh no'. Riku tells Towa that he's only survived this far because of the madam who took care of him. Riku covers his mouth as he starts to cough. Towa catches Riku and notices that the blood's not stopping. Riku says the miasma bug poison is a real pain. Towa sits Riku down by a tree. Towa asks Riku why would he continue to help her like this when he knows that she's Kirinmaru’s enemy. Riku tells Towa that he wonders why and he can't seem to understand it himself as there's really no reason to be protecting her. Towa becomes surprised. Riku tells Towa that if he loved her that he should’ve killed her by now but maybe he doesn’t have enough love yet and he's not good at this as he stands up. Towa stands up as well. Riku tells Towa that understanding love is far beyond a doll like him. Towa holds onto Riku and tells him to hang in there as she doesn’t really understand romantic love either but if it’s liking someone then she might understand. Riku senses danger and tells Towa this way as he carries her out of the way when Tōtetsu shows back up as he attacks them. Riku and Towa land in different places. Towa asks Riku if he was okay. Riku tells Towa to run away even though he himself is still badly injured. Tōtetsu picks up his sword and calls Riku a castaway puppet and questions that he still betrayed them as Zero, Kirinmaru, and himself will forgive him for his actions as he lunges towards him. Riku becomes annoyed as this really isn't to his taste as he draws out his sword again by the chime of his earring and aiming to attack Tōtetsu. As Tōtetsu and Riku are about to clash, Moroha’s Crimson Dragon Wave and Setsuna’s Scourge of Swallows aims in the middle of Tōtetsu and Riku. Tōtetsu and Towa runs but is blown away. Riku distances himself behind the trees. Towa wonders what happened. Setsuna, Moroha, and Kirara stand by Towa’s side as the sun begins to rise. Moroha asks Towa if she was okay. Towa realizes that it's Setsuna and Moroha. Totetsu groans in pain and sees that Setsuna and Moroha are here. Towa tells Setsuna and Moroha that they are late. Moroha becomes annoyed as she tells Towa that was she kidding as her and Setsuna been looking all over for her. Towa becomes surprised. Setsuna questions Towa that didn't she tell her not to wander off. Towa tells Setsuna sorry.
Towa notices her hair and eyes are changes back to normal as the sun is up. Setsuna hands Towa her sword. Towa tells Tōtetsu sorry as it is sudden. Moroha tells Towa and Setsuna let's make this quick. Setsuna tells Tōtetsu that she hopes he's ready. Towa, Setsuna, and Moroha draw out their blades to fight Tōtetsu. Tōtetsu tells Towa, Setsuna, and Moroha that they're kidding as he has plans to live a long life before he makes a cloud and begins to escape. Tōtetsu tells Towa, Setsuna, and Moroha that he'll swallow all of them at once. As Tōtetsu attempts to make his get away, Riku throws a sword from out of the air and beheads Tōtetsu, where Tōtetsu’s head, body and the Orange Rainbow Pearl falls to the ground. Riku walks towards Totetsu and tells him that he only kill the ones he loves but he'll have to make an exception for him as he takes the Orange Rainbow Pearl. Towa, Setsuna, and Moroha became shocked. The chime of Riku’s earring rings and he teleports in front of Towa. Towa calls out to Riku. Riku walks over to Towa and gives her a hug as he tells her that he's glad that she's okay and he was so scared that he couldn’t help himself. Towa becomes shocked. Setsuna and Moroha point their blades towards Riku. Setsuna tells Riku to step away because he has the same scent as Kirinmaru. Riku looks at Setsuna and questions her about another tasteless comment. After hugging Towa for a few seconds more, Riku pushes her to the ground and teleports further away from the girls, on top of a tree to leave. Towa runs up to Riku as she calls out to him. Riku looks at Towa. Towa tells Riku that she may not know about love and she knows that she likes him. Riku becomes surprised. Towa's Silver Rainbow Pearl glows in her left eye before she takes it out and happily throws it to Riku. Setsuna and Moroha become surprised. Riku catches the Silver Rainbow Pearl and is shocked to see it in his hand. Riku calls out to Towa and tells her what a tremendously tasteful thing for her to do. Towa tells Riku to give her regards to his madam and asks to overlook Setsuna and Moroha’s Rainbow Pearls. Riku laughs and tells Towa that she's a strange person. Towa asks Riku that he thinks so as she thinks he's pretty strange too Riku tells Towa that as a living being he’s an imitation at best. Towa questions Riku about being an imitation. Riku tells Towa 'yes'. Towa tells Riku that she can barely call herself a hanyō so she doesn't think he has to worry and he's just himself. Riku questions Towa that he's just himself and for an abandoned puppet like himself those words are too kind. Riku makes his departure and tells Towa 'thank you' for her Silver Rainbow Pearl and if fate allows it they shall meet again. Moroha is shocked and tells Towa that she couldn't believe she'd handed over her treasured Rainbow Pearl but she wonders if she can take Tōtetsu’s head there and if so then Riku's a nice fellow. Moroha kicks Tōtetsu’s head before dodging it when he tries to bite her. Moroha punches Tōtetsu’s head. Tōtetsu tells Moroha that he'll eat her. Moroha asks Tōtetsu that how is he going to do that when he doesn't have a belly and to give up already before she punches him. Tōtetsu becomes unconscious. Moroha happily says she doesn't have to worry about food for a while. Towa laughs nervously. Setsuna asks Towa if it was really okay for her to hand over her Rainbow Pearl like that. Towa tells Setsuna that the Silver Rainbow Pearl is hers after all and even without it she still have enough demon power as she activates her Energy Blade.
Setsuna tells Towa that's not it and with those Rainbow Pearls Riku will have immense demon power. Towa unactivates his Energy Blade and tells Setsuna that Riku is giving them back to their rightful owner. Setsuna tells Towa that they can only hope that the rightful owner won't use the Rainbow Pearls for evil. Towa becomes shocked. Moroha comes dragging Tōtetsu’s head towards Towa and Setsuna and asks wasn't Riku working with Kirinmaru. Towa becomes more shocked as she realizes that Kirinmaru is their enemy. Towa runs off into the woods after Riku and calls out him as she changed her mind and to give her back the Silver Rainbow Pearl. Riku turns around as it seems like he heard Towa’s voice and he contently looks down at his hand where he now possesses the Green, Purple, Blue, Orange, and Silver Rainbow Pearls and walks off. Towa continues to call out for Riku to wait.
Characters in Order of Appearance
- Tōga is said to have sustained grave injuries from battling Shishinki and Ryūkotsusei, which is actually consistent regardless of the incoherence of Tōga using the technique Meidō Zangetsuha, which he had normally stolen from Shishinki, when he and Kirinmaru destroyed the Grim Comet 500 years ago in episodes 15 and 22, which also dismisses the origins of Tessaiga and Tenseiga.
- This is the first time that the Sacred Jewel is shown via through a flashback around the time that Inuyasha was born, as well as Tōga's death.
- It's been revealed that Riku is only a doll since he was around the era of the Great Dog General's reign.
- Towa confirms that it's currently winter. Though unlike winter in the modern era, the weather is only mildly cold as Towa doesn't feel cold in her human form until a breeze strikes.
- This along with how many times she's turned human suggest that Hanyō no Yashahime did indeed start in October, and not just the broadcast.
- This marks the second time Towa becomes full human, meaning its been two months; possibly three if she arrived in the Sengoku jidai after the New Moon in the Modern era.
- Towa learns from Kaede that her mother's name is Rin.
- Tōtetsu being weakened by miasma bees of the dead summoned by Riku while using his air breath is similar to Miroku being weakened by the Saimyōshō of Hell while using his Wind Tunnel.
- As of this episode, all the Four Perils have been slain.
- Tōkotsu is the only Shikyō to not appear in this episode at all.
- Kaede confirms Rin disappeared shortly after giving birth to the twins.
- Riku's sword is a European cutlass rather than a Japanese katana. Being a pirate, it is possibly he may have taken it while raiding a European ship.
- Towa's dream is reminiscent of the one she had whilst under the dream gazing spell in Episode 8 before she caught the sight of the Dream Butterfly.
- When Towa reverts to her half-demon state, her hair regresses back into her scalp.
- Konton wears the second armor, but it supposed to be only his kosode, right before using the Meiōjū armor from Meiōjū in Episode 9.
- The closed captions are shown as Zero says "That boy causes no end of trouble.", instead of "That boy causes no end, but trouble."
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