Episode Five
お願い、愛に時間を!!
Onegai!! Ai ni Jikan wo!
(Please!! Time Enough For Love!)
It is the year 2032. Ten years have passed since Noriko Takaya departed on the Exelion for her adventures in space.
Now, along with Kazumi Amano, she finds herself back at the Okinawa High School for Girls. This time; however, she is
not a student freshman, but a graduate. The memories she has of the school total only four months, but Noriko feels
empty inside. Viewing a picture of her past classmates, she is suddenly filled with bitter regret. She is not the person she
once was. To her, time seems as if it has only passed by in mere days. On Earth, it has flown by with unprecedented
speed.

With the realization of this, Noriko now realizes how her father must have felt when he returned from deep space every
year to celebrate Noriko's birthday. To see a person you love change so drastically while you only age a few days is
rather unsettling. Noriko tries to put this past her as her name is called by the school's principle to accept her diploma.

With graduation out of the way, Noriko and Kazumi have some well earned leave coming. Departing the school, Noriko is
wondering if she could now have a baby, now that she's 27 years-old. Kazumi smiles at Noriko's innocence. It is at that
moment when a face from the past comes back to haunt Noriko. It is the much older face of her childhood friend, Kimiko
Higuchi.

As Noriko soon learns, Kimiko is now 27 and has married. The small girl Kimiko has with her is her child, Takami Akai.
Noriko feels the pangs of regret returning, for she knows she could of had a normal life on Earth if she had stayed behind.
Something gleaming in the sky catches Noriko's eyes and she changes the subject. Asking Kimiko what it is, her friend
states that it a new type of ship, the
Eltreum. Kimiko tells Noriko that it is an evacuation vessel, to be used in the event of
alien attack on Earth.

Kimiko then asks Noriko, with her pull in the military, to gain Takami a place on the Eltreum in case the Earth is doomed.
Noriko looks at her friend. Kimiko has indeed changed. No longer was she the self-absorbed teenager who loved
horoscopes, but instead a full-fledged mother who was determined to protect her daughter. Noriko feels more distant from
her than ever.

Later on that evening, Noriko calls Kimiko on the phone only to find that she is out for the evening with her husband.
Talking with Takami, who is house-sitting, Noriko tells her to let her mother know that she is sorry. Hanging up, Noriko
reflects back on her life. Meanwhile, reports suddenly come in from one of Earth's deep space monitoring stations that a
large alien fleet has been detected outside of the solar system. The monsters have finally found Earth.

The next morning, Noriko receives a page to report to Coach Ota. Arriving at the Okinawa High School, Noriko is
surprised to see Kazumi storm out of the office, tears streaming from her eyes. Noriko then enters the office, only to see
Ota double over and fall to the floor, vomiting blood. Trying to call for help, Noriko is shocked when Ota slams the phone
to the floor. Ota vows to kill her if she tells anyone of his condition.

Taking a bath later on, Noriko reflects on what Coach Ota told her. She remembers Ota saying that Kazumi was not
strong enough to handle the news of his condition, but Noriko has reasoned that Kazumi already knows.

At Earth Defense Command, a meeting is taking place to find a way of destroying the alien armada amassing their forces
outside the solar system. No solution can be found. Suddenly, the door is thrown open, exposing Ota outside, with guards
restraining him. He has a solution. Proposing to the council, he states that the recently decommissioned
Exelion can be
escorted into the heart of the alien fleet where the ship's collapsing motor can be overloaded, creating a black hole. The
Exelion would be flanked by Buster Machines for defense. The council tries to argue this plan out of the question, but
with a 1 in 10,000 chance of humanity surviving without it, the order is given.

With flight plans and preparations made, Noriko and Kazumi are on the launch pad, awaiting take-off. Noriko tries to put
Kazumi in high spirits by suggesting that she and Ota get married once the mission is over, but Kazumi releases a
bombshell. Their mission is going to take 6 months Earth time, and Ota may die within that period. He has cancer resulting
from space radiation poisoning.

Outside the system, Noriko and Kazumi locate and engage the enemy. The sheer number of them is overwhelming, but
the two
Buster Machines handle the job with ease. Scores of alien drones and attack ships are vaporized in the firefight. It
is at that moment Kazumi notices the mission chronometer. Six months Earth time is rapidly approaching. Kazumi breaks
down. Kazumi states that she does not want to go on, that things she wanted to say to Ota went unsaid. Unable to fight
alone, Noriko slows down to meet Kazumi and tells her that the mission will fail if she doesn't get her act together. Noriko
says Coach and the whole of Earth are depending on them.

Kazumi snaps back to her old self, and the two women merge the fighters into the massive
Gunbuster. Catching back up
with the
Exelion, they notice the aliens have damaged it heavily, but it is still intact. Moving back to the offensive, the
Gunbuster fights its way back to the Exelion, where it finally engages the collapsing motor. The engines start to overload
and finally explode, but not before the
Gunbuster escapes. Not long after, a massive void opens up, and the remainder of
the alien fleet is crushed to a singularity.

Back on Earth, Kazumi is desperately waiting to land. She and Noriko soon reach the hospital, where Kazumi bursts into
Ota's room, finding him there smiling. Kazumi falls into his arms crying, declaring her love for him. Upset by this emotional
display, Noriko runs out of the hospital, crying herself. She talks to the spirit of Toren Smith, realizing that the man she fell
in love with is lost to her forever.
つづく
To be continued...
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