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Rei places fifth in his butterfly, setting a personal best record. However, it is not enough to qualify for the finals. Nagisa too, did not make it to the breaststroke finals. Halfway through watching Rin’s butterfly event, Haru leaves. Sosuke is resting elsewhere and misses Rin’s heat.
When young, after having lost their relay, Sosuke stated that the relay is not for him as he does not like losing due to others’ mistake, nor having to share their win. This angered Rin. Later, Kisumi explained that Rin got angry as his father used to swim the relay. Kisumi suggested for Sosuke to swim the relay for Rin, but he replies that it is not like that between them, and that they are better off as rivals. Sosuke reminisces about his happy childhood with Rin up till the point where Rin transferred to Iwatobi Elementary School. Sosuke is shaken out of his thoughts by Rin, who asks him what is wrong as Nitori is worried. Rin questions Sosuke about his behaviour recently but he insists that nothing is wrong.
Buying a soda and saying that it is his treat, Rin throws it to Sosuke, who fails to catch it, revealing his shoulder injury in the process. Sosuke finally comes clean and tells Rin that he sustained his injury about two years ago from over training. Sosuke reveals that he lied about being scouted and having a university to enrol in. They go somewhere else to continue their conversation.
Seeing Makoto alone, Nagisa asks him where Haru is but he has no idea too. Nagisa tells them not to worry as he is confident that Haru will be back in time as they are going to swim the relay together.
Haru is sitting on a bench outside, thinking about Rin’s word from their confrontation. He discovers that Rin and Sosuke are within hearing distance behind him. Rin asks Sosuke why he lied to him and transferred to Samezuka Academy. Sosuke explains that he always thought that they were better off as rivals, which is why he watched Rin transferred to Iwatobi without saying anything. He continued to work hard towards his dream as Rin is doing the same. Despite not receiving news from Rin, Sosuke had faith that he would be fine. During high school, Sosuke intensified his training further. However, he began to sense that something is wrong with his shoulder. He ignored it and continued swimming until his shoulder broke down completely.
Around this time, Sosuke heard from Gou that Rin was back home. However, Sosuke could not bear the thought of Rin seeing him break down, and went for physical therapy. His teammates started surpassing him gradually and he finally realised that his dream would never come true. Before he decides to give up swimming, Sosuke went to see Rin swim one more time. However, he was shocked during last year regionals when he saw that Rin was in pain. Hidden, he witnessed Rin’s outburst with Nitori. Rin had passed him by, but Sosuke could not bring himself to call out to him. Afterwards, Sosuke saw how Rin transformed into a totally different person while swimming the relay with Haru and his friends. It was then that Sosuke had a new dream, which is to swim with Rin once again.
He admits that in the past, he was unable to see how precious it was to swim with friends. Sosuke declares that before he gives up swimming, he wants to truly become Rin’s friend. Rin grabs Sosuke by his jacket and demands to know why he has hidden all this from him. Sosuke replies that it was because he knew that Rin would cry. Hearing this, Rin cries while denying it, calling Sosuke an idiot. Having overheard their conversation, Haru leaves.
Rin tells Sosuke agitatedly that he cannot swim in his current condition and that if he forces himself, he might never be able to swim again. A calm Sosuke replies that this is his intention from the start. Sosuke promises to swim finish his lap and declares that he wants to swim. However, Rin still have his reservations. Nitori and Momotarou burst in, wanting them all to swim together. Nitori shares the same feeling as Sosuke, desiring to swim with Rin after witnessing the events during last year regionals. Momotarou agrees and says that he wants to swim the ultimate relay with this team. Rin is shocked at their outburst. Sosuke requests for Rin to show them too, a sight that they have never seen before. Rin steps forward and leaves with them.
The relay is about to start. Rei and Nagisa wonders about Sosuke’s shoulder. Haru relates to them that Sosuke saw their relay last year and found his dream. Sosuke has realised the importance of swimming with friends, and wants to swim the best possible relay on the best possible team, even if it means wrecking his shoulders. Haru wants them to respond to his wish with everything they have.
The relay starts with Momotarou taking the lead. Nagisa performs a perfect exchange and pulls ahead. Samezuka has noticed Sosuke’s injury and are in disarray. However, Seijuro shouts that what they need to be doing right now is to cheer their teammates on. Sosuke widens the lead. However, his shoulder starts to give him some trouble. He perseveres and finishes his segment. Rin and Haru are swimming furiously, reaching the turn at the same time. They finish within seconds of each other. Iwatobi wins and makes it to the nationals. Iwatobi is overjoyed at having made it to the nationals. Momotarou says that it was the best, and the team is all smiles.
Afterwards, Sosuke tells Rin that he is finally able to find it.