12 June, 2005
10 June, 2006
After landing at Ciudades del Cielo, an altercation between Renton and Holland leads to Renton running off into the city, where he discovers the truth of what happened there and the origins of Gekkostate.
Tiptory apologizes to Holland for forcing him to go to Ciudades del Cielo, but he tries to shrug it off, though Tiptory isn't buying it. The city is revealed to be a completely run-down city with very little population. The Gekko lands but Ken-Goh doesn't think they'll stick around very long. Watching Holland, Hap, and Tiptory on the monitor, Talho doesn't think they will stay long, and none looks happy with Holland. Holland bids Tiptory goodbye and she insists on giving him a two-litter bottle of glowing liquid that he refuses to accept, but she insists on giving it to them because he might need it someday. Elsewhere, Renton meets up with Moondoggie and wants to show him his board, but Moondoggie is not interested. Renton pays him no mind and wants to try it out, but Moondoggie says they're not staying long. It's odd to Renton because this place had good waves, but Holland doesn't want to stick around for long and ride them, and asks Moondoggie if he thinks Holland is fickle. Moondoggie is noncommital as they watch the lady leave, though he suddenly decides that he can Ref until they leave, so Renton goes with him. On the bridge, they're about finished restocking the supplies as Holland mopes they won't get to stick around for the waves, and Talho calls on him being the most legendary Reffer in history and not sticking around. They start to argue, but Stoner stops it by asking if they're not going to ride and that Renton and Moondoggie are on their way. As they bask in the area of good waves, Holland storms up and asks what they're doing. Renton says that the waves were good, and Holland suddenly punches him. shocked, Renton asks what that was for, but Holland doesn't explain himself and punches him again. Moondoggie doesn't have the will to stand up against Holland and Renton runs off saying he understands. Meanwhile, the kids are bickering over why Eureka has a weird look on her face when Renton refs, but he doesn't stop when she calls out to him. Renton wonders around the city, finding evidence that the place got bombed and destroyed recently, and takes off after he hears someone scampering around. He ends up getting tangled up in a clothesline and looks up to see Tiptory and bunch of other Vodarac loading supplies in caravans.
On the ship, Talho asks Holland where Renton is, and Eureka comes running up to ask about Renton, but Holland just apologizes and turns away. At the Vodarac monastery, Renton asks if the group's ready anti-Federation and says he learned about the Vodarac from school. She explains that what others say is not always the truth and people tend to believe only what they hear. Eureka pilots the Nirvash to look for Renton, and Talho warns her to be careful. She finds him as Tiptory explains that the whole 'gate of choice" was beautiful once, and despite being bombed-out rubble. If you stay here long enough, she says, you'll choose something. Because of the Vodarac's beliefs, the military attacked and destroyed the city three years ago. A Vodarac member comes running up and shouting about the "White Devil" being back. As Renton and Tiptory hide in the caravan, he hears Eureka calling out to him and realizes she has been looking for him. However, he sees people start throwing rocks at her, and Renton defends her. He then realizes that it's Eureka, not the Nirvash, they hate as they call her a murderer and a monster. Renton is confused and the Air Force arrives, launching bombs over the city, which forces them to go into hiding. The Gekko is trying to take off, but their guns are not working and Holland is off to pick up the Nirvash. Back at the ruins, Renton asks Eureka why everyone did that to her and Eureka says she's getting what she deserves, and confesses that she killed many people there, much to his horror. Eureka reveals that she was in the military's SOF (Special Operations Force) and Holland was the unit's leader. Under the military's command, they killed many civilians and destroyed the city. They did what they were told and Eureka believed in Holland so she went along with it. However, what stopped her from killing was the sight of her future children, whom she rescued after killing their parents. Renton now understands why Holland is the way he is, and Eureka is not as perfect as he thought she was. He initially tries to pass it off as a war back then but she says it's still war now and Renton is part of it now. Meanwhile, Hilda is comforting the kids and tells them that Holland promised to bring Eureka back, and he's never lied to them. Eureka says the purpose of the Gekko's existence is atonement for their sins, but above all, to complete their mission to stop the military. Renton yells at her that if it's all about the mission, then why did she save the kids. He calls her a liar for saying she wants to help others if she's not willing to actually do it, and believes she is not concerned with surviving if she's not going to use the Nirvash to help the Vodarac. Eureka shouts that she doesn't want to hurt people and wants to redeem herself, but she needs Renton to do so because he can also pilot the Nirvash. He climbs onto the Nirvash to stop the Air Force's attack, and Eureka hears Nirvash tell them they need to go, so he tells her to get to the cockpit. Holland watches the Nirvash launch into the sky, and while they don't have their sensors, Renton has a plan. The battleship picks up the Nirvash and tries to shoot it down, but Eureka cooly says it ain't a problem and easily disables the ship. Tiptory watches from below, reflecting this is the path that Renton has chosen. Holland knows this isn't Eureka' normal fighting style, as it takes out of the ship's targeting system. Renton opens the cockpit and points out the moon, telling her this is a place of choice and she made an incredible atone today. He further tells her that he will support her and he thinks she hasn't changed from the person she was before. With tears in her eyes, Eureka says she might have changed, from the day she first met him, which surprises him. Back on the ship, Renton takes the blame for everything that happened, but Holland just asks him where his board is, and when Renton says he lost it, Holland gives him his Official Gekko State Membership Wheel. Holland tells him that as long as he keep that wheel, he is a member of the Gekkostate. As his first official job as a member, Talho orders him to clean his new room. Meanwhile, Eureka asks the Nirvash if she's really changed.
- Introduction of Ciudades del Cielo.
- Background of the city's massacre three years prior.
- Renton becomes an official member of the Gekkostate.
- Holland's treatment of Renton starts to turn abusive, mostly out of jealousy and looking for an excuse to escape from his problems.
- The name of this episode is a reference to "It's Only a Paper Moon" by Harold Arlen.
- The episode's title refers to the full moon that appears at the end of the episode during a key moment in the series.
- It is revealed that Eureka and Holland were part of the SOF, the military's special task force, that were ordered to annihilate the city's inhabitants.
- The Vodarac people refer to the Nirvash as "The White Devil".
- Holland physically assaults Renton in a rage for the first time in this episode, when Renton and Moondoggie go out to ride some waves without permission. Although this incident may have been just a moment of anger because Holland wanted to leave the city as soon as possible, and he was already feeling frustrated with being there. He made up for this by making Renton an official member of the Gekkostate and gave him his own room (after having previously slept in a tent in the hanger).
- Eureka stated that, as a soldier, she was taught to shoot her "targets" and lacked a sense of mind to realize her targets were really people, leading her to brutally murder dozens of men, women, and children during the massacre. What ultimately stopped her was finding the kids and, although she would've killed them as well if she hadn't found them in the condition they were in, she decided to protect them after having realized what she had done.
- Prior to joining the Gekkostate, Eureka felt no emotions towards anyone or anything, and was taught to follow orders no matter what. It was finding the kids that caused her to develop her first emotion: guilt. This was due to her realizing she had killed many people, including their biological parents.
- Eureka cries for the first time in this episode, after having realized that she is slowly changing into a different person due to Renton's influence over her. This causes her to question Nirvash and herself if it is alright to change because she knows no other way of living.
- Despite the children currently being aged 5, 4, and 3, they appear as old as infants in the flashback from three years prior.
- Despite the horror of discovering of the terrible things Eureka had done and the war that the Gekkostate is involved in, Renton decides to help her fight in order to protect people instead of killing them. Also, he forgives her because he truly believes Eureka is remorseful of her past actions and is capable of changing into a better person.