|Beyond the Dead-End|
Fukurokouji No Mukou
|Next:||The Woman of the Island|
"Beyond the Dead-End" is the 14th episode of the season "Jigoku Shoujo".
While in school, Tsugumi wakes up from a dream of the Twilight world and continues on with her day. In the Twilight, Ai returns from a mission and receives another request. While walking home, Tsugumi has another vision; one of a person hanged off the ground and a group of people, laughing, and she snaps out of it and heads home. That night, Tsugumi tells Hajime of what she saw; a person hanged from a set of monkey bars ( "unte" as they are called in Japan) and of the group of people. Then, Hajime brings out an article about an employee of Mayor Ryouzo Kusunoki committing suicide under mysterious circumstances. Tsugumi points out the people she saw in her vision.
Hajime goes to the town of Matsunobe where Ryouzo lives and he gets information of the mayor and the deceased employee, Mr. Kirino from a colleague. In the town, Ryouzo has arrived at a retirement home, where a young woman, Saki Kirino has been waiting for him. She angrily yells at him and orders him to turn himself in to the police, but Ryouzo's son, Yoshiyuki pushes her aside and both of them go in. Saki remembers in flashbacks that one night, about a year ago, she hears her father on the phone, and she goes to investigate. On the table, she sees an envelope full of photos of the mayor with suspected crime lords of Japan. Then, Mr. Kirino comes in, takes the photos and leaves the house. The next day, his body was found and Saki goes to identify him. She asks the police if they found an envelope with the photos, but they said no. At Mr. Kirino's funeral, the mayor and Yoshiyuki arrive to pay their respects, but Saki refuses to let them in. She states that she saw the photos of the mayor and he is shocked, then they go. Saki continues to go to the police, but they can't further investigate the mayor without evidence, and Saki gives up hope.
Back in the present, Saki returns to find threatening letters on her door, but she throws them away. She then pulls out the black straw doll, meaning that she summoned Hell Girl to take Ryouzo to hell, once she pulls the string. Then, Hajime arrives and begins to ask her questions of her father and the mayor. It is revealed that the mayor cares a lot about the community and has donated money to the retirement home, where he visits often. Saki believes her father was murdered and the mayor must've destroyed the photos. Hajime then sees the straw doll and asks Saki if she met Hell Girl, but she doesn't answer. Hajime begs Saki to hold off on the revenge till he completes his own investigation, but he warns it won't bring any statisfaction to her.
The next day, Hajime interviews Yoshiyuki about Kirino's death and of Saki's suspicions, but Yoshiyuki thinks it is all a lie. Then the mayor comes in and takes Hajime to the retirement home, where he explains his early life. He was raised by his grandmother and when she passed away, Ryouzo had the retirement home built and the elderly residents were welcomed to live there. Hajime then learns that when the original owner passed away, some of Japan's crime lords were planning to take it over and the mayor had to stop them from achieving that goal. Yoshiyuki then tells him of Mr. Kirino wanting money after noticing the plot, but they had to turn him away, because they feared of huge debts, which resulted in Kirino's suicide. Ryouzo suspects he was the one responsible for Kirino's death, but he couldn't bring himself in, because the retirement home will shut down.
That evening, Hajime tells Saki of what he has been told, but she doesn't believe it. In the morning, Saki is stopped by Yoshiyuki, who gives her an envelope identical to the one that she was looking for. Yoshiyuki then points out that if his father dies or is arrested, the people of the town will have to leave. He also points out that Saki needs to forget about her father's case, but she storms off in tears, without taking the envelope. Hajime goes to visit Ryouzo and insists that he should apologize to Saki, and explains that her feelings are sincere. Awhile later, Saki is given a bank account, with all her father's money in it, but she knows it's not enough to send her to college.
Saki then declares that she doesn't care what happens to the town and she has done enough for her father, and then, she pulls the string. On Ai's ferryboat, the mayor asks Hell Girl if he could apologize to Saki, but Ai says no, and she ferries him to hell. Hajime is informed from Yoshiyuki that Ryouzo has disappeared and Hajime realizes that he failed, again.
Back at the Shibata's apartment, Hajime watches from the news and learns of the fate of Matsunobe's people. Although Tsugumi feels happy that Saki got her revenge, but Hajime doesn't think so. In Matsunobe, Saki sees that the retirement home has been closed down, and the elderly have been moved to another city. Saki feels sorrow as she reveals the black fire symbol on her chest.
Saki's candle is then lit and Hell waits to claim her.