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|One arm isn't nearly enough to make up for that. I hope I'll be able to pay back the rest when I end up in hell...|
|— Erwin Smith acknowledges the losses he has caused|
The soldiers finally return after Eren's rescue, albeit in a terrible state and with a lot of casualties. Eren blames himself for getting captured, however, after Jean and others speak to him about the possible ability of him controlling the Titans, he regains his resolve. Meanwhile, it is revealed that humanity would barely have enough food to support the refugees for a week if Wall Rose were to fall. Dot Pixis reveals these details to Erwin. Levi expresses pity at Erwin's lost arm, but Erwin claims it is a small price for all the soldiers that have died due to his orders.
They are joined by Connie and Hange who reveal the possibility of Titans being humans completely fused within their body. This theory is supported by the events in the Ragako Village as all the humans have seemingly turned into Titans, including Connie's parents, much to his sorrow. Levi then reveals to Erwin that his team has been remade with several members of the 104th Training Corps members in order to watch over Historia and Eren. Far away from any civilization, Eren is reminded of the original Levi Squad as his new team bickers among themselves.
Back from the rescue operation, the soldiers climb over the Wall. As Connie and Historia reach the top of the Wall, they fall down, completely exhausted. It is stated that most of the Military Police Brigade soldiers have fallen prey to the Titans. Nearby, Jean notes that the recruits have some luck to survive these events. They put down an injured Mikasa who claims that she is fine, however, it is revealed that her broken ribs are in even worse state due to the horse ride. Suddenly, just next to them, Erwin loses consciousness, much to the horror of the soldiers.
Eren then looks around, witnessing the terrible state of his friends and other soldiers. He asks how many people died for his sake in the mission, to which Jean says that out of the 100 soldiers who went after him, Military Police included, only forty or so returned, with the Survey Corps having lost most of its remaining veterans in the endeavor. Eren blames himself for getting captured again and questions the number of the dead, with Jean revealing that more than half of the soldiers were killed. However, Armin notes that on their way back, the Titans ignored them and headed straight for Reiner and wonders if it was Eren's doing. Even though Eren claims he has no idea what happened, the rest discusses the idea of Eren possessing such ability. Jean then tries to encourage Eren and eventually Eren thanks him for it, regaining his resolve. He proclaims that he will control the Titans and seal the Wall Maria while capturing Reiner and others to make them pay. They are then approached by Historia, who, after correcting them about her real name, proposes heading to the other side of the Wall.
Afterwards, Dot Pixis explains to an awoken Erwin that the humans had taken shelter in the underground city within Wall Sheena and, according to the prediction, the food had lasted for about a week before it was announced that Wall Rose is safe. He states that it is certain that it will not take more than a week for riots to start happening if Wall Rose falls. Levi then comments the events and Erwin's loss of the arm, but Erwin claims it is a small price for all the soldiers that have died due to his orders. After short jokes about hell and alcohol, Hange and Connie enter the room, with the latter being praised by Levi for his work during the investigation.
Hange explains about the incident in Ragako and informs everyone about the details - that no villagers or their bodies have been found and the number of Titans matches the number of the village residents that have disappeared. Connie recalls the time when he visited the village along with Hange. At that time, they stand by the Titan that had seemingly tried to talk to Connie before. Hange, much to her shock, realizes the similarity between the Titan and Connie's mother as she looks at her photo. Connie then breaks into tears, knowing that he has nothing but the picture of his parents left.
Everyone is shocked to hear this and even though not everything is proven, they continue to discuss the theory, noting that no human's organs have been found in Titan's weak spot. However, Hange considers the weak spot to be no coincidence, implying that if humans can indeed become Titans, they are completely merged with the Titan bodies. Levi does not like the idea as he realizes that he is been killing humans the entire time. He then attempts to talk to Erwin, however, the latter is found with a creepy smile, which Levi mentions. Erwin notes that he is been called creepy ever since he was a kid and Levi wonders if this was the reason for him to join the Survey Corps. The group then talks about Eren and Historia, with Levi notifying everyone of his team being remade in order to watch over the two.
Far away from the other humans inside the Wall, Jean, Armin and Sasha carry the supplies into the house. They proceed to make fun of Sasha due to her 'potato incident', warning her not to steal anything due to lack of the food. Eren then appears, scolding them for not cleaning their shoes before entering. Jean complains about it and they continue bickering as Mikasa and Historia arrive as well. While the group talks about watching over Eren and Historia as the new Squad Levi and then continues feeling nostalgic about their time as 104th Training Corps, Eren, with a saddened expression, remembers the original members of the Special Operations Squad.
Additional SceneThe version of this chapter released with Volume 13 adds 5 extra pages not included during its original publication. These pages start with a redrawn version of page 17 and extend the conversation between Historia, Eren, Jean and Connie.
In these extra pages, after proposing that they head over the Wall, Historia urges Eren to come back and rescue Ymir, but collapses of exhaustion and wonders why Ymir chose Reiner and Bertolt over her. Connie and Jean guess that Ymir wanted to save Reiner and Bertolt, but conclude that they really do not know her well. Historia declares that she will never forgive Ymir and, after Jean comments that she is not acting like Krista, she laughs at the comment and reveals that she thinks that "Krista" was a role given to her, based upon a girl in a book she read as a child, and that it was a role she assumed in order to survive. She seems to have some difficulty recalling this book in her mind.