|Yu-Gi-Oh! - Duel 019|
|Chapter listing||Yu-Gi-Oh! chapter listing|
"Final Stage" is the nineteenth chapter of the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga.
This chapter was originally printed in the Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine in Japanese. Its first English release was in the Shonen Jump magazine. It has been reprinted in volume 3 of the tankōbon and volume 2 of the bunkoban.
Shadi's confidence worries Yugi. He seems to already know Yugi's weaknesses, but regardless of what game Shadi has in store, Yugi refuses to let his ushebti break, as Anzu's life depends on it. To save Anzu, he needs to cause Shadi's ushebti to break, allowing the Millennium Key to slide to Anzu and free her from his spell. He starts to wonder how he can do that, but can't think of any weaknesses Shadi has. Shadi laughs that Yugi can search his heart for a weakness, but it will be in vain. Shadi claims his ushebti is like unbreakable diamond, while Yugi's are like alabaster, which is easily broken.
Shadi says that he shall introduce Yugi's opponent for the final stage. Yugi turns to find Jonouchi appear behind him. Jonouchi makes a swipe for the Millennium Puzzle, removing it from around Yugi's neck. Shadi tells him that this Jonouchi is an image created from the other Yugi's heart. The old Jonouchi, who once bullied Yugi, has been reborn, Shadi explains. Shadi caught a glimpse of these painful memories when he first visited the Yugis' soul rooms, he tells Yugi, and even though he may have forgotten them, they will always remain in his heart, no matter how much time passes.
In the final stage of the game, Yugi is to be "The Game of Death" against Jonouchi. Some of the ground surrounding Yugi and Jonouchi disappears, forming a bottomless pit. Shadi explains the rules: The two players will take turns rolling the Millennium Puzzle, like a die. Their opponent must move two floor tiles in the direction the Puzzle lands pointing. The first player to force their opponent off the edge wins.
The game begins and Shadi challenges Yugi to defeat that painful memory. Yugi is sure that this Jonouchi is another one of Shadi's illusions, but fears the possibility that it is the real Jonouchi, under Shadi's spell. He tries to convince Jonouchi that they don't have to play this game. However Jonouchi starts to mock Yugi about how he cares for the Millennium Puzzle, like he did on the day before Yugi solved the Puzzle. The regular Yugi gains control of his body for a split second, crying and causing two of his ushebti to shatter.
Now supported by only one rope, Anzu's platform begins to wobble. Back in full control, Dark Yugi is thankful that Anzu is still supported. Yugi thinks to himself that Jonouchi's words reminded his other self of the way things were in the past. That must have been Shadi's intent and with only one ushebti left, Yugi can't show any more weakness or he will lose.
Jonouchi proceeds with the game. He rolls the Puzzle, which points towards the pit behind Yugi. Yugi moves two spaces in that direction. Jonouchi holds out the Puzzle, telling Yugi that it is his turn, but Yugi refuses to Play this game with Jonouchi. Shadi is surprised and wonders if Yugi will jump into his own pit. Jonouchi takes it as a pass from Yugi and rolls again. Yugi moves another two spaces towards the pit and is now standing at the very edge. Jonouchi offers Yugi his turn, saying that it could be his last chance, because this roll could send Yugi into the pit. Yugi announces that he will pass again.
Astonished, Shadi asks Yugi if he is throwing the game and accepting defeat. "Defeat?", Yugi asks and tells Shadi that he is wrong, this is trust. Shadi laughs that Yugi "trusts". He believes that Yugi was unable to defeat his past, which is what was being tested in this final game. He asks if trust, something he believes to be more easily broken than ushebti to be one of Yugi's weaknesses. In the end friendship is nothing but weak hearts clinging together for solace, Shadi says and that true strength of the heart is the ability to believe in yourself needing no one. Had Yugi sent Jonouchi into the pit, Shadi believes that Yugi would have gained strength and he orders Jonouchi to throw the Puzzle for the last time.
Jonouchi remains still. Shadi is surprised and asks why he doesn't throw it. The illusion of Jonouchi disappears. Shadi is left dumbstruck, but Yugi explains that there is no past or present for friendship, if you trust your friends, they will trust you.
Yugi looks over at Anzu. Although the supporting ushebti is still intact, the rope is starting to break under the pressure. However the real Jonouchi appears under the board and holds it up himself.
Shadi is astonished to see that Yugi and his friends are all supporting each other, without hesitating for an instant. He notices the top of his ushebti starting to crack. Yugi tells him that although he probably won't understand, true strength of the heart cannot be gained alone; the power to trust your friends is the true strength of the heart. Shadi's heart pounds and the entire face of his ushebti starts to crack.
Debuts are in bold.