The chapters 152 to 160 of the manga Demon Slayer is exciting as it features the confrontation between the high ranked demons of Muzan Kibutsuji and the best Demon Slayers on the planet. As the fight gets more violent, the readers are introduced to the tragic past of Akaza as a human. Tanjiro puts everything in his battle and unlocks the Transparent World technique, which was taught to him by his father many years ago. It gives him an x-ray vision of the world and helps predict the next movement of Akaza, evading his attacks with ease. Even Akaza recognizes his skills, and it feels that Tanjiro is getting the upper hand in his fight with the demon.
When the Upper Rank 3 demon, Akaza, uses his brutal techniques, Tanjiro is reminded of the last time they faced each other. It triggers memories of him watching Akaza mercilessly murdering Kyojuro Rengoku, the Flame Hashira. Tanjiro intervenes when Akaza is on the verge of doing the same to Giyu Tomioka after snapping Water Hashira’s sword. Although the high ranked demons can easily dodge their adversaries by sensing their fighting spirit, Tanjiro is able to eliminate his fighting spirit by reaching as he is using the Transparent World technique.
Tanjiro surprises Akaza by cutting off his head. But, Tanjiro and Giyu are shocked by the demon’s ability to continue fighting with them even with his head detached. Since Tanjiro had pushed himself to his limits, he is quickly knocked unconscious by the demon. Now, only Giyu remains to put up a fight with the frightening demon. He understands that he must keep fighting; otherwise, both will lose their lives, so he throws everything he has and keeps attacking the rank three demon.
As it is quite familiar with Demon Slayers, Akaza, on the verge of his defeat, starts getting visions of his past. He remembers his long-lost loved ones. Akaza’s father was ill when he was young, and to take care of him, he was pushed into the world of crime. Although he was caught many times, he had no other way of providing for his father’s needs. One day, his father decided to kill himself as he felt that he was a burden on his son. He was tired of watching Akaza sacrificing his life just to take care of him. In the hope that he will live a respectful life after he is gone, he takes his own life.
Akaza is deeply hurt by his father’s death and blames himself for not taking care of him. Luckily, he is met with a kind man Keizo who runs a student-less dojo. Keizo is compassionate and understands Akaza; the love and care he gives Akaza makes him forget his father’s bitterness after his father’s death. He decided that he will dedicate his life to this kind man and takes care of his sickly daughter Koyuki. The three of them grow close to each other, but Akaza’s bad luck follows him. One day the father and daughter are murdered by a neighboring dojo. The murder fills Akaza with hate, and he avenges their death by going after the ones responsible for their death.
He later meets Muzan Kibutsuji, who turns him into a demon. When Tanjiro gains consciousness, he starts fighting alongside Giyu. Akaza considers fighting back, but he soon accepts his fate. He remembers Koyuki for one last time and apologizes to her for failing to keep his promises.
Kanao and Doma
Kanao is heartbroken by the death of her adoptive sister. Doma, the upper rank two demons, killed Shinobu Kocho, but he is soon informed of the death of his companion Akaza. He tries to express grief for his fallen friends but fails. Kanao taunts him for his inability to show any emotions, even for the people who stand by him. She tells him that Kanae Kocho would have felt sympathy even for a monster like him, which angers Doma. He then attacks the Flower Hashira. But, Kanao is too good for him and easily dodges all his attacks. The demon seems to be winning the fight when he snatches the sword from Kanao, but Inosuke soon levels the playing field by intervening. When he learns about Shinobu’s death, it seems that the Demon Slayers’ victory is not too far away.
Doma recognizes Inosuke when his boar mask is removed. He tells him that he killed Inosuke’s mother. He knew her a long time ago, and she used to be in an abusive relationship back then. He even mentions a song that she used to sing for his son, which triggers Inosuke’s memories. When she knew there was no hope left for her, she tossed his son into the river, hoping that he would somehow escape the clutches of the demon.
The volume ends with Inosuke determined to avenge his mother and friend’s deaths, and it appears that Doma has little hope. Inosuke deeply cared for Shinobu, and after he got to know that her mother was killed by the same demon, it was too much for Inosuke to tolerate.