"The sealed King of the Quincy. Over 900 years, he shall recover his heartbeat. Over 90 years, he shall recover his intellect. Over nine years, he shall recover his power. And over nine days, he shall recover the world. Let us go forth. Uryū. Haschwalth. These nine days will be the end of this world."
- Yhwach to Uryū Ishida and Jugram Haschwalth.
"The path has now closed. Ichigo. The path to a world without fear. The Human World, Soul Society, Hueco Mundo. They belong together as one. They should have been brought together, that life and death may mingle as one. But now that path exists no longer. All thanks to you, Ichigo. How disappointing. Because of you, life and death will not lose their form. All living things will continue to live their lives in fear of death...for all eternity."
- Yhwach to Ichigo Kurosaki.Yhwach (In Japanese: ユーハバッハ, Yūhabahha), often referred to simply as "Your Majesty" (陛下, heika) by his underlings, is the monarch of the Wandenreich and Father of the Quincy. He also possesses the designation "A" - "The Almighty", and is the son of the Soul King. He is the main antagonist of the Bleach series after Sōsuke Aizen's defeat.
Yhwach is a tall man with a long face, broad chin, and pronounced cheekbones. He has long black hair, which reaches to his lower back, and reddish-brown eyes with thin eyebrows. He has well-kept mutton chops and a connected mustache, but is otherwise clean-shaven. His usual attire consists of a white, double-breasted trench coat, which has the Wandenreich symbol on the middle, with large buttoned cuffs and lapels, white trousers, and trench boots. Over this, he wears a tattered, ankle-length maroon-black cloak, which has a red ribbon near the neck and is fastened to the left with a single large button.
As noted by Ōetsu Nimaiya, the manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers heavily resembles Yhwach's appearance from 1,000 years ago; similarly, the Bankai form of this manifestation looks like Yhwach when he was in his teenage years. During the Wandenreich's second invasion, his maroon-black cloak is replaced with a white version. After absorbing Mimihagi's powers, Yhwach gains a black pattern of eyes running down the left side of his face and onto his chest, and his left eye becomes inverted in coloration.
After completely absorbing the Soul King, Yhwach gains a dark mask of eyes covering the upper half of his face and begins constantly oozing darkness. Later on, darkness begins flowing from and covering his entire body, leaving only his hands, feet, knees, and part of his face and chest visible. Template:Clear
Yhwach is a proclaimed lover of peace, hating conflict and believing painful battles should be ended as quickly as possible. He holds the first generation of the Gotei 13 in great respect, for they were Shinigami who could strike fear into his heart. He especially admired Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto, whom he called a demon for treating his subordinates as expendable ashes. Yhwach despises values like justice and honor, which is why he hates how the Gotei 13 became "weak" during the 1000 years of his absence. He also dislikes lies, and does not give any falsities to the existence of his subordinates.
Yhwach treats his subordinates and the Quincy very differently. He is very fond of some of them, calling them his sons. He puts great effort into forcibly recruiting them into his empire. Yhwach can show mercy and appreciation, thanking Royd Lloyd for sacrificing himself in a suicidal mission and granting him a quick death via obliteration after the latter lost most of his torso. Yhwach dislikes blind loyalty, and was glad that his Sternritter showed outspoken discontent with his choice of successor.
In front of his subordinates, Yhwach is a man adamant in his disapproval of infighting, though he will not hesitate to stop the conflict using the most brutal methods possible. Yhwach's contempt for Arrancar is apparent, mercilessly wounding and slaying even those who have sworn allegiance to him when he deems them to have fulfilled their use. After his awakening, Yhwach heartlessly robbed "impure" Quincy of their powers, causing many to die. Yamamoto states this same disregard extends to all of his underlings, regardless of species or position, and is an attitude which Yhwach has allegedly always possessed; this is proven when he ultimately uses his Auswählen to fatally steal power from Gerard Valkyrie, one of his elite guards, and Jugram Haschwalth, his trusted second-in-command and other half, after absorbing the power of Ichigo Kurosaki.
Yhwach believes that he and his Sternritter are comrades and that they should be prepared to assist each other whenever necessary, even if it means certain members should be sacrificed for others; he demonstrated this belief by using Auswählen to steal the life force of the Sternritter who had been left behind in order to revive his fallen Schutzstaffel.
As a baby, Yhwach could not see, hear, speak, or even move. Despite this, he was not afraid, and would not have cried even if he had the ability to because he knew he would continue to live on. The people around him treated Yhwach with great reverence because everyone who touched Yhwach found they gradually gained something which they lacked. This occurred because Yhwach possessed the power to share out his own soul. Anyone who touched him received a fragment of his soul, and those fragments healed the wounds which their own souls alone could not. At the same time, as their wounds slowly healed, the various aspects of each person were all imprinted upon the fragments of Yhwach's soul which they had received until those fragments returned to Yhwach at the moment of their owners' deaths. Even though none who touched Yhwach lived for much longer, the people continued to gather around him. As he regained the fragments of his soul that he had shared out, Yhwach's body began to gain function. In time, when his deaf ears became able to hear, Yhwach realized the people had begun to call him by an unusual name: "YHWACH". He understood this was the name of the God these people worshiped, but he chose nonetheless to take this name for his own.
Yhwach is credited with being the progenitor of the Quincy. He is their king, and his blood flows in every Quincy. Later, he eventually discovered a much more powerful way to distribute his soul: by engraving a letter, signifying an ability, directly onto another's soul, he could share out his soul more deeply, and with greater power. Lille Barro was the first Quincy Yhwach bestowed a Schrift upon. At some point during his history, he was given the letter "A". When Bazz-B and Jugram Haschwalth were children, Yhwach began using his power to conquer the northern lands where their village and forest were located, both of which he burned down; this conquered territory became known as the Lichtreich (Japanese: 光の帝国 (リヒトライヒ) Rihitoraihi, German for "Light Empire", Japanese for "Empire of Light"). Five years later, he informed Zeidritz that he wished to create a new army. When Zeidritz pointed out how they had conquered all the nearby countries, Yhwach stated they had not yet conquered Soul Society before revealing that he intended to create an army called the Sternritter for this purpose.
Eventually, Yhwach sent out two of his personal guards, Hubert and Algora, to inform nearby villages of the formation of the Sternritter. While Bazz-B was confronting Hubert, Yhwach arrived and pinned almost everyone present to the ground with his Reiatsu. Declaring his intention to find a right-hand man, Yhwach selected Haschwalth, whom he recognized as his other half. Yhwach declared that Haschwalth would join the Sternritter before preparing to leave. However, when Haschwalth claimed that Bazz-B would be a better right-hand man to him, Yhwach noted that this was just as he had foreseen before revealing that Haschwalth shared his ability to grant powers to others. After explaining how this was the catalyst behind Bazz-B's prodigal powers, Yhwach told Haschwalth that he needed the latter at his side before being defended from Bazz-B's Heilig Pfeil by Haschwalth.
About 1,000 years ago, under unknown circumstances, Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto failed to kill him. Sometime around or during the course of this event, Yhwach witnessed the capabilities of Yamamoto's Bankai, Zanka no Tachi. After his battle with Yamamoto, Yhwach supposedly lost his powers. Quincy folklore spoke of him as "The Sealed King": after 900 years of being sealed, he would regain his pulse; after another 90, he would regain his intellect; and after 9 more years, he would absorb the power of every "impure" Quincy to make their abilities his own. With Auswählen, he did this to Kanae Katagiri, killing her, and to Masaki Kurosaki, who died during her fight with Grand Fisher due to the loss of her powers. All "impure" Quincy were killed except for Uryū Ishida. Yhwach later reveals this song is known as the Kaiser Gesang (Japanese: 聖帝頌歌 (カイザー・ゲザング) Kaizā Gezangu, German for "Emperor Song", Japanese for "Praise-Song of the Sacred Emperor"; Viz "King's Hymn") and has another verse stating the "Sealed King" would regain the world after 9 days.
When Äs Nödt survived an incident and was hospitalized, Yhwach visited him and granted him power. At some point during the seventeen months after the defeat of Sōsuke Aizen, the Wandenreich conquered Hueco Mundo, and Yhwach personally defeated its ruler, Tier Harribel. Imprisoning her, he claimed the territory of Hueco Mundo for the Wandenreich, regarding it as another foundation stone for the invasion of Soul Society.
The Thousand-Year Blood War arc
Upon Luders Friegen's return to the Wandenreich base, Yhwach states he dislikes conflict and severs Luders' arm as punishment for arguing with Asguiaro Ebern. After Luders declines his offer to lie down before him in exchange for his legs, Yhwach questions his estimate of five days being required for them to prepare for the war with Soul Society. Asking Luders if he is a prophet, Yhwach listens to Luders' denial of this title and asks him why he had been talking about the future, for he only wanted to know about what was happening at the present point in time, before killing Luders. Turning his attention to Ebern, Yhwach admits he has no reason to praise or blame Ebern, for he effectively delayed Ichigo Kurosaki, and states his role is over before saying Ebern will be a foundation stone for peace in death. When Ebern is decapitated, Jugram Haschwalth asks Yhwach if it is alright to kill the Arrancar, for they do not need to be taught how to fight. Dismissing this, Yhwach climbs newly-formed stairs to a room behind his throne and states they can acquire as many as they need, thanks to Hueco Mundo already being their dominion, as he looks at the imprisoned Tier Harribel.
When told Ebern's medallion was used, but was unable to seal Ichigo's Bankai, Yhwach cites a special plan would be needed to do so. Declaring "hot-blooded fools" could be useful at times, he instructs Haschwalth to have the Jagdarmee of Hueco Mundo collect "a few idiots" alive. Later, when told of Ichigo's ongoing battle with Quilge Opie, Yhwach notes this is the perfect opportunity to invade Soul Society before ordering all of the Sternritter to be notified. Later, Yhwach appears in the air above Ryūnosuke Yuki and members of the 13th Division as they ready themselves for battle and states thinking they will attack from one of Seireitei's gates makes sense before saying war is always a bitter affair. When the group loses their composure in the face of Hidetomo Kajōmaru's defeat, Yhwach permits Haschwalth to spare the others if he thinks it is the benign choice.
Later, as Captain-Commander Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto realizes his opponent was not Yhwach, but was instead his subordinate Royd Lloyd, who had used his abilities to mimic Yhwach's disposition, memories, and appearance, the 1st Division barracks are destroyed. Appearing behind Yamamoto, Yhwach thanks Royd for his service before incinerating his remains. When asked what he had been up to this entire time, Yhwach asks Yamamoto what lies beneath the 1st Division building before explaining how he had gone to the Central Great Underground Prison to speak with Sōsuke Aizen, though his offer to join their army was predictably declined. Continuing, Yhwach asks Yamamoto if he has exhausted his power fighting Royd.
When Yamamoto attempts to use his Bankai again, Yhwach steals it with his medallion and reveals it is not that they were unable to take Yamamoto's Bankai, but the power of Zanka no Tachi is too enormous for anyone other than Yhwach himself to handle, so he ordered Royd not to do anything regarding this until he had returned. Goading the Captain-Commander by asking if he should use Yamamoto's Bankai to resurrect the dead Shinigami, Yhwach manifests a second weapon from above. With a wave of his sword, Yhwach bids Yamamoto farewell and attacks him.
With Yamamoto bifurcated by the attack, Yhwach derides him and attempts to leave, only for Yamamoto to grab hold of his cloak. Cutting off the Captain-Commander's arm, Yhwach reveals he had not listed him as a Special War Power because of his foolish reluctance to exploit others, which had made him grow weak. Stating the original Gotei 13 was a group to be feared, and Yamamoto did whatever it took to win, Yhwach says Soul Society will die soon, but unbeknownst to Yamamoto, the Gotei 13 died 1,000 years ago. Unleashing innumerable arrows from an outstretched finger, Yhwach completely obliterates Yamamoto's body.
After ordering Haschwalth to inform the Sternritter that they are to demolish Soul Society, Yhwach observes the ensuing devastation in the wake of the advancing Soldat. With the Seireitei and the main forces of the Gotei 13 decimated, Yhwach prepares to declare a retreat in order to await the Royal Guard's inevitable arrival, only to be startled by an explosion in the air above him. Confirming the Reiatsu is indeed Ichigo's, Yhwach declines Haschwalth's request to eliminate him and states they are leaving. As Tensa Zangetsu is thrust into the ground before them, they are intercepted by Ichigo.
Though unaware of exactly how Ichigo had escaped Quilge's jail, Yhwach congratulates him on doing so before asking Ichigo if he is really intending on fighting with his body's current condition. When asked if he is the enemy's leader, Yhwach states he both is and is not before confirming he is responsible for the current state of Soul Society. As an enraged Ichigo emits a large amount of Reiatsu, Yhwach is left with no option other than to crush him. Unaffected by a Getsuga Tenshō, Yhwach pins Ichigo to the ground before subduing him by stabbing him in the throat with his sword. Affirming Ichigo is still breathing, Yhwach orders Haschwalth to bring Ichigo back to their castle, where they can recruit him into their army. When Ichigo awakens, Yhwach deduces the pronounced veins stopping his sword are in fact Blut Vene before being engulfed by Ichigo's Reiatsu.
Emerging mostly unharmed, Yhwach admits he had made a mistake in using a pure Quincy to stop Ichigo, for this awoke the memories in his Reiatsu. He reveals in trying to escape Quilge's jail, Ichigo absorbed some of the surrounding Reiatsu, which awoke the memories deep within his soul and allowed him to escape, for the jail cannot trap a Quincy. Stating Ichigo knows nothing about himself, not even about his own mother, Yhwach threatens to drag Ichigo to the Wandenreich and tell him everything there. As the two clash, Yhwach prepares to stab Ichigo, only for shadows to appear below him. When told his time outside of the Schatten Bereich is up, Yhwach realizes Aizen had confused his perception of time while they spoke and turns to leave. As Haschwalth intercepts Ichigo's subsequent attack, Yhwach departs while declaring he will return for Ichigo.
Several days later, he asks Haschwalth where the subject is. When Haschwalth states he is here, Yhwach greets the newly recruited Uryū Ishida before proclaiming they will fight together. Yhwach is later saluted by the Sternritter as he announces he has information for them. Announcing Uryū will become his successor, much to the dismay and shock of several Sternritter, Yhwach states they do not need to doubt his decision because they will see Uryū's power for themselves in the upcoming fights.
Later, in his chambers, Yhwach tells Uryū the ceremony is over and states Uryū's power will soon awaken. Saying he will give Uryū a Schrift, Yhwach bestows him with the letter "A", which is his own letter as well. When Uryū asks why he specifically was chosen as his successor, Yhwach asks why he is alive, much to Uryū's shock, before stating all mixed blood Quincy died during Auswählen except for Uryū. Proclaiming he named Uryū his successor because he was the first one to survive Auswählen in all of history, Yhwach surmises Uryū possesses a power which can surpass his own, which is why he was chosen to succeed him. Stating Uryū does not have to question anything, Yhwach tells him to come with him.
Shortly after the Seireitei vanishes, Yhwach appears on a building with Uryū and Haschwalth and states the invasion is complete before asking Uryū if he knows the Kaiser Gesang. When Uryū confirms this and recites it, Yhwach notes there is another verse: after 9 years of regaining his powers, he will regain the world in 9 days. He instructs Haschwalth and Uryū to come, for the world will end in 9 days. Later, Yhwach elaborates on how the Wandenreich managed to make Seireitei vanish and reveals the Quincy escaped into the Seireitei, the most vulnerable area in Soul Society, and created a space in the shadows after they lost the war 1000 years ago, which is why they named themselves the Hidden Empire.
When the Shinigami reclaim their Bankai by using the Shin'eiyaku invented by Kisuke Urahara, Uryū asks Yhwach if he had expected it to happen. Confirming this, Yhwach states he had indeed predicted it before noting the Sternritter seem to be reveling in this event. As numerous Sternritter across the Seireitei activate their Quincy: Vollständig, Yhwach proclaims the Shinigami will now taste true despair. Later, at the Wandenreich HQ, BG9 and Cang Du sit tied up before Yhwach, who says he is going to judge the Sternritter who lost. As Yhwach has Haschwalth step forward, BG9 begs him to wait and admits they lost before pointing out how the activation of their Quincy: Vollständig resuscitated them. As BG9 states they can still fight for him, Yhwach says they should be grateful for having survived.
Later during the night, Yhwach falls asleep. When Mask De Masculine is defeated, the sleeping Yhwach calls James back. When dawn comes, Yhwach wakes up and thanks the souls of the fallen for his continued ability to perceive the world. Later that day, Yhwach watches silently as the meteorite which Gremmy Thoumeaux summoned hurtles toward the Seireitei. Soon afterward, when Ichigo arrives in the Seireitei, Yhwach notes his appearance and informs Haschwalth and Uryū that they will begin. Watching Ichigo and Candice Catnipp's battle from afar, Yhwach tells Haschwalth to summon "the key". As Haschwalth does so, Yhwach says they will thank the one who brought them to the light. As a beam of light pierces the heavens, Yhwach tells everyone to be with him.
Yhwach begins speaking to Ichigo and explains how Ichigo's clothes possess enormous defensive powers because they are made from the bones and hair of Royal Guard members, allowing Ichigo to break through the 72 barriers between Soul Society and the Soul King Palace unscathed. However, Yhwach reveals that because of this power, the barriers are unable to reform for the following 6000 seconds, causing Ichigo to realize he plans to depart for the palace. Ichigo quickly reaches their location, causing Yhwach to take note of his arrival. He watches the short confrontation between Uryū and Ichigo before telling Uryū it's time to go. He asks Uryū if he said farewell considering this will be forever and then starts ascending towards the palace together with Uryū and Haschwalth. Soon afterward, Yhwach, Haschwalth, and Uryū arrive at the Soul King Palace.
When Yhwach notes where they are, Haschwalth claims to know how he feels, but Yhwach states a rotten gravestone does not make him feel anything before having Haschwalth summon several Soldat to invade. When Tenjirō Kirinji arrives, defeats the Soldat, and introduces himself, Yhwach demands to know if Kirinji believes he can defeat him, prompting Kirinji to confirm this before engulfing those present in his hot spring water. After explaining the water's properties, Kirinji releases his Zanpakutō and attacks Yhwach. Kirinji's attacks all miss Yhwach despite the latter not dodging them. Yhwach walks away from Kirinji only to be confronted by Senjumaru Shutara, who says it has been a long time. She gives out that he has entered the palace without an invitation and has her soldiers surround him. The soldiers attack Yhwach, but they too are unable to hit him. The confrontation is interrupted when Sternritter "W" Nianzol Weizol appears out of the ground.
After Nianzol is killed by Senjumaru, Yhwach watches as she summons more soldiers and claims that he can now be harmed. Countering this, Yhwach summons several Soldat' from his shadow to combat Senjumaru's soldiers. He then calls on his Schutzstaffel (Japanese: ') - Gerard Valkyrie, Lille Barro, Pernida Parnkgjas, and Askin Nakk Le Vaar - to take on the Royal Guard. After Nimaiya defeats his Schutzstaffel, Yhwach's hands begin to glow as Nimaiya challenges him. Yhwach activates Auswählen and steals the power and lifeforce of the Sternritter in the Seireitei below in order to revive his Schutzstaffel, whom he tells to go forth.
After initiating the Auswählen and the destruction of the Cage of Life, Yhwach appears before Ichibē Hyōsube and asks him if he will allow him to pass, only for Ichibē to tell him to be careful speaking his name so easily, for it is likely to crush his throat. When Ichibē draws a line on the floor and states this is where he will defeat him, Yhwach notes this is a bit small before claiming Ichibē will die three steps before this. However, Yhwach is interrupted when an enormous hand shoves him off the side of the palace. When Ichibē explain to him that this hand will push him 1000 ri away, Yhwach attempts to say something, but finds he cannot speak. After Ichibē pushes him downward with another hand, Yhwach punctures his own throat and proclaims that he gives himself the power of voice before using Sankt Bogen to shoot himself through the chest with a Heilig Pfeil, prompting Ichibē to note he must kill him.
Noting that he must kill Yhwach because of his failure to atone, Ichibē draws his brush as Yhwach prepares to clash with him. Ichibē and Yhwach clash, with Yhwach noting that he looks much happier than he expected. When Yhwach deflects Ichibē's brush with his arm, Ichibē reveals that his brush can cut names as a shocked Yhwach's arm falls to his side. Ichibē reveals that Yhwach's arm is now Ar and that his physical capabilities have been cut in half before slashing him down the center of his body, causing Yhwach to fly back into the palace. Moving back to the palace, Ichibē asks Yhwach what he thinks about being cut to pieces, prompting a grinning Yhwach to demand to know if he looks like he is suffering as Reishi gathers around him.
Yhwach gets to his feet as he explains to Ichibē that he can merely restore anything which Ichibē takes from him and that everything in the world is his for the taking before sending his Reishi pillars hurtling toward Ichibē. When Ichibē blocks the pillars and uses Bakudō #62. Hyapporankan on him, Yhwach activates Blut Anhaben to protect himself and explains how it is a defensive wall that expands outside the body. Ichibē uses Ura Hadō: Sannodō — Teppūsatsu to seemingly break through and grabs Yhwach by the neck, but Yhwach reveals that Blut Anhaben consumes everything around it as black lines appear on Ichibē's arm. However, Ichibē merely ruptures Yhwach's face and reprimands him for daring to invade the body of a Royal Guard before releasing his Zanpakutō, Ichimonji.
Noting he does not sense any Reiatsu despite Ichibē releasing his Zanpakutō, Yhwach looks at Ichimonji and tries to figure out what is wrong, prompting Ichibē to ask him if he cannot tell the difference between a pen and a sword before attacking him. As he and Ichibē clash, Yhwach points out how Ichibē is merely spraying ink everywhere before proclaiming that he will simply take back his powers no matter how many times Ichibē removes them. However, Yhwach falls silent with shock, prompting Ichibē to reveal his sword does not have a name anymore before explaining how anything Ichimonji covers in ink loses its name. When Ichibē asks him if he really believes he can kill him now, Yhwach holds out his hand and claims he will simply steal Ichibē's powers before using Sankt Altar. However, Ichibē effortlessly shrugs off the spell and explains how his Zanpakutō wields the power of darkness, which is why Yhwach cannot steal his power, before covering Yhwach's face in ink.
As Yhwach stands covered in ink, Ichibē notes it must have been painful for him to lose his name before activating his Bankai, Shirafude Ichimonji, and giving Yhwach the name of Black Ant. Ichibē smashes Yhwach through the floor with a giant foot and bids him farewell before crushing him between two giant hands. Wondering if this is how it will end for him, Yhwach bursts through the floor of the palace entrance and attacks Ichibē, who wonders what is going on as Haschwalth reveals this is the power of The Almighty.
Yhwach notes Ichibē must have many questions about how he can be doing this before explaining how The Almighty allows him to see into the future and use any power he knows of, which means he cannot be defeated. When Ichibē attempts to defeat him by using the black on his body for Futen Taisatsuryō in order to strip him of everything he possesses, Yhwach points out how he has regained his name and proclaims he will be the one to take everything away from Ichibē before blasting him. Noting that Ichibē died in three steps just as predicted, Yhwach observes that the Royal Guard have been defeated and proclaims the Soul King is next.
Soon afterward, Yhwach reaches the main palace, where he slaughters the Soul King's servants before confronting the Soul King himself. Claiming the Soul King is an imperfect god too weak to run away, Yhwach proclaims he shall end his humiliation here and notes the Soul King likely foresaw this day before stabbing the Soul King, whom he addresses as his father and bids farewell. However, Yhwach is interrupted by the arrival of Ichigo and his friends behind him. Mentally cursing Ichibē, Yhwach turns to face Ichigo.
When Ichigo states that they have come to stop him, Yhwach admits he had already seen it before explaining how he can see the future due to his new eyes and how he knows about Ichibē's revival before revealing the impaled Soul King behind him. Ichigo leaps past him in an attempt to help the king, but Yhwach lets him do so while stating that Ichigo must be prepared to destroy Soul Society. When Ichigo's right side is enveloped in Blut Vene veins, Yhwach explains how the Quincy blood within him will never permit the existence of the Soul King and invites him to watch the destruction of Soul Society as Ichigo slashes the Soul King across the chest.
Yhwach explains to Ichigo how his power allowed him to transfer the Reiatsu still present in his sword to Ichigo, which his blood reacted to. When Ichigo attacks him, Yhwach effortlessly blocks his sword and points out how it is pointless to fight him any further because Soul Society will be destroyed regardless. Yhwach goes on to explain how the Soul King keeps the flow of souls in balance and claims it is Ichigo's fault that everything will fall apart, only to stop in surprise upon seeing several razor-sharp wires placed around him by Yoruichi, who tells Orihime to revive the Soul King. However, when Orihime's Sōten Kisshun shatters around the king, Yhwach proclaims that the Soul King will never draw breath again.
However, Yhwach is shocked when Jūshirō Ukitake's Kamikake appears in the palace and wraps itself around the Soul King. Recognizing this as the work of Mimihagi, the one being whom his eyes cannot predict, Yhwach demands to know if the Soul King's right hand is beginning to feel sentimental toward Soul Society after protecting it for all this time. Yhwach attempts to destroy both the Soul King and Mimihagi, but is stopped by Ichigo, who grabs his arm and dispels his attack. Asking Ichigo why he is doing this, Yhwach points out how he is the one who cut the Soul King in half and states that Ichigo's blood cannot permit the Soul King's existence, but Ichigo states he is here to save all the realms, prompting Yhwach to demand to know if Ichigo believes that he is the only one who can do this. Ichigo proclaims he cannot simply sit by before blasting Yhwach within the palace with a Getsuga Tenshō. When Ichigo tells him that he will not do his bidding despite Yhwach's blood running in his veins, Yhwach claims that this will be decided by his eyes alone.
Yhwach tells Ichigo that he has never intended to make Ichigo do his bidding. When Ichigo questions what this means, Yhwach claims that all of Ichigo's battling and growth up until now have been in preparation for him killing the Soul King and that all of Ichigo's decisions benefited him because they share the same blood, prompting Ichigo to angrily attack him before proclaiming that he still intends to stop him. However, Yhwach asks Ichigo if his resentment toward him is truly justified before claiming that it is Ichigo's own weakness that led to his mother dying. After Uryū appears and shoots Yoruichi in the shoulder, causing her barrier around the Soul King to shatter, Yhwach catches the top half of the Soul King. Yoruichi begins throwing spheres at him, but Yhwach has Pernida warp her arm before throwing her out of the palace himself. After Uryū distracts an attacking Ichigo, Yhwach rips Mimihagi off of the Soul King.
After Uryū knocks Ichigo and the others off the palace, Mimihagi attempts to attack Yhwach, who merely wonders if it is trying to hinder its own child before dispersing it with a strike. Noting that Mimihagi is now far below him, Yhwach absorbs Mimihagi through his hand and decides to take everything that once belonged to the Soul King before firing a beam of darkness through the floor of the palace. As his beam strikes the Shakonmaku and spreads a veil of darkness over the Seireitei, Yhwach begins staggering before dissolving into a mass of one-eyed black creatures that begin swarming the Schutzstaffel. Haschwalth appears and explains that Yhwach is unable to keep all of the Soul King's now-released power within himself and is simply releasing it in the form of these creatures as the swarm begins pouring out of the palace and heading for the Seireitei below.
Soon after, Yhwach completely absorbs the Soul King. When Haschwalth and the others enter the Soul King's chambers, which are covered with darkness, Yhwach turns around to reveal that he has gained a mask of eyes across his face. Noticing Askin backing away from him in shock, Yhwach wonders if he is afraid and assures them that they will get used to it before noting that he never expected to have too much power as the top of the palace shatters. When a kneeling Haschwalth asks him to lead them, Yhwach addresses him as his firstborn and states they will begin by creating a new country for the Quincy.
Yhwach brings the Wandenreich city to the Soul King Palace, which he connects to the surrounding cities to form a Quincy Zeichen; soon after, he creates a large, tower-like palace for his new stronghold. When Ichigo, his friends, and the Gotei 13 arrive in the Soul King Palace, Haschwalth reports their intrusion to Yhwach, who decides to make the tower the cornerstone of his new world, the Wahrwelt. Soon after, Liltotto Lamperd and Giselle Gewelle confront Yhwach, who quickly dispatches the two before returning to his slumber.
While sleeping, Yhwach has a vision of Ichigo arriving and bifurcating him. He then wakes up as morning arrives, regaining The Almighty as he remarks that his dream was wonderful to the point of being a nightmare. Ichigo then arrives at the throne room, and Yhwach asks him what took him so long to arrive, referring to him as his "son of darkness." Ichigo stands before Yhwach, who notes that Ichigo's newly-attained true power is causing his Reiatsu to become visible around him before revealing that he is not using The Almighty to predict Ichigo's moves because he wants to savor this reunion. When Yhwach claims that Isshin Kurosaki was merely a surrogate father for him, Ichigo decries him being his parent because he is the one who killed Masaki Kurosaki.
As Yhwach claims Ichigo is still a petulant brat, Ichigo leaps toward him and fires a Getsuga Tenshō, which Yhwach blocks with a torrent of Reiatsu that attacks Ichigo, prompting Orihime to block it with Santen Kesshun. When the Reiatsu pushes past the barrier, Ichigo cuts through it with his shorter sword before leaping toward Yhwach once more, only for the Reiatsu to stop his assault as Yhwach claims that Masaki died so he could create Ichigo. Proclaiming that Ichigo should not sulk because there is no greater honor than this, Yhwach flings him into a wall before standing up as he prepares to demonstrate his true power.
Yhwach tells Ichigo that they are done talking as Ichigo charges at him again. Berating Ichigo for charging in so recklessly, Yhwach stifles Ichigo with Reiatsu again as he says that they should not rush things since Ichigo's death is inevitable. Yhwach tells Ichigo that it took a lot of work to create him and that he should stop making light of it, as his abilities were never his to begin with, before surrounding Ichigo with his Reiatsu. As Ichigo continues to charge him, Yhwach wonders why he is so eager to die and notes that he will destroy both Soul Society and the Human World if not stopped. When Orihime covers Ichigo with her Sōten Kisshun, Yhwach points out how she is saying "no" by healing Ichigo and telling him to keep fighting before blasting Ichigo with more Reiatsu while ordering him to expend all his Reiatsu and die for his allies. However, upon seeing the tip of his blade turning white, Ichigo has Orihime block Yhwach's next blast with Santen Kesshun. An explosion of Reiatsu engulfs Ichigo, prompting Yhwach to realize what his endgame is as the dust clears to reveal Ichigo has entered a partially Hollowfied form.
After greeting a shocked Orihime, Ichigo confirms Yhwach's assessment that this is the form he takes on when melding with his Hollow powers before explaining how he reforged his Zanpakutō after his Hollow and Quincy powers came into balance with one another. As Yhwach grins at Ichigo's strategy of awakening his powers with his Reiatsu, Ichigo moves in front of Santen Kesshun while telling Orihime to keep up her guard before unleashing his Reiatsu, which destroys most of the room around them. Yhwach commends Ichigo's power and forms his broadsword, only for Ichigo to grab him before slashing at close range. As more of the tower is destroyed by the force of the attack, Yhwach blocks Ichigo's blade with his bare hand and claims that he could not be harmed by Ichigo's level of strength before tossing him back. However, Ichigo proceeds to form a Getsuga Tenshō and fuse it with a Gran Rey Cero before firing it at Yhwach, who is cut deeply.
Noting that a combined attack like this is fitting for a racial hybrid like Ichigo, Yhwach grabs and repels the augmented Getsuga Tenshō before proclaiming that Ichigo is out of his league. Ichigo clashes with Yhwach, who details Ichigo's probable train of thought before declaring that his window of opportunity is gone as he activates The Almighty, which he admits is the result of him no longer being able to underestimate Ichigo's power. Clashing with Yhwach repeatedly, Ichigo draws his other sword and strikes, only for Yhwach to form a second sword and repel Ichigo in turn. As Ichigo moves around, his feet are impaled by shadow blades emerging from the places he lands on, causing him to realize that Yhwach has set up traps. After planting his sword in the ground, Yhwach states that Ichigo has likely been told that The Almighty allows him to see the future, prompting Ichigo to note that his attack should not connect if this is true. Grinning, Yhwach slashes at Ichigo, who leaps back and lands on top of a pillar as Yhwach details his thought process of growth during a fight causing the future to change before telling him to stay there if he believes this. As Ichigo is stabbed by long shadowy blades from the wall behind him and falls to the ground below, Yhwach appears in front of him and reveals how Ichigo miscalculated by assuming that the future is linear before explaining how it is instead akin to countless grains of sand in the wind that he can choose and move between at will. Telling Ichigo to keep pushing forward and moving between grains of sand without despairing, Yhwach watches as Ichigo activates his Bankai.
Immediately after Ichigo activates his Bankai, Tensa Zangetsu, in a burst of energy, Yhwach breaks off part of the blade with his bare hand, leading a shocked Ichigo to wonder how he did this without moving. Yhwach notes that Tensa Zangetsu is indeed a fearsome Bankai and reveals that he used the future to break it before breaking off Ichigo's horn as well while reminding him to not drop his guard. When Yhwach throws his horn at him, Ichigo bashes it away with the remainder of his Bankai, only for Yhwach to appear behind and slash him out of the air and into the ground below. Attacking Ichigo once more, Yhwach closes in on him and slashes, only for Orihime's Santen Kesshun to block his blade. However, Ichigo is still wounded, prompting Yhwach to reveal that The Almighty lets him transform the future as well as foresee it before telling Ichigo to despair for him.
Yhwach states that The Almighty is no different from Ichigo and Orihime's powers because he can also influence only what he can see, which is the entirety of fate. Yhwach claims that Ichigo has only been able to overcome his despair and change his fate up until now because he was not present and declares that he will cut down any future Ichigo tries to create for himself before telling Ichigo that he can begin despairing now, prompting Ichigo to begin screaming in anger. Soon afterward, Ichigo coughs up blood after being attacked by Yhwach, who grabs him by the head while noting that he expected more of a fight from Ichigo. When Ichigo loses all hope of winning, Yhwach drops him while claiming that all Ichigo accomplished was providing him with some entertainment before preparing to take back the power he had given to Ichigo.
Black veins encompass Ichigo and the surrounding area as Yhwach absorbs his Quincy and Hollow powers. As his merged Hollow form dissipates, Ichigo falls to the ground, unconscious, as Yhwach laughs maniacally before initiating a third Auswählen, which drains power from Haschwalth and kills Gerard. Power is drawn from all over the area to the top of Wahrwelt, where Yhwach has opened a portal and bids Ichigo farewell while promising to bring ruin to all of existence now that he no longer has need for him or the Sternritter. When Rukia and Renji appear, Yhwach expresses annoyance at having so many weaklings be sent after him and notes that they are probably too exhausted to take another step before deciding to leave the portal open so they can pursue him if they wish, which he will reward them for by slaughtering them in their time of greatest happiness. As he promises them that they will feel the looming shadow of death for all eternity, Yhwach steps into the portal.
Shortly afterward, Yhwach arrives in the Seireitei, where he is greeted by Aizen in his chair. After destroying Aizen's restraints, Yhwach responds to Aizen's claim of Ichigo giving him too much trouble in the Soul King Palace by reminding Aizen that he was the one whom Ichigo defeated before noting that protecting Soul Society does not seem like something that would be in Aizen's best interests. When Ichigo and Renji suddenly attack him from behind, Yhwach repels them and claims to have already foreseen Ichigo coming here and having his Bankai broken once more. However, when Tensa Zangetsu is merely cracked instead of completely destroyed as he had planned, Yhwach notes that Ichigo possesses a great deal of good fortune.
After pushing Ichigo back with a blast of Reiatsu that destroys part of Sōkyoku Hill, Yhwach questions why he did not let Orihime heal his wounds prior to coming here before reminding Ichigo that he was told he would be unable to do anything even if he followed. When Renji seemingly attacks him with his Bankai, Yhwach severs his left arm while claiming that all Bankai are rendered impotent against him before deciding to crush Renji with his own hands in order to prove this point. Suddenly, Aizen appears with Kyōka Suigetsu in hand and intervenes, prompting Yhwach to ridicule him for defending one of the "losers" which he so detests, before using Hadō #99. Goryūtenmetsu, which ruptures the ground around them and forms a large energy dragon in the air above as Aizen rushes forward. Despite this, Yhwach merely points out that Aizen's sword is cracked before sending him hurtling back with an energy blast. When Ichigo appears behind him, Yhwach blows off his arm and stops his blade while noting that Ichigo decided to ally himself with Aizen before pointing out how even Kyōka Suigetsu was useless before his power. Reminding Ichigo that he can see everything, Yhwach shatters Tensa Zangetsu and bids Ichigo farewell before seemingly blowing a hole in his torso as he prepares to destroy Soul Society. However, Aizen, having disguised himself as Ichigo, merely notes that Yhwach's vision of Ichigo attacking him is interesting while impaled on Yhwach's hand. Suddenly, the real Ichigo impales Yhwach from behind with Tensa Zangetsu before unleashing a powerful Getsuga Tenshō.
As Ichigo cuts him in half, Yhwach dissolves into a mass of darkness, which shortly afterward engulfs a shocked Aizen. Noting that the power of Kyōka Suigetsu appears to have run out, Yhwach reforms as he asks Ichigo if he really thought an attack of that caliber would be enough to kill him before proclaiming that he can even rewrite futures where he dies using The Almighty. Yhwach bashes Tensa Zangetsu out of Ichigo's hand and engulfs him and the rest of the Seireitei in his darkness before declaring that everything will lose its form and become one before his power. However, Yhwach is interrupted when Uryū fires the silver arrowhead through his chest, to the surprise of both him and Ichigo, as his darkness suddenly clears from his body, prompting Uryū to tell Ichigo to move now. With his cracked Bankai in hand, Ichigo leaps toward Yhwach, who is beginning to regain his powers and seemingly shatters the blade in his hand. However, the blade instead crumbles to reveal the original Zangetsu in Ichigo's hands, prompting a stunned Yhwach to realize that this is what Haschwalth was trying to warn him about with his dream as Ichigo cuts him in two. Yhwach grabs hold of Zangetsu and laments to Ichigo how the path is being closed to the world without fear, and further laments how existence will continue as it always has in a cycle of life and death.
Ten years in the future, Yhwach attempts to use The Almighty to destroy the future by infiltrating it with his Reiatsu, but due to Ichigo defeating him ten years prior the Reiatsu vanishes altogether.
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