- "J" can refer to the Jewel Dopant actually Joujima Rui or Jinno Mikio in his first focus ep.
Our story starts in the Fuuto precinct for a change, specifically in the lockup, where Shotaro and Akiko have been called out at barely a moment's notice. In the midst of Makura's overly gleeful gloating, they finally learn that it concerns their old friend Jinno for once... as the culprit. He says he's been set up by a woman in red with a huge diamond ring, who tried to get close to him, only to kick him in the face and leave the stolen goods on his person when the other cops came. The only other clue he really has is her cryptic question:
"Do you know why diamonds are so valuable?"
It's not much good as a lead on its own, so Shotaro goes out and finds some more - turns out a woman fitting that description is being fingered for a total of seven victims being turned into gems. Ignoring the physics behind that, Akiko still doesn't get how easily Jinno took the fall like that, which is when Shotaro explains a little something about him.
Jinno Mikio is not easily fooled. His greatest gift is being fooled. It's actually harder than it looks - any idiot can believe a lie, but Jinno does so with so much earnest that any person with a soul will live the lie with him. Further elaboration will have to wait as Shotaro gets another lead from Santa-chan - the Blue Topaz club, frequented by all the victims. Time to make a move, but not before checking in with Phillip... who's gone completely sullen. He's still got Wakana on his mind, in quite the literal sense now that she can meet him in the Gaia Library at her leisure.
Over at the Fuuto Hotel, Jun Kazu explains to Saeko about the whole Claydoll Xtreme business - basically, Wakana has turned into a living conduit to the earth itself, about to become nigh omnipotent thanks to the Gaia Library, and there is nothing Saeko can do about her even with the new Red Nazca. But there may be hope yet...
Shotaro and Akiko finally reach the Blue Topaz, but shmoozing their way in is going to be a little harder than it looks. Luck works in funny ways though; just as the bouncer is about to get violent with Akiko, someone immediately intervenes. Meet Uesugi Makoto, popular model and Blue Topaz patron, who even has enough clout to get our heroes inside. He doesn't know anything about a lady with a big ring though... which is particularly suspicious, considering he has a ring of his own.
But no more suspicious than the woman they're after actually being in the Blue Topaz at that time. Unfortunately, rather than slip away when Akiko confronts her, she gets violent and puts the poor girl on her ass, forcing Shotaro to intervene. They definitely have their man... er, woman... not only does she have the ring, but she says the same thing to Akiko.
"Do you know why diamonds are so valuable?"
Akiko makes a wild guess, which is of course nowhere near the correct answer: "Because they are beautiful and can never be damaged... like me." Before Shotaro can actually do anything, the woman backs off and all the lights go out for some reason, only to come on again to reveal the Monster of the Week. The Jewel Dopant, who attacks with spewing gas that really does turn beautiful women into gems, their screams quickly replaced with a clatter on the floor. No time to question the logic of that, as Shotaro alerts Phillip and they go into Double immediately. Fortunately the jewel attack fails to work on them... but something of the reverse happens as Double starts wailing on Jewel Dopant and can't even leave a mark. And switching through HeatMetal and LunarTrigger doesn't change things, whereupon the Jewel Dopant merely gets up and leaves. At least they know what she looks like.
It's only at this point that Makoto, who's taken a bad hit during the fray, reveals everything... yes, he does know her. Joujima Rui, a childhood friend of his who's somehow gone off the deep end with this Dopant business, and Makoto has been trying to turn her around... because he blames himself for all this.
Slinking back to Narumi Detective Agency with their collective tails between their legs, our heroes run a search as Akiko metaphorically licks her wounds. Phillip manages to find what he's after... until Wakana comes in and snatches it from him. That whole Gaia Library connection is a tricky thing indeed - not only does Wakana know anytime Phillip goes in, but she's been slowly and steadily wresting control, to the extent that the Gaia library is no longer his domain.
Nothing to do about it now, except visit Jinno at the lockup with an armful of bad news. Makoto's here too, presumably having given his statement, with that arm now in a cast. Turns out Jinno not only knew Makoto from a while back, but Joujima Rui too.
This'll take some explaining. There were three of them - Makoto, Rui and one Takeda Satoru, all kids with big ideals but held back by, well, being kids. How did Jinno fit into the picture? Because they'd turned into minor hoodlums, and had crossed paths with him several times. Of course, over the years feelings will develop, and when Makoto learned it was Satoru that liked Rui, he was only too happy to give them their blessing... except that she liked Makoto the whole time. It's just as messy as it sounds. Making things messier is the fact that Satoru had been reported missing, and Jinno adamantly takes Rui's side despite the way he'd been implicated, while Shotaro is suddenly reminded of Rui's big diamond ring.
Wakana meets up with Jun Kazu, and basically spells out that she already knows he's fielding Saeko. Indeed, Saeko is currently following his last word, about another Dopant Memory she can take for herself, to take on Wakana. The Jewel Memory, currently with Joujima Rui, whom Saeko manages to locate in the washroom of a pub. The same pub that Terui Ryu, with Makura in tow again, is currently investigating.
Of course Rui is not going down without a fight, one that doesn't last as long as it ought to, and the tussle draws Ryu's attention. Makura immediately goes after Rui, and Saeko, currently fed up to heck with everything, jacks in and goes Red Nazca on Ryu, who goes into Accel and prepares to rumble. While Rui has no problem at all taking out Makura, Ryu's luck is only slightly better as Red Nazca actually gives him a problem. On the other hand, Shotaro strikes gold for once as he manages to find Rui, accusing her of turning Satoru into the very diamond she'd been wearing all this time. Which causes her to get violent again, attacking him and managing to slip off in order to jack in and become Jewel Dopant before his eyes. It's Rider time, hopefully for the last time as Shotaro and Phillip immediately go into CycloneJokerXtreme and whip out one Finishing Move after another... and still fail. It's slightly interrupted as Accel Trial and Red Nazca burst into the scene, still fighting, whereupon Jewel Dopant puts a stop to it by reflecting CycloneJokerXtreme's next attack and magnifying it until it hits both Riders and Red Nazca, hard enough to knock them back to normal, and leaves with an ominous warning.
Leaving the scene of the battle with their tails between their legs again, Shotaro checks in with Jinno again, who reveals something else about Joujima Rui - they were your plain old Delinquents, true enough, but Rui was driven by the need to destroy what she loved the most... putting Makoto in danger. There's no time to elaborate as Jinno is scheduled for a medical checkup, and Shotaro gets hushed out the door by Makura as the doctor comes in... turning out to be Joujima Rui in a Paper-Thin Disguise. While it's not clear why she came, Jinno picks now of all times to wise up like his peers, and accuses her of coming to silence him, whereupon she backs off and flees, busting past Makura with hardly any effort.
Phillip attempts another search, only to find that Wakana can not only snatch the books but turn into Claydoll within the library, making here more than just a threat. At the same time, Shotaro checks on Jinno again, allowing him to catch Rui on the way out. Rather than react violently, she just warns Shotaro that they have all been fooled, and leaves without a fight... which is enough to clue Shotaro in that there's more to it than that. It's at this point in time that Makoto shows up again, claiming that Rui wants to meet up with him again, and he wants Shotaro to accompany him if possible, just to be on the safe side.
Rui does show up at the meeting place, but runs off immediately - they manage to corner her, but something about Rui specifically wanting Makoto to come closer leads Shotaro to whip out the Denden Sensor and scan the area. It's already covered in bombs. As Akiko manages to drag Makoto away, Rui's attempt to escape is cut short as it all goes up in smoke. It should have been the end of it - but Shotaro isn't done.
Our story cuts over to a cruise ship out at sea, where Shotaro manages to find Makoto, deep incognito as if he's fleeing the scene. Which makes perfect sense, as this whole thing had been his doing. He'd been lying all along - Rui loved Satoru instead, and fortunately it was mutual, but Makoto wouldn't have it. Using a simple smoke-and-mirrors routine, Makoto cast Rui's reflection over himself to look like she could turn into the Jewel Dopant, an act that she'd kept up for the longest period, just because he promised he could turn Satoru from that big diamond on his ring back to normal. Makoto did love her, mind you, but his obsession with what he loved only served to magnify their flaws to him, leading him to just erase everything and start over... and it was her turn. Fortunately, Shotaro had been two steps ahead of him, roping Terui Ryu in to get Rui out of the trap just in time as Accel Trial. Maybe hiding the detonator in an obvious spot like that arm cast along with the Jewel Memory wasn't such a bright idea in hindsight.
It's Rider time once again, as Shotaro and Phillip as Double and Ryu as Accel Trial prepare to take down the Jewel Dopant for good. They do get beaten back, but Double goes into CycloneJokerXtreme, and Phillip reveals that he's already had a game plan - from the Gaia library. Turns out Wakana's increasing synchronicity and the way it reduced Phillips' hold over the Gaia Library meant that he was the one passing through her instead, allowing to slip right through her arms to get what he wanted. It was a simple case of shattering Jewel Dopant's defense by directing a Bicker Charge Break at his flaws.
Before they bring him in, Makoto blames Rui for everything, not just for involving the Riders but for trying to get Jinno off the hook for what she'd done. Truth is, this is hardly the first time Jinno had her back for something. It's not just because she was let off for something. It's because he believed her. Of course she'd probably been in trouble because of Makoto at the time, but still.
Our story ends on a much-needed positive note. Jinno is cleared of all charges, and Shotaro tells him he should meet up with Rui again since she's also in the clear, but Jinno has resolved to wise up from now on, and not believe any damn thing he hears. Until Shotaro randomly calls out and points "abominable snowman!", causing Jinno to run off and investigate.
Except the abominable snowman was real.
- Coat, Hat, Mask: Actually shades, but to her credit she has them in Carmen Sandiego's colors.
- Gainax Ending: That abominable snowman...
- Named After Somebody Famous: Uesugi Makoto, possibly inspired by the samurai descendant celebutante Oda Nobunari. The next season would attempt something similar.
- No Ontological Inertia: Carrying out a Memory Break on the Jewel Memory turns Satoru and supposedly all the victims back to normal.
- No-Sell: Jewel Dopant is nigh invulnerable. Emphasis on 'nigh'.
- Yandere: Makoto deliberately set up Rui as one the whole time.