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Recap / Persona 4

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For the sake of convenience, the protagonist will be referred to by his canon name from future games and the anime adaptation, Yu Narukami.

This page contains unmarked spoilers. Read at your own risk.

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    Welcome to Inaba 
It begins with a dream of a limousine traveling through a foggy landscape. Within the limo is an old man, a young woman, and an unseen guest. The old man introduces himself as Igor, and welcome the guest to their location: a place between mind and matter, dream and reality; the Velvet Room. After using tarot cards to predict the guest's future, Igor also introduces the young woman as his assistant, Margaret. Both of them tell the guest that he will soon be going on a journey, upon which the guest wakes up.

April 11, 2011: Yu Narukami, a high school junior, arrives in the sleepy rural town of Inaba. With his parents travelling abroad, Yu is being left in the care of his uncle: Ryotaro Dojima, a detective. He also meets his young cousin: Nanako Dojima, a shy young girl. While Dojima stops at a gas station to fill up his car, Yu is greeted by a gas station attendant, and feels sick after shaking their hand. Noticing this, Dojima suggests to Yu that he explore the shopping district to get some fresh air.

On his way around the shopping district, Yu finds the fog-covered town to be just as quiet and unassuming as his first impression. The only thing of note is a strange girl with a stranger fashion sense and mannerisms, but she's not interested in talking, so Yu returns to Dojima's car.

Arriving at the Dojima's home, Yu learns from Nanako that his uncle is too busy to take care of her all the time. The awkward silence is broken by the TV, which shows a news report on a former politician turned deliveryman named Taro Namatame, who had an affair with a local television reporter named Mayumi Yamano. Nanako finds this boring, but cheers up when a commercial for the department store Junes airs.

That night, Yu has a strange dream about travelling through a realm shrouded in a thick fog. A mysterious voice asks him to pursue it if he seeks the truth, which he does. Sword in hand, Yu finds the source of the voice and attacks it. The voice is surprised but unaffected; the fog grows stronger as Yu continues to attack. Eventually, the fog grows too thick for him to remain conscious, and the voice tells him that he will have to try harder to find it.

The following day, Yu starts class at Yasogami High, where he meets his classmates: Yosuke Hanamura, the resident class clown and son of the owner of the local Junes chain; Chie Satonaka, a tomboyish kung-fu fangirl; and Yukiko Amagi, Chie's best friend and daughter of the owner of a local Japanese-style inn. He also meets their homeroom teacher, an unpleasant man named Kinshiro Morooka, who wastes no time in insulting him and everyone else in the room. Soon after that classes are cut short by an announcement on the school intercom.

On the way out of school, a strange boy tries hitting on Yukiko, and runs off when she rejects him. Chie waves it off as a common occurrence.

On the way home, Yu, Chie, and Yukiko run into the police investigating a crime scene. They learn that a woman was found dead and hanging from a TV antenna. Dojima approaches the group and tells them to move along, while a rookie detective, Tohru Adachi, throws up from seeing the victim's body. Later that day, Yu and Nanako see the news, which identifies the victim as Mayumi Yamano. Yu spends the rest of the evening comforting Nanako.

    The Midnight Channel 
The next day, Yosuke offers Yu some free food to help him get settled, and Chie tags along with them. The three go to Junes, where Chie mentions that the stores in the shopping district have been closing down thanks to being unable to compete with the new department store. Yosuke tries to change the subject by introducing an upperclassman, a girl named Saki Konishi. Though Yosuke clearly wants her to, Saki is uninterested is staying to talk, though she asks Yu to take care of Yosuke. Chie mentions that Saki's family owns a liquor store, which is also going out of business thanks to Junes.

To change the uncomfortable subject, Chie tells Yu and Yosuke of an urban legend known as the "Midnight Channel": supposedly, if you watch TV that is turned off on a rainy night, the TV will show the viewer their soulmate. Several other students are heard talking about this, with some claiming they'd seen a local celebrity on the Midnight Channel.

In the evening, Yu and Nanako watch the news, where it is mentioned that Yamano's body was found by a female high school student. Yu recognizes the student as Saki Konishi. From the news report and Dojima's reaction to it, it seems that the police haven't found the cause of death, making it unclear if Yamano's death was an accident or a homicide.

As per Chie's suggestion, Yu stays up late to watch the Midnight Channel that night. Much to his surprise, the broadcast happens just as the rumors said it would, and he sees a girl on a screen full of static. As the broadcast fades, Yu hears another voice in his head, saying "I am thou, thou art I". Confused, Yu finds himself drawn to the TV screen, and reaches out to touch it. He is once again surprised when his hand goes through the screen like it's made of water. Yu tears himself away from the TV and wonders what just happened.

At school the next day, Yu, Yosuke, and Chie discuss the Midnight Channel, and realize that they all saw the same girl. However, the latter two don't believe the former when he claims he heard a voice and nearly fell into the TV screen. Instead, they discuss the large flatscreen TVs sold at Junes, and decide to go there after school.

Arriving in the electronics section of Junes, Yosuke and Chie touch the screen of a TV and it reacts normally. But when Yu does the same thing, his hand phases into the screen like it did the previous night. While Yu goes further into the TV, Yosuke and Chie panic when they hear costumers coming, and accidentally knock themselves into falling into the screen.

Landing in what appears to be a TV studio full of fog, Yu, Yosuke, and Chie find themselves trapped with no visible way back to Junes. Exploring the area leads them to a foggy apartment complex where the only open room is full of bloodstained walls, torn posters of a woman, and a suspicious noose and chair. Chie and Yosuke are unable to stand the ominous imagery and run back to where they came in.

Just as the three students start to realize that the oppressive atmosphere is making them feel sick, a new presence arrives. A large, blue teddy bear in red pajamas approaches them, though it seems even more afraid of them than they are of it. The bear cowers when Chie threatens it, but responds positively to Yu's gentle questions. It tells them that it lives in this strange place, but someone has been throwing people inside and making a mess. Yosuke and Chie don't understand what the bear is saying, and complain about the lack of an exit when it says they should leave. Frustrated by their attitude, the bear manifests a stack of old TVs and shoves the three students through them.

Yu, Yosuke, and Chie promptly find themselves back in Junes, right outside the TV they went into. While reeling from the strange experience, Chie notices a poster, and recognizes it as the same poster they saw in the TV world. The woman depicted on the poster is identified as Taro Namatame's wife. Recalling that Yamano had an affair with Namatame, Yosuke wonders in the room they saw was related to her death, before aborting that train of thought.

Returning to the Dojima's house that night, Yu learns that Saki Konishi has gone missing, and that Yamano was staying at the inn owned by Yukiko's family. Exhausted from the effects of the TV world, Yu goes to bed early.

Tensions are quick to rise the next day when Dojima leaves early, and sirens are heard throughout the morning. An assembly is called in the school gym, where the students are told that Saki was found dead, hanging from a telephone pole in a way similar to Yamano.

Yosuke, visibly rattled by the news of Saki's death, mentions that he realized that she was the one they saw on the Midnight Channel. Combining this with the rumor of someone having seen Yamano on the Midnight Channel, the fact that the bear told them that people were being thrown into the TV world, and the strange room in the TV world seemingly related to Yamano, Yosuke theorizes that Saki and Yamano's deaths are connected to the TV. Knowing that the police would just think them crazy, Yosuke asks Yu to help him investigate the TV world.

Leaving Chie back at Junes, Yu and Yosuke jump back into the TV world and run into the bear again. Through Yosuke's argument with it, Yu learns that the fog in the TV world lifts when fog descends in the real world, that monsters that the bear calls "Shadows" get violent when that happens, and that the bear is not a person in a suit, but an empty, animate teddy bear costume. The bear unfortunately doesn't know of the Midnight Channel, but agrees to help them investigate by taking them to where the last person who fell into the TV world ended up.

Introducing himself as Teddie, the bear gives Yu and Yosuke special glasses that allow them to see through the fog. Teddie takes them to a new area that he claims appeared when a girl fell into the TV world, which Yosuke notes looks just like the shopping district. Walking up to the Konishi liquor store reveals a red and black portal where the door should be. Yu and Yosuke have no time to dwell on this because the monsters that Teddie calls Shadows attack them as they approach.

As Yosuke and Teddie panic, Yu hears the second voice again, telling him to call upon the power within himself. Finding a mystical tarot card in his hand, Yu learns the name of that power— Persona. He destroys the card, breaking away from fate, and summons Izanagi, the father of Japan. With Teddie's direction and Izanagi's power, Yu destroys the Shadows.

Yosuke is shocked by Yu's sudden display of power, but isn't able to dwell on it— voices begin to be heard from inside the liquor store. Heading inside, they find it in ruins, and the voice of Saki's father yelling at her for getting a job at Junes, the store running him out of business. As Yosuke takes this in, he hears Saki's voice, saying how much she hated working at Junes, dealing with rumormongers, and most of all, putting up with Yosuke himself. Yosuke, visibly hurt by this, tries to deny what he just heard— only for another, yellow-eyed Yosuke to appear in the depths of the store and laugh at him for it.

The other Yosuke claims to be Yosuke's true self, and declares that Yosuke didn't actually care about Saki, but was so bored living out in the countryside that he'd gladly go on an adventure in a strange world while using her death as an excuse to do so. Yosuke denies this, and tells the other Yosuke that they're not the same. This turns out to be the wrong thing to say, as it causes the other Yosuke to turn into a giant ninja-frog monster.

Yu summons Izanagi again and fights Shadow Yosuke, defeating him and causing him to revert back to human form. Yosuke feebly tries to deny him again, but with help from Yu and Teddie, he is able to admit that deep down, he really did think what the Shadow said he did. When he does, Shadow Yosuke transforms again, this time into Jiraiya, the gallant ninja— Yosuke's Persona.

Musing on his new power, Yosuke wonders if Saki faced her Shadow like he did just now. Teddie explains that it's very likely— Shadows are born from human hearts and minds, and go berserk when the fog lifts, meaning Saki's Shadow spawned in the liquor store. Yosuke realizes that the apartment complex and the shopping district appeared from Yamano and Saki's minds when they were thrown in the TV world, and no one was there to save them from their Shadows. Promising Teddie that they'll find whoever is sending people to be killed by Shadows, Yu and Yosuke exit the TV world.

    The Princess and Her Prince 
On the way back from Junes, Yu runs into Yukiko in the flood plain. Dressed in an elegant kimono, Yukiko asks how Yu is adjusting to town, and explains that she's running an errand for her family's inn. Later that evening, Yu sees Yukiko on the news, and a pushy news reporter explaining how Yukiko is currently filling in as the manager while her mother is out of commission. The Midnight Channel broadcasts again later that night, showing a girl in a kimono...

Yu goes to sleep, and finds himself in the Velvet Room again. Igor and Margaret tell him that he has a special Persona ability— the Wild Card. It allows him to use many Personas, but he must learn how other people think by forging bonds with them if he wants to learn how to use its power.

The next day at school, Yosuke tells Yu that he can now go into the TV by himself as well. Feeling reaffirmed in solving the case, the two boys talk about the Midnight Channel, at which point Chie arrives and tells them that the girl on last night's broadcast was Yukiko. Now worried about another potential victim, the three realize that Yukiko isn't at school today.

Luckily, Yukiko answers her phone and claims to be busy at the inn. Yosuke decides to check on the TV world, but Teddie claims to be alone in there. Concluding that Yukiko is safe for now, Yosuke tells the other two to keep an eye on the Midnight Channel to see if they can find out more.

That night, the Midnight Channel airs— but the broadcast is no longer full of static. Instead, a clear image of Yukiko in a pink dress appears onscreen. Acting far more bubbly than usual, Yukiko claims to be a princess searching for her Prince Charming, and runs into a castle in the background. The castle's entrance is noticeably another red and black portal like the one in the liquor store. Yosuke calls Yu to confirm if they saw the same thing, which they did.

The next day, after a mishap involving Yosuke bringing weapons to the Junes food court, Yu and Yosuke run into Adachi, who tells them that yes, Yukiko is missing. Adachi adds that Mrs. Amagi collapsed from the stress of dealing with Yamano, and hints that the police consider Yukiko a suspect in the murders. Chie isn't pleased when she hears this, and Adachi breaks away realizing he's said too much.

Chie takes Yu and Yosuke to a metalworks shop in the shopping district where they can get new weapons and armor. Along the way, Yu finds a blue door that takes him into the Velvet Room. Inside, Yu finds a new addition; the same strange girl he met on his first day in town. Margaret introduces her as Marie, and explains that the three residents of the Velvet Room will provide aid to him in nurturing the power of the Wild Card. In addition, Marie asks him to show her around Inaba when he gets the chance, as she has no memories yet finds the town familiar.

Once inside the TV world, the gang finds Teddie sulking in the corner. Chie asks if Yukiko is somewhere around, so Teddie takes them to a new area that appeared last night; the same castle seen in the Midnight Channel. When asked, Teddie is unable to answer if someone is filming the Midnight Channel. Remembering that Yukiko was acting strange while onscreen, Chie worries and charges into the castle alone.

Annoyed, Yu, Yosuke, and Teddie chase Chie through the halls of the castle, defeating the Shadows she aggravated in the process. They find her standing still in a large, empty room, where they hear Yukiko's voice like how they heard Saki's voice before.

Yukiko's voice expresses her own feelings of worthlessness, and how she feels like she can't stand up for herself. Her voice cheers up when talking about Chie, saying how grateful she is to have a friend like her, who protects her and helps her find the ground to do what she wants to do.

Yukiko's words strike a chord with Chie, who nearly cries when she hears how much Yukiko depends on her. Unfortunately, Shadow Chie spawns right across from her and laughs when she hears Yukiko's true feelings. Explaining that Chie always felt second best to Yukiko, who is smarter, more graceful, and gets more attention, Shadow Chie is gleeful at hearing how much Yukiko depends on her for everything. Panicking, Chie denies this, and Shadow Chie transforms into a dominatrix on a throne made of schoolgirls.

Yu and Yosuke step in to defend Chie from her Shadow, and succeed despite Shadow Chie's strength and insults. Chie tries telling off her Shadow, who has gone quiet, but Yosuke and Yu help her understand that her Shadow isn't all there is to her. Chie accepts this side of herself that she wishes wasn't real, and Shadow Chie becomes Tomoe, the samurai maiden.

Now with a Persona of her own, Chie tries to continue traversing the castle, but finds herself too weak to do so. Knowing that it won't be foggy in the real world for a few days, and thus Yukiko will be safe until then, the team opts to retreat. After Teddie gives Chie her own fog glasses, the team unanimously elect Yu as their leader, and promise to meet again tomorrow to save Yukiko.

After recovering, Chie, Yosuke, and Yu return to the TV world the next day to rescue Yukiko. Entering the castle again, they run into Shadow Yukiko, who is treating her search for Prince Charming like a game show, and the rescue party are the contestants. Teddie theorizes that Yukiko's true feelings are trying to show themselves to them.

Yukiko's voice is heard throughout the castle, begging for her prince to find her and venting her frustrations at people who annoyed her in the past. When the party finds the real Yukiko, Shadow Yukiko explains that she feels like her own life has already been decided for her, that she wants an excuse to run away from home, and that Chie already failed to help her. Yukiko denies this, of course, and so Shadow Yukiko transforms into a giant red bird in a cage.

After defeating Shadow Yukiko, Yukiko and Chie apologize to each other for not noticing each other's personal issues. This helps Yukiko accept that her Shadow is a part of herself, turning Shadow Yukiko into a Persona— Konohana Sakuya, the goddess of cherry blossoms.

Unfortunately, Yukiko can't remember how she ended up in the TV world, let alone who threw her in. Concluding that the Yukiko they saw on the Midnight Channel was actually Shadow Yukiko, the group calls it a day and leaves Yukiko in her home to recover.

After Yukiko recovers, the now functioning Investigation Team gets together to go over the facts. The victims so far are women connected to Yamano, and they've all appeared on the Midnight Channel. Unfortunately, none of that leads to the killer, meaning the Investigation Team has to wait and see what the killer tries to do next. Adachi, wandering around nearby, adds that the police have only ruled out Namatame's wife as the culprit, convincing them that the police won't be able to solve the case.

    A True Man's Stand 
After spending Golden Week bonding with Nanako, the Investigation Team hears rumors about a delinquent first-year student who singlehandedly crushed a biker gang. Said student appears on the news that night, and Dojima identifies him as Kanji Tatsumi, and says that he beat up the biker gang because they were keeping his mother up at night. The next day, the Midnight Channel shows the silhouette of a man.

The Investigation Team gathers, and concludes that Kanji was the one shown of the Midnight Channel. When investigating the textile shop where Kanji's mother works, they see Kanji talking to an androgynous teenager, who leaves shortly afterwards. Kanji wonders aloud why that strange boy wanted to talk to him, and chases off the Investigation Team when he notices them spying on him.

Discussing the pattern of the victims, Yosuke, Chie, and Yukiko notice that Kanji doesn't fit into the killer's targets, save for appearing on the Midnight Channel. They end up seeing him again with the same boy from before, and get chased off again with Kanji yelling at them for getting the wrong idea.

That night, Yukiko calls Yu to tell him that Kanji has gone missing. Sure enough, checking the Midnight Channel shows Shadow Kanji dressed in a towel and in a bathhouse, and acting incredibly flamboyant on top of that. Sure that Kanji is already in the TV world, the Investigation Team goes to save him.

Unfortunately, Teddie is not only acting distant, but also can't find the new area by smell alone. He asks for clues as to the kind of person Kanji is. Asking around town, Yu meets the androgynous boy who Kanji was speaking to the other day. From him, Yu learns that Kanji doesn't like it when people think him to be strange. This turns out to be enough for Teddie to find him.

Inside the bathhouse, Shadow Kanji insists that his event be boys only. Kanji's voice, heard throughout the bathhouse, seems to be focused on the concept of manliness. When the Investigation Team finds Kanji, his Shadow is talking about how much he hates girls for mocking him about his less than manly hobbies, like cooking, sewing, and cute things in general. Kanji, angered by his Shadow's words, rejects it, causing it to transform into a rose-covered muscle man dual wielding giant Mars symbols.

The Investigation Team defeats Shadow Kanji, who asks for someone to accept him for who he is. Frustrated, Kanji punches him in the face before doing so, and so his Shadow becomes Take-Mikazuchi, the Japanese god of thunder. After exiting the TV world, Kanji asks to know what's going on, to which Yu agrees to tell him. After Kanji recovers from the ordeal, he nervously asks to join the Investigation Team in their quest to find the murderer, and they accept.

    Baring It All 
After getting a motorcycle licence and an awful school camping trip, Yu winds down at home with the Dojimas, when an entertainment news interview airs on the TV. Apparently, an idol singer known as Rise Kujikawa is taking a hiatus from showbiz, and returning to her hometown— Inaba. Yosuke is excited by this news, and Yukiko claims that the local tofu shop is owned by Rise's grandmother. Chie expresses concern that Rise, as the latest person to appear on TV, might be the next victim.

Just as Chie worried, the Midnight Channel shows the silhouette of a girl in a bikini, which Yosuke says is definitely Rise. Yu, Kanji, and Yosuke investigate the tofu shop, and after getting through a crowd of nosy fans, are able to meet Rise, who is working as a server. Asked if she'd heard of the Midnight Channel, Rise responds that she did see it, but denies being involved in what she thinks is a strange TV show. Having warned Rise about the killer, the boys leave the shop as Dojima and Adachi arrive with the same goal in mind. Dojima isn't pleased to know that Yu has seemingly involved himself in the case.

The next day, the Investigation Team and Adachi stakeout the tofu shop to try and stop the culprit before he can take Rise. Unfortunately, while they're distracted while apprehending a voyeur, Rise goes missing right under her grandmother's nose. The Investigation Team is left with no choice but to wait for the Midnight Channel's broadcast.

That midnight, the moment of truth arrives, and Shadow Rise appears on the TV. She starts hinting that she intends to strip naked the next time she's onscreen. Simultaneously frustrated and excited, Yosuke implores Yu to rescue her as soon as possible.

Upon entering the TV world, the Investigation Team finds Teddie bemoaning being left alone in there for days on end. Teddie gets upset when Yosuke points out that he's hollow, and wonders aloud as to who he is and where he came from. Yu promises to spend more time with Teddie, and so Teddie feels motivated to help again.

Having gathered that Rise feels that her idol personality is manufactured for showbiz, the Investigation Team finds the new location that appeared from her mind— a strip club. When they find Shadow Rise, she confirms that she intends to strip down to let her fanbase see the "real" her. Rise's thoughts echo through the strip club, giving stilted answers to interviewers and generally feeling unsure about herself.

The real Rise is found on a pole dance stage with her Shadow nearby, and the latter is inappropriately excited by the audience that just arrived. Shadow Rise asks for everyone to look at her, the "real" her, not the celebrity adored by the ignorant masses. As she tries to take off her bikini, the real Rise loudly rejects her. Shadow Rise proceeds to turn into a multicolored pole dancer with a satellite dish for a head.

The fight against Shadow Rise begins as usual, until she uses Supreme Insight to predict everyone's moves. After that, attacks simply stop connecting. While the Investigation Team struggles with an opponent who can't be hit, Shadow Rise counterattacks and leaves them staggering. Just when all hope seems lost, Teddie steps up, not wanting his friends to die. With a sudden spike of energy, Teddie charges at Shadow Rise and detonates, defeating her before she can kill anyone.

Having survived his own attack, the now flattened Teddie is thanked by the others for saving them and scolded for worrying them. Yu helps Rise to her feet, and she accepts her Shadow as a part of herself. Having run away from showbiz to find herself, Rise concludes that there is no "real" self for her to find. And so, Shadow Rise becomes a Persona; the legendary shaman queen Himiko. Rise recognizes the boys and thanks the Investigation Team for saving her.

While the team gets ready to call it a day, Teddie mumbles to himself about finding the "real" him. It seems Rise's words struck a chord in him— a chord that causes Shadow Teddie to spawn on the stage. Shocked at this turn of events, the Investigation Team can only listen as Shadow Teddie says that the real Teddie is denying his true nature, and prefers to live in ignorance rather than face a truth he doesn't want to hear. Teddie refuses to listen and attacks his Shadow to no avail. Shadow Teddie then turns his nihilistic ideology on the Investigation Team, and tells them that the truth they're trying to find will only lead to their death. With that ominous line, Shadow Teddie turns into a giant, hollow, demonic version of himself.

Though Yosuke worries that they must now fight without Teddie's guidance, Rise steps up to the role of the navigator. Summoning Himiko, Rise is able to do a much better job at directing the flow of battle than Teddie ever did. Though Shadow Teddie gives the Investigation Team the fight of their lives, they emerge victorious in the end.

After Shadow Teddie's defeat, Teddie admits that he doesn't know what he is, and that he's afraid he won't like the answer. But so long as the Investigation Team needs him, Teddie won't have to be alone no matter what. Shadow Teddie becomes Teddie's Persona; Kintoki Douji, the golden boy.

After exiting the TV world and taking Rise home, Yu waits for Dojima with Nanako. Adachi brings a drunken Dojima home, and explains that the police have hired a boy detective as special support. Dojima isn't happy about this, ranting about how the boy is extremely condescending, and chews Yu and Adachi out for causing trouble by nearly passing the peeping tom from before as the murderer.

With Rise rescued, it seems the killer has been thwarted again... until the next foggy morning reveals Kinshiro Morooka's body hanging from a water tower.

    Game Over 
The news of Morooka's death disheartens the Investigation Team, because it seems the killer outsmarted them. He never appeared on the Midnight Channel, but still ended up dead, breaking the pattern of what happens to the victims.

To find answers, the team goes to Junes to ask Teddie if Morooka had been inside the TV world. Much to their surprise, they find Teddie in a massage chair in the real world, proving that he is not limited to existing only in the TV. Teddie claims that no one but himself had been in the TV world since Rise was rescued, leading the team to conclude that Morooka was killed in the real world. Yukiko wonders if the killer stopped trying to use the TV world because their last three murder attempts were thwarted.

While the Investigation Team wonders if they should ask Rise to join them, Teddie surprises everyone again by revealing he is no longer hollow— a blonde boy with Teddie's voice and mannerisms emerges from the costume. The now human Teddie mentions that he has no clothes aside from his fur, which causes Chie and Yukiko to drag him off to find something to wear.

After getting Teddie clothes, Yu and Yukiko meet the androgynous boy again outside the tofu shop. This time, he introduces himself as Naoto Shirogane, detective. Unlike the police, Naoto has drawn the same conclusion that the Investigation Team came to; that the murder victims were connected by the TV until Morooka's death last night. Naoto leaves after the team doesn't give proper answers to his questions.

Once Naoto is gone, Rise comes out of the tofu shop and asks to talk to the Investigation Team in private. Unfortunately, she doesn't remember what happened when she got kidnapped. Rise does thank them profusely for saving her, and mentions that Naoto keeps coming by to asks questions about her disappearance. Once the ice is broken, Rise cheers up and asks to join the Investigation Team. They accept, knowing that she'll be a great asset.

The next day after school, the Investigation Team gathers in Junes to discuss the killer's motives. Their discussion is cut short when Naoto interrupts the conversation with the news that the police now have a suspect for the murders. Though Naoto doesn't know who the suspect is, he claims that the Investigation Team's "game" is at an end. Rise, sore from having her near-death experience called a game, chews out Naoto by pointing out that he's only doing this to prove he can. Yosuke manages to deduce that the police have taken Naoto off the murder case, which he reluctantly confirms before leaving.

A week later, the Investigation Team overhear Adachi complaining about how the elusive the suspect is. It's another few days later when the Midnight Channel broadcasts again. There's no fuzzy image this time; the screen clearly shows the same strange boy who tried hitting on Yukiko in the first day of school. His Shadow challenges the town to try and find him.

Having seen the Midnight Channel himself, Teddie tells Yu that the suppressed emotions from people in the TV world get picked up by TVs in the real world when it rains at midnight, meaning the killer isn't responsible for the Midnight Channel. Either way, the Investigation Team needs to go in there and confront him.

Because Rise and Teddie don't know who the boy is, they can't find him in the TV world. Yu has to ask around town for a name. It takes a while, but Yu eventually learns that his name is Mitsuo Kubo. With this, the Investigation Team finds the new area created by his mind, a video game themed dungeon called Void Quest.

As they traverse Void Quest, the Investigation Team hears Mitsuo's thoughts, which treat the murders like a game where he's the hero and the victims are the enemies. His narration claims that he leveled up from each murder. While Yamano and Saki's deaths only gave him emptiness, Morooka's death made him feel like he was cool; like all eyes were on him now. Rise declares him insane, and urges Yu to bring him down.

Mitsuo is found yelling at his unresponsive Shadow, insisting that he needed to kill to make people notice him. When the Investigation Team accuses him of being the killer, Mitsuo laughs and affirms it, saying that they don't need to listen to the lies of his Shadow. This causes Shadow Mitsuo to transform and knock the real Mitsuo out cold, before turning his attention to the Investigation Team.

Having become a giant baby armored by an eight bit video game character, Shadow Mitsuo attacks the Investigation Team while talking about how empty he is inside. Undeterred, the actual heroes break through his armor and defeat the Shadow within. The real Mitsuo wakes up afterwards, and is ecstatic to learn that the police are after him. He goes on to insist that he really did kill the three murder victims. Shadow Mitsuo fades to nothing after that, glaringly unlike all the other Shadow Selves encountered thus far.

Having heard all they needed to hear, the Investigation Team pulls Mitsuo out of the TV world and hands him to the police. With Mitsuo arrested and not denying being the murderer, the case is as good as closed.

    The Detective Prince 
Luckily for the Investigation Team, summer vacation happens just after Mitsuo is caught. With no business to do after having caught the killer, they enjoy the summer festival, a trip to the beach, and a fireworks festival. Towards the end of the fireworks festival, Kanji voices concern for Naoto's whereabouts, and Rise expresses regret over what she said to him last time they talked.

They don't have to wonder long, because Naoto shows up again when summer vacation ends, having enrolled into Yasogami High as a first year. Naoto says that he is unsatisfied with the results of the case, and wishes to stay long enough to satisfy his curiosity. Despite claiming to wanting their relationship to be cordial, Naoto remains as blunt and condescending as ever.

At the end of the week after school starts again, Yasogami goes on a class trip to Tastumi Port Island, the city where Persona 3 took place. After touring Gekkoukan High, learning that they'll be staying at the former love hotel where S.E.E.S. fought the Full Moon Arcana Hierophant and Lovers, and Teddie revealing himself to have followed them despite not being a student, the Investigation Team heads into Club Escapade to have fun. They meet Naoto at the bar, and so Rise and Yukiko invite him to join them for a party game.

With a reservation secured by Rise, the gang decides on playing the King's Game. Rise, Yukiko, and Teddie end up getting drunk (despite Naoto later revealing that Club Escapade doesn't serve alcohol), and Yukiko blabs about Personas, Shadows, and rescuing people from inside the TV when Naoto sees the opportunity to ask. Despite Rise backing Yukiko's claims, Naoto believes he is being made fun of. The party ends when the three drunken team members pass out.

After returning from the class trip, Yu is told by Dojima to try to be friendly to Naoto, because the higher-ups at the police station are losing their patience with him. Two nights later, Yu and Nanako see Naoto doing an exclusive interview on TV. Naoto tells the interviewer that there is an inconsistency in the case that is being ignored.

The next day, Naoto asks to talk privately with the Investigation Team. He reiterates what they know about the victims: that they all appeared on TV. He also adds that there were three others who were shown on TV and disappeared for a few days, but came back alive and joined the same group of friends— Yukiko, Kanji, and Rise. As a last point, Naoto reveals that not only did Morooka never appear on TV, his cause of death was identified, unlike the others. Naoto refuses to let this inconsistency slide, and parts while insisting that he's not playing a game either.

Later that week, the Midnight Channel shows a silhouette resembling Naoto. The Investigation Team gathers to discuss it, and realize that they don't know what the Midnight Channel even is. Despite Kanji insisting there's nothing to worry about, Shadow Naoto appears on the Midnight Channel the next night, showing that Naoto has somehow ended up in the TV world. Shadow Naoto, dressed in a too large lab coat, claims that he will be undergoing the experiment of the century.

The Investigation Team realize that Naoto used himself as bait to lure out the killer if they were still around, and proved that they were. From the information Naoto gave them, they deduce that Morooka was Mitsuo's only victim, and that the police were able to find him because he left a forensic trail in the real world, something Saki and Yamano's deaths didn't have. In other words, the first killer is still at large.

Asking around town, Yu learns from a policeman that the Naoto is considered an annoying child by the police force. Hearing this, Yukiko wonders if Naoto got desperate after nobody was willing to listen to him. Rise uses this to find Naoto's dungeon, which took the form of a secret agent's laboratory.

Naoto and Shadow Naoto are found in an operating room. Though Naoto tries to keep his composure, it quickly crumbles when Shadow Naoto starts talking. Shadow Naoto reveals that Naoto is insecure about being called a kid by the men who dominate the police force. No matter how seriously Naoto tries, he gets little respect from the adults he works for. Shadow Naoto adds that Naoto would be respected even less if those men knew she wasn't actually a boy.

Shocked by the sudden reveal, the Investigation Team watches as Shadow Naoto threatens the real Naoto with a forced sex-change operation. Naoto rejects her Shadow, and it becomes a life sized toy robot version of her. The Investigation Team steps in to fight Shadow Naoto before it can harm her.

With her Shadow defeated and all her secrets out in the open, Naoto tells the Investigation Team the story of how she wanted to be a cool detective, but was never taken seriously for both her age and gender. After Yukiko reminds her that her Shadow's words mean that she doesn't want to be an adult yet or a man in the first place, Naoto accepts her Shadow, who becomes Sukuna-Hikona, the dwarf deity of healing. Admitting that she would have never believed them about Shadows and Personas, Naoto is taken home by Rise and Yukiko.

When Naoto returns to school after recovering, the entire town now knows that she's a girl. Going to Junes with the Investigation Team, Naoto recounts her experience in being kidnapped. She managed to deduce that the kidnapper is a man working alone, and he had a TV nearby to throw her into after incapacitating her with a chemical. She goes on to explain that despite Morooka's death breaking the pattern, making it an obvious copy cat murder, the police were desperate to close the case, so when Mitsuo came forward saying he was responsible for every murder, they saw the opportunity to do so. Naoto, unfortunately, is no longer on the case, which is why she turned to the Investigation Team. She also doesn't know how Mitsuo ended up in the TV world in the first place.

Now knowing that the culprit still at large, the Investigation Team, with Naoto having joined, prepares themselves for the killer's next move.

Towards the end of October, Yu receives a note warning him to not rescue any more people. Naoto realizes that the note is proof that the killer knows who's been rescuing their victims.

After the culture festivalnote , Yu and Nanako watch a news report about the fog. Not only do meteorologists not know where the fog comes from, rumor has it that people can suffer ill effects from it. Nanako mentions that the man onscreen went to her school to interview her and her classmates. As soon as she says this, she starts showing signs of a fever.

On the fourth of November, the Midnight Channel airs again, but the image is too indistinct to make out the person's silhouette. The Investigation Team don't have any leads as to who the victim will be, as the latest person to appear on TV is not even in town.

That evening, Yu receives another threatening letter, this time telling him that someone close to him will die if he tries to rescue them. Unfortunately, Dojima sees the letter, and confirms his suspicions that Yu knows something about the case that he doesn't. This causes him to detain Yu to ask him what it is he knows.

Unfortunately, Dojima doesn't believe Yu about the TV world, Shadows, and Personas. After Dojima leaves them in the interrogation room, Adachi tries to reassure Yu by telling him that Dojima was also unsatisfied with the results of the case, and the implication that the killer is targeting his nephew is enough to send him into a panic. Meanwhile in Junes, Yosuke and Teddie try calling Yu's cell phone, but get no answer. When they resort to calling the Dojima's house, they learn from Nanako that Yu received another letter and was taken to the police station.

Locked in the interrogation room for the night, Yu sees the Midnight Channel from a TV in the corner. Much to his horror, the image is distinct enough to show the next victim— Nanako.

Having seen the Midnight Channel themselves, the rest of the Investigation Team spring into action. Yosuke, Teddie, and Kanji make it to the police station with Naoto on the phone to tell Dojima that Nanako has already gone missing. Dojima really does panic this time, and runs off to try and intercept the kidnapper.

The girls arrive at the police station while Yosuke and Kanji are trying to convince Adachi to let Yu go after Dojima. Naoto explains that there was no sign of forced entry in the Dojima's home, meaning Nanako had to have opened the door herself. Since Nanako knows not to open the door for strangers, this means that the culprit has to be someone she's familiar with. From her own experience, the short time between being incapacitated and being thrown in the TV world makes Naoto realize that the kidnapper is carrying around a TV with them as they go. If this is the case, then they need a vehicle to transport it, and that vehicle needs to be inconspicuous. A vehicle that no one would find suspicious can only mean a delivery van.

As Kanji, Yukiko, and Rise realize that there was a delivery van near their homes on the day they were kidnapped, Naoto points out that a small town like Inaba would only have a local delivery company, with only one deliveryman, one that Nanako wouldn't hesitate to open the door for. Adachi, realizing this matches the profile of a suspect that had been dismissed by the police force, runs off to tell Dojima. Naoto identifies the deliveryman— Taro Namatame.

A call from Adachi lets Dojima know that Namatame was the one who kidnapped Nanako. Dojima opts to pursue Namatame's van with his car. Namatame, realizing that the police are after him, accidentally tips his van over, causing Dojima to crash into it. The Investigation Team and Adachi soon arrive at the scene of the accident.

After calling an ambulance for Dojima, Naoto inspects Namatame's van for clues. She finds a TV large enough to throw people into, and a diary with names and addresses. Yamano's, Saki's, Yukiko's, Kanji's, Rise's, and Naoto's are all listed, but not Morooka's, which is enough for Adachi to be sure that Namatame is the killer. Yosuke agrees, and Naoto reads a final passage in which shows Namatame's thoughts as he kidnapped Nanako. Unfortunately, Namatame himself is nowhere to be found at the scene of the accident.

Now sure that Namatame is guilty, the Investigation Team prepare to rescue Nanako. Entering the TV world, they find that the fog has gotten even thicker. As Nanako is someone close to their hearts, Rise is able to locate her dungeon without a problem.

Arriving at the area created from Nanako's heart, the Investigation Team finds that it looks like a storybook version of heaven. Fighting their way through hordes of Shadows, they hear Nanako's voice wondering what became of her late mother. Nanako feels strongly about being left alone, and clearly loves Yu, the rest of the team, and her father.

As they progress, Rise feels another presence besides Nanako in the dungeon. Yosuke realizes that it must be Namatame, who escaped into the TV world from the TV in his truck to avoid the authorities. The Investigation Team starts hearing fragments of Namatame's thoughts instead of Nanako's. He claims to be saving people by throwing them in the TV world, and talks about a woman he lost, implied to be Yamano.

Eventually, the Investigation Team corners Namatame, who has taken Nanako hostage. Namatame is clearly unstable, as he insists he will save Nanako and recognizes some of the Investigation Team as people he has already saved. Yu questions him, asking what he intends to do. Namatame claims that the Midnight Channel is a warning, and that he needs to save whoever appears on it. Kanji and Rise call him out, telling him that he did the opposite of saving them. Namatame insists that they would have been worse off if he hadn't "saved" them, to which Yukiko yells that they nearly died. Namatame's only response to this is "Exactly."

Having concluded that the Investigation Team intends to do harm, Namatame denies having killed anyone. His eyes turn yellow, like the Shadow Selves, and he calls himself a savior. Seeing an opening, Yosuke and Kanji are able to force Namatame to let go of Nanako, at which point Namatame loses his temper and causes a ton of Shadows to gather around him. When the smoke clears, Namatame has become an angelic humanoid monstrosity— Kunino-sagiri, the Japanese spirit of foggy lands.

The Investigation Team is pushed to their limits by this fight, in no small part because Kunino-sagiri can take control of them, but press on to victory. As Kunino-sagiri dissolves into smoke, it leaves behind an unconscious Namatame. The Investigation Team have a more pressing concern in the form of Nanako, who has succumbed to the ill effects of the fog. They hurry to pull both non-Persona users out of the TV world.

With Dojima, Nanako, and Namatame hospitalized, the Investigation Team and Adachi can only sit and wait until they get better. November passes slowly, with the Midnight Channel blank, and fog continues to roll into Inaba...

    Renewed Resolve 
Though Namatame and Nanako wake up, neither is in a state to speak. Meanwhile, doomsday cultists appear in town, insisting that the fog is a sign of the end of times. It doesn't help that more and more people are falling sick with no discernible cause.

Towards the beginning of December, the fog has been a fixture of the town for a few weeks. When Kanji automatically puts on his fog glasses, he realizes he can see through it. The rest of the team confirms this with their own glasses, and Chie correctly guesses that the fog from the TV world is leaking into the real world.

Adachi suddenly calls Yu to tell him that Nanako's condition has worsened. When the Investigation Team arrives, the doctors have no idea how to treat her. Nanako is barely able to exchange a few words with Yu before flatlining.

Stunned and depressed by Nanako's sudden death, most of the Investigation Team follows Dojima as he storms to Namatame's room while Teddie stays in Nanako's room. Dojima collapses from his injuries before reaching his destination and is taken back to his room by the doctors. As Yosuke points out that Namatame can't be convicted because the cause of death for the murder victims and Nanako can't be traced back to him, the gang hears Namatame trying to escape his room.

When confronted, Namatame is too scared to speak properly, and isn't able to defend himself when Yosuke and Chie accuse him of killing Nanako. At that moment, the Midnight Channel airs on a nearby TV, showing Shadow Namatame accusing the Investigation Team of preventing him from saving Nanako. Shadow Namatame adds that he won't be found guilty, and that he'll continue to "save" people.

Angered by this, Yosuke, Kanji, and Naoto suggest that they throw Namatame in the TV, much to Chie, Yukiko, and Rise's horror. With one side telling him to send Namatame to his death, and the other telling him to try and get him convicted, Yu tells everyone to quiet down, realizing that they don't have Namatame's side of the story yet. Conceding his point, Naoto gets the others to back down.

After Adachi calls everyone out of the room, a doctor appears and tells them that Nanako was able to be resuscitated. While the Investigation Team are relieved to tears, the also notice that Teddie has gone missing.

That night, Yu goes to the Velvet Room in his dreams. Igor congratulates him for making it this far, and sends him the voices of those he's bonded with as encouragement. Margaret explains that he has reached a fork in his road of life, and must solve the mystery correctly to take the right path.

The next day, with Teddie still missing, the Investigation Team gathers to review the facts again. This time, they realize that Namatame claimed he successfully saved Yukiko, Kanji, Rise, and Naoto by throwing them in the TV, and said he failed to save Nanako when she flatlined. Because the first two victims died, this should have stopped Namatame from trying to save more people by throwing them in the TV. Reviewing the second threatening letter, Naoto realizes that it doesn't fit with what Namatame was saying— the letter is formulated in a way that suggests that someone other than the writer was the one kidnapping people.

The Investigation Team decides to talk to Namatame again, this time rationally. Asked what he meant by saving people, Namatame replies that they'd be killed if he didn't save them. He also claims that Yukiko was the first person he saved. Naoto concludes that Namatame saw Yamano and Saki on the Midnight Channel, and both turned up dead. In the process, he discovered he could go into the TV screen. When Yukiko appeared on the Midnight Channel, he decided to save her by throwing her in the TV, and she came back alive. Namatame confirms this.

After Yamano was found dead, Namatame had tried to contact the police about the Midnight Channel, but they didn't believe him. Neither did Saki when he tried to warn her after seeing her on TV. When Yukiko appeared, he had the idea of throwing her in the TV so the killer couldn't find her. It seemingly worked, as Yukiko made it back to the real world alive. Encouraged by this, he went on to save Kanji, Rise, and Naoto, all of who survived.

When Naoto explains that the TV world was actually a dangerous place, Namatame says that he realized that when he followed Nanako inside. By this point, it's clear that Namatame had been manipulated by the real killer. Apologizing for the trouble he caused, Namatame begs the Investigation Team to find Yamano and Saki's murderer.

With Namatame no longer a suspect, the Investigation Team go over the real killer's actions. The real killer had to have known what both Namatame and the rescue team were doing, been able to mislead the police, and was able to put the threatening letters in the Dojima's mailbox without drawing suspicion. Putting those facts together, Yu concludes that their new suspect is someone who kept appearing while the team was investigating— none other than Tohru Adachi.

    Pursuing the Killer 
The Investigation Team gathers the facts: Yukiko remembers that Adachi was escorting Yamano after she asked the police for a bodyguard from the paparazzi, and that there's a TV in the lobby of the Amagi Inn. He also would have been able to interrogate Saki when she was called in for questioning about finding Yamano's body, and there's a TV in the interrogation room. With suspicion cast on Adachi, the Investigation Team asks to meet him in the hospital.

At the hospital, Dojima has calmed down and realized that Namatame's actions don't line up with the first two murders. Adachi tells him that he can't question Namatame, who has been detained. Yu asks Adachi if he knew Saki and Yamano, but only receives vague answers. Yu then decides to ask what became of the threatening letter Dojima confiscated. Dojima also questions Adachi on this, as he gave it to him to take it to the crime lab for forensic analysis. Adachi claims to have conveniently misplaced it in the confusion.

Now sure they're on the killer's trail, Naoto reports that she suspects that the killer and kidnapper are two different people. Knowing the kidnapper is Namatame, Naoto reveals her suspicions of Adachi, who panics and insists that Namatame was the one who threw everyone in the TV. Naoto presses on, and reminds Adachi that he was "convinced" that Namatame was the murderer from what was written in his diary, despite the police not having any records about any attempted murders. Adachi loses his composure and runs away to Namatame's room and disappears. After Dojima is taken back to his room, the Investigation Team inspect the TV in Namatame's room and conclude that if Adachi is the killer, he'd have escaped into the TV world.

Calling it a day, Yu returns home to rest, where he dreams into the Velvet Room again. Igor, Margaret, and Marie are not there, but Teddie is. After expressing surprise at seeing Yu there, Teddie tells him the story of a Shadow that forgot it was Shadow. The Shadow awoke to human emotions and felt loneliness, so it made itself look like a cute teddy bear so that humans would want it around. That Shadow was Teddie himself.

Depressed from what happened to Nanako, Teddie agrees with Shadow Teddie's claim that he was hiding from his true nature, and resigns himself to fading away into a normal Shadow. Yu tells him that Nanako is alive, and that everyone is looking for him. Relieved, Teddie admits that he doesn't know what's beyond the fog, but wants to move on with Yu and the others. Teddie fades away from the Velvet Room, bringing back Igor, Marie, and Margaret.

Igor tells Yu that beings without egos can't exist in the Velvet Room, and Margaret tells him that there are no more forks in the road; Yu has taken the correct path. The next day, Teddie reappears in the real world in Nanako's hospital room.

The Investigation Team had gathered in Junes the next day to prepare for finding Adachi when Teddie catches up to them. He reveals his true origins to the rest, while they tell him that Adachi's the killer. The gang investigates the TV world, where the fog has grown even more dense, and find the entrance to Adachi's dungeon in Yamano's apartment complex. Adachi appears as a phantom, now acting like a heartless murderer, and shows them how he threw Yamano and Saki into the TV world. He also adds that he took Namatame's call to the police, and suggested to him that he save Yukiko himself. Finally, he was the one who threw Mitsuo Kubo in the TV to stop the "game" from ending. When asked why he did all of that, Adachi claims it was out of boredom. Adachi then disappears, and so the Investigation Team calls it a day and disperses for the night.

If the bonds Yu has forged with his friends throughout the year are strong enough, their Personas will evolve. Jiraiya becomes Susanoo, the god of storms. Tomoe becomes Suzuka Gongen, the mythical warrior woman. Konohana Sakuya becomes Amaterasu, the sun goddess. Take-Mikazuchi becomes Rokuten Maou, the demon king. Himiko becomes Kanzeon, the Bodhisattva of compassion. Kintoki-Douji becomes Kamui, an Ainu spirit. Sukuna-Hikona becomes Yamato Takeru, the demigod son of a Japanese emperor.

Knowing they have to apprehend Adachi before the fog spills into the real world on Christmas Eve, the Investigation Team enters his dungeon to find him. It turns out to be a ruined version of Inaba, called Magatsu Mandala. Adachi's voice does it's best to discourage them, telling them that playing hero is useless and they should just stick with the hand life gave them. When they corner him, Adachi uses his nihilistic attitude as justification for the murders, impressing no one. He also claims that no one wants truth, just what they want to hear, and that this world full of Shadows will give that to the real world eventually. The Investigation Team tells him to shut up and prepare for combat.

Adachi responds by summoning a Persona of his own: Magatsu-Izanagi, the tempter of the void, and a dark reflection of Yu's Izanagi. Despite the surprise, the Investigation Team is able to defeat Adachi— or so they think. Adachi starts gathering Shadows like Namatame did, and speaks with a voice that's not his own. The voice claims that humans desire emptiness, and that they will be consumed by the fog and become Shadows. Adachi transforms into a giant mechanical eyeball, revealing the source of the voice— Ameno-sagiri, the Japanese spirit of foggy heavens.

Ameno-sagiri admonishes the Investigation Team for going against the wishes of mankind. They refuse to accept its conclusion, and fight it with everything they have. Against all odds, they win, impressing Ameno-sagiri with their resolve. It claims to be mankind's desires personified, and promises to watch over this new potential before fading away.

Now free of demonic possession, Adachi asks to be left to die. The Investigation Team refuses, and takes him back to the real world to face his punishment. After leaving Junes, they see that the fog has lifted, bringing back the sky. The team is elated, as they caught the murderer, got rid of the fog, and closed the case.

On Christmas Day, Dojima and Nanako are released from the hospital. While celebrating with cake, the Investigation Team learns that Yu will be going back to the city in March. The next day, the Midnight Channel is blank despite the rain, leaving Yu and Yosuke to conclude that there's no longer any supernatural threats to worry about.

    The Hollow Forest 
After New Year's Day, Yu goes around town greeting all the friends he has made. When doing the same in the Velvet Room, he finds only Margaret and Igor, but not Marie. Margaret tells him that Marie has left for a reason unknown to her. Yu asks where she went, but Margaret doesn't know that either. She offers to find Marie for him, but warns him that there might be danger. Yu accepts anyway, and so Margaret gets to work.

The next day, Yu comes down with a cold. In a strange fever dream, he sees Marie bidding him goodbye, telling him that with the fog gone, his future will be peaceful. She sadly states that meeting him gave her happiness, but she must end something soon, "for the best". When Yu awakens a few days later, Margaret calls him to say that Marie is in a dungeon deep within the TV world. She suggests that Yu hone his Persona abilities in the coming month.

With Margaret's words in mind, Yu spends the next month bonding with his friends. Much to their surprise, their Personas evolve again when they look forward to the future. Susanoo becomes Takehaya Susanoo, the full name of the storm god. Suzuka Gongen becomes Haraedo-no-Okami, the goddess of purification. Amaterasu becomes Sumeo-Okami, the imperial great goddess. Rokuten Maou becomes Takeji Zaiten, the ruler of the romance realm. Kanzeon becomes Kouzeon, the light of mundane voices. Kamui becomes Kamui-Moshiri, the world of spirits. Yamato-Takeru becomes Yamato Sumeragi, the divine emperor. In addition, Yu's bond with Marie creates a brand-new Persona— Kaguya, the moon princess.

Throughout the rest of January and the beginning of February, Yu sees flashes of the time he spent with Marie and receives updates from Margaret. Nothing comes of it until the Investigation Team goes on a ski trip, in which they find an abandoned cabin with an old TV. When Chie examines it, Margaret's hand reaches out from the screen and grabs her. The rest of the team is pulled into the TV when they try to stop her from being pulled in.

Once inside the TV world, Margaret introduces herself to the rest of the Investigation Team, and tells them that they're in the Hollow Forest, a dungeon created by Marie's mind after she regained her memories. Yu explains Marie's amnesia to the rest of the team, and Margaret adds that Marie was created in the TV world. When Rise asks if she was thrown in, Margaret responds that Marie is here willingly.

Whatever the case, it seems Marie did not like what she learned from her missing memories. She intends to shut herself in the Hollow Forest and fade away. If she does, all memory and traces of her will disappear. Margaret can't get through to her, but she hopes Yu will try. The Investigation Team resolves to find Marie before she erases herself.

The next day, the Investigation Team begins the operation to rescue Marie. As they progress through the Hollow Forest, they hear Marie reading her poems aloud, this time with clearer meanings now that her situation is known. The Hollow Forest prevents the team from bringing outside equipment and drains their spirit power with each battle, suggesting that Marie's cognition is trying to impede their progress. Eventually, Rise realizes that the Hollow Forest contains scenery from Inaba— specifically, the places Yu took Marie to see.

Marie is found floating on a raised stone pathway, dressed in a white robe and with one eye glowing green. When the Investigation Team tries to reach out to her, she rejects the offer and insists she has to die. Her memories showed her what she really was— Kusumi-no-Okami, a fog spirit just like the two Sagiri. If Ameno-sagiri and Kunino-sagiri were meant to learn mankind's desires from Adachi and Namatame, Marie was meant to do the same from Yu. She claims that the human world is doomed if she doesn't die, and leaves the area.

Undeterred, the Investigation Team chases after her and corner her in the center of the forest, near a stone coffin. Marie admonishes them for not listening to her, and tells them that the three divine fragments were going to use the fog to grant the wish they believed humans were asking for. But with the two Sagiri dead, the fog isn't needed, and neither is Marie herself. Her body now contains the fog, and she must die in the Hollow Forest, taking it with her. The Investigation Team refuse to leave, so she opts to remove them by force.

As Marie fights, she insists that she's destined for nonexistence, but the Investigation Team refuses to accept that. When a lull in the battle happens, Kusumi-no-Okami's voice reiterates Ameno-sagiri's words regarding humanity's wish for a peaceful lie. Yosuke suggests that Marie release the fog and allow the team to destroy it. Marie protests that the fog won't let them simply destroy it, and will turn into a monster if it takes over her body. Yu tells her that it's possible for the Investigation Team to defeat that monster. With a sliver of hope, Marie agrees to that plan, and goes to sleep. The fog transforms her body into the moth-like true form of Kusumi-no-Okami.

Kusumi-no-Okami is a formidable foe, with its ability to drain energy and repel attacks. Nonetheless, the Investigation Team defeats it, leaving behind Marie's human form. Just as everyone breathes a sigh of relief, the Hollow Forest starts to collapse, forcing everyone to leave in a hurry.

Once back in the real world, Marie expresses gratitude to the Investigation Team for saving her, even though she doesn't know why they would go so far for her. Yu tells her that being friends with her is enough. As the gang celebrates with a snowball fight, Marie wonders about Kusumi-no-Okami's parting words, and questions about who it was that put those thoughts in her head.

    Reaching Out to the Truth 
After Valentine's Day, nothing of note happens until March 20, the first day of spring. Yu has finished packing his things to return to the city the next day, so Dojima tells him to spend one last day with his friends. Nanako gives him a letter before he goes.

After going around town having last conversations with everyone he's bonded with, Yu goes to the Junes food court out of a sense of nostalgia. Much to his surprise, the rest of the Investigation Team had the same idea. Deciding to have lunch together, the team reminisces about their experience with the TV world. As they eat, they wonder where the rumor of the Midnight Channel came from, and how Yu, Adachi, and Namatame gained the ability to enter the TV world.

Yu decides to open the letter Nanako gave him, which turns out to be from Adachi. It turns out he had similar thoughts, but has noticed that Namatame, Yu, and himself only gained their power after coming to town. He can't remember who told him about the Midnight Channel, but wants Yu to find the answer to where the rumors came from. As a last word, he admits that Yu grew on him, indirectly giving Yu the ability to use Magatsu-Izanagi.

From Adachi's letter, Yosuke starts to suspect that there is a conductor behind the supernatural events of the last year. Chie wonders if the conductor is the same person who started the rumor of the Midnight Channel. Naoto, sensing a loose end, tells Yu to retrace his steps of his first day in town, and see if he can find where he received his powers.

Asked by Yu about his first day in town, Nanako reminds him that he got sick after shaking the gas station attendant's hand. Yu goes to the Velvet Room for answers, and ends up producing shards of power from his ability to sense the truth. Igor gathers them into an Orb of Sight, and gives it to him. Marie tells Yu that she was meant to protect humans and grant their wishes, but the two roles caused her to split when they became too distant from each other. The other half of her has been continuing to play her part behind the scenes, and Marie suspects that she might bring back the fog one day.

Yu goes to the gas station, where it has begun to rain. The same gas station attendant has reappeared, so Yu asks them if they know Adachi and Namatame. The attendant only gives responses that a normal attendant would, so Yu directly asks them if he received his power from them. The attendant laughs, before calling him troublesome.

Confirming that she did give three strangers to the town the ability to enter the TV world, the attendant expresses surprise that Yu would come after her even after defeating the Sagiri and saving Marie. When she asks what Yu intends with her despite having played his part, he responds that he wants to end her game.

The attendant reveals herself to be Izanami, the primordial mother goddess of Japan. If Yu intends to fight her, then she'll show no mercy. With that, she disappears, leaving Yu behind as Yosuke, Chie, and Yukiko catch up to him. Yu explains that Izanami was behind everything, and she's likely to start another experiment in the future.

Gathered once again, the Investigation Team enters the TV world. Rise senses a new area with tremendous presence. Approaching it, Izanami's voice welcomes them to Yomotsu Hirasaka, the entrance to Yomi. As Yu traverses it, he senses familiarity, and remembers it as the place in the first strange dream he had. Izanami explains that in her experiment, Namatame represented despair, Adachi represented emptiness, and Yu represented hope. Each was given a divine fragment to monitor them; Kunino-sagiri, Ameno-sagiri, and Kusumi-no-Okami. Because Adachi's actions had the biggest impact on the town, including spurring the other two into action, Izanami concluded that humans desired emptiness, and sent Ameno-sagiri to give them exactly that, which meant spreading the fog to turn everyone into Shadows.

At the end of Yomotsu Hirasaka, the Investigation Team confronts Izanami. When Naoto asks about the Midnight Channel, Izanami responds that it responded to the desires of the town. They wanted to see more of the people they were thinking about, so the Midnight Channel was meant to grant that desire. The Midnight Channel is in fact a reflection of such desires, and the initial images of the "victims" only display whoever has recently caught public attention and are technically separate from the murders. Everything Izanami has done is in accordance to the desires of humans, who she claims don't want truth, but what they want to hear. The Investigation Team protests that humans don't need a world directed by her, and prepare for battle.

Fog gathers around Izanami, and she transforms from human form to a goddess form. A woman in a straight jacket, resembling Kaguya, bears down upon the Investigation Team. The final battle underway, Yu, Yosuke, Chie, Yukiko, Kanji, Rise, Teddie, and Naoto give it everything they have.

Izanami's stamina seems infinite, as she keeps surviving the Investigation Team's strongest attacks and hitting back with the same force. Yu recalls the Orb of Sight, and uses it to dispel the fog and reveal Izanami's true form, a giant, rotting, multi-limbed corpse. Izanami-no-Okami arrogantly declares that as a goddess, humans have no hope of beating her. The Investigation Team presses on, and deplete her heath— but it isn't enough.

Using the Thousand Curses of her legend, Izanami-no-Okami targets Yu, intending to take him out of the battle first. One by one, Yu's friends knock him out of the way, and are dragged into Yomi for their trouble. When Yu is left standing alone, Izanami-no-Okami mocks him before pulling him down to Yomi as well.

Alone in a foggy afterlife, Yu hears Margaret's voice, imploring him to listen. From there, Yu hears the voices of his friends, team members and non-team members, begging him not to give up. One by one, Yu is given the strength to stand up despite the fog. With renewed determination, Yu's Persona evolves— Izanagi becomes Izanagi-no-Okami, the ruler of creation. With this new power, Yu pulls himself out of Yomi.

Izanami-no-Okami wastes no time in trying to send Yu to Yomi again, but he walks through her Thousand Curses like they're nothing. Surprised, she tries to smite him with waves of lightning, to no avail. Though Izanami-no-Okami insists that humans cannot grasp the truth, Yu throws aside his fog glasses, proving he doesn't need them anymore. Summoning Izanagi-no-Okami, he uses the power of the World Arcana to dispel the fog, bring his friends back, and destroy Izanami-no-Okami with Myriad Truths. Accepting this turn of events, Izanami dies, leaving the Investigation Team victorious.

With the fog gone, the TV world becomes idyllic and peaceful. Teddie recognizes this dreamlike world as the one from before the fog came. From the Velvet Room, Igor and Margaret congratulate Yu for discovering the truth lost to the fog. Marie reintroduces herself as Izanami-no-Mikoto, she who protects mankind. Igor moves on, saying that Yu was a remarkable guest.

March 21, 2012: Yu's school friends come to see him off at the train station. The Investigation Team, Nanako, and Dojima are there as well, each one saying a personal goodbye to him. Yu boards the train, and his friends chase after it on the platform, promising to meet again one day. As Yu leaves Inaba, Teddie says that no matter the distance, they will always be in each other's hearts.

    Golden Days 
Months laternote , Yu returns to Inaba for summer vacation. As he walks through town, he sees Namatame, who has made a comeback to his political career. Walking into Junes, he sees that the local family owned stores have been able to cut a deal with them to keep their businesses afloat.

At the food court, Yu waits for a few seconds before Yosuke and Teddie fail to surprise him. The rest of the gang appears right after, welcoming Yu back to town. Dojima calls right after, telling Yu that there's a meal waiting at home.

At the Dojima's home, Dojima tells Yu that Adachi was imprisoned, but is no longer causing any trouble. Nanako comes home from piano lessons, and happily greets Yu when she sees him. The weather report comes on, showing Marie, or rather, Mariko Kusumi, who is now the local weather forecaster. Judging by the way she tells the forecast, it seems she can use her goddess powers to control the weather. She also seems to know that Yu is in town, and greets him through the screen.

As they eat, Nanako whispers some thing to Yosuke. Yosuke gets everyone to turn to Yu, and they all say what they've wanted to say to him: "WELCOME BACK!", except Kanji, who says "It's good to see you, Senpai!" As Rise and Kanji bicker about this, Yu smiles, because it's good to be home.