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Quote1 Turned out...just when I thought she'd left the ferrst, the whole world was one big one. It was still kill or be killed. ... We've gotta let the children outta this jungle, at the very least. Else the same thing's just gunna happen again and again.... Quote2
— Mr. Blouse chooses to end the cycle of violence

Children of the Forest (森の子ら Mori no Kora?) is the 1st chapter of the 28th volume and the 111th chapter overall of the Attack on Titan manga, written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama.

Overview

The military has lost over one hundred soldiers due to the defection of Eren Yeager and his followers. Acting Commander-in-Chief Dot Pixis has Hange Zoë and Nile Dok secure the personnel who either know of Zeke Yeager's whereabouts or protect the Queen's residence. Pixis reveals that he plans to negotiate with the "Yeagerists" by offering them knowledge of Zeke's location. He hopes to bring the two sides together for the sake of Eldia's survival.

Hange takes the remaining members of the 104th with her to investigate a restaurant after noting the line of work taken up by many of the Marleyan prisoners of war. The Blouse family arrives at that same restaurant, where Nicolo now works. Midway through their meal, Falco Grice and Gabi Braun reveal their identities to him, as Gabi tries to warn him of the upcoming Marleyan invasion. However, she admits to killing Sasha Blouse, causing Nicolo to attack her in grief. Falco protects her, taking the blow of a wine bottle that breaks over his head. Sasha's father manages to talk everyone down, realizing that both sides have lost people they cared about. Defeated, Nicolo asks Hange to wash out the unconscious Falco's mouth, because he suspects the wine has Zeke's spinal fluid in it.

Summary

Pixis proposes to surrender

Pixis proposes to surrenders to the Yeagerists

Nile Dok holds a meeting that confirms that over one hundred soldiers have defected and are part of the anti-Corps organization rallied behind Eren Yeager. Certain they were behind the bombing that killed Commander Darius Zackly, he refers to them as the Yeagerists and asks Hange Zoë what their goal is. It is revealed that their goal is most likely to reunite Eren with Zeke Yeager and the killing of Zackly was to demonstrate their resolve. Rogue wonders how they managed to gather so many followers so quickly and believes they trust Zeke and his "rumbling" plan. Hange goes on to theorize that their recent attack is also in part due to the military devising a plan to have a soldier loyal to the military try to inherit the Founding Titan from Eren. Nile mulls this over while Rogue bluntly demands how Hange will take responsibility for this.

Just then, acting Commander-in-Chief Dot Pixis enters and reminds them that they have a visitor and they should not be bickering among themselves. He asks how many know the whereabouts of Zeke, and Hange replies that Levi Ackerman and thirty soldiers with him, along with three soldiers in charge of supplies and herself. Pixis orders to bring the three in and asks Nile about the safety of Historia Reiss's residence, knowing that the Yeagerists will try to reach her. Nile goes off to confirm while Pixis entrusts Armin Arlert to fortify their defenses. When asked if he had any longer-term plans, Pixis reveals they should surrender to Eren, but not submit to the Yeager brothers. He intends on negotiating with the Yeagerists by putting Zeke's location on the table. He also informs them that they would be watching over the "rumbling" experiments and notifies them that no mentions of the murder of the Commander-in-Chief will be made during these negotiations.

Nicolo attacks Gabi

Nicolo attacks Gabi after hearing she killed Sasha, striking Falco in the head

After dismissing the other soldiers, Pixis goes to Kiyomi Azumabito and apologizes for having to see this exchange and asks her to stay in the harbor for her own safety. She gets a hold of Mikasa Ackerman and wishes that she go to the Azumabito ship in case something happens. While appreciating the concern, Mikasa vows to stay and fight. The senior members of the Survey Corps along with Hange discuss the current situation. Hange states that they need to figure out Zeke's intentions to avoid being made a fool out of. For this, she takes them to a restaurant which she claims to be a suspicious line of work for Marleyan prisoners of war.

At a restaurant, Nicolo replies to another Marleyan that his guests are right on time. Mr. Blouse arrives with his family along with Falco Grice and Gabi Braun. Gabi starts to get nervous but Kaya assuages her fears by telling Gabi and Falco that Nicolo is a Marleyan and that he can be trusted. As they start eating, Falco and Gabi are amazed by how great the quality of food is. In the kitchen, Nicolo is informed he has visitors from the Survey Corps. He tries to excuse himself but agrees when Onyankopon reveals that the Anti-Marleyan Volunteers had been detained and they had questions to ask him. Jean Kirstein notices a bottle of wine that is usually served to the Military Police and tries to get a sip; Nicolo swiftly grabs it and demeans him as an Eldian, surprising the others there. Falco and Gabi come up with an excuse to leave and find Nicolo in the basement and reveal their true identities.

Mr. Blouse trains Sasha

Mr. Blouse remembers training Sasha

Surprised, Nicolo asks how and why they are here and Gabi excitedly proclaims that they smuggled aboard the airship the Survey Corps used in the Battle of Liberio. Putting together who they are, Nicolo asks if they have killed anyone, perhaps a female soldier and Gabi victoriously claims that she brought her down. Horrified that the killer of Sasha is in front of him, Nicolo swings a wine bottle at Gabi, which strikes Falco in the head as he tries to protect her. He punches Gabi and brings them to the dining room, revealing to the stunned Blouse family who they are. Nicolo offers the knife to Mr. Blouse asking him to avenge his daughter and if he did not do so, he himself would.

Mikasa protects Gabi

Mikasa protects Gabi from Kaya's attack

The Survey Corps hear the commotion and rush in. They are surprised to see the girl who shot Sasha and plead Nicolo to stop where he was. Overwhelmed with grief, Nicolo holds a knife to Falco's neck and threatens to kill him. This infuriates Gabi who implores Nicolo to come back to his senses and not lose to the island devils. Just then, Mr. Blouse requests Nicolo to hand over the knife which he then passes over to his wife, who compels Nicolo to let go of Falco. Mr. Blouse says that Sasha grew up as a hunter in the forests and he was responsible for sending her outside the forest to become a soldier. Though soon he realized that the whole world was a large forest and Sasha had ventured too far in it, which led to her inevitably losing her life in a foreign land. He decided to spare Gabi's life as a way to stop the cycle of violence which led to the loss of his daughter.

Nicolo lets go of Falco and slouches as he is held by Jean and Connie. Gabi is stunned to see that they harbor no ill feelings toward her and as Mikasa attends to her injuries, Kaya attempts to attack Gabi but is stopped by Mikasa. Nicolo slumps over and, although admitting it may be too late, he asks Hange to wash out Falco's mouth with water. When asked why, Nicolo reveals that all the wine in the bottles have probably been infused with Zeke's spinal fluid.

Characters in order of appearance

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