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Pain (Chapter) (痛み Itami?) is the 1st chapter of the 14th volume and the 55th chapter overall of the Attack on Titan manga, written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama.

Overview

Erwin Smith presents Dot Pixis with his proposal to overthrow the government. The commanders discuss the risks involved in doing so, and Pixis challenges Erwin to convince him of the value of his plan. While they wait for a messenger to arrive with news crucial to the plan, Erwin reveals his back story and the event that shaped his life: his father's death at the hands of the government. Hange and Levi carry out the interrogation of the captured members of the 1st Squad, brutally torturing Djel Sanes for information. His screams disturb the younger members overhearing this. They realize just how far they may have to go to win. Sanes finally breaks and discloses the secret of the Reiss family. Armed with this information, Erwin finalizes his plan by proposing that they install Historia as the new queen.

Summary

Erwin Smith begins explaining his proposition to Commander Pixis to dethrone Fritz and displace the royal government. After brief thought, Pixis admits that he knew one day, when they would no longer have the capacity to accept those seeking shelter in their world, the time would come when he would have to point his gun towards the king. However he confesses that an old soldier such as himself does not have the power to lead his subordinates towards a fight for mankind, Erwin then tells him that he is seeking

Erwin and Pixis speaking

Erwin and Pixis discuss plans

Pixis' authority to judge him. Pixis agrees to listen to Erwin's plan and if he is persuaded he will abandon his current position and join the corps with loyalty to operations no matter how gruesome. However if he is not persuaded he threatens to throw Erwin to the gallows.

Briefly, Pixis examines the idea of beheading the king and the reaction humanity may take to that, he mentions that even during the fall of Wall Maria when over 20 percent of the population was destroyed, riots did not happen. He theorizes that because everyone was forced into the same wall, they shared the same fate. Starting a war would mean bringing destruction to the world. The royal families, kings, and people that governed over humanity before the walls remained a peace symbol and a form of emotional support for the people. Pixis challenges Erwin to show him a world without a revolution of blood shed. Continuing with his explanation, Erwin proposes that they plan to exchange the kings head without Military forces or killing. He admits that he does not have the key factor allowing that plan to work, and that if it is wrong then he will probably be killed. As he waits for the information to arrive, Erwin discusses some of his childhood analogies with Pixis.

During Erwin's childhood, his father was a teacher. One day in his fathers classroom, they were learning about history and how they had managed to create a utopia within these walls. After that, Erwin posed a question to his father and without an answer, the class was ended. Later at his home, his father answered the question and stated that the history textbooks provided by the government contained many mysteries and contradictions.

Erwin and father

Erwin asks his father a question

 Even if these mysteries were not contained in the book, past generations would be able to pass them on and keeping information regarding the outside world would be almost impossible. His father then shared a story with him and he could not fathom the reason for it not being appropriate for the class. Erwin then told the other children of the story and his father never returned home. It was revealed to Erwin that his father had been killed in an accident within a town far away from home. However, according to Erwin's sources his father had been killed by the government so his theory could not be exposed. People became titans, and titans became walls.

Erwin states that memories are erased to easily, and Pixis confirms he means to state that without a revolution the community inside the walls would never change. Erwin theorizes that the government wants to use Eren and his ability to control titans with is voice. Though Pixis assumes it would be to keep titans away from mankind, Erwin discloses that Eren's voice would be used to protect the royal families standings and ownerships. Just then, Nifa dashes into the room with a message containing the information Erwin had been waiting on.

A few hours prior, Hange and Levi begin their torture of Djel Sanes by ripping out his nails for information. Levi's squad over hears his screams and are visibly unsettled as they realise how far they will have to go to win. Armin begins to theorize how to get the people on their side, he suggests possibly taking advantage of the confusion caused by the repeated Titan attacks by rousing the public to shift responsibility on the monarchy. Armin worries about putting lives in danger but states its for the good of mankind. He also proposes causing a significant accident and making it look as though it were caused by the monarchy. He then gets startled and claims to be joking. He states that they are now criminals and they may have to kill enemies with a different way of thinking. He also claims that they are no longer good people.

Continuing the interrogation, Levi punches Sanes twice and Hange shows him all ten of his finger nails on a plate, smiling and asking how many they would have to rip out to get as good as he was at it. Sanes explains that the peace within the walls was actually created by someone. He states the the first brigade got their hands dirty by eliminating anybody who challenged the order of the walls with ideas, inventions, or actions seen as unfit (including killing Historia's mother).
File:Hange and Levi torture Sanes.jpg
Levi then grabs Sanes face, stating he understands he did his best in his own way. He then breaks his nose and threatens to punish him if he doesn't answer his questions properly. He then asks him who the Reiss family are, Sanes responds by saying they're just a noble family living in the country. Levi then asks if they have the right to disclose information about the titans inside the walls, if it is them trying to keep people away from the walls using religion, and why they are doing this instead of the royal family. Sanes claims to have said all he knows and Hange quickly pushes a pair of pliers into his mouth and rips out a tooth stating he took to long to answer. Sanes then proclaims that he has never seen someone enjoy hurting someone so much and admits to enjoying hurting someone who cant defend themselves. He then implores them to torture him to death. He claims that they are monsters and that he has the king and believes in the security of the walls. He also states that what they have done is not wrong, that he wants to believe but it was so painful. He again asks them to torture him to death because his entire life is covered in blood. Hange and Levi then set down their tools and leave to take a break.

As Sanes begins to say his last words to himself, he over hears Hange and Levi speaking with his comrade Ralph about giving up the information so quickly, and he begins to panic. Levi is then seen holding a knife to Ralph's throat as he explains that Sanes was always crazy and he doesn't care if he dies. Hange is then shown holding the script he is being forced to read, and Ralph continues to say that they can kill him off and everything he'd told them so far was true. As Hange and Levi re-enter the room, Hange states that they will begin torturing him to death as he wishes until they are interrupted by Sanes revealing that the Reiss family is the real royal family.

Back with Pixis, Erwin, and Nifa. Erwin states that his bet was true and it's possible to change the king without killing anyone, if they are able to get Historia to succeed the thrown.

Characters in Order of Appearance

  1. Erwin Smith
  2. Dot Pixis
  3. Fritz (flashback)
  4. Eren Yeager (flashback)
  5. Mikasa Ackerman (flashback)
  6. Annie Leonhart (flashback)
  7. Nifa
  8. Levi Ackerman (flashback)
  9. Djel Sanes (flashback)
  10. Hange Zoë (flashback)
  11. Sasha Blouse (flashback)
  12. Jean Kirstein (flashback)
  13. Armin Arlert (flashback)
  14. Historia Reiss (flashback)
  15. Connie Springer (flashback)
  16. Moblit Berner (flashback)
  17. Kenny Ackerman (flashback)
  18. Ralph (flashback)

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