December 1, 2012
After hearing about a player ID that is similar to Asuna, Kirito attempts to fly to the top of the World Tree. Leafa flies after Kirito and tries to warn him about the barrier. But Kirito, ignoring the warning, keeps hitting the barrier. Leafa grabs Kirito's arm and tells him to stop while Yui calls out for Asuna.
At the top of World Tree, Asuna is sitting in her chair and hears Yui's voice. Asuna tries to find where the voice was coming from, looking down from the edge of her cage. Asuna tries to call out to Yui that she is up in the tree, but realizes it was hopeless. Instead she then tries to find something to drop. Kirito still tries to break the barrier until Yui tells Kirito that she tried to use the Warning mode to contact her. Kirito is about to draw his sword before he notices something falling out from the tree. Kirito grabs the item that appears to be a card. Leafa doesn't have any knowledge of the card but Yui believes it is a System Admin access code, giving access to GM controls with a system console. Yui thinks that Asuna must have heard them and dropped it for them. Kirito ask Leafa where is the gate that leads to the inside of World Tree and thanks her for everything and that he will go alone for the rest before heading to the base of world tree.
Kirito makes it to the base, but before he could enter, two swords from the two statues block the pathway and ask if he wanted to go in, then a window popped up if he wanted to attempt the grand quest, which he accepts. Kirito takes out his sword before walking into the dome.In the dome, Kirito sees the pathway to get to the top of the tree, and flies to the pathway. NPC guardians begin to spawn and assault on Kirito. While having flashes of Asuna, Kirito manages to kill 7 NPC guardians before engaging in a clash with another NPC guardian. As Kirito struggled to push back, until he had another memory of Asuna, giving him the strength to glide through the sword and kill the guardian. Kirito continues to fight to the top while guardians keep attacking Kirito. Kirito tries to rush to the top but was stopped by a group of guardians firing arrows at Kirito. Ignoring the arrows, Kirito continues to fly up, getting hit by the arrows in the process. The guardians then threw their swords at Kirito, causing Kirito to stop. His HP eventually reached zero, and becomes a Remain Light.
While waiting for the Resurrection time to hit zero, Kirito realizes that his strength means nothing instead only skills and status. He thought he was able to go beyond the boundaries of the game; beyond the limits and was able to do anything, recalling his memories at SAO.
Suddenly Leafa comes flying in the dome, searching for Kirito's light. While fighting the guardians, she finds and grabs Kirito's remain light, she flies to the door but gets hit by couple of arrow however she still manages to escape.
Outside the gate, she brings Kirito back to life by using the World Tree Dewdrop. Kirito thanks Leafa but tells her not to do things like that again. Leafa tells him to stop and to go back to his "normal self". Leafa was about to express her feelings for Kirito but he tells her that he is sorry, and that he has to see Asuna again. Leafa begins to back away, realizing Kirito was Kazuto. She calls Kirito "big brother", causing Kirito to realize Leafa was Suguha. Shocked, Leafa logs out.Suguha wakes up crying. Kazuto knocks on her door and asks Suguha what was wrong, and thought she was upset because of him using the NerveGear again. Suguha opens the door and tells him the real problem: that it was because she was trying to forget about Kazuto to fall in love with Kirito which is now impossible. Kazuto tries to remind her that they are siblings before he was interrupted by Suguha telling him that she knew the truth about them not being a real siblings for the past two years. She asks that if it was the reason why he quit kendo and avoided her. She thought that his kindness after he came back from SAO was a gesture of giving her a chance. She tells him that he should have stayed as a jerk so she wouldn't have realized that she liked him, been sad about Asuna and Kazuto's relationship or tried to fall in love with Kirito. Kazuto is stunned and could only say that he was sorry. Causing Suguha to close the door before she begins to cry. Kazuto leans against the door before falling into sorrow.
Adapted from Sword Art Online Light Novel Volume 04