On their way to the World Tree, Kirito and the others are advancing through a gigantic cave, the Lugru Corridor, when Lyfa receives a message from her friend, Recon. In it, he urges cautions, but it is too late - a Salamander squad is fast approaching. Driven into a corner, Kirito finds himself with no option but to fight, and he designates Lyfa as the Healer of their group, while he himself launches a solo attack on the enemy.
But the Salamanders have a counterattack in place. As Kirito stands blocked by their unyielding front-line defense, he is deluged by magic unleashed by the Mages.