And we begin another episode of Cross Ange, and the first shot we see is the crashed Vilkiss and Tusk's paramail, and as Ange starts to wake up, a long pink tongue is licking her cheek.
Turns out to be DRAGON!Vivian, and Ange understandably flips out until Vivian manages to convince her she's still herself. Tusk is up at this point and checking on Ange, and that's when Ange remembers they were over an ocean earlier, and after a quick look around, we see that they are on a deserted island of a lost civilization that looks suspiciously like stock imagery ripped from an episode of Life After People, and I'm going to bet money it's Japan/Tokyo or a serial numbers filed off equivalent.
Basically, one of those lost civilizations consumed in whatever screwed up history the first go round as explained by Jill/Alektra.
After the intro, Ange tries radioing in to HQ, no response, and that's when Vivan manages to trigger a soda machine. Meanwhile, Ange is slightly panicky as Tusk can't get squat either. Ange wonders if it's an ancient ruin, Tusk isn't so sure, and Ange wonders if they feel into another world or something, and Tusk confirms that could be possible given the Vikiss l33t hax powers (hey, it was designed to do incredible stuff by Embryo after all), and surmises the Vilkiss teleported them away from Embryo's death ray last episode. Ange asks Tusk to repair the Vilkiss while she susses the terrain, so he hands her his assault rifle and tells her to watch herself, and that's when Vivian offers her back so Ange can scout from the air. Tusk is bit surprised Vivan was a DRAGON, and Vivan holds a finger to her lips and says it's a secret (bit late for that, Viv......)
As Ange and Viv fly around, we get confirmation of Mt. Fuji, so this must be a serial numbers filed off Japan/Tokyo, and we also see what the Dawn Pillar Julio referenced a few episodes back, and when Ange reports this to Tusk, a few pieces fall into place, as she realizes that the Ppalace/city are gone, but the pillar is there, but the weird part is the mossed and shrubbed over runis they are in, and Tusk muses they time traveled Rip Van Winkle style, but Ange isn't amused.
Just then, a robot passes by, asking if any survivors are around, telling them to gather at the refugee center in the central park, so Ange and Tusk head on out. They are scanned at the shelter, detected as valid life signs in front of the mossed over dome, which opens up to reveal a full on shelter, which Ange and Tusk enter with guns raised, and as they reach the heart of the center, an automated message of a woman reporter tells them to pick a part of the center to reside in, and to Ange and Tusk's horror all they discover are the long dead corpses of a ton of people, which, given the sealed environment, are very well preserved.
Ange queries the automated computer (called Himawari) as to what the hell happened, and they get an automated holographic recap of what looks like World War III (or World War VII in the CA world), and it appears a serial numbers filed off version of the Union from Gundam 00 faced off against some version of the AEU/HRL from the same and basically wiped each other out (one of the alternate names is RAGNAROK), and the population of the world decreased by 89% (HOLY SHIT!), and the Federation ended the war with the Ragna-Mail (which means Embryo must be a remnant from the Humanity 1.0 world), and they basically cooked off a ton of wave motion gun blasts that ended the war, and basically fried most of the planet as well, detonating all the Dracunium reactors (their version of the Solar Elevators from Gundam 00, and most likely the radiation for these are why some humans turn into DRAGONs) on the planet with weaponry capable of warping dimensions, and the Cross Ange world experienced a Fallout style apocalypse scenario due to all this radiation blanketing the planet (yeah, they definitely cribbed notes from Fallout), and as Ange and Tusk watch all this in horror, a few more pieces fall into place.
Basically, Embryo was the guy responsible for the mass world die off and it's subsequent resurrection, and the SEELE ripoffs are contemplating ANOTHER mass world die off and subsequent reset because they aren't satisfied with how so many Humanity 1.0 remnants are lying around. It also explains why Embryo was so horrified at Julios brutality last episode: He apparently did all the above as a well intentioned extremist (as far as we know), doing what he felt was necessary at the time, and Julio's barbarism basically went beyond that, hence why Embryo was pissed off enough to ice him and undo some of the damage.
He's still apparently a villain since he's willing to do another world reset despite the fact this would reset most of humanity to square once again (including a bunch of people who would have every reason to object to this), but at least he willing to draw a line in the sand, again, as far as we know.
Ange is in "WTF?!?!" mod and finds out this all happened 538 years ago, and that what was left of humanity apparently perished in the mass die off last time, so Embryo was basically the only guy left and recreated the human race with his own hax (okay, maybe this guy is God after all)..
tl;dr: This show's backstory is like what would happen if Fallout and Evangelion had a baby.
Theory here: I'm willing to bet all that Dracunium radiation in the background cocked up Embryo's rebirth of the human race and caused all the retrograde humans (Norma) and the DRAGONs (further mutated Norma). Also, given how dimension warping BS is not out of the question for this show, I'm guessing a ton of them have been launching attacks from another dimension because they are cheesed off over what happened the first time round, and the Norma at Arzenal have been duped into killing off those whom they would otherwise consider allies, though it doesn't explain why Riza (an apparent DRAGON) was manipulating Julio, unless she was hoping to pull off a Ra La Creuset (Gundam SEED) "watch both sides kill each other because they both suck" plan.
As Tusk and Ange had back to their Paramail, Tusk realizes the writing on one of the soda cans is in Japanese (which he can't read) and that a LOT of shit must have changed since over 500 years ago. Ange is in denial mode again (entirely understandable, given the fact she just watched Armageddon and all the horrible aftereffects up close). Tusk is trying to convince her it's frickin real, but Ange just doesn't want to hear and heads off on Vivian.
Once we get back, Ange is still in denial, and Yusk is still doing repair work. Later, Vivian is tired from all the flying, and Tusk tells Ange not to strain her any more.
And that's when Ange earns some Jerkass points by yelling at Vivian for being useless.
.....way to go, Ange, and the audience was really respecting you at this point.
Tusk calls her out for this, and that's when it's obvious the stress, denial, and panic have taken a massive dump on Ange's reason at this point, as Ange is worried sick about everyone else, and she also takes this opportunity to call out Tusk for using her for Libertus (which is not that off the mark). Tusk of course isn't that much of coldblooded ass, but Ange racks up a few more asshole points by claiming Libertus was doomed to fail and that Tusk is fucking idiot for believing in it (and we finally get to see him getting pissed).
And that's when he makes her feel about an inch tall when he quietly remarks,
"Then, my parents died for garbage's sake then."
As Ange realizes how much a bitch she sounded like, Tusk tells her the Ancient People always wanted to free the world from Embryo and make world where the Norma could live without persecution, and his parents gave their lives for that, and that's when he finally gets fucking mad (and I don't blame him a bit) and angrily asks Ange if she thinks all of their sacrifice wasn't worth a damn.
Tusk stomps off at this point, leaving Ange feeling like a real heel.
The next morning, Tusk is still working on the Vilkiss during a light drizzle (he's stretched a tarp overhead to keep water out), and Ange is mad Tusk won't talk to her (gee, I wonder why, Ange, could it be because you were a fucking asshole?), and as Ange flashbacks to all of Tusk's face in crotch moments while sitting in a collapsed building,t hat when she realizes she in a store of some sort, and as she sees some cute, Vivan-esque trinkets, she decides to find an "I'm sorry gift".
We cut back to Tusk, who hears somethign behind him, sees some male jewelry hanging off the Vilkiss for him, and we get an amsuing shot of Ange failing to tiptoe quietly away as Tusk asks her about it.
She claims she thought it might look good on him, and he puts it on and asks her if it does indeed look good on him. As he tells her she needs to eat and tries to walk away (after confirmation his new amulet looks good), she tells him she's sorry. Tusk is honestly shocked she CAN apologize (hey, she's spent so much time being in angry Tsundere mode I can understand), and before she can be offended, he apologizes too. Vivian passes by, and Ange reedems herself completely by apologizing to her too.
Later, Tusk sneezes and realizes it's snowing. That's when Ange and Vivan drop in and Ange is all ^_^ about finding something awesome. We cut to them dropping off in front of a hotel (named after Mu La Flaga from Gundam SEED, lol), and they discover the hotel has working electricity (after screwing with some circuit breakers), beds, a bath, and a nice roof, and as the three of them are in 0_0 mode, Ange has a hilarious bit of naivety where she thinks it was an aristocrat's castle (looks more like a love hotel to me, Ange). Vivan and Ange are bathing (and I'll admit, this scene is both fanservicy and adorable, especially watching Ange wash a very ^__^ DRAGON!Vivian.
Later, as the snow really starts to fall and Vivian is crashed across an entire bed sending up a line of Z's, Ange and Tusk are in bathrobes (yeah, definitely the types you'd find in a love hotel, and that amulet Tusk is wearing makes him look like a playboy), and we get an awwworthy scene with the two of them, where Ange is basically complimenting him for being a sweet guy and he's blushing cherry red as he fumbles with a hair dryer. As Tusk muses he understands her rollercoaster feelings given the crazy shit she's gone through, she asks him what he knows of Embryo.
He confirms Jill's statements about him holding the world by the balls, but comments that doesn't seem to apply in their current situation. After some more aww-worthy scenes, Tusk opts to be a gentleman and sleep in the hall, but Ange tells him there is a sofa and a bed. He's all stammering and nervous, but she insists. He goes to sit on the sofa, and it collapses underneath him (hell, it had 500 years to atrophy, makes sense, apparently the bed is made of sterner stuff), and Ange laughs as the crash is loud enough Vivian wakes up. Ange shyly offers him the other side of the double bed, and Tusk's face turns into a tomato.
Later, as Vivian looks out the window at their room, she's all 0_0 at Ange and Tusk side by side in the same bed, with Tusk obviously uncomfortable, as Ange is still in "being all sweet on him" mode. The dialogue takes a severe turn for the romantic, and Tusk decides to get out of the bed while he can, but Ange catches on, and after he weakly protests they can't......(do I have to spell this out for anyone?)....Ange pulls the "don't you like me?" card.
Tusk changes the subject really quick and mentions when the first shot at Libertus failed (when Alektra/Jill lost her arm). He mentions since then he ran like a bitch to that cave we first found him in, and until he met Ange, he didn't really have anyone he wanted to fight for, and that when Ange inspired him to sack up and crawl out of his shell with how much of a badass she was, and even though his confession he chose to be her knight is both touching and borderline melodramatic, Ange calls him a loser, but soften the blow by saying she admires the purity of his intentions, and his face fills with blood as she partially sheds her robe (yeah, she's naked underneath), and she tells him the fact she now has hands covered in blood means she doesn't feel she deserves to have him as her knight, and Tusk finally proves he isn't a eunuch when he tells her he doesn't give a shit and will stay by her side regardless, and when she protests she's violent and fussy, he still doesn't care, cue them starting to suck face as Vivian flips out.
For more than one reason, as a massive DRAGON shows up to crash the party (and, per series obligation, Tusk falls into her crotch again), and that's when two women who look like Sala (y'know, all eastern styled uniformed) welcome the "false citizens"), and they confirm "yeah, you are now in another dimension, the Earth everyone on the world you came from left behind".
Cue end credits.
The next episode preview is FUNNY AS HELL, as Ange and Tusk comment on them meeting Sala and a bunch of others from her world, and Tusk wonders if this means he'll get a harem, which cues Ange to want to kick his ass, and we also see Sala has DRAGON wings too, but unlike Vivian and like Riza, has some degree of control over it.
........okay, this episode confirmed my above theory (I was writing this as I watched it), and from what I gather, Embryo basically warped himself and what little remained of humanity to a new world (a paralell universe, apparently) and attempted to start over, but left behind a bunch of humans who manages to survive the initial destruction of Ragnorok, and the DRAGONs we've seen so far are basically them launching assaults against the second world that left them behind.
Basically, they have as big an axe to grind against Embryo as do the Norma, but whether they'll come to that conclusion sooner or later is up in the air for now.