Golden Age (5) (黄金時代(3),Ōgon jidai (5)?) is the 13th nonnumerical episode of the Berserk manga series, written and illustrated by Kentaro Miura. This episode is also the thirteenth of sixteen episodes that do not go by conventional episode labeling.
Guts suffers a nightmare, where Donovan chases Guts' eleven year-old self across a field of bones. Guts comes across Gambino and begs him for help, but Gambino refuses on the grounds that he was killed by Guts. Gambino turns to his dog, who has Shisu's face, who agrees that Guts is not worth saving. Donovan overpowers Guts as the latter begs Gambino to forgive him. Gambino and Shisu dissolve into bones as Gambino tells Guts he should have died the day he was found as a baby. The scene changes, and Guts, now fifteen, lays naked in an endless void. He screams not to be touched as a naked Casca embraces his body.
Guts awakens in an unfamiliar tent, pain in his shoulder flares up as he suddenly remembers Griffith and their fight. He leaves the tent and looks around; the camp is full of mercenaries of a comparable age to Guts' own. In the distance, Guts notices Casca arguing with Griffith. As their confrontation ends, she storms over to Guts, who recognizes her from his dream, and greets him with a punch to the gut. She leaves after wishing Griffith had killed Guts. A nearby mercenary, Judeau, explains that Griffith had ordered Casca to sleep next to Guts for the two previous days to help him heal from his wounds, despite the fact that she had given up living as a woman to be a mercenary. Griffith walks over and introduces himself amicably, returning Guts' sword while asking him to accompany him through camp, amidst the glaring eyes of the other mercenaries. Griffith explains that the group is called the Band of the Hawk, and Guts admits to having heard rumors of their formidable reputation.
As they reach the top of a nearby hill, having a personal interest in him, Griffith reveals that he spared Guts to because he wants him to join the Hawks' ranks. But Guts refuses and instead wants to return the favor by impaling Griffith in the chest with his sword. Griffith inquires into what he would receive should he win their bout, and Guts says that he have him. Griffith agrees, saying that he "rather enjoys settling things with force," also drawing his sword. Casca, having followed, emerges from hiding spot as Griffith orders her to not interfere. Casca in turns, relays the order to the others as they arrive on the scene. Guts is quickly overwhelmed, and he wonders how Griffith can beat his enormous greatsword with a simple falchion. The fight seems to end when Griffith jumps and lands on the blade of Guts' sword, his own weapon pointed at Guts' face.
Griffith compliments Guts for his fighting methods and willingness to win by any means, but notes that his weight is keeping Guts from using his sword and offers to postpone the fight. Guts tells Griffith that he talks too much before using his own mouth to bites down on Griffith's blade, intent to continue the fight.