Kirishima Nanaki (桐嶋 七葵)
CV: Chiba Susumu (千葉 進歩)
(The choices that I’ve chosen in this route allow me to switch to another character’s route with as much minimal disturbance to the storyline as possible, therefore all posts after this one will start at the point of the story where they start to diverge).
Nanaki is your typical serious character who doesn’t like to show his emotions much. He has a quick temper, but he can’t completely hide his kind heart which shows through his actions and how he mothers his group of friends. From the moment he was born has the ability to see things that are hidden from normal people.
Quick overview of the beginning.
*** PROLOGUE ***
Our adventure starts once again with the story about the girl meeting a Shinigami and telling him that she’s searching for the most beautiful word in the world. The Caged Bird story is told again too. Tooya tells Sayo about a story he wants to write with a Shinigami being the main character. He wants to change the connotations associated with the word Shinigami. The story is going to feature the Shinigami meeting a Shoujo, a young female traveller who is on the search for the most beautiful word in the world, and the Shinigami decides to travel with her. Sayo thinks that his premise for the story is amazing.
Sayo meets Kaho on her way to school, pass the clock tower, and in their class she accepts a pen that Kaho bought for her. Sayo decides to join the group of girls and ask them about the Shinigami that they’re talking about and finds out that there’s been this suspicious man sighted around the clock tower who calls himself a Shinigami. Natsume passes by and tells the girls that they should probably seat themselves before the teacher comes in. After he’s gone, the girls can’t stop talking about how cute Natsume is and Sayo takes no part in it.
Kaho leaves school first, because Sayo needs to go to the library to return books and while she’s there she decides to start reading a new one. Hinase comes to find her in the library and when she asks for a reason, he asks if there is any reason other than wanting to see her beautiful face because he likes her. Sayo teases him by saying that they should go out then, because Hinase likes her and she doesn’t hate him. Hinase gets flustered and Sayo tells him that it was a joke, which makes him ask her what she would do if he didn’t take it as a joke, but Sayo doesn’t think he’s that kind of person.
Sayo gets caught up in reading her book and suddenly realizes the time. As she heads home she hears a voice calling out to her, but there is no one around except for Nanaki who tells her that he didn’t say anything. She thinks about the appearance of Nanaki and feels that he seems familiar to her since he’s famous for being the captain of the kendo club, but she can’t remember his name and so she goes home.
On her way home Sayo stops at the clock tower. She meets Ao there who asks her if she knows the reason why the clock tower stopped. All she knows is that the clock tower stopped 10 years ago and then she accidently calls him a shinigami, which makes him ask her if she knows about him. Turns out Ao has lost all his memories and the only thing he can remember is that he is a shinigami.
She worries about him and wants to bring him into the hospital and ends up giving him the name Ao, because his eyes are blue. While talking to one another, Ao sees a girl collapse from anemia and Fushimachi walks by and calls an ambulance. Sayo leaves the girl and Ao in the hospital and returns home to her brother. She tells her brother the day’s events and then they both mention how they dislike their father.
*** CHAPTER 1 ***
The next day at school, Sayo and Natsume are called out by the teacher to help him carry something. Natsume tells Sayo about Nanaki who they see briefly when he berates the teacher for being late to kendo. Then Sayo invites Natsume to eat lunch with her and Kaho, but he refuses. Kaho gets annoyed that Sayo invited Natsume, because she shouldn’t lonely with Kaho there and Natsume dislikes Sayo so Sayo should dislike him back, is what she thinks.
While walking home, Kaho heads off and Sayo stares at the clock tower. She meets Ao again and tells him she’s glad to see him. Turns out Ao left the hospital because he dislikes hospitals and thinks that they’re useless. Hinase comes across the two of them and asks if Ao is Sayo’s lover or friend. As Sayo talks to Hinase, Ao wanders off and the two of them chase him to Fushimachi’s shop where he starts reading books.
Tomoe comes in and thanks Sayo while letting everyone know that she also has no memories from a year ago. She then touches Sayo’s hair and mutters that if she had hair like Sayo then maybe that person would like her. Fushimachi explains Sayo’s love for her brother which makes Hinase wonder if she has a brother complex and then says that he wants a sister like Sayo. Fushimachi wants a daughter like Sayo.
Hinase escorts Sayo home and tells her that what Tomoe said was true, because her hair is beautiful. He flirts with her by asking if he can walk with her to school and home from now on, but Sayo tells him that she already made a promise with Kaho after teasing him by playing along and asking if he would be able to wake up that early. She goes home and her brother notes that she looks happy and Sayo tells him that it’s because she met the Shinigami again.
The next day at school, Sayo tells Kaho that she’s going to go to Fushimachi’s shop to check up on Ao and Kaho offers to come with her. Along the way they meet Tomoe at the clock tower and she tells the two girls that she can almost remember something there. At Fushimachi they find out that Ao has become the shop helper and after assuring herself that he’s doing fine since he hasn’t left the shop since yesterday, Sayo returns home with Kaho. Kaho wonders why Sayo has so much interest in Ao and Sayo tells her that she likes him or more like she doesn’t hate him. Kaho goes home and Sayo stops at the clock tower again.
Ao finds her there and returns to her a book that she dropped when they first met Tomoe. Her brother comes along while they’re talking and jealously herds Sayo away from Ao. Tooya is worried because they don’t know what kind of man Ao was before he lost his memories and he’s worried about what Ao must have done to have earned the name Shinigami.
Sayo kisses her brother on the cheek and asks if he’s jealous, to which he replies he is because 「・・・・可愛い紗夜をこのまま誰にも触れさせたくない」(I don’t want anyone else touching my cute Sayo). He also adds that 「出 来れば、このまま俺の手を離れて欲しくない」(If I could do it, I would make it so that I would never let you go) and 「俺は世界で一番、お前が好きだよ」(You’re the one I love most in this world). I DON’T KNOW HOW I’M SUPPOSED TO BE FEELING WITH A YANDERE!BROTHER CONFESSING TO ME (＾∀＾；). THIS CAN EITHER BE TAKEN AS BEING ROMANTIC OR REALLY SCARILY POSSESSIVE.
The next day at lunch, Sayo is interrupted from her reading of “The Caged Bird” by Chiyo. Chiyo runs off after realizing that he’s late to meet his friend and Nanaki comes by asking Kaho and Sayo if they had seen someone. Kaho starts to realize that she shouldn’t leave Sayo alone, because she attracts strange guys.
Sayo tells Kaho that she’s going to stay after school. She decides to wander into the dojo where the guys are practicing kendo. She’s amazed at the level that Nanaki is at and accidently says amazing out loud. One of the kendo members notices her and asks if she has business there, but Sayo doesn’t and so she quickly runs out. She heads home and sees Fushimachi and Tomoe argue and calls out to them. Tomoe heads off and Fushimachi asks Sayo to show Ao around the town because he’s reading too many books and doesn’t go out enough. She tells her brother and he shows his jealous side again.
The next day Sayo is showing Ao around the town and she notices that he’s wearing new clothes. They eat a tea shop restaurant and Ao burns his mouth on hot food. She takes him to the school and he ends up wanting to go into the library, but the school is closed. They go to the harbour and Ao realizes that the ocean is quite large and when Sayo asks where his country is Ao tells her that shinigami don’t have countries.
Sayo wonders if shinigami aren’t born somewhere, but Ao tells her that they just exist. They go to the park and Ao dislikes it because it’s noisy. They walk by the manor where Sayo lives and Ao explains that he dislikes her brother for reasons unknown even to him. They finish the tour on the hill of cosmos flowers and Sayo asks for his help in finding the world’s most beautiful word and Ao agrees.
As they’re walking back to town they come across Chiyo who quickly tells them that Tomoe collapsed at the clock tower. Tomoe freaks out when Sayo is there and grabs her arm really hard, before being pulled away by Nanaki and then the ambulance arrives. The next day at school, Sayo is warned to stay away from Tomoe by Nanaki and later on Chiyo.
Fushimachi finds Sayo at the clock tower and interrupts her conversation with Chiyo by asking if Sayo has seen Ao because he skipped his hospital checkup. Sayo asks if she can come along and the next day she is with Ao at the hospital making sure he doesn’t run away. She notices that he’s wearing his original clothes again because he likes them.
Tomoe makes a scene at the hospital because she wants to return back to the clock tower to remember her memories. She crazily states that Sayo knows her feelings and this causes Sayo to almost faint, but Ao manages to ground her with his voice and eyes. They meet Tomoe’s older sister who tells them about Tomoe trying to commit suicide, because the man that she liked cheated on her, and then she lost a year of her memories at the clock tower. Ao escorts her home at night because Fushimachi pestered him into doing it and Sayo learns that Ao doesn’t care whether or not his memories return.
Sayo has a nightmare about someone killing herself and this makes her hug her brother when she wakes up. At school she is late to meet Kaho and she runs through the halls only to crash into Nanaki. Hinase comes across the two of them and manages to convince Nanaki into eating lunch together with everyone. Sayo asks what everyone’s hobbies are and Kaho’s is shopping, Sayo’s is reading books, Nanaki’s is fishing, and Hinase can do magic tricks.
After lunch, Sayo manages to get Ao a pass from the librarian and then she hears Nanaki coming in and asking about newspapers. She meets Chiyo again who tells her that if she wants to find out more about Tomoe then she should look at the graduation book he gave her.
On her way home Sayo goes to tell Ao about the good news and they arrange a meeting time to go to the school library. She finds out that he hasn’t eaten all day and brings him home with her. There’s a tense atmosphere between Tooya and Ao, but the two manage to reach a slight accord when Tooya shows Ao his work room which is filled with books from different countries. Tooya blackmails Ao into protecting Sayo with his books and food. That night, Sayo commits herself to investigating Tomoe’s past.
She asks the librarian the story and finds out that Tomoe had a relationship with a teacher at school. Sayo goes home and sees Ao and Tomoe at the clock tower and finds out that Tomoe remembers everything. She can’t sympathize with Tomoe though, because she thinks that the teacher’s fianceé is the victim. Ao and Sayo talk about how “The Caged Bird” story relates to Tomoe’s situation. Sayo goes home and asks if her brother loves her which makes him confess with a lot of romantically poetic lines. Sayo also asks that if he lost his memories, would he also forget his love for her? Tooya tries to tell her that he would never forget about his love for her and Sayo believes in him.
The next day, Sayo waits for Ao at the clock tower and sees Chiyo there. She talks to him before they both get interrupted by Tomoe who hallucinates that Sayo is her teacher’s fianceé and tries to stab her. Ao saves her in time though and Tomoe freaks out, because she thinks Ao is the teacher. Nanaki comes along and explains the whole story.
Tomoe fell in love with a teacher who loved her back, despite the fact that he had a fianceé. They arranged to meet at the clock tower and the teacher died in a car accident along the way which made Tomoe think that he betrayed her and so then she tried to commit suicide. Nanaki accesses her teacher’s memories and speaks the teacher’s last feelings and thoughts for Tomoe. Tomoe becomes unresponsive and her sister comes and takes her home.
Nanaki, Chiyo, Ao, and Sayo go to the tea shop for explanations. Sayo finds out that Chiyo is a ghost and that Nanaki has the power to access the memories and feelings of dead people so long as their feelings are powerful enough. They don’t know why Sayo can see Chiyo and think that Ao’s ability to see Chiyo is tied in with him being a shinigami. Chiyo and Nanaki head home, while Sayo takes Ao to the library where they read books and talk about Tomoe’s situation. The librarian then tells Sayo that Tomoe never had an older sister.
The end of the chapter features a conversation between Tomoe and the teacher in the past. They love each other even though they both know that they’re betraying everything in their lives like their family, their friends, etc.
*** CHAPTER 2 ***
The book, Shinigami to Shoujo, is updated at the start of a new chapter. The story continues with the two going into a giant forest that is surrounded by a cage. The two of them get lost, but suddenly see flying fish in the sky. The Shoujo asks the fish for directions and they direct the two of them to the exit. The Shinigami asks why the fish don’t just leave the cage if they know the exit and the Shoujo thinks that maybe it’s because they want to be able to continue swimming in the sky. The Shinigami asks if the word “continue” is the most beautiful word, but the girl denies it.
Sayo has been spending most of her time taking Ao to the school library and one day Kaho decides to come along with them. Kaho complains about the two of them constantly reading books and so Sayo finally accompanies Kaho on a shopping trip while Ao follows along questioning the point of it. They see Hinase at a flower shop, but he walks away without hearing Sayo call his name. Ao explains about the language of flowers and how red roses mean love which makes the two girls wonder if Hinase is going to give it to someone. At the end of the day, Ao escorts Sayo home because he has books to return.
Tooya is jealous when Ao comes and coldly tells the other to finish his business quickly and leave. He’s jealous that Sayo has been spending most of her time with Ao and so he is more affectionate which affects Sayo. The next day at school, a senpai asks if he can speak to Sayo alone but she refuses on the context of having to prepare for the next class.
Natsume comes along though and tells her that he’ll take care of preparations so she should hear the senpai out. The senpai confesses to Sayo, but she gently turns him down. Hinase manages to overhear the entire conversation by accident and tells her that it wouldn’t have been bad to go out with him. When Sayo asks why, because she doesn’t like the senpai, he tells her that she might have come to like him by going out with him. Then he warns her that beautiful flowers don’t just attract pretty butterflies.
The next day Sayo waits for Ao at the clock tower, but he’s really late. As she’s waiting she meets Hinase who seems to be going somewhere but he ends up deciding to go with her to the shop to find Ao. At Fushimachi’s shop, Ao is arguing with this other blond about there not being a certain book in store. The blond mistakes her for a person called Rosa and grabs her hand while expressing his joy in meeting her. It turns out though that the other blond is called Louis and he’s the protagonist of a book that Sayo’s brother wrote. He needs to find her brother, because he wants the ending of the book changed and so the four of them head off to search for it.
Tooya isn’t at home though and so the five of them decide to search for him in the town. Louis and Hinase don’t know what Tooya looks like though, so Sayo will take one while Ao takes the other and they’ll split up. She picks Hinase to go with her. While walking, Sayo gets curious about what Hinase bought the rose for and after she admits to being friends with Hinase he takes her to his parent’s graves. He tells her that his parents died in a car accident and then crushes the rose that he bought and sprinkles its petals across as an offering.
Sayo asks if his hand is alright, because he wounded it when crushing the rose. Hinase asks if she’s going to lick it better and Sayo actually does look it. HOLY CRAP MY FACE WAS BURNING IN EMBARRASSMENT AT THE YABAI-NESS OF THIS MOMENT (๑￫‿￩๑) I DIDN’T KNOW SAYO HAD IT IN HERE TO DO SOMETHING LIKE THAT. She takes his wrist and licks his palm and each of his fingers, but while she is doing this Hinase just has an emotionless face on. After she’s done, he states that he didn’t think she would do it and laughs while saying she’s interesting because it was a joke. Sayo is all embarrassed and tells him to clean it out properly and they continue on the search for her brother.
Sayo and Hinase meet up with Ao and Louis at the clock tower. Nanaki and Chiyo come along and Sayo praises Nanaki on how good he looks with his glasses on. Nanaki and Louis get into a fight and Louis runs away and so Sayo and Ao chase after him. Hinase manages to bring Nanaki along and blackmails Nanaki, with the help of Sayo’s pleading, to aid them in their search for her brother. The six of them travel around the town trying to find Sayo’s brother while Louis is marvelling at the world. First, they see a cat mascot that Louis starts hugging and trying to dance with because it reminds him of the dancing cat in his world.
At the park, Louis runs off to buy some takoyaki but doesn’t have any money and so when Sayo tries to pay for all six of them, Nanaki cuts in and pays for it instead. Ao burns his mouth on it and Sayo helps him cool it down by blowing on it. They get into a conversation debating the merits of cooling it down by blowing on it or just waiting for it to cool down itself.
Everyone else is staring at the two of them and Hinase asks if Sayo and Ao really aren’t going out, because they seem very close to one another. Louis asks if Hinase is jealous to which Hinase replies with a blunt “Yes!”, then he teasingly asks if Sayo can do the same thing for him which she agrees to do. Sayo cools it down for him by blowing on it and then Hinase eats out of her hand rather than taking it back. Sayo feels kind of embarrassed that everyone is watching and Chiyo tells Nanaki that he should ask for it too.
Then Louis runs off and they chase him to find a cat up a tree with some kids wanting help in getting it down, but Louis tells them not to worry because the cat can save itself. Their time for finding Sayo’s brother is running out, because Louis told them that when the sun sets he will disappear back into his own world. Louis runs off into the ocean and tries to walk into the sea and so Nanaki chases after him, but Sayo is held back by Hinase. It turns out in the end though, that Louis isn’t really Louis. He was just some guy who wanted to be the protagonist of a story. He wants to feel like the world revolves around him.
The five of them start to head home while talking about what just happened. Hinase explains how everyone wants to feel like they’re important to the world and then takes his leave, before his grandmother gets angry. Nanaki caught a cold from going into the ocean and then they head off to Sayo’s house where they find Tooya, who just came back from a business trip. They explain their journey to him which leads to an existentialist debate.
They see Natsume walking by and he ignores Sayo when she calls out to him, leading Tooya to ask if Natsume is bullying Sayo in a forceful tone. Chiyo and Nanaki are scared at his protectiveness of Sayo and quickly agree when Tooya asks them to take care of Sayo for him. The day ends with Sayo listening to her brother read the story of Louis.
The story that her brother wrote was about this boy Louis who always reads books. One day a girl in a black dress came out of his book and he fell in love with her, but then she disappeared back to her strange country. He followed after her and encountered a lot of people and made friends and found out that he had to defeat the evil queen in order to find Rosa, the girl in a black dress. However, at the end he realizes that the evil queen is Rosa and so he ends up walking into the water to be with her with a smile on his face.
*** CHAPTER 3 ***
Shinigami to Shoujo is updated once again. This time the two of them are sinking underwater to visit an underwater city and the Shoujo was slowly dying from a lack of air but when the Shinigami touched her and told her that it wasn’t her time yet, he saved her. Down in the underwater city they meet the queen of the city who wants to know about the world up above.
She asks them whether or not it’s as beautiful as she dreamt it would be, to which the Shinigami replies that there is no such thing like the world that she dreamt. This causes the queen to be angry and tell them to go away and the Shinigami asks what the difference between a sleeping dream and a dream, as in a goal, is? The Shoujo answers that the two are the same. The Shinigami states that the word “world” isn’t the most beautiful word and the Shoujo agrees.
Sayo picks up a cat plushie from the ground and brings it back home. At school the next day Hinase manages to drag Nanaki, Sayo, and Kaho into a bento-making contest. Sayo is worried that everyone will hate her cooking and so Kaho reassures her by telling her that if they say anything, she’ll hit them. Sayo chides her for doing that, because she’s a girl. Sayo meets Chiyo at the marketplace while she tries to think of something to make and the two of them head over to ask Ao for a cooking book. The three of them are in trouble because Sayo has no idea what looks good, Ao has no interest in cooking and so didn’t read many books on it, and Chiyo can’t taste food at all.
Fushimachi comes back and gives Sayo the advice of making something easy like teriyaki. Ao remembers a book that her brother wrote about a white cat making teriyaki for a black cat and gives her it. Sayo goes out to buy groceries with Chiyo helping her and Ao forced to carry her groceries by Fushimachi pestering him again. When Sayo heads home, her brother is jealous that he won’t be able to taste her cooking and that she’s not cooking for him. Sayo decides to make an onigiri bento with teriyaki inside.
The next day is the bento contest. Hinase goes first and asks if Sayo wants him to feed her and she lets him put it in her mouth. His bento is delicious. The next one to go is Kaho’s and she feeds Sayo as well. Her bento is just as delicious. Nanaki goes next and his bento is also delicious. Sayo’s bento is next and the teriyaki is delicious, but Kaho and Nanaki tell her that the vegetables aren’t so great. When the voting comes, Kaho and Nanaki vote for themselves. Hinase votes for Sayo and so Sayo votes for Hinase which makes everyone tied. Because there’s no winner, when Natsume walks by Hinase manages to blackmail him into tasting all the bentos.
Natume tells everyone that Hinase’s bento is bought from a convenience store. Everyone else’s is okay, but he likes Sayo’s the best because teriyaki is his favourite food. Kaho and Nanaki berate Hinase for cheating, but Hinase tells them that this was all a ploy to eat Sayo’s cooking which makes Nanaki yell “Don’t use us like that!”. Kaho and Nanaki tell Sayo never to cook for Hinase again.
After school, Sayo is walking home with Kaho and they talk about the bento making contest. Kaho offers to make Sayo a bento as well, but Sayo refuses gently. When Kaho goes home, Sayo reminisces on how she met Kaho. Kaho was always alone and the other girls picked on her because of her boyish attitude. However, Sayo stuck up for Kaho and now Kaho considers Sayo to be really important to her and her only friend. Sayo decides to visit Ao to thank him for yesterday and ends up tagging along with him and Fushimachi as they go to the hospital for a checkup.
At the hospital Sayo has a moment where she spaces out and remembers that she hates hospitals a lot, because she was sickly when she was young and spent a lot of time in a hospital. Ao and Sayo also see Natsume visiting his sister and at first he doesn’t notice them, so Ao makes a wager with Sayo.
The wager is that if Natsume didn’t notice them then that meant that they weren’t fated to meet him here, but if he did notice them then that meant that there would be a purpose in meeting him here. Natsume ends up noticing them through his sister, because she sees Ao and thinks he looks handsome. Natsume’s sister drags him over to the two of them to introduce them and when she sees Sayo she inadvertently calls her Toono Tsubaki, Sayo’s mother’s name.
Sayo has a freaks out though and yells about not looking like that woman and being completely different. Natsume coldly insults her with harsh words and explains that he hates her because of what her father did to his family. Even when Sayo is denying wanting to do anything with her mother Natsume tells her that she should realize whose child she is, the child of a whore.
Sayo starts to hyperventilate and calls for her brother, but Ao ground her again by grabbing her arm and escorting her out of the hospital and home. Ao takes her into her room and tells her to rest on her bed and she calls him a nice person. He searches for a change in the subject and talks about how the cat plushie that Sayo picked up is saying how she needs to rest before she ruins her beautiful face. Sayo starts to confess something to Ao, but her brother comes back home.
Sayo latches onto her brother and confesses that she hates her face and things like how she wished she was never born to that person. This makes Ao curious and he wonders why the name Toono Tsubaki distresses Sayo and why she denies it, but the more he pries the more Tooya tells him to stop and the more Sayo flinches. Ao tells her that no matter how much she lies about it, denies it, or even loses her memory about it, it won’t change the fact that Toono Tsubaki is still her mother. Tooya tells Ao about how words can mislead people and how words can hurt and says to him that he overstepped his boundaries. For the first time Ao apologizes.
The next day at class, Sayo tries to apologize to Natsume who doesn’t accept her apology. He says that she probably doesn’t think that she’s in the wrong and he hates people like that. Kaho slaps Natsume for insulting Sayo and gets in trouble. Hinase and Nanaki come to see how she’s doing, but Sayo doesn’t tell them the reason why there was a fight in the classroom. After school, Sayo bumps into the mascot cat and thanks him for helping her at the meat market when she was making her bento. The mascot cat finds out that she’s friends with Natsume and asks her a lot of questions about him, because the mascot cat is Natsume’s best friend.
When Sayo goes home she is comforted by her brother again, because Sayo is starting to think that maybe she’s a bad person for being born to her mother. Tooya tries to convince her that Sayo is Sayo and that’s all that matters. The next day at school, the gossip mill has been running and a group of girls blame Kaho for slapping Natsume.
When Sayo tries to interfere they shift the blame onto her, but for some reason Natsume steps in and apologizes to Kaho. Sayo makes Kaho apologize back and then Natsume explains that everything is fixed between the three of them so there is no more need for people to stick their noses into their business.
Nanaki, Hinase, Kaho, and Sayo have their lunch together again and Hinase asks if Sayo hates Natsume. Sayo responds that she doesn’t which confuses Kaho because in her mind if someone hates her then she’ll hate them back. Their lunch is interrupted by Chiyo saying that there’s a problem because Wilhelm, the mascot cat, and Ao are at school when they shouldn’t be.
Nanaki and Sayo try to get Ao out of the school but get caught by a teacher, however Hinase saves them by lying about how Ao is an exchange student. They also find out that Wilhelm is at school to see how Natsume is doing. Everyone agrees to help Wilhelm check up on Natsume and sneak him into the library with the help of Hinase’s lying.
Days pass with Wilhelm hanging around the school and checking up on Natsume. Sayo and Ao decide to go watch Nanaki practice his kendo, because Ao is curious about the sport. Everyone in the kendo club can’t help but notice Sayo which makes Nanaki want to face palm. He’s called the 鬼部長(Demon Captain) of the kendo club and is amazing at it.
While walking home after watching kendo practice, Chiyo explains how all the people in Nanaki’s house are people who excel at martial arts and things like kendo. Sayo keeps mentioning on how amazing it is and finally Nanaki points out that her family is pretty amazing too, because her father is the director of a corporation. Sayo denies it forcefully though, which surprises Nanaki.
Nanaki and Chiyo head home while Ao escorts Sayo home. On their way home, they meet Wilhelm who talks about how he’s Natsume’s friend and asks if Ao doesn’t have a friend, because he’s always with Sayo. Ao asks if Sayo is his friend, to which Sayo replies that he is but when he asks for her reasoning she can’t give him one. Sayo ends up saying that their relationship is difficult to explain and Ao agrees before saying that all he knows is that he’s here with her searching for the world’s most beautiful word.
The next day at class, Kaho asks if Sayo is suspicious of Wilhelm because he won’t explain who he is or why he’s Natsume’s friend. Sayo says that she’s curious, but not suspicious. The two of them find out that Natsume is exhausted and take him to the health office to rest. Kaho stays at the health office to wait for Sayo as she goes to find everyone else, because the teacher isn’t in the office. Chiyo sees Sayo and runs off to tell Nanaki of the situation while Sayo tries to find Hinase.
She finds him in an empty classroom with another girl. Hinase and the girl see Sayo and the girl walks off annoyed that they got interrupted. Sayo explains the situation to Hinase and then tries not to ask about what he was doing, but Hinase can see her curiosity and puts his hand on her shoulder while whispering to her 「・・・・気になる？」(…Are you curious?). She can’t hide it and he finally snaps into dark!Hinase and says that he’s really happy that she’s concerned about him.
Sayo tries to play dumb which amuses him, before he asks her to promise him something as punishment for walking in on him. He asks her out on a date and Sayo agrees to go. Hinase and Sayo return to the health office. Nanaki meets them along the way, having been told by Chiyo who also told Ao, and they head to the office together. Kaho is there waiting and Wilhelm climbs through a window to see Natsume. Wilhelm explains Natsume’s life story about how his family was rich before they got cheated by a man who turns out to be Sayo’s father.
Wilhelm starts insulting Sayo, because he hates rich people, and then Kaho argues on Sayo’s behalf while also pointing out that it’s stupid to compare the happiness of rich people and poor people and that money doesn’t automatically equal happiness. Wilhelm ends up running away and Hinase unclenches Sayo’s fist for her while flirting about not wanting her to hurt her hand. Natsume wakes up because everyone is being too loud.
It turns out that the reason why Natsume is so tired is because he has to juggle school, a part-time job, and he’s trying to find a cat plushie. Sayo tells him that she picked one up and so they head to her house only to find out that Tooya gave it to Wilhelm who came by to pick it up. They run around town searching for him and find him at the clock tower. Wilhelm asks Natsume why he cares so much about his plushie which can’t even do anything, but Natsume says that just having it beside him is enough. Then Natsume tries to find out what is underneath the mascot head and Hinase manages to convince Nanaki to join in.
Everyone is cheering and being lively while Ao and Sayo are on the sidelines. Ao asks if Sayo isn’t going to join in and Sayo agrees to join in. Wilhelm avoids all their attempts at capture and runs off and then Ao says that Natsume and Wilhelm resemble each other which makes everyone laugh including Sayo.
Hinase states that she’s laughing and it makes him happy, which makes Ao ask him why he’s happy that she’s laughing. Hinase explains that it’s because he likes her and wants her to be happy. Ao muses that liking someone and being someone’s friend seems to be the same thing.
The story then switches to the perspective of Natsume’s cat plushie and it is explained that the cat plushie has an awareness and was with Natsume through most of his life. Wilhelm wishes really hard to be able to move and talk so that he can help Natsume and suddenly he’s granted a life. In the end though when he is at the clock tower, Wilhelm realizes that he doesn’t have to be able to move and talk to support Natsume and so when he runs away he decides to return back to his doll form. This might explain why Ao can understand the plushie because it has a spirit.
*** CHAPTER 4 ***
The book, Shinigami to Shoujo, is updated again with the Shinigami and Shoujo travelling to a country filled with cats that act like humans. The cats have their own cities, markets, and walk upright as well. The Shinigami asks if they want to become humans, but the cats say that they’re fine just being by themselves. As they leave the place, the Shinigami asks the Shoujo if the most beautiful word is “freedom”, but while she admits that it’s a beautiful word it’s not the one that she’s looking for.
Sayo is fulfilling her promise to Hinase today by going out on a date with him. They finish watching a movie and Hinase reassures Sayo that he’s okay with paying for everything because he’s her escort. Then he muses on how it’s like a date so they should hold hands. Just as she’s about to do it, Sayo remembers that time where Hinase was in the classroom with the other girl and then says that it should be fine if they don’t hold hands. Hinase responds 「そう。残念だな」(I see. That’s a shame).
Sayo thinks that Hinase is just spending time with her and trying to please her, but Hinase tells her it’s not possible for people to understand other people and that it might have been coincidental if he takes her to a place that she likes or watches a movie that she likes because he might like it too. Then he muses on how she doesn’t have anyone close to her except for her brother and Ao and tells her that for today he wants her to just think of him.
The two of them go to the tea shop restaurant to eat lunch where Sayo finds out that Hinase likes to eat spicy things, though he also likes sweet things. Hinase asks her where she wants to go next, but Sayo lets him choose and so he tells her that it’s a secret until they get there. Then he asks her what she likes, because he wants to learn more about her.
Sayo answers that she likes her brother because he’s her everything. Hinase wonders if her love is sibling love or a love between lovers, but even Sayo doesn’t know herself. All she says is that 「兄の存在を失うくらいなら、私は世界の全てを敵にします」(If my brother were to disappear I would make the whole world my enemy). UWAH, SO EXTREME… I CAN’T TELL IF I’M ON NANAKI’S ROUTE OR TOOYA’S…
Hinase asks her if her brother returns her feelings which makes Sayo fall silent as she thinks about it. She’s not too sure of what her brother feels, but she does know that her brother said that he loved her more than anything in the world and that she was necessary to him. Hinase says that these questions are enough for today and takes her to the clock tower. He managed to procure the keys to the inside of it and takes her up to the top. Sayo tells him that she’s curious as to why the clock tower stopped and Hinase shares the same feelings and wonders out loud if someone stopped it. The two of them then look at the scenery from the top of the tower.
They come back to the ground and Sayo thanks him for everything he did today and wants to pay him back. Hinase says her thanks is enough, but Sayo tells him to wait and buys him a rose. He jokes about how it seems like a love confession and then confesses that he likes her, but tells her that she doesn’t have to answer him right away. He tells her that he wants her to think about it and then give him an answer three days later.
At home Sayo meets her father’s butler who forces her to arrange a meeting place at the tea shop restaurant tomorrow to see what business her father has for her. Sayo spends the night thinking about Hinase though and how curious she is about him. Her brother comes in and asks if she’s alright, but Sayo tells him that she wants to spend some time thinking alone and so he leaves after telling her not to overdo it.
She meets her father at the tea shop restaurant where he isn’t pleased with meeting her at this kind of place. She tells him to leave if he doesn’t like it. Her father tells her that he arranged a marriage for her and that if she refuses then she’ll have to leave the house he bought for her and try to survive on her own. When she tells him that she has her brother he slams the table and tells her never to say that name again. Her father leaves after giving her this ultimatum.
Sayo hears someone laugh and it turns out to be real!Hinase. He asks if she isn’t going to look at the picture, but she doesn’t because she wants nothing to do with it. He notices that she hates her family and tells her that he hates his too, then he asks her if she wants him to take her to a far away place where there is no one. While they’re walking though they come across Fushimachi and Ao who become worried about Sayo because she’s crying silently and take her back to Fushimachi’s shop. Hinase tells them that he ran away from home, because his grandmother was really strict, and his parents died in a car accident.
Ao talks about how her tears are like rain, because it started and stopped just as suddenly. Fushimachi explains how they call that 『時雨』(rain shower) in their country and Ao smiles for the first time at how beautiful the word sounds. Fushimachi talks about how today is a strange day with Sayo crying and Ao smiling.
Hinase decides to escort Sayo home and talks about how today was a failure, because he wanted to take her away but things got in the way. She thanks him for worrying about her and tells him that he’s a nice person, but real!Hinase tells her that he wasn’t worrying about her but just wanted to be nice to her to get to know her better. He tells her that his offer will still be up to steal her away to somewhere.
At night, Tooya brushes Sayo’s hair and listens to Sayo talk about everything and anything. Sayo tells him about the arranged marriage, but not about Hinase’s confession and then tells him that sometimes she wants to run away. Tooya warns her that living by her own power is hard especially as a princess, and then he tells her a story about a princess who had to wait for her prince to show.
The next day during lunch, Natsume joins the four of them for unknown reasons. They bicker about their diets and whose bento is better and Hinase tries to get Sayo to join in, but she’s too distracted thinking about everything. After lunch, Kaho complains about how annoying she finds Natsume and then Sayo sees the girl that confessed to Hinase walk by with a glare on her face.
Sayo tells Kaho that she wants to know Hinase’s real self and Kaho tries to help by telling her what she knows about Hinase. She knows that he’s really smart, popular, but doesn’t seem to have a girlfriend. The two of them walk home together and split up at the clock tower where Sayo thinks about her answer to Hinase’s confession.
On the confession day Sayo is alone with Hinase in an empty classroom. He mentions offhandedly how the setting is perfect for a romantic confession, but then becomes serious and asks for her answer.
Nanaki’s route properly starts off from when Hinase is waiting for Sayo’s answer and tells him that she’s sorry, but that she doesn’t think that he really likes her. Hinase tells her that he’s not lying and that 「僕は本当で君が好きだよ。初めて見た時からずっと君ばかりを目で追っていた」(I really do like you. From the first time I saw you, I couldn’t stop pursuing you).
Sayo apologizes again, but Hinase tries to keep his tone light and says that it’s not her fault that she doesn’t like him. Sayo asks him why he likes her, but he only smirks and tells her 「・・・・さあ？何でだろうね」(Why indeed?) and then he leaves the classroom. GODDAMNIT, YOU BETTER BE WORTH THIS HEARTACHE NANAKI ｳﾜｧｧ—–｡ﾟ(ﾟ´Д｀ﾟ)ﾟ｡—–ﾝ!!!!
At lunch the next day, everyone is eating lunch together as usual except Hinase isn’t there. Kaho and Natsume are arguing as usual and it’s up to mama!Nanaki to split them apart and order them to eat their lunch. After school, Sayo spends her time in the library again and realizes that Ao isn’t there. When she leaves the library she bumps into Nanaki and Chiyo and talk about their first meeting. Nanaki heard of Sayo already, but Chiyo’s first meeting was that time when Sayo walked out of the library and heard someone say 「お嬢さん」(young lady).
Chiyo ends up asking if Sayo wants to walk home with him and Nanaki and while they’re walking Chiyo brings up how cool-looking Nanaki is. Sayo agrees and then Chiyo starts thinking about all the men in Sayo’s life and how cool-looking they are and whether or not they can pose as romantic interests. He then asks Sayo if she likes men with quick tempers and Sayo replies that she does, which makes Chiyo exceedingly happy.
He tries to ask her more about the type of man she likes, but Nanaki cuts in and tells him to stop asking Sayo those questions. Nanaki also tells Sayo not to treat Chiyo so sweetly, but Sayo doesn’t listen to him and this makes Chiyo think they’re similar with their stubborn attitudes. Nanaki tells Chiyo that he won’t talk to him anymore if he continues on, but Sayo tells Chiyo that he’ll still have her and this makes Chiyo say that he loves her.
They reach the part where Sayo has to leave them to go home and so she sees them off before going her own way. However, she’s suddenly grabbed and pinned to the wall by the real Hinase! He tells her he wants to talk to her about something, but when she asks him to release her he responds with 「・・・・うーん。でも、この方が君の顔がよく見えるんだけどなぁ」(…Hmm, but I like being able to see your face like this).
Sayo tells him forcefully to let her go and Hinase smirks while saying 「嫌だと言ったら？」(And if I said no?). She tells him she’ll scream for someone which makes him reply lowly and in a dangerous voice 「それは困るな。でも、それって一体誰の名前？」(That’ll be troublesome, but who exactly will you call?). KYAAH~ THE APPEARANCE OF A JELLY REAL!HINASE?! I’M LIKING ALL THESE HINASE APPEARANCES Ｏ(≧∇≦)Ｏ! NANAKI? NANAKI WHO!?
Nanaki suddenly appears and saves Sayo. He asks what Hinase think he’s doing and the real Hinase reveals that he just wanted to ask Sayo about “himself” and then warns them not to believe in Hinase Mitsuru, because he’s a liar. Chiyo and Nanaki escort Sayo home and at home her brother talks about how Nanaki seems like a nice person.
Tooya is reminded of a story and tells Sayo about how a traveller met these two boys and one of them always spoke the truth while the other always spoke a lie. One of the boys told the traveller that he could go through a forest, while the other said that there was a wolf in the forest. The traveller decided to believe the word of boy who said that the forest was safe and went in only to find out that the liar wasn’t lying. Sayo says that the liar was actually a good person in the end, but Tooya asks Sayo that out of the two of them which one does she think is the kind one?
The next day at school, Sayo is greeting people in the morning and sees Hinase and greets him. She notices that he doesn’t seem to remember yesterday and is acting as if nothing had happened. She has lunch with Nanaki, Chiyo, Natsume, and Kaho and then Nanaki decides that now is the time to find Hinase and question him and so Nanaki sends Chiyo off to find Hinase, but the two of them end up finding him in his class and take him off to a place to ask him.
Nanaki asks him what he was doing yesterday, but Hinase doesn’t remember any of it. Hinase also says that everything he had to say to Sayo was over yesterday and mentions about the confession and then he also reveals that Nanaki already knows that he got rejected. Hinase leaves after telling them that if they doubt him they can go to his house and ask his grandmother where he was yesterday night.
Lunchtime ends and Chiyo asks if he can accompany Sayo to class. In class Sayo writes on paper to carry on a conversation with Chiyo and finds out that he likes learning. After class, Sayo tells Natsume to work hard and he orders her not to tell anyone about his part-time job. The two of them head off to the library to wait for Nanaki to finish his kendo practice and meet Ao there and so they explain the situation.
Ao tells Sayo that she should go to Hinase’s house and when he learns that she doesn’t want to spend time alone with Hinase tells her that she’s not alone and that he’s with her. Chiyo mentions how that sounds like a love confession, which causes the two of them to talk about how words are difficult and that depending on the situation and context they can change their meaning. The three of them spend time reading books until Nanaki comes to find them and then as they try to decide if they’re going to go to Hinase’s house, Hinase sees them and invites them over.
While they’re at his house Chiyo and Nanaki are impressed with the servants he has. Sayo is used to having servants though and asks about Nanaki’s house, to which he responds that they’re just normal. Hinase’s grandmother comes back and is severely strict to Hinase and even starts insulting Ao, because she hates foreigners because of Hinase’s mother who her son fell in love with. Hinase manages to convince his grandmother to leave his friends alone for the night and then he takes them up to his room where he shows them his photo album and they learn the story of his parents.
Also all of his servants confirm that Hinase was in his room yesterday. They discuss different possibilities of there being another Hinase around like a doppelganger or phantom of some sort. Everyone heads home after thanking Hinase for dispelling their suspicions, but on the way home Ao talks about how they don’t know if Hinase was lying or not. Sayo asks for the reason that Hinase might be lying, but Ao doesn’t know either. They reach Sayo’s home and suddenly Ao senses that there is someone there.
It turns out to be the real!Hinase. He tells them that there are two Hinase’s and the one that they’ve known is a liar and the fake one. He wants their help to find evidence that proves that the two of them are different, but he tells them that he can’t show himself to the other one for fear of being killed. He met the fake!Hinase once before.
Sayo decides to help the real!Hinase which makes him glad and they arrange to meet him only at night and at Fushimachi’s shop. Mama!Nanaki makes an appearance and asks where Hinase is going to be staying, to which he teases them by asking if one of them will give him shelter. Sayo refuses though and he shrugs it off, before leaving them with a promise to see them later.
They still don’t know who to believe, but for now they’ll investigate. Ao goes with Sayo into her house to return books and borrow new ones and also has dinner with them. Sayo notices that Ao is holding his chopsticks wrong and mentions that Nanaki holds his beautifully, which makes her brother jealously ask her if she always watches him. Ao leaves for home after borrowing more books and Sayo finds out that he likes her brother’s writing.
The next day, Kaho asks if Sayo wants to learn how to cook and Sayo agrees to let Kaho come over. She sees Hinase again and notices that he’s still not acting any differently and has lunch with Kaho, Natsume, Chiyo, and Nanaki again. Nanaki and Sayo talk about Hinase some more which irritates Kaho, because that’s all they’ve been talking about and then mentions that it does seem lonely without Hinase around though. Natsume points out that if Sayo asks then he’ll probably come have lunch with them again and Sayo decides to ask tomorrow.
Everyone meets up with the real!Hinase at Fushimachi’s shop at night, but they make no progress because they still haven’t found anything. Fushimachi gives Sayo her brother’s new book and she’s ecstatic. Hilariously, Ao asks if there is any for him as well which makes Fushimachi ask when he started liking Tooya, but Ao answers that he doesn’t like Tooya. Nanaki and Hinase are both envious of Sayo’s happiness and love regarding her brother.
The next day Ao and Sayo talk about her brother’s new book which is about a princess trapped in a tower and a lying thief. It’s a romantic book because the princess fell in love with the thief and ran away with him. THIS BOOK SOUNDS SO FAMILIAR.. OH WAIT.. IT’S ABOUT SAYO AND HINASE (＾∀＾；). At lunch, Sayo asks if Ao wants to eat with them and tells him that she’s going to invite someone else, but she doesn’t want Ao to come with her and so he declines the lunch offer.
Sayo finds Hinase in his classroom and asks if he wants to eat lunch together, to which he asks if it’s just going to be the two of them. Sayo responds that no it isn’t and so he says 「何だ。君に気が変わったのかと思って期待したよ」(Aw, here I was hoping that you changed your mind about me) in a teasing voice with a smirk.
He’s reluctant to eat with everyone, but when Sayo tells him that it’s lonely without him he replies in a soft voice 「・・・狡いな、そんな風に言われたら、君を好きな僕は断れないじゃないか」(That’s unfair. When you say it like that I, who likes you, can’t refuse). During lunch, Sayo asks Hinase what he was like as a child but he turns the question onto her and when she responds that she wasn’t a very cute child he denies that she could possibly be un-cute. THE USUAL FLIRTATIOUS AND CHEERFUL HINASE IS BACK 出た━━(ﾟ∀ﾟ)━━!!
At night, they meet up with real!Hinase again and this time Nanaki wants to know the reason why he won’t show himself to fake!Hinase. Real!Hinase says that he’s afraid, because he can’t live up to his grandmother’s ideal image. Then he angrily states that he’ll never forgive the fake!Hinase for being better at living as Hinase than himself and for stealing away his life by making his own reputation and whatnot. After he leaves, Nanaki reveals that he has Chiyo following after the real Hinase since everyone is still unsure of who to believe.
When Sayo gets home her brother tells her to think about her situation but not to overdo it and that the time will come when she understands everything. He doesn’t know if there are truly two Hinase’s, but he does know that there is truth out there somewhere in both of their words. The next day Sayo meets with Nanaki and Chiyo and finds out that Chiyo somehow lost Hinase while following him. CHIYO… YOU’RE UTTERLY USELESS ( -д-).
Nanaki mentions that it doesn’t really matter if Chiyo lost him or not, because it would have been cheating to make the story end quickly. Sayo realizes that what Nanaki said is exactly the same thing that Ao said and Nanaki reveals that he thinks it was fate that made Chiyo lose Hinase and he tells her not to laugh at him.
Sayo agrees, because the things that happened to them were far too rare for it to be coincidental. That they would be approached by the real!Hinase for help and that Chiyo, who can’t be seen by anyone, could still manage to lose sight of the person that he’s following. Nanaki pats her on the head and praises her as being a good child, but when Sayo tries to deny it he tells her that 「言葉を全部信じろとは言わんが、褒め言葉くらい素直に受け取った方が可愛いぞ」(You should believe other people’s words, it’s cute if you just accepted praises honestly).
And then when Sayo remains quiet he asks her for her answer sharply. She replies that she will and so he pats her on the head again and calls her a good child. Sayo leaves to find Kaho and thinks that it’s the first time she heard Nanaki use the word cute. ME TOO! AM I IN THE TWILIGHT ZONE!? WHO IS THIS PERSON AND WHERE IS THE REAL NANAKI (＾∀＾；)?
At lunchtime, Sayo finds Ao to give him a bento she prepared and when she asks about the taste he says that he has no thoughts toward it. This makes her feel kind of down, but she doesn’t ask again. The two of them discuss the fake!Hinase’s actions before Ao returns to his post on top of the school’s roof.
After school Sayo learns how to cook some food from Kaho, who goes over to her house, and they make some cookies before Sayo has to dash off to Fushimachi’s shop to meet the real!Hinase. While there, Nanaki berates her for forcing herself to run that far and exhaust herself and tells her that he’ll give her his phone number and she should give him hers so that they can call each other in case one of them is going to be late.
The real!Hinase makes a joke about how Nanaki is scoring by getting Sayo’s phone number and he also shortens Nanaki’s name to Nakki, which makes Nanaki glare at him for both the butchering of his name and implying that he wants Sayo’s phone number for reasons other than what he said. Nanaki reveals that he doesn’t like his name which leads to him getting in an argument about Ao about names and their meanings and how if he doesn’t like his name then he can just change it.
In the meanwhile, Hinase asks about the sweet smell when Sayo came in and she shows him the cookies she made. She shares them with him while Chiyo tries to get Nanaki and Ao to stop and eat them, but they’re too engaged in their argument. Hinase praises Sayo’s cooking and says that the cookies are delicious, before kissing her on the cheek and saying that if it’s just that she’ll be able to forgive him.
Then he smirks devilishly and tells her 「お嬢さん。あまり油断してると狼に食べられてしまうよ」(Young lady, try not to be too unaware or you’ll be eaten by a wolf). HINASE~ (*´∀`*)えへへ! WHAT A SHAMELESS FLIRT~. IF YOU AREN’T CAREFUL NANAKI, HINASE IS GOING TO STEAL YOUR GIRL AWAY.
When Sayo asks him if he’s a wolf, he replies smoothly 「いいえ。僕はただの男です」(No. I am merely a man). Hinase smirks some more at Sayo before interrupting Nanaki’s argument with Ao and then he thanks them all for their hard work, before leaving with a parting remark about how it’s okay if they argue so long as they don’t forget about his situation. After Hinase is gone, Chiyo calls Nanaki an idiot for taking his eyes off of Sayo, because she had her cheek kissed.
Sayo tries to pacify Chiyo, but he snaps at her to be more careful with who touches her body and then when he realizes he spoke loudly to her he leaves the shop out of shame. Nanaki doesn’t explain why Chiyo was so angry at what Hinase did and Sayo ends up sharing the rest of her cookies with Ao and Nanaki. Ao says that the cookie is sweet.
Sayo waits for her brother at home and when she comes back she eats her cookies with him, but they’re very salty. She wonders why Ao lied, because she can understand why Hinase might lie since he’s a charmer. The next day at school, she talks to the fake!Hinase and also gives him her cookies and then arranges a time for her to go to his house.
He jokes about how if she talks like this then he’ll start to feel like he has a chance and when Sayo asks him why he talked to her that one day in the library, he tells her that it’s because he likes her. She asks him why he lies, but when he asks about what he lied about she tells him not to worry about it if he doesn’t remember.
At night, Sayo meets with the real!Hinase again and tells him to show up at his house on the day that she said she was going to meet the fake!Hinase. Sayo knows of a way to tell between the two of them and pick out which one is the real one. When Ao asks how she’s going to do it, Sayo tells them all that it’s a secret and that she can do it by herself and so doesn’t need any help. She then starts wondering why people lie and understands that there are things such as good lies and bad lies, but why do lies exist? Ao answers that lies are necessary, especially in stories and that stories are just lies but it might be possible for lies to become truths.
On the promised day, Sayo prepares herself and is cheered up by Nanaki and Chiyo who talks about how Nanaki is always nervous. She reveals to everyone that the Hinase in front of them is a fake, because he doesn’t have a developed sense of taste while the real!Hinase has a liking for sweets.
Fake!Hinase tells the story of how he was a skilled swindler and how he was born into that kind of life. He heard from his network of friends that there was a rich old lady who lost her grandson and that he looked exactly like him, and so fake!Hinase came to take the place of the real Hinase. Sayo tells him that what he did was a crime, but fake!Hinase counters with the question of how none of his lies hurt anyone and how happy Hinase’s grandmother seems to be with him there.
Hinase’s grandmother still doesn’t believe Sayo’s words and tries order the fake!Hinase to tell her that what Sayo is saying is a lie. Fake!Hinase pushes her away and runs off with Chiyo following him and the rest of them talk to Hinase’s grandmother a bit more, because Sayo doesn’t understand how a family member could be deceived like that.
After they talk to her Sayo, Ao, and Nanaki run off to the harbour where the fake!Hinase is. He applauds them for knowing where he was and then tells them that a skilled lie always has a grain of truth inside. Sayo questions him as to why he didn’t just continue lying if he was so skilled, but he doesn’t answer her.
Instead, he sticks out his hand for her and when she reaches out to him Nanaki pushes her behind him. Hinase tells them that he won’t do anything and so Nanaki lets Sayo talk to him. Hinase whispers into her ear that she’s a princess trapped by a which and that he knows the words that can release her. However, he doesn’t know if she’ll break from hearing those words. Then he tells her to be careful of words, especially those that she doesn’t know are true like his words. He warns her that a liar is close to her and then leaves.
Sayo starts crying for and says that 「何だか、すごく淋しいのです・・・・・」(For some reason, it seems really lonely…). Suddenly, one of fake!Hinase’s friends comes up to them and throws them a key that he left for Sayo. Everyone is confused as to why the fake!Hinase decided to give Sayo something and when Sayo tries to ask what his name was and why he did that the person, who is female, replies that the fake!Hinase was an amazingly talented criminal.
She also tells Sayo that the reason he gave her that was probably because 「稀代の詐欺師を狂わせた美しい貴方に敬意を表して」(An uncommonly talented swindler who was driven mad by your beauty… he’s giving it to you as a sign of respect). She leaves after telling them this.
The four of them quickly run to the clock tower and use the key that Hinase gave them to enter and climb to the top. At the top of the clock tower in the room that he once brought her to, Sayo finds a book that he left for her. Chiyo tries to open the book that Sayo was left with, but she yells at him to stop. Everyone is a bit shocked and then they find the real!Hinase who was tied, gagged, and left at the top of the clock tower for them to find.
There’s a scene with the real!Hinase talking to the readers about his life and how he ran away two years ago, because of his strict grandmother. He found a job at another town and was enjoying his life of freedom, but realized that he didn’t have a place to return to like other people and so he came back to the his home town only to find someone else taking his place. He doesn’t want to forgive his grandmother for being his family and yet still being tricked by the fake!Hinase.
Sayo is in the library and she thinks she hears fake!Hinase’s voice asking her if the book that she is reading is interesting, but when she looks up it’s just Nanaki and Chiyo. Nanaki notes that she doesn’t look happy at all, to which she starts crying while saying how it’s weird how Hinase isn’t there anymore and will never be there.
Nanaki pats her on the head and tells her 「あいつはいないかもしれんが、俺はいる。それじゃ駄目か？」(He might not be there, but I am. Or is that not enough?). NOOO NANAKI LET SAYO MOURN HINASE SOME MORE. IN FACT, LET ME MOURN HIM SOME MORE TOO BEFORE YOU TRY TO DO THINGS LIKE CONFESS TO SAYO ｳﾜｧｧ—–｡ﾟ(ﾟ´Д｀ﾟ)ﾟ｡—–ﾝ!!!
The chapter ends with fake!Hinase’s friend recalling the two times that she saw him. The first was when he came to the town and she told him about how there was a boy named Hinase who ran away and how the fake!Hinase looked exactly like him. The second time was when fake!Hinase came by and told her to give this key to Sayo. The friend wonders why fake!Hinase didn’t immediately leave when he knew he was found out as a fake and when he realized that the real!Hinase had come back. It is implied that the fake!Hinase loved Sayo so much that he wanted her to know who he was, or at least that he was a fake!Hinase and she is also the reason why he stayed so long.
Then there is a memory of the first time that the fake!Hinase and Sayo met. He called out to her and asked her what a princess was doing in their school and if she would give him her name. She tells him her name and also asks him not to call her a princess, because she isn’t one. Hinase tells her that when he saw her he thought she looked remarkably like a trapped princess, but if she doesn’t want him to call her a princess then he’ll think of something else.
She asks why he doesn’t just call her by her name, to which he says that he can’t because 「僕は君の名前を呼ぶのには相応しくない男ですから」(To call you by your name is inappropriate for a man like me). OHMYGOD FAKE!HINASE IS SO AMAZING AND THE STORY IS SO BITTERSWEET. HIS DEPTH OF LOVE FOR SAYO IS SO BEAUTIFUL AND SAD ｳﾜｧｧ—–｡ﾟ(ﾟ´Д｀ﾟ)ﾟ｡—–ﾝ!! THIS MINI-EPILOGUE IS ALSO SPECIAL ENOUGH TO MAKE SAYO HAVE A VOICE AGAIN.
*** CHAPTER 5 ***
The Shinigami to Shoujo story is updated again. The Shinigami and Shoujo travelled to a country full of roses. The Shoujo wondered if the roses she saw reflected were real or not and when the Shinigami touched them, they turned out to be lies. The Shinigami asks if the word “lies” is different from a beautiful word, but the Shoujo disagrees and says that she does not think that lies are ugly. The truth hurts while lies can be nice, however while that is said the word “lies” is not the most beautiful word that she is searching for. The story ends with the question of how you can determine the truth from something you can’t touch.
Sayo is in the library with Nanaki and they’re both trying to teach their respective classmates. Sayo is helping Kaho study while Nanaki is helping Hinase. Hinase hasn’t been to school for a while and so he’s behind in all his work and his grades are falling. Nanaki finally decides to take Hinase over to his house where they will go over the whole curriculum. On a Sunday while Sayo is taking a walk she meets Nanaki who is waiting at the park for Chiyo who is trying to find Hinase who ran away from his lessons.
While they’re both waiting, Nanaki asks Sayo if she’s still thinking about the fake!Hinase. Sayo tells him that she can’t forget about him and that whenever she sees the real!Hinase she can’t help but think that he’s not the person that she knew. Nanaki tries to cheer her up and tells her not to dwell on it too much.
Chiyo comes back and they all leave to find Hinase asleep in a flower field. When they wake him up the conversation somehow turns to what Sayo thinks about Nanaki. Sayo thinks that he’s an interesting character and wants to know the things that he’s bad at, because he’s always so skilled.
Hinase asks Nanaki if Sayo is his type of girl, but Nanaki replies that she isn’t because he prefers traditional girls. Then he starts pointing out a list of attributes about Sayo, like how she has too much pride and her eyes are too strong and she has too much stubborness. NANAKI YOU BASTARD! HOW DARE YOU INSULT SAYO, ALTHOUGH I DIDN’T REALLY WANT YOU TO LIKE HER ANYWAY. HINASE~ FLIRT WITH SAYO TO MAKE NANAKI JEALOUS PLZ.
Chiyo remains with Sayo while Nanaki drags Hinase back to his house to study some more and then Chiyo start ranting about how Nanaki’s words were mean. Sayo doesn’t mind it much and then she finds out that Chiyo really loves sakura trees. They make a promise to get everyone together to watch the sakura blossoms.
At home, Sayo asks her brother if she’s traditional and explains what Nanaki said to which her brother laughs and says that what Nanaki said about her is right, but then he gets serious and asks if she wants him to punish Nanaki for his words. Sayo gets reminded of her father and while hugging her brother, he accidently breaks a cup precious to her. They spend the night reading together and the next day Sayo goes to the library to study with Kaho. They finish studying and Kaho manages to convince Sayo to go out and make accessories with her. They meet Natsume working at his part-time job as Wilhelm the mascot cat and Sayo convinces him to tutor Kaho.
The next day while Natsume is tutoring Kaho, Sayo goes to buy a drink at a vending machine. She bumps into one of the kendo club members and he reveals that Nanaki likes girls who have strong wills, which means that Nanaki lied when he said that Sayo wasn’t his type. NANAKI YOU BASTARD! I HATE DISHONEST MEN ( -д-). Sayo returns to the library and after a period of studying the three of them head out for lunch. On their way to lunch, Sayo finds Chiyo staring at a barren sakura tree and asks him to accompany them. After lunch, Chiyo whines a bit about being unable to be seen by anyone and so Sayo takes his hand and walks with him as they go back to the library.
After school, Sayo says goodbye to Natsume and Kaho and then Nanaki comes along by chance and then offers to walk her home with Chiyo. While walking, Sayo teases Nanaki about telling him that she has a type but it’s a secret and then Chiyo and Sayo find out that Nanaki likes sakura, but he won’t tell them his most favourite flower. At night, Sayo continues to prepare a bracelet for Chiyo after Kaho taught her beading and then her brother comes in to read her a story.
She has a strange dream about someone looking at a sakura tree and wanting to see the flowers. Sayo wakes up confused and goes to school and continues working on the sakura bracelet that she’s making for Chiyo. After school, Kaho and Sayo see Nanaki trip and fall and while Kaho makes fun of him Sayo gives him her handkerchief. The next day, Sayo finishes the sakura bracelet for Chiyo and Kaho gives her a white flower corsage and heads home first while Sayo goes to the library. At the library Sayo meets Nanaki who returns her handkerchief and gets her a bracelet as thanks and so she wears both white flower bracelets on her.
Sayo finds out that Nanaki bought it for her after her brothers told him that he should for taking a lady’s handkerchief. She also finds out that Chiyo and Nanaki got into a fight and that Chiyo ran off and hasn’t returned since.
There’s a scene about Nanaki and Chiyo’s past when they first met. Chiyo has no idea who he is, what he is, or why he exists and then he meets Nanaki who is the first person to see him. Kid!Nanaki is the one who gives Chiyo his name and becomes his friend.
The next day at school, Sayo sees Chiyo at the gates but then he runs off. Kaho gets curious about the bracelet and at lunch Hinase joins in on the curiosity as well. Sayo tells everyone that it’s a secret though and when Hinase asks for a hint she says it’s from a wonderfully nice person. Nanaki apologizes for causing her trouble afterwards. On her way home, Sayo sees Chiyo by himself and manages to give him the sakura bracelet that she made. He thanks her a lot and tells her he’ll never take it off and will treasure it, while she tells him that she thinks it’s lonely without him there.
Another scene from Nanaki and Chiyo’s past is shown where Nanaki is playing hide-and-seek with Chiyo but always loses, because Chiyo has the ability to sense where Nanaki is. Nanaki almost falls and gets hurt or killed which makes him thank Chiyo for saving him from death. This prompts Chiyo to ask what death is and he tries to understand that he might be the spirit of a person who died from unnatural means. He forbids Nanaki from dying or leaving him alone.
At school again, Sayo waits for Nanaki at the school gates and tells him to talk to Chiyo and become friends again. She goes to class and Natsume is working a bracelet too, but he won’t tell who it’s for and he teases Sayo by saying he’ll only say it if she tells them who gave her hers. Sayo doesn’t though and so it’s a stalemate with only Kaho being irritated at them. After class, Sayo has to find Nanaki because they’re going to find Chiyo and so she leaves Natsume with Kaho who is getting surrounded by her classmates who want to learn how to do beading as well.
While on the third floor she encounters Hinase who tells her that there is gossip going around after everyone saw her wait for Nanaki at the gates and then talk to him alone. He asks her if she likes him, because she treasures that bracelet a lot but Sayo skillfully avoids the question making Hinase say 「君は狡いなぁ。・・・・・ま、桐嶋君に飽きたら、僕の所にでもおいでよ。僕は君なら正直大歓迎だからさ」(You’re so sneaky. Oh well, if you ever get tired of Kirishima-kun you can come to me. I’ll definitely give you a warm welcome). HINASE~! I HAVEN’T SEEN YOU AROUND IN A WHILE, PLEASE TAKE ME AWAY FROM NANAKI’S ROUTE BECAUSE HE’S SO BORING Ｏ(≧∇≦)Ｏ!
She doesn’t respond much to his words and so he wishes her luck in finding Nanaki. Sayo finds him down on the second floor searching for her and just as they’re going to leave the school a ball comes flying through the window and breaks it. Nanaki grabs Sayo and protects her with his back and so she’s safe, but then Sayo starts freaking out at the broken class. She babbles about how she’s sorry that she’s a witch and a bad child, but that she doesn’t want to be stolen away.
Sayo gets taken to the health office and there she asks Nanaki to pet her head to relax her, which he agrees to do because he was the one who asked her what he could do. Kaho comes in and hugs Sayo, relieved to tears that she’s okay. NANAKI… ARE YOU OR ARE YOU NOT A MAN? DON’T JUST PAT HER HEAD щ(ﾟДﾟщ)! NOT ONLY ARE YOU BORING BUT YOUR CGS ARE BORING AS WELL. Nanaki walks her home and has an embarrassing moment when he ruffles her hair and says that it’s all messy in a pleased voice, only to try and cover it up when he realizes how out-of-character he was.
Another scene of Nanaki and Chiyo’s past where they look at sakura blossoms and Chiyo decides that he loves them, because they’re beautiful and they’re the country’s flowers. He thinks it’s wonderful that the sakura tree can act as a patriotic symbol.
Next day during lunch, Sayo and Nanaki make plans to find Chiyo which makes Hinase interrupt them for staying in their world and ignoring the rest of them. After school, they go to find Chiyo staring at the barren sakura trees and for some reason it turns out that Nanaki can’t see Chiyo anymore, nor can he hear him. Sayo has to act as a translator, but then Chiyo freaks out thinking that it’s all a bad joke and runs away. They get the idea to ask Ao about the situation, but learn from Fushimachi that Ao disappeared one day. Nanaki wonders if Ao was really a shinigami, but is in too much shock to do anything else other than go home. Sayo walks home alone.
At school the next day, Nanaki grabs Sayo during lunch and takes her to the dojo where they plan to go out and find Chiyo. When they finally settle everything and decide to eat lunch, it turns out that Sayo forgot to grab her bento when Nanaki took her out of the class. They don’t have enough time to return back to get it, but Sayo doesn’t want to eat Nanaki’s bento because it’ll leave him with no food and he doesn’t want to eat it if it’ll leave her with no food. Sayo finally suggests that she’ll eat what she likes from his bento and leave the things she doesn’t like to him, then if they’re both still hungry they’ll share her bento.
After school they go out to find Chiyo. While searching through the town, Nanaki asks if Sayo is tired to which she responds that if she says she is will he carry her? He flirts back by saying that if she really does get tired then he’ll carry her, but for now she should try her best to hang in there. WHAT THE HELL? HAHAHAHAHA. I CAN’T STOP LAUGHING AT THIS ROLE-REVERSAL WITH SAYO SAYING THE IJIWARU COMMENTS AND NANAKI EXPERIENCING THEM!
They run around without seeing Chiyo until it’s dark. Finally Chiyo appears and apologizes a lot to Nanaki with Sayo acting as a translator and then for a split second she sees him fading, before he reappears. She ends up hugging Chiyo and while crying says that she’ll connect the both of them together.
Now is another scene from Chiyo’s point of view of everything that happened when he first met Sayo. He saw her and fell in love with her at first sight due to her beauty, her kindness, and everything about her. He asks Nanaki about who she is and wants to know everything about her and then tries to follow her around and talk to her all the time.
Nanaki warns him not to get close to her, because Chiyo is different from humans but Chiyo continues to stalk Sayo and sing praises about her. Finally, Nanaki tries again to convince Chiyo not to get close to her because he’ll be a trouble to her when she starts getting looks for talking to herself and points out that Chiyo is going to stay like that forever while they all grow old.
Chiyo becomes angry at Nanaki’s words, because he thinks that Nanaki is trying to win in the race for Sayo’s love and pushes Nanaki over before yelling that Nanaki doesn’t understand him at all and is only saying these things because he wants to be the one by Sayo’s side. It’s after he runs away and tries to come back that they find out that Nanaki can no longer see Chiyo. OH GOD THIS WHOLE SCENE WAS KIND OF SCARY, BECAUSE CHIYO WAS GIVING OFF MEGA-STALKER VIBES. HOW EXCITED HE WAS AND HOW MUCH HE WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT SAYO AND HOW HE WANTED TO TALK TO HER AND SEE HER EVERYDAY AND HOW MUCH HE PRAISED HER. SO DAMN CREEPY (°Α°).
At any rate, the three of them become good friends again and despite the fact that Nanaki can’t see Chiyo they decide to go out together. They walk around town before Chiyo suggests that they go to the school and Chiyo wanders the courtyard, halls, and kendo dojo. They go to the harbour next and Sayo almost falls into the water, but Nanaki rescues her. Then they’re at the park and Nanaki goes off to buy them lunch and while he’s gone Chiyo manages to convince Sayo to call Nanaki by his first name. When he comes back, Sayo thanks him for the crepe by calling him “Nanaki-senpai” and he drops the crepe in his hand due to surprise and embarrassment and then gets annoyed at Chiyo.
In the end they return to the harbour and talk about how it must lead to far away lands and how it’d be nice to travel there. It’s night as they walk by the barren sakura trees and Chiyo mourns the fact that he’s not going to make it in time to see the sakura. It turns out that today he is going to disappear and Sayo starts crying, but holds hands with the two of them as they walk up to the hill with flowers.
They make it to the flower field where Chiyo starts to explain that he’s the autumn sakura and that he can never see the spring sakura, because he’ll die by then. He makes the relation between himself being the autumn sakura and Sayo being the spring sakura which can never be together, but that they somehow managed to do it for a short time. However, now he is going to disappear.
Chiyo finally understands Nanaki’s words about letting the person you love go and he gives Nanaki the job of protecting and making Sayo happy. Then he disappears and Sayo cries a bit before hugging Nanaki, because he doesn’t cry at all but she can see that he misses his friend.
The next following days at school, Sayo goes to meet with Nanaki all the time and they hang out after school. Natsume and Kaho wonder if they’re going out, but don’t do anything because the two of them look a bit depressed. While Sayo and Nanaki are walking, Sayo decides to go watch a romantic movie and Nanaki agrees to go with her and then mentions casually that it seems kind of cold and then grabs her hand while looking away.
The epilogue comes and it is them being married and having two kids. The two kids talk to Chiyo about their life and when their parents come to get them, they tell Nanaki and Sayo about meeting Chiyo. Nanaki and Sayo are surprised, but when they call out for Chiyo they get no answer and so they tell their children that the next time they meet him they want their children to tell them. Nanaki wants to tell Chiyo that they’re both living a happy life and the game ends with Chiyo whispering that he knows.