Hana Awase 「蛟編」 ~ Iroha ~

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Iroha (いろは)
CV: Terashima Takuma (寺島 拓篤)

Iroha is Rank 1 among the 5 Brights and a third year kaei of the Chisengumi. He is the strongest of the kaei and everyone looks up to him and desires to be him, especially since his eyes have the full moon. He’s quite emotionless, which gets him get called a robot a lot, and he’s also strict on the rules. He’s very distant from the world and if it weren’t for Momotose he would be wearing the same dirty clothes everyday.

(I cried many times while finishing up this post. If you’re going to read this then I suggest having a box of tissues nearby. Also, now that I’m finally done HA I can concentrate my full efforts on DiaLov and Amnesia Later. Thanks for being patient!)

DAY 21. Today is the day that Mikoto needs to choose a partner to do Kabatsu with and help her awaken as a senki.

(Full view pictures to see them in 850 x 595).

Mikoto overhears Momotose yelling ineffectually at Iroha to stop and wait. She wonders why Momotose’s voice is raised and so she goes over to ask her if something happened. Momotose sighs and explains that she didn’t think Iroha would be such a child. A few days ago he scolded Mizuchi harshly for the library incident. She tried to chide him for that, but it was useless…

Iroha and Mizuchi won’t speak of it and Momotose wishes they would be more like adults, even if they’re thinking about Mikoto. They’re troublesome. Mikoto recalls how extremely scary Iroha was when he saved her at the library. That was her first time seeing him like that. If she hadn’t stopped him then Mizuchi would have…

Mizuchi used to be seen together a lot, but now she doesn’t see them around each other at all. Could it be her fault…? If that’s the case then she needs to clear up the misunderstanding with Iroha. She decides to head to Iroha’s room, because it would be nice if Mizuchi and Iroha’s friendship could return, even a little, to the way it was before.

She knocks on his door before entering and he asks her, without emotion, what her business is. Mikoto finds that he’s somewhat scary. There’s a feeling, even more than before, of being thrust away. A sense of intimidation…? No, it’s different. It’s as if there is an aura preventing people from coming close. He tells her curtly that if she has no business, he would ask her to leave the room.

Mikoto hurriedly blurts out that she does; it’s about the library incident and she would like to thank him for that time. He informs her that he already heard her thanks. She becomes a bit flustered as she apologizes, and then she reminds herself that she can’t falter. She has to bring it up! And so she tells him that she wants to talk about Mizuchi and that she heard the story from Momotose.

He doesn’t respond. She tells him that Mizuchi isn’t the person to have intentions of doing those things. She’s sure there is a reason. She’s already fine too, so… He tells her that she has the wrong idea. He conveyed to Mizuchi how he should interact with the senki candidate. It has no relation with her feelings. In her mind she repeats the word “no relation” with confusion.

In other words… the reason Iroha is angry is because the senki candidate was hurt, not because she had a dangerous experience. Her face crumbles as she wonders if she was arrogant to think that she worried him. Iroha asks her flatly if that was all and Mikoto averts her eyes.

IF YOU CHOOSE TO RETURN HOME QUIETLY. She nods quietly and then he tells her that he would like her to be more aware of herself as a senki candidate. She apologizes weakly, but he only leaves silently. She watches him go sadly but realizes that what he said is right. If, at that time, she had lost her qualifications to be the senki candidate then it would have become a disaster. The only reason she’s in Kaen is because she’s the senki candidate.

For her not to have that awareness, she thinks that Iroha must be disgusted. To him, she’s only a senki candidate. Although, that’s natural… Because he saved her when her accident happened, she thought there was something in his heart. She feels embarrassed. She needs to focus her mind more because she’s the senki candidate… before clearing up the misunderstanding with Mizuchi. She apologizes to him in her mind because she wasn’t any help.

IF YOU CHOOSE TO FEEL EMBARRASSED. Mikoto apologizes quietly, but Iroha asks her why she is crying. She’s surprised to find that her tears won’t stop. She tries to tell him that she didn’t intend to start crying but her voice gets stuck in her throat. The things he has said are correct and he isn’t mistaken.

She’s the senki candidate and yet she doesn’t have any self-awareness of that, even though she nearly lost her qualifications. She thought it was her fault that the two of them were fighting, as if she were a damsel in distress, and yet she’s crying after learning that it wasn’t true. It’s shameful because it makes her seem like she’s trying to get him to feel pity for her.

Mikoto doesn’t want that and so she tries to leave this place quickly. She sobs out an excuse and turns to leave, but Iroha grabs her and calls out to her to wait. She gasps in surprise, but then he tells her that he doesn’t understand the reason. She snaps back that it doesn’t matter because this has nothing to do with him.

He’s silent before he murmurs 「・・そうだな。私には関係ない。君とは何も。これからも、ずっと。」(.. That’s right. It has nothing to do with me. Anything with you. Now and forever). Her eyes widen when his hand cups her cheek and she’s taken aback by his gentleness. He comments on how she’s always crying, but because she’s the senki candidate she needs to control her emotions.

She nods obediently at that but then she realizes in confusion that he said “always crying”. She’s sure that she’s never cried in front of him before this… but right now he definitely said… Iroha’s voice falls lower 「・・泣く傍に、いつも蛟がいる。彼のせいか。今も、彼のために・・・。」(.. It’s always Mizuchi by your crying side. Is he the reason. Even now, for his sake…). His breath catches in his throat. AND TEARS ARE CATCHING IN MY SOUL GSJGH.

Mikoto looks at him in confusion, but then he suddenly tells her that if she’s crying for Mizuchi’s sake then she should become his partner. When she looks even more confused, he informs her that it’s a reasonable plan which excludes waste. If she’s by his side then she can control her emotions. It is an appropriate conclusion. She starts to nod before she realizes what he said, which makes her blurt out that it’s too sudden and she needs to prepare herself!

But then he suddenly leans in and starts to lick her tears away while saying 「この瞳で、私のみを映せばいい。ずっと。」(These eyes should reflect only me. Always). She turns bright red and asks, with a stutter, what he’s doing before she tells him that it tickles. She asks him to release her, but he whispers that he’ll only release her if she becomes his partner.

She splutters at that, but she feels herself shivering every time he licks her. Why!? This is her first time seeing him so forceful… Also, if she suddenly becomes Iroha’s partner what will Mizuchi think? A thought occurs to her which makes her ask if he’ll repair his relationship with Mizuchi if she becomes his partner. He withdraws before telling her that there is no reason to.

Mikoto points out quickly that there is no reason not to either, because she’ll become his partner. His breath catches. She continues on to say that her and Mizuchi, no, the senki candidate and Mizuchi will become unrelated. And so there’s no reason to keep a distant relationship.

Iroha tells her that he’s not particularly keeping a distant relationship; and his interactions with Mizuchi won’t be any different than how they are right now. If she’s fine with that… She smiles in relief before telling him that she’ll accept! She’s glad and with this Mizuchi will surely be glad as well. She pauses when she realizes that she just became Iroha’s partner. Could it be that she said something outrageous?

At night, Iroha recites a poem 「色は匂へど散りぬるを 我が世誰ぞ常ならん 有為の奥山今日越えて 浅き夢見じ 酔ひもせず」. Then he tells himself that he knows that he will surely regret what happened today. Was he driven mad by the moon? Or has he gone mad? The end is coming, but even still… everyone is pursuing it… like that distant day.

“Although its scent still lingers on
the form of a flower has scattered away
For whom will the glory
of this world remain unchanged?
Arriving today at the yonder side
of the deep mountains of evanescent existence
We shall never allow ourselves to drift away
intoxicated, in the world of shallow dreams.”
IROHA TRANSLATED BY RYUICHI ABE.

In her room, Mikoto realizes that Kabatsu starts tomorrow. Even she doesn’t know what exactly is going to happen. Was her choice the right one? She shakes her head and reminds herself that no matter the result she can’t regret, because this is the path she chose. She’ll work hard to become a senki.

When she falls asleep she dreams about the Half Moon. It calls out her name and confirms that it’s her. She asks if this is the Half Moon and it excitedly notes that she remembers its name! She points out that she’d remember something she meets everyday. It confesses that its happy and then tells her that they can’t meet except in this place. She asks what it is, but it replies that even if it tells her she surely wouldn’t know that it was him.

She asks it what it means, but the Half Moon doesn’t reply. It only tells her that the full moon is close. When the moon is full, fate changes greatly. But that is her trial; what she will believe in. However, there is only one answer. It tells her to find her other half of the moon.

Mikoto tries to stop it from leaving but she ends up waking in her bed. Just who is it that she’s seeing every day? She can only hear its voice but it seems nostalgic, although she can’t remember. The Half Moon… its name has a strange ring. She suddenly recalls that she needs to tell Momotose that she’s decided on her partner; because she’s decided on the moon. Yes, she and that person…

DAY 22. Momotose gasps in horror at it being Iroha. Mikoto nods, but when Momotose continues to look on in horror, she apologizes for having this decision made without consulting Momotose, who was Iroha’s minamo. She hurriedly tells Momotose that she can still choose a new partner so… But Momotose finally shouts out that it’s dangerous!

When Mikoto looks at her confusedly, Momotose yells out that he doesn’t understand a maiden’s heart at all. He really really doesn’t! She tells Mikoto that he’s like a created robot that is missing some vital human parts. (*ノ∀`)アハハ八八 SHE’S SO MEAN BUT IT’S SO TRUE. POOR IROHA.

Momotose is uneasy about the impolite things he’ll do to Mikoto if they’re left alone together. Meanwhile Mikoto is wincing at how mean those words, about robot parts, are to Iroha. Momotose informs her that, because she’s worried, she’ll also come along to Kabatsu so that she can keep a watch on him. Mikoto’s mouth drops at that.

Anyway, back in her room Mikoto thinks about how strange things have become. Momotose is Iroha’s minamo; and so she thought Momotose would be unhappy with her wedging in like that, but it seems like she was wrong. Just what is the relationship between Momotose and Iroha?

Later on, Iroha knocks on the door to Momotose’s room and enters before asking if she called him. Momotose glares at him before ordering him to confess. Just what did he do to get her Muse to become his partner. He doesn’t respond. She points out that Mikoto is attracted to Mizuchi and vice versa; he knows that! Iroha continues to remain silent. Her eyes widen as she gasps out that he can’t possibly… for Mikoto…

Iroha tells her without emotion that the one who decided on it was Mikoto. Momotose sends him a sympathetic look before she concedes, but not before telling him not hurt Mikoto any more than having made her his partner. She wants him to act like a gentleman. She asks him if he understands that he can’t be curt. He has to be gentle… very very gentle. He replies that he will in the extent that he is capable. AKA: NONE.

She tells him that she’s engraving those words to heart, and she wants him to fix his relationship with Mizuchi! He tells her that their relationship hasn’t changed. She snaps back that he’s lying. He doesn’t say anything and so she glares at him even more. He finally tells her that he understands and he will… in his own way. Iroha exits the room after this, leaving Momotose to sigh and wonder if he really does understand.

Meanwhile, Mikoto has just finished her classes and she recalls that she has Kabatsu with Iroha today. She’ll have to work hard! But the class representative asks if she has time because she wants to ask Mikoto about this rumor, which must be a rumor. Mikoto asks her what’s wrong and so the class rep reveals that she heard Mikoto replaced Momotose as Iroha’s partner.

The class rep smiles awkwardly and points out that such a reckless thing wouldn’t happen, right? Mikoto averts her eyes sheepishly and asks if such a thing is that amazing. The class rep gapes at her before shouting out that it is because Momotose is Kaen’s best minamo and among the minamo she’s standing at the top. It’d be impossible to press that person down. In the first place it’s awe-inspiring to be close to Momotose.

Mikoto blinks in surprise and points out that Momotose is always good humored though. The class rep sighs at how Mikoto doesn’t understand; she’s special. Momotose is concerned about her and that’s an amazing thing. Momotose and Iroha are existences above the clouds to the minamo. It is beyond their power, as ordinary minamo, to even talk to them.

Originally, it wouldn’t be strange for a minamo of common origins like Mikoto, to say nothing of her being admitted from the outside, to be treated coldly by the ladies of Kaen. The class rep informs her that she thinks the ladies have become obedient because of Momotose giving them the cold shoulder. The things that Aoi and the other second year ladies have done is actually kind.

Mikoto admits that she didn’t know that, but then she realizes that it certainly is strange for a commoner like her to be accepted immediately by the elite of the Kaen because she’s a senki candidate. It’s because Momotose covered for her that she is able to spend her time like this. Anyway, the class rep decides that she doesn’t think the rumors are true. If by any chance the rumors are true then it’d be a disaster to be targeted by the Chisen minamo.

The Chisen minamo belong to Iroha, who is the top of the top. If one wants to belong with these excellent minamo, then there is a private tournament for the Chisen within Kaen. She heard that, for the sake of remaining in the Chisengumi, everyone is always competing. When Mikoto looks confused the class rep explains tha the Koukokugumi is peaceful because there is a rule that forbids competition between minamo.

But it is said that the Chisen are bloodthirsty. If one can’t suppress the others then they won’t survive. SOUNDS LIKE MY PLACE TO LIVE. The class rep exhales and admits that she’s glad to be in the Koukokugumi. If she were in the Chisen then she’d be torn apart. She suddenly gasps and tells Mikoto that what she said was confidential. Mikoto feels like she heard something outrageous. Is it alright for her to be Iroha’s partner…?

Anyway, today is the Kabatsu. Should she practice a bit? Mikoto decides not to and starts to head to Iroha’s room, but she finds herself feeling nervous to do Kabatsu with Iroha. She shakes her head and tells herself to work hard without being timid! She knocks on his door before entering, but then yelps in surprise when she finds him sleeping on the floor. THIS GUY… AFTER WE GOT A TALK ABOUT HOW “AMAZING” HE IS TOO. TOP OF THE TOP.. PFFF.

She’s amazed by his sleeping posture because he’s prostrate on the ground; isn’t it painful? She calls out his name but there’s no response. Mikoto pauses before she announces herself and then he suddenly sits straight up. She’s taken aback by how displeased he looks, but she still stutters out that they have Kabatsu today. She bows and tells him to please take care of her. He continues to remain silent.

Mikoto looks back at him with wide eyes, but she slowly realizes that he isn’t moving at all. Could it be… that he’s half-asleep? She calls out his name again hesitantly, but he finally mutters out the word Kabatsu. She startles before nodding her head quickly. He falls silent for a minute before he suddenly gets up and exits the room. She wonders if she’s supposed to follow after him. LOOK AT THOSE SLEEPY EYES… I’M WELL-VERSED IN IROHA-NESE.

Suddenly, Momotose appears and yells at Iroha to stop. Mikoto gasps in surprise, but Momotose yells at Iroha and asks him what that behavior was. She told him to be more gentlemanly around his partner! Iroha turns back with squinted eyes, which makes Momotose order him to wake up. He replies flatly that he is awake and that his intentions were gentlemanly.

Momotose grits her teeth and growls in frustration. She finally walks over to Mikoto and apologizes sadly for her having this mean partner. Mikoto stutters out that it’s nothing and he’s far from it! It’s fine. Iroha points out that there’s no problem and then walks off. Mikoto flinches when she sees Momotose’s hair bristling before she hurriedly tells her that she’s really fine! They should get going together!

Mikoto finally gets Momotose to calm down, but she’s worried about doing Kabatsu in this mood. Anyway, she exits the room only to freeze when she sees Mizuchi. Her expression crumbles as she says his name, but he doesn’t respond. Then she remembers that she needs to tell him about how she’s become Iroha’s partner. She opens her mouth to say something, but he walks past her without saying anything.

She realizes painfully that she chose someone other than him as her partner. When she thinks about it, she did a cruel thing. In addition, the other person is Iroha. She became Iroha’s partner to return Mizuchi and his relationship to normal, but even that hasn’t happened yet. Iroha is as he always is, but she wonders if her relationship with Mizuchi can return to the way it was before. Mikoto scolds herself when she realizes that she was spacing out; she needs to do Kabatsu!

Anyway, the three of them head out to the center district of Goto-gai. Mikoto used to come here often with Ai, but the impression is completely different now. The air feels stagnant… when before it was only a normal business district. Momotose explains that it’s because Mikoto’s ability as a minamo has increased. To the general public this place is a normal city… but to them it is a den filled with taint; a tainted city.

Mikoto realizes that, as a minamo, she sees things differently. Before she realized it, she’s completely become a part of Kaen. At any rate, Momotose asks Iroha where the adabana point is that Onosada told them. Iroha answers that it is this whole zone and it’s almost time. Mikoto is confused, but then she hears a giggle behind her that sends a shiver down her back.

A voice cackles out that it can smell it; a sexy sweet scent. She feels the taint from this presence and turns around to scream in surprise at the sight of an adabana. The adabana screeches out that this scent is the scent of a senki! It’ll take her! Mikoto is horrified by its appearance as it continues on to say that it’ll taint her purity. It’ll tear this skin of hers apart!!

She’s taken aback by the strength of its negativity and its spite. She shuts her eyes as she finds herself petrified in fear, but then Momotose cuts the tension between them and comments lightly on what a crude field of darkness this is. Is this intended to be the first move? Iroha states that it is a low class adabana and suggests that they should make the next move to end it quickly.

Mikoto watches on with wide eyes as Iroha and Momotose fall into position. Iroha states calls out 「フィールドを生成完了。・・・これより、粛清に移る。」(Field creation; complete… Proceeding with the purge). I THINK IT’S KIND OF INTERESTING TO NOTE THAT MOMOTOSE IS GLOWING WHITE… WHEN ONLY MIZUCHI GLOWED WHITE AFTER MIKOTO ASCENDED INTO A SENKI.

They defeat it without any difficulty and Mikoto is shocked to see the adabana wither and disappear, when it had been a person just a while ago. But more importantly, she has no idea of what just happened. Iroha and Momotose entered a field and then, in an instant, the adabana withered. Momotose notes that it took them 1 minute which is so-so. She lectures Iroha on how the performance of his offense has decreased. She wants him to make it shorter next time.

He acknowledges her words without emotion. When Momotose notices Mikoto’s stunned look she apologizes for defeating it without a thought, but they were attacked so suddenly. Mikoto smiles awkwardly and thanks them for saving her. However, Iroha narrows his eyes and says that he’s disgusted. She didn’t even assume a stance when the adabana appeared. Does she intend to die?

Mikoto flinches at his words and so Momotose snaps at him to choose his words, because this is Mikoto’s first time doing Kabatsu. But Mikoto tells Momotose that it’s fine since she is inexperienced. She averts her eyes and apologizes to Iroha before promising to do better next time. He stares at her in silence before finally declaring that today’s Kabatsu is over and they are going to return to report it.

He walks off without another word and Momotose looks pained as she admits that she might have done too much. Mikoto shakes her head though and agrees that she’s incompetent and so she caused him displeasure. Momotose comforts her by telling her not to be concerned about Iroha. He’s always like that; much too curt. In her mind Mikoto disagrees because what Iroha said was correct.

All she did when the adabana appeared was be scared. She didn’t do anything. She won’t be able to support him as a partner like that. Even before she’s a senki candidate, she’s failed in her capacity as a minamo. Momotose tries to smile as she points out that there’s still some time left and so they can buy something sweet before returning! But Mikoto declines with a quiet apology because she’s just going to return back today.

As she walks back to Kaen Mikoto thinks about how today’s adabana disappeared in an instant. It looked like a person, yet it wasn’t. It’s a tainted and sad existence. However, she doesn’t have the time to think about Kabatsu like that, because she cannot not fight. She needs to do it for the sake of protecting her partner’s life. She feels ashamed of herself and tells herself to face Kabatsu more seriously. What can she do for that sake…?

Her cellphone rings as she thinks this and so she answers it in confusion. It turns out to be Shou and it’s been a while! He called her to ask about how she’s doing with the person she said that she was interested in. She asks him hesitantly if he means Mizuchi, which makes him splutter out that she has it all wrong! It’s not like he meant interested in “that” way. He just heard it from Ai who was being annoying.

She thanks him for worrying about her, but this makes him ask her why she’s being awfully sweet. Then she confesses that before she was able to meet with “that person” she ran into a wall. He realizes that it’s not going well but he tells her not to be depressed. He also adds「俺が・・・じゃなくて、俺たちがいるだろ。」(I’m–.. I mean, we’re here for you).

He points out that it must be hard to be suitable for Kaen and so what he wants to say is that it’s fine for her to come back whenever. Because he’s… no, they’re waiting, always. SHOU IS SO UNSUBTLE WITH HIS FEELINGS BUT HE NEVER GETS THE GIRL… IT’S SAD. She manages to summon up a smile and calls him nice. It makes her want to see him… see him and be spoiled.

Shou starts to choke before stuttering out that if she would have hi–… He hurriedly adds that Ai would say the same thing. But then Mikoto tells him that she can’t allow herself to be spoiled, because it’s her problem. She thanks him again and promises that she’ll become more reliable.

Then she tells him that it’s late and so she wishes him good night before hanging up abruptly. Mikoto realizes that she can’t let Shou comfort her for not doing well when he doesn’t know anything. In addition to doing what she needs to do for Mizuchi she also needs to do what she needs to do as a minamo and senki candidate.

In the evening, Onosada yawns in the practice room and prepares to close it. He talks about how the first beer after finishing work is delicious. It’s out of this world when he drinks the cool beer slowly. He wonders if he should make fried squid for tonight’s meal, but then recalls that he still has packaged yakitori and so tonight he’ll eat that. But suddenly Mikoto runs up to him and calls out his name.

He jumps in surprise and tells her not to surprise him like that. She apologizes and tells him that she thought he might be returning home at this time but… He eyes her silently for a while before he sighs and tells her to come in. She obeys and then ends up telling him the incident from this morning. He hums thoughtfully and restates that Iroha and Momotose was overwhelming during kabatsu, yes?

Mikoto confesses that she’s seen the vast difference in their abilities. Onosada points out that the status between she and Momotose is too great. After all Momotose is Kaen’s number one minamo; she’s like a monster. This makes Mikoto shout that she knows this, but she doesn’t want to continue to be protected by those two like this. She wants to become strong.

She begs him to tell her what she should do! He smirks and compliments her for saying it, because a while ago she was acting pampered. But then he warns her that she needs to have a determination to become strong. She tells him firmly that she understands. His voice drops as he tells her that he’ll believe in those words.

He regains his grin as he tells her that he’ll make her take his special intensive training menu! Once she finishes this, she will also have a power that’ll match Momotose. Her mouth drops open in astonishment, but then he adds with grin that she “might”. She bites her lip at that and he laughs before saying that she’ll become more or less better. And then he starts her off in the training.

Meanwhile, in her room Momotose sighs sadly because she’s sure that she hurt Mikoto when she intruded in. On the side, Iroha crunches on his chips. Momotose cries out that her body will be torn to pieces by sadness if she’s hated by her Muse. Iroha crunches on chips… and crunches… and crunches. Momotose grits her teeth before she yells at him and asks him if he was listening to her! And what is with that sound!?

He answers 「・・・りんごチップスですが、何か。」(… Apple chips. What of it?). AND THIS GUY IS THE TOP OF THE TOP… (*ノ∀`)アハハ八八ノヽ. BY THE WAY YOU’LL NEVER VIEW APPLE CHIPS THE SAME WAY AGAIN AFTER THIS. She shouts at him to stop eating those things like a squirrel and to listen to her properly! Speaking of it, from the start this situation was his fault!

She tells him that because he, as Mikoto’s partner, didn’t back her up she became insecure! In times like these he’s supposed to be gentler! He answers without emotion that there is no reason to be gentle. Mikoto doesn’t act with enough conduct as a minamo. She growls in frustration at how he really is like a machine! He can’t do anything but what is inputted.

Iroha stares at her silently. She huffs loudly and tells him to study more on the human heart. Then she stalks out of her room and slams the door, leaving Iroha to contemplate the words 「・・・やさしく、する。」(… being.. kind).

DAY 23. Mikoto snores softly in the classroom and so the class representative calls out her name. When Mikoto continues on snoring though, she ends up yelling her name and hitting her on the head. Mikoto yelps as she startles into wakefulness and the class rep asks her how long she intended to sleep for, because it’s already after school! Mikoto gasps at that.

The class representative glares at her though and tells her that she was snoring really loudly in the classroom and it was echoing. That’s embarrassing for the minamo of the Koukokugumi. Perhaps she needs to be reminded on the rules again. But Mikoto hasn’t been listening at all and she apologizes to the class rep before saying that she needs to go! The class rep tries to ask where, to which Mikoto answers that she needs to go to Onosada.

Mikoto runs off before the class rep can do anything but yell at her to wait. When Mikoto finally reaches the room at a sprint, she apologizes for being late. Onosada tells her sternly that she was late by 3 minutes and as a punishment she will do Hana Utsushi 10 times without a break. She gulps at that but obeys him.

Some time later, Mikoto gasps out tiredly to Onosada that she finished. But he tells her sternly that she’s not done yet! Next is reciting the terminology of Kasen 100 times from memory! She grits her teeth and nods determinedly. By the time that it’s evening, Onosada checks to see that they’ve done reflex simulations for 1 hour and they’ve tested her stamina against taint for 2 hours. Now next is…

She’s panting as she asks in muted horror if there’s more. He tells her that of course there is and then hands her something for today’s menu. She picks it up to see that it’s a paper with tons of words packed together. He grins slyly though and points out that if she wants to catch up to Momotose then this is insignificant, right? She summons up her determination and nods.

DAY 24. It’s dawn and Onosada asks Mikoto how she’s doing, only to find out that she’s fallen asleep. He chuckles at how careless she is to fall asleep in a place like this. He steps closer to her and admits that she did well though. He suddenly hears a thump coming from outside which makes him pause.

Then he smirks and steps back while coughing loudly before announcing into the empty room that he’s empty of gas and so he’s going to leave Mikoto here and go enjoy himself. He tells the empty room that he’ll leave the rest to “him”. Mikoto murmurs in her sleep that she can’t take any more as someone walks closer to her. It turns out to be Mizuchi who tells her softly that she’ll catch a cold sleeping here.

He slides her onto his back and then starts to walk down the hallway while telling her that he’d like her to close her eyes. She mutters his name though which causes him to freeze with wide eyes. But then she continues on to snore quietly. He exhales in relief at her sleep-talking because he thought she was awake. His breath catches in his throat and he flushes though when he realizes that their posture means that she’s pressed against him.

She groans out again that it’s too much and then sighs sweetly into his ear, which makes Mizuchi turn even more red. He asks her in a strangled voice if she can stop breathing by his ear. She continues on sleeping though and he tells her that he’ll carry her quickly and so he would ask her to endure this a little longer. Then he sighs and scolds her for overexerting herself too much to this state.

He admits out loud though that the sincerity of her actions is a source of pride as one of the Koukokugumi. But then he gasps when he sees Iroha in front of him. Iroha’s voice is thunderous as he asks Mizuchi what he is doing. THIS SCENE. OH MY GOD. YOU GUYS DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW EMOTIONLESS IROHA’S VOICE IS UNTIL YOU HEAR WHAT HE SOUNDS LIKE PISSED AS HELL. AND IT HAPPENS RIGHT HERE.

Mizuchi answers respectfully that the senki candidate collapsed and so he’s carrying her. His breathing becomes strained as he’s stared down by Iroha. I’M JUST IMAGINING WHAT I LIKE TO CALL “TIGER-EYES” GKJGFH YOU KNOW THAT SCENE IN PSYCHO PASS WITH GINOZA IN EP.3 WHERE HE ALMOST HAS CAT-EYES?? YEAH.

Iroha’s voice is chilly as he asks Mizuchi if he’s forgotten the words that were said to him. He orders Mizuchi to lower her, because he’ll carry her. Mizuchi nods stiffly and apologizes formally. But suddenly Mikoto tightens her arms around him and, while sleep-talking, asks Mizuchi not to leave. His breath catches in his throat while Iroha grounds out 「正直な寝ごとだな。」(What honest sleep-talking).

He finally tells Mizuchi that he’ll allow this just once and then he stalks off. Mizuchi is stunned into silence, but then Mikoto murmurs that he’s warm. He blushes again at that before admitting out loud that he doesn’t know what to do with people like her. In spite of the promise he made with Iroha… he would like to ask her forgiveness for touching her just this once. Because there won’t be a second time.

In the morning, Mikoto finds herself waking up in her bed. She shoots straight up when she realizes that she’s in her room and sleeping in her school uniform. She’s certain she was in the practice room with Onosada and undergoing his intensive course. She also felt like Mizuchi appeared in her dreams… but maybe it was her imagination. He was gentle and it was a nice dream. She suddenly scolds herself for thinking about this because she needs to go to school!

Some time later, Mikoto has assembled into Onosada’s lecture room along with Momotose and Iroha. Onosada informs them that today’s Kabatsu is this one and Mikoto is shocked to see 4 locations. Momotose’s eyes widen as well and she points out that this is much more than the one before. He tells them that he picked the best ones in order to show off their strength, isn’t that right senki candidate?

Mikoto accepts it determinedly and promises to do her best. Momotose smiles sadly with pride while Mikoto reassures herself that it’ll be fine. She did that intensive course after all and so she can do it. She needs to believe in herself. Iroha is silent through all of this. Anyway, Onosada sends them off by telling them to do well.

As they exit the room and start to head out though, they run into Mizuchi in the hallway. His eye widens at the sight of Mikoto but then he looks away silently. Iroha is watching all of this with an emotionless face, but then Mizuchi walks off without saying anything. Momotose gives a pained smile and suggests that they head out.

In Goto-gai they come to another tainted zone and Mikoto notes that the taint is already in the air. Momotose agrees and thinks that it’s because the adabana are nearby. She advises Mikoto not to overexert herself, but is cut off when Mikoto spins around quickly. Momotose quickly asks her if something is wrong, to which Mikoto shouts out that there are adabana behind them.

Iroha agrees that there is the presence of many. It might be a series of battles. Mikoto nods and then requests Iroha to Hana Awase with her. His eyes widen in surprise and so Mikoto asks him again as the adabana start to surround them. He finally acknowledges and accepts her request before setting up his field and activating it.

They fight through two consecutive battles before defeating all the adabana. Mikoto is panting by the end of it but she’s glad they won. Momotose hurriedly supports her when she collapses to the ground, but Mikoto only asks her how she did. Momotose smiles proudly and praises her for being splendid. Mikoto is relieved by that and then apologizes for making Momotose worry.

But Momotose shakes her head and asks for Mikoto’s forgiveness for her unnecessary actions before. Mikoto’s eyes widen as she denies it because she also did something impolite. Iroha doesn’t say anything before he starts to walk away, but Mikoto calls out for him to wait. She thanks him for allowing her to Hana Awase with him. She knows she’s still inexperienced but she hopes she was acceptable as his minamo.

He answers bluntly that he has no right to decline. Her eyes widen and she starts to ask if that means he… But Iroha interrupts and asks her how long she’s going to remain sitting there. They don’t know when more adabana may come and she’s too negligent. Mikoto clambers onto her feet with an apology. He is silent before he approaches her and hands her a bag with the orders to eat it.

She blinks in confusion and so he elaborates that they are sweets for when one is tired. She thanks him in a surprised voice, but he only remains silent before he walks off. Momotose gasps out that those are the apple chips that Iroha eats. THOSE GODDAMN APPLE CHIPS MAKING THEIR APPEARANCE AGAIN. Mikoto notices that the seal is open; could this be something Iroha was eating?

Momotose sighs heavily before wondering out loud if this is Iroha’s attempt at being kind. Mikoto also wonders if he’s concerned about her. It makes her happy and she has the feeling that she’s been approved of a bit, although she knows she still has ways to go. She’ll work hard even more as his minamo!

At night, Mikoto asks Momotose if she’s really alright with her room. She only has one bed here and so she thinks sleeping will be hard. Momotose tells her cheerfully that she’s more than fine! In fact, it makes her happy to be pressed close against her Muse in this small space. She giggles in joy at having a sleepover and then asks Mikoto to come a bit closer. Mikoto scoots over with a bit of embarrassment.

And then Momotose confesses that she was worried that she was going to be hated for what she did. Mikoto protests to that and explains that she felt indebted. She was envious of the amazing power that Momotose has as a minamo. She wants to become like Momotose. She wants to be accepted as a full adult and minamo without taking advantage of the title of senki candidate.

Momotose thinks she’s unworthy of those words though. In her case, she loves Mikoto’s innocence. Mikoto gasps in surprise when Momotose leans over and kisses her on the lips. Momotose laughs softly and then says that if she were a gentleman, then Mikoto would awaken as a senki right here. This makes Mikoto recall that the senki must come into contact with her partner.

She falls silent for a while before suddenly telling Momotose that she wants to thank her. If Momotose weren’t here, then she’s sure her life at Kaen wouldn’t be well. She might cause more trouble for her in the future, but she would like to ask Momotose to continue watching out for her. Momotose smiles kindly and replies that she’ll also look forward to working together with Mikoto.

This makes Mikoto admit that she’s a bit embarrassed, but Momotose also feels the same. The two of them giggle before Momotose reveals that she has a secret. The other day, late at night, she saw Mizuchi come into the girls’ dormitory. Mikoto is surprised and asks why he would be here. Momotose smiles before explaining that he carried Mikoto, who had fallen asleep due to exhaustion after the intensive course, on his back to her room.

For Mizuchi to break the rules and come to the girls’ dormitory is unprecedented. If other people saw him then it would become a serious matter and so Momotose kept secret. Mikoto’s expression softens, especially when Momotose informs her that Mizuchi is very worried about her; he wonders if she’s eating properly and sleeping enough. He’s very stiff and silent, but those words slipped out of his mouth by how happy he was placing her in bed.

Momotose explains that, although Mizuchi is socially awkward and stuff, he’s very kind. Mikoto smiles gently and agrees with how kind he is. She knows that he’s that type of person; he seems cold but he casually watches over her. Momotose thinks that it would be nice if things returned to the way they were before. Mikoto agrees and she’ll work to achieve that.

Inwardly, she thanks Mizuchi. Even though she isn’t his partner right now, when she’s finished with the things she needs to do… she would like to return to his side. For that sake she needs to grow as a minamo and during Kabatsu; she needs to not embarrass Mizuchi.

DAY 25. Iroha is walking down the hallway in the morning but he gets stopped by Onosada who praises him for working hard. Iroha doesn’t respond to that. Onosada points out that the senki candidate must have been pretty good and Iroha can thank him for his intensive training. Iroha replies without emotion that he thought it was normal.

Onosada scoffs and tells him that he isn’t cute at all and this is why the senki candidate is emotionally attached to Mizuchi. Iroha asks him what he’s talking about. But this makes Onosada smirks because he knows that Iroha knows what he’s talking about. It seems like he was one step too late. Iroha tells him 「意味がわかりません。」(I do not understand your meaning).

But then Onosada remarks 「お前さんは、つくづくツキに見放されてんなあ。」(You’ve been completely abandoned by the moon, huh). Iroha’s eyes narrow but he replies calmly 「理解を越えました。失礼します。」(My comprehension has been exceeded. Excuse me). HINT: THE MORE FORMAL IROHA GETS THE MORE HE’S HIDING SDKJFKH BABY. He walks off quickly after that, leaving Onosada to whistle at how young Iroha is.

Meanwhile, Mikoto is out in the courtyard and searching for the meeting place that Iroha called her out to. She finds it unusual to be called on by him though and she wonders why. But it was at the right time, because she has something to give him. She smiles upon seeing him and asks him what he wanted to discuss with her. He remains silent for a moment before asking her if they were delicious.

She blinks in surprise and so he elaborates by saying apple chips. Mikoto smiles brightly at that and tells him that they were delicious. They were crisp while also being sweet and sour. Iroha replies quietly 「そうか。ならいい。」(I see. That’s good) and then attempts to walk off. But Mikoto stops him and hurriedly lifts something out of the bag that she’s carrying to hand it to him.

He takes it while asking her what this is. Mikoto explains that she wanted to try making apple chips herself, because she felt bad for receiving what he had been eating. His breath catches quietly in his throat. She admits sheepishly that this is her first time making them so the shape is a bit… but the taste is similar. She placed cinnamon on these other ones. He asks her if she’s giving these to him.

She nods her head before adding with a smile that she knows he loves sweet things. He informs her that everyone is the same when it comes to food in their mouth; but the effect of sweets is nice. But then he cuts himself off and tells her that it’s nothing and he’ll accept them. She thanks him happily, which leaves him staring at her in silence. Then he says 「君は・・・」(You are…).

But the two of them are interrupted by Himeutsugi who calls out to her excitedly and asks her what she’s doing here. He’s also brought along Mizuchi. She greets them with a smile and is glad at their timing because she made a lot of apple chips and so she offers some to them. Iroha makes a muffled noise. Himeutsugi is delighted by the homemade chips and the apples smell nice. He encourages Mizuchi to take some as well.

However, Mizuchi averts his eyes and is silent. Iroha is just as silent. And then Mizuchi declares that he’s fine before he walks off, leaving Mikoto to stare after him in confusion. Himeutsugi apologizes for Mizuchi and explains that he’s bad with sweets. Mikoto gives him a smile and tells him that she understands and it’s fine. He tilts his head and notes that she seems awfully happy.

Mikoto tries to deny that but she giggles. Iroha exhales quietly. Then Himeutsugi approaches her and asks if she’ll give him Mizuchi’s portion. She hands it over to him cheerfully while saying that of course he can have it. And then she recalls that Iroha had something to tell her, but when she turns around to ask him he’s gone. She wonders why. HOW ARE YOU SO OBLIVIOUS. THOSE FUCKING APPLE CHIPS ARE HIS.

DO YOU GUYS NOW UNDERSTAND MY APPLE CHIP TRAUMA?! IT’LL GET WORSE. At any rate, Mikoto also recalls that she has a report she needs to go and submit to Onosada. Maybe she should arrive their early and practice with some Hana Utsushi? She decides not to and continues to relax.

When the time arrives, she finds Onosada and informs him that she brought the report for the assignment. He’s surprised by how she’s done already and compliments how much she wrote while he flips through it. She smiles sheepishly at how she couldn’t stop writing it. But writing a report like this has allowed her to control her mind and she’s able to think calmly in the middle of a battle.

Somehow or another she feels like she understands the ways of Hana Awase. He’s impressed by her enthusiasm and he recalls how focused she was in the intensive training. Mikoto points out that she seems to immerse herself so deeply she can’t see the things around her though. Her friends often scolded her for that. YEAH LIKE BEING SO OBSESSED WITH MIZUCHI YOU’RE MISSING IROHA’S PAIN.

Onosada agrees because she’s stubborn and lacking softness, which means she’s inflexible. She winces at that and asks him not to hit her where it hurts. She wants to become more soft but she can’t seem to do it. Onosada smirks and tells her that it’s a waste to have her mind so serious. She should become more soft… like her breasts. He gropes her breasts which makes Mikoto squeal in shock and she lashes out unconsciously.

After hitting him in the face she yells out that he’s a pervert before running out. Onosada clambers onto his feet and tries to ask if people normally hit their teachers in the jaw. But then he laughs out loud and calls her an interesting person.

Meanwhile, Mikoto stomps down the hallway in anger at how Onosada is a pervert! He was so serious in helping her during the intensive training that she thought he was a good person! Suddenly, one of the chairmen call out to her and asks why the senki candidate is so cross. She pauses in surprise and then greets him as Kintokihana, but he corrects her and tells her that he’s Awahana.

She tries to apologize but he waves it off because it’s rare for people to get it right. Then he pauses and sniffs the air before smirking at how sweet it is and how this will work. Mikoto gives him a look filled with confusion, but he simply orders her to come with him and help him. Mikoto yelps when he suddenly grabs her arm and pulls her along. She can’t help but feel like she’s a mother being pulled along by a child.

But then Awahana tells her not to call a man who is approaching his 60th birthday a kid. She startles and apologizes quickly, but inwardly she tries to recall if she said that out loud. Awa informs her that she doesn’t need to say anything because it’s written on her face. She gulps as he tells her that the thinking of a young girl is too easy to understand.

Anyway, he takes her to the greenhouse. Mikoto blinks in surprise when she sees a person with a bug-catching net and exploration headgear. Awa asks them where “he” is right now. They answer that he’s fluttering around deep inside the greenhouse. Suddenly, another comes running up and salutes to the chairman before telling him that he caught three groups of gossamer-winged butterflies and he wants to breed them with the chairman’s lecture.

Another comes up and tells the chairman that he discovered a different opinion from the report he submitted in about different evolutionary forms, and he’d like to ask the chairman about that! Mikoto is surprised to see them all gather around the chairman. But the chairman tells them to wait until later, because right now he has to find the Cypris. When Mikoto questions him about that, he explains that he’s talking about the blue version of the Morpho Cypris.

Then he points out where they’re fluttering and Mikoto gasps at how beautiful and glittering the butterfly is. Awa informs her that they’re called flying jewels and he released them a while ago; it’s beautiful, is it not? And then one of the people asks the chairman who this female bug is and then asks, with a stutter, if she’s planning on joining their club, “Velvet”.

Awa corrects them and introduces Mikoto as the senki candidate from the ceremony a few days ago. The members of the club are surprised and ask if there had been a ceremony. They thought that the “senki candidate” was some academic classification of a living creature. Awa rolls his eyes and tells them that it’s a person before sighing at how they have no interest in anything except butterflies.

Mikoto doesn’t know how to respond to this atmosphere, because now they’ve all surrounded her. Awahana introduces these people as members of “Velvet”, Kaen’s Butterfly Association, and he is their advisor. He also tells her that it isn’t necessary for her to know them because they don’t mingle with the rest of Kaen’s people. She looks uncertain, but he changes the subject to why he brought her here.

He would like to ask her to catch the Cypris. Mikoto is surprised and so Awa explains that these members would use their next to try and capture the butterfly to replace it in its basket, but this will damage its wings. He wants to return it unharmed. He wants to use the sweet water that the senki candidate releases to lure out the Cypris. Mikoto repeats the word “water” questioningly.

Awahana reveals that he heard from Kintoki that she was releasing an intensely inviting water. He sniffs the air again and agrees that it is sweet; in fact it’s an erotic smell. Mikoto is confused about the reference to Kintoki, because at that time the chairman introduced himself as Awahana. Member A of the Butterfly Association smells the air in confusion while Member B salutes and reports that they don’t understand this tempting water at all.

This makes Awa point out that they don’t see Mikoto as a female. It’s a sex pheromone. It’s an incomprehensible thing to these people who only care about butterflies. Mikoto feels as if she’s been dragged into something and wonders what she should do. Awa reads her mind and tells her to simply stand there and soon butterflies will come close. He walks away and Mikoto obeys his orders by standing still.

But after an awkward silence she points out that the butterflies aren’t coming closer. Member A cries out to the chairman that it isn’t working at all! The Cypris is keeping completely silent. Awa snaps at them to wait a while longer, but Member B salutes and suggests that there isn’t enough sweetness. Just to be sure he actually brought sugared water and he thinks they should smear it all over Mikoto.

Mikoto’s jaw drops, but Member B reveals that he brought baskets full of the water and then he throws the water all over her. Mikoto shouts in surprise and then tries to run away, but they chase after and try to throw more water over her. But then she trips over the baskets and Member A yells worriedly to the chairman that kets get knocked over as they’re chasing her and Member A yells this worriedly to the chairman.

She starts to shiver from the cold, but then Member A continues to report that the basket upturned over Mikoto’s head and now her clothes are becoming completely soaked. Mikoto groans at how awful this is, but then Member A gulps and says that it’s unusual but he’s starting to feel strange. Member B salutes and reports the same. Member A is starting to find a wet female irresistible and he wants to soak her more!

Mikoto turns red at that and loudly calls them idiots, but all the members who are holding baskets of sugared water start to squirm. She screams out for someone to decent to come and help her. And suddenly Iroha appears to snarl out viciously 「・・・やめろ。」(… Stop). HOLY SHI– I WISH YOU GUYS COULD HEAR HOW ABSOLUTELY PISSED HE IS. He glares coldly at them and Member A squeaks out Iroha’s name. Mikoto finds his expression frightening.

Iroha orders them to release her with a voice full of cold rage. Member A obeys immediately and Mikoto wilts inwardly with relief. Then Iroha tells the chairman in the same voice that he would like him to treat the senki candidate courteously. Awahana replies curtly that he knows and then he blames the club members for making him get scolded by Iroha as well. Member A apologizes tearfully.

Mikoto can’t help but feel as if there’s a reversal of roles here. Suddenly, she hears a multitude of flapping wings and she wonders out loud what this noise is. Member A cries out for the chairman to look at how the jewel-like Cypris are being stained in black. Member B can’t believe that this is happening, because those are utsurohi! The butterflies are being possessed by the utsurohi. I DIDN’T REALIZE BUTTERFLIES HAD GRUDGES BUT OKAY…

BY THE WAY, IF YOU’RE LAUGHING AT THESE NOW. YOU’RE GOING TO CRY LATER ON. Mikoto gasps in shock, but Iroha calmly asks the chairman where he obtained these butterflies. Awa answers that they came from a butterfly trader who spoke brokenly in Goto-gai. What of it? Iroha frowns and replies that this is too suspicious and why did the chairman buy them.

Awa tells them that he was collecting them, although this was a risky purchase. Iroha narrows his eyes, but then Mikoto tells him worriedly that the butterflies have steadily accumulated. He suddenly orders her to Hana Awase and she nods determinedly. Iroha coolly activates his field and they defeat the butterflies. She pants tiredly but exclaims in relief that they won!

She found the battle hard because they’re different from humans and so she couldn’t read their moves at all. Member B starts to sob at the remains of the Cypris and Member A cries out at what a global loss it was for the blue jewels to become black and withered. Member B suddenly calls out to all the club members to hold a funeral for the Cypris and to let the beautiful butterflies sleep softly.

Member A gets excited at holding a funeral ceremony and calls for the chairman to come; he’ll carry him! Awa orders them not to touch his behind and to carry him gently. Mikoto watches in stunned silence as the club members carry the butterfly remains and the chairman out. And then Iroha states that he doesn’t understand, to which she agrees.

Anyway, Iroha notes that the greenhouse has been tainted by the utsurohi. He’ll have Mizuchi cleanse this place later. When Mikoto looks at him questioningly, he explains that the chairmen left the management of the greenhouse to Mizuchi. He was also the one who cleansed this place after the previous utsurohi incident. She recalls how water was released in this place before.

Then she realizes that she can seize this chance to ask Iroha about if his and Mizuchi’s relationship has returned to normal if he’s requesting Mizuchi to cleanse this place. He remains silent before finally repeating the word “relationship” curiously and then telling her that he already said it wouldn’t change. She lowers her eyes and points out that she hasn’t seen them together very often like they used to be.

Iroha asks her if that has any relation to her, and this makes her flinch because he has an extremely cold expression. She wonders if she was too persistent and so she apologizes quietly. He doesn’t respond. Mikoto inwardly sighs at how she isn’t able to fix it smoothly, but since they’re talking at the least it’d be strange if she tried to press any further. Iroha continues to remain silent.

She also realizes that her clothing is clinging to her and sticky. The Velvet members soaked her through with the sugared water and so she can’t wear this at all… what should she do. Iroha is silent and she wonders what’s wrong since he’s been completely silent this whole time. However, when she calls out his name questioningly he suddenly tells her to strip. She freezes in surprise and then asks him hesitantly to repeat himself.

Iroha repeats that he told her to strip; and he will as well. She yelps in shock when he removes all his clothing before asking in a yell what he’s doing. He explains that, after their previous Hana Awase, their clothes have traces of taint on them from the butterfly remains. She starts to nod in understanding before she remembers the current situation at hand; does he really intend to take off all his clothes?!

Mikoto screams when he goes for his trousers and Iroha pauses before asking her why she’s screaming. But she only yells at him to put on his pants. Iroha informs her that she should quickly strip as well. She stutters out that she can’t do it here and she’ll return to the dormitories before stripping. But he points out that she can’t walk through the inside of Kaen while carrying taint.

She admits that he’s right, but she doesn’t have a change of clothes! He repeats the word “clothes” quietly and she nods before telling him that it’ll be a disaster if he walks through Kaen in his bare skin. By now she has her eyes shut as she begs him to put on his clothes again. Iroha remains silent as she tells him that he needs to put on his clothes before people come! She’ll keep her eyes closed!

He’s surprised when she picks up his clothing and asks him to put his arms through his shirt. Somehow they manage to clothe him again and Mikoto sighs in relief with her face completely red. Even though it’s be a disaster for the top of the 5 Brights to walk through Kaen like that… she can’t tell if he’s composed or just doesn’t care about it at all. She asks him to raise his arm so that she can fix his sleeve.

She’s a bit taken aback when he comes even closer to her but she adjusts his sleeve without problem and then asks him for his other arm. She finds it a bit difficult to put on his clothing, but he’s holding completely still and she’s surprised by his unexpected obedience. But then she pauses in thought and wonders why she’s the one putting on his clothes. Suddenly Iroha, who had been silent this whole time, mutters that there’s a sweet smell.

Mikoto blinks in confusion but then realizes that he might be noticing what the chairman said about her inviting water. Does he understand it? He leans closer to her and sniffs the air before asking where this sweet smell is coming from. He smells her some more and she finds herself startled by how close his face is. Mikoto informs him that she can’t put on his clothes like this and so can he back away a little?

He remains silent though and she wonders what to do because he’s staring intently at her. She takes this time to look back at him and notices that he’s unthinkably beautiful; so beautiful it makes her dizzy. She recalls that she was also surprised such a beautiful person like this existed in the world when they met for the first time. She starts to get nervous though when he continues to stare at her. What should she do?

She inwardly scolds herself and forces herself to put his clothes on properly. As she starts to say his name though she trails off when she notices something in his eyes. She can see something faint in the depths of his eyes. It is… the moon? She said that out loud though because Iroha steps back and informs her that it’s the full moon.

Mikoto asks if he means the one she read about her textbooks; the rare minamo or Kasen player who holds the moon in their eyes. Iroha reveals that it appears only when doing Hana Awase, and only a handful of players and minamo can confirm its existence in normal situations. He compliments her for seeing it. Mikoto is surprised though and wonders why she can see it.

Iroha explains that it is said that those who also hold the full moon can see it. She blinks in confusion and points out that she doesn’t have such a thing though. Iroha doesn’t respond and then leaves. As she thought though, Iroha is amazing for having the moon in his eyes.

DAY 26. Mikoto is finally satisfied at the state of her clothes. She managed to everything off and nothing was stained, luckily. She’s also amazed at how intense the members of Velvet are and how they’re a part of Kaen. Suddenly, Momotose knocks on her door and asks if she’s there. Mikoto calls out an affirmative and so Momotose enters to inform her that the chairman wishes to give her this as an apology for yesterday’s events.

She finds herself given another uniform and then Momotose mutters angrily at how she heard the entire story. How could they soak her Muse’s body in sugared water? Just what is going on with the gentlemen in Kaen! Mikoto laughs sheepishly and reassures her that she was only surprised. She’s fine now and everything was removed. Then she asks what she should do with the new uniform because the old one is still usable and it’d be a waste.

Momotose smiles and tells her that receiving the feelings behind the gift are enough. The chairman also gave her something else. Mikoto accepts the letter with curiosity. It turns out to be an invitation to a moon-viewing party. Momotose explains that the chairmen have a hobby of having a moon-viewing party every month. Only those chosen can participate and it can be called a salon.

Mikoto is taken aback by such an amazing thing being offered to her, but Momotose only giggles and reveals that the chairmen are interested in her and so the invitation was certain. She is also going to participate in it and so she’d like to go together with Mikoto. In that case Mikoto smiles and accepts the invitation. What will the moon-viewing party be like?

Then Momotose informs her that today’s Kabatsu will be Mikoto and Iroha only. Mikoto is surprised and asks why Momotose isn’t coming with them. Momotose explains that she’s meddlesome and so she’ll interfere with the Kabatsu but the Kabatsu this time is Mikoto’s test. Besides, watching over her is also a form of love. She believes that Mikoto’s own power will be enough if she isn’t there.

Plus, she also severely warned Iroha and so Mikoto can relax. Momotose sighs though and comments on how it’d be useless anyway. She doesn’t know why he’s is like that but he holds no interest towards people. Mikoto asks if she’s talking about Iroha and Momotose nods with a frown before explaining that Iroha’s concern in regard to others is weak and he also has no concern for himself. It’s as if he has no blood flowing through his veins.

He’s perfect when in regards to Kasen but he’s indifferent and careless with everything else and untidy if left alone. He’s really the worst!! Momotose sighs wistfully at the thought of being able to do a maintenance on his feelings, but even if new machine parts are bought they will simply break without a trace. Mikoto is stunned by how Momotose is really treating Iroha like a machine.

Momotose is really worried about Iroha’s attitude and she encourages Mikoto to scold him without restraint if he does anything rude. Mikoto nods hesitantly and then wonders if he really has no interest in other people. She agrees that he’s cold but she doesn’t feel that he’s uninterested. Before she came to Kaen and was in the accident, Iroha stayed by her side the entire time. She owes him her life. Iroha is a mysterious person.

Some time later, Mikoto is in Iroha’s room and she hopes they will do well in today’s Kabatsu. She also informs him that Momotose won’t be with them this time and so he might be unhappy, but she’ll work hard with her entire being. Iroha has been silent this complete time and so she hesitantly calls out his name. But there’s no response. She can see that his eyes are open but there is not even a quiver. Could he be…

Mikoto yells out at him to wake up but Iroha replies without emotion that he is awake. She sighs at his response but then he asks for water. Mikoto blinks in surprise and goes searching for it in his room, although it’s so messy that she has a hard time finding it. When she finally does find a bottle and returns to him, she finds that he’s gone. She gasps out his name and then goes running out to catch up to him.

She finally finds him in Goto-gai though she didn’t expect him to go first. She tries to hand him his water, but Iroha informs her that he’s confirmed the presence of an adabana. He orders her to perform Hana Awase. Mikoto is taken aback by the sudden information but then she nods determinedly. They fight three consecutive battles and defeat the adabana without any problems.

After they finish, Mikoto thanks him for his hard work. She finds herself exhausted from the silent and consecutive battles, and then Iroha declares that today’s Kabatsu is concluded. She nods tiredly and then suggests that they return to report to Onosada but he walks off in the middle of her sentence. Mikoto blinks in surprise before calling out at him to wait because she’s returning too!

It is evening now by the time Mikoto returns to the school. When she reaches Onosada’s room, Iroha is there to inform her that the report is finished. She apologizes while gasping and says that she ran after him but she couldn’t catch up. Then she tries to give him his water again. But he only states that their meeting can break up now and walks off.

She’s left holding onto his water silently. Mikoto notices that he didn’t look at her at all. She’s frustrated by his actions and decides to drink the water herself. Then she vows to work hard without breaking.

DAY 27. In the morning, Mikoto finds a crowd of people in the hallway. There’s something posted on the wall. Suddenly, one of the Chisen minamo exclaims happily that she’s in the top ten. Another one cries at how she became on the outside range. The first one comforts the crying girl and tells her to try harder next time, but the crying girl snaps back that she’s only saying that because she can remain.

The former asks angrily what that response is when she was trying to comfort her. If she’s mortified then she should win! The second girl yells at the first one not to say such self-important words. Mikoto is shocked to see the minamo start to fight. Then she sees Karakurenai walking down the hall and he notes with boredom that another commotion is happening again.

Mikoto greets him stiffly and with narrowed eyes, but he only sighs heavily before telling her not to be so wary. He won’t do anything to her anymore. She’s surprised by that and so he explains with a smirk that she’s Iroha’s partner, right? The moment in time when she chose him, all the men knew to look away. She opens her mouth but then he tells her to look over there at the crowd.

All of those are girls from the Chisen. They hold tournaments to determine the survivors in the group and so that’s why they’re causing such an idiotic commotion. Mikoto recalls the class representative talking about the Chisen tournaments. Karakurenai scoffs at how naive they are to compete like that; if they don’t call out to him then he won’t look at them.

But Iroha has no interest in any of them. The only words he listens to are those from that impertinent Momotose. He’s only a shitty doll under her control. Mikoto snaps out that he’s said too much. Karakurenai smirks and asks her if she believes that and if so then she should ask Iroha if he has interest in her. She’ll hear a very interesting answer. He chuckles and leaves.

In her mind Mikoto thinks on how she couldn’t possibly ask that! Karakurenai is too cruel. Then she turns her mind to the minamo of Chisen and how those who do not survive the tournament cannot remain in the group. That seems like a grave problem. It makes her scared if she imagines herself in the Chisen.

Suddenly, she hears one of the Chisen minamo point her out. Another one confirms it that she’s the senki candidate who defeated Momotose. One of them sneers and comments on how she doesn’t seem amazing. It is said that she’s been chosen by the onifuda but her power as a minamo isn’t considerable, right? They won’t forgive Mikoto for becoming a minamo in Momotose’s place. One of them agrees and is determined to show Mikoto her place.

Mikoto can feel the intense glares of the Chisen minamo on her. It’s similar to hatred… What should she do? She suddenly hears Momotose ask the girls to be quiet. The Chisen minamo gasp out her name and Momotose coolly informs them that she heard her name just now. They try to deny it but Momotose tells them that she’s heard of a strange rumor lately; that the senki candidate became Iroha’s minamo. She’s wondering who it was that is spreading this rumor.

The minamo flinch and hurriedly say that the rumor is absurd! Iroha’s minamo is no one but Momotose. Momotose informs them that they are correct and such an improper rumor will cause trouble for the senki candidate. Mikoto is taken aback by Momotose’s words and opens her mouth, but Momotose tells them flatly that the senki candidate has been guided by the onifuda into becoming a minamo of the Koukokugumi.

It is absolutely forbidden for outsiders such as the Chisen to lay a hand on her. She asks them if they understand and they quickly agree. Then Momotose approaches Mikoto with a kind smile and suggests that they leave. As the two of them walk off, Momotose apologizes to Mikoto for saying those things but if she hadn’t then the danger to Mikoto would have increased from the Chisen minamo. A lot of the girls are hot-blooded and it’s troublesome.

Mikoto shakes her head and thanks her for saving her. She also thought Momotose looked cool, and this makes Momotose blush in embarrassment at that. Mikoto finds Momotose amazing but that’s obvious since she’s Kaen’s best minamo; Mikoto also wonders if Momotose is always like that to others.

It makes her think on how strange it is for Momotose to be so kind to her. Is it because she’s the senki candidate…? Then Momotose asks if Mikoto would like to eat lunch with her because eating together with her Muse makes everything delicious. Mikoto agrees with a smile as she decides that it’s a mystery.

Some time later, Mikoto is looking in the greenhouse for Iroha because she heard he was here. If she isn’t careful he might leave for Kabatsu first. She sighs when she thinks on how Iroha becomes unhappy every once in a while when he notices her presence. He hasn’t been meeting her eyes at all. Then she notices how this greenhouse has changed completely since the last time she was here. It’s very quiet.

Not a lot of people come here, so that might be the reason why. It’s an atmosphere that she wouldn’t have thought Kaen would have. But then she notices that the plants are glistening with water. Did someone water the plants? She turns around to see Mizuchi and realizes that he must have purified this place. He’s silent at the sight of her and Mikoto averts her eyes.

But then as he starts to walk away she calls out to him. He pauses in surprise and she quickly asks if they can talk. He looks away and so she begs him to talk with her for even just a little. Mizuchi inclines his head. She thanks him happily before apologizing for taking his time but there’s something that she needs to tell him. She thinks he’s aware of this already but…

She became Iroha’s partner and the two of them are doing Kabatsu. But even still she wants to be one of Koukokugumi’s minamo. Once everything is over she wishes to return to being his partner. She thinks it might be shameless but she wants to be one of Koukokugumi’s minamo. Mizuchi averts his eyes and informs her that Iroha exceeds him by far and if she wishes to learn to be a minamo and grasp power then she should switch to the Chisen.

Mikoto stares at him in shock, but he continues on to say that the Chisen is strict but it will raise her strength. She can’t comprehend joining that bloodthirsty group though… Mikoto hurriedly tells him that she wants to, once again, be a minamo of the Koukoku and Mizuchi’s partner. But Mizuchi closes his eyes and refuses her bluntly. She flinches as he adds that he has no intentions of receiving her.

Her expression collapses but she apologizes and admits that he’s right. Then she excuses herself and as she leaves thinks that Mizuchi is angry at her. He’s always been strict but she’s never been thrust away like that. She thinks that it must be because she had been silent up until now about her partner. What should she do? She did something offensive.

Some time later, Mizuchi reports to Iroha that he finished the purification. Iroha is silent. Mizuchi adds that he came into contact with the senki candidate but there was no problem. Iroha narrows his eyes and replies sharply that there would be a problem if there was. GOD BABIES (ノ;Д;)ノ DON’T FIGHT! He also adds that he told Mizuchi already not to get involved with the senki candidate.

Mizuchi averts his eyes before he apologizes formally. From now on he won’t be in contact with her and he will protect the law he exchanged with Iroha. Iroha coolly states that those words will be enough before he walks off. Mizuchi is left behind to exhale shakily. Meanwhile, unnoticed by both of them, Himeutsugi frowns.

Some time later, Mikoto is in the practice room and thinking about how the minamo of the Chisengumi are extremely concerned with their own rank and evaluation of their strength. Everyone is frantic to be able to stand by Iroha’s side. She wonders if it’s alright for her to be Iroha’s partner like this. She decides not to check her rank. BECAUSE I’M NUMBER 1 AND LEVEL 96 ANYWAY LMAO. NOTHING CAN BEAT ME (・`◡´・) NOT EVEN IROHA.

Later on, Mikoto and Iroha finish today’s Kabatsu without any trouble. Mikoto has noticed that she’s been able to support him considerably calmly now, although she still has a ways to go. She turns around to thank him for his work but then finds that he’s gone. It’s strange but he might have gone home first. She calls out his name but there’s no answer and so she decides to return back first since it can’t be helped.

But then she hears girls squealing and notices that a large crowd has formed. Some of those girls scream out about how Iroha-sama is really cool! It’s different from seeing him in a magazine! He’s so tall and his intensity is too much! His sex appeal is too much! Another fan exclaims about how lucky they are to see Iroha being photographed. It makes her feel strange!

Mikoto is confused by what she’s hearing and then wonders if this “Iroha-sama” is actually… Meanwhile, a cameraman is snapping photos and praises his shots before asking Iroha to face this way. Mikoto’s eyes widen when she sees this and then she blurts out his name in surprise before asking him what he’s doing. But a producer calls out for her to wait and tells her that there’s a problem. If she’s talking to Iroha then she needs to go through him, the producer, first.

While she mouths the word “producer” in confusion, he tells her that Iroha is the talk of the town as the transcendent senior high school beauty model! Mikoto can’t believe Iroha is a model and the producer is horrified by her lack of knowledge and so he quickly shows her a pile of magazines with Iroha in them. Mikoto is stunned to find a special edition magazine. And then there’s one with him on the front cover!

The producer tells her that his history is a mystery! The super senior high school model Iroha who appears around Goto-gai has grabbed hold of the hearts of women with great popularity! Even an editor cum producer like him can only meet Iroha here and so his photographing has to be a guerrilla style. The moment he finds Iroha he has to snap pictures!

Mikoto turns her wide eyes to Iroha but he only answers that they said they were taking pictures and then they were just taken. She shakes her head as she realizes that he probably doesn’t know what he’s doing. She’s amazed that he’s a model, but she understands that he attracts public attention. Anyway, the producer calls for Iroha to stand over here this time; because they don’t know when they’ll meet him again they need to videotape him.

Since it seems like the photo shoot will take a while, and because it would be bad to get in the way, Mikoto decides to return first. She informs Iroha that she will return to report at Kaen and he can continue to get his pictures taken. Iroha doesn’t respond, but then one of the fans asks angrily who Mikoto is since she’s been talking to Iroha. Another thinks that’s impossible and then tells her to go away.

Mikoto winces at the stabbing glares directed at her from the people around them. She quickly gives her excuses to Iroha, but then pauses when something touches her head. Iroha states that it’s the rain. When Mikoto turns to look up in surprise it suddenly starts to pour, which makes the fans squeal. It’s a shower of rain… but it’s strong. Iroha growls out that they’re here which makes Mikoto try to ask him what he means.

But she’s interrupted by a laugh. A female appears and states that she’s found her, the senki candidate. She comments on how Kaen’s precious boxed in girl has come out to play. Are the screws loose in the heads of their otaku chairmen? Then she notes the presence of Iroha of the 5 Brights. If he is defeated then the senki candidate can be taken. It looks like the tip-off was correct.

And then a man slinks up and addresses the female as Arabuki. He tells her that the darkness field has been set up. Arabuki praises Suzumushi for his hard work and then promises him a reward later. Mikoto worriedly wonders who these people are and, as if he read her mind, Iroha explains that these are adabana and a minamo that Goto uses. Mikoto gasps and then asks him what he means by “minamo”.

Iroha informs her that minamo, by nature, lose their power if they lose their qualifications. But if they swear their loyalty to Goto then that power can once again rest in them. Mikoto repeats the word “loyalty” warily and Iroha continues on to say that it is heresy to use a fallen minamo. But even if they are heretics their powers are strong. Mikoto’s eyes widen, but then Arabuki informs them that it was the fate of the moon to meet her, Arabuki, in Goto-gai. She’ll taint them!

Mikoto screams when the rain turns black. Iroha narrows his eyes and states that they intend to exhaust them with taint and so they need to defeat them without delay. She agrees and prepares herself for Hana Awase. In her mind she’s thinking about the fallen minamo, but realizes that this isn’t the time! She needs to defeat them with all her strength! Iroha quickly sets up his field and does his field call.

They defeat the two adabana and Suzumushi screams in pain. Arabuki calls out Suzumushi’s name worriedly and then swears before declaring that she’ll pay them back for this! The two of them run away and Mikoto pants tiredly, but then Iroha tells her that those two much know about the previous utsurohi incident because they know about him and Mikoto. He declares that they need to return to Kaen and report to Onosada.

But then he pauses as he notices the state that Mikoto is in. He asks her what the problem is and she apologizes before answering that she’s only shivering a bit. He scrutinizes her while Mikoto thinks that it might have been the shower of the black rain from before because her whole body feels heavy and disgusting. Iroha murmurs out loud that she might be drying up.

Mikoto replies that she doesn’t think it’s that extreme. It might be because she was hit by the taint. She tiredly tells him that she’ll be fine when they return and she washes it off. He repeats her words quietly in thought and Mikoto notices that he’s looking at a building. Then he orders her to come and she gasps his name out when she’s taken along with him. She becomes increasingly confused as he takes her to a hotel. Why are they here?

Soon they procure a room and then Iroha turns on the shower before ordering her to enter. Mikoto points out that he’s telling her to enter… a bath. But then he tells her to take off her clothes so the taint can fall from her body. Her mouth drops open at those words before she refuses because she’s fine. He narrows his eyes and she finds that his expression has become scary.

She stutters out that she understands and she’ll strip, but she can wash this off herself and so she’d like him to go outside. But Iroha states that he doesn’t understand the reason as to why he should leave. She stutters out that it’s embarrassing. He repeats the word “embarrassing” questioningly and then asks her why because he’s not. Mikoto informs him that she is though.

He points out that there is no problem if he sees her, though there would be if it were other people. Mikoto pauses and then wonders what he meant just now. But then Iroha repeats again for her to strip because she’ll be tainted if she stays like that. She answers that she understands and she will but she’d like him to leave. Iroha tells her that she’ll need help to rid herself of all of it. She’s the senki candidate and he’d like her to have more self-awareness of that.

In her mind she’s frustrated at his unreasonable words. She’s sure that, to Iroha, her taking off her clothes is a trivial thing because Iroha is concerned about the body of the senki candidate and not her. Iroha tells her to be quick about it and then grabs her clothes, but she yelps and asks him not to grip them. She struggles and he ends up ripping her clothes which makes her gasp. He pauses as well.

Mikoto finds it cruel for this sort of thing to happen, no matter the circumstances. She starts to cry and Iroha is startled. He asks her slowly why she’s crying. She asks him while sobbing if he doesn’t feel anything when he does these things; even if she’s embarrassed or doesn’t want it. He starts to say that he doesn’t understand the reason as to why he should feel but Mikoto yells at him to understand.

She asks him if he only sees her as the senki candidate. Can he see nothing else but that about her? Iroha is completely silent before he asks her coldly if there is any need to see her as something outside of the senki candidate. Then he informs her that tears are unneeded to the senki candidate. He already told her to control her emotions. She sobs loudly at that, but Iroha only tells her to wear this when she rids herself of the taint.

He’s given her his uniform. Mikoto tries to call out for him to wait when he exits the shower, but it’s too late and he’s gone. She wonders if she was mistaken about Iroha. Is he really, like Momotose said, a person that is a machine? Even still though… she… GODS THIS SCENE IS JUST… IROHAAAA!

At night Mikoto is dreaming of the Half Moon. It greets her and notes that it’s been a while. She points out that it hasn’t appeared in her dreams lately. It agrees quietly and she asks if something is wrong. But it suddenly apologizes to her. She asks it why it is apologizing but it only falls silent. Then it tells her that it feels sorry for her, but there’s nothing it can do. She asks it what it’s talking about, but the Half Moon changes the subject and asks her if she only has one moon.

It can see two moons behind her, though there will be one moon which will break. Even it doesn’t know what will happen after this. It all depends on her. It hopes that the moon she chooses doesn’t end up leading to this place. Mikoto gasps and then calls out for it to wait and not go, but she ends up sitting up in bed. What did the Half Moon mean by its words? Especially the part about the two moons. GURL IT’S A METAPHOR!!

DAY 28. Mikoto has finished her classes and recalls that Onosada told her to come to his lecture room after this, but what should she do? Maybe she should go early and practice Hana Utsushi. She decides to go later and meets Onosada at the designated time. Onosada informs them all that he knows the identity of the minamo who attacked them in Goto-gai.

Arabuki is the weed of Coin, one of the Suuto. When Mikoto looks confused, Onosada explains that in short they are subordinates. Although they swore their loyalty to the boss, Goto, they’re weeds compared to the Suuto. Iroha realizes out loud that the one targeting the senki candidate is Coin of the Suuto then. Onosada agrees that it seems that way but they only know his name.

However, there is one thing that he is concerned about in the information gathered. Coin appears to be able to manipulate people’s minds by using a strange technique. When he manipulates them they move without any thoughts and, under Coin’s hands, it is as if they are a different person. How frightening, isn’t it?

Mikoto repeats those words in her mind and then realizes that… Iroha is the one who states out loud that it might be Mizuchi. She snaps her head in his direction as Iroha continues on to say that Mizuchi was controlled by Coin and put the senki candidate in danger at the library. Mikoto has nothing to say because if that happened then she understands now why, at that time, Mizuchi seemed like a different person.

In that case the person who attacked her was… the person called Coin?! Iroha narrows his eyes and murmurs that with this everything is connected. The principal offender for the series of utsurohi disturbances were Mizuchi. Mikoto gasps and then asks what he means by that. According to the student who was possessed in the first utsurohi disturbance, after the ceremony, Aoi was acting suspiciously in the greenhouse.

After that, Aoi was possessed by the utsurohi and expelled. The timing was as if someone was trying to get rid of the nuisance. Mikoto is stunned as he continues on to say that the next incident was the adabana disturbance at the park. Only the kaei can make the adabana wither, but there was no report to the country. There is only one meaning to that. Onosada concludes that the only kaei who have no obligation to report are the 5 Brights.

Iroha inclines his head and elaborates on how the 5 Brights, as students, obey the law of the Kaen and not the country. The reports of the Kabatsu are the responsibility of Onosada. Those who are chosen as the 5 Brights would not forget to report. Mizuchi took advantage of that common knowledge. Mikoto tries to protest but he goes on to say that immediately after that incident there are eyewitness reports of Mizuchi with the expelled Aoi in Goto-gai.

Onosada tells her that they heard it from Karakurenai. At first he was dubious but it connects to the rest of their information. Mikoto is shocked that Onosada is agreeing with Iroha. Iroha points out that even if Aoi was expelled, by having a relationship as family, she can still be called by Mizuchi. They can also be used as minamo necessary for Hana Awase whenever an adabana attacks.

Lastly, there was the library attack on the senki candidate. Mizuchi, as controlled by Coin, was going to take away her qualifications. It’s easy to put the senki candidate in danger if the ones closest to her won over. Iroha declares that, in conclusion, both Coin and Mizuchi have a connection as accomplices. Mikoto sobs out that it’s a lie. Onosada quietly asks Iroha if this is the reason as to why he’s been putting distance between him and Mizuchi.

Iroha only replies 「・・・どうでしょう。」(… Who knows). IROHA PLEASE. STOP BEING A ROBOT! At any rate, Onosada narrows his eyes and points out that this is bad if it is true that one of the 5 Brights and Goto’s subordinates are connected. But Iroha declares that he isn’t concerned about that. He thinks they should secure Mizuchi’s body immediately and deliver severe punishment… by purging him.

Mikoto gasps out the word and then tries to ask him if he means… Iroha states coldly that they will erase Mizuchi from this world. Her eyes widen and she tells him that this is too cruel, no matter what the circumstances are. She would beg him to reconsider, but Iroha refuses her curtly. He tells her sternly that he would like her to hold more self-awareness as the senki candidate.

She’s taken aback by those words but fortunately Onosada interrupts and calls for Iroha to wait; he needs the permission of the chairmen to purge one of the 5 Brights. Iroha decides that Mizuchi’s body must be restrained then. He asks Onosada to take care of the entire surroundings of Kaen to make sure Mizuchi doesn’t run away. Onosada agrees and says that he’ll leave the rest to Iroha.

Iroha excuses himself and walks out, leaving a stunned Mikoto behind. She asks desperately what she should do… what should she do? Onosada compliments Iroha for investigating up to this point and for being tenacious. He’s sure that Iroha is doing it for her sake though. She’s taken aback by this and so Onosada explains that it was a great offense to Iroha for her to be attacked and so he went searching for the offender.

Mikoto denies this though and says that it wasn’t for her but for the sake of the senki candidate. It wasn’t for her! To Iroha she only exists at the senki candidate! Onosada is surprised by how agitated she’s become and asks her if something is wrong. But in her mind she finally thinks she understands the reason as to why Iroha forcibly pulled her away from Mizuchi and made her his partner.

If she became his minamo then the senki candidate would be closest to him and he could guard her. He’s not worried for her; he’s doing everything for the senki candidate. She understands the reason but it’s a cruel decision. She repeats Mizuchi’s name worriedly in her mind.

Some time later, everyone is in the chairmen’s rooms and Kintoki informs them that they heard everything from Onosada. She remains silent. Awa asks where Mizuchi is currently. Iroha reports that he is restrained in the auditorium and the general student body is forbidden from entering. Kintoki remarks on how this is an unprecedented scandal and so he wants everyone to keep it to the people here.

Awa points out that if they are speaking the truth then they must find Coin. Iroha reports that he interrogated the subordinate, Mizuchi, about Coin’s whereabouts but he didn’t confess. Momotose narrows her eyes at the words “confess” and asks Iroha if he treated Mizuchi poorly. Iroha replies that he needs to respond with proper force if there is no confession.

Himeutsugi tells Iroha that he’s going too far. Iroha doesn’t respond, and so Himeutsugi continues on to point out that Mizuchi might only have been manipulated so he needn’t go that far. Iroha finally replies coldly that it is a problem for one of the 5 Brights to be manipulated since they hold responsibilities as the 5 Brights. Himeutsugi expression falls as he reluctantly agrees with that but…

Karakurenai snickers and comments on how interesting Iroha is, because it’s almost as if he’s the villain. Iroha doesn’t reply to this. Karakurenai notes that he’s saying things in his habitual behavior, which resembles Mizuchi, but he’s a thousand times less cute. Iroha continues to remain silent. Karakurenai laughs sharply at how hilarious this is to watch garbage crush garbage.

Then he exits the room and Himeutsugi also excuses himself quickly. Mikoto watches them go with wide eyes, but then Kintoki coughs loudly and acknowledges that while things are like this… the moon-viewing party is tonight. Awa tells Kintoki without emotion to read the atmosphere. Kintoki replies with annoyance that he knows, but the moon waits for no one. He informs all who are concerned to gather in their rooms here tonight at 8PM.

Iroha, Mikoto, and Momotose are all silent. Kintoki frowns and snaps out that if he tells them to do it then they will do it because this is orders from the chairmen. He walks off after that and then Iroha declares that he’s going to check on Mizuchi. Momotose quietly requests him to give Mizuchi some allowance, but Iroha only narrows his eyes before he walks off.

Momotose turns to Mikoto and admits that she doesn’t know what to say. Even she can’t enter the auditorium and so she can only hope that Mizuchi isn’t encountering anything horrible. She notes that Iroha is usually always composed, but right now she thinks he’s acting a little strange. It’s as if something is urging him on and something is making him act strangely. Mikoto doesn’t respond.

As evening falls Mikoto finds herself in the courtyard and wondering what Iroha is doing to Mizuchi. She prays for Mizuchi to be safe. Suddenly, Himeutsugi calls out her name. He tells her that, even now, he doesn’t believe it. He’s known Mizuchi since he entered Kaen and it’s impossible for him to do what Iroha is accusing him of doing. Mikoto thinks the same. Then Himeutsugi tells her that what he says might trouble her but…

Ever since the day that Mizuchi assaulted her in the library, Iroha has become cold to him. Mikoto believes that it’s because Iroha suspects him to be the offender of the incident. Himeutsugi agrees that she might have a point, but he also thinks she might have an influence on this. When Mikoto looks at him in confusion, he points out that normally if a girl that one likes is in love with another man then they would be jealous.

She becomes even more confused at his words and so he cuts to the chase and says that she likes Mizuchi, doesn’t she? Mikoto averts her eyes and admits that she doesn’t know if she likes him or not, but she thinks he’s kind and honest and so she respects him. He is a very important person to her. Himeutsugi smiles sadly and confesses that if the person he liked said things like what she just did then he would hate Mizuchi.

Mikoto gasps and asks him why he would!? His smile twists painfully as he tells her that this is what men are like. They don’t want the girl they like thinking about men other than them; to say nothing of the girl they like defending that man. DAGGERS TO MY HEART. TEARS IN MY SOUL. Her eyes widen and she hesitantly points out that he’s talking as if he…

Himeutsugi shrugs and tells her that this is what he would do, if it were him. He can only guess for Iroha, but it’s hard to know what he’s thinking. Then he tells her that he’s going to think of a way to save Mizuchi and excuses himself. Mikoto is left thinking on how it sounds as if Iroha likes her… but that’s impossible. GURL PLEASE. PLEASE PUT HIM OUT OF HIS MISERY. I CAN’T HANDLE THIS ANYMORE _(┐「ε’:)_.

He only sees her as the senki candidate and it has nothing to do with who she is. But if that’s the case, then what is the thing that is urging Iroha on? WHEN YOU’VE ELIMINATED ALL THE POSSIBILITIES, WHATEVER REMAINS HOWEVER IMPOSSIBLE MUST BE THE TRUTH. AKA: HE LOVES YOU DUM-DUM. She decides to head to the auditorium because she wants to see what is happening with her own eyes.

When she gets to the greenhouse she notices that there is a note affixed onto the wall saying that it is forbidden to enter the auditorium. She wonders what she should do and maybe she should turn back… But then she shakes her head because she’s come this far already! Mikoto pulls the door open a crack and peeks into the dark auditorium. Is Mizuchi and the others inside?

She suddenly gasps when she spots Mizuchi all bloody and bruised. Iroha asks Mizuchi in a low voice where Coin is. Mizuchi apologizes respectfully before saying that he doesn’t know that person. Iroha swings his arm and a cut appears on Mizuchi, who grunts in pain. Then Iroha tells him that he heard those words already before he growls out that Mizuchi doesn’t know when to give up. Has he not had enough?

Iroha slices Mizuchi up some more. Mikoto is horrified to see Mizuchi bloodstained. Mizuchi is panting with pain but then he falls silent. Iroha notes that he’s fallen unconscious and then snaps at him to wake up. He pours a bucket of water on Mizuchi which makes him splutter as he’s brought back. Then Iroha tells him that until he spits out everything, he will not be granted a moment of rest.

Mizuchi gulps down air before calling out Iroha’s name. He pants out that he has endeavored to act in ways as to not embarrass the 5 Brights and he would ask Iroha to believe him. But Iroha only punches him in the face. Iroha declares that if he does not confess then he’ll ask those in the Koukoku and naturally he’ll punish those who defend Mizuchi. Mizuchi’s eyes widen and he frantically pleads with Iroha not to involve those in the Koukoku. He doesn’t care about himself!

Iroha is silent before he grabs Mizuchi by the hair and pulls his head up. Then he asks him dangerously if he’s including the senki candidate when he speaks of the minamo in the Koukoku. He still has no intentions to give up on her then?! Mizuchi’s eyes widen and he opens his mouth to say something, but Iroha clenches a fist and demands Mizuchi to throw away his feelings for the senki candidate immediately.

His voice becomes harsh as he declares 「泉姫候補を見ることも・・・考えることも許可しない。お前の中から彼女の存在を消せ。さもなくば、殺す。」(You have no authorization to look at the senki candidate… or even think about her. Erase her presence from your mind. If you do not… I will kill you). GODS IROHA’S VOICE HERE PAINS ME SO MUCH BECAUSE THIS IS THE FIRST TIME YOU HEAR HIM SO ANGRY.

At the door, Mikoto flinches in horror. What is he doing?! Mikoto yells out Mizuchi’s name in her mind. Back in the auditorium, Mizuchi narrows his eyes before he slowly says that he understands. Iroha is silent. But then Mizuchi says 「どうぞ、殺してください。」(Please, go ahead and kill me). Iroha is visibly startled by those words.

Mizuchi declares 「罪を問われようと、痛みをあたえられようと・・・耐えられます。しかし、自分の中から、泉姫候補の存在を消すことは・・・耐えられません。」(Regardless of my sins or the pain that is given to me… I can withstand it. However, to erase the senki candidate’s existence within me… I cannot bear that). No matter the distance placed between them… he will not erase his feelings for the senki candidate!

Then he says 「どうしてもとおっしゃるなら、どうか、自分をひと思いに殺してください。この命を奪っても・・・心までは奪えません!」(If what you say is absolute then, please, kill me instantly. Even if you take this life… you will never take my heart!). SORRY WHAT WAS THAT? I CAN’T SEE THROUGH MY TEARS FOR BOTH OF THESE GUYS. OUCH IROHA. OUCH MIZUCHI.

Iroha is deathly silent before he snarls out that if this is how it is then he’ll grant Mizuchi’s wish! Mikoto’s eyes widen when Iroha releases Mizuchi’s head before delivering another punch. He punches him again and again but Mizuchi only remains silent except for his grunts of pain. Mikoto starts to shake her head and whispers at Iroha to stop. She even tries to go in but suddenly Onosada tells her to wait and not to go.

She whirls around in surprise, but Onosada only tells her to let Iroha punch Mizuchi because he won’t really kill him. She blurts out that at this rate Mizuchi will…! Onosada admits that he doesn’t know how she’s seeing it but… Iroha has lost. Mikoto is confused by the word “lost” but Onosada tells her that 「アンタが行って蛟をかばったら、さすがの鉄面皮も壊れちまうぜ。」(If you go and defend Mizuchi, then even the iron machine will break).

Mikoto shouts out that she doesn’t understand what he’s talking about; the one who is in pain is Mizuchi! Onosada only smiles though and tells her that it’s best if she doesn’t understand. Then he decides that it’s about time for a referee stop and he tells Mikoto to return.

She has no choice but to obey reluctantly. As she leaves she thinks about how, no matter how she looks at it, Iroha is doing everything one-sided. Why did Onosada say that he lost? She doesn’t understand but… those words that Mizuchi said meant… “that”.

At night, Mikoto notices that the moon has already risen. It’s a beautiful moon and it feels like it’s going to suck her in. There is also a moon in the world of Kasen and she read in her textbooks that it is a symbol of madness. It attracts people and makes them act strangely. She feels a bit afraid of the moon when she looks at it alone like this. Just looking at it makes her feel somehow uplifted.

Suddenly someone knocks on her door. It turns out to be Momotose who informs her that it is time for the moon-viewing party and is Mikoto prepared? Mikoto quietly tells her that she is and they can leave now. When the two of them reach the chairmen’s room, Kintoki greets them with a smile and tells them that they were waiting. Mikoto summons up a small smile and thanks them for the invitation.

Awa gestures for them all to head to the terrace. Mikoto looks up in the sky and gasps in astonishment when she sees two large butterflies fluttering around the moon. Kintoki explains that, just as the word “moon-viewing” implies, this is a party to admire the moon. Tonight the leading actors are the moon and their pair of butterflies; Ruri and Beni. THEIR NAMES MEAN LAPIS LAZULI AND CRIMSON.

Mikoto finds them almost magical with the way they whirl and flutter around the moon sweetly. Awa tells them to enjoy themselves until the moment the moon becomes hidden again. Mikoto thanks them deeply and then Momotose asks her to come sit beside her. As she takes the seat, Momotose informs her that Himeutsugi seems to be arriving late. Mikoto nods politely but she’s distracted by how Iroha is beside her.

Iroha hasn’t said a thing and Mikoto also falls silent. She doesn’t know what expression to put on after seeing him like that. She’s scared of him… the most out of everyone she’s seen. But inwardly shakes her head and tells herself to act naturally. Iroha still hasn’t said anything and then Momotose asks her if she would like some tea; there are herbs from the greenhouse placed inside.

Mikoto suggests pouring some for everyone else too, but then Iroha tells them not to bother because he is leaving now. Momotose frowns and Mikoto turns around in surprise. Momotose’s voice is serious as she asks him if he is going to where Mizuchi is and Iroha’s expression turns severe as he asks if there is a matter with that. Kintoki calls out to Iroha and tells him not to speak of boring things.

Mizuchi is being guarded by Onosada and so he can remain here for a while. Iroha has no response to that and so everyone turns to look at the moon again. Kintoki tells everyone to look at how honestly beautiful the full moon is with its shape and color… to the point of being eerie. Then he comments on how today is more fun than usual… as if the moon is being courted.

But then Awa’s voice is full of alarm as he calls for Kintoki to look at it again. Everyone is surprised and Kintoki gasps at the sight of Ruri falling. What is the meaning of this? Momotose points at the moon in horror and Mikoto is shocked to see it turn crimson. Iroha exclaims that it’s a total eclipse of the moon. Mikoto is surprised by the lunar eclipse but Kintoki declares that this is impossible. Why is it appearing at this time…

Suddenly Mikoto stiffens at the sound of utsurohi. She screams in surprise when an innumerable amount of black butterflies comes flying at them. Iroha thinks that there must have been some remaining utsurohi butterflies. Mikoto can’t believe it because they certainly defeated them. Kintoki gasps out Beni’s name and then Momotose yells at Iroha to Hana Awase and assumes the stance, but then she says his name in shock when he doesn’t respond.

Iroha is silent before he suddenly orders Mikoto to come to him. She yelps in pain when he grabs her arm and she tries to ask what he’s doing. Iroha’s voice is lined with steel as he declares 「私の水妹は君だ。・・・戦え。」(You are my minamo… Fight). HIS VOICE HERE GIVES ME CHILLS WOWGKDFS IT’S SO FIERCE. Mikoto is taken aback by the ferocity in his voice but she nods.

He sets up his field in a cold voice and they enter the fight. The butterflies are defeated but Mikoto is left panting and taken aback by their strength. These butterflies are much stronger and overwhelming than before. But then she turns back to the moon in horror when she hears more flapping wings. They’re still coming and even faster! Momotose asks what is happening but then the door is slammed open.

It is Onosada and he reports that an innumerable number of utsurohi in the shape of butterflies have appeared in Kaen. Kintoki grits his teeth and explains that they know because they have appeared here as well. But Onosada also reports that Mizuchi has disappeared from the auditorium. Mikoto is shocked to hear this and Awa asks Onosada stiffly if he wasn’t there at the auditorium.

Onosada replies that it happened in the moment that he looked away because of the lunar eclipse commotion. Kintoki exclaims that there is a strong barrier placed around the auditorium and there is no way for them to get in. Mikoto tries to understand the meaning of this because Mizuchi had been bound. In that kind of situation how did he get out form the auditorium?!

Iroha thinks that the most probable case is Coin coming to free Mizuchi and calling the utsurohi to act as camouflage. Mikoto turns to him in surprise and tries to point out that there’s a barrier. Onosada worriedly says that they underestimated Goto’s upper echelons. Iroha narrows his eyes and declares that Mizuchi has fallen to Goto and at this rate the general student body will be drawn into danger. He is requesting permission from the chairmen to purge Mizuchi.

Kintoki grits his teeth but nods his head because it can’t be helped. But he orders that the extermination of the utsurohi is first because at this rate Kaen is going to be stained in taint. Iroha inclines his head and states that he will act with the senki candidate and they will eliminate the utsurohi within Kaen. Momotose decides that she will stay here to protect the chairmen and Onosada.

Mikoto acknowledges that firmly and then heads out with Iroha. Immediately they are assaulted by an innumerable amount of butterflies in the corridor. Iroha informs her that they are going to be in a series of battles from here on and so she cannot relax her attention at all. Mikoto gives a firm nod and Iroha sets up his field in a flat voice. They defeat that group of butterflies but even more flies out.

Iroha tells her that they’re going to lure them into a classroom and Mikoto hurriedly follows him into an empty classroom. The two of them wait until the butterflies appear and then they enter into another fight. They defeat that group of butterflies but Mikoto is starting to wince with pain. Even though they keep defeating them and defeating them, more keep on appearing. Just where exactly are they coming from?

Mikoto screams when more butterflies appear and Iroha shouts at her to run. As they run down the hallway, Mikoto is shocked to see the butterflies chasing them. They stop in the courtyard to catch their breaths but then the butterflies swarm onto them all at once. They defeat all the butterflies in that area and then end up running into Iroha’s room. Mikoto is panting with exhaustion as she asks Iroha what all of this is.

She finds it strange at their state of excitement. Moreover, they also seem to know where the two of them are… Iroha is silent and she says his name questioningly when she notices him staring intently at her. More butterflies appear outside of the windows but then Iroha states out loud that he understands it now… it’s the inviting water. When she looks at him in confusion he explains that her scent is attracting the butterflies.

Mikoto is startled but then points out that it didn’t work at all in the greenhouse… He asks her slowly if she still doesn’t understand that a sweet scent is rising up from her entire body. She’s taken aback as he continues on to say that it’s not only the butterflies, but also the main cause as to why Mizuchi is driven odd. It is 「泉姫候補が放つ、破滅の水・・・。」(The water of destruction that the senki candidate releases…).

His expression relaxes as he murmurs that it’s not just her scent… it’s her entire being. Mikoto worriedly calls out his name again but she gasps when he pins her to the wall. Iroha’s voice is a whisper 「・・・このツキは、違えていた。望月が血を流している。これは、もっとも選んではいけない運命だった。」(… This moon is a mistake. The full moon is bleeding. This is a fate which must not be chosen).

But then he angrily says 「だが、もう・・・止めることはできない。」(But it’s already… too late to stop it). His voice becomes pained 「何故、選んでしまったのだろう。あの日・・・君が泣いていたから。望月が、濡れていたから・・・。私が・・・月を見てしまったから。」(Why was it chosen, I wonder. Because on that day… you were crying. Because the full moon… was wet… Because I… saw the moon).

“ON THAT DAY YOU WERE CRYING” IS VERY IMPORTANT. REMEMBER THIS. Mikoto frantically asks him what’s gotten into him because she doesn’t understand what he’s saying! But Iroha only murmurs that now that fate has been mistaken then… he will die with her. She cries out his name questioningly but he silences her with a forceful kiss. She tries to yell at him to let her go but he only continues to kiss her.

Iroha’s voice is shaking as he says out loud that her lips are sweet, her tongue is sweet. Sweet, sweet, sweet. Before they die… he wants her body. He says in a strangled voice 「罪は・・・死とともに許される。」(My sins will… be forgiven with death). Mikoto finds it painful when he slides his tongue into her mouth. She can’t breathe! She tries to tell him to stop again but then finds that his hand is crawling down her body slowly… as if he’s checking something…

He starts to pant heavily and then Mikoto gasps before yelping out that he can’t touch “that place”. He’s not allowed! But he spits out that Mizuchi touched this place. Mikoto is shocked when she realizes that Iroha must have been there at that time in the library, but if so… why?! Iroha whispers at her to relax her body because he can’t take off her clothes. But Mikoto only screams at him not to touch her.

However, all her strength is leaving her and she doesn’t know what to do. Meanwhile, Iroha continues to breathe heavily. He confesses that he wants her which shocks her and makes her scream at him to move off. She screams for Mizuchi but this makes Iroha yell out angrily 「その名を口にするな!」(DO NOT SPEAK THAT NAME!). Mikoto is shocked into silence and then she realizes that the moon in his eyes has become clear.

Iroha’s angry expression fades away and then he stares at her sadly. Then he says quietly 「君は、このままひとつになって・・・ツキを失い、私と死ぬ。」(Become one with me right now… lose that moon, and die with me). Mikoto starts to cry as she asks him why. He’s lying when he talks about dying, right? Iroha doesn’t respond. She turns away and cries out that she doesn’t want to.

But he only repeats that they will become one. Mikoto screams out in refusal and then the door is slammed open. Someone calls out her name and she whirls around to see Himeutsugi and a bloody Mizuchi. Mizuchi calls out her name worriedly and she runs up to him while crying with relief at how he’s unharmed. She’s really glad! He replies with a smile that he’s also glad she’s safe, but then he falls silent and looks at Iroha.

Iroha is silent at this exchange. Then Himeutsugi apologizes and tells Iroha that he was the one who released Mizuchi. Iroha continues to remain silent and so Himeutsugi continues on to say that even if Mizuchi is being manipulated by the Suuto, and even if there is evidence, he believes in him. Moreover, the one who was chosen by the girl is not him. The one who is chosen is Mizuchi.

This only makes Iroha respond 「許されない。」(Unacceptable), but Himeutsugi shakes his head and says that the one who is unforgivable is Iroha! Iroha’s voice can barely be heard 「私の?」(Me?). Himeutsugi tells him to look behind himself and Mikoto is horrified to see even more butterflies appear. They break through the window and start to flutter around Iroha who is silent.

Himeutsugi tells him that he must understand already just who exactly the butterflies, stained with utsurohi, are attracted to. Utsurohi haunt those with negativity in their hearts and these butterflies, who have had their shape borrowed, are fluttering around… his heart, are they not? Mikoto’s eyes widen in horror and she asks Himeutsugi if he means that… But Iroha only repeats quietly for her to die with him here.

Mikoto screams out his name when the butterflies start to approach, but then Mizuchi calls out to her to Hana Awase. They defeat Iroha along with the butterflies, but Iroha is unfazed and even more butterflies appear behind him. Mikoto wonders in horror if this is the state of Iroha’s heart; such sadness… and empty of hope. Iroha is completely silent and so she begs him somehow to…

But Mizuchi interrupts and tells Iroha that the senki candidate neither belongs to Iroha or him. Mikoto murmurs his name while Iroha narrows his eyes. Mizuchi adds that, however, their feelings are allowed; his and Iroha. Iroha is silent before he wonders out loud 「・・・許される、か。」(… Forgiven, huh). Then, for the first time, he calls Mikoto by her name and says that it would have been better if he had killed her.

When she stares at him in shock, he murmurs 「・・君だけが持っているツキの力で、もう一度会おう。」(… With the power of the moon that only you hold, let us meet again). Those words take her by surprise and she tries to ask him what he just said, but he leaps backwards out of the window and she screams his name. Mizuchi and Himeutsugi both gasp when they hear the shattering glass.

A loud crash is heard on the ground and Mikoto yells out Iroha’s name again before dashing out of the school and to where he lies. She starts sobbing at how this sort of thing happened. She calls out his name over and over again and yells at him to open his eyes. But there is no response. She asks through her tears why he’s crying. She asks him hysterically if he wasn’t the one who told her to control her emotions and not to cry.

There is no response. She asks him desperately why he’s crying. GOING THROUGH THIS TWICE IS MORE THAN ENOUGH SJGFHJ I THINK I HEAR MY SOUL CRACKING. She tells him not to cry. Please don’t cry. There is no response. Mikoto screams out his name.

Iroha died. Mizuchi didn’t remember anything about being involved with Goto or the Suuto. But still, he said he would take responsibility and so he left the school. On that note, her involvement with him ended. She also had hopes of leaving the school but the chairmen detained her to protect her from Goto. However, in the end, she didn’t awaken as a senki. After Iroha died the minamo of Chisen dispersed.

Many, after receiving the shock of his death, followed after him by committing suicide and it would have been a disaster if Momotose hadn’t been there to support the rest. In front of her, Momotose acted as she normally did. It was a long time later that Momotose told her about finding the apple chips she gave Iroha in the drawer of his room. The amount of chips had only decreased by a little.

Momotose had smiled sadly as she told her that he probably treasured them and ate them little by little every day. Mikoto became an empty shell for a while after Mizuchi and Iroha were gone. And even now, the last words that Iroha had said make her curious.

Why did he say the same things as the Half Moon? More importantly, why was she still alive when she had mistaken her path? Even now she still has no answer.

Epilogue! Mikoto is at the bus station outside when her cellphone rings. She answers and Ai hurriedly tells her that she’s running late! Is Mikoto already there? Mikoto answers that she is but Shou hasn’t arrived yet. Ai calls him an idiot but then apologizes because she’s just leaving the house. She’ll head over there at a dash though! Mikoto tells her that it’s fine and to be careful.

After she ends the call she smiles at how the two of them are the same as always. It’s been a long time since she came out like this. For a long time she’s been coming and going from the dormitory to Kaen. Himeutsugi also offered to escort her out of worry about Goto, but Ai and Shou would be surprised and the place they’re going to is nearby anyway. At any rate, it’s also a nice day. It feels like shopping weather.

Mikoto thinks on what she should buy, although she doesn’t have much spending money. Then she recalls that Shou said he wanted to look at bags and so she decides to look for a new one as well. She’s about to continue planning her day out but then her cellphone rings. She takes it out while wondering who it is and then is startled when she sees the display.

Just as she answers the phone, Mikoto is alarmed to hear the screeching tires of a car. A crash happens and Mikoto wonders in a daze what just happened. This is as if… Her consciousness is… Everything turns black.

Then she hears a voice call her name. She’s surprised because this voice is… The voice calls her name again and then tells her to grip his hand tightly. She wonders who this is. It’s the voice of a small… boy? The voice tells her 「次の僕の番・・・さあ。」(My turn is next… Come now). She takes his hand and asks him if he meant like this. The boy tells her that she’s doing it right and then thanks her.

He also tells her 「ぼく、みことのだいじなもの、とられないよう、まもってあげる・・・みことのためなら、なんでもする。どんなことでも・・・。」(I will protect Mikoto’s precious thing, so that it won’t be taken… For Mikoto’s sake I will do anything. No matter what it is…). Mikoto can see light now beyond the hand. She’s drawn into the bright light. THIS SOUNDS EERILY LIKE HIMEUTSUGI. CHECK OUT THE FLASHBACK IN HIS ROUTE.

The very last line is Iroha’s voice saying 「浅き夢見じ、酔ひもせず・・・」(We shall never allow ourselves to drift away intoxicated, in the world of shallow dreams). THIS IS THE FAMOUS “IROHA” BY RYUICHI ABE.

*** SPECIAL SCENE ***

When Mikoto reaches Rank 2, Onosada tells her that she should know who came already. He calls for someone to come and Iroha appears to tell her emotionlessly that he’s been waiting. Mikoto’s eyes widen and he informs her that he’s going to battle her. She’s taken aback by this abrupt challenge. He tells her that he heard from Momotose that she’s been fighting the 5 Brights up until now.

The last one is him. Onosada informs her that the person who will oversee this match is him. He jokes about how he has to burn this into his memory; the gallant figure of the senki candidate climbing her way to the top of Kaen. Momotose appears and tells them that she’ll supervise this as well. In order to see Mikoto at the top she dropped everything she was doing and came running.

Mikoto blinks in surprise, but then Himeutsugi shows up and tells her that he’ll also watch. Mizuchi is also with him and tells her 「鴻鵠の者として、君の活躍をうれしく思う。期待している。」(As a member of the Koukokugumi, I am happy for your success. I will be anticipating great things). GAFKLGADG MIZUCHI. AGDKGDN OMG WHY AM I GETTING FEELS FROM A STUPID CHILDREN’S CARD GAME.

UGH THE SUPPORT IS SO TOUCHING. Karakurenai growls out childishly that she definitely better win. Mikoto is surprised to see him, but he just grins and tells her to use the technique he taught her to smash Iroha. Onosada informs everyone that Iroha is well-known among all the students and in the entries. He is undefeated.

Mikoto gasps at that and then tells Iroha that the title seems pretty important. He tells her emotionlessly that he doesn’t care. She flinches at his composure. Onosada tells Mikoto to show off her accomplishment among the students of Kaen. Now to start this decisive battle for the top!

IF MIKOTO LOSES. Mikoto winces at how strong he is. She notices him staring at her intensely and then he tells her that this wall she is hitting is because she is a minamo. Then he tells her that it would be nice if one day she exceeded him, who represents this wall. She stares at him with wide eyes and then Himeutsugi calls out her name worriedly.

Momotose smiles and congratulates her for trying her best. It was a splendid Hana Awase. Onosada comforts her by saying that her opponent was Iroha and so it’s understandable. Karakurenai glares and spits out that she just needed one more step.

Mizuchi praises her 「君は勇敢だった。悔やむことはない。共に、さらなる精進に励もう。君のそばには、つねに自分がいることを忘れないでくれ。」(You were brave. This is nothing to be frustrated about. In fact, it gives both of us even more encouragement to be diligent. Do not forget that I am always by your side). ADGFKDJGDF I NEED TO LOSE MORE IF I GET COMFORTED LIKE THIS GAJKDFLGAD.

He smiles at her and Mikoto returns his smile. Onosada whistles off to the side and remarks on the heat between them. Mikoto averts her eyes with a blush and Mizuchi looks away as well. Then she remembers to ask Iroha what happens to the loser. He tells her flatly that there is nothing right now. Mikoto gapes at him which causes him to ask her if she would like there to be a condition. She hurriedly blurts out that she’d rather not.

Anyway, Onosada comments on how this time was a failure. May she work hard so that she avoids being crushed. Mikoto nods determinedly and wonders if Iroha is that strong because she faced him immediately. She would like to be as strong as him. A stronger minamo!

IF MIKOTO WINS. Mikoto cheers in happiness. Suddenly people start clapping around her and she’s shocked to see the gallery filled with cheering people. Momotose tells her that it was an amazing match. She confesses that she’s so moved she almost wants to cry. She praises Mikoto for working so hard. Himeutsugi also congratulates her and tells her how amazing it is for her to win against Iroha.

Mizuchi praises her Hana Awase for being splendid and tells her that she is the pride of the Koukokugumi. Onosada admits that he didn’t think she would get this far. Now she is the top of the top in name and reality. She thanks him bashfully and then notices Iroha staring at her silently. She acknowledges him by saying his name, but then he tells her quietly to come. She yelps in surprise when he grabs her arm and pulls her out.

She asks him what has gotten into him but he doesn’t answer, which only causes her to wonder what the heck is going on. He takes her to the courtyard and stares at her intensely. Mikoto stutters out Iroha’s name questioningly, but he only remains silent. Finally he tells her that he’s been thinking of a reward. When she looks confused he explains that he’s been thinking all this time about what reward to give her that would be appropriate.

What would be good? She smiles gently and then tells him that it’s fine, because she doesn’t need one. Just being able to match him in Hana Awase is more than enough for her! FDAKLGJDFGD THE ANTICIPATION IS KILLING ME. She starts to tell him that at the time when she came to this school and met him and the others.. no, it was even more before then.

From the time that he saved her from the accident and the demon card chose her, she yearned to enter the Kasen world. If she didn’t meet everyone then the current her wouldn’t exist. The card called to her and guided her to him and the others. It guided her down the entire road of Kasen and this is more than enough of a reward for her.

She bows and thanks him deeply before telling him that she will also work hard, without losing focus, to be a minamo. Iroha is silent and then murmurs 「・・・そうか。」(… Is that so). Since Mikoto has finished speaking she tries to excuse herself, but he tells her to wait. She turns back to look at him in confusion.

Then he says 「今の話を聞いて、やりたいことができた。・・・してもいいか。」(After hearing this story, I have something I want to do… Will you let me?). She repeats his words in confusion and he explains 「理由はわからない。だが、そう、したいと思っている。・・・いいだろうか。」(I don’t understand the reason. But even still… I want to do it… May I?). She smiles brightly and gives him permission.

Iroha falls silent and then takes a step closer before he brushes his lips against hers. Mikoto’s eyes widen and she gasps out his name. Iroha is silent before he quietly murmurs 「ようこそ、華園へ。私は君を歓迎する。」(Welcome to Kaen. I welcome you). I WOULD LIKE TO COME TO THIS SCHOOL IF THIS IS WHAT I GET MAKLGDFKLGN OMFG AGLDGK I AM SCREAMING AT THE CG. LEGIT. FUCKIAGADFG IROHA.

Her mouth drops open in surprise while Iroha’s eyes narrow as he admits that he doesn’t know the reason why he wanted to do this. He also doesn’t know what to do from now on. And then he tells her that her powers as a minamo are still unknown, which is why he would like her to be diligent and aim for supremacy among the minamo. He confesses 「私は、それを見守りたい。」(I want to watch over that).

Mikoto stares at him with wide eyes before smiling and accepting his words. Iroha looks to the sky as he tells her 「・・・我々は華。君は水。互いに交わることで、新たな命が生まれていく。」(… We are the flowers. You are the water. When they mutually join, a new life (fate) is born).

He adds 「それは、水妹のさざなみのように、ゆるやかなもの。」(It is – like the ripples of the minamo – a gentle thing). The last thing he says is 「祝福の水となり・・・華を、咲かせて欲しい。」(Next to the blessed water… I want the flowers.. to bloom).

*** THINGS TO NOTE ***

This GAME and it’s stupid despair-inducing routes. Okay, now everything has been revealed. When she gets hit by the car there is no voice, but going by the speech pattern it sounds a LOT like Himeutsugi. What I love most about this game is that WoGa is developing it as a trilogy (or tetralogy) which means that all the games are linked. Himeutsugi-hen is next and so I’m 90% sure that this boy telling her to grab his hand is Himeutsugi.

WHICH MEANS THEY PLANNED THIS WHOLE GAME WITH LOOPS. It reminds me a lot of Amnesia’s alternate worlds, except Mikoto seems to be stuck in a reincarnation loop… We still don’t know if she travels to a different world or something, but the onifuda choosing her partner definitely has a role in this.

Gods, everything Iroha says is like a stab to my soul. He’s my absolute favorite out of this game because you can just sense the pain he’s immersed in. Even though he barely speaks, and when he does it’s a monotone, you know what he’s feeling from his actions and the comments of others. Basically, he’s tormented by Mikoto choosing men other than him and yet he knows that he himself is the wrong choice. UGH.

There was that scene in the shower where he says that it wouldn’t be a problem if he sees her, although there is if other people were to see her. THAT THROWS UP SO MANY FLAGS. Has he seen her like that before? Did they use to be lovers?? DOESN’T IT JUST SEEM SO SAD?!?!

He tries his best to push her away and yet, at the same time, he can’t because he’s so in love with her. Also, it’s pretty much 90% confirmed that Iroha is the Half Moon. They both have the same voice and he says a line that the Half Moon says before he… falls out the… window… An interesting thing to note is that he also mentions this “sin” of his a lot, but we never find out what it is. He seems to be aware of the loop too ;; or has past memories of Mikoto.

Iroha’s namesake poem is “Iroha” and I quoted the full version in my common route post. It suits him so well (ノ;Д;)ノ especially since he loves to quote the last part.

I’m seriously looking forward to the rest of the series and would recommend it to everyone. It’s very cheap too, only coming to 1500¥ which is like $15 CDN. That means that getting all 3 games amounts to ~$45 which is cheaper than a full game by itself. WoGa knows what they’re doing!

Lastly, I’m going to translate the monologue that comes with his character page booklet when you buy the full game because I feel like it reveals even more clues to his past. He talks about a day that she was crying. COUGHS. Does that sound familiar?! There are also a lot of theories over here at the OJ Forum.

――空をあおいだ。
–The sky was blue.

その日は、とても綺麗な望月だった。
On that day, there was a very beautiful full moon.

紅と蒼の螺旋が私を包み込み、導いていく。
Spirals of red and blue wrapped around me and lead me.

・・・君は、泣いていた。
… You were crying.

どうして泣いているのかわからない。
I do not know why you were crying.
何をしゃべっているのかも、その涙の意味を、私は理解できなかった。
What I should say, the meaning of those tears, I couldn’t comprehend.

全ての命は決められている。
Everyone’s fate is determined.

君も私も、あたえられた命にあるべき宿を遂行するだけの存在。
You and I are only existences that house and accomplish our bestowed fate.

だから私は・・・これからも、きっと君を理解することはないだろう。
That is why I… surely won’t be able to understand you after this.
この咎がある限り、ずっと。
Forever… as long as this sin exists.

だが・・・。
But…
いまだけは、君と。
Only for now, I can be with you.

次の永遠が始まる、このわずかなひとときだけ。
Only in this mere moment, before the next eternity begins.

私は、望月を求める――。
I search for the full moon–.

47 thoughts on “Hana Awase 「蛟編」 ~ Iroha ~

    Hana said:
    May 19, 2014 at 09:36

    Ahh I replayed Iroha’s route again with your post.. the FEELS just keep coming back :D I know that you said you want to get one dialovers route out before making your hime-hen posts… but I’m so impatient lmaooo I can’t help it. Ever since I received hime-hen in the mail, I always look at it and go through these hana awase withdrawals, I replay the routes in mizuchi-hen (and fall in love all over again) But I heard hime-hen was really good and I just *looks longingly at it on my shelf* It’s been a while since your last post, but of course you have a life of your own. Perhaps you could start the common route of hime-hen? Then go back to dialovers if you want to?

    ADFADJSFKASD I’M SO SORRY I sound so demanding aksdjfhajsfd LOL hana awase withdrawals may be a legit thing if it makes me this OOC :S asjhdfasjdfasdfj I’m gonna shut up now and stop being such a demanding child, since it’s up to you on what and when to post and ahhhh I’m so sorry for sounding like a kid. WHAT AM I SAYING.

    *ahem* Anyways, thank you so much for all your beautifully written posts. I am in love with this series – solely thanks to you. I’m pretty sure I commented a couple times on here before, but I think my display name’s different, don’t remember my older alias lol. All right, I’m going to shut up now, you can safely ignore the above. I just wanted to let that out (though it’s is highly incoherent). It’s official. I’ve gone crazy. Thank you XD

      Hana said:
      May 22, 2014 at 08:18

      Looking back at this, ugh I sound horribly unreasonable, can’t delete that comment now >.< Well, I've just started dialovers with your posts too, and it's definitely different from most games I've played haha ^^; Anyways, no need to rush what you're doing and you can write these posts on your own time and whenever you want to. No need to feel obliged to do so. They're so detailed and wonderfully written, so no words can amount to how grateful I am. So as long as you're happy and healthy, that's the most important thing :)

      My sense of reason has come back as you can see so clearly XD Anyways, you're awesome for spreading the otome love for fans who'd never have the chance to play these games otherwise. I've been semi-stalking your twitter/tumblr, so I know you've been swept away with Winter Soldier and HNR-which I'm halfway through btw and it's fantastic so far :D

        Ilinox responded:
        May 26, 2014 at 23:47

        It’s strange because I was pretty much looking forward to Hime-hen all the time too but I kind of stowed it away in a corner so I wouldn’t be able to look at it and I think it just kind of got buried in my backlog |D;; I’m still looking forward to it but at the same time my guilt complex just kind of… glares at me from the Diabolik Lovers’ corner.

        Ah, no worries! It’s good to get these comments once in a while as well to remind me of the responsibilities I have on my blog ヾ(:3ノシヾ)ノシ and you’re really polite about it.

        I vaguely remember your other alias as well but it’s on the tip of my tongue. It started with an “H” as well, didn’t it? Seriously though, hearing comments from people who appreciate my posts is always a huge motivator to get my butt moving so <3 don't worry about your comment.

        Aww, thank you so much. It's a bit of a struggle to blog Diabolik Lovers so much because it's interesting because of its dark material but sometimes you just want sweet romance and ;;;; so because this dark material is kind of sad, it makes playing Hana Awase harder too because that game is pure tragedy LOL. I really need a better balance of light-hearted games and dark games.

        //SOBS _(´ཀ`」 ∠)_ I'M SORRY FOR MY EMBARRASSING TWITTER AND TUMBLR and it kind of shows you how much of a dirty procrastinator I am too because it's like "Ili just stop rolling around on twitter and tumblr and get working on your blogging!". I think the mindless surfing is just really attractive after I get back from work so ;;; but I've gotten another dose of motivation so I'm ready to get cracking again on these.

    メロ said:
    April 29, 2014 at 08:11

    I have another question, if you don’t mind. Is it the kaei that does the battling and the minamo(s) as support(s) or is it interchangeable? It’s kind of confusing because from what I understand, Mikoto is the one doing the battling, and her partner is the support. Even in the rankings(when you battle females, the Kaei is in the supporting role, right?).

    When the brights graduate, will there be a selection for new brights? I kept thinking back to those bad ends where there is a time skips years later. It seems the brights still stay at the school(I’m not sure). In Himeutsugi’s bad end(the one where he dies), there is a 3-year-time skip, right? When Iroha delivered the phone to Mikoto, does he still wear his uniform?

    You’re right; in that they may have the potential to be candidates for becomming a senki, though I think being chosen by the onifuda is a requirement? I don’t think just anyone with a full moon can become a candidate. I also have this assumption that only one person can become a senki at a time.

    Oh, sorry! I think I might have been confused! I thought all of Mizuchi’s relatives used to all have a full moon in their eyes because of the curse(it’s said that the full moon keeps their violent urges at bay, so if not everyone had a full moon, does that mean they went crazy as well?)

    Yeah, Utsutsu is clingy and possessive of Mikoto. After all when she tried to tell him about the others, he either tells her that ‘He doesn’t understand’ what she means because Mikoto is his, and she only has him and vice versa or suddenly becomes silent and then a minute later, resumes talking to her agian as if she didn’t say anything at all(again my understanding from the events).

    The only time he expressed any thought on the others was in the pajama event; where he was trying to coax Mikoto out of her room while wearing a penguin costume, while pretending to be a cat. And when Mikoto called him out on it he suddenly bangs on her door telling her to open it in a rather desperate manner because there are crazy guys after her, and then a moment later Kurenai comes telling him to stay away from her. Then Utsutsu say that Kurenai is the person hates the most in the world. Kurenai not realizing who he is just says that he doesn’t understand why, because they never met. I believe this is the first time he openly shows contempt to a bright, unless I missed something? After that he was walking around the hall trying to find Mikoto but couldn’t, and he seems to be confirming his existence. He said: “I’m truly here.”(This is from Kurenai’s Pajama Event)

    In his own event(Text wall for Utstutsu’s Pajama Event), Mikoto wakes up thirsty, and Penguin costumed!Utsutsu brings her a glass of water. Mikoto, thankful for it, told him that his kind, but he just stayed silently shaking(from the cold, I suppose.), she even invites him in her room because it must be cold in the hall. But he just said that there are no hindrances so she should go back to sleep. She offers the other half of her futon to him, but he said nothing. After that she offered him some onigiri, but then he says something like: “…..I hate meals.” Then she said it’s delicious, and that because he’s a small penguin, he needs to eat to become big, so she says that she’ll eat half of it. She tells him that she played a lot with everyone, and he asked her if she had fun. She told him that she likes playing with her friends, and that he is her friend as well. He stayed silent again and Mikoto assumed that it’s because he doesn’t want to eat it after all. He doesn’t want to eat it because if he does he’ll disappear.

    Part2:

    Mikoto then says that she’ll give him another onigiri, but next time it’ll be her own handmade one. He doesn’t say something again and continues to shake. She ask if he’s still cold and tells him that she’ll put a blanket on him. Finally, he says something:

    Utsutsu: Scary.
    Utsutsu: Miko, I’m scared.
    Mikoto: Poor you… Did you see a scary dream? It’s all right, because you’re here, that’s why I’ll make the scary dream go away
    Utsutsu: …………Miko, Miko.
    Mikoto: Un, un, Penguin-kun is strong, you were kind enough to give Mikoto her water.
    Utsutsu: All the animals are not here, only Mikoto, for me, only Mikoto.
    Mikoto: That’s right. Everyone went to sleep, so Penguin-kun should too.
    Utsutsu: zaku……zaku……zaku……fufu.(Not sure about this)
    Mikoto: Fufuh, Penguin-kun, do you still want to see a dream? Not a scary dream. Fuwah… Mikoto is sleepy too…… Munya……good night.

    So yeah, I just translated the last part. Anyways, he may be possessive(and odd) but I believe he genuinely cares about Mikoto and truly wants to protect her. Which again is the exact opposite of Goto(Who wants her for her power).
    I mean, if he just wants to make her his wife, why the need to kill her just because it wasn’t him who awakened her. If it was Utsutsu he’ll probbably just kill the others and take her away; awakened or not, by him or not. I believe the closest to being Utsutsu is……Loveme-kun.

    My reasons:
    1.He likes Mikoto.
    2.Onosada called him pure(came from the screenshots of pearlsinthesun), kinda like Utsutsu(when it comes to Mikoto that is).
    3.Censored Sprite(Why else would they do it?)
    4.Rank 5

    Utsutsu is rank 5 but he’s missing. instead of waiting for him to appear, isn’t it more logical to just replace him(with loveme-kun)? Or maybe it’s because he’s loveme-kun, and the school is covering his identity for reasons.(Maybe there’s a threat to his life or something else)

    As much as I want it to be Mikoto-hen, it seems unlikely. Her names changeable after all, something I’m not fond of. I wish they just made her name permanent like some otoges, I mean it’s perfect already and changing her name to something else will kind of make it lose its meaning and significance to the story(and that line in Iroha’s poem). Besides it’s more dramatic and heartbreaking when they say her name. I’m curious as to how they’ll handle it in Kurenai and Utsutsu-hen though. Utsutsu tends to shorten Mikoto’s name to ‘Miko’ most of the time.(As seen in the translation above)

    One last thing: What is the original age rating of Hana Awase? I heard that based on the scenes of Himeutsugi-hen, it went up.

    Again thank you for putting up with all my questions and textwalls.

      Ilinox responded:
      May 4, 2014 at 01:53

      Hmm, that’s a good question about the battling system and unfortunately I don’t think we’ll ever find out exactly how the system works unless they explain it in the game one day. I imagine that it works something like the kaei and minamo sharing battle experience when they challenge players, with the person who wants to have more experience being the one to “take charge” for example.

      Even though we – as players – are the ones choosing the cards I think that the Brights are the ones making the moves when Mikoto is paired with them (in terms of choosing the cards while she provides the raw power so to speak… to a certain event because apparently the Brights have their own power too). But because Mikoto is training I would imagine that anyone she paired up with would act as her support and let her make the decisions.

      Once again, I don’t think we’ll ever figure this out unless they explicitly say something about it.

      I believe Iroha was still wearing his school uniform but none of the guys get any costume changes except for Mizuchi in his epilogue. I think there is a new selection of Brights whenever one graduates because no one makes a huge deal on how these men are the ONLY Brights in the school ever. From what I recall in a conversation with Momo you get to hear about how promising students who graduate from their school can work for the emperor or whatever at a shrine and well exorcise demons for a lack of a better word.

      Who knows why the Brights stay on if they do, unless they’re there because they have some job offer at the school. In Himeutsugi’s end, Mizuchi leaves the school, remember? And in Iroha’s end Mikoto graduates and I believe Mizuchi leaves the school there too. So, no, I don’t think the Brights have to stay at the school.

      They do make the senki sound super rare and special so that’s probably true ;;; it’s still a bit of a mystery as to what makes Mikoto that special other than the onifuda and full moon (although that is special enough already since Iroha is the only other person with a full moon).

      With respect to Mizuchi’s family, I believe it was said that their powers were sealed by the moon but it doesn’t state that it was a full moon. I think a crescent moon does fine ;;; or they just have impeccable emotional control or the seal hasn’t weakened as much as it did when it reached Mizuchi. Either way, Mizuchi was actually born without a moon and was given a “mock moon” or “crescent moon” in his eye.

      So maybe the rest of the family was okay with their various moon eyes, except for Mizuchi’s grandfather who actually doesn’t have a moon (but he goes crazy so LOL I guess that proves that no moon = craziness).

      It’s kind of ironic since Utsutsu’s name is supposed to mean “reality” which is why everyone thinks he’s the opposite side of Iroha, whose whole theme is on illusions. I can’t remember any of the Utsusu’s things I read so if you say he hates Kurenai then that’s really interesting. From what I do remember, he does just mostly ignore them.

      If Utsutsu is actually unhinged though that would explain why he would kill Mikoto if she was awakened by someone else, because in that sense that means she’s bound to them. In Mizuchi’s ending when she ends up sharing one of her full moons with him, the headmasters talk about how she’s not a full senki unless she’s with Mizuchi and that the two of them need to be together because of their full moons being drawn to each other.

      So, I mean if Utsutsu is confident that they can just start another loop and he can try again that might explain why he would contemplate killing Mikoto. But you have a point in that, up until now, he’s never come off as being violent towards her ;;; just scarily dependent and possessive and needy.

      Hm, the developers never put an age rating on the original game or the second game actually. I just opened my disks to check too and looked at the specs on the website and I don’t see… anything LOL. All ages? Cero C? I’m not sure ;;;;

    Sena said:
    March 26, 2014 at 18:10

    ILI. I DIDN’T KNOW IT WAS STILL POSSIBLE, BUT SOMEHOW THEY MANAGED TO MAKE IROHA’S ROUTE IN HIME’S GAME EVEN MORE DEPRESSING THAN IN MIZUCHI’S GAME 。゚(゚ノД`゚)゚。. IT HURTS SO MUCH. SO MUCH PAIN. OH THE FEEELS.This game is so full of NO I CAN’T EVEN ・(/Д`)・. I kept screaming so much internally that a few sounds actually came out. Luckily, the only ones who got disturbed from my outbursts were my dogs, but holy hell. I’m so depressed, but it’s soooo gooood. I have no idea how I’m going to wait another 2 years or so for the next game (; ̄д ̄). I will probably still have not recovered from this once you get around to playing it either. My heart is so broken. I think I might need to literally go on my bed and scream into a pillow to let some of it out. Oh, my heart ಥ_ಥ

      Ilinox responded:
      April 6, 2014 at 18:16

      Replying to your last comment over here |D;; I don’t know if it is more correct to say that I have a lot of other projects going on or if I am just a person who procrastinates and lazes around, haha.

      WoGa struck a nice balance with a fun and chlalenging mini-game but not having it be hard to learn. I didn’t realize that another name for the Rainman card could be Onifuda… that’s insane if you consider that duality with Iroha and Mikoto. FOREVER BOUND BUT NEVER TOGETHER //SOBS (ノ;Д;)ノ.

      Ah yes, it was in one of the interviews for Hime-hen. Utsusu is sharing his game with Karakurenai and you can see his name listed on the official website for the four games (with the last still being that pesky ??? one). My friends went crazy when they read that Utsutsu has actually appeared in the first game because ???? WHERE. I DIDN’T EVEN HEAR HIS VOICE EVEN THOUGH HE’S LISTED IN THE CREDITS. We’re all thinking someone like Love Me-kun though… he’s way too suspicious, especially with the covered up face.

      I could forgive most shoujo manga art (not going to lie but Dengeki Daisy looks kind of strange in some panels. The art isn’t too stable there) but after seeing Hirunaka no Ryuusei’s art… I think my standards have been raised. *coughs* almost all of my biases are older men so I think I’m naturally drawn to people like Shishio. Mamura is adorable but he’s just so sincere and honest that it makes him kind of flat… at least for me |D;; I really do like him as well though.

      I just really love how Yamamori explored the difference between love and admiration and power balances in a relationship, especially how the older party can influence the younger.

        Sena said:
        April 8, 2014 at 11:53

        …I give up, Ili. I think I might have to literally re-type my whole comment to the other (Kekkonroku) post instead of mostly retyping it. My little “tester” comment didn’t really help since that comment posted but the other one didn;t. Something must be wrong with it that I can’t quite figure out despite taking out the emoticons and changing them to ones with different characters. Maybe I should just make a blog to utilize more bloggy functions (do they have a messaging system? That might be more productive than me wall spamming all the time, haha).

        I understand the procrastination. I’m probably worse. At least you have an excuse because you have to pay attention to so much detail due to the nature of yous posts. I really start something, work on it for a couple hours studiously on one day, lament at how le suck I am, don’t touch it the next day because I’m depressed over my lack of skill, and basically don’t work on it forever after that but have it torment me because it’s once again another project I started but never finished.

        I think they did. The real Hanafuda would’ve been too much work and would’ve put a huge damper on the game for people unfamiliar with it. It’s actually not the Rainman card that has the onifuda name but a different card in the same set. I probably should’ve explained that better. There’s the Rainman, the bird, the banner, and the gaji/onifuda in the November willow set. What you said would still hold true in that case anyway though. “Forever bound but never together.” I didn’t know too much about it myself but I looked into it more because I wanted to know more about the meanings of the Bright cards that I might not have known before, which led to looking at each individual set and that’s how I came across that info.

        Ah, good ol’ Love-Me-kun. That’s a possibility. My brain was actually going into overdrive and running through pretty much every possibility no matter how ridiculous. I think one of the ones that crossed my mind that made me laugh was like…Momotose can change genders and is actually Utsutsu. Yeah, that’s my brain for you. That was probably the most fun one. I almost felt ashamed that I even considered it though because it felt a bit like I was ruining the integrity of her character, haha. I THOUGHT THE SAME THING ABOUT HIS VOICE, though. Since you know who he’s voiced by I was like…”Utsutsu appearance where???”

        The ???-hen is super 悔しい. I wanna knnooooow. I agree about Dengeki, but I think since overall I liked the art enough that after a while I didn’t even notice it as much. I think the first manga series I really go into during my freshman year of high school was Alice 19th, so yeah, I really was into that detailed-looking art. I was also very fond of Saiyuki, which is not shoujo art at all, but it had a lot of lines and details so I’ve always been rather fond of those types of styles. Hirunaka’s is simpler but pleasant to look at. And I really enjoy Suzume’s not-so-serious comic-relief facial expressions.

        I agree that I’m biased towards Shishio as well, but the Mazume dynamics are so cute and innocent. Shoujo manga ships are usually really polarizing so I find it nice when I do want to root for the other guy even a little despite my obvious bias to one. Yamamori does a good job with the issues she addresses and what she focuses on in each relationship and what they mean to Suzume.

        Ilinox responded:
        April 14, 2014 at 00:44

        These comments work with HTML codes so you could be potentially bugging the comment box if you’re putting in anything like “” with slashes and backslashes ;;; although it doesn’t look like you put those in any of your other comments.

        Ahaha, I’m afraid I am a tried and true procrastinator though even when I know I should make some kind of progress on the things I have going. For example, I could at least strive to translate one scene a day for Laito so that I could finish his 30 scenes in 30 days… but I could go for a week without touching it because I simply get caught up in other things… oops.

        Actually some of my friends thought about Momotose having some kind of role to play too, especially since she’s so interested in Mikoto and there was that kiss in Iroha’s route (but since nothing happened and she said the line of “if only I was a male” or something it looks like she really is a female so…).

        Sena said:
        April 14, 2014 at 15:21

        Thanks for the heads up about the HTML coding…like I concluded in my other posts, I have really just given up on that thread of conversation.

        Haha, it’s okay. Procrastination is allowable. It’s not like you’re not active even if you’re not posting or I wouldn’t even be talking to you so much right now. And rests are good. Sometimes you really just need a break from certain things. I took a lot of breaks when I was playing Diabolik Lovers because I really just needed them and sometimes they went on longer than they needed to be because I got distracted by other stuff or I just didn’t feel it. Two routes isn’t too bad either…

        Momotose seems like she could have a bigger role in the grand scheme of things, and with two games left it’s highly possible something else could happen, but yeah…not so sure about that theory. I would laugh if it somehow worked out that way though. They’re pretty good at plot twists and making everything connect, so I’m sure it’ll be satisfying one way or another.

    Sena said:
    March 22, 2014 at 00:36

    You know, Ili, I just started playing a little bit of Himeutsugi-hen and I don’t know why I thought of this now, but I was thinking more about the Gokou and the possible meanings behind their cards and something struck me and I felt like I needed to share it with you since you’re like my Hana Awase conversation buddy.

    The Rain Man card is actually the “weakest” of the five in a way because it functions a little differently than the others do. In Hanafuda (or at least the variation of Hanafuda that I play), each of the other 4 cards are considered the high point cards because they’re worth 20 points each. The Rain Man card is only worth 5 points (which is actually the lowest amount a card can be worth besides 0 points). In Koi Koi, the Rain Man card is part of the Ameshikou and Gokou combos, but what’s interesting is that the Rain Man card really is the “weak” link in this sense because there’s another combo called Sankou which it cannot be a part of. In that way, it makes it seem like all other brights are stronger or more legit. Gokou obviously is all 5 brights. Ameshikou is 3 other brights plus the Rain Man, which makes it seem like that card is only “worth something” when it’s paired with the other cards. Sankou can be made from any 3 of the other 4 cards not including the Rain Man.

    I don’t think I really explained that well, but my point is basically that the Rain Man card really seems most out of the loop compared to the other 4 cards. I forget where it was, but I remember seeing that link to different profiles for the Hana Awase characters and how Iroha had something like ‘sinner’ in his title, and it made me think that maybe he wasn’t originally part of the brights.Like, maybe there was originally only 4 of them, but he did something because he coveted Mikoto so much or something along those lines and he succeeded by becoming part of the loop and part of the brights, but it’s like a type of punishment where he’s never supposed to be with her. Like the whole “be careful what you wish for” stuff with how he got his wish, but not in the way he wanted and now he has to live with it and suffer for it over and over and over again, which could be one of the reasons why he’s so aware of the loop. it would be too easy on him to just never get chosen, but in this way he remembers that he never gets chosen, which makes it much worse. God, I hate my theory. I feel like that could somehow tie into the full moon in his eyes as well, such as how you had mentioned something like maybe Mikoto had given it to him in a previous cycle like she did with Mizuchi in his route…

    I have more ideas circulating in my brain regarding how all 5 of the cards work differently from each other, but I haven’t been able to come up with theories involving them just yet. Maybe I will eventually, but I feel like this is an interesting angle to analyze things from since I’m so familiar with Hanafuda and Koi Koi (because I’m dorky and play them a lot…I can play 3 games with hanafuda cards and I was introduced to a region-specific version once but I can barely remember it because I only played it for like an hour one day and never did again. I couldn’t find the rules for that version either so I’ll probably forget it eventually which is such a waste…)

    Also, completely unrelated to the above conversation, but I see on your Twitter you got sucked into Hirunaka no Ryuusei. I recently just read all of it too (in one night…ooops). I’m so not patient enough to keep waiting for each chapter to come out. I almost regret that I started reading it at all because of my lack of patience…I really adore the heroine. I love how maturely she handled her feelings and certain events but she’s still young and naive as well. I haven’t read a shoujo manga in a while where I enjoyed the heroine so much…besides like Teru in Dengeki.

      Sena said:
      March 25, 2014 at 00:42

      Well, I just ran into something that possibly disproves my theory I just posted. It’s not a huge thing, but there it goes. It might sound like I am, but I promise my post is not filled with spoilers. I’m just talking about something general. I feel like I shouldn’t written that in the beginning of the previous comment as well because starting something off with “so I’m playing Himeutsugi-hen” makes it sound like I might talk about the game itself when in reality I was just discussing the world and a theory. i should learn to label things better; like how I didn’t tag myself in the Tumblr ask earlier…

      I finished playing Hime’s route (I didn’t realize it was so long…perhaps it’s because I didn’t technically finish Mizuchi-hen yet so I can’t compare the length…). Buuut, i did run into that thing that I think you mentioned when I said I was having technical problems with Mizuchi-hen, the prompt box where it asks you if you want to maintain your ranking or something to that effect. It’s making this second playthrough much easier (and much faster). I think to settle my curiosity, I might finish playing Himeutsugi-hen first, but hopefully with my newly found knowledge of the playthrough, I’ll be able to finish Mizuchi-hen (finally) as well…

      Since I just got the good end and I’m working on Mizuchi’s route (conversation-wise switching back to Hime’s game), I already see some directions it’s going in and it’s making my heart hurt. So many feels, this series. I just wanna post my reactions all over somewhere. I’m sure it’ll be very incoherent and probably slightly repetitive, haha.

      I don’t want to talk about anything else since i know you didn’t play anything from it yet so I won’t. But I’m looking forward to when you do so we can discuss, even if it’s just something like the music or the changes in the game set-up, etc.

      Ilinox responded:
      March 27, 2014 at 01:21

      Sorry _(´ཀ`」 ∠)_ I just keep on getting swamped with things and picking up other miniature projects to do which prevent me from accomplishing my goal in finishing Laito’s route before I play some Hime-hen, so it might be a while before I finally get to it and become able to talk about it.

      Ooh, it’s really interesting to hear your theories on Hana Fuda |D;; since I’m not too clear on any of the combos you can do or the rules on it (even though the game sort of teaches you combos you can make… but my brain just simplifies them into “gold card + two plain cards” or something). At most, my friends and I were looking into the symbolism behind the cards like the story behind the Rain Man and the month that he’s in, which I believe is November?

      There’s a lot of talk about the Rain Man and how the picture displayed on it portrays a story about a man who was watching a frog attempt to eat an insect on a nearby willow tree and fail repeatedly before finally succeeding. It apparently taught him perseverance. But it’s an interesting story to think about if you link that to Iroha’s perseverance… or more like torture.

      Another thing is that the Rain Man is part of the set of cards in November, which is symbolized by the willow. Willow trees have lore stretching back to ancient times connecting it with life, death, and rebirth, which I shouldn’t need to point out is a central theme in Hana Awase ;;;; I like to think the card themselves symbolize interesting things for all the brights.

      I think you might be onto something with Iroha being outside of the group of the other Brights though ;;; I’ve played a bit of the beginning of Hime-hen and saw the childhood scene where it seems like everyone gets mentioned except for Iroha and Utsutsu (unless you squint really hard and assume that this one speech pattern is Utsutsu).

      Haha, yeah, I think Hirunaka no Ryuusei has consumed my soul. I am absolutely in love with Shishio ;;;; The art is just gorgeous too but I agree with the wait being painful. It’s painful but at the same time it’s kind of fun experiencing the wait with the fandom and trying to guess at what comes next. It’s one of the rare times when I’m literally in the dark when speculating about what the author might do ;;;; THE SUSPENSE IN THE LOVE TRIANGLE IS CRUSHING.

      Ugh, Suzume is amazing. I can really connect and relate with her which is probably why it’s so great for me. I also find it rare to enjoy the heroines in shoujo manga and so it’s a treat to like Suzume so much _(:3」∠)_ and I like her friend, Yuyuka.

      I think of the difference between Hirunaka and Dengeki as a true slice-of-life manga and an action-y one. Dengeki had enduring love and a fun adventure/mystery kind of story, but Hirunaka is really all about growing up and discovering different kinds of relationships while growing up. It’s really inspiring to see them grow ;w; and Yamamori’s story-telling is fantastic with its realism… //sobs never going to get over Shishio.

        Sena said:
        March 27, 2014 at 12:31

        No, no, take your time. I just really needed to get it out of my system. I don’t know other people who have an Iroha bias and you’re the person I talk to about Hana Awase the most anyway, so as soon as I had these uncontrollable feelings of needing to tell someone about it, I just automatically found myself here typing text walls. I realize that you have a lot going on and you probably have more projects than me, but at least you’re working on them. I’ve just been kinda ignoring all of them. This is a good test to see how devoted I would be to maintaining a blog and I’m not doing so good so I’m probably not ready for it yet, haha.

        It’s really hard to learn the different combos in Hanafuda unless you practice it by playing. I introduced the concept to two friends once, but they only really started catching on after we had played several times and they started seeing the patterns and what matched, etc. They really did simplify it a lot for the Hana Awase games, but I can see bits of the actual game in there so it’s interesting. The “real” Hanafuda cards are actually the gold-rimmed ones. I remember being so confused when I first started playing the card game because I was like “…this is not Hanafuda. WHAT IS THIS???” I got over it pretty quickly though. I think it would’ve made the game way too complicated to play the real Hanafuda. It would’ve probably made it take much longer as well. It’s too bad I can’t teach it to you.

        And yeah, the Rain man “ame” set are for November, the willow. Another interesting thing to note is that the wildcard (in some variants it’s considered a kasu card but in the one I play I know it as the gaji/thunder card) is depicting drums being hit in the rain. This time period is known for strong stormy weather like hurricanes and typhoons, which I believe is what’s being shown, so it’s also likened to a “demon” hitting the drums in the rain. In other words, another name for this card is onifuda.

        I agree that the symbolism behind all the other cards are interesting too, but I suppose because of the Iroha bias or because of that fact that the willow/ame cards are rather fascinating since they’re the “odd set” out in Hanafuda cards, I was particularly interested in analyzing that one. Ironically, when I actually play the game, this is just between me and another friend, but my lucky card is usually the moon card. Every time I capture it in the game, I win. I think I only lost with it once and it was a close game.

        Yeah, I noticed that with the childhood scene flashback as well. I forget where I read it, but I heard that for the third game, they say Utsutsu will finally make his appearance, but in reality, he’s appeared in both Mizuchi-hen and Himeutsugi-hen. All the possibilities. AHHHHH TWO YEARS IS SO LOOOONG.

        AND YES THAT LOVE TRIANGLE. I’m pretty fond of Shishio myself, but Mamura is adorable (I actually looked up the manga because I saw a Mamura/Suzume manga cap set that looked interesting). I really love how conflicted it makes me feel. And I agree that the art is beautiful. I used to really love shoujo manga art, but now I’m a bit pickier somehow.

        This is true about the two series in comparison. They’re good in their own ways, but they do have that difference which puts them on a different level from each other. I actually watched a Japanese drama that dealt with (in a rather different way) the whole teacher/student relationship possibility and how that affects the people around them and how they get affected by it. So if we consider that as being close to real life, then the struggles they experience really does hold that realism to it. I was impressed by the way it’s been handled so far.

    メロ said:
    March 1, 2014 at 08:19

    Thank you very much for such a detailed review of this game!
    Hana Awase is really deep and poetic. Everything is connected one way or another. All the characters are great, even the supporting ones!

    I really feel for Iroha/Half-moon. At first I thought Half-moon was the missing bright, but after reading your post It turned out to be Iroha(or at least all the major hints points to him). I love Mikoto! She’s my favorite otome heroine! I don’t know why but I seemed kinda drawn to her. I suppose she grew on me even though we have nothing in common. Mizuchi was cute as well. He and Mikoto make a great pair. Hime was alright. He has his good points and his bad points but I never felt to strongly about him(^-^;). About Karakurenai well…He became nice later on but it still doesn’t change the fact about what he did to Mikoto in the hallways and everything after that so…He’s currently my least favorite among the others(I even like Walter better than him!)

    About the Goto theory. I don’t think he’s the 5th bright. For one if Utsutsu was Goto how did manage to hide It while studying in Kaen? I mean at least someone should have been suspicious of him. Plus from the descriptions
    the others have given us it seems they know at least a little bit about him.
    And on terms of personalities Utsutsu’s and Goto’s personalities seems different from each other. Although I kind of believed it at first, after all
    Go in Japanese is 5 and Utsutsu is the 5th bright, but it’s kind of silly to base it on something like that. I suppose we’ll just find out in the next installments.

    Once again thank you very much for this review! I’d play Hana Awase myself but my parents won’t allow shipping to our house and my japanese is still kind of low level. That’s why very detailed posts like yours are precious gems. Especially since I’m very interested in the story of Hana Awase.

    Out of curiosity, I was just wondering if you plan on posting reviews about Hime-hen in the future as well. I don’t mean to pressure I was just wondering.(^-^;) I know how difficult it is to make very detailed post like yours so please take your time.\(^0^)/ But if you decided to post about Hime-hen I’ll be sure to read it immediately! Sorry for bothering you and the long post Ms.Illi! Again ありがとうございました!

      Ilinox responded:
      March 6, 2014 at 00:03

      You’re welcome! I really enjoy the concept of Hana Awase |D;; and it’s one of the few games where I love all the characters almost equally.

      I’m still not too sure on what exactly or who the Half Moon is ;;; because while there are a lot of signs that point to it being Iroha, the Half Moon also seems like some sort of separate character or split personality. In his Karakuri track, the Half Moon sounds like another person… but still connected to Iroha. My friends and I think Iroha and Utsutsu are sides of the same coin, so you might be correct in thinking that the Half Moon is connected somehow with the 5th Bright as well.

      Mikoto was really pure and headstrong in this one |D;; a lot like Mizuchi. I’m kind of curious to see if she changes in the other games depending on the guy who is chosen by fate. She and Mizuchi definitely made a cute pair in this game but then again this IS his game so… For me, Himeutsugi is relatable in how he acts one way and then, because everyone starts to treat him like that, he becomes locked into that persona /)_(\ his manipulations make me side-eye him a bit though. HAHA… Kurenai though… he has to be one of the most epic douchebags that I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading about but somehow he grows on you with the brief glimpses of his kind side and it’s just… amazing. You love him yet hate to love him and love to hate him.

      Hmm, it didn’t seem like Goto really made much moves until later on when Mikoto joined and by then Utsutsu was missing so… who knows. I just keep squinting my eyes suspiciously since they did mention that Goto was young and then Coin passed on the message Goto had about being connected to Mikoto and how he’ll always go after her ;;; that seems kind of in line with what Utsutsu has been saying. But yeah, we don’t have much choice but to wait and see what WoGa will reveal in the next installments.

      Aww, you’re welcome again! I’m glad you were able to enjoy this game through reading my posts ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ. I hope you’ll be able to play the game one day because the voice-acting is seriously magnificent. I do definitely plan on blogging about Hime-hen (since I adore Hana Awase so much) but I’m not sure how soon a post will be able to be uploaded. I’m kind of leaning towards concentrating on finishing up with Diabolik Lovers. どういたしまして。

        メロ said:
        April 18, 2014 at 13:45

        Oh, please take your time! Your posts are very detailed, so it’s understandable that it would take quite sometime before you’re able to posts, especially since you have work as well.

        I do have a few questions though… In the beginning, they said a minamo can only serve one kaei(who are the brights, I assume?) If so, then what about those other male players? How do they get a partner? The brights also have their own designated minamo(except for Kurenai), what happens to the others? After all, Kurenai seems to be the only one who needs multiple minamos because of his level of skill(Momotose can support Iroha by herself).

        The fainting thing that happens to Mikoto in Kurenai’s route is some form of defense mechanism, right? That seems more disadvantageous than helpful. Fainting all of sudden will make a minamo more vulnerable, if anything. Aside from purifying their water, I think that wasn’t well thought out.

        In Mizuchi’s route, they said that before all his family members had full moon in their eyes, even the females. Does that mean that they had the potential to become senki/s? Or maybe you had to be specifically chosen by the onifuda to become one, and the full moon is just some indication that the senki has awakened, or the senki’s full moon is special and different from normal full moons?

        And something unrelated to the plot: When Kurenai’s name is spelled in hiragana it’s くれなゐ, What’s ‘ゐ’? I think I saw that in some bunko characters(I think that’s what it was called). but I’m not sure(still learning).

        Oh! when I mean ‘not alike’ I meant their personalities don’t match up. Based on what I’ve seen so far of Utsutsu in the official twitter events, he’s childish, playful(like a kid), and sort of clingy a bit. Doesn’t really match the description Onosada said(If you ask me, it fits someone like kurenai), especially now that it’s hinted that loveme-kun might actually be Utsutsu.
        Besides, he said he would protect Mikoto from harm, which is kinda opposite of what Goto is planning(I think).

        It is also hinted in the beach special that the ‘something red’ on his hood might be blood(at least to me). So I think he’s the type who would do the work himself, instead of leaving it to minions like what Goto is doing. I don’t think he would try to kidnap her forcefully either, nor leave a message like Goto’s. I believe it would be something along the lines of; MIkoto is mine, only Mikoto and me, and no one else~! Something like that, kinda childish.
        I also think he’ll just try to persistently ask Mikoto to go with him, like in the chibi gokou event.

        So yeah, aside from the fact that he’s missing and young like Goto, they don’t really have much in common(I believe his disappearance is something more, because, again in the events, he mentions something about disappearing himself( his existence), and that no one seems to recognize or acknowledge him being there(though in the case of the ‘pajama de oyasumi’ event, Kurenai may not have known it was him because of the animal costume, ether that or he just doesn’t remember him.

        I think Goto might be:

        1. His evil alter ego.
        2. His evil twin or doppelganger.
        3. Him, but Onosada’s given description is wrong or inaccurate(it might just be from rumors, speculation, or assumption, as no one knows what his like. Or it’s correct, but it’s his alter ego’s personality).
        4. A different character altogether(the last game, ???-hen, might actually be Goto-hen or something).

        I just thought 2 or 4 is more likely, after all, I don’t think Utsutsu is interested in Mikoto’s powers, and I doubt he’ll allow her to get killed just because she was awakened by someone else.

        In the end, all of the above was just my own speculation. We will find out more as the story unfolds in the future games. Again sorry for the long rant!

        Ilinox responded:
        April 27, 2014 at 03:00

        (I’m so sorry for how slow I was in replying to this!)

        Unfortunately, they never really explain all the finer mechanisms and workings of the whole school and the other kaei and minamo. From what I can see, they look like they just pair up with each other whenever they need to? Like when you’re battling up the ranks there are a bunch of random people (and not so random people like Love Me-kun) who just have faceless minamo support them.

        I might be completely off here but I just imagined it like people having their own partners and things, with the highest honor for a female in being the minamo for one of the Brights. For men, the highest honor would be in becoming a Bright.

        Haha, that’s very true but I liken it to humans fainting in surprise or shock if something extreme happens. Fainting in front of an axe-wielding murderer isn’t very helpful either ;;; but it does happen.

        Hum, that’s a very good point. From what it sounds like only some people are “candidates” to awakening as a senki. Most people could see that Mikoto had a full moon in her eyes but that she wasn’t awakened so maybe all females who have full moons do have the potential or candidacy to be a senki. However, people with full moons were rare and still are rare.

        I don’t believe all of Mizuchi’s family members had full moons. It was said that those with full moons were the only ones who could succeed the family, not that they all had full moons. In fact, Mizuchi’s mother only had a crescent moon ;;; and went off to marry a man with no moon. Mizuchi’s grandpa was trying to create a child that had the full moon but it didn’t work out.

        I don’t know anything about bunko. All I know about ゐ is that it’s an obsolete form of Japanese kana. You’ll probably learn more about it from this page here. It makes Kurenai calling himself that even more hilarious because he just has to use an archaic spelling.

        If I recall correctly, it sounds like Goto wants Mikoto to be his wife. Who knows what that implies (and if he wants to corrupt her ;;; but he doesn’t have his Suits touch her so…) and Utsusu sounds scarily possessive of Mikoto, which is why I keep thinking he might be Goto.

        That’s a good point though about how Goto was fine with letting her be killed because she was awakened by someone else… unless Utsutsu is confident that Mikoto will just be thrown into another loop when she dies and will try to target her there. I still haven’t forgotten the creepy lines Coin recited from Goto’s message about him trying for Mikoto over and over again. But, like you said Love Me-kun is a big candidate too because he’s also obsessed with Mikoto.

        Oh wow! That’s…. really creepy. I haven’t been keeping up with the specials so just imagining the red on his hood being blood is a bit… lmao I can’t wait until Utsutsu actually shows up. There’s just too many possibilities with how Utsutsu will be revealed or even who he is… UGH. I’m still side-eyeing the directors and how they said that he’s actually appeared in this game. WHERE?!

        I WILL FLIP MY SHIT, NO JOKE, IF THE ???-HEN ENDS UP BEING GOTO-HEN OR MIKOTO-HEN AND DOESN’T INCLUDE ANY IROHA. It will be the ultimate troll and I will sob forever into my pillow while still reluctantly tossing my money at WoGa.

        Aww, don’t apologize for the long post. I love discussing Hana Awase things with people because it’s just such a great game with a lot of mystery and intricacies.

    Razu said:
    February 12, 2014 at 07:25

    Thanks for this long explanation of Iroha’s route…. I’m too afraid to read it one by one because my heart hasn’t healed yet after the Drama CD… *my problem, though* I translated the Hana Awase Karakuri Meguri, and Iroha’s tracks was just too much to handle. I thank you so much for providing this, and it takes more preparation to play the game and choosing Iroha’s route, I guess.

      Ilinox responded:
      February 18, 2014 at 22:53

      Oh god, to be honest I don’t know which way would be worse; listening to the drama CD first and feeling heart crushed and then playing the game and being more crushed… or playing the game first and then getting stomped on by the CD. (Am I reading your comment right? It sounds like you haven’t played the game yet? I fully recommend going through this entire game because it is absolutely fantastic).

    Sena said:
    September 27, 2013 at 13:52

    *Screams*…I gave in. I couldn’t help it. My mind was so filled with this that I had dreams about it.

    As expected, Iroha’s route didn’t disappoint in the utter despair it delivered. Poor baby (╥_╥). It does answer some questions that I had earlier and foreshadows to a lot of the things I want to know more about. So Iroha only has one ending, huh? I think I must’ve missed something, but I’m a little confused about the presence of the Full Moon and the Half Moon. Are they the same and just change? Perhaps this would make more sense to me if I actually played the game, but since I didn’t yet I thought I’d ask.

    “Basically, he’s tormented by Mikoto choosing men other than him and yet he knows that he himself is the wrong choice.”

    Oh my God, YES. That was one of the things so tormenting about reading his route. After I get this game and actually experience this all happening, I feel like I’m going to feel everything I already felt by 100x. Just by reading all their lines I can feel the clenching in my heart but if I actually heard it…

    It just felt like every single thing Iroha said had some meaning. A man of few words, but his words weren’t empty, you know? I can’t stand this ヽ(´□`。)ノ

    APPLE CHIPS. GODDAMN IT, IROHA. I can picture myself glaring at them in super markets and then crying if I actually ate them. Such conflicting emotions.

    Seeing the extra CG of Iroha as the “rain man,” really makes me want to look up more about Hanafuda cards and the meanings and such. I didn’t really get a huge impression (but I did get a small one) of all the guys and the bright card they’re affiliated with. Considering the whole reason I got interested in this game was because of that aspect, I’m surprised the thought didn’t occur to me much earlier.

    THIS LOOP IS SO INTENSE. I’m super looking forward to seeing how all of this will be tied together. And I really am curious to find out what Iroha’s ‘sin’ is and how he (and some of the guys) seem to have more awareness of previous memories of other cycles or something.

    Ironically, my comment on Iroha’s route seems to be one of the shortest considering he’s definitely my bias, but I guess I don’t have the capacity to get all my thoughts and feelings out of my head right now. It’s all messed up in there. Maybe I’ll be more functional after I get over the depression of THESE EFFING ENDS. GAH.

      Ilinox responded:
      September 29, 2013 at 14:43

      Oh my god, I’m so sorry! I must have derped out hard while I was writing because there is only the Half Moon ;;; there is no Full Moon other than the full moon eyes that they talk about in the game… I was probably getting sleepy and forgot that his name was Half Moon while they were throwing around the full moon terms.

      You are going to cry buckets of tears when you hear the voice acting in this game because of the contrast between how unemotional Iroha is through everyone’s route and then you get to that one scene in his own route where he’s kissing her and his voice is just UGH щ(ಥДಥщ) It’s so strangled and broken and desperate and gjhkfsjhkghJKGHFJH.

      It’s really interesting to see what each card represents since they’re all attached to different months, eh? I know the Rain Man is a November card and associated with willows and swallows and stuff… so there’s a treasure trove of symbolism there if they meant for any of that to apply to Iroha. The same goes for the other men ;;; I really don’t believe they just randomly assigned these cards to these guys for no reason.

      I AGREE SO MUCH. I just want to figure out what exactly is the nature of the loop and how long Iroha has been trapped in it… maybe his sin is somewhat related to that? I also want to know more about his eyes because it’d be so tragic if he acquired the full moon eyes from the senki at the very start of the loop or something akhjfghJHGHFH since we know that the senki can give her eyes to other people through Mizuchi’s route.

    Sena said:
    September 27, 2013 at 00:26

    Iroha’s words. His words. I’m only in the beginning and I can’t. I just can’t. I need to go to sleep or something. I can’t deal with this right now…can I just have him? (Last sentence not relating to the previous thoughts at all. Obviously a sign that it would be a good decision to stop this for now since my brain isn’t functioning properly)

    On a random note, I just went to throw away the garbage and usually look at the moon when I do so but I couldn’t see it tonight. Oh man, the moon and symbolism. This game is going to make me overthink things more than I already do.

    I want to read this at work like I did with Karakurenai and Mizuchi’s routes today, but I probably shouldn’t. If it’s as bad as you seem to make it sound, I can’t exactly start bawling at work. I don’t even think I have tissue there, haha.

    So I guess I’ll be back tomorrow sometime after I settle in at home. I don’t believe I just wrote an extended comment that basically just said I’m reading this later.

    Brooke said:
    May 30, 2013 at 10:28

    You chose to hide in the damn.. Forsaken clock tower.

    In there you meet two people. Fiona and Yui. They’re like who are you? Then there is a corpse of some girl across the room, but you can’t see her face.
    Then to make it worse, freaking evil cat twins come, along with hot crazy vampires. And Brooke is like wait one more guy, then the Yandere appears. Again, you see three portals appear and a guy is in all of them. Which one will you go to?

    Next option
    Ikki
    Hinase
    Arles

      Ilinox responded:
      June 8, 2013 at 01:40

      Did you purposefully pick these guys out of my bias list? :C Why are you so mean to me… b-but I’ll have to end up going with Ikki.

    Brooke said:
    May 25, 2013 at 11:33

    Reply your answer here so I can give you more cruelty hehe~~

      Ilinox responded:
      May 29, 2013 at 03:11

      Obviously I’m going to hide at the clock tower that has stopped at 11:45! No way am I going to pass up meeting some shinigami or a pathological liar, ahah. Sorry for the slow response! I just recently got back from my holidays and so I’ve been extremely tired and taking care of small business along with unpacking. I’m really amazed at how you’ve managed to add bits and pieces of every game that I’ve played so far though dfsgkjgh did you systematically go through my blog and read every game I’ve played? xD;;

        Brooke said:
        May 30, 2013 at 09:33

        You’re on to me…
        Oh no.

        I still need to add in Diabolik lovers. Maybe some more Gekka, hm. Maybe a wolf assassin? Fufufu…

    starikun said:
    May 21, 2013 at 20:45

    Whoa, does this mean Ironha is the canonical route then?

      Ilinox responded:
      May 21, 2013 at 21:47

      It’s hard to say. It could be argued that in Mizuchi-hen he’s the canon since everyone else dies if you choose them. So whatever the onifuda chooses is what is determined as canon… however, we do know that she’s looping and she’s going to have to break out of it somehow (or at least I hope the developers explain it and get it to stop) so maybe.

      Currently, Iroha has a very mysterious past and his connections with Mikoto (and being the Half Moon??) does make him seem really important.. but don’t forget there’s the mystery behind Goto and Utsutsu. Utsutsu’s overwhelming obsession with Mikoto is also a bit suspicious and the most canonical route could just as easily be him.

        starikun said:
        May 26, 2013 at 18:36

        Everything is starting to get confusing now (@A@) it makes me crazy to find out what is going to happen next
        Also I can’t believe I spelled Iroha’s name wrong OTL

    Eclipse said:
    May 19, 2013 at 09:41

    My Irohaaaaaaaaaaa!!! *cried a flowing river*

    *sob* It’s sad that in the end, he have to die for his unrequited love (which I don’t understand why would he still have eyes for mikoto while there’s me, waiting passionately for him ;D)

    Anyway, thank you so much for doing and writing his route with details (I love details!!). Your efforts truly meant for non-japanese fans like me who are dying to know what happened to our favorite characters in our choice of game/drama cd/etc…

    About the route itself, there are inded a lot of mysteries surrounding iroha; especially his relationship with mikoto. It’s just my speculation, but I think Iroha was mikoto’s kaei in the past. But because of something Iroha did (or not), Mikoto didn’t become a full fledged senki and thus came his ‘sin’. Well. that’s just what I think since we can’t take a peek at hana awase’s story line creator(s) ;)

    Ah~ I hope they make another game about iroha’s story to satisfy my hunger and thirst for him…..

      Ilinox responded:
      May 19, 2013 at 21:41

      You’re welcome!! I’m always happy to share the despair ヾ(:3ノシヾ)ノシ of our favorite characters.

      I’ve been thinking about Iroha’s past as well! It seems interesting that Mikoto was able to give one of the moons in her eyes to Mizuchi and it made me wonder if, in another life, Iroha was given two moons by a previous Mikoto? But we’re still left with so many questions like what his “sin” is and how come he seems to be the only one to know about the loops and stuff gskjhfdh. And is he a really great actor or what because his reactions as the Half Moon and how he is in the morning is completely different.

      We’re all praying for an Iroha-hen to come out xDD although now that the website has a mysterious 4th “???” game… maybe.. MAYBE!

    Brooke said:
    May 15, 2013 at 17:58

    You chose Ask a UFO for help!

    For some random reason a lot of cows appear and you’re inside of the UFO! You look to see an evil Ukyo, (I just had to) you are stabbed in the legs multiple times before being transported to a cliff. (We all know where this is going), the forest surrounding you is lit on fire by a cat person. Then the ground goes crumbling down and you fall in it.
    When you fall you get hit by a car, and wake up in a wheelchair. Then the Yandere appears and the guy who is also in the hospital with you jumps out the window. (That was Iroha)
    Then a dead Brooke appears, and the Yandere tells you to apologize.

    Next choice,
    Ask why Brooke is dead
    Cry and sob
    Do a 180 fro the other choices and call him an obsessed freak

      Ilinox responded:
      May 19, 2013 at 21:18

      THAT’S JUST PURE CRUELTY PICKING OUT THOSE TRAUMATIC EVENTS IN THOSE GAMES AND MAKING THEM HAPPEN TO ME. I’ll do a 180 in my wheelchair for the other choices ヾ(:3ノシヾ)ノシ but I wouldn’t call him an obsessed freak. You don’t piss off the yanderes… ever.

        Brooke said:
        May 19, 2013 at 22:09

        You chose 180, but instead of calling him a an obsessed freak you call him a freaking shitty stalker.

        When you start strolling away, you do a 180 and kick him in the balls. (Gekka) and start running for dear life. Brooke has become a fairy who is helping you now (Amnesia – Orion) she tells at you like Run Forest Run, -er I mean stroll forest stroll!
        Before you know it you run into the bitch-club, and they lock you in a shrine and set it on fire
        Then they emofag that Ikki will hate them. But suddenly your transported to an empty city( YOU CAN WALK AGAIN) where it’s only you and Brooke. Then yo start running from this DAMN YANDERE WHO APPEARS AGAIN.
        You start running and when your away from him you need to find a place to hide.

        Next option;

        Clock Tower that stopped at 11:45

        University with “Nothing” suspicious

        Or become a magical girl

    YG said:
    May 15, 2013 at 08:20

    Thank you for this release, I have been waiting for you to finish Irohas’s route when I found your site while looking for information on Amnesia. I love how it’s so detailed and explained in such a way that I can feel the emotion you’re trying to convey. It feels like I’m reading a romance novel that I love to read and love to reread your post over and over :D
    And because Hana Awase is only in Japanese without your explanation I wouldn’t be able to understand how much I’m missing out on
    Once again thank you so much for your hard work especially while you’re away on holidays. Very much appreciated
    Also there was an error in this post where I think you intended to write “come” but had “cum” instead… ^^’ not sure if you want to fix it but thought I better let you know. Thanks again

      Ilinox responded:
      May 15, 2013 at 17:26

      You’re welcome! sgkjfghj oh gosh that’s the highest praise I could ever receive ;;; hearing my post be compared to a romance novel (*ノ∀ノ). I’m glad I could spread the Hana Awase despair love around, especially since I love this game dearly to bits.

      I was actually using “cum” in its form as a preposition www so it basically means “along with, with, combined, etc”. It was at the part where Iroha was being photographed right? I was just saying the guy was an editor along with being a photographer (・ω\) in other words editor cum photographer.

      Thanks for pointing things like that out though! Always feel free to ask about things in the post or anything /o\.

        YG said:
        March 5, 2014 at 03:12

        Hi I know its been aaaages since my last post but I do still visit your site very very regularly. I enjoy it way too much and it’s permanently on my bookmark :D so if there was a record of the longest someones been on a page that would be me lol. I was just wondering as Hana Awase Himeutsugi Hen will be released would you be translating this in the future ?
        thank you

        Ilinox responded:
        March 10, 2014 at 01:27

        Aww, thank you so much for your sweet words. You’re always welcome to drop by whenever on whichever post you find interesting. I’m always keeping the comments open for people <3!

        I do plan on blogging about Himeutsugi-hen since I adore the Hana Awase franchise too much; the problem is just trying to find time and motivation to do it. I've been working full-time lately and the job is quite far so I'm always exhausted when I get back. It's no excuse, I know, so I'm trying to get back into the mood of just trying to get one scene done a day in my games.

        YG said:
        March 11, 2014 at 00:15

        Yay thank you so much it’s still nice to know you’re planning on blogging HImeutsugi-hen. I did read a twitter post you posted in Feb how you were reloading Mizuchi-Hen lol so the motivation is there just not the time lol

        Not to worry I’ll be rereading Mizuchi Hen for my Hana Awase fix until it happens too lol

    allycat said:
    May 12, 2013 at 23:54

    Thank you so much for uploading this! I love how detailed your reviews are and straight forward. And the comments you throw in from time to time are great! Its thanks to reviews like yours that I feel like I can make an accurate decision on wether to get a game or not. Mizuchi was just so adorkable and full of moe. Hime was sweet and sad. Kurenai was hot and made me go doki doki. Iroha was just cool and made my heart ache. I totally agree with you though, about Iroha being Half Moon.
    But I do have a question. Who is “that guy” all the flashbacks seem to refer to? Are they talking about Goto? And where is Utsutsu? Why can’t any of them remember each other? Were their memories erased? Momotose is also suspicious to me.
    And this loop Mikoto seems to be in is it a reincarnation loop or like a loop to different world(realities) like in Amnesia?
    All in all I love your blog. The details, comments, quotes and straightforwardness is to the point and I have found that I can make better decisions on wether this is a game worth buying. Thank you so much for all the hard work that you do and look forward to reading more from you. ::bows deeply::

      Ilinox responded:
      May 13, 2013 at 20:15

      Aw, thank you so much! I always get so motivated after receiving comments like these (・`◡´・)ゝ. I never expected to like Mizuchi so much but hearing him bumble like that and be full of just honest love is so sweet.

      We don’t know who “that” guy is ;;; a lot of my friends think it’s either Iroha or Utsutsu but it’s really hard to identify them in the flashbacks because of how no names are given. I counted up to 4 boys in the flashback in Mizuchi’s route which leaves one of the boys to be “that” guy. I know Kurenai and Mizuchi were there and it sounded like Hime was as well. The last one sounded like Utsutsu iirc so that would mean Iroha was “that” guy that everyone doesn’t like, which I can see happening because of his attitude. But until we’re given concrete names I don’t know /o\.

      I think it’s a reincarnation loop with SORT of an alternate reality. I think the deciding factor as to how the world (and her fate) goes is who the onifuda chooses as her partner. In this world or version it was Mizuchi. The next one is going to be Himeutsugi.

      As for the rest of your questions… we haven’t been given any answers unfortunately. In an interview the developers said they intended to clear up a lot of mysteries here in Mizuchi-hen in Himeutsugi’s game, which makes sense since they intend for Hana Awase to be like a tetralogy (which I think is an awesome way of handling separated games).

      You’re very welcome again! I’m glad that my posts can help you decide on whether or not to get certain games ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ. I’ve been wondering if I should actually start the habit of having a “my thoughts” section at the bottom but I’m afraid that I won’t have anything to say for some routes, aha.

    Brooke said:
    May 12, 2013 at 17:39

    I am so sad why did you upload this? Can I cry on your shoulder?

      Ilinox responded:
      May 13, 2013 at 20:04

      I needed to share the despair of course! Of course you can borrow my shoulder though (T_T)ヾ(´▽`;)! Would you like some apple chips along with tissues?

        Brooke said:
        May 14, 2013 at 16:51

        Sometimes you make me more as ;-;
        *Runs away crying*

        Random Yandere appears,
        He pulls a knife out and tells you to apologize or die!

        Apologize to Brooke
        Be stabbed
        Ask a UFO for help

        What do you choose?

        Ilinox responded:
        May 15, 2013 at 17:21

        I’m sorry /o\ please don’t stab me! It’ll make updating much harder, ahaha. I’ll “Ask a UFO for help” (・ω\).

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