(Is this the first happy character route!? IT IS. IT FINALLY IS! I won’t spoil who this character is and so I won’t be tagging anything except for the usual general tags, but those who have been following my Psychedelica posts will know. This is my attempt at encouraging people to read these posts as a series.)
I’m going to do another quick summary of everything, including choices, up to where new things start to appear. But if you want details then you’ll have to read my Psychedelica posts from the very beginning, up to and including the Best End. Psychedelica is such a nice story about dealing with loss and different sides to that. Like, Takuya and Ai deal with feelings of guilt.
*** PROLOGUE ***
Beniyuri wakes up in a strange mansion with no memories. She meets up with Hikage and they are both saved from the monsters by Monshiro. Kagiha appears and leads them to a refuge. But then they hear a scream and so Beniyuri runs out to save Karasuba and Yamato. The team gives themselves names from the plates on the door and also find out that they are all amnesiac and that the master of the mansion wants them to complete this item called the “kaleidoscope”. They can also manifest guns to fight the monsters.
*** CHAPTER ONE ***
The team finds the pieces of the kaleidoscope and complete it. They are then told by a messenger, called Usagi, that they need to collect fragments to complete the kaleidoscope. The fragments are held by monsters and so they need to exterminate them. As a reward for completing the kaleidoscope, everyone is also given back their childhood memories. Beniyuri has a cry about her previous life and is comforted by Kagiha.
*** CHAPTER TWO ***
Everyone trains themselves to manifest and use their guns. Beniyuri is taught personally by Yamato, and is the last to pick this skill up. Anyway, they go on their monster hunting expedition with Beniyuri choosing who she wants to explore the mansion with.
*Beniyuri picks Yamato and converses with him about her family, since he won’t talk about his. She ends up comparing him to her dog, Koro, which amuses Yamato. Then they stumble upon a young boy who turns into a monster and drops a fragment when they defeat the monster. Yamato has a breakdown about being unable to protect someone “again”.
After that they are given another reward by the master of the mansion in the form of Usagi delivering food to them. Everyone has dinner around a table and Beniyuri feels that everyone is getting closer together. She also manages to see Usagi’s face.
*** CHAPTER THREE ***
Yamato has been irritable lately and so Beniyuri visits him with hot chocolate. They have a talk about their families and lives before Yamato reveals that he has a younger twin brother who has been in a coma for ten years. Yamato is impatient to get out of this mansion because he’s the only one who’s been talking constantly to his brother, and the doctors say that this gives his brother the best chance to wake up.
Beniyuri comforts Yamato but runs out of his room when he tries to touch her, for some reason. In her room, the master of the mansion suddenly asks if she wants to know more about Yamato or not.
*She does but the master of the mansion sends her a photo of the twins before she can respond.
Then everyone is woken up by Yamato screaming and rushes out of the refuge to see him transform into a monster in their face. Yamato runs off before they can do anything. After this event, Usagi visits them and reveals to them that this world is the interval between life and death. Meaning, everyone here is almost dead and the only way for them to return to life is to complete kaleidoscope, since it’ll grant the user a wish. And then Beniyuri reveals to everyone the photo of the twins that the master of the mansion sent to her. Hikage realizes that he’s Yamato’s little brother and staggers off to be alone in his room. Everyone is shocked and a bit broken from the sudden loss of one of their members.
*She wonders if Yamato can return back to normal and is then visited by Monshiro who pleads with her to help Yamato.
*** CHAPTER FOUR ***
Everyone is depressed by Yamato’s disappearance but realize that they have no choice but to continue on hunting for the fragments to complete the kaleidoscope. They have collected quite a few fragments but Beniyuri only continues to feel uneasy. She partners up with Kagiha this time and they defeat a monster, which leaves her breathless and exhausted. She also has the feeling that someone is watching them.
At night, she is led outside by white butterflies and to Monshiro who leads her to the hidden greenhouse where Yamato has been hiding. She manages to turn him partially back to normal but he refuses to return to the refuge. She promises to visit him and keep this a secret from others and is led back to the refuge by Monshiro.
*She wants to know what relationship Monshiro has with Yamato.
She visits Yamato every night with Monshiro and then, one day, Monshiro gives her the ribbon that he always has and tells her that it’s a protective charm. He also wants to be one of her companions and ends up popping into the room. Everyone is suspicious but Karasuba lies to help Beniyuri and so Monshiro joins the group. He ends up cuddling with her at night and whispers that he can’t stay with her forever, even though he wants to.
Yamato tells Beniyuri about a study and so she visits it with Hikage only to find a strange book.
*She turns her eyes away from it.
In the end, she finds a photo before she and Hikage are attacked by a monster. They retreat back to the refuge and show the photo to everyone which unlocks their memories about being childhood friends, except for Monshiro. Hikage is very suspicious about this. Everyone also seems to be hiding a painful memory from Beniyuri, who is the only one who can’t remember it.
At night, Karasuba muses on breaking the kaleidoscope because he doesn’t want to return to reality. He tries to tempt Beniyuri into running away with him but she refuses. Karasuba reveals that he likes her because of her optimism and is comforted by her. He regains his personality and equilibrium but also warns her that she’s the one who will be hurt by her memories when she reveals that she wants to remember.
*** CHAPTER FIVE ***
Usagi tells them that they have almost completed the kaleidoscope; they only need one or two more fragments. Everyone is happy except for Karasuba. He ends up disappearing the next day and everyone goes through the mansion to search for him. Beniyuri even secretly enlists the help of Yamato. She and Hikage find Karasuba injured in a room. They head back to the refuge only to see Monshiro pointing a gun at Kagiha.
Everyone has regained their memories except for Beniyuri who is starting to lose her patience at how everyone is keeping a secret from her. Karasuba ends up shooting Monshiro’s mask and breaks it to reveal that he has the same face as Hikage. Hikage reveals that he’s the master of the mansion. Monshiro was Kazuya, Yamato’s twin brother all along.
Hikage tries to kill Beniyuri for the last shard but Kagiha takes the shot for her. Hikage attempts to kill her again but is wounded by Yamato, who suddenly appears. Hikage retreats and uses Kagiha as a shield. Beniyuri has memories of the time everyone went to the summer camp and started to explore a mansion on a lake.
*** CHAPTER SIX ***
Yamato takes their diminished group, consisting of Beniyuri, Karasuba, himself, and Monshiro, to the greenhouse in an attempt to find somewhere to hide from Hikage and heal. They rest there until Karasuba’s wound heals. Beniyuri starts to feel isolated and hurt at how everyone is still keeping a secret from her. But then they’re approached by Usagi who reveals that Beniyuri has the last fragment and the master of the mansion wants her to come to him.
Everyone makes a plan to deal with Hikage, but this only makes Beniyuri feel more isolated since her plans are shut down and she’s not very involved apart from having the role to talk and distract Hikage. In the end, she’s the one who decides when they should go though and she:
- Wants to look around
- Wants to go immediately
Beniyuri wants to head over to Hikage immediately.
*** CHAPTER SEVEN ***
At night, Beniyuri is lured out of the greenhouse by butterflies and meets Kagiha who coaxes her into giving him her ribbon. He tells her that she won’t be able to return back to life with it since she has a strong attachment to it. He also gets her to promise not to tell anyone about their meeting. Beniyuri’s accessory is also turning worryingly black.
The team confront Hikage in his throne room and it is revealed that Kagiha has been working with him. Beniyuri is forced to remember her tragic past where Kagiha, also known as Natsuki, died in the accident saving her and Kazuya. Kazuya fell into a coma from the accident. Karasuba, also known as Aki, moved away. Yamato, also known as Takuya, also moved. Basically their friendship broke and Beniyuri blames it on herself and starts to become a black butterfly in despair. Her hairpin, containing the last fragment, shatters and Hikage takes this chance to acquire the last fragment for the kaleidoscope and completes it.
Yamato and Karasuba burn themselves trying to reach Beniyuri. Hikage has betrayed Kagiha, who is in despair at what his choices have wrought. Monshiro is angry that Kagiha took the ribbon which is a protective charm for Beniyuri, and whoever wants to injure the master of the mansion. He still tries to stop Hikage from using the completed kaleidoscope though.
Beniyuri summons up the strength to crawl to Kagiha and they forgive each other. Kagiha had wanted to return to life with her because he loved her but he also realizes that he needs to unshackle himself from everyone. He returns the ribbon to her, which cures her from her despair and then sacrifices his life to pin Hikage down. Beniyuri shoots through both of them and kills both. Kagiha’s spirit wishes her happiness before finally disappearing.
The kaleidoscope automatically grants their wish to live again and returns Beniyuri, Yamato, Karasuba, and Monshiro back to their original world. All of them have learned a valuable lesson about moving on and friendship.
*** EPILOGUE ***
Minato Ai wakes from her coma in the hospital, and so does Aki, Takuya, and Kazuya. All of them, excluding Kazuya, had been going to the lake to hold a memorial service for Natsuki but experienced an accident that put them in a coma when their bus drove off a cliff. It’s hailed as a miracle that all of them are awake but Ai knows that they have all escaped from that strange world and their exploration from that one summer’s day has finally ended.
Time skip! Ai finishes her mathematics problems and starts to tackle her English assignments in the living room drenched in sunset. She’s completing her assignments during the time that no one else is home yet. It’s been a week since she was discharged from the hospital. Her body is mostly recovered but she was told to keep an eye out on her condition and so she’s studying in her room without attending school yet.
She thinks that she’s completely healed though and wonders when she’ll be able to commute to school. Being alone and spending time in this quiet house only reminds her of “that mansion”. They were able to return to their original world after completing the kaleidoscope. Although she heard that everyone else woke up in her hospital room, she was discharged without seeing any of them. Even though she was told that they were uninjured she worries from not having seen their faces.
Concentrating on her assignments, she can only see everyone’s faces and hear their voices. Maybe she should send a message for everyone to meet? But she doesn’t want to trouble any of them if they are still recovering. She takes out her phone hesitantly. But then it suddenly rings and startles her. There’s a message.
Ai is called out to the park and when she arrives there she is greeted by Takuya in his uniform. She returns his greeting happily as he notes that it’s been a while. He has a school bag under his arm and it looks as if he just came back from school. Anyway, Takuya apologizes for calling her out to this place. She reassures him quickly that it’s fine and admits that it’s really been a while.
The Takuya in front of her doesn’t look like he has any injuries or had been sleeping for countless weeks. It’s been such a long time that she feels a bit nervous. She asks if he’s been going to school, to which he answers that he has been for the past couple of days. His eyebrows shoot up as he returns the question before realizing that she’s still resting. Did he force her out when she’s still recovering?
Ai reassures him that she’s fine now but her teachers and father want to continue observing her health. It’s an exaggeration, huh. He smiles wryly and points out that it’s not unreasonable since they had been in comas for a few weeks. She nods at that and reveals that she’s still catching up to everything that she missed. He smiles in response. No matter where they stand though, the summer heat beats down on them and Takuya wipes the sweat along his face with the back of his hand.
She notes that he doesn’t have sharp claws anymore and it looks like he’s returned to his original form. She says original but honestly his facial features look more mature from before. Takuya notices her look and asks her if there’s something on his face. She quickly shakes her head and replies that it’s nothing. She’s just thinking about how they’ve really returned. He grins again and comments on how it feels like a miracle to experience this heat.
This makes Ai ask him about Kazuya. She heard that he woke up! Takuya informs her that Kazuya woke up at the same time that he did but, in Kazuya’s case, he was sleeping for ten years and so it’s hard to move his legs and arms. But Ai is glad that he’s properly conscious.
Takuya and Ai end up sitting on the swings in front of them and as she looks up at the gold-edged clouds, she peeks at him from the corner of her eyes. Takuya muses on how they used to play here a lot when they were children. It’s a sudden sentence, aimed at no one. He doesn’t think anything has changed but it’s actually a small park. Ai agrees before talking about how the park hasn’t changed but they’ve become bigger. Takuya quietly comments on how they’ve changed too, huh.
His mouth flattens before he turns to look at her and says that he called her here to talk about something. She glances at him in surprise as he continues on to say that it’s about Kazuya and it’s something he hasn’t said– or more like hid. The heavy sounding words create tension. She only turns her eyes on him without saying anything.
Takuya starts to reveal that he did something he can never take back during the summer camp. She asks him what he means. He flushes as he reveals that he liked her when he was a child. But he wasn’t able to be honest to his feelings and he regrets how he was always acting contrary. And so, in his heart, he was irritated at how honest and easily Kazuya and her could get along without awkwardness. He wondered how Kazuya could talk to her so easily when he wanted to talk to her too, but they could only argue.
He admits that, thinking about it at the time, they did nothing but fight. Ai isn’t sure what to say to his words. He recalls how Kazuya fell and was injured during the summer camp. He confesses that he was extremely jealous when he saw how she used her precious ribbon – given to her by her mother – as a bandage and wrapped it around Kazuya. He acted like he was retying the ribbon for Kazuya but purposefully loosened it.
Ai freezes. Takuya admits that he wanted the Kazuya and her to fight after he lost it. He bites his lip and kicks the ground, making a small cloud of dust. His voice becomes shaky as he reveals that if Kazuya hadn’t gone back to retrieve the ribbon then none of that would have happened. The accident… was his fault. Ai hurriedly denies that and reminds him that she was the one who wanted them to go exploring in the first place!
Takuya interrupts her and tells her that he’s not done yet. He’s also thought about how if only Kazuya didn’t exist when they were children, and even when grown. Every day, when he went to visit Kazuya, he would wonder if he was truly worried about Kazuya or if it was just atonement. She murmurs his name. He looks away and whispers that he just wanted to be forgiven. It’s idiotic of him, right? Especially when he was the one who…
Ai tells him firmly that he’s wrong and he never meant it when he thought about Kazuya disappearing. He treasures Kazuya. If he didn’t then he wouldn’t go to see Kazuya every day for the last ten years. Takuya protests because that was just his guilty conscience. She refutes that and tells him that he has an extremely gentle look on his face when he looks at Kazuya. It’s the face of an older brother and his bond to his sibling.
His smile is wry as he wonders about that, since he can’t see it. Ai reassures him that she sees it. He looks away. She goes on to say that, at the mansion, she saw many sides to him; his strength and his weakness. But the thing she saw most was his gentleness. Even when he had lost his memories he continued to worry about Kazuya and hastened to leave the mansion. She thinks that if he was just looking for atonement then he would have forgotten about his visits to Kazuya. And that’s why she knows that he treasures Kazuya. In that world… and here.
She grips onto the chains of the swing and looks at him. The deep blue of his eyes are resting straight on her. He tells her that he wanted to know her. He doesn’t want to run from anything anymore. She nods.
Suddenly, he smiles and asks if she has time right now. She’s puzzled by the change in topic but answers that she does. He tells her that he’s been thinking about going to Kazuya and apologizing for what he did. He feels like he can talk about it now… even though he has no idea what kind of expression to have. Ai tells him to just see Takuya with the face of an older brother and reassures him that he’ll be able to do it. Takuya exhales relievedly.
Opening that hospital door, she is assaulted by the smell of medicine. White walls and white sheets. In the center of that white room Kazuya is lying on the bed. Is he sleeping? She pauses at the entrance, hesitating to enter. But, as if sensing a presence, his closed eyes flutter and slowly open. Kazuya calls out Takuya’s name and Takuya asks if they woke him up. Kazuya shakes his head and answers that he was awake before noticing that Ai is here too. They have a strange expression. Did something happen?
Takuya breathes out and, after exchanging a look with Ai, they approach the bed together. He tells Kazuya that he has something he wants to apologize for. He sits down on the chair beside Kazuya and tells him what he told Ai in the park. How he was jealous of Kazuya’s honesty when they were children. How he loosened the ribbon during the summer camp to make it easier to come undone. How he thought about wanting to break Kazuya and Ai’s relationship.
Kazuya only continued to quietly look at his older brother’s face, twisted in pain. Takuya apologizes in a teary voice about how he was always jealous and thought the worst things. He put aside how he wasn’t honest and instead thought about how he’d get along with Ai if only Kazuya didn’t exist. Kazuya doesn’t respond. Takuya also apologizes for the impulse of his actions with the ribbon. But because of that he forced Kazuya to be alone for a long time in “that mansion”.
He knows his apology doesn’t settle anything but he still wants to apologize. He was in the wrong. He’s sorry. Kazuya still doesn’t respond and only stares at Takuya who lowers his head. In a little while, after continuing to look at that splintered expression, he slowly speaks. It’s fine. Everything is over. Takuya tries to protest but Kazuya cuts him off to call him an idiot. Takuya falls silent.
Kazuya had wondered what Takuya had been doing at the time… but he was also an idiot. They’re the same in this regard. Takuya is surprised to hear this. But Kazuya’s words continue without inflection. He was also jealous of Takuya. He was a poor talker, clumsy, and didn’t have many friends. In contrast, Takuya could do anything and was popular everywhere. Kazuya has always been envious of that, to the point of having thought about Takuya not existing.
He knew that Takuya liked Ai. And so, when Ai gave him the ribbon, he showed off a bit of how he was so close to her. Kazuya repeats that he was also jealous. And if Takuya also suffered the same loneliness that he did then they’re the same now. They’ve both hurt each other. Everything is over now, which is why he thinks it’s fine. His calm eyes reflect Takuya’s conflicted expression without shaking.
Kazuya wants to repair their relationship and thanks Takuya for caring for him every day while he was sleeping. Takuya chokes out Kazuya’s name, his voice shaking with his emotions, and thanks him for returning. Kazuya suddenly looks over and calls out to her, beckoning her with another hand.
Ai remembers that she needs to apologize too. It’s because she forced everyone to explore that Kazuya was caught in the accident. She hurriedly tells him that she also– he interrupts and tells her that he doesn’t want to hear an apology, if that was what she was doing. More importantly, he wants her to hold out her hand. Taken by surprise, she can only extend her hand in confusion. He tells her that he’s returning this.
And then she feels a familiar sensation of something slippery falling onto her open hand. It’s her mother’s ribbon. Kazuya smiles and apologizes for borrowing it for such a long time, but thanks to the ribbon he was able to survive “that mansion”. It was his protection but he’s returning it. She hesitantly asks him if he’s fine with that. His smile softens as he tells her that returning this was his hope. He’s finally returned it. Ai nods her head and thanks him for protecting it.
She starts to gather the ribbon in her palm but she suddenly feels it being pulled and looks to see Kazuya gripping it with his fingers. Upon her look, he asks her if she’ll still come without the ribbon. She doesn’t understand. He elaborates on how he wants to see her still. He wants her to come here… even if it’s once in a while. Please. He looks away with a weak smile after giving this request.
Ai wraps both her hands around his and tells him with a teasing smile that she’ll come every day if he asks like that, to the point where he’ll start to hate it. Because he cries when he’s alone she’ll make sure that he’ll never be alone. Is he still okay with that? He’s stunned at her teasing tone but then grins and tells her that it’s fine. It’s the brightest smile that she’s seen from him up to now. And then, in a quiet voice that only she can hear, he thanks her for saving Takuya and is entrusting Takuya to her. His eye crinkle gently.
At night, on the way home, Takuya sighs and mutters about how even though Kazuya isn’t a good talker he’s shrewd and knows which buttons to press. He’s not clumsy at all. High in the summer night sky, the stars are glittering brightly. She wonders if Takuya heard what Kazuya last said to her. Entrusting Takuya to her… Thinking about that in her corner of her mind, she looks beside her and meets eyes with Takuya. Her heart skips a beat.
Takuya muses on how in the past she was sweet on Kazuya, which was why he… She looks at him in confusion, but he just looks away and scratches at his cheek. Her eyes drop to the ribbon in her hand as an awkward silence falls between them. Shining in the darkness, this is the only thing that she finds precious and she recalls how her mother gave her this ribbon, saying that it would lead her to a wonderful future.
This ribbon taught her to believe in hope and to overcome despair. It was passed through many people’s hands and this ribbon has all of their feelings. Right now, it’s in her hands. She had thought that she’d become a lovely woman when the time came for her to wear it. Would it suit her now? Takuya notices her contemplative silence and asks her if something is wrong.
Ai shakes her head before explaining that she was just remembering her past thoughts on whether she was a wonderful woman who would suit this ribbon. Her hair was short when she was small but she wonders if she can use it now. Takuya suddenly says 「・・・それ、つけてやるよ。」(… I’ll put it on for you). She looks up at him, flustered, before quickly saying that she’ll receive a shock if it doesn’t suit her and so she’ll do it secretly at home. But Takuya just tells her to give it to him and orders her to stand still.
He steps closer to her and wryly tells her that this time he’ll make sure it doesn’t come undone. Slender fingers comb through her hair and he starts to fasten the ribbon that he took from her. His hand is gentle and detailed, contrary to the roughness that she expected, and so her cheeks turn red unintentionally. She stutters and asks him what he’s doing since this is unlike him. He shoots her a grin and replies that he’s learned from Kazuya. He finishes tying her hair and tells her that he’s done.
Ai hesitantly asks him how she looks. He tells her bluntly that it suits her and her ears turn red. Takuya averts his eyes, also turning red, as he confesses that he had thought the same when he was a child, that she would look well with her hair in a ribbon. Ai retorts that he should have said that when he was a child then. He chuckles before telling her that he’s saying it now because he didn’t say it then. She giggles before pointing out that it feels good to be honest, huh.
Exchanging smiles, it feels like they returned to being children, and time gently passes like that. And then Takuya asks if he can say one more thing that he never told her. She hesitantly asks him if this is also something that he hid. He looks at her seriously and admits that it’s very important to him… and so he hid it. She looks up at him as his face turns red.
He points out 「さっき『お前が好きだった』って言ったけど、ちょっと違う。『だった』じゃねんだ。」(A while ago I said that I liked you, but that’s a bit wrong. It’s not in the past). She cautiously asks him what he means. He stutters out 「言葉通りだ。だからつまりーーお前が好きだ。今でも、っていうよりは、再会して前よりもっと。」(Exactly what I said. Basically– I like you. Even now, or more like even more ever since we reunited). He likes her.
Her eyes widen in surprise. As she continues to stand there without a response, the red disappears from his face before he rubs a hand across. He didn’t meet her during those ten years, not because he didn’t remember her but because he couldn’t bring himself to meet her. He thought she’d have forgotten what happened in the past and would be too dazzling for him, who was still trapped in the past.
But reuniting with her showed him that time had stopped for her ten years ago and she had an atmosphere that didn’t allow people to get close. He felt that she was alone, like him, and so he became concerned. Even “in that mansion” when they had no memories, they were still drawn together by their past. He was irritated every day and could only feel like he needed to return to someone whose face he couldn’t remember. And he realizes that she must have been scared to lose him and the others every day.
The way she expressed her emotions were different but she was suffering and troubled by the same things he was and so he couldn’t leave her alone. He was always concerned about her. He admits that he had cruel thoughts such as how she might have been the only one to understand his pain; he was relieved when he could be weak around her. Ai realizes that she was doing the same with him.
But then Takuya reveals that he thought she was strong though when he saw how she overcame her wounds and suffering. She hasn’t changed from when they were small– no, he’s mistaken. She’s stronger and more dazzling than she was as a child… and this is why he’s drawn to her once again. Thanks to her encouragement, he’s able to face Kazuya and his own past bravely. He wants to be able to see the same thing as her next time and so he wants to be by her side.
Ai can only murmur his name, feeling her heart tighten at his honest confession. She’s feeling a mix of surprise, bewilderment, pain, and happiness. She… Takuya takes a step back and realizes that it isn’t like him at all to say these things. She hurriedly tells him that she’s happy to hear his feelings. He stutters out that he doesn’t understand what that means though. How does she think of him?
For a second she glances away but then she looks back and stares into both his eyes as she answers that feels like she saw and felt the same thing he did. In the middle of feeling like everyone and everything has changed, she was happy to find that Takuya was the same as before. But… change is important. Their feelings of not wanting to change only led them to running away and they weren’t able to move forward.
And that’s why, in “that mansion”, they had to confront the things they ran away from like Natsuki and Kazuya. She was scared and felt like she was being pursued but… they changed. They overcame it. She thinks that things from now on will also have similar things that are painful, sad, and that they won’t want to think about. But…
There is only a small distance between them.
Ai continues on to say that if they can change together then she feels like she’ll be okay no matter what happens tomorrow. She’ll be okay so long as she can grow together with Takuya. She blurts out that her feelings are something like this and she feels like they’ll be able to overcome things together if he’s by her side. As long as they’re together. Takuya murmurs her name and she gasps softly before biting her lip. Her mouth is strangely loose in the darkness of the night and it feels like she said something outrageous.
She apologizes for talking too much and going on for more than what he had asked. Takuya smiles and shakes his head. He’s glad to know her true feelings. Looking down at her gently, he places a hand against her cheek. She stills in surprise but then he asks her seriously if she spoke the truth when she said they’ll be fine together even if unexpected things occur. Did she mean it when she said they’d overcome it?
Ai tells him that she only said she had those KIND of feelings because she doesn’t know whether it’ll be true or not. She accidentally says this because she’s embarrassed to accept those words frankly. He smiles 「・・・だな。わかんねぇよな。だから、さ。・・・確かめてみないか？」(… Right. We can’t know, huh. But… why don’t we try it?). S HR IEKS AT THIS LINE.
Just as she asks him what he means, her arm is grabbed. In the instant she looks up, a shadow falls, and then she feels a dry warmth against her lips. Her mind turns blank. She doesn’t know what just happened. She exclaims his name in surprise. He asks her how it was. She looks at him in confusion.
He starts to turn red 「起きただろ？思いがけないこと。さっきの発言・・・。思いがけないことが起きても、俺と一緒なら大丈夫って奴・・・。本当かどうか、わかったか？」(It happened, right? Something unexpected. You just said… that even if something unexpected were to happen it’d be okay so long as we’re together… Do you know now whether that’s the truth or not?).
She blurts out that she wouldn’t know with a surprise attack like this! He turns even redder as he offers to do it again then so it won’t be a surprise attack. She stares at him with wide eyes. Seconds pass. He’s giving her the chance to escape. But she only stands there and allows those warm eyes to come close. She accepts him. She doesn’t resist or turn her face away. The heat that is born from their touch spreads throughout her body.
The feeling of reality fades and it’s like she’s floating in a dream. Takuya softly tells her that he wants to know her feelings. Is she truly okay with him being together with her? She thinks he’s a bully. An undeniable fact has already been indicated and yet he still wants her to confess. He prompts her by calling her name again. But she only tells him that he’s being unfair since he should know the answer already. Why is he always bullying her? He retorts that it’s because she never properly answered.
His slightly unhappy face is adorable and she smiles at the same time her words come out honestly. She likes him too. She’ll be okay so long as she’s with Takuya. No matter what happens, they’ll overcome it. They’ll move forward together. He calls out her name in delight and she yelps when he pulls her tighter against him, making her wrap her arms around his back.
He grins again as he confirms that, yep, he does love her. She teasingly reminds him that he said that already. He asks her to let him say it since he never said it before. He loves her. Once again, the two of them exchange smiles. It’s a smile that is similar to the ones they had when they were children and yet different. A smile between similar people.
And then… they move their feet, which had stopped, one step forward. Forward on the dark road with their hands linked and to an end they can’t see. On this road that continues without an end, she doesn’t know what might await them. Yesterday, she would have immediately been scared and stopped walking.
But, right now, she has Takuya beside her. As long as she has this warmth from his hand, even if tomorrow rains, or if the day after that is windy, or if it’s never light… No matter what kind of painful hill, she’s able to continue forward with her head held up. That’s what she thinks.
Takuya’s voice is heard saying 「ゆっくりでいい。時々、後ろを振り返ってもいい。けど、立ち止まらずに歩いていこう。・・・お前となら大丈夫だ。」(It’s okay to go slow. It’s even okay to turn around and look back from time to time. But let’s continue walking without stopping in place… everything will be okay so long as you’re here). I’M GOING TO CRY OVER THE THEMES IN PSYCHEDELICA ABOUT MOVING ON AND FORGIVENESS.