Looking at the mirror in her house, Satowa fixes her necktie and recalls Akira’s smile. This made her smile as she heads to school. At the club room, Sane tells Chika that he really startled him to death. “5am in the morning, and you’ll suddenly say, ‘come to the club room’. I thought something had already happened.. Do you always come to practice this early in the morning? No wonder you were always the first to arrive. By the way, aren’t you sleepy? Aren’t you super lethargic in the morning?” Chika says that right now, if there is a bed here, he can immediately go back to sleep. Sane says that he thought so. He comments that Satowa and Akira’s ensemble is really super amazing. Chika agrees. He says that before, he always thought that until the day of the tournament, he must reach Satowa’s level. Sane comments that Chika really thinks of some extraordinary things. Chika says but he thinks that he was mistaken. Sane asks what he meant. Recalling the girls’ performance, Chika says that they definitely have to do their own growth to be able to be placed equally with that girl. This surprises Sane.
Chika tells him that didn’t Suzuka say that they have to properly think of the meaning and responsibility of one’s timbre..even if right now, he still doesn’t totally understand its meaning. “But, he said ‘have to value each note’. I think it is generally not enough if it only becomes ‘you played it well’.” Sane thinks that actually, he himself wanted to properly do his best and Chika, he is really..in short, there are times when he’ll immediately leave him behind in a breath and go far away but, ‘Once more time, we--..’ Sane exclaims, okay, they are going to play the 17 string to the point that it is at par with Satowa!! Chika says it is like that, so first, they are going to double their practice. Sane asks Chika if he knows how many hours there are in a day, and compared to that, the way of practice is more important-- Sane laughs and thinks, “Hey, Chika, I also want to be at par with you.” In her classroom, Hiro is practicing their piece with a small cardboard replica of the koto. She thinks that it is good, she can already remember the musical score, so next, she is going to work hard and practice—
Takezou leans close to her and asks if that is Chika’s. This startles Hiro that she exclaims his name. This also startles Takezou. He apologizes for suddenly talking with her. Blushing and nervous, Hiro says no, no, she should apologize and yes, she borrowed this from Chika. Chika let her borrow it since he is temporarily not using it since he is practicing the 17 string. Takezou comments that cardboard koto seems to be very popular. He says that her and Kouta’s second sound ensemble have also started to coordinate and it seems that Kouta has been specially working hard. Hiro exclaims that is right, Kouta is really doing his best as he practiced diligently with her as if his life depended on it! She says that it seems that there is no problem with his and Michi’s first sound group that Michi’s attentive timbre is pleasant to listen to. Takezou says that it seems that Michi can do some tailor work at home so his hands are very skillful. Hiro exclaims is that so, Michi is really amazing. Takezou says but, the two of them at the first sound group..their performance is VERY MEDIOCRE or he should say that it is too serious. This made Hiro burst into laughter.
Takezou says that it isn’t a funny thing for wasn’t it said that ‘if the first and second sound group’s way of blending isn’t the same, the piece’s feeling will also subsequently change’-! Hiro apologizes and says that it is because actually, it is too much his distinctive trait. [<- mediocre and too serious] Takezou says that he isn’t at all happy about that since that issue really caused him to be distressed for such a long time like ‘I’m seriously too boring’-something. Hiro exclaims that he isn’t boring, he’s really cool! This surprises Takezou. Hiro happily says that ‘being serious’ that part is really cool! “So, you only have to display that part up to its utmost limit- The first sound group can play neat and tidy [/efficient]- Afterwards, the second sound group would use ‘liveliness’ as the goal! And afterwards-- *Takezou blushes a bit over happily talking Hiro* Hey, Kurata!! Are you listening to me!?” Surprised Takezou says yes, he’s listening, sorry. Some other day, Akira is heading towards the club room when Sane calls out to her and says that she is really early today.
Akira calls out his name. Sane exclaims that she remembers his name and it turns out that she knew. Akira says but of course. Sane asks if she is already okay today. This puzzles Akira. Pointing to his eyes, Sane happily says, “The eyes. There are a lot of dust in our club room even if we properly sweep it. If there is some dust that went into the eyes again, Or perhaps, it is some other thing, then do not hesitate, please tells us directly about it.” This surprises Akira that she says that she is already fine. Sane smiles and says that’s great. Entering the clubroom, he exclaims that it is great, there is no one else here yet! “Lucky- I get to monopolize the teacher!! Before everyone comes, please give me special training!!” While Sane is playing, Akira tells him to play that part lighter and do not be anxious, just play slowly. Sane says okay. Looking at him trying hard, Akira comments that he is really doing his best. Sane asks is that so but compared to him, Chika is working harder than he is. This surprises Akira.
Sane says that Chika obviously can play better than him and has the talent for it. “Yet, he practices more than me. Takinami-sensei said, ‘own timbre’s meaning and responsibility’. Chika also considers those words as something that definitely has a very important meaning. (--..but..honestly speaking, my timbre--..) Ah, in short! I’m putting in my utmost effort in order not to drag everyone behind!!” Akira tells him that his timbre is the kind that can properly blend in together with all of the club members. This puzzles Sane. She tells him that Suzuka had told her the reason why he made Sane play the 17 string. Flashback: Suzuka told Akira that she should have noticed it already that the club members, all of their timbre isn’t on key, so it is easy for it to become a totally incompatible music. But, Adachi’s timbre and the other members are very ‘harmonious’ [/keep in step with] that it can ingeniously make the timbre of every member have a parallel connection together. End flashback. Akira tells Sane that Suzuka said that is why he put Sane in charge of the 17 string, the piece’s core. She smiles and adds, “Besides, I also think it is so.” Sane is moved for he is connecting everyone’s music. Flustered Sane thanks Akira and he’ll do his best. This made Akira smile.
Soon, everyone is practicing together. Chika turns to Sane and asks if his timbre has changed. Sane asks is that so, he himself cannot hear it out too much. “—perhaps, it is because I already know, ‘own timbre’s meaning and responsibility’..generally..” This stuns Chika that he exclaims what does he know, what is it!!? Thinking that he couldn’t say out that stuff about him, Sane tells Chika that it is a secret. Irked Chika puts Sane in a head grip and angrily shouts, what secret, you.. Sane quickly tells Chika that he surrenders. Akira calls out to Satowa and asks if she had changed her playing method a bit. Satowa admits that she did for her second finger is always very weak..even if lately there are a lot of progress but after hearing Akira’s performance, she felt that it is still not enough. “In short, I have no way of playing each note neatly as I imagined.” Aghast Sane asks where, he totally wasn’t able to hear [notice] it..and if she were to play it a bit more neatly, then the note will become silk[? Too delicate/sorry I couldn’t read the word really well]. Satowa says if it is possible, that is what she wanted. Akira stands up and gives Satowa an eye mask.
Akira says that if she doesn’t mind, she can use that. Satowa is puzzled. Akira says that she always use that way to practice, wearing the mask while playing since it makes her energetically concentrate her ears, and then her feeling will become sharper. “It will be easier to communicate with one’s own music. If you are willing, please try it out when you are practicing alone.” Chika exclaims that he also wanted to try that. Akira tells him that with his current level, it is meaningless to use that. This made Chika disappointed. Akira tells him that after his skill can go up a level, then he can try this method. Holding the mask, Satowa says about this.. Akira says that she’s giving it to her. This made Satowa smile and thank her. This surprises Akira. Then, she says, you’re welcome. Chika starts looking around as the others are playing. He recalls being told that this is the last opportunity for the two [Takezou and Hiro]. Chika thinks that he has to quickly improve. So he always rushes to the club room to practice. Practice with the group and alone. Listen to the music while going to sleep. He is practicing so hard that he is injuring his fingers and nails from playing so hard.
In class, Chika is laying his head on the desk with the Tenkyuu music book on his head. Satowa asks him what happened. With his soul already floating above, Chika says that it is nothing. Satowa says that lately, he seems to be acting a bit strange so if he has any worries regarding the playing-- Sitting up, Chika says that he said that he is nothing and anyway, it has nothing to do with her..ah, sleepy to death.. Satowa is surprised by his answer that she apologizes for interrupting him. Then, she looks away from him. Chika glances at her then puts the book on his face again. He thinks that he must immediately climb up to her side. So, he continues to practice really hard while thinking that he must immediately..immediately.. Takezou starts to look a bit worried about Chika. At Houdzuki residence, Akira notices her grandmother going out of her room all dressed up. She asks if her grandmother is going out. Dojima says that she is and she plans to go to Takagi-sensei. Akira bows and says is that so, then please be careful on her way. Dojima thanks her. After she left, Akira thinks that she has seen Takagi several times and if she remembers right, he is Houdzuki Group’s authoritative..
After looking at the side to see if no one is around, Akira slides open the door and goes into her grandmother’s room. She opens a drawer and is surprised to see pictures of Chika and Sane. [<-there seems to be other pictures] She mutters, this..is.. She recalls her grandmother saying that gathering of delinquents, really doesn’t have a sense of shame. The scene changes to Chika going to the club room. He feels a bit dizzy and thinks that it is bad for it seems that his blood isn’t enough..meat.. He opens the door to find Takezou already there with his koto. He greets Chika and says that this time around, he is earlier than Chika. He laughs and says that before, every time he arrives, Chika is already there when obviously, he is waking up earlier each day. “But, I always wasn’t able to meet you in the morning that I got a bit impatient! It turns out that everyday, you come to practice this early.” Chika says that it is nothing. Getting his koto to play it, Chika says that he is a super early riser that his eyes are already open when the sky is still dark.
Takezou says that he knows that he is annoyed when he just got up but this time, that part that he and Chika is responsible for and their grouping isn’t the same so there is always no opportunity to properly talk. Chika asks, talk? Takezou asks isn’t he practicing excessively lately. Chika says what does he mean excessively when obviously it is still not enough and the tournament is less than a month-- Chika is surprised when Takezou suddenly grabbed Chika’s left hand and look at it. Chika’s fingers are all wounded. Realizing that he has been practicing for such a long time, Takezou worriedly says that isn’t this excessive. Pulling his hand from Takezou, Chika shouts that he said that it is still totally not enough, and with them currently like this, they absolutely cannot enter the Nationals! “The level of our ensemble is very far from Houzuki and Doujima! It even couldn’t compare to Himesaka and Hakuto. If I don’t practice more--” Takezou says that he understands his feelings but it is no good if he practice too much and ruin his hands. “Besides, Kudou-kun, you are still a first year, so there’s no need to be in such a hurry. About entering the Nations, there is still an opportunity next year--”
Chika shouts, “You guys are no longer here next year!! *Takezou looks surprised* Next year is already too late.” Takezou is flustered to the verge of tears. Chika says that since he understands then move aside for he is hindering his practice!!? Chika is surprised when Takezou suddenly tightly grabs his right hand into his arms. Takezou angrily shouts that he’s banned from practicing!!! Chika exclaims, “Ah!? What are you talking about, quit joking around!!” While he won’t let go of Chika’s arm, Takezou exclaims that practicing too much has an opposite effect!! “The quantity of practice isn’t everything!!” Chika shouts for him to shut up for if he doesn’t practice, will there be a possibility for him to play well, stupid!! Takezou shouts that he is making him choose a good method. Chika angrily shouts what he is talking about. Soon, the two are tired from the struggle that they catch their breath while lying down on the floor. Chika calls him stupid for what are they doing, they unexpectedly wasted a lot of time. Takezou says that doesn’t he feel better. “..From before, I had taken note of something and that is something to do with Kudou-kun’s timbre.”
Sitting up, Chika asks what is it. Takezou says that occasionally, Chika’s timbre would shine. This puzzles Chika that he asks shine? Takezou says yes, occasionally, and it emits light that is very gentle and warm. “I always don’t understand what is that shine’s timbre. I felt that it is very baffling. Right now, I think that I finally understand. *smiles* Those timbre is Kudou-kun’s, your heart.” Chika looks surprised as he recalls someone saying, ‘that is a person’s heart’. Takezou snaps out of it. He immediately sits up and felt embarrassed. He thought that it is bad, for he carelessly got too relaxed that in the end, he said out what he was thinking..!! Chika says what, did he get his head jammed into the door. Takezou thinks that he knew earlier, he wouldn’t have said it. Chika looks flustered as he recalls his grandfather telling him that this thing called music can resonate with one’s heart so the musical composition is the composer’s heart. “That is a person’s heart.” He recalls telling Satowa that he doesn’t know what that piece is to her. Satowa told him that actually it is a song to make someone smile.
Suzuka told everyone that it is definitely better to express the ‘darkness’ [/negative] while expressing the ‘sun’ [/positive]. He also told them to seriously look at the whole piece and go understand the piece’s texture. End recollection. Chika seems to have realized something. At the Houdzuki residence, Doujima calls out to Akira and says that she got visitors so can she prepare some tea. Akia asks, visitors..? She is surprised to see a group of people. She realizes that it is Takagi-sensai and the other higher ups.. Doujima says that after she comes back, greet everyone. Turning around, she reminds Akira to remember to prepare the tea water for the head of the family. [<- Chiharu?] After looking surprised, Akira slightly smiles. She calls out to her grandmother and asks with a smile, “Will you also let me join along?” Doujima looks at her suspiciously then says okay, she can also come.
Comment: From this chapter, it seems that they are all improving their timbre. This is good since as shown in Chika, no matter how hard one practices, it is difficult to become an expert player in such a short time. So, it is better to add focus on what they are good at. It seems that they are in their own way to realizing consciously or not what Suzuka meant. That is their part of the group and personality which can be shown through their playing. There are some nice touching moments here. It is really amazing to hear something that one always wanted to hear when one is ‘stuck’ or to feel that one is actually important/special to someone else. It is quite a high that makes one feel that it’s great to be alive and one had a purpose in this life. Well, if Akira was originally a spy for her grandmother, it doesn’t mean that she cannot also be a spy for the others. ^^ I’m not sure how Akira will handle things since her grandmother seems to be already suspicious of Akira ‘no longer doing as she says’ and she might trick Akira. Anyway, I think it is inevitable that her plot will backfire and I’m excited to see when that happens ^^ In a way, perhaps, Akira realized that the grandmother is going to make Chiharu go and listen to the performance ^^ Scans by 二次元秘店汉化
Quote of the day:
Most of us, swimming against the tides of trouble, the world knows nothing about, need only a bit of praise or encouragement – and we will make the goal. ~ Jerome Fleishman