As Hakuto finishes up their performance, Chika and others look tense. The audience starts applauding. Mio happily looks upwards. Taishin and Uta are happy for him. Satowa thinks that the last part seems like there is some awakening.
Chika is quite glad upon realizing that it turns out that koto has this way of expressing. Sitting with the audience, Kazusa complains that she cannot dare believe it for what kind of playing is that!? She never heard of that classical piece and she can see the universe.
Fumi tells her that it isn’t a classical piece, it is an original piece. Yae says that even if the approach is very different from theirs, but it can compete against them for the first.
Kazusa thinks that’s right, it will definitely split up the judges’ ballot. Wakaba glances at somewhat tense Hozumi. Wakaba says there’s no need to worry because the reason why people would think that of Hakuto is basically, it depends on the soloist’s performance and the piece being very good itself.
“But, Himesaka isn’t the same for they are using all the same strengths to finish playing the piece. Regarding that, the judges will definitely give us a good evaluation.” Some of the judges look a bit troubled. Holding his head, Tsukaji thinks that later on, they judges will quarrel and what’s up with this.
“Is this the Nationals!? The level is so high!! Himesaka and Hakuto, yet unexpectedly, only one group can enter the Nationals! Is this some kind of joke! Just ignore it and let the two groups enter the Nationals!! This year, just ignore the contract and let the two ascend [to the Nationals]!!” Komaki tells him to calm down since she’ll feel embarrassed.
Tetsuki comments that he feels that Hakuto is also really amazing, and it is a totally different way of amazing compared to Himesaka. Isaki agrees and like this, the judges will definitely have a headache.
Tetsuki asks how music is judge from good or bad. Is it looking at the piece’s difficulty or how complete it is? Isaki says of course, both points are being look at.
But, if they couldn’t distinguish who is better basing on those two points, then the judges will look at other points. They’ll consider its orderliness, aesthetics and paying attention to the way the piece has been expressed.
While Mio and others are taking away their koto, Taishin meets up with Suzuka who is with Akira. Taishin and Suzuka nod at each other before Suzuka leaves. Meanwhile, four of Tokize’s members are getting the jitters. Sane became really nervous.
He thinks that this is bad when obviously, he calmed down after the cheering up huddle. “But after listening to Hakuto’s performance, I became nervous again.” Hiro tells herself to calm down and wonders why Hakuto has to perform right before them. Kouta wishes that his tempo isn’t too fast or slow, and he can properly match it with the others.
Michi is worried about his fingers moving in the correct way and it is alright even if he cannot play it with the plectrum[?/not sure on the second part of the sentence]. Upon seeing the four nervous, Satowa wanted to do something but Chika stops her by holding her hair. Takezou tells the others that it is okay, there’s no need for everyone to worry or feel uneasy because they only have to play just like the usual.
Everyone is surprised by what he said. Takezou thinks that as the club president, he always doesn’t do anything that is in accordance to his status as club president but, only this little bit, he can assert. Takezou smiles and says that it is because their amount of practice is absolutely the biggest [compared to the others]. Everyone looks moved.
Chika rubs Takezou’s head and shouts that since the club president said that, then it is definitely, right since their amount of practice is the biggest!!! Suzuka says that even if their practice is the most, it isn’t definite that they’ll ascend to what is called the Nationals. Chika angrily shouts for him to shut up.
Akira tells everyone not to worry and it is right because they already bore her severe coaching. “There’s no need to think of anything today. Just perform as much as you like.” The others are moved by that. The girl calls out for Tokize to prepare to go on the stage.
Before they leave, Suzuka tells them not to forget. “What’s important isn’t ascending to the Nationals but rather, ‘why you have to ascend to the Nationals’. Don’t forget that.”
Everyone starts to remember why they have to go to the Nationals. If they lose this preliminary, Takezou and Hiro can no longer go to the Nationals. For them, this is the last opportunity. They don’t want everything to end.
It’s quite great if they can always persevere on. They won’t be here next year. It will be too late if it is next year. With thoughts about why they absolutely have to go to the Nationals, Tokize heads out onstage.
Meanwhile, Fujimoto scolds Kinoshita for dilly-dallying when they can immediately leave after putting things in order. Kinoshita says but, won’t they listen to the other school’s performance.
Fujimoto asks if that is necessary and if she wants to listen then go there alone. Kinoshita asks them to please go with her for she hopes that this koto club can take part at the last part of the tournament. The two look at Kinoshita quietly.
Back at the auditorium, Takezou’s mother calls out to her husband that Takezou and his group is going onstage. She worriedly wonders if he’ll be okay, and for him to screw up in this kind of formal situation— Takezou’s father tells her to calm down.
Mashiro nervously cheers Takezou and others on. Isaki tells Tetsuki that she suddenly became nervous. Tetsuki tells her that they are definitely alright, and after all, they practiced like crazy for such a long time.
At a different room, Arakagi is furious that Mio is nowhere to be found. Holding Mio’s koto, Taishin says that Mio went to listen to Tokize’s performance. Akaragi is furious that Mio won’t tidy up his own instrument. Upon seeing Taishin looking distracted, she asks if he wants to go and see.
She tells him to go since he also wants to listen to Tokize’s performance, right? “Wasn’t it said that it is very possible that they’ll become our formidable opponent? You just go and listen on our behalf. Go and listen to see if it is so.”
Sparkling eyes Komai says that it is so amazing for the next school unexpectedly have 5 boys. She exclaims that it’s so cute and she supports this school. Tsukaji says is that so. He feels pity for them since they’ll perform after Hakuto.
He sighs and thinks that honestly speaking, he already doesn’t want to listen to another terrible performance. “Anyway, number one is either Himesaka or Hakuto.” Kazua is tense for it is Tokize’s turn. Taishin finds Mio sitting among the audience. A staff member says that it’s great that Shizu manages to come in time. Shizu says, yes.
Kinoshita and others manage to find some seats. Kinoshita looks at the stage and sees Chika. She thinks that it’s great that it is his group’s turn, and she gets to listen to it. Fujimoto recognizes the glasses guy whom he bumped into during the opening ceremonies.
Kinoshita recalls him commenting that school is the same with theirs, a feeling of being ‘patchwork’ [/hodge podge]. Fujimoto says that it is good if they didn’t stop playing like them. Kinoshita just looks on tensely. Tokize are already in position.
While their school name and piece is announced, Satowa looks at the audience. She didn’t see her mother. She closes her eyes and opens them again. Just then, the door at the back opens. It is Chiharu who glances at surprised Satowa before she looks away.
As Chiharu and Doujima takes their seats, Satowa felt like crying. “-This sentence, ‘Your koto is like a lethal weapon’ has repeatedly chewed into my heart countless times.” Upon sitting, Chiharu notices that her hand is shaking.
Clenching her fist, she thinks that isn’t promising for she is unexpectedly scared of listening to her own daughter’s performance. Satowa thinks, “For a long time now, I don’t understand so I didn’t go and face it but right now, *scenes of everyone together including Akira*..”
Everyone except for bored Tsukaji is surprise, or nervous with anticipation when Satowa smiles as she prepares to play. Then, everyone is stunned as Satowa plays as if they are submerged in water. This made Tsukaji scowl and tensely sit up.
Narration: “—yes, it is this. It is completely different from that time but you only have to listen to THAT, then you’ll already understand everything-- You only have to listen to one sound.” On the verge of tears, Chiharu covers her mouth. She recalls that time.
Flashback: Young Satowa informed her mother that she wrote a koto piece. Chiharu patted her head and said that it is an amazing piece. Satowa asked if she had cheered up after hearing it. Teary-eyed Chiharu said that she’ll also properly do her best in order for her and Satowa to always live with a smile. End flashback.
Chiharu covered her face while crying. Looking flustered, Tsukagi couldn’t believe it. “Is this music? By merely listening to one sound, one can realize how very far the level of difference is. It’s crystal clear, distinct [/bright] and gorgeous. The music penetrates deeply into the heart [/refreshes the mind] that it always penetrates into the body..to the heart’s every corner. How the hell is this kid--..”
He suddenly recalls an image of Satowa playing solo before at the Nationals, and he realizes something. He quickly opens the booklet and reads Houdzuki Satowa as the soloist. He recognizes her. She was the one who was said to have lost eligibility to perform and got expelled from Houdzuki Group. “It is that genius girl!!??”
Kazusa also looks flustered as she wonders why Satowa, in this kind of place.. Aghast Wakaba wonders is this the ‘Satowa-chan’ whom Kazusa is always clamoring about. “Quit joking around. This is a different dimension [/out of this world]. It is impossible to win against this kind of opponent.. –but,”
Sou, the judge, thinks that is just limited to the solo performance. “This child possesses an exceptional ability. If this is a solo competition, she will without a doubt be number one. ..but, this is a group ensemble.” Tsugaki thinks, “What will the others do in order to match with that kind of music. ..or rather, I also won’t want any bit of any unnecessary sound to be inserted into it.”
Chika smiles and thinks that in the end, Satowa is amazing. Sane thinks that before, they always depended on Satowa to lead the way. –but.. Takezou thinks that it will soon reach the place where the 17-string koto will perform. As Sane and Chika get ready to play, Chika thinks, “We must depend on our own strength and go to that person’s side.”
Comment: In a way, I think Chika and Hakuto can be ‘friendly rivals’ since they seem to unintentionally encourage each other with their performance regarding how a piece can be performed. Hakuto is good enough to make Himesaka realize that winning isn’t in the bag yet.
It will all depend on the judges who got confused over whom they’ll send to the Nationals. As Tsukaji mentioned, both are National level-type of performance. They would just have to carefully scrutinize other points of comparison on who’s the best between the two.
With four members having the jitters, Takezou did his best to cheer them on by reminding them how much they practice. Suzuka is such a pessimist =P Well, Akira put in a good word of encouragement. In the end, Suzuka was the one who reminded them why they are all here now.
Apparently, Konishita and her group are still in the story. Is she/they also going to be influenced by Tokize’s music and have a life-changing point/perspective in their lives? Perhaps, everyone who is gathered there will, more or less, have that sort of experience.
Well, we already have one ‘influenced person’ at the last part. Chiharu finally realized what Satowa wanted to convey to her before. It took a long time of suffering and patience on Satowa’s part but finally, her effort is going to be rewarded. It must be such an amazing music that even Doujima looked astounded by it.
I guess I should be satisfied that a part of the performance is shown in comparison to Himesaka and Hakuto whose starting performance ended up as the cliffhanger. Everything is being set-up at the start. There are supposedly only two major contenders for the Nationals.
Tokize is currently the underdog based on Tsukaji’s reactions. At first, he pities them for performing next to Hakuto. After realizing who their soloist is, he isn’t too enthusiastic about the others performing which he assumed will ruin the music. So, I cannot wait to see his and the others’ reaction later on. ^^ Scans by 二次元秘店汉化
Word of the day:
Anything wonderful can happen in that little margin of time when you don’t give up and keep on believing. ‘Let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6:9’ ~ 101 mottos for success by J. Richards and M.S. Fontaine.