Chika and others watch on as teary-eyed Satowa and her mother hug each other. Chika notices Kouta sobbing. Then, Kouta immediately rushes out and shouts that this is great, Houdzuki-chan-- He goes to give Satowa a hug.
Aghast Chika tries to go after him as he says, stupid... Hiro rushes out to stop Kouta as Takezou grabs her. Chika and Hiro realize that Satowa and her mother had noticed them. Satowa becomes beet red in embarrassment.
At the lounge, Hiro is reprimanding Kouta over running over at that kind of time. Sobbing Kouta apologizes for he was so happy. Hiro apologizes to Satowa for it was a rare reunion with her mother yet it was messed up.
Embarrassed Satowa assures them that it is fine. She says that she ought to be the one apologizes for not only did they help her search...she even let them see that humiliating... sorry... Hiro hugs her tightly and shouts what is she saying, it isn’t a bit humiliating.
Sitting on the bench, Chiharu comments that it’s really lively. Chika looks at her after overhearing her say that. He sits down and says that in the end, she and Satowa feels very similar. Chiharu says that she recalls that he played the 17th string. He says yes, he is...Kudou.
Chiharu looks surprised and says, right, you are... Chika is puzzled. Chiharu says that it is nothing. She compliments him and the other guy who played the 17th string performance as very amazing. “Thank you for supporting that child all the way.”
After looking surprised, Chika says, ...eh, no, ah...he should say that they are dragging her progress. Chiharu tells him that dragging one’s progress and support aren’t the same. “No wonder that child totally treasures this club and you guys.” This made Chika blush a bit.
He feels uneasy then he says thank you... This made Chiharu smile. While Hiro is still hugging her and comments that she’s so soft, Satowa wonders what Chika and her mother are talking. Wiping his tears, Sane says that it’s really great.
Kouta agrees with him. Michi tells them that he’s so thirsty that he feels that his throat is going to be ruined from dryness for they were running and crying. Takezou comments that they were planning to buy some drinks a while ago.
Sane calls out to Chika that they are going to buy drinks so come and play jakenpon. Chika goes to the others. Then, Akira approaches Chiharu and greets her. Chiharu thanks her for bringing her here. Akira smiles and says no need for thanks and she is really sorry for forcefully dragging her over.
Chiharu says that it is like what she said about the kids in this club. Akira smiles and says, yes. After the jakenpon between him and the other three, Chika lost so he had to buy the drinks.
While buying the drinks at the vending machine, Chika thinks that he is so weak at jakenpon. He recalls the orders, cola for Sane, cool ginger ale for Kouta and Fanta for Michi. Takezou had told him that there’s no need to buy for him.
Chika angrily thinks that it is all carbonated drinks so how about shaking them a bit. As he buys the drinks one by one, he notices a girl sulking at the side of the trash can. This made Chika exclaim in surprise. Looking at the girl’s fluffy hair, Chika wonders if this person is---
Just then, Nene comes rushing to her sister and shouts that she had found her. Kazusa looks up and calls out to Nene. Nene says that she is in this kind of place when she was always looking for her.
Just when Kazusa is about to apologize for that, she notices Chika standing in front of her. He was observing that her hair got fluffier. She angrily shouts when he started standing there. “By the way, what are you looking at! Ah, could it be because Nene is so cute, so---”
Chika angrily says, ha, he isn’t looking, he is only buying drinks. After buying the others’ drinks, Chika decides to buy strawberry milk for himself. Kazusa gets flustered as he buys the drinks that she says, anyway, right now, they definitely already feel that they had defeated them.
Chika looks surprised and says, ha... She says that for him to calmly buy drinks here, he definitely already feels that he’s number one. As he picks up his drink, Chika says that isn’t she the same.
This made her look flustered again. She says that they...did a ‘uniform’ performance and that is their entirety. “Uniformity is the best and most beautiful. For us, this is music...! *bites lips* (but after hearing that kind of performance)...
...*recalls Tokize’s performance* ...merely doing a uniform performance as if our lives depended on it, aren’t we like idiots?” Chika asks what she is saying. This surprises her that Kazusa says, so she’s saying...
Chika tells her that for her to say that it is only for uniformity is totally wrong. “There are so many of you guys performing and even using that kind of speed to perfectly play it. Honestly speaking, I felt that it is very cool.” Kazusa looks surprised at serious Chika.
Nene looks awed by him. As he turns to leave, Chika says but, of course, in the end, they’ll [Tokize] win. Just then, Nene immediately grabs Chika’s right leg. Holding a small flower origami, she says that it’s for him. Kazusa calls out to Nene. Chika asks what this is.
Nene exclaims that it is her treasure. After bending down and holding the small origami, Chika wonders why she is giving it to him. Nene happily says that it is a pink rose that she folded. She asks if he’s happy. He nervously says, ah, she can consider that.
Nene tells him to properly take care of it throughout his life. This surprises Chika. Kazusa looks surprised too but she didn’t say anything. Chika looks at the rose origami. He tells her that they’ll exchange. “Here, for you.”
Chika gave her his strawberry milk. Delighted Nene exclaims that she likes strawberry milk. Chika says that’s good. Nene thanks him and says that she’ll properly take care of it throughout her life. Chika says no, quickly drink it.
Then, they bid each other goodbye. He says, see you. She says yes, see you tomorrow. Snapping out of it, Kazusa suddenly calls out to Chika and says that she takes back the words about them that they basically couldn’t match and play together with Satowa.
“Even if I’m really frustrated and really isn’t willing to admit it. *teary-eyed* Today, you guys truly played really well!!!” Chika looks surprised. He smiles and says, that’s right! He whistles as he leaves. Kazusa complains that normally, one should answer back ‘thanks’ right!?
Nene holds out the drink and tells her sister that she’s happy that she got this. Kazusa smiles and mutters that unexpectedly would drink strawberry milk, a bit out of place. This surprises Nene that Kazusa tells her that she isn’t talking about her.
Later on, Sane is furious over why his cola only has half a bottle left. Chika says that he drank it. When Michi and Kouta open their drinks, it start to spill that they ask what Chika did.
At a room, Kai [white hair glasses judge; Sorry, I named him wrong in the previous chapter/s. I’ve interchanged him with Sou ^^; ] collets all the papers together and says, then, the result of this competition is already decided. “Anyone has any objections? *the others are silent* --none, then, let’s go.”
It is announced that the results of the competition will be announced right now, and then, it will be followed by the closing ceremony. All the respective members of the school are asked to go back to the auditorium.
As everyone in Tokize looks tense, Sane says that it is finally here. Together with their group, Fumi tells Kazusa that they are going. While walking with their group, Taishin comments that he’s so nervous. After everyone had gathered in the auditorium, Kai walks on stage for his speech.
He tells everyone good work [otsukaresama] today. “In this tournament, the performance of many groups surpassed our expectation for it had reached the level of the Nationals. As the audience, who has heard it, we feel very blessed--- but, as a judge, we feel that it is very difficult to choose.”
Flashback: Yoshihiro [chubby judge] reconfirmed that among the groups only one can enter the Nationals. Kai said that’s right. Yoshihiro said that whether it is Himesaka Hakuto or Tokize, they can get a good position [/ranking] in the Nationals.
Kai told him but only one school can be chosen and he thinks that it should be Tokize. “The level of technique isn’t fussy and besides, honestly speaking, after hearing a lot of high school performances, it is the first time I felt stunned...
...It is the first time my heart was purely moved. Afterwards, it spurts out this kind of ‘music is really beautiful’ feeling. Furthermore, I want more people to listen to their performance.” Hisako [woman judge] opposes it for lately, people like modern pieces.
“Even if the melody is gorgeous and it is unexpectedly very easy to understand then it can effortlessly leave an impression on one’s heart. But, that kind of ‘let others listen to it’ piece is not at all a difficult thing. I recommend Hakuto. That kind of chosen piece as well as talent in performing is more worthy of being honored.”
Kai asked of Yoshihiro’s opinion. Scratching his head, Yoshihiro said that he also felt that the most moving is Tokize but thinking about it being a ‘tournament’ by itself, it should be Himesaka.
“That kind of technique, as well as uniformity, to the extent of playing it perfectly deserves to be the title of being the first.” Kai said is that so. Then, he asked Sou’s opinion. End flashback.
Back on stage, Kai says that if it is possible, he also wants everyone to ascend to the Nationals. “This is my sincere words. I really hoped for it to be that way but... a so-called tournament is very heartless for all of you had poured in everything, youth and performance...
...We have no choice but to put ranking. We have no choice but to choose that school that will ascend to the Nationals. *Members of Tokize, Himesaka and Hakuto look tense* --So, next, I’ll proceed with the announcement.”
Flashback: Sou said that for him, he believes that there is only one school that can pass the preliminaries. “They are obviously better than the other schools. This is my analysis [/consideration] coming from ‘music’s meaning. *Kai looked surprised* I really understand the meaning of what Midoriyama-sensei [woman judge] said...
...A piece can truly be divided into ‘a piece that can easily attract people’ and ‘a piece that isn’t like that’. But, the level of their performance isn’t at all to arrive at being able to play a ‘piece that can easily attract people’...
–--before it can cross over to experts [/critics] and be surrounded by experts, a really exquisite performance ought to be also appreciated by the masses. Even in front of language barrier and people of different culture, it can also open their hearts---
...Regarding this kind of performance I think we ought to send it off to a more dazzling place.” End flashback. Kai announces, “On the 32nd Kanagawa Prefecture High School Japanese Music preliminaries, the one who got first place as well as acquired the right to enter the Nationals is---
...*everyone looks from mildly tense to super tense.* Prefectural Tokize High!!!” Everyone looks surprised. This made Takezou, Satowa and Hiro flustered with tears brimming on their eyes. Sane, Michi and Kouta scream, yes and ‘is this for real!!!’ thrice.
Akira is happy for them as Suzuka just smiles. Hiro holds on to Satowa and asks if he just said that they’re first and is it true. Satowa exclaims that it is true. Teary-eyed Isaki and Mashiro hold each other and exclaim that it is amazing, the Nationals!!
Tetsuki sighs and says, ama-zing. Chiharu just smiles. Teary-eyed Takezou’s mother tells her husband, no way, no way, Nationals!? He [father] just smiles at her. Teary-eyed Tsukaji applauds. Kinoshita applauds with a smile. Kazusa and Mio look downcast. Chika isn’t reacting as he thinks, “—it isn’t, it isn’t over yet. We can continue on.”
Teary-eyed Sane calls out to Chika that they’ve succeeded!!! Takezou also calls out to Chika. They are surprised to see tears welling up on Chika’s eyes as he bites his lips. As Chika covers his face, everyone happily hugs [/goes to him] and shout, “We can all go to the Nationals!!!” (We performed together-- We won together)
Comment: Wow, so they finally won the most important competition and they’re going to the Nationals! After all that hard work and everything that led them here right now, the goal is now reached ^^ Just learning that, it gives me some kind of chill in a good way =P
It is already a big thing whether or not they’ll win the Nationals. But definitely with their kind of performance, they’ll be remembered by the audience. ^^ From what the judges decided on, music that is able to move the heart is the essence of music.
Actually, I think it is quite amazing if one can do that especially with koto which is quite traditional in a sense. For the other two, it has more to do with impressing the audience with their talent in playing. Sou’ vote and explanation was the determining factor since the other three have their own respective choices.
Chiharu and Chika’s encounter is good. At least, there is no possible hindrance on that side. *wink wink* As for Kazusa, she has also accepted Chika and others playing with Satowa. In a way, that conversation had probably changed her view of Chika. Both of them comment their own group’s performances even if Chika will still insist that they’ll win this. =P
I’m not quite sure what to think about that scene with Nene. A crush? A joke? Or, perhaps, Chika remembered something about his past when he got the origami rose. Anyway, Chika now as a young admirer ^^ If this is some shoujo, they might be paired up. =P
On a side note, it seems that there will be a koto CD for this series that will be out on March 8. <- not sure since it is all in Japanese. But, part of the track is Tenkyuu and the other schools’ performance.
Word of the day:
After years in the making, preparation, and planning, you may only be a brief flame which lights up the landscape for a moment. But it is all worth it, for that moment of truth. ‘Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this? Esther 4:14’ ~ 101 mottos for success by J. Richards and M.S. Fontaine.