But still, I’m going to keep it... short? Or... Shorter than normal? By like a paragraph or two, maybe. Let’s focus on the big moments, signs of character growth, the funny, the cute and hope for the future!
Yuuri shows up in a yukata for the fireworks, even though Futaba and Murao thought they all agreed not to wear one. I suppose this is Yuuri’s idea of working hard for love, which is... fine. I mean, let her give it a good go the only way she knows how, and then she can give up. XD I’d really like to see her understanding of affection deepen a little though. People don’t fall in love with anyone just as long as they’re sufficiently pretty. But then I guess this particular one-sided love affair is exactly what she needs to realize that, so I have a feeling Yuuri will keep improving, rather than regress into a standard green monster messing with the OTP. And her thoughts when she confesses are pretty admirable, actually...
...Okay, obviously this review, or analysis, or... rant... will have no structure. I’ll just finish talking about Yuuri for now.
So, uhm, spoiler, Yuuri confesses to Kou. Meaning! What I said I hoped for at the end of last chapter actually happened! ‘Cause I’d venture to call this the climax to the Yuuri situation. She sinks a little low in the first half of the chapter, wearing the yukata without saying anything even though she knew the other two believed they’d all agreed not to (kind of sneaky but hardly evil), trying to convince herself she can be better than Futaba and that she’s got just as much of a chance as her in the battle for Kou’s heart (she’s clearly delusional, but I still like a girl who tries to pep-talk herself instead of whining about her various disadvantages. Self-confidence is good, but it’d be nice if she could manage to put herself high without pulling others (Futaba) down, because that’s basically doing the same thing as the girls who used to freeze her out).
As the chapter progresses, Yuuri finally comes to accept that Kou’s just not that into her. Yeah, Yuuri. It was about time you accepted that. (She was kind of treading a fine line between trying-to-be-confident and mildly-obnoxious up until then.) But instead of bowing out with her pride still intact, only to smolder jealously on the sideline from now on, she decides to tell Kou she likes him, even though she knows she doesn’t stand a chance. That’s pretty cool. I could never do that. She even thinks that she has to confess so she won’t end up becoming someone who does something disgusting out of jealousy later, so I choose to believe that means this is as far as Yuuri will go, and that the love triangle is now mostly resolved.
Anyway, Kou rejects her, of course. The surprised look on his face when she says she likes him is really cute, though. Awhaw. Haw. And Yuuri’s confession face is really cute too.
But then just as Yuuri is about to ask if Kou likes Futaba, Futaba herself comes to interrupt. Futabaaa! Why didn’t you SNEAK up to them! (Ignoring that she was all worked up since she thought Yuuri was hurt because Kou is vague on the phone.) You overhear interesting conversations when you sneak. You should learn to sneak. Unless Kou would have tsundere-denied it... Maybe he would. So. Well. Next topic.
Just jumping from big moment to big moment, let’s go from the Yuuri Plot Thread to The GG-kun Appearance! The order is messed up, but that’s the charm of this non-summary okay. The GG-kun Appearance includes a dash of Kou is Totally Jelly and Futaba is Cute and GG-kun is Wearing a Hat.
Speaking of which, keyboardsmashfwnsipaf I like your hat, man. I also like how tall you are even though you look kinda 12 and I like all that blushing you do and also is your bag hanging over your stomach? That’s different. I also like that even though GG-kun is a bit of a quiet one, he does still say what he wants to say, and all in all he falls outside the standard character cliches (if you ask me). The only thing you’re missing so far, dear GG-kun, is laughter. You do do that right? I’d like to see if he can joke around in some form, ‘cause he’s going to get boring if he’s ONLY goody-goody.
...I should probably start calling him Touma, but it’s so hard. Maybe when Futaba and everyone starts calling him by name. I might get used to it then. I wonder what his first name is, though. Wait, or is Touma his first name? Then his last name? ...Ikuta? XD
What was I talking about. Oh yeah, GG-kun walks by, and after some initial blushing, he leads Futaba away to have some private GGxFuta time (Kou gives them a very satisfying displeased look) and tells her to forget about You Know What. And just. Hahaha. Seriously, Futaba, why do you phrase yourself so... sexual innuendo-y. Your first time? Doing... such a thing? Hahahaha.
I assume Eavesdropping Kou thought she meant a kiss, because anything else would just be... I mean... what genre is this again someone remind me.
Anyway, manly Kou is manly and interrupts to tell GG-kun he is UNmanly for wanting Futaba to just forget “something like that”, but then he gets the real story and turns on Futaba instead, calling her a female pervert. Among other things. Haha. I love Futaba’s change from I HATE BOYSSSS to tomboy to female pervert. XD
Kou walks away in shame and then he sulks about how long they’re talking, even though Futaba’s supposed to hate boys. That is just. So cute, I can’t even.
Ah, I’m falling back into summarizing habits, aren’t I. Oh well. Moving on, the cutest cutest thing that has happened in forever, when Futaba wonders what it’s like to say, “suki,” (which I suppose you know means, “I like you,” (the “I” and “you” implied by context)) and tests it out when she and Kou has to stop and wait for a train to pass on their way home. She giggles about how he didn’t notice, and then another trains passes and she does it again, only this time he leans in close and asks her what she’s saying. She’s so surprised she almost walks backwards into someone standing behind her, so Kou pulls her close all protectively. I mean, they’re such a COUPLE they practically have grandkids already.
And theeeen :D Futaba notices a poster about that summer festival at Sakisaka Shrine (oh man, I’d like to visit Sakisaka Shrine hahaha why is it fictional) that they never went to, and they both look at it kind of wistfully, and Futaba says she always regretted not making sure whether he’d really invited her or not back then. Kou repeats what he’d said, “7 o’clock, in Sankaku Park, by the clock,” and Futaba says that since that was all he said, it was hard to interpret. Kou repeats it one more time and Futaba laughs like she thinks he’s just joking around with it, and it’s quiet for a moment before she pulls her hair together beneath her chin to make a beard (SHE IS SO CUTE) and repeats that it’s hard to interpret. Kou smiles at her (HE IS SO CUTE), and says, “I was trying to renew the promise just now,” and, “Let’s make sure we go this time?”
“And while we’re at it, let’s just start dating officially.”
“Ohh, since when were you so... not ambiguous?”
“Since Bikkuri started writing fanfiction.”
“She shouldn’t do that. She’s killing our charm.”
You’re welcome. Let me share my ideal future story progression with you: Kou acts Tanaka-kun-y on a regular basis. And... that’s it. No, wait. And Futaba makes Kou flustered. Yeah. That would be fun.
I do wonder if Sakisaka will take the story to The Trials of Couplehood any time soon, or if she’ll use GG-kun to delay (but also assist, by making Kou jealous?) Futaba and Kou’s getting together. Or Yuuri might remain an obstacle, but I kind of doubt it. I get the feeling Sakisaka rather likes Yuuri, haha (I do too, really). I don’t think she wants to take her down any dark alleyways (don’t!). I could be wrong, I guess, but just... my Sakisaka Io manga radar sense gut feeling of magic... tells me that Yuuri just needed to feel she also got a fair shot, ‘cause she must feel like Futaba’s always in the lead (...because she is) and that must be hard to swallow. But in the end I think she likes Futaba too much to go overboard. Yeah. I have faith in you, Yuuri! Don’t disappoint me!
But back to FutaxKou and the future... I suppose KOU might be the problem still. I’m like 57.4% convinced he’s at least vaguely aware that he likes her, but all in all I’m not really... sure. It’s quite likely he’s still in some sort of denial. And though he might have accepted that it’s okay for him to be happy and all, he miiiight still distance himself reflexively if Futaba gets too close? But then again, the teaser line for ch16 on the Betsuma website suggests tension/nerves due to the shortened metaphorical distance between them, so that sounds promising...?
…Ahhh stop talking geez. Okay. I got to fangirl loooong-windedly about Aoharaido this month too! Let’s wait and see what happens next month. It’s very possible that the Chinese scans will keep coming out before I even get my Japanese raws (though probably not several days before the official release haha?), and if so, then... well. We’ll see, I guess.