Kage Kara Mamoru! – 06
On the way home from the store, Mamoru is attacked by a group of ninja. Though he suffers a few surprises, Mamoru gets out of the battle relatively unscathed through the clever use of some of the groceries. The next day, Airi announces a female transfer student, which gets all of the boys (except Mamoru) excited. The new student’s name is Kumogakure Hotaru, and Airi comments during lunch that she’s quite different from Tsubaki. Hotaru shows up on the roof while they’re eating and says that she has a request for Mamoru. It turns out that she’s actually confessing to him because she fell in love at first sight. Mamoru’s parents congratulate him as soon as he gets home, and, to his dismay, they’ve already chosen the name of his child.
The next day, Mamoru goes to pick up Yuuna but learns from her mother that she’s sick. In truth, she’s moping at in her room about Mamoru and Hotaru. In class, Airi tries to stop Mamoru from talking to Hotaru, but he avoids her attack and takes Hotaru outside. Despite Airi’s worries, Mamoru apologizes and turns Hotaru down. Hotaru starts to cry, but Mamoru suddenly pushes her out of the way of some throwing knives; the ninja after him are back. Mamoru, with Hotaru in his arms, jumps away and over several rooftops, but more throwing knives come flying at them. In order to protect Hotaru, Mamoru turns around and uses himself as a shield and then uses a smokescreen to get away. The two of them end up on top of a building under construction, and Mamoru takes the chance to explain that the reason he turned her down is because he is a ninja with a person to protect.
When Mamoru falls unconscious from his wounds, Hotaru takes out her sword and remembers her and her brother vowing to their dying father that they would defeat the Kagemori clan. Hotaru’s own feelings now prevent her from doing it, but her brother arrives to complete the task. Although she turns against him, it’s Mamoru who ultimately defeats her brother. Hotaru apparently gave Mamoru (via mouth-to-mouth) some of her family’s secret medicine. Hotaru tells him that it all began one year ago during the deciding match of their ninja athletic meet. Yamame had distracted Hotaru by pretending to see a UFO, and won the race while Hotaru was looking. The Kumogakure clan thus became disgraced as the UFO family. Hotaru then bids Mamoru a tearful farewell as she disappears with her brother. A normal day passes and Mamoru returns to protecting Yuuna, but then arrives home to find Hotaru sitting in his house. She’s apparently moved into the neighborhood.
I actually enjoyed this story quite a bit, despite it not being the most original story. Mamoru actually gets a kiss from a girl who wasn’t Yuuna. Yuuna would freak if she ever found out, considering how depressed she was at the prospect of Mamoru being with another girl. I assume that the reason Hotaru disappears in green lights is because they’re supposed to be fireflies (蛍 (hotaru) = firefly).
The animation quality this fluctuated around a lot. The pacing also seemed very quick, and so much happened so quickly that I half expected it all to be Mamoru’s dream or something. I think I was expecting it all to be a big joke in the end, but it wasn’t. Like I said though, I still enjoyed this episode. Next week, Yamame and Hotaru are going to meet again, and we get to see some of Mamoru’s past.