Strawberry Panic! – 09
During one summer night, Yaya and Hikari bring cakes to Nagisa and Tamao’s room. Nagisa is actually hiding in the closet because she’s trying on her swimsuit and is too embarrassed to come out. But because she likes sweet things, the other three girls manage to tempt her out with cake. On the way back to their room, Hikari and Yaya hear the strange sound of a girl crying. The next day, the news of the crying girl has spread to Tamao and Nagisa. Tamao relates it to the Seven Mysteries of the Ichigo Dormitory, where the first mystery is the girl of the hallway. However, after reciting the other mysteries along with Chihaya, Tamao realizes that not every girl knows the same ones. Incidentally, Nagisa is deathly afraid of ghosts and monsters.
Tamao ends up doing a lot of research and investigating on the mysteries. She and Nagisa even go to the girl’s shower to ask Yaya and Hikari some questions about what they heard. That night, Nagisa is too scared to sleep alone, so she climbs into bed with Tamao. Tamao tells her that if they hold hands, they can have the same dream, so the two girls sleep while holding hands. The next day, they go to see the student council president, but Miyuki brushes off their investigation on unscientific grounds. They also go to see Shizuma, but after hearing what Miyuki said, Shizuma declines to comment. Fortunately for them Chikaru is a lot more helpful, telling them about the rumors when she entered school years ago.
That night, Tamao and Nagisa explore the hallways of the dorm together. They hear the girl’s crying and they follow the noise to its source: a cat. Tamao’s not so sure about it, but Nagisa is adamant that this was the cause. After the two girls return to their room, the crying continues. It’s actually coming from a young girl named Miyuki who’s crying because she’s homesick. Another girl named Shizuma comes and leads her back while holding her hand. Because Shizuma had come, Miyuki says that she’ll be ok and that she’ll do her best. Back in the present, Miyuki is daydreaming in class and gets called on by the teacher. Sitting behind her is Shizuma and she helps Miyuki find her place in their book. Miyuki remembers how she had said that she was going to get a grip and someday be as strong as Shizuma.
Meanwhile, Nagisa is enjoying the pool when Tamao tells her that there are still six more mysteries that they can investigate. The easily-scared Nagisa is not too happy to hear this.
Some background on Shizuma and Miyuki this episode. Seems like the original rumors were started because Miyuki was crying in the hallways. She sure changed a lot from when she was younger – she’s more or less achieved her goal of becoming stronger and even became student council president. I wish she had kept the long hair though because it looks a lot better that way (at least to me). It’s also good to see that Shizuma was the same as always, even offering to share her bed with Miyuki. I wonder why their relationship didn’t develop any further…
It’s interesting that this episode seems to emphasize the roommate pairings: TamaoXNagisa and YayaXHikari. Amane was noticeably absent and there was more ShizumaXMiyuki than there was ShizumaXNagisa lol. But I’m sure this is just evening things out a bit, increasing the yuri factor with girls other than Amane and Shizuma.
As final note, I think I prefer the look of St. Spica’s swimsuits a lot more than St. Miatre’s. That goes for their school uniforms too. The white designs just look so much better.