Pumpkin Scissors – 09
Early one morning, Oreld is walking along a bridge when he sees a cloaked woman on the other side. He notices her depressed look and thinks that she’s going to jump off, but she just walks away. This woman stays on Oreld’s mind through his duties at work and into the night when he returns to a brothel with two girls. By chance, the same woman is working there, but she doesn’t respond when he calls out to her. He learns from the madam of the establishment that the girl’s name is Hannah, but when he comes back on a different day, Oreld sees her with another man. He comments that she doesn’t really look happy, causing the madam to reveal that Hannah came here when she was 17 years old after losing her parents. Hannah is apparently also awaiting the return of her boyfriend who went off to war. The next day, Oreld is so lost in his thoughts that he doesn’t hear Alice come into the office and announce their mission. He decides to take Hannah out that night, but she doesn’t seem to enjoy their time together. Afterwards, Oreld pays a visit to Oland, and mentions that Hannah isn’t living. Oland passes this statement along to Stekkin and Machs, who figure out that something must have happened.
Oreld ends up borrowing money from Machs, so he and Stekkin follow Oreld that night. They see him go into the brothel, bring out Hannah, and take her for a motorcycle ride. Concluding that it’s love, they tell Hunks about it, and the captain covers for Oreld when Alice bursts into the room angry about him taking the bike out without permission. Oreld continues to take Hannah out for dates and on one particular night, brings her onto the roof of a building with a great view of the city. He’s even got champagne ready, but she questions why he’s doing all this for her. He explains that he saw her on the bridge before, and then suggests that she forget about her boyfriend because there’s no use waiting for a guy who won’t come back. Since the war ended three years ago, Oreld is sure that the guy would have come back already if he were still alive. Hannah, however, insists on her belief that her boyfriend Frank will return because of his promise to her. She then parts ways with Oreld, asking him to leave her alone. Oreld does not do this and returns to the brothel later to find her once again with that other man. He sees the man trying to take her upstairs, so he goes and beats him up. Seeing the fighting, the madam calls her security guards and throws Oreld out.
Outside, Oreld admits to the madam that he wants to make Hannah smile. She doesn’t think that he can do it, and in fact, no one can. Hannah’s smile will return when her boyfriend does, but the madam knows that the boyfriend is already dead. It seems that Hannah got a letter telling her exactly that, but she wouldn’t acknowledge it. Having learned this, Oreld once again pays a visit to Oland and tells him about everything. Oland feels that it’s because the war hasn’t truly ended yet, so no one can move forward. He confesses that he felt the same way until recently when he joined the Pumpkin Scissors. Thinking about this, Oreld heads to the library and reads up on military reports about the war. He then finds Hannah again on the bridge the next morning and starts reciting the events leading up to battle for Neugelitz, where Frank died. Hannah stops him and again insists that Frank isn’t dead, so Oreld tries to make her understand that Frank was fighting for his country and to protect her. He tells of how the brave men of the 7th Company held out and continued to fight in a prolonged battle without supplies to protect their loved ones. With memories of Frank on her mind, Hannah starts crying as Oreld continues his story to the end.
It is sometime later that Hannah is looking up at the sun and smiling once again. At the office, Oreld laughs off Stekkin and Mach’s assumption that he was heartbroken, though he knows that Hannah had actually rejected him.
Oreld gets some more focus this episode as he shows off his compassionate side and does his own bit of war relief in helping Hannah to get over her. It wasn’t a bad episode – I liked it better than last week’s because it had a few touching moments, particularly at the end. Unfortunately I really don’t have much more to say about it. I still have the same complaints that I’ve had for almost a month now about this series not progressing, but there’s no use saying them again. I’ll just keep waiting for the story to pick up…