We are treated to a bit of aftermath from last week. Mayama apparently got beat up by Yamada’s father after he brought her home crying. After he invites her to eat, Yamada notices that Mayama is beginning to warm up to her. Over dinner, Hanamoto-sensei tells Hagu that he’s been offered a job that requires a lot of traveling. He has taken the job and offers to take Hagu-chan with him. As Hagu decides, Hanamoto-sensei remembers back to when he met Hagu-chan while she was in high school, when she was confined in her world by his aunt. When the aunt died, Shuuji took her in and brought her to Tokyo. While talking to Rika, Shuuji reveals that Hagu decided to stay. While Rika holds his hand, he wonders if he’s doing the right thing. After he leaves, Rika calls him a baka and we see that she does have some feelings for him. That night, Mayama arrives at Rika’s place to return her keys. He also gives her a bracelet and tightens it so that it fits her and so that she cannot take it off. He tells her that he’s going to learn all sorts of things, but that he will come back, whether she waits for him or not. After he leaves, Rika starts to cry. The next day, Takemoto finds Hagu by the river looking for a four-leafed clover to give to Hanamoto-sensei for luck while he’s on the trip. One by one, each member of the group arrives and takes up the search. In the end, they couldn’t find one, but Hanamoto-sensei comforts a crying Hagu and says that he’s received a lot from her already. As they have one last meal as a group, Takemoto remembers how great the day was when everyone is together.
I can’t say how much I loved this episode. There hasn’t been another anime in recent memory that can change tones from funny to sad to happy to sad to happy again in such a short time, done so well as Honey & Clover. The atmosphere is just right in all the scenes. The only gripe I have with this episode is that some of the animation seemed off, especially the Rika scenes. Her face just kept changing in its proportions.
The insert song this episode (Yay! Finally another one!) was Spitz – Tamagawa (多摩川). It’s from 1993 (that’s 12 years ago!), but I am amazed by how well the music fits. This song in particular is perfect for the loneliness scene. Anyway, a thanks goes to Nixie for finding the mp3. I put up a torrent onto Point-Blank and posted it on Tokyo Tosho.