At work, Mayama is questioned by his coworkers about his relationship with Yamada, then with Rika. Nomiya wonders if he’s using Yamada as his backup plan to Rika. Mayama vehemently denies it, and the two leave for Yamada’s college to pick up some pottery. After Yamada fills Mayama in on whats been going on with the group, she offers to treat them to her homemade curry. They decline, and Mayama recieves a call that he has to return to work. He leaves behind his coat, which Yamada later finds. Nomiya also drives off, but notices that he left behind his lighter. When he returns to get it, he finds Yamada wearing Mayama’s coat. He interrupts her and pretends not to notice, instead inviting her to dinner. They end up driving all the way to Nagano to eat soba. The next day, Nomiya tells everyone at work about the date, including Mayama. Enraged, Mayama storms into the college and confronts Yamada about it, to which she gets angry and rushes out. Afterwords, Mayama has a chat with Hanamoto-sensei. Hanamoto mentions that Rika did see Mayama at the park over the summer, making Mayama realize that it’s been an entire year and that he still has feelings for her. He remembers the night two years ago when he found her collapsed in the shower: as he had watched over her bed while she slept, she had taken his arm and called out to her husband, only to wake up and find Mayama there. Mayama took advantage of the situation and kissed her. Back in the present, Mayama gets a phone call telling him that Asai-san, his former coworker, has been hospitalized. Visiting Asai-san, he is then informed that Rika is in the building. Mayama rushes to the lobby to find her, catching her in the elevator. After sitting down, he suggest coming back to work for Harada Design, but she pushes his offer away. Mayama decides that maybe it’s time to start over with her. As Rika leaves the hospital in the evening, she finds Mayama waiting. He offers her a ride through the rain, taking advantage of her immobility. As he drives, he realizes that his feelings are as strong as ever, and he lets his selfish self take over.
If it weren’t for the insert song, this would have been only a decent episode. There were some good jokes about Yamada’s cooking, and most of the stuff Hanamoto-sensei was involved in this episode was pretty funny. Of course, the drama is still good. I hope Mayama works things out with Rika next episode. Either they need to finally realize their feelings, or she needs to clearly and forcefully reject him.
But since there was an insert song, Spitz – Yoru wo Kakeru (夜を駆ける) from their 2002 album 三日月ロック, this was a great episode. This is definitely my favorite insert song so far. It has an almost haunting feeling to it, and I love the opening notes. They played about two and half minutes of it, all the way to the ending credits, which is what bumped my rating quite a bit higher.
Ultimately though, I hope that Morita comes back soon, and we can continue with Takemoto/Hagu-chan/Morita storyline. Though I do admit, I’ve been enjoying the Mayama arc a lot more than it may sound like.