Haruo returns home tired and ignores both Maika and Ayumi. Instead of being happy that tomorrow is Christmas Eve, he’s just worn out. The girls however start dreaming of spending the day with their beloved Haruo. Yuri fantasizes a dinner date with him and giving herself as a present. Marin wants to defeat the other witches with Haruo’s help so that they can watch the sunrise together. Maika imagines feeding Haruo tons of food and getting a kiss on the cheek. However, all three see Haruo looking very out of it, so all three try to ask him out to cheer him up. But Haruo has something else to do, and he leaves. Ayumi, who was watching, follows him and catches him coming out of a gift shop. In a rush, he accidentally pushes her down and runs off. Ayumi is shocked that Haruo would leave her on the ground like that. She runs into Rika, who points her in the direction of a cake shop where Haruo has taken on a part-time job. Ayumi assumes that Haruo is doing this so that he can secretly buy a present for her. But then Ayumi sees Haruo getting all chummy with his female co-worker causing her illusion to come crashing down.
Rika tries to speak with Ayumi, but Ayumi just wants to be left alone; she’s devastated that Haruo would be getting along so well with another woman. Ayumi waits outside the store until Haruo gets off work, but she’s even more shocked when Haruo emerges with the woman so that the two of them can go buy a present together. Not having noticed Ayumi earlier, Haruo returns home alone. He’s greeted at the door by his sisters who are ecstatic that they’re going to have a Christmas party. It turns out that Haruo and Rika had planned it all along. After Yuri and Marin also arrive, Haruo thanks Rika for distributing the invitations, but Rika tells him that she was never able to give one to Ayumi. Haruo remembers the earlier incident when he left her on the ground, so he runs out into the snow looking for her. Meanwhile, Ayumi is still wandering around town and happens to encounter the same woman who worked with Haruo. She learns that Haruo didn’t know what to get as a present, so he had used his co-worker’s help to choose something. Ayumi realizes her own mistake and quickly returns home.
Yuri and the others have already started opening Haruo’s presents: matching bracelets for everyone. But by the time Ayumi arrives, there are no more presents. Haruo runs in and tries to explain, but Ayumi refuses to listen. She says that she hates him and tries to fly off, but Haruo clings onto her broom. He clears up the misunderstanding by giving her a special present, different from the others. In a lapse of judgment, Haruo accidentally lets go of the broom and starts falling down. However, magical wind breaks his fall. At the same time, the magical mirror that originally cursed Ayumi starts to crack. The girls end up celebrating and partying while Ayumi keeps the injured Haruo company. His present to her is a small stuffed cat. She leans in to give him a kiss, but he opens his eyes at the wrong moment, so he gets a slap. Instead, we see that the imprint in the snow of Haruo’s face where he landed earlier now has a kiss mark on the lips.
This episode actually had a lot working against it. I found there to be a lack of craziness and laughs for most of the episode. The most amusing parts are of course Yuri, Marin, and Maika’s fantasies, but those only lasted a few minutes in the first half. The rest of the episode seems like an attempt at a more drama-ish plot, but that ended up being rather bland. At the beginning, I had thought that maybe Haruo was depressed that Christmas Eve was coming because of something that had happened in the past on that day. But they took a much less exciting route than that. There’s also a considerable drop in animation quality, and I really didn’t care to hear their rendition of Jingle Bells. Like I said in this week’s Canvas2 entry, having a Christmas episode while it’s March in real life just isn’t the same as having it during December.
However, they do manage to advance the overall plot a little. Ayumi is now pegged as someone very special to Haruo. There wasn’t that much doubt before, but now they’ve made it very clear. In addition, it looks like Haruo once again uses his magical powers, this time to save himself. Those powers are causing the mirror to crack. They’ll probably go into this a lot more in next week’s episode, which is all about Haruo’s awakening powers.