Yuuichi is greeted back home by Ayu, who notices that he’s not looking so well. Going to his room, he thinks about how Kaori told him about informing Shiori that she won’t live to her next birthday. Even if she did live until then, it wouldn’t be much longer than that. Kaori hadn’t told anyone else except Yuuichi since he became friends with Shiori, and she notes that Shiori smiles when she’s with him. Ayu interrupts Yuuichi’s thoughts by coming into his room because she felt that it’d be better to be by his side, but the two don’t really say anything to each other. The next day at school, Yuuichi notices that both Kaori and Shiori are absent. Afterwards, he finds himself atop Monomi Hill thinking to himself that he can help search for a lost item, and he can help fight against demons, but he can’t do anything similar in Shiori’s case. Addressing Makoto, Yuuichi asks what it’s like to be her and wonders what he can do for a girl with only a little time left. By chance, he runs into Shiori by the fountain on his way home. She explains that she used to come here to play with her family when she was young. Back then, she had eaten ice cream with her sister, and she now wishes to do that again. Shiori then tells Yuuichi that with more time, she probably would have liked him more and more, even though she shouldn’t like anyone. When Yuuichi asks her about her sickness, Shiori says that it’s not something medicine will make better, so she doesn’t remember the since it has no significance.
Shiori eventually admits to avoiding Kaori because she feels that that’s all she can do for her sister. She also has one request for Yuuichi: to treat her like a normal girl. This is because when she’s with him, she can return to the happy times in her memories. After he agrees to be like a brother to her, and the two are ready to part ways for the night, she reveals that she’ll have something surprising for him tomorrow at school. As she starts to walk away, Yuuichi calls out to her and asks if it’s really too late to do anything and if she could possibly recover. Shiori’s answer is that it’s possible with a miracle, but they’re called miracles because they don’t happen. At home, Yuuichi finds everyone already asleep, including Ayu in his room. He realizes she was waiting for him, so he carries her back to her own room and puts her to bed. The next morning, Ayu is still sleepy because of a scary dream she had during the night. Yuuichi notices later at lunchtime that Shiori isn’t waiting for him outside, and he’s very surprised when she shows up at his classroom door wearing her school uniform instead. Although Kaori walks out at the sight of her sister, Yuuichi goes with Shiori to the cafeteria for lunch. Shiori explains that she got her doctor’s permission to come to school until next Saturday – the day before her birthday. In any case, she tries the curry even though she can’t handle spicy food because she wanted to eat the same thing as Yuuichi. Afterwards, she suggests that she bring a bento tomorrow for both of them.
Kaori returns home later that night and is greeted by Shiori, but Kaori ignores her sister. She silently goes back to her own room and falls to the floor with her back against the door. The following day at lunch, Yuuichi finds that Shiori made two big boxes of food just for him and only has a small portion for herself. The two go out together for some ice cream after class, and Shiori notices the odd stuffed animals in the window of a store. She’s wants to go inside, but Yuuichi catches sight of Kaori first and chases after the elder sister. He tries to persuade her to have tea with him and Shiori, but Kaori claims that she doesn’t know a girl by the name of Shiori and then walks away. While he was away, Shiori went inside the toy store and talked to the old man who ran it, but she didn’t have enough money to buy anything. This is actually the same store that Sayuri bought the stuffed giant anteater from, and thinking about this reminds Yuuichi of how Mai told him that the person who is turning away from the painful things is someone close to him. After getting Shiori’s preference for stuffed animals, Yuuichi goes home and counts how much cash he has. Ayu interrupts him to tell him that the bath is open now and notices the wallet he’s holding. Yuuichi meanwhile comments on how Ayu put on her hair band right after she took a shower, and Ayu reveals that she got it from a person very important to her. Getting back to Shiori’s birthday, Yuuichi tries to get present ideas from Ayu, but they all revolve around taiyaki. In the end, Ayu suggests that Yuuichi do something that’ll make Shiori happy, making Yuuichi realizes that being with Kaori would accomplish this. He feels that this is the one thing that he can do for Shiori.
My general sentiments toward this episode are that it was ok, but nothing terribly exciting or dramatic. There’s plenty of cute Shiori moments, but I still don’t feel very attached in any way to the character. I’d even say that I feel more sympathetic towards Kaori than Shiori. Maybe that’ll change next episode or the episode after (I’m not sure how long this arc is supposed to go). I did find it interesting that Yuuichi visited Monomi Hill to do some thinking and “visit” Makoto. If nothing else, it shows that Yuuichi still keeps her in his mind even though she’s been gone for a little while now. There was also the talk of miracles not happening that Shiori had with Yuuichi, and it reminded me of and contrasts to the talk he had with Mishio at the end of the Makoto arc. Perhaps Shiori will indeed get a miracle…
Next week is Shiori’s birthday. The piano piece in the preview and that clock striking midnight make me think that Shiori’s time might be up.