At the nursery, Kobato asks Kiyokazu about telling Sayaka about the phone call, but he still feels that they shouldn’t. In his subsequent hurry to head to his university’s campus, Kiyokazu accidentally leaves behind some papers, and Kobato finds them and decides to bring them to him. She’s initially unable to locate him on the large campus, but she eventually sees him talking with another guy in a nearby building. Kobato isn’t able to reach Kiyokazu in time, but she does run into the other guy who introduces himself as Doumoto Takashi, and he tries to help her find Kiyokazu. Along the way, Kobato sees Takashi helping a lot of his peers, and this is in huge contrast to how Kiyokazu is refusing to help two of his classmates when they finally find him. Kiyokazu’s behavior angers Kobato, and she storms out after giving him his papers. Impressed with how she stood up to Kiyokazu, Takashi follows her out and explains that, if he really wanted to do what’s best for people, then he should refuse them like Kiyokazu does. He sees Kiyokazu as a very strong person who’s not afraid of others hating him, and he admits that he’s envious of that strength. Kobato, however, feels that it’s lonely and painful to be feared and hated, and she points out how happy everyone was around Takashi, making him realize that it’s not a bad thing to want to help others. In the aftermath, Kobato finds that she’s gained another konpeitou, and the next day, Kiyokazu is begrudgingly grateful to her.
After finding an abandoned kitten, Kobato brings it back to her apartment building and shows it to Chise and Chiho. They take a liking to it, but they also know that they can’t have pets in the building, so Kobato decides to bring the kitten to the nursery. Unfortunately, they can’t keep the kitten at the nursery either because one of the kids has allergies. This begins a search by the girls to find a new owner for the kitten, but no one seems to want to take him. It’s only after a long day of searching that the girls come across the old woman, who Kobato had sung to before, waiting for them. She had heard about the kitten from Kiyokazu and is willing to take it in, so the girls hand the kitten over. Chise and Chiho are sad to see the kitten go, so Kobato sings for them the same song she sang for the old woman, and they’re asleep by the time she finishes. In the aftermath, Kobato goes to thank Kiyokazu for his help in finding the kitten a home, and she also discovers that she’s gained two more konpeitou.
Both of these episodes provided character moments for Kiyokazu, but whereas it was a big part of the focus of episode seven, in episode eight it felt more like it was just a side-effect of the other stuff going on. Both episodes had their moments (and Chise and Chiho are very cute), but I didn’t really like the latter one because the whole stray kitten thing felt unoriginal and not worth spending an entire episode on. Episode seven at least dealt with the ideas and motivations behind helping people, and I found myself connecting to what was being said and agreeing more with Kiyokazu’s way of thinking than Kobato’s.
I think part of my displeasure now is because I’m getting a little impatient waiting for the story to move forward after episode six showed a number of interesting directions it could go, yet neither Ioryogi nor the debt storyline played a significant part in either of these two episodes. I was also hoping that Doumoto Takashi’s character would turn out to be something more than just a foil for Kiyokazu, but so far that’s not been the case. Maybe there’ll be a bit more progress in the next few episodes as we approach the halfway mark.