「森島はるか編 第二章 セッキン」 (Morishima Haruka-hen Dai Nishou – Sekkin)
“Morishima Haruka Chapter 2 – Getting Closer”
Jesus Christ, Haruka is the biggest flirt ever. I’m inclined to believe that she’s aware what a huge tease she is now, but that flirtatious Itou Shizuka voice is like a damn Achilles’ heel of mine so I’m at her mercy too. At least she put out this time around when Junichi came right back with confession number two. That was only after he lost a full night of sleep from the first one and immediately found out that Haruka doesn’t see him any differently even after turning him down. Knowing that things weren’t awkward between them gave Junichi the glimmer of hope to try and become the charismatic, strong, and reliable leader-type guy Haruka likes, though it didn’t seem like he had to stray too far from being himself to keep her noticing. I should probably be a bit concerned about how she only seems him as some puppy she can’t leave alone, but I guess that isn’t so bad either in a way. The fact that she can’t leave him alone is a sign she’s taken a liking to him after all.
Whatever the case, there’s still something wrong when a school idol wants to join in on your pro wrestling type training with your best friend and put you into submission holds. Does Haruka not realize that guys get aroused when a hot girl in gym clothes and bloomers rubs up against them? Surely she must, yet she doesn’t show any signs that it bothers her one bit. As such, I got a pretty good laugh out of Junichi asking her to put him in a “Manjigatame” (i.e. Octopus Hold) all she wants, until her level-headed friend Tsukahara Hibiki (Asakawa Yuu) came along and put an end to her flirtatious endeavors. And here I was, all ready to see Haruka unzip that jersey she had on. Talk about one disappointing tease. After seeing her give Junichi more signs by saying she doesn’t know how she’d respond if the same guy confessed to her twice on the way home, and by going to him asking for a girl’s swimsuit because she just feels like swimming out of the blue, I was starting to get annoyed at the prospect of her turning him down again.
I swear it was all part of her master plan to seduce him with her swimsuit look, but it’s good to know that Junichi is true to his feelings and can compliment her right away without being terribly toyed with. I still think first-year Nanasaki Ai voiced by the sultry Yukana would be a much better girl to fall in love with, but I have to respect Junichi’s earnest attempt at trying to win Haruka over. The scene in the library played out really nicely with him giving her his blazer when she fell asleep and waiting around until dusk for her to wake up. His second confession shortly after was just as abrupt and in-the-moment as the first one, but I really like how he didn’t try to be too forceful with it. He even apologized if his feelings are an annoyance and asked her if it’s okay if he likes her, to which Haruka couldn’t say no to. I think more than his kindness, it’s Junichi’s boldness that Haruka can’t help but feel attracted to, which I must say makes him a very refreshing male lead in a romance series. She did give him a kiss on the forehead to break the tension in the end and pretty much left the door open for something more, since she technically hasn’t agreed to go out with him just yet. Still, this is amazingly good progress for two episodes.
On the flip side, I still think Miya puts an interesting spin on their relationship since she hates how Junichi is completely receptive to everything about Haruka yet more or less ignores her most of the time. I don’t think she’s interested in her brother romantically, but I can understand how she’s jealous about Haruka stealing all his attention with ease. Aside from that, it was nice seeing a bit more of Rihoko since she is the childhood friend in the series and one of the girls who will come up later on. With how well this Haruka arc is going after only two episodes, it’s hard to believe that we still have five more girls’ arcs to get to. I’m pretty excited to say the least, as this series is shaping out to be the romance drama I was looking for.