「ツミナオトメラ」 (Tsumi na Otomera)
With Kazuha and Akira’s routes wrapped up, the series takes us all the way back to the end of episode one to explore a couple of other possibilities, namely Nao and Sora. As the shared episode between their routes, this was mostly about Nao and much less so Sora, which may explain why Haru’s twin sister will be getting five episodes to tell her story. However, despite the lack of screen time that Sora got comparatively, this episode didn’t fail to reiterate her disdain towards Nao was building more and more from the sight of her with Haru. At this point, Sora’s actions straddle the line between jealousy and hate, making it hard to discern whether she wants Haru to herself in an incestuous way or simply doesn’t want him to wind up with Nao. The reason I say that is because she never showed quite the same level of stalker/yandere-level behavior in Kazuha and Akira’s stories, which includes checking Haru’s cellphone’s call history and repeatedly typing “Nao’s an eyesore” 「奈緒うざい」 on her laptop. In the latter case, I would’ve liked to chalk it up to a hikikomori’s way of quietly venting frustration, but it’s pretty hard to when I see the look in Sora’s eyes and her close observation of everything Haru does with Nao. Given her current behavior, it’s likely a combination of jealousy and hate that makes her look like she’ll snap any minute, but I get the feeling that there’s another side of the story that makes it understandable.
So far, we’ve only seen things from Nao’s point of view, where she more or less used a younger Haru for comfort sex to cope with the unrest she had at home with her parents arguing over the possibility that her father’s seeing another woman. What they didn’t show though was where Sora was at the time that happened, leaving me wondering if she stumbled upon exactly what they were doing and remained quiet about it all this time — something she didn’t do this time around. My anime intuition (if you can call it that) can picture something along those lines being revealed later on, which would explain why Sora wasn’t happy about seeing Haru with Nao shortly after moving back to Okukosomechou. It’s probably safe to say she bears a grudge; all I’m wondering now is if it stemmed from their childhood like I’m thinking it did, back when she probably developed some feelings towards Haru from their kiss. Whatever the case, there’s a lot of background story that will surely come into play in both the remainder of Nao’s arc and Sora’s one coming up, so I can see their arcs being a lot more dramatic than the ones prior. Let’s just hope it doesn’t end on a boat somewhere, regardless of all the signs suggesting that it’s a possibility.
Now despite how much it looks like Nao was a good three to five years older than Haru when she took advantage of him, it just so happens that she’s been blessed with a big bust ever since she was little. Still, I do find it kind of hard to believe that Nao is only a year older, as the end result looked like a high school girl had her way with a grade schooler. Admittedly, I’m curious as to how exactly old they were back then (I’m thinking 12-13), as I don’t recall if a time frame was ever mentioned on when Haru and Sora lived there. In any case, while Sora’s hatred continues to show with the way she’ll remove the buttons Nao sowed onto her school uniform and redo them herself, Nao has already gotten the green light from Haru after some behind the scenes matchmaking by Ryouhei and Akira. The most interesting thing I find about that rapid development is how this episode is meant to serve as an common one in Sora’s route (assuming that information’s reliable as it has been), meaning that the creepy Sora we see now will somehow turn this around and end up with Haru. This would be on top of the fact that Haru revealed he doesn’t hate Nao for taking advantage of him when they were younger, even though she figured he must hate her for it. Part of me wants to jest about how no one would be able to say no to Nao — past or present — but it’s probably fair to say that Sora’s up against some “stacked” competition, which she doesn’t quite measure up to.
* It didn’t occur to me when I wrote this post that it was already revealed in the ending sequence that Sora did see Nao and Haru together when they were younger, but it goes to show that I can somewhat see where this is going. 🙂