Hana Awase: Mizuchi-hen – Mizuchi

So after taking a ridiculously long time doing the common route post, I’ve made my way into Mizuchi’s route. This route explains most (if not all) the mysteries in the game, so you can do it whenever you want to figure out what’s going on.

Mizuchi is the Kaei of the Koukoku Class, a second year student in Kaen. He’s a really serious person, which unfortunately also makes him rather inflexible. He has a passionate side hidden deep inside of him, and he’ll do anything for the person he has fallen in love with. On the other hand, Mizuchi is really cold and ruthless towards traitors—whom he’d corner without mercy. Mizuchi ranks the third among the Five Brights.

• Day 21 •

Mikoto goes to Mizuchi’s room and knocks on his door, only to receive no answer. For a moment she wonders if he’s away, but then she opens the door and finds him standing inside—looking worn-out. Mikoto opens her mouth to say something, but Mizuchi asks her not to come closer. Iroha already told him about what he did to her back in the library, and it’s not something they can brush off just because he can’t remember it. He doesn’t know how to apologize to her either. Mikoto insists that she’s fine though, and she notices that Mizuchi has a painful expression—he’s deeply concerned about the incident. That being said, Mikoto knows that she needs to talk to Mizuchi. Or else they won’t be able to move on. She then asks if she can come closer, but he flinches and apologizes. He’s afraid that if she approaches him, he’d only turn strange again. He says they should stop approaching each other for her own sake, and he also wants her to choose someone else as her partner. He doesn’t want to taint her.

Mikoto sadly lowers her gaze, thinking about what she truly wants. Does she want to choose another partner? Does she want to drift away from Mizuchi? Does she want someone else to touch her? Mikoto knows that she has to be honest here, or else she’s going to lose Mizuchi forever. That’s why she ends up calling him a liar. He already promised that he would protect her, and he also asked her to believe in him… Was it all a lie? He’s not a person who would break rules and promises so easily. Mizuchi says he feels grateful for her words, but then he points out that Mikoto is seeing too much fantasy. After all, he’s a person who could harass her like that. He ends the conversation and asks her to leave, but she sadly asks if he doesn’t need her anymore—if he doesn’t mind her choosing someone else. The Senki candidate uses her power through physical contact with a player, so she will have to touch someone else from now on. She’s going to become partners with someone else.

Mizuchi quietly says he doesn’t mind if it’s inevitable, but Mikoto replies that she’s not okay with it. She was scared by what he did, but she doesn’t want to be touched by people other than him. Mikoto asks if she’s the only one who feels this way, and since Mizuchi remains silent, she keeps calling his name until he can’t take it anymore. He grabs her shoulders saying she’s cruel. Is she trying to get him to say it? Mizuchi says he already made the decision. Rather than hurting or tainting Mikoto, he decided to let her go. Before Mizuchi can finish his sentence, Mikoto suddenly leans forward and kisses him on the lips—leaving him speechless. Then she asks him to taint her. Mizuchi is shocked and asks what she’s saying, but Mikoto replies that she’s serious. He’s deeply concerned about the library incident. Even before that, he has always been careful not to taint her. That’s why she also needs to get over the incident to make him stay as her partner.

Mikoto then unbuttons her shirt, asking Mizuchi to hurt her. The mark he left on her chest is still visible, and she asks him to put another one on the same place. Mizuchi is still shocked, and Mikoto herself feels scared and embarrassed. Her body is shivering from fear, but she asks him to touch her. She’s about to ask him to go further, but then she sighs and apologizes—she’s at her limit. She pushed herself a bit too much, so her heart is about to burst now. Mizuchi blushes saying it’s only obvious, considering Mikoto did something so bold. Once again Mikoto sighs, but then she tells Mizuchi that she’s not scared. She’s not terrified even if he touches her, though she does feel nervous. Mikoto also admits that she’s not as good as Mizuchi thinks, as she can be selfish and reckless too. That’s why she wants him to stay by her side, to scold her if she’s doing something bad. She asks him to support her. She needs him. She doesn’t want to be apart from him.

Mizuchi sighs, and he hugs Mikoto saying he understands—she doesn’t have to do something like this. He can’t believe she’d go this far just for him. He believes she’d leave if she finds out about the real him, but for now… he asks if he can stay with her like this. He wants to feel her courage for a bit. Mikoto nods. Her ears are thumping, her body feels hot, and her head is about to burst. She troubled Mizuchi with her ego, just because she doesn’t want to lose him. She never knew that such an emotion exists inside of her. She feels really embarrassed, but she has no regrets. Now she won’t lose him, and it makes her extremely relieved. It also makes her realize how she feels towards him. As Mikoto calls Mizuchi’s name repeatedly in her heart, he tightens his arms around her—so much that it’s hard for her to breathe. His feelings reach her, and she wants him to hug her more.

Mikoto then puts her arms around Mizuchi’s back, and she picks up his scent. It’s a refreshing scent that’s different from her own, the one she sensed at the park before. Mikoto came to Kaen and became a Senki candidate because she was told to do so. She became partners with Mizuchi because he was chosen by the demon card… but it’s different now. She chose him and only him. Mikoto can feel water filling her heart, and the strong power has a blissful feeling to it. She wants to present her water, all the power inside of her, to Mizuchi. She wants to become his strength—his Senki. Mikoto believes the two of them can do Kabatsu together, because she can do anything as long as Mizuchi is with her. Mikoto then quietly confesses in her heart: “Mizuchi-san… I love you.”

Mizuchi:
“花に染む心のいかで残りけむ  捨てはててきと思ふわが身に” — Saigyō Hōshi (76)
Why is my heart still captivated by the flowers, even though I have cut attachment to the world?

Mizuchi thinks about how he got absorbed in hugging Mikoto. Her sensation still lingers in his hands. Even though he hugged her for a long time, he strangely feels that it’s still not enough. She probably has no idea that it leads to a repulsive emotion, deeply hidden inside of him. He doesn’t want her to notice. He needs to act normally, so she wouldn’t be terrified… but more than anything else, Mizuchi knows he needs to protect the vow he made to Iroha.

That night, Mikoto is thinking about Kabatsu. It’s going to start tomorrow. She wonders if she has made the right choice, but this is the path she chose for herself. No matter what the result is, she won’t regret it. She’s going to do her best and become a Senki. Mikoto goes to sleep after that, and she finds Half Moon again in her dream. Half Moon is happy that Mikoto remembers her name, because they can only meet right here in her dream. She asks about his identity, but he sadly answers: “…even if I tell you… you won’t know it’s me.” Mikoto asks what he means by that, but Half Moon doesn’t reply. Instead, he informs her that the full moon is close. When the moon is full, fate will drastically change… but that’s a trial for her to face. She has to think about what to believe in, and there’s only one answer. Half Moon then asks Mikoto to find her own half of the moon, and the dream fades away.

Mikoto wakes up in shock. She’s been seeing Half Moon in her dream everyday, but who is he? She can only hear his voice, but he also gives her a nostalgic feeling—even though she can’t remember anything from it. Now that she has chosen her partner, Mikoto wants to tell Momotose about this. She has chosen her moon. She has chosen that person…


• Day 22 •

Today, Mikoto tells Momotose that she chose Mizuchi as her partner. Momotose smiles saying she’s going to cheer them on, and she asks if Mikoto loves Mizuchi. Mikoto is taken aback due to the sudden question, but then she blushes and answers that she does. She admits that it feels embarrassing to put it into words, and she still finds love difficult—she’s not sure if it’s truly love or not. Besides, she’s pretty sure that Mizuchi doesn’t feel the same way. He’s probably just going along with her selfishness. Or so she thinks. Momotose believes the feeling is mutual though. When Mikoto asks what should she do if it’s true, Momotose clings to her saying she’s so cute. There’s no man out there who can ignore a lovely girl like her, so she should have more confidence and start attacking Mizuchi… but first, they have to deal with Kabatsu.

Later on, Mikoto meets up with Mizuchi by the entrance and subconsciously stares at his face. He wonders if she has something to say, but she quickly shakes her head. Mikoto knows she’s being awkward because she’s overly conscious of Mizuchi, and she tells herself to get her act together. After all, their lives will be on the line during Kabatsu. They go to Goto-gai in the central ward after that, where Mikoto mentions that the place looks like a normal business district. Mizuchi explains that it’s only the exterior. If they go deeper into the district, they will see the dark side of the city. It’s an impure place—the nest of Adabana. Mikoto notices that Mizuchi has a disgusted expression, but she can sense that something impure is indeed wrapping the city. In any case, they’re not supposed to stay in Goto-gai for a long time. They need to get today’s Kabatsu done and over with, so Mizuchi asks Mikoto not to leave his side.

As they walk through the city, Mikoto reminds herself to stay with Mizuchi… but the close distance between them only makes her more nervous. Mizuchi soon notices that Mikoto’s face is red, and he asks if she’s not feeling well—which she quickly denies. She tells him it’s probably due to the air of the city, and he feels bad because she’s weak against impurities. If they’re not careful, there’s a chance that she might dry up again… and so he asks her to hold out her hand. Then he holds it. (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ Mikoto is surprised, but Mizuchi calmly explains that he can help circulating her water this way. That, and she won’t get separated from him. Of course this causes Mikoto to blush again, and she finds it hard to look at Mizuchi in the eye. She reminds herself to do it properly, but they are soon interrupted by a creepy laughter—a dark shadow has picked up her scent. Mizuchi informs Mikoto that it’s a low-rank Adabana, and she gets terrified upon sensing a really strong hatred from it. He explains that Adabana can fall even further and lose their heart as well, which will leave them in that state—they no longer have human emotions.

Mikoto finds it really cruel, but Mizuchi warns her not to sympathize with them. If they don’t reap Adabana, they’re going to die. He’s going to deliver a requiem for the Adabana. How about her? Mikoto answers that she’s prepared, and Mizuchi smiles saying they’re going to do Hana Awase then. He’s going to put a special field barrier around them. It blocks normal people from interfering with Kabatsu, so all the people around them won’t be able to see what’s happening. After Mizuchi sets up the field, Mikoto assists him in defeating the Adabana through Hana Awase. It withers and disappears, which leaves her feeling guilty since she was the one who caused erased its existence. Even though it’s an Adabana, she made it wither on her own will. She wonders what they really are. They look like human, but they’re not—a tainted, sad existence.

This marks the end of today’s Kabatsu, so Mizuchi says they should report to Onosada now. Mikoto weakly nods, but as they head back to school… he holds her hand again. Realizing that Mizuchi’s concerned about her, Mikoto smiles and thanks him. He doesn’t reply, but his hand is really warm and gentle. Her worries are slowly disappearing. She wonders if it’s because he’s circulating the water in her, but she realizes that’s not the reason—it’s because of him. At the same time, this also causes her to feel conflicted. A part of her finds this really embarrassing, but she doesn’t want to let go either. Her feelings contradict each other, and she’s not sure about what she should do. However, Mizuchi then asks if Mikoto is in pain. She tells him that she’s fine, but he asks her to think of this as a ritual between a Kaei and the Senki candidate. There’s no deeper meaning, so she doesn’t have to worry. Mikoto quietly nods. She knows that Mizuchi is only treating her as the Senki candidate, and yet his words left her feeling terribly shocked.

Mizuchi also asks if Mikoto went to the flower beds today. When she says no, he only answers with: “I see… Then it’s fine.” This causes her to wonder if there’s something wrong. Did she do anything weird?

Mizuchi:
“花散らで月は曇らぬよなりせば 物を思はぬわが身ならまし” — Saigyō Hōshi (72)
If flowers never wither and the moon is never clouded, I will never feel any worries.

It was the first Kabatsu, both for Mizuchi and Mikoto. He thinks they did a great job. Even if they’re wicked, Adabana are originally humans. They do have doubts and fear towards withering, and he wants to praise their courage and determination. Even though he did something terrible to her, Mikoto believes in Mizuchi and chose him. He wants to answer her sincerity, and besides… Mizuchi stops himself from saying further, reminding himself that he doesn’t have the right to. He sighs upon recalling the sweet scent from Mikoto’s body, surrounding her like aromatic flowers. Her scent is still lingering in his hand, and he sighs once again. Then he berates himself for doing something so foolish. He already made a vow to Iroha, and he needs to protect it. It’s a rule he implied on himself. He must not break it no matter what.

Meanwhile, Mikoto is calling Ai in her room. When Mikoto admits that she’s in love with someone, Ai chokes and wonders if the world’s ending. Ai asks if it’s the guy she mentioned before, and Mikoto explains that he doesn’t feel the same way about her—it’s one-sided. On the other hand, Ai has never had a one-sided love before. She confesses to the guys she likes on the spot, and she moves on if she gets rejected. Mikoto finds her really frank, but Ai says it’s so troublesome to figure out if the guy feels the same way or not. She’s more interested in finding out whether she can have sex with him or not, which brings them to their next subject. Does Mikoto know what lies beyond love? Mikoto protests since she’s not a kid anymore, and Ai asks if she wants to do it with Mizuchi… but Mikoto reminds Ai that she’s a Minamo. She’ll get kicked out of Kaen if she does that. While it’s true that she loves Mizuchi, she never really thinks about what lies beyond that point.

Ai sighs saying Mikoto is living in the wrong era. She reminds Mikoto that even if she doesn’t think about it, it might not be the same for the other party. Ai has said it before, but Mikoto has made countless men cry in the past—it’s something she should be aware of. Mikoto never realized since none of them ever confessed to her, but Ai thinks their aura was obvious enough. Besides, Shou was always guarding her… though sadly for Shou, he’s not needed anymore since Mikoto has found the person she loves. Ai jokingly mentions that she’ll comfort the poor thing, but she gets really startled when Mikoto points out that she’s in love with him. Mikoto knows, and Ai can’t deny it either. Ai changes the subject by saying Mikoto is being cheeky, and she tells Mikoto to confess to Mizuchi. If she’s being too slow, someone might snatch him away. Mikoto thanks Ai for the advice and ends the call, thinking about how cute Ai is. A long time ago, Shou already said that he only thinks of Mikoto as a sister… so Ai doesn’t have to be so concerned.

Mikoto then thinks about what Ai said earlier. What lies beyond love? She has kissed Mizuchi before, but it was because she was so absorbed in convincing him. She was really nervous, and so she can’t remember most of the details. Does she have to go even further than that? With Mizuchi…? Mikoto blushes thinking it’s impossible, and she decides to go to bed for today.


• Day 23 •

At noon, Mikoto is captured by three suspicious seniors in the hallway. They introduce themselves as third year students of the Koukoku Class, and she greets them nervously. Most of their seniors are young ladies from noble families, but she heard that some of them are rather “special” …so she wonders if these people are one of them. They’re gorgeous, but for some reason they also give her the chills. It turns out they have heard rumors about Mikoto, and they’re impressed with her strength. Before Mikoto can even thank them, they suddenly hug her and start groping her everywhere. If Aoi was a “beautiful white snake”, then Mikoto is a “lovely wild flower”—they think she looks as adorable as a doll. As they say this, they start touching her boobs and wonder out loud about her size.

Luckily Mikoto manages to twist herself out of their arms, and she apologizes before running away to her classroom. There she learns from the class rep that those peculiar seniors are the “third year onee-sama group”, otherwise known as the three sisters of sundew. Their real identity, however, is the three sisters of flowers— Shimo, Rokka and Rokuyuki. They LOVE everything cute, and they will sexually harass the people they love. In conclusion, they’re really dangerous. Mikoto protests since the class rep never told her about them before, but the class rep lightly answers that those seniors only love strong Minamo. She didn’t think they’d notice Mikoto. On the other hand, Mikoto should be happy since that means she’s grown to become a pretty strong Minamo. Mikoto complains about how they touched her everywhere, but the class rep only grins saying she’s asking for too much. Mikoto finds them scary though, and so she wants to avoid them as much as possible from now on.

In the afternoon, Mikoto goes to have some tea in Momotose’s room. Momotose always invites her to have meals and tea together, so today Mikoto made some macaroons for her. When Momotose opens the door, Mikoto is surprised to see Iroha and Mizuchi inside. Especially because guys aren’t allowed to step into the girls’ dorm. Momotose asks Mikoto not to worry though, since apparently Iroha already asked for the dorm leader’s permission. Mikoto quickly notices that Mizuchi looks very uncomfortable, but Momotose only asks them to help out. Iroha will warm up the cup, while Mizuchi is in charge of… cutting oranges. Mikoto finds it odd to see two large men in Momotose’s room, and she asks why they’re here. Momotose smiles saying it’s to make their party even merrier. Iroha is too quiet for them to have a chat with, so she also invited Mizuchi along. Or rather, she dragged him by force. Mikoto feels that she hasn’t seen Iroha and Mizuchi together as much recently, so she’s wondering if Momotose actually calculated this.

When Momotose asks about the bundle in her hands, Mikoto hands over the macaroons she made. Iroha immediately perks up upon hearing the word “macaroons”, while Momotose happily puts them on a plate. Mizuchi soon reports that he’s done cutting the oranges, and Mikoto notices that all orange slices have the same width—he’s really precise. She offers to put them on a plate, but he refuses saying they can’t trouble her like that. This leads to them touching the plate at once, causing their hands to touch each other. Mikoto quickly apologizes, which Mizuchi replies with another apology. They get interrupted when Iroha comes to take the orange slices from them. Mizuchi seems taken aback before turning silent, and noticing the change in his expression, Mikoto wonders what’s wrong with him. After they’re done preparing, Momotose opens the tea party. The first thing Mikoto thinks about is how gorgeous this party is. They’re all sparkling, and she feels so out of place. It seems like they’re using expensive utensils, and the tea they’re having must be from a famous brand. Kasu and Tane are ready to serve her as well, making her even more nervous.

Meanwhile, Momotose happily eats Mikoto’s macaroons. Mikoto also loves the scone served by Kasu and Tane, and Momotose smiles saying she only gave Mikoto’s recipe to them. Mikoto is surprised to learn that Kasu and Tane made the scones themselves, but Momotose lightly answers that they’re just like her hands and feet. Momotose also asks Mizuchi to stop eating sandwiches only and have some sweets, but Mizuchi admits that he actually doesn’t like sweets… until Momotose asks: “Even if it’s Mikoto-san’s macaroons?” He stutters in hesitation for a bit, but then he grabs a macaroon and eats it. (๑ ´ ლ `๑)❤ Mikoto asks Mizuchi not to force himself, but after munching it for a while, he says he can eat it just fine. It’s his first time eating one, but he likes her handmade macaroon since it’s not too sweet.

Mikoto happily thanks Mizuchi for the praise, completely unaware that Iroha is watching them in silence. Momotose teases them further by saying it’s the sweets made by the person he loves, so of course it tastes good. She tries to get Mizuchi to admit that he loves Mikoto, but before Mikoto can even protest… suddenly Iroha reminds them that she’s the Senki candidate. Mizuchi should know about this too. As Mikoto looks at Iroha in confusion, Mizuchi takes a deep breath and answers that Iroha is correct. He doesn’t think of her as anything more than that. Momotose turns to warn Iroha not to disturb them, but much to her surprise, Iroha has eaten ALL the macaroons left on the plate. Yes, he ate about 20 of them—by himself. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ

Iroha simply states that they were in the plate, and so he ate them. Is there a problem with that? Momotose is horrified since she only managed to eat one. How cruel! Next time she’s going to restrict it to one piece per person! Mikoto sighs since the party has turned into a mess. She finds it surprising for Iroha to eat the macaroons, but then she remembers that he also gave her konpeitou before—maybe he really has a sweet tooth? She then turns her attention to Mizuchi, who remains silent in his seat. He just said that he doesn’t think of her as anything more than a Senki candidate. It’s like a confirmation after yesterday’s Kabatsu, and it obviously only adds to her shock.

In the evening, Iroha asks if Momotose is still angry. Momotose sharply says of course she does. She threw the party so he could make up with Mizuchi, but it ended in a failure instead. Iroha flatly says they didn’t do anything that requires making up, but Momotose points out that he’s still dragging the library incident even until now. Then she asks him to get a fork, grumbling about how childish he is. As he hands over the fork to Momotose, Iroha replies that he only reprimanded Mizuchi. One mistake could have caused Mikoto to lose her qualifications. He then asks if he can put the table cloth here, and Momotose angrily says he can dump it anywhere. Momotose knows that’s not the only reason, and since Iroha seems confused, she points out that he was jealous of Mizuchi. His answer is simple: “Jealous? Me towards Mizuchi? I cannot understand.” She replies that while he’s the top student who can do anything, he’s also the most maladjusted person in Kaen. Once again Iroha says this has gone beyond his point of understanding, and he excuses himself. In return, Momotose sharply says he’s free to leave and go home. Both Mizuchi and him needs to learn more about a maiden’s heart! Momotose feels really sorry for Mikoto, and she sighs saying Mizuchi is at fault too.

Seems like Mikoto has fallen in love with a troublesome person.

Mizuchi:
“面影の忘らるまじき別れかな 名残を人の月にとどめて” — Saigyō Hōshi (621)
A parting that left an unforgettable trace, she pines the remnants onto the moon.

Mizuchi knows that Iroha hasn’t forgiven him yet. It’s probably because Iroha noticed a certain something that lies deep within his heart—an emotion that’s not allowed to exist. Mizuchi understands. He knows that if he breaks the rule, it’ll only hurt Mikoto. However, his heart is always thinking of the opposite… along with his tingling right eye. Mizuchi groans as he holds back the pain, and he wonders if he can sleep—eternally, without opening his eyes ever again.


• Day 24 •

When Mikoto and Mizuchi enter the lecture hall, Onosada informs them that Kabatsu is cancelled for today. Instead, he wants them to investigate a second year student from the Koukoku Class. Mikoto recognizes his picture right away, and Onosada confirms that he’s the student who got possessed by utsurohi on the day of the ceremony. The problem is every time Onosada asks about what happened, the student never reveals anything and runs away. That’s why he’s leaving the case in the Senki candidate’s hands, believing that girls will be more effective. The student should talk if Mikoto shows her panties once—it’s service! Yeah right, of course she refuses. (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

Mizuchi also warns Onosada that he’s being rude, but Onosada replies that he’s not interested in a high school girl’s panties. For him, it’s limited to women who are 20 and older… or so he says. Onosada teasingly asks if Mikoto wants to be treated as a woman, but Mizuchi quickly stops this. The student they’re looking for his his classmate, so he’ll do the asking. Mizuchi then takes Mikoto out of the lecture hall, and Onosada sends them off with a smile. Outside, Mikoto thinks about how calm Mizuchi is. On the other hand, she had no composure at all… so now she feels really childish and pathetic. From there, Mizuchi takes Mikoto to the second year classroom. He asks her to wait as he goes to call the student, and soon he comes back with a terribly nervous guy. Aside from stuttering all the time, apparently the guy is also suffering from permanent case of hiccups. Noticing that Mikoto seems concerned, Mizuchi asks her not to worry—he acts like that all the time.

Anyway, the guy follows Mikoto and Mizuchi to the greenhouse. He wonders if one of the great Five Brights and the Senki candidate need something from a small fry like him. When Mizuchi asks him to explain about what happened during the ceremony, the guy gets frightened and apologizes in fear. He didn’t mean to do something like that, but Mizuchi cuts him off and tells him to go on with the explanation. The guy hesitantly answers that it all started from his sudden impulse. He knows that Aoi is Mizuchi’s Minamo, but he couldn’t hold back—he’s in love with her. Since Mikoto became the Senki candidate, he thought she’d replace Aoi as Mizuchi’s Minamo… and that might give him a chance to approach Aoi. In any case, the guy was planning to confess to Aoi. When she left the auditorium, he also went outside to chase after her. The guy then saw Aoi talking to someone on the phone, and the call continued for quite a long time. He mentions that Aoi walked around in the greenhouse, as if she’s under a spell.

The guy started wondering what Aoi was talking about. When should he confess to her? He followed her as he tried to eavesdrop on her conversation, but he suddenly lost his consciousness. By the time he opened his eyes again, he was devastated to find out that Aoi has dropped out of school. The guy wails about how he has lost his angel, and Mizuchi has to drag him back to the subject at hand. Meanwhile, Mikoto finds the story a little strange. The guy then mentions that just before he fainted, he saw a weird person coming. This person wears a suit and has long black hair. Since the person is quite tall, the guy thought it must be a man. He panicked thinking it might be Aoi’s boyfriend—even though she’s always been loyal to Mizuchi. The guy approached them out of curiosity, but he’s not allowed to tell anyone about this… or else the “retribution” will come for him.

Here, Mikoto notices that something is wrong. The guy’s constant stuttering has gotten worse, and soon he starts shouting violently. As Mizuchi tells Mikoto to stand back, they hear the sound of windows shattering… followed by a bunch of utsurohi leaking into the greenhouse. The guy starts giggling creepily before calling out to Mizuchi, yelling that he hates Mizuchi for being so arrogant. It’s not just him. All the players hate him just the same. The guy can’t seem to forgive how Mizuchi threw Aoi away, even though he’s the only one in her eyes. The hatred is also fueled by jealousy, because the guy is in love with Aoi. If only he has power like the Five Brights… When the guy starts yelling at Mizuchi to die, Mizuchi tells Mikoto that they’re going to do Hana Awase now. Mikoto notices that he’s being as calm as usual, but something is also bothering her. She doesn’t have the time to think though, so she assists him in defeating the guy through Hana Awase.

Since the guy is only possessed, Mikoto thinks they might be able to get rid of the utsurohi without purging him—just like what they did back in the library. He’s not an Adabana, so he won’t wither right…? Nope. The guy withers while calling Aoi’s name, whispering that he doesn’t want to die. Mikoto is shocked to see this, but soon Onosada comes to reveal that he was eaten by utsurohi. Ever since he was possessed on the day of the ceremony, he has turned into an Adabana. He was driven towards insanity by the utsurohi inside of him. His potential negative emotions were fueled, and he was controlled by the utsurohi. Onosada thinks it was so sneaky of Goto to hide a tainted soul right here in Kaen, which only proves that he’s serious about attacking them. Mikoto finds this hard to accept, because the guy didn’t do anything wrong—he was only in love with Aoi. On the other hand, the words he threw at Mizuchi are still bothering her…

Mizuchi says he understands. He promises to submit a report about this incident later, and he walks out of the greenhouse. Mikoto is taken aback for a second, but Onosada tells her to go… and so she runs to chase after him. When he eventually stops at the courtyard, she’s already running out of breath and tries her best to talk about what just happened. However, he tells her that people who got eaten by utsurohi are holding darkness in their hearts. It’s their own fault if they get eaten, and the guy from earlier was inexperienced as a player. One’s darkness cannot be erased by others, so the responsibilities lies within themselves. Mizuchi then tells Mikoto that Hana Awase wears them out physically, and so she should get some rest. As he walks away, she thinks about if he’s really okay with this. He’s always so calm and noble, not shaken even during times like this… but does she know the real him? What does she want? Does she want people to see her in the same way? If she’s in his position right now, then how would she feel?

After thinking about this for a while, Mikoto runs up to Mizuchi and hugs him. He’s obviously confused, but she tells him that she’s scared—she doesn’t want to be left alone. She’s still not used to Kabatsu, and today she reaped a student of Kaen. Her feelings are in a stir and it feels painful. Mikoto then begs Mizuchi not to leave her alone, because his presence makes her feel at ease. She wants him to listen to her—or rather, the Senki candidate’s—selfishness. Mizuchi remains silent for a while, and he reluctantly replies with: “…if that’s what you’re wishing for.” Mikoto happily thanks him, and he smiles in return. Now that she’s calmed down, Mikoto realizes that she’s being absurd… but she remembers what Hime said before. Mizuchi doesn’t know how to rely or getting relied on by other people. The same goes for herself, and so she can understand his feelings for a bit. Right now, she doesn’t want to be alone. She wants someone to stay by her side, to touch her. That’s why she’s trying her best to do the same for him. In her mind, Mikoto asks Mizuchi to let her stay with him. All she’s wishing is for him to feel peaceful, even if it’s just for now.

Mizuchi takes a deep breath, and he tells Mikoto that he wasn’t close friends with the guy… but they were companions who spent their time together in the Koukoku Class. He’s one of the Five Brights, and he has followed the rules as a Kaei… but he doesn’t know how to act in this situation. Mizuchi then asks if they can stay like this for a little longer, even after the Senki candidate—or rather, Mikoto—has calmed down. Mikoto nods, and Mizuchi whispers that warm water is flowing into him. He feels that every single one of the holy drops is purifying everything in him. Is this the power of the legendary Senki? Or is it… something else? He shakes his head and drops the subject, deciding to stay here until her water fills him. At the same time, his words are soaking into her heart. She doesn’t mind if he doesn’t see her in a romantic way. As long as she can stay with him. As long as she can touch him, she’s already satisfied. In her heart, Mikoto asks Mizuchi to accept her water. She wants to present all of her water, all of her heart, to him.

Mizuchi:
“とにかくに厭はまほしき世なれども 君が住むにもひかれぬるかな” — Saigyō Hōshi (104)
Even though it’s a world to be loathed, as long as you live there, my heart is drawn to it.

Similar incidents have happened in the past. When Mizuchi became a Bright, he was prepared to deal with immature emotions… but the moment Mikoto touched him, he was surprised to see how shaken he is. The water she gave him was overflowing with love, as if it was encompassing him. It’s the first time he has ever received something like that. Players and Minamo are supposed to be partners during battle. They are not supposed to hold deeper emotions for each other, but Mikoto’s water throws Mizuchi into confusion—it’s messing up his mind.

Meanwhile, Mikoto is wondering why she doesn’t see Half Moon in her dream today. Instead, she gets an image of Mizuchi. She tries calling out to him, but then an image of Aoi appears and clings onto him. Upon noticing Mikoto, Aoi mockingly smiles saying she’ll be taking Mizuchi back. After all, Mizuchi lives in the same world as her. They have the same noble blood flowing inside of them, so they’re different from commoners like Mikoto. Both Mikoto and Aoi turn to Mizuchi, but he only remains silent and leaves. Aoi laughs saying it means members of a family have to stay together, and she vanishes as well—leaving Mikoto to wake up as she calls Mizuchi’s name. Why did Aoi appear in her dream? She’s supposed to be staying back in Mizuchi’s family residence, and somehow Mikoto has a bad feeling about this…


• Day 25 •

Onosada is drinking in the lecture hall today—as usual. He asks if Mikoto had a “good time” with Mizuchi yesterday, but quickly drops the joke when she gets mad. He already read Mizuchi’s report, but so far they only know that the culprit is a long-haired man in a suit—it’d be hard to track him down. There’s a lot of people like that in Goto-gai, but Onosada promises to search for the culprit. In the meantime, they should continue doing Kabatsu. He then ends the meeting in a burp, and Mikoto sighs since his personality is so questionable. She’s not sure if he’s diligent or lazy, not to mention his daily life is wrapped in questions. As soon as they leave the lecture hall, Mizuchi excuses himself and walks off. Speaking of questions, he’s also shrouded in mystery. They spend more time together lately, but he still doesn’t speak much about himself. Mikoto is glad to see that Mizuchi isn’t feeling down anymore though.

However, Mizuchi returns upon realizing that he forgot to say something. He’s going back home by the end of the week, so they can’t do Kabatsu while he’s away. This reminds Mikoto of Aoi, and she asks if Aoi is doing well. Mizuchi answers that he’s not sure either. He hasn’t seen her ever since she left Kaen, but his family said that she’s recovering. Mizuchi then takes his leave for real, and Mikoto is thinking about how he hasn’t talked to Aoi directly since then… which makes her feel strangely relieved. It’s just like she feels happy that he doesn’t have any contacts with Aoi, and she wonders why. It’s really strange since Mizuchi and Aoi are relatives. Mikoto realizes it’s probably because of her dream though, and she decides not to think too deeply about this.

Not too long after that, Mikoto notices Hime walking towards her. He asks if she’s gotten used to Kabatsu, and she admits that she hasn’t… but Mizuchi is supporting her, so she’s gradually making progress. Hime smiles saying that’s just like her, and Mikoto uses this chance to ask him a question about Mizuchi. He was partners with Aoi before she came to Kaen, so she wants to know about their relationship back then. Since Hime is giving her a puzzled look, Mikoto quickly says the question doesn’t have a deeper meaning. It’s just it might help her to become a better Minamo, because Aoi is beautiful and more capable than she is. Or so she says. Hime’s responds to this by asking if she’s jealous, and Mikoto denies it in a panic—saying that she is simply curious. Hime hums for a moment, and he explains that Aoi’s been in love with Mizuchi ever since they were small. Due to his personality, Mizuchi never noticed her feelings at all. Even during Hana Awase, they only looked like a player and his Minamo—nothing more.

When Mikoto slowly nods, Hime smiles and asks if she feels relieved now. She tries to denies this again, but he can see right through her. He knows she hates lying, and he finds this side of her really interesting. Hime laughs when Mikoto asks him not to tease her, but then he mentions that there’s something about Mizuchi and Aoi’s blood. Maybe they’re deeply linked because they’re a family and share the same blood, especially because their family is special. Hime only knows this much though, and so Mikoto should ask Mizuchi if she wants to know more. This leaves her wondering about the members of his family. What kind of people are they?

In the evening, Mikoto thanks Mizuchi for today’s Kabatsu. He apologizes for taking her to various places, since they didn’t have time to eat at all. Mikoto admits that she’s hungry, and Mizuchi invites her to have a meal together—he’ll take her to a traditional restaurant he knows. She feels bad knowing it’s an expensive restaurant, and so she suggests buying a hot dog at the park instead. However, he replies by asking what a hot dog is. Σ(゚ー゚;) Realizing that he really doesn’t know what it is, she runs off to buy some hot dogs and soda for them. He’s staring at them in silence, and she asks if he hates soda… but he smiles saying it’s not a problem. Mizuchi watches as Mikoto eats her hot dog, and he comments that she looks really happy while eating. She gasps and tries to explain that it’s because she’s hungry, but he says it’s a good thing—the hot dog does have a rich flavor. Mikoto is relieved, as she was worried that it might not suit Mizuchi’s taste. She heard that his family is rather strict, so she thought he’d refuse to eat outside due to bad manners.

Mizuchi admits that eating outside is indeed forbidden by his family rules, and Mikoto apologizes since she didn’t know about that… but again, he says he doesn’t mind. It’s nice to have meals outside sometimes, not to mention they can watch the sunset from the park. It’s so quiet here and the scenery is beautiful. The fact that they were doing Kabatsu earlier feels like it’s only a dream. Mikoto mentions that she loves the moment when the sun goes down. When she was small, she often watched it from the second floor window. It was fun to see people shopping and going home during the sunset too, because it made her realize that she’s watching the same sunset as them. It gives her a strange mix of embarrassment and sadness. She doesn’t have enough time to watch the sunset ever since she entered junior high, so she feels happy whenever she can see the scenery—like now.

Mikoto apologizes for rambling so much, but Mizuchi says it’s fine. He has never seen sunset in such a way, but the sunset he’s watching with her right now is special to him. Back on the day of the ceremony, Mizuchi thought Mikoto is a quiet and reserved lady… but her image keeps changing as he spends more time with her. For example, he just learned that she gets so absorbed while eating—so much that she doesn’t notice the sauce around her mouth. Mikoto panics and searches for her mirror, but Mizuchi asks her to stay still before wiping the sauce from her cheek. She can feel that his hand is really gentle. After a short silence, he continues that she’s always surprising him. That’s why his eyes are chasing after her before he could even realize, checking what she’s doing. Mikoto sadly asks if it’s because she’s unreliable, but Mizuchi shakes his head—he has another reason.

Mikoto is surprised when Mizuchi licks the sauce off his finger, and then he returns his gaze to her. She can feel her heart racing, and her cheeks are burning. It’s the first time he ever looks at her in such a way. She’s wondering why he remains silent, but the distance between them is closing. Her heart is about to burst any moment, but before she can say anything… they suddenly get interrupted by a shutter sound. This is soon followed by an apology in awkward Japanese (“Solly, did I surprise you?”) and they see a foreigner nearby. Or rather, it’s the foreigner who bumped into Mikoto weeks ago. He says he’s not a suspicious person, and he took a picture of them because they make a nice couple. They’re both beautiful, and he loves everything beautiful. Mikoto is surprised, but Mizuchi isn’t too pleased about this. He asks the foreigner to stop taking pictures without permission, and he demands for the pictures to be deleted too. Surprisingly, the foreigner obediently deletes the pictures from his camera.

Mikoto wonders where the foreigner comes from though. He’s blond and has a pair blue eyes, and he’s tall as well—he’s around Mizuchi’s height. Upon taking a closer look, he comments that Mikoto is very cute. He asks if she’s a high school student, but Mizuchi tells him to stay away. The foreigner quickly apologizes and reminds himself that they’re a couple, but Mizuchi doesn’t reply and only takes Mikoto away. Behind them, the foreigner is sending them off while waving his hand. Back in Kaen’s entrance, Mikoto once again thanks Mizuchi for his hard work today… but he only looks at her in silence. When she asks him what’s wrong, he apologizes saying it’s nothing. He asks for her cooperation for tomorrow, then he leaves her in confusion.

Mizuchi:
“様々に思ひみだるる心をば 君がもとにぞ束ねあつむる” — Saigyō Hōshi (675)
In the end, my heart that falls into disorder because of you, is put back together by your side.

When Mizuchi saw the foreigner approaching Mikoto, anger suddenly welled up within himself. He recalls how he subconsciously wipes the sauce off her face with his hand, and he lets out a heavy sigh. Whenever he looks at her, he can feel himself going crazy. Her gaze and gestures draws out an indescribable emotion inside of him. After receiving Iroha’s warning, Mizuchi has been trying to push it deep inside his heart… but it only grows stronger. Even though he needs to suppress it. Even though he’s not allowed to yearn for it. Then suddenly, Mizuchi hears a voice saying he should go for it. If he wants Mikoto, then all he needs to do is to seek for her. Mizuchi is surprised and asks who he is, but the voice answers: “I am your heart’s voice… the spokesperson.” The voice is echoing from deep inside his head.

Once again, the voice confirms that he is Mizuchi. Now he’s going to reveal what’s hidden inside Mizuchi’s heart, weaving a story with the strings of his heart’s voice. The first thing he mentions is that Mizuchi wants to sleep with Mikoto. He wants to devour her as a man. Mizuchi is shocked to hear such a vulgar thing, but the voice replies that it’s his own wish. In fact, he tried to take her chastity not too long ago. Mizuchi denies it since he has no recollections of that incident, but the voice asks if he really doesn’t remember. He should have the memory deep in his mind. He should remember how Mikoto tried to reject him. Because the same goes to everyone in his family lineage. If “Mizuchi” wakes up, they will have a reason for everything. Mizuchi gasps in shock and asks why the voice knows about this, but again, the voice says he’s the spokesperson of his heart. That’s why he knows about what Mizuchi truly wants. It’s useless even if Mizuchi tries to act like a good honor student in front of him.

Mizuchi shouts at the voice to shut up, but he groans in pain when his right eye starts throbbing. The voice points out that it’s the anger of “Mizuchi”. “Mizuchi” is furious because he’s not honest. Because he doesn’t show what he truly wants. Mizuchi yells at the voice to stop since this is nonsense, but the voice calmly tells him to close his eyes and imagine Mikoto looking at him—she’s incredibly charming. She looks so lovely as she blushes, and he wants to embrace her. The voice asks if Mizuchi remembers how it feels when he hugs Mikoto. Her body is soft, beautiful and smells nice. It’s different from his own. It’s a woman’s body. Doesn’t he want it? Doesn’t he want to make his pure, untainted skin his and only his? As he slides down one hand under his blanket, Mizuchi whispers: “Only… mine…” The voice provokes Mizuchi further by reminding him of Mikoto’s lips and chest, and he tries to stop the voice from going further… but then he stops and moans.

The voice points out that it’s Mizuchi’s real self. Mizuchi tries to deny that he’s such a tainted person, but he never finishes his sentence and moans even more. The voice then urges him to direct that desire at Mikoto, whispering that she will surely accept him. Mizuchi shouts at him to stop, and after struggling with the… uh, the deed he’s doing, he says he doesn’t care even if the voice is his heart’s spokesperson. He doesn’t want to hurt Mikoto. This is a deception. He will never ever turn into “Mizuchi”, and he chases the voice away. In return, the voice says that he’s pretty obstinate. He warns Mizuchi that his medicine won’t do anything. It’s only a tranquilizer, and it won’t resolve the main issue. After all, the curse of “Mizuchi” isn’t that light. Even if he takes the medicine behind his grandfather’s back, things will get out of hand if people find out that the heir of the family is taking tranquilizers to keep himself stable.

Mizuchi doesn’t reply. He’s panting harshly, and the voice decides to stop here for today… but he needs to remember that one day, Mikoto will find out about his true colors. When the time comes, he has to do his best not to get hated. The voice vanishes with a laughter, and Mizuchi whispers: “Mikoto-kun… I don’t want you to see this side of me…”


• Day 26 •

After school, Mikoto finds Kurenai standing by the entrance. She feels a bit awkward after what happened before, so she tries to walk past him without getting noticed… but since this is Kurenai we’re talking about, of course he notices and asks why she’s ignoring him. She greets him properly since he’s a senior, but this actually creeps him out instead LOL. Just then a familiar voice laughs beside them, and Mikoto is surprised to see that it’s the foreigner from yesterday. He says she’s very cute after all, and he starts taking pictures of her—commenting that she’s really photogenic. When Mikoto turns to ask Kurenai about this, Kurenai says the foreigner is just his acquaintance. Apparently the foreigner was hitting on girls before in Goto-gai, and Kurenai came to punch him. He protested since it was so sudden, but Kurenai only said “Don’t mess up my territory!” and gave him yet another punch. (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ Or rather, it was because the foreigner tried to hit on his woman. In any case, they became friends after that—though Mikoto doesn’t think so.

Since the foreigner mentioned that Mikoto went on a date with her handsome “boyfriend”, Kurenai asks if it’s Mizuchi. When she says hes, he grins saying she won’t become a Senki by partnering with someone like that. He thinks both of them are equally ugly and can only match each other though, and so they can keep playing house together. The foreigner quickly takes note of this idiom, and he asks for Mikoto’s name so he can write it down too. In return, he introduces himself as Walter. At first he claims that his name is “Water”, and they must be linked by fate because Mikoto is a Minamo… but Kurenai sighs and tells him to stop lying. Walter doesn’t care though, and she can call him anything she wants. It can be Walter, Water or even simply Wat—he’s more interested in kissing her hand instead. Kurenai slaps his hand saying he’ll kill him for doing this, and Walter whines that “Karai” so scary. When he points out that Mikoto has a boyfriend, Kurenai falls into a short silence before scoffing and walking away.

After Kurenai leaves, Walter chuckles saying “Karai” is so interesting since he always acts like a spoiled brat. Mikoto quickly asks him not to hug her shoulders as he speaks, and Walter apologizes—he forgot that the women in Japan are shy. He’s being overly friendly, but she doesn’t think of him as a bad person. However, Walter then hands a picture to Mikoto. He took it at the park by coincidence, and he thinks it’s going to be a conclusive evidence. Curious after hearing those words, Mikoto takes a look at the picture… and there she sees an image of Mizuchi and Aoi. Walter thinks Mizuchi is cheating on her, and so he took the picture for her. He remembers that Mikoto went on a date with Mizuchi to the park before, and the picture was taken not too long after the date—she can see it from the time stamp. He says Aoi was linking arms with Mizuchi as they walk through the park, and he remembers because she’s beautiful as well.

Mikoto is surprised since their date took place after Aoi dropped out of school. Mizuchi also said he hasn’t seen Aoi since then, and yet they were seen linking arms. Walter asks if she’s shocked to see her boyfriend cheating, but she sadly explains that they’re not lovers. It’s the truth, but Mikoto has to admit that she feels shaken upon seeing the picture. She can’t see Mizuchi’s expression, but Aoi looks really happy. Walter then says Mikoto shouldn’t go for a player like him, because there should be someone else who’s more suitable for her. Fate is linking her to her soulmate, and that person must be waiting for her. Mikoto doesn’t answer, so Walter continues by introducing himself again. He’s a college student, and he loves taking photographs. He often takes pictures at the park, and since it’s close to Goto-gai, he often goes there for a drink. It’s also where he met Kurenai—whom he refers to as “Karai”. It’s hard to pronounce “Karakurenai”, so he decided to call him “Karai” instead. Kurenai often goes on a rampage in Goto-gai, so it’s easy to find him. Walter says he loves Japan since he can see classic Yamato Nadeshiko like Mikoto, and he cheerfully takes his leave after that. On the other hand, Mikoto is feeling gloomy. Of course she can’t ask Mizuchi about this, and he’s also going back home this weekend. Upon thinking that he can see Aoi there, she feels disgusted by the strange feeling in her heart. What is this feeling…?

That night, Mikoto sees Half Moon in her dream. It’s been a while since the last time they met, and he asks if she was lonely without him… but she replies that she’s not too sure. (´・ω・`) Noticing that she looks rather gloomy, Half Moon asks her what happened. Mikoto explains that she saw a picture of the person she likes, linking arms with another girl at the park. They look so happy together. Half Moon asks if this means Mikoto was dumped, but she denies it. She doesn’t want to take it that way. Mikoto admits that she’s never fallen in love with anyone before, so she doesn’t know what to do during times like this… but she loves that person. Half Moon remains silent for a while, and he eventually asks: “Where did you put the picture?” She tells him that she put it on her table, but why is he asking this? Instead of answering, Half Moon only says goodbye. Mikoto then wakes up feeling confused, because he seems so different from usual.


• Day 27 •

During lunch break, the class rep asks why Mikoto looks so glum today. She doesn’t touch her lunch at all, and the class rep tells her to be more elegant during a meal. It seems like Mikoto didn’t even remember that they’re in the middle of lunch, so the class rep scolds her for being so out of it. Apparently her mouth was hanging open when she was lost in thought earlier. The class rep admits that she can’t leave Mikoto alone since Mikoto is always so unreliable, and she asks Mikoto not to misunderstands—it’s simply because she’s in charge of first year Minamo. However, Mikoto only says that she’s envious of the class rep. She wants to be honest too. Noticing that Mikoto is having a problem, the class rep offers to hear her out… and the first question she receives is: “Class rep, can you forgive cheating?” This causes the class rep to spit her lunch in shock, but then she says the answer is obvious—she would never fall in love with a man who would cheat. They’re the worst.

Mikoto sighs upon hearing this, and the class rep shoves a fried prawn into her mouth. Mikoto looks like a maiden in love, and the class rep won’t allow Mikoto to leave her behind. Or else she will stuff another fried prawn into her mouth. When Mikoto asks if she looks like that, the class rep makes it clear that she does. So much that it’s pissing her off. Just then Hime appears and asks if they’re having lunch, and the class rep gets terribly nervous to see Mizuchi beside him. Hime says he got curious because they look like they’re enjoying their lunch, but Mizuchi flatly answers that they’re just passing by—they shouldn’t disturb the ladies. Hime teasingly points out that Mizuchi is actually curious about them too, but Mikoto quickly excuses herself and leaves. The class rep is thrown into panic since she’s now left alone with Hime—who looks confused—and Mizuchi—who remains silent.

Hime lightly comments that they’ve been rejected, and he comments that the class rep’s lunch looks good… so the class rep nervously hands the whole lunch box to him. Mizuchi quietly wonders if Mikoto is avoiding him because of a certain reason, and he refuses when Hime calls him to eat fried prawns. Then he takes his leave and walks off, leaving Hime in confusion. Meanwhile, Mikoto has escaped to the hallway. She doesn’t know why she ran away, but she can’t look Mizuchi in the eye right now. The picture of him and Aoi keeps intruding her mind, filling her heart with a strange irritation. She doesn’t want to feel this way, but she can’t do anything about it.

After school, Mikoto follows Mizuchi to Goto-gai for today’s Kabatsu. She’s obviously still feeling down, and she notices that he’s staring straight at her in silence. Somehow he looks even scarier than usual, and she’s wondering if it’s because of what happened during lunch break—she ran away from him after all. Mikoto is about to apologize, but she can’t bring herself to say it. Whenever she tries to say something, the picture of Mizuchi and Aoi always comes out in her mind. She then notices that he seems to be waiting for something, and she realizes that he’s waiting for her to hold his hand… because they always do that whenever they are in Goto-gai. However, Mikoto doesn’t want to hold hands today. Instead, she tells Mizuchi that the weather isn’t too good today and so they should finish Kabatsu as soon as possible. She’s going to do her best too, and she runs off to enter the district—leaving him speechless.

Even though they manage to end today’s Kabatsu safely, Mikoto ends up avoiding Mizuchi all day long. She thanks him for his hard work, but he doesn’t reply… and it makes the situation between them very awkward because she realized that she’s been blatantly avoiding him. He treats her normally despite her attitude, so she wonders if she put him in a bad mood. She feels that he’s being even more quiet than usual today, and the silence is painful for her… so she tries to break it. By telling him that she’s glad the weather doesn’t turn bad and they can finish Kabatsu without any problems, then she says they should return to Kaen now and runs off ahead of him. (╯ ಠ益ಠ )╯︵ ┻━┻ She knows it might be rude to him, but she just wants to hurry back home. Suddenly, Mizuchi grabs Mikoto’s hand and asks her what happened. If he did something rude to her, then he wants her to tell him. She quickly denies this though and makes up an excuse that she’s just concerned about the weather, so he quietly nods and agrees to go home.

As Mizuchi makes his way to leave Goto-gai, Mikoto thinks about how she needs to chase after him… but on the other hand, her feet won’t move at all. She knows she’s really cruel. She has done something very cruel to him—what is she doing? Doesn’t she love him? It feels meaningless to avoid him for such a reason, and she feels irritated by how pathetic she is. Why did she become weird just because of something like this? Is it because she’s in love with him? If this is what it means by falling in love, then she doesn’t want to feel this way. She wants to quit this love. … ( ಠ_ಠ ) Then suddenly, she hears a familiar voice saying it seems like she’s having a hard time—she’s getting tangled in love. Mikoto is startled and turns around to find Walter behind her, holding a crepe in his hands. Apparently it’s a famous product in Goto-gai, the “Vanilla Choco Tornado Onimori Mix Banana Marmalade Melting Cheese Mega Special”! …and it comes in a bucket. Σ(゚ー゚;) Walter offers a bite, but Mikoto refuses since she gets a heartburn just by seeing him eating the crepe.

Walter then asks if Mikoto isn’t doing well with her boyfriend, and if it’s because of the picture he gave her. She reluctantly denies it, but he says it’s so cold of her boyfriend to leave her alone in a place like this… and so she explains that he’s wrong. She was the one who rejected Mizuchi, and she couldn’t even look him in the eyes. She has done something cruel to him, so she’s the cold one. Instead of replying, Walter uses this shutter chance to take a picture of her. He only laughs when Mikoto protests, but suddenly he groans and collapses to the ground. At the same time, Mikoto senses something strange in the air—their surroundings have been enveloped by darkness. The next thing Mikoto hears is a woman’s voice saying that she must be a student in Kaen. Getting lost in this area alone is just the same as walking towards her own doom.

Mikoto turns around to find a woman dressed in black— Arabuki. She’s also followed by an Adabana who calls her “nee-san”, informing her that Mikoto has a really strong stench. In fact, the smell is so strong that he can tell that she’s the Senki candidate who killed Tamamushi—the Adabana who infiltrated Kaen before. Arabuki nods saying she doesn’t like Mikoto’s face. Mikoto is the type she hates the most, and because she also killed Tamamushi… they have no choice but to kill her. The Adabana— Suzumushi—is delighted to hear this, but he asks if it’s okay to do that. After all, Goto ordered them to capture Mikoto alive. Since they’re not allowed to kill her, Arabuki suggests a better idea. They should let utsurohi taint her, but not to the point of killing her. They’ll turn her into a useless trash before handing her to Goto. Apparently the fact that Goto is interested in Mikoto annoys Arabuki to no end, and Suzumushi is more than ready to assist her. Since Goto didn’t forbid them from causing any physical defect, they can cut off Mikoto’s arms and legs as the revenge for Suzumushi. Arabuki is going to destroy Mikoto’s beautiful face, so much that they won’t be able to see it anymore.

As Arabuki releases a strong negative aura, Mikoto comes to the shocking realization that Arabuki is actually a Minamo as well. Before Mikoto can do anything, a surge of black water comes to flood her feet. The water gives her an incredibly cold sensation, and she realizes that it’s tainted. She can’t believe that a Minamo can use such an impure water—just who is she? Unfortunately, Mikoto doesn’t have time to think about this as the water is draining her power. Arabuki laughs when Mikoto screams in pain. It’s such a pleasant sight for her, and she wants to see Mikoto struggling even more. This is when Mikoto regrets her foolish decision of not following Mizuchi earlier. If only she didn’t remain in Goto-gai, she wouldn’t get caught by Arabuki and Walter wouldn’t get dragged into danger either. Arabuki then says that meeting her in Goto-gai was the end of Mikoto’s luck, and Mikoto screams as Arabuki flings another attack to corrupt her soul… but just before it hits her, Mizuchi appears to save Mikoto—repelling and pushing back Arabuki’s tainted water.

Mikoto regains her power as the impurities are drawn out of her body, and Mizuchi asks if she’s alright. She can’t believe her eyes. He came back! On the other hand, Suzumushi warns Arabuki that Mizuchi is a Bright. Arabuki isn’t intimidated at all though. Instead, she orders Suzumushi not to falter. It doesn’t matter even if they’re facing a Bright—they only have to kill him. Since Mikoto is still confused about their identity, Mizuchi explains that they’re an Adabana and a Minamo who have fallen to Goto’s side Suzumushi isn’t too strong by himself, but Arabuki is clearly an expert. Mizuchi knows that Mikoto’s body wouldn’t be able to stand it if the battle drags on, so they need to finish this in one go. After setting up the field barrier, they face Arabuki and Suzumushi in Hana Awase—eventually defeating them. Suzumushi collapses directly after their defeat, and Arabuki has to carry him as she makes her escape. She warns them to remember this, for one day they will return for revenge.

After they’re gone, Mikoto thanks Mizuchi and is about to say something… but he grits his teeth and slaps her. Where does she think they are? Why did she leave his side? Mizuchi asks if Mikoto forgot her position, because she should know about what would happen if she gets tainted by Arabuki and Suzumushi earlier. Knowing that Mizuchi is right, Mikoto can’t bring herself to say anything in return. Her mind was full of the picture of Aoi, and she ended up doing something selfish in the dangerous Goto-gai. If he never returned to save her, she’d be tainted by now. Mikoto cries as she apologizes once again, but Mizuchi takes a deep breath and asks her to follow him. He then brings her to an empty alley, where he asks her to hold out her legs. Before Mikoto can ask him anything, Mizuchi turns red as he kneels down and starts licking her thighs. She’s obviously shocked and nervously asks why he’s doing this, to which he replies that he’s cleaning her from the tainted water—she’ll get tainted if they ignore it.

Mikoto panics and asks Mizuchi to stop. Her legs are dirty, and he shouldn’t do something like this. Instead of stopping, he reminds her that she’s the Senki candidate. She’ll lose her qualifications if she gets tainted. Mikoto can’t believe that a refined man like Mizuchi would go so far just because she’s the Senki candidate, but he promises to finish this “treatment” as quick as possible—asking her to endure it so she won’t dry up. That being said, Mikoto can’t stand the ticklish sensation left by Mizuchi’s tongue. She apologizes saying it’s really embarrassing to have him licking her thighs, so she’ll finish the treatment by herself… but he answers that she can’t do it alone. Which is true. Mikoto is really surprised when she hears herself moaning, and she begs her voice not to come out—she doesn’t want Mizuchi to think that she’s weird. His tongue is sending chills all over her body, and she tries asking him to stop. The tainted water didn’t go THAT high, but he only says that he’s not done yet. He wants her to bear with it for a little longer.

Mikoto flinches when she feels a sharp pain on her legs, and she quickly notices that Mizuchi is sucking her thighs. When Mizuchi lifts his head, he tells Mikoto that he has left a mark on her. A kiss mark, to be specific. She remembers that he also left one on her chest during the library incident. As he gets up, he tells her that he has removed most of the impurities… but some of them might remain. The mark is a “technique” that will prevent impurities from spreading further. Mikoto wonders if it’s really true, but since Mizuchi said so… she decides to believe in him. She quietly thanks him for treating her, but suddenly they hear a voice saying she shouldn’t fall for that—it’s obviously a kiss mark. When she turns around, she finds Walter standing nearby. Mikoto was gone when he regained his consciousness, so he went to search for her… and he was shocked to see Mizuchi kissing her legs LOL. Since they were inside a field barrier, Walter couldn’t see their battle. He seems confused since he got knocked out from behind.

Mikoto asks if Walter is alright, but then Mizuchi suddenly grabs her hand saying they should go home. She notices that it looks like he’s trying to get her away from Walter, so she quickly apologizes to Walter for what happened. Walter doesn’t mind though, and he sends them off saying they’re a hot couple after all. As they walk back to school, Mizuchi points out that they’ve met Walter before. Mikoto nods saying he’s a friend of Kurenai’s, and so she feels bad for dragging him into their battle. Mizuchi doesn’t reply though, and Mikoto notices that he has a grim expression. Did she say something weird…? Mizuchi eventually opens his mouth to ask Mikoto to minimize contact with outsiders. They might get dragged into danger, like what happened to Walter earlier. Mikoto is surprised, but then she realizes that selfish actions would only cause trouble for Mizuchi and the other party… and so she agrees. Mikoto also asks if he can loosen his grip since it’s hurting her hand, but Mizuchi remains silent. He soon notices that she’s staring at him with a confused look, so he nods and loosens his grip… but she wonders what’s wrong with him.

Meanwhile, Suzumushi has reported today’s encounter to their superior—Coin. Arabuki apologizes to him for failing to capture Mikoto. Coin informed them that Mikoto will appear if they keep an eye on Walter, and so they managed to find her that way. It’s just before they could capture her, they got interrupted by one of the Five Brights. Coin isn’t pleased that Arabuki returned empty-handed though, so he warns her that Goto hates useless tools. He also makes it clear that Goto wants them to capture Mikoto alive. In other words, he wants her to be pure and unharmed. Coin asks if Arabuki understands what that means. She’s not allowed to do whatever she wants, or else a punishment more painful than death awaits. Coin chuckles saying he’ll put his “strings” around her brain, and Arabuki cowers in fear. She begs him to have mercy, and so he tells her to do her job properly. Goto isn’t exactly patient, and they don’t have any time either. They have to drag Mikoto to their side before she falls into another man’s hands. Coin sighs saying it might be time for him to move. He already set up the strings. All that’s left is to make them dance in the hands of Coin from Suuto.

Mizuchi:
“あはれとも見る人あらば思はなむ 月のおもてに宿す心を ” — Saigyō Hōshi (618)
If someone is watching the moon like I am, please think of me as miserable at the very least.

Mizuchi reflects on the foolish thing he has done to Mikoto today. He knows she was avoiding him, and he was afraid that she has noticed his devious actions. That’s why… Here, Mizuchi hears the voice from before again—asking if that’s why he licked Mikoto’s legs. The voice says he’s amazed to see Mizuchi’s high sexual frustration. Didn’t he see how Mikoto was trying to refuse? The voice then asks Mizuchi not to do anything without his permission, but Mizuchi only tells him to disappear. Even though the voice keeps claiming to be the spokesperson of his heart, Mizuchi can only feel a wicked, impure aura from him. The voice turns silent for a while, but then he complains that he got caught rather fast. He actually wanted to enjoy each moment as he controls Mizuchi, but it can’t be helped since they have no time. The Senki candidate can awaken any moment now, and it’s all Mizuchi’s fault. The voice says he didn’t expect Mikoto to have such a strong heart, following Mizuchi despite all the things he’s done to her. Mizuchi nearly stole her chastity in the library, and yet Mikoto still believes in him. The voice thought Mikoto would despise Mizuchi after he betrayed her trust, but the result was the exact opposite.

Mizuchi is shocked to hear this, but the voice continues. He thought it’d be best to take advantage of a girl who’s not used to men and their desire, but it seems like he used the wrong method. At this rate she won’t be a suitable bride for Goto. The voice then says it’s useless to fuel Mizuchi’s desire further, though he had fun teasing the pure, inexperienced Mizuchi. They don’t have time, so he needs to do the finishing touches. The voice calls someone to come over, and Mizuchi is surprised to see Aoi in front of him. The voice slowly says it’s time for the dance, and Mizuchi screams in pain as he clutches his head. The only thing heard after that is the voice laughing. Mizuchi and Aoi are going to dance once again—as his dolls.

At the same time, Mikoto finds herself in a dream. She hasn’t seen Half Moon at all lately, and she wonders what happened to him. Suddenly a different voice greets her, and she asks if it’s Half Moon… but the voice only muses that he finally made it here. He mentions that the Senki candidate is really something else, since she can stay in hades just fine. When Mikoto asks who he is, the voice says he’s nothing special. If he has to introduce himself, then he’d be the person who receives her. After chuckling for a while, the voice then tells Mikoto that she will become Goto’s bride. The great Goto is waiting for her. He wants to obtain her before anyone can lay their dirty fingerprints on her, and she should be honored to become his. Mikoto asks why she has to be with such a person, and the voice says it’s because they are destined to be together. It’s been decided many years ago.

The voice then asks Mikoto to take his hand. Hades eats their bodies, and so unlike her, he can’t stay here for a long time. However, Mikoto screams at him not to come closer. She’s terrified of the voice, as she can sense a strong negative aura from him—she can’t let herself get captured. The next moment, everything is wrapped by a blinding light… and Mikoto hears a familiar voice warning her not to take that hand. The first voice sighs saying he was so close, but it can’t be helped. He’ll withdraw for today, but he leaves her with a message from Goto:

“I won’t let you go anymore. You are already mine. Yes… Let’s tie you up, so tightly that it wrings you out. And I will yearn for you eternally… Mikoto, I love your moon…”

Mikoto wakes up in her room, panting from the dream she just saw. What’s with that dream? Who was that voice? …and why does Goto want her? Isn’t he supposed to be their enemy? Mikoto feels extremely scared. If the dream turns out to be true, what should she do?


• Day 28 •

Today is a holiday, but Mikoto ends up coming to school. She feels a bit scared to go out after seeing such a dream, but she feels concerned. Mizuchi is going back home today, and she’s wondering if he’s meeting Aoi. In the courtyard, Mikoto runs into Awahana. Or rather, Kintokihana in disguise. Apparently they switch places from time to time, just because Kintokihana enjoys surprising everyone. Awahana has informed him that Mikoto seems to be growing closer to the awakening, but he notices that she doesn’t look as happy as she should be. Instead, she asks him about Goto. What kind of person is he? Kintokihana hums in thought, and he answers that Goto is evil. Goto-gai is only one of his bases, as he’s actually leading a giant syndicate behind the screen. They heard that the main base is located overseas, though it’s unconfirmed. At first they thought Goto is simply seeking for money, but then he does dangerous things like gathering Adabana and Minamo. Maybe the casino and gambling are nothing more than a cover.

Mikoto feels that Goto lives in a completely different world, but Kintokihana says that’s not true either. Goto is aiming for the Senki candidate. Mikoto might not be aware of this, but a Senki’s power is great enough to make the world go insane—it’s only obvious if Goto wants to obtain her. Kintokihana tells her not to worry though. Kaen is protected by their barrier, and the Five Brights are doing Kabatsu as well. They will protect her with their lives. Mikoto quietly says she still doesn’t get why she was chosen as the Senki candidate, but Kintokihana says the answer is simple. It’s karma. Cause and effect. Her current life is linked to all the karma from her previous life. It’s her inevitable fate, and it’s also karma that brings Goto to target her. Kintokihana then releases his butterflies, and Mikoto watches as they draw a beautiful spiral in the air. He explains that the butterflies—just like them—don’t live in this moment only. Life is a never-ending spiral. When they reach the next life, it’s time for karma to take effect—putting all sins and love on the wheel of reincarnation.

Turning to Mikoto, Kintokihana says her life is riding on a wheel of karma in the name of Senki… and it’s up to her to release her karma or not. She asks if that means she has the power to change fate, but he tells her to think about it herself. No matter what her fate will be, he asks her not to regret it later. Mikoto thanks him saying she seems to understand it for a bit, and he smiles saying she’s so simple. Then he reveals that he’s actually Awahana. Just as he said earlier, they switch places just to troll people. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ Awahana leaves after that, and Mikoto continues to think about his words—the wheel of karma. If she’s carrying something from her previous life, what kind of fate did she have…? As a Senki, did she worry about things like she does right now? …and she wonders if fate brought her to the same person in the previous life.

Upon returning to the dorm, Mikoto finds herself with absolutely nothing to do. She can’t leave the school since it’s dangerous outside the barrier, so she decides to return the notes she borrowed from Momotose. She also makes some cookies as a token of gratitude, since Momotose was really mad when Iroha ate all of the macaroons before. Since Momotose loves cute things, Mikoto puts the cookies in a jar, wraps it with a lace napkin and ties the package with a pink ribbon. She goes to deliver it to Momotose’s room after that, and the door swings open when she knocks. Mikoto tries calling Momotose, but since there’s no answer… she enters the room to find no one inside. Unlike the other students in the dorm, Momotose took four rooms for herself and had them remodeled by Kasu and Tane—her room is gorgeous. Mikoto notices a door leading to a separate room, and she wonders if Momotose might be there.

However, Mikoto then hears Momotose talking to Iroha about a certain incident and the culprit. Iroha says there should be no mistakes, and they only have to track down the Minamo who was assisting said culprit. Momotose nods saying she’ll discuss this issue with the chairmen immediately. She’ll provide the necessary accommodation, so Iroha can do as he likes… but he needs to keep it discreet because they don’t have any conclusive evidence yet. Mikoto knows she probably shouldn’t be listening to this, but before she can move away, Iroha opens the door and asks if the Senki candidate is eavesdropping on them. On the other hand, Momotose is clearly happy to see her. Mikoto apologizes saying she didn’t mean to eavesdrop because she only came to return the notes, but Iroha flatly excuses himself and leaves. Of course this causes her to feel bad, but Momotose doesn’t seem to mind. In fact, she’s glad that she could help. Momotose soon notices the cute package in Mikoto’s hands, and so Mikoto explains that she baked some cookies. She made three flavors for Momotose—coconut, tapioca and almond. Momotose is delighted to receive handmade sweets from Mikoto, and the two girls are smiling at each other when suddenly…

Iroha: “…cookie.”

…!? Σ(゚ー゚;)

Mikoto is startled. Momotose points out that he just left them earlier, but Iroha simply answers that he was on his way out. NO, YOU ALREADY LEFT. You returned just for the cookies LOL. Noticing that Iroha’s staring at the cookies, Mikoto reluctantly asks if he wants some—to which he answers with a silent nod. Momotose protests saying he’ll eat everything, but it’s too late. The cookie jar already falls into Iroha’s hands, and he’s now munching the cookies with extreme speed. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ Momotose desperately tries to get her cookies back, but since Iroha is really tall… the poor girl just can’t reach him. Mikoto can see Momotose raging again later, but she’s a bit concerned about their conversation. What were they talking about?

After that, Mikoto baked more cookies for Momotose and Iroha. This time she puts them into two different jars so they don’t fight, and Momotose shares her cookies with Kasu and Tane. None for Iroha though. 8D Mikoto returns to her room at night and throws herself onto bed. Maybe it’s because of Kabatsu, but lately she feels sleepy everyday. It’s only 8 PM, but she decides to go to sleep early. When she goes to change into her pajamas, Mikoto notices that the picture from Walter is gone. This is strange since she left it on the table before, but then again she doesn’t really want to see the picture… so she decides to search for it next time. Just then Mikoto’s phone starts ringing, and she picks it up to see Mizuchi’s number. She asks him if there’s something wrong since he’s supposed to be at home, and he answers that he returned home to attend his family’s memorial service.

Mizuchi then asks Mikoto to come to his house right now. Mikoto doesn’t think it’s a good idea since it’s late and she might disturb the memorial service, but Mizuchi flatly says it’s alright—his grandfather wants to see the legendary Senki candidate. The sudden request surprised her, but it’s so unusual for him to ask for her help. Besides, she wants to visit his house as well. Especially because the issue with Aoi has been bothering her lately. Mikoto eventually agrees, and Mizuchi asks her to come to the address he’s going to give. He also asks her to come alone, because his family rule only allows those who are chosen to enter their grounds. It reminds Mikoto that Mizuchi’s family is really strict, and so she agrees to come alone. After writing down his address, she leaves her room and rushes out of Kaen… but then she runs into Iroha by the entrance.

Iroha asks where the Senki candidate is going at this hour. Mikoto makes up an excuse about how she left something at school, but he points out that he’s heading out—not towards school. Knowing that she can’t lie to Iroha, Mikoto apologizes and explains that Mizuchi called her. Iroha nods saying he’s going with her. When Mikoto tries to refuse, he reminds her that she can’t fight to protect herself. She has no choice but to let him come along, though she’s not sure if it’d be okay. After all, Mizuchi told her to come alone. As Iroha walks beside her in silence, Mikoto notices something pink sticking onto his uniform’s hem—it’s a piece of the ribbon she used to wrap the cookie jar. She wonders if it got there when he opened the wrapping, but she doesn’t have time to ask since he’s already walking ahead of her.

From there, Iroha and Mikoto head to Mizuchi’s family residence. She’s surprised to see how enormous his house is. On the way she noticed a wall that seems like it’s going on forever, and she realizes this means his family probably owns the entire area… so it’s really true that he comes from an honorable family. The other thing Mikoto notices is that Iroha came straight to Mizuchi’s place without getting lost, so she asks if he has come here before. He nods saying was once invited by the head of the family. When she mentions that only chosen people are allowed to enter, he replies that it’s only because he has “full moon / 望月 / mochizuki” in his eyes. People say those who were born with full moon in their eyes are blessed with power in Kasen. Mikoto remembers learning about this before. Normally the full moon invisible, and only a few people can see them. That, and when the owner is doing Kasen.

Iroha then explains that Mizuchi’s family has a strong attachment towards full moon—even more than the royal family. For generations, they have been keeping a rule that the heir of the family must be blessed with full moon in their eyes. Mikoto asks if that means Mizuchi also has moon in his eyes, but Iroha answers that Mizuchi has a “crescent moon / 弦月 / gengetsu”. He only has a moon in one eye, not both. It’s probably in the one he’s covering with the eyepatch. Mikoto never heard about this before, and she has to stop herself from getting jealous of Iroha. It seems like he’s the only one who knows about this, but Mizuchi has known him for a long time—it’s not something to be jealous of. Mikoto then asks if Mizuchi is going to take over the family, and Iroha replies that as one of the Five Brights, Mizuchi’s future is secure. After graduating, Mizuchi can choose to work as a priest for the emperor. He’s also ready to become the next head and take over his family. The only problem is his crescent moon. Can his family accept a head who doesn’t have full moon?

Mikoto sadly asks if full moon is really that important, but Iroha replies that the current family head is really fixated in that issue. In his eyes, Mizuchi is flawed. Mikoto feels bad since Mizuchi never wished to be born with a crescent moon, but Iroha says he doesn’t understand her. She’s the Senki candidate and Mizuchi is her partner. Why does she have to mix emotions into their relationship? Emotions are not connected to the awakening. Mikoto immediately denies this. She apologizes for raising her voice, but she believes emotions are necessary. All this time she’s been taught that the Senki candidate can use her power through physical contacts with her partner, but after becoming Mizuchi’s partner… she learned those touches hold a deeper meaning. It’s not simply for techniques and maintaining trust. He supports her and stays by her side, and it clears the water inside of her. Mikoto doesn’t know if it’s the awakening or not, but she’s never felt this kind of water before. That’s why she’s pretty sure about her feelings for him.

However, Iroha harshly replies that it has nothing to do with him. He concludes that it’d be meaningless to inquire further, and he walks away from Mikoto. She’s surprised by the sharp tone in his voice, though she wonders if it’s just her imagination. Noticing that Iroha has walked closer to the house, Mikoto chases after him. He informs the receiver that he came at the request of Momotose, and soon the gate swings open for them… but no one walks out to greet them. Suddenly, Iroha grabs Mikoto and tells her to duck. Before she can tell what’s going on, several arrows rapidly fly out of the gate. Mikoto is shocked and takes a closer look at the arrows, but Iroha warns her not to touch them. The next moment, a low voice greets Iroha saying it’s been a while. When Mikoto turns around, she finds an old man standing before them. Iroha recognizes the man as Kuzuryuu and notes that it’s such a violent way to welcome them.

Kuzuryuu laughs and apologizes, explaining that he forgot to disarm the trap for intruders. All members of the family are incredibly alert, and they won’t let even a single ant walk into their territory. Iroha comments that the tip and the feather of the arrows are laced with poison, and Kuzuryuu confirms that he’s right. The arrow has been covered with a special paralyzing drug from overseas. Mikoto is surprised to hear this, but Kuzuryuu adds that they won’t kill any intruders. They’ll just capture them alive, and what they do after that isn’t something they can mention in front of a lady. Once again, Kuzuryuu apologizes to Mikoto for greeting her in such a scary way. He asks if she’s the rumored Senki candidate, and when she says yes, he mentions that he’s heard about her from Mizuchi. He’s been waiting for her. As he looks into Mikoto’s eyes, Kuzuryuu cheerfully notes that she has beautiful full moon. This surprises Mikoto because she doesn’t have any, but Kuzuryuu already moves on to compliment the moon in Iroha’s eyes.

Kuzuryuu then introduces himself as Mizuchi’s grandfather, which surprises Mikoto further since he looks rather young. She actually thought he might be Mizuchi’s father instead, but she can see their resemblance somehow. He already heard about them from Mizuchi and Momotose, and so he invites them inside. Iroha excuses himself before entering, and Mikoto follows him… but something is bothering her. When Kuzuryuu was looking at her earlier, it actually sent chills down her spine. His eyes looked like a serpent’s glaring at its prey. She quickly brushes off the thought since it’s rude to think that way about Mizuchi’s grandfather, but somehow she feels uneasy. As they make their way through the house, Iroha suddenly stops walking. Both Mikoto and Kuzuryuu wonder if there’s something wrong, but he asks them not to mind him. However, she notices that his expression changed for a brief moment earlier. She tries observing him for a while, but he’s back to his usual state now. Mikoto also remembers that Iroha said he came here based on the request of Momotose, so does that mean he was planning to come here all along? Something feels wrong here. What is going on?

When they reach the (insanely large) main hall, Kuzuryuu mentions that he didn’t expect the two of them to come together. It turns out Iroha was actually planning to visit them tomorrow, but he flatly says they had a change of plans—that’s all. Today the family is having a memorial service for their ancestors, and so they can’t provide much hospitality… but Iroha says it’s fine. They will finish their business in no time. This makes Mikoto even more confused, since she can’t see where this is going. In any case, Kuzuryuu soon brings up the subject of full moon again. Iroha is famous in Kaen as a Bright with full moon in his eyes, and Kuzuryuu is clearly not happy to see how inferior his grandson is in comparison. Mizuchi had to attend the memorial service in behalf of his late father, but since he doesn’t have full moon, it’s rather difficult for him to become the heir. Kuzuryuu wants him to take over the family, but things aren’t going too well.

Here, Iroha mentions that their ancestors were priests directly serving the emperor. Kuzuryuu laughs and confirms that it’s true. Similarly to Iroha, their ancestors also had full moon in their eyes. It’s believed that it was the reason why the emperor loved them. For the royal family, those who have full moon are treasures. It also means their predecessors were powerful, but Kuzuryuu says it’s all in the past. Their blood has been fading a lot since then. Right now they can barely produce a crescent moon. Iroha has heard that Mizuchi’s mother also has a crescent moon, and Kuzuryuu’s expression instantly changes upon hearing this. After a short silence, he scoffs saying they did their research well. When Mizuchi was small, his mother hid the fact that her son only has a crescent moon… but up until her very last moment, she regretted her failure to give him full moon. She blamed herself for only having a crescent moon, and Kuzuryuu admits that he also did painful things to her.

Meanwhile, Mikoto wonders if it’s okay for her to listen to this. She knows Mizuchi probably wouldn’t want her to know about the family inheritance issue or about his mother—especially when he’s not around. She then remembers that she came here to see him, so she asks where he is right now. When Mikoto mentions that Mizuchi was the one who asked her to come over, Kuzuryuu suddenly grins saying he’ll guide them to see his grandson. She turns around to ask for Iroha’s opinion, but he says he doesn’t mind. As they follow Kuzuryuu, Mikoto notices that he’s taking them outside. Since the house is enormous, she wonders if he’s taking them to a separate building. However, their destination turns out to be a warehouse. Kuzuryuu says Mizuchi is waiting inside, and he urges them to go in… rather forcefully. Mikoto is hesitant because there’s clearly something wrong here, but Iroha quietly steps forward. Before they enter the warehouse, he wants Kuzuryuu to answer a few questions for them.

The first question is why did Kuzuryuu welcome them directly when they arrived earlier. It’s strange for the head of the house to open the gate for the guests, since normally someone else would do it instead—such as servants or helpers. The second question is why didn’t they sense any presence as they walked through the hallway earlier. They had a memorial service today, and so the house should be busier than usual… but Iroha and Mikoto didn’t see anyone other than Kuzuryuu. Why is that? Kuzuryuu knows that “coincidence” can’t be an excuse, and Iroha says he should know why he came here through Momotose. Iroha then gets directly to the point by stating that Kuzuryuu and his family—the family of “Mizuchi“—are involved in all the utsurohi incidents in Kaen. However, Kuzuryuu laughs saying Iroha must be joking. Aoi has told him about the incidents. Does this mean Iroha is accusing their family of turning their fangs against Kaen?

Since Iroha remains silent, Kuzuryuu’s smile soon disappears. He agrees to listen further, so Iroha explains the details starting from the very first incident. That day utsurohi entered Kaen by breaking the greenhouse barrier, and he received a report that Aoi was in the greenhouse directly before the incident. After watching the ceremony, Aoi got angry and left saying she’ll report it to her grandfather. After that Aoi called someone in the greenhouse. Judging by her words before that, it’s pretty obvious that she was talking with Kuzuryuu. Aoi became strange after that, and this eventually led to her getting eaten by utsurohi before dropping out of Kaen. Iroha also points out that an Adabana was purged outside of Kaen, and the ones who did it were Mizuchi and Aoi. Purging an Adabana requires permission from the country, but they never got any reports for this case. This means it can only be done by a Kaei who doesn’t need to submit reports for the country. In other words, one of the Five Brights.

Kuzuryuu points out that they don’t have any proof, but Iroha then takes out a picture of Mizuchi and Aoi at the park—the picture Walter gave to Mikoto. She’s surprised to see the picture in his hands, but then she realized that he might have entered her room when she was visiting Momotose earlier. Iroha notes that the time stamp on the picture shows the same date as when they found the Adabana’s corpse—can they call it a coincidence now? Kuzuryuu stays silent for a while, but then he laughs saying he underestimated Iroha. He turns to the warehouse saying they can come out now, and the door swings open as Mizuchi walks out with Aoi. Kuzuryuu says he wouldn’t need to do this if only the Senki candidate comes alone, but it can’t be helped… so he orders Mizuchi and Aoi to capture both Iroha and Mikoto alive. Mizuchi flatly replies with “I understand”, while Aoi creepily giggles beside him. Mikoto is shocked to see them in such a state, but Iroha tells her that Aoi has fallen—her feet is wrapped with tainted water. After warning Mikoto not to hold back, Iroha sets up a field barrier and takes them into Hana Awase.

Sadly while they managed to defeat Mizuchi and Aoi, Iroha suddenly collapses after the battle. It turns out that he actually took damage when he shielded Mikoto from the arrows earlier, so now the paralyzing drug is taking effect on him. Kuzuryuu laughs saying Iroha has an incredible endurance, but now his entire body is paralyzed. Eventually he’s going to lose consciousness too. Mikoto panics and asks why he didn’t tell her, but Iroha mutters that it’s not necessary—it’s got nothing to do with her. He tells her to escape because it’s dangerous here, but she refuses to leave him alone. Before fainting, Iroha whispers that Mikoto is so naïve. At the same time, Kuzuryuu laughs saying Iroha is a greenhorn after all. Now the Senki candidate has fallen into his hands. When Mizuchi approaches her, Mikoto tries to ask him if this is just a misunderstanding. She begs him to save Iroha, but he knocks her out instead… and she faints while still calling his name.

When Mikoto regains her consciousness, she finds herself in the mail hall. Her whole body hurts, and she can’t move her arms and legs. Kuzuryuu soon comes to apologize for doing this to the Senki candidate, but he wants her to bear with it for a little longer… and by “this”, he means tying her up with a rope. That’s why she can’t move. Noticing that Mizuchi is standing behind Kuzuryuu, Mikoto desperately asks him to release her. He doesn’t reply though, and Kuzuryuu laughs saying it’s useless even if she calls him. Kuzuryuu then asks Mikoto to forget about Mizuchi, because someone else has been waiting for her. Someone who saved the family of “Mizuchi”. In fact, she was summoned here so they can present her for that great person. This makes Mikoto realize that the phone call from Mizuchi has been a trap all along, and she asks him to return to his normal self… but once again, Kuzuryuu asks her to forget him. Because she’s going to become Goto’s bride. Mikoto is shocked and asks why he brings up that name here, but Kuzuryuu only laughs saying she’ll understand soon enough. Kuzuryuu then asks Aoi to purify the Senki candidate before Goto’s men comes, but since Aoi has fallen to insanity and keeps on giggling… he ends up leaving the task to Mizuchi.

Ignoring Mikoto’s attempt to protest, Mizuchi picks her up and carries her to a bathroom. She feels relieved when he releases the rope, but the feeling soon disappears as he doesn’t stop there—he proceeds to take off her clothes as well. When she tries to protest, he simply replies that they’re going to purify her body and tells her to take everything off. Of course Mikoto refuses, which only leads to Mizuchi stripping her by force. Σ(゚ー゚;) She screams, but he coldly warns her not to move because they don’t have time. That’s when she realizes that it’s not him. This person isn’t Mizuchi. Why did he become so strange? Mikoto wants to escape out of embarrassment, but he orders her to get into the bath. Even though the water is really cold, he only tells her to let the water reach her shoulders. At first Mikoto thinks it’d be better than having Mizuchi staring at her naked body, but it’s impossible for her to stay still. The water is too cold and she’s shivering, but then again he orders her to sit there for five minutes. Mikoto wants to protest, but since Mizuchi keeps staring at her in silence, she has no choice but to obey his words.

After five minutes that seems like forever, Mizuchi eventually tells Mikoto to get out of the bath—he’s going to wipe her body. Before she can do anything, he pulls her over and starts wiping her with a cloth. Mikoto feels really embarrassed and asks Mizuchi not to look at her body, but he doesn’t react and just continues wiping her. She notices that he doesn’t seem to feel anything about this situation, but his eyes are strange. It’s as if his consciousness lies somewhere else. She squirms and whines that it tickles, but again, he orders her not to move. She tries asking him what happened since he’d never do something like this, though it’s a useless effort since he doesn’t reply. He keeps on wiping… until he reaches a certain private part, and that’s when she finally slaps him saying: “Mizuchi-san, you’re a pervert!” Mikoto quickly apologizes upon realizing what she’s done, but Mizuchi blinks several times and looks around in confusion. The moment he sees her, he instantly turns red and asks why she’s naked.

Mizuchi enters panic mode when he notices that his hand is still touching Mikoto, which also causes her to scream on the spot. He immediately closes his eyes saying they should move away from each other, and he asks her to wear something—anything. She doesn’t know where did he dump her uniform, but fortunately she finds a women’s kimono in the basket. It seems like he was planning to put it on her. Mikoto asks if she can wear it, but Mizuchi only replies with: “Anything is fine! My eyes are closed!” プッ(※థэథ)∵.*.∵ She finds it hard to believe that he’s now sitting straight on the bathroom floor. He’s so different from how he was a moment ago. Mikoto quickly gets dressed and informs Mizuchi that she’s done, but he’s still blushing while keeping his eyes closed. For a moment she wonders if he’s going to turn weird again, but then he asks her not to come closer—it should calm down in a while. This leads to an awkward conversation.

Mikoto: “Calm down? …what’s going to calm down?”
Mizuchi: “Uh…! Anyway, please leave! Do not enter for 10 minutes!”

OH MIZUCHI. (((壊゚∀゚)))ァヒャヒャヒャヒャヒャヒャ

…and so Mikoto leaves the bathroom, wondering what Mizuchi is going to do inside. She finds her uniform lying outside, so she wears it and waits in the hallway for 10 minutes. When Mizuchi finally comes out of the bathroom, Mikoto politely hands the kimono back to him… but he looks away from her. Mikoto also notices that Mizuchi is completely drenched, and his ears are really red. She wonders if it’s because he took a bath, but the water is cold… What did he do, I wonder? ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ Before Mikoto can ask him anything, Mizuchi says they need to figure out the situation first. Why is she here, and what in the world happened here? He’s still red in the face though, and his voice wavers as he asks the question. Poor thing. Realizing that Mizuchi doesn’t remember anything, Mikoto explains the situation to him as they move to an empty hall.

Mizuchi is shocked upon learning about what his grandfather did, and Mikoto is aware that it might sound unbelievable… but it’s the truth. Iroha is in danger. She asks him to search for Iroha together, but he points out that Goto is targeting her. She shouldn’t remain here for too long. Mikoto doesn’t want to leave without Iroha, especially since Iroha came with her because he was worried about Mizuchi, but Mizuchi says he will take responsibility and find Iroha later. For now, Mikoto should leave and return to Kaen. When she tries to protest, once again he tells her to leave in a sharp tone. He wants her to leave their residence and never get involved with him and his family ever again. He’s going to drop out of Kaen too. His whole family is involved with Goto. It’s enough reason for him to leave school, and he doesn’t want to involve her any further than this. Mizuchi asks Mikoto to understand, but she doesn’t answer. Mikoto knows that it’s indeed dangerous for her to stay here, but she feels that if she leaves now, she’ll never see Mizuchi and Iroha again.

Since Goto is coming for her, Mikoto knows she’ll only get captured if she stays. As the Senki candidate, she will only trouble everyone by staying here. After thinking for a while, Mikoto finally agrees to leave… but she also asks Mizuchi not to drop out of school. This incident isn’t his fault after all. Mizuchi remains silent, and Mikoto tries asking if they can meet again, but he only says he’ll walk her to the entrance. Before he can take her out of the hall, they suddenly hear a voice shouting at them to stop… and Aoi appears with a deranged smile on her face. She giggles saying she won’t let Mikoto escape, because she’s going to kill her—she can’t forgive Mikoto for stealing Mizuchi from her. A large swarm of utsurohi gathers around Aoi as she yells that Mizuchi used to belong to her, and yet Mikoto snatched him away. Mizuchi was only hers. He’s the only one who carries the same agony as she does. Aoi then swears by the blood of “Mizuchi” that she will kill Mikoto, but Mizuchi sharply exhales and says they’re going to purge Aoi.

Mikoto is shocked and tries to argue, but Mizuchi tells her that it’s different from last time. Aoi won’t return to normal anymore. She’s been consumed by the blood of “Mizuchi”—not utsurohi. The blood of “Mizuchi” is cursed. It’s the blood of destruction that’s been hidden by his family for generations. They have to break all of their doubts, and Mizuchi takes Mikoto to purge Aoi through Hana Awase. Aoi shrieks and coughs up blood right after the battle. Mikoto rushes over and asks her to get a hold of herself, but Aoi weakly tells her not to touch her—calling her disgusting. Aoi cries saying she really hates Mikoto, because Mikoto is the girl who took Mizuchi away. Then she weakly calls for Mizuchi, and she smiles upon seeing him. Aoi admits that she did her best to hold back for Mizuchi’s sake, but in the end she lost to the blood of “Mizuchi”. She also apologized for failing to become a Minamo he can be proud of, and after taking a deep breath, he answers that she did well. Aoi smiles saying she’s happy, and now she can finally say goodbye to this cursed blood. If her next life, she wants to have a normal family that’s not bound by anything… then she can tell him that she loves him. Mikoto cries when Aoi closes her eyes, and Mizuchi recites a poem.

Mizuchi:
“この世にて、またあふまじき悲しさに。すすめし人ぞ心みだれし” — Saigyō Hōshi (357)
In this world, knowing we will never meet again, your death throws my heart into disorder.

After a moment of silence, Mizuchi reveals that Aoi had the same fate as himself. Due to their fate, they had to carry a heavier responsibility in their family. Both of them were born without full moon, which is required for those who are born in the family of “Mizuchi”. Those who don’t have it need to carry out their fate, and Aoi couldn’t endure that fate. When Mikoto asks what he means by their fate, Mizuchi answers: “Destructive impulse due to emotional collapse… It’s called the curse of ‘Mizuchi’.” The family of “Mizuchi” is originally a brutal lineage that could never follow the rules. They bared their fangs at the ancient emperor, but they got sealed by the mighty power of the moon—granting them moon in their eyes. As long as they have moon in their eyes, their emotions will never sway. However, the seal is weakening along with time. Now their family only has people who don’t bear full moon in their eyes. Mizuchi is one of them. When Mikoto mentions that Iroha and Kuzuryuu said he has a crescent moon, he closes his eyes and exhales. Then he reveals that the one in his right eye is a “paraselene / 幻月 / gengetsu”.

Because of their background, Mizuchi’s family created severe rules for themselves to follow. Mikoto realizes this is the reason why he’s always that strict when it comes to rules—it’s to suppress the curse of “Mizuchi”. However, Mizuchi admits that he’s inexperienced. He always got tempted by the curse, which also resulted in him doing… um, questionable stuff related to Mikoto. Since she obviously doesn’t get what he means, he reverts his gaze saying there’s an impulse that he can’t hold back. If they touch, he feels that this impulse is going to explode at this very moment. The fact that such an emotion exists inside of him disgusts him to no end. Maybe he got controlled by Goto because his blood is wishing for it. Because his blood wants him to attack her. Mikoto can see that Mizuchi is really in pain, but she doesn’t get what kind of emotion that drives him to this point. Mizuchi continues that it’d be better if it’s only emotions, but he’s afraid that he might lose to the destructive impulse and hurt Mikoto. He’s dangerous, and that’s why he doesn’t want them to meet again. It’s for her own safety.

Back to the problem at hand, Mizuchi reminds Mikoto that she can’t stay here. Goto’s men will come to pick her up, and she needs to escape before they find her. The next moment, they hear an unpleasantly familiar voice asking if they called him. It’s the voice that claimed to be the spokesperson of Mizuchi’s heart, and the one that tried to get Mikoto in her dream before. When they turn around, they see a man with long jet black hair. He’s dressed in a matching black suit, and he’s sighing that Mizuchi keeps on doing “worthless things” whenever he takes his eyes off him. It’s just the same as his “useless minion” who tried to assault the Senki candidate without permission. The man then laughs saying he did make Mizuchi clean up the mess, though Mizuchi probably doesn’t remember anything. Meanwhile, Mikoto feels that she has met this man before… but even more than that, the thick malice she senses from him is creeping her out. The man comments that it seems like the “strings” weren’t enough, but it’s now the end of their playtime. He orders Mizuchi to move away from Mikoto.

When the man snaps his fingers, Mizuchi suddenly clutches his head and screams in pain. It’s unforgivable to lay a finger on the Senki candidate before Goto does, and so the man is going to give Mizuchi a lesson by strangling his nerves—using the string he has set around Mizuchi’s body. Mizuchi’s going to be his puppet. Mikoto is shocked when Mizuchi screams again, while the man is laughing gleefully in front of them. Mikoto turns to ask what did he do to Mizuchi, but the man lightly replies that it’s clearly a punishment. Or rather, a punishment for a puppet who doesn’t listen to him. Noticing that he hasn’t introduced himself yet, the man then gives Mikoto a tarot card—Queen of Pentacles—in behalf of his greetings. Then he introduces himself as Coin, one of Suuto who’s serving Goto. Coin has been lending a hand to Kuzuryuu, and so he would be troubled if they do something like this in the middle of the “contract”. Mikoto is shocked to hear this, but he simply says it’s a wonderful contract. She has no idea what he’s talking about, but he chuckles and says she doesn’t need to understand. The only thing she needs to do is to think about Goto.

Coin then asks if Mikoto can see the mind string wrapping Mizuchi’s body. Once again he snaps his fingers, and Mizuchi screams in pain. Coin laughs saying it must be painful, since he’s tampering with all the nerves in Mizuchi’s body. He can also use the pain to drive Mizuchi to death by insanity. When Mikoto begs him to stop doing something so cruel, Coin says he’s willing to stop… but only if she comes with him and becomes Goto’s bride. It doesn’t matter though. Even if Mikoto refuses, he will just kill Mizuchi and take her by force. If Coin casts his mind strings onto Mikoto’s brain, he can easily control her anytime. He’s only holding back because he wants her to stay untouched, and that’s why he’s offering this deal to her. Knowing that Coin is going to kill Mizuchi at this rate, Mikoto doesn’t have any choice. She asks if Goto is only targeting her, and if Coin won’t harm Mizuchi anymore if she goes to Goto’s place. Coin promises that he won’t lie, but Mizuchi warns Mikoto not to go. He asks her not to mind him, as he’d take death over losing her. Of course this only pisses Coin off even more, and so he shuts Mizuchi up with another attack. He’s patiently negotiating with Mikoto right now, so Mizuchi needs to be quiet.

However, a familiar voice replies that Coin is the one who needs to shut up. Before Mikoto can grasp what’s going on, something slashes the mind string around Mizuchi. The next thing they see is Momotose walking towards them, commenting that Goto’s men are as unrefined as expected. Coin is shocked and asks about who she is, but Momotose sharply answers that she won’t introduce herself to an evildoer. She apologizes to Mikoto for coming so late, but Mikoto doesn’t mind. She’s more surprised instead. Mikoto then asks why she’s here, Momotose reveals that she received an emergency message from Iroha on her phone. She told him to send it should anything happens, and she turns around to see Iroha—who comes out behind her. Both Mikoto and Mizuchi is surprised to see him doing just fine, but Iroha flatly states that he told Mikoto to run away. She’s too naïve. Iroha then takes out Mikoto’s cookie jar, explaining that the poisonous arrow hit it by total coincidence. Momotose knows he actually did that on purpose though, and she laughs saying his gluttony can be useful too sometimes. This means that Iroha was never paralyzed to begin with. Kuzuryuu fell for it, and Iroha has locked him in the warehouse.

After hearing all of this, Coin laughs saying this is interesting. In fact, it only fires him up even more. He then takes his leave for today, but he drops a hint that they’ll meet again on the night of a full moon. He vanishes into thin air right after that, and Iroha suggests returning to Kaen for now. They have to report this incident to the chairmen. Momotose asks Mikoto and Mizuchi to come along, but Mizuchi refuses. He’s going to stay here. He and his family attacked the Senki candidate, and he doesn’t have the right to return to Kaen. Iroha remains silent for a while, then he answers that they don’t need his resolution. Even if he doesn’t return to Kaen, Mizuchi will be purged anyway. Both Mikoto and Momotose are shocked to hear this, but Iroha says it’s only obvious for his numerous treason. Mizuchi replies that he understands. He won’t run or hide, and he will wait for the punishment here with his grandfather. Mikoto tries to stop him from accepting this, but Iroha pulls her away and drags her out of the house. She desperately calls Mizuchi’s name, but he doesn’t reply. He’s going to be purged. What should she do…!?


• Day 29 •

Today opens with a dream of a distant memory. A boy is asking Mikoto if she’s going to transfer, and if they won’t be able to see each other anymore. Mikoto answers that she’s only leaving her grandfather’s house, and so she’s not transferring away… but she won’t be able to play in “this place” anymore. Her mother told her that she shouldn’t play here. The boy nods sadly, and he says this would be the last time they gather in their “secret base”. Another boy tells him not to be that sad because they can meet up somewhere else. Just like the first time they met here. A different boy then asks if she has told “that kid” about her moving, but the second boy says she doesn’t have to—”that kid” rarely comes here anyway. This leads to a very… intriguing conversation:

Boy 3: “You’re so cold, Kurenai-kun. We’re all friends, right?”
Boy 2: “Shut up, Mizuchi. Don’t act like a goody two shoes.”
Boy 2: “I won’t be deceived by something like shaved ice!”
Boy 3: “…I’m not deceiving you. I just thought everyone would be happy.”

As Mikoto tells them to stop fighting, another boy laughs beside her. He then asks her to play here for one last time, because everyone wants to see her power. The second boy comments that Mikoto’s power is so impressive, but she refuses because her mother would get angry. The second boy says her mother would never know if they keep quiet, but another boy stops him from forcing her. Besides, Mikoto is… He turns to Mikoto and suddenly asks if she loves them. Or rather, who does she love the most among them? The dream then fades away, and Mikoto wakes up. She wonders if it was a dream, because it feels more like a memory of her childhood. For some reason Mizuchi and the others’ names appeared in her dream, even though she only met them after transferring to Kaen. It’s a strange dream.

Momotose soon comes and knocks on the door, informing Mikoto that the chairmen are calling them. The chairmen had a sour expression upon hearing their report last night, and she feels terrified to hear what’s going to happen. When they enter the chairmen’s office, Awahana opens the meeting by asking if Onosada has investigated this case. Onosada nods and reports that Coin is a Suuto specializing in mental attacks. As reported by Momotose, Coin discreetly sets his mind strings around his victims’ brain and nerves. It allows him to gain complete control of his victims. In this case, his target is Mizuchi. This is most likely why Mizuchi suddenly attacked the Senki candidate in the library before. Kintokihana sighs saying it’s still hard to believe that Mizuchi’s family is involved with Goto, and Awahana explains that Mizuchi’s family has been keeping a strong bond with the emperor for a long time. It’s a mystery why they’re working with Goto.

Turning to Mikoto, Kintokihana confirms if Coin said he had a contract with Kuzuryuu. When she nods, he says that contract might be the key—even though they don’t know what it is. Here, Iroha suddenly changes the subject by asking for the permission to purge Mizuchi. Mikoto is shocked, especially when Kintokihana answers that it can’t be helped. She begs them to stop, but Iroha coldly says her feelings are irrelevant. This is the rule of Kaen. Awahana adds that Mizuchi is an honorable young man, so he should know what their decision would be anyway. With this, the chairmen issue an official order for them. Tomorrow at noon, the Five Brights and their Minamo shall head to Mizuchi’s residence and purge him there. That, and in order to keep her safe, Mikoto is not allowed to step out of the dorm. Momotose will keep an eye on her. Momotose has no choice but to accept the order, and she can only apologize to Mikoto.

Hime tries to help by saying this is too cruel. He’s about to say that Mikoto is in love with Mizuchi, but Iroha cuts him off. The most important thing for Kaen is the Senki candidate’s safety—how she feels is irrelevant. Hime asks if they don’t value her opinion, but Iroha replies that it’s only a burden. Kurenai suddenly bursts into laughter upon hearing this. He grins saying that’s not the reason, and Iroha should be honest with his feelings. Since Iroha doesn’t reply, Kurenai points out that he just doesn’t like how Mikoto has fallen madly in love with Mizuchi. He should be glad now that he can kill his rival out in the open. Iroha stays silent, and Onosada eventually says that Kurenai is provoking him too much. Kurenai answers that he only stated the truth. He thinks purging Mizuchi is a dumb idea, and he walks out saying they can do the rest. Onosada can only sigh, while Iroha says he’ll take the Senki candidate back to the dorm. Mikoto protests when he grabs her arm, but since he keeps staring at her in silence… she quietly agrees and follows him outside. Awahana comments that the Five Brights always do as they please, and Kintokihana nods… but he also knows they’re doing something cruel to Mikoto. Beside them, Momotose whispers Mikoto’s name in concern.

As they make their way back to the dorm, Mikoto asks Iroha to let go of her arm. It hurts, and she promises that she won’t escape. He silently lets go of her arm, but then he tells her to forget Mizuchi. They will assign a new partner for her. Once again, Iroha reminds Mikoto that her emotions are not necessary. As the Senki candidate, she only needs to think about the awakening. Mikoto is shocked, but then she answers that she doesn’t want to. She can’t forget Mizuchi. Iroha replies that he cannot understand. Why does Mikoto get so fixated on Mizuchi? He’s a criminal who’s involved with Goto, an existence that needs to be purged. Mikoto denies this right away, and even though her determination quickly wavers, she tells Iroha that she believes in Mizuchi. Even if his personality changed due to Coin’s influence. Even if he does something cruel to her. No matter what Mizuchi does to her, it won’t change her feelings. Before Mikoto could finish her sentence, Iroha sharply tells her to be quiet. He has absolutely no intentions of understanding her words, and he will never come to understand her eiither. The Senki candidate can only become partners with a Kaei—they are not allowed to go further. She shouldn’t forget why she came to Kaen in the first place. Iroha tells Mikoto to go to the dorm, and she has no choice but to obey.

Meanwhile, Onosada pays Kurenai a visit. Kurenai asks if he’s here to give a lecture, but Onosada only says lectures don’t fit his personality. He finds it surprising that Kurenai would stand up for Mizuchi, but Kurenai says he didn’t. In fact, he really hates both Iroha and Mizuchi. He doesn’t care about anything. At this point he doesn’t even care about Mikoto anymore—seeing someone else’s woman sickens him. Onosada sighs, though he can understand Kurenai’s feeling. Kurenai then asks if Onosada knows, but the Five Brights are all targeting Mikoto—including Hime. Kurenai finds this interesting because Hime always supports Mizuchi, but they’re all hard for Mikoto behind the screen. OMG Kurenai your language please… (*ノノ)キャー Onosada thinks that’s an extreme assumption, but Kurenai noticed how the look in their eyes changed right after the library incident. The Five Brights are all watching Mikoto like a prey. Again, Kurenai doesn’t really care about this. He only wanted to do Mikoto once, that’s all.

However, Onosada wonders if that’s true. Kurenai is taken aback, but Onosada points out that Kurenai has never been interested in women outside of his territory. He never got involved with any woman who aren’t interested and those who don’t throw themselves at him, so why did he keep chasing after Mikoto? Despite what Kurenai always says, Onosada knows the interest isn’t purely physical. Kurenai can’t seem to counter this, so he grumbles and tells Onosada not to act like he knows everything—calling him “damn teacher”. He then leaves his room and finds Hime standing outside, but he only tells Hime to move before walking away. As Hime stares at Kurenai in silence, Onosada comments that he overheard something unnecessary. It’s so difficult to be a man, since men turn weird if they fail to get the woman they want. Hime nods, because that emotion is called love. Onosada teases him for saying such a thing without getting embarrassed, but Hime doesn’t think it’s something to be ashamed of. He likes everyone. He’s in love with everyone. Then he adds: “…but if it’s truly love, I wouldn’t tell anyone and only keep it only to myself. Feelings which are hidden until the end… is also a form of love.”

Hime… (´・ω・`)

Onosada sighs saying he can’t understand the feeling of the romanticist princess, but Hime chuckles saying it’s okay. Hime then asks if Onosada knows that tonight will be a full moon. When the moon turns full, it will be time for Mizuchi to be purged. Onosada says that must be painful for him, and Hime nods before falling into silence. Here, Onosada notices something in Hime’s expression. Hime quickly apologizes and takes his leave, while Onosada wonders if his imagination is playing tricks on him… because for a moment, Hime was actually smiling.

At night, Momotose comes to visit Mikoto. Momotose feels really bad and wouldn’t be surprised if Mikoto hates her now, but Mikoto says it’s not Momotose’s fault—it’s her own fault for lacking self-awareness as the Senki candidate. She knows she’s troubling Momotose. After a short silence, Mikoto mutters that she’s going to say something that’s not allowed for the Senki candidate to say. She asks if Momotose is willing to listen, and when Momotose nods… she admits that she wants to save Mizuchi. She doesn’t mind breaking the rules of Kaen. She wants to save him no matter what. Iroha told her that the Senki candidate shouldn’t act based on emotions, and Mikoto knows he’s right. It’s just she can’t follow the right path. She can’t lie to her own feelings. Mizuchi is her first love, and she doesn’t want to lose him.

Mikoto’s tears start flowing out as she repeats that she loves Mizuchi. Through her blurry sight, she can see that Momotose looks troubled… and so she apologizes. They take a good care of her here in Kaen, and she knows they’re holding high expectations for her… but she’s saying that she wants to save Mizuchi, even if it means throwing away her status as the Senki candidate. Mikoto can’t control her tears anymore after that, and Momotose gently pats her head—telling her that it’s alright. Momotose admits that she thought further about the Senki candidate. Why does a Senki candidate grow stronger by touching her partner? They don’t like impurities, and yet they seek for physical touch. Mikoto asks if it’s because they share a strong trust with their partners, but Momotose shakes her head. The reason is deeper than that. It’s just her assumption, so it might be wrong… but the path towards awakening might lie beyond trust. When Mikoto looks at her with a confused look, Momotose smiles saying love is a wonderful thing. Girls become beautiful when they’re in love. That’s why she’s happy to see Mikoto turning beautiful as she falls in love with Mizuchi, but love has a continuation—something that lies beyond trust. Something that goes beyond the relationship of the Senki candidate and her partner.

Momotose quietly smiles for a while, and then she tells Mikoto that she’s going to say something she’s not supposed to say. Momotose asks if Mikoto’s moon has turned full. She was wishing for Mikoto to awaken, but at the same time… her biggest wish is probably for Mikoto to not become a Senki. Mikoto is surprised to hear this, but Momotose only says she loves Mikoto—that’s the only thing she wants to convey right now. Mikoto notices that Momotose looks really sad, though she doesn’t know why. Momotose doesn’t explain either. Instead, she tells Mikoto that Tane and Kasu are guarding her room outside. They won’t come into her room, so she doesn’t have to worry. Momotose smiles saying they have a beautiful moon outside, and her smile turns sad as she takes her leave. Mikoto wonders what Momotose was trying to tell her, and she notices the beautiful full moon shining through the window on her ceiling. The moon also exists in Kasen. Her textbook says it symbolizes madness. Those who got allured by the moon would turn insane.

Mikoto reminds herself that Mizuchi will be purged tomorrow at noon. Is she really okay with that…? Can’t she do anything other than waiting for him to be killed…? Then she recalls her grandfather’s words. Do not run away from everything. The moment you run away, all the moon will escape from you. You are the one who decides the moon. If you escape, that will also be the end of your moon. The end of Mizuchi’s life. Will she choose luck or madness? Mikoto knows she already has the answer. Even if she has to break the rules, even if she has to drop out of Kaen, she wants to be with him. Mikoto rushes out of her room, only to find her door guarded by Tane and Kasu. They fall into silence when she begs them to let her through, but then they agree to cooperate. Today they ate a lot of Mikoto’s cookies, and so they’re feeling sleepy tonight. They will fall asleep, and the Senki candidate is free to escape. They’ll be in trouble later on, but they also deliver a message from Momotose: “I support the path you believe in. Please find the thing that lies beyond love.” Both Tane and Kasu are supporting her too, and Mikoto thanks them before running out—promising that she will find the answer.

As she runs through the streets, Mikoto feels her body heating up. She’s driven by a strange impulse. The full moon above is shining on the path, and she knows this path isn’t the right one. It’s a path she should never take as the Senki candidate, but she has no regrets—she won’t turn back.

Meanwhile, Mizuchi is talking to his grandfather in front of the warehouse. He asks Kuzuryuu to forgive him for not opening the door. There’s a sin locked inside. A sin that can never be forgiven. He’s been carrying it even before his paraselene was given to him. It’s a sin that lies in his erased memories. Mizuchi says he understands it now. Coin saw through his sin—his weakness—and used that to tempt his heart. It must be the same for Kuzuryuu and Aoi. Their family’s curse is making fun of them, toying with their emotions. He sighs and informs Kuzuryuu that Iroha and the others are coming to purge them later. As the only heir, his death will brings an end to the curse of “Mizuchi” as well. They will be released from all the rules and their cursed blood. Mizuchi admits that he feels strangely disappointed, even though the cursed blood has been torturing him for so long. He won’t need to suppress his emotions with medicines anymore.

Everything will end.

Mizuchi soon notices the shadows extending, and he looks up to the full moon in the sky. He was yearning for the full moon. He was wishing to have it full moon both of his eyes, and yet he was not allowed to yearn for it… even though the moon seems so close. It feels like he can grasp it only by holding out his hand, but the moon is so far out of reach. Just like Mikoto. He’s so fiercely in love with her, and yet she feels really far.

Mizuchi:
“なにとなくさすがに惜しき命かな ありへば人や思い知るとて” — Saigyō Hōshi (658)
Somehow, this life is regrettable. If only I had stayed alive, she might come to realize my feelings.

Mizuchi laughs saying it’s impossible. After all, nothing lies within the reach of his hands. Nothing. He takes a deep breath, but then he hears something—the sound of footsteps. The next moment, Mikoto suddenly appears calling his name. She’s running out of breath, but she’s glad to see him again. Mizuchi is surprised, and he asks why Mikoto came here. He already told her not to see him again, and he asks him to leave… but she refuses. She won’t leave. It’s now her turn to hold his hand. Mizuchi’s hands have always been there to support her. Mikoto knows that if she lets go of that hand, she’s going to lose him forever—that’s why she won’t let go. She came here for him, and she asks him to let her stay with him. Mizuchi looks really torn for a moment, and he eventually says they can’t do that. Mikoto doesn’t know his cursed blood. She has no idea what he wants to do to her. He feels like he’s going insane with her holding his hand like this. He thinks she feels terrified of his desires, but she answers that she doesn’t. If it’s what he’s wishing for, then he’s free to do as he wants—even if that means she will lose her qualifications as the Senki candidate.

Mizuchi sighs saying Mikoto tends to take surprising actions from time to time. He’s not sure how to react, and the same goes for this situation. She’s looking at him with innocence and trust in her eyes. Mizuchi falls silent for a while, and he asks if he’s allowed to yearn for her. Mikoto firmly nods saying his wish is her wish as well. She wants to become his water. She wants to become the eternal water that lies in his eyes. Mizuchi awkwardly smiles saying he understands, and he asks Mikoto to close her eyes. The moment she does that, he pulls her into his arms and gives her an extremely passionate kiss. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ He can’t seem to stop his body from longing for her, and he asks if she’s scared of him… but she tells him that she doesn’t. She wants him to do it more, and he answers that he won’t let her go. Even if she’s shivering in doubt, writhing in pain or tries to escape from him, he won’t let her go. Not even if he has to fall into hell for this. However, Mikoto also asks Mizuchi not to let her go. She wants to stay with him like this forever, and she finally tells him that she loves him.

When Mizuchi replies that he feels the same, Mikoto feels her body trembling. The kiss feels different from the one they shared before. Both of them are glowing. Every time their lips touch, every time their tongues intertwine, she’s becoming one with him. The water in her is rising. She wants to stay like this forever… but sadly they are soon interrupted by Arabuki—who’s complaining that she’s doesn’t have time to watch kids making out. Behind her, Suzumushi laughs saying it’s just as Coin has predicted. If they keep an eye on the heir of “Mizuchi”, the Senki candidate will surely come. Arabuki says Mikoto is so stupid to fall for a man like Mizuchi, because his family is thinking of her as nothing but a tool. Since she feels sorry for Mikoto, Arabuki says she’ll reveal what the contract is all about: “The family of ‘Mizuchi’ used you as a material for a contract with Coin-sama.” Kuzuryuu made a deal with Coin. They will hand over the Senki candidate, and Mizuchi is going to obtain full moon in return. In other words, Kuzuryuu is sacrificing Mikoto for his grandson. Mikoto refuses to believe this, but Arabuki doesn’t care. They can ask Kuzuryuu in the warehouse, but only if they can defeat Arabuki. Last time they humiliated her in front of Coin, and now she’s going to take the payback.

…or so she thinks. Of course they get defeated by Mikoto and Mizuchi. (´・ω・`)

Suzumushi collapses right after Hana Awase ends, and Arabuki is surprised to see how strong Mikoto and Mizuchi have become since their last battle. Suzumushi apologizes for being a burden, and Mizuchi warns Arabuki not to move—or else he’s going to end Suzumushi’s life. Mikoto tries to stop him from doing such a thing, but before any of them can say anything… something suddenly strangles Suzumushi. Something in the name of Coin, that is. Suzumushi screams that his body is burning, and Coin quickly ends his life with a finger snap. Arabuki watches in terror as Suzumushi’s blood sprays towards her. She asks what the heck is going on, but Coin says he should be the one asking that question. She lost to a Bright twice, which makes her nothing more than a shame. Arabuki tries to protest for Suzumushi’s death, but Coin grins and asks if she’s defying him. He threatens to tie her up with his mind strings as well, and so she has no choice but to apologize. After all, it’s a master’s duty to put a leash on his pet dogs.

Coin then turns to greet Mikoto. As he said before, they meet again on the night of a full moon. He came to pick her up as Goto’s bride. She obviously refuses, and Mizuchi asks her to step back. As long as he’s here, he won’t allow anyone to touch her. Mizuchi then asks Coin to leave if he doesn’t want to die, but Coin has expected this answer too. That leaves him with no choice, so he decides to call a guest. He snaps his fingers to break the lock on the warehouse door, and Kuzuryuu quietly walks out. Coin points out that it seems like his grandson has zero intentions of handing over the Senki candidate… which means the contract between Goto and the family of “Mizuchi” has been broken. It’s really too bad since they already absorbed the souls of the whole family, and all that’s left was for Coin to give Kuzuryuu the full moon. Noticing that Mizuchi has no recollection of this, Coin laughs saying they can’t easily hand full moon to people either. It requires a lot of blood as the sacrifice. That’s why Kuzuryuu offered the lives of his family in return. When they came here to attend the memorial service, they were actually walking into their deaths. Coin found it rather exhausting to absorb their souls though.

Both Mikoto and Mizuchi are shocked. Mikoto recalls how the house was really quiet that day. If what Iroha said was true, then it means Kuzuryuu and Coin have killed everyone by then. Mizuchi grits his teeth saying he’ll never forgive Coin for this, but Coin points out that they’re doing it for him—he should be thankful. In Coin’s hands lie the unlucky, good-for-nothing souls of their family. He was supposed to hand it to Mizuchi, but now he’s having second thoughts… and he eventually decides to give it to Kuzuryuu instead. He laughs saying he knows Kuzuryuu’s sin as well. He knows that Kuzuryuu is actually the one who wanted the moon, and this might be the chance for Kuzuryuu to obtain it… but only if his body can handle it. Coin then snaps his fingers, and all the souls in his hands are thrown towards Kuzuryuu. As Kuzuryuu screams and clutches his eye, Coin chuckles saying it’s out of his league after all. The power isn’t something that can be obtained by the likes of him. Kuzuryuu starts panting harshly. His emotions are going out of control due to the curse of “Mizuchi”. He wants to destroy. He wants to kill. As he points out these facts, Coin grins and says that the moon doesn’t fit him—hatred does. The attachment towards death, destrudo, must be rising inside of him, because Coin has given all the sinful blood, all the foolish souls, to him. It’s impossible for him to hold back the urge to kill.

When Coin orders him to awaken, Kuzuryuu slowly stands up. Mizuchi begs him to stop and tries calling his grandfather, but Kuzuryuu’s reply is simple: “…die.” Σ(´・ω・`;) Kuzuryuu begins repeating the word “die”, and he breaks into laughter as he turns into a giant dragon. He announces that he is “Mizuchi“, the ancient serpent of treason. As Mikoto watches everything in utter horror, Coin asks what Mizuchi thinks. This is the real form of his family. Coin tried combining their tainted souls with a little utsurohi, and this is the result. A foolish monster’s birth. He finds it amusing because the family of “Mizuchi” is holy and has always been the emperor’s favorite, and yet they turned out to be more tainted than anyone else. Mizuchi yells in anger, but Coin lightly says it’s his own fault. After all, he’s also one of those tainted souls. At the same time, “Mizuchi” is going on a rampage. He wants more blood. He wants to devour everything. Mikoto knows everything will be destroyed at this rate, but she’s being hesitant because the opponent is Mizuchi’s grandfather.

After a long silence, Mizuchi finally tells Mikoto that it’s time for Hana Awase. As the heir of the family, he will defeat his grandfather. He holds out his hand and asks her to help. He needs her. Mikoto nods and accepts Mizuchi’s hand. Upon noticing how cold his hand is, she realizes that he’s going to fight—shaking off all the doubts in him. Mizuchi then sets up a field barrier around them, but unfortunately… “Mizuchi” strikes them down before they can even start. Mikoto is instantly paralyzed, and she can feel the water in her depleting. “Mizuchi” is really strong. They don’t even stand a chance against him. Coin laughs saying it’s useless even if they try to fight back, because Mizuchi—who is now down on the ground—will be killed by the grotesque monster of the curse. That, and Mikoto isn’t allowed to do Hana Awase anymore. Goto will be angry if she’s wounded, and so Coin quickly pulls her over. Mizuchi desperately tries to get her back, but Mikoto gasps in shock when “Mizuchi” lunges to attack him. Repeatedly. While yelling at him to die, over and over again. He eventually collapses in his own blood, weakly calling his grandfather.

Mikoto screams upon seeing this. She tries to twist herself out of Coin’s arms, but it doesn’t work until she suddenly releases a strange attack—at the same time ordering him to let go. Before Coin can recover from the shock, she escapes and quickly runs over to Mizuchi. She asks him to hang in there since she’s going to stop his bleeding, but he whispers that he can’t be saved anymore—his internal organs are damaged. She assures him that he’ll be alright, but soon notices that his blood keeps on flowing out. Once again she asks him to hold on, but he tells her it’s okay. This blood used to be everything. The curse of “Mizuchi” has been running in their blood, and it can finally end with his death. He has no regrets either, because he was able to meet her in his life. Mizuchi then closes his eyes, and Mikoto’s tears start running down her cheeks. She begs him not to die and to open his eyes, but he doesn’t answer anymore. Mikoto cries out as she realizes that Mizuchi is gone… and the sound of bell is heard. The next second, everything is wrapped in a blinding light—along with the sound of running water.

For a moment, Mikoto wonders what’s going on. Her body feels warm, with water overflowing inside. Then she realizes that the demon card is glowing, bursting into light when she takes it out. Arabuki is shocked to see water flowing out of Mikoto, and she drops a hint on what’s happening—the Senki candidate is having ripples. Waves of water are coming out of her to wrap Mizuchi, at the same time changing her uniform into a traditional shrine maiden outfit. Mikoto soon realizes that her water is healing Mizuchi’s wound, restoring his blood and eventually his consciousness as well. When Mizuchi opens his eyes, he blinks several times… and he smiles as he calls Mikoto’s name. He asks if she’s the one who did this, and when she nods, he says her water is really warm and gentle. As her water fills him, he can feel his body being purified. Upon taking a closer look at Mikoto, Mizuchi notices something different in her: “You… You have… moon… in your eyes. Both eyes… Is this, full moon…?”

Mikoto is confused since she can’t see her own eyes, but there’s one thing for sure in this situation—Coin is definitely not pleased with this. He never expected her to become a Senki here. Arabuki can’t believe her ears, but Coin heard this from Goto. The moment she hosts full moon in both of her eyes, the Senki will be awakened. This means their plan ended in a failure, because the Senki is not supposed to be awakened by anyone other than Goto. Coin curses saying this is disgusting. He always thought he can fulfill Goto’s wish, but that didn’t happen. He frowns in silence for a while, and then he smiles saying they don’t need Mikoto anymore—”Mizuchi” can kill both Mizuchi and her. Behind him, they can hear Kuzuryuu groaning inside of “Mizuchi”. Turning to Mikoto, Mizuchi asks if she can save his grandfather with her water. Just like how she saved him earlier. She agrees to give it a try, and so they enter Hana Awase to defeat “Mizuchi”. By the end of the battle, Arabuki is shocked to see Mikoto’s strength. She has never seen a Minamo THAT powerful. Is this the power of a Senki? At the same time, Coin can only grit his teeth.

Meanwhile, Kuzuryuu is heavily injured. Mizuchi rushes over to support him, and Mikoto asks him to hold her hand—she’ll heal him with her water. However, Kuzuryuu only says it’s okay. He asks her not to touch him, because he’s going down like this. He will face death, carrying the blood and sin of his family. Mizuchi begs him to let Mikoto heal him, but Kuzuryuu asks him to grant his last wish. He wants to go. To the place where his daughter—Mizuchi’s mother—has been waiting for him. It was his fault that she only received a crescent moon. Because he doesn’t have a full moon, and yet he hid the fact and became the family head. Mizuchi is surprised, while Kuzuryuu laughs saying he probably never knew about this. Mizuchi is not the only one, because Kuzuryuu was seeking for the full moon as well… and yet he did something cruel when Mizuchi was small.

Mizuchi is still taken aback, but then he shakes his head. Kuzuryuu is the person whom he respects the most. Kuzuryuu laughs saying he said it. He always thought that Mizuchi is unreliable, but before he knew it, his grandson has grown to become so dependable. Kuzuryuu then says that Mizuchi is the one who’s truly fit to become head of the family of “Mizuchi”, and he’s leaving the family in Mizuchi’s hands. Kuzuryuu believes Mizuchi can bring a future for their cursed blood, giving redemption and hope for everything in “Mizuchi”. Kuzuryuu closes his eyes after that, and Mizuchi tries calling his name… but he doesn’t answer. Knowing that Kuzuryuu has departed, Mikoto doesn’t say anything and remains silent.

Unfortunately, they don’t have time to mourn. Coin not-so-kindly reminds them that they’re not done yet, and all this trouble has left him with no choice—he’ll deal with them himself. He only needs to kill them, so he doesn’t have to hesitate. All he needs to do is to cast his mind strings around Mikoto. Coin then orders Arabuki to become his Minamo, saying she should be grateful that a Suuto wants to use a “weed” Minamo like her. Arabuki is clearly reluctant, but then again she doesn’t have a choice. As Arabuki steps forward to assist Coin, Mizuchi asks if Mikoto is ready. She firmly nods, and he sets up a field barrier before taking her into Hana Awase—eventually defeating Coin and Arabuki as well. With her water drained out of her body, Arabuki collapses right after the battle ends. Coin isn’t too happy to see this, and he sighs saying they lost because she’s incapable as a Minamo.

Arabuki apologizes for the failure, but Coin asks if she really feels sorry. He orders her to grovel before him, and when she reluctantly obeys, he says that’s what it means to beg for forgiveness. Then he starts kicking her with all his might, blaming her for their loss. It’s a heavy sin to damage the reputation of Suuto, and he yells repeatedly that she’s just a worthless weed. Mikoto can’t believe that Coin would do such a cruel thing to Arabuki, because she’s supposed to be his partner. When Mizuchi asks her not to look, Coin asks if he’s trying to be a knight. He doesn’t like that attitude. It’s necessary for them to cut down worthless weeds, and he mentions that Kaen is doing exactly the same thing. However, Mizuchi only tells Coin that it’s useless. He won’t fall into Coin’s temptations anymore. Coin asks him not to get so cocky just because he obtained the Senki, but he takes his anger out by kicking Arabuki instead. He warns them that he won’t forget this insult, then he vanishes into thin air—taking Arabuki along.

After they’re gone, Mizuchi quietly walks up to Kuzuryuu. He looks up to the moon above and prays for his grandfather to rest in peace, then he recites a poem.

Mizuchi:
“死出の山越ゆるたえまはあらじかし なくなる人のかずつづきつつ” — Saigyō Hōshi (225)
Those who cross the mountain of death are endless, if this many people died.

While still looking up at the night sky, Mizuchi tells Mikoto the line from the opening:

“Please rest for a while… I am going to search for the bodies of my family.”


• Day 30 •

Late at night, Mikoto makes some tea for Mizuchi. Both of them remain silent for a while, until he apologizes for troubling her. The corpses of his family were found inside the warehouse. After carrying Kuzuryuu back to the house, Mizuchi buried his family alone. Mikoto couldn’t do anything other than staying with him. She can’t forget his expression when they found the bodies, but he did his best to endure it. He looked straight at them. Mikoto wonders what’s going to happen now. Is Mizuchi going to take over his family alone…? She realizes that it’s wrong though, because he’s not alone—she’s with him. Mizuchi then asks if she’s not cold, and Mikoto assures him that she’s fine. Mizuchi falls into silence for a while, and he says there’s something he wants to ask… but before that, Mikoto needs to know about his past. He asks if she’s willing to listen, and when she nods, he begins telling her everything.

Kuzuryuu was really harsh towards those who don’t have the moon, including Mizuchi’s mother. When she married his father—a man who has no moon and not related to their family—Kuzuryuu nearly disinherited her. It resulted in them eloping, and before long Mizuchi was born. Kuzuryuu took Mizuchi and his mother back by force after that, and Mizuchi never saw his father again ever since. In order to make a heir who has full moon in both eyes, Kuzuryuu tried forcing Mizuchi’s mother to remarry… but it never happened. It only caused her to pass away when Mizuchi was small, and her death was related to Mizuchi as well. He caused an incident and nearly lost his life, but his mother protected him. It’s just the same as killing his mother. The problem is Mizuchi doesn’t remember any of this. His memory of that time is missing, and he doesn’t know what he did back then. Kuzuryuu never talked about this subject either, but Mizuchi knows that because of him… they failed to get a heir who has full moon.

Mizuchi admits that he’s not hiding his right eye because of a family rule. His mother also had her crescent moon in her right eye. In the same place as his paraselene. Whenever he looks at his right eye, it reminds him of his mother. His moon throws his heart into disorder, driving him insane with a strong impulse. He’d feel like destroying everything—tainting everything. Mizuchi couldn’t stand it, and so he covered it up with his eyepatch. It’s to hide a sin that he can’t wipe out from his life. He doesn’t mind if Mikoto scorns him, but she shakes her head. He’s been carrying such a heavy burden all alone, and so there’s no way she can hate him. Mizuchi smiles and tells Mikoto that it’s the first time he ever told anyone about this. He’s nervous, but he can finally ask her the question. Now that she has learned about his past, he wants to know her answer. Mizuchi takes a deep breath, and he asks if Mikoto is willing to come with him.

“I love you. I love you… so much that I can’t take it. I don’t want to hold back this feeling anymore. I want to be the one to protect you, for eternity.”

♪゚+.o(*萌´д`从´д`萌*)o.+゚♪

Mikoto answers that no matter what happens, she won’t ever let go of Mizuchi. She wants to protect him as well. She wants to stay with him forever. Mizuchi nods and closes his eyes. He then falls into a long silence, until Mikoto asks him what’s wrong. He asks if she has become a Senki, and she nods. She still finds it hard to believe though, and she didn’t even notice when her clothes changed into that beautiful kimono. It also reverted back to her uniform before she knew it. He chuckles saying it’s just like her, and he suggests telling the principal about this. They have to report that she has awakened as a Senki. Mikoto then asks if Mizuchi is going to come with her, because she wants to report it together with him. He admits that he was thinking of the same thing, or else he won’t be able to do a certain something with her. Mikoto asks what he’s going to do with her, but Mizuchi turns red saying he’ll save it until everything is over. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ

They’re going to be busy tomorrow, so they need to rest for a bit. Mizuchi doesn’t think it’s healthy for them to sleep on a bed, so he’ll get some blanket instead. When Mikoto gives him a puzzled look, he explains that sleeping on a bed means they will have to stay in separate rooms… and even if it’s only for a short while, he doesn’t want to be apart from her. Mikoto never expected to hear these words for Mizuchi, so she blushes too as she nods. She feels both happy and embarrassed. After that he takes a blanket for them, and they lie next to each other. Mikoto asks if Mizuchi feels cold, but he’s more worried about her instead. Soon Mikoto hears Mizuchi rustling beside her, and she asks if he finds it hard to sleep in this position. However, Mizuchi says he’s just changing the angle so Mikoto wouldn’t be “surprised”… though she doesn’t understand what he’s talking about. (*ノノ)イヤン He then asks if he can come closer to her, and she admits that she was thinking of the same thing. As they snuggle up to each other, Mikoto tells Mizuchi that it feels so warm. She’s aware that she’s doing something incredibly bold, but she wants to be closer to him.

After a while, Mizuchi asks if he can touch Mikoto’s hair. When she nods, he gently starts stroking her hair… and he says that he wants to touch her face. She nods again, and he nervously apologizes when she says it feels a bit ticklish. Mizuchi slowly runs his fingers on Mikoto’s cheeks, nose and eyes before stopping at her lips. Then he asks if he can kiss her. Mikoto is surprised, but the moment she says yes, Mizuchi kisses her on the lips. He wants to touch her more. He wants to go deeper inside of her. Mikoto replies that she feels the same, as she wants to go deeper with Mizuchi as well. Σ(゚ー゚;) Of course this surprises him. He asks if she understands the meaning, but she obviously doesn’t LOL. She asks if she’s wrong, but he smiles saying it’s okay—they’ll go to sleep like this for now. As Mizuchi hugs her, Mikoto thinks about how she wants to stay in his arms forever.

Mizuchi:
“いとほしやさらに心のをさなびて 魂ぎられるる恋もするかな” — Saigyō Hōshi (1320)
It’s a pity, if I say it myself. For my heart to grow younger, and for me to fall in love… I lost all reason, as if my threads of life has been cut off.

Noticing that Mikoto has fallen asleep, Mizuchi whispers that it’s like a dream. He never thought he would be able to hold her in his arms. Humans grow greedier after obtaining what they want. Because they’re in love with each other, he wants to be connected to her. He wants to hit her with the impulse rising inside of him, but he knows it’s still too early for her. He’s going to wait until she matures, until she can accept him… and he’ll stay by her side until that day comes. Up until now he’s been relying on medicines to suppress his emotions, but now he feels really peaceful—probably because he has her now. Mizuchi chuckles and says good night to Mikoto, then he closes his eyes as well.

That night, Half Moon greets Mikoto in her dream. He looks really sad, and she asks him what’s wrong… so he nods saying he’s been rejected. (´;ω;`) She doesn’t get what he means, and he falls into silence for a while. Then he sighs loudly saying he always plays the loser, though he already knew about this ever since “that time”. Mikoto asks what he means by “that time”, but Half Moon answers with another question: “Hey, Mikoto. How long do I have to wait? When will this sin… disappear?” Mikoto is confused and points out that he’s being weird today, but once again… Half Moon falls into silence. He tells her that he is the moon who’s protecting her. He’s always wishing for her happiness from afar. Always. The dream then fades away, and she wakes up feeling confused. Half Moon seems to grow sadder the more they talk, but why…?

Upon noticing the kimono she’s wearing, Mikoto remembers that she went to sleep with Mizuchi last night. She can’t see him in the hall though, and she changes into her uniform before going out to search for him. Eventually she finds him standing in front of the warehouse, and she greets him good morning—feeling a bit embarrassed after what happened last night. They have something important to do today though, and so she tells herself to act normally. Mikoto then reminds Mizuchi that it’s about time for them to go to Kaen, and he smiles saying they should go now. He offers his hand to her, and she happily holds onto his warm, big hand. It might be a small thing, but it makes her really happy. No matter what’s going to happen, she’ll never let go of his hand.

When they arrive at Kaen, Mikoto suggests going to the chairmen’s office directly… but Mizuchi notices that something is wrong. He can’t sense anyone’s presence. This makes her realize that no one is around, even though it’s supposed to be the time for school. It’s really quiet—so much that it’s scary. Soon the class rep appears to approach Mikoto, and Mikoto is relieved because the school seems to be in a strange condition. However, the class rep only asks what’s so strange about the school. Then she chuckles saying it’s the same as always. Mikoto realizes there’s something wrong with the class rep too, but before she can do anything, Hime appears to greet Mizuchi. He welcomes them back, adding that he’s been waiting for them. He knows they must have had a rough time, but it’s okay—he’ll talk to the chairmen. The class rep promises to help as well, and she smiles saying it’s because they’re friends.

Hime and the class rep then invite them to go inside, but Mikoto is reluctant because they’re clearly weird… and soon they hear Walter’s voice warning her and Mizuchi to run. Behind them, both Hime and the class rep begin chuckling. Mikoto is surprised when Hime sets up a field barrier around them, while Mizuchi tells her that they’re coming—they’re going to do Hana Awase. Hime and the class rep collapse when the battle ends, but at the same time, they regain their senses as well. The class rep blushes as she asks Mikoto not to hug her, while Hime looks around in confusion—wondering what just happened. Mizuchi says they should be the one asking that question, but Hime doesn’t seem to remember anything. On the other hand, Mikoto notices that it’s similar to the time when Mizuchi was under a certain someone’s influence. Walter then says it’s not only Hime and the class rep. He came here to see Kurenai, but Kurenai was in a strange condition as well. They couldn’t talk at all, and now he’s pretty much baffled.

When Walter points towards the school, Mikoto notices that the whole area is wrapped in strings—just like a spiderweb. Mizuchi says the one who did this must be Coin, and Walter asks who that is. The four of them vanished into thin air earlier (because of the field barrier) and it really surprised him. Did they use magic or something? Mikoto can only shake her head, because they can’t tell him about what actually happened. He has nothing to do with Goto, and so they shouldn’t involve him in this issue. She then asks him to leave the school ground since it’s dangerous, but he protests and asks her why. He’s worried about Kurenai, and he suggests searching together instead—he knows where Kurenai is. Walter explains that Kurenai is wrapped in strings and seemed to be in pain, which surprises both Mikoto and Mizuchi. He continues that he ran all the way here searching for help, and he can guide them there—they should hurry. Mikoto turns to Mizuchi and asks what they should do, but he quietly replies that Hime and the class rep have disappeared. On the other hand, Walter keeps on calling them to hurry… until Arabuki appears and tells them not to get fooled.

Mikoto is shocked to see her here, but Arabuki only smiles saying she couldn’t stand it. This is just a stupid farce, though she was completely deceived as well. When Walter asks who she is, Arabuki yells at him not to play dumb. She knows his cheap trick. He’s planning to approach the Senki in order to kill her. Arabuki says she’s glad to have followed his orders like a dog since then, because now she managed to learn the secret behind his trick. She points out that he knows he wouldn’t be able to win against the Senki without playing dirty, and she calls him a “ball-less bastard”. Walter flatly replies with: “Wao… You said it… What is it~? Is this revenge for Suzumushi? A grudge for traditional Japanese dogeza?” Arabuki scoffs saying she doesn’t care. She’s gotten fed up, and she won’t listen to his orders anymore. After all, she belongs to Goto and not him. Arabuki tells Walter to show his real form already, or else she’ll pull it out for him. Walter sighs saying it can’t be helped, even though he also loves the “page” version of him. He then takes out a card and gives it to the confused Mikoto—Knight of Pentacles. He states that his plan was going well, but Arabuki just had to come and get in his way. Then he laughs saying he got bitten by his pet dog. Now he only has one answer: “All of you shall go to hell!” (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

Just in case you haven’t noticed already… yeah, Walter is Coin in disguise. He switches back to his real form with a mad, creepy laughter. He grins and tells them it’s too bad. He’s now a reversed Knight, so he’s not as lukewarm as the Queen. Noticing that both Mikoto and Mizuchi are confused, Arabuki explains that Coin of Suuto has multiple personalities. Sometimes he can be an exchange student from overseas. Sometimes he can be a superficially courteous man. The other times… he’s a madman. Coin controls his personality based on tarot cards. Upon hearing this, Coin roughly asks if “Arabuki-chan” is introducing him. He laughs saying Goto is a demon towards traitors, and he asks what she’s going to do now. Arabuki replies that she’s ready for it. Even so, she has no intentions of becoming Coin’s Minamo. However, Coin only points out that she’s being too insolent—she’s going to die at this rate. He then hurls his long hair towards her, choking her as they strangle her neck. He points out that she’s been working as Goto’s Minamo for so many years. She should know that once they join his side, their loyalty belongs to him until death picks them up. She should know what would happen if she breaks that rule.

Coin then laughs saying Arabuki is such a useless puppet, but he’ll make use of her even if it’s just for a bit. She should be happy that he’s giving power to a weed like her. As Coin injects his “Special Rapture Doping” into her, Arabuki screams that her head is about to burst. Mikoto notices that something flows into Arabuki from Coin’s long hair, and Mizuchi asks her to be careful—he can sense wicked presence from them. After a while, Arabuki stops screaming and begins… laughing madly. She gleefully says it feels good, and she asks Coin to let her feel it more. She wants more! As Arabuki breaks into another laughing fit, Coin warns Mikoto and Mizuchi that it’ll be different than their last battle. Because he has absorbed power from all Minamo in Kaen and injected it into Arabuki. That’s why Coin wrapped the whole area with his strings. He grins saying he’s not an idiot, and he knows he can’t face the Senki unprepared. His mind strings can provide them with unlimited power—it’s a perfect plan. Coin starts screaming nonsense, and Mikoto turns to ask for Mizuchi’s opinion. He replies that he won’t change no matter what happens. He’s going to fight. When she nods, he sets up a field barrier and tells her that it’s going to be their last battle. Then he takes her into Hana Awase.

However, Coin and Arabuki knocks Mizuchi down in a single hit. The hit instantly drains Mizuchi’s stamina, and Mikoto knows they won’t be able to fight further. Arabuki is still giggling, while Coin teasingly asks why she’s glaring at them like a cute kitten. Mikoto finds this hard to believe, but she can’t deny the fact that Coin is indeed different from the last time they fought him—his strength is overwhelming. It’s probably because he’s absorbing power from Kaen, but his power is endless. What should she do…? Just then Mikoto hears a voice calling her name, asking if she can hear him. He asks if she recognizes him, and indeed she does—it’s Half Moon. Mikoto is confused since she never heard him outside of her dreams, but Half Moon only asks her to listen—she has to give the power of her moon to Mizuchi. It’s the power only held by the Senki. Give it to him, and a miracle will occur in him.

When Mikoto asks him how to do it, Half Moon tells her to repeat and chant the words with him. But before that, he warns her that by doing so, she’s going to lose her full moon. Is she okay with that? Mikoto replies that she doesn’t mind, and Half Moon says he knows she’s going to say that. As Coin wonders why Mikoto keeps on mumbling to herself, Half Moon guides her to chant the words.

Mikoto:
“天地星空”
Heaven, earth, star, sky.
“山川峯谷”
Mountain, river, ridge, valley.
“雲霧室苔”
Cloud, fog, mudhouse, moss.
“人犬上末”
Human, dog, top, end.
Ametsuchi no Uta

As Mikoto recites these words, she can feel ripples rising inside of her. At the same time, the ground begins shaking under their feet—shocking Coin. When she calls Mizuchi’s name, a blinding light comes to envelop everything. The next thing she hears is Half Moon congratulating her, explaining that she has released the moon… and this time, the moon is not him. Mikoto has chosen Mizuchi, and Mizuchi was also wishing to be reunited with Mikoto. Half Moon then repeats the words from the prologue:

“The reunion of the full moon needs miracles closer to ten thousand, further from a thousand. Even so, if the two are to meet, tens of millions of miracles will become one, and fate will be born.”

Half Moon asks Mikoto to close her eyes, and to grasp a hand when she opens them again. It’ll be the hand of her precious one. Mikoto obediently closes her eyes, and Half Moon asks her to hold out her hand—as if she’s reaching out to grasp the light. Soon her hand touches someone else’s, and she recognizes his hand really well. Knowing that she’s found what she’s looking for, Half Moon sends her off and bids her farewell with these words: “Next time… Please meet me. It’s a promise…”

Okay, excuse me for a second. I have to…

HALF MOON C= C= C= C= C= C= 。・゜゜ヽ| ;∀;|ノウワァァァァァァンッ!

The moment Mikoto holds the hand in front of her, she hears Mizuchi calling her name. She calls out to him as well, and he appears right before her eyes. Somehow he feels lightheaded, and his eyes feels hot. Upon noticing the change in him, Mikoto points out that Mizuchi has a moon in his right eye. At the same time, he tells her that the moon in her right eye is vanishing—it’s moving into his. Mikoto can feel her left eye turning hot, as if it’s attracted to Mizuchi’s eye. He then moves closer to kiss her, and she senses power flowing into her—it’s like the power she always gives him is being returned to her. She feels water filling her… or rather, filling the entire area. When the light fades away, they’re surprised to see countless flowers blooming in the lake surrounding Kaen. Mizuchi wonders if Mikoto was the one who did it, but she shakes her head. It was the two of them. The moon in their eyes became one, summoning water and making the flowers bloom.

Coin screams in shock when the flowers begin glowing, and soon they hear Momotose calling Mikoto. She already cut Coin’s mind strings with Iroha—who’s standing behind her. Upon seeing the blooming flowers, Iroha notes that the Senki has been awakened. All karma has been severed. Iroha then issues an order for Kaei Mizuchi to defeat Coin with the Senki. Both Mikoto and Mizuchi are surprised to receive this order, but Mizuchi firmly accepts it. On the other hand, Coin is raging. How dare they cut off his strings! He then hurls another tarot card at them—King of Pentacles in reversed position. He chuckles and summons all utsurohi to gather on his string. Jealousy, agony, destruction. Coin is calling out to all the dark souls, spreading thick darkness onto the area around him. They’re the first and the last ones who can drive him up to this point. Coin then challenges them to come at him. He’s going to do the last gamble with them.

Iroha asks if they need support, but Mizuchi politely refuses—he’s going to defeat Coin with Mikoto. She’s a bit worried since Iroha has been harsh on him lately, but to her relief… Iroha nods and lets them do the task. Unlike the previous battles, Mikoto actually leads Mizuchi into Hana Awase this time. They’re going to make the flowers bloom. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ

…and that’s the end of Coin.

Okay, not really. Arabuki silently collapses to the ground, while Coin is panicking that his body is vanishing. He screams, curses and tells them not to think of this as a victory. He starts rambling about how Goto won’t ever give up on the Senki. The moon will go around, and eventually there will be time for Goto to make his dearest wish come true. There’s no way Goto would lose to the likes of them. However, someone suddenly stabs Coin from behind before he can finish his sentence—it’s Arabuki. She tells him that he’s being noisy. He should shut up for a while. As Coin falls onto the ground, Arabuki weakly smiles and asks how it feels to get killed by a weed. She then calls out to Tamamushi and Suzumushi, telling them that she’s going to their place now… and she disappears. Just like water, she doesn’t wither and leaves no trace.

After that, Mizuchi holds out his hand to Mikoto and thanks her. She smiles and thanks him back in return, and they look into each other’s eyes until Momotose teases them about it. Both of them blush as they turn to see her, but she only smiles saying she has watched a battle of the legendary Senki and a Bright—along with Iroha. He remains silent though, only opening his mouth to remind them that everyone in Kaen must be confused after Coin’s attack. They should return inside. Iroha then starts walking away, and Momotose instantly protests. Is that all? Doesn’t he have anything else to say? Iroha stops and silently stares at them, and he finally says they don’t have enough people—Mikoto and Mizuchi should help as well. This surprises both of them. When Mikoto asks about their initial plan of purging Mizuchi, Iroha answers: “I said we don’t have enough people… We will talk after that.”

Mikoto happily nods, while Momotose laughs saying Iroha isn’t honest. Mikoto then turns to invite Mizuchi to go together, and he remains silent for a while. Then he smiles and nods.


• Mizuchi’s Ending•

Shou is running late to the park, and Ai rages the moment he arrives. He apologizes saying his alarm didn’t ring, but she points out that it always happens to him. He needs to learn from experience and think about the people who wait for him under the blazing sun. Shou complains that it’s too early to go out, but Ai says it’s normal for them to leave at this hour—they need to line up for the rides after all. They nearly get into yet another argument when Mikoto stops them, and this reminds him why they came here in the first place. It’s been a while since the last time they met, and Shou is taken aback because Mikoto seems… different. Ai has to help him fix this by saying Mikoto has become more beautiful, and he nods saying she’s glowing.

Mikoto wonders if it’s because she’s wearing Momotose’s clothes today, but Ai grins saying that’s not it. It’s obviously because she has a boyfriend! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ Shou frowns as he asks if her “boyfriend” is coming today, and Mikoto nods saying he went to some drinks for them. Soon after that, Mizuchi returns and gives the drinks to them. Mikoto happily thanks him. Ai grins, while Shou freezes on the spot. When Mizuchi asks about Shou, Mikoto introduces him as her childhood friend… and Shou is nervously gawking at Mizuchi as they greet each other. Beside him, Ai giggles saying she had exactly the same reaction—because Mizuchi is insanely good-looking. Looks and aura aside, Shou quietly points out that Mizuchi is really tall. It only takes one look, and he knows he has lost. Ai bursts into laughter saying he’s really dumb, and Mikoto has to stop them from bickering in front of Mizuchi… but Mizuchi smiles saying it’s good to be lively.

Mizuchi then asks when their bus is going to come, and Mikoto says it’s coming in 10 minutes. He suggests resting under the shades of trees for 5 minutes since the sun is really strong, and he carries her bag so she can enjoy her drink. Meanwhile, Shou is watching their interaction with a (´・д・`) expression on his face. Ai smiles saying they’re so perfect for each other, and she’s glad to see Mikoto looking so happy. Ai then asks if Shou can give up after seeing that, and he answers that this is foul play—he can’t win against that “cheat” LOL. Ai is relieved that Mizuchi is a nice person even if he’s from Kaen, and she scolds Shou for being glum. After all, their duty is to protect Mikoto’s happiness. Shou can’t believe Ai still remembers the words he said when they were small, but she smiles saying her memory is good. After a short silence, she encourages him to cheer up—she’ll comfort him. She even offers to hold hands as they walk to join Mikoto and Mizuchi, but he doesn’t seem to be satisfied. Poor girl. (´・ω・`)

At the same time, Mikoto smiles saying they never change. Mizuchi is a bit concerned since it looks like they keep arguing, but she assures him those two are always like that. Even if they fight all the time, they actually get along really well. Mikoto apologizes for taking Mizuchi along today, but he says it’s a nice way for him to relax… because he’s been busy making round trips from his house and Kaen since then. He also thanks her for helping out in his house. He can reach this point because of her. It’s all thanks to her that the chairmen cancelled their order to purge him, and his family didn’t receive the blame either. It’s because she gave him the moon. However, Mikoto says it’s all thanks to him. Without Mizuchi, she wouldn’t become a Senki. They look into each other’s eyes until Ai eventually interrupts, reminding them that it’s hard for Shou and her to join in. It’s alright for them to be ラブラブ with each other, but they shouldn’t forget about their double date today—though Shou doesn’t seem to be aware of this. He’s not excited to have Ai as a partner though, and this finally causes her to kick him without any words. Mizuchi is shocked to see this, but Ai only grins saying their bus has come. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ

Meanwhile, Awahana finds Kintokihana playing with his butterfly in the greenhouse. He reminds his twin not to be so carefree, because they’re going to have an audience with the emperor in no time. Kintokihana nods saying Awahana is right, but well… they’ll do something about it. When he asks what happened to the couple involved in this, Iroha flatly answers they went to the amusement park. Momotose chuckles saying they’re having a double date today. She’s about to explain what a “double date” is since Awahana doesn’t know what it is, but Iroha interrupts and directs them to the main subject. He will inform the emperor that Mikoto became a Senki after giving her moon to Mizuchi. Kintokihana still finds this hard to understand, so he asks if both Mikoto and Mizuchi are parts of the Senki—they are one. Iroha nods and explains that it is required for a Senki to have full moon in her eyes. However, Mikoto gave one of her full moon to Mizuchi… and so she’s incomplete as a Senki without him. They’re inseparable.

This brings them to their next problem. Iroha mentions that if they can’t change partners, it’s going to put a heavy burden on Mizuchi. Momotose doesn’t see this as a problem though, because he’s going to protect Mikoto no matter what. In fact, he made it clear in front of the chairmen. He told them that he’s going to live with the Senki. What they didn’t expect was the fact that he also announced his engagement to Mikoto. This is THAT rigid Mizuchi after all. Iroha frowns saying it’s not allowed to rob the Senki of her qualifications, but Momotose points out that’s why they’re going to ask the emperor. Then she asks if he doesn’t want Mikoto to be taken away by Mizuchi that much, but he flatly says they’re going off-topic. The chairmen thinks it’d be fine though, since Mizuchi promised not to touch Mikoto until graduation. He’s one of the Five Brights who awakened the Senki, and that makes him the pride of Kaen. They can’t purge or kick him out of school.

Iroha falls silent upon hearing this. When Momotose tells him to give up already, he replies with: “What do you mean? Even if Coin vanished, Goto is still around. We need to proceed with caution. We have to make sure those two do not cross the line… Excuse me.” As Iroha walks away, Kintokihana asks if he’s in a bad mood due to jealousy. Momotose sighs saying he’s being TOO honest, but then she adds that Iroha isn’t the only one who’s burning with jealousy. Awahana curiously asks who the others might be, but she only chuckles and says: “I wonder?”

Outside, Hime is greeting Kurenai by the school entrance. Kurenai only replies with a sigh, and Hime asks where he’s going. Kurenai doesn’t get why he has to tell Hime everything, but Hime is wondering if Kurenai is going to search for Coin in Goto-gai. Coin vanished, which means there’s a chance that he actually hasn’t withered yet. Hime figures out that Kurenai might be feeling responsible since he was involved with Walter, but Kurenai only answers with: “You’ve got a smooth tongue, you damn princess. If you say further, I’ll kill you.” Onosada comes to stop them before anything happens though. He asks them not to say such brutal things in front of the entrance, and he also warns Hime not to provoke Kurenai. Onosada also asks if Hime has always been this kind of person, but Hime chuckles saying he learned something from Mizuchi: “If you are not honest to your own feelings, you won’t get what you want.” … (´・ω・`) Hime can’t forget the words Mizuchi said to them in the chairmen’s office. Even though they might purge him, he went to announce his engagement to Mikoto.

Onosada thinks it’s all worth the result in the end, but Kurenai grumbles that it’s got nothing to do with him and walks off. Knowing that he’s going to unleash his rage somewhere, Onosada can only sigh. It appears that Kurenai is pissed because he got used by Coin. In the end, it was him who brought Coin into Kaen. He got approached by Walter, and Coin took advantage of their friendship to sneak past the barrier. It’s a very smart strategy, considering the barrier can only be opened by players and Minamo. Onosada then turns to Hime and asks how’s it going for him. When Hime gives him a confused look, Onosada asks him not to play dumb—what does he think about Mizuchi and Mikoto…? Hime smiles saying he’s giving them his blessings, but since Onosada doesn’t seem convinced, Hime then reminds him: “I told you, right? There are feelings that remain hidden until the end.” Then he smiles and excuses himself, leaving Onosada to whisper about how much of an actor he is.

Onosada never thought Mikoto and Mizuchi would really make the flowers bloom though. Their full moon is now inseparable, and he thinks that’s elegant. Upon thinking about Goto, Onosada chuckles and says he got unlucky again. He should do better next time.

In the evening, Ai and Shou say goodbye after the double date. Mikoto notices that they won’t make it back in time for the dorm’s curfew if they don’t hurry, but Mizuchi reluctantly says he wants to stay with her for a little longer. He quietly averts his gaze, but then she smiles and nods. Instead of rushing back to Kaen, they take a walk in the park—which is really quiet at this hour. She apologizes that Ai and Shou sort of went out of control today. Shou flipped his lunch tray earlier, even though he’s usually more reliable that than… and the same goes for Ai. Apparently she bombarded Mizuchi with torrents of questions, and Mikoto feels bad. It seems like both of them are super interested in him though. After a short silence, Mikoto turns to look at Mizuchi… but he smiles and says he’s listening. She blushes and admits that she’s nervous to be alone with him, but when he asks if she hates it, she quickly says she’s happy. Mizuchi answers that he feels the same. He doesn’t know what to talk about whenever they’re alone, but still… he wants to be with her. They look at each other for a while, and Mizuchi turns red as he asks if he can do it. Before Mikoto can answer, he pulls her into his arms and kisses her.

Mizuchi then says he loves Mikoto. He wants her. He wants to sleep with her, right here and now—without waiting for graduation. He would never think of this before. For all his life, he’s been protecting rules and suppressing his inner desires. He was taught that it was the right thing… but everything crumbles down in front of her. He wants her to know how foolish he is. He wants her to see his covered right eye, his sin and everything in him. Mizuchi asks if she’s scared of him, but Mikoto slowly answers that she isn’t. She feels the same way. She wants him to know her everything, so he can see how much she loves him. Mizuchi chuckles saying he can still hold back. Just by holding Mikoto like this, his body an soul is already fulfilled. However, there’s also the possibility of the emperor not allowing them to marry. Mikoto then asks what would he do in that case, and Mizuchi answers: “We’ll break through by force.” His answer surprises her for a moment, but then she smiles saying she’ll cooperate. He thanks her for approving and he kisses her again to show his gratitude.

Mizuchi:
“いとほしやさらに心のをさなびて 魂ぎられるる恋もするかな” — Saigyō Hōshi (1320)
It’s a pity, if I say it myself. For my heart to grow younger, and for me to fall in love… I lost all reason, as if my thread of life has been cut off.

Mizuchi vows that he will live with Mikoto. For as long as he lives.


• Extra•

Once you’ve climbed high enough in the rankings, the Five Brights will come to challenge Mikoto. They will have a competition in which the loser has to listen to the winner’s words.

This event will happen if you lose to Mizuchi in Hana Utsushi.

Momotose happily hands a sexy China dress to Mikoto, and she drags Mizuchi along to her private studio. There she asks Kasu and Tane to set up the perfect lighting, and she opens a photo session for Mikoto and Mizuchi. Yes, for both of them. When Mizuchi reluctantly asks what she’s doing, Momotose gleefully replies that it’s a scenery of a “beauty in China dress” and the “Bright who’s chasing after her”. She squeals saying the China dress looks absolutely wonderful on Mikoto, who’s trembling in her place. Mizuchi asks if Mikoto is alright and she quietly nods, but of course she’s not alright—she’s dead embarrassed. Aside from having a high slit, the China dress is also revealing on the chest area. Momotose then starts issuing order for them. Mikoto has to open her eyes and look at Mizuchi, while he needs to kiss her in this position! Mizuchi sighs saying Momotose is having too much fun, but he moves closer to Mikoto anyway—so close that they might really kiss. (*ノ∀ノ)イヤン

However, Mikoto notices that Mizuchi closed his eyes. That’s probably why he doesn’t notice. She then tries calling his name, and he blushes upon opening his eyes. At the same time, Momotose rages that they need to KISS! She suddenly hits Mizuchi from behind, and this pushes him towards Mikoto—causing their lips to touch. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ But more importantly, the hit also sends Mizuchi’s hand to land right on Mikoto’s boobs. Momotose is delighted to see how “aggressive” he is, and she quickly snaps a few shots of them. Mizuchi is shocked upon realizing what he has done, then he screams and apology to Mikoto and runs off. 8D Mikoto can only tremble in place, as she keeps recalling the fact that he just touched her chest. Behind them, Kasu and Tane are whispering about how jealous they are. (((壊゚∀゚)))ァヒャヒャヒャヒャヒャヒャ


Again, I’m sorry for the massive delay. Since this is his game, Mizuchi has the longest route that explains his background. Mizuchi is also the only one who has a happy ending in this game, but we’ll get to that later as I move to the others. As you might have noticed, all the guys in Hana Awase have their names from poems. Mizuchi is named after a legendary Japanese serpent, which plays an important role towards the end of his route. As for my opinion about him, I actually like Mizuchi a lot. He’s devoted, loyal and incredibly cute once he falls in love. イヤン☆(*´∀`)σ)))))*3゚),・´. He has some… um, questionable scenes because his main issue is to suppress his emotions / inner desires, and those scenes made me feel really bad for him. He needed a person who can release him from all the shackles on his feet, and Mikoto fills in that role really well.

Speaking of which, I absolutely love Mikoto’s interactions with Mizuchi. Both of them have burdens on their shoulders, and sometimes those burdens cause them to avoid each other… but in the end, they can always set each other free—even though it doesn’t always solve the problem they’re facing. Mikoto never gives up on reaching Mizuchi, and while he tries to avoid her at some points, he does the same thing for her. It goes to the point where they’d accept anything other than forgetting each other, and I find that really touching… though at the same time it also gives me complicated feelings for the rest of the Five Brights. The only thing I didn’t like was Mikoto’s attitude during the Aoi picture drama, but that’s it.

Now for plot. Even though Mizuchi’s route pretty much reveals his family background, I feel that some parts are left unexplained. For example, what exactly happened to Mizuchi’s mother? What accident did he make and why did his memory disappear? I feel that it might be linked to Mikoto’s past too, and we got a glimpse of their childhood interactions from Mikoto’s dream. But then again, the developer team has promised that no questions will be left unanswered… so I guess we have to wait for the next games.

TL;DR: Mizuchi is straightforward, devoted and super adorable. (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

Let’s not talk about Half Moon for now because it breaks my heart.

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23 thoughts on “Hana Awase: Mizuchi-hen – Mizuchi

  1. Hi, Rin! Thanks again for the review and don’t worry about the delay! Hana Awase may not be the longest game ever, but it is full of hints and details and it certainly must be hard to decide what MUST be written and what not. Not to mention that finding the time to write a detailed review is a problem. Considering this, I think you’re fast enough!

    About Mizuchi, he certainly has the best route since he’s the main guy of this game, and I agree that he’s adorable in many ways, even though I usually don’t like the stoic kind of guy (I’m more into the Karakurenai kind of guy, even though he acts like a jerk a lot of times). I really loved him while I was in his route and I thought he would become one of my favourites. I even almost liked Mikoto! But then everything kind of went downhill when I got into the other guys routes. Maybe I’m too used to the classic type of otome games, where the heroine is in love with the guy whose route you’re in and the other guys don’t butt in their relationship too much unless it’s really necessary plotwise. I admitt I like it this way, because it doesn’t make me suffer too much. Being forced to see Mikoto being always in love with Mizuchi no matter what, and seeing the others suffering in front of her constant “Mizuchi-sanMizuchi-sanMizuchi-san” made me feel really bad. I ended up being kind of annoyed at Mizuchi himself, because I felt like he was “getting in the way”. So, while in his route I was really happy whenever I felt his love for Mikoto, in all the other routes I just wanted him to kind of… disappear. Then a certain Karakurenai ending killed all the love I had for him in the beginning. It’s not like I dislike him now: I still like him and I think he’s adorable, but not as much as before.
    I know I’m being unreasonable and biased, since Mizuchi wasn’t my favourite to begin with, but I can’t help it. Anyway, I only hope I won’t feel the same toward characters I really like, like Karakurenai and Iroha when their games will be released. And I hope the Childhood Mystery will be solved soon, because it left me scratching my head in all the routes.

    Thanks again for all your work and sorry if I always end up writing novels instead of comments.

    • Hello! Thanks for reading and understanding. (*´∀`*)
      Yeah, in other games I usually don’t record ALL details… but in Hana Awase, you can’t tell which one is a hint and which one isn’t. Or maybe I should say that all of them do serve as hints, and that’s why it’s hard to take anything out. Everything happens for a reason, and that’s what makes this game so amazing.

      Similarly to you, I’m more into the manly, assertive types like Kurenai. In fact, he’s my favorite out of the Five Brights. Or rather, the Four Brights since who knows where Utsutsu is. Did you also do Mizuchi first? Because I did and had the same problem. Once the happy ending is out of the way, things just went downhill. (๑•́ ₃ •̀๑) …but then again, going for the others first would make me feel bad for ignoring Mizuchi after all those development in the common route.

      Mikoto’s reaction is exactly why we get this complicated feeling, isn’t it? It’s good that she stays so loyal and devoted to Mizuchi, but on the other hand, it’s just painful to see when you’re doing someone else’s route. Because no matter how much development they have, or how much closer they’ve gotten to Mikoto, in the end her heart belongs to Mizuchi. She won’t fall in love with them. The problem is we’re the ones getting attached to the others, and then we get annoyed at Mikoto and Mizuchi for being so loyal to each other LOL.

      …and yeah, there’s this big question mark regarding their childhood. It seems like they were friends in the past, but something happened and they’re now stuck in this—as Kintoki puts it— never-ending wheel of karma. Hopefully they’ll give us more hints in Himeutsugi-hen, whenever it’s going to come out.

      OH GOD WHAT HAS THIS GAME DONE TO US. (屮゚Д゚)屮

      No need to worry about long comments, I love reading people’s thoughts. 8D

      • Yeah, I cleared Mizuchi first too. Actually, I think the game WANTS us to clear his ending first. It would feel really weird to go for someone else after seeing Mikoto swooning over Mizuchi for the whole common route. As for the rest, my play order was: Mizuchi > Himeutsugi > Karakurenai > Iroha. I felt that I had to leave Iroha last because he looks to me like the main guy and, for the other two, I simply chose to go from the one I like the least to the one I like the most. As for Utsutsu, I heard someone already has some ideas about who he could be, but honestly I don’t have a clue. I hope I’m not the only one!

        As for the childhood mystery, there aren’t enough infos to understand something as of yet, even though I think it is heavily linked to Mikoto’s past. I’m actually kind of curious about her family history, because I feel there’s something big hidden in there. But I guess my main reason for waiting for the rest of the games is that I want to see her rejecting Mizuchi to end up with the others. I know I’m bad and cruel, but I saw her ignoring the other poor guys so many times that now I think it’s only fair.

        • Yeah. If you want to explore the mysteries by yourself and let everything fall into place near the end, I guess you can save Mizuchi for later… but for me it doesn’t feel right because the common route focuses heavily on Mizuchi. I agree that it’d be best to leave Iroha for last, because his ending is… like that. We share the same play order, by the way! :D But I’m reversing Hime and Kurenai for blogging, because Kurenai’s route touches Mizuchi’s background for a little bit. As for Utsutsu… I’m rather clueless too actually, but somehow I have this strange suspicion that he might be Goto. He’s so shady, but yeah let’s wait for Hana Awase to surprise us. :3c

          Also, you’re right. The key seems to lie in Mikoto’s past. They only drop bits and pieces in Mizuchi-hen, but those childhood dreams must be hinting something. I actually feel bad for Mizuchi because of his family background, but I know what you mean. Next is Hime’s turn to get his happy ending, so I’m preparing a tear bucket for the others—Mizuchi included. ;_;

  2. Hi I just really love your blog!! Would you mind if you could do Eikoku Tantei Mysteria? Take your time :)))

    Sent from my iPhone

    • Hello, thanks for commenting! :D
      I’m planning to do Mysteria, but not quite sure when since Karin tends to release Director’s Cut edition for their games after a year or two… but that aside, yeah I’ll do it sometime in the future.

  3. YAY u played this too! Glad you did cuz I saw a lotta “wtf it’s less than 2000yen must be a shitty game not playing” comments on this game even though it’s brill imao :D LOL at the “questionable scenes” with Mizuchi, I was thinking that a fair bit too whenever he uh, let his inner ” rapist manbeast” side out and did some pretty :o things to Mikoto. I totally missed the extra in the game, there were too many sad feels so I was expecting more sad death stuff but GEE IS MIKOTO HOT <3

    brill review as always!

    • Man, this game exceeds people’s expectations. I think most of us walked into Hana Awase expecting nothing much (since it’s only 1500 yen) and walked out in tears LOL. Hana Awase is really good, and hopefully they can maintain this quality for the next 2 / 3 games. ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ Also, I’m kinda curious if they’re gonna use Mizuchi’s inner beast to drive us into bad endings in those games. They probably will though, looking at the bad endings in this one. xD

  4. OH MAI GOD OH MAI GOD!!! Okay…. breath….. breath….. huff…. haaah…. *catching breath
    I can’t express my inner fangirl self properly…. ugh, how to sum this bursting thingy whatever….. oh yeah, I’m so glad that you played this game Rin! It’s true, really! I’m never the one to play any card game properly…. ever, due to constant lose on my side. Card game and me never clicked I guess :p
    Anyway, since reading the Common route, my inner self screaming Mizuchi all over for the entire time even if from beginning. I won’t talk about my own guess about who is the Half-Moon, but really…. I think I shouldn’t speak of it too….. because well…. he make me sad. But still, I’m glad you done Mizuchi route the first time, I knew I would become too lazy to read the other beside him, but whatever.
    Mikoto and Mizuchi really is a good couple, well balanced all over, I guess. Mizuchi was loyal, kind, gorgeous, but his inner self really did scare me out. I felt sympathy for him too as he need to endure it for a long time before Mikoto arrives on his life. And as weird as it come out from me, I felt a lot of similarity with Mikoto here, not about the spiritual Half-Moon whatever though, but like a mirroring personality. How she was a complete dense (well, I admit I’m dense but at least not as worse as this), not able to express our feeling properly or make the other knew what we wanted to say, pushing others away without noticing, acting tough although weak, Mikoto being a Hana Utsushi geek and me being a complete and total Otaku (or Japanese Geek), not to mention my school was the most, err, they said my school was the first in my city, whatever the words for it and it really is secluded from the city….. it was too similar it sent shiver down to my spine.

    • Actually, I really suck at card games too LOL. But Hana Utsushi is easy even for a failure like me, especially once you’ve powered up your stats. :3

      Oh, it’s so interesting how you can be so similar to Mikoto. Does that make it easier for you to relate to her? :D I think if you’ve heard Half Moon’s voice and are familiar with seiyuu, you should be able to guess who Half Moon is. Another hint is that picture with Aoi. It went missing after Mikoto told Half Moon about it, and the next time she sees it again, it’s in a certain someone’s hands. Not to mention that someone’s ending is really sad… It’s so painful to hear Half Moon saying he got rejected. ;____;

      But anyway, I agree that Mikoto and Mizuchi make a good couple. They’re similar, so they know what to say to each other when they need it. ❤

      • Well, my luck kinda suck too you see, when I do a Janken I almost always lose, drawing my own number in turn card, it was too amazing to think it was just a mere coincidence…. I might try this one day, but not so sure right now.
        It’s so similar I thought I was being spyed LOL. Yeah, I understand what would she do before I even read what would happened in your review. I tend to not let go those I finally relate to, (to the point of clingy I guess) and hey, Mikoto works like that too to Mizuchi so it was an easy guess.
        I know who is the Half Moon, really, it was too easy to figure it out. Yup, Mikoto and Mizuchi looked nice, but too similar made it quite hard to relate, but they worked it out so it’s okay.
        I guess I would wait for the Half Moon – hen to make me change my mind about MikotoxMizuchi. I wondered how Half Moon-hen (if there are any, that’s it) will play out XD

        • If you’re having difficulties in Hana Utsushi, I’d suggest checking Lore’s tutorial if you haven’t already. :D

          As for Half Moon… Well, they listed “???-hen” on the official site, but we don’t know if it’s going to be his game or not. Maybe it SHOULD be his game (because who else is there LOL) but who knows what they’re planning. They might surprise up by bringing up a different name. 8D

  5. I finally finished reading this wall of text… I’M GLAD I OVERCAME IT because his route is too much… Mizuchi is so…so in love with Mikoto that every time he feels embarrassed my heart just squeezes tightly and (*°∀°)=3

    I don’t play this so I really don’t know about the other’s routes but Goto gets mentioned here a lot but doesn’t really show up yet. And then there’s their childhood memory and Mizuchi’s mother.
    I wish i’d know who half moon is, though I do have someone in mind … I’m falling for him too…

    Thanks for the hard work!!! keep doing your best for the others as well~~~
    (*・∀・)/\(・∀・*)

    • OMG thanks for reading! (人´∀`)アリガトー♪
      Mikoto and Mizuchi are so cute together, aren’t they?

      Goto is actually only mentioned in Mizuchi’s route. They don’t deal with Suuto at all in other routes, so Goto doesn’t make any appearance either. For now that’s all we know about him, I guess. Hopefully they’ll drop more hints in Hime’s game, because I have several suspicions and my head is filled with questions LOL. As for Half Moon, the picture with Aoi is the hint. :3c

      I’ll do my best to finish the others. Thank you. (`・ω・´)ゞビシッ!!

  6. “…but if it’s truly love, I wouldn’t tell anyone and only keep it only to myself. Feelings which are hidden until the end… is also a form of love.”
    — I was (´・ω・`) when get to that part. Aww Hime ;A; I’ve realized how he’s holding back too. That and I can pretty much relate to what he said. wwww

    But nothing beats Half Moon. T________T
    When he said goodbye, I was like ‘don’t gooo (╯°□°)╯’.
    Btw, is Half Moon the character who I think he is? The picture thing is pretty much the conclusive evidence ww. But I wasn’t sure especially when I was thinking ALL this time that FukuJun voiced Iroha. /o\ So I thought is this his other voices? I feel so dumb aaaahhh ( ꒪⌓꒪). Also, I could have love Mizuchi more when I didn’t confuse his seiyuu with Iroha (I still love Iroha though esp with that sweet tooth of his XD).

    And wow I <3333 Mizuchi. Part of me don't want to do the other ends because I don't want to see him getting eaten by his beastly side. The other half is sooo interested with the other guys' routes. I mean, there's more than meets the eye with every character in this game. It's like, they don't just pop out of somewhere without really a connection to the story or they don't act like that just because they felt like it. (´・ω・`)

    I liked Mikoto too though sometimes she's a too gullible for her good. (the phone call by Mizuchi is obviously a trap). I liked her with Mizuchi as well. For a moment there, I thought 'so this is AI NO CHIKARA (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧' www

    I feel bad for Ai. I liked her as a character but man, Shou is just too focused with Mikoto. Hopefully they get together in next games /o/

    Today is a full moon. As I look above, my mind instantly goes '…Half Moon (´・ω・`)'. /bricked

    P.S. The card game is addicting. xP
    P.S.2 Sorry for the long comment. Really I should stop blabbing now. ^^;;

    • I think everyone has the same idea about Half Moon’s identity, since the events are hinting towards one person LOL. That’s the thing with Hana Awase actually. The small scenes are hinting towards something bigger, but you only realize that once you’ve seen the issue and replay from the beginning. That also makes it more painful, like how you realize that Hime is holding back… especially after you’ve seen how things turn out in his endings.

      As for Mikoto, she IS dense and gullible. She’s very loyal to Mizuchi, but that also becomes a flaw since she’s literally blind when it comes to him. You’ll see this more in Kurenai’s route, if you haven’t already. This also shows in Iroha’s route, as her love for him basically causes her to fail to pick up anything beyond what she sees. Oh well, enjoy the despair that’s about to come your way. xD

  7. Glad I found this post… It’s incredibly long but very complete and thorough. I thank you so much for writing this much and it’s very helpful for me to understand the game. Actually, I just played the beginning and it seems to be a very interesting story. Once again, many thanks for the post^^

    • Thank you for reading! :D
      Hana Awase can be a bit confusing at first since they just throw all sorts of terminologies at you, but I hope you’ll enjoy the game. It gets much more interesting once you get used to the world. :)

  8. OAO
    SO LONG?!!!!
    I didn’t read everything but it seems nice and i have it already as well….
    I might play this as well after my tests
    Gambatte on your Ken ga Kimi (*^▽^*)

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