Recap: Haru being Haru, the threat of Yamaken instills fear in losing Shizuku instead of the confidence to ensure she remains by his side. Just as Shizuku is about to open up to him again, Haru’s jealousy tries to override her free will, only further upsetting her.
God damn it, Haru. Just…. god damn it. I had so much faith that the fire Yamaken just lit under his ass last episode would finally get him to man up. I never thought it would be the complete opposite of that. If the last few episodes showed the extent of Shizuku’s problems, this one was a huge example of the many issues Haru has. We start off the episode and Haru is acting like the lamest clingiest douchebag in the entire world. Shizuku, the nigh unflappable saint she is, bears with it in the beginning, but notices this is a regression in his behavior back to how he was when they first met.
Compounding the problem, Natsume has decided they should have a Christmas party, and seeing as the two main groups in this story seem to never leave the same square mile of land, they run into Yamaken, who is emboldened by Haru’s jealousy to tag along. While it would appear Yamaken is successful in denying Haru’s accusations, it seems no one is fooled.
Natsume herself has less than noble intentions for this party, planned at Mi’s(his name is just too long) batting cages so she can get closer to him. Typical crush symptoms occur and Sasayan sends some subtle hints his way as to why she would be acting this way. It is interesting finally seeing Sasayan admit some kind of affection for her. Obviously he showed attraction to her ever since the summer break episode, but I always thought it was just on a physical level. To hear he too had fallen for her kinda makes you feel sorry for Natsume, as this would just be another example of her prime fears, that every boy wants to date her and every girl envies her for it.
After hearing about his past a little more, it would appear Haru’s history of violence has roots all the way back to those elementary school days. It is obvious he still just cannot control his emotions. After that story where he involved in the “push-off incident”, he nearly lets his anger get the best of him again against Yamaken’s hostility. It really was frightening in such a softly animated show to see his eyes go so narrow and cold. I could really feel the hatred he had toward him for threatening the life with Shizuku he all too desperately wants to protect.
Unfortunately, this simply comes back to be his downfall. I cannot blame Shizuku for how she treats him at the end of this episode. Finally coming to grips with her emotions, finally trying to figure out how to balance her study schedule and her life with Haru, and he cannot even trust her to go to a cram school without him. To have her put such trust into Haru only to have him so quickly squander it was really depressing. It at least grew my respect for Shizuku, as even in the light of realizing her emotions she finally has her priorities straight, and doesn’t allow Haru’s bullshit to affect that.
I suppose with two episodes left I should have known there was one more piece of drama left in the bag to keep these two apart, but that doesn’t mean I can’t still be utterly frustrated by it. Perhaps in this separation Haru can finally realize how to handle his emotions and love Shizuku for who she is as well as respecting her individual will. Shizuku does look royally pissed off, and while it would seem this would be the perfect opportunity for Yamaken to try and steal her away, I can’t imagine Shizuku would give up on something she’s devoted so much effort into like she has to her relationship with Haru any time soon.