Summary: Arakure (Wild Ones), Vol 2, Chp 7
This chapter begins with Sachie in bed. She is having a dream of her mother. Her mother tells Sachie that she has to go. Sachie begs her not to go. “Don’t go, don’t go, mother …” Sachie pleads and then wakes up in the middle of her dream, obviously talking in her sleep. She gets out of bed and heads to the kitchen, thinking about how she hasn’t dreamt of her mother in a while. On her way to the kitchen, she sees blood drops splattered on the floor and upon entering the kitchen a huge bald maniacal looking yakuza turns his head and grins while holding a bloody knife in his hand. “You saw,” he says and Sachie freaks outs. He continues, “When I came into possession of this fine tuna, I thought I would surprise you because we usually have mackerel.” Sachie is in too much shock … “tuna, tuna,” she repeats to herself. The other yakuza wonder what has happened. Shortly after, Sachie regains her composure and thanks the bald yakuza, saying that she looks forward to eating the tuna the next day. She reflects on how she still isn’t used to living in a yakuza household.
Out of nowhere, Igarashi scoops Sachie into his arms, telling her that if she sits there she will cat cha cold. He’s smiling at her sweetly, and Sachie feels belittled and defends herself by explaining that she’s okay because unlike normal people she’s not that weak. In fact she’s forged like steel. Igarashi agrees that her head is indeed forged of steel (in other words, she’s hard-headed). Sachie narrates about how her caretaker, Igarashi, is sweet, but peculiar. She wonders why he’s up this late and asks him. Igarashi explains that Azuma’s loud snoring woke him up. Azuma joins in to defend himself because he fears Sachie will get strange notions about him. Finally, Sachie’s grandfather comes to see what the noise is all about and gives Sachie some warm milk to settle her so she can go back to sleep. Sachie reflects on how different her life is now and that she is happy to be surrounded by lots of people. She says, “Mother in heaven, I’m not alone.”
Later in the morning at school … Sachie’s class is having a meeting to decide what they will do for the cultural festival. Sachie gets excited and tells everyone her mikoshi fantasy. She is very much into this, talking about how the heat of souls come together, sweaty, and become one. Her classmates are appalled. Then there’s a flashback to Sachie’s childhood (hard to translate because there’s too much slang and dialect involved) in which she asks an elder to be carried in the mikoshi once around the block. The elder explains that only males can be carried in the mikoshi and that she would be crying behind a curtain because she would only be dressed in her underwear (apparently from the picture, the guy in the mikoshi goes shirtless). The class rep. seems to be going along with the idea and says that if there are no other ideas … and then is bombarded by requests to do a haunted house or a maid cafe. Sachie is bummed, but the class rep reassures her that she helped make the meeting lively. (It seems that maybe he’s little sweet on Sachie ??? perhaps).
Moving on, Sachie and her friend see Igarashi outside as they are passing through the hall. Igarashi is surrounded by girls. The film studies club president is talking to him. Sachie’s friend think she’s inviting him somewhere, but Igarashi seems to be refusing her. He sees Sachie in the hall and leaps onto the window sill and asks if she wants to go do something later. He’s trying to get away from the film studies club president. The film studies club president comes running after Igarashi asking if he would talk to her and Igarashi is being an ass. Finally he asks what she wants. Does she want to see him in glasses or wet in the rain — something like a shower scene. The film studies club president is very excited and animated and says the film Studies club exists for it’s customers — “Viva megane moe and viva wet moe!” On she prattles about how sibling romantic forbidden love is hot this year, or perhaps Korean flavored platonic love. Igarashi continues to be an ass, asking Sachie whether she knew and Sachie is passed caring. Finally, Igarashi explains that he can’t help out the film studies club this year because he is the class president, is active in a club (kendo), and helps out in class.
The girls of Sachie’s class explain that they are doinga haunted house maid cafe for the cultural festival. Igarashi is intriqued (I imagine he’s thinking about Sachie dressed in a maid’s costume) and asks if he can join in. The girls go nutz and surround him. They decide they want to go to a haunted house to get ideas and to find excuses to get close to him. At the haunted house entrance, the Film Studies Club President is waiting for Igarashi along with the crazy girls. Igarashi tries to get away to be with Sachie, but is carried off by the sea of girls. Sachie gives up. Cut away to a couple of wimpy guys who can’t handle the haunted house. They meet up with Sachie, who seems to be fine walking through the haunted house. They finally get too scared and run out of the haunted house but Sachie decides to continue through, collecting ideas. She then starts thinking about her dead mother and whether she is in a world like this alone. As she sinks further into sadness, she falls to her knees and then Igarashi shows up. He’s close up to her and asks if she’s okay. Sachie tentatively reaches out and then pulls back. Igarashi grabs her hand and then hugs her tightly. He apologizes and says he should have stayed with her and not left her on her own. Sachie remembers back to the wee hours of the morning when she couldn’t sleep and Igarashi was awakened too. She asks him whether he was awakened by her crying out in her sleep. He covers her mouth and says that it has been a year and she still hasn’t cried for her mother. He says that she doesn’t have bear it and that when in need, call him and he will come to her side. They stand up and Sachie asks if he thinks her mother is in a world like this. Igarashi says he doesn’t know, but he thinks probably is not. He says it would be nice if heaven is a warm world with blooming flowers and then he reaches out for Sachie’s hand and asks if they should leave now.
The next page … Igarshi is looking at some drawings of monsters for the haunted house. He complements Sachie on her drawings even though they are not good — Sachie knows this. Sachie’s classmates are impressed by the number of drawings they have now to use as reference for the haunted house maid cafe. Cut to later (oh, here comes the fan service), Sachie is walking to the bathroom to take a bath. She’s very happy thinking about the upcoming cultural festival. She opens the bathroom door and there Igarashi is in the bathroom, wet from his shower and towel drying his hair. Sachie thinks “I did it” — again, apparently. She excuses herself and runs off. Igarashi, for the most part now dressed, finds her waiting near the bathroom. He leans in close to her, his arm coralling her against the wall. He’s now very close and then asks, “Did you see it? The shower scene.” Sachie is very embarrassed and hits him on the head and then runs away. Now we see Sachie in the bathtub. She is thinking about what happened in the haunted house. Meanwhile, Igarashi encounters Sachie’s grandfather. The old man asks Igarashi how it’s going being Sachie’s caretaker and says he bets her tomboyish ways are causing him lots of trouble. Igarashi agrees that’s she quite a handful. The old man blanches — I imagine he was fishing for a complement. Igarashi continues though, saying that Sachie is straightforward and truthful and so he will be the person that shares her pain. “Your precious granddaughter is my very special person, so no matter what happens, going forward I will protect Sachie-sama,” he explains to her grandfather. (This sounds a lot to me like Igarashi is asking for Sachie’s hand.) We aren’t shown Sachie’s grandfather’s face, so we can’t know his reaction. (I suspect, though, that he has raised the boy intentionally to be Sachie’s husband). Back to Sachie who is almost submerged in the tub and blowing bubbles. She is still thinking about the haunted house, lamenting how she couldn’t get any words out.
On the last page, we are back to the Film Studies Club president. She is vowing to stick to Igarashi 24/7. The ending narration reads “It seems like the quiet before the storm” (Not exactly this, but I think this is the closest English idiom.)