MANGA CHAPTER 33: AH...JR. HIGH STUDENTS
(Japanese title: "Aa, Chūgakusei" / ああ、中学生 )
(Anime Cross-reference---Episode 1: "What Are Girls Made Of?")
(Story Note---The original manga series consisted of 123 manga chapters. All of the manga chapters have been translated into English. In the Manga Section of this Wiki, only the manga chapters that are parallel to the anime story will be chronicled for the first phase of development. The entire manga series incorporation into this Wiki will be for future development. The story covered by the anime's twelve episodes are equivalent to manga chapters 33 - 85, and only these manga chapters will be posted to this section of the Wiki.)
The first day of Jr. High school classes has all of the friends checking around to see if everyone is still in the same homeroom class. For the most part, yes ! One this first day, gossip and innuendo abound. Maho Nitori asks her soon to be boyfriend Seya if any of the gossip is true ? Actually, no. Yoshino receives a love letter from Shuuichi. They respond with a return letter, but they decide against advancing their relationship from friendship to dating lovers. Shuuichi eventually tears up the letter. But not before Maho grabs it and reads the juicy contents ! Next day at school, Sasa tries to act as an intermediary between Chiba and Yoshino, who dislike each other. Sasa's efforts, however, do not bear much fruit. On day of the Opening Ceremonies at school, Shuuichi greatly dislikes having to wear the male school uniform. Likewise, Yoshino greatly dislikes having to wear the female school uniform, and wishes that some day Shuuichi gets to wear it instead of themselves.
This Chapter's Story
It is the first day of Jr. High (Middle School), therefore, Shuuichi and his older sister, Maho, are asked to stand in front of the apartment building that the family lives in, so that their parents can take a picture of the two in their new Jr. High school uniforms. Unfortunately, Shuuichi has to wear the dreaded male school for the time being. As the first day begins, all of the students seem to only be interested in sharing gossip about what has happened at the school in the past, and what is happening at the other Jr. High school in the city now. In the hallway, Yoshino and Sasa run into Shuuichi and Mako-chan. They soon find out that the four of them, as well as the other friends in their social circle, are all going to be in the same classes together. Mako-chan is somewhat annoyed by this turn of events.
At home after school, Shuuichi shares some of the gossip with his older sister, Maho. Maho doesn't believe any of it, including the supposed fact that the school is full of delinquents and perverts. Maho announces that she will ask Seya about the rumors. This she does after school the next day, with the both of them sitting on a park bench. Seya says that the rumors are all false. However, he then goes on to remark to Maho that he is still sore that she set it up so that he could date Shuuichi for a while, thinking that Shuuichi was a girl. Yet it was Seya that initiated the idea. Maho is surprised that he is still annoyed by that whirlwind of dating. Seya comments that Shuuichi should have been born a girl. Maho, breaking into tears, bemoans that if that had been the case, and Shuuichi then being her little sister, she, Maho, would not have had a chance to ever date Seya at all. Both sit in silence until Maho's tears subside. Then Maho tactfully asks if he will hold hands with her, and walk her to her home ? This he does with relish.
When Maho gets home, she finds that Shuuichi is already in the bedroom that they share, and is staring at an envelope, crying. (Inside the envelope is a message from Yoshino, telling Shuuichi that they can't respond to Shuuichi's expression of love and friendship at this time, as they don't know how to navigate such an intimate love.) Nosy Maho wants to know the contents of the letter, but Shuuichi declines, as it is way too personal. Nevertheless, Maho grabs the letter out of Shuuichi's hands, and runs with it. She reads the letter 'on the fly' as Shuuichi catches up with her and plants a fist onto her shoulder to retrieve the letter. Dad yells for the two of them to settle down ! Maho weakly apologizes for her actions. That night in bed, Maho tells herself that she was a bad person today, but it was sad to come to find out that Shuu got turned down.
The next day finds Shuuichi and Mako-chan walking together toward school. Shuuichi recounts to Mako-chan what happened yesterday at his home regarding the letter from Yoshino. He declares that he is not going to throw away the letter, it is too special. Mako-chan, always ready to give advice and his personal opinions, tells Shuuichi that his older sister is a real petulant person, with no sense of decency. At school, Yoshino is asking around about the whereabouts of Sasa. Sasa is already in the nurse's office. Meanwhile, Sasa and Chiba are sitting at a desk in the nurse's office, talking things out. Sasa is trying to convince Chiba to abandon her dislike of Yoshino, and make up with them. The school day grinds on and on. Sasa, later in the day, approaches Yoshino to tell them to say that Chiba has no close friends, and would (supposedly) appreciate if you, Yoshino, made up with her and resume friendship. No way, no how, not gonna ever happen ! Yoshino offers a weak and forced apology to Sasa, and walks away.
That evening, in Shuuichi's bedroom, he is at the desk, again staring at the envelope and letter inside. He tells himself that he can't keep this dilemma with the letter going forever. Therefore, he tears the envelop, with the letter inside, in two, and discards it. Goodby, Yoshino !
Next morning, Shuuichi and Mako-chan are again walking to school together. Mako-chan voices his opinion that Shuuichi and Yoshino could still be friends, however, Yoshino and Chiba need to put their differences aside, and make up with one another. Later that day, Yoshino visits Sasa's home, only to find out that she is sick, and can't have visitors. Yoshino then goes to see Chiba, and asks for the both of them to put their differences aside for Sasa's sake. However, Chiba rebuffs Yoshimo's friendship repair effort, causing Yoshino to regret that they even tried to talk to Chiba. Mako-chan comments to Yoshino that social problems seem to have gotten worse. Yoshino agrees.
The next school day are the Opening Ceremonies of the new school year. And of course, Shuuichi oversleeps, and has to hustle to put on the male school uniform and make it to school on time. Yoshino, at home, mournfully has to wear the female school uniform. However, at school, they are complimented about their tallness, just like a typical boy. Sasa, although not completely well, nevertheless, makes it to school for the ceremony. Yoshino receives a compliment on her good looks, but only wishes that is was Shuuichi who could wear the female school uniform to school, and not themselves.
Before Shuuichi leaves for school, although they are late, Mom wants to take a picture of them in their male school uniform. Shuuichi complains, but to no avail. He smiles just to get it over with.