9-nine-はるいろはるこいはるのかぜ 9️⃣ Week 5 (Visual Novel Book Club, offshoot)

This is being read as an offshoot continuing Episode 2. Episode 1 was originally read as part of the Visual Novel Book Club.

Home Thread Here!

9-nine- episode 3

Current week start date: June 23, 2023
Previous Week (Week 4) :infinity: Next Week (Week 6)

Pace

We’re aiming to read approximately 25k characters per week! A suitable enough end point will be selected each week and posted within the thread.


This week's endpoint: 23.4k

Scene transitions and character count (Steam version)
Location Character Count
Rooftop 6
Kakeru’s home (Beginning of 5/04) 965
Park 6 389
Rooftop 8 188
Kakeru’s home (Beginning of 5/02) 10 600
Nine ball (Beginning of 5/03) 16 546
Street 16 957
Kakeru’s home 17 372
Kakeru’s home (Endpoint) 23 408

Discussion Guidelines

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, do your best to provide context. Pasted text, screenshots, descriptions, etc. Unlike book clubs we can’t flip to relevant pages, so we may need a little help identifying exactly what is being discussed.
  • Feel totally at ease to ask questions or give your thoughts, any time! Clubs live and die by participation, and asking whatever question you have, no matter how silly it may seem, helps others who are reading it and even the answerer themselves.
  • Have fun, and do your best to interpret anything said with as much good faith as possible :slightly_smiling_face:

Participants

  • I’m reading along
  • I have finished this part
  • I’m still reading but haven’t reached this part yet
  • I’m no longer reading
0 voters
4 Likes
A thought at that 10,600 character mark

Taking a break here, pretty clear break point, just have one big thing on my mind – the way Sophie is perfectly content to wait for another branch to do this right implies this Iris isn’t actually from Sophie’s world, right? That or the mechanics don’t work the way I think they do. In my mind, it seems like because Sophie exists outside this whole timeline thing, she just has to get her hands on the artifact a single time to “win.” Parallel world mechanics get way too complicated, so does it at some arbitrary point disappear from every single timeline? We’ll see how directly they address that, but the point is, while there are a whole bunch of alternate Kakerus we don’t (yet?) have any reason to think about multiple Sophies. Uhh besides the literal fake one haha, but that’s not what I mean.

But it’s heavily implied that Iris getting this just means she won in a single timeline, and as soon as we jump it’s just a new piece of info. The only alternative coming to mind is that having this kind of permanent effect is a Sophie exclusive power because she has that whole timeline viewing ability (I’m not sure if we were clear how special or not she was for that?)… but if that’s the case I feel like that’s very unsatisfying in how stacked it feels. Then again, we’ve always said the powers seem overly broad and powerful, heh.

Actually yeah, I was thinking that eye of the world thing she has is the exact power that sees through timelines, and just started reading the next part which immediatly confirmed it – anyway I’m unsure how getting the artifacts permanently is meant to work but I’ll shut up til I’ve actually read the section now :sweat_smile:

4 Likes
Full section spoilers

Let me make sure I add that I’ve been really sick so I’m struggling through things super fatigued, even more than usual, looking up tons of things I know and sometimes going “what the hell is this language” and pressing English far more because of the state of my thinking ability so if I’m making mistakes or forgetting things, forgive me heh. The rest of this section seemingly confirmed that Iris is definitely THAT Iris, and Kujou even briefly mentioned that she can run wild in at least one branch, but I’m still kinda unclear on how the overarching struggle between her and Sophie works if a victory like that is ultimately not very meaningful. My read on it is it’s fine for me to not get it right now, but I’m just hoping they properly consider all of this in the end. I mean, it has to be pretty obviously a concern to address at some point, right? Unless my brain on fire is making some silly mistake.

Maybe we’re still headed for trouble with Haruka? We have the first indications that, while we’re not let in on what the trouble is, something about her powers is bothering her. Are they just firing off all the time? The party is a cute idea that fits this VN’s tone but also certainly seems like something that would be within her desires like that.

While I guess this wasn’t the unadjusted ambrosia, and rather just unrelated poison, I feel like @2OC3aOdKgwSGlxfz at least sort of it called it on this one! I honestly didn’t really expect the VN to go there, oof those deaths.

Anyway, again, this week was pretty good? After a rocky start it seems like this chapter has found its footing a lot better over time, for me. A shift away from Yoichi as the villain is certainly preferable. I have a feeling, especially since Kakeru already tried to reach out, that when the true finale rolls around (next episode at least) it’s going to involve somehow even bringing him and Takamine in as partners, somehow. It’s obvious he’s being heavily manipulated by Iris, and him truly not actually wanting to kill Kakeru and the others would give us a retroactively far less dumb justification for their cartoon villain “I’ll finish you later!” retreat.

4 Likes
Spoilers for this week

I’m not sure if I’m forgetting anything either but the way its been presented so far I’m not really sure why any specific branch matters. Iris clearly won in that other branch but now we are just in a different one doing things differently. Sophie also told Kakeru that he should basically sacrifice everything in these branches to find a way to “win” but unless I’m misunderstanding his powers, its not like he is time traveling or anything. When they lose those other branches, doesn’t he “die” there but just a different him can see what went wrong?

I would guess at some point there will be something they have to do that forces the branches to all converge to one specific point and that point will have to be somewhere near the beginning of the series cause otherwise a bunch of people are dead. But if they end up doing that, I feel like that will make even less sense cause Iris has already “won” one branch, so not sure how the Iris from that branch would let them undo everything. I’m hoping we get a better explanation for how all of this works soon :sweat_smile:

Outside of that though this was a nice week. The party was pretty cute and those type of slice of life moments are generally the strong points in this VN. Not sure why Kakeru sent a message to Yoichi asking to help them. Yoichi kind of wants to kill them and didn’t Kakeru just find out that the fake Sophie that Yoichi was talking to is most likely Iris? Seems like he just gave his whole plan away to the enemy.

Also I noticed the title screen changed after everyone turned into stone, was a nice touch

4 Likes
Another thought

Come to think of it, if it’s likely Iris is in full control, this week makes me want to recontextualize any past appearance of Naruse, but the only time I can really recall where she did much was when she visited Kakeru when he was “sick.” It does make me wonder if the reason for that visit was a lie, though all I can recall her really doing was seeing him partially turned to stone, listening to the story of what was going on, and offering general sympathy and well wishes. Could just be that she was monitoring him?

4 Likes
This week's spoilers

The intermediate book club was recently reading a book that also had “parallel worlds” and sadly I feel this just falls into a similar pitfall - Iris will probably win in a bunch of them (I mean, it’s not like she lost in ep 1 nor ep 2, right?) and I guess eventually in ep 4 there will at least be a branch where クソ兄貴 and the girls win (and maybe in this one too? Not sure how I feel about getting yet another antagonist for ep 4)

In the end, the very fact that all those branches “exist” kind feels like there’s no point in any of the events that happen in them. I guess there could be some “and now we use some artifact / magic to make this branch the only official reality” or something, but that feels like the cheapest of tricks.

I also found the wording slightly weird for the choices after the bad end - if I recall correctly first its “swim back the flowing of time”, and then it’s something alongside “install memories”? I mean, you might say it’s a different クソ兄貴 in another branch, but for practical purposes I would just call it time travelling. I feel like my initial hunch for what クソ兄貴’s power was still stands :stuck_out_tongue:

And now for the fun moments of this week!


クソ兄貴 and his big mouth when he almost reveals what happened when Haruka used her powers on him … #itWasAtThisMomentHeKnewHeMessedUp


I haven’t watched Ghost in a Shell, so I was hoping someone could explain this one… unless it’s a reference to something else?


#let’sGO


Sora still needs training in the ways of the Chuuni


Yey for more fun expressions from Yuuki


クソです、クソ兄貴です

Same here, I was just expecting it to be some kind of simple plot hole in the VN, and not actually lead to that scene >.<

Still I think I’m happier with this turn of events than just some random shounen-manga battle again, though it wouldn’t surprise me if we actually end up in some kind of confrontation later on anyway…

4 Likes
Spoilers

I love Haruka’s otaku moments. :joy:

But it seems to have been forgotten that our dear Kakeru already has a chuuni name for his power :joy:

Blessed two weeks in a row. 助かる

I don’t know why this is always one of my favorite insults in anime, but it always makes me laugh. :joy:

…all the far more difficult words and kanji in this VN, and this is what gets the furigana? :joy:

I didn’t screenshot it, but the トマト bit with Yuuki gave me a good laugh too. :joy: “Disrupts my prana.” :joy:

The bad end was pretty rough this time around. Jeez. But yeah, I’m with everyone here that it was better than yet another lame shounen face-off. I mean, イーリス still did the whole, “I’ll save you for last” thing (:roll_eyes:), but it was otherwise a pretty good scene.

As far as イーリス being the big bad:

futurama-shocked

Definitely looking forward to seeing more of how they unravel the multiple branches thing. Hopefully they do so in a decent way, but I’m not keeping my expectations too high. I like this VN a lot, but it’s definitely more on the slice-of-life stuff that I like it more. The main big bad drama stuff hasn’t been the strongest so far. Not terrible, but nothing to write home about.

I may end up reading a little ahead tonight; the next two-three weeks are going to be pretty busy for me, so I’m not totally sure I’ll have the time to read this as much as I would like to. It’s not as convenient as a book/manga, unfortunately. :sweat_smile:

4 Likes