Orange 🍊 Chapter 8

Letter 8

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Previous Part: Chapter 7
Next Part: Chapter 9 (Volume 3)

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Start Date Chapter Page Numbers Page Count
Sep 3rd Letter 8 131 - 172 42

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I usually read the chapters pretty quickly (in one sitting) but boy did this week's assignment feel shorter than usual, as if I just blinked and saw everything that happened.

Compared to the previous chapter, this one hurt pretty bad. But the nice thing is two of the major plot points in the series are finally revealed! One is in the very first pages of the chapter and the second is in the very last pages And some of you guessed right!

I think it wasn’t until after reading this chapter that it didn’t strike me that Naho was recording everything in a diary hence why her memory is very detailed (as her future self can easily refer to certain events in her diary). I’m sure it was mentioned in the opening pages of the first chapter, but I guess I zoned out because I kept wondering how can anyone recall so many details so well from 10 years ago, haha.

This is also the first time Naho chooses to read ahead, which is very necessary because now she knows the truth of Kakeru’s death. And I think I know why future Naho didn’t just come right out and tell her what happened from the get-go. I mean Naho knows herself better than anyone. Obviously she didn’t fully trust the contents of the letter until more and more of the stuff started coming true as it said it would in the letter.

But also most importantly, I think, maybe she didn’t want her past self to be swayed to fall in love with him out of pity knowing that he was suffering and going to commit suicide. Maybe she wanted herself a chance to get to know him and fall in love with his character like her future self did. If she took away that relationship from them, even if Kakeru were saved, I just think it wouldn’t be the same.

It’s like a reverse Florence Nightingale Syndrome, instead of the patient falling in love with the person who takes care of them, the caretaker starts to care deeply about the person that needs saving and it’s confused for love because it’s a very emotional process. It’s easy to feel pity towards a person that way, but since the roles are unbalanced, it’s not really love because you’re not seeing them as a whole person - just feeling pity for them.

So in this sense, while I was initially frustrated that future Naho didn’t just come right out and tell her what’s up and possibly prevent a lot of drama from happening, it’s also important for present Naho to go through all these experiences with Kakeru (for example, watching him date senpai) so she can affirm her own feelings and decide for herself why Kakeru is so important to her instead of simply being told what to do. After all, if she didn’t have these experiences with Kakeru, he would only just be an important person to her future self without any relevance to her current self. And that’s not going to make much of a romance. :wink:

5 Likes

Whoa, you’re right. At the start, the pace felt normal, maybe for the first ten pages or so, but before I knew it I was at 「つづく」.

I think the big giveaway is back in the first(?) chapter when Naho writes in her diary, then realizes what she wrote matched what was in the letter. Of course, it’s possible she subconsciously wrote the same thing as the letter because it was in the back of her mind, but more important is the mention of a diary at all.

Considering the story is from Naho’s perspective, I wonder whether we’ll see some of what Suwa went through up to this point. What prompted him to set aside his own feelings? Even though I remember feeling fairly early on that his actions didn’t feel natural/realistic concerning Naho+Kakeru, I don’t recall when the first instance was. (Maybe I’ll catch it while trudging my way through the novelization unless someone recalls and mentions it here.)

Edit: From the あとがき:

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Whereas we see from the date on Naho’s phone and the final page of the letter that Kakeru has about half a year left, I see we are almost a year away from the “future” time. (Granted, the manga chapters would have come out at a slower pace than the passage of “real time” for the story.)

3 Likes

Wow, a lot happened in this chapter!
Like @ChristopherFritz mentioned, I’m hoping we get to see a bit of what Suwa has been experiencing over the course of the last 2 books.

I’m really looking forward to starting Volume 3 now!

5 Likes
End of this chapter spoiler

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The theories got confirmed and it makes sense. Now Suwa’s actions make sense, but it is still oh so sad!

4 Likes
Suwa Moments: What did he know and when did he know it? (And a little more. Or a lot more.)

Did Suwa receive a letter the same day Naho did?

Did he receive the entire letter the day he received it?

How much content was in the letter? Remember, Naho’s letter was backed her diary.

Did Future Naho and Future Suwa collaborate on their letters? Did they write them independently? Were they aware of the other writing a letter?

Was Azu’s ability to disappear two パン into her mouth at once her start down the path to becoming a scientist who specializes in disappearing letters into a black hole to the past?

This scene is the first that sticks out to me as Suwa being aware of Kakeru and Naho fitting together. However, there’s no indication that he’s aware of anything at this time. Remember, he likes Naho and here he’s seeing another boy immediately being observant in her favor.

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Okay, so she didn’t completely disappear them into her mouth in one go. Scratch the idea that she becomes a scientist specializing in black holes.

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Here is another where in hindsight one can wonder if he’s purposefully being friendly to Kakeru. However, we know from Naho’s letter that Kakeru did originally get invited along, so it’s likely Suwa is being naturally friendly.

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Remember, Naho’s letter says nothing (so far) about her future post-Kakeru. We don’t know what Suwa’s letter says.

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A bit later, Kakeru joins the soccer team when Naho expected him to refuse, as per her letter. She wonders if she changed things enough that led to him joining but that did set well with me at the time. “If Suwa had a letter too, it would make more sense.”

Yet looking through these earlier pages, I’m reminded that Kakeru tells Naho about being better than Suwa at soccer following tending Naho’s foot, which comes after her home run that didn’t originally take place.

Thus, it’s entirely possible she did change history regarding Kakeru and the club, and I forgot enough details that I mistakenly thought Suwa must have been guided by a letter of his own to convince Kakeru to join after the observation visit.

With Suwa, there are many scenes that feel like he should be seeing Kakeru as a rival yet he’s being overly friendly.

In the original timeline, Kakeru starts dating a girl who always watches the soccer club. Does this mean Kakeru did club observation in the original timeline? Does this mean the scene with him bringing the first aid kit for Naho’s foot occurred even without her helping in the baseball game?

(My thoughts are kind of all over the place as I recall later scenes while skipping through the chapters.)

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This suddenly reads differently.

Again with the selfless act that makes one wonder, “Why?”

Another one of those things that leads to wondering if anyone else received a letter.

Since I’m jumping ahead as I type, I’ve already mentioned it, but this definitely came with a feel of “did Suwa do things differently this time around?”

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As I wonder whether Kakeru did club observation in the original timeline, it’s also possible Ueda learned about Kakeru separately. She takes to him because of his origins before moving to town, so he’s not like she was attracted to his soccer ability.

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Letter from Future Suwa to Past Suwa: “My biggest regret in life is that I went with scissors that day. If only I had chosen paper.”

Once again, observation from Suwa, yet nothing about this scene feels like he would have written about it in a letter. Likely he completely forgot about this day. But knowing something about the future, any action, any glance, can be due to the overall nature of the letter, and not to any specific individual events.

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If Suwa purposefully lost, this scene could have been avoided. Considering Naho’s letter mentions the letter in the eraser, this must be how things originally played out.

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Was this an original timeline observation on Suwa’s part?

This is another of those “this isn’t natural” moments.

Sure, it’s possible he could have just been a selfless kind of guy who could see that Naho liked Kakeru, but teenagers don’t tend to be that observant. (Well, this is fiction, and fiction often is nothing like reality.)

I remember thinking at this point that there wasn’t any reason this moment necessarily should have been written in the letter, so calling out that it wasn’t felt like the author telling us to take note that something happened differently from the original timeline.

This is also the part where I mistook Azu thanking him as being that she asked him to do this, making me wonder for a moment if she maybe had a letter from the future.

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Observant girl.

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“My biggest regret in life is that I didn’t bring an umbrella with me that day.”

From Future Hagita.

To Past Hagita.

Letter delivered to the wrong address.

:frowning:

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Again, these “did the timeline change?” moments always stuck out to me. But in this case, I figure she probably just misinterpreted the invite as mentioned in her letter.

One thing I find interesting is that even with things such as Suwa convincing Naho to go to Kakeru over him dating Ueda, the altered timeline actually seems to be fairly close to the original. It feels like every push to get Kakeru out of a bad situation (dating Ueda) or improve upon things (making lunches for Kakeru) results in the original timeline (Naho and Kakeru meeting to watch fireworks together).

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Whern Naho goes to the pool to meet with Kakeru later, she comments on Original Timeline Naho maybe not having the hair pin with her. Here, Kakeru mentions two things as reasons for the gift, at least one of which Original Timeline Naho didn’t do (making him lunches).

There’s also Ueda’s obsession with the hair pin. Why is that?

My consideration thus far is that it belonged to his mother, and he originally gave it to Ueda but took it back when they broke up.

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“My second-biggest regret in life is that I didn’t believe in time travel sooner.”

From Future Hagita.

To Past Hagita.

Letter delivered to the wrong address.

:cry:

So far, so good.

On one hand, I kept thinking Suwa was being too observant.

On the other hand, Kakeru is being rather observant here.

But then, we’ve seen how observant Kakeru can be since chapter one.

Why did Suwa’s observations always feel unnatural to me while Kakeru’s felt natural?

Actually, even Kakeru’s felt a bit unnatural to me. I joked back in the chapter one thread about Kakeru knowing what bread Naho liked due to having received a letter from the future. (This was well before we knew about the lack of a Future Kakeru.)

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Future Hagita: “My third-biggest regret in life—”

Letter delivered to the wrong address.

I don’t think I’ve ever really considered either of the girls here had any future knowledge. The closest would be the scene at the stairs after Suwa pushes for Naho to go after Kakeru, but even then I think it’s just a matter of girls being observant of girls (these two knowing Naho likes Kakeru) the same as boys being observant of boys (Kakeru and Hagita knowing Suwa likes Naho).

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This is where I actually started to doubt the “Suwa received a letter as well” theory.

My alternate theory is that there are three timelines:

Timeline 1) Past Suwa doesn’t notice Naho likes Kakeru. With the loss of Kakeru, Future Suwa sends a letter of his regrets to the past.

Timeline 2) Past Suwa receives the letter from Future Suwa and opts to support Naho’s feelings for Kakeru. However, he is unable to save Kakeru. Timeline 2 Future Suwa tells Naho about the letter from Timeline 1 Future Suwa, and Timeline 2 Future Naho sends herself a letter to try and help save Kakeru.

Timeline 3) What we’re reading now.

(I don’t think this theory is actually the case.)

If Future Naho didn’t receive the hair pin, then it makes sense that this event may not have happened in the original timeline.

It’s also possible it did, and Future Naho didn’t elaborate on details because she felt that would potentially spoil the outcome.

The series definitely has held my interest thus far!

5 Likes
Story spoilers for all of vol 1 and 2, speculations, discussion

The first thing I noticed with this chapter is that this is the first time we went back to future Naho and company and had time pass since volume 1. Well, there were a couple of pages in one of the earlier volume 2 chapters, but we didn’t advance the conversations with Kakeru’s grandma.

Many things are indeed falling into place here.

And Suwa’s ability to always catch Naho after trouble-filled Naho and Kakeru encounters should have been a flashing red light, shouldn’t it? Like he was ALWAYS there to catch Naho. That can’t be coincidence unless he was following them around, and why would he have been doing that without a letter? To punish himself by watching the girl he loves fall in love with another?

@ChristopherFritz Suwa vs Kakeru’s observation skills. I think the story establishes early Kakeru’s observational skills. With the curry bread thing, and then sports day. Considering Future Kakeru is dead, we can be fairly sure he doesn’t have a letter? Probably…

Suwa on the other hand is not presented as super observant. He takes notice of Naho, you can tell by him checking with Naho extra if she is sure she’d be happy with whichever bread; we can assume this is because he’s sweet on her. But outside that, we don’t actually see Suwa being remarkably observant (not to say he is oblivious like Hagita (or like Hagita plays; I can’t decide if he is a fool or plays the fool, maybe a bit of both). At least in my opinion.

I think a few interesting questions to ask are:

  • When did Suwa get his letter? Also first day of school or later?
  • If Suwa got it first day of school: when Suwa writes his letter, did he know Kakeru’s mother committed suicide on the first day of school (I think they learnt that at the Kakeru’s funeral? Or did they just learn she committed suicide overall but no the date?)? Because Future Naho seems to think the best thing would have been not to invite Kakeru, did Future Suwa think differently or didn’t he know Kakeru being late home might have affected the actions of Kakeru’s mother? (Although, stopping one attempt doesn’t mean there won’t be more of them.)
  • How detailed is his letter? After all Naho gets a lot of her details and dates/times from her diary. I find it hard to believe that Suwa just happened to keep the same kinda detailed diary.
  • And lastly, do they all have letters? If so, Hagita sure doesn’t have a detailed diary because who wouldn’t avoid getting soaked if possible. :joy:

I think there is a different reason for Future Naho to not tell Current Naho from the beginning that Kakeru would commit suicide. Naho is shy, introspective, and very bad at asserting herself. She rarely speaks her mind even with friends, is content to eat whatever bread is leftover rather than occasionally asking for her favorite.

Then boom, she’d be told that a boy she didn’t know who is starting in her class will commit suicide after she’d have known him for a while.

Like, how would she even deal with that? Like if it was me, I’d be afraid I might cut my losses and not get to know him at all. After all, how could I ever think that I could actually save someone from committing suicide? (I guess I could get him into a psych hold, but other than that?) That is hubris if I’ve ever heard it.

Back to Naho, why would she care? Like care enough to truly try and make a difference? How would she even go about getting to know him when she’d be burdened by the path of the future. On top of the fact that she is very unassertive, and rarely takes actions she even wants to take if they are hard or scary. (It took me a decade into adulthood to even begin to be comfortable with some of those things!)

Also, there is the “why would she believe it” factor.

A pretty cliffhanger-esque end to the chapter for sure. I can’t wait to read the next one.

4 Likes