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Synopsis

Prologue

The episode opens with a montage from the previous. Rika's mother tells Rika that her status as Oyashiro-sama's reincarnation is a secret between them. Rika senses the fragment in her mother.

First Half

Hanyū and Ōka

Hanyū and her daughter Ōka

At night in the Saiguden, Rika tells Hanyū through the crystal that her mother is the reincarnation of Oyashiro-sama and she does not know what to do. Hanyū replies in her more Adult Voice that long ago, "so long ago that even my memory falters," before she became known as "Oyashiro-sama," she, "or rather, when Oyashiro-sama decided to become a god," her daughter, Rika's ancestor, "was very sad." She explains that her daughter knew that she decided to become a god because she harbored "great malice for this world," since, "people sinned against each other, living in disgrace." This disgrace evoked despair in Hanyū, and she decided to take the sins upon herself. By being killed by someone else, Hanyū explains, she would carry these sins away. She chose to have her own daughter kill her, because she feared that if her daughter did not become the one who killed her, she would be ostracized as the daughter of a "vicious goddess." Worse, her daughter's heart might become filled with malice as well. While her daughter did not want to kill her, she understood the reasons. "Even so," Hanyū explains, her daughter spoke to her as the scene moves to a flashback. Her daughter accepts that if purity can only come from a sacrifice, she will do it to create a world where everyone bands together. The adult Hanyū responds that she will believe in her words, and she declares that she will return to the world when her daughter's worlds become true. Her daughter raises her weapon. After the flashback, Hanyū explains that her daughter cleansed her world of its sins then ruled Hinamizawa with the powers Hanyū left her. Her daughter gave them the guidelines on how the villagers must behave while inspiring a fear in a "vicious god's wrath" if they ever wavered from them.
New Born Rika

New-Born Rika
This moment of "Awwww!" brought to you by When They Cry Wiki

Peace returned to Hinamizawa, Hanyū explains, but she could not return. The power of her hate remained too great for her to accept their world. She explain that it could not last forever, and her daughter knew this. Though she does not explain why, Hanyū states that if for eight generation in a row, the Furude family had a girl as the first born, then she could return. In a flashback, Rika's mother holds the newborn Rika up to her father. Hanyū explains that with Rika's birth as the eighth generation first-born girl, she could reëstablish contact with the world through Rika.
New Born Rika Stares

Shown:
"Awwww!"

 The infant Rika appears to stare up at her smiling father, as Hanyū narrates that she has intended to occupy "those thousands of years" waiting "with my hatred for this world."

She concedes that it became nothing more than a punishment, and when Rika's mother became pregnant, she prayed that she would give birth to a daughter. In her Adult Voice, Rika responds that she understands, and she feels as if Hanyū was the first person she ever saw, instead of her own mother. Hanyū confesses that since then she has felt that she has been living her life with her first friend in over a thousand years, "and my daughter." However, when she encountered the "dead-end of Shōwa 58 (1983)" she sinned again: she used her powers to alter Rika's fate.

Surprised, Rika asks if Hanyū means that in her very first world they should have accepted Takano ripping her open. Hanyū replies: "I'm sure this sounds cruel to you, but that is what I have come to believe." Hanyū feels she should have lived wisely with Rika and accepted the end, "whatever its form might have been." Angry, Rika tells her to stop. Hanyū may somehow enjoy wallowing in her guilt, but it gives no satisfaction to her. Rika reminds her that she thought that they both decided not to accept that fate and, instead, vowed to fight for as long as it took to achieve a better future. She cannot believe Hanyū could suggest such a thing after all they have suffered through.

Hanyū calmly asks her to return to the main problem: Rika's mother as the eighth generation descendant of Oyashiro-sama and how this prevents Hanyū from entering her world. She reminds Rika that she wanted her opinion on whether or not she should kill her mother to return to her original world or stay in her current world. When Rika quickly affirms this, Hanyū scolds her for entrusting the decision, and therefore the responsibility, to her. She tells her a life chosen for her is not her life. She reminds her that she has traveled to many worlds, even those beyond the human realm, and she tell Rika to use her own strength rather than one borrowed from her.

Hanyū Scolds Rika
Rika asks if she chooses to remain in her current world, what would happen to Hanyū. Hanyū replies that their long journey together will end based on the rules of Rika's world: Hanyū will not exist there. Rika hurridly asks if Hanyū is satisfied with that result, but Hanyū responds by asking Rika to stop using her as an "excuse." She does agree to help her with her decision by revealing what she knows of Rika's world. 

There is a flash to the Maebara home in a city. Hanyū explains that Keiichi, "who taught us again and again that our fate can be defeated," over him leaving for school, that he never transferred to Hinamizawa. While the stress of studying for exams depresses him, he never shoots at children with a toy gun. Instead, he faced his stress and overcame it. As Hanyū explains, Rika sees visions of Keiichi succeeding at school, including on his baseball team. Rika understands that since Keiichi never committed his "sin," he never moved to Hinamizawa.

Hanyū continues that with regards to Rena, since her parent's company did not fail, they never moved to Ibaraki.
Rena and Mother

Reina and her Mother

Rika sees a vision of Reina preparing a meal with her mother watching. Since her parents never divorced, Reina did not feel responsible. Reina is happy with her cooking as her father joins them. When she starts to describe the lives of Mion and Shion, Rika interrupts to conclude that since Satoshi never disappeared, neither of them "sinned." Hanyū tells her that she is correct. Mion trains to become the new head of the family while Shion does her best to help from her school faraway, "hoping not to become a hindrance."
Satoko Ideal World

Not Shown:
Getting Shot in the Face

Over a vision of Satoshi leaving his house with his mother followed by Satoko and their stepfather, Hanyū explains that the Hōjō never become seen as enemies and ostracized. Satoko never "sins" by killing her parents or is afflicted by the Hinamizawa Syndrome. For Satoko and her family, Hanyū explains, this is "an ideal world." Rika realizes that for everyone else, this is the "ideal world." Hanyū agrees and reveals that none of the people she has been involved with have conmmitted any sin: "This is a beautifully pure and clean world."
Hanyū Ideal World

So not Cleveland. . . .

 Even Takano is without "sin." Hanyū notes that the "dice of destiny" have led Rika to a world she would have considered a "vital chance" her hundreds of years. Rika repeats "vital chance," and Hanyū explains that Rika still has the option to return to her original world: if she chooses to kill her mother, Rika will make the choice to leave his "sinless paradise" by her own volition. This conversation occurs over a view of a small light, like a firefly, traveling from the Saiguden slowly through the forest to the Furude house.

Rika notes that Hanyū stated that she was killed by her own daughter. She asks Hanyū if she really thinks she should repeat that action simply to choose her own life. The light enters a room where Rika's mother sleeps next to her husband. Hanyū responds by saying that if she were Rika's mother, she would respond: "My own life is less important than my daughter's happiness." The tiny light settles on her mother's pillow. In the Saiguden, Rika protests that Hanyū cannot be serious. She asks Hanyū if she ever paused to consider what her daughter must have felt about killing her own mother. Hanyū inhales slightly. Rika angrily continues that dying is easy, but the killer must bear it for the rest of his life. Further, her descendants have born it for the past thousand years. She argues that Hanyū should not have died but should have lived on and fought.

Hanyū angrily interrupts her to ask if Rika feels she should have continued living so she could fight, then what will Rika do now. Will she accept her existence in her current world which will throw away the "precious world" she found "after those hundreds of years," or will she cast aside the "comforts of this world" to return to it, even if it means destroying the ideal world for everyone else. Hanyū insists that she thought "long and hard" about her decision, and her daughter did not make a "hasty decision" either: "That was our battle, and I won't allow anyone to make light of it!" As Rika flinches, Hanyū continues that she "finally" has something "important" to discuss with her: the crystal that links them will soon lose its power. Further, the fragment within Rika's mother will lose its power after the next day's sunset. Hanyū explains that this does not mean it will disappear, but Rika will forever lose the opportunity to reacquire it. Rika understand that she does not have a "third option" of delaying her choice.

Hanyū confirms that she cannot. She could simply look away and not make a choice, which would mean she would remain in the world without making a decision. Hanyū warns that if she does that, her life will be very different from the one she could have chosen actively. She begs Rika to not simply "run away." She reminds that whatever world she fought to obtain "will definitely be a wonderful place." Rika vows to try to fight by making a decision. She confesses that she had come to believe her life was something she could just try over and over due to Hanyū's power. She realizes that her current world has taught her how important life is. She thanks Hanyū who fades from the crystal. Rika calls to her but receives no further answer.

Second Half

Rika Dream
A women gently waked Rika. Rika wakes to find herself in a hospital bed. She asks the nurse where she is, but the nurse asks her to wait as she rushes away calling the doctor. Rika hears hear say that, "Rika-chan has regained consciousness, Sensei!" An adult man's feet approach, and then Rika sees Yamamoto who transforms into Irie Kyōsuke. She says his name questioning, but he just repeats "thank goodness!" With a "Mii!" she asks if she is in the clinic. He responds that she is, and she hit her head while returning to Hinmizawa and has been unconscious since then. Rika asks about her mother, and Irie responds that her memories must be confused. He confirms that she has been dead since the Watanagashi Festival two years before. Rika looks sad and turns away. Surprised, Irie tries to smile and then promises to return quickly.

After he leaves, Rika repeatedly asks for Hanyū. With her Child Voice "Auu~!", Hanyū responds. She appears, translucent, sitting at Rika's bedside. In her Adult Voice, Rika confesses that she feels vulnerable when she enters a new world without Hanyū. Hanyū insists that she is always by her side when she wakes up. Rika asks if the world she was in was just a "dream" (夢・ゆめ・yume) or real. Hanyū pleasantly replies that she does not understand. Rika asks her again if the world she was in was a "dream," and Hanyū, in her Adult Voice, curtly snaps back that it was. Rika understands this to mean that it was not a dream, and her killing of her mother is what turned it into a dream and allowed her to enter her current world. She looks at her hands in horror, then has a flashback of her mother embracing her in the kitchen. She begins to cry.

Continuing in her Adult Voice, Hanyū gently tells Rika to calm down. After a quick view of many feet running, Hanyū smiles and tells Rika that her friends have come to see her as she fades away. Satoko appears saying her name quickly followed by Keiichi. Satoko embraces Rika repeating her name and crying. Rena enters, followed by Mion. "Welcome back, Rika-chan," Mion says. She continues that they all believed that she would return, and Keiichi adds that miracles happen when they believe that they will. Rena adds that she visited Rika "every day, always believing that you would wake up afterwards!" Rika asks if Satoshi is not there. Satoko turns away and answers that "Nii-Nii ran away from home and hasn't come back," then turns back to her and playfully scolds Rika for being "so forgetful." Mion looks at her intently and agrees that Rika's memories are "scrambled at the moment." Rena reveals that Rika has been "a sleepy-head for almost a month." Rika explains that she feels like she had been dreaming for a month. Her dream took place in Hinamizawa, "but a lots of things were different." She reveals that first Keiichi was not there, as Keiichi protests being left out. She explains that he was not there, because he was never involved in the toy gun incident. Further, in the world, Mion, Rena, and Satoko were all very happy. Rika suspects that the reason that she is in this world is because she chose it over that world.

Mion lectures that Rika's description sounds like a "near-death experience," and if Rika chose the other world, she never would have returned. Rika sheepishly agrees. Rena adds that the world sounds very interesting, and she thanks Rika for making them all happy, "even if it was only a dream." Rika still looks down sadly, while Rena continues that if she had a choice she would pick the current world rather than the one in Rika's dream. When Rika asks her why, Rena explains that while her mother's divorce "was an unpleasant experience," it changed her life in many ways, and she learned a great deal from it. She now accepts her mother's divorce as one of "life's trials."

Mion remarks that trials and setbacks make one grow as a person. Keiichi agrees. While his incident is his greatest regret which he "must never forget," and will regret until the day he dies, like Rena, he learned many things. Satoko also agrees. She explains that if her brother remained, she would have continued to depend upon him. Now, she can stand on her own and wait for his return. Rika asks if they really believe this and would reject the perfect and "sinless" world of Rika's dream. Rena contends that their world is "far more precious." When Rika asks her why, Rena explains it is because they all fought to obtain their future: "We're nothing like the people in that other world." Rika wonders if living in a world without "sin" is a "sin" itself, but Rena disagrees since, "A flower raised in a greenhouse is still beautiful, even though it knows no adversity."

Rena Wisdom

Rena's Wisdom
"Hau~! Hau~!"

Rena walks to the window to observe flowers in the grass outside the clinic. She continues that a flower growing in the field has survived adversity and possesses something more than just beauty. Rika asks her if what if she had to choose between growing up in a greenhouse or in a field. Rena suddenly realizes that Rika has been mistaken from the very beginning. When Rika "Mii?"s in reply, Rena approaches her with her hands behind her back. She cautions Rika that she cannot compare an impossible world to her current one. Rika would have to be a goddess capable of traveling between both worlds to compare them. Rena suggests that the Rika of both world exists, "And I think both of them are living proudly in their own worlds." Satoko adds that "even a loser" would not cry over not having been born into a rich family. Rena decides that it may be easier to explain with a game. She rhetorically asks Mion if she brought some candy. Mion gives Rena some. Rena then presents her two fists to Rika and asks her to choose. Rika picks her right hand which Rena opens to reveal one candy. Rika smiles and Rena congratulates her then feeds her the treat. Rika gives a satisfied "Nipaa~!" She declares that she is happy that she made the right choice. 
Rena Explains to Rika

"Without the matricide, of course!"
- Rena [Citation Needed - Ed.]

Rena then reveals that her other hand contained two candies and states, "What you're feeling right now is probably pretty close to what you were feeling before." Rena repeats that comparing two worlds is something humans cannot do. She holds up one candy and notes that there is only one world for them, and it is set up so they can find happiness in it. Rika was in effect, according to Rena, "a goddess" who could travel between two world in her dream and feel the way she does. She should not worry about what "is in the other hand."
Rika Bernkastel

And thus many arguments on Higurashi discussion fora is born.

Rika flashes back to her asking Hanyū if she was in a dream, and Hanyū affirming that it was. To herself, Rika concludes that the other world was not a dream, but since she made her choice, it became a dream and her current world is reality. In a flashback to the realm that contains time fragments that depict scenes from previous arcs, Rika confesses to herself that she had "stepped half-heartedly into the world of gods, being a mere human." This confused her over very important things. Back in her current world, Rika smiles: "It's time for me to give up being a witch. I must return to being Furude Rika, rather than the witch Bernkastel. . . ."

Keiichi asks her if she is alright. Rika looks up and responds in her Child Voice that it means that she must be careful and not get into accidents, "Nipaa~!" This surprises all of her friends, who then laugh. Mion even jokes that Rika has been acting like "she's some sort of witch!"

Hanyū Ask Rika Why Thanks
As the higurashi cry over a scene of the mountains at sunset, Hanyū gently explains in her Adult Voice that should Rika lose her life again, she thinks that she could accept that fate. Rika agrees in her Adult Voice that she is fine with it as well. A translucent Hanyū sits on Rika's clinic bed and looks out the window. Rika then thanks her. Hanyū asks her why, and Rika merely responds "for lots of reasons." After a pause, Hanyū wishes Rika sweet dreams, and, "Please treasure this future that you've won," over views of various points in Hinamizawa. As the montage continues, Rika agrees that she will, and, once she is discharged, she will visit her parents' grave. She reveals that she now understand the meaning of having to kill her mother: "I've always chosen this world without feeling as if it were a sin to do so, and thus, I've continued to kill my mother over and over again." She then asks if Hanyū wanted her to realize that, her "sin," particularly her failure to respect her parents.

Softly in her Adult Voice, Hanyū thanks Rika for realizing this. She declares that she feels the "greatest since that I felt within you has now finally been cleansed." She then reveals that Rika did not actually kill her mother to return to this world, and the Perfect World was just a dream that Hanyū gave Rika "so I could bully you a bit." She hopes that when Rika wakes up she will forget about it. She wishes her a goodnight, and asks her to dream about how she will live her life in this future.

Teaser

There is a teaser for the next OVA with the main theme from "Super Scription of Data."

Characters

In order of appearance

Referbacks and Forwards

  • Hanyū is a Mom!: This is not covered in the anime though there are a few instances such as her slapping Rika in Matsuribayashi-hen where she takes a maternal role and even speaks in an Adult Voice like Rika. In the same arc, she reminds Rika, who confesses that she can never understand exactly "who" Hanyū is nor her origins, that she chose to take the sins of the world upon herself and became a goddess. She later tells Takano that she has the power to forgive her and does forgive her. When Takano tries to shoot Mion, Hanyū offers herself to take Takano's sins. The Sound Novels and manga adaptations include the material summarized by Hanyū in this episode. Her Character Page contains more information including the Sound Novel arc Kotohogushi-hen which covers Hanyū's past as the adult Hai-Ryūn Ieasomūru Jeda. In this arc, Hanyū speaks primarily in her Adult Voice and behaves as an adult when Rika confronts the choice she must make.
  • Come Together, Right Now, Over Me!: Hanyū's daughter's vow anticipates the "key" to solving the entire series: everyone working together. In the conclusion to Minagoroshi-hen, the dead principle characters who had all finally worked together invite Hanyū to join them, and then during Matsuribayashi-hen, Hanyū is finally convinced to return to the world physically.
  • Religion 103: How to become a God: Hanyū's daughter started the myth of Oyashiro-sama as a vicious and wrathful god in order to compel the villagers and their descendents through fear to adhere to the rules.
  • Why Hanyū Did Not Intervene: the question why Hanyū did not intervene more directly to save Rika naturally comes to mind. Obviously, if she did as a veritable deux ex machina there would be no story. With her slapping Rika when Rika begs her to act as a goddess to save them in Matsuribayashi-hen, this arc suggests that Hanyū wanted Rika and her friends to use their own strengths to save themselves.
  • The First Rule of The Club is You Don't Talk about The Club: the manga adaptation does depict a game session with Rika, Mion, Reina, and Satoshi. Satoko stands a bit away with her arms folded and glaring, but as Satoshi explains, her stubborn sister will eventually come around.
  • Toy Gun Incident: as explained in previous arcs, the stress of academics broke Keiichi who started shooting at children with a pellet gun. While not fully explained in the anime adaptation, Keiichi hits a girl in her eye, confesses, and his family pays a sizable settlement to the girl's family to prevent further legal repercussions. His father decides to take Keiichi away from the city, which is why he moves his family to Hinamizawa.
  • Bernkastel "We've Found a Witch! May We Burn Her?!: this is the first and only time "Bernkastel" as well as "witch" is mentioned in the anime. No, no, NO! The figure at the end of the anime adaptation of Matsuribayashi-hen is not identified as "Bernkastel," nor are the poetic narratives at the end of the first season episodes attributed to her. When They Cry Wiki suspects that such references could not be adequately depicted in the anime due to time constraints. Even then, the manga adaptation handle it slightly differently as explained in both Rika and Bernkastel's main articles. When They Cry Wiki further suspects that since this is an OVA, the creators expected those interested may have played the Sound Novels. Thus, Mion's quote about Rika acting like a witch.

Trivia

  • Tamura Yukari (田村 ゆかり), who voices Furude Rika, also voices Furude Ōka.
  • Hanyū still calls Rena by her new name "Rena" even though in Rika's new world she remains "Reina." She also calls Mion and Shion by their full names.
  • Head Injuries: the severity of which are directly proportional to the time a person remains truly unconscious without other factors such as sedation. True loss of consciousness for over 24 hours indicates a severe head injury that cannot be managed in a clinic, and those who in what is then a true coma for a month, as Rena reveals . . . but . . . well . . . When They Cry Wiki suspects that Hanyū-chan Oyashiro-sama was involved "Nipaa~!"

Cultural References

  • Welcome Back Rika: not a situation comedy staring Furude Rika and John Travolta! Mion uses a shortened or more informal version of the traditional welcome to someone returning home: お帰り・okaeri.

Memorable Moments

  • Hanyū talks about her past life as a mother and her decision to sacrifice herself.
  • Hanyū reveals that she has voyaged to many worlds even outside of the human realm.
  • A Very Special Episode of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni: The After-School Special: Hanyū previously seems a meek childlike character when she finally appears. She will have glimpses of strength and scenes that suggest she was an adult and a mother. This arc portrays her more in that adult role with a heavy use of her Adult Voice as she teaches the still child Rika responsibility as well as Rika's own "sin": while Rika lamented her plight from life to life, she forgot how everyone else suffered as well in each and every life. Her "perfect world" requires the death of her parents and the suffering her friends experienced.

Quotes

  • "The ideal world you envisioned, one where everyone banded together to help each other, I shall bring it to life upon this very land!" – Furude Ōka
    • "Then I shall believe in your words." – Hanyū
  • "Since then, I have been living my life with you, my first friend in over a thousand years . . . and my daughter." – Hanyū
  • "Stop this! You may derive satisfaction from this self–flagellation, but it holds none for me!" – Rika
  • "But there is no meaning to a life which is chosen for you." – Hanyū
  • "If you are to commit the ultimate sin by killing your own mother, you will be making the choice to be exiled from this sinless paradise of your own volition." – Hanyū
  • "Did you ever pause to consider what your daughter must have felt about killing her own mother?!" – Rika
  • "Thanks for making us happy, even if it was only a dream." – Rena
  • "Not even a loser would see fit to babble about how it would have been better to have been born into a rich family!" – Satoko
  • "Here we have a girl who can't even get that right going around acting like she's some sort of witch." – Mion
  • "You wanted to show me that fragment of sin that you felt within me." – Rika
  • "That was all just a dream that I gave you so I could bully you a bit." – Hanyū

Gallery

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