PrologueVarious garbage floats in a stream. A landlord uses a stick to poke at one bag of garbage. An older woman tennant scolds him not to poke it since it smells so bad. The landlord agrees as his stick opens the bag releasing flies and a disemboweled corpse with nails sticking through the interphalangeal joints of its right hand.
In the Maebara residence Keiichi’s mother explains to Keiichi that the mentor of Keiichi’s dad has collapsed, so both of his parents are going to Tōkyō for a few days to help out. While they are gone, she explains, he will have to cook. A half-awake Keiichi mutters that he will be fine: "It'll work out . . . Work out. . . ."In school, Keiichi proclaims that it will not "work out." Rena observes that his parents must be having a hard time, but Keiichi interrupts to insist that the problem is his food. Satoko genially suggests that he try cooking his meals himself. Rena adds that the food one cooks for oneself often tastes the best. Mion heartily agrees, while Rika sympathizes that he may cut or burn his fingers. At home and with no choice, Keiichi decides to try. With the determination expected of any anime hero, Keiichi quickly chooses his tools, recipies, slices and dices in an impressive montage, only to succeed in creating a fire which reaches the kitchen ceiling. Initially, Keiichi compliments himself as "just like a master chef," only to watch the ceiling start to burn. Satoko and Rika visit just in time to stop his house from burning down. Relieved but embarrassed, Keiichi demands to know why they are tresspassing. Satoko retorts that he just got caught committing arson. Rika agrees: if they had not shown up, there would be fire trucks. Beaten, Keiichi collapses to his knees and apologizes. Satoko smiles and declares that he needs to be looked after.
Satoko quickly begins cooking dinner. When Keiichi expresses surprise, Satoko suggests that if he has nothing better to do than sit there, he can get the bowls and chopsticks ready. Since Satoko and Rika will eat with him, she happily instructs him to set the table for three. He rushes to complete this task; Rika cutely offers to help him. Keiichi observes that her "good mood" seems so different from Satoko's "bad mood." Rika disagrees and explains that she has not seen Satoko have so much fun in a while. It reminds Rika of when she was with her "Nii-nii," a diminuative of "ani" (兄) or "older/elder brother." Keiichi asks about "Nii-nii," and Rika explains this refers to Satoko's older brother. She further explains as Satoko smiles as she stirs a pot, that when Satoko was with her brother, she always had fun like this. Keiichi notes the past tense, and he asks in a whisper if the two live separately. Rika turns sad and confirms this. She then changes back and happily announces that Satoko was the one who suggested they visit Keiichi: "She couldn't leave you alone." She further asserts that Satoko is Keiichi's "younger sister" (妹・いもと・imōto). Keiichi marvels at this.
Satoko sets an impressive meal which Keiichi finds delicious. Satoko thanks his praise but downplays her results. She complains that her side dishes are all store bought, and she simply opened a can of sardines. Keiichi insists the meal is "great," and a sly Satoko accepts that if he can recognize that even she can make decent food, "then that's enough." Rika lets out that eating dinner like this is like when they would eat with Satoshi. Satoko turns sad as she confesses that she "misses" those days. She then wonders where he is and what he is doing. Keiichi is surprised by her response. Not knowing what Rika told him, Satoko explains that Satoshi is her "Nii-nii," only to embarrassingly correct herself and call him "Ani." Satoko does wonder how someone "so incapable of supporting himself," could run away, but she still expect him to suddenly return.Keiichi pats her on the head and confesses that he misjudged: he did not think she was such a strong person. Blushing, she stammers that she has always been strong and only played around with him. He calls her a "good girl," to which Satoko wonders if she is being teased. He insists her cooking is good, and when he seeks Rika's support, she agrees that the canned sardines are really good. Satoko whines over Rika's comment. As she leaves, Satoko turns to say, "Well, 'till tomorrow." Both she and Rika have their bikes. Keiichi asks if they need an escort in the dark, but Satoko retorts that she can find her home with her eyes closed. She then reminds Keiichi to brush his teeth before going to bed. Rika stays back. When Keiichi asks her if she forgot something, she declares that Keiichi earned “full marks” for the day and "claps" for him in congratulation. She then suggests that Satoko felt like her “Nii-nii” came back to her and had a good time. She states that "for now on," she would like him to play along with her scolding. Keiicih smiles and responds that he hopes her “Nii-nii” will come back soon. Satoko calls to Rika, and Rika wishes Keiichi a good night.
Second HalfKeiichi’s parents return as a chibi Keiichi lazes on the couch with his manga. The phone rings, his mother answers it, and she tells him he has a phone call. Over a scene of him racing on his bike down the main road, Keiichi voices surprise that there is a "total crisis, a fight!" He tells Satoko he is coming and to wait for him. With the determined look expected of an anime hero, Keiichi races on his bike with a golf club to a middle school field. He leaps from his bike triumphantly weilding his golf club only to find himself in the middle of a baseball game. Rena, Mion, Rika, Satoko, and other players stare at him in disbelief. Finally, Satoko slowly walks up to him to meekly ask why he is holding a golf club. A chibi Keiichi turns bright red in embarrassment. In narration, Keiichi explains that the "match" and "crisis" was merely a game between the Hinamizawa Fighters and their "old foes," the Okinomiya Titans. Unfortunately, Keiichi performs terribly against the unnamed Okinomiya Titans' pitcher. As he walks away dejected, Satoko holding a bat passes him and, soon after, he hears the sound of an aluminum bat strike a ball hard. Satoko crushes a home run for a "walk-off" win in the bottom of the ninth.
During the barbecue afterwards, Keiichi sits alone feeling like a fool and useless. A man comes up to him to remark on the energy of the other players. He introduces himself as Irie Kyōsuke, the physician of the Irie Clinic as well as the baseball team's manager. He admits that everyone calls him "manager" (監督・kantoku) and asks Keiichi to call him that as well. He then rhetorically asks if it feels like "your heart's being cleansed" when Satoko smiles. Keiichi jokingly dismisses this and Irie laughs. When Keiichi notes that Irie seems to like Satoko, he admits that he does, and he plans to propose to her when she grows older. As Keiichi chibi react in horror, Irie asks if he is also "after Satoko-chan." He continues that this will be a problem since he has "pursued her for many years." When still horrified chibi Keiichi asks if he is joking, Irie continues to explain that her brother use to play for the Hinamizawa Fighters. As he talks, Rika and Satoko notice them looking. Satoko smiles and waves to Irie and Keiichi. Irie continues that he wanted Satoshi to play more, "but he transferred." Keiichi repeats "transferred" as a question, and Irie becomes serious: "Misfortune happened in various ways."Irie then reveals that three years have passed since, around this time of year, Satoko and Satoshi's parents suffered an accident. In a flashback, two adults lean against the wooden railing on the edge of a very scenic cliff. From the vantage point of their legs, they fall forward as the railing gives way. Irie's voice explains that they fell off a viewing platform while they were on vacaction. In the flashback, a younger watches behind two shocked adults. Keiichi now understands that Satoko lives with Rika, another orphan. As Satoko passes them playfully chasing Mion, Irie admits that he has seriously considered adopting Satoko. However, he admits that he is single and has no experience raising children, but he wants her to keep smiling. Keiichi confesses that he wants the same thing. As he watches Mion playfully poke Satoko's face to the delight of Rika and Rena, Keiichi then asks, "hypothetically," if he could adopt Satoko, what would Irie do. Irie stares a bit, closes his eyes, places his hand to his mouth, and the voice of Shion responds, "First, I'll make her call me 'Master,' and train her to be a serving maid." A chibi Keiichi turns to look irritated at Shion. At first, he calls her "Mion," before correcting himself. When he demands to know why she is there, she responds that she is actually the Hinamizawa Fighters' "manager." He demands to know why she was not at the game, to which she responds that she is a "phantom manager." Irie patiently scolds her that there is not much excitement if she does not come to the games. Later in afternoon Keiichi washes trays from the barbecue. Shion states that she heard he played a major role in the game. Keiichi denies it and instead gives credit to Satoko’s home run. He remarks that he is surprised that she is so athletic. Shion smiles and remarks that Satoko is so different from Satoshi, and she must have taken all of the athletic skills. Keiichi is surprised that she knows about Satoko's brother, and Shion is similarly surprised that Keiichi knows. Keiichi admits that he never met Satoshi, but he knows a little about him. He suspects that after his parents passed away Satoshi "transferred" away. Shion becomes angry with the term "transferred," and demands to know who would say such a thing. Surprised, Keiichi asks her what is the matter with her all of a sudden. Shion turns away, regains her composure, and apologizes. She then asks that, "If you don't know much about it, please don't say he transferred. Truly, please." She then smiles as before and notes that he is on his last tray and starts to leave. Confused, Keiichi watches her leave. Mion, Rena, and Keiichi with his bicycle walk together past the water wheel. The two girls discuss the weather. Mion remarks that it will be rainy the next weekend, but Keiichi, not paying any attention, raises Satoshi. Rena reminds him that she explained that he transferred. Keiichi asks, "He didn't run away?" His assertion surprises both girls. He assures them that he does not accuse them of anything. Mion replies that they are not trying to hide something or deceive him. Darkly, Rena explains that Satoshi has not been home since one day. When Keiichi asks her where he went, she can only reply, "I don't know." Mion tries to explain that Satoshi did not return one day. She and others including the police searched the entire village but could not find him. The police discovered that he had been saving money from his part-time job and withdrew all of it the day he disappeared. Later, someone claimed to have seen a person who looked like him at Nagoya station. "I think that's a lie," Rena interrupts. She claims that he did not run away. When Keiichi asks her to explain, Mion orders Rena to stop. As wind gusts through the trees, Rena claims that his disappearance is a result of Oyashiro-sama’s curse. She explains that before Satoshi disappeared, he told her that he was being watched and followed, even in his house. As he lay in bed, it would stand by his pillow and look down on him. Mion growls at her to stop, but Rena continues to claim that such is a premonition of Oyashiro-sama's curse. She suspects that Satoshi had the desire somewhere in his heart to leave Hinamizawa and run away. Over Mion's continued protests, a wild-eyed Rena reveals that Oyashiro-sama is the guardian deity of Hinamizawa. Those who leave Hinamizawa will never be forgiven. "I apologized for that," she continues, "but Satoshi-kun didn't." For this reason, he suffered Oyashiro-sama's curse. The claim he "transferred" is "a lie selfishly made by those who dismiss the curse!"
Mion grits her teeth, a slap is heard, and Rena's hat falls to the ground as the higurashi cry. Mion scolds her that she told her to quit. Emotionless, Rena feels her cheek, while Mion looks at her hand. Mion suddenly brightens and reminds Keiichi that she promised to lend him some manga. She invites him to stop by her house. While Rena silently holds her cheek, the confused Keiichi finally understands a veiled suggestion and agrees to accompany Mion. Darkly, Rena picks up her hat and announces that she will "then" go on ahead alone. Mion wishes her a "see you tomorrow," and a now bright and smiling Rena returns it only to look down then walk away seriously. Both Mion and Keiichi watch her walk away to the sounds of the higurashi.
Mion turns to Keiichi and soothingly tells him not to worry about what he just saw. Staring ahead, Keiichi responds that it did not bother him and blames himself. As they watch Rena walk away, Mion explains that it is not as if they were trying to hide what happened to Satoshi; it is just a subject they do not want to think about much. Mion sits on the foundation of the water wheel and asks him if he had heard of Oyashiro-sama's curse. When Keiichi responds "just a little bit," Mion starts to explain that Satoko's parents were proponents of the dam. Keiichi admits that he thought everyone in Hinamizawa opposed the dam. Mion confesses that not everyone did, and Satoko's parents were leaders of the proponents. The government offered lots of compensation money, and proponents wanted the money. "Unluckily," Mion continues, Satoko and Satoshi's parents died during the Watanagashi Festival. For this reason, people think they were cursed by Oyashiro-sama. Keiichi reminds her that Satoshi running away is also seen as due to the curse. Mion merely replies, "something like that."She then tells Keiichi that, for Satoko, talk of her parents' deaths, the disappearance of her brother, and Oyashiro-sama's curse are all unpleasant. Keiichi understands as Mion explains that the group of friends try not to mention Satoko's family, "even if we're asked about Satoshi, we just lie that he transferred." Keiichi says he understands and apologizes for what happened during the day. He begins to take his leave, but Mion stops him to ask that he not mention Satoshi in front of either Satoko or Rena. When Keiichi looks surprised, Mion sadly explains that she thinks he noticed how Rena has taken Oyashiro-sama's curse very seriously since Satoshi "transferred." Keiichi wonders why Rena becomes so serious. Mion starts to say, "Rena was," then halts herself to proclaim it a secret and warn Keiichi not to say a word about it. Keiichi promises. Mion continues that she heard that Rena was once cursed by Oyashiro-sama: "She said so, and she believes it," and one cannot tease her about it. Keiichi agrees and promises that he will not talk about Satoshi anymore.
Rika's adult voice observes:
- "What cannot be saved is a single teardrop. What cannot be stopped is a cry of despair. What is coming is the chain of hatred."
after announcing the next episode, over the face of Irie looking concerned, she asks:
- "Can you believe it?"
In order of appearance
- Maebara Aiko
- Maebara Keiichi
- Maebara Ichirō (mentioned)
- Hōjō Satoko
- Ryūgū Rena
- Sonozaki Mion
- Furude Rika
- Hōjō Satoshi (mentioned)
- Irie Kyōsuke
- Kōichi Kameda (unnamed)
- Satoko and Satoshi's Parents
- Sonozaki Shion
Referbacks and Forwards
- As in Onikakushi-hen, Rena claims that Satoshi "transferred."
- "Bow to Your Sensei!": As in the previous episode, Keiichi performs the formal dogeza bow in apology.
- "Big Sis!:" Girls will sometimes affectionately call older girls "big sister" or 姉さん/ちゃん (nēsan/chan) with or without the polite prefix お (o). Even when Shion calls her sister an "idiot," she says, "お姉さんの馬鹿! (onēsan no baka)" To avoid spoilers which involves later arcs, one character will call another "nēsan" and, for her part, Satoko does call another character, "Nē-nē."
- Satoko does the cooking for her and Rika.
- Satoko and Rika have bicycles.
- Rika will "clap for you" for another character in a later arc.
- In Onikakushi-hen, Rena and Mion referred to Irie as "manager" due to his managing the baseball team. Extremely paranoid from the Hinamizawa Syndrome, Keiichi did not understand this.
- Irie claiming he has pursued Satoko for "many years."
- Satoko will also call Keiichi to help in this baseball game against the Okinomiya Tiger's star relief pitcher in Powerlessness of Yakusamashi-hen
- In the flashback, Satoko directly witnesses her parents' accident.
- Irie in another arc introduces himself to Rika and Satoko as "your master" using the same term explained in Trivia below.
- In this arc, Keiichi knows who Shion is.
- In Onikakushi-hen, Rena also describes footsteps following and being watched.
- The footsteps and being watched as a premonition to Oyashiro-sama's curse.
- In Onikakushi-hen, it is revealed that Rena had left Hinamizawa for a time and exibited violent behavior.
- Keiichi apparently already knows about the conflicts over the dam project.
- Bad Hair . . . and Belly . . . and Finger Joints Day: Although not specified in this arc of the anime, TIPS from the Visual Novel reveal that the corpse is Mamiya Rina who stole from the yakuza group headed by Sonozaki Akane's husband. She is caught, and her boyfriend and pimp Hōjō Teppei flees back to Hinamizawa.
- Walk-Off Home Run : while the term now seems to apply to the hitter being able to "walk off" ending the game, "walk off" originally referred to the pitcher having to slowly walk off the mound as the other team celebrates the win he just gave up. Any play that results in the home team scoring the winning run is a "walk off" such as a "walk off single/hit" when there is a runner in scoring position.
- "Who Da Masta?!: The term Irie uses for "master," which Shion mockingly repeats, is goshujin-sama (ご主人様・ごしゅじんさま). The "go" is the honorific 御 usually written as ご. It is also pronounced "o" as explained in the Cultural Reference below. Go + Shujin refers to someone else's husband; however, 主 (shu・しゅ) means "lord," or "master," and 人 (jin・じん) means "man." When They Cry Wikia has no further opinion on referring to another's husband as "master." Finally, sama (様・さま) is an especially formal honorific used when one wishes to place the person above oneself or another.
- "Who's the 'Manager?'": Shion uses the Japanese katakana rendering of the English "manager" (マネージャー・manējyā) to describe her position.
- Nii-nii (兄々): the formal name for an elder brother is お兄さん (oniisan) with 兄 representing the nii in that construction. The "i" vowel is longer than in the simple 兄 (ani) as in the title. お (御) adds formality. Similarly, an elder sister is お姉さん (onēsan) with a longer "e" than 姉 (ane). Satoko is initially embarrassed to use her diminutive in front of Keiichi, and she corrects herself to call him 兄 (ani). See Referbacks and Forwards for more interesting information!
- "Keiichi Will You Light My Fire?": Satoko, despite her age and previously seen "bratty" demeanor, knows how to cook well and safely. She knows how to stop Keiichi's fire.
- Irie's infatuation with Satoko: When They Cry Wiki has no further comment on the matter, no, not even on maid costumes.
- Rena having been cursed by Oyashiro-sama.
- "You might cut or burn your fingers. Poor, poor you." - Rika
- "Honestly, you need to be looked after." - Satoko
- "I'm honored to be praised, but it's not that great." - Satoko
- "Well, I bet he'll eventually come back out of the blue." - Satoko refering to Satoshi
- "There's nothing to be afraid of if we're together." - Rika
- "From now on, I'd like you to play along with her scolding sometimes." - Rika to Keiichi regarding Satoko
- "Um, can I ask you one thing? Why are you holding a golf club?" - Satoko to Keiichi
- "When you see Satoko-chan's smile, doesn't it feel like your heart is being cleansed?" - Irie
- "Really? I don't think you can even wash a single plate well with her smile." - Keiichi
- "I want her to keep on smiling forever." - Irie regarding Satoko
- "What's the matter with you all of a sudden?" - Keiichi to Shon
- "Before he slept, he said it stood by his pillow and looked down." - Rena discussing what Satoshi told her
- "Those who leave Hinamizawa and run away are never forgiven." - Rena
- "Oh, it's a secret. Say a word and our friendship is over." - Mion to Keiichi
- "She's normally easygoing, but her anger's quite scary." - Mion describing Rena to Keiichi