The Let's Play Archive

Katawa Shoujo

by Falconier111

Part 116: Proof of Existence

Update 105: Proof of Existence (Act 4, Scenes 8-9)

:eng101: True sex scene this time. :eng101:

Katawa Shoujo OST ~ Passing of Time

Katawa Shoujo OST - Raindrops and Puddles (Rain Sounds)

The first day of summer vacation is a disappointment. I woke up. Water came down from the leaden sky in Biblical proportions. I was optimistic at the time. A quick summer shower, I thought. Torrents of rain for a few minutes, then it's gone.

No such luck.

Rainwater is relentlessly pouring down from the blue-gray sky outside, streaming down the glass of my window in small brooks and rivers and gathering together to form miniature ponds on the walkways. Just like it has done for the past two and a half hours. So I've been half-assedly cleaning up in between half-assedly reading a book, packing my stuff on the side when I get bored of the first two. The weather drags my spirits pretty down too, making it harder to do anything properly.

Something bumping quite loudly against my door rouses me from my apathy. I hope it's not Kenji and his crazy indoors bowling alley.


I hear no more sounds from the corridor until I walk to the door and open it.

(Silence, Rain Sounds Continue)

Rin. I wish seeing her would evoke some more emotion in me, but for one, I'm too surprised that she came to see me and for two, she is soaking wet. Her uniform shirt is drenched and she is standing in a self-created puddle. Droplets of rainwater are dripping from her short bangs and sliding down her nose until they fall down from the tip. One. By. One.

HISAO: "Umm... hi. How are you feeling?"

RIN: "Medium normal."

Katawa Shoujo OST - Parity (Rin’s Theme) (Rain Sounds Continue)

The relative questionability of her statement aside, she sure doesn't look too good.

HISAO: "You're all wet."

RIN: "It's because I come from the outside. Do you know it?"

HISAO: "Why'd you be outside? It's raining buckets out there, if you haven't noticed."

RIN: "I haven't. It's raining pretty hard though. I was on a walk."

HISAO: "Is this what you call “wallowing in self-pity?”"

RIN: "Do you think I'm pitiful?"

HISAO: "No, I implied that you think you are."

RIN: "I'm not, and rain is not a sad thing. Don't you ever walk in the rain?"

HISAO: "I do, but only with proper equipment, like an umbrella."

RIN: "You just need to imagine you have a blue umbrella with white stripes."

HISAO: "It might be tough when rain is falling on my head."

RIN: "Just imagine harder."

… Yeah, she definitely is back to normal. Those half-sarcastic, inconsiderate remarks that really push my buttons even though she doesn't mean it, that vacant, spaced-out stare that always expects more than it gives. It's so... very much like her.

RIN: "I may need to come in. I need some help with this water and clothes I'm wearing."

My brain quickly solves this equation, and I stumble with my words, a stark display of contrast against Rin's easygoing self-invitation.

HISAO: "But, Emi..."

Rin shakes her head vehemently, causing water to sprinkle everywhere.

RIN: "She left. Besides she would just worry and fuss until she could not worry or fuss any more, which always takes a troublesomely long time. It's in fact longer than I want to hear her fussing, and I thought you probably are not the fussing kind."

(Silence, Rain Sounds Continue)

She slumps down on my desk with a squishy sound. Her soaked clothes are making the desk and everything on it wet but she doesn't care.


HISAO: "Okay. Fine. I'll help you out. I have a towel somewhere. Do you want dry clothes? Is a uniform fine? I'm taller than you, but..."

RIN: "Everything is fine."

With a little searching I find a fresh uniform and a fluffy towel from the depths of my closet. The towel in one hand and the uniform in the other, I turn to face Rin again, uncertain of the next step. There is something wrong with me, a normal guy would just—

RIN: "Stop worrying. It is not a problem."

She probably could see right through my hesitant demeanor. As if I was completely transparent to her. I push my anxiety away and concentrate on the eight buttons lined on her shirt, just like mine has. Only the first button is an obstacle, and after getting it over I undo the others with slightly less shaking hands.

Katawa Shoujo OST - Letting My Heart Speak (Rain Sounds Continue)

Throwing the soaked shirt aside, I reveal Rin's pale upper body, shrouded only in her light blue brassiere which instantly reminds me of her saying it's her favorite color. I try not to think too much about... stuff, but it's hard not to look at her body with what I can only think of as mixed feelings. I don't know what to think of this, so I just watch her.

Rin looks... brittle. She is like a shell, a fragile thing just barely holding together. Her ribs, each of them visible under her pale skin, are moving up and down in the rhythm of her breaths. Rin always struck me as quite thin, but I realize now that the manic creative period before the exhibition opening might've caused her to lose weight. Did she eat properly and enough? Definitely not and probably not. This ugly, yet beautiful bare minimum of a human body that belongs to someone I care about is a contradiction of aesthetics in itself, oddly becoming of her. My eyes follow her collarbone to her shoulder and down her arm until the abrupt end. No, it's less than the bare minimum, I think with a passing pang of sadness and some guilt for thinking like that.

Her arms, degenerated into almost nothing but bone and skin due to lack of use, look very short now that the long sleeves of her uniform are not covering them: My lack of any negative reaction makes me think that I've actually grown pretty accustomed of the various physical abnormalities of my schoolmates. I always wondered why Rin keeps her shirt sleeves long, only tying them in a simple knot at where the elbow would be. It seems a bit impractical, but then again she is not exactly the pinnacle of practicality. Maybe she likes it, maybe it is somehow important to her. Maybe there is no deeper meaning to it. I feel like asking, and almost do, but Rin's miserable state requires a higher priority of my attention. She's stopped talking too, after we ran out of spiky greetings. I guess there is no need for chitchat then.

I pick up the towel from the bed and wrap it around her head, rumpling it all over her hair until most of the rainwater is hopefully soaked into the fabric. She peeks from below the towel at me, looking up with impassive eyes. It looks like she wants to say something without saying it. It's that kind of a look. But I can't read what she is thinking about from her face, so I just keep on fussing with the towel around her shoulders and hair. The silence is oppressive, terrifying. Communication between us has suddenly been reduced to the movements of my hands and the towel, and Rin swaying her body to and fro. My jagged breathing and her quiet breaths, trying to find a common rhythm that just is not there. I think I can hear her heartbeats, or maybe they are just mine redoubled.

As I brush a rogue strand of hair aside from her ear, Rin suddenly presses her cheek against the back of my hand. The contact is electric, a jolt of current surging through me.

Whether she seeks comfort, warmth or just my touch I wouldn't know, but I can't help touching her back, caressing her soft cheek with my hand. And with closed eyes, she kisses me, on the fingers, counting the joints with her lips... I am saddened beyond my expressive capability. Here we are, a boy and girl, both in love or something like that with each other, or maybe not... and yet...

Something is broken, I can feel it in me and in Rin; in the way our gazes merely brush against each other, shying away from contact; in her closed, timid posture and in my way of touching her like a china doll, afraid of shattering her delicate form. In how we are closer than we have ever been, yet I'm not feeling happy. It's like yesterday. When did tenderness and forlornness become one and the same word, acts of affection start invoking only longing? ...How, why did we end up like this? “No, don't answer that,” I'd like to say to myself, but fighting against the omniscience of self-awareness is a lost cause. Still, I am here, and Rin is here, and it feels like she might be able to solve whatever problems she has. And if she can, why couldn't I? Why couldn't we?

It feels like taking that step is too much, too difficult, too uncertain. So for now, all I can do is dry her up so she won't get a cold again.

I pet her head, trying to sort out the hair that refuses to be sorted out even when wet. A pair of dark, glazed eyes follows my every movement.

HISAO: "Pants too?"

She nods an answer, leans back and spreads her legs, with a grotesquely inviting gesture that makes a nasty feeling crawl up and down my spine like a bad premonition. It's not enough to sober me though, as the silence is starting to make me feel detached from myself. I move automatically, without thinking even though I should; I should talk to her about this, or at least about something. The silence is a spell, a pact that has bound us to this private world made of the dull sound of rainfall and the soft feel of her skin against my fingers. The button of her trousers is fastened tight, but it opens surprisingly easily. Slipping them off is hard, mostly because she is sitting on them, with no intention of standing up to ease my task. I kneel down uncomfortably and titillatingly between her legs so I can quickly dry her bare feet, remembering that they are as important to her as hands are to me. As I work the towel up from her ankles, Rin brushes her thigh against my cheek and nudges the small of my back with her heel to make me come closer. I look up to meet her silent stare that was waiting for me to look up. That unassuming, expectant stare seems to say that the ball is in my court.

Katawa Shoujo OST - Romance in Andante II

:eng101: You know how a lot of the sex scenes we’ve seen so far have been extraneous, or at least not crazy important to the plot? That isn’t the case here. They get closer, he goes down in her, and then he pauses to think about what’s happening. :eng101:

HISAO: "You know, this really is not what friends should be doing."

I whisper, once again noticing how such a simple matter as talking can be overbearingly difficult at times.

RIN: "Will you stop being my friend?"

That wasn't what I meant, but her serious tone and the layers of connotations behind Rin's question give me pause.

HISAO: "Nah."

RIN: "I... think it might be all right. Even if you did."

I hug her and smile into her hair, understanding Rin perfectly for once.

RIN: "You are wet."

The remnants of water on her skin have drained into my shirt. Somehow, even her statements of the obvious make me glad right now.

HISAO: "You're right. I am. But that's your fault."

RIN: "I want to see you."

I comply, standing back to open the buttons of my shirt, much more quickly than when I undid Rin's buttons. A sudden sense of haste strikes me, spurring me to rush forward. Every second I'm not touching Rin is a second wasted, a chance lost. My belt buckle proves an obstacle despite my ability to open it in an eyeblink under normal circumstances. While I fumble with it, I don't notice Rin bringing her foot up between us until she starts tracing my chest with her toe. I look down to see what she's looking at...

HISAO: "My heart..."

I reflexively flinch back, covering the scar tissue in the middle of my chest. The shallow mark that the surgery following my heart attack left on my body has healed already but... well, it's not a particularly pretty sight if not overly repulsive either. It's barely noticeable, but she does have an eye for detail. Is this why she said she wanted to see me? I had sorta forgotten about this because of all this mess with Rin, but now all the unpleasant things connected to my condition surface at once, rushing through my mind like a flash flood. And oh God all the stories about old guys getting heart attacks when having sex, what if...

RIN: "Hisao."

... Realizing that I might just have spoiled the mood, I stumble to explain myself.

HISAO: "Ah... sorry, it's just that..."

RIN: "Let me touch you."

Her eyes are sultry, inviting as she sits there bare naked without an inkling of shame. I never thought Rin could look like that. Yeah, I know this is not how it should go. Even though Rin is right here, even though there should be no more questions, no obstacles, not this maddening feeling that something is constantly wrong... The same feeling that clutched my heart yesterday makes its appearance. We are together. In a way that is difficult to define, it eludes description as stubbornly as it evades change. Would a relationship like this be all right? Could we ever change to become closer? Even though we would stay together for all of eternity, we might never find our mutual understanding. But there is no such thing as eternity. This may mean that we will not be together forever. If not our differences, then the flow of time will pull us apart with irresistible force.

Rin is a creature of the moment, of whim and of impulse. I am nothing of the sort. This is a fact that I can understand very clearly. If for no other reason, for this reason I should grasp this moment. Even if it's the only moment we will ever have, I should not let myself spoil it. Even if I can't escape myself. Rin can't either, I know it now. We both have things we can't let go, things we can't not think. Feelings we can't not feel. But she allows herself to want me without any restraint. Here and now.

HISAO: "I'm sorry, you know..."

RIN: "Hisao, you really have to stop worrying."

Rin interrupts me before I get further, which is good because I don't know what I could have said. Her voice, void of its usual spaciness, scolds me softly, without an edge.

RIN: "You really have to learn to let go."

She scans me calmly, almost calculatingly. I wonder what I look like through her eyes. Damn. They are so green it almost hurts. I always was so enchanted by her eyes, those mysterious, captivating eyes that always were too restless for their own good. But I was also always intimidated by them. Yeah. Rin is intimidating, on more than one level and especially right now. She is frighteningly lucid, the goosebumps on her skin giving away that she is cold, or scared too. Either way, I steel myself and step back to Rin, embracing her to feel her in my arms again and to banish my doubts. The sight of her gentle, loving eyes seems to melt those doubts away like the last snow of winter. She presses her head against my shoulder, seeking a place to rest herself in, leaning against me like I lean against her.

RIN: "Let go."

:eng101: They begin, only for Rin to stop this time. :eng101:

RIN: "Wait..."

I stop moving, slightly alarmed. Maybe it hurts, or... She looks at me in a way that I can't really begin to interpret.

RIN: "Is this it?"

HISAO: "...Huh?"

RIN: "You said I don't have to be alone."

Her eyes are full of an innocent, fuzzyheaded confusion that makes me chuckle a little and pet the back of her head.

HISAO: "Yeah. This is what I meant. That you have someone you can come to when you get soaked in a rain. It means you are not alone. If there is such a person for you."

She answers with a kiss…

:eng101:They have their moment and the camera fades to white as they finish. :eng101:

Katawa Shoujo OST ~ Passing of Time (Rain Sounds Continue)

:eng101: Passing of Time is played in full here, instead of the eight second clip that normally plays during scene transitions – the only time that happens in the game.

The next section consists of text displayed center screen, without text boxes. :eng101:

Present. “Present” is a fleeting and vague concept at best. The moment between the past and the future? That doesn't really mean anything. Thinking too much about things that don't make sense is a waste of time. That's why living through the present is always the best option. Besides, for us who can't foresee the future and who forget the past too easily, present is really the only proof of our existence. Even though existence will go on even if you forget about it for a while, it's good to seize the day at least every once in a while. That way... you can confirm that you are, in fact...


Katawa Shoujo OST - Raindrops and Puddles (Rain Sounds Continue)

I am pretty sure that the girl who is standing there half-naked, staring out of the window of my room, has a much better grasp of “present” than I do. As for me... well, right now I'm somewhat confused by my present state, since I should try to locate my shirt and not stare at Rin's butt. But I just can't stop looking at her. She is so close to the glass that her nose is probably going to leave a mark. At least her breathing does, when it condenses on the rain-cooled window glass before quickly disappearing again. My shuffling around to get dressed doesn't rouse Rin from her contemplation, which is fine, really. I don't mind the silences as much as I used to. Only after I'm almost finished with buttoning up my shirt does Rin say something, still without turning to look at me.

RIN: "Let's go somewhere."

HISAO: "Where?"

I can only assume she is inviting me and not the windowsill, but it's a fair guess.

RIN: "I know."

HISAO: "What?"

RIN: "Help me get dressed. I think today is the day. Come on, clothes."

Clothes, clothes... what an impatient tone. I crouch down to pick up her bra from the floor where it had fallen, discarded in the haste of undressing and forgotten there. Hanging it from between my fingers like a dead fish, the same hesitation that grasped me when I was undressing Rin is creeping inside my head again. Is intimacy really something this difficult for me to handle?

RIN: "Come on, you got it off just fine. This is the same but the other way around. It's like talking backwards. Ysae s'ti tub, drah smees."

Perplexed by her sudden and prodigious display of mental processing capacity, I forget to attempt reversing her gibberish back. I'm pretty sure I couldn't switch to talking backwards that fluidly even with some practice.

HISAO: "Umm, could you repeat that?"

RIN: "Ysae s'ti tub, drah smees."

HISAO: "Got it. Fine, I'll give it a try."

Rin was right, the locking mechanism is simple enough, and I get the little plastic hooks right on the third attempt.

HISAO: "There."

RIN: "Ti tsujda ot evah uoy won."

HISAO: "What? Please stop that, I don't speak backwardese."

She shakes her head as if needing to banish the backwards way of thinking with a physical gesture. I know a few people who could benefit from that kind of ability.

RIN: "I got stuck. Now you have to adjust it."

HISAO: "Adjust?"

RIN: "That's what I said."

HISAO: "No, I asked what you meant."

RIN: "You know, so that they are... fine."

Oh. Fine, you say? ... As I have no idea when her breasts are supposed to be “fine,” I end up fumbling around her chest for a good while without really getting anywhere. Not that I would complain, but Rin does.

RIN: "Emi is better than you at this."

Her impatient tone ticks me off, even though I can't really disagree. Rin suddenly seems to be in an awful hurry.

HISAO: "Yeah well excuse me, could that be because she is a girl and can actually relate?"

RIN: "I don't think so, she has just about as much chest as you do."

(Silence, Rain Sounds Continue)

With her bra and breasts eventually “fine” as they should, the rest of her clothes are considerably easier to put on. Rin launches towards the door even though her shirt is not even buttoned up all the way yet. Left with little choice, I run after her.

Katawa Shoujo OST - Air Guitar (Rain Sounds Stop, Nature Sounds)

As soon as I realize that we are heading for the side entrance leading to the forest, I think I know where Rin wanted to go, although I couldn't say why she'd want to go there. Then again, I can't really assume my guesses to be anywhere near correct when Rin is concerned, not even for a quite generous definition of “correct.” The forest behind the walls smells of rain, the last raindrops are still dripping from the wet undergrowth into the earth despite the rain being gone for a while already.

We stroll along with an unhurried pace that Rin sets, giving me time to take in the calming atmosphere. I think I can hear Rin saying hello to at least three different trees while she walks past them, but I ignore it, just like the trees do. She leads me to the narrow side path leading up to the hilltops, as I guessed. I peek through the canopy trying to find a rainbow, but there doesn't seem to be one. It's perfect weather for rainbows. The sun is shining low, and rain has passed not too long ago. Well, whatever. I lower my eyes from the treetops to see the gaunt back of the girl who is climbing up the hill slowly, without losing her balance. A few steps ahead of me on the path, but still within my reach. I don't think I ever could reach a rainbow, but reaching Rin... it seems less impossible than it used to seem.

The clear sky greeting us from above the meadow clearing seems vast and beautiful. A strong wind is herding the rainclouds away from the town, to the other side of the mountains in the distance. The sight is pretty, but...

(Silence, Nature sounds)

A speck of white flies past the edge my peripheral vision, but when I turn to look, it's already gone. Another follows, then a third. Before I realize it, dozens of almost invisible small tufts of white are flying all around us.

RIN: "Look, the flowers."

Ah. I see it now.

Katawa Shoujo OST - Comfort (Nature Sounds)

The sea of dandelions that covered the hilltop on our last visit has changed over the days. Where there was bright yellow before, there is now fluffy white. Some of the flowers have already shed their seeds, but many are still waiting for a suitable gust of wind. Today those gusts are not in short demand, every now and then they shake the grass thoroughly, and suddenly the air is thick with dandelion seeds. One by one, the seeds separate from the flower heads and are lifted away. A commonplace event, but one that seems to fascinate Rin for some reason. She's turning her head from side to side, marveling at the change happening all around her as the seeds fly away. I watch them too, following the white tufts floating with the wind towards the horizon, and imagine that I can see them even after they disappear from my sight.

RIN: "Hisao."

HISAO: "What is it?"

RIN: "Do you love me?"

I snap to attention, to meet her suddenly very serious face that is not looking only at the flowers any more. What a tough question, asked just like that, out of the blue. Still, her bluntness compels me to answer rapidly.

HISAO: "I don't know. Maybe I do."

Maybe too rapidly.

RIN: "What does that mean?"

HISAO: "...I don't know."

Rin sighs, perhaps unhappy with my wishy-washy answer. I would be too.

RIN: "Me neither. I don't think I know much about love."

HISAO: "... ...It's fine, isn't it?"

“How should I know?”, the shrug of her shoulders seems to say, hesitating to give a firmer answer. She stays silent for only a second too long, but even that second isn't long enough for me to think ahead...

RIN: "I love you."

Those three words freeze me in place like a rabbit staring into headlights, but I'm not a rabbit and I'm just staring into Rin's eyes that seem far, far too impassive for what she just let out of her mouth. Rin looks pretty serious though, until she sticks out her tongue, frowns a little and confuses me even more than her words did. Why does she look mildly unhappy? Was it a confession of her deepest feelings, a test to see how I would react, a test to see how she would react?

RIN: "It tastes weird."

HISAO: "...Tastes?"

RIN: "Yeah. So weird."

She laughs, maybe nervously or so I want to think, but stops midway when she notices how strange it sounds.

RIN: "Like... I don't know what, I... don't think there is a word for this."

Rin keeps on talking as though there was no meaning behind her words, steady and careless words dropping from the same tongue that formed the more important ones.

RIN: "A word for... ummm..."


RIN: "'s like..."

She can't.

RIN: "..."

Find the words.

RIN: "..."

Rin just keeps staring at me, stumbling with her words as if her brain suddenly ground to a halt. She looks awfully confused, much like how I feel right now as I wait for her to explain. But she doesn't, she just blinks a few times, the flutter of her long lashes catching my fancy because she looks like she is petrified otherwise. Until I realize what they were fighting against.

It's those weird tears again, not associated with sadness or happiness, not pitiable sobbing nor laughter of joy. Just tears, spontaneously and without a warning, like that one time in her classroom.

RIN: "Ah."

Just a few of them, not enough to make a fuss about, so Rin doesn't make a move to hide them even after noticing. Rin cries, looking like she has no idea why, and somehow a great uneasiness grows in my chest when I look into her watery eyes that stare right back at me. It petrifies me too, the shock of the incomprehensibility of this situation. I just don't know what is happening any more.

HISAO: "Rin? What's wrong?"

RIN: "I..."

She shakes her head in confusion, stumbling to get the words out of her mouth.

RIN: "Sorry... I might be a little afraid of you."

The words are muttered slowly, with a small voice that is as disbelieving of what it's saying as I am.

HISAO: "What? Why?"

RIN: "I don't know. Saying that just made me feel like that. People cry when they are afraid, right? See? I can do it too."

She's averting her gaze now, deliberately not looking at me. It bewilders me, at least as much as what she is saying.

RIN: "I... I sometimes, with you, want to run away so badly but I can't move it's like my legs turn into lemon panna cotta pudding and my heart feels like it's going to explode and..."

She slumps her shoulders melancholically.

RIN: "Has a thing like this ever happened to you?"

…I remember the leaden sky above the frozen forest and the sound of the leafless branches clacking against each other. It's like a memory from another life.

HISAO: "Yeah. Once. My heart hurt a lot back then, too."

RIN: "But I thought your thing was not contagious."

I shake my head and a tiny, slightly forced smile rises on my lips. The other ailment of my heart could very well be contagious and I wouldn't care a bit.

HISAO: "What are you afraid of? I never thought I was scary."

Rin shakes her head desperately, as if knowing that the tangle inside her mind won't be undone with just that.

RIN: "You make me feel that I should be someone else than me. It's a scary thing. It happens when you are being nice to me. Like yesterday. I never know what to do at times like that. It's hard."

Her voice is barely audible, a whispered admission of something that is too embarrassing to even think, not to mention to say aloud. Rin has never been one to be embarrassed so she does utter it aloud, only timidly as if by instinct.

RIN: "But I want to do something. But I don't know if this me can."

For a moment, we just stare at each other as if waiting for the other to say something.


HISAO: "You are so stupid."

Rin's lips taste salty and scared against mine. As I grasp her into an embrace, I feel my heart thumping in my chest painfully. Even though I am glad that she can say things like that, they make me sad after all. Rin's spirit, her passion, her strength. All those things that I hold dear are the ones I don't want to change. How should I treat them? Where are they headed to? Is that future irrevocably different from mine? That anxiety will never loose its grip on my heart, but I think I could learn to live with it. Slowly, the pain in my heart dies out, and it settles into the same rhythm as Rin's. We listen to that for some time.


After our lips break apart, it takes a while for either of us to realize that we can say something now.



RIN: "See? You are a really kind person, even when you are not. It's the most scariest thing ever. I think... that all I was ever afraid of is your kindness."

HISAO: "Is it bad? Even if you are afraid?"

She thinks about this for a while, furrowing her brow as though this was some kind of hard math problem.

RIN: "No. I'm all right with it. It's fine, if it's you."

Like a weight lifted from my chest, her words elate my heart, filling it with... I don't know, happiness? What else could it be? This time my smile is genuine. Rin steps back, still smiling gently at me like I do at her.

While she wipes her face on her shoulder, I pick up a round, plump dandelion clock and bring it to my pursed lips.


They spread out into the wind that picks them up to carry them to a new home. To think, only a few short weeks ago they were so different. This is change.

HISAO: "Hey, so the flowers became what they were meant to become, like you said the last time. What about you? Did you become a true artist? Or did you not, because you ran away?"

She pauses for a while to ponder my question...

...and shrugs her shoulders. It almost makes me laugh.

The carefree easiness of her gesture is a lovely thing, a sign of how Rin can, truly and really, without any restraints whatsoever, shed the entire weight of the world from her shoulders, should she will so. She is, in every possible and probably a few impossible ways... free. And I think I might love her for that.

RIN: "I don't think it matters. Let's just watch the clouds for today."

Katawa Shoujo OST - Aria De l’Etoile

She takes five steps to climb on a large rock so she can rise as high as it's possible here, and stands on tiptoes. When you reach for the clouds, every inch counts.

HISAO: "Sure, let's watch the clouds. It's good to do something you really want to do, every now and then."

RIN: "Yeah. You are probably right."

I glance upwards at the blue sky opening high above us. It's a deep, cerulean vastness that spreads to fill my entire field of vision and beyond. Yet Rin stays on her rock, peering at the distant horizon where the rainclouds are drifting further away from us.

RIN: "I have decided something."

That dreaming voice of hers, spoken to the wind that carries it to my ears, is lacking resolve in tone but is full of it in meaning.

RIN: "It's all right to be me after all."

It's all right? Her decisions always seem to be pretty... far out. Well, I suppose that is an important realization. Coming to terms with oneself, accepting yourself, being fine with what you are. A simple resolution of heart that for some people is overbearingly hard to do, if not impossible. I do realize well enough that I might also be one of those people. Rin too...

Maybe we are not that different after all. Maybe to accept someone else, you must first accept yourself.

Maybe that is a necessary step, which we didn't take until now. Looking at her standing on that rock, I believe that she can find whatever she is looking for. And so can I.

The wind catches her hair and clothes, and Rin spreads her short arms into an embrace that is so very very tiny, but as wide as she can ever do. For a moment it looks like she herself might take flight, and I have to hold myself back to not reach for her shoulder, to not drag her back to me. But this picture is something I can only watch, it is something for me to remember. Rin's sleeves are flapping freely in the wind, her hair wildly tousled by it, her skin touched by the setting sun. Her sleek form that I've come to adore is quivering in the cool wind that carries the small white specks past her, each a beginning of a new flower. All that is engraved inside my heart. Like those tiny seeds scattered into the wind, I'm sure that Rin too can take her place in this world without the need to create her own inside of it. Maybe she believes it too, and standing as close to heaven as possible, she is giving the world a big hug. To me it seems like the entire world really could fit there, between those small arms of hers, inside of her all-encompassing embrace.

RIN: "Hisao?"

She looks at me in the same way she calls my name, carelessly over her shoulder with a strange happiness in her voice and in her eyes. I gaze into those mysterious, dark eyes that are curiously twinkling from below her auburn hair. Although I'm too far from her to see it, I'm sure they are reflecting my image.

HISAO: "What is it?"

RIN: "What's the word for when it feels inside your heart that everything in the world is all right?"