Hyouka: Episode 2

It has been one month since Houtarou, Eru, and Satoshi reestablished the classics club. While Houtarou was alright wasting time inside the room, Eru is highly dissatisfied, wishing that they could do something instead of staying here doing nothing. Eru suggest creating an anthology for the culture festival, but Houtarou wishes to have nothing to do with it because, or him, it was a waste of time. Eru, told him that the Classics Club has always been providing an anthology for the school for 40 years, so it would be a waste if they did not continue with the tradition. Having no other choice, Houtarou decides to follow along, but Eru does not actually know what an anthology consists of. The two decide to check out the room for any past anthologies, but none were found. Eru decides that they should check out the library and runs to it while Houtarou stays behind. Eru would have to drag him with her in order to get him to the library; however, Houtarou does not wish to go there for a personal reason.

Working at the library today was Ibara Mayaka, someone whom Houtarou knew since first grade, but there seems to be bad blood between the two. Satoshi, whom Mayaka had a crush on since junior high,  happened to be around when all three of them were at the library. Eru would finally find the time to ask if they stored any of the Classics Club’s anthologies, to which Mayaka does not know, but the main librarian should if it is kept in the archives. She state that they would have to wait since she was at a meeting. Although Eur and Houtarou were willing to wait, Mayaka told him to go home, to which he does until Satoshi stops him so that Mayaka could tell him that story.

Apparently, there was a popular book, but every time someone checks it out, it would be returned later that day. This has been happening for five weeks, but neither Mayaka nor Satoshi knew the meaning behind this. The large book would be taken during lunch break and immediately returned after school and a different person would take it everyday. Houtarou wanted nothing to do with the story and was about to walk out of the library when Eru, with her eyes sparking, grabs him over to her and forces him to listen with her. As information about the story heightens, Eru would be very interested in solving his mystery and wanted Houtarou to help her with solving this case. Houtarou did not want to be a part of this, but Eru continues to urge him to the point of Houtarou raising his voice. This was not natural for him because he wanted to use the least amount of effort as possible. In the end, Houtarou has no choice but to solve it with her.

Houtarou checks on the book and concludes that it is either just very popular or that all were at the same club and were taking turns using it. Given the time span, it would be difficult to figure how one can use it at such as short amount of time. Eru starts smelling the book and finds out that the book was a certain scent on it that she cannot point out. For Eru to find out there was a certain scent on it, Houtarou was able to deduct something. Houtarou tells Eru to go somewhere for him, but she brings Houtarou with her, much to his disapproval. Mayaka would want to come as well, for she was interested in his deduction as well. Satoshi would have no choice but to stay on guard at the library.

Houtarou would lead all of them to the art room, where Eru and Mayaka would see several portraits of the girls possibly written on the card holding the book as a prop. Houtarou deducted that, within such a short amount of time, the only way one was able to use such a large book was at class. The only time in which all of the girls of different classes could use the same books is if they shared a same class. In this case, all of the girls have an art class in common, thus the reason why Eru was able to smell a strong order similar to paint from the book. Eru and Mayaka were very impressed by his deduction and wondered how he did it, to which he stated he was lucky, not wanting to waste any more energy that he should despite their shining eyes at her.

On a tangent, I found it very interesting how Houtarou finds Eru’s eagerness to drag him around to do what he feels are unnecessary things similar to choosing a menu from a restaurant. At the table, Houtarou was presented two menu’s: a red one and a blue one. Houtarou did not wish to choose either because he can feel the energy and liveliness emitted from both menus. Houtarou was about to choose the blue menu when Eru grabbed his hand and forced him to choose something from the red menu. I found this a mirror to the scene of The Matrix where Morpheus offers Neo a red or a blue pill. Neo chose the red pill in order to look deeper in the “truth” that Morpheus speaks of. However, Houtarou chose the blue menu, a symbolism that he wished for this to be over with and return to where he once was. Even so, Eru forces him to take the red menu, almost making him follow her as he gets sucked in a journey that he did not want to go to.

Back to the story, everyone returns to the library and talk about how easily Houtarou solved the problem, but something does not feel right. Everyone was talking, chatting, and having fun, but what about Houtarou. This is not something that he is used to doing, nor is it the kind of people he wanted to socialize with, if any. The bright atmosphere that comes from the three highly contrast with his dull view of life with no energy. Houtarou wanted to disappear, but Eru once again stopped him, for she did not forget what their main mission was.

The library woman would be available, but when asked of there were any previous anthologies from the Classics Club in the library archives, the librarian’s looks and words seem suspicious. She states that they have no such things in their archives, meaning they were back in square one. However, something about what she said feels off, to me. It is almost as though she does know of it, but is hiding the information from them. Is there something about the Classics’s Club that she does not want either of the four to know about? In any case, Houtarou claims that they will find it eventually, but Eru thinks otherwise. In fact, she seems more serious than she has ever been. Exactly what is on her mind, and why does she need Houtarou to make her wish come true?

The next day, Eru would call Houtarou and tell him that she wanted to meet him today. There was something important that she wanted to say to him. Having no other choice, Houtarou chose to meet up at a cafe, but Eru would come about thirty-minutes late. Even when she arrived, she was quiet throughout most of her time. Impatient, Houtarou decided to leave if she will not say anything else, but Eru tells him not to, for she has to be prepared for what she was about to day. Houtarou asked if it was a confession, but Eru states it could be considered as such. Exactly what does Eru wish to confess to Houtarou about? Is it love, or something more serious that she wanted solved? It will not be long until we find out just what is it she wants from Houtarou.

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