Volume 05 ended with a problem but let’s cross our fingers that everything will be resolved in this chapter or at least this volume.
The New Problem
While Maaya was still drowning with calls from friends to explain things, Chigira called Maaya as soon as he found out about the picture. Maaya being Maaya, told Chigi that she was doing fine despite Chigira checking on her and even asked if he could be there for her during this time.
While Maaya was pondering over what’s gonna happen moving forward, the next few panels showed Chigira staring at a book titled “Tomb of the Chrysanthemum” and then some flashbacks where he first saw Maaya at the station crying from reading the same book. On another page was a rainy day and Maaya was running after Chigi which we can only assume was a flashback of before they knew each other and probably when he started getting interested in her.
Running Away from the Problem
The next day came, and Tezuka also saw the picture circulating and is now worried about Maaya and how he could help get the rumor/problem sorted out. Everyone was talking about Chigira in the hallway and Maaya even skipped class.
Because of that, Tezuka went to confront Chigira and to know Maaya’s whereabouts. He told Chigira that their homeroom teacher didn’t get a call about Maaya not going to school and that even her friends couldn’t reach out to her. Unfortunately, even Chigi was surprised by the news so he told Tezuka to look for her at the library and park near the station while he’ll look for her in places he thinks she’ll be.
Still looking for Maaya, Chigira broke the misanga Maaya gave him which made him even more anxious.
Maaya on the other hand was just in some spot thinking about what’s gonna happen next. She thinks everyone is mad at her. Her friends will think she betrayed them because she hid her relationship with Chigi, while other people will be against her being with Chigi because she’s “plain”. She was scared to face everyone.
She thinks she deserved what was happening given how she didn’t tell Chigi that she has moved on from her previous love since she wanted to keep playing pretend with him. She felt so guilty for lying to everyone including Chigira because of her selfishness.
While thinking about what she should do, she saw some pigeons surrounding her bag and noticed the “pretend mutual” to-do list tucked in the pocket. Looking at it made her think about how Chigira is probably disillusioned now and she was sure their pretend game will finally come to an end given that she even ran away from their problem which for sure made Chigi hate her.
She was about to rip the list off when she noticed some notes added to it. She opened it one more time to check and looks like Chigi read all that was on the list. He added comments for each, agreeing to some of them while asking for more details from the others. At the end of the list, he wrote “I wanna do all the things you wanna do.”
She realized how it’s not enough to just be grateful to someone, especially to someone who’s more important to her than herself. At the same time, she was also aware of her selfishness because all she thinks about was herself considering she ran away from their problem.
A text from Chigira woke her back to reality where she realized she left him by himself to face everything. How she never even explained her side to everyone and got Chigi involved. From then, she finally made her resolve and said goodbye to her love (I’m assuming she’ll stop their whole pretend even if it means they can’t be together anymore) because she can’t let Chigira make a sad face. She’ll protect him this time.
We can see her running (probably on the way to school to clear things out) when a hand stopped her and the next page was Chigira hugging her from behind.
End of Pretend Mutual Love?
He finally found her. When Maaya asked how he did that, Chigira just said it was because he’s her stalker. Maaya felt bad that Chigira looked so out of breath and it was obvious that he’s been looking for her the whole time. She tried to apologize but Chigi cut her off and said there was nothing for her to apologize for since everything was all because he asked her to do the pretend game.
He said he knew this day would come but he kept stalling and now he knows it has to come to an end. With that, the chapter ended with Chigira telling Maaya that they should stop the whole pretending.