(Spoilers in this review) Summary: Takeda is fooled by Hotaru’s impromptu lie and he isn’t against the idea of Yuma being intimate with Hotaru. Yuma herself is left wondering about her relationship with Hotaru since Hotaru claims that kissing Yuma means nothing and does so on a whim, which frustrates Yuma. Hotaru pulls her off to the side and kisses her to prove her point, which is seen by Fujiwara. Fujiwara confronts Hotaru over her boldness, which prompts Hotaru to reveal that this wasn’t part of the deal. It’s then revealed that Hotaru and Fujiwara made a pact where they would satisfy each other’s desires while forbidding each other from being nosy. Meanwhile, Yuma is left wondering about her relationship with Hotaru since Hotaru is back to kissing her despite what she said in episode 7. The episode ends with Yuma spending some time with Takeda during morning practice while Hotaru has to treat the mark left by Fujiwara all alone as she muses that he went to some other girl’s house for some sex.
Comments: Takeda is too gullible. He is also a yuri fan like most of us who watch this show. I wonder if he’ later sat down and really thought about what it would mean if Yuma was actually involved with Hotaru (and she is). Maybe he’s okay with being the sidepiece.
Hotaru’s deal with Fujiwara seems like a poor parody of the one struck between Hanabi and Mugi. However, Fujiwara is prone to erupting in violence unlike Mugi and the relationship is inherently imbalanced. It seems like he was the one who gave Hotaru a black-eye earlier in the series according to his conduct in this episode. He’s a real piece of work, that guy. He even says he hates women but loves sex. I’m so done with him.
Interestingly enough, she says she probably was never in love as she lets Fujiwara have his way with her (after he socked her, of course). Why else would she enter into such a loveless deal? That directly contradicts with the story she told Takeda, which was heavily implied to be about Hotaru and her feelings for Yuma. So she’s either in denial or a pathological liar. Stay unlikable, Hotaru.
The episode had a nice parallel going on again. Even though Yuma and Takeda’s relationship is currently strained and they’re not even truly going out, they are enjoying themselves and having some genuine, wholesome fun. Meanwhile, Hotaru has to deal with the consequences of her actions and earlier decisions as she sits by herself all alone, injured and dejected.
It’s sloppy to reveal this deal between Hotarua and Fujiwara this late into the series. There was a general lack of foreshadowing other than this implicit sense of unease and unnatural feeling regarding their relationship. The flashback scene was also lazily rendered as it was difficult to tell when the flashback ended. The characters’ actions and mindsets and acts of stupidity have left me apathetic to their struggle even as I criticize them. Two more episodes until it’s over.