So Hayate has entered the mission to make Ruka happy. He would therefore be on a journey with Dr. Kurosu to… wherever. Funny enough, Ruka’s presence is not required for a mission to make her happy. Perhaps the mission has little to do with what Ruka can control. While Ruka is obviously trying to change her fate from within, Hayate could well be trying to change it on the outside.
In gaming terms, as Ruka struggles with the level boss, Hayate could be rewriting the game.
It appears that Hayate would become the newest passenger of Dr. Kurosu’s Lamborghini. Given that Hayate could travel at very high speed himself, and that he has a special move which makes him move even faster, he should also be someone who wouldn’t be afraid of the car’s speed. Yet, as this is Hayate we are talking about, things wouldn’t be that simple for him.
We would talk about the trunk in the front later.
It turns out that a third person would also be coming, and that would be – who else? – Hinagiku. Her reason is simple enough: she would be worried if Hayate is going alone (with Dr. Kurosu). Of course, she has always been worried about Hayate, but you wouldn’t hear her talking about it so often in the past. The Tsundere in the past appears to have grown into a fairly straight-forward girl.
As Nagi and Ruka lock horns for Hayate, Hinagiku has proven herself to be a welcomed presence for him. Instead of charming Hayate or fending off other opponents, Hinagiku has chosen to (only?) worry about him, showing him a helping hand whenever needed. I am not saying that this will grant her final victory – according to Cuties, she won’t – but this is the approach I admire the most.
You may find it funny that I am stubbornly stuck to the “losing side”, but let us not forget that the ends doesn’t justify the means.
Obviously Hinagiku and Dr. Kurosu have made their agreement behind Hayate’s back, but it isn’t sure when. I have suggested in the previous Chapter Review that, Hinagiku could have talked about Hayate so much on their way back to Tokyo, that Dr. Kurosu has come to the conclusion that Hayate is the only one who can make Ruka happy. Maybe during their long conversation, Dr. Kurosu has also explained her objectives clear enough, that Hinagiku has come to the decision that her presence would benefit Hayate.
Anyway, three people have to travel in a 2-seated Lamborghini. So, unless Hayate and Hinagiku could fuse into one, some unorthodox (meaning, illegal) way must be used. Oh, so there is the front truck… As such, our poor Hayate is forced to travel in a 300 km/h Lamborghini in the front truck, which would be 100 times more scary than usual. So, Hayate has become the last passenger to scream in Dr. Kurosu’s car, while Hinagiku remains the only one who could keep quiet – wait, did she?
Maybe this is one of the very few times that Hayate would prefer Hinagiku’s absence.
Meanwhile, Nagi goes back to square one: over the past 20 chapters or so, she has recruited Chiharu, Ayumu, Ashibashi-sensei, Hinagiku (in that order) to help with her manga, but now she only has Chiharu with her. Unfortunately, time would not wait. We have finally (!) entered August, and suddenly we are only less than 2 weeks away from the doujinshi competition. Given that it takes about a week for printing, Nagi actually has only about a week to draw. Although it is not impossible, Nagi is guaranteed a week in Hell.
Yet Nagi understands that she still has to do it, so she has finally shown her determination to survive Hell. It is clear that Nagi is slowly growing up in this (very) long arc. Instead of waiting for Hayate (or anybody else, for the matter) to save her, or giving up altogether, Nagi knows that she has to struggle for her own survival. Such determination is necessary for main characters of a shonen manga, and key for being admired by fans. I consider myself a huge supporter of Nagi on her manga career, and I am glad that, step by step, Nagi is moving in the right path.
Unfortunately, there is someone else who is still on the “wrong path” – as I see it anyway. Once again Ruka declares that she wants Hayate, and she would take him away from Nagi. She would do this by winning in the doujinshi competition, and thus also winning her bet with Nagi. In other words, Ruka could be postponing her idol career for another two weeks, in order to enter the doujinshi competition as one of the only two candidates – no other circles would give a damn about them.
In a sense, Ruka has also gone back to square one: she is putting her idol career on hold in order to win Hayate from Nagi in their doujinshi competition, and that is no different from Ch. 385. Her revelation over the past few chapters appears to be irrelevant to the plot, and I wonder what Atsumari thinks after all the fuss and buss: she is still not getting Ruka to work wholehearted anyway. Perhaps the only outcome of her forcing Ruka to make a decision is that the relationship between manager and idol is damaged. Nice work, genius.
The main problem with Ruka’s love approach – as I see it anyway – is made clear in this chapter. While some may claim that romantic love is selfish, Ruka is being too selfish by attempting to isolate Hayate from his other connections. Even Athena has decided not to take Nagi away from Hayate upon knowing that she is Hayate’s “life in itself (sparkling!)”. Yet Ruka is attempting this very evil. I for one do not see that ends very well for Ruka…