Hayate no Gotoku! Ch. 429

Dear lolicons: 10 years later Nagi won't be a loli.

Dear lolicons: 10 years later Nagi won’t be a loli.

Comiket has come to an end, and the venue should be cleared. Yet Nagi and Ruka are still sitting back to back in the hall, both looking exhausted. Maybe the time for “clear out” has not yet come.

As you may know, there is a theory that Ruka might have held the last copy of her manga from selling on purpose, thus allowing Nagi to win. Apparently this is what Nagi is thinking too, because losing by one copy is simply “too convenient”. Of course, this is a very important matter for Nagi, as she could not call her victory a legitimate one if it is found out that Ruka is holding back on purpose. Come to think of it, this is a very effective way to troll your opponents…

Seriously?

Seriously?

Somehow I do not think Ruka’s answer is convincing. Surely blaming a creepy mask is a bit lame, and she is implying that Nagi has won not because her book is better, but because she looks cuter. This understandably draws a retort from Nagi that her book has not lost in quality – actually, she won.

That said, Ruka’s answer does not even have to be convincing. There is only one message Ruka would want to tell Nagi and herself: “Nagi has won, Ruka has lost. Fair and square”. Maybe it doesn’t matter if certain details are a little too convenient or ambiguous. What matters to them is the result.

Or, if they would like those tiny details ironed out, they could do it some time in the future. In order to “finally” decide who makes a better manga, Nagi offers a rematch, while Ruka suggests it to be after 10 years. In these 10 years, the two girls would head into different career paths: Nagi would become a mangaka, while Ruka would focus on her idol career.

She won't look the same 10 years later. Just saying.

She won’t look the same 10 years later. Just saying.

Bear in mind the fact that Ruka actually loves music, and we would understand why she chooses her idol career over manga. Singers like Ruka need to be young, cute and energetic in order to shine brightly on stage. As time passes they would begin to lose such qualities, and be replaced by a new generation of singers. In my country, singers generally lose their popularity at the age of 27. Ruka would be 26 years old in ten years, so it is likely that she has foreseen the end of her idol career.

Maybe this is why Ruka makes such a suggestion – nothing is more exciting than to re-enter a career you loved by battling your old rival again. If Ruka’s predictions are correct, Nagi would be a very successful manga after 10 years, so Ruka must know that she would be facing an opponent who is presumably much stronger than her. In other words, this time she would play the underdog.

As a certain someone once said, "no malice intended".

As a certain someone once said, “no malice intended”.

I think Nagi understands this as well. You can see that she uses the exact victory line as Ruka used after Comisun. She was the loser back then, but this time she is the winner. Next time, she would have Ruka – someone she considered (or still considers) to be closest to God – playing the underdog. It is such a wonderful feeling that Nagi’s eyes are filled with tears of joy. She is just that happy.

As Chiharu brings an end to the event with coffee cans, the canonicity of Heaven is a Place on Earth is once again confirmed. So far we have a satisfactory explanation to the fact that Nagi and Ruka were on good terms in the movie: they ended Comiket with a friendly rivalry, so Nagi would be perfectly fine inviting Ruka to a trip. The only unresolved issue between the two girls is a certain piece of ass Hayate, which, according to Hata’s BS, would be address in the next chapter.

Coffee cans in the movie.

Coffee cans in the movie.

Speaking of Hayate, he is still talking with Dr. Kurosu about his family outside the building. The subject changes from his horrible parents to his heroic brother. Ikusa’s appearance seems to have reminded Dr. Kurosu of something, and she correctly supplements two other features of him. It can only mean two things: she knows him, or at least she has met him.

In a sense, Dr. Kurosu is quite similar to Ikusa, as both of them are quite willing to travel long distance in order to help people. We don’t know if each has any influence on the sense of justice in another, but this combination of a Cool Big Bro and a Cool Big Sis with a Cool Car looks interesting.

It's a small world after all.

It’s a small world after all.

Now that Ikusa is mentioned, it is natural to assume that the plot would again move in the “Royal Garden” direction, and the most promising development would be the return of Athena (full version). Indeed, as the end of August approaches, Athena (beta version) should have finished recharging. The return of both Ikusa and Athena (full version) would make a lot of, if not all, readers happy. Just… leave me out.

Of course, given how much a troll Hata is, there is no guarantee that the plot would develop in that direction at all. Yozora is mentioned with the King’s Jewel and the “28th photo”, but she goes missing. Hayate is supposed to be looking for ways to restore Nagi’s wealth, but he has hit a dead end. Given such track record, why should we have faith that this time the story would head in the “right” direction?

Maybe – just maybe – Dr. Kurosu is the final straw on the camel’s back that would cause a chain reaction that links everything above together. Until that happens, my money is on this scenario:

Don’t ask me why. This is the kind of manga you are reading.