The University Festival
Tomoko, Nanako and Mariko finally arrive at the university festival.
Mariko is very nervous, because she must "protect" the two friends from
all the "disgusting" men at the festival.
They meet Henmi and Takashi, and Takehiko introduces his friend. Tomoko and Mariko are surprised to meet Miya-sama's older brother. Takashi is going to shake his hand with Mariko, but the girl refuses it, she doesn't trust him because he's a man!
They all stroll around. Mariko refuses to go to the cinema because there's
darkness, the sharply criticizes a comic show they watch, and so on. They
finally go to the "Haunted Mansion". They enter into two separated groups
(boys and girls). Mariko is walking, then is scared by a "monster" and
runs away, falling into Takashi's arms. A terrible scream echoes in the
Takashi, Takehiko and the girls stop at a café, and chat. Mariko tells Takashi to sit away from her, and the boy asks her why she can't relax. Mariko says her purpose is to protect Tomoko and Mariko. Takashi asks her why she's so hostile to men. "Because they're all selfish and dirty, they're disgusting". Takashi says there are also exceptions. Mariko screams: "That's a typical reply of men! They're all words!". Takashi falls from his chair...
Walking around, Tomoko, Nanako and Henmi lose contact with the other
Takashi follows Mariko, saying he'll be responsible for her safety. Several girls greet Takashi while they walk, one of them asks if Mariko is his girl-friend, and Mariko looks quite unsociable. They sit on a bench, Takashi seems a bit embarassed. He admits he has lots of friends, both boys and girls, but he points out that "if you meet a special girl, all the others disappear". Mariko too should have a lot of friends... Mariko says that's not his business, and pours on the ground the Coke she was drinking...
Tomoko, Nanako and Takehiko talk at the café. Tomoko asks some questions to Henmi about his future plans, and Nanako realizes that she doesn't know much about the boy's problems and feels a bit selfish. They remain alone for a while, and Nanako confides this worry to Henmi. The boy says smiling that he enjoys reading her letters, because they make him live again the feelings of when he was Nanako's age. Every morning, he reveals, he runs to check the mailbox!
Mariko and Takashi are in a stand where there are some chiromancers.
Mariko has her hand read, and the man says that the girl has family problems,
her parents are going to... Mariko runs away.
Two students notice Mariko and tell her they wish to spend some time with her. They follow her. When one of them touches Mariko, the girl starts sobbing. The two boys and several other people stop and look at her, perplexed, Takashi arrives and kneels close to her. He apologizes because he said he would be her "body-guard" and instead left her alone...Mariko tells him "Go away! You can consider me crazy like all the others!" Takashi remains close to her, and Mariko after a while calms down. "Stop it, you're drawing attention to yourself!", she says to the boy, and starts walking away. Takashi giggles...
They finally meet Takehiko, Nanako and Tomoko at the entrance. Henmi
proposes to have a tea, but Mariko says to go back home, the sun is going
down, and "night turns men into werewolves!". She carries poor Nanako and
Henmi says: "That girl is incredible! Being alone with her must have been a nightmare!"
Takashi says: "No... I like her... I like her very much, I must admit!"
On the train home, Tomoko thanks Nanako for the special day, and they
talk about Mariko and wonder about the situation in her family...
At home, Nanako's mother asks her how things went, and adds that luckily she had a guide at the festival. Nanako feels really happy and is grateful to her oniisama for the beautiful day she spent with him.
In her wonderful villa in the country, Fukiko scolds a maid, Mimeko, and then tells her that she wants to remain alone. Fukiko opens a locked room, full of dolls, the calendar on the wall is on August 8th. "That summer day...", she thinks. Images of a straw-made hat. "Everything is like that day, nothing changed". Then the girl notices that an object is out of place, and scolds Mimeko again: Everything must stay in the right place!
Mariko and Nanako arrive at the villa, the only Sorority members of
the first year. They have a task: to write and put into envelopes the invitations
for Fukiko's birthday party, which will be held the following week. There
are 300 names and two volumes of addresses to complete in 2 days!
Nanako is tired and decides to have a walk. While she's sitting near a stream in a wood she hears the music of a violin. She finds out that Miya-sama is playing, and wonders who's the person for whom the girl is playing such a sad and desperate melody...
It's night. Nanako can't get to sleep. She walks out of her room and notices that someone is swimming in the swimming-pool. But there she doesn't find anyone; she follows the trails of water, and reaches the upper floor. Behind a locked door, she hears Fukiko's voice. She's reading a sonnet by Shakespeare (number 18*: "Shall I compare thee to a summer day?/ Thou art more lovely and more temperate:/ Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,/ And summer's lease hath all too short a date..."). Then Fukiko kneels and cries, desperately. But she suddenly realizes that someone heard her. Fukiko starts searching, but Nanako manages to hide. Then the girl goes back to her room, and Mariko, worried, asks her where she was. Miya-sama hears these words hid in shadow, and so she discovers that Nanako wasn't in her room...
The following morning Fukiko has her usual calm attitude. While they're having breakfast, Nanako wonders how Miya-sama can be so calm after she heard her cry desperately the previous night...
Mimeko brings something to drink to Mariko and Nanako, who are very
busy writing the addresses.
Later, Nanako meets the maid, and asks her who has the room at the end of the corridor on the 3rd floor. Mimeko says that the door of that room is always locked; Fukiko used that room until she was 12, and from that time the room stayed exactly the same.
Miya-sama appears and scolds Mimeko because she's talking with the guests. Then she calls the head of the domestic staff and asks him to fire her because "she's not suitable to work for our family". Reluctantly, the man obeys. Nanako tries to defend the maid, but Fukiko tells her that she mustn't worry, because she hasn't been satisfied of her work for a long time, and it's not Nanako's fault.
The maid is leaving in her car, but Nanako stops her and the two talk
for a while. Mimeko tells that working for rich people is unpleasant, because
they treat you badly. Then she tells that nobody can enter the "closed
room": only Fukiko can go there. Even the other family members cannot enter
there. But the day preceding the arrival of the family, the maid can go
in to clean it. It's a strange room, with the same furniture as 6 years
before, and if even a doll is not in the right place Fukiko gets really
The two girls say bye to each other.
Nanako is on the lake shore, and sees Fukiko on a small wooden boat, with a parasol. Fukiko tells her: "You know, Nanako, I adore this lake, I'm charmed and enchanted by it..." Then she throws the parasol in the air and dives, disappearing under water. Nanako worries and goes towards the lake, walking on a protruding trunk. Fukiko appears on the surface and grabs Nanako's ankle, pulling the girl under water. She pushes her towards the bottom of the lake. Nanako's ankle gets trapped, Fukiko swims to the surface, then looks at Nanako, changes her mind and swims down. Fukiko frees Nanako and carries her out of water in her arms. "Forgive me, Nanako. I'm sorry. I just wanted you to swim with me.", she says with a very calm (and a bit inexpressive) voice.
On the train home, Mariko asks Nanako how she's feeling. Nanako looks
out of the window, and thinks that she'll not be able to tell anybody about
what happened to her that day...
Nanako didn't go to school. She stayed at home to think back to the events of the previous day and better understand them. Her mother asks her how she is and Nanako pretends she's got a fever.
At school, during lunch break, Miya-sama asks Tomoko where Nanako is. Tomoko explains that Nanako is ill, and Fukiko leaves, with an annoyed look on her face...
Nanako awakens from a nightmare. She receives Tomoko's visit, and the two friends go to the beach. Nanako gives Tomoko a souvenir of her trip to the lake. Tomoko asks her what happened to her, why she pretended to be ill, and she seems not too convinced of Nanako's explainations. Nanako changes topic and starts running, suggesting a running race on the beach...
When Nanako goes back home, she receives a telephone call: Miya-sama asks Nanako why she didn't go to school, and asks her how she's feeling. Nanako says that she hasn't the fever any more. "Good, so tomorrow I can see your pretty, smiling face...", Miya-sama says. Then she asks Nanako if she didn't go to school because she's mad with her after the events that took place at her country house. Nanako says no. Miya-sama says: "I'm sorry, I just wanted to play you a little trick". She takes the petal of a red rose from a bouquet and bites it, keeping it on her lips. Then she says that during a Sorority meeting they decided to ask the students of the first year to take care of the guests during her birthday party... Nanako is very tense, her hands are sweating, and she can't wait to end the conversation...
Nanako and Tomoko are having a look at several shops, Nanako wonders
what present she can buy for Fukiko's birthday... She knows that Mariko
plans to buy hundreds of red roses, Miya-sama's favourite flowers.
Nanako and Tomoko look at a shop-window with jewels, and they are all too expensive... Tomoko finally suggests Nanako to cook her special biscuits for Miya-sama: everybody loves them, even her hamster!
It's early in the morning, and Fukiko leaves with a bouquet of flowers;
she's going to the cemetary.
Rei is knelt next to her mother's grave. She tells her mother that she's happy because the sea is calm and clear, like every time she's close to her. "Fukiko is going to be 18 soon", she adds.
Fukiko arrives: today it's the 3rd anniversary of Rei's mother's death, and she brought some flowers for her. Rei says that after her death, she entered Seiran under Fukiko's suggestion, and since then she has lived in the flat the Ichinomiyas rented for her; she also receives a considerable monthly cheque.
Miya-sama says that even if they have different mothers, they have the same father, and since she's the only sister she's got she invites a surprised Rei to the birthday party for her 18 years.
At the birthday party, Miya-sama receives luxury gifts from all the
Sorority members, and she seems happy to receive also Nanako's special
The party begins, Fukiko blows on the candles, and after a while also Takashi and Takehiko arrive.
Nanako, who's serving drinks to the guests, sees them and runs to greet Henmi, under Fukiko's jealous gaze. Accidentally, a glass falls on Takehiko's jacket, and Nanako starts cleaning it up. Fukiko arrives and tells Nanako to take care of a guest. Takehiko gives Fukiko his present, a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and Fukiko thanks him, hiding a sad look.
The party goes on, and Nanako meets Saint Just. Rei says that she's
been there for 2 hours, but Nanako didn't notice her. Nanako apologizes,
but Rei says she was just joking, because she has just arrived. She waves
bye to Nanako with a smile, and all the girls surround her, asking her
to play something for Miya-sama. Rei accepts, in Fukiko's honour . She
takes the violin and starts playing... the same melody Fukiko played in
the wood, when Nanako heard her!
Hearing these notes, a look of pain appears on Fukiko's face. She grabs a knife on the table and runs against Rei, cutting the strings of the violin. "Curse you! How dared you?", she screams to a shocked Rei. Then she runs away, followed by her sister. They climb the stairs, Fukiko locks the door behind her, and Rei asks her why Fukiko is behaving this way. What did she do wrong? "That music! You played the piece I hate the most in the world!", Fukiko answers. "I've always thought it was your favourite! You played it all the time, you were obsessed by it!", Rei explains, kneeling before the door and calling Fukiko. Fukiko yells, telling Rei to go back home. "I didn't even want you to come to my party!", she says. Saint Just sobs...
It's raining hard. Everybody leaves the house. Mariko and Nanako leave together in silence, sheltered by an umbrella, so does Henmi. Rei leaves alone under the rain.
A burner. Miya-sama throws Takehiko's flowers and Nanako's biscuits inside it...
Seagulls fly above the sea, it's dawn. Rei is sitting on the shore,
and thinks to Fukiko's words: she's sure that the violin piece was Fukiko's
Nanako phones Saint Just's home, but nobody answers. Tomoko tells her to hurry, or they'll miss their train. On the train to school Nanako thinks about the strange relationship between Saint Just and Miya-sama...
Takashi is leaving the parking with his car, and sees Rei who's waiting
for him. They chat in the car, and Rei inserts a CD in the car music player.
Takashi recognizes the violin music, and Rei asks him some more information
about it. The two stop, and looking at the sea Takashi tells Rei the story
related to that melody:
Fukiko used to play it all the time. He was at his first year at university, so they're talking about the summer of 6 years ago. Henmi had been his guest for a week in the country house, and then he had left. At the end of the summer, the Ichinomiyas used to invite all the neighbours to a sort of goodbye party to the next year. Before leaving, Henmi had promised to come back in time for the party. Then, Fukiko started to practise all the time: she wanted to play that violin piece to the party. She played the melody perfectly at the party, but Henmi wasn't there... Everybody congratulated, and many asked for an "encore". But Fukiko left, and since then she has never played that music any more. Takashi says he's sure he never heard her play that music again.
Back in the car, Takashi asks Rei how she knows that piece. Rei tells that she often heard Fukiko play the piece, when she thought nobody could see her. Then she asks Takashi if Henmi ever came back to the country house since then. Takashi confirms, and, not saying it openly, the two seem to wonder about Fukiko's feelings towards Takehiko...
At home, Takashi is talking with Fukiko, who's putting some roses in a vase. He tells her that he met Rei that morning, and they talked about the events of the summer of 6 years ago... and about Henmi. Fukiko cuts a rose clean off. "A single red rose is enough to make all the others vulgar!", she says, angry. Then she throws all the roses in a trashcan, and leaves the room running. Takashi stays there, very surprised.
In her room, Fukiko rails against Rei, in tears. In the meantime, Rei
is talking to the little doll. "I couldn't know that the violin piece was
only for Henmi! You played it with all your heart and soul, but he preferred
not to come back, and left you in pain...I didn't know it...", Rei says
crying, and hugging the doll.
Fukiko is sitting and remembers: a summer day, she was close to a little waterfall. Takashi introduced his friend, Takehiko Henmi. Fukiko's hat flied away, and Takehiko ran to recover it near the water. Everything seemed like a wonderful dream to Fukiko...
In another flashback, Fukiko is walking and sees Takehiko under a tree. He's reading Shakespeare's sonnets. Fukiko asks him to read one of them, and Henmi reads sonnet n. 18. The two are in a small wooden boat, but suddenly it starts raining. They find a shelter in a small hut near the pier, Takehiko says aloud the sonnet, while Fukiko reads it at the same time, saying she adores it. Takehiko smiles and says she can keep his book.
Another flashback: next to the swimming pool, Henmi promises he will be back for the party...
"That was the most shining summer in my life...", Fukiko thinks.
Nanako goes to Saint Just's apartment. She rings the bell, but nobody
answers and Nanako comes in. She finds the doll on the floor, and a CD
that she inserts in the hi-fi player. Nanako recognizes the violin piece
Rei played at the party. Fukiko arrives, and hears the music. She angrily
runs towards the CD player and pulls out the plug. She asks Nanako if she
often comes to Rei's apartment, and very annoyed reminds her that she already
told her not to get close to Rei...
Nanako leaves, surprised at Fukiko's anger, and thinks that Miya-sama was probably irritated by the violin melody...
In her car, Fukiko thinks back again to the events of that summer. "My heart died in the summer of 6 years ago...", she thinks. Flashback: Fukiko is getting dressed for the party, and wears a beautiful pair of red shoes. On the stairs she meets Takashi, who tells her that Henmi had a hitch. Fukiko, very saddened, plays the violin piece, hiding her pain behind a smile. When she finishes everybody congratulates her, but she throws away all the flowers she received and runs to the lake. She dives, trying to suicide. On the bottom of the lake, she hears in her mind the words of Henmi's favourite sonnet. Her body floats back to the surface. Fukiko cries desperately on the pier. "Why? Why?", she asks herself...
Back to the present, Fukiko thinks that that summer day belongs only
to her, until he comes back to her. That day she won't allow anybody else
to have him, she promises, breaking in her hands the CD she took from Rei's
flat. At that same moment, Fukiko's car goes under a bridge, and a train
is passing on it. Nanako is on that train...
Shall I compare thee to a summer's say?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date;
Sometimes too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often in his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimmed:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st,
Nor shall death brag thou wand'rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st.
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.