Kohana’s next on the list to give a demonstration of her artista ability, ikebana, and she’s terrified. She still hasn’t learned how to make sparkles yet, and she’s worried she’ll fall flat on her face in front of everyone.
To make the situation worse and amp up the pressure on Kohana, various schoolmates keep approaching her all week to offer her support and encouragement, and tell her how much they’re looking forward to her performance. Great. Helpful but not really, right?
One evening Kohana shows Juri a photo album with pictures of her mother and her mother’s flower arrangements. Because Kohana’s mother passed away when Kohana was only ten years old and therefore Sakura wasn’t able to teach her daughter everything she knew, Kohana relies on the album as something of a teaching instrument. Kohana has one particular arrangement in mind for her performance, so she spends the week dutifully practicing the arrangement, hoping for a miracle.
But it’s not to be. Kohana is still unable to produce sparkles, and in an attempt to cover up the real reason for her failure, Todo-sensei (the purple-haired teacher with a ponytail) tells her that she needs to be able to better deal with pressure before her next performance.
Afterwards Teika mocks Kohana, telling her she needs to be able to produce the Light of Arte or he’ll kick her off the Hoshi festival committee.
In the principal’s office, Todo-sensei has a chit-chat with the school’s principal. He tells Todo-sensei that he allowed Kohana to enroll in the school because he sees great potential in her, but he admits that Kohana has to find her path herself. No one can teach her how to make the Light of Arte; she has to discover that on her own.
Later Todo-sensei finds Kohana looking at the old picture of her mother, and he gives her the key to the traditional Japanese room where Sakura had done much of her ikebana. Kohana immediately starts practicing, and as she works the words of her peers echo in her head, and she starts to doubt herself.
But Aoi shows up with words of support and a yummy bun for a snack, mirroring the last episode when Kohana did the same for him, which I thought was a nice touch. Aoi says that even though she hadn’t been able to produce sparkles, he still liked her arrangement.
Aoi’s words spark something in Kohana, and even Teika’s words hit home a little. Kohana realizes that she has to make her own arrangements, not simply copy her mother’s. Kohana’s arrangements must be made using her own instincts, born from her own thoughts and feelings. Kohana thinks of the people who will see her arrangement, and inspiration blooms inside her. She starts to add more blue roses to her existing arrangement, making it into her own creation.
This act is what blows the door off Kohana’s magical art. A pillar of sparkles gushes through the roof and spawns into a massive cherry blossom tree which looms over the entire school campus. Cherry blossom petals rain down over everyone, and it’s the ultimate sign that Kohana has finally learned how to use her magical artistic ability.
Kohana rushes to the tower where the artista staircase is, and for just a moment, she can see her mother in a beautiful dress running up the stairs towards the light.
My thoughts: Poor Kohana. Losing her mother at such a young age couldn’t have been easy. However despite touching on her mother’s death, this episode does a fantastic job of showing Kohana’s close relationship with her mother, and how much they loved each other. *sniff*
Aoi’s also really growing on me. I’ve always been a sucker for the quiet type, and Aoi definitely fits that mold. I think I ship him with Kohana, just a little. =~.^=
I’m curious about what’s going on with Teika’s brothers, and I look forward to learning more about his family situation in later episodes.
Two more committee members recruited, hot damn! Go Kohana! Looks like next week might be Louis’ episode.