Natsuyuki Rendezvous – 05

Atsushi “borrows” Hazuki’s body while Hazuki’s consciousness is stuck in some kind of surreal dreamworld within the pages of one of Atsushi’s sketchbooks he used to draw in while hospitalized. He is accompanied by a fairy-like Rokka. Atsushi has to deal with Hazuki’s poor eyesight, lack of money, small apartment, and unavoidable hunger. Rokka cooks dinner for him, and then asks if she can wash his back.

This entire episode, Atsushi is in control of Hazuki’s body, and while there’s no doubt he’s ecstatic about being able to talk to and touch Rokka (he tears up multiple times, in fact), the inescapable fact is, he’s just as powerless as he was as an invisible ghost. He’s still invisible to Rokka, although she seems to feel his aura. Is it his aura? We’re not sure; this is a metaphysical can of worms. But one thing’s certain: Rokka knows her husband is dead, and would never believe Hazuki’s body telling her he’s back. She’d sooner throw Hazuki out for being so cruel and foolish.

Atsushi initially has a little fun with his control over Hazuki – spending all his money on dorky glasses, then giving him a bad haircut. But the more he’s in Hazuki’s skin, the more he realizes the inevitability of this guy ending up with Rokka. He often talks like he’s not Hazuki, but he never gives away who he is, thus damaging Hazuki and Rokka’s relationship. Why? Maybe he remembers what Hazuki told him: even if he gets rid of him, there are other guys. Rokka is nice (and cute) a human being to live out the rest of her days alone. If Atsushi takes Hazuki away, he won’t just be hurting Hazuki – he’ll be hurting Rokka too.

Rating: 9 (Superior)