As Chekhov’s Teddy looms in the background, Sakura prepares for a day of delicious lunches and beautiful flower petals that share her name.
Kero-chan teases her a little, her brother teases her a little, but she’s off nevertheless high in spirits.
Ain’t nothin’ bad gonna happen today! And how can it, with such sweeping, majestic, upbeat music playing as she walks to the park?
If I rated episodes purely by the quality of the soundtrack, this would easily be a 10 out of 10.
Upon meeting up with Tomoyo, the only thing that seems amiss is a slight feeeling that something has a hold of Sakura’s leg, but it’s only momentary, and engenders her smallest of “ho’es?”
The girls arrive earlier than the meet-up time to find their friends already waiting for them, having arrived even earlier.
It’s pastoral perfection and universal punctuality in perfect harmony, and it couldn’t be a prettier day to relax, eat good food, and enjoy the cherry blossoms.
But those little feelings of being pulled become more frequent and more forceful, until Sakura is being pulled away from the picnic and across the park (though she’s able to get her boots back on, somehow).
The weather turns dark and gloomy, and her destination comes into view: a gargantuan sakura tree with glowing purple blossoms that looks particularly sinister, especially with its whipping vines.
Obviously, it’s a card. Boss music plays, Sakura releases her staff, and tries to use a flexible Siege Cube to arrest her momentum, to little effect.
Still, all this card seems to be doing is pulling her towards itself, so it’s really just a matter of pointing her staff at the epicenter and yelling “Secure” from just the right distance without hitting the tree.
The new card she gains is “Gravitation”, which will come in handy if any future cards try to play hard to get. And sadly, Tomoyo once more fails to record Sakura’s heroics; I might be crazy, but this seems like it could be recurring gag.
Sakura is actually full of recurring interactions that differ in the details. We get out latest Lovey-Dovey Sakura x Syaoran Scene in which Syaoran initially says he just ate, then remembers Sakura made a lunch for him and eats that as well (I mean, he would’ve been a jerk not to).
Following some of Yamazaki’s patented Nonsense-Spewing and Sakura-, Syaoran- and now Akiho-Believing, and something, we get something new: everyone pipes down and listens to Tomoyo sing—and she sings beautifully.
There are no weird dreams with the hooded figure who may or may not be Akiho this week, nor any shadowy talks between Syaoran and Eriol; just a nice, idyllic spring picnic with just a brief interruption by a card that was more bark than bite.