Love Hina #9

    Love Hina » Love Hina #9 - Vol. 9 released by Tokyopop on March 2003.

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    The chapter begins with a flashback to Keitaro, Naru, and Mutsumi as children. Keitaro wakes up and realizes that it's not a dream... he has finally made it into Tokyo U. The Hinata House residents have fixed Keitaro a celebratory breakfast, and afterwards he gets dressed for the Tokyo University entrance ceremony. He daydreams for a bit and accidentally walks into Haruka. After she pounds him, he asks her if she's seen Naru. She tells him that Naru left after receiving a phone call from her family. Keitaro tries to get hold of Naru on her cell phone, but has no luck.

    He meets Mutsumi, who frightens him by saying he might have exhausted his supply of good luck by getting into Tokyo U. She tells him that she was kidding, but he is subsequently attacked by a pack of dogs and a flock of birds. They finally arrive at the university, and Keitaro spies Naru. He tries to go to her but keeps being pushed back by various obstacles, including a falling truck. Finally, the giant onion dome that sits atop Budokan Hall FALLS OFF AND LANDS ON HIM. He lives, but has a broken leg. In the ambulance, Keitaro futilely watches Tokyo University getting further and further away.

    The entire gang(minus Naru) comes to visit Keitaro at the hospital, and they decry his bad luck. Haruka tells him that the doctors say he's going to be out for three months and won't be able to attend any classes. Mutsumi further spoils his day by telling him that Naru was scouted to be Miss Tokyo U.

    After everyone leaves, Naru finally makes her appearance. She tells him about her day, and how her parents kept her after the ceremony. As she prepares to leave, Keitaro finally, FINALLY tells her that he loves her. Unfortunately, Naru gets a stunned look on her face and runs out the door without saying anything. Keitaro can't believe what he just did.

    Keitaro has finally been released from the hospital, but is disappointed when he arrives at Hinata House because no one is there. He flashes back to when he told Naru that he loved her, and it's revealed that she never came back to visit after that. He tries to sort out how she might feel about him, and is surprised when Kitsune appears next to him. He admits to Kitsune that he finally confessed his feelings to Naru, and she tells him that she's proud of him. Unfortunately, she tells Keitaro that not having heard anything from Naru in three weeks is a very bad sign. She reveals that when they were in school together(before Seta), Naru had many admirers. She would always wait three weeks before turning them down. Keitaro starts to despair, but Kitsune tells him that she has a plan.

    Kitsune and Keitaro are wearing two of Su's stealth suits. They go into Naru's room, where Kitsune plans to read Naru's diary. Unfortunately, Naru walks in but the two manage to activate their suits just in time. Keitaro tries to leave, but Kitsune manages to convince him to stay as Naru begins writing in her diary. She writes that she's glad Keitaro will be coming home, but Keitaro's hopes are dashed when she adds that then she won't have to clean the bathroom anymore. The two spies leave without Naru noticing.

    Outside, Kitsune tries to console Keitaro. She puts on Naru's old school uniform and flirts with him for a bit. She tells him that it's not like him to give up quickly, and to keep trying. Naru walks out, and wonders what they're doing and why Kitsune is in her old uniform.

    Later, in the bath, Kitsune tells Naru that she needs to at least start talking to Keitaro again. A text block informs us that due to all the "exercise", Keitaro will be out an extra two weeks.

    Keitaro is hobbling through Tokyo on his crutches when he runs into Naru. They make small talk, but when he brings up what happened between them, Naru claims she has a class trip to get back to and runs off. Keitaro wallows in self-pity for a bit, until he sees a woman resembling Motoko walk by. Keitaro notices her and isn't paying any attention to the van that's heading straight for him. The woman saves him by performing Motoko's signature Evil Cutting Strike. She then asks him if he knows the way to Hinata House.

    While riding on the bus, Motoko has a nightmare about being attacked by her sister and a monstrous turtle. She arrives at Hinata House and is shocked to find her sister, Tsuruko waiting for her. Tsuruko tells her that it's time for Motoko to take over the family business as they had agreed to, and that she's here to bring her home. Motoko doesn't want to go, so she surprises everyone by saying that she and Keitaro are engaged to be married. Motoko takes Keitaro and the other residents aside and tells them that, according to family tradition, if a woman is married, she doesn't have to take over the family dojo. Keitaro agrees to help her. Keitaro introduces himself as Motoko's fiancee. Tsuruko is somewhat suspicious and asks them to kiss. Motoko can't go through with it, but thankfully Kitsune distracts Tsuruko so she doesn't notice. She then reverts to her mischievous self and tells Motoko and Keitaro to take a bath like they normally do.

    Motoko is in the bath; making sure Keitaro looks the other way. Keitaro asks Motoko why she's so afraid of her sister. She tells him that her sister is the greatest swordsman her clan has ever produced. When Tsuruko becomes angered she is like a god of war. Motoko was never confident enough to stand up to her and coming to Hinata House was her chance to get away. She then tells Keitaro that she won't let it end like this. She plans on standing up to her sister, while reminding Keitaro that their relationship is "just an act". Unfortunately, Tsuruko walks in, and having heard that last part, tells Motoko that it's time for her punishment. They fight, and Motoko is "totally pwned". Tsuruko tells Motoko that her skills are abysmal and that she will not sully the God's Cry School any longer. She breaks Motoko's shisui and declares that from now on she must live as a normal high school student.

    Motoko is trying to live as what she considers a regular woman. She goes overboard waxing the floor and cooking breakfast. The other residents ask her what she's doing. She breaks down and considers committing seppuku. Keitaro tells her to relax, with his broken leg he could use the extra help. As the residents prepare to eat the breakfast that Motoko has prepared, they're disappointed to find that it's a traditional, lean samurai breakfast. She refuses to allow anyone to get seconds and has also replaced all of Kitsune's alcohol with vinegar.

    The other residents sit on the roof, lamenting Motoko's current situation and regime. Motoko overhears them saying that she's going overboard and runs away crying. Keitaro tries to stop her but she punches him.

    Later, Keitaro sits on a park bench, wondering what he's going to do. Tsuruko sits next to him, and stops him before he can run away. She shocks Keitaro by asking him to help Motoko defeat her. Tsuruko explains that Motoko once walked in on her and her future husband sharing an intimate moment. Shortly after that Tsuruko left the dojo to get married. This caused Motoko to leave the God's Cry School to get even with her sister, and also caused her hatred of men and turtles. Tsuruko tells Keitaro that the only way for Motoko to become whole is for her to defeat her sister in combat. She then tells Keitaro that if he DOESN'T help Motoko, he'll be forced to marry her and make her an "honest woman". She then departs for Kyoto and tells Keitaro that she'll be awaiting their arrival.

    Meanwhile, Motoko is miserable and walking alone in the rain. Keitaro finds her and they walk home together. Back at the dorm, she breaks down and admits to Keitaro that she needs help. Keitaro manages to get her to smile, and tells her not to give up. He then tells her that Tsuruko is waiting for her in Kyoto. Motoko asks what she's supposed to do about a blade. Keitaro goes searching and finds "Hina:the Ominous Blade"; an Urashima family heirloom. Keitaro asks her if she's ready to go to Kyoto and kick her sister's tail.

    Naru is finished with her class trip, but is still in Kyoto. She calls Hinata House, where the residents tell her that Motoko and Keitaro have also gone to Kyoto. At that moment, Keitaro comes crashing down from the sky, soon followed by Motoko. Tsuruko shows up and continues to thrash them. Naru wonders what's going on, and the other three explain the situation. Tsuruko asks Naru if she would like to stay for the wedding reception and the two of them walk off. Motoko and Keitaro decide a full-frontal assault is impossible, but Keitaro wonders why they can't use the Hina Blade. Motoko tells him that she senses an evil aura coming from the sword. She tells him that if someone were to unsheathe the blade, they would be possessed by an evil presence. They decide to try and catch Tsuruko when she's off guard.

    Various hijinks ensue as Motoko and Keitaro try attacking Tsuruko ninja-style. Unfortunately, most of their attempts seem to inadvertently attacking Naru. Later, Naru and Keitaro are walking discussing Motoko's situation. Keitaro tells Naru that tomorrow will be the final showdown, and reveals some of Su's bombs. Naru teases that he secretly WANTS to be married to Motoko. He denies it, but Motoko overhears. A short time later, she asks him if it would really be such a bad thing if they were married. Keitaro gets flustered and Motoko runs off, embarrassed.

    It's the day of the final battle. Naru points out that the place looks more like a wedding reception than a battleground. Tsuruko tells her that it's so the wedding can happen as soon as Keitaro and Motoko lose. The two challengers show up and the battle begins. Tsuruko gets the upper-hand until Keitaro unleashes a volley of Su's bombs. The bombs also knock him back, and he lands near Naru. Naru tells him that instead of bombs, he should be using a sword. She grabs the Hina Blade and is immediately possessed. The three fighters take time from their battle to defeat Naru. The spirit inside Naru mentions how nice it is to be in a female body and kisses Tsuruko, draining her life force. Naru trips over a rock, plunging the Hina Blade into Keitaro's head. Now Keitaro is possessed. Seeing her sister prone on the ground, Motoko realizes what she must do. She kisses the possessed Keitaro and detonates several of Su's bombs, dislodging the sword from his head. She then uses the Cutting Demon Sword: Second Form to seal the blade. Tsuruko has come to and tells Motoko that she has proven her worth. Motoko tells her sister that she plans on attending college. Her sister tells her that this is perfectly acceptable, and asks Keitaro to look after Motoko for her.

    It's Weaver Festival time and the gang is celebrating. They make their wishes, and Shinobu wishes to go to Tokyo U. The other residents find out and tease her about it. She asks Naru and Mutsumi if they have any advice for her. Naru reminisces about her time with Seta, and how much she was like Shinobu. She suggests Shinobu find a tutor. Shinobu asks Keitaro to be her tutor, and he agrees. Naru tells him that he better actually tutor her, and not try anything perverted.

    Shinobu shows up to be tutored; following Naru's advice to wear thick glasses and ratty clothes. She and Keitaro work on fractions, but Shinobu gets depressed because she's not good with fractions. Keitaro cheers her up, but Naru walks in with some snacks. She had overheard them and walked in to check up on them. Shinobu is embarrassed because all she could think about was Keitaro, and she runs out. Naru finds her in the bath and tells her about how much she and Keitaro remind her of herself and Seta. She tells Shinobu that she used to want to get good grades in hope of one day going out with Seta. She tells her not to give up, and Shinobu feels much better. She goes back and changes her wish to get a good grade on her exams so she can go on a date with Keitaro. She then goes back to her room to work on her math problems.

    Shinobu wakes up after having fallen asleep studying. She checks her answers and is overjoyed to find that she got them all right. She shows Keitaro and Naru, who are happy for her. Kitsune notices her wish that she had written on her bookmark and reads it aloud. Shinobu is embarrassed, but Naru tells Keitaro that it would probably be a good reward for her if she does good on her exams. Keitaro agrees to take Shinobu out.

    The next day at school, Shinobu has trouble concentrating. During the test, she starts daydreaming and marks all the answers one down from what they should be. Her teacher tells her that he's very disappointed in her. Shinobu walks home in the rain, crestfallen. She finally makes it back to Hinata House and finds Naru in Keitaro's arms. She runs out of the house crying.

    Shinobu is at the Hinata Cafe crying to Mutsumi about her problems. The other residents, including Keitaro and Naru walk in, and Shinobu hides under the table. They asks Mutsumi if she's seen Shinobu and that they're worried about her. After all they need her to cook for them. Shinobu is angered that cooking is all they think she's good for, and after they leave she tells Mutsumi she's going on a trip.

    After she leaves, Mutsumi runs to find Keitaro and Naru. She tells them that Shinobu is going on a "Heartbreak Relief" trip. Naru tells Keitaro that he needs to go after her. She knocks Keitaro up into the sky. Meanwhile, Shinobu only has enough money to take a trolley to the next town over. Keitaro comes crashing down out of the sky and lands next to her. She tells him about all her problems, and starts crying. Keitaro asks her if she still wants to go on date. They go to an amusement park, and afterwards to a fancy restaurant.

    At the restaurant, Shinobu is disappointed that the waiter serves her a kids meal. She tells Keitaro that she wishes she could grow up. Keitaro tells her to calm down, otherwise she may choke... which she promptly does. Choke. Keitaro gives a drink to help her swallow, but unfortunately he realizes that he gave her his wine instead of her water to drink. Shinobu is now drunk. She drunkenly asks Keitaro how he feels about Naru, and proceeds to throw a tantrum. Keitaro scolds her, and she starts to cry. Keitaro apologizes, and Shinobu smiles and grabs him by the hand. She leads him across the street to a hotel, where she had made reservations. Once in the room, she pushes Keitaro into the shower, and she passes out on the bed.

    She wakes up, and is horrified about what she's done. Keitaro comes out of the shower and Shinobu tries to leave, but Keitaro takes out his "tools". These turn out to be Shinobu's books and other study items. Keitaro tells her that they're going to spend some time studying. Shinobu apologizes for the way she had been acting. Keitaro tells her that she gives her all in everything that she does, and he has no doubt that one day she'll make into Tokyo University. This cheers Shinobu up immensely.

    On the way back to Hinata House, Keitaro asks Shinobu if she had a good time with him. She tells him yes. He then tells her about his situation with Naru. Shinobu gives him a kiss, and tells him that she's sure everything will work out for him and that she will cheer him on.

    Keitaro finally has his cast off and goes to Tokyo U. He is disappointed when he gets there and a groundskeeper tells him that school is out for the summer.

    Back at Hinata House, the residents are enjoying some watermelon on the roof. Naru asks them if they've seen Keitaro. Shinobu tells her that he went to school. Naru calls him a moron and heads back inside. Haruka asks if something is wrong with Naru, and Kitsune makes up an excuse about PMS. Haruka doesn't believe her and deduces that it must have something to do with Keitaro.

    Naru is pondering her situation with Keitaro, when she unexpectedly runs into him coming up the steps. Keitaro tries to confront her, but she runs away. He chases after her, and they just barely manage to escape a van that comes crashing down from the sky. The van explodes and Seta comes crawling out. He explains that he's finished a major stage in the Parakelse excavations, and come back to Japan for a bit. He gives everybody presents that he brought back for them and asks to see Haruka. They take him to the Cafe Hinata where Haruka is. He surprises everyone by offering Haruka a ring. They're even more surprised when Haruka rejects the ring and knocks Seta back.

    Later, Haruka and Naru discuss what happened while Seta and Keitaro do the same. Seta reveals that Haruka used to be his assistant and he fell for her. He confessed his feelings for her, but she never gave him an answer. He eventually moved in with another woman and things just went downhill. Seta tells Keitaro that he's come back to keep a promise that he made. Meanwhile, Haruka is recounting the situation to Naru. She tells Naru that Seta can bring up the promise all he wants to, but there's nothing between them anymore. She then asks Naru if she shouldn't be more concerned with her own problem right now. As Naru leaves the cafe, she runs into Keitaro and asks him a favor.

    Later, Keitaro has lured Seta into the bath under the guise of asking him about the ruins. Keitaro's thoughts reveal that the favor Naru wanted was for him to get Seta into the bath. Naru and Haruka walk into the bath, causing the two men to hide. Naru starts asking Haruka how she feels about Seta, and Keitaro realizes that this must have been Naru's plan. Haruka turns the tables on Naru, and asks about her feelings toward Keitaro. Keitaro gets so excited that he accidentally knocks down the fence that he and Seta were hiding behind. Haruka and Naru knock the two guys into the stratosphere.

    Afterwards, Naru goes to Haruka's room to apologize. She isn't there, but Naru finds a photograph on the floor. The photograph is a picture of Seta, Nyamo's grandfather, an unidentified woman, and Haruka. A young girl sits in Haruka's lap. Naru, intrigued, wonders if Haruka has a kid.

    Naru comes bursting into Keitaro's room and shows him the picture that she found. They wonder why the kid has blonde hair and decide that Haruka must have had an affair with some foreign guy and that's why she turned down Seta's proposal. Naru and Keitaro vow to get Seta and Haruka back together. The other residents walk in and tell the two that Haruka has invitations to a resort hotel, and that they're all leaving tomorrow.

    The next day, Haruka is relaxing at the resort. Keitaro and Naru walk up to her and ask her if she's ever thought about getting married. She ignores them and begins to walk away. Sarah and Su dropkick Keitaro, causing him to drop the picture. Su finds it and Sarah reveals that the little girl in the picture is her and the unidentified woman is her mother. Keitaro and Naru are embarrassed because they thought the girl was Haruka's love child. Sarah gets out her photo albums and starts showing off a bunch of pictures. One of the pictures shows a young Haruka with her arms around Seta. Haruka is embarrassed. She grabs the picture and runs off. She runs into Seta, who notices the picture. He asks her why she still has that photograph, and teases her by asking if the reason she didn't accept his proposal was because she was embarrassed. Haruka is furious and pulls out a bunch of Su's weapons. While the couple battle, Sarah explains that Seta couldn't choose between Haruka and her mother. He had promised to choose by the time he was thirty, but Sarah's mother died before that happened. Haruka is angry because it's like she won by default.

    Later, Naru and Keitaro are walking together, upset that their meddling only made things worse. They see Haruka and Seta together and overhear them talking. Haruka tearfully tells Seta that she knows his heart is still set on Sarah's mom. Seta tells Haruka that while he DID love Sarah's mom, she made a wish before she died. She wanted Seta to give the ring to Haruka. Haruka stops him and tells him that she already made her decision... but because she's been reminiscing about good times she'll wear the ring but only for the rest of the night.

    As Seta and Haruka leave to go tuck Sarah in, Naru and Keitaro realize how childish they've been. Naru tells Keitaro that she's been wanting to tell him that she loved him... but she's not sure. She tells him that she didn't want to end up in a childish relationship just because they said that they liked each other. She realized that what she wanted was for them to be friends forever. Keitaro starts to get upset and asks Naru if she doesn't like him. Naru stops him and tells him that it's not simple. Keitaro then asks if they're boyfriend and girlfriend. Naru bluntly tells him no, but she loves him... maybe. She apologizes for making him wait so long and says that to make it up to him, he can give her a kiss. Keitaro nervously goes to kiss her, but accidentally kisses her nose. Naru kicks him into the pool, but then softens and tells him to get it right next time. On the upstairs balcony, it's revealed that Seta and Haruka were watching the young couple.

    Chapter Titles

    • Hinata 70: Off To Todai!
    • Hinata 71: Yes, No, Or...?
    • Hinata 72: Blossoming Sword Part One: Ane-ue Comes To Tokyo!
    • Hinata 73: Blossoming Sword Part Two: What!? "Hold Me"!?
    • Hinata 74: Blossoming Sword Part Three: Showdown - Sister vs Sister!
    • Hinata 75: Shinobu's Beeline For Todai ♥
    • Hinata 76: I Wish I Were Grown-Up!
    • Hinata 77: A Sudden Proposal?
    • Hinata 78: Just Say I Love You


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