Honestly, as awesome as Asa is, I want to get this done this weekend; it's the best opportunity I'll get to do it for a while. Tentatively, my plan is to go through the bits up to Asa's first scene today, and then the rest tomorrow, but depending on how soon the scene is I may change that. Shall we begin?*
First day of exams. I wonder if the results will be announced for Rin's surprisingly-good test, like it was during Nerine's route? I'm kinda surprised that that's the only route in which it's actually been announced.
The scene wherein we find out about Asa's... "dislike" of magic is the same as always. I guess it's just meant to be setup of some kind. :/
The conversation with Nerine about how well everybody's doing. Nothing I haven't gone over before, and nothing really of interest anyway.
...Asa's portrait already? That's the earliest one yet. o_o
So yeah. Asa has met up with Rin before school on the last day of exams, and greets him by whacking him on the back as usual. Looks very similar to her first CG, only Kaede's not there this time. (The scenery might also be different; I forget.)
Asa, as she was the Sunday night prior, is very upbeat about the exams, particular so today, considering that it's the last day. That said though, Asa asks Rin whether he's free after school and can go to her house. She says as thanks for walking her home the other day that she wants him to try a new cake of hers. He brushes off the bit about walking her home, but enthusiastically accepts being able to try her cake. When she sets the meeting place she also asks if Kaede can come, but Rin says she wouldn't be able to, with an implication that Mayumi will be taking up her time already with a party. After Rin says he bring her if he can, Asa wishes him good luck and runs off.
After the exam, Mayumi starts pestering Rin about throwing a party, saying quite dissonantly (and thus happily) that she's not sure whether or not she'll have a vacation once the results are out. In describing the party she wants to throw, she says that she wants "an extreme pig-out party" with Lisianthus, Nerine & Kaede, but Rin says that while she can do what she wants with her own body, the other three girls shouldn't be dragged into it. That all said though, he of course declines Mayumi's invitation, regardless of how much she complains.
At Asa's house, she leaves Rin in her room again while she goes off to get changed. Instead of commenting on peeping this time though, she "warns" him off looking into her wardrobe. Rin shows no interest in it.
...On the other hand, as he's looking around the room, he does show an interest in the corkboard above her bed, which has a few photos on it of Asa at various ages. In particular he notices a picture of her with her parents, but after looking at it for a while considers it strange. While studying it to figure out why though, Asa returns with the cake and some tea. Rin asks her whether he can ask he one question (well that's one already...), to which she immediately says her three sizes - "body size" in the translation, even though I can specifically hear the words "three sizes" - are top secret.
Of course, that has nothing to do with what Rin wants to know. What he actually wants to know is whether Asa is a Devil. (Surely she'd only be half at most, like Mayumi, no?) Asa's a bit put off by the question, leading Rin to continue into mentioning how he just noticed that Ama - Asa's mother, as a number of you already know - has the ears of a Devil.
Asa responds by coming to the realization that she had forgotten to take that photo down due to being used to seeing it, and assures Rin that she is human and can't use magic, despite her mother being a Devil. And despite what anybody else claims, it seems. Rin's a little bit confused, it seems, but Asa says that being human is "the only atonement that (she) can make". (Note to translator: "Which", not "that".)
When Rin asks her about the atonement, she says she "used words she was never supposed to use". An odd phrasing. Rin asks whether that's the reason she doesn't like magic, and she says it's pretty close... before turning the conversation back to Rin, asking what his biggest secret is. Fair's fair, no?
He claims not to have any big secrets, but Asa reminds him of one: Why Kaede used to hate him. Rin's surprised she knows about it. Asa explains how she knew (in essentially the same way as she did at the end of Kaede's route), and Rin explains what happened (...in essentially the same way as he did at the end of Kaede's route. Although he doesn't emphasize how it was a lie "only children would believe"). Afterward though, Asa apologizes for asking about the secret so light-heartedly, and sympathizes for the rough time he had had.
Rin also talks about how that was around the same time as when he met Lisianthus & Nerine, and had talked to them because they were looking as sad as he felt. Asa seems glad to know these new things about Rin, but he brushes it all off by saying that tolerance is his only strength. On the other hand, Asa thinks he's very strong... As strong as "someone who (...) protected their child" - her father, I am almost certain - saying how they were both willing to sacrifice themselves for somebody they cared for. Rin wonders who she's talking about, while she continues by blushing slightly and saying that Rin "was kind of cool" when he was describing his past earlier, and that it made her heart race.
As an "award" (Grr. RE
ward.), she goes forward to kiss him. He's a bit surprised, but doesn't shy away, musing that it's the first time he's seen Asa as a female.
At school is as normal (Everyone being optimistic about their grades), but after school Rin is down by the CAFFE relaxing after a week of hard work. As he notices others doing the same - including a few "making out"*
in the cafe - his mind wanders back to the day before when Asa kissed him, and he mumbles her name.
...Which of course leads to a very startled Asa appearing right in front of him, which startles him too. Kareha - who is also there, Rin soon notices - asks why they're so surprised to see eachother, but Asa's attempted dismissal of the idea that either of them was startled only serves to make her more interested. In what can only be a poor choice, Asa and Rin attempt to use a four-year-old child (the same age as how long they've known eachother, you see) as an analogy for how well they get along, but surely this choice of analogy can only make Kareha's fantasy even stronger, right?
After their fumbling, Asa attempts to farewell Rin and say that she and Kareha are off to get some cakes, but Kareha buts in before he can leave and invites him to join them. He of course sees this as a bad idea, and thus declines. At the end of the day, it seems, both he and Asa are shy people. Pun totally intended.
Nothing new here. Lisianthus' father is out shopping with his daughter, and goes off to knock some sense into some guys trying to pick her up.
The conversation about kissing. The effect Rin's recent kiss with Asa has on this situation: None. After school at the station though, Rin sees Kareha being accosted by a group of guys, and so heads over and calls out to her. Kareha smiles in relief, but of course doesn't know Rin's exact plan. As it turns out, Rin knows this sort of situation quite well, likely due to Kaede, and already has a plan of attempting to take the damsel away without talking to the others at all if he can help it.
I don't think I've heard this music before though. Maybe it's classed as a sound effect set to repeat, thus explaining why it's not in the sound test?
While trying to leave with Kareha, one of the men punches Rin in an attempt to stop him, but Rin acts as if it had no effect, which very quickly scares them all away. Rin is glad, but also surprised at how "typical" they were. Kareha thanks him, but expresses concern about his new injury, which she offers to fix (and does). Afterward, she asks Rin if he could avoid telling Asa that she used magic, even when Rin says it shouldn't matter too much since it was only healing magic.
Lisianthus panicking about being called up for English. I forget, did this have any relevance in any of the routes?
After school is again Rin finding out about Kareha working at the cafe, for which there is no difference. As a recap, Kareha is saving money to buy a present for Asa without her knowing.
In a school corridor Asa (with Kareha) has come up to Rin to give him a present: The cookies she made in the class prior. As he accepts and eats them, he compliments them by saying they taste like store-bought cookies (which where I come from would be more insult that compliment...), but when he asks whether it's alright for him to have all of them rather than them being shared among more people, Asa blushes and says that it's not as exciting to give them to girls. (And I suppose Itsuki doesn't count. :P)
Kareha then goes into her fantasy land again, saying that Asa should be "more honest with herself". Asa asks what she means by that, to which Kareha responds by telling Rin that Asa knows many boys other than Rin who the cookies could have been given to. Asa attempts an excuse - which has no effect on Kareha at all of course - then excuses herself, taking Kareha with her. Rin considers them the same as ever.
After school, Rin, Lisianthus, Nerine, Kaede, Mayumi & Itsuki are by the station feeling rather bored. He says (for some reason I have no idea of) that he shouldn't be hanging out with them like that, but pays no mind to such notions.
Mayumi is the first to speak, asking how Primula's doing. Or more specifically, whether she's a potential love interest due to being a similar age. Lisianthus & Nerine ask in slight surprise whether Rin is falling in love with Primula, but Kaede assures them that there is nothing like that going on.
That aside though, Rin hears somebody calling out for him (calling him "Ricchan"). Ama, I guess? ...And I was right. Interestingly, her first line while on screen addresses Kaede ("Kae-chan"), but the text doesn't reflect this. She also (in text) refers to Asa as Ah-chan, which makes me wonder whether that "Ah" is A or Aa. I don't like it when translations add the letter h to the end of Japanese words (as I've previously complained about regarding "Otoh-sama"). :/
That aside though, she's sad that Rin doesn't often come over to her/Asa's house when she's there, but is able to get a promise out of him and Kaede to go more often.
On a different note, Itsuki starts trying to pick her up. She's very flattered, so it takes quite a bit of time before Kaede and Rin eventually butt-in to tell him that she's Asa's mother. Or as Rin puts it in big letters, "a woman with a child around our age". Everyone's so shocked the entire view (except the HUD) turns completely black & white (with no greys).
As everybody comments on how young she looks, she says she gets that compliment often, but believes that she's aged quite a bit. Mayumi's disbelieving, Itsuki wonders what she looked like when she was actually young, while Lisianthus asks Nerine whether there's magic for eternal youth (and is told there isn't).
As Ama leaves, everybody (except Rin & Kaede) are in a silent shock.
Nerine is being asked about the "Angel's Bell" thing. Nothing new here, nor of any interest, I think... Although I do find it interesting that Rin didn't ask her about it after school; that's happened in more routes than just hers so far.
Last day of school. In class is the same, but afterschool is a new scene wherein Rin sees Asa by the track, even though he doesn't really want to. It seems that Asa's embarrassed too, but has the courage to ask Rin if he wants to grab a bite to eat. He thinks about it for a bit, then considers that it may be a good chance to return things between them to how it used to be, and thus accepts. Asa smiles and takes his arm.
And now, the cafe. I get the feeling that Kareha will be working today...
...Although Asa doesn't seem to be averse to this at all, even when Kareha asks her whether she's on a date with Rin. Rin says it's not a date, with Asa agreeing, but Kareha sees Asa as being a bit disappointed at Rin's answer. When they realize Kareha is in her own world thinking of how good a couple Asa & Rin are, they seat themselves.
After a while though, even Asa has become irritated by Kareha's pestering, and is relieved when the annoyance gets called away.
...Well I didn't expect this. One of the people who called Kareha over to their table was a kid who figured it'd be fun to have a look under her dress. Kareha's not really sure what to do about the kid, but his mother comes along soon enough to take him away. As the mother apologizes, the kid said he did it because of how pretty Kareha was. Is there a trope for "I annoy you because I love you"?
Once Kareha returns to Asa & Rin's table, Asa teases her about it, while when Rin admits that he did see her, Kareha tells him to forget it immediately.
That evening, Lisianthus & Nerine's fathers are in front of Rin's house. To demand to go to the ocean, if I remember right. Nothing new here.
Nothing really of interest here today; it's the same as in Lisianthus & Kaede's routes. Which is to say, it's at the pool, Nerine's wearing a normal swimsuit, and Primula's not there.
Asa's swimsuit is still impressive though, if that's the right word.
After enjoying the sun for a while, Rin has entered the cafe - cafe Ether, as I found out during Kareha's recent CG - and is sitting with "his friends" in the corner. It doesn't specify which friends, but it's at least Asa & Kareha, who are the first to go on screen. The topic of conversation drifts for a bit, including such things as the cafe's popularity since Kareha started there and whether Asa would look good in their uniforms. Asa thinks she wouldn't, but Rin is able to get her to agree to wear the uniform sometime when he says she'd look cute in it.
The conversation (we're told) then leads on for quite a while, saying what kinds of clothes Asa would look good in. She's embarrassed, but also taking notes. Even if said clothes are whacky stuff like miko robes.
Afterward, Rin and Asa are walking down the neighborhood street, having since parted ways with Kareha, and the solitude has been making Rin think more about his feelings for Asa, although he doesn't know if she knows how he feels. I get the feeling he doesn't really know either.
Cue interruption by Ama. She and her daughter have a brief conversation about not much in particular, which makes Rin think about how well they get along, and makes me think about how those two seem very very similar to eachother, bar a bit of personality difference. Their mannerisms are very much alike.
While talking though, Asa suddenly feels dizzy and falls, with Rin catching her. Her mother is very worried, but Asa says she'll be fine. As she tries to stand up she's still a bit wobbly, so Rin offers to walk her home. Both Asa & Ama are appreciative. Asa's a bit hesitant at first, but fully accepts the help shortly enough.
Asa has met up with Rin by the school's track with her wrapping herself around his arm. He briefly tries to pull away, but gives in without any real fuss. Asa (without blushing this time) asks him if he wants to go home together again, to which he brings up the point of how they live in different directions from the school. Asa says that they'd still need to go the same way for around 5 minutes, and she wants to spend as much time with him as possible, leading Rin to remember when they kissed, and the emotions involved. As they walk, Rin realizes that when he's with Asa he gets a feeling of happiness - that his feelings for her are "special". But this also makes him confused, so he confronts her about it.
Specifically, he asks why she kissed him. He recalled how she had once said that she'd never have those kinds of feeling for him, and so asks her what changed. She lets him go and takes a couple of steps away from him. Facing away, she answers that she doesn't really know why. She couldn't help it, she says; she had simply fallen in love with him. Despite saying that though, she does elaborate. She didn't want to just be his sempai*
any more, and that Rin having the same strength as the person she respects the most is more than enough reason to fall in love
Asa goes on to say that she doesn't care how Kaede, Lisianthus or Nerine feel; the only person that matters to her is Rin. She asks whether he likes her, and by almost any measure he does, but still feels as though something is stopping him - that there's something he still doesn't understand.
Asa takes his response of "I still don't get it" as meaning that she has a chance. Girl, if you could read his mind you'd see that it's more than just a chance.
The Primula dream. Nothing today is different nor of any note.
At the pool again, this time with Kaede, it seems. Itsuki's also around, chatting up as many girls as he can lay his eyes on, but his presence seems to only be a segue into Kaede talking about who the most energetic people are, lumping together him, Mayumi and Asa. Mentioning Asa of course sends Rin into thinking about her, with Kaede then wondering why she's not around that day.
That said though, Rin is somewhat glad she's not there, as he wouldn't know how to act around her after her clear confession the other day; he's still confused about his own feelings.
After they're done in the pool, Kaede heads off to do some shopping, leaving Rin behind saying he should rest. Before he can though... Kareha has come up from behind, calling out to him. It seems that Asa had collapsed on the way to the pool, and is now in the infirmary. Kareha urges him to go to her straight away, which of course he runs off for without hesitation.
Once there, he sees her sleeping soundly in one of the beds, not looking that bad, which makes him realize that he didn't actually need to run. He considers it likely that Kareha knows her feelings for him, and possibly his feelings for her too, but doesn't have time to pay the thought much mind before Asa wakes up. At first she's a bit out of it, but turns surprised when she actually realizes who's there. She's silent at first when Rin asks her what's been wrong with her recently - remembering the dizziness she had felt a week or so prior - but shortly decides that it would be okay to tell Rin.
She isn't really sure what's going to happen to her, she says. She then goes on to mention how Primula is the third homunculus, and how her mother was the first.
Waitwhat. Did not expect that. And why are all the homunculi female, anyway?
It seems that the people running the first experiment had only assumed
that Ama was dead, when in fact she had been thrown to the world of humans by the great impact of magic that had supposedly killed her. In time, Ama had met a human, fell in love and had a child... but that child is by everything I know worse off than her mother was. At least Ama could handle magic at all; Asa on the other hand is effectively a human with boosted power - a power which due to being human she can't use.
When Rin says she should have told him, she says she originally didn't want to tell him at all; that she didn't want it to become an excuse for him to go out with her. Before he realizes, he's already hugging her.
I won't go into any details, but this time around (as opposed to every other route) I get given a choice at the start rather than end. Odd.
That said though... *scene*
I won't keep going today, but I just want to mention so that I don't forget... Asa's portrait is still transparent on the next day's opening image. This wasn't how it worked for any of the others... I'm confused. :/
But yeah. Next update should come within 12 hours, I think.
Ha, I suppose that's another word for it. Who'd'a thunk a piece of cloth and a couple of strings (paired with some ripped/cut jeans) could be used as a swimsuit?