Story Characters Episodes Miscellaneous

The Arrival of Winter

Original Air Date: 11-27-02

Morning comes and Rakka is asleep in her room on her sofa. The scene changes to a flashback where Rakka's crying terribly and the others are trying to comfort her and then Reki drags her off. Rakka wakes up and one black spotted feather falls off as she gets up to look out the window. It has been a month since Kuu left and Rakka can't get over her being gone so she cleans her room daily and speaks as if Kuu is still there. In the middle of cleaning, Rakka drops the mop and breaks down crying. She looks over to the windowsill where Kuu had set up some frog figurines and on each one's belly was written the names of the Old Home haibane. She tipped over the one with her name on it. As Rakka washes her hands, she looks in the mirror at her wings to see that one had black spots on it. She plucked it quickly and stared at it in bewilderment.

Rakka goes into the town to the cafe where Kuu worked as she had been for a while and orders some pea soup. The manager mentions that the person that worked there normally (referring to Kuu) hadn't been around lately. Rakka sadly states that she's gone but he didn't really act like it was a big deal. She handed Rakka her soup and she began to pay, but he let her have it without payment. Outside, Rakka sits on a bench with her soup open but not eating it wondering if Kuu is okay and Hyoko comes up to her on his skateboard. She doesn't seem to want to speak to him or remember him so he pulls off his cap revealing his halo. He makes sure that she's one from Old Home before asking if she saw the light that was in the western woods during the storm. He was wondering who it was that crossed over and he leaned down to whisper to Rakka asking if it was Reki that crossed over and she shakes her head. He becomes happy beginning to say something while Rakka drops her soup. She looks up and finish what he was saying that they shouldn't be talking about it and she runs off.

Rakka arrives at Old Home at the area with the nameplates and she becomes sad no longer seeing Kuu's nameplate next to hers. Then a crow's cawing distracts her before it flies off. Inside the haibane are cooking in the kitchen. As Nemu leaves out, she asks if anyone knows where Rakka is. They don't know but Hikari points out that she hasn't been eating at Old Home lately. Kana figures that she's on a diet and Hikari snaps at her for saying something like that. Kana then points out that lately she's been going out in the city alone to eat probably because she's the most depressed about Kuu. Nemu also points out that Rakka had been cleaning Kuu's room ever since she crossed over. Nemu suggest that during this time they should be a bit more tolerant. The others become quite sad and Hikari comes up with an idea. Meanwhile, Rakka looks in the mirror at her wings to see that they have become more spotted. She looks around the room and stares at some scissors on a table.

The next morning, Hikari cheerfully goes to Rakka's room to wake her up and invite her to dinner. She agrees to come and Hikari goes back downstairs. Hikari begins making wing covers for the winter with Kana complaining about having to sew. Suddenly, Rakka comes in rather sheepishly and everyone gathers around her happily with Hikari presenting her with the pattern for the wing covers and then asking her to stretch out her wings to make measurements but Rakka is a bit hesitant. Hikari then notices that Rakka's wings are in terrible shape and asks if she hasn't been taking care of them well, to which Rakka answers "Not really." Hikari begins to measure her wings and Reki looks at them with wide eyes. She suddenly pushes Hikari aside and takes a part of one of Rakka's wings in her hands and immediately, one of the feathers begin turning black. Rakka snatches herself away from Reki and says that it's because she hadn't been sleeping well being that she was on the sofa. Kana suggests that she come back to the guestroom but Nemu says that that won't do so Hikari suggests Rakka taking Kuu's old bed. As Rakka speaks, Reki notices the black spot on her wings growing. She tries to get closer to Rakka but she pushes her away and runs off to her room causing Hikari to think she did something wrong. Reki assures her that it was nothing she did and goes off to talk to Rakka. Hikari wants to come, but Reki wants to talk to her by heself.

Reki knocks at Rakka's door as she sobs. She doesn't respond and Reki intrudes. As she enters, she notices that several clipped wings and a pair of scissors lie on the floor and becomes shocked. Reki approaches her and she yells for her to just leave her alone. They look at each other intensely for a few seconds and then Rakka lunges for her scissors and Reki moves quickly hugging her and keeping her from picking up the scissors. Suddenly, the spot begins to grow and Rakka screams in pain. After a few seconds, Reki forces the scissors out of her hands and asks if she's okay. Rakka figures that she must be sick, but Reki tries to reassure he that she isn't.

Reki begins to rub some sort of ointment which is painful. Because Rakka thought that this was some kind of medicine, she figures that she really is sick. However, Reki explains that it's a dye from a tree that grows only near the wall and warns Rakka that she shouldn't go near the wall. Rakka wonders where Reki got such a thing and how she knows about how to treat what's afflicting Rakka. Reki begins to explain explain a different type of haibane that don't receive the blessings of the city. Rakka begins to ask if she was one, but Reki quickly confirms that she is not, that she's a good haibane unlike she. Rakka becomes shocked and Reki begins telling the story of when she was first born with black-spotted wings. Everyone feared her except for a haibane by the name of Kuramori. Reki walks over to pull a cloth off an easel with a picture she painted of her. She was the foster parent for the little ones. She was the one who got the medicine for Reki even though she was weak. Rakka hears all this and sees Reki as a good person, but she was a criminal once. One day five years ago, she disappeared. They didn't know why then so Nemu researched the "Sudachi no hi" but Reki refused to believe it. She became a bad girl and ran away. She eventually got caught and was punished by the Haibane Renmei. But Reki doesn't think Rakka did anything wrong and that it was just a mistake. Since Reki's dream was incomplete she tries drawing what she can: a red moon, wandering on a pebbled path, and something bad happening. Also, since she came to Old Home, she had been having terrible dreams that she often woke up screaming from.

Later on, Reki notices new wing covers on her door with a note from Hikari saying that she's sorry. Rakka becomes a bit sad thinking about how life really is. She thought that the city would be completely happy, but she realises that it's not like that because some people suffer and sad things happen. She then questions what are the haibane.

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12 - 13