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"Fight for Rock, for Life" is the one hundredth and seven chapter in Ahiru no Sora.

Chapter Summary

Kenji Natsume training separately from his teammates

After their relentless pursuit, Tsukasa and his friends succeed in finding Madoka’s lost left earrings. Due to his diligent and kind efforts, Tsukasa manages to get Madoka’s cellphone number. Upon departing, Tsukasa request Madoka, if she requires any kind of help or assistance, he and his friends will always be there to support her. Madoka smiles and feels pleased that spending time with Tsukasa and his colleagues was enjoyable and entertaining.

Momoharu and his teammates mentally prepare themselves for their upcoming daunting practice match against the powerhouse Yokohama Taiei High. Since losing their club status, Momoharu and his teammates cannot use the schools’ gym. They look for other venues to hold their practice sessions. Midway through their jogging workout, they take a brief interval. Upon locating the nearby vending machine, Sora and his teammates decide to have a friendly match of rock, paper and scissors, and the person who wins will not pay for the purchased items. Unfortunately, Sora loses, and the rest of them decides on what to buy. A serious Momoharu sees them and questions as to what they’re doing? And instructs his colleagues to stop goofing around.

While Sora and his friends are busy choosing what to buy, Nao informs them to conduct their training session at the public gymnasium. Their team needs to gather funds of 150 yen. Sora and his teammates get a bit frustrated and voice their opinion that it is too expensive, unfair, and why do the locals have to pay if it’s a public gymnasium? Nao praises herself that she was lucky to locate the public venue, and she didn’t know to use the gymnasium, one has to pay rental fees. Momoharu agrees and replies that their team is fortunate to have a practice match. However, to prepare themselves thoroughly, their club needs to find a court to practice as soon as possible. Currently, their team is only focusing on jogging or running workouts, and this is not enough. If unable to locate a venue, their team will have the same repeated performance of the Inter-High District Prelims.

Sora and Nao going to Tokkei Security Hiratsuka Gymnasium

Momoharu further comments being able to use the court is worth it, but their team needs to do something about their budget to pay for the rental fees. Nao replies managing the expense for their training sessions will be part of her job. Momoharu disagrees and answers he will support her with the cost since he is the one who caused the suspension. Upon hearing, Chiaki and Sora inform Momoharu they don’t have any money and request he pays on their behalf. Momoharu becomes angry at them and urges to stop messing around. All of a sudden, it starts to rain, they continue their workout session. As Momoharu and his teammates are busy with their shuttle runs training, Nao thanks their schools’ principal for giving their club a second opportunity. Ever since then, their team is heading in a positive direction. Their goal is to perform well in front of all the faculty members and teachers. On seeing, the ambiguous state of their team, Yasuhara is uncertain about their club attaining a victory. Nao replies that the main point is to get their teachers to notice their honest efforts regardless of the outcome. Their opponent is a veteran team that recently dominated the Kanto Tournament and has been consecutively qualifying for the Inter-High Tournament for the past two years. As of yet, the day of the match is unknown. Nao hopes it’s a later date that will allow their team to prepare themselves appropriately.

Kaname gives his opinion that isn’t it strange that the date of the Inter-High Tournament is so close. Why would Yokohama Taiei High agree to have a practice match with them? Chiaki replies that it’s a clever, trivial question, and he is confident their first-string members won’t participate. For Yokohama, this match is to improve the skills of their second and third strings members. Momoharu agrees that even if their second or third strings members participate, they need to train appropriately to match their skill level. A concerned Nao looks at her team and gives her opinion regardless of their opponent's strength, the team's current state is important. After the short interval, Nao instructs her squad to form groups of two. Yasuhara requests Masahiro to join him as they conduct their training. While all of them decide their groups, Nao further comments, everyone on the team is trying their best to move in one direction. However, due to Kenji’s absence, she feels the team is falling apart.

Sora and Nao meet Takahashi and Kojima at Hiratsuka subway station

At the Kawasaki bridge, a focused Kenji secluded from his team quietly prepares himself for the upcoming practice match. Nao and others reach the public gymnasium. Upon entry, they see the packed court with all the locals practicing. A confused Yasuhara gives his opinion; there are too many people at the court, and can they even practice? Chiaki replies that all of them should be grateful for being able to use a court. Doing shuttle runs training at a gym is entirely different from the outside. Kaname agrees with his suggestion. Chiaki further states that it's been a while since he wore his basketball sneakers. Masahiro informs Nabe that he feels a bit intimidated practicing in front of so many people. At that moment, Nabe, for the first time, notices Sora’s new sneakers and ask, aren’t you nervous to practice in front of so many people? Sora smiles at Nabe’s question and feels excited to be able to practice on the court finally. Sora then recalls the final moment of his team’s appalling defeat at the Inter-High Preliminaries and encourages himself from now on; he will be standing on the court by his willpower.

After the conclusion of their practice session, Nao and Sora travels to Hiratsuka city through the subway train to watch the Kanagawa Representative final match between Shinmaruko High and Yokohama Taiei High. Compared to Sora, Nao arrives a bit late at the subway station and courteously apologizes and asks if he waited too long for her. Sora smiles and replies, not at all, and in fact, he just arrived at the station a minute ago. A confused Sora asks Nao why she is wearing the school uniform, and can it be one can’t enter the tourney venue without their uniform? Nao replies, it's nothing like that, and one can arrive at the venue wearing casual attire. While sitting next to Sora, Nao feels nervous, as if both are going on a date or something. Nao then quietly comments that she wore the uniform, so Sora doesn’t feel uncomfortable with her and that it doesn’t look like an actual date. Sora asks Nao if the Tokkei Security Hiratsuka Gymnasium is a bit far away from their city. Nao replies it takes about 2 hours to reach there and assures Sora that both will make it in time. Sora feels happy that both are going to the venue without informing anyone on their team. The last time, while travelling to the Kanto Tournament, he had to wait for his carefree teammates for about 4 hours.

Sora explains to Nao that two teams can qualify for the Inter-High Tournament from the Kanagawa region, and he thought it was one school per every prefecture. Nao agrees, opens her notebook and clarifies that besides their region, other districts are also holding this tournament, such as Tokyo, Osaka, and Fukuoka. While Nao explains, Sora ardently stares at her, notices the fragrance, and praises the unique scent. Nao notices Sora’s passionate gaze and asks is something wrong? A nervous Sora replies, nothing is wrong and asks that her hair has gotten longer. Nao smiles and responds that she made an oath with herself by not cutting her hair until their team attain a victory. Sora becomes speechless and feels a bit embarrassed. Nao further comments that long hair doesn’t suit her since she is a small individual. Sora tears up and promises Nao that he will try his best not to disappoint her. Nao tries to calm down a depressed Sora and requests him to be optimistic. Two high school girls travelling along see Sora and Nao. Due to their small height, the high school girls assume Sora and Nao must be junior high students and praise they look adorable.  

The Inter-High Kangawa Prefecture match between Yokohama Taiei High and Shinmaruko High begins

Upon hearing, Sora and Nao confusingly stare at each other. The situation becomes a bit awkward. To interrupt the confusion, Nao informs Sora that they have to switch the subway train at the next stop. Sora agrees with her update. Upon arrival, as Sora and Nao are departing the subway, Kojima notices them and tries to confirm they are both from Kuzuryu High? Sora sees Takahashi and Kojima and courteously greets them. Kojima asks, what's up with both of them? Are they going on a date? Sora and Nao furiously reply he has got the wrong idea. Nao then tries to confirm from Kojima, similar to them, are they also heading to the Tokkei Security Hiratsuka Gymnasium? Takahashi confirms, and both are going there to offer some support to their valued friend Shinichi Chiba. The four of them finally arrive at the venue. On seeing the crowded gym, Kojima comments that the final match of the Kanagawa Tournament never disappoints. The scale of everything at this tourney is entirely different from their district prelims. Takahashi agrees and replies just for once, he really wanted to compete at this venue. Nao informs Sora that Shinmaruko High has lost their previous two matches and one more loss their team is out of the tournament. Takahashi sees Chiba and says hello to his good friend. A serious Chiba stares at him and doesn’t respond. Upon noticing, Takahashi notifies Kojima that Chiba looks nervous as usual at the start of the match.

Chiba heads to the men's washroom, stares at the mirror and tries to calm himself down. Their team Shinmaruko High has finally made it this far, they’re one victory away from getting into the Inter-High Tournament, and everything will be fine. Tokiwa teases his captain on his nervous state. Kento also joins in their trivial conversation and urges Chiba not to worry. Their team will indeed perform well, and it’s too early for their captain to consider retirement. Chiba replies they’re all his carefree and uncool teammates. While exiting the washroom, Chiba sees Sora and smiles at him. Chiba politely pats Sora’s forehead and urges him to watch and learn from their team’s performance. Sora wishes Chiba and his teammate good luck. A firm and determined Shinmaruko High enters the court. The tournament officials announce the final game between Shinmaruko High and Yokohama Taiei High is about to commence.

Characters

Reference

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