"The Morning Sun" is the thirty fifth in chapter in Ahiru no Sora.
It's the fifth day of the training camp, and Momoharu finally makes his return from being away due to sick leave. Before entering the school's court, he is confident that the team would be in an unorganized manner in his absence. Nevertheless, Hanazono furiously opens the door and gets astonished that all of his teammates are seriously practicing. Yasuhara, Chucky, and Nabe are working on crossover step drills. Chiaki, along with Nao, oversees their training. As the experienced members of the team, Sora and Kenji take on the role of being the advisor. Kenji instructs Yasuhara to improve his speed in the exercise, and Sora suggests Nabe look straight ahead and not look sideways; otherwise, his center of gravity would shift. Nao hands out Momoharu his separate training regimen, and for punishment, Chiaki informs his brother that he would have run 25 sets of laps with his hands up. Afterward, Nabe and Masahiro compliment each other on their recent significant improvement, and they praise Nao’s basic training workout.
Kenji, later on, helps out Yasuhara with his shooting skills. Natsume advises Yasuhara that one doesn’t need to jump high; the most important thing is timing, and when you jump, you stop in mid-air, and that is when you shoot. Instead of aiming for the basketball rim, aim for the square on the board. Natsume further explained that this same technique is used for jump shots and free throws. Later he tells Yasuhara to see Sora’s form and learn from it. Upon watching, Yasuhara is amazed at Sora’s shooting form and range and notices that Sora bends his knees a lot at the start of his shooting motion. Masahiro compliments Sora’s work ethic, and Nabe calls him a monster on practicing making 1000 baskets every single day.
After practice, a tired and exhausted Sora heads out and lies on the ground of the front doorsteps of the gym and stares at the pitch-dark skies of Kawasaki. Madoka also joins him and advises him not to fall asleep outside; otherwise, he will catch a cold. Sora replies, not worry; he won’t sleep outside and, upon seeing his enthusiastic teammates still training, he smiles. Seeing his excited expression, Madoka replies that it would be nice if the boys’ basketball team can make it into the Inter-High Tournament. Hearing Madoka’s response, Sora blushes a little and then unoticingly compliments Yabuchi on her beautiful, attractive appearance. Madoka then questions Sora, that all of a sudden, his face is red. Sora replies it's nothing, and he feels a bit tired. Later, the two of them head inside the gym, Nao, at the end of their training session, notifying everyone that they will be focusing on strategic and tactics training in the remaining two days of their training camp. Momoharu advises Nao that they should at least have a practice game with another school on closing their training camp, and maybe they should ask Shinmaruko High. Nao doesn’t answer Hanazono right away and remembers that she should ask a certain someone, referring to her cousin Tarou.
The next day at training camp Sora and his teammates focus on improving their passing skills. Nao instructs all of them to pass the ball to each other at least ten times before making their way to the basketball hoop. Upon seeing Yasuhara’s unbalanced form, Natsume advises him that he should just snap his hands when passing the ball. Suddenly, Tarou makes a surprise appearance on the court and gives Nao a friendly hug. Chiaki, upon witnessing, gets extremely jealous and questions Tarou about who he is. Kabachi then introduces himself to Kuzuryu High as Kitasumi High’s ace and Nao’s cousin, and to test out their skills; Taro chooses Nabe for a 1v1 friendly basketball challenge. Tarou quickly passes Nabe and, while going for a layup slips due to not wearing any basketball sneakers. Later, upon leaving, he compliments Sora and his teammates that they have a nice basketball court and informs them he is looking forward to competing against them in the upcoming practice match.
- Momoharu Hanazono
- Masahiro Saki
- Ryuuhei Nabeshima
- Sora Kurumatani
- Yasuhara Shinichi
- Nao Nanao
- Chiaki Hanazono
- Kenji Natsume
- Madoka Yabuchi
- Tarou Kabachi (debut)