"The Black Kite and The Peacock" is the sixty first chapter in Ahiru no Sora.
Kaname politely turns down Nao’s offer to join the basketball team and states that he doesn’t have a lot of stamina or strength when playing basketball, and he primarily specializes in doing Hook Shots. The next day Kaname arrives early at school on his bicycle and makes his way to the science lab. He cleans the classroom and heads outside to dispose of some waste. While doing that notices that there is someone at the schools’ gym and heads over to see who is inside. Upon arrival, he sees Sora and his teammates practicing. At that moment, the ball from Yasuhara’s hands suddenly slips and accidentally hits Kaname in the face. Sora sees a bruised-up Kaname; he then apologizes to him on behalf of his teammate. Sora further comments that they’re doing early morning practice to prepare for the upcoming Inter-High Preliminaries. Natsume invites Kaname to join them for training because they’re one member short, referring to Chiaki. Kaname politely turns down the offer and responds that he quit playing basketball in his Middle School.
Sora questions his decision and tells Kaname that he is such a skilled basketball player. Shigeyoshi responds that he quit playing upon his doctor's advice and further comments that he has always been a weak individual and participating in sports activity has never been his forte. Sora then questions him again that he did play basketball in Middle School. Kaname replies that it was to increase his stamina, which didn’t work out well for him, and politely excuses himself from the court. Later in the day, both Sora and Kenji have a friendly shogi match during the school's recess. Sora, while playing shogi, gives his opinion that he eagerly wanted Kaname to join their basketball team, and due to his poor health condition, he feels terrible for him. While discussing, Sora recalls when his mother gave him her basketball sneakers and tells Natsume that Kaname is in a similar situation to his mother, and not being able to do something you’re passionate about must be terrible. Kenji replies that injuries are common in all sports. Any kind of inability or critical illness is related to unfortunate circumstances; being passionate about something isn’t enough to keep you in it. As both are conversing, Nao joins them and shows the Inter-High Preliminaries tournament schedule to them.
After school, three of them go to their schools’ basketball court and meet the rest of their teammates. Nao also shares the tournament schedule with them and informs them that Shinmaruko High and Kitasumi High are participating, and Tokiwa’s team is part of their block. However, they will not be facing them yet. Momoharu then asks Nao about who is their first-round opponent, and if she has any data available on them. Nao replies the team they’re facing is Shinjo Towa Academy, and their club has three players who are at least 190 cm tall. Nanao further comments that it is a pretty tall team they’re facing as their first-round opponent, and then she instructs her squad to practice seriously. In between their practice session, Momoharu asks Nao what does she think about their team? She comments based on their current level of training; their team will barely make it by the first round. Nao further states their team’s biggest weakness against Shinjo Towa Academy is the height difference; their team only has three people around 180 cm. Compared to their previous opponents, Kitasumi High, their team is in a completely different situation, and it will be an intense battle underneath the basketball hoop.
Upon hearing, Momoharu comments that he shares the same thoughts with her and their team requires taller guys like Kaname. Nao replies that we can’t force Kaname to join their team, and so we have to make due to what we got. Nao further comments that due to Momoharu’s efficient jumping ability, their team has a fighting chance in defending their team’s basket. Upon listening, Momoharu replies that don’t go on praising him. Nao then jokingly states to Momoharu that your shooting skills are negative, so it evens everything. Upon hearing, Momoharu then smiles at Nao’s clever remarks about his basketball skills.
Meanwhile, in class, Satsuki checks Kenji’s test paper and praises him for being an intelligent individual. Satsuki then advises Natsume that he got suspended upon his arrival at their school, so he should be careful. In concluding, he also states to Kenji that don’t forget your promise not to indulge in any more fights. Kenji replies that he remembers his promise to him, and the Inter-High Preliminaries are right around the corner, and going forward, he will make smart decisions. Kenji then heads towards the basketball gym, and mid-way he passes by the Science club. Everyone at the club praises Kaname for his effort in helping them out on solving a complicated experiment, and his colleagues call him the ace of their club. Kenji overhears their conversation and decides to stop and hear what they’re discussing. One of Kaname’s colleagues reconfirms that he heard from others that you (Kaname) turn down the offer on joining the basketball club, and he had no idea about his poor health condition. He further reassures Kaname that the Science club does not indulge in any strenuous activities, and he is a perfect member of their club. Kaname replies that he lied to Sora and his teammates and commented that he is physically not that weak. Upon hearing, a furious Kenji opens the door and instructs Kaname to explain himself in regards to it.
- Kaname Shigeyoshi
- Sora Kurumatani
- Nao Nanao
- Yasuhara Shinichi
- Ryuuhei Nabeshima
- Momoharu Hanazono
- Kenji Natsume
- Yuka Kurumatani (flashback)
- Chiaki Hanazono
- Masahiro Saki
- Madoka Yabuchi
- Masayoshi Satsuki