"Glimmer in the Dark" is the ninety ninth chapter in Ahiru no Sora.
After Yuka’s sudden passing, Sora meets Madoka for the first time at school. Both have a brief conversation. Sora remains optimistic about the revival of the basketball club, and he is concerned about Kenji’s behavior because he is not willing to understand his reasoning. At the end of their discussion, Madoka tears up and politely excuse herself. A depressed Momoharu arrives at Satsuki’s residence and requests his former advisor that he is here to seek his guidance regarding the recent locker room fire incident. Satsuki then invites Momoharu inside his residence. Mrs. Satsuki prepares tea for Momoharu and her husband. She also offers them some snacks and accompanies both of them during their discussion. Satsuki questions Momoharu due to his suspension. Isn’t he under curfew to leave the household, and how did he get those wounds on his face? Momoharu responds that he and Chiaki had a small argument and later led to a fight. Satsuki is amazed at his unusual behavior again and comments indulging in a fight during the suspension. Satsuki then changes his demeanor and candidly asks Momoharu why is he here? Momoharu replies that Chiaki sent him a text message stating that you (Satsuki) haven’t been attending school lately. Could it be you got fired due to them? Satsuki smiles and comments that he came from home to ask him this question.
Momoharu replies that this isn’t something trivial and requests Satsuki to clarify. Satsuki reassures Momoharu that the school wouldn’t fire him over such a minor incident. Due to being one of the experienced teachers at Kuzuryu High, he has garnered much respect from the school staff and his colleagues. Satsuki informs Momoharu that his wife is expecting their first child, and the due date is close. Due to that, he has taken a maternity leave from work. Momoharu is relieved and happy to hear the news. Satsuki further comments that he is sure to expect any deduction to his remuneration for the next few months. Due to his lower vocabulary skills, Momoharu cannot understand the word of remuneration and requests Satsuki to clarify it in simple terms. Satsuki simplifies by stating that his income will become less, and the school will not pay him for his absence due to maternity leave. Satsuki then asks Momoharu that is all he wanted to ask him. Momoharu replies that he hasn’t given up on basketball. He abandoned the sport once in Junior High, and he will no longer turn his back on what is important to him. All of them may be weak, or sometimes they might be mischievous. The basketball club, to them, was a place of belonging, and due to his wrongdoings, he can’t let the school take the club away from them. Momoharu then bows down and requests Satsuki to kindly reconsider giving him and his colleagues a second chance to continue playing basketball.
On hearing, Mrs. Satsuki comments to Momoharu what a selfish thing he just stated. Satsuki questions his wife as to what she just said bluntly. Mrs. Satsuki further explains to Momoharu that the school advisors only get a couple hundred yen as compensation. Satsuki interjects and politely tells her that teachers and faculty members cannot share that information with students. Mrs. Satsuki insists her husband on letting her speak. She further clarifies that ever since her husband became the advisor of the basketball club, the weekends and vacations he would spend with the family were all gone. After arriving home from club activities, Satsuki would spend late nights checking and marking tests of students. Due to the less compensation, many teachers at school disregard the club advisor position. She further stated, in the beginning, Satsuki would often complain to her about why he became the advisor of the basketball club. As the team progressed, his demeanor also changed and later, he would arrive at home excited. Due to being inexperienced in basketball, Satsuki purchased a book that would help him understand the fundamentals of the sport. Ever since this fire incident happened, the club members aren’t the only ones affected. She and her husband are also facing adversities. Upon giving her side of the story, she asks Momoharu if he is qualified to say once more to reconsider giving him and his colleagues a second chance to continue playing basketball? Momoharu becomes quiet, thanks both of them for the hospitality, and politely excuses himself. After Momoharu’s departure, Satsuki questions his wife that she shouldn’t have stated everything to his student. Mrs. Satsuki questions her husband that he is not reconsidering becoming the advisor of the club again? Satsuki-sensei doesn’t respond and quietly heads inside the residence.
A depressed and confused Momoharu heads towards his residence and mid-way stops to purchase the water bottle from the vending machine. While he is doing that, Momoharu sees Kaname vomiting. Some of the city locals notice Kaname and states that they should call an ambulance. Due to the awkward situation, Momoharu pretends that he doesn’t know him and politely tries to escape from this incident. Momoharu changes his mind gives Kaname his water bottle. Momoharu then informs the city locals that everything is under control and he is Kaname’s friend from school. After their departure, Momoharu questions Kaname as to what is he doing here? Kaname responds he is doing some running exercise. Kaname then shows Momoharu that he is following Nao’s training regimen. Kaname further states that Nao is currently working hard at school to re-establish the basketball club. In the meantime, all the non-suspended members are following her training regimen. Momoharu is shocked to hear the news about the re-establishment of the basketball. Kaname further states that it’s only been a month since their club got established. Currently, they’re facing many adversities and shortcomings in restarting the club, and consider this as a starting point for their team.
Momoharu then questions Kaname isn’t he angry with him and the others who got suspended. Kaname replies he isn’t surprised at their behavior because their school has that kind of reputation. Kaname then also blames himself for enrolling at Kuzuryu High. Momoharu is shocked and stunned by his response. Kaname further states that he really doesn’t care what Sora and Kenji are thinking about this incident. Especially Kenji due to his cold and fearless demeanor. Kaname then bluntly informs Momoharu that he doesn’t care if you and the others suspended decide not to return to the team. However, it will indeed be lonely under the basketball hoop without him (Momoharu). Upon departing, Kaname states that he is saying these things to him regarding the teams’ structure. Momoharu then stares at Kaname and comments he is indeed a complicated individual. At that particular moment, over the bridge, the subway train passes by Momoharu looks at it and then heads towards his residence.
- Momoharu Hanazono
- Masayoshi Satsuki
- Chiaki Hanazono (flashback)
- Ryuuhei Nabeshima (flashback)
- Masahiro Saki (flashback)
- Yasuhara Shinichi (flashback)
- Kaname Shigeyoshi
- Nao Nanao
- Kenji Natsume