The Troublesome Freshman (迷惑な一年坊, Meiwaku na Ichinenbō) is the seventh episode of the Ahiru no Sora anime. The opening theme is Happy Go Ducky! which is performed by the pillows. The ending theme is Tsubasa which is performed by saji.
After the conclusion of the practice match between Shinmaruko High and Kuzuryu High, a tired and exhausted Sora was carried on the back and shoulders of Madoka. Upon arrival, Madoka realized that Sora's family owns and operates a barbershop. Yone, his grandmother, answers the door and informs Madoka that she closes her store at 3 pm. Yabuchi greets and informs Yone that she's here to drop of Sora. Yone apologizes to Madoka for that and tells her once Sora is asleep, he barely wakes up. To show Madoka appreciation, Yone gives a complimentary haircut. Madoka sees the picture of Sora's mother, Yuka Kurumatani. Yone informs Madoka that her daughter Yuka is currently suffering from a critical illness and receiving treatment at Kanagawa Hospital.
Yuka is a former retired professional basketball player who played for the Japan National Women's basketball team. Yone further stated that her daughter has been battling this disease for a while. Upon her diagnosis, Yuka initially received treatment at a local clinic in Nagano and later transferred to Kanagawa Hospital. Sora respects, and admires his mother and, due to her, got into the sport of basketball. When hospitalized, Yuka, to properly cure her illness, distance herself from her son, and ever since then, Sora's relationship with her has been complicated. Yone further states that Sora hasn't met Yuka for a while, and he has promised his mother that he will see her when he wins the Inter-High tournament. Madoka, hearing that heartfelt story, tears up a little. During that time, Sora wakes up and decides to go to the school's court for some practice. Madoka is shocked to hear that and urges Sora that he should rest since their team just had a practice match. Sora responds that his team might have lost the practice game, but they can't lose in the upcoming Inter-High Preliminaries.
After meeting up with the Kurumatani family, Madoka the following day wakes up a bit early. She sees the time is 5 am and decided to go back to sleep. At that moment, she sees a grade-schooler jogging outside her residence and then later realizes that it is Sora. Madoka then decides to follow him and also decides to take her pet for a small walk. Later on, Sora heads to the schools' court for some basketball practice. An angry and frustrated Madoka approaches him. She informs Sora that he is going overboard with his training and can even injure himself. Madoka further advised him that even the best of professional athletes knows the basics to refrain from heavy exercise after a match. At that moment, Masahiro, Nabe, and Yasuhara also make their way to the schools' court, and then all of them decide to do basketball practice together.
The next day, the schools' advisor informs Sora and his teammates that they cannot use the basketball court today. The gym hall is basically used in rotation between the schools' volleyball, badminton and basketball team. Instead of using the court, Sora and his teammates decide to do dribbling practice at the gym's hall stage. The badminton team astonishingly watches them, and an angry Yasuhara informs them it's not a performance act and that they are doing basketball practice. Meanwhile, Momoharu meets up with Chiaki in the locker room. Momoharu informs his brother that he just had a meeting with the schools' advisor, and moving forward, their team needs to be careful. Any type of violence or fighting will get their team disbanded.
After their small dribbling practice, Masahiro, Nabe, and Yasuhara expressed their frustration to each other on not being able to use the gym today. While strolling, they see a skilled freshman doing layups at the outside basketball school's court. Yasuhara approaches him and praises that individual for his efficient dribbling skills. Sora, later on, also joins them and sees a beaten-up Yasuhara on the ground. The troublesome freshman reveals his name is Kenji Natsume, also known as Tobi (Kite).
The name of the notorious freshman is Kenji Natsume. After witnessing Yasuhara's beat down, Nabe, Masahiro, and Sora also decide to join the minor scuffle. The outcome of the brawl remained the same. Momoharu approaches and instructs them to stop the fighting; Kenji, annoyed by Momoharu's decision, tries to kick him. Momoharu, to halt his kick headbutts, and informs Natsume that he will not fight back. A frustrated and angry Kenji walks away. After Kenji's departure, Momoharu then asks his colleagues what happened? Yasuhara responds that they saw Kenji practicing at the outside basketball school's court. He approached Kenji to praise him for his efficient basketball skills, and suddenly, he started hitting him. Afterward, in the locker room, Momoharu tells his teammates that he had a meeting with their schools' advisor, and they cannot afford to get into any fights. Yasuhara responds what if that freshman, Kenji shows up at their court and decided to join their team. Momoharu responded that he would deny his entry into the club.
While heading towards their basketball gym, Momoharu and his teammates see Kenji dribbling on the court. They are astonished and shocked to see him. Kenji recklessly drives passes all the girls' team members. Sora tries to stop him and informs Kenji that the boys' basketball team cannot practice on the court, and currently, is being used and occupied by the girls' basketball team. Kenji doesn't listen and does a quick crossover move on Sora. While going for a layup, he knocks down one of the girls' team members. She passes out, and everyone in the gym goes into panic mode.
Characters by Appearance
- Sora Kurumatani
- Madoka Yabuchi
- Yone Kurumatani
- Yuka Kurumatani (flashback)
- Tomohisa Kurumatani (flashback)
- Ryuuhei Nabeshima
- Masahiro Saki
- Yasuhara Shinichi
- Momoharu Hanazono
- Chiaki Hanazono
- Kenji Natsume
- Storyboard: Koji Sasaki
- Director: Han Younghoon
- Animation Directors: Naomi Ide, Mayuko Matsumoto. Masakazu Ishikawa, Kim Myoungsim, Park Changhwan