We rush right into the holiday season as Taiyo and Nishimura grow closer together… at least they would have if Taiyo wasn’t completely clueless! Before we get there, everyone wants to check out Nishmura’s cat, Kuro. She sets up a time for everyone to come over and check out the cat; however, since this is the first time that she is going to be having friends over, she goes a bit overboard with buying food, cleaning the house, and picking out an outfit to wear. All of her efforts lead to her catching a fever and having to cancel her plans but that doesn’t stop them from stopping by! Taiyo, Hino, and Umi all pay a visit and Nishimura ends up saying something weird to Takada but it’s okay… she thought it was a fever dream until she recovers and realizes it wasn’t!
Now we get to Christmas. They decide to hold a gift exchange party and the usual crew plus Kasahara all get together. Taiyo rambles on and on about getting to drink Chammary which he refers to as adult soda. We know it as a little bit of the bubbly! While they were out shopping for the gift exchange and for food, Taiyo saw his sister’s friend out on a date. They witness her kiss her boyfriend and suddenly Taiyo gets really nervous. At the party, it’s clear that something is bothering him so when Nishimura goes to check on him, Taiyo asks her a massive question!! (The results are rather cute).
We zip into New Year’s and the typical shrine visit and then we go on a bomb diffusing mission! (Yes, you read that right but it’s not as dramatic as it sounds.) The fact that Kitamura turned to Taiyo for help was actually pretty hilarious… especially since he wasn’t trying to set him up for anything. It was a legit plea which makes you wonder if he’s starting to crack.
In addition, we also learn where Taiyo’s father has been this entire time. His father says that they should visit sometime (oof, Argentina is a long way from Japan) but even still, Nishimura is willing to go… as long as it’s with Taiyo!
This volume tackled the issue of romance in a cute way. While there wasn’t much with most of the characters, the big focus here was on Taiyo and Nishimura. When Taiyo asked her a certain question, it really made you believe that they would become a couple; however, the manga skirted around presenting love between children by having Taiyo confess that he doesn’t understand the difference between the way he feels about his friends and his feelings for Nishimura. All he knows is that something is different but he doesn’t know what that different feeling is.
Something tells me that he’s lying, otherwise, he wouldn’t have asked a question like that of Nishimura. Either that or he’s not lying but he’s just acting on his gut feeling. Whatever the case may be, it made things a bit awkward with Nishimura but not for long. It made her think about the two of them before they returned to just being themselves. A nice little tease!
There was a nice setup throughout the book for the next volume and it was confirmed in a note by Taku Kawamura at the end of the book that volume four will deal with them going through graduation. Although, they won’t be moving on to middle school just yet as they still have another year of elementary school to go through before that happens; however, earlier in the book, Umi had some thoughts about what would happen between herself and Hino once they did enter middle school. They could end up going to separate schools and never see each other again. Some nice seeds were planted so I wonder if something like that will happen when the time comes.
Outside of that, the cuteness scale buried the needle during the Christmas party. The fact that Taiyo took the time to try and understand his feelings was adorable. The only problem is that once it was all said and done, everything just went back to normal… ish. Nishimura did ponder things for a bit but I don’t think any triggers are going to get pulled here until they leave elementary school. If there is a middle school arc (which I’m guessing there will be based on the seeds aforementioned above), I expect something like that to happen there.
Either way, another great omnibus! Can’t wait to see where they go with this in Volume 4 (7+8).
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