Hanamonogatari – Suruga Devil, Part Three

Suruga Kanbaru has just had an encounter with beloved scam artist Kaiki Deishuu. And the one who told him where to find Suruga was none other than Rouka Numachi. The plot thickens!

Synopsis

No time is wasted in giving us Rouka – she’s waiting for Suruga in her classroom the next morning, her left arm wrapped in bandages.She tells Suruga to meet her in the gym after school. There, the two play basketball, where the two seem somewhat evenly matched. After their match, they get to some real talk.

The conversation drifts to wishes, and Rouka asks Suruga what she wished for. Suruga agrees to tell Rouka, but only if Rouka tells her everything. Rouka agrees, and so Suruga tells her what she used her two wishes on. Rouka then teases Suruga with a kiss on the cheek, before revealing that her left leg is a devil’s leg.

After a little more discussion, Rouka tells the story about how she came to enjoy listening to people’s misfortune.

Initial Confrontation

Immediately we see Rouka waiting for Suruga in her classroom. There, Rouka fesses up to having taken her arm. Nothing really surprising, given what’s happened so far. Suruga meets Rouka, and then coincidentally, her devil arm is gone. We do get this little bit of info:

“Kaiki didn’t know you were the collector, huh?”
– Suruga

“Nah. That scamster knows exactly who I am.
He’s a rather strange man.
No matter when, no matter who he’s up against,
he makes it a point not to reveal
more than half of what he knows.”
– Rouka

This also isn’t very surprising. Kaiki is definitely that type of character. And while he was an antagonist before, you can still include him in that group of individuals who really know their stuff, to the point of almost seeming like there’s nothing they don’t know. Characters like Oshino Meme, Gaen Izuko, and Yozuru Kagenui. Which isn’t a coincidence.

Anyways, it seems Kaiki knew all along what was going on. But he didn’t outright tell Suruga to stay away from Rouka, instead he simply told her to just walk away from anyone who came to collect her devil arm. I wonder what his reasoning was for doing this. Maybe it was just a warning. At the moment though, it doesn’t really seem like Suruga is interested in heeding it.

After this brief confrontation, we skip to after school in the gymnasium.

Chat in the Gym

After a quick game of one-on-one, the two get talking. We get another instance of Rouka making a move on Suruga, just as brazen really, as Rouka moves on top of Suruga to kiss her, and ends up kissing her on the cheek. Hard to say what the reasoning behind this is, aside from the seemingly obvious that Rouka is into girls, which seems likely.

Rouka then demonstrates that she can dunk, something she never could do before, thanks to the strength from her left leg, which is revealed to be a devil leg.

“Forget about the devil’s left arm and live
your life with a happy smile on your face.”
– Rouka

“That arm’s the symbol of the sins I bear.
It’s my arm.”
– Suruga

“No, it’s not. It’s the devil’s.
And from what that scumbag told me,
this belonged to your mother.
It has never, ever, been yours.”
– Rouka

At this point, Rouka shows the arm to Suruga.

“It’s gotten smaller!
Why?”
– Suruga

“Isn’t it obvious, Kanbaru?
Your first wish was granted.
The devil’s arm should’ve grown right then.
I think you said something like that earlier too.”
– Rouka

“Now that you mention it…
But…”
– Suruga

“I left the part of your soul that the
devil took back then within you.
That’s why this paw’s back to it’s original size.”
– Rouka

“The price I paid the first time?”
– Suruga

What? That’s just absurd.
That was a contract with the devil, and they’re not so easily swayed,
and there’s no way they’d just let me get my body back.
More fundamentally, what exactly is meant by “collecting the parts of the devil”?
– Suruga (via text on screen)

I thought that this interaction was interesting, because I couldn’t help but wonder how Rouka was able to just take Suruga’s arm. Especially without Suruga realizing it. How does it work?

This scene gives us a little information, but it’s still pretty cryptic. I was thinking that perhaps Rouka made a wish while touching Suruga in their first confrontation, and that’s why her paw is smaller than Suruga’s was. Because Suruga had used two wishes, and in this case Rouka would only have used one. This is essentially what I figured from the above interaction. The only thing it doesn’t explain is the part where Rouka claims to have “left the part of Suruga’s soul that the devil took behind.”

All I can conclude is that we don’t fully know how the parts of the devil work yet.

Another interesting bit is how Rouka reveals that Kaiki told her about the monkey’s paw.
And that it had belonged to Suruga’s mother.

What’s Kaiki’s game in all of this? So he knew that Rouka was a collector, and then told her about the monkey’s paw. What did he gain in return? Just the information of when and where Suruga would leave town?

He then delivered the warning to Suruga to just hand over the paw and walk away, fully knowing that Rouka was coming for it (although she had already taken it by then, and maybe he knew that, too).

It seems that there are still too many unknowns to this case.

Rouka’s Story

Before I get to the story, I did want to point out that Rouka mentions something interesting about herself:

“Look at the shape my leg is in.
It’s more like a devil’s than a monkeys, right?
But know this, Kanbaru:
This is not the only devil I house within my body.”
– Rouka

That’s a pretty big piece of information to quickly move past. Is she referring to the paw that she just acquired? I doubt it. Suruga already knows that, there would be no reason for Rouka to say it again in this ominous way. I get the impression that Rouka is referring to something yet to be seen. Could it be something hidden in plain sight, like her eyes? Or something literally internal? The takeaway here is simply that there’s still more to Rouka than we know.

She then moves onto her own story, which is basically how she got into basketball, and then how she got into listening to the misfortune of others. To be honest, I didn’t find much of interest there, it’s pretty straightforward and along the lines of what she had mentioned a few episodes ago.

She does refer to herself as “Numachi Rouka, collector of misfortune” at one point which was intriguing if only because she’s both a collector of misfortune and a collector of the parts of the devil. Is there a correlation here?

Suruga also calls Rouka out on her story, mentioning this.

“You still haven’t told me why you started collecting
not only misfortune, but also parts of the devil.”
– Suruga

Rouka responds with a warning.

“From this point onward,
this truly becomes the story of the devil.
If you can get by without knowing,
then I think it’s better off that way.

It’d be easier for you to go back
to leading a normal life…”
– Rouka

After Suruga demands the full story, Rouka gives her final warning.

“I’ll keep going, then.
I’ll tell you how I met the devil.

But let me just say this:
this sob story won’t provide any consolation to anyone.”
– Rouka

Wrapping Up…

We’ll have to see what Rouka has in store for us. I hope that it’s really dark, if only because I like that in anime. And it’d be interesting that way, if we find out that Rouka is much more of a monster than we had previously realized. Kind of like that moment in Kizumonogatari where Koyomi walks in on Kiss-Shot eating a human corpse.

I believe that Rouka has some other devil part in her possession, and I have a feeling that whatever it is, it does something other than just make her physically stronger like the leg or the paw. Affects her thoughts, or vision, or something in a way that the way she sees things is different.

Aside from Rouka, I’m curious about both Kaiki and Ougi’s role in this story. Kaiki in particular has become someone of interest, because I’m not certain what his motivations were / are. Ougi, well, she could just be doing what she normally does, and stirring up trouble by arrogantly passing out information. But there might be more to her, too.

Once again, we’ll just have to wait for next episode to learn more.

Until next time,
Thanks for reading.

Hanamonogatari

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s