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-A SILENT VOICE: THE MOVIE

STORY ARC NO. 7

WELL DOC, MY CORVETTE STARTED TO SWERVE ...THEN I SAW THE JAG SLIDE INTO THE CURVE...
GUESS IT'S TRUE WHAT EVERYONE SAID---
" WON'T COME BACK FROM DEAD MAN'S CURVE " !

( Program Note---This Story Arc contains the adult oriented and mature content of the breakdown of a circle of friends and the resultant emotional depression, the death of a beloved family member, an attempted teen suicide, and of another teen's near suicide. )

( THIS STORY ARC CONTAINS ADULT ORIENTED AND MATURE CONTENT, AND CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT MAY BE TRIGGERING TO SOME PEOPLE, AND MAY NOT BE SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN OR PRE-TEENS. READER DISCRETION IS STRONGLY ADVISED !!! )

Previously

As Shoya continues to redeem himself by becoming socially closer to Shoko, even dating her a few times, and as Shoko continues to reconnect with her past schoolmates, things seem to be progressing in a fruitful way. Shoko even tries a verbal Love Confession to Shoya, but he does not get the sense of it. However, with Naoko inserting herself into the little group, and trying to drive a wedge between Shoya and Shoko, problems begin to develop. During a day at the amusement park by the group of friends, Naoko snookers Shoya, and later berates Shoko while both are riding the Ferris Wheel. Like an bite and infection that gradually worsens, self doubts and depression begin to affect Shoya and Shoko, leading to a detour and winding down of their social compatibility with the circle of friends.

Progression of Story Arc No. 7

Begins with gossip at school as to just what Shoya did or did not do to Shoko, and others, in the past. The group of friends congregate at the bridge where the koi are. Misunderstandings abound, and the group splinters. Shoko and Yuzuru's grandmother dies. As Shoko falls deeper and deeper into depression, Shoya continues to date her in an effort to cheer her up. But to no avail, as Shoko begins to consider suicide. Shoko and Yuzuru, along with Shoya, celebrate Mrs. Nishimiya's 44th birthday. Plans are made to attend the Summer Fesitval. During the fireworks display, Shoko leaves to go home, and in a little while, Shoya goes to Shoko's home to get Yuzuru's camera. Upon arrival, Shoya catches Shoko just beginning her suicide, jumping from the third story balcony. Shoya interrupts the suicide, and gets Shoko to safety, but then falls the three stories himself. Ends with Shoya landing in a body of water and sinking to the bottom, bleeding profusely.

The Movie Continues

Next day at school, Shoya and Satoshi are casually talking, and Satoshi wants to know if, based on what his girlfriend Miki has told him, is anything going on between Shoko and Naoko ? Satoshi further speculates from Miki's comments that Shoko was bullied in public school, and the bully must have been a horrible person. Shoya only cringes. Later in the school day, Miki fingers Shoya as Shoko's bully, much to the chagrin of everyone. At the reveling of Shoya's past, he first tries to 'take it all in', but soon becomes physically ill, and runs to the toilet to vomit. Shoya then leaves school early, and rides his bike to the bridge in town that he used to jump from and get all wet. After spending some time meditating on his social progress, and how it can be torn down so quickly, he passes by the bridge where Shoko is feeding the koi. Yuzuru and Miyoko are already there, too. Miyoko takes one look at Shoya, and knows by their dejected expression that something is wrong.

Friendsonbridge

Next to show up, surprisingly, is Miki and Satoshi, Nagatsuki, who saw the whole bloody mess at school earlier, and bad-girl Naoko. Miki kicks things off by apologizing, but quickly shifts to defensive mode to justify herself and her actions. Naoko puts in her two cents by saying that everyone was to blame for what happened in the past, with the implications of that being very displeasing to Miki. Naoko also tries to draw a target on the back of Miyoko, but Shoya calls for everyone to just stop with the accusations. Shoya sits down on the bridge pavement, and puts all the blame on himself. Shoya then does a one-by-one character assassination of various ones in the little group. Miki is the first to leave, crying that she 'can't take this anymore'. Nagatsuki puts down Shoya's backpack, and leaves in disgust. Miyoko signs " Later " to Shoko, and walks off. So unlike the way she rolls, Naoko apologizes, and leaves. Satoshi casually drops a " Not Cool " on the pavement, and leaves. Now we are down to just two overlooking Shoya; Shoko and Yuzuru, observing at a distance. Shoya switches social modes, and asks Shoko if she wants to go out somewhere special, practically asking for another date. Shoko only gives her shy smile, changing into a frown.

A couple of so days later. Yuzuru is at home looking at the infamous notebook that Shoko has kept all this time. Ito, Yuzuru and Shoko's grandmother, who lives in the same house with the family, offers Yuzuru a cold drink of her special juice mix. She then airs a concern; that Yuzuru is spending too much time looking after Shoko's social woes, to the neglect of Yuzuru's own welfare. Nevertheless, Yuzuru is a good kid with a heart of gold, so declares Granny. Yuzuru says that she only does what she actually wants to do. That night, Yuzuru sleeps with Granny, but wakes up sometime during the night from a frightening dream. Yuzuru's dream seems to be some sort of premonition that Shoko is going to commit suicide. Granny is supposedly asleep and very, very still.

Next day, Shoya purchases bread to feed the koi fish, and practices his sign language to tell Shoko how wonderful she is. However, Shoko is a 'no show' at the bridge. Instead, he catches sight of Yuzuru a little distance away, wearing a girl's cute sailor fuku ( a girl's sailor suit school uniform ), and quietly crying to herself. Yuzuru pretends like nothing has happened, and comes over to help Shoya feed the fish. She only says that she is cosplaying. A text from Shoko deems that Yuzuru must now leave, but Shoya decides to tag along. Yuzuru dismisses Shoya at the entrance to a graveyard, but then confesses to him that she is scared. The Nishimiya family gravesite is adorned with flowers and candles, and a picture of Granny Ito. The funeral services proceed, but during the next several hours, it all seems like a dream sequence to Yuzuru, including seeing Shoko wearing a sexy, tight-fitting black dress and black tights, and playing with a butterfly.

Early next day, Shoya texts Shoko about the promised date with her, and she agrees to go. They take the light rail to a small village. Once there, they leisurely walk around, looking at the village proper, and walking through a lush, pretty park with a waterfall. The dating couple next visit an art gallery, with an outdoor exhibit that is a depression in the ground that looks like an asteroid crater made of polished aluminum. Shoya slips on the polished surface, and falls down. Shoko comes down to lend a hand, but in sign language, apologizes. Later on the return train, they sit in silence. Shoya correctly figures out that Shoko thinks that her being with him is somehow distressing to him. That is not true at all, but Shoko continues to think of herself as more and more worthless. That evening, as thoughts of the past keep recurring in his mind, Shoya again realizes that he has been and now is the cause of Shoko's emotional depression, not the other way around. Over the next several days, Shoya continues to date Shoko, with Yuzuru tagging along, but he notices that Shoko is falling deeper and deeper into depression. Little does he know the full extent of her mental anguish, that she has already crossed over into suicidal territory !

One day next week, Shoya is conscripted to help out in the kitchen of the Nishimiya household for a special occasion. Shoko, Yuzuru, and Shoya are going to mix, bake, and frost a birthday cake for Mrs. Nishimiya ! Just a short time after it's done, with the number 44 on the top icing, Mrs. Nishimiya come into the kitchen. She rebukes Shoya for being there, but Yuzuru convinces her that it is a party, and bad vibes don't belong at a party. Mrs. Nishimiya consents to eat cake with the three chefs turned partygoers. Yuzuru is told that mom submitted several of her pictures to a local contest, to which Yuzuru is much surprised. Yuzuru then mentions that next Tuesday is the day of the Summer Festival and fireworks, and that Shoya simply must come with them. Shoko has big plans for that evening, too, something that will supposedly remedy her depression permanently !

On the faithful night of the Summer Festival, Shoko finds herself staring at the setting sun. Soon, the blanket is spread out on the ground, and Mrs. Nishimiya and Shoko, both wearing yukatas, plus Yusuru and Shoya, dressed casual, are found relaxing on the blanket. In a while, the fireworks display begins, lighting up the night sky with all manor of color and noise. Others are also watching from their own locations; Mrs. Ishita, her daughter, and Maria; Miki and her family; Nagatsuka; Satoshi; Miyuki; Naoka and her family. The fireworks display takes a half-time break, so Yuzuru gets up to go get yakisoba snack. Mrs. Nishimiya also leaves with Yuzuru, leaving Shoya and Shoko alone. Shoya makes small talk, and finds out that Shoko's birthday has already passed. Shoko is now eighteen, and a legal adult ! The fireworks resume, as Shoko seems to be mesmerized by some unknown realization that now is the time. She gets up to leave, telling Shoya in sign language that she is going home to ( supposedly ) study. Shoko then signs, " Goodby ! " to Shoya with a somber finality, and disappears into the crowd. A few moments later, Yuzuru and Mrs. Nishimiya return with the yakisoba snacks, and Yuzuru asks Shoya to quickly return to the house to retrieve her forgotten camera.

Ringing the doorbell, but finding the door unlocked, Shoya enters the Nishimiya apartment. It is so dark, with only the light from the main window illuminating the interior. He calls out to Shoko, who must be in the home somewhere, as he notices Yuzuru's camera on a dresser near the front door. Light from the continuing fireworks again illuminate the walkway leading to the door that opens to the balcony. Shoya sees Shoko on the balcony, still wearing her cute yukata, but what she next does takes his breath away and sends a chill down his spine. Shoko is climbing onto the top of the low wall surrounding the balcony that is three stories up. Shoya puts the camera down, removes his shoes, and quickly walks towards the balcony door, crying out to Shoko.
Shokosuicide
Shoko is now standing on the top of the wall, looking outward at the fireworks. But why ??? In his haste, Shoya bumps into a table and chair, himself falling to the floor, and slowing him down in his efforts to reach the balcony. Panic now seizes Shoya, as he realizes what Shoko is going to do !!! With all his might, he screams her name, as he launches himself off the floor, like a armed missile fired towards it's target. Shoko gently leans her motionless body forward, as she initiates her decent to the ground, three stories below. A curtain blows across the doorway to the balcony, blocking the view, and when it returns to it's place, Shoko is gone !

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It's the climax of the fireworks show, with the sky lit up in a beautiful display of color, and a frightening roar of sound. But it all seems like everything is quite at this moment, as if time has frozen still to enhance what is taking place on the balcony right here and now ! Where am I?, and what am I doing?, Shoya's mind is telling him. Realization engulfs him like a toxic cloud. Shoya is bent over the low wall, with the lower half of his body pressed against the interior of the low wall. His stomach is pressed down onto the top of the wall, and the upper half of his body is hanging downward, next to the outside exterior of the wall. His one arm is outstretched downward, with his right hand clamped tightly around the wrist of Shoko ! His left hand is trying to grip the top of the wall. Shoya can see the wind gently fluttering Shoko's yukata, as her entire weight is slowly pulling him down ! His feet now leave the floor of the balcony, and his left hand is pulled away from the top of the wall. With his left hand now free, he swings it down and grasps Shoko's hand, now holding her with both hands. With Shoko's weight pulling on him like an anchor, his body slowly inches downward to certain death for the both of them.

Shoya yells to Shoko to grab onto the grill railing on the outside of the wall with her free hand.

He now does something that he has never done before, never even considered it, never thought of it as the least bit important---

He prays to God !

"Please God, give me one more ounce of strength !

I won't run away from my problems anymore !

Just do this one thing for me, PLEASE, [help me save Shoko] !

Starting tomorrow, I will look everyone in the eye !

Starting tomorrow, I'll listen when people speak to me !

Starting tomorrow, I will do better, better than I have ever done before !"

As Shoya looks down upon Shoko, he takes note of the scar on her ear, the scar that he gave her when he ripped her hearing aid from her, drawing blood, and had thrown it out the school window, so long ago.

Did I ever apologize to Shoko for that ?

Are you still mad at me ?


"I'M SORRY SHOKO, SORRY FOR EVERYTHING BAD THAT I DID TO YOU !!!"


Would Shoko ever forgive me ? I am so dumb !!!

Why have I never asked her ? And now it is too late!

By the way, Shoko, do you think that I might ....?

With redemption for his misconduct being offered and accepted, Shoya tries one last attempt to save Shoko---He has Shoko place her free hand on the grill railing, with Shoya now pulling on and moving her other hand onto the top of the wall. Shoya uses a counter-balance ploy, like how a see-saw works by counter-balancing up and down. As Shoko is boosted up, Shoya is pulled down, down and over the wall, down into free-fall, down to the ground so far below . . . .

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Shoya feels the water surrounding his body ..... the water is so cold, so very cold ..... but now the water is warm, so warm, and so red ....

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Next Story Arc---Story Arc No. 8---Help!---can be found here---