>Ebina’s confession arc happens. Hayato doesn’t want to involve Hachiman or the Service Club because Hayato knows how Hachiman solves problems.
Ultimately, Hayama and I began discussing the things that you could lose.(!) Hayama said several things. He was well aware that you will lose things eventually. Regardless of the type of relationship, that, too, will end as well. If it was really important as you claimed it to be, then you would try your best to avoid losing it or so he said. But, that was just sophistry.
“You sure like running your mouth. As far as I can see, you look like you’re doing everything for your own personal benefit.”(!)
Hayama’s sharp voice reverberated. Hayama glared at me with a distinct look of anger. I returned his glare straight on. When I did, Hayama looked like he tried to hold back the shame from getting overly excited and sighed deeply. He slowly began to talk.
“Then, what would you do? If it was you, what would you do?”
“Don’t try to shift the subject to me…”
If it was me, then… or not. Thinking about it was pointless. I was different from Hayama. Of course that included Tobe as well. Pondering what I would do in his situation was nothing but wasted effort. That’s why I didn’t want to talk about it.
“So basically, you don’t want anything to change.”
“…Yes, that’s right.”
Hayama spat his words out. His voice was diluted with anguish and impatience which was something you wouldn’t expect from Hayama normally. It’s just that. That feeling of not wanting anything to change.(!) At the very least, I could understand it. I mean, I had to. When you wanted to get your thoughts across, it wasn’t always the correct choice to lay bare your entire life story.(!) A relationship where you couldn’t move forward.(!) A relationship where you couldn’t forgive others for stepping over into your domain.(!) A relationship where you couldn’t forgive the person for trampling all over you. In dramas and manga, there was always a happy ending for those who crossed over that line. But reality wasn’t so kind. It was much more cruel and apathetic.
There wasn’t anything else important. The moment you lost the things that were irreplaceable was the moment you realize that you’ll never be able to obtain them ever again.(!)
As I am now, I couldn’t call Hayama a coward, let alone make fun of him.(!)
You could say his inability to move forward was the correct choice. If it was for the sake of his happiness, then it was fine. The words that could deny the entirety of his answer wouldn’t come to me. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. As I stood there without a counterargument or rebuttal, I heard a short and resigned sigh.
“You’re exactly right… This is just me being selfish.”
As Hayama Hayato said that, he made a lonely laugh. That laugh rubbed me the wrong way.
“Don’t look down on me, Hayama. I’m not one to easily believe in the words of others.”(!)
I was the type of guy who looked beyond what was said. The owner of that worthless personality was me.
“That’s why I don’t believe you for a second when you say you’re being selfish.”(!)
Hayama’s expression was full of shock.(!) It wasn’t exactly anything to be shocked about. I imagine there were other people like who wanted the same thing. And that there were other people like me. And girls who lie and put up a facade in order to protect something. Hayama Hayato doesn’t want to hurt anyone. The reason why Hayama couldn’t act was because he knew someone was bound to be hurt.(!) The one step that he could take would ultimately hurt someone which would lead to something breaking.(!) Exactly who had the right to deny the justice of those who agonize over their decision to try to protect something? All of us were living in this laughably narrow world with a limited amount of time. It doesn’t need to be said that our time as high school student wouldn’t last forever.(!) Who had the right to criticize you for wanting to value the limited time you had left?(!) It was understandable wanting to not lose anything.(!) What I needed to do was already decided. Hayama Hayato can’t choose anything. There were too many things he had within his grasp that he held dear.
Hikigaya Hachiman can’t choose anything. Rather, there were no alternatives because there existed only one choice. As ironic as it was, Hayama and I were similar in the regard of “not being able to decide”(!), but everything else was completely parallel. The things Hayama wanted to protect were things I couldn’t understand.
But it was better that way. That’s why there were things that only I could do. Hayama called out to me as I left with my back turned against the river.
“I really didn’t want to rely on you for this too…”(!)
The same goes for me too, you bastard. Love and friendship were things adored by the masses. But that was a limited right granted to the winners. The cries of the losers fell on deaf ears. In that case, I will take them all in. I will sing out with all my might.
>Hayama already knows what it’s like to lose something that’s important to you. Hayato also knows how Yukino is as a person, but at the same time Hayato wants to preserve his current group. Hayato has no other options, so he lets Hachiman do as he pleases.
>Yukino and Hachiman have their falling out.
>Haruno encounters Hachiman at a donut shop. They talk to each other for a while. Orimoto and her friend show up. Orimoto reveals how Hachiman used to have a crush on her. This piques Haruno’s interest.
“You don’t say, Hikigaya confessed huh~.”
Haruno spoke with a surprised tone. But those amused eyes of her were dyed with a sadistic color. It made me suspect she wanted to know what happened between me and Orimoto after seeing my reaction to her.
>I wonder what Yukino’s reaction would be if she heard about this.
>Hayato invites Hachiman out on a date with Orimoto and her friend. Hachiman declines. Haruno calls him later and insists. She lets Hachiman know that Hayato, for some reason, REALLY wants him to come as well. What is implied is that Hayato is planning something Haruno isn’t aware of.
>Proud Hayato bows and asks Hachiman for a favor.
The one who broke the silence was Hayama.
“Couldn’t you just come along and think of it as helping me out?”
To my surprise, Hayama had bowed his head. I couldn’t see Hayama’s downcast expression, but based on his tightly gripped fist, he wasn’t smiling. To go as far as bowing his head, I couldn’t understand what was going through his head.(!) Even so, I wasn’t in the mood to lend him an ear either.
“I doubt I’d be of any use and don’t you have people who could help you?”
After I said that, Hayama moved his shoulders slightly. However, he continued to bow his head.
“…Also, that’s a day off so there’s no way I’d want to go out. Ah, how about that? You should bring along your friends and introduce them instead. That way, everything would work out perfectly.”
>I wonder why Hayato insists on taking you along?
>They go out on a date. Orimoto and her friend treat Hachiman poorly throughout the entire date. Hayato smiles all the way through.
If you’ve paid attention throughout the series, Hayato’s watch plays a rather big role. Either Hayato’s watch gets brought up or more specifically Hayato looking at his watch. This is to illustrate that Hayato is a schemer.
>Hachiman looks at Hayato’s watch, while they’re waiting for Yukino to arrive (S2E10, sadly a LN exclusive).
From thereon, Hayama lent his ear to Haruno-san and Yuigahama’s conversation, occasionally responding. At the wrist of Hayama’s hand that held his cup, the second hand of his watch slowly ticked.
All I did was follow it with my eyes.
The hand turned and turned as it was dictated to, going at the same rhythm indefinitely without breaking its pace. It would make one revolution, then a second one, and return to its original place, taking a similar appearance as always. But even so, it would never, ever look the same. While the second hand of the clock would stay as it is without changing, the time that represented the surroundings would.
>Hayato looks at his watch during the confrontation with Sagami on the roof. Hayato is saying pleasant things to Sagami about how she’s really great and how everyone is waiting for her, but this instant showcases that he’s mostly concerned about how much time they have left, not Sagami herself.
Now why am I bringing this up? Like I said, there have been times where Hayato has shown to be a schemer.
>Throughout his and Hachiman’s double-date with Orimoto and her friend, before meeting up with Yukino and Yui, Hayato kept looking at what time it was, with increasing urgency.
(Sadly, most of these are also LN exclusives.)
“…Hey there.” Hayama said briefly, the shine of his dull silver wristwatch escaping from out of his cuff that he lightly lifted in the air.
Hayama looked at the two girls with a mixed smile and when he quickly looked at his watch(!), he spoke in an urging tone.
“We should hurry or we won’t have much time to look around.”(!)
“Ah, right. When do the shops close again?”
Orimoto asked. I, of course, wouldn’t know the answer to that question. Besides, I didn’t even know which stores we were going to, you know… Why did I have to partake in a mystery tour of my own home town? Nakamachi dabbled with her phone. Apparently she was looking it up.
“Um, at 8:30 it says.”
“No way! Crap! Don’t we, like, totally have no time?”
Orimoto took out her cellphone hurriedly and looked at the time. It was just about 7:30 PM.
So we had about an hour left. I didn’t know how long it took for girls to shop, but there probably wasn’t much wiggle room. Everybody’s pace naturally became faster.
>After Miura sees Hachiman and Hayato with two girls.
I stealthily maneuvered my way towards Hayama’s back and spoke to him in a whisper.
“Hayama. We should probably go somewhere else.”(!)
When I said that, Hayama checked his watch.(!) No, I wasn’t talking about the time.(!) I was talking about something more fearsome.(!) But Hayama arbitrarily looked convinced for one reason or another and whispered, “Yeah, that seems right.”(!) He then called out to Orimoto and her friend.
>Hayato looks at his watch again once they step outside.
While they were picking out sportswear, it was just about closing time for the shops. So that meant we were entering the last stretch of my long job as a supplement. When we made it outside, it was completely dark out as well as cold.
Hayama checked his watch(!) and called out to Orimoto and her friend.
“Are you guys a bit hungry?”
>Hachiman suggests going to Saize. The girls laugh at him. Hayato says where they’re going.
Hayama pointed in the direction of a cafe across the street. It was a store that looked chic and hip so the girls nodded in agreement. They definitely only said yes because Hayama suggested it, didn’t they…? Had I blurted this out, I couldn’t see a future where everything would work out peacefully. It was basically that. “The law decrees that you don’t get popular from being in a band, but you get popular because you’re a popular guy in a band.”
Something like that. In any case, we crossed the street and entered the store.
Yukinoshita Haruno secretly waved in such a way that only I could see. Well, it didn’t look like she planned on getting in the way so there’s no harm in leaving her alone… She hadn’t done anything yet so far, after all. Also, Hayama should have noticed too. But since he hadn’t said anything, there was no doubt he was ignoring her.(!)
>I don’t like the way you’re acting. Hayato has been keeping quiet throughout the entire date while the girls were mocking Hachiman. Yet he decides to stand up for him, just as Yukino and Yui are about to show up. What a coincidence.
And in that silence were the sounds of footsteps. The sound came from the stairs and it was heading in our direction.
“…Looks like they’re here.”(!)
Hayama muttered and stood up.
>If Hayato has no intention of running for SCP, then what was Hayato’s real reason for calling Yukino and Yui here and for forcing Hachiman to go on a double-date?
>“I just wanted to do whatever I could.”
>“Oh? Is that so?”
As expected, Yukinoshita and Yuigahama planned to nominate Hayama as the candidate. That decision itself wasn’t all that mysterious. You could even say it was correct. But it was odd for Hayama to actually accept it.(!) Regardless of how much of a “can’t refuse someone if they asked for help” personality he had, Hayama was in a club. On top of that, he was the club president. If he was half-hearted about either one, he’d cause trouble for both. Hayama should’ve been well aware of that.(!) So there was no way he’d be able to accept the offer so easily.(!) As I stood there not understanding what Hayama’s real intent was(!), I looked at Hayama. When I did, Hayama who took on my glare responded in a weak voice.
“I just wanted to do whatever I could.”(!)
>Haruno laughs at what Hayato pulled.
Their voices wouldn’t come out. The reason was because they were disillusioned with the man called Hayama Hayato or because they feared him and at the same time confused. As they wondered how they were supposed to answer, a silence emerged. Except for one person.(!) Was it my imagination that I could hear a sneer in the direction of the seats at the counter on the smoker side?(!)
>“People who can handle everything flawlessly are boring. I got what I came for. Someone rained on my parade, anyway.”
Hayato has outplayed Haruno.
Basically what happens is the following: Hayato forced Hachiman to come with him on the date. Hayato invited Yukino and Yui, under the pretense that he wanted to talk about the SCP candidacy. Orimoto and friend treat Hachiman poorly throughout the entire date. Hayato suggests they go to a specific cafe. Just as Yukino and Yui are about to come in, Hayato starts making his speech about how Hachiman is actually really great. He does this to make amends for allowing Hachiman to fix his group’s problem during Ebina’s arc and he felt guilty that Hachiman’s actions now distorted the balance of the members of the Service Club.
>Why did Hayato go out of his way to set this up? Well, he wants to make amends to Hachiman’s group, because it’s his group’s fault that there’s now a rift in their group.
I was aware that his actions were just to protect me. Even so, I just couldn’t comprehend why Hayama would go as far as destroying his own image to do that.(!)
“…I’ve always been thinking. About a way to take back the things that I destroyed.”
“I… had expectations of you. Even though I understood you, I asked you for help anyway. Because of that…”
“…This is how you did things up until now, right? Can’t you just stop making a victim out of yourself now?”
But at the same time, if Hayato wants to use Hachiman to get closer to Yukino, then it’s important to him that the two of them stay on good terms at all times. It’s also important that Yukino sees Hayato standing up for Hachiman (something Hayato didn’t do for Yukino when they were younger), which is why he started giving his speech to Orimoto and her friend around the time Yukino would show up.
>Don’t you think it’s about time you stopped sacrificing yourself? Because if you continue, then you won’t be able to make up with Yukino, which means I won’t be able to make up with Yukino either.
>Hachiman’s biggest problem of season 2; stubbornly clinging to the idea that he’s still a loner, that his actions don’t have any impact on others.
I glared at Hayama and he returned the glare back. At some point, Hayama, who probably hadn’t noticed himself, was clenching his fists. He suddenly loosened his grip and casted his eyes downward.
“Don’t you help people… because you want someone to help you? Isn’t it because you’re wishing for someone to help you?”
Now this is interesting. At first glance, you might think this applies to Hachiman. It doesn’t. Hachiman helps people because beneath his “rotten” exterior, he actually is a nice guy. Also, a lot of it, he does for Yukino’s sake. (Read Part 4 of Yukino’s analysis)
Secondly, you might think this applies to Yukino. It doesn’t. Yukino helps people, but she doesn’t expect others to help her. Now you might be thinking, that’s contradictory to what happened in this scene:
Except, the only reason why Yukino does this is because Hachiman crushed her self-confidence. (Read Yukino’s analysis) (Also confirmed by ANOTHER, since in that universe Hachiman doesn’t help Yukino out at all with her family problems. Also confirmed by Volume 12, because Yukino decides to solve her family problems on her own. The point being: Yukino never expected anything in return when she started looking out for him.)
So, then who does it apply to? Hayato asks Hachiman if he’s like Hayato. Isn’t the only reason why Hachiman is helping people, so that someone will help him? Because that’s the reason why Hayato is helping people, he wants “someone” (Hachiman) to help him restore his relationship with Yukino.
>Hayato is going to do the campaign speech for Yukino. What are you going to do Hachiman?
As I fell into thought, Miss Hiratsuka added.
“Hayama is apparently doing the campaign speech for her.”
“Is that so…”
Hayama, huh… True enough, when it came to the campaign speech, he was the most suitable choice. But that was only if they were completely unrelated. I didn’t know the details behind Hayama and Yukinoshita’s past. I’ve been doing everything up until now without ever knowing. However, based on how Yukinoshita typically acted, I felt it didn’t fall in line with her principles. During the weekend, Yukinoshita decided to run for candidacy, contacted Hayama, and got his consent to do the speech for her, huh? I couldn’t get a clear image of what her motive and intent was, but the preparations alone were quite good. From that alone, I could say it was very typical of Yukinoshita. When Miss Hiratsuka crushed her cigarette, she softly looked up.
“Hikigaya, what will you do?”
“I won’t do anything. I can’t really be picky about their plans.”
Besides, if you thought about it normally, then Yukinoshita becoming the president would settle everything. There wouldn’t be a need to look for other possible nominees for candidacy. There just wasn’t anything problematic that I could see. I was gritting my teeth, not having realized it.
>Hayato is waiting near the Service Club so he can work together with Yukino. He asks Hachiman what he is going to do? Nothing. It’s only logical that Yukino is the best candidate and that Hayato is going to help her out! It doesn’t bother me at all! Oh, I haven’t eaten my lunch yet?
Not in the mood to start up a conversation, I sent Hayama a look asking why he was here to which he shrugged his shoulders.
“I was just called out to meet with them.”
I replied with just those words and walked past Hayama. Just as we passed by each other, Hayama spoke.
“I’ll be working with Yukinoshita… What are you going to do?”(!)
“…I’m not going to do anything.”
I spat out those words and continued down the hallway without looking back. It sounded like I could hear a sigh from behind me.(!) If anything, it was likely more correct that I wasn’t going to do anything, but that I couldn’t do anything. Rebuttals that could go against Yukinoshita wouldn’t come to mind. Her words were much more logical. In the first place, I wasn’t sure if opposing her was a good thing. There was no reason for that. Should Yukinoshita run as a candidate in the election, then she would no doubt be the strongest contender and it was pretty much clear who was going to be elected. Not only was her ability the real deal, there was also Hayama who was cooperating with her. As I walked senselessly back to the classroom, I only just realized that I forgot to eat my lunch.
It’s very likely that at this point in the series Hayato has already come to the realization that or come to terms with Hachiman being better suited for Yukino than Hayato himself. He says that what he felt for Yukino was probably a misconception, which is why he sighs when Hachiman tells Hayato that he isn’t going to do anything.
>So Hayato wants to help/is willing to stand up for Yukino, Hachiman and Yui, but not (for) Iroha? How peculiar.
>I thought you were supposed to be a nice gu- Oh.
>Hayato (unintentionally) tests the waters of his current relationship with Yukino. Surely after helping people out so much, their relationship should be a bit better, right?
>Too soon Hayato, too soon.
>That get-together causes rumors about Hayato and Yukino going out with one another. This isn’t the first time this has happened.
“Rumor? Huh, what’s that about, Iroha-chan?”
Haruno-san didn’t let that word slide by and she directed a gaze to Isshiki.
“Ah, ummm…” Isshiki contemplated whether it was okay to tell her, making alternating glances between the discouraged Yukinoshita and Hayama who was chatting further away, and was at a loss for words.
But Haruno-san placed her hands lightly on Isshiki’s shoulders as if pressing her for an answer. “Tell me please?”
At that point, she couldn’t refuse. Those words were just as heavy. Haruno-san wore her usual smile while quietly waiting for Isshiki to act. After a few seconds of that, as if giving in, Isshiki whispered into Haruno-san’s ears while being mindful of the reactions around her. Haruno-san leaned her ear to one side as she nodded with an amused expression. Ahh, if this person gets wind of the rumor, there’s no telling what’ll happen…
But Haruno-san’s attitude wasn’t as I imagined it to be.(!)
“Oh, so that’s what it is… That’s something they’ve been through since a long time ago,”(!) said Haruno-san, coldly.(!)
After thanking Isshiki, she turned around as if dropping all of her interest.(!)
“Meguri, let’s get going.”
>However this time Hayato actually takes measures to make the rumors stop.
>Hayato eventually makes up with Yukino. Hayato is Yukino’s Orimoto, a relic of the past that has haunted her up until this point in the series. By making up, both Hayato and Yukino can finally let bygones be bygones and put their past to rest.
>Yukino tells Hayato that he doesn’t need to force himself to chase after her anymore, that he shouldn’t be tied down by the past anymore.
Yukinoshita breathed out as if smiling and turned to Hayama. “You shouldn’t let the past tie you down anymore… There’s no need to force yourself to chase after someone.”
>During the same volume/episode, Hayato’s future career plays a big role. Is Hayato going to go for the sciences or for the liberal arts? Hayato’s group wants to know, so they can go in the same direction. Hayato says they should all decide for themselves what they want to do.
>Miura approaches the Service Club with a request. She wants them to find out which direction Hayato is headed into, so that their group can stay together for another year.
>Hachiman approaches Hayato and asks him about it. Hayato doesn’t want to tell.
>Haruno shows up at school. Yukino asks her about Hayato’s future career. Haruno says that Yukino “should” know. (LN exclusive)
(Why should Yukino know? Because it’s the opposite of what Yukino is supposed to pick. Their parents want a long lasting relationship between the Yukinoshita and Hayama families, so Yukino has to pick one while Hayato picks the other.)
>Haruno asks Hachiman to walk her to the station. Hayato was expecting someone to “find him”, to find what he actually wanted.
>Hachiman asks Totsuka to ask his tennis club teammates to keep the other runners back. He needs some alone time with Hayato. Hachiman offers Hayato an option of how Hayato can free himself from the expectations of others. Hachiman assumes that Hayato is only taking the wishes of his classmates into consideration.
>Hayato says that he doesn’t want to lose to Hachiman. Instead he’ll continue being the Hayato Hayama he has always been: Everyone’s Hayato Hayama and continue to meet everyone’s expectations.
Episode title: Hayama Hayato Always Responds to Everyone’s Expectations.
This whole “I feel inferior to you, I want us to be equals, that way I can accept losing to you” is highly likely also about Yukino. Hachiman has been able to do way more for Yukino in less than a year than Hayato has been able to do in all those years of knowing her. Hayato doesn’t have a high opinion of Hachiman (or at least not at first), however Hachiman’s selflessness has made it possible for Yukino to grow as a person, get friends and even fall in love with someone. Hayato wants Hachiman to be his equal, because that way he can comfort himself knowing he lost to someone that’s as good as him, that it was a fair and even match.
>Hayato’s character arc ends with him deciding that he still wants to be everyone’s Hayato Hayama, living the life his parents and society have planned out for him.