From the back cover:
Nana’s band Blast is taking off in a big way—from sold-out club dates to a record label waving a contract at them. But the Trapnest menace still lurks, stealing away everything she cares for. Trapnest took her boyfriend, and even though Ren is back in her life, his band still comes first. And now her trusty sidekick Hachi is being lured away by Trapnest bassist Takumi. But this time, Nana won’t give up without a fight!
There’s a lot of complicated emotional stuff going on in this volume, some of it explained and some left to the reader to interpret. The major issue at hand is how the others see Hachi and the way that Hachi sees herself.
Everyone learns that Hachi slept with Takumi, thanks to his casual admission. They all assume she must love him, because they can’t fathom her doing that otherwise. The boys defend her. Nana is initially shocked to see them together, but quickly begins rationalizing it. She even covers for him and doesn’t tell Hachi about some rude things he said about her. Still, it puts a wedge between them and she spends most of the volume staying with Ren.
Nobu, spurred by the situation with Takumi, confesses his love to Hachi. But he’s another one with an idealistic vision of her, and though she’s positive she’d be happier in the kind of relationship he could offer, she still can’t break free of Takumi. I was having trouble understanding why she’d do that, but something she thought later made it clear—it’s because Takumi is the only one who gets that she is not so pure and innocent. He knows exactly how empty she is inside.
This is all incredibly deep stuff! Even though the relationship with Takumi is trouble, I’m still fascinated to see one of the heroines go through such a dark journey. I want to see her come out of it and pursue something healthier. She admitted several volumes ago that she was kind of playing up the naïveté because she wanted Nana to like her; I’d like to see her dismiss that, too, and just be herself. That may be the only thing that’ll bring Nana home again.
I love that the plot is completely secondary to the emotional journey of the characters. I’m torn, though, ‘cos I want them to get their happy ending soon, and I highly doubt that is going to happen.