Titre original : Now the Flower Blooms
Three years ago, Arata Wataya moved from Fukui to Tokyo, leaving behind his friends and everyone else who shared his passion for karuta. Alone in his interests, and further singled out for his rural accent and apparent poverty, he is friendless until the day that Chihaya Ayase, outspoken tomboy and sister to a model, begins to stand up against their classmates’ bullying tactics. When she walks him home one day he reveals to her his love for karuta and his dream to become a master, sparking her own interest in the game.
In the present, Chihaya finds herself in a situation not unlike Arata’s. New at high school, alone in her love for karuta, and thought of as odd for her tendency to speak her mind, Chihaya is widely regarded as a waste of a pretty face. Listening to poetry on her headphones and really discouraged that no one else wants to join her karuta club, her mood takes a turn when one of her old friends, Taichi Majima, transfers into her high school. Although he used to play karuta with Chihaya and Arata, he has since moved on to other interests, forcing Chihaya to wonder if Arata still harbors his love for the game….