Another 200 meters to the school gate.
There, I stand still.
I sigh and look up at the sky.
The school gate is just over there.
As if it was placed there on someone’s whims.
The nightmarishly long hill road went on and on.
A different sigh — weaker and shorter than mine.
I look to my side.
There a girl stands, just as I am.
She’s a third-year like me, but I’ve never seen her before.
Her short hair ending just above her shoulders flutters in the wind.
“Do you like this school?”
No, she wasn’t asking me.
“I love it very, very much.
But nothing will stay the same.
Fun things, happy things, all of it…
All of it won’t always be the same.”
Although faltering, she continues.
“Even so, can you still love this place?”
“Then just find something else.”
Surprised, she looks straight at me.
“Just find the next fun thing, the next happy thing.
It’s not like only one of those exists, right?”
Such a time of clueless innocence.
Everyone’s been through it.
“Come on, let’s go.”
We begin to climb up.
Up the long, long hill road.
The protagonist. A third-year student who lives together with his father. He always comes to school late, so he’s treated as a delinquent in school. Having already given up on trying to get into university, he doesn’t look favorably on his classmates who are busy studying for exams.
A third-year in the same school as Tomoya. Coming back a long break from school, she meets Tomoya as she’s deep in thought. There are many difficulties awaiting her in school, but endeavors with Tomoya to overcome them.
A third-year in the same school as Tomoya. Although brash and very rough around the edges, she’s a girl who knows how to look out for others. She serves as the class president in the class beside, and was in the same class as Tomoya the year before.
The school’s top student, a prodigy and fellow third year student. However, she barely goes to class, and is usually found reading books in the library. She’s a little detached, and there are times where it’s difficult to carry a conversation with her.
A second year who just transferred into the school in spring. She tries to hide it in school, but she’s so strong that she can take on a group of men in a fight and win. Although she’s younger than Tomoya, she doesn’t seem to be that way at all to him.
A first year at Tomoya’s school. Seemingly a quiet girl, she’s always alone, carrying a knife in one hand and a block of wood in the other. She wants to give the finished carvings to as many people as she can.
A second year student who often holes up in the long-forgotten reference room. Knows a great deal about both the school and the town. Is incredibly polite, and refers to Tomoya as an upperclassman.
A girl in the same class as Tomoya, and Fujibayashi Kyou’s twin sister. Unlike her older sister, she’s quite negative and subdued, but still serves as the class president. Although she loves fortune telling, her predictions are never right.
Tomoya’s worst friend. Got into school via a sports endorsement, but he got into a fight, leading into suspension, and was subsequently forced to quit the club. From then on, he has led a nonchalant life in school. He and Tomoya are the famous duo of delinquents.
The resident in charge of Sunohara’s dormitory. She has a motherly disposition, and is excellent at serving as councillor for the dormitory’s residents. Apparently she was a beautiful, prim and proper girl back when she was a student.
Nagisa’s father who runs a bakery alongside his wife, Sanae. His disposition is that of a delinquent who never changed his ways and simply grew into adulthood, but the neighbors all seem to like him. Plays baseball with the kids nearby whenever he finds the time.
Nagisa’s mother; her personality is child-like, similar to Nagisa’s, and is brought to tears easily. She tutors elementary school children on the side while helping out at the bakery.
Fuuko’s older sister. She used to be an art teacher in the same school up until three years ago. Is able to treat anyone she meets with kindness, and was the only person in the school whom Nagisa looked up to.
A teacher in the school who looked after Tomoya during the first year. During Kouko’s teaching years, he was also her mentor.
Sunohara’s little sister who, although clever and shrewd, thinks only the best for her older brother. Having come from the countryside to visit him, her eyes sparkle at the many new things she finds.
A young man who works as an electrician. He used to make a living through music. Perhaps some habits from that era stick with him, but the shouts of his rocker’s soul sometimes burst forth.
A mysterious young man who appears throughout town. According to him, his goal in life is “to live like a man”.