Kaori finally saw how strong Hajime’s party is in episode 5 of Arifureta season 2. In the final episode of Arifureta season 1, she decided to join Hajime’s party because of her feelings towards him. She did it, knowing that she was inferior to Yue when it comes to Hajime’s affection. However, it also seems that Kaori was not aware that she would also feel inferior to Shea, Tio, and Yue when it comes to battle capability. In fact, it would be precise to say that she is holding the whole team down. The reality is crueler than she expected. Maybe Kaori just really wants to stay at Hajime’s side and earn his affection, but since Hajime is not the person he was used to be, she needs to consider all of the things related to that. Though her actions might be selfish since she didn’t think clearly about their situation before joining Hajime’s team, we all know that she is just afraid to lose him again, like what happened in episode 1 of Arifureta season 1. I’m sure that it’s one of the reasons why Kaori doesn’t want to be apart from Hajime, despite their differences.
Well, to feel inferior to others is inevitable for Kaori since she was not around when Hajime started his adventure. Another thing is that her own powers are not suited to the battlefield since she is a healer. When they are fighting, she can’t do anything since she is not a combat-type person, which makes her feel inferior to others. Yue, She, and Tio are not really humans, and they are stronger than the summoned heroes too. Hajime has also obtained a power that makes her inhuman. Hence, they don’t really need Kaori’s healing, who is one of the summoned heroes, unless they’re on the brink of death. For me, Kaori is not really a weak person since she can cast a double-edged sword spell that even Yue can’t cast, and she can also use spells that only she can cast. It is normal for a party to have a healer-type member, it’s just Hajime’s team is irregular. Though, I’m sure that there were times when they really need Kaori’s power, like what happened in the previous episode. Kaori is the one who saved Tio after taking all of the attacks from Freid Bagwa.
Even though Kaori has her own accomplishments when she was still with her fellow heroes, her guilt still overwhelms her. She saw a prophecy that something bad will happen to Hajime but she couldn’t protect him. She is full of regrets because of what happened on the day she lost Hajime. When they were reunited, she thought she could make up for being not able to protect Hajime, but she eventually realized that Yue was the one who saved Hajime. If not for Yue, Hajime might be dead now. Of course, Kaori sometimes thought that she could have been the one who stayed with Hajime when he was on the brink of death if she had the chance, instead of Yue. Sometimes, she also wishes that she were Yue, even if it is impossible. In episode 5 of Arifureta season 2, Hajime noticed that Kaori is acting strange. She is always apologizing for small matters, always looking down, and always faking her smile. Thus, he realized what was going on in Kaori’s head. The fact that Kaori is also the reason why she and Hajime were separated from the others in this episode made her feel worse. She can’t hold her breath anymore when they were in the ocean, so Hajime abandoned the others and saved her. This scene also states that Kaori is really weaker than the other girls in Hajime’s party.
Because of Kaori’s thoughts, Hajime made it clear that Yue will always be special to him. According to Hajime, if hearing that only makes Kaori feel pain, inferiority, and defeat, she should not be around him. Hajime also mentioned that in the past, Shea was a weak demi-human and always crying to the point that she was annoying, but she didn’t give up and didn’t let her feelings of inferiority get ahead of her. As a result, she is now a strong demi-human who can take care of herself and Hajime trusts her. I’m sure Hajime did this because she wants Kaori to be stronger. After all, the reason why Hajime came back to the Great Labyrinth of Orcus in the final episode of Arifureta season 1 is to save Kaori, not his former classmates. I think it is safe to say that Hajime might have had feelings for Kaori even a little before he met Yue, considering the bond they formed, and he is also awkward to her when they were alone together in the past.
Is Kaori going to overcome her feelings, or she will go back to the capital and just accept that she can’t be with Hajime? In my episode 1 feature, I mentioned that Kaori will experience tons of suffering in future episodes, and what happened in this episode is one of the major events that hurt her. The episode ended with Aiko being kidnapped by a suspicious nun. How will Hajime and Kaori react if the events in the capital reached them? If you are also curious, stay tuned to the anime. Episode 6 will air on February 17, 2022, and you can watch it on Funimation.
Also, if you enjoyed seeing Kaori spend her time alone with Hajime in episode 5 of Arifureta season 2, you can vote for the anime on our weekly poll.
Screenshots via Funimation
©Ryo Shirakome, OVERLAP / ARIFURETA Project