ProfAllister wrote:For "Cut Petals," I wasn't saying Chess with Hisao on Tuesday then "I maked myself ded LOL" on Wednesday. And I'm more than willing to admit that I'm still trying to work out what exactly goes on in Hanako's head that separates "Misstep" from "Cut Petals". To the best of my understanding, "Cut Petals" is her resignation - she and Hisao will never be equals, will never be lovers, and it's probably for the best. And, based on the few glimpses we've been given into her internal thoughts, she's misanthropic, has severe trust issues, and a near nonexistent sense of self-worth. Even here, I consider suicide unlikely, but it's still far more likely than any other situation.
Well, only two things I can think of directly influenced Hanako - Hisao's invitation to the city, and her subsequent meeting with Othello. Evidently, Othello's vote of confidence in regards to Hisao and Lilly meant something to Hanako. Maybe it was enough to make her second guess her misgivings about the two of them? I think it would be a little silly if it were that simple, but it seems to be the case. Having lasted as long as she already had with gods know how many disappointments, I think she'd be more like your proposal for Rin - maybe one day she would
find somebody who acknowledges her as their equal.
On the other hand, I feel rather confident in my reading of "Misstep". Well, at the very least, I think it would make for a good story. Her outburst surprised Hisao, and it's very likely she surprised herself. To assume she went into misery, depression, suicide, etc., after "Misstep" kind of plays into the "it's a trap!" mindset that gets you to "Misstep" in the first place - assuming that she is weak and fragile, unable to care for herself. And again, the underlying theme of these stories was that life goes on after the Bad End. Besides, I think there's some kind of law against having that kind of phoenix imagery available and not taking advantage of it. :p
My problem with Hanako is that in spite of her inner strength, she only says what matters when she is absolutely pushed to the brink. It was always
within her power to change the dynamic of her relationship with Hisao and Lilly. Lilly always had faith that Hanako was a strong person, and at the very least, Hisao did not treat her the way he did because he thought she was broken. I think they would have listened if she had spoken. And I think that maybe, after thinking on it for a while and calming down, Hanako would realize that as well.
That's why I've never found the idea of her reconciling with Hisao something that would make her any weaker of a character. She isn't crawling back to him and admitting that she was wrong. She set her foot down, established her boundaries, and spoke her mind. Perhaps she didn't mean everything she said, but she sent a clear message nonetheless. Perhaps then she would realize that she can renegotiate the terms of her relationship with Hisao and Lilly, so to speak. She can still become a phoenix, but she doesn't have to burn down her bridges in the process.