It's been almost a year since Natsumi and her family moved from the town of Onigafuchi. Her grandmother, a native of Hinamizawa village, fears that they will be cursed for abandoning the mountains, but Natsumi has never been happier, making new friends and enjoying school life. When a terrible gas explosion in Hinamizawa wipes out everyone in the village, her grandmother is convinced it is the wrath of the village god, Oyashiro-sama. Natsumi's family has never taken Grandmother's beliefs seriously, but her devotion to Oyashiro-sama has taken a frightening turn. Have the old woman's fanatical convictions gone too far?
- Main article: Onisarashi-hen/Plot Summary
This volume includes the last 4 main chapters of the story.
- Breakdown (崩壊 Hōkai)
- Secrets (秘密 Himitsu)
- Showdown (決着 Ketchaku)
- Truth (真実 Shinjitsu)
The "Demon Exposing Arc," which was written as a side story to Higurashi WHEN THEY CRY, has reached the end of this volume, and we were able to conclude the story. I feel a renewed sense of deep gratitude to Kito-sensei, who turned it into a story much, much more wonderful than the outline I pitched!
The world surrounding Natsumi in the "Demon Exposing Arc" reached a conclusion after overcoming a great trial, but now there will be a period of atonement that won't end for a long time. With no family to tell her when those days are over, Natsumi may have to carry that cross her entire life. When you imagine that, maybe the weight of this story will make you feel something more.
The impetus for tragedy is sometimes appallingly tiny. And also appallingly, it happens in an instant, is over in an instant, and can never be wiped away how much regret will assault us when we realize that? If you can imagine that, then maybe you can also imagine that the tragedy of the girl Natsumi Kimiyoshi might also befall you.
Lately, I've thought that we've reached an era when lives are lost all too easily. It's probably only a matter of time until a tragedy closely resembling the "Demon Exposing Arc," or one that far surpasses it, happens in real life. ...At the very least, I pray that those of you who were kind enough to read this story will learn something of what Natsumi and her companions learned.
Natsumi and Akira probably have long days of hardship ahead of them. I have no doubt that the total of their suffering will surpass the tragedy that began.
But I believe that they can overcome it and find happiness.
I mean, if Natsumi and Akira can't find happiness, then the tragedy will never end. And there's no such thing as an unending tragedy.