Festival Accompanying Arc Vol. 8 is the eighth and final volume of Karin Suzuragi's manga adaptation of Matsuribayashi and the 32nd overall volume of the manga adaptation of Higurashi When They Cry. The volume was released in English by Yen Press as an omnibus (numbered 25) with Volume 7.
At last, after countless failures, Rika has exposed Takano's mad plot to destroy the village of Hinamizawa for the sake of her and her grandfather's research. Barricading herself in Irie Clinic, Takano draws her allies in close even as Rika and her friends organize a siege outside the facility. Takano's cleverness has allowed her to elude capture in every other world. Will Rika find a way to defeat her would-be murderer and reclaim her life beyond the Cotton Drifting? This final confrontation will decide everything!
Chapter 33: Showdown, And Then…
Chapter 34: Gods and Men
Final Chapter: An Ideal World
This is My Wish
Hello, I'm Ryukishi07.
In this volume, the "Festival Accompanying Arc" reaches its conclusion at last. In other words, this long, long trip through the various fragments finally comes to an end. To all who have walked with me on the long journey of this story, I truly thank you. When I realize that this will be the last time I write an afterword for the manga version of the main Higurashi question—and—answer arcs, I am filled with deep emotion.
The story only covers the week leading up to the cotton drifting here in the "Festival Accompanying Arc." It was a very busy week for our heroes and truly their final week. For Rika and her friends and for Miyo Takano. How did you enjoy the world of Higurashi? As you know, Rika and Hanyu, in addition to the club members and everyone else in Hinamizawa (though they didn't know it), have repeated this world again and again. It was a vicious, cruel, and completely outrageous world. But for those of us living now, maybe in exchange for not constantly repeating our world, we're being tested to see how we will live our one lifetime. Keiichi and his friends failed again and again through countless worlds. And then in the "Festival Accompanying Arc," they finally reached a conclusion that could be called the "right one." but I hope that you, who have seen the many worlds, will never forget the tragedy and regret that they endured again and again. And I hope that you, living right now, will never forget the everyday miracles of living a normal life—of laughing, eating, falling in love......that is my wish.
Now, then, Rika and Hanyu have reached the end of June 1983 for the first time, and their long, long journey has reached one conclusion. But the world of Higurashi WHEN THEY CRY has just a little bit further to go in the "Dice Killing Arc." I hope you will stay with me a little longer too.
The manga version of the "Festival Accompanying Arc" has reached its end. The journey through all eight volumes felt both long and short—it was over in a flash. I wouldn't have been able to run this far if not for all of your support. Thank you so much for watching over me.
Up until now, I have lived my life alongside Higurashi. The "Abducted by Demons Arc" was terrifying. Rena's transformations were so scary, I read it with my hand up, poised to cover the screen. The "Cotton Drifting Arc" was filled with such constant terror that, as expected, I read on with my hand up to the screen. The "Curse Killing Arc" kept surprising me, but I charged through it the action scenes in the "Time Killing Arc" had me at the edge of my seat, wondering anxiously if Akasaka would make it through alive. The "Eye Opening Arc" was so fascinating as it exposed the tricks and turns underlying the plot, I couldn't tear my eyes away. The "Atonement Arc" made my heart leap as it alternated between oncoming terror and relief. The "Massacre Arc" brought me to tears with its theme of the power of unity and its unbearable reality. And I lost all track of time playing the "Festival Accompanying Arc," with its power of optimism, collection of miracles, and exhilarating battles. I remember being completely absorbed, reading about the painful and powerful process through which Miyo Takano built up her indomitable will. I am so happy to have been given the opportunity to turn parts of all that into a manga.
...Still, Rena's transformed face really was horrific, and for a while I couldn't even look at the official message boards because of it but now I'm overcome with urges to see it to draw it, to seek it out. I'm so fickle. There was a time when I couldn't handle horror, but thanks to Higurashi, think I've built up a resistance to it it also taught me a lot about moe. Cat ears, kneesocks, the "absolute territory," maid-san paradise...I think the Angel Mort design is excellent. Thank you for letting me draw so much.
To everyone who sent me letters during the series' run, thank you. Some people sent me multiple letters, and they were a big encouragement to me. Thank you for all the new year's cards, summer greeting cards, and winter greeting cards. I'm sorry I couldn't send you replies. I hope I can return your kindness with the manga I draw every day and by filling in as much space as possible with bonus drawings. You sent me so many adorable illustrations of Rena, Mion and Shion, Rika-chama and Hanyu—they were such a pleasure to see. I've been very blessed to have met all of you through Higurashi.
If there's one thing I regret, it's that I couldn't visit Shirakawa-go again while I was working on the series. I had no idea the memories of my visit before starting the series would be such a source of comfort to me. Shirakawa-go is a great place. Its natural scenery is beautiful, and the people there are very kind. If you ever visit, I hope you get a taste of just how wonderful the place is. If I ever have the chance to spend more time there, I would like to experience dusk and early morning at Shirakawa-go. I want to see the summer water sprinkling and the sake festival and—though it would be hard to get there in winter—what it's like in the snow. I bet it's amazing. I want to take good care of Shirakawa-go and all of japan's nature. The cicadas and Higurashi too, of course. Chirp, chirp, chirrrp...
Now that the "Festival Accompanying Arc" is over and Rika has made it past June of 1983, the "Dice Killing Arc," which could perhaps be called her final trial, is about to begin. You could say it's the arc that brings all of the Higurashi stories to a conclusion. I hope you will watch over Hanyu as she contends with the feelings in her heart and Rika as she struggles toward a new resolution.
If possible, I hope that this last volume will reach BT-san. I would be so happy if BT-san—who always read the Higurashi manga with a smile, enjoying it with all his heart—could read this book.
Thank you so much for staying with us all this time. I hope you will enjoy the "Dice Killing Arc"!
—Original Story, Supervisor—
Ryukishi07-sama, BT-sama, Yatazakura-sama, Tokika-sama, Tsubaki Naruse-sama, Nekozakura-sama, Kakumu-sama
Jun Akagami-sama, Shigetomo Tanakura-sama, Nayu Y-sama, Niwako-sama, Noda-sama, Tomoka Furuta-sama, YF-sama