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Omen (兆候 Choukou) is the seventh chapter of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Oni.

Summary[]

In the present, Oryou pauses telling her story. Mion and Shion are excited to hear more, thinking that Ritsuka reminds them of Satoko. Shion gets ready to go home but Oryou says she can stay the night in exchange for her home cooking. Shion becomes happy and goes off with Mion to start. Meanwhile, Oryou looks back over Souhei's book and starts crying, being unable to read his handwriting. She ruminates that the Hinamizawa children's present way of life was all thanks to what they did back then, but Ritsuka and Seiji had a hard time.

Back in the past, Ritsuka, Seiji and Oryou are cleaning the Furude Shrine assembly hall when Souhei barges in yelling about draft papers. Oryou is worried that Souhei's been drafted to war, but Seiji explains that he's actually the one getting drafted and will ship out in ten days. Souhei congratulates him and promises he'll protect Hinamizawa until he comes back. Souhei then leaves for work and asks the group to come to his place tonight for a going-away party. A shadow falls over Seiji as he promises he'll be back right away. Ritsuka prays for Oyashiro-sama to protect him. Oryou asks if Seiji wanted to talk about something else, but Seiji says he forgot.

The group joins Souhei at his place for their party and get drunk. Souhei goes outside for some fresh air and is followed by Seiji. Seiji suddenly asks him how he feels about Oryou, and Souhei stammers as he says she's like a sister to him. Seiji says he likes her, and wanted to tell her before going to the frontlines. After Seiji's father died at a young age and Chiyoko and him were shunned by the village, Oryou treated him like a brother and adored him, and was the reason Seiji could keep going. After the "demon" took away Oryou's smile, she became tense all the time, and so Seiji wanted to protect her but was still shunned by the villagers. Seiji complains about Oryou always going on about Souhei despite him abandoning the village. Souhei tries to defend himself and Seiji accuses him of being like the other villagers in doubting Chiyoko. Souhei says he still believes in her, but Seiji yells that he's lying.

Seiji rambles about how Souhei must have been laughing behind his back, and that his sucking up to the Sonozakis is proof. Souhei says he was just taking care of work and making up for his time away. Ritsuka and Oryou come outside just as Seiji accuses Souhei of hating him and Chiyoko for killing his family. He blames him for suggesting they enter the ritual storehouse, and Ritsuka yells that that sin weighs on all four of them. Ritsuka says Souhei still believes in Seiji and Chiyoko, but Seiji doesn't believe it and says there's nobody on his side. Seiji finally leaves, thinking he's just lashing out while drunk.

As Seiji walks home, he laments that Souhei has everything Seiji ever wanted: he was the ace of the club, he was Yuuki's favorite disciple, he escaped the village and had a good city life, and he has Oryou. Seiji starts scratching himself and scratches his throat a little as he hears footsteps. Fearing that the villagers were following him, Seiji turns around to see Ritsuka, who ran to catch up to him. Ritsuka says he'll lose everything if he keeps things up, and so will pray for his safety before he leaves. Seiji says he'd prefer to look inside the ritual storehouse again, but Ritsuka says it won't be good. Seiji goes off on her always saying it's no good, and says that Oyashiro-sama must have cursed him with the draft notice since he only curses innocent people. Ritsuka chides him for it but Seiji laughs at the thought of suffering his wrath and asks what his mother did to deserve her curse.

Seiji angrily says that he went into the ritual storehouse twice and should be cursed, yet Oyashiro-sama didn't target him. He wants to continue believing in Oyashiro-sama and has already been forgiven since the Three Families are the ones using his name and defiling it. Seiji prepares to hit Ritsuka, but Okai appears behind him and makes him fall to the ground unconscious. Ritsuka is shocked to see her with several villagers.

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