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Watadamashi-hen Part 3 (綿騙し編 其の参 Cotton-Deceiving Chapter Part 3) is the seventh episode of Higurashi: When They Cry - GOU and the third episode of Watadamashi-hen.

Synopsis

Japanese

詩音に誘われて綿流しの奉納演舞を抜け出した圭一は、偶然出会った鷹野の提案で、不可侵の祭具殿に忍び込む。

そこで、圭一は雛見沢の恐ろしい伝承を聞かされる。

English (Translated)

Invited by Shion, Keiichi sneaks away from the Watanagashi ceremony and enters the impenetrable ritual warehouse at the suggestion of Takano, whom he meets by chance.

There, Keiichi is told of Hinamizawa's horrible legends.

Preview Gallery

Plot Summary

Prologue

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Keiichi, Shion, and Takano enter the ritual warehouse. Keiichi turns on a light switch to Shion's surprise and illuminates the storehouse, revealing a statue.

First Half

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Shion turns off the light and reprimands Keiichi for it, as people outside the warehouse might notice it. Keiichi apologizes but Takano says it's fine, as everyone is focused on Rika's dance right now. She says the statue is of Oyashiro-sama, Hinamizawa's guardian deity. Shion says it's more ornate than the one at the shrine, and Takano comments on the large amount of tools located in the warehouse. Keiichi says they all look more like construction equipment instead of religious implements. Amused by his ignorance, Takano sets down her lantern and pulls out some documents, wanting to tell Keiichi of an old legend.

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Long ago in the mountains, there was a deep swamp that was said to lead to Hell, being named Onigafuchi, or "Demon's Abyss" by the villagers living near it; Keiichi understands that that village was Hinamizawa. Keiichi comments on the ominous name, and Shion says it was renamed in the Meiji era. Takano continues, saying demons arose from the swamp one day and terrorized the villagers. The villagers tried to run but it was a futile attempt, and when all hope was lost Oyashiro-sama appeared to them. Keiichi thinks Oyashiro-sama got rid of all the demons, but Shion and Takano say the alternative happened instead: Oyashiro-sama is not violent, but rather benevolent. The demons refused to attack him, instead prostrating themselves before his radiance. Oyashiro-sama then bestowed them with human forms and allowed them to coexist with the villagers. As generations passed, the humans and demons' blood mixed, and they lived in secrecy in their village while being worshiped by those living at the bottom of the mountain.

Keiichi thinks it's a weird story, and Takano says that's when things get really interesting. The demons were actually man-eating demons, and so their half-demon offspring also had the same craving for human flesh. Onigafuchi's villagers would thus "demon away" humans from other villages. Keiichi asks what that means, and Takano says "demoning away", onikakushi, means kidnapping; humans were kidnapped by the villagers ans sacrificed. Keiichi exclaims that it's no different than what the demons did earlier and asks what the kind Oyashiro-sama was doing during all of this. Takano explains that the god was well aware of these happenings, as he was the one that decided the sacrifices. After a sacrifice was obtained, the villagers would feast upon them in a practice that would be called "watanagashi." Keiichi notices that the Watanagashi is the name of the annual cotton-drifting festival, and Shion explains that wata can also mean "entrails." Keiichi realizes Watanagashi's other meaning: Entrail-drifting.

Takano says the modern Watanagashi Festival is just a summer festival, but long ago it was a gruesome night of feasting. Keiichi exclaims that she's lying, and Takano asks him to think about what the cotton from the futons, or the wata, represent. Keiichi yells they're just futons, beds for sleeping in, and she instead posits they represent entrails, asking what Rika's dance must mean. Keiichi thinks about Rika preparing her dance with the ceremonial hoe, and he shakes his head in denial. Shion motions for him to quiet down, and Keiichi looks at the other tools hanging in the shed. They are not tools for farming but for slicing people up, which Takano likens to cooking utensils.

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Shion tells Takano to stop teasing Keiichi as he's still naive, and Takano apologizes as she thought boys like him would enjoy these kinds of stories. Sighing, Shion looks at the Oyashiro-sama statue and touches it, which causes the head to fall off and split in two, revealing a hollow inside. Keiichi calls her out for it and Shion swears she only touched it, and the warehouse doors open to reveal Tomitake. After assessing the situation, Tomitake puts the head back together and affirms Shion's claim that it was already broken. Takano returns the head atop the statue, the body seemingly containing a slot inside for putting something in. Shion lets out a sigh of relief. Takano figured that Tomitake got tired of waiting and came in to see, but he says everyone's already heading down to the river. Takano looks at her watch and asks the Tomitake to wait outside, as she wants to take pictures. Keiichi says he's had enough.

Outside the warehouse, Keiichi says he should've waited with Tomitake. The photographer asks if Takano was calm in there, as he expected her to get very excited when surrounded by all sorts of historical objects. Takano exits the warehouse with a sated curiosity, having found solid evidence to the legends she's heard so much about. Tomitake asks if she took anything out, and she says she wouldn't go that far. Tomitake replaces the lock and heads off to the river, as they need to see the cotton drifting in action. Keiichi thinks more about the entrail-drifting meaning.

The villagers are already lined up at the river, with Tomitake looking down from a viewing area and lamenting that he couldn't get any good pictures in. Takano says he can take some pictures of her and hugs his arm. Tomitake asks Shion and Keiichi if they want to come with them to the river, and Keiichi denies it. Takano wishes the two kids good night as she and Tomitake walk off.

Shion says her sister and her friends must be looking for Keiichi, so he needs to go. Shion figures that Mion will go ballistic on her if she knew she was hogging Keiichi all night, so she asks Keiichi to keep that night a secret. Keiichi doesn't like how awkward that sounds, and Shion says there's more to it: they can't let anyone know what they did and where they went. The wind blows, and Shion says Oyashiro-sama's curse may strike again tonight. Because their group trespassed onto sacred ground, those four are the most likely targets. Keiichi is taken aback by how serious Shion is, but she suddenly says she's kidding and laughs. Keiichi nervously laughs with her, thinking he's on edge because of Takano's stories. Shion takes her leave, not wanting to be there when Mion shows up.

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Keiichi walks down the steps of the shrine and Rika calls out to him, jumping on him as Mion and Rena show up. Mion says they need to find Satoko now, with Rena happily saying thy were all split up. Rika asks if Keiichi watched her dance, and he nervously says she did a perfect job with no mistakes. Rena and Mion react when he says this, with Rika becoming despondent. Rena consoles her by saying that nobody thought it was a mistake, and a surprised Keiichi is asked by Mion if he drifted cotton at the river yet. Keiichi says he didn't, and Rena becomes shocked as he has to do it before it ends. Keiichi apologizes as it's his first Watanagashi, so he doesn't know of the rules. Mion grabs his hand and they walk off as Rena and Rika watch them.

After walking far enough from the others, Mion asks Keiichi if he's seen Shion at all. Keiichi comes up with an answer that he felt like he saw her in the crowd, but because they look so much alike it's hard to tell. Mion doesn't lend credence to that answer, as they wear different clothes and can't possibly look that similar. Mion then asks if he saw Takano or Tomitake; Keiichi chokes up and denies ever seeing them.

Second Half

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Keiichi finally heads to his home, where a parked car beeps its horn to get his attention. Detective Ooishi emerges from the car and apologizes for the interruption. Keiichi asks what he wants with a cold expression and Ooishi says he just wants to chat since he saw him walking by. He comments on how impressive it is that Keiichi has gotten so close to the Sonozaki girls, asking if he knows their dad is a yakuza; the Sonozaki yakuza family controls much of the area, and Mion and Shion's dead is the head. Ooishi takes Keiichi's confused look to mean he doesn't know, saying the Sonozaki main house even resembles a stereotypical yakuza mansion with its high fences, barbed wire and security cameras. Keiichi figures that Mion is next in line to become the head, and Ooishi says she could even kill anyone in broad daylight and get away with it. Keiichi exclaims that she would never do that, and Ooishi laughs. Keiichi doesn't care who Mion's family is as she's one of his best friends and moves to enter his house, but Ooishi grabs his shoulder and asks him to answer one question: did he see Jirou Tomitake or Miyo Takano that night?

Nervous yet again, Keiichi denies ever seeing them and asks why. Ooishi thinks he's having trouble remembering, and Keiichi affirms it. After a pause, Ooishi releases his shoulder and lets him go home. The detective also lets Keiichi know that he did see the two of them: Keiichi, Shion, and those two were having a good time at the stone steps. Keiichi is surprised, and Ooishi says he'll see him later.

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Inside his room, Keiichi takes a late call from Shion, who asks if Mion believed his story. Keiichi got nervous when she realized he didn't watch Rika's dance, but she bought it. Shion congratulates him and then turns serious, asking him if he saw Takano or Tomitake after they split up. Keiichi angrily asks why she wants to know, as everyone's been wanting to know about those two. He asks if Shion's seen them and she says to calm down, explaining that Takano and Tomitake went missing. The Sonozaki family keeps a close watch on police activity, and police reports say the two of them went to the volunteer parking lot and stole one of the festival trucks, leaving behind their car and bicycle. The police say they left the village in a hurry, almost as though their lives were in danger.

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Keiichi asks what that means, and Shion says maybe they were targeted by Oyashiro-sama's curse, and if so it was because they trespassed and beheaded the Oyashiro-sama statue. Keiichi takes this to mean he and Shion are next. Keiichi pleads that he never even wanted to look at the stuff in the warehouse and wanted to see Rika's dance, blaming Shion for dragging him in there. He asks why Shion is getting up in arms over trespassing on holy ground and Shion apologizes, not knowing this would happen. Keiichi demands to know what she plans to do about it, but Shion hangs up on him in the middle of his rant. Listening to the dial tone, Keiichi struggles to accept that the curse might really be coming for them and buries his head.

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Monday, June 20. Keiichi waits at the usual spot for Rena to come, and she comments on how Keiichi's eyes look. Keiichi says he didn't get much sleep last night, and they start walking to school. They soon meet Mion, with Rena saying she also looks bad. Mion says she went to sleep at three, and Keiichi admonishes her for this. Rena figures it's because they still haven't found the mayor yet, and Keiichi asks what they mean.

During class, Chie explains that Mayor Kimiyoshi has been missing since yesterday. Some of the kids think he may have been demoned away, but the curse hasn't really happened yet. As Chie tells everyone to let an adult know if they find Kimiyoshi and reminds them to walk with a friend, Rika looks downtrodden. During recess later, a gloomy Keiichi sits alone and wonders why the mayor was the one to go missing, as he or Shion should've been the ones. Rika appears and pats his head, asking if he did anything bad last night. Keiichi asks Rika if he can tell her a story about kitties, saying that on the night of the festival four bad kitties went into a forbidden storehouse. There were many scary things inside, and the kitties heard they would be cursed; two of them are missing now, and Keiichi wants to know what the other kitties should do.

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Rika laughs, her voice suddenly growing deeper as she says she didn't expect Keiichi to tell such a ridiculous story. Her eyes turn red, much to Keiichi's shock, and Rika assures him that he doesn't need to worry. No matter what Keiichi does, everything is over; Rika says herself, Keiichi, this year's curse and this world are all finished. She admonishes Keiichi, saying he should've watched her dance and should've known better than to go somewhere forbidden, especially on Watanagashi. Keiichi asks why she knows this but Rika cuts him off, expressing surprised that Tomitake's body hasn't been found yet; him and Takano are already dead but Shion should be alive, and Rika doesn't know if this bodes well for Keiichi.

Rika giggles some more and a ball rolls into Keiichi's leg, with Satoko's group running over. She asks Keiichi to join them for dodgeball instead of just sitting around. Keiichi is surprised and Rika goes back to her regular self, telling him to play with Satoko. Keiichi looks at her.

Soundtrack

Start Time End Time Track OST Description
0:33 2:01 I believe what you said I believe what you said Opening
2:54 4:25 Suspicion Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Original Soundtrack Takano talks about Hinamizawa's past
5:55 7:11 Onigafuchi Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Original Soundtrack Keiichi realizes the other meaning of Watanagashi
16:36 18:08 Search Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Original Soundtrack Vol. 2 Keiichi hears that Tomitake and Takano are missing
22:15 23:44 Kamisama no Syndrome Kamisama no Syndrome Ending

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