Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Chapter 391

ハヤテのごとく!/Hayate no Gotoku Chapter 391

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Sharna and Fumi are at a cafe when Fumi decides that for the plant and animal journal part of her summer homework, she’ll be observing the people who work at the Animate store in Akihabara. Fumi decides to see if the claim of an Animate manager that says that employees would fall for each other romantically since they have similar interest. As such, she finds NPC A and new hire, Chiharu.

Chiharu is very popular with the otaku customer base at Animate, and NPC A is attracted to her. NPC A is a little disappointed that so far, nothing has blossomed between them, but gains some hope when Chiharu offers him, her senpai, a canned beverage after work one evening. However, despite her kind nature, Fumi rates her as cruel.

In the backroom during a break, Fumi and Sharna observe to see if NPC A will make his move. Isumi appears and says that Chiharu’s defenses are too strong. As Chiharu and NPC A discuss summer vacation, Chiharu reveals she has no plans, but when she asks him his plans,  Fumi and Isumi see it as his chance to score. However, as he says he’s going to the beach, he doesn’t get to ask her out since her break is over, causing Isumi to remark on how awesome Chiharu’s defenses are.

The trio start the second half of their “game” observation with Fumi and Isumi taking the announcer’s booth. NPC A strikes up a conversation with Chiharu over Oyoneko Buunyan, which he has recorded on VHS tape from its original airing. He offers to lend her the tapes since the series was never released on DVD, and to Isumi’s and Fumi’s surprise, she agrees. Outside his apartment, he gives her a bag of tapes, leading her to say how happy she is that he’s so kind. NPC A is about to confess his love to Chiharu when she gets a call from Hayate to pick up some eggs on the way home. When he asks who called her, she says it was the boy she’s living with, completely devastating NPC A.

Thoughts/Review:

*lol* I’ve been expecting one of these one-shot chapters for a while now, but Hata-sensei knows how to use timing pretty well, both in his actual writing, and in when he presents something to us.

Initially, when I saw Chiharu working at Animate in Akihabara in this chapter, I thought that we were getting a fact established in Hayate the Combat Butler! Can’t Take My Eyes Off You established in the manga as canon. I forgot that in volume 20 of the manga, Chiharu worked there during Golden Week since Sakuya was in Las Vegas with Wataru and Saki. So basically, this chapter establishes that she’s returned to work at Animate for the summer, though why she’s not working as Sakuya’s maid is not known (at least, I don’t remember a reason being given).

Regarding the chapter itself, Fumi chapters are more often than not, pretty funny.  This one falls into that category. I laughed out loud when Fumi’s narration stated that most of the people working at Animate have a 2D “waifu,” and that NPC A’s was Homuhomu (AKEMI Homura from Puella Magi Madoka Magica).

Having Fumi’s observations of Chiharu and NPC A turn into a something akin to a soccer game (or possibly hockey) was funny, made even more so by the unexpected arrival of Isumi on the scene.

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