When I first played LB, I had saved the Rin route for last. After seeing Riki experiencing different kinds of romance with different girls, I was curious to see how this one would be handled. In the first place, it was difficult to imagine Rin in any kind of romatic context since she didn’t exactly give off girly vibes.
So, how did Rin1 play out?
I was elated to see how simple it all was. No harem conflicts, no love triangles, no osananajimi romance drama. Riki and Rin had been reminded of the fact that Romance is a thing, so they just went for it without thinking too deeply about it. It all seemed so obvious.
“By going out with Rin, won’t I be able to stay with everyone?”
Actually, that’s kind of a lame reason. But since it’s working out so well, why not?
I have to say, though, the way Riki handled Suginami’s confession was not ok. I know Riki couldn’t help it, being a complete novice at this, but it’s still not ok. He went around telling everyone about his girlfriend, and by the time he had decided to inform Suginami, she already knew. This is kind of a huge dick move. Suginami confessed to him and he replied he needed more time. But right on the next day, she heard rumors of him hooking up with a different girl. This hypocricy must’ve felt incredibly shitty to poor Mutsu, who still tried to be positive about it. Bad Riki.
“But at that time.
---------- We hadn’t even come to know love yet.”
The route progressed, but the relationship between Riki and Rin didn’t. It felt different from the romance in the other routes. Sure, there was a bit of awkward blushing, Riki did not slack off on dutifully providing support and Rin tried her best, but it didn’t result in progress. Well, romance wasn’t exactly the focus and the route wasn’t long, either. But still, they didn’t take the next step, and as a reader, I didn’t even know what the next step should be.
I hoped it would be only a matter of time, but all they ever did was playing house. It wasn’t just Rin. Riki was still immature, as well. This became obvious when Rin was asked to transfer to a different school. He hated the very idea of Rin leaving, lashed out in opposition and became downright desperate. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think that there is a correct decision here, especially considering that Rin hated the idea as well. But the way Riki acted was just so pathetic and it really put his weakness on display. He couldn’t even tolerate that Rin had acted kinda mature by considering the transfer when she was asked to and tried to deny the little progress Rin had made. He tossed around excuses and big prases like “strenghthen our relationship” or “let’s be together forever”, but the way he acted made it plainly obvious that he didn’t know what he was talking about.
In the end, Riki played the boyfriend card, knowing that Rin would do as he asked. At some point, he got assaulted by narcolepsy, but peacefully accepted it, thinking that he had nothing to fear with a reliable girlfriend by his side.
But was she really that reliable, when it was him who had made all the decisions?