In episode 2 of Harukana Receive, Haruka gets some training from Kanata in order to prepare for their revenge match against Narumi and Ayasa.
This epiosde opens with Kanata dreaming of the past; more specifically, the match where she ended up giving up on beach volleyball. She is soon awakened from it by Haruka, who sleepily climbs into her bed.
Following that, Haruka does some training. Kanata has her getting used to moving around on the sand, because she kept getting caught up in it during their previous match.
During the training session, Haruka mentions how part of her swimsuit keeps hitting her, and that hurts. She thinks she should get a uniform, but Kanata tells her that everyone just wears swimsuits.
Kanata helps Haruka to adjust her swimsuit, which also gives Kanata a chance to get a good look at some of Haruka’s best features. Once the adjustments to Haruka’s swimsuits are complete, it is back to training.
With the revenge match drawing ever closer, Kanata decides that it is finally time for Haruka to get some actual practice in with the actual volleyball.
Kanata tells Haruka that the opposing team will target the weaker player during a match – and since Haruka is a beginner, she’ll likely be the one targeted. As such, Kanata has Haruka practice receiving.
Afterwards, she tells Haruka about spikes, and how you’re not supposed to be able to get them. Haruka is a little confused at first, but when Kanata explains the idea is to catch your opponent off-guard, she realises that beach volleyball is actually a battle of wits. Kanata has one thing she wants Haruka to master to give them any chance of winning: the cut shot.
As opposed to normal spikes that go straight, the cut shot travels diagonally. Kanata figures that Narumi and Ayasa wouldn’t expect a beginner to use a cut shot.
After returning home and having dinner, Haruka has a bath whilst Kanata thinks back to the same match shown at the beginning of this episode.
Come the day of the revenge match, Haruka heads out for an early morning run. She ends up meeting with Ayasa, and the two sit down to talk a little. Ayasa tells Haruka that she shouldn’t partner with Kanata if she is serious about beach volleyball.
Kanata used to be Narumi’s partner, but because she was short, she would be the one targeted by their opposition. This led to Narumi having to cover for her. Because of this, Kanata ended up giving up on beach volleyball.
Kanata overhears the conversation, which includes Haruka saying that she has utmost faith in Kanata.
That brings us to the revenge match, and it is the same rules as the first time around. Haruka and Kanata simply have to score a single point to win the match.
The match begins with Haruka getting used to jumping serves; they are going to wait before they attempt to use a cut shot.
Haruka is able to perform the cut shot when the time comes, but Narumi had been expecting it. She manages to return the ball, and Ayasa scores a point.
With Narumi seeing through their plan, Haruka asks Kanata to receive the ball. Kanata is reluctant to do so, but Haruka believes in her.
With the next serve, Haruka dodges it to allow Kanata to receive it. However, Kanata isn’t quite able to bring herself to do that just yet, so the game goes to match point.
With Haruka believing in her, Kanata is finally able to make a move.
Kanata receives the ball, and this ends up bringing Narumi to a standstill. However, the ball is still in play – Haruka goes after it, and Ayasa prepares to defend. However, Haruka catches her off guard with a dump shot, and brings the match to an end.
Narumi struggles to process that Kanata received the ball, and she runs off. Ayasa follows her, and when she catches up Narumi cries as she felt like she was the one who caused Kanata to suffer. Fortunately for Narumi, Ayasa is there to comfort her.
Haruka noticed that Narumi wasn’t actually aiming for Kanata – her shots were avoiding her. That’s what gave her the idea to have Kanata receive, and everything worked out.
As those two enjoy their ice cream, Ayasa comforts Narumi and tells her that her kindness towards Kanata was not wasted. It’s just that Haruka was a little more clever about getting Kanata back into beach volleyball.
This episode ends with a glimpse of a couple of characters who will almost certainly be future opponents.
This episode covered what happened between Kanata and Narumi in the past, and Kanata’s return to beach volleyball, and I think it done things pretty well. Having learned a little more about Narumi, I’m warming to her more than I did in the first episode – as Ayasa said, she is the way she is because she is actually shy.
Kanata has now returned to beach volleyball, and Haruka will be there at her side. I’m certainly looking forward to seeing how they grow as team, and if we get more interactions between them like at the beginning of this episode, that’s even better.
I’d say we’ve got a decent balance of serious and silly moments. Haruka is still a fun character, and it turns out that Kanata can be just as amusing too.
All in all, a fun episode, and I eagerly look forward to more beach volleyball action in the future.