Confronted with Kyo's guilty past and Akito's virulent hatred, will Tohru be able to maintain hope for the ones she loves?
Writer/Artist: Natsuki Takaya
What They Say
Kyo finishes telling Tohru about his role in her mother's death and how the reason he disappeared for so long was that he felt so guilty about it. He explains that he overcame his guilt by blaming everything on Yuki, but he realizes he was only running away from his own feelings. But how will he react when Tohru says that she still loves him?
Kyo finally reveals to Tohru his connection to her mother, his guilty feelings over her death, and his reasons for hiding that knowledge from Tohru from the very start. Having divulged all, he does not expect her forgiveness, nor can he forgive himself. However, no sooner has he stunned Tohru with his confession than Akito arrives -- still bearing the knife stained with Kureno's blood.
Volume 20 of Fruits Basket ended on an extremely suspenseful note for Kyo and Tohru, and Takaya interweaves the conclusion to Kyo's confession with the resolution to the Ren-Akito conflict. As a result, there is so much dramatic action and pivotal revelations that take place in first half of Volume 21 that it is fairly difficult to write a review without giving away spoilers. All I will say is that by the end of the volume, it is clear to the reader where Akito, Kyo, and Tohru stand with respect to one another; the only question remaining is what move Kyo will make next.
I am disappointed in one respect; while Takaya-sensei does an excellent job depicting the varied intense emotions of Akito, Kyo, and Tohru, the way Tohru gets injured at the end of Chapter 121 is much too contrived. She does, however, make up for it in the way Yuki intercedes between Tohru and Kyo; while Yuki certainly acts in Tohru's best interests, he doesn't separate his own emotions towards Kyo when he confronts him, and in the end, both boys are better for it.
Extras include the Fans Basket section, embedded author's comments, cast of characters, and a 15 page preview to Tokyopop's release of Takaya-sensei's manga Phantom Dream. There are also color illustrations printed on the inside of the cover, and Kyo x Tohru fans will be absolutely delighted with the one on the back cover.