Starting Off With Friendship in ‘Although I Love You, and You?’ Episode 2

Sakae and Soga decide to start their relationship as friends in the second episode of Although I Love You, and You?

Following Sakae’s confession, both feel troubled regarding the true meaning behind Sakae’s words, “What now?”. In an unexpected turn of events, Soga finds himself in Sakae’s room after getting drunk, and they mutually agree to start their relationship as friends. Now being able to have someone to rely on, Soga who is struggling with an issue at work seeks Sakae’s help.

 

Warning: Spoiler alert. Read at your own risk.

 

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Sakae wants Soga to develop a liking for people from Osaka, including himself. Despite an internal struggle to refrain from saying more, Sakae finds himself unable to resist confessing his feelings to Soga. Sakae takes back his confession and clarifies that he likes Soga as a person because he can learn a lot from him. Soga reciprocates, expressing that he also likes Sakae as a person. Unsure of how to proceed, Soga asks what needs to be done now, recalling Sakae’s earlier question after the confession. Sakae pretends that he meant his question as asking Soga if he needs anything. Following what happened, Sakae confides in Kaname while he works out, concerned that he might have said something rude. In despair, Sakae is convinced that what he said amounted to a confession. Kaname points out that it sounded like Sakae was waiting for Soga’s response. He suggests that Sakae should honestly tell his feelings to Soga, but if he’s not ready for that, he should observe how things go. That means continuing the relationship they currently have now and figuring out what to do then. Kaname reassures Sakae that Soga might not be overly troubled by the situation, bringing some relief to Sakae. Meanwhile, Soga actually appears genuinely bothered by what happened. He searches for meaning behind Sakae’s “What now?” question, feeling confused about what he should respond to. Soga continues to be troubled about the interaction with Sakae. Even at work, Kanda reacts with surprise when he poses the same question. Another instance occurs when their boss, Takagi, praises them for successfully finalizing the contract, and Takagi asks, “What now?” Soga responds with yet another surprised reaction. Takagi plans to treat them to a meal as a gesture of gratitude for their hard work. Since Soga doesn’t have any specific preferences, Kanda suggests they celebrate at Tamae. Meanwhile, Sakae is at the restaurant contemplating whether he should text Soga, advising him to forget about the “What now?” question he asked the other day. However, he hesitates and decides to delete what he typed instead. Takagi teases Kanda about her choice of a less expensive place, hinting at her potential feelings for the good-looking Sakae. Soga lightly taps Takagi, prompting a quick apology and retraction from Takagi. However, Kanda confesses that she does find Sakae quite cool. As a result, she requests their boss to highlight her positive qualities when talking to Sakae later. 

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True to his word, Takagi praises Kanda’s positive qualities to everyone present. As Takagi and Kanda scan the menu, trying to decide which sake to choose, Sakae suggests they try something unique, something they can’t find elsewhere. Inspired by this, Kanda orders the drink “Turn a Deaf Ear.” The sake is served to everyone, including Soga, and as the night progresses, everyone ends up becoming drunk. Sakae even has to intervene to prevent Kanda from drinking too much and getting everyone drunk. Seizing the opportunity, Kanda asks if Sakae is currently dating someone. Before she can ask further, however, Soga collapses onto the table, completely drunk. At that moment, Soga dreams of the time when his wife, Saeko, wanted to tell him something while they were examining the divorce certificate. However, he’s unable to hear what she says, and he wakes up from his dream. To his surprise, when he opens his eyes, Sakae is there, informing him that he’s at Sakae’s place, just above Tamae. Soga quickly understands the situation and jumps out of bed to apologize to Sakae. However, due to the abrupt movement, he feels a headache, and Sakae immediately offers him water to drink. Soga becomes aware that it’s already 6 am and notices that Sakae stayed up all night, considering he’s sleeping on his bed. They both start speaking simultaneously, but Sakae takes the lead to address the question he had asked earlier. Despite Kaname’s advice to express his feelings, Sakae informs Soga that he’s willing to start by being friends. Soga feels happy, realizing that they share the same sentiment, as he also wants to be friends with Sakae and holds great respect for him. They shake hands to officiate the start of their friendship. Soga and Sakae maintain their friendship, and Soga continues his regular visits to Tamae. During their conversations, they explore topics like their beliefs in aliens and ghosts. Sakae notices that Soga frequently receives work-related messages but will never share anything about them. In the sauna, Sakae vents his frustration to Kaname about Soga not opening up about his work and mostly focusing on discussions about aliens and ghosts. Sakae becomes frustrated, and tired of the supernatural topics. After his outburst, they leave the sauna, and Soga starts to wonder if Sakae doesn’t trust him when he just wants to know Soga more and be of help if he can.

 

Watch ‘Although I Love You, and You?’ on GagaOOLala.

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Soga visits Tamae once again, and the regulars notice that he appears troubled. Despite their concern, Soga refuses to open up about it. Sensing Soga’s distress, Sakae encourages him to share what’s on his mind. Soga reveals that he has been attempting to adapt to the Osaka communication style, trying to avoid disrupting conversations and falsely claiming expertise in making takoyaki, a dish he has never prepared. However, this strategy has backfired after receiving an invitation to a home party that requires him to actually cook takoyaki. Sakae reassures Soga that having a proper takoyaki maker should make things manageable. However, Soga shows him a picture of the failed takoyaki, indicating that his skill surpasses the capabilities of the machine. Seizing the opportunity, Sakae offers his expertise as a professional chef to teach Soga how to make takoyaki. Soga immediately changes his mind,  explaining that he already owes Sakae for helping him when he was drunk. Sakae responds by saying that if their roles were reversed, he wouldn’t think twice about helping. He expresses his desire for their relationship to be one where they can rely on each other. Soga recalls the time when his wife told him that she wished he would be more open to relying on others. She sincerely hopes that someone like that will come into his life. With this memory in mind, Soga gains the confidence to ask Sakae for a favor. Soga invites Sakae to his place to begin the takoyaki lesson. As Sakae arrives, he glances around, not entirely understanding the decorations but appreciating their stylishness. The lesson begins, with Sakae guiding Soga through the preparation of ingredients. Sakae instructs Soga from behind, holding his hand to demonstrate the proper technique. This position creates a heart-pounding moment as they look into each other’s eyes. Soga successfully makes edible takoyaki and as they enjoy it, Soga starts asking Sakae questions about his cooking skills. Sakae decides to share the serious reason for his culinary studies, leaving other details for a later time. Sakae requests that Soga stop using formal language, and they both agree to switch to informal language with each other. While Sakae continues savoring the takoyaki, Soga casually wipes the sauce from the side of his lips, a simple action that greatly affects Sakae’s love-stricken heart.

It’s great that Soga is gradually opening up to Sakae and allowing himself to rely on other people, a problem that seemed to exist even when he was still married to Saeko. As I said in the previous recap, Sakae and Soga are beneficial for each other and it seems Sakae is slowly mending the scars Soga has been keeping. But we all know this would hurt Sakae since he has feelings for Soga and is trying to not cross the border between friendship and love. Will Soga be able to reciprocate his feelings soon?

 

Watch the endearing and frustrating love story between two people with contrasting personalities in ‘Although I Love You, and You?‘ on GagaOOLala – now available to watch on your Smart TVs by downloading the app on Google Play, Amazon Appstore, and Roku.

 

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