Shigure: In short, I’m the Dog. Yuki-kun is the Rat. Kyo Sohma there is the Cat. We’re all possessed by animal spirits. […] For hundreds of years, members of the Sohma family have been possessed by the same twelve animal spirits that are in the Zodiac.
Of course, Tohru just happened to stumble upon their primary weakness (quite literally): They transform into their respective animals when embraced by a member of the opposite sex (or when their bodies become very weak).
Shigure: I’ll inform Akito-san, the Head of the Family, about all this. After all, you know the Sohma family’s greatest secret now. […]
Yuki: No wonder you were going on and on about us. You intend to wipe Honda-san’s memory, don’t you? […]
Shigure: No, that is not my intention.
Yeah, we’ll get back to Shigure’s intentions later…
In the meantime, we get to know Kyo a little.
Kyo: What’s she…what’s a girl doing in this house!?
Unfortunately, all we’re really able to learn about him is that he has a terrible temper. Also Yuki hates him and Shigure seems to enjoy making fun of him, which clearly doesn’t help with his temper.
But the bulk of this chapter is focused on Yuki.
Yuki: Akito…am I so weird that we have to hide what I am?
Akito: Yes. You are strange. Naturally, a human turning into a rat is a freakish thing. If normal people discovered the truth, it would sicken them. They would shun you.
Even though Yuki is revered by his classmates, whether he’s above them or below them doesn’t matter to him, because he’s still the “other”, something not quite human, and he’s still alone. Or at least he was.
Tohru: After my memory gets erased, please become my friend again, okay?
For better worse, Akito decided to allow Tohru to stay, with the only condition being that she must keep their secret a secret. And for some reason Kyo has to stay there, too.
Yuki: This sounds too good to be true…you and Akito aren’t plotting something, are you? Something involving Honda-san?
Aside from Yuki’s suspicion toward Shigure, the only notable difference between the manga and the anime for this chapter is something that was added (at least in the English version): The word “curse”. In this chapter, the Zodiac thing is only ever referred to as a “secret”, while episode 2 of the anime is actually titled “The Sohma Curse”. Notably, Shigure was the one doing all the explaining here.
Until next time…