Why is Kyo such an idiot? And why must this story keep breaking my heart?
“You’re lonely, huh?”
I didn’t understand then what those words meant, but it felt like she, a complete stranger, had accepted my existence. Although she probably hadn’t meant it like that.
When little Kyo first told Master about the “weird lady” he met, he actually encouraged him to meet her again. As counter-intuitive as it might be for a guardian to encourage a relationship between his child and a woman he’s never met, it still does Kyo good to have a new friend.
I’d thought only Master was kind like that. It sounds kind of ridiculous, but…my mother’s love was always clouded by her paranoia, my dad had nothing but hateful words for me, everyone else in the Sohma family looked down on me with contempt…so I’d lived with rejection every day of my life. So she seemed like a ray of hope.
His whole life he’s been used as a vessel for the negativity in the Sohma family – hatred, frustration, guilt, and such were all foisted on his shoulders. And he started heaping his own feelings of that sort on himself, too.
I made a wish that she would be happy. I wanted that lady and her daughter to live their lives surrounded by happiness. It was a childish thought, but I didn’t want them to be lonely. So it bothered me for the longest time. I’d think, “What about today? Is she lonely again?” Or, “Is she smiling today?” It’s like something bloomed deep in my heart. I couldn’t get them out of my head.
He was often wishing for Tohru’s happiness from afar, but he knew even back then, when her mother was still around, that she was lonely sometimes. But as with all of the Sohmas, he thought there was nothing he could do about it but pray. And then he made it worse.
Kyo: “I’ll never forgive you.” That’s what she said to me. Your mother was lying in a pool of blood. She noticed me standing there. She told me, “I’ll never forgive you.” That’s what it sounded like, at least…I couldn’t do anything. My mind went blank, and then everything started moving real fast. I couldn’t take it. I ran away. That’s when Master took me away to train in the mountains. […] Master tried to help me through it, but I just couldn’t forgive myself for what I’d done. I felt like this time for sure, death was my only option. So I…I told myself it was Yuki’s fault. And by doing that, I made him into the bad guy. I made him bear all the responsibility. I didn’t have any grounds for it. I didn’t need any. All I needed was a scapegoat. From there on out, everything bad in my life was his fault. I didn’t have to keep beating myself up about things. All I had to do was keep hating the “bad guy”. It was so easy. I couldn’t believe how much better I felt when I forced my guilt onto someone else. But I was just doing what I’d been doing since I was a kid. The only thing I’ve ever been good at is saving my own skin…awful, right?…So I got better, or felt better anyway, and came down from the mountains. I’d decided to live off my hatred.
It’s a vicious cycle of blame and guilt that’s consumed the Sohma family. After he got back, Kyo had a little tussle with Akito, resulting in the bet about beating Yuki. That was never the reason why he hated Yuki, just an excuse to act on that hatred.
But then he met Tohru, the object of his blossoming affections since childhood…and a reminder of his perceived guilt.
Kyo: Could you ever forgive me…? For running away…for always running away…for pretending I didn’t know who you were when we first met…for never saying anything…(internally) I was pissed, and scared too. I never meant to get so close to you. I never meant to fall in love. I didn’t mean for any of that. (aloud) I can’t forgive myself. I won’t forgive myself. And I don’t expect you to forgive me either…
Tohru: I don’t forgive you. Is that what you want me to say…? Forgiving you, or not forgiving you. Are those the only choices left to me? You say my mom told you, “I’ll never forgive you.” I don’t believe that…I just can’t believe that. But…but even if she really did say that…if she did…then I…I would have no choice but to go against her…! Because! No matter what, I can’t stop myself from feeling this way about you…is that wrong!?
Forgiveness is only needed when you see guilt in a situation, and Tohru just doesn’t consider Kyo responsible for her mother’s death – honestly, it’s hard to blame anyone for a loss when you just heard the hand they played two years after the fact, especially when you love them.
Kyo: That’s…I’m disillusioned.
YOU’RE MAKING TOHRU CRY, YOU IDIOT!
This line is a bit difficult to parse, until you consider the context. Kyo always wanted Tohru to be happy with her mother. He saw himself as the person who took Kyoko away from Tohru, and thus deserving of her hatred. That was why he pretended not to know her in the first place, why he kept insisting his life was “none of her business” – because he “knew” that she would hate him if she found out. He hates himself for it, Kyoko apparently hated him for it, so why wouldn’t she? He’s “disillusioned” because Tohru’s going against her mother, choosing Kyo over Kyoko-san. And that’s “stupid” of her – foolish beyond belief.
Then Kyo runs off (with Yuki chasing after him, because he’s being an idiot), leaving Tohru to wander off on her own…
I already know that this world doesn’t always give you the chance to apologize before losing someone. But if I let the same kind of thing happen again, how is that any different from not knowing anything at all?
Until next time…