| This article contains HEAVY spoilers. Please view at your own risk.
|Christmas Eve Festival|
|Opening & Ending|
|Opening Song||Silky Heart|
|Ending Song||Holy Night|
Under the Fir Tree
Forever Like This
"Christmas Eve Festival" is the 19th episode of Toradora! and was first aired on February 12, 2009. The screenwriter for the episode was Masahiro Yokotani.
On the night of the party, Taiga brings over a suit for Ryuuji to wear while he still attempts to convince Minori to come. The party begins with a special Christmas song performed by Taiga and Ami. Following the song, Ami informs Ryuuji that Taiga has left the party. Taiga decides to go home in order to wait for Santa Claus, stopping by Minori's house on the way to convince her to go to the party. Ryuuji, figuring she would be alone, goes to Taiga's apartment dressed up as a 'Bear Santa Claus' in order to help Taiga realize that she is not alone. Afterwards, she tells Ryuuji to go back and wait for Minori. Ryuuji leaves, despite initially resisting. Taiga begins crying uncontrollably, thinking that with Ryuuji together with Minori, Ryuuji and herself can no longer stay together. Taiga rushes after Ryuuji, calling for him, but he is already gone. Minori, who was heading to the party, witnesses this. When Minori meets Ryuuji at the school, she implies to him that she does not wish to have a boyfriend at this point in time. Ryuuji interprets this as being rejected and collapses onto the sidewalk.
On the day of the party, Ryuuji makes one more call to Minori to ask her to come and leaves a message. He then gets thrown a package from Taiga containing a suit that her father doesn’t want, and his mother gives him his grandfather’s watch to wear. Taiga gets all dressed up as well, and the two are soon off to the party. Once they’re there though, Ryuuji loses sight of Taiga because he starts manning the drink station. Much to his surprise, Taiga and Ami get on stage to perform a song together, and Taiga leaves the party soon after. Ryuuji doesn’t find out about this until Ami tells him that Taiga left to convince Minori to come and won’t be coming back to the party so that she can get ready for Santa. Since Ryuuji doesn’t understand why Taiga would do this, Ami suggests that there’s something Taiga doesn’t want to see, and she gets pissed off reminding Ryuuji of the warning she had given him about stopping playing house because he hadn’t been listening to her. Remembering what Taiga had told him about wanting to be part of the happiness during Christmas, Ryuuji decides to leave the party as well.
Taiga meanwhile returns to her own apartment after having told Minori that Ryuuji was waiting. All by herself, she knows that Santa doesn’t really exist, and she’s resigned to being alone because she doesn’t want to rely on anyone. She ends up falling asleep, but she’s awakened a short while later by a knocking on her bedroom window. It turns out to be a bear wearing Santa clothes, so she lets it in. When she asks if the bear is Santa and it nods yes, she laughs and shows it her Christmas tree. Taiga is extremely happy at this point and plays with the bear for a while, and she starts thinking that her dream came true. She knows, however, that it’s Ryuuji in the costume, and she thanks him as she takes off its head and reveals him inside. She then tells him that Minori should be heading to the party, and she thus urges him to go back. Although Ryuuji doesn’t want to leave her alone, Taiga insists that she’s fine and pushes him out the door, telling him that her present to him is getting Minori to the party.
After Ryuuji leaves, however, Taiga is surprised to find that she’s crying. She realizes that she had been relying on Ryuuji, but that’s over now because she believes that Ryuuji and Minori will end up together. That means that she won’t be able to be at his side any more, and Taiga deep down doesn’t want that. She ends up running after Ryuuji, but by the time she gets out of her apartment building, he’s long gone. That leaves Taiga crying his name out alone into the night sky, and unbeknownst to her, she’s seen by Minori. Though shocked, Minori doesn’t let Taiga know that she’s there and instead heads to school where she finds Ryuuji waiting. After the feelings she had seen from Taiga, Minori decides to tell Ryuuji that it’s better if she doesn’t see UFOs or ghosts like they had talked about, and she runs off before he can really respond. Realizing that he’s just been rejected, Ryuuji feels what he thinks is heartbreak and collapses.
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