Act 3: Distance is the third act on Rin's route.
Nomiya is overjoyed at Rin's decision and drives the two students to the 22nd Corner Art Gallery. They meet the owner, Sae Saionji, who thinks her technique needs a little refinement, but that she'd be willing to host an exhibit if Rin is willing to add more works. Rin commits herself wholeheartedly, and Nomiya arranges for Rin to be exempt from classes for the rest of the trimester. Saionji arranges the atelier above her gallery for Rin to do her work in, even letting her stay overnight.
On her last day, Hisao finds Rin at her desk napping, crying in her sleep. She explains that crying is something she's learned from others. She also tells Emi not to distract her by visiting while she focuses on painting. Hisao still wants to become close to Rin. He confesses his feelings in the atelier, but she cuts him off and tells him she can't think about it right now. Heartbroken, Hisao turns to l*eave, but Rin asks him to visit again tomorrow.
Thus begins a pattern where Hisao visits her in the evenings, watching her paint or reading in silence. He brings her some oranges when he realizes she hasn't been eating properly and gently feeds them to her. Rin begins to struggle--she cannot inspire herself to paint using new methods nor old. She concludes that changing is not enough. First, she must destroy the "old her". She asks Sae for cigarettes and Hisao reluctantly shares the pack with her.
Upon seeing that smoking is only increasing her melancholy, Hisao takes her into the city at night, taking random turns and discovering new views. She suddenly asks him to stop visiting her for reasons she won't explain.
Within a few days, Hisao finds himself heading back to the gallery, unable to stop thinking about rin. He runs into Nomiya and Sae who talk about the challenges of a gifted career artist. While the two old friends reminisce, Hisao makes his way into the atelier. He discovers Rin is pleasuring herself on the floor. Realising she's been seen, she rambles about the shame and frustration of pursuing a path as an artist. She asks him to help her finish and he does. In the morning, Hisao wonders whether it crossed a boundary in their friendship. Rin responds in emotionless circles and Hisao gets frustrated trying to connect with the woman he loves.
Hisao demands that Rin explain what he means to her, but she is unable to do so. He yells at her about how selfish and unhealthy she's being by devoting herself to her art, treating him only as a source of inspiration and not as a person with feelings. Rin coldly demands that he leave. Hisao returns to his dorm. Before falling sleep, he notes how much time he wasted chasing things out of his reach.
- 22nd Corner
- The Scent of Light
- Things You Can't Give Up
- Rose-Tinted Glasses
- The Edge of the World
- The Context of Rin
- Fast Forward
- Reverse Escapism
- Things You Hate
- Shards of Ire