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Miso Factory
Miso factory c12p12
First Mention Chapter 8
First Visited Chapter 12

This is an abandoned factory that Sachi's mom used to work at and Seki's dad used to buy store supplies from. A murderer hides bodies and money here, and Punpun and his friends go looking for the money in elementary school. Although it is only visited by Punpun twice, it is a hugely significant location in the manga since it is the link between several Tanabata days.

Appearance Edit

This large, abandoned factory is made up of several buildings containing dangerous metal supplies and heavy, overhead doors. There is a "No Trespassing" sign on the front gate, ignored repeatedly.

Plot Edit

Sachi's used to accompany her mother to work here. This is where she befriended Seki, who also accompanied his father on supplies runs here. One Tanabata day, Sachi let Seki read her amateur manga and promised she'd show him the final product when she was done. Later that day, he asked the factory owner if she would still eat at Seki Lunches even after he inherited the store from his father. The owner promised she would. The factory went bankrupt, however, causing Seki Lunches to go bankrupt as well. According to Sachi, the owner committed suicide by fire. Seki's father closed his store and became an alcoholic. 

Some years later, still in elementary school, Punpun and his friends find a porn video on the side of the road, titled "Lil' Chubster". They watch it at Punpun's house one day after Yuuichi has gone on an errand, but the video has been taped over with a murder confession. The murderer claims it was a mercy killing and that he's hid the bodies, along with a large sum of money, at the miso factory for those curious and brave enough to look for it. After Punpun promises to run away to Kagoshima with Aiko, he realizes the train ticket would be costly and later agrees to go searching for the money with his friends. While the boys make their plans, Aiko passes by, on her way to the Tanabata festival, and decides to go with the boys. Although Seki believes the video is a prank, he agrees to show them the way to the miso factory. As they take a shortcut through alleyways, Seki lights a cigarette. When they reach the factory entrance, they run into an older girl, Sachi, who likes to spend her days here drawing. She and Seki pretend not to recognize each other, and she tells the kids to take care of the building and watch out for ghosts. They explore the whole factory without finding any money. They find the owner's office, where Seki finds a photo of himself and his dad with the owner. Bitterly, he lights it with his cigarette. Harumi yells at him and stomps the flame out, before exploring the roof, where they run into a dark, ghostly figure. The boys take off running, but Aiko gets hit by a falling, metal rod and faints on top of Punpun. As the figure nears them, Punpun wets himself and faints. The boys finally find an exit and crawl out of a heavy, overhead door, but Shimizu goes back to look for Aiko and Punpun. Harumi and Komatsu run away to find an exorcist, while Seki tries and fails to open heavy door on his own to go get Shimizu. Inside, Seki's cigarette starts a fire, and he witnesses a corner of the building explode. Shimizu survives unscathed. A quick rainfall extinguishes the fire and washes away Punpun's urine. He wakes up to find the others have returned. The milky way glitters overhead as the children join hands and go home, and Punpun wishes upon a shooting star to see this same, bright sky with Aiko again someday. 

This view of the milky way inspires Sachi's starry painting many years later, which reminds Punpun of Aiko and his long-gone friends. He writes a story in Sachi's notebook, which leads to their manga collaboration and relationship after Punpun is 18. During a fight in middle school, a bully discovers Seki's phobia of fire, a result of the explosion at the miso factory. His phobia is used against him in another fight many years later, and while he sulks in pain, he thinks of the broken promises of Sachi and the owner, his father's bankruptcy, and the traumatic factory explosion, and concludes that the miso factory ruined his life. The next day, Shimizu gets caught in a similar cigarette-caused explosion at Cosmos Health Center. Seki faces his fear of fire to bust inside and rescue him. Elsewhere, Punpun and Aiko are on the run for Mitsuko's murder. As they sit outside and look at the sky, Aiko asks what Punpun will wish for if they see a shooting star, and he says he'd wish for shooting stars to disappear. After they reach Kagoshima, Aiko makes him promise to always think of her on Tanabata. He wakes up to find she has hung herself. Just a couple days later, on Tanabata, Punpun returns to the miso factory of his childhood and walks through his old memories, to realize that the ghostly figure that appeared to him so long ago was a vision of his current self. He then kills his Dark Spot by stabbing himself. He lays down to sleep forever, but Sachi finds him and brings him to a hospital. While stars fall overhead, Seki waits outside the hospital for Shimizu, finally getting to read Sachi's newly-published manga. 

Gallery Edit

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