As much as Hikaru has progressed, it's really amazing that nobody has sat him down to read a book on the basics or that nobody has simply sat him down and schooled him personally. To the surprise of others, he's become a pro without learning how advancement works for the pros among the various dan ranks. And everyone sort of just chuckles and laughs in that "oh, Hikaru" kind of way, like he's a special child. His progress has been amazing and he's certainly growing up a lot, but he's still a little kid in a lot of ways and someone other than Sai really needs to guide him better.
Hikaru's all dressed up at long last as he's going to get his 1-dan certificate having pass his exams and all and that means hobnobbing with other Go players. He's able to hang out with a couple of friends along the way but he also comes across Kurata there, who is still indignant that Hikaru didn't know who he was. Hikaru's definitely looking sharp in a suit as well as taller and older than he's felt for awhile now, though when placed against other adults he's still coming across as young. But the little boy we felt from the start of the show isn't there anymore. Even more so when he comes across Akira and there's tension in the air, mostly stemming from Akira's side, as Hikaru is just glad to see the person that he's looked up to and wanted to play seriously against as a rival.
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