I have read several opinions about Yona’s confession and the following kiss scene. So I thought I might as well make a post about my own take on it.
Personally I think that Hak is now aware of Yona’s feelings. He might have some lingering doubts but I think they are finally on the same page. He has been presented with a healthy dose of evidence that Yona does, in fact, feels the same way. First, there is of course her confession. She said his name with it, so it is clearly directed at him. He heard it loud and clear and was even momentarily shocked before he had to move on to get out of the building. Secondly, there is her reaction upon seeing him. The girl literally burst into tears and was so happy she finally got to see him again. I think this moment took Hak almost even more off-guard than the confession. The latter can be brushed off as sleep-talk, but this cannot. Just look at his expression. He is shocked to the core.
I think Yona’s reaction here combined with her mumbled confession earlier already made him realize she feels the same way. But then Yona went ahead and literally fed him water through the mouth, which, let’s be real here, she would not do with her dragons, or any other person for that matter. There are other options for giving someone water even if there is no ladle. She literally went ahead and chose an option that put them in a very intimate position. Which, again, shocked Hak. Just look at his eyes yet again, the boy is shook.
By this point I think it fully clicked for him that Yona feels the same way. I’m also quite certain that no matter the situation, he would not kiss back like that, if he wasn’t sure that Yona is okay with it. That is just not him no matter how much he missed her.
Long story short, I think he gets it now guys.
My last point is that even if it turns out he did not, in fact, realize Yona’s feelings fully, it really does not matter in the grand scheme of things. An important point that Kusanagi emphasized in the previous chapter is that Yona deeply regretted not confessing to Hak earlier. She was also incredibly afraid she is going to die there and thus fully miss her chance of being honest with him about her feelings.
Which brings me to the obvious conclusion that the first thing Yona is going to do once things calm down is confess to him loud and clear. This seems to be further supported by the fact that she doesn’t seem to realize she actually already mumbled out a confession that he heard clearly. So in her mind she hasn’t said it yet.
TL;DR: I’m quite sure that Hak and Yona will officially get together in the next 1-3 chapters. There is no way this can be delayed even more, unless a new conflict suddenly prevents them from talking so that Yona can’t confess properly or they are seperated yet again. But Kusanagi said this arc is pretty much over, so I don’t see any confict happening for the next few chapters at least.
Hoo boy, the last Gintama chapter was certainly a thing that happened.
I want to be honest here, I really really really dislike the fact that Takasugi had to die this way.
Like, I already hate “redemption equals death” trope as it is, but being forced to watch for several long chapters how Takasugi was tortured, how he was torn apart and then consumed by Utsuro only to be killed off by Gintoki himself? That’s just such a gruesome and tragic fate and it’s so jarring to see this happen after Gintoki promised that he would save Takasugi too.
So yeah, Takasugi really didn’t deserve any of this and while the death scene itself was very dramatic, heavy, dark and well done, I just disagree with Sorachi’s decision to kill off Takasugi after he has experienced so much growth as a person during the last story arcs.
Which leads us to the next point - will Taka’s death change Gintama’s status quo and will we finally get some well-needed character development and relationship development from the rest of the cast?
Well, The thing is Takasugi as a character always was an outside force - he heavily influenced the main plot but he was never present during the “slice of life” Gintama segments and outside of Joui 4, Kiheitai and Utsuro nobody in the main cast even knew him as a person. So him being gone won’t affect someone like Shinsengumi guys or Nobume or Otose.
However, his death must affect Gintoki, Zura and Sakamoto. These three dumbasses have to stop running away from the relationships and responsibilities they have and finally have a reality check.
If after this horrible death we are going to get another Be Forever Yorozuya style ending where Gintoki and the rest will pretend that nothing has happened and everyone will just resume their old lives while being completely unaffected by these horrible events, I will be livid.
Status quo needs to be challenged and the main cast has to experience some real change and growth. Otherwise Takasugi’s death will be a pointless development which happened just because Sorachi needed some drama for the grand finale before ending it off with the usual “and then they all lived happily ever after and stayed as same old friends forever and ever”. And I truly believe that this would be the most unsatisfying and cheapest way to end this story.