We’re back into finding out what Fukumaru and Kanda are getting up to in Volume 3 of A Man and His Cat! Fukumaru ends up interrupting Kanda’s reading time — but Kanda responds by resting on him! How will Fukumaru respond? By chomping on Kanda’s hair!
For about a good portion of this volume (mostly the start of it), we get little quick vignettes like that. Like the most drama involving these two personally revolves around Kanda getting Fukumaru neutered, but he struggles to do so because he’s too attached to that cat. Mundane in concept, but for them, it’s the time where they truly show how much they enjoy being in each other company’s and how they help each other heal while trying to move forward in their lives.
That said, we start to get more of Kanda’s past, and learn it may be something not even Fukumaru can do to aid him.
The story has established that Kanda losing his wife took a toll on him, but it’s not really until here where two things clash — his family and his magnificent piano skills. It starts innocuously enough, as one of his co-workers, who became inspired by Kanda’s skills, wanted to take him to a concert. That concert they both go to, however, ends up triggering a painful moment for Kanda that, honestly, is pretty scarring. There are ways to learn how someone beloved died, and how Kanda learned it — and what he did after — was pretty heartbreaking.
Having Fukumaru has been a major help, and Kanda insists it was not his co-worker’s fault for relieving his past — in fact, he does want to try going to a concert again — but this isn’t something that will go away. I can only guess that’s why we have a new character, Kanade, appear in this one. He’s not just any new character though, as he plays the piano, and he happened to play it while Kanda was in attendance (and soon leaving). Kanade and Kanda will be knowing each other more thanks to this moment, and maybe that’s how Kanda will be able to come back to the stage feeling well.
Though it’s not just the piano that brings them together — we learn one of the cats Fukumaru knew back when he was a small kitty has been taken by Kanade! Well, ok, more like foisted upon Kanade, as his mom no longer wanted to care from it. Now Kanade’s got to learn about taking care of a cat, and that includes figuring out if certain brands make a difference after all. (That part was actually pretty funny!)
A Man and His Cat in this volume doesn’t have quite the humor, but it manages to display the continued affection our two main protagonists have for each other, and relishes in the quaint moments one has with their pet. Umi Sakurai mentioned in the afterword how in this volume the manga’s no longer constrained to Twitter (it’s now serialized on Gangan Pixiv and in Monthly Shonen Gangan) so the story can be developed in a number of ways now. We see a bit of that here, and expect to see more of those changes the more the series continues.