Rohan au Louvre (Movie Novelization)

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Rohan au Louvre (Movie Novelization) (映画ノベライズ 岸辺露伴 ルーヴルへ行く, Eiga Noberaizu Kishibe Rohan Rūvuru e Iku, lit. Movie Novelization Rohan Kishibe Goes to the Louvre) is a novelization of the 2023 film of the same name.

Written by Ballad Kitaguni and based on the script by Yasuko Kobayashi, the novelization was released alongside the film on May 26, 2023.



Rohan Kishibe sees a woman with jet-black hair and a black parasol, feeling extremely nostalgic. She is someone he had forgotten, but he feels as if the darkness of her hair is engraved in his memory. She asks him whether he knows what the blackest painting in the world is, but Rohan couldn't hear what she said after, feeling the wind suddenly growing stronger and the sunlight scorching his eyelids. He wakes up at his desk once he realizes it was only a dream. It was unusual for him to fall asleep at his desk; his manga, Pink Dark Boy, was currently in its eighth part, and Rohan is always prepared when working. He wasn't sleep-deprived, and also did his daily stretches before sitting down. He wonders whether the comfortable summer weather caused him to take a nap, since his window was open. However, what truly bothers him is his dream, since he couldn't remember the woman and hadn't dreamed about her for many years.

That day, Rohan leaves his office to gain new experiences for his research. He visits a backstreet antique shop that resembles a warehouse filled with goods and junk. A middle-aged clerk with a mustache asks if he needs any help, but Rohan ignores him, instead focused on the chaotic display of products on the shelves. The clerk and his young shop assistant wearing glasses find Rohan suspicious, so Rohan finally answers him, informing him that he's doing research on art for his manga. The clerk asks if he's famous, so Rohan points out an autograph of his that is in the corner of the shop. It was a fake autograph that Rohan hadn't actually drawn himself. The mustached clerk stops pretending to be nice, admitting to Rohan that they sell fake goods and that there's no need for Rohan to buy the real products if he just needs them to draw manga. The young shop assistant tries getting the older clerk to stop talking, but the mustached man underestimated Rohan, who he knew nothing about. Rohan's glare and aura scare the two clerks, overwhelming them once he rants about how an appraiser could tell his drawings were based on fake products if he didn't draw the real thing. Exasperated, the clerks tell Rohan that they have real goods in the back that they'll sell to him, but Rohan reveals his true purpose for coming to the shop. He didn't actually come there to study art, but rather because he knew the store sold fake goods and autographs. He declares that he wants to interview the criminals who would run a shop like that, but the clerk demands that he leaves since they don't allow interviews. In an instant, the two clerks fall unconscious as Rohan uses Heaven's Door in order to "interview" them. The men unfurl into books, allowing Rohan to read their memories.

Rohan has no intention of reporting the criminals since he wasn't a policeman nor someone who cared for justice. However, as a manga artist, he could not overlook them disrespecting art. With Heaven's Door, he writes an order that they treat all works with the utmost respect. Some things he read in their books made him angry, but he feels it was valuable information for drawing a realistic criminal character, as he learned their methods and how they strayed from a proper life. Before going home, Rohan sees a catalog of an auction, realizing that was another way to dispose of stolen goods. Among the auction items is a painting drawn entirely in black. From the photo, it didn't seem like the blackest painting in the world, but Rohan feels as if he was being guided by the woman from his dream.

Chapter 1

Rohan and his editor Kyoka Izumi are at a first-rate hotel. Kyoka thanks the receptionist for allowing them to conduct research for Rohan's manga. She tells Rohan that she was successfully able to register them for an auction because she mentioned Pink Dark Boy, bribing the staff by offering autographs from Rohan. Kyoka hands Rohan the paddle she got from the receptionist and wonders what Rohan is planning to buy at the auction. He is interested in the painting he saw in the catalog, "Noire", by a French painter named Maurice Legrand.

While the pair head into the auction room, Kyoka thinks Rohan looks like the Mona Lisa, leading to Rohan telling her to go home. However, Kyoka wants to stay so she can write Rohan's research journal for their website. She takes photos of Rohan before the auction begins. Eventually, Noire is brought up on stage with a minimum bid of 200,000 yen. Rohan raises his paddle with the number 17 but is caught in a bidding war with a man behind him with the paddle number 9. Rohan notices his competitor consulting with another man next to him. Eventually, his competitor raises the bid to 320,000 yen. Annoyed by his persistence, Kyoka raises Rohan's paddle herself to raise the price, as she was caught in the moment. Suddenly, the man raises the price to 500,000 yen, instead of going by 10,000 yen increments. Rohan doubles that to 1 million yen, but his competitor raises it to 1.1 million. Finally, Rohan ends up winning the auction with a final bid of 1.5 million yen.

On their way back to Rohan's home, Kyoka worries about Rohan's purchase since the cost increased by 1.3 million yen. The painting had no historical value and the artist wasn't a famous person, even though the painting's value slightly increased after the artist passed away. Kyoka asks Rohan why he wanted it, to which he says he was attracted to its jet black color. Upon entering Rohan's house, Kyoka is shocked at the mess of wood, jars, and paint trays scattered around. Rohan tells her that they're all old pigments which he is researching. He demonstrates various usages of them, which fascinates Kyoka. She starts taking pictures of Rohan's room for their research journal. Rohan asks Kyoka if she has seen the blackest color in the world. She initially doesn't understand what he was implying, but he shows her a page from a book depicting an extremely black bird, so dark as if it looked like there was a hole on the page. It was a bird-of-paradise species, whose feathers absorb almost 100% of light. However, even this wasn't the blackest color in the world. Rohan begins telling her about a black painting drawn by Nizaemon Yamamura, but is interrupted by black hair he saw moving outside his window.

Kyoka tries searching for Nizaemon on her phone but can't find anything, since his name and paintings were not recorded anywhere. Certain that someone is spying on him, Rohan quickly rushes out of his house and spots the man. It was the man with paddle number 9 at the auction. The man attempts to flee, but Rohan uses Heaven's Door to incapacitate him. As he begins to read the man's pages, he hears Kyoka scream inside the house. Worried, he bursts into his study and finds Kyoka on the ground, though she isn't visibly injured. She quickly informs him that a man suddenly came in and stole his Noire painting. Rohan rushes out the back door and chases the man, whose name is revealed as Kawai. Kawai flips over Noire and peels off the oil paper covering the back. However, whatever he was looking for wasn't actually there. Anxiousness takes over him, as he and his partner Watabe just invaded a house and stole this painting for no reason now. Kawai notices a black mass resembling tar on the corner of the frame. Suddenly, a swarm of tiny spiders covers his hand. A classic car then mysteriously appears behind him and chases Kawai, who abandons the painting and desperately runs away. By the time Rohan finds the abandoned painting, Kawai and the black mass had disappeared. Kyoka notices text written on the back in French, which she translates. It mentions that it is the black color the artist saw at the Louvre and also has the word "remorse".

Rohan prevents Kyoka from calling the police since he doesn't want to deal with the hassle. He studies the Noire painting, wondering what the text means. Kyoka puts Rohan's thoughts into words first, believing it's related to the Black Painting Rohan mentioned to her earlier. Thus, Rohan concludes that their next destination for research must be the Louvre Museum. Meanwhile, Watabe runs away from Rohan's house, telling a person on the phone that he's backing out since something is off about Rohan. Kawai was not at the arranged escape route and all Watabe saw was Rohan and Kyoka picking up the discarded painting. Believing the job wasn't legitimate, Watabe quickly ends the call after telling the person that there was nothing on the back of the painting.

Kyoka returns to Shumeisha and prepares for their trip to Paris. A voice of the woman from Rohan's dream echoes in his head. He takes out black paint and nostalgically draws her black hair.

Chapter 2

In the past, Rohan's maternal grandmother ran an inn in Morioh, but closed it down after her husband passed away. Before Rohan made his professional debut as a manga artist, he was staying there for several months since he wanted to concentrate and felt it suited his writing environment. His grandmother sold most of her possessions when she went out of business, leaving plenty of empty rooms. One day, Rohan went out for a stroll around the neighborhood, sketching to take a break from his manuscript work since he had a creative slump. After returning home, he decided to take a bath before having dinner. He casually opened the door to the bath, but was shocked to see a woman already in there, who was only in her underwear. The woman quickly covered herself while Rohan apologized and left. He realized he accidentally entered the women's bath because the signs in the inn were confusing; the women's bath sign showed a woman's hair tied in a ponytail, whereas the men's bath sign showed a man with a topknot. Rohan later learned that the woman's name was Nanase.

While sitting in the garden one morning, Rohan was sketching birds when he saw Nanase doing her laundry. Captivated by her beauty, Rohan started to draw her. Nanase noticed him and took his sketchbook, causing Rohan to feel embarrassed. Rohan complained to her about how an editor told him that the girls he drew weren't cute, so he was drawing Nanase for practice. Before leaving the garden, Nanase told Rohan she would like to read his work sometime. A few days later in the evening, Nanase brought Rohan to her room to read his manuscript. She told him the story about the "blackest painting in the world", which was painted about 250 years prior by Nizaemon Yamamura before he died. The painting was sold to the Louvre, but Nanase warned that Rohan should never look at it or touch it. Rohan spotted a black spider on the ground, and then Nanase suddenly suggested that he should leave. He obliged, but noticed that she was crying. When he headed back to his room, he heard the footsteps of Nanase leaving the inn. He didn't see her again for several days. Rohan tried going to Nanase's room one day, but there were no signs of her living there. While he drew Nanase with heavy shading for her black hair, he was making progress on his manuscript but still felt empty. Suddenly, he heard the noise of wooden sandals and thought it might be her, but it was just his grandmother. His grandma informed him that she was in trouble because Yoshio Kawadori, who she had asked to organize her storeroom, had gone missing.

About a week later, Rohan heard footsteps again amidst the sound of rain. As soon as he opened the door of Nanase's room, she tearfully jumped into his arms. Rohan was about to use Heaven's Door to find out what was troubling her, but decided not to intrude on her privacy. Seeing that Rohan created a character in his manga based on her likeness, Nanase quickly destroyed the drafts and apologized to Rohan before once again disappearing from his life. Rohan tried asking his grandmother about Nanase, but she didn't remember if a person like that even stayed with them. She then informed Rohan that a foreign buyer was coming for some paintings in her storehouse, so she needed Rohan to handle the exchange. As Rohan left, the radio his grandmother was listening to stated that Yoshio Kawadori's body was found in a junkyard in Kotodai on the previous night. The cause of death was drowning, despite there being no water sources around. A French man named Gaucher bought the paintings from Rohan after a brief greeting. Eventually, that summer ended and Rohan accepted the reality that Nanase had left. Rohan too eventually left from his grandmother's inn as he began his journey as a manga artist.

Rohan kept those memories stored away, so he wonders why he suddenly remembers Nanase now. He understands that all he could do now is head to the Louvre, where he heard the Black Painting should be.

Chapter 3

Emma Noguchi has been absent-minded in recent days, making easy mistakes which she wouldn't have made in the past. However, she was a skilled Louvre staff member, spoke French fluently, and could interpret Japanese, so her boss, Jacques Blanc, still found her indispensable. Jacques reminds her about her task to attend to a Japanese guest which she seemingly forgot about. Their client had questions prepared in advance, but Emma forgot to compile answers. Jacques tells her he'll do it and sends her off since there isn't much time left until their meeting. Emma forwards him the e-mail from Rohan, which asks about Maurice Legrand and Nizaemon Yamamura. Jacques feels as if he heard the name Nizaemon before.

Meanwhile, Kyoka excitedly takes a photo of Rohan in a double-decker bus. An elderly woman sitting behind Rohan asks where the Champs-Élysées is and Rohan responds back in fluent French. Eventually, the bus arrives at the nearest stop to the Eiffel Tower, where Emma greets Rohan and Kyoka. Walking through Paris, Kyoka makes small-talk with Emma such as admiring that even the children are fashionable, and that she always wanted to visit Paris as a kid. Emma gives bland and nonchalant responses, but Kyoka doesn't mind since she was used to Rohan's behavior. Emma asks whether they would like to check in to the Louvre first since it's closer than their hotel. Kyoka wanted to go change at the hotel, but Rohan decides that they'll go to the Louvre first due to their limited schedule. On their way up an escalator, Rohan is approached by two young French fans asking for an autograph. Kyoka tries to intervene but struggles while speaking French. Rohan scolds them for being disrespectful because of how they dressed and acted while at the historic Louvre, but gives them autographs anyways by signing their clothes and bags. Emma guides the two to various places in the Louvre, such as to the Apollo Gallery and to see the Mona Lisa.

Emma goes on to answer Rohan's questions from his e-mail. She informs him that Maurice Legrand used to copy paintings often. After he passed away, his family disposed of all his works. Emma explains how the Louvre started moving its collection to a newly constructed storage center to protect them from Seine River floods. During the process, they discovered over a thousand pieces of valuable art in their underground warehouse, consisting of over a hundred pieces of Asian art. Emma tells them that she plans to ask an expert in Asian art on the collection investigation team later and continues their tour. In the sculpture exhibition room, Rohan starts sketching when he is suddenly approached by a man named Ryunosuke Tatsumi. He greets Rohan with a quote from a letter that Vincent van Gogh wrote to his brother, claiming it describes Rohan well. Emma introduces all of them to each other, informing them that he is the Asian art expert she had just mentioned earlier. Tatsumi declares himself as a fan of Rohan's art, though denies reading Pink Dark Boy, saying he understood the contents just from seeing the cover in a bookstore. Emma explains that he's a well-known appraiser assisting with the Louvre's investigation on their collection. Chatting as they walked along, Tatsumi mentions that Maurice seems to have died from an accident. Suddenly, the group hears a loud scream. Above them in the second-floor exhibition space, Emma is shocked to see Jacques acting afraid. Her boss ignored them, constantly looking back as if he was terrified at something while begging for help, but nobody could see anything behind him. In his panicked state, Jacques jumps off the railing and lands on the floor below, where Emma and Tatsumi rush over to. Jacques manages to tell them about a spider and black hair.

A while later after the incident, Kyoka and Rohan walk along a bridge over the Seine River. Kyoka searches for follow-up reports on the incident on her tablet, relieved that Jacques survived. She asks Rohan whether he thinks Jacques jumped off by himself. Rohan is surprised at how observant Kyoka is when she shows him a photo of Maurice's Noire painting on her tablet, zooming in to show a spider and lines resembling hair. While Rohan theorizes about the connection between everything, Kyoka wonders what it has to do with "remorse". Back at the Louvre, an employee named Marie who shared a desk with Jacques at the Cultural Mediation Department is stunned about the incident. Marie tells Emma how Jacques was researching about Nizaemon. When Emma looks at his computer, she decides she has to get in touch with Rohan again as soon as possible.

Chapter 4

Emma leads Rohan and Kyoka to Jacques's computer to show them that a painting by Nizaemon is stored at "Z-13", an abandoned basement warehouse in the museum which hasn't been used for over twenty years. Emma asks Marie to look into who Jacques heard the name Nizaemon from. Rohan requests to go visit that warehouse and Emma agrees. Tatsumi joins them on the way, making Rohan suspicious because of his timing. At the entrance to the underground passage, Emma introduces Rohan and Kyoka to two firefighters named Nicolas and Hugo. Hugo asks them to hand over any flammable items or anything that could harm the stored items like lighters, pens, knives, and keys. While walking, Emma receives an email from Marie stating that Jacques heard the name Nizaemon from Gaucher Bigotte, a curator who worked at the Louvre over twenty years ago. Emma shows the group the photo of Gaucher and Rohan is shocked to see that it is the man that collected the painting from his grandmother's storehouse. After registering Nizaemon's painting in the Z-13 warehouse, he suddenly disappeared and is still considered "missing".

The firefighters turn on their flashlights and lead the way down. Emma finds it strange that the warehouse's door opens easily with their key even though it shouldn't have been used for a long time, and Hugo agrees with her. Nicolas suddenly sees something move in the room and wonders if it's a rat, but the two aren't concerned. While searching for what he saw, Nicolas knocks off a painting from the wall. It ends up being an unpublished painting from Johannes Vermeer, which makes Rohan and Emma suspicious since it should have been sent to the Louvre's newly constructed storage center already. Tatsumi declares it's a fake and tells Nicolas to dispose of it. However, Rohan rejects his claim and believes it is authentic. He shows them an art material he found with Maurice Legrand's name on it and then explains his theory of how he believes Maurice is part of an art theft group and how they were operating. He deduces that since the original painting is still there, a forgery by Maurice was sent to the storage center. Maurice would create a forgery in the "abandoned" warehouse, send the forgery to the storage center, take the original home by hiding it in the back of his own painting, ship it overseas, and then sell it in an auction cheaply. Tatsumi vehemently attempts to deny Rohan's claims until Rohan states it would be easy for Maurice to accomplish such a task with allies such as curators or firefighters who could freely access rooms in the Louvre. Tatsumi, Nicolas, and Hugo stay silent upon hearing Rohan's correct theory. After some time, Tatsumi starts arguing, but Nicolas and Hugo don't pay attention to that. Hugo is concerned about Nicolas, who is staring into the darkness of the warehouse. Stunned, Nicolas wonders why a soldier is there and is suddenly shot with several bullets.

As Nicolas dies, Hugo loses his calm and accuses Rohan of doing something since Watabe contacted them earlier saying Rohan is dangerous. Hugo charges at Rohan but the manga artist shakes him off. Angered, Hugo pulls out a knife and lunges at Kyoka. Rohan protects Kyoka and shoves him away, but Hugo successfully managed to snatch away the Vermeer painting. Hugo screams and no longer trusts anybody. Paranoid because Tatsumi spoke in Japanese with the group earlier, he thinks Tatsumi may also be betraying him like what happened with Maurice. Tatsumi confesses to Rohan, complaining that Maurice suddenly went crazy after seeing something in the warehouse and talked about quitting their theft group. Tatsumi tried persuading him to stay since his forgery skills were the only way their group could function. Suddenly, a black spider crawls up Tatsumi's back. Everyone is confused when Tatsumi mentions Maurice's name, as only he could see the illusion of the man. While Tatsumi is strangled by Maurice, Rohan sees the Black Painting on the wall behind Tatsumi. He pushes Kyoka away so that she doesn't get harmed by the darkness of the painting, ordering her not to turn around. Meanwhile, Emma sees her deceased son Pierre, and apologizes for taking her eyes off him for a moment at the pond where he ended up drowning. Emma begs for forgiveness, but suddenly starts drowning in the middle of the room. Rohan quickly takes off his jacket and completely envelops Emma with it, preventing her from seeing the painting. He then has Kyoka take Emma out of the room.

Meanwhile, Hugo sees victims of a tragedy caused by his grandfather's madness. Rohan begins to understand that the painting excavates memories from genes, showing either one's own regrets or the sins of their ancestors. For instance, Maurice's regret upon seeing the Black Painting might have been that he was making money from all the forgeries he was creating. In his state of terror, he painted Noire as an imitation of Nizaemon's Black Painting before dying. Tatsumi then felt regret by thinking Maurice's death was his fault. Impulsively, Rohan takes a look at the painting, curious as to what he would see. Rohan's "regret" manifested as the shadow of a man he couldn't recognize, who resembled a samurai but wielded an axe. The samurai swings his axe at Rohan. Although Rohan feels as if his flesh got torn apart, it was only an illusion, and black sprayed out of him rather than blood. Rohan recalls Nanase's words and realizes the man must be Nizaemon. Not understanding the relationship between him and Nizaemon, Rohan attempts to use Heaven's Door, but Nizaemon's pages were completely black. Since Nizaemon wasn't actually a soul but rather a dead person living within the memories of someone else, he had no memories or humanity himself for Heaven's Door to read.

With his lighter, Hugo sets himself on fire, which was his ultimate fate because of the regret inside him from his grandfather. The fire spreads throughout the warehouse, with heat roasting Rohan's skin. As Rohan is cornered by the flames and by Nizaemon who was about to strike with his axe again, Nanase appears behind Nizaemon and holds him down. She was the portrait drawn in the Black Painting. Rohan realizes the words Nanase kept trying to tell him in his dreams: "Forget everything." Rohan makes the decision to use Heaven's Door on himself and erase all of his own memories. The undead vanish, leaving a newly-amnesiac Rohan to crawl up the stairs to safety. After reaching the top of the stairs, Rohan sees and follows a command on his hand to rub the words off his face, erasing the first command and restoring his memory. Exhausted, Rohan puts his hand on the floor. A small spider crawls up to his hand and vanishes, presumably being the last black spider from the painting. Outside the Louvre, Kyoka consoles Emma. Kyoka shows her a photograph of her father standing in front of the Louvre. Her father passed away when she was five, which is why Kyoka wanted Emma to take a similar photo of her earlier. Emma says the two look similar and starts crying, so Kyoka hugs her. The paramedics arrive and assume they all hallucinated because of gas accumulation in the basement.

The next day, Kyoka and Rohan are at a café. The fire didn't spread since it was underground and they fully sealed off the warehouse. However, Rohan doesn't know what happened to the Black Painting. They decide to head back to the Louvre, where Rohan admires its vast history while standing in front of it. Kyoka suddenly remarks that the woman in the painting was beautiful, surprising Rohan who assumed she didn't see it. Rohan asks whether nothing happened, but Kyoka doesn't know what he means. Rohan admires that Kyoka seems to not harbor any kind of regret.

Thus, Rohan's journey at the Louvre concludes. However, Rohan still needed to settle his regret. He heads to a small village in northeast Japan, where he finds Nanase's grave. Nanase's ghost apologizes to Rohan, saying that was the only way she could stop Nizaemon. She places her hand on Rohan's cheek, allowing Rohan to read her memories. One day in August, Nanase was arranged to marry a man from the Yamamura family, who had been serving as official painters for generations.

Final Chapter

One day in August, Nanase had an arranged marriage with Nizaemon, the eldest son of the Yamamura family. The family served as official painters for generations. The two loved each other and Nizaemon would frequently paint her, particularly detailing her hair. Nizaemon had once asked Nanase her thoughts on one of his paintings and she honestly replied that she didn't think it was good. He appreciated her honesty, stating that it was an imitation of a Dutch painting he saw while studying in Edo. Nizaemon did not only paint traditional styles but also in the ukiyo-e style which was popular with townspeople. His father scolded him for this, as it was unacceptable for him to paint things for commoners given their social status. Since Nizaemon disagreed with his father, he was disowned from the family. The chief priest of their local temple allowed him and Nanase to move to a hermitage in the corner in the temple, where Nizaemon continued to paint. Although he lost his status as an official painter, Nizaemon made a living by selling fusuma (sliding door) and byobu (folding screen) paintings to merchants. Meanwhile, Nanase would take care of the household chores.

At some point, Nizaemon was bothered that he didn't have black ink that was dark enough to properly depict Nanase's black hair. At the same time, Nanase suddenly fell gravely ill, no longer having energy in her hands or feet. Nizaemon was not making enough money to support themselves, as his savings went toward paying for doctors and medications. Thus, he swallowed his pride and asked his father to accept him back into the family. His father agreed, but only if Nizaemon would show him a painting that surpasses his own. The doctors and medicine did not help Nanase, so her only hope was to pray to the gods. While praying, she came across black sap flowing from the sacred tree in the temple. Feeling as if that was a sign from her prayers, she collected the sap and gave it to Nizaemon to use for his painting. She didn't want to tell him where the sap came from, but continued collecting it for him. However, Nizaemon followed her one day and found where she was getting it from. From then on, Nizaemon started collecting the sap from the tree himself.

After he started using the black from the sacred tree while painting, his personality started changing as if he was possessed. Others found out about Nizaemon collecting the sap, such as his younger brother, Samanosuke Yamamura. Samanosuke filed a complaint with the magistrate's office, since he intended to take over the Yamamura household instead of his brother. The officials then arrested Nizaemon as it was a taboo to harm the sacred tree. Nizaemon claimed he did not harm it and only collected its sap, but the officials said he should not even touch it. Feeling guilty, Nanase confessed that she was the one who did it rather than her husband. She grabbed onto the leg of one of the officials to prevent them from harming Nizaemon, but they struck her with a stick. Nizaemon shook off the officials grabbing him and rushed to Nanase's side. As Nanase's vision started to blur, she witnessed him grabbing an axe and killing the officials. He then struck down the sacred tree with the axe, as the sap in his hands mixed with the blood of the officials.

Sitting by Nanase's side, Nizaemon started to paint with the black ink. Nanase realized that its true nature was a small black spider, which had been inside the darkness of the sacred tree for perhaps thousands of years. Nizaemon finished the painting extremely quickly with a speed that exceeded human capabilities. However, his life also burned out when he completed it. He and his wife died together as their sorrows, anger, regrets, and Nizaemon's resentment seeped into the painting.

In the present, Nanase's ghost apologizes to Rohan for getting him involved. However, Rohan declares that it was a necessary part of his past. Nanase reaches out her hand to Rohan as a sign of farewell before disappearing. Rohan understands that Nanase shredded his manuscript back then so that his affection for her wouldn't turn into regret that would trap him, since he had drawn her hair with a black color similar to what Nizaemon was trying to pursue. Reading their gravestones, Rohan learns that Nanase's maiden name was Kishibe. Rohan wonders if the Z-13 warehouse still exists under the Louvre. He also doesn't know whether the Black Painting has completely disappeared. However, he knows that he had to be the one to free Nanase and Nizaemon from their regrets. Although she's gone now, the Kishibe blood that he inherited from Nanase guides him.


Several days after their visit to the Louvre, Rohan and Kyoka are back to their usual work. Kyoka enters his house, happily pointing out how she found the old pigment Rohan requested, but is greeted with a shock when seeing that Rohan's house is clean again, no longer having any of the pigments and paints he gathered. She's flabbergasted since Rohan had mentioned wanting to use traditional Japanese paints for his next full-color manuscript, but Rohan says he changed his mind, wanting to stick to what he's used to. Kyoka doesn't accept his answer because of the trouble she went through to retrieve the pigment and leaves it with him anyways, hoping he'll use it someday. She heads to his bookshelf to return the books she borrowed from him, but accidentally drops a sketchbook from the shelf. Inside, she sees a sketch drawn by Rohan of Nanase, who she remembers seeing in the Louvre. Kyoka decides not to question it and pretends nothing happened. Just then, Rohan follows his usual pattern of grabbing her and pushing her out of his house. While annoyed at first, she is relieved that Rohan seems more inspired after their trip and she was also able to touch on her father's memories.

Rohan's next story is a full-color manuscript of Pink Dark Boy inspired by what he saw at the Louvre. Kyoka titles the travelogue as "Rohan Kishibe Goes to the Louvre". After she leaves, Rohan does his usual warm-up exercises for his wrist and fingers. Suddenly, a gust of wind from his open window carries a page of his manuscript to the floor. The page depicted his black-haired heroine. Rohan remembers the day Nanase ripped up his manuscript. He decides not to forget anymore, even if his memories are lonely or filled with regret. Although regret may be a black poison that corrodes someone, people can use that blackness to create a story depicting the regrets that they've overcome. Rohan returns to his desk to start working, cherishing his valuable experience.


Yoshio Kawadori
(Mentioned only)
Gaucher Bigotte
Hugo's Grandfather
(Mentioned only)
Kyoka's Father
(Photo only)


Each chapter begins with a quote from various painters, aside from the epilogue which instead ends with a quote from Rohan.

Link to this sectionQuote
My work is drawn from my own experiences rather than the words of others.
Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519)
Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519)

Link to this sectionQuote
A painting is complete when it has the shadows of a god.
Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669)
Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669)

Link to this sectionQuote
When one is painting, one does not think.
Raphael Sanzio (1483-1520)
Raphael Sanzio (1483-1520)

Link to this sectionQuote
Art is not a pleasure-trip, it is a battle, a mill that grinds.
Jean-François Millet (1814-1875)
Jean-François Millet (1814-1875)

Link to this sectionQuote
Painting is all about sacrifice and determination.
Francisco de Goya (1746-1828)
Francisco de Goya (1746-1828)

Link to this sectionQuote
Rohan Kishibe (Currently serializing Pink Dark Boy as of 2023)


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