Set years before the events of the first episode, Kōsei is seen performing at his first piano recital, with Emi and Takeshi in the audience. As Emi listens to the recital, she begins crying over his performance and therefore decided on that day that she would become a pianist. Emi also starts to develop feelings for Kōsei. At the next performance, Emi tries to gain Kōsei's attention by sitting next to him, however, Kōsei ignores her entirely, and instead reading his sheet music. Takeshi then joins them, revealing that he decided to play piano in order to receive a toy robot hero, however, after listening to Kōsei's performance, Takeshi admires Kōsei as a hero. At the next piano competition, Kōsei wins first place, but decides to ignore the results. As Emi and Takeshi realise that Kōsei has always been placed first, they begin a rivalry with Kōsei. Emi and Takeshi are seen conversing at a competition, discussing their future, before Kōsei comes and sit on the same bench as Emi and Takeshi.
"You should enjoy the little detours. To the fullest. Because that's where you'll find the things more important than what you want." ~Ging Freecss