"Strange Occurrence" - Ichiro Nakajima
Bright Win / Port Deck / -7:39:37
Ichiro Nakajima, a transfer student from Kansai. Exuding a somehow grown-up, city air, he is the protagonist of chapter 2. Having fostered an ill-fortunate love with his classmate Noriko Kifune, as he stares at the sea from the port deck of the Bright Win on 2 August 1986, his heart is unsettled. Late the night before, going to see his girlfriend Noriko after being summoned by her (archive [No.045] Heart-Shaped Letter) she revealed the truth of the "troubling" thing she "can't even tell Ichiko" - that she is pregnant. Noriko, who became his rock during his desperation at the divorce of his parents and his transferring schools, now seems as though a burden that will steal his future from him... It may seem like a selfish thing to think, but as a 14-year-old second year middle schooler, it is understandable.
As Nakajima is lost in his thoughts, the Bright Win is struck by an accident. Admist sudden radical worsening in the weather, the boat runs aground. The "black mass" that runs the Bright Win aground at this point is actually Otoshigo. As previously noted, sensing the presence of the "doves" (Offshoots B and B') that Mother, living in the Nothingness World, has released, Otoshigo also awakens. The "ancient ones" who became the Yamibito and "those who fled to the depths of the sea" who became Otoshigo were originally former inhabitants. Otoshigo dreams of the day when he can return to Mother in the Nothingness World, and rises up from the deep sea. At this time, he makes impact with the Bright Win. Also, before Nakajima loses consciousness he hears a ferry announcement telling of an emergency. The "emergency" mentioned here appears to refer to the "impact with a mysterious creature (Otoshigo)", but could also perhaps mean that a "mysterious woman (Offshoot B') is roaming the ship attacking passengers".
After regaining consciousness, Nakajima wanders the Bright Win, seeing flashes of hell pass him by. A middle-aged woman who has lost her senses from fear (this woman later appears in chapter 3 as "just a face" protruding "cackling" from Offshoot B's waist), and his classmate Kazuo Inada, both his arms gone, slowly being "eaten"... As he is cornered by the rampaging dove Nakajima is saved by the sound of the emergency bell; this bell is rung by Ichiko Yagura. Although coincidental, Ichiko's actions in pressing the bell's switch save Nakajima's life.
Finally reaching the front deck, Nakajima sees Noriko Kifune in the wheelhouse. Seeing Noriko cornered by the rampaging dove, he suddenly decides to protect her. "I won't give up. I'll protect you, no matter what.." This is no longer the Nakajima who for a time thought of Noriko as a burden that would steal his future from the unexpected reality of a "middle school pregnancy". Whether this is due to the power of love, or perhaps the many deaths he has seen on the Bright Win have changed him... Nakajima heroically stands up to the rampaging dove with its fierce strength and speed. With the aid of Offshoot B, trying to stop the rampage of Offshoot B', Nakajima appears to have barely managed to repel the rampaging dove, but ultimately a terrible fate awaits him. Noriko watches in fear as he approaches the collapsed Noriko. By this point, Nakajima has already morphed, "half-eaten" by the dove. The young lovers are torn apart by a cruel destiny...
"Saved by Offshoot B"
Offshoot B' rampages around the boat, and its other half, Offshoot B, attempts to stop its violence. This is because in contrast to Offshoot B', which has been influenced by Otoshigo, Offshoot B has been influenced by humans and sympathises with them, displaying kind actions. The finer details are discussed in "decoding" chapter 3, but this is also why Offshoot B saves Ichiko. During his fight with Offshoot B' in the wheelhouse she aids Nakajima, telling him to use the light of the signal lamp ("The light...").
[No.078] Ferry CCTV Monitor
Noriko Kifune and Ichiro Nakajima meet up on the stairs before heading off somewhere. During a momentary flickering of the screen, you can see the white shadow of a woman at the bottom of the stairs hallway where they are. This is Offshoot B', which later starts rampaging, who after awakening is not fully conscious and roams the boat aimlessly.