Haruhi and Tamaki develop deep feelings for each other in Volume 12 and upwards. Tamaki has feelings for Haruhi very early on - perhaps as early as the first episode - but misinterprets his feelings as fatherly love. As the anime begins to stray away from the manga, it also begins to explore Tamaki’s feelings. His unusual affection for Haruhi and the trust they share is tested.
STARTING TODAY, YOU ARE A HOST!
Haruhi is in search of a quiet place to study when she walks in on the Host Club. Being a “commoner,” Haruhi is “infamous” as Tamaki already knows her name. As Haruhi attempts to move away from him, he “praises” her for commoners everywhere, for being able to get into such a pristine school like Ouran Academy. As Haruhi is backing up from him, she stumbles into an expensive vase that ends up falling and shattering on the ground. As Haruhi is unable to pay for it with money, she’ll pay for it with her “body,” becoming the Host Club’s newest member.
Not long after, Tamaki comes up to Haruhi once he’s able to step away from the attending girls and talks to her. As he’s speaking, Haruhi zones out, trying to figure out a certain word that would describe what Tamaki is. As Tamaki comes back to her, Haruhi figures it out–obnoxious! This causes Tamaki to crouch in the corner as Haruhi apologizes. Though he recovers quickly and soon deems Haruhi a make over, to look the part of a host once he sees her without her glasses on.
Haruhi is doing so well as a host that it’s decided she won’t need training. Tamaki calls Haruhi over to meet a regular girl in attending, Seika Ayanokoji, when Tamaki picks Haruhi up and spins her around at a cute head tilt she does in greeting them. Seika shows jealously at Tamaki paying more attention to Haruhi rather than her. It’s heavily implied that she takes Haruhi’s belongings and tosses them into a fountain in the school’s courtyard. As Haruhi is searching through the fountain for her things, Tamkai comes up beside her, at first lightly annoyed that she would leave the club, but at Haruhi mentioning money for food, Tamaki then joins in the search through the fountain, ultimately finding her things.
Back inside the club room, Seika requests Haruhi and fakes assault when Haruhi deems her to be jealous. The twins, Hikaru and Kaoru, pour a pitcher of water on both girls. As Seika plays the victim, Tamkaki sees right through this and kicks her out, saying Haruhi “isn’t that kind of man.” Haruhi is given a fresh pair of clothes to wear. It’s when Tamaki comes into the changing room with clean towels does he see her in a state of undress and very clearly her breasts. It’s then the final lightbulb lights up with Tamaki realizing Haruhi is a girl. When Haruhi emerges from the changing room, wearing a dress, Tamaki backs up and blushes furiously. Kyoya breaks the forth wall, commenting, “Now I could be wrong, but I think we may be witnessing the beginnings of love here.”
THE JOB OF A HIGH SCHOOL HOST!
When an attending girl, Kanako Kasugazaki, of the Host Club switches to Haruhi as her favorite host, Tamaki becomes increasingly jealous of that. By chance, the Host Club is throwing a large formal party which Haruhi attempts to get out of, to which Tamaki forces her to attend, telling her she’ll have to master the waltz in one week or she’ll be outed as a girl to the school and be demoted back to errand boy.
A week later, the Host Club throws the party. Because Haruhi is “already here,” it’s suggested that she might as well get something to eat. Haruhi shyly looks up and asks if there’s “fancy tuna,” which leads to the boys looking at her with utter shock, before Tamaki jumps down from his position, ordering Kyoya to order the tuna.
A week prior to the party, the Host Club comes up with a plan for Kanako as the Host Club’s job is to make every girl happy. Part of Tamaki’s plan is to have Haruhi dressed in a pink dress and make-up, once he arrives to send her off; he’s momentarily stunned, commenting, “I can’t believe… she’s so pretty.” As Haruhi speaks with Kanako’s fiancée, Tamaki speaks with Kanako herself, before they meet back up at getting Kanako and her fiancée to talk to each other. As the both watch on, Haruhi glances up at Tamaki with a warm smile.
At the end of the night, Kanako is crowned the “Queen” and is rewarded a kiss on the cheek from the King, though Haruhi is unexpectedly standing in for Tamaki, much to the surprise of Tamaki and Haruhi. As Haruhi is moments away from kissing Kanako’s cheek, Honey chimes in; wondering if this would be Haruhi’s first kiss. Tamaki panics and rushes to stop the kiss, only to slip and trip on a banana peel into Haruhi, pushing her into Kanako, causing the girls to kiss on the lips. As the girls back away in shock, Tamaki is distressed from behind Haruhi.
BEWARE THE PHYSICAL EXAM!
Noticing Haruhi standing alone, Tamaki comes up behind her, asking if she’s “having a good time.” Before she can answer, Tamaki goes on how the flower viewing reception, a Host Club activity, is going well. He continues on how he’s “in full bloom,” and how Haruhi will “fall for him soon.” Hikaru and Kaoru come up to them, pulling Haruhi away from Tamaki, starting a whole new conversation about what classes she’ll be taking. Tamaki look on in defeat as her attention is pulled away, before he drops to the ground in his “depression corner.” Tamaki speaks with Kyoya on how with Haruhi and the twins being in the same classes, they’re able to spend more time with Haruhi than Tamaki is at the Host Club. Kyoya pulls out a graph that shows Tamaki only spends 3% Haruhi’s day with her. Tamaki screams he doesn’t want to hear it, before gripping Haruhi’s shoulder, telling her he doesn’t want her to hang out with “those shady twins.” The twins bring up that she’s going to found out sooner rather than later as the school’s physical exam is coming up.
Later that day, Tamaki fantasizes about Haruhi being found out and being embarrassed by the students all staring at her, with Tamaki promising he’ll protect her, before he spins her around and she tells him how she’s “in love-love with him.” Hikaru pips up that Tamaki’s “creeping him out,” when Tamaki breaks from his daydream and comments, “This anime is obviously a romantic-school comedy. Haruhi and I are the main characters, so that means we’re love interests.” When it’s brought up that once Haruhi is outed as a girl, she will no longer be able to be a host. Hearing this, Tamaki is stunned. Haruhi arrives to the club, and Tamaki grips her shoulders, telling her that no one will find out about her. Tamaki enacts “Operation: Conceal Haruhi’s Gender.”
The following morning at school, the plan is action. When it’s Haruhi’s turn to be examined, she’s pulled into a room where Tamaki holds her close from behind, promising her he’ll “protect her.” He places on a brown wig and steps out to the awaiting female students and nurses. Nobody buys it and everyone laughs at this failure. This ended up being “revenge” for Kyoya, Hikaru and Kaoru as the previous day Tamaki had called them “supporting cast.” Kyoya soon sends Haruhi to the special boy’s clinic where her “situation” has been addressed and the doctor is sworn into secrecy. Not long after, a girl freaks out at about a man “trying to make a pass” at her. The girl tells school officials where the “pervert doctor” went—the special boy’s clinic. Tamaki and others all yell, “Haruhi!” and rush for her.
As Haruhi is changing, the strange man enters her room and covers her mouth. Tamaki is first to make a move of attack, kicking the man into the wall, before the others step in. As Tamaki steps closer, he covers Haruhi with his shirt.
Once the situation is explained and the man, who was searching for his daughter, is sent away peacefully, Haruhi asks the guys to leave, which leaves them shocked that she wants to quite the Host Club. Haruhi says no, but that she still has to complete her physical. At this, Tamaki hugs her tight.
JUNGLE POOL SOS!
The Host Club spends the day at Kyoya’s family indoor beach. Upon orders from Tamaki, Hikaru and Karou kidnap Haruhi. They end up bring some of their mother’s fashion line of swimsuits for Haruhi to pick out and wear for the day. As Tamaki listens to Haruhi from the outside of the changing room, he becomes in increasingly bashful. When Haruhi emerges from the room dressed in a one-piece swimsuit, Tamaki lowers his head. He hands her a pullover and shorts, saying, “Just hurry up and put it on. A proper young woman should not show that much skin until after she’s married.”
A little later, during a water gun fight with the twins, Tamaki slips into a mechanical totem pole, activating the beach’s tidal wave, which results in Honey getting lost on the other side of the waterpark. As the Host Club searches for their missing friend, Haruhi ends up going with Mori when he splits up from the group. As Haruhi shows concern for Mori, and Mori returns gentle affection back, Tamaki becomes slightly jealous at believing Mori is falling for Haruhi. Later in the day, once Mori and Haruhi are found, along with Honey, Tamaki runs up to hug her, saying how worried he was for her.
Starting Today, You Are a Host!
- Tamaki picks up Haruhi and spins her around when she acts “cute.”
- Tamaki helps Haruhi search for her belongings that were tossed into a fountain.
- Tamaki blushes furiously at realizing Haruhi is a girl.
- Kyoya breaks the forth wall, commenting, “Now I could be wrong, but I think we may be witnessing the beginnings of love here.”
The Job of a High School Host!
- Tamaki is momentarily stunned to see Haruhi dressed up in a pink dress and make-up.
Beware the Physical Exam!
- Tamaki fantasizes about protecting Haruhi.
- Tamaki covers Haruhi with his shirt.
Attack of the Lady Manager!
- Tamaki believes Haruhi was attacked by couple of boys, so he slams one against the wall, demanding to know which “jerk” hurt her.
- “Now I could be wrong, but I think we may be witnessing the beginnings of love here.”
- — Kyoya, referring to Tamaki’s reaction to Haruhi being a girl, Starting Today, You Are a Host!
- “I can’t believe… she’s so pretty.”
- — Tamaki, about Haruhi, The Job of a High School Host!
- “This anime is obviously a romantic-school comedy. Haruhi and I are the main characters, so that means we’re love interests.”
- — Tamaki, Beware the Physical Exam!
On AO3, TamaHaru is the most written ship within the Ouran High School Host Club - All Media Types tag; Tamaki’s most written, as well as Haruhi’s most written.
|SHIPS||het||HikaHaru • MoriHaru • TamaHaru|
|slash||KyoKao • KyoTama|