"Rui's his only son. And he tried to totally control him, so Rui went kind of autistic. You get glimpses of that in him even now. Whenever we played together, he'd stay in the corner. Wouldn't even smile. It was almost like...his eyes were dead."
After graduating from junior high, Rui and his friends began attending Eitoku's high school. They were known as the F4 by this time and took control of the school. The group gave out red cards, known as their "declaration of war", to those who defied them. Rui seemed to have little interest though in these games.
Rui: "I wouldn't have helped you, if I thought you were going to be a pest. It was just bad form, that's all."
Tsukushi: "But I was really happy. For the first time since I came to this school, I was so happy that I cried. I'll look for you at the emergency exit!"
Rui first encountered Tsukushi Makino, when she yelled her frustrations about her classmates at his favorite sleeping spot, the emergency stairwell. She, however, did not notice him there. Later, Tsukushi's friend fell down the stairs and landed on Tsukasa. Tsukushi protected her friend, which angered Tsukasa. Rui was completely uninterested by the whole affair. After she received a red card, Tsukushi "declared war" on the F4. The next day, Tsukushi rushed to the stairwell after being bullied. Hearing her yell, Rui realized she was the same girl as before. When she started talking about her family situation, he said "I'm not interested in other people's problems." Rui later ordered a group of boys, who were attempting to assault her, to "let her go". He then said "Don't misunderstand. I just don't like this kind of stuff.
The following day, Akira and Sojiro asked Rui to watch over Tsukasa, who had just been kicked by Tsukushi. He evidently ignored them, because Tsukushi found him playing violin in the music room shortly later. Rui became annoyed by her interruption and quickly began leaving. She thanked for helping her earlier and voiced her hope to see him again at the stairwell. Rui replied "Then I won't go there again." He happened to meet her outside Tsukasa's house later that day. Rui was not interested in why she was there and tried to keep walking. Tsukushi then asked him "Is there anything money can[not] buy?" Rui said "air" and surprised her by actually smiling.
Later, Rui did not reply to Tsukushi's "good morning". After school, Sojiro saw her through the window of a shop where she worked. Rui bought one of the pastries since he thought it was "pretty", even though he was unable to eat sweets. He and Sojiro the left to go to a party. The next day, Rui returned to the emergency exit, saying "I like it here. I can get away from the chaos of the school." He was in a good mood about Shizuka's impending arrival. Rui asked Tsukushi "the time difference between France and Japan," which he waved off since she obviously did not know. Later that day, Tsukushi saw Rui kissing a poster of Shizuka. She stumbled over her words, leading him to ask if she was in love with him. Rui then kissed her on the cheek, before walking off.
Upon Shizuka's return, Rui greeted her enthusiastically, saying "For so long, I've wanted to see you again." He became sullen once the rest of the F4 arrived. Later that night, they took Shizuka to a night club. Sojiro commented on Rui's "moody" demeanor, to which Tsukasa said "He always gets into a bad mood when he's happy." Shizuka finally asked him what was wrong and he admitted that her almost "naked" photos had been bothering him. She insisted that it was only for her modelling career, but called him "sweet" for worrying. The next day, the F4 and Shizuka ate lunch at the university's cafeteria. Shizuka started talking about relationships and mentioned introducing someone to Rui. He quickly refused the offer. A few minutes later, Tsukushi and her friend Kazuya Aoike burst in the room, followed by a group of bullies. Rui defended Tsukushi, calling the bullies "animals."
Tsukasa became incensed when Rui came to Tsukushi's defense. Rui yelled at him to "snap out of it", leading Tsukasa to ask Rui if he liked Tsukushi. Rui did not answer so Tsukasa asked him if he was "prepared to face the consequences". He then tried to grab Tsukushi out of Rui's arms. She eventually screamed at both of them to let her go. Tsukasa ended the argument with "We [are] through!" Afterwards, he ran into Tsukushi at the emergency exit. She thanked him and also apologized for his "falling out" with Tsukasa. That summer, Rui went to Atami on Tsukasa's yacht, having been "dragged" along by Shizuka and the others. He was surprised to see Tsukushi at the beach. That night, he told her that she looked "nice" after Shizuka gave her a makeover.
Haruto: "I know this is really rude of me to ask, but I'm going through a lot of upheaval right now. It feels like I'm powerless. In this situation, what would Mr. Domyoji do?"
Rui: "Who knows? He's a wild one. When everything's a mess, he only has eyes for what's most important."
One day, Rui was sleeping at his old favorite spot, the high school's emergency exit. Haruto Kaguragi, a high school student, accidentally woke Rui up. He then dropped his bracelet, which broke. Rui picked up one of the stones and asked if he could have it since "it [was] kinda cute." As Rui was walking away, Haruto told him he was going through "a lot of upheaval." He asked "In this situation, what would Mr. Domyoji do?", to which Rui replied immediately "Who knows?" He went on to say "[Tsukasa] only has eyes for what [is] most important." Haruto yelled his thanks.
Personality and traits
Rui was quiet but not shy. He spoke little and generally avoided people who were not in his circle of friends. Rui spent most of his time asleep, leading Akira to joke that "he must sleep fifteen hours a day." His favorite spot to nap was the high school's emergency stairwell, which he continued to visit during university.
Behind the scenes
Boys Over Flowers Wiki has 218 images related to Rui Hanazawa.
In Hana Yori Dango: F4 and First Kiss (2015), a mobile game, Rui appears as a choice for the player's character to date. He first appears in the prologue chapter of the game. As one of the F4, he regularly appears in promotional art for the game. He also had special menu items at the Hana Yori Dango Café, including "Rui Hanazawa Éclair Set" and "Rui Hanazawa Ratatouille".