I’d like to introduce the voices behind the girls of K-ON! Going clockwise are Minako Kotobuki who happens to play Tsumugi Kotobuki—what are the odds of having the same last name? Minako is in a pop group called “Sphere” with Aki Toyosaki and is the youngest of the voice actresses, she did well in the live show “Come With Me” faking it on the Korg Triton and Keytar—but, apparently she might not have been faking it all the time.
Next is Yoko Hikasa, she resembles Mio Akiyama in a lot of ways, she has a hair trigger emotional state and cried a lot at the end of the live show mentioned above. She is probably the best singer of them all and is a professional. She had some trouble faking her playing of the real Fender Jazz Bass that Mio plays, but improved during the second half of the show; she is the eldest of the voices.
Aki Toyosaki is Yui Hirasawa—her hair is so close, but so is her personality, very cheerful and has a great ‘Anime’ voice and can sing very well. Aki is part of the pop group “Sphere” with Minako Kotobuki. Aki was really impressive in “Come With Me” and she faked playing the real Gibson Les Paul Standard which Yui plays. The above are singers; that is what they do best.
Satomi Sato is Ritsu Tainaka, she is very cheerful however she also has an emotional side that came out of nowhere during the “Come With Me” live show. For a large part of the show she faked playing the actual Yamaha Hip-Gig drum kit and I bet she was tired when the 3 hour and 40 minute show finally ended. She is an able singer yet she hosts a radio show on top of voicing Anime.
Finally, my favorite (well, they are all my favorites, but I like her most) Ayana Taketatsu is Azusa Nakano or Azu-nyan! Her singing voice is very cute and the song she performed called ‘Over the Starlight’ has become one of my most listened to. Ayana sings a bit, but she is truly an Anime star; playing Kirino in Oreimo (the title is longer, but people know it by this) and of course many others including Azusa. She consistently faked playing the real Fender Mustang that is exactly like Azusa’s and was a joy to see “live” as it was seeing the rest of the voices.
Great group of people–and that is why I love K-ON!
All right, on with the story! Last time On K-ON!!!! “Dust in the Wind” Nao and Maki were married which was followed by a reception at Mio’s small apartment with many guests. At the end, Nao had called Sumire and told her that she was pregnant through artificial insemination. Now we join Mio with Nao—Mio will gain her freedom, find out how…
Keion!!!! (K-ON!!!!) “Dust in the Wind” Part 12.
Mio and Nao sat at the Kotatsu cross legged with their instruments over their thighs. Mio was picking her bass strings and Nao was playing a soft tune on her Roland G-707.
Mio wore a long sleeve top in black with blue shorts and black thigh high socks; her long black hair was down her back. Nao wore a short sleeve green top with a pink pleated skirt trimmed in white; and green knee socks; she also had pink yarn-knitted arm warmers up to her elbows. Nao’s short black hair was parted and held on the left with a pair of pink clips and her red half-rimmed glasses were at the edge of her nose.
Both instruments were plugged into amps but the girls kept the volume low where it sounded nice, but didn’t upset the neighbors. Occasionally Mio and Nao would look up to each other when they played something exceptional, and smile.
Nao was over three months pregnant and she had been getting cramps often, at this point, she had to stop playing and she held her stomach and then her pelvis and looked up to Mio as she stopped playing her bass.
“Are you all right Nao-Chan?” Mio asked softly. She had begun using ‘Chan’ when she addressed Nao out of love for her as a friend.
“I’ve been cramping a lot, I’ve never been pregnant, so this is all new to me,” Nao replied.
“Do you want to lie down?” Mio asked.
“I’d like to take a walk, how about if you join me?” Nao said.
Mio froze up for a moment—take a walk, that meant leaving the landing in front of the door…well, Nao was having cramps, so maybe letting her go alone was a bad idea…all Mio could think about was the possibility that she might have put a downer on her friends wedding by not being able to go to Maki’s home where everyone could easily fit and probably could have watched the ceremony…A walk…where?
“We can just walk around the parking lot, I have to get my purse out of the car anyhow, I’m bleeding so I need to use a tampon; I don’t know why I’m having my period…or maybe its just normal when pregnant? I’m not a medical doctor, but I can give medication, so I don’t know and it all started recently, so I’m just waiting until my next appointment,” Nao said putting her Roland into its case as Mio put her Fender bass in its stand next to her Shamisen.
“Are you and Maki having sex?” Mio asked.
“No, we didn’t want to do that until after I gave birth so nothing gets ‘knocked around’ if you know what I mean. Who knew that I’d have triplets—I guess it’s by chance, after all my Mother had quadruplets, so it makes some sense. So, are we going to walk around the parking lot, I’ll hold onto you the whole time—I’ll just let go for a moment so I can get my purse and then we’ll take another lap and come back in, its cold for being near the end of winter—do you even have a coat, you always wear your house robe or something summery?” Nao said.
“I have a coat, it’s in the closet. I’m scared to do this, but I understand and it’s the least I can do…just 2 laps right? …And you’ll hold onto me the whole time?” Mio said.
“Yes, I will hold onto you the whole time, I promise,” Nao replied standing up. When she got to her feet she cringed and held her stomach and then her pelvis, Mio got up and went over to Nao and said, “Are you sure you are all right?”
“I’ll be fine, it’s just new for me, the pain and discomfort, throwing up, wanting to eat disgusting combinations of food, not going potty properly, we’re both girls, you get the idea,” Nao replied.
Mio nodded, but was still concerned, however when she saw Nao settled, she went into the closet and pulled out a heavy blue coat and put it on; she shrugged and thought to herself that it still fit. Nao put on her black parka with the gray fur trim on the edge of the hood and zipped it up; she took hold of Mio by her arm and they left the apartment and made their way down the three floors of stairs. Mio looked around nervously but stayed close to Nao who was so much shorter than she, but Mio trusted Nao so she carefully walked beside her until they got to Nao’s Lancer Ralliart. Nao touched the inside of the handle and a tone sounded, unlocking the doors. She opened the right driver’s side door and reached in for her translucent pink back pack style purse and slung it over her shoulders and closed the door and pressed a button next to the handle to lock it and set the alarm.
You have a really nice car, the orange-ish color is pretty and the inside is interesting, was that a TV in the middle or something?” Mio said.
“It’s a multi communication center. It can play videos on the screen, you can touch the screen to make adjustments, there is a navigation map and hard drive for music and you can even plug an external source in and play video games and watch whatever — maybe plug a camcorder into it? I like how snug the seats are, they are like race car seats, however, leather is tough to move on when I’m wearing vinyl, there is too much friction and a lot of squeaking, but I still like them,” Nao replied.
“What is ‘Recaro’?” Mio asked referring to the embroidery on the seats.
“Just the name of the manufacturer of the seats—I’m glad I’m not the only one who can read and speak English,” Nao replied.
“I thought you’d have one of those obscenely priced cars, why just a Mitsubishi?” Mio asked.
“I loved this car the day I saw it, however Maki asked the same thing and she determined that I should get the Evolution X which is like a race car, this is fast enough and I love it,” Nao said as the girls began their walk again.
“Your plate reads ‘G-707’ what did that cost you?” Mio said noticing Nao’s license plate under the rear bumper which was surrounded by a ‘Ralliart’ frame in chrome.
“I look at it more as luck being able to get the numbers, its not like most people know what the guitar that I play is,” Nao replied.
Half way around the parking lot, Nao stopped suddenly and began crying out in pain as a bloody liquid began running down her legs and she fell hard to her knees letting go of Mio’s arm on the way down.
“What’s wrong Nao-Chan? Oh Kami-Sama! Is that blood!” Mio cried as she felt her heart sink and a nervous ripple ran throughout her body. Mio took a deep breath and tried to relax so she could think straight and knelt down to Nao who was holding her pelvis with tears in her eyes, she said, “Miss Akiyama, you have to take me to the hospital, do you have a license?”
“Yes, I kept it up to date, but how can I drive? Being in the parking lot is freaking me out!” Mio replied.
“You have to do this for me if you really care about me even the slightest bit—you have to get over your fear, because I might die,” Nao said calmly.
“Oh…o…k…I’ll be brave for you Nao,” Mio said.
“Good, help me up,” Nao said.
Mio helped Nao to her feet and held onto her as she led her to her car. Nao took her keys out of the pocket of her parka and handed them to Mio and said, “There is a blanket in the trunk, press the black button on the right side for a moment and the trunk will open,”
Mio took the keys and pressed the button as Nao said and the trunk popped open, she lifted the lid and took out a cloth emergency blanket and then closed the trunk lid with her hand on the deck and not the large spoiler. Mio handed the blanket to Nao who wrapped it around her waist and thighs and started to walk slowly to the left passenger side of her car.
“Miss Akiyama, touch the inside of the handle and the doors will unlock—you can put the keys in your pocket, you don’t actually need them…” Nao said weakly as she and Mio made their way to the left door. Mio touched the inside of the handle and a tone sounded and the locks opened. Mio opened the door and helped Nao in and closed it for her, then went around to the right and got in.
Mio sat in the firm, yet comfortable seat and looked at the controls and said, “How do I start it without a key?”
“There is a knob where the key would go, just turn it like a regular lock until the engine starts,” Nao said.
Mio started Nao’s car and then looked at everything and said, “What do I do with these levers by the wheel?”
“They are the paddle shifters, you don’t need to use them, just use the shifter in the middle and put it in reverse and then drive…stay out of the other ‘gate’ and don’t touch the paddles—everything is normal, just get me to the hospital, please…” Nao replied as she started to shake, the blanket was soaking up the fluid that came from her vagina, Nao could feel that her panties were soaked and she was very weak.
Mio had not driven since she was 18 and was probably more careful than she would normally be; if there was any place that Mio knew the location of, it was the local hospital. Mio could feel the power of Nao’s car and worried that she might have been going too fast, but at this point, she had to help Nao in any way that she could.
Mio’s fear had vanished due to the stress and urgency of having to get Nao help and she had stopped shaking and calmed, she had returned to how she used to be—it was as though a price had been paid and Mio was now free from her prison.
Mio pulled up in front of the entrance to the emergency area of the hospital and got out and ran into the building. Nao sat in her Ralliart as a chime went off denoting that there was no key present in the car—Nao had never seen the car shut off because she didn’t know the distance that the key box could be away from the vehicle.
Mio led a nurse who was rolling a wheelchair out of the automatic sliding doors to Nao’s car and around to the left. Mio opened the door and the nurse helped Nao out and into the wheelchair all-the-while asking her questions about what she was feeling and what was happening to her. Before taking Nao in, the nurse instructed Mio to park the car a few yards over in the emergency lot and to join them inside. Mio quickly did so and remembered that Nao had pressed a small button next to the handle to lock it up and after pressing it a tone sounded and she held Nao’s pink vinyl purse and went into the emergency unit after both the nurse and Nao.
Maki walked quickly through the hall of the hospital following the lines and arrows that marked the floor, Mio had called and told her which room that Nao had been brought to.
Mio stood outside the door pacing as Maki came up to her and said nervously, “What’s wrong, what happened!?”
“Nao-Chan started bleeding from her vagina when we were out walking at my place and I brought her here—the doctor is in there with…” Mio was cut off by the pain-filled shrieks that came from Nao’s room; Maki’s partners small voice was straining as she screamed causing Mio to cringe and for Maki to run into the room.
“Naoko, Naoko…? What’s wrong?” Maki said with wide, fear-filled eyes.
The doctor turned to Maki and said, “You are her spouse?” Maki nodded and the doctor continued, she said, “I’m sorry, but Miss Okuda miscarried her pregnancy, there was nothing that we could do for her, it had already ended before she arrived here—I’m sorry…” The doctor backed up towards the wall and Maki looked to Nao who was scrunched into a ball in the middle of the bed crying and yelping. Mio stood at the doorway crying for her friend, she couldn’t believe that this was happening, especially to Nao of all people.
Maki sat on the bed next to her wife and pulled her up into her arms, holding her tightly with tears in her eyes; this was one instance in which Maki couldn’t do anything for Nao except comfort her.
“Mio, take my phone and call Naoko’s mother and my parents, have them come here ok?” Maki said, she then tossed her cell phone to Mio who caught it and before leaving the room she said, “I’m so sorry Maki…”
Maki nodded her reply and rocked Nao holding her against her body.
After a week had passed, Nao had to leave the hospital, she couldn’t keep the room anymore and farther care had to be given at home. Nao was almost gone to the world; she simply stared out into space not knowing how to handle the loss. She was told that the triplets would have been girls after the remains of the cells were examined which put her into more of a depressed state. Nao had refused medication, she had refused counseling even from her closest colleagues and even though her mother, brothers, all of her friends and even Maki’s parents had come to talk with her, she just sat in the bed staring at the wall.
Maki’s father had read to her daily, bringing in books that Maki said Nao would like and even though Nao didn’t pay attention, Maki’s father continued for the entire week to read to her day after day.
Sumire had left Tsumugi and returned home to be with Nao, but she couldn’t get her friend to talk to her at all. Sumire and Maki took turns feeding Nao, even though she refused to eat, it was a messy process and the nurses offered to medically feed her to make sure she remained healthy, however it was agreed by all that, that wouldn’t be done no matter what.
After the first time Nao urinated in her bed, she was put on a bed pan –this had concerned Jun who came with Azusa every other day to visit because it was strenuous on Azusa to travel—her infection had become something that Jun had to monitor and administer medication often to keep it from becoming a serious problem to Azusa’s health, so they couldn’t see Nao daily. Jun had told Maki that Nao should probably wear a diaper, but Maki thought that was disgusting with no offense to Azusa and refused.
After the third day in the bed, Nao had stopped defecating causing Maki to ignore the nurses, Sumire and their parents and let Nao be. When Azusa and Jun were over for their visit, Jun waited for Maki to leave the room or found a way for her to leave and then forced Nao to swallow multiple spoonfuls of Milk of Magnesia which was too overwhelming for Nao to hold in any longer and she went to the bathroom without any control. Maki had returned to see Jun cleaning Nao and gave an angry look to her but didn’t say anything because she knew it was for Nao’s own good.
At the end of the week, a nurse bathed Nao and Maki helped her to dress. She was alone now, Azusa and Jun didn’t come by, Sumire had to return to Tsumugi because her own partner had a failed concert and she was broken hearted not only for her failure, but for Nao’s loss. The news papers were calling for the end of Tsumugi Kotobuki’s career as a concert pianist and none of the group was happy about it, but none of them could force the halt of the presses, so they were stuck hearing about it often.
The weather was still cold, more of an omen, there was even snow on the ground and Maki tied Nao’s pretty snow boots and helped her into her parka. The last thing Maki did was clean the lenses of Nao’s glasses and tried to put them on her, but Nao took hold of the red half rims and shook her head as she folded the ear pieces and put them in the pocket of her parka.
“I don’t want to see Miss Maki,” Nao said softly, it was probably the first words she said in a week, and Maki nodded and took hold of Nao by her arm and walked her out of the room, she had refused a wheelchair exit and signed all the paperwork and left the hospital with Nao.
Although Maki had her car parked in the garage of the hospital, there was a park nearby in which Maki wanted Nao to walk around for a bit because she spent so much time in bed. As they walked, Nao could hear the laughter of children as they ran around playing–the laughter started to sound like painful screams as though the children were being killed one by one and Nao covered her ears and started to cry.
“Make it stop, make it stop, make it stop!” Nao cried.
Maki put up Nao’s hood and pressed her head against her body in an attempt to cover her ears; she then changed direction and headed towards the parking garage at the hospital.
“It’ll be okay Naoko, I promise. We will get through this together, I promise Naoko, I promise, I promise…” Maki said.
A very small Wake was held for Nao’s unborn children and the remains were placed in the family plot with the ashes of her father. Everyone came and Nao asked for nothing from tradition, she remembered how Tsumugi was being hounded away from the graveyard; it was amazing that the press didn’t come in…
After parting with everyone, including Mio who tried again and again to help Nao to be free from her pain in return for doing the same for her; Maki took her wife home where Nao tossed her funeral clothes upon the floor and dug out her MP3 player which she attached to her laptop and cleared it. Once the memory was empty, she installed only two songs onto it. As the songs were loading, Nao went into the recording stage room and took hold of her large green headphones and returned to her office. Maki came in after her and said, “What are you doing Naoko? You need to put some clothes on.”
“Yes Miss Maki…” Nao replied in a monotone as she unhooked her MP3 player from her computer and plugged an adapter into the jack of the player and followed with the plug of her headphones, she then went slowly into the bedroom with Maki in tail.
Nao put her headphones and player on the bed and opened a few drawers and took out white panties that she put on and black shorts and a black cap-sleeve top with white racing stripes. Once Nao was dressed Maki said, “What are you doing Naoko?”
“I don’t want to hear the world anymore, I don’t want this pain to go on, I don’t want to hear children screaming, I don’t want to hear my own crying, I just want to be alone…please…” Nao replied with tears in her eyes.
“I…I guess that’s ok for now, but you have to eat…and…and you have to go to the bathroom, do you understand Naoko?” Maki said nervously.
“Yes Miss Maki, I understand…” Nao replied as she attached a cord to her MP3 player and plugged it into the wall socket; she then clamped her large green headphones over her ears and adjusted them tightly. Nao could hear very little, but when she turned on the music player and adjusted the volume she could hear nothing but the music. Nao looked at Maki who began to say something, but all Nao could see were Maki’s lips moving, not the words she was saying. At this point, Nao closed her tear-filled eyes and listened to the song that would play in two versions over and over again on an endless loop.
Maki left the bedroom and whispered, “My poor Naoko-Chan…” And she cried…
Next time on K-ON!!!! “Dust in the Wind” the last part of the “Dust in the Wind” series which will sum up the end of this “season” to return as K-ON!!!!! “Beautiful World.” Be here next Thursday for the shocking end of Season 1.