|Character/s in the cover||Yukihito Yashiro|
|Original Release||September 20, 2017|
|Arc||A Lotus in the Mud arc|
Flying Shock is the 251st chapter of the Skip Beat! Manga Series.
Thanks to past experience on Purple Down II Yashiro knows what type of person Kimiko truly is and reveals that he stayed precisely because of this. He's annoyed that despite staying something has happened due to her meddling and Kyoko's distracted. However Kimiko's meddling lead Yashiro to have a epiphany of his own.
Kyoko doesn't know what she has to do for this stage of the audition and she's panicking. Luck seems to go her way for Kanae is the Chidori she is acting with. Kanae notices her dilemma and sends her a sign. Kyoko is able to understand the sign and run with it. Although this does not go unnoticed by the judges, particularly Kuresaki. Kuresaki isn't impressed and Kyoko thinks she's going to be dropped. However she's given another chance. Kuresaki challenges her: Can she make him say he would love her to play the role of Momiji?
Yashiro gasps in alarm as Kyoko face plants onto the the tatami mat due to tripping on the raised edge. Concerned and flabbergasted he bends down asking if she's alright. He is shocked at that fact she fell on her face. What happened to her defensive instinct?! Kyoko looks up at him from the floor still a little stunned from the fall and her face red. He asks if her nose is alright. Kyoko blinks and blushes and assures Yashiro not to worry. She can take her shoes off on her own, of course. They don't have sandal straps. Yashiro gapes at her, now really concerned for that is definitely not what he said! Not sandal straps, he asked if her nose was okay! This is bad, he really thinks that Kyoko is acting strange!!! Yashiro wears an aggrieved expression and there's a sense of foreboding as he watches her prepare for the audition.
He paces outside the gym in the hallway pondering what might have disturbed her mind so much. He quickly thinks back to what Kyoko mentioned earlier regarding her discussion with Kimiko Morizumi - that they talked about how much she looks up to Ren. Yashiro wonders suspiciously if that was really all? Could she had told Kyoko some unnecessary fact about her and Ren? Yashiro ums and ahs about it. Then suddenly falls into a slumped crouched position as he cradles his head and lets out an internal groan. He scolds himself, asking himself what the heck he is doing?! Doesn't he remember why he came here and stayed for this audition?! He came here to stop any potential trouble that might happen when Kyoko met with that girl!!! Because that girl has some problematic personality traits! She talks down to others on purpose so they'll get jealous of her, and that sense of superiority satisfies her constant craving for attention! She used Ren for exactly that purpose... Yashiro flashes back to when Ren was shooting Purple Down II with her where Kimiko would cling to Ren mainly around the female cast & staff subsequently destroying the workplace mood at Purple Down II. Yashiro is certain the Kyoko doesn't have eyes for Ren simply because they're in the same agency but she unfortunately does act like that recalling Kyoko quickly scribbling down a new technique on acting that Ren mentioned as he and Ren look on confused. Kyoko mumbling all the while that Ren really is a person blessed by the heavens, no a guide sent straight from the heavens. Yes, she definitely views Ren in a strange way... And so he figured if that girl ever figured out about her quirks, Kyoko would totally become a target!!! She's probably doing the same thing she did back then Yashiro thinks darkly. Choosing her words carefully and sounding so natural that any others who overhear would immediately misunderstand and get the wrong idea. If something similar happened now, he'd be sweating buckets... For if anyone thought the Ren Tsuruga was involved with a minor his clean image would be soiled for eternity. But nothing newsworthy occurred so no weird rumours were spread. Thankfully no one there actually took her seriously Yashiro thinks ruefully. It was unrealistic for an older guy like Ren to be with a 15 year-old girl. The troublesome part is that everything she says is technically true... It's just the way she says it that's problematic. Yashiro thinks on this for beat. More seriously he wonders what exactly Kyoko heard. Considering what Kimiko usually does. She usually says things to hint she has a special type of relationship with Ren. But this is Kyoko that he's talking about right? Love-Me Member Number 1! She doesn't see Ren in a romantic light at all, there's no way she'd get so distracted just from hearing a story like that. But if that is the case, then does that mean she's actually begun to see him as a possible romantic partner whispers one of Yashiro's inner voices. Yashiro's mouth drops at this and his face is stunned. He mentally screams as he implodes at the possibility. Because that is impossible, but no. Maybe? No. A miraculous development?! Could it be? What else could explain this?
In the audition room Kanae wins the scissor-paper-rock with her rock vs the other Chidori's scissor. The staff in charge looks down stating that it's settled, Kanae will go first. She asks the other two Chidori's to exit the room. Kanae glances over at Kyoko who looks uncertain and uneasy given that she hadn't listened to Kuresaki. Kanae guesses from her expression that Kyoko has no idea what she is supposed to do. She sighs inwardly and wonders what has Kyoko so distracted. A staff member approaches Kanae and presents her with a weapon that has a beautiful decoration on it. It suits her kimono and character well. Kanae takes the weapon, thanking the staff member. She glances down at it as she grips it while she formulates an idea.
Kimiko is up on the mezzanine level of the gym again getting ready to observe Kyoko's routine. She's quietly hailed by her manager. Kimiko comments on the fact that she also is up here. Her manager confesses that she got curious since Kimiko said something like that. Flashing back to when the Kimiko came back from the gym room after the turns were decided and whispered, conscious of Yashiro there, that she wasn't going to do anything for she was going to win by default. The manager wonders what is she going to do? She narrows her eyes at Kimiko and asks if she pulled some tricks again? She's such a bad girl. Kimiko pouts complaining it's because that Uncle Jouji isn't helping at all and Producer Kuresaki said rude things to her as she recalls the exchange after her stage combat performance but even when she gave a look to get her Uncle to say something he merely gave her a thumbs up with a look that said do your best. He didn't interfere at all. The manager ponders this so it wasn't a 'leave it to me' look she muses. Well any obvious sort of foul play probably wouldn't work against the hard-headed Producer Kuresaki. Kimiko's expression is unsatisfied and sharp. She agrees that this is true but still... The manager continues saying that she made it down to the final two, so she's sure that he'll push to support her in the end. I's only natural to do that for a fellow family member. Kimiko still doesn't look happy as she stares down at the gym. She smirks as she says that in any case that it'll be Kuresaki's hardheadedness that forces him to choose her out of process of elimination. That's one thing she's pretty sure of as she gazes down at Kyoko whose readying for her audition.
Over the microphone Kuresaki states that the actress for Chidori has been selected so without further ado please begin. Kyoko face goes ashen when she hears the voice. She glances up at the cue and is surprised to see Kanae. Inwardly she starts crying in relief believing this a sign from the universe, from the Buddha saving her from Hell. She starts begging Kanae to help her. What is she supposed to do? What is going on? She even lied to Produce Kuresaki when he asked me if she was listening. Why did she do that?! Kyoko's expression is imploring, practically a sign for Kanae for help. She knows if she doesn't give the right answer here the Producer will fail her on the spot. Kuresaki looks on, his expression grim. Kanae suddenly moves her weapon. She's holding it just below the decorative sheath. She brings it to her neck and then swings it it down with her other hand. Then sends Kyoko a look. Kyoko's expression is stunned as she watches Kanae. He eyes widen as she receives the message. Kanae turns and sits down elegantly in her kimono in front of the judges with her weapon on her left. She then closes her eyes and remains in the seated posture. Jouji murmurs to Kuresaki for they both saw the sign. They both look to see if Kyoko got it. Kimiko is looking triumphantly down from the mezzanine level at Kyoko, smirking.
Kyoko begins her audition, falling into her Momiji. She unsheathes the sword on her right and spins it into an upright position as she walks over to Kanae. Kimiko is no longer smirking. She watches Kyoko surprised that she unsheathed a sword without a second thought. But only one sword...? Is she not trying to act out Momiji? She can't be... Is she seriously going to do it? Is she seriously going to act out the assigned scene? Below her, Kyoko walks over to the seated Kanae who is demurely seated with her eyes closed and her weapon at her side. Kyoko walks up an stand behind her, sword in hand. Kyoko swings as if to behead Kanae but Kanae blocks her with her weapon. She jabs the weapon back at Kyoko with a push of hand. Kyoko leans back to dodge but is off balance. Kanaes follows through using her long weapon to sweep Kyoko of her feet. Already off balance Kyoko falls. Koga and Jouji murmur their appreciation for Kanae's technique. Koga praises it saying her movements flow as smooth as silk and as light as a feather. As if she were taught by Shizuma himself. The battle between Kyoko ans Kanae rages on. Kyoko is back on her feet however Kanae is still on her knees. Kyoko throws a blow down onto Kanae with her sword that Kanae blocks with the blade of the weapon, sliding open the sheath so just enough is necessary. Kanae then quickly slams the sheath shut on Kyoko's blade effectively trapping it. Kyoko goes for her other sword but Kanae use her long weapon to knock her down which dislodges the other sword and disarms Kyoko as well as pushing her to the ground. Kyoko stares up at Kanae from the ground angry and frustrated at being beaten. Kanae watches her from a half kneeling position and slowly sheathes her blade as if making a point. This only annoys Kyoko more. She demands to know why she won't kill her? Kanae's expression becomes pensive and a little sad. She explains that she does not possess the mind or body suitable enough to decide the fate of others. Therefore she was not taught the type of swordsmanship used to take others' lives. Kyoko listens but isn't impressed. Kanae places her sword in front her and bows down deeply as she earnestly apologises to Kyoko. For if she were not such a weak-minded coward her father would still have his life. Kyoko furiously tells her that she won't forgive her. She leaps up into a half standing position. As she yells that if she didn't exist her father would still be alive. She won't be satisfied until she pays with her life! Kanae only smiles sadly as she stares at the floor. She says that she has no objections however she asks that she may be given some time for there is something that she must absolutely see with her own eyes. If she could grant her that one wish she promises that she will return. She will obey any and all orders, no matter what they may be. She is prepared to give this life to her, so please she begs Kyoko give her this wish. Kyoko's expression is stern and harsh as looks down at the begging form of Kanae. This thing she claims she must see Kyoko asks. Is it related to Sakagami Shizuma. Kanae visible jumps a the name and goes quiet for a beat. She then lifts her head whilst blushing like a school girl with a crush and exclaims that no its not! All the judges are shocked by Kanae's complete change in demeanour. Koga gapes. There's a beat of silence then Kuresaki steps in and tells them they may stop. Like a switch being flicked, Kanaes expression goes from blushing schoolgirl to ice queen in a nano second. She rises from her seat position to meet Kuresaki. Both Koga and Jouji smile in admiration at the evident display of high level acting skills. Kuresaki states that even during the last audition they were highly impressed with her acting skills and now that she has shown us new expression and other sides of herself, they have an even higher opinion of her. Kuresaki compliments her stating that he thought that was a wonderful portrayal of Chidori. Kanae bows as she thanks him. Kuresaki then asks Kanae what is happening over there sending a derisive look to where Kyoko is currently fangirling all over the floor due to seeing Kanae's new super cute expression. Kanae's expressions darkens as she says that it's a very strange disease that is best cured by leaving it alone so please pay it no mind.
Kuresaki glances at Kyoko and addresses her. She jolts out of her fangirling and practically leaps into a standing position. Kuresaki states how it seems she was bailed out by her partner this time around however do not think she had them completely fooled. Keep this in mind that he has the utmost hatred for poor liars as well as those who lack the ability to concentrate on their acting. He doesn't even want to breath the same air as them let alone work together on the same production, even a miracle wouldn't change his mind on that. Kyoko feels ashamed and guilty, and her expression shows that. Looking down she knows his argument is sound and she doesn't even have room to apologise for this problem is not about whether she can act or not, its more fundamental. Unfortunately willpower and persistence won't help her here. This situation is beyond that. Now he won't ever give her another chance. Kuresaki's voice breaks through Kyoko's self-pity when he states that if she does that again and she's finished. Kyoko looks up stunned at what she hears. Kuresaki walks away but adds that he dislike liars and those that can't focus but he can't deny she understood everything based on a single sign from her partner. He does not dislike how bright she is. He sends her a sharp glance back as throws her a challenge that he would like to see her to try and pry these words from his lips
"I would love to have you play the part of Momiji"
Characters in Order of Appearances
- There's a pun using homonyns here. Yashiro says nose but Kyoko thinks he says sandal straps.