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This article is about a character in Higurashi When They Cry.
MAJOR HIGURASHI SPOILER WARNING
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This article or section contains untagged major spoilers for the original Higurashi When They Cry and possibly the console-exclusive arcs. Readers who have not completed the main story are advised not to proceed further.



Une ((ウネ)) is a character introduced in Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Hou. She makes her first appearance in Kamikashimashi as she rescues the club members from a deranged mob in Okinomiya, during the midst of an unprecedent outbreak of the Hinamizawa Syndrome.

She appears to be a normal human child at first but is later revealed to be a godly entity like Hanyuu, and the leader of her "clan" who had just arrived on Earth. Miyo Takano was looking for her under Tamurahime no Mikoto's command in order to stop Une's plans of omnicide.

Profile

An unfortunate girl who happened to be in Hinamizawa while a tragedy was brewing. Was she unhappy because she was in Hinamizawa that day? Or maybe it's because she met them...

(Translated from the official 07th Expansion website.)

An unfortunate little girl who happened to be in Hinamizawa as it became wrapped in tragedy.

However, she hides a great secret...

(Translated from Entergram's Higurashi Hou website.)

Appearance

Also see Une/Image Gallery and Une/Sprites

Une appears as a physically young girl around Satoko and Rika's age with turquoise hair and twin-tails. She has golden-yellow eyes. When posing as a human she wears a plain navy blue sleeveless dress along with a white collar, a red brooch and navy blue Mary-jane shoes with white socks.

Une's costume as a god is an unusual spin on the traditional miko outift. She sports a fancy white, gold and frill embroidered kosode—having puffed shoulders and furisode sleeves with scalloped edges that resemble the appearance of a bird's wings when raised. On top of the kosode, she wears a sleeveless, bodice-like black and purple bodysuit that flares into a ruffled frilly skirt (resembling the Angel Mort uniform). There is also a purple obi around her waist, with a golden obijime complete with a blue magatama-like jewel in the center of the bow-shaped knot. On her head is a golden headpiece resembling her obijime. She also wears matching black thigh highs and zōri sandals.

For her punishment she is forced to wear a white cattail with a turquoise ribbon and a revealing striped white and turquoise bikini set underneath a PE T-shirt. In the Entergram version, she is simply seen wearing a blue PE uniform with bloomers.

Personality

Une first appears to be a shy and meek young girl, albeit friendly. Her age and maturity are assumed to be around those of Satoko's. Une immediately comes to the club members' rescue by giving them a ladder to climb up to her apartment and hide from their persecutors and this earns her their trust and devotion.

At first, Une speaks in third person:

"They often call me Une (ウネ、……と呼ばれたりもする・Une, to yobaretari mo suru)"
— Une introduces herself to the club members

She also tends to speak in double negatives—

"There's no way I'm NOT going to run! (走らない……、わけはないのですっ・Hashiranai wake nai no desu—!)"
— Une escorted by the club members as they fend off deranged civilians


Une's innocence is later revealed to be a façade and her demeanor takes a heel turn after her seeds are sown throughout the earth. As soon as her plan succeeds, her arrogant and wicked personality surfaces. Une's change in attitude also reflects in her speech as she drops her previous verbal tics and begins to talk in a more haughty and shrill tone. As a god, she speaks in polite Japanese, mixed in with occassional archaic components that both Tamura and Hanyuu also use. She also begins to display a habit of prefixing "Super" (チョー・Chō) to her adjectives when describing situations (e.g., "Super Pleasant!").

Une seems to have no remorse at the prospect of "devouring" the human race as a whole and is rather ecstatic about it—unlike Hanyuu, who deeply regrets the damage the Hinamizawa Syndrome causes to its hosts. Une's cruelty is subject to ambiguity as she reveals she had no intention of devouring the entire human population and just wanted to "distribute her seeds a little". Her evil deed was revenge against Tamura who had rebuffed her existence. In spite of her twisted nature, Une does show a lot of childlike embarrassment when she is forced to wear a revealing costume as a punishment game.

Background

Une's people have a long history of destroying planets, with Une being the last of her kind. She came to Earth with the intent of spreading her virus throughout humanity and receiving nourishment.

Relationships

Role in the Story

Kamikashimashi

Une rescuing the club members from danger

After the events of Outbreak, the club members are chased by a frenzied homicidal mob in Okinomiya. Une lets down a ladder from her window and rescues them, later allowing them to be sheltered at her house and recover from their ordeal. The club members feel sorry for Une when they realize she is currently home alone and that her family "hadn't returned". Une is soon ushered by the club members as they fend off deranged Okinomiya residents and finally take refuge at the Sonozaki Family Office as planned, where the Sonozakis have prepared a stronghold for survivors and evacuees.

The club takes Une to safety

When the group reunites with Hanyuu and Rika again at the stronghold, Hanyuu exposes Une as a godly entity similar to her—the leader of an alien strain of parasitic microorganisms that had recently arrived on earth. Hanyuu communicates with her telepathically and discovers that their "roots" share the same "strength", i.e., that the parasitic strain of the Une Virus was as strong as η-173. Since Class-C Brain Parasites are shown to be biologically competitive, it meant that a host can only harbor either the η-173 or the Une Virus on a first come, first served basis if they were to compete. Rika quickly realizes that spreading the Une Virus across the globe first instead would curb the η-173 epidemic. She convinces Tomitake to escort Une to "Tokyo"'s HQ immediately and spread the Une virus across the suburbs.

Before they can enact this plan, Tamurahime no Mikoto instantly expresses her disagreement and Miyo Takano barges into the Sonozaki shelter demanding Une's custody. As Tamura's "miko", she is now armed with superhuman strength and relentlessly pursues Une despite all attempts to subdue her. Hanyuu uses her divine powers to momentarily weaken Takano and the club members trick her into capturing Satoko who is dressed in Une's clothes before overpowering her. Une is then safely dispatched to the National Institute of Infectious Diseases where her cerebrospinal fluid is collected and sent to research facilities across the world.

Une's true nature revealed

Rika later realizes that Une was originally the one Tamura wanted to stop, motivating her to spread η-173 before Une could infect anyone. It is revealed she did so as Une's brethren were actually a strain of highly contagious killer viruses that latched onto host after host and leaving them for dead. The Une Virus soon turns into a pandemic and after mere seven weeks after the Une virus outbreak, the human population decreases by a whopping 20 percent. Une cruelly proclaims that after the earth is depleted of humans, she plans on vacating to another inhabited planet and spread her seeds of destruction there.

Une feels she is unstoppable after the outbreak, since neither Hanyuu nor Tamura knew where her physical body was. Rika ridicules Une's carelessness and stabs herself with a kitchen knife in retaliation. As a result of Rika's death, the timeline is wound back to a point before the events of Outbreak and the club members apprehend Une in Okinomiya, along with the two other gods. Having been captured before she could attempt anything, Une is distraught and confesses that she only wanted to "distribute her flowerbed a little", but Tamura's rejection had spurred her to destroy everything.

The boisterous gods are apprehended

Une, Tamura and Hanyuu incessantly bicker and try to push the blame onto each other. It soon becomes clear that the root of all conflict was the petty rivalry between the gods. All three of them are sentenced to play games with the club members until they learn to get along with each other. Une loses her game and dons an embarrassing costume along with her fellow gods for their punishment game, as they all lament the outcome and swear to get along better.

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Mei

In Part 3, Une is revealed to be the main antagonist of the story, having created the Sleeping Sickness and spreading it across Japan for as-of-yet unknown reasons. Tamura shows to Miyuki a vision of her and her friend Chisame dying from it and entrusts Miyuki with stopping Une.

Trivia

  • Une's bio notes that she enjoys breakfast and "eating" as much as she likes. This is probably an allusion to how her strain of parasites voraciously "devour" their hosts.
  • Une's human and goddess forms having their names written in kanji and katakana respectively is similar to the naming schemes of humans and their witch form in Umineko When They Cry. The official English translation rendered witch names in all caps (as seen with Eva Ushiromiya and EVA-Beatricefor example).
  • Une's human form is commonly known as Sai to English-speaking fans. However, this is a mistranslation. When Une is first introduced, the hiragana pronunciation for Une (采) is presented in parentheses (うね), which wound up translated by xPearse as "Sai (Une)". The official 07th Expansion website displays the correct translation of 采 as Une.

References

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