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Yugami (ユガミ Distortion) is the fourth chapter of Part 1 of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Mei's main story.

Plot Summary[]

Part 1[]

Kazuho and Miyuki take Nao to their home and have dinner. They help Nao get her bearings and explain what this 1983 Hinamizawa is, and then ask why she’s here. Nao refuses to tell them, however. Kazuho mediates as Miyuki and Nao argue, and remembers that she also never asked Miyuki why she came here. To make them stop arguing, Kazuho agrees to tell her own story first. With the help of distant relatives she went to St. Lucia Academy and plans to go to high school there. After the Great Hinamizawa Disaster, most of Kazuho’s family died, including her parents and older brother. Although Kazuho lived in Okinomiya, she sometimes went on trips to visit her grandfather Kiichirou, the mayor. Miyuki asks how she survived then; Kazuho can answer very well due to having to deal with government proceedings and mass media reports a lot.

In 1983, the 5-year-old Kazuho had just finished dinner when a phone call suddenly came from Kiichirou. Kazuho’s father talked a lot to him about something, then her parents and brother talked, and left Kazuho behind while they all went to Hinamizawa, and never returned. Miyuki asks for their names as she looks into her notebook. Kazuho lists her mother and father as Kanae and Minoru. She remembers an old conversation with her brother: before he left, he gave her a whistle that can scare away ghosts and evil people. If Kazuho was ever in danger, she could blow on it to get rid of them. Kazuho finally says her brother is named Rei. Miyuki affirms it and explains to Nao her notebook contains a list of victims of the disaster.

The reason Kazuho came to Hinamizawa is because she received a message on a brand-new pager that originated from Kiichirou’s house in Hinamizawa. The message had a phone number, and when Kazuho called it she heard a strange voice telling her to come to Hinamizawa. Kazuho says she may not be able to recognize the voice if she heard it again.

Miyuki goes next, and explains that she’s tracking her dead father’s footsteps.

Part 2[]

Miyuki’s father was Mamoru Akasaka, a police officer. He always did investigations by himself, and in 1983 he was investigating Hinamizawa and frequently sent back messages that he was alright. Then, after the Great Hinamizawa Disaster, Akasaka didn’t call back, and hasn’t been seen for 10 years. He wasn’t on the official list of victims, but Miyuki and the rest of the police accepted that he was dead.

In middle school, Miyuki started investigating to find out what happened to her father, but when her mother found out about it, she told her to stop. Kazuho understands that it was because Miyuki’s mother didn’t want to lose her daughter as well. Miyuki temporarily stopped her research to prepare for high-school entrance exams, but then in 1993, she learned that the Hinamizawa dam project was going to start up again, and submerge the area and make it impossible to find any clues. Miyuki arranged with a friend to cover her and then went to Hinamizawa, met Tamura, and time-traveled.

The girls look to Nao to explain her side, but she says she can’t do it right now. She says the person she’s looking for might be in Miyuki’s notebook, and needs a miracle in order to find them. Miyuki promises that she can keep a secret, but Nao points out that she tends to lie a lot, and Kazuho shows everything on her face. Insulted and annoyed, Miyuki starts searching up the name “Houtani” in her book but finds nothing there. Nao says she won’t allow anybody to know her plan until she’s succeeded.

The girls wonder what to do now. Miyuki suggests searching Okinomiya tomorrow since Kazuho’s family lived there, so they should go check out her old house. Kazuho becomes conflicted, and Miyuki apologizes for bringing it up. Nao mentions time paradoxes and worries that they’d be causing one by meeting Kazuho’s old family. Kazuho wonders about confirming if this is really the past or not, and Miyuki says they don’t even need to meet Kazuho’s family, they just need to observe them. Kazuho agrees to visit Okinomiya and see her house.

Part 3[]

The girls take a bus to Okinomiya the next day since they only have 1 bike. As they explore, Miyuki and Nao become enamored with the “retro” stores and go shopping. Nao tries to buy a manga magazine but is chased out by the angry shop owner, who thinks she's using fake money. When Nao shows her friends the bill she used, they point out that the 1000 yen bill was redesigned in 1984, so Nao’s money from the future can’t be used. Nao borrows some era-appropriate money from Miyuki and buys the magazine. Kazuho admires that Miyuki and Nao are starting to get along.

Just then, they hear a scream coming from a toy store and go to investigate. There, they find the club watching Rena battling Keiichi Maebara in an arcade game, with Keiichi acting very mean. Rena loses. The scream came from Mion getting overly excited. It becomes apparent that the club isn’t friends with Keiichi in this world; Mion explains that Keiichi’s group was hogging the arcade machine and wouldn’t let anybody else play unless they beat him. Mion calls Keiichi annoying, which disturbs Kazuho since she normally acts so nice. Nao introduces herself to Mion.

Keiichi gloats over his victory, and Nao steps up to challenge him. As Nao sits down at the game, she, Miyuki, Kazuho, and Keiichi are suddenly transported to another space. Keiichi notes that "that girl" was right about their powers, and explains that they all need to defeat the tsukuyami in this space to return. As a horde of tsukuyami appear, Keiichi summons a giant bat weapon, and Nao pulls out her own Role Card to summon a giant box cutter.

Part 4[]

The girls defeat all of the tsukuyami, and the world turns back to normal. From the perspective of the club and the crowd, Nao just defeated Keiichi in the game. Kazuho notes Keiichi’s initials in the game as “K. M.” The club praises Nao’s skill and accepts her as a member of the club. Rena especially says she wants to play more games with Nao. Keiichi accepts his defeat, and Mion tells him he isn’t welcome here anymore. As he leaves, Keiichi says Kazuho, Miyuki, and Nao are not to be taken lightly and promises that they’ll meet again.

The club finishes playing in the afternoon and decide to go to Mion’s house to celebrate with dinner. Nao apologizes to Kazuho since they were supposed to go to her house and she got carried away, but Kazuho is okay with it. She wants to visit her house another time when she’s mentally prepared.

As the girls go to the bus stop, Kazuho feels like she’s seen Keiichi before and wonders if he was a friend of her brother.

Part 5[]

The girls get ready for school the next day. Nao sees that her school uniform magically appeared, and that some strange power is causing it. When Rena arrives to pick them up, Nao becomes flustered. When they meet Mion, she gives them two extra bikes so that they can get around more easily.

Nao gets acquainted at school and plays a club game with everyone after school, with the goal to defeat as many tsukuyami as possible. This time the loser will do a punishment game.

Part 6[]

After defeating the tsukuyami, Nao explains she was keeping track of points, and that Mion may be the loser since she shares a point with Rika. Mion declares the match is a draw so there’s no punishment game, making everyone annoyed.

The club rests back in the classroom. Miyuki and Nao go off to the bathroom together. Mion asks Kazuho to retrieve a towel from her game shelf, and when Kazuho goes there, she finds a misplaced baseball bat with “Keiichi Maebara” written on it. Kazuho doesn’t see Keiichi’s name written on any of the other student shelves and asks who Keiichi is. Suddenly, Mion, Rika, Satoko, Rena, and Hanyuu freeze and start staring at her. Kazuho becomes incredibly horrified, and Mion walks up and whispers that she should just forget about it.

Kazuho’s memories seem to stutter as she suddenly realizes that everyone is gone. Miyuki and Nao return from the bathroom and ask where everyone went and what’s going on, noticing Kazuho’s pale complexion.

Part 7[]

At home, Kazuho calms down and explains what happened. Miyuki says it’s just like when she mentioned Hanyuu’s horns, and Nao inquires about those since she also noticed them; Nao didn’t say anything because she didn’t want to be rude. Miyuki apologizes for leaving Kazuho alone in a situation like that.

They determine that since Mion was acting weird, she doesn’t want this Keiichi person looked into, and so they’ll continue the investigation there. Nao quickly goes upstairs and retrieves a notebook with Keiichi’s name on it, explaining that she found it in Kazuho’s room. Nao says she also found “Maebara” written on a storehouse in the garden, meaning this house once belonged to Keiichi. They’re unsure why his family would abandon it however.

Just then, Rena rings the doorbell. The girls hide everything related to Keiichi and let her in, with Rena explaining she came to make dinner.

Part 8[]

The girls eat Rena’s dinner and admire it, forgetting about how weird she was acting earlier. Afterwards, the girls escort Rena home, not wanting to be attacked by any tsukuyami. Rena notices Kazuho’s ghost-repelling flute and explains that the Watanagashi Festival is next week, and invites them to join the club there.

After seeing off Rena, the girls hear rustling in the bushes behind them and prepare to fight, believing it’s tsukuyami. Mamoru Akasaka and Kuraudo Ooishi emerge instead, wanting to know why the young girls are out by themselves at night. Miyuki is shocked to see her father alive.

TIPS[]

TIP Name JP TIP Name EN
ある休日の会話 Day-Off Discussion
居酒屋からの電話 Phone Call From the Bar
塾の合間の気分転換 Change of Pace from Cram School Sessions
一穂の両親 Kazuho's Parents

Day-Off Discussion[]

Irie is surprised to run into Takano at the clinic, as it’s her day off. Takano chides Irie, because it’s supposed to be his day off as well, but here he is diligently reading research papers. Irie relents. He got invested in an interesting paper on toxoplasma gondii. It’s a microorganism that parasitizes the human body through the intermediary of animals. An infected host may experience changes in the secretion of neurotransmitters like dopamine, which can, in turn, have a significant impact on behavior, thoughts, and even personality. Old research had suggested that toxoplasma exhibited behavior instinctively, unconsciously adjusting to its environment. However, this new study suggests that its neurotransmitters may contain a sense of individuality as a living organism. In other words, what was previously considered as toxoplasma possessing only primitive survival instincts, may, in fact, be an intelligent life form capable of parasitically transferring to different bodies. Takano expresses that it’s a revolutionary shift in thinking, but she would like to wait for more evidence before subscribing to the theory. She feels that, unless it’s overwhelmingly proven, it sounds akin to entertaining pop science than anything factual. Irie agrees, but he feels that it often takes radical hypotheses to move science and medicine forward.

Irie realizes he got carried away with the topic, and asks again what brings Takano to the clinic on her day off. She says she forgot something at the clinic, but changes the subject. She asks if he’s seen Tomitake around, or knows where he is today. She called his hotel earlier this morning, but it seems he wasn’t there. Irie says no, what do you need with him? He asks if there is something going on between the two of them, and Takano shuts that down, saying that her and Tomitake don’t have that sort of relationship. Irie apologizes for insinuating and offers to call Tomitake’s pager for her. Takano declines, saying that it would be tasteless of her to interrupt his time with another woman. She then excuses herself. Irie reprimands himself for being so transparent. He remarks to himself that she’s clearly invested in the two of them, despite her words. Takano, still in the other room, acknowledges that she heard him and Irie is surprised because he thought she had already left. She said she was just using the restroom first, and excuses herself once again. Irie sighs, feeling embarrassed. He worries about Tomitake’s inability to refuse requests from people out of kindness.

Phone Call From the Bar[]

“Ah, hello, this is Akasaka from the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department. Is detective Oishi-san there? Ah, he just left the office less than an hour ago? …Oh, okay, I see. Please contact me if you manage to get ahold of him. And let him know that I’ve already arrived for our meeting. Thank you, goodbye.” Akasaka hangs up the phone and wonders what kind of trouble Oishi has gotten himself into this time. When it comes to drinking, Oishi is a man who rarely breaks his promises. Whatever the reason is, Akasaka trusts in his decision-making. He has a lot of respect for those that are clear-cut and resolute in their decisions. He takes a moment to reflect on his previous experience working with Oishi five years ago. Back then, he still felt like a rookie. He's learned a lot from it. Akasaka returns to his seat and lets his associate, a forensics specialist, know that it could be a while. They decide to drink while they wait for Oishi, and they joke that they might be drinking until morning.

Change of Pace from Cram School Sessions[]

After school, Nao realizes there’s a bit of time left before she has to go to cram school. She thinks about how things have changed in her city, specifically around smoking. More and more places are becoming smoke-free, making them more accessible and family-friendly. On the way to cram school, she stops by one of those places, a family-friendly arcade. After playing for a while, she reaches the ranking registration screen when she suddenly overhears some boys talking about her. “Wow, that girl beat my high score? Who is she?” “What, you don’t know her? That’s [NAO], she’s famous at this place!” “Wait, that’s [NAO]? The name ranked on the top of every game, regardless of genre?” “I heard the rumors of a young girl coming in here, but I didn’t realize she and [NAO] were one in the same.” “She’s different from other girls, did you see the way she moved?” “She’s cute, too, I want to get to know her”. Nao shudders. She didn’t come to the arcade often, maybe once or twice a week, just to pass the time between the end of school and the start of cram school. Even on a bad day, games can help calm you down and cheer you up between all the studying. But it might be time to look for a new place. It might be for the best, she had already beaten all the games here anyway… With the remaining time left on the ranking registration, Nao wonders what name to input. If she puts in her real name, things could go badly for her. It would only grow the rumors about her. Then, what name should she register instead? After thinking to herself, she chose to write in the name of [that person].

Kazuho's Parents[]

Miyuki realizes that she doesn’t know anything about Kazuho’s parents and asks her about their occupations. Kazuho is surprised it hasn’t came up yet, considering that they are living together. Miyuki says that when she was asked by the others, she had told them her parents were civil servants. Nao expresses concern that it is important that they have their stories straight. Miyuki defends her usage of “civil servant”, as it is a broad term that gives them room to work with. She adds that it’s how she was taught to refer to her own parents’ occupations as well. Nao says that it makes sense, telling others your parents are detectives might cause distrust or tension. Kazuho laughs in agreement, adding that the vagueness is why she didn’t clarify earlier. Kazuho explains that her mother is a full-time housewife and her father is a high school teacher. Miyuki asks Kazuho what subject her father teaches. Kazuho says that her father is a history teacher, and that he has also studied similar subjects, such as the history of specific regions and even geology. Nao asks Kazuho about the others in her family, and she shares that she hardly knows anything about the Kimiyoshi side of the family. Nao thinks that’s pretty weird, but Kazuho says it can’t be helped. Miyuki says it makes sense, considering Kazuho lost much of her dad’s side of the family when she was only five years old, and most people don't have strong memories from that age.

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