Yukino Kikukawa (菊川雪之 Kikukawa Yukino?) is a fictional character from the anime and manga series My-HiME, and also appears in the alternate universe sequel, where she is known as Yukino Chrysant (ユキノ・クリサント Yukino Kurisanto). In both series she is voiced by Mamiko Noto in Japanese, and is voiced by Morgan Partridge in the English language dub.
Yukino is depicted with short red-brown hair and inverted square glasses. She is very close to Haruka Suzushiro in all incarnations (and implied to have romantic feelings towards her in Hime, though one sided on her part), and serves as an introverted and quiet foil to Haruka's quick and passionate temperament. She is also depicted as being very intelligent and loyal to Haruka in all incarnations.
Yukino appears as the secretary of the Fuuka Student Council and Haruka Suzushiro's best friend and confidant. She is in the same class as Mai Tokiha and Yuuichi Tate. She is frequently seen with her laptop computer and occasionally runs the communications network of the Executive Council. An introvert, Yukino frequently corrects Haruka's mispronounced or misspelled words as and attempts to calm the hot-headed Haruka down during crises. Yukino has been friends with Haruka since they were small children, and was often defended by Haruka when she was unable to defend herself from bullying. As such she feels great loyalty towards Haruka and often accompanies her during her (sometimes ill-planned) attempts to protect the school.
Yukino is revealed to be one of the 12 HiME after a vampire-like Orphan sent by the SEARRS foundation begins to attack girls on campus when she is contacted by the school's headmaster Mashiro Kazahana, who warns that Haruka may become a target if the Orphan attacks continue. Yukino then uses her CHILD, Diana, to survey the school and learn of the location of the captured Natsuki Kuga, which she sends to Mai in an anonymous text message.
When the SEARRS foundation invades the school Yukino uses her powers for reconnaissance to help her fellow HiME. However, she falls under a great deal of emotional stress as the rules of the HiME festival and the cost of losing are revealed and tensions between the HiME escalate. Later, believing that Haruka is in danger, she is psychologically manipulated by Ishigami the art teacher and nearly attacks Mai before stopping herself. However, Mikoto arrives and attacks Diana believing Mai to in danger until Mai herself intervenes. The relationship between the two girls is eventually reconciled as Yukino uses Diana's power of illusion to mask a battle between the HiME and tries to help locate Mai's brother Takumi Tokiha.
Eventually, Yukino locates Student Council President Shizuru Fujino where she is hiding with Natsuki, and observes Shizuru disrobing and lying down next to Natsuki and later stealing a kiss from the sleeping Natsuki while hiding in the bushes with Haruka, whose shocked reaction gives them away. After Haruka confronts Shizuru for her "disgusting" infatuation with Natsuki despite Yukino's attempts to calm her, Shizuru retaliates and kills Diana, and by extension Haruka, her Most Important Person. Despite this, Haruka manages to head-butt Shizuru before tossing her council badge at Yukino to reassure her and disappearing.
Yukino is reunited with Haruka when Mashiro resurrects the defeated HiME and their CHILDs, and at the end of the series Yukino is seen at the graduation with Haruka.
In the manga Haruka actually is a HiME, and Yukino is a member of the Ori-HiME team along with Haruka who is her key. Together they form a tag-team when fighting Orphans. Instead of Diana she now has a Child called Mirror Wall which resembles an open flower (instead of a closed one in the anime) that floats above ground. It abilities appear to be more powerful than in the anime, as are several other HiMEs Childs, as it's spy camera spores are large enough to reflect Haruka's child's laser attacks. Mirror Wall appears to be able to create more precise illusions than Diana and can erect forceshields strong enough to deflects blasts from Kagatsuchi, but in turn seems to be completely without offensive abilities.
Element and Child
Yukino's Element is a set of mirrors that allow her to observe different parts of the school. Her CHILD, Diana, is a plant-like creature that sends out spores that act as miniature cameras and can generate cloaking fields and illusions. Diana can also attack with its tentacles. According to the official guidebook Diana is a reference to Anne of Green Gables with Haruka representing Anne and Yukino representing Diana. Yukino's HiME mark is located on her arm slightly below the elbow.
In this universe Yukino is the president of the Aries Republic, and the master of the Otome version of Haruka, who is a brigadier general in the Aries army. She is considerably more confident than her My-HiME counterpart and appears cool under pressure. She is apparently well-respected within her country. She helps Garderobe combat the invasion by Artai forces and lends several of Aries' warships to the cause.
On an amusing note, she still corrects Haruka's mispronunciations, though this time she is armed with a megaphone to make herself heard. She also has some of her subordinates use a rock to knock Haruka out if she become too exuberant (though in the second episode of the My-Otome Zwei OVA they discover that they need a bigger rock). This OVA also sees Yukino's position being challenged by presidential candidate Ishigamin (the art teacher Ishigami from My-HiME) and later Tomoe Marguerite after she (literally) knocks Ishigamin off his campaign platform and declares herself a candidate.
Though it seems that she and Haruka often disagree due to their conflicting personalities, they have a mutual understanding that they must work together to accomplish the same task despite their differences, something that Arika Yumemiya takes to heart in consideration to her relationship with Mashiro Blan de Windbloom. Yukino is also visibly troubled when Haruka is petrified by the as-of-yet unknown enemy, though Haruka is still alive despite her nanomachines being solidified. It is also shown that Yukino keeps a sunflower on her desk in a vase resembling Haruka's Meister Robe, and she is shown looking at it sadly after Haruka is petrified.
In the manga version of My-Otome there are actually two Yukinos. The first is a member of the Windbloom Police Department with Haruka as her partner. Their relationship is very similar to the My-HiME manga. Yukino is apparently skilled with a sniper rifle, as she demonstrates when she destroys a SLAVE's control GEM in chapter 11.
The second is Yukino Kikukawa, the resurrected HiME, who like the other HiMEs has an altered personality and is much more aggressive and devious than any other incarnation. Haruka's HiME counterpart is subservient to Yukino, which is a shocking realization for Haruka Armitage. The HiME Yukino is also sexually aggressive towards Haruka, and tongues her neck in a suggestive manner in front of a shocked Armitage.
- The kanji of Yukino's surname in My-HiME mean chrysanthemum, and this is reflected in her Otome counterpart's surname, Chrysant, which also means chrysanthemum in Dutch. The chrysanthemum is also the symbol of the Japanese Imperial family, and may be a reference to her position of power in My-Otome.