|Character/s in the cover||N/A (Cain Heel (Ren Tsuruga)|
|Arc||Dark Breath arc|
Heel Chic is the 175th chapter of the Skip Beat! manga series.
The Heel Siblings arrive on the set of Tragic Marker and most cast and crew don't know what to think of them yet. Costar Taira Murasame appears to be a potential source of tension.
The chapter opens with exposition for the movie Tragic Marker, explaining the backstory of supernatural serial killer BJ.
In a lounge we meet two actresses, one of whom is named Manaka, talking about the upcoming arrival of the actor who wil play BJ. They are joined by one of the film's stars, an actor named Taira Murasame. None of them are very impressed with Cain Heel not showing up until so late into filming, and they doubt he's taking the movie seriously, possibly because it's Japanese and he's a foreigner. Murasame is convinced that Cain Heel isn't famous, because he verses himself in foreign movies and hasn't heard of him any more than the two actresses have.
A production assistant comes rushing in to announce Cain Heel's arrival and request everyone head into Studio S. On the way there Manaka and Murasame discuss the difficulties of acting with CGI. They are directed where to sit at the assembled circle of chairs. Director Konoe comes in looking pale and encourages everyone to take some time for this first get together now that Cain Heel is finally here. He motions for Cain to take a seat.
Makana's and Murasame's gazes are focused on the backlit silhouette of Cain Heel. Murasame feels some jealousy that Cain is taller than him. Cain is non-emotive and eventually takes his seat. Konoe advises everybody that now the villain scenes are going to be shot, the film shooting will become more intense. Murasame listens, but has eyes only for analyzing Cain. Cain's attitude feels so off that Murasame finally decides he's method-acting, and remaining in character as BJ all the time. If Cain really looked like that normally, he's be scary and possibly a killer.
A leather-gloved hand appears on Cain's shoulder and a girl with a chain connecting her lip ring to her ear whispers to Cain in English. Murasame figures she's translating for him. Everyone else at the table seems to be coming to a similar conclusion: that Cain doesn't speak Japanese. This is somewhat offensive because despite living in the UK he is of Japanese descent. They are also uneasy for how complicated this will make shooting.
Setsuka looks up, directly at Murasame who has been staring. Rather than being shamed, Murasame is struck by the fact that she's actually cute despite all the weird clothes. He thinks to himself that if she's going to be Cain's go-between, then he no longer minds that Cain doesn't speak Japanese. Murasame is then startled when Cain sends him an evil look.
Eating in the cafeteria later, Manaka tells her fellow female castmate how scared Cain made her feel. All the costars and crew are muttering about it, and a suspicion arises that even Director Konoe might have only met Cain Heel today—perhaps that's why he looked so pale. Everyone is uneasy until a woman named Mitsui hands out chestnuts. Manaka takes the bag from her and offers some to Murasame, who's kind of in a daze. Familiar with his prep routines, she reminds him that he hasn't had any of his "staple of Murasame" yet. Still sluggish, Murasame stands and agrees to go get some "blood of Murasame" which turns out to be cola.
Alone in the hallway, Murasame can't get the evil look Cain sent him out of his head. He's ashamed that he flinched at it, when he was fairly well-known as a hoodlum in his teenage years. He wonders if he's lost his guts ("have my balls frozen up?"). Murasame's idol is Kuu, and he has another routine of cheering himself up by pretending to write Kuu on his palm five times and eating each time.
His routine is interrupted when he reaches the vending machine and sees that Setsuka is already there, bent over to pick up the water bottles she'd just purchased. He still doesn't know her name, and he definitely wants to get to know her better. He tries to figure out the best way to approach her, but he can only think of the juvenile way he used to approach girls and comes up with something more mature... only he feels that's too much effort to pull off naturally. Remembering that Director Konoe asked him to be the cast representative to interact with BJ, Murasame gets some confidence back.
"So which street corner does Cain Heel perform on?" he calls to Setsuka's back as she walks away with her water bottles. Setsu turns and stares at him over her shoulder, and Murasame stares back belligerently.
Characters in Order of AppearanceEdit