|Original Release||20 January, 2017|
|Arc||A Lotus in the Mud arc|
Undead Monster is the 244th chapter of the Skip Beat! manga series.
Kyoko gets one more chance to audition for Momiji. All the judges, and even Kimiko and Erika, watch with baited breaths to see her creation. Kyoko blows them away! It seems to be going smoothly, maybe too smoothly for Director Morizumi. He drops a bomb that might affect Kyoko's chances in re-entering the audition!
Kimiko dashes up the stairs to the balcony that overlooks the gymnasium and hides behind the railing as she watches Kyoko.
Kimiko recalls back to before she left the gymnasium. She was stunned when Kuresaki allows Kyoko one more chance to audition however if the audition she shows them is on the same level or below the level previously demonstrated by the other participants then she will instantly lose any privilege to make further statements or actions and she will promptly leave the premises before he completely loses his temper. Does she agree to abide by these terms? Kyoko's face alights with challenge as she smiles and then shouts her agreement. Kimiko is still present in the gymnasium and inwardly is gaping in shock at this development. Kuresaki is just going let a failure come back this easily and she's just some newbie who isn't even famous at all! Annoyed she looks to her Uncle wondering if he has anything to say to the most inflexible and hard-headed person in the industry. Something that might cause him to reconsider. She is frustrated to see him playing on his cell phone again and rages at him inwardly that he's at work so start working!
Kuresaki announces that they will begin now and dismisses Kimiko. Kimiko puts her swords away as she thinks that she will merely pretend to leave the room but she won't go back to the waiting room. Hurriedly she rushes out the door of gymnasium giving the waiting Yashiro a passing glance and then bolts up the stairs to the second floor to the balcony overlooking the gymnasium. Kimiko watches Kyoko from above as she thinks inwardly that she won't be satisfied until she sees it with her own eyes what this no-name newbie can do whilst bound by such conditions. Show her the calibre of a person who can stand on the same level as Ren and can receive the same management as him. Kimiko peers over the balcony in anticipation, eager to see what Kyoko's got to show her!
Yashiro's waiting outside the gymnasium in the corridor. Puzzled he thinks that the girl in the wheelchair is gone. She looked incredibly gloomy and forlorn. He wonders what was wrong... Erika has propelled herself up to one of the windows that looks into the gymnasium. Panting slightly she looks into the gym worried as she wonders why the Love Me member is doing such a foolish thing. Although she isn't sure of the particulars, she is able to guess what must've happened. The Love Me member must've been rejected once already, therefore she was already at a disadvantage in the first place so now she's picking a fight with the Kuresaki, the Producer! Unless she pulls off something extraordinary she won't be able to win him over! However if she was able to act out a Momiji equal to her own then she might have a chance but that's something she seriously doubts Kyoko is capable of!
Back in the gymnasium the audition has started. Kurasaki instructs Kyoko that there are swords however he observes that she has brought her own so ignore those. She may go right ahead and approach them from where she is standing. As of this moment she is Momiji. All the judges are watching with interest as he instructs her to begin. Kyoko places a fist on her heart then to the surprise of all, she slides down into a crouch her head bowed. Kuresaki asks what is the matter? Kyoko answers back that she cannot move without orders from Shizuma. Kuresaki looks taken aback for a minute at this, he then beckons Koga to take the microphone. Koga then orders Momiji to come here. Kyoko runs up to the judges table causing Erika and Kimiko to gasp in surprise at her technique. Kimiko recalls the description of Erika's audition; that she ran if she were gliding, the sound of her footsteps completely silenced. She muses that instead of gliding its more like Kyoko dashed into full-speed from the get-go just like a cheetah! The judges are also surprised at her running technique. Koga states it's amazing how her head doesn't move at all. Jouji muses that it's not just her head but her shoulders and hands that are also completely steady just like the running style of a ninja. Erika Koenji's style, he recalls, focused less on the ninja aspect and more on beauty. So this is her unique version of the role she's created through research?
It's time for the next part of the audition. Everyone is holding their breath to see how Kyoko will react. Kyoko is silent, head bowed and crouched before the judges table, her hands on her katanas. Kuresaki makes to unsheathe his sword and Kyoko notices the move and readies her own. They all notice the move and wait a beat but nothing happens. Kuresaki then demands ninja answer my question! Who do you serve? Who are you?
As he shouts the second question he begins to unsheathe his sword. He has barely finished unsheathing by the third question when Kyoko is already on top of him parrying a blow and then subduing him with one sword held to his throat the other at his abdomen. The judges at gaping in open-mouth shock for Kuresaki was decisively beaten in a matter of seconds. Koga lets out an awed gasp 'The Dust Whirlwind' - Momiji's alias. Kuresaki also says "Kamaitachi' while being held at sword point. Kyoko as Momiji tells him with a dark expression on her face not to refer to her as that name, her father's name, for she has no intention of taking on his name as well. Kimiko is also gaping from her viewpoint on the balcony and Erika is so engaged in watching that she almost tips over her wheelchair trying to get a closer look. She is rescued by Sayou, her bodyguard, who looks pleased that she is up and about.
Back in the gymnasium Jouji is going over Kyoko's paperwork again as though he realised something. Koga tells Kyoko to stand down and only then does she relinquish her hold on Kuresaki. Kurasaki puts his sword back in his sheathe as he gives Kyoko an appraising look. He agrees to make a special exception for her and allow her to return for another chance at the audition. Kuresaki is then interrupted by Jouji who tells him to wait a moment for he wants to confirm something first. He holds Kyoko's resume up and states Kyoko she did not write down which department of LME she was associated with. How come? As he understands LME is divided into many different departments right? Kyoko recalls that Matsushima advised her against putting down that she was from the Talent Division, in fact he specifically and emphatically told her not to. Kyoko doesn't say anything so Jouji presumes correctly that she was told to do so by her agency. Did they tell her not to write anything that might be unfavorable to her? Kyoko is confused, unfavorable? Jouji turns to Kuresaki and ask if his beliefs and convictions are still the same? That he would not use any clueless non-actors? Kuresaki confirms that this is so. Jouji asks if he is still alright with this girl then for she is a mere talent as he shows Kuresaki Kyoko's Love Me Talent Profile page that he has pulled up on his phone.
Characters in Order of Appearance Edit
This is the second chapter along with ACT.243 to bear the title "Undead Monster"