Webcomic: The Way To Your Heart
The Way to Your Heart
is a ongoing Webcomic
created by Emily Muto (née Wilcken) in 2003. Taking place in Japan, the story follows Naïve Everygirl
Yumi Takahashi, a transfer student to the prestigious St. Othello Academy
, a private school heralded for both its academics and elite music program. St. Othello is also home to Orochi, an up-and-coming indie visual-kei band consisting of School Idols Miyabi Otosuki
(vocals), Akito Yamashita
(guitar), Shuya Katsumura
(bass), and Toshio Matsumoto
Upon Yumi's first day of school, she accidentally incurs the wrath of Miyabi. Both quickly dislike the other, and every day, Yumi suffers constant abuse from him, causing her to gain sympathy from Toshio. As the two bond, Yumi decides to attend one of Orochi's lives on her accord, her rock-gal guise attracts Miyabi's attention and causes him to fall in love with her
without knowing who she truly is!Hosted on Muto's own website
, the comic is now complete.
This series contains examples of:
- Abusive Parents: Toshio's father was a gambling addict and an alcoholic, which is the main cause of why Toshio's family is separated.
- Beach Episode
- Berserk Button: Any insult towards Miyabi's mother or reference to him being Driven to Suicide will have him at your throat.
- Betty and Veronica: For Yumi, Toshio is the Betty while Miyabi is the Veronica.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Do not try to hurt Yumi in front of Toshio.
- Bi the Way: Word of God states that Sakuzo is romantically interested in Kazuki, and during his first appearance, he's also seen briefly asking Kazuki to introduce his sister to him. Maybe he's just Aikawa-sexual.
- Bishōnen: Well, of course.
- Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: At the beginning, Miyabi is the Brooding Boy and Yayoi is the Gentle Girl. This was later subverted when Yayoi went into Yandere and almost kill Yumi
- Brutal Honesty: Miyabi's not afraid to tear anyone a new bootyhole! When people are honest with him, on the other hand, he ends up with a Heroic BSOD.
- But Not Too Foreign: Yayoi and Mitsuzuka-sensei are part-Ukranian and part-Japanese.
- Butt Monkey: Eizo, when it comes to Orochi.
- Character Blog: The main characters all have their own Formspring.me and Twitter accounts.
- Character Development: Following Shuya and Musashi's wedding, Miyabi has become a lot less temperamental and when he's given custody of his son with Yayoi (who died giving birth to him), he expresses genuine regret for his actions, vowing to step up to the plate and be a good dad.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Yayoi is a borderline Clingy Jealous Girl and is protective of Miyabi, though it's unclear as to whether she really is jealous of Yumi or if she is upset that Miyabi is letting her get away with "messing Orochi up."
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Eizo gets out of touch with reality when he's daydreaming about Orochi... and he's always daydreaming about them.
- Covert Pervert: Miyabi mentions that Toshio looks at porno magazines as a substitute for not being able to get it on with Yumi.
- Cool Big Sis: Sayaka acts as one to the whole team, and is willing to give a Get A Hold Of Yourself Man slaps to her little brother if it means anything.
- Crazy Jealous Guy: Toshio gets increasingly possessive of Yumi, not even hesitating to use his Good Ol Fistcuffs against anyone who may get between them.
- Cute and Psycho: Yayoi, in spades.
- Death by Childbirth: Revealed to be the ultimate fate of Yayoi.
- Demoted to Extra: Miyoko and Eizo as the strips have gone on.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Akito was one for Yayoi, while Miyabi slowly becomes one for Yumi. Sayaka is a female version for Toshio until she starts dating Kazuki.
- Dramatic Necklace Removal: Miyabi rips off the necklace Yayoi gave him for his birthday after Yayoi tries to kill Yumi.
- Driven to Suicide: After Mitsuzuka drops Haruki off to live with Miyabi, he goes to a train station, most certainly looking like he's about to jump in front of an oncoming train. It's averted thankfully when a phone call from Akito thanking him and Miyabi promising to raise Haruki right and that he'll never hurt anyone else again convinces Mistuzuka not to go through with it.
- Elegant Gothic Lolita: Yayoi prefers dressing in sweet lolita (amaloli)!
- Even the Guys Want Him: Among the many Fangirls at school, Eizo just loves Orochi. Meanwhile, Sakuzo would like to get a piece of Kazuki...
- Five-Man Band
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Miyabi is melancholic, Toshio is phlegmatic, Shuya is phlegmatic II, and Akito is sanguine.
- Genki Girl: When Yayoi isn't upset, her temperament is generally chipper.
- Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Despite her several health issues and being told going through with her pregnancy will kill her, Yayoi chooses to carry her and Miyabi's child to term. She ends up dying after giving birth.
- Gratuitous English: Sure, the comic is originally written in English, but there's also the matter of Alex, who speaks English fluently.
- Gratuitous German
- Green-Eyed Monster: Miyabi grows into this whenever he sees Yumi and Toshio together, and finally has a Green-Eyed Epiphany near the end of chapter 13.
- Happily Married: Shuya and Musashi as of track 12.
- He Is All Grown Up: Pretty much how Sayaka and Kazuki get together.
- Hopeless Suitor: Miyabi is one for Yumi, while Yayoi hopelessly pursues Miyabi, and Akito pursues her.
- Hypocrite: When Miyabi found about Toshio and Yumi's enagement, he called out Toshio on this as just being an excuse to have sex with her and saying Yumi is a fool for only falling in love with the first guy she met. Never mind earlier with his relationship with Yayoi where Miyabi had sex with her almost right after they began going out and never loved her back and then tried to fall in love with her in order to forget about his feelings for Yumi.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Sayaka encourages Toshio and Yumi to get along despite that she has feelings for Toshio herself. This also happens with Fumiko, Toshio's girlfriend from junior high, after seeing how Yumi has changed Toshio for the better.
- Ill Girl: Yayoi is prone to epileptic seizures and later develops mental issues.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Miyabi starts out as a Jerkass, but mellows out into this... though how much of a Jerkass he is to Yayoi is questionable.
- Keet: Akito.
- The Lad-ette: Musashi.
- Long-Haired Pretty Boy: Toshio.
- Long-Lost Relative: Toshio reunites with his sister and his mother, who he has not heard from in five years, in chapter 15.
- Love Dodecahedron: Yumi and Toshio fall in love with each other, but Miyabi develops a crush on Yumi's rocker persona and falls deeper in love when he finds out her true identity. Yayoi is in love with Miyabi and will do anything to please him, while Akito takes a liking to Yayoi as well though he falls out of love with her when she goes Ax-Crazy. Off to the side, Sayaka secretly pines for Toshio, while Kazuki has liked her for as long as he remembers.
- Love Makes You Crazy: Eizo is a borderline Cloud Cuckoo Lander when it comes to anything Orochi. A more serious example would be Yayoi, who literally changes herself to become the ideal girl for Miyabi. There's also Toshio, who gradually becomes more possessive of Yumi.
- Love Makes You Evil: Yayoi, Yayoi, Yayoi. To be fair, it was also made clear that Miyabi was using her to get over Yumi.
- Love Triangle: Toshio/Yumi/Miyabi is the main focus, of course, but there's also Yumi/Miyabi/Yayoi, Miyabi/Yayoi/Akito, and Toshio/Sayaka/Kazuki.
- Loves My Alter Ego: Miyabi falls in love with "Little Mouse", a nickname he uses to refer to Yumi in her rocker outfit.
- Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Yayoi intends to be this to Miyabi, though it goes in a way that doesn't end well.
- Missing Mom: Miyabi's mother, whom he had been close to, died when he was in junior high. For Toshio, he has been unable to see her since his abusive father threatened to attack her if she returned. Yayoi's mother is stated to have died when she was younger due to health problems.
- Memento MacGuffin: Yumi's jade necklace.
- Murder the Hypotenuse: When Yayoi's Ax-Crazy and Yandere tendencies explode full-on, she attempts to kill Yumi. Oh, Crap indeed.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Miyabi finds out about his son with Yayoi and how she died giving birth to the boy (Haruki) and the pain it caused her father, Miyabi is utterly horrified with himself for having treated his manager/mentor's daughter like a sex object and vows to make things right by raising Haruki to be a good person.
- No Guy Wants to Be Chased: This is how Miyabi treats Yayoi.
- Older Than They Look: At first glance, you wouldn't know that Toshio is 20 and Shuya is 22 unless you read their character profiles. This counts as Fridge Brilliance regarding to why they are attending class with Yumi, as Shuya and (probably) Toshio quit school early on in their lives.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Rarely anyone calls Toshio by his real name.
- Papa Wolf: Screwing with Yayoi in any way (even physically!) will lead you with dealing with her daddy, Mitsuzuka.
- Parental Abandonment: Miyabi's mother is dead while he suffers a lot of Parental Neglect from his dad. Toshio was separated from his mother and sister when his parents divorced and has been unable to see them due to his violent, abusive father. He eventually moves away from him to Mitsuzuka's house when he joins Orochi. Similarly, Shuya cuts himself off from his parents, though the decision was mutual in the least. Akito meanwhile was raised by his grandfather because his mother was a prostitute and his father was one of her clients.
- Production Throwback: Two members of ~PHANTASM~ and their girlfriends came from one of Muto's earlier works.
- Power Trio: Yumi (ego), Miyoko (superego), and Eizo (id).
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Miyabi is the red to Toshio's blue.
- The Rival: Kazuki regards Miyabi and Orochi as his rival band, unable to forgive Miyabi for kicking him out of the very band he created.
- Romantic False Lead: Deconstructed with Yayoi.
- School Idol: The entire ensemble of Orochi, complete with drooling Fangirls.
- Second Love: Kazuki becomes this for Sayaka. Monique serves as one for Akito.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: It's hard to believe that Jerkass Miyabi is related to the kind-hearted Sayaka.
- Single Girl Seeks Most Popular Guy
- Slap-Slap-Kiss: This essentially describes Miyoko and Eizo's relationship... if they were still dating.
- Smoking Is Cool: Shuya and Musashi smoke, which completes their image of being rebellious and unconventional, though Musashi later quits when she gets pregnant. Toshio picks up smoking from Shuya over stress.
- Tall, Dark and Handsome: Toshio and Shuya.
- Tall, Dark and Snarky: Shuya, though Miyabi sometimes fits this trope on his occasions of snarkiness.
- Team Mom: Musashi holds this role firmly, which is Hilarious in Hindsight as she's about to become a mother herself!
- Teenage Pregnancy: Yumi's parents had her when they were young, and Yayoi also ends up getting pregnant too.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Yumi gives one to Miyabi — in a public supermarket, no less!
- Those Two Guys: Miyoko and Eizo to Yumi. Similarly, Atsuko and Minako deserve a mention as Those Two Girls.
- ¡Three Amigos!: Yumi, Miyoko, and Eizo.
- Title Drop: Track 13 was titled "Always On My Mind", the song Kazuki wrote for Sayaka. Track 15 was titled "Out of Chaos", a song Orochi performed in the chapter. Yayoi drops the title of track 16, "Somewhere From Above", during a phone call with Akito.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Musashi is the Tomboy to Sayaka's Girly Girl.
- Troubled, but Cute: Miyabi, to an extent, fits this trope. Yayoi is also Troubled, but Cute, though it's more mentally than emotionally.
- Tsundere: Miyabi, when it comes to Yumi.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Prior to Saeko's death, flashbacks showed that Miyabi was a kind-hearted child.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Miyabi and Toshio seem to argue frequently, but they actually get along really well otherwise.
- Yandere: Yayoi begins showing signs of this when she realizes Yumi is the cause of Miyabi's problems, and later falls into this point-blank.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Averted in the fact that all characters have black as their natural hair colors, though Shuya puts blue streaks in his hair when he gets a haircut later on.