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Main Character Index | High School Student Council (Kaguya Shinomiya | Miyuki Shirogane) | Second Years

Character sub-page for Miyuki Shirogane.

Miyuki Shirogane

Voiced by: Makoto Furukawa
Played by: Sho Hirano (live-action movie)

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/shirogane_1.png
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The president of the Shuchi'in student council. Despite being of common birth, he is held in high regard as a "genius among geniuses" with unparalleled wisdom and intellect, and holding the top scores throughout the entire country. He is engaged in a long Battle of Wits with Kaguya to make the other confess their love.


  • Above the Influence: Hayasaka tries to tempt him into doing things to Kaguya when he comes to visit, pointing out that she wouldn't remember any of it due to her fever, the two of them would be left alone for three hours and that the walls are sound-proof. He manages to avoid giving into temptation, though he says that it took every ounce of his willpower. Perhaps more importantly given the nature of their relationship, however, is that he also resisted the temptation to ask how she really felt about him or about any of her weaknesses.
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  • The Ace: Considered to be this along with Kaguya. Later chapters make it clear that this isn't actually the case.
  • Achievements in Ignorance:
    • He's able to No-Sell Betsy's attempts to Break Him By Talking due to the simple fact that he doesn't speak French.
    • In chapter 56, he doesn't notice any of Kaguya's attempts to squirm due to his excitement over watching the moon and causes her to squirm instead.
  • Adorkable: When it comes to his crush on Kaguya. Other than that, he's an arrogant, yet kind-hearted man who gives 100% in anything he does, which endears him to many people, Kaguya included.
  • Always Someone Better:
    • He's this academically to Kaguya. What makes it even more poignant is that academics is the only subject that Kaguya uses 100% of her abilities on.
    • For him, there's the as of yet unseen Mikado Shijo who was the only one to defeat him on the last national mock exams.
  • Animal Motifs:
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    • Dogs, as befitting the Female Feline, Male Mutt dynamic he has with Kaguya. He has a tireless work ethic and is kind to all those he comes across.
    • His Suckiness Is Painful moments are usually compared to sea cucumbers.
    • He has an affinity for penguins, having a penguin plushie and often visiting the penguin exhibit at the local aquarium.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Shirogane boasts that he has the top scores in the entire country, passed very high level tests, is a certified hazardous material engineer...and an appraiser of chickens. Even the illustrations show this, with various professional certificates drawn along a cartoon-style chicken.
  • Batman Gambit: In order to make sure that Fujiwara wouldn't interfere with his plan to confess to Kaguya, he makes up a whole Phantom Thief plot with meaningless clues left behind, knowing that her love of riddles would keep her distracted until she solved it.
  • Beautiful All Along: Played with. Shirogane is already a fairly handsome young man, but most of the students find him intimidating due to his Exhausted Eye Bags giving him a constant Death Glare. When he finally gets a good night's sleep after his term as president is over, the rest of the students suddenly find him a lot easier to approach, but Kaguya ends up less attracted to him due to him no longer conforming to her fetish.
  • Becoming the Mask: Invoked. As he tells Hayasaka in chapter 108, he does pretend to be good at things he's actually bad at, but he's still working hard to make that ideal version of himself a reality.
  • Beneath the Mask: Shirogane likes to put up the front that he's an intelligent, stoic and all around perfect person but as the series has shown that he's actually quite awkward, shy and unskilled beneath it all. Chapter 147 shows that he hides a huge inferiority complex because of his mother's abandonment. Even his current popularity has only furthered his complex as he feels everyone around him only like the ideal version of himself he presents instead of who he really is.
  • Berserk Button:
    • He can't help but get riled up whenever he imagines Kaguya saying "how cute" to him in a condescending way. Ends up becoming a Verbal Weakness when she actually says it for real (in a completely genuine manner).
    • Calling him lazy annoys him as well, which makes sense considering how much of a hard worker he is.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Chapter 83 reveals that he's overprotective about Kei due to their mom leaving.
  • Bigotry Exception: Invoked. Shirogane and Fujiwara state that in spite of his excellence as president and his academic acumen, at the moment elections occur, there's always a portion of the student body at Shuchi'in who resents him for being part of the lower class.
  • The Blind Leading the Blind: A series of chapters has Shirogane giving relationship advice to Tsubasa despite him not having any previous experience.
  • Brown Note: His rapping is enough to knock out Fujiwara and Hayasaka.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Or rather, will not. The entire premise revolves around Kaguya and Shirogane forcing the other to be the one to confess.
  • Cerebus Retcon: His obsession with studying becomes a lot more depressing after it's revealed that his mother abandoned him when he didn't excel in his studies.
  • Chick Magnet: Shirogane is very popular with girls. Sadly the girls he attracts are rather unstable.
  • Counting Sheep: Parodied in chapter 143 where the sheeps turned into coffins. note 
  • Covert Pervert: Shirogane shows quite an interest in "nude pictures with visible pubic hairs". One time, he also almost flubbed and revealed to Kaguya that he would like to see her wearing black underwear.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: If he wants to be able to compete in anything with Kaguya, he has to put all his efforts into just one field rather than her well rounded portfolio. Doing that, he manages to score just a hair better than her on tests, but at the costs of being completely hopeless at anything else. Fujiwara helps him hide his shortcomings, which are numerous.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: Gender inverted and only for sport. He's so bad at sports that when trying to serve a volleyball he hits himself in the back of the head causing his face to hit the volleyball.
  • Determinator: When he sets his mind to it, he'll stop at nothing to succeed. Case in point; at the start of his freshman year he was at the very bottom of the social food chain and only got in to Shuchi'in because he was on the wait list after nearly failing the entrance exams. Jump forward to the following year's culture festival, he's the two time Student Council President, the number one ranked student in his class, and has one of the most popular girls in the school hopelessly in love with him.
  • Death Glare: Most students in Shuchi'in won't talk back to Shirogane because his face is seemingly permanently fixed like this. The real reason however is that he has Exhausted Eye Bags, and is very aware of them to the point of anxiety. Apparently only Kaguya finds it a point of attraction.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: He suspended all student council activities before the second semester exams because being in the same room as Kaguya made it difficult for him to focus on studying.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: This was his initial approach back when he first fell in love with Kaguya, to little success. He only started to catch her attention when Momo suggested that he pretend to be more confident, eventually leading to the Duel of Seduction seen at the beginning of the series.
  • Dramatically Missing the Point: He hears from Hayasaka that Kaguya is back in Ice Queen Mode because she's trying to be more honest and show him her weaknesses and bad sides on top of her good side in an effort to make their relationship more honest. When it's suggested that he needs to do the same and stop working himself to death, he instead doubles down on his unhealthy lifestyle, brushing off Kaguya's opinion because he feels she doesn't understand what it's like to be a normal person. This is exactly the attitude that alienated Kaguya from her peers years ago.
  • The Dreaded: For Fujiwara every time he wants to learn something in secret. Fujiwara absolutely dreads each instance because of two reasons: first, Shirogane is a grating and needy student who is equally terrible at handing constructive criticism; and second, he is so awfully bad at first that Fujiwara cannot bear not to help him. On top of that, because they do it in secret, she cannot reap the merits she deserves for his accomplishments, and even worse, third parties always think that it's effortless from him, when he received massive heaps of help from Fujiwara.
  • Dreadful Musician: He's aware he's bad at singing, but not of how terrible it is. He think he's only a little tone-deaf, but in actual his singing is enough to make Fujiwara scream for help. But as bad as his singing is, his rapping is even worse.
  • Dumbass Has a Point: The fact that he forces himself to be the perfect student under the belief that Kaguya wouldn't love him otherwise is presented as being unhealthy, but he's right. While Kaguya may have fallen in love with his true personality, she didn't even acknowledge his presence until after he starts following Momo's advice to act more confident than he actually is.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Most characters usually refer to him simply as "President". After his term as president ends it's revealed that Ishigami and Fujiwara are both on a First-Name Basis with him, though Kaguya can't bring herself to call him anything other than "President" (in fact, the main reason why she asks him to run for a second term is so she has an excuse to avoid calling him by name). This is averted in the English translation, where everyone is instead on a Last-Name Basis with him.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: His hair is significantly messier in the present compared to flashbacks. It's bedhead that he doesn't have the time to fix in the morning since he gets so little sleep due to his increased work load.
  • Face of a Thug: Downplayed. His Exhausted Eye Bags give him a constant Death Glare and most of the students find him intimidating, but pretty much everyone already knows that he's a Nice Guy.
  • A Father to His Men: Or rather, to his fellow student council members. In chapter 20, the council successfully prepares a banquet meeting with Shuchi'in's sister school in Paris. Afterwards, Shirogane insists to the school principal that they be given more than just three days in advance, so he can avoid placing such a burden on his fellow council members.
  • Friend to All Children: Implied. He's never actually shown interacting with any children during the course of the series, thought the fact that he wants nine kids of his own implies that he enjoys being with them. One recurring A.U. in the Official Doujin also shows him to be quite adept as a kindergarten teacher.
  • Frozen Face: He is very good at hiding his emotions behind a stoic face.
  • Gentleman and a Scholar: Parodied. His fellow students consider him an expert in a variety of subjects, unbeknownst that he's only good at studying. What he is indeed is a tremendously lucky master of winging it with a poker face, so whatever counsel he dispenses sounds as expert opinion. However, he is truly a gentleman, which is one of his many virtues.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Miyuki is normally a girl's name. However, the kanji used is masculine.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Due to his overwhelming pride and narrowmindedness, Shirogane has a considerable difficulty seeing his own faults, and much to Fujiwara's chagrin (who always ends up helping him), correcting them too. However, he is always willing, and always grateful towards her.
  • Grade Skipper: He was accepted into Stanford a year early, which ends up putting significant pressure on both him and Kaguya to finally confess.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Tries his best to utilize his presidential powers to prevent Kaguya from going to receive a love confession from another boy, especially when she suggests she might actually accept it.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Admittedly, his blonde hair is only the result of artistic liscence, but it does match his kindhearted nature.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Averted or subverted, depending on how one looks at it. In Shirogane's own estimation, he has zero natural talent, and the only reason he holds the #1 spot in academia is because of the constant effort put into studying. It's been shown that he's from below average to downright atrocious when it comes to some mundane activities, including ones that any other individual wouldn't have had trouble performing reasonably well at without prior training (aside from, weirdly enough, juggling). It also takes tremendous amount of work, along with a skilled instructor to bring his skills in those areas to about normal level. On the other hand, he is quick-witted and can come up with plans on the spot, holds multiple national certifications in different fields, manages to keep in balance his domestic routine, three part-time jobs and rather demanding studying sessions at the same time, eventually gets accepted into extremely selective Stanford University (at an accelerated rate at that), and most importantly, always succeeds exponentially in self-improvement (becoming average at something may not sound extraordinary, but when you start below figurative "zero", it's a whole other story). All of that suggests he might be very special human being.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • He is a very sweet and selfless person in spite of his menacing looks and proud attitude.
    • He loves freestyle rap, but predictably, he's awful at it.
  • High-Pressure Emotion: Steam starts coming off of his head when he reads though the calender of a stationary set that Kaguya gave him for Chirstmas and sees that it's filled with notes for all the days that she wants to spend with him now that they've had their Relationship Upgrade.
  • Hypocrite: Despite disagreeing with Hayasaka's belief that people cannot be loved for who they truly are, he believes that Kaguya only loves the persona he put up and wouldn't love the "real him".
  • I Read It for the Articles: Shirogane's excuse in 83.5 for why he's going through a porno magazine on the street.
  • Imagine Spot: A Running Gag of the series is Shirogane envisioning Kaguya looking down upon him with a sarcastic smile and muttering "How Cute." The one time she did make the face, she was actually being sincere, but was attempting to maintain a stoic expression in place of a wide smile, resulting in the aforementioned sarcastic smile. And the only time she said those exact words, they were entirely genuine and she was delirious from a fever.
  • Impossibly Tacky Clothes: We see that Shirogane's fashion sense is just as bad as everything else when Kei gets a look at his wardrobe outside of his school uniform. Kei directly compares his clothes to a middle school student due to how edgy and ridiculous it looks. Shirogane justifies it that his clothes are from middle school and he hasn't bought clothes since moving to high school to save money.
  • In Touch with His Feminine Side: He has a couple of unmanly habits for a Japanese boy, such as constantly looking up his horoscopes and being concerned about his physical appearance. Chapter 62 shows he is quite good at sketching and the narrator even states he's in touch with his emotions.
  • Indy Ploy: In contrast to Kaguya (who can use her vast wealth to plan for every eventuality), Shirogane often has to rely on his quick wit and comes up with plans on the spot in their Battle of Wits. That said, his Grand Romantic Gesture shows that he's perfectly capable of long term planning if given sufficient time.
  • Inferiority Superiority Complex: He works so hard as the Student Council President and the top student in his grade to hide his insecurity over his commoner heritage next to all the richer students.
    Shirogane's Father: So he's the Student Council President... he seems ill-suited to the role. It looks like he's desperately trying to hide the chinks in his armor.
    • Chapter 147 reveals that his mother leaving the family was the start of all this. Shirogane could feel his mother’s interest was slipping with each failure, until she finally left with the one daughter who did well on her exams. To this day, he always hangs on to the hope that if he did well, she would return.
  • Insecure Love Interest: He feels inferior to Kaguya, but wants to stand beside her as an equal. He studies desperately so that he can outdo her in at least one field but is very worried that she'll beat him one day. It's also the very reason he wants to have her confess to him: if he confesses and she ends up rejecting him, he feels that he'll never end up closing the already wide gap between them. His self-esteem was already shot because of his mother abandoning him thus he feels that no one can love him for who he truly is.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: While he's arrogant and looks down on pretty much everyone, he cares for the student council and will do anything to help students that come for help. He's also a lot more honest with himself than Kaguya and thus more willing to throw his pride away to do what he knows is the right thing.
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: Loves cats. Kaguya being cat-like herself may have something to do with it.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Because of being the student council president and carrying aura of manliness, the students all think he's quite the hit with ladies. When Tsubasa asks him for romantic advice, he's forced to bluff his way out of it since he has no romantic experience.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Played for laughs. Albeit he's a master of keeping his composure regarding Kaguya, when he tells her to come with him to Stanford and she French-kisses him, neither him nor Kaguya can think straight out of shock.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: According to a psychological test Fujiwara gave him, he wants to have nine kids.
  • Messy Hair: His fringe isn't a deliberate choice on his part, it's bed head that he never has the chance to straighten out due to having to rush to school in the morning. Notably, flashbacks to before he had an increased workload as Student Council President (and the one chapter where he got a good night's sleep), his hair is much neater.
  • Missing Mom: His mother ran off about seven years before the story began.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Fujiwara is under the impression that he has a crush on Hayasaka's butler disguise.
  • Morality Pet: Kaguya holds him in the highest regard, and she contains most of her ill-intended side so that she doesn't alienate him. By Shirogane's example, Kaguya has learned that she cannot possibly continue treating her peers as inferior if she expects to be at his side, and she is forever thankful towards him for forcing her to bring out the very best of herself where there was only a resentful, unfeeling husk before he showed up.
  • Must Have Caffeine: Due to his heavy workload, he drinks a lot of coffee, even keeping his own coffee beans in the student council office. Just a sip of decaf coffee and he falls asleep instantly.
  • Nice Guy: According to chapter 32, he's physically incapable of needlessly acting cold to people.
  • Noble Bigot: His pride stems from narrow-mindedness, not malice.
  • Not Distracted by the Sexy: Invoked. In spite of Fujiwara's presence in the student council, which elicits considerable resentment on Kaguya due to Fujiwara's personability, good looks and nice figure, it's shown that Shirogane has eyes only for Kaguya.
  • Oh, Crap!: In Chapter 98 when Maki complains about the fool that taught Tsubasa the Kabedon and how she wants to tear him to pieces, all Shirogane can do is keep silent as he shakes in fear.
  • One Head Taller: He's roughly a head taller than Kaguya.
  • Oxymoronic Being: Invoked and played for laughs. As he is extremely popular, yet completely inexperienced in love, Shirogane is described as a combination of both:
    (Narrator): Yes, this man was an aberration, posessing both virginity and bottomless self-confidence! A MONSTER VIRGIN!!
  • Penny Among Diamonds: He's working class and attending a school for the powerful and wealthy.
  • Parental Abandonment: It is revealed in chapter 147 that his mother abandoned him and his family because he was a poor student (not from a lack of trying), taking Kei with her as she did good on her exams.
  • The Perfectionist: He is obsessed with maintaining his perfect student council president image. He takes studying very seriously, and any shortcomings he may have (of which there are a lot) are painstakingly rooted out and overcome. Part of this effort is motivated by his desire to stand as Kaguya's equal and prove that he's good enough for her. The rest is because he was abandoned by his mother as a child when he didn't meet her insanely high standards.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Due to his lack of sleep, nearsightedness and caffeine dependence, Shirogane always sports intimidating Tsurime Eyes. Should he get a good night's sleep, they turn into Tareme Eyes, making him seem considerably more accessible. However, Kaguya likes him better when he has a glare and bags under his eyes.
  • Phrase Catcher: His failure to do things (like his singing or when he brews coffee) usually gets compared to a sea cucumber.
  • Promoted to Love Interest: Shirogane is based off of one of the five suitors who failed to court Princess Kaguya in The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter. Here, he's Kaguya's only love interest, having taken the role from the emperor.
  • Promoted to Parent: Played with. Because of their mother's abandonment and their father's immaturity and job instability, Shirogane had to take a more significant role at home as the person who "mothers" Kei. Just as so, he receives the blunt force of Kei's teenage angst and rebellion all on his own.
  • Raging Stiffie: He gets one when Fujiwara pressed against him in the Doujin spin-off.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: When two students ask him for help in raising funds on school grounds, he points out the administrative obstacles required to get through. Yet he still decides to help them as best he can, due to seeing their determination and seriousness about it.
  • Samaritan Relationship Starter: He initially fell in love with Kaguya after seeing her rescue the Mass Media club president from drowning in beginning of their freshman year.
  • School Uniforms Are the New Black: Shirogane wears his uniform even on his days off. Kaguya has lampshaded this.
  • Secret Keeper: He is the only person outside of the Shinomiya household who is aware of Hayasaka's status as Kaguya's valet.
  • Security Blanket: He sleeps while embracing a penguin plushie, which in turn causes him to have a daily bedhead that he seldom has time to fix. This happens to cause the signature look on his bangs.
  • Selective Obliviousness: Pretends not realize that Kashiwagi and Tsubasa's relationship is obviously sexual in nature.
  • Sheep in Sheep's Clothing: The catalyst for Kaguya falling in love with him was realizing that he was exactly as nice and selfless as he presented himself. It's also what kicked off her eventual defrosting.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: He only has eyes for Kaguya and no one else. In fact, when he and Ishigami found a porn magazine lying in the street one day, he was disinterested in the contents until Ishigami told him that one of the girls featured there resembled Kaguya.
  • So Proud of You: Beyond his romantic intentions towards her, Shirogane considers Kaguya one of the very best people he's ever met, and derives a significant amount of pride from the mere fact that she's his partner and his friend.
  • Student Council President: At least of their second year at Shuchi'in. He takes the job so seriously that he refused to take his gakuran and aguilette off until the end of his term because he wanted to do his job with pride and respect.
  • Suckiness Is Painful: His singing approaches Brown Note levels and has been compared to having sea cucumber guts shoved in your ears. That's not even getting into his rapping, which caused Fujiwara to collapse and start foaming at the mouth.
  • Super Drowning Skills: It's mentioned in chapter 7 that he's such a bad swimmer that he could drown in his own bathtub.
  • Supreme Chef: Cooking is one of the few skills that Shirogane is good at. Fujiwara had nothing but praise for his cooking after she ate some of his lunch in chapter 5.
  • Teen Genius: Reportedly has the second highest test scores in all of Japan, and is certified in many professional fields. However, his profile in volume 1 notes that calling him a natural genius wouldn't be proper due to his intellect being a result of obsessive studying rather than inherent talent.
  • Terrible Artist: Averted, art is one of the few subjects besides studying that he isn't horrible at. But he is mediocre at it initially.
  • There Is Only One Bed: Invoked. Due to his family's monetary constraints, he shares a room and a bed with his sister that is separated by a curtain.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: As the series goes on, we start to see more and more of Shirogane's personality and less of his ego. As such he comes off as much kinder and relatable compared to the start of the series.
  • Triple Shifter: Shirogane rarely has time to sleep due to having to attend school, study hard enough to keep his position as the number 1 student, do all his duties as Student Council President, and work multiple part-time jobs to support his family. As a result, he has permanent Exhausted Eye Bags and relies on a constant supply of coffee to keep himself from passing out.
  • Tsundere: He is this in regards to his feelings towards Kaguya, though he is a bit less blatant about it. He has also said the classical "It's not like I like her or something!" tsundere line at some point.
  • Uncatty Resemblance: While they aren't his pet, it's noted that he looks rather similar to Fujiwara's dog Pes.
  • Unexpected Virgin: The narration refers to him as a "Monster Virgin". He doesn't tell anyone for fear of Virgin-Shaming.
  • The Un-Favourite: His mother was a relentless Education Mama who ended up favoring Kei due to her doing better on exams, even taking her with her when she abandoned their father. He does not appear to have any form of resentment for his sister, though he clearly has a very low opinion of his mother.
  • Villain of Another Story: It's lampshaded in chapter 65 that Shirogane sounds like the condescending, amoral tyrant to Miko's idealistic, determined underdog. In any other setting, that would be true, but unfortunately this one has no need of a rebel like Miko.
  • Virgin-Shaming: Shirogane is scared that he'll lose the respect of the school if they find out he doesn't have any experience.
  • Weirdness Magnet: It was stated that early on that the girls that he attracts are unstable. Considering the three girls that are attracted to him are Kaguya, Karen and Moeha, this is pretty accurate.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: The reason that he constantly pushes himself in academics is because he secretly hopes that his mother will come back for him if he becomes the smart child that she always wanted.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: Kaguya and Moeha list his piercing gaze as one of his most attractive physical features (the other being his nose). When Shirogane finally gets a good night's rest, the student body finds his proper eyes to be very attractive as well bar Ishigami, who finds it creepy, and Kaguya, for the above reason.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Hayasaka leaves him alone with a feverish Kaguya making it very clear that no one will interrupt them no matter what he does and that Kaguya won't remember any of this tomorrow. He could molest her and get away with it, but of course never really considers it. He could also take advantage of her impaired mental state to 'cheat' in their game of wits by asking her highly personal questions that she would never answer if she was coherent. The only thing he asks is if it's his fault that she's sicknote  and touching her lips with one finger even after she drags him into bed herself and falls asleep.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Shirogane is extremely terrified of insects, enough to prefer going to the beach instead of the mountains (which is significant since he cannot swim). Of course, chapter 15 has him dealing with a cockroach.
  • Workaholic: Kaguya states he actually enjoys work. And the extras show that he spends so much time studying and working that no one knows when he has time to sleep.
  • Worth It: He is physically and mentally exhausted by studying to outdo Kaguya in tests, but he also feels immensely satisfied every time he succeeds. This isn't just his pride: Scoring higher than Kaguya on an exam is what made her notice him for the first time, which was his goal. Keeping ahead of her is how he considers himself to be worthy of her.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: As opposed to Kaguya who can use her affluence to craft intricate plans, Shirogane most often relies on his quick wit to create opportunities to attract Kaguya, and is adept at improvising should his schemes go awry.
  • You Were Trying Too Hard: He always has the most success in getting Kaguya to fall for him when he's more focused on something else, best seen during the stargazing chapter.
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