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"Ever since the beginning, all we wanted was to live equally with humans."
Shizuku, Chapter 10, "Overflow"

Bara no Toge (Trans: A Rose's Thorns/Thorn of a Rose) is a fanfiction written by Ruka Kikuchi and UltimateLockSmith where the Japanese idol group SKE48 portray an all-female cast of all original characters. It is part of the Bloody Rose fanfiction universe.

The main story is about a girl named Yuri (Matsui Rena) arriving at an all-girls' school, which is actually a school for both humans and vampires. She begins to form a friendship with one of the vampire girls, Shizuku (Matsui Jurina), unaware that there is a plot to bring them together, in order to try and stop an ongoing feud that was caused by a tragedy 18 years prior.

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The series was originally published on AsianFanfics in March 2015 and ended in October 2016. In July 2018, Ruka began posting chapters on Wattpad.

On January 29th, 2017, a non-canon Spinoff called "Bara no Toge Chibi Gaiden", "Chibi Bara" for short, or alternatively, "Stories of Tsubaki Academy" was created. It serves as a more light-hearted series of stories focusing on several of the characters from Bara no Toge.

On April 29th, 2017, Ruka posted a playwright on her deviantArt "AnimeFann682" of a one-act Gaiden/side story, "Yurihime in Wonderland". Told (somewhat) by a narrator as if reading a bedtime story, Yuri takes on the role of Alice from "Alice in Wonderland". As Alice, she finds that she has lost something and can't remember what it was, so Shizuku, acting as the White Rabbit, and the other students embodying characters from the story, try to help Alice find her "Lost thing" so she can remember what it is she's lost in the first place.

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On May 9th, 2018, a sequel one-shot was posted to Ruka's AsianFanfics account titled "Blood War". It takes place 3 years after the end of the original series (picking up some time after the epilogue), as Yuri learns about the life of a vampire princess who lived during the 100 Year Blood War.


This fanfic provides examples of:

  • Accidental Kiss: Happens to Yuri, when she accidentally kisses Shizuku while she's asleep. She shock puts her in a temporary Post-Kiss Catatonia.
  • Aerith and Bob: A lot of the names are pretty common names, but then there are names like Kiba (meaning "fang"), Onpu (meaning "music note"), and the only non-Japanese sounding name Lala.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Shizuku calls her former lover, Himeno, "Hime".
  • Ageless Birthday Episode: "Yurihime in Wonderland" is actually Yuri's birthday. No age in confirmed, but it can be assumed she's at least 17 or 18.
  • Alice Allusion: "Yurihime in Wonderland"
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    • Most of the references come from the Disney animated movie.
  • All Myths Are True: Vampires? They're real; and they aren't the monsters humans made them out to be. What about the Blood Moon? Yup, it can really bind souls together for eternity. It happened 18 years ago, to Shizuku and Himeno, AND it also bound the souls of three vampire girls during the 100 year war between vampires and humans. And the three goddesses who watch over the school? They're real, too. And it just so happens that Shizuku, Yuri, and Kureha's lives are now tied together, because it turns out they were those girls from centuries ago in their past lives, and they are the chosen children of the three goddesses.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: Kureha. She's often bullied due to her mental instabilities. At first, the only person she could ever trust was Aya, but she soon becomes close friends with Saki (after her transfer due to Kureha biting her and turning her), Yuri, and Shizuku.
  • Alpha Bitch: There are two offenders to this trope; Mitsuko and Erena.
  • Alternate Universe Fic
  • Arc Symbol: Roses, and the Blood Moon.
  • Arc Words: Awaken/"Wake up"
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The Queen of Hearts (Aya) puts Yuri on trial for forgery by trying to paint white roses red (acting as an accomplice to cover up the cards' mistake), trespassing on her grounds, and generally ruining her good mood. And on her un-birthday, no less.
  • Berserk Button : Never say anything bad to Shizuku about Himeno or her choice to wait for her after she is reborn. She will either try to kill you or have a mental breakdown.
  • Bifauxnen: Kou, Ruka, and Kiba all have boyish appearances.
    • Yuri is a surprisingly good Romeo.
  • Boyish Short Hair: Ruka.
  • Brainwash Residue: Victims placed under vampire hypnosis will usually be dazed or sleepy for a short while.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Kureha becomes like this, complete with Empty Eyes, a Broken Smile, Creepy Monotone, and even a Twitchy Eye! Kiba even made her repeatedly write out several phrases to further the brainwashing.
    “Emotions are useless distractions.”
    “There are three types of people in this world: the weak fools, the powerful rulers, and the power-hungry servants. None of them get anywhere.”
    “The world has no use for those who are deemed incompetent.”
  • Break the Cutie: Sumire. She was emotionally unstable to begin with, but after her two closest friends started ignoring her and her feelings for Himeno could not be returned, she snaps.
  • Breaking And Blood Sucking: Shizuku does this often. She waits at the window of the Lily class dorm rooms, sings to draw them out to her, bites them, and sends them back to bed before leaving. Since the girls she feeds from are under hypnosis, they have little to no memories of the event.
  • Broken Record: Yuri becomes like this temporarily after the shock of her accidental first kiss with Shizuku, who after the event calmly offered to become friends with her.
    Yuri: "Friend... Friend..."
  • Cherry Blossoms: Many are blooming in the academy's courtyard. Shizuku seems to have a fondness for them, as she likes to eat lunch and take naps under them, and is very knowledgeable about them (and the fact that they can live for up to 100 years, "or maybe longer.")
  • Childhood Friends: Shizuku, Himeno, and Sumire.
  • Chill of Undeath: Most vampires have skin that's cold to the touch. This is taken Up to Eleven with Yuki, who's cold touch is amplified with her low blood circulation AND her ice powers. So much, when she touches people, they usually get a Ghostly Chill.
  • Color Motif: White for the Lily class, red for the Rose class, and a mix of grey and black for the Cattleya class.
    • Red can also represent blood and the bonds created by them.
    • Blue for Sumire.
    • Pink is subverted with Mitsuko and the love potion she uses on Ruka.
  • Comforting Comforter: Yuri to Shizuku. The morning after Their First Time, she covers her with a blanket.
    • Nami also does this to Yuri after she falls asleep in class, taking her to the infirmary and tucking her in herself.
  • Compelling Voice: Shizuku and Aya both seem to have this. No matter if it's out loud or in your head, their voice can easily put people into a trance.
  • Council of Vampires: While Inori is there as the Lily class representative, it can be argued that she is the ONLY human on the council.
  • Cry into Chest: Shizuku to Kou.
  • Cryptic Conversation: A lot of this happens. Usually, to foreshadow.
  • Custom Uniform: Most of the students have a way of differentiating themselves by tweaking their uniform slightly. Some wear ties instead of ribbons, some have pants, or even shorts, instead of skirts (which can also be tweaked to be either long or short), and the three class representatives in the student council (that being Kou, Inori, and Kiba, respectively) have flowers in their breast pocket.
  • Cycle of Revenge: Sumire, Kiba's younger sister who was madly in love with Himeno, and feels neglected after she and Shizuku become more fixated on their romance together than their friendship, ultimately KILLS HIMENO! However, after coming to her senses, she is Driven to Suicide. Kiba immediately blames Kou and Shizuku for her death, and begins to plot her revenge.
  • Dance of Romance: After their dance during the Winter Ball, Nami confesses her feelings for Ruka and they become a couple.
  • The Dark Arts: Kiba plans on using Black Magic in order to resurrect the spirit of her younger sister, Sumire, who committed suicide due to heartbreak and betrayal. She even uses a potion made from her OWN BLOOD to brainwash Kureha so she can become a vessel for her spirit. She does succeed, but the consequences aren't so sweet...
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Shizuku. 18 years ago, her former lover was killed and she's been waiting for her reincarnation to return to her. At least Kou is there to comfort and support her. After all, she is her personal caretaker, and she's just as messed up about the event as she is.
    • Uta also has this, since she was bullied and developed stage fright because of it.
  • Dark Is Evil / Evil Wears Black: Slightly subverted. Kiba is definitely the Big Bad, along with Erena and Yami (which means darkness), but the other Cattleya students aren't evil in the slightest.
  • Daywalking Vampire: The Rose class and Cattleya class vampires attend regular classes, just like the Lily class students.
  • Deadly Hug: Sumire stabs and kills Himeno while the latter is hugging her.
  • Devoted to You: Shizuku's undying love for Himeno. She's so devoted to her that she stays at the academy for 18 years, waiting for her to come back in reincarnation.
  • Dhampyr: Onpu and Kou, as well as her sister Hikaru.
  • Dream Tells You to Wake Up: Happens to Yuri, when she's regaining her past life memories as Himeno. The first few times, it sounds like Shizuku's voice, but then, it turns out to be Mother Lily.
  • Dream Weaver: Another type of Mind Manipulation vampires have; they can rewrite memories to make it seem like a dream, or keep their victims in a dream-like state so they won't remember what just happened. (I.e., while Shizuku was feeding on Nami, she made her dream of her and Ruka dancing together.)
  • Dreaming of Times Gone By: This happens to Yuri. Twice. The first was a dream of her(as Himeno) and Shizuku waking up together, right after sex. The other time was several points in Himeno's life, from when they were children playing, right to the moment where Sumire killed her.
  • Dying Declaration of Love
    Himeno (to Shizuku): "I love you..."
  • The Empath: Kureha. She can sense when someone is feeling extreme sadness. It's due to this trait Kiba chooses her to become Sumire's vessel.
    • Later on, Yuri starts to feel when Shizuku is in pain. After her awakening, she also feels both Sumire and Kiba's pain from when they're suffering.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Towards Kou, Shizuku, and Ruka.
  • Everyone Is Gay
  • Eye Colour Change: The vampires' eyes change from black/dark brown to red when their thirst is triggered or they need to put someone in a trance.
    • When Kureha became possessed by Sumire, her eyes became icy blue, just like hers.
  • Fantasy Pantheon: The Three Mothers. They are Goddesses who watch over the academy, as well as protecting their own children (given the titles the Rose Maiden, the Lilian Princess, and the Child of Violet) respectively.
  • The Fashionista: Ichika. She'll usually have an extra hairpin if you need a Hairpin Lockpick, and was the one who helped give Nami her Important Haircut.
  • Find the Cure!: Kiba poisons Shizuku, and Kou, Aya, and Hikaru have to make an antidote. But one of the ingredients they need is buried under a pile of snow outside, and they only have until sunset to save her.
  • Finger-Suck Healing: Shizuku does this to Yuri after she gets a paper cut.
  • Floral Theme Naming / Flower Motifs: The three classes are the Rose, Lily, and Cattleya classes respectively.
    • The academy itself is called "Tsubaki (camellia) Academy".
    • There's also the three Mothers; Mother Lily, Mother Rose, and Mother Violet.
    • Some of the STUDENTS' names even translate to flower/flower themed names.
      • Yuri - Lily
      • Shizuku - Dew/drop
      • Tsubomi - Flower bud
      • Saki - Bloom
      • Hana - Flower
      • Mitsuko - Honey
      • Sumire - Violet
    • The Lily class students are all virgins, which is considered the sweetest, purest blood for vampires to feed on. Plus, the Lily class uniforms are white.
  • Forceful Kiss: Shizuku does this at one point to Yuri in order to suppress her thirst for Yuri's blood.
  • Forgotten Birthday: Inverted. Yuri forgets her own birthday, and her friends throw her a Surprise Party.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Most of the Rose class consists of these.
  • Fun with Acronyms: The "Yurihime" is an abbreviation of "the Lilian Princess".
  • Genki Girl: Akiko. And to an extent, Nami.
  • Great Offscreen War: There was a century long war between vampires and humans. Whatever started it is unknown, but how it ended is common knowledge; a High Court of humans and vampires signed a Blood Pact and issued an act of peace so a similar war would never happen again. It's also clear the damage done was devastating on both ends, since it was so bad, three vampires who were close friends used a spell to ensure they would meet in another life if they were killed.
    • We get glimpses of what the world was like during the war in "Blood War", but we never actually see the war.
  • Green Thumb: Shizuku is able to bring life to and control plants, specifically roses.
  • Healing Factor: Shizuku had this after her awakening.
  • The Hedge of Thorns: Shizuku's room becomes this when her powers begin to manifest from flashbacks of Himeno's death and causes a rose to grow rapidly and cover every inch of her room in thorny vines, even entangling her in the process and growing out to reach the Lily class dorms, as well. It eventually stops after she calms down.
  • Held Gaze: Shizuku does this quite often, usually with Yuri; it's no wonder she's quite the charmer.
  • Hidden Depths: Kou. She's usually calm and collected, always sure that things will be okay. However, the moment Shizuku is poisoned and on the verge of dying, her calm demeanor shatters and shows that she's actually very distraught about what has happened over the years, beginning to panic and cry over the thought of everything she worked for crumbling. Ultimately, Hikaru has to comfort her by repeatedly telling her everything will be okay.
  • High School A.U.: The members are all students at a private academy.
  • High-School Dance: The annual Winter ball is celebrated by the entire school, for many reasons. The girls get to wear gorgeous dresses (or suits for the more princely girls), the Lily class students get a chance to dance with their admired Rose class crush, and of course, the ceremonial dance between a chosen couple.
  • Horror Hunger: If a vampire's thirst is not kept in check, they can get out of control, threatening to bite anyone they come across.
  • Hypnotic Eyes / Red Eyes, Take Warning: Vampires eyes produce a mesmerizing red glow that can put whoever gazes at them into a hypnotic trance. However, the red glow can also mean that their hunger is starting to take hold of them.
  • An Ice Person: Yuki.
  • I'm Having Soul Pains: Yuri can feel when Shizuku is in distress. The first time, she felt as if her heart was being pierced by thorns. The second time, she felt as if her body was on fire (one of the symptoms of being poisoned by black rose venom).
    • This happens again when Yuri can feel Sumire's feelings of heartbreak and betrayal from the past, and later when Kiba is suffering from her Face–Monster Turn.
  • I Kiss Your Hand: Kou does this when Yuri first arrives at the academy.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Kou isn't in love with Shizuku, but she most definitely wants nothing more than for Shizuku to live a happy life.
    "Shizuku's happiness is my top priority."
  • Important Haircut: Nami gets her hair cut just before the Winter ball.
  • Invisibility: Diana and Eleanor do this in the church when they think human soldiers are present. They have to hold their breath and stand still.
  • Japanese Christian: Inori. She wears a cross necklace and often prays to God (not counting for when the students all have their morning prayer to their three Mothers). Her aunt even owns a catholic orphanage.
    • Heck, her NAME means "prayer".
    • Shizuku also gives Yuri a pair of couple's rings as an early Christmas present.
    • Their uniforms (all three completely different for each class) are sort of a mix of the Japanese Sailor Fuku and the Roman Catholic uniform.
  • Joshikousei
  • Keeping Secrets Sucks: Not only does the Rose and Cattleya classes have to keep the fact that they're vampires from most of the Lily class, but there's also the matter of Kou, Kiba, and Shizuku having ALL been attending the school for over 18 years. It should be easy; they can just erase memories and keep documents hidden. But after Yuri AND Nami eventually find out, they finally decide to reveal who they really are.
  • Kiss of the Vampire: Shizuku explains that vampire saliva contains a venom that dulls the pain from a bite. They can even numb their victims by exchanging the venom via an ACTUAL kiss.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: The vampires have to keep themselves secret, so they usually use their hypnotic powers to erase their memories.
  • Lesbian Vampire
  • Love Hurts: Sumire's feelings for Himeno remained unrequited, thus leading to her going crazy, killing Himeno, and finally ending her life out of guilt.
  • Love Potion: Mitsuko uses this on Ruka to make her only love her, in order to keep her from getting close to Nami.
  • MacGuffin: The night after the Winter Ball, Shizuku had planned to give Himeno one of a pair of couple's rings, but Himeno was killed before she could receive the gift. Shizuku decided to keep the rings and eventually gave it to Yuri as an early Christmas present.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Nami is the perfect example of this. She's a ball of sunshine, and quite the Determinator.
  • Meaningful Name: Lots of the Floral Theme Naming seems to relate to the characters one way or another.
    • Kou and Hikaru can both be translated into "light". Kou acts as a beacon of light to guide others, as well as a light of hope to reassure everyone things will be okay. Hikaru has a very bright, upbeat personality, and she's eventually the one to take her sister's place after she is stabbed and killed by Kiba.
    • Another name for the Lilian Princess is Yurihime. Yuri's name means "lily", while her past life Himeno's name means "princess". And they were both chosen as the Lilian Princess during the Winter Ball in their respective times.
    • Uta and Onpu both are associated music, Uta meaning "song" and Onpu meaning "note". The two can play musical instruments and they perform together during the Winter Ball.
  • More Than Meets the Eye: Mitsuko. Don't let her smile fool you; if you try to get between her and Ruka, she'll threaten you to stay out of the picture and make sure Ruka is hers to keep.
  • My Death Is Just the Beginning: Himeno's death started everything.
  • Mysterious Past: Shizuku. It's obvious something is wrong, but she doesn't want to talk about them.
  • New Transfer Student: Yuri.
  • Not Their Birthday: Taking a page from Disney's Alice in Wonderland, Alice (Yuri) and the White Rabbit come across the Mad Hatter, March Hare, and Dormouse celebrating their un-birthday and get in on the celebration when they realize it's their un-birthdays as well. Ironically inverted, however, because it actually is Yuri's birthday!
  • Ojou: Shizuku.
  • Older Than They Look: Applies to Shizuku, who appears to be 17, but is really 35, Kou, and Kiba, both a few decades old.
  • Only One Name: The characters are all addressed by their first names.
  • Ordinary Highschool Student: Yuri.
  • Performance Anxiety: Uta has this because she was bullied in the past, but Onpu is able to help her overcome it.
  • The Power of Blood: Type A here.
    • The Blood Pact that was created by the High Court after the century long war between vampires and humans.
  • The Power of Friendship: In the final chapter, Kureha awakens with the ability to wield a sword of vines to fend off Kiba, AND the entire school rises up to assist them.
  • The Power of Love: This ends up saving the day, as Yuri decides that the best way they can finally resolve the conflict, have Sumire forgive them, and free Kiba from her suffering, is to fight with love and kindness.
    Yuri: "We'll stop her with love."
  • Prophecies Are Always Right: Mizuki's future visions are extremely accurate. Shizuku and Himeno were bound together by the Blood Moon... but Himeno died, even though they did as much as they could to prevent it.
  • Psychic Powers: Vampires have these. Most have Telepathy, while some are gifted with very special powers that others don't.
    • Mizuki can see visions of the future.
    • Since her soul is connected to Shizuku's, Yuri gains the power of Empathy and is able to feel when she's in pain. This later extends to Sumire and Kiba.
  • Psycho Lesbian: Sumire (temporarily) to Himeno, Mitsuko to Ruka, and especially Erena to Kiba. Kiba probably doesn't even have any feelings toward Erena, since all she thinks about is Sumire.
  • Red String of Fate: Is actually the Blood Moon. Any two people who are bathed in the moon's blood red light will be bound together forever. Case and point: Shizuku and Himeno.
  • Reincarnation Romance: Yuri is the reincarnation of Himeno, Shizuku's former lover.
  • Romancing the Widow: Shizuku is like this for a while; she still has strong feelings for Himeno, but she eventually moves on after those romantic feelings are transferred over to Yuri.
  • Schoolgirl Lesbians
  • School Idol: The Rose class. The most popular among them is Shizuku.
  • School Play: In "Chibi Bara", the students put on a production of Romeo and Juliet, with Yuri and Shizuku as the leads.
    • This chapter serves as a reference to a radio show SKE did in the past, in which they did their own version of Romeo and Juliet, again, with Rena and Jurina as the leads. Unlike the play, however, the Star-Crossed Lovers receive a happy ending.
  • School Uniforms Are the New Black: Tsubaki Academy divides into three classes, resulting in three different types of uniforms of each their own color; the Rose class is red, the Lily class is white, and the Cattleya class is black/grey.
  • Seers: Mizuki has the ability to see the future. While they usually tend to come true, they can still be influenced one way or another. The only types of visions that more than likely WILL come true are visions of death.
  • Shared Mass Hallucination: The explanation given for the thorny vines growing due to Shizuku's powers emerging from a mental breakdown was that there was a gas leak in the greenhouse causing the plants to grow at a rapid speed.
  • Shipper on Deck: Several of Yuri's classmates are openly for the idea of her dating Shizuku. Most notable is Nami.
    • In return, Yuri supports Nami's feelings toward Ruka.
  • Sliding Scale of Vampire Friendliness: Want to know the biggest example of this dynamic? Kou and Kiba.
  • Something About a Rose: The Rose class.
    • Plus, Shizuku is called "The Rose Maiden". During the Winter ball, she even wears a red dress and is crowned with a tiara of red roses.
    • Kou has a red rose in the breast pocket of her blazer.
  • Talking in Bed: Shizuku and Himeno seem to have done this a few times since they were dating.
  • Talking in Your Dreams: Mother Lily communicates to Yuri during her Flashback Nightmare.
  • Talking in Your Sleep: Shizuku does this sometimes when she's dreaming of Himeno.
    Shizuku: "Himeno... Hime.. my Yurihime... come back to me..."
    Kou: "You don't have to worry anymore. Your Yurihime is with you."
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Kiba slips black rose nectar into Shizuku, Kou, and even Yuri's hot chocolate, which is deadly poisonous to vampires.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: This pretty much sums up the feud between the Rose and Cattleya class. The main conflict being Kiba toward Kou and Shizuku (and the entire Rose class) for Sumire's death, and Shizuku somewhat toward Kiba and the Cattleya class for Himeno's death.
  • To the Pain: The black rose venom acts as this. It starts with the brain, causing Hallucinations, then it hits the nerve system and causes the body to feel like it's being burnt alive, then it enters the bloodstream and slowly makes the other muscles and body parts grow weak, until it finally reaches the heart and claims the victim's life.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Ruka and Mitsuko.
  • Touch of Death: Opposite to Shizuku's power of bringing life, Sumire is cursed with the power to drain life away from plants, AND people. This only happens, however, when she's upset.
  • A Tragedy of Impulsiveness: Himeno and Sumire's deaths, as well as Kiba's Start of Darkness and the feud between the Rose and Cattleya classes ALL could've been prevented if Sumire just calmed down and told someone she had feelings for Himeno.
  • Tragic Villain: Kiba. Sure, she was consumed with revenge after Sumire committed suicide, but in the end, Was It Really Worth It?.
  • Tranquil Fury: Aya rarely ever gets mad, but she will if it involves Kureha.
  • Vampires Are Rich: Implied for the Rose class.
  • Vampire Dance: The annual Winter ball.
  • Vampire Fiction
  • Vampire Monarch: Three Goddesses (aka "Mothers") are worshipped by all the students of the academy.
    • Shizuku is also an heiress and a descendant of one of the goddesses. She is quite literally the "princess" of the Rose class.
  • Vegetarian Vampire: The Rose class does this. Kou states they usually take blood tablets or drink animal blood (and tomato juice).
  • Viral Transformation: Saki was bitten by Kureha and turned into a vampire, which caused her to be transferred to the Cattleya class.
    • Also, in a flashback, Onpu reveals that she let her hunger get to her and turned Uta into a vampire.
    • Nami also WILLINGLY lets Ruka bite her and turn her into a vampire so they can be together.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Kou and Kiba.
    • Also can be said for Shizuku and Sumire, when Sumire snaps and kills Himeno.
    Shizuku: "I thought we were once friends, Sumire..."
    Sumire: "Not anymore... I HATE you!"
  • Yuri Genre
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