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akʲi ɕizɯha (♫)
Shizuha Aki in Mountain of Faith
More Character Titles
Goddess of autumn leaves
Controlling the turning of leaves
Shizuha Aki (秋 静葉 Aki Shizuha) is the goddess of autumn leaves and thus have to power to control the turning of the leaves. She is Minoriko Aki's older sister and together they have the ability to control autumn. She first appeared in Mountain of Faith being a stage 1 midboss.
She believes that the autumn colors of the turning leaves are the best thing about autumn, and is filled with a sense of superiority when she shows the beauty of the leaves to her sister. She becomes sorrowful and pessimistic as winter approaches.
Surprisingly, she doesn't use supernatural powers to turn the leaves red. Instead she "paints" them by hand, which is why the colors of the leaves are inconsistent. Fallen leaves are another part of her work. Instead of dropping leaves moderately, she simply kicks on the trees and scatters them roughly.
She is the goddess of autumn leaves and with her sister, who is the goddess of harvest, they control autumn. Together they are not the best at fighting, but when someone is disrupting autumn they punish that person.
It is difficult for her to gather faith, which makes it a bit challenging to distinguish her from a normal youkai. However, goddesses of autumn leaves appear to be pretty rare, so she doesn't have the problem of competition that her sister Minoriko faces.
Her name is Shizuha Aki (秋 静葉). The character for Aki (秋) means "Autumn", and Shizuha (静葉) means "quiet(静) leaves(葉)".
Shizuha has yellow-orange eyes and short blond hair with red autumn leaves in her Mountain of Faith official art. She wears a long red-orange dress with darker red at her middle and arms and more orange towards the bottom and ends with leaf-shaped cut-outs around. There is a white collar at the top of the dress. Under the white collar there is something what resembles a nametag, with three buttons next to it. She has white socks and black shoes.
Shizuha was under the impression that the heroine in Mountain of Faith was coming to disrupt autumn, which prompted her to attack. But she was easily defeated, however, being a mere first-stage midboss.
Minoriko is her younger sister. Together they control Gensokyo's fall season. Shizuha often brags about how beautiful she makes the leaves look, but is also jealous about Minoriko's popularity with humans as a harvest goddess.
- It makes very much sense for Shizuha to be the older sister who is the goddess of turning leaves as the leaves change in autumn before the harvest.
- Despite being older than her sister, Minoriko, she only appears as a mid-boss in her stage and has no dialogue in the game. This has lead most doujin authors to represent Shizuha as an immature and unreliable older sister who depends on her younger sister for everything.
- She is sometimes shown to be jealous of her sister's greater popularity among humans and/or curvier figure.
- Since Minoriko and Shizuha are the spirits of autumn and "disappear" during winter, and Letty is the spirit of winter, fans suggest a rivalry between them. This leads to depictions of Shizuha openly attacking Letty; after all, she is a spirit of autumn and despises winter.
- Because she and her sister were ranked the lowest of the Windows characters in a year's annual Touhou Popularity Poll, there is a running joke in Japan that they are "original characters" with negligible presence in the games. There is a doujin anthology project dedicated to the Aki Sisters, perhaps to compensate for this.
- On her character portrait, the leaves on her head roughly resembles a crab if they are seen as a single piece rather than two. This occasionally leads to her being associated with one, the leaves on her head being replaced by one, or herself replaced by one in fan works.
- Aoneko (Nicovideo, Pixiv), noted to be one of the biggest fans of the Aki sisters, started an Aki sisters-only video website called AkiTube.
- Even though her character portrait, her sprite, and each of her print work appearances show the bottom of her dress as being shaped like leaves, many fans omit the detail and instead draw her dress as having a straight edge.
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