Shoujoai ni Bouken: Adventures of Yuriko


Volume 1, Issue 1

“Meet Yuriko”



"Just once more and we’re done.” Yuriko could feel the cool slime of cold cream pass across her cheek, followed by a vigorous circular rubbing motion. Her skin became warm, and the slimy feeling changed to a slightly tacky sensation. She sighed impatiently and crossed her arms. The sensation ceased.

“You’re done.” The hairdresser was tall, scandalously thin and exceptionally effeminate. He put his hands on his hips and looked at Yuriko condescendingly. “That wasn’t *that* bad, was it?” He leaned forward, peering at her closely. “Oh wait, I missed…” She slapped his hand away and stood abruptly.

“That’s it! I’m done here! Sheesh!” Yuriko ripped the smock from around her neck. “Thanks, sweetie, but I have to go home.” She slammed the smock down onto the chair she had vacated and was at the door in three steps.

As she left the room, she could hear the hairdresser saying petulantly, “Fine, but don’t complain to me if you have dry skin!” Yuriko bared her teeth in what might have passed for a smile and slammed the door. Stopping in the hall, she sagged back against the wall and took a deep breath.

A woman laughed, the voice musical and girlish. “Yuri-chan, did the widdle hairdwessers abuse you again?” Yuriko looked up to see her best friend, Mariko, waiting for her.

Yuriko smiled and straightened. “Yes, they’re really too much. In fact, “ she gestured broadly, “this is all insanely over the top. It’s only a commercial, for pity’s sake, not that you’d know it from the way Andre’ is acting.” She caught up to Mariko and the two women started down the hallway. “I mean, we’ve been filming for three days already!”

Mariko laughed again. “You are such a whiner, Yuri. Most women in your position would be thrilled.”

“I’m not most women,” Yuriko commented unnecessarily.

Glancing up at her friend, Mariko enquired, “You seem in a rush. Got another date tonight?”

Grinning sardonically, Yuriko shook her head. “No. I’m beat…I think I’ll just go straight home tonight.”

Mariko watched her for a moment then stopped where she stood. Pointing at Yuriko, she laughed behind her hand. “You didn’t get any offers today, did you?” Yuriko looked down at her friend, startled, then flushed slightly.

“No, as a matter of fact.”

Mariko leaned against the wall, almost doubled over with laughter. “Poor, Yuri. How are you going to stand it…after all, you’ve got needs,” she giggled until Yuriko closed in on her, pinning her to the wall.

Yuriko glared down at her friend, and bared her teeth once again. “I guess I’ll just have to rely on my friends, then…” she leaned forward, moving her face close to Mariko’s.

Mariko gasped, then blushed, then flushed dark red and pushed Yuriko away. “No! I can’t…wait, that’s not what I meant…” and flushed again as she realized that Yuriko was laughing at her. She turned away angrily and began walking down the hall again. She could hear Yuriko catch up, but ignored her.

“Sorry,” Yuriko apologized.

Mariko softened, then smiled. “It’s okay - after all, I was teasing you first.” She paused. “You didn’t mean it, right?” she asked softly.

Yuriko took Mariko’s arm and threaded it through her own. “It depends.” Mariko turned to look at her friend, open-mouthed, then realizing the Yuriko was still teasing her, slapped the blonde with her free hand.

Laughing, the two women left the studio.


“Ladies and Gentleman, I’d like you all to welcome the hottest thing to come down the pike this week…Yuriko!” Ouch, that hurts

Applause, teenyboppers screaming.

“Welcome, Yuriko…thanks for coming.”

“Thanks for having me.”

Mutual bowing, shaking hands, sitting.

“Wow - I see you’ve got quite a fan club here.” Laughter.

Shy smile. “I can’t help it, apparently.” More laughter, more screams.

“Well, let’s see - you’re doing modeling right now, right?”

“Ah, yes. I have a new series of commercials coming out. We just finished filming them. Um, they’ll be on the air in a month or so.”

"What our viewers really want to know is about you, personally. Do you have any hobbies?”

Cross legs, place hands on knee. “I like to dance.” Screams interrupt, wave at fans a little, grinning.

“Your fans seem to know that already.” Chuckling.

Look down at paper. “How about boyfriends? Anyone special in your life right now?”

Grin, look into the camera, “There’s no one special person right now…or a boyfriend, either.” Screams again, increasing in volume. Nervous laughter from the host.

"Let's twenty-four you've already made a name for yourself in music, modeling and acting. What’s next for you?”

Hand behind head, look embarrassed. “I’m not really sure. Another acting role, if a good one comes along…maybe a new album. I guess we’ll see.”

The host nods, catches the signal for commercial. “Well, thanks for coming by today - everybody, let’s hear it for Yuriko!” Gesture, applause, shrieks. Standing, shake hands, bow. Host turns away, looking a little discomfited. Walk off stage, grinning.

At the back door, fangirls press up against the barrier. Lean over, place a kiss on one cheek, press another hand, sign a few autographs. One little girl, all brown eyes and nervousness, passes over a rose. Break the stem, tuck the rose into lapel, then slowly, carefully, kiss the back of her hand. She nearly passes out and her friends practically climb over the barrier.

With a wave and a smile, climb into the car. Lean back and loosen the tie. Heavy sigh. One more down, only a thousand to go.


“Yuri, do you have any white wine?”  Mariko asked, her head buried in the refrigerator.

“Check in the rack.”

“I did, there isn’t any.”

“You are a such a pain sometimes.” Yuriko turned on the CD player then stepped towards the kitchen. She opened the closet, dug her way into the back and pulled out a bottle with a bow tied to its neck. Mari took it from her and smiled at the bow. Soft strains of a cello concerto filled the apartment.

“Gift from another admirer?”

“Mari!” Yuriko snapped. “Gods, you are bad…no, a gift from a friend, if you must know.”

Mari chuckled and opened the bottle. She poured two glasses and handed one over to Yuriko, who sipped at it.

The two women sat, without uneccesary chatter. Mariko watched her friend recline on the sofa, her eyes closed. Her lean form was complimented by the suit she wore, the tie insouciantly loose, her gold wire-rim glasses giving her an academic look. She looked like a young college professor from a novel, Mariko thought. The kind that is always having advances made towards him by the students.

Without opening her eyes Yuriko asked, “You seeing Hachi tonight?”

Mari swallowed her wine and placed the glass on the table at her side. “Yes, he’s coming here to pick me up - is that okay?”

“Oh, sure.” Yuriko sipped more of her wine. “What time is he coming?”

Mariko raised an eyebrow. “What time do you need me gone?”

Yuriko’s eyes opened and she gave Mariko an innocent stare. “I don’t know what you mean.”

“When is she coming?” Mari choked on her words as soon as she said them. “I mean, when is she supposed to be here?”

Yuriko gave her friend a wry grin. “About eight.”

“I’ll be gone at 8:05, then.” Mari winked.

“Checking my date out?” Yuriko laughed.

“You know I’m always looking out for you.”

“Always. You’re the best, Mari.” Yuriko leaned forward and held her glass out. Mariko tapped hers against Yuriko’s and they both drank.

The doorbell rang at 7:55; Mariko got up to answer it. Her fiancée, Hachigoro, gave her a smile and entered, kissing her shyly on the cheek. Waving past Mariko at Yuriko, Hachi stepped up into the apartment.

“I hope we’re not being too inconvenient.” Hachi said, his voice almost soft enough to cover his slight lisp.

Mari slipped her arm through his. “We have to go…in a few.”

Hachi laughed in Yuriko's direction. “Got a hot date tonight?” He slipped an arm around Mari and looked at her fondly. “Me too.”

Mari slapped his arm lightly. “You hope.”

Yuriko grinned at her friends. “Yeah, me too.” They all laughed.

The doorbell rang again. Yuriko jumped up from the sofa. “If it’s alright with you, I’ll get this one.” She opened the door to a petite woman whose short, dark hair swung lightly at her temples. She was wearing a short cheongsam that on another woman might have looked flashy - on her it looked natural. She bowed slightly to Yuriko and stepped into the foyer. Glancing up, she was surprised to see Hachi and Mari.

“Uh,” Hachi said hastily, “we have to be going.”

Yuriko closed the door and introduced her friends to her date. “This is Faye. She’s from Hong Kong.”

Greetings were made, then Mari grabbed Hachi’s arm. “We really have to be going now.”

Yuriko waved brightly as Mari winked behind Faye’s head. The door closed once again. 


“So, how was Faye?” Mariko asked the next day. Yuriko sat in her trailer, waiting for the camera call.

“You mean how was my date with her, don’t you?” Yuriko asked pointedly, glaring as best she could without cracking the makeup on her face. She was dressed as an Edo-period samurai, with almost Kabuki-like heavy white makeup lying thickly on her face.

“No.” Mariko said lightly.

“You’re really twisted, you know?”

“Hachi and I thought she was cute.” Mari continued, as if the blonde hadn’t spoken.

“Me too.” Yuriko grinned, then immediately thought better of it.


The door shut behind Yuriko. She walked over to the desk and seated herself on the corner, grinning down at the harried form of her manager.

“Get off my desk.” The cigarette dangling from Kishi’s mouth punctuated her comments by wagging up and down as she spoke.

Yuriko didn’t move. “Your chairs are uncomfortable.”

“Then sit on the floor…or stand. Get your butt off my desk.” Kishi looked up and glared.

Yuriko stood, laughing. “Okay, okay.” She held up her hands placatingly and backed away from the desk. Seating herself in one of the chairs, Yuriko put her hands behind her head and lounged while her manager ignored her pointedly.

At last the older woman pushed the papers on her desk aside. Taking a deep drag from her cigarette, she blew out the smoke and ground the stub out.

“So,” she said, giving Yuriko an acid look. "Where the *hell* have you been? I’ve been calling you for two days!” Kishi slammed her hand on the desk in frustration.

Yuriko’s slow smile was maddening. “At a love hotel.”

Kishi sneered. “Uh-huh.” She reached for a pack of cigarettes and lit a new one. “For two days.”

Yuriko’s smile broadened. “Yup.”

“Gods,” Kishi muttered, “you are such a…”

“Tomcat,” a male voice interceded neatly. The owner of the voice entered from the front door and bowed slightly to Yuriko.

Kishi sucked on the cigarette, but said nothing further. Yuriko bounced to her feet and bowed deeply.

“Good afternoon, Miyamoto-san.” Yuriko could be charming when she wanted, Kishi admitted to herself, but the girl really got on her last nerve.

“Good afternoon, Yuri-kun, Kishi-san.” The agency manager beamed at them. “We’ve just got news of a great new opportunity for you, Yuri-kun.” He handed over a sheaf of papers to the manager, who ground out her finished cigarette and leaned over the desk to receive them.

Yuriko nodded. “What kind of opportunity?”

Miyamoto smiled avuncularly. “Well, apparently one of the major studios wants to do a “reality” series about High School, about the pressures, the joys, the difficulties of being a teenager…and they want you to star in it.”

Yuriko looked thoughtful. “Am I playing a boy or a girl?”

“You’re not playing anyone.” Miyamoto put his hand on her shoulder. “You’re playing yourself.”


“We’ve enrolled you in Mitsukawa High School as a senior. Just be yourself. The film crew will try to stay out of your way as much as possible, remain in the background. We’ve already made arrangements with the administration. You have nothing to worry about.” Miyamoto reassured her. With a comforting pat, he removed his hand from her shoulder.

“Just remember to do your homework!” Laughing at his joke, he turned away from the stunned blonde and headed towards the office door. “Kishi-san, if you have any questions, give me a call.” Kishi bowed as he finished, and didn’t straighten up until Miyamoto had left the office.

The manager gave her client a nasty grin. “Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?”

Yuriko made a face. “Oh, great. Because high school was so much fun the *first* time around…”



Volume 1,   Issue 2

“Back to School”


Yuriko lifted one hanger to her chin, then the other. She tried to imagine each outfit on her body, but the images just didn’t work. She looked at Mariko in the mirror, pretending not to see the evil grin her friend was giving her.

“Which one do you think I should wear on my first day?” Yuriko asked, switching hangers once again. “Boy’s or girl’s?”

Mariko put a hand to her chin thoughtfully. "Try them on, let’s see what they look like.”

Yuriko shot her friend a suspicious look and entered the dressing room. When she came out, she was wearing the girl’s uniform. Yuriko clapsed her hands in front of her waist and waited for Mariko’s verdict.

Mariko looked her up and down and nodded. “You know, you look better in that than I would have suspected.” She grimaced. “I forgot that about you…you always make your clothes look good.”

Yuriko smirked a bit and pulled gently at the hem of her skirt, lifting it slightly. “You don’t think my legs will be too distracting?”

Mariko stuck her tongue out. “Probably. Let’s see the boy’s now.” She shooed Yuriko back into the dressing room. When the blonde came out a second time, Mariko gave a low whistle. “Don’t do that, it’s bad for my heart!” she laughed. The stiff, military-style uniform looked splendid on Yuriko, and Mariko could tell that her friend knew it.

“There is something to be said for custom tailoring,” Yuriko commented, turning to the mirror and smoothing the jacket across her hips.

"Okay,” Mariko rendered the verdict at last. “I’m saying start with boy’s, but wear the girl’s the second day, so they don’t get any chances to make assumptions.”

“What?” Yuriko asked with a grin. “Like that I might be a cross-dressing lesbian or something?” She laughed. “Wouldn’t want them to get any funny ideas like that.”

Mariko protested, “No, I didn’t mean that…okay, yes I did. Forget it. Wear the boy’s.” She smiled at Yuriko admiring herself in the mirror. “You always were a little vain.”

“Mari, thank you.” Yuriko took both her friend’s hands in her own and looked down at the brunette fondly.

“Whatever for?” Mariko looked puzzled.

“For saying *exactly* what you’re thinking.” Yuriko leaned down and bussed Mariko on the cheek. “I’m going to need you more, while I do this stupid project.”

Mariko blushed prettily. “I’ve been your friend a long time, Yuri. I don’t plan on going away anytime soon.”


The nightmare starts early, Yuriko thought. She was pretty much a morning person these days, since most shoots began earlier than people think, so getting ready for school wasn't an issue. She smiled brightly as she combed her hair, thinking of how her old homeroom teacher would have laughed to see her now. She had so many "tardy"s on her school record it almost wasn't funny.

Book bag in hand, uniform neatly pressed, Yuriko had the car let her off about a block away from school. She walked along with the other students, none of whom appeared to know her - or even notice a new student walking with them at all. She relaxed slightly, and was surprised to note that she was actually rather tense to begin with.

It was just after entering the main gate that it started. She was walking briskly towards the school entrance when a harsh voice rang out.

"Hey! Hey you!"

She slowed her steps slightly.

"Yo, pretty boy! Yeah, you!" A second voice laughed cruelly.

Yuriko turned to see four disheveled figures slouching along the brick wall. She pointed at herself and asked, "Are you talking to me?"

The first voice belonged to a stocky young man, whose upper lip was in need of a shave. His uniform jacket was unfastened and there were worn areas at the wrist and elbows. "Yeah, I'm talkin' to you. You see anyone else here?"

Yuriko did, in fact. At least thirty students were now slowing their progress, watching the interaction.

"No." She smiled. "No one else at all."

The ringleader pushed himself off the wall and approached her belligerently. She found herself staring him nearly in the eyes. He leaned forward and growled, "What are you - some kind of fag?"

She thought about that for a split second, batted her eyelashes at him and preened. "No," she said, softening her voice and raising its pitch slightly, "I'm a girl."

She could hear the snickers come from the students around her. She wanted to glance over her shoulder and see if the camera crew had arrived yet, but remembered she was to meet them in the Principal's office. She groaned inwardly.

The ringleader turned red and spluttered. "I guess we're going to have to teach you a lesson so we get some respect."

Yuriko yawned delicately and looked at her watch. She patted the ringleader lightly on the arm and said. "You can beat me silly, but to be honest, you'll never get an ounce of respect out of me. Now if you'll excuse me..." she turned away to the sound of thirty gasps of surprise.

Welcome to your first day of high school, Yuri, she thought wryly.


"Welcome to your first day of High School!" The Principal looked like every principal since the dawn of time. His beaming smile masked his intense dislike for youth and his fear of rebellion. Yuriko bowed deeply and thanked him for allowing her to be a part of his school, yadda, yadda, yadda... He welcomed her fulsomely, and introduced her to her homeroom teacher. Yuriko turned towards the young man and bowed. When she stood upright once again, she glanced at him in some surprise.

Abe-sensei was young, probably not much older than she was. What was more, she thought as she eyed him critically, I'd bet ten thousand yen that he's... her thoughts were interrupted by the arrival of the camera crew.

The arrangements were simple. A single cameraman would discreetly film her classes, while the full crew would be available for interviews with her, and outside activities. Yuriko rolled her eyes as she realized that the only time she'd have to herself would be in the bathroom...she hoped.

Eventually the formalities ended. It was close to the end of homeroom, so Abe-sensei suggested that he and Yuriko make the best of their time. The two left the Principal's office with many a bow, followed by a cameraman and a production assistant, who looked exhausted already.

Abe-sensei looked behind him nervously. Whispering to Yuriko, he asked, "Is that woman going to be alright? She looks terrible."

Yuriko smiled reassuringly. "She's a PA - they all look like that." Abe-sensei nodded, but did not look happy.

They reached the room and slid the door open. Abe-sensei entered and the students stood, then at his nod, were seated. "Everyone, I'd like to introduce to you a new student. She'll be with us for a while..." He looked down at the folder he held in his hand. "Please make, uh, Yuriko, welcome..." His voice was drowned out by the buzz of voices in the classroom as Yuriko stepped in.

She bowed and smiled. " My name is Yuriko. Nice to meet you." The buzz continued and she stood, content to wait it out.

Abe-sensei looked completely flustered until one girl, her hand raised, stood shyly and asked, "Excuse me. Are you *the* Yuriko?"

Yuriko nodded and said, "I guess my reputation precedes me, huh?"

Abe-sensei looked from the girl to Yuriko and back. "*The* Yuriko?" He asked, puzzled.

The girl shot him a disdainful glance, then turned back to Yuriko with hearts in her eyes. "Are you really filming a new show here?"

Yuri gestured to the cameraman in the corner. "Apparently." To which answer, the girls in the class practically shrieked with delight, while the boys all muttered and wondered amongst themselves.

Abe-sensei attempted to regain order, but one of the boys stood up and asked loudly, "Is it true what they say, did you really face down Uto and his gang this morning?" Silence fell and Yuriko grimaced internally. Yep, just the normal life of a high school student. "Um, not really." The buzz was disappointed.

Abe-sensei used the lull to assign Yuriko a seat. She placed her bag on the desk and bowed briefly to the girl in the next seat. The girl giggled and turned red from her neck to her ears. It took everything Yuriko had not to place her face in her hands and whimper.