|First appearance Mai-Otome||Episode 1|
|Voiced by|| Saeko Chiba (Japanese)
Cheryl McMaster (English)
|GEM||Ice Silver Crystal|
|Known relatives||Saeko Kuga(Mai-Hime)|
|First appearance Mai-Hime||Episode 1|
|Beloved person|| Shizuru Fujino
Natsuki Kruger is a fictional character from the Mai-Hime and Mai-Otome anime and manga series. Her name is Natsuki Kuga in the Mai-Hime series. She is voiced by Saeko Chiba in Japanese and Cheryl McMaster in English.
Natsuki Kruger is the 2nd of the Five Columns whose Master is Fumi Himeno, herself. She doesn't need a certification from an individual master and can materialize whenever she wants.
Natsuki's Gem is the Ice Silver Crystal and her master is Fumi Himeno. She requires no certification, though her ability to use a Robe is dependent on the status of Fumi.
Robe & ElementEdit
Her robe is mostly ice-blue and black and it resembles her Child from Mai-Hime. When she attacks the strings at her robe ram themselves into the earth to support her.
Her Element is a massive cannon capable of executing an energy attack called the Howling Silver Wolf. Both the shape of her weapon and the name of its attack are also a reference to Natsuki's wolf-like Child Duran in Mai HiME.
In the Mai-Otome anime series, Natsuki Kruger is the headmistress of Garderobe, as well as #2 of the Five Columns. She has a calm, reserved, neutral, and calculating personality, often only appearing in episodes to comment on the political situation and making decisions for Garderobe based on it. Her closest friend is Shizuru.
In the past, Natsuki was a loner, but after meeting Mai during her time at Garderobe, she gradually began to open up to others. She hoped to become Shizuru's room attendant, having looked up to her, but was disappointed when Shizuru thought of her as another fan. After a talk with Mai, she approached Shizuru and expressed her desire to learn more about her, resulting in them developing a new understanding of each other.
Natsuki first appears in the middle of episode 1 in her office at Garderobe, talking to Shizuru about the current political situation. At the end of episode 1, she welcomes Arika Yumemiya to Garderobe, and is the first person to recognize the Blue Sky Sapphire GEM. In the following episode during the Garderobe council, she supports Arika's admission into Garderobe, and gives Arika of her knowledge and guidance wherever and whenever possible. As she watches over the learning progress and rivalry between Arika and Nina Wáng, she makes the comparison between the past and present rivalries of Mai and herself, Shizuru and Haruka Armitage, and Arika and Nina. She hopes that her faith upon them will not let her down, which is supported by later events.
In the following episodes, she makes appearances either commenting on the escalating political conflicts or acting as the head of Garderobe. She does not battle until episode 17, when she and Shizuru team up against Aswad. However, she loses her Robe due to Schwartz's meddling, and becomes unconscious due to the explosion caused by Arika's and Nina's battle.
Natsuki is taken outside of Windbloom territory by Juliet Nao Zhang and Yamada. Nao and Natsuki travel to Aries in episode 19 and to Cardair in episode 22 to seek help in reclaiming Garderobe. In episode 23, the two end up in the Black Valley, reunited with Arika, Mai, and Mashiro.
Natsuki and Nao return to Garderobe to assist with the counter-coup. Natsuki succeeds in regaining her Robe in episode 25, but her subsequent attack against Fuka Castle is deflected and she loses her Robe. She is reunited with Shizuru, but they are powerless against Schwartz's intravenous wave jamming. Regaining her Robe again at the beginning of episode 26, she joins the other Columns in taking back Fuka Castle, and is the one to destroy the Harmonium.
She returns in Mai-Otome Zwei to oversee the Meteor Destruction Operation alongside Yukino Chrysant and the leaders of the other nations, then backed up Arika and Mai in the Black Valley before being forced to return to Garderobe and later with Arika interrogating Nagi. She is currently holding the SOLT (Strategic Otome Limiting Treaty) with other nation leaders in Artai, while awaiting investigations from Nao and Yohko. On Episode 4 of Mai-Otome Zwei, she later directs the Otome teams to take down Yuna in the form of Fumi Himeno and her spawned Childs, and gives Arika and Nina enough time and chance to successfully destroy Yuna once and for all.
In the Mai-Otome manga, Natsuki Kruger is the headmistress of Garderobe. She is also the daughter of Aries' current president, Saeko Kruger, and the sister of Alyssa Kruger. Natsuki's main role in the story is running the Academy and making sure Mashiro Blan de Windbloom stays in line.
Eventually, Alyssa comes to the academy proposing that the Otomes be replaced by the Maids, mass-produced replicas of Miyu, in the hopes that this will enable Natsuki to come home to Aries and spend more time with her. Natsuki rebuffs this, and has her students compete with the Otomes. When Midori breaks free during the final competition with Miyu and the attacking Aswad threaten Alyssa, Natsuki stands up to protect Alyssa, causing her to realize that she truly cares about her.
Natsuki's GEM and Robe are the same as in the anime, with minor cosmetic differences. Her master is initially Fumi Himeno and later Lena Sayers (when the title of source passes from one to the other).
Common characteristics: Natsuki is typically portrayed as a serious, rational blue-haired female, as a foil to the lighthearted Mai Tokiha. She usually has Shizuru Fujino as a close friend. Natsuki always uses some type of gun as her weapon and she is usually associated with wolves, silver and the element ice. She also has a habit of flicking her hair with her right hand. She has a tendency to become irritated easily.
Initially, Natsuki doesn't want to work with Mikoto or Mai, but as the series progresses the three fight off the various Orphans at the academy, they become friends.
Natsuki's purpose for fighting is revealed in episode 9 when the three girls investigate an old First District lab. Natsuki tells the others that she wants destroy the First District for causing the death of her mother, a researcher of the First District.
Natsuki rescues Akane Higurashi from the First District's lab in episode 13; Akane later reveals to Natsuki in episode 17 the link between a Child and the HiME's most important person.
In episode 20, Natsuki learns from John Smith that her mother actually attempted to sell her to the Searrs Foundation, rather than attempting to protect her. This sends Natsuki into depression, preventing her from summoning her Element or Child and allowing her to be caught by Nao.
Natsuki is saved by Shizuru and later finds out that Shizuru is actually in love with her. Natsuki later confronts Shizuru in an emotional battle in episode 25, which ends with the deaths of the two after Natsuki kisses Shizuru and orders Duran to fire. They are later revived in episode 26 with the other HiME and destroy the HiME Star. The official guidebook suggests that Natsuki's relationship with Shizuru becomes deeper as time goes on. And in the novel, "Natsuki Prelude" (also in the artbooks vol 1, 2), there's a backstory of Natsuki revealing that while she sent Takeda a rejection note (she thanked him and also apologized for not returning his feelings) she told herself that there was someone's feelings she must accept, referring to Shizuru (She was contemplating this in episode 25, after a conversation with Sakomizu only seen in "Natsuki's Prelude").
Child & ElementEdit
Natsuki's Elements are a pair of small pistols, with the spheres on the pistols providing it with unlimited ammunition. She also displays knowledge of hand-to-hand fighting techniques. Natsuki's HiME mark is located on her lower left back, an area said to be governed by Leo, her zodiac sign.
Natsuki's Child is Duran, a silver wolflike creature named after her deceased pet dog. It has a pair of cannons on its back, and in its hind legs are several different types of projectiles: Silver Cartridges create icicles, Chrome Cartridges are conventional explosive charges, and Flash Cartridges produce a blinding light. Duran is also capable of close-combat fighting, and it can transform into a hoverbike that Natsuki can ride.
In the Mai-Hime manga, Natsuki Kuga is a typical tsundure character involved in a love triangle with Mai Tokiha and Yuuichi Tate, the latter being the Key for both girls. Natsuki shows a rivalry with Mai in the first chapter, indicating the two were fighting since before Yuuichi appeared. Natsuki's inability to do housework and her fondness of mayonnaise is more emphasized in the manga than in the anime.
Natsuki remains the same in the manga except she appears able to control ice to some extent erecting an ice wall in Chapter 15 to protect Tate. She, along with Mai, still has her HiME mark on her lower-left back.
Natsuki's Child is Duran, similar to the anime version but named after the doll her mother gave her. It has the same cartridges as the anime version, although Silver Cartridges actually encase the target in ice. The Duran used by Natsuki's mother used a new type of Cartridge called 'Plutonium Cartridge' - highly explosive shells much more powerful than the Chrome Cartridges. Natsuki's Duran had one more transformation to go through and it became Golden Duran. It also became able to fire Diamond Cartridges, which freeze the molecules of their target with 'absolute zero' temperatures. This is the form that Natsuki used to defeat QUEEN Mai and a Dark Kagutsuchi in a one-on-one battle.
Actions Natsuki is first shown in chapter 1, fighting Mai in front of Fuka Academy. She is the first to realize that Yuuichi is a Key - more specifically, her Key - but is surprised when he turns out to be Mai's Key as well. In chapter 5, Natsuki reveals her reason for fighting: to avenge her mother, who died at the hands of a HiME. Later in that chapter, events force Natsuki to move in with Mai, Mikoto, and Yuuichi. In chapter 7, Natsuki joins the Ori-HiME Team; it is shown later in chapter 12 that this was only to get information on every HiME on campus, which Shizuru gives to her. She rejoins the Anti-Orphan Squad at the end of chapter 14, helping to defeat Haruka Suzushiro and Yukino Kikukawa. Natsuki loses the ability to summon Duran when the relationship between Mai and Yuuichi is revealed in chapter 24. In the following chapter, she meets her mother, who is revealed to be alive and working for the Searrs Foundation, and her sister, Alyssa Searrs. She refuses to work with her mother, leading to a battle with her sister in chapter 29. Natsuki frees Mashiro Kazahana, who holds off Alyssa and allows Natsuki to confront her mother at the gate of the HiME Star. During the ensuing battle, Natsuki regains the power to summon Duran in chapter 34 and subsequently defeats her mother. In chapter 38, Yuuichi and Natsuki break into the Obsidian Palace where they encounter QUEEN Mai. After Natsuki defeats QUEEN Mai and a Dark Kagutsuchi in a one-on-one battle with her powered up Duran(Golden Duran),Yuuichi convinces Mai to help stop her brother.The three fight Takumi Tokiha, and in chapter 43 use the Sword of Kagutsuchi to defeat the HiME Star's Child and saved Takumi. In the final chapter, Natsuki is now living with her mother, sister, and Miyu Greer and still fights Mai over Yuuichi.