The next few paragraphs are just various notes about this story and its history, so you don't have to read those either if you don't want to - you can scroll down to the scene library to pick a specific scene, or just keep scrolling to start from the beginning.
When I first started this route, I did so because I wanted to write a story - I had been inspired by Scissorlips' work, linked above. However, I was somewhat "egged on" by something else: "The Curse of Miura". When I started planning and writing this story back in September 2013, there were no finished Miki Routes. There were lots of completed short stories, but it seemed that, whenever someone tried to write a full route (covering an entire relationship, similar to the various routes within the base game), they ended up having to stop after only a few releases, sometimes for odd reasons. Not one to turn down a challenge, I vowed to finish a complete route about Miki.
It might seem silly to have acted on such a superstition, but there's a little bit of method hidden in the madness: because nobody ever got too far with a Miki route, there was actually very little Miki content at all, and I was more than happy to try and fill the gap. So, for exactly a year, I was in charge of one of the most-complete Miki routes on the market. Then, on Christmas Eve 2014, just a few hours before I was about to release a pair of new scenes, a new story called Summer's Clover was released in a single update (as opposed to scene-by-scene, as myself and many others often do). It was a complete Miki route written by none other than Suriko, who you may know as the writer responsible for Lilly's route in Katawa Shoujo.
That, in my mind, is when "The Curse of Miura" was broken. It's fitting, really, that such a feat was accomplished by a writer who I personally hold in such high regard. I quickly released my Christmas update, then spent a long time trying to build up the courage to read Summer's Clover. It was brilliant, just as expected. I was quite humbled by the fact that one of my heroes had just written a story similar to one of my own, but I also realized that Suriko was portraying a much different set of characters than I was. His Hisao, Miki, and Suzu were well-written, but they were also quite different from the ones I was writing about. As such, I decided to keep working on my route (much to the delight of those who had come to enjoy following it). The curse might be dead, but I think that my work should live on.
Of course, deciding to keep writing and actually doing that writing are two very different things. Throughout the course of my work, I've had a number of long hiatuses. In early 2014, I was undergoing preliminary treatment for my depression: 146 days between updates. For most of 2015, I was dealing with further depression related to college, which eventually led to me dropping out: 248 days between releases. Late 2015 to early 2017, I spent most of my time at a job which, though well-paying, destroyed my free time and ate at my soul a bit: 669 days between releases. You can see that I haven't exactly been consistent - for more details, you can check out a spreadsheet that I keep updated with these statistics.
For some people, this has probably been too long. I won't blame anyone for choosing to stay away, wanting to avoid another massive hiatus. However, I will continue to do my best. I really do enjoy writing this story and releasing it for people to read, and I know that there are at least a few people who enjoy reading it. We're a long way from the end, and I can't guarantee that I'll be able to make it all the way there, but I can guarantee that I'll be trying my best to provide well-written content whenever possible. If you'd like to join me along the way, you're more than welcome to. :)
Anyways, with all that boring stuff out of the way, let's read a Miki route, shall we?
- Act 1: Commoners
- Landfall - There's a new kid in class, but things remain mostly the same for Suzu and Miki. Mostly.
- Amends and Amenities - Most doors, once closed, can be re-opened. Hisao needs some help with this concept.
- Act 2: Adventurers
- Body and Spirit - Hisao saves Miki from the present, Miki saves Hisao from his past, and they both plan for the future.
- Tossing and Turning - Miki deals with her phantom pains decisively, and cools down with Hisao for the first time.
- Impact - Miki sets out to battle phantom pains, but ends up dealing with a different problem entirely.
- Converse Appropriation - Hisao is prepared for class, and Miki is decidedly not. Luckily, she's got friends in smart places.
- Little Angels - Miki and Hisao take a Sunday trip to the city, complete with conversation and dessert.
- Self-Insufficient - Miki isn't making the grade, so help is enlisted, and turns out to be more pertinent than expected.
- Cover - The track meet is almost here, but sailing is far from smooth.
- Path A: Keep your secret
- Vigil - Miki has been up all night, which is a suboptimal way to prepare for a track meet.
- Freefall - Having run her races, Miki focuses on studying with a partner who ends up learning more than just chemistry.
- Lithobraking - Best friends know when they're needed, and Miki needs Suzu now more than ever.
- Path B: Tell your story
- Structural Integrity - Miki and Hisao have a lot in common - they just need to show it.
- Weightlessness - With the track meet over, Miki has even more time to talk with her friends than expected.
- Coelliptic - Miki worries about Hisao, but he has much more important things on his mind.
- Rendezvous - Miki and Hisao have spent more than enough time back-to-back. Finally, they end up face-to-face.
- Act 3: Protectors
- Layover - Miki steps in to help Hisao twice, and ends up surprised both times.
- Contact Light - Suzu clutters Miki's mind, but Hisao does his best to clear it.
- Uplink, Downlink - Miki and Hisao tell Suzu their secrets, one of which is no longer secret.
- Local Dawn - Hisao gets a letter from his past, as well as a late-night visit from Miki.