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Tsukimiya Ayu

Japanese name: 月宮 あゆ
Nickname: Ayu Ayu
Name: Ayu Tsukimiya
Birth Date: January 7th, 1982
Horoscope: Capricorn
Age: 17
Eye Color: Red
Hair Color: Brown
Height: 154 cm
Weight: 41 kg
Three Sizes: 80-52-79
Blood Type: AB

Ayu Tsukimiya is a fictional character and the main heroine in Key's adult visual novel Kanon, followed closely by Nayuki Minase who is the only Kanon heroine to appear with Ayu on three of the official game covers released by Key. Ayu was created by Naoki Hisaya who wrote her scenario for the visual novel, and designed by Itaru Hinoue. Hisaya commented on how he thought Ayu was the one character in Kanon that he felt he grasped the best, but noted it was very difficult to write her character due to Ayu being primarily energetic. After Hinoue drew wings on Ayu's backpack, Hisaya suggested that they remove them due to spoiler reasons, and while Hinoue went along with it at the time, the wings were later included once again.

Yuichi Aizawa, the protagonist of Kanon, meets a lively seventeen-year-old Ayu on the day after he moves to the city depicted in the game. As the story progresses, Yuichi discovers that she is trying to find something she lost, but she cannot remember what it is; Yuichi tries to help her in her search, but with no initial success. One of her most defining characteristics is the repeated utterance of her catch phrase "ugū" which she mutters as an expression of various negative emotions such as frustration, anger, and fear. Her favorite food is taiyaki, and is seen eating the confection many times throughout Kanon.

The main focus of both Kanon anime is Ayu, who has also appeared in all of Kanon's adaptations, and has been incorporated into numerous dōjin games. Ayu makes a cameo appearance in the second episode of the Air anime series along with Nayuki, and Makoto Sawatari from Kanon. Her voice actresses are Yui Horie in the Japanese versions of the visual novel and anime, and Brittney Karbowski in the English version of Kyoto Animation's Kanon anime, who also voiced Ayu during her cameo in Air. A leitmotif named "Hidamari no Machi" ("A Sunny City") is associated with Ayu which is played in Kanon numerous times during scenes which involve her, and is also used in a similar fashion throughout Kyoto Animation's Kanon anime. In a review by Anime News Network, Ayu is described as a character that "persists on a degree of earnest cuteness that will endear her to some viewers."

Curiosities:
# Ayu has been parodied in several anime. Episode eight of ]Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi parodies Kanon and other adult games. In it, Ayu's Japanese voice actress Yui Horie plays a girl that is modeled after Ayu, and references taiyaki and "ugū" near the end.
# In episode four of Lucky Star, Konata gives a tardy excuse to her teacher Nanako, stating that she was late because there was a girl running away from a taiyaki seller; after listening to the excuse, Nanako utters "ugū" out of frustration.
# Another parody in Lucky Star is that when Kagami scolds Konata in episode thirteen when she complains about her winter break being occupied by homework, Ayu's backpack appears behind Konata, and she utters "ugū
# In the anime adaptation of Air, Ayu makes a cameo appearance in episode two along with Nayuki Minase and Makoto Sawatari as regular girls who talk with Yukito Kunisaki briefly.

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