Headmistress

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Media Mix Character


Headmistress


"To be able to graduate from being young girls, you all need to die once."
Kanji/Kana 学園長 (がくえん ちょう)
Alias N/A
Actor Jun Miho
Status Alive
Occupation Headmistress/Nun
Appears in Fatal Frame: A Curse Affecting Only Girls
Fatal Frame: The Movie

The Headmistress is a character in Fatal Frame: A Curse Affecting Only Girls and Fatal Frame: The Movie. She is a graduate of the school herself. She is troubled by her students' mysterious disappearances.

A Curse Affecting Only Girls

The Headmistress of Saint Loudun's Academy for Girls, and a former student there. In her day, she performed Ophelia's Song at the graduation ceremony. She is given to flowery speeches full of metaphor, but Kasumi feels they are insincere, as if the Headmistress is only reciting words she has learned. She has a painting of Ophelia in her office, and the same picture is on the cover of the school pamphlet.

Ritsuko and Kasumi come to ask the Headmistress whether Aya will be able to perform in the ceremony, since Aya has been absent for two weeks and everyone assumes she is being punished for something. The Headmistress is evasive, speaking poetically about the cycle of death and rebirth. She explains that, although a song about a woman drowning seems like an odd choice for a graduation ceremony, the students are all similar to Ophelia, because a part of them must die before they can emerge as who they were meant to be. Like butterflies emerging from their cocoons, she says, the students will shed their girlhood with their school uniforms, and be reborn as women. Ritsuko takes this to mean, as well, that once Aya has reflected on whatever she did wrong, her punishment will end and she will be able to come out of her confinement to perform in the ceremony.

Later, as they investigate the disappearances at the school, Aya and Michi realise that the Headmistress is more deeply involved in the history of the curse than they could have guessed. Long ago, the Headmistress was in love with another girl, Mio Takaishi. They were lovers for three years, but because their relationship was taboo, they decided to perform a rite that would allow them to be together in the afterlife, and then commit suicide. They walked into the lake together, and Mio drowned, but the Headmistress survived. In revenge, Mio placed a twofold curse upon her: she would be unable to die, just as Mio was unable to achieve true peace in death, and every three years, she would be required to sacrifice a young girl as an offering to Mio, by placing their photographs alongside Mio's in the Ophelia Album. In this way, she would atone for the three years of love that she betrayed.

She grew up, graduated and became the Headmistress of Saint Loudun's, continuing to make sacrifices. She would curse new applicants to the academy using their ID photos, so that the disappearances would be scattered across the country and not traced back to the school. Her attempts at suicide never succeeded - she always ended up back in her own bed, unharmed - and to explain the length of her employment and her changeless appearance, she posed as her own successor many times, saying that the job was hereditary and passed on to close family members.

Twelve years before the events of the novel, she took in twin orphan girls, Aya and Maya Tsukimori. She decided that one would be allowed to live at the school, with all the advantages it conveyed, but the other would be sacrificed. She took them to the suspension bridge near the shrine and offered them the choice of who would live. Maya chose to die for Aya's sake, and the Headmistress threw her into the river to drown.

When she went to the shrine to offer up Maya's photo, however, she found someone already there. It was a student at the school, Taruho Saginomiya, soaked in blood and holding a saw. Taruho had killed and dismembered a classmate she believed was trying to seduce her brother. Taruho witnessed the Headmistress killing Maya, and so the Headmistress was forced to keep Taruho's secret in return for Taruho's silence. The two conspired to destroy the shrine and the evidence of Taruho's murder, and rebuild it with funds from a donation which Taruho would make to the school. The old worship hall, along with the ghost marriage photos and the picture of the Headmistress and Mio that began the Ophelia Album, reappeared in a secret underground shrine behind the painting in the Headmistress's office.

Even so, after being treated as an equal by a murderer like Taruho, the Headmistress re-evaluated her actions and began to feel the weight of her sin. For twelve years, she cursed nobody, but fate conspired to ensure that the curse would continue. Her actions, combined with those of Takashi and Taruho over the years, caused Kasumi and Itsuki to die, and when Taruho's murders were uncovered, the Headmistress took responsibility and resigned. She was found dead in the water tank in the forest, smiling.

In the novel's final section, the 'new' headmistress, who looks exactly the same as the old one, crawls out from the room behind the painting. The curse begins again.

Movie

When she was young, the Headmistress was in love with another girl (unnamed in the movie). In order to be together in the afterlife, they followed a local tradition where girls would have their portraits taken at Kusanagi Photo Studio and then drown themselves in a nearby lake, which had since become a water reserve. However, the girl who would later become the Headmistress could not bring herself to jump into the water, so the girl she loved died alone.

After that day, the Headmistress became fixated on the idea that the girl could not move on, that her body would not decay and she would haunt the Headmistress forever as a cursed spirit. After years of guilt, the Headmistress decided to make a sacrifice at the water reserve, so the ghost would not have to suffer alone. Her victim was Maya Tsukimori, the twin sister of Aya.

Later, a curse begins to spread through the school as Maya's spirit reaches out, trying to be reunited with her sister. The curse culminates in several disappearances and deaths. Finally, Maya's body is discovered in the water reserve, and the siblings Mayumi and Takashi Asou are blamed for the murders. However, the Headmistress confesses to Mary that the original death that began the chain of events was her doing. Mary nonchalantly replies that it no longer matters, since the curse is broken. Alone in her office, the Headmistress listens to the students at the graduation ceremony singing Ophelia's Song again.

References


Characters
Major Characters
Aya Tsukimori - Headmistress - Kasumi - Mary - Maya Tsukimori - Michi - Risa - Susumu Kusakabe - Takashi Saginomiya - Taruho Saginomiya
Minor Characters
Itsuki - Keiko Makino - Kuro Karatsu - Mio Takaishi - Nagi - Ritsuko - Waka
Terms
Ophelia Album - Ophelia's Song - The Girls' Curse - Yuukon
Locations
Saint Loudun's Academy for Girls
More Pages
Zero Media Mix
Characters
Aya Tsukimori - Michi Kazato - Headmistress - Itsuki Kikunobe - Kasumi Nohara - Keiko Makino - Kuro Karatsu - Mary - Maya Tsukimori - Mayumi Asou - Mio Takaishi - Risa Suzumori - Susumu Kusanagi - Takashi Asou - Waka Fujii
Terms
The Girls' Curse - Ophelia's Song
Locations
Kusanagi Photo Studio - Seijitsu Academy
More Pages
Zero Media Mix