If a character has a "Xeno" prefix, followed by the first two syllables of their name, that person is from Idolmaster: Xenoglossia.
If a character has an "iDO" prefix, followed by the first two syllables of their name, that person is from The iDOLM STER.
If a person has a "Doppel" prefix, followed by the first two syllables of their name, that person is a doppelganger created by me. The only time this will occur is for Project Fairy.
It was late. I knew that. I totally knew that! But even if I'd wanted to sleep, I couldn't. Something was keeping me awake, was pulling me, was calling me. I wanted to know what it was. I yawned and stretched, sitting up in my bed, glancing to the dumbbells by my side. I groaned.
"Why can't I sleep?!" I cried, speaking to whatever it was that was keeping me awake. That was when Baka Ribbon-excuse me, Haruka-opened the door. She looked just as tired as I probably did.
"You can't sleep either, Iori-chan?" she asked quietly.
I moaned. "No. Why, you neither?"
I leaned back in my bed. "What's keeping us up?"
"Yukiho-chan and Ritsuko-san are up also," Haruka pointed out. "Nobody can sleep."
"I don't understand," I whimpered. "I think…it's calling to me."
"Yeah, It is!"
"I don't understand, Iori-chan…" Haruka muttered, rubbing sleep from her eyes.
"That's because you're Baka Ribbon, and Baka Ribbon is always even more stupid when she's tired," I scoffed. "Haruka…hey, Haruka?"
"I'm still here."
"Do you feel It too?"
Haruka placed a finger on her mouth. "A little…oh, um…earlier I heard a whirring noise. Is that what It sounds like?"
"How should I know?" I sighed, exasperated. "Geez, Haruka, really…wait, did you say a whirring noise?"
"That's weird…" I said under my breath, standing. "Baka Ribbon. Come with me, and let's investigate!"
"Do you think it's them?" Haruka breathed. "Trying to talk to us?"
I froze. "Baka Ribbon will be Baka Ribbon, after all," I laughed, trying to sound cheerful. Not for her sake, but for mine. "Stupid. They're gone. They can't talk to us."
Haruka nodded slowly, a smile frozen on her face. "I miss him," she whispered.
"We all miss our iDOLs. But that's not going to change anything. They had to sacrifice themselves or they would have had nothing to come back to." I started walking again, out the door and out of the dorm. It took a while for me to realize that Haruka, Yukiho, and Ritsuko had all followed me.
What we found weren't the iDOLs—not that I thought it would have been—it was a huge, swirling mass of space. A nothing, almost. But it was alive-and it was calling to every single one of us. Taking a deep breath and Haruka's extended hand, I plunged into the Nothing, taking the others with me. The question was…where were we going?
"Ugh, what is taking them so long?" I groaned. "Producer and Ritsuko should have been back with the milk long ago. They're slacking."
"Don't worry, Iori-chan," Kotori said brightly. "I just got a call from Producer-san, and he and Ritsuko-san will be back very soon."
"That's what he says, but can you really trust a word that guy says?" I complained. "Yukiho, make me some tea while we wait."
Yukiho stood from her place beside Haruka on the couch in the agency and hustled into the kitchen, obeying immediately.
"Thanks," I added over my shoulder.
"You're welcome…" Yukiho called back.
I took her spot on the couch. "It's getting really late."
Haruka nodded. "Yeah, and Producer-san and Ritsuko-san are still out. What do you think is taking them so long?"
"Ritsuko's probably being annoyingly specific," I laughed. "'Two-percent milk, Producer! We need two-percent!' Doesn't she know my favorite is skim?"
Haruka laughed back. "Maybe…oh, Yukiho-chan, how's the tea coming?"
"I-it's fine," Yukiho stuttered. That girl may be good at making tea, but she was always so shy. It kind of irritated me. One of these days, I was going to turn Yukiho into a real thug. I had no idea how I would do it…maybe hire her a personal trainer? It'd have to be a female trainer though, or she'd never listen to them.
As I was pondering this, the door opened. Ritsuko's face appeared in the doorway, and Producer behind her, holding two paper sacks stuffed full with stuff. I leapt to my feet.
"There you are! Why do you have so much stuff?! All we needed was milk! Skim milk, mind you. I hope you didn't get whole milk, you know I hate whole milk..." That was when I saw them.
Four people, standing behind Producer and Ritsuko, looking bloody, dirty…and exactly like us.
I didn't know her, this head-banded girl in front of me. But somehow, she seemed achingly familiar—and by that I mean she looked exactly like me. Sure, the hair was a bit off, but she had the same skin, the same face, the same eyes…although mine were a little darker. And on the couch was a girl hat looked just like Baka Ribbon! Speaking of Baka Ribbon, that girl went straight for the one that looked like her and began to introduce herself.
"Hi! I'm Haruka, Amami Haruka. What's your name? You look a lot like me…"
The other Baka Ribbon looked shocked. "Um, I'm…Haruka! Amami Haruka," she explained, obviously a bit unnerved.
"There are two Baka Ribbons?!" I gasped.
"Baka Ribbon…good one," the other me snickered. "Why did I never think of that?"
I approached her and stuck out a hand. "Minase Iori."
Gingerly, she shook it. "Minase Iori-chan. Pleasure to meet you."
I narrowed my eyes. "You're Minase Iori, I'm Minase Iori…that's Amami Haruka and Amami Haruka…"
"And I'm Akizuki Ritsuko, and this is Akizuki Ritsuko too!" our Ritsuko piped up, gesturing to her look-alike, who gave me a curt nod.
Yukiho squeezed into the room. "That's strange," she commented. "How will we know which is which?"
Just then, a girl who looked just like Yukiho came into the main room holding a tray of tea. "I-I finished the tea, Iori-chan…" When she saw our Yukiho, who waved politely, she squeaked and dropped the tray to cover her mouth with her hands. "Wh-wh-who are y-you? A-and why do you look like me? And w-why are there so many Haruka-chans?!"
The Harukas waved. The other me took one look at the spilled tea and looked straight at the man who'd walked here with us.
"You! Producer! Clean that up, will you?" she demanded. The man sighed.
"I'll help!" offered the other person I didn't recognize, a green-haired lady who had been here when we arrived.
"Hello, I'm Hagiwara Yukiho," our Yukiho said sweetly, gazing curiously at her look-alike.
"No you're not! I-I'm Hagiwara Yukiho!" the other Yukiho gasped.
Their Ritsuko shook her head. "Producer, just leave those bags in the kitchen. I'm going to see if I can figure out what's going on." She started off towards a computer. I exchanged a glance with the other me.
"On the bright side," she began, "at least there aren't two Makotos."
I groaned. "That would be a nightmare."
"I totally agree!" she gasped. "Nihihi! One weird little thing running around is hard enough, but two of them? And we already have to put up with two Ritsukos and two…what did you call Haruka again?"
"Baka Ribbon," I answered.
"Right! Two Baka Ribbons," the other me finished. "Let's solve this right away. You may call me Iori-chan."
"I'll be…Minase? Or maybe just plain old Iori," I offered.
Iori-chan nodded. "Producer, from now on I am known as Iori-chan. If you want the other me, just call Minase-chan." She glanced at me. "Sound good?"
"Then Iori-chan and Minase-chan it is."