Mitsuba Higashikata (東方 密葉 Higashikata Mitsuba) is a secondary character featured in the eighth part of the JoJo's Bizarre Adventure series, JoJolion. Gaining significance during the "Doctor Wu and Awaking 3 Leaves" story arc, she becomes a temporary ally to Yasuho Hirose.
Mitsuba is a woman of average to slim build. She has short, medium-colored hair with sideswept bangs curled upward. Her outfit consists of a shirt with two cutouts on her upper chest and a checkered skirt. She also wears a pair of heels.
In her later appearance, her bangs are no longer curled upward and her hair is longer on the sides, now covering her ears to hide her skin hardening to stone. She wears a short sleeve top with knots on the shoulders, shorts, wristbands, a long transparent dress, and a pair of high heels. Her shirt is adorned with a downward arrow symbol, whereas her wristbands have symbols with arrows pointing both upward and downward.
It is revealed that Mitsuba has had different parts of her body successively turning into stone due to her treatment at the University Hospital. Starting with her teeth, her scalp above the right ear was then affected, and finally both of her legs were crumbling to the bones for a short period of time. Having an additional Locacaca treatment that cost her the arms of the fetus inside of her, she nonetheless ate another Locacaca to her child, leaving her with no nose.
Mitsuba is a vain woman, caring a lot about her appearance and wanting to look perfect. It is revealed that she has repeatedly visited Dr. Wu Tomoki to have various operations to maintain her good looks (for instance having a breast enlargement operation), paying large sums of money behind Jobin's back. She also demonstrates some petty selfishness, as she closes the door of an elevator before an old woman with crutches can enter just so she can have it to herself, as well as using her Stand to make Maako and others of the parent council spill their drinks over themselves.
However, it is also shown that she cares deeply for her children, willingly eating a Locacaca to save her unborn child even if there was a risk of her dying. For the sake of her child, she also proves herself to be a fierce and resourceful fighter, brutally stomping Wu Tomoki when he gets in her way. She also fiercely defends Tsurugi when he's accused of injuring Mina. However, in private, Mitsuba also harbored doubts about Tsurugi. When push comes to shove, Mitsuba reveals how ruthless she can be: when she has to choose between saving Yasuho Hirose from drowning in a toilet through Paisley Park or keeping the secret of the Locacaca that will cure her son, Mitsuba cold-heartedly decides not only let Yasuho die, but tries to ensure that she dies by pushing the phone further down the water.
- Main article: Awaking III Leaves
Mitsuba's Stand, Awaking III Leaves, takes the appearance of a cloaked humanoid adorned with a multitude of arrow-shaped designs. Using her stand, she can manifest small hand-sized arrows that redirect energy and objects outwards towards their tips.
In her school days, Mitsuba was known as "Miss Cherry". She won a contest and got to travel to China and Europe for the fruit of Japan. She ended up meeting Jobin, and married into the Higashikata family. She then became a model for the Higashikata Fruit Company's ads. She had support from the whole family and her modeling helped with sales as well. After that, Mitsuba began to see Dr. Wu Tomoki to fix the signs of age, unknowingly being one of the guinea pigs of the Locacaca Organization which tested the effects of the Locacaca-derived medicine on her.
Mitsuba is introduced as Jobin's wife by Norisuke Higashikata IV during Josuke's arrival at the Higashikata Household. She is seen carrying around her child, Tsurugi, and was present during the family photo.
Shortly after a fire has ravaged the Higashikata family's orchard, Mitsuba arrives at TG University Hospital to see her physician Dr. Wu Tomoki about her sudden loss of balance and hearing that morning, as she feels something wrong with her right ear. Dr. Wu examines the ear and hides from her the fact that it has turned to stone, and says it is simply a dry scalp due to allergies and it is nothing to worry about. Mitsuba demands that he treat her, as she has felt the skin and it feels like stone. She then mentions the pattern she has noticed since she came to him for a breast augmentation earlier, after which her teeth felt as if they turned into stone, making her drool uncontrollably and lose her sense of taste, forcing her to cover her mouth to avoid talking to people. After she came back to him to treat this malady, her hearing loss began soon after. She demands treatment, as she knows her young son will say something if he feels the skin is wrong. Dr. Wu makes a phone call, and then offers her one more treatment for 200 million yen. Unbeknownst to both of them, Yasuho Hirose has come to the hospital to treat her menstrual pain, and she spots Mitsuba being wheeled away in a wheelchair while her ankles have crumbled away down to the bone.
Suspicious, Yasuho calls Josuke, who is already on the way to the hospital with Rai Mamezuku to investigate a possible Rock Human there, and he warns her to stay put. However, she tries to follow Mitsuba, only to find her completely healthy and no longer in the wheelchair. After telling Yasuho about her breast augmentation, and saying she originally met Jobin after she won a modelling contest for Morioh's Miss Cherry competition and becoming a model for the Higashikata Fruit Company, Yasuho asks what happened to the wheelchair she was in, but Mitsuba cannot remember one. Yasuho soon discovers the chair disassembled and stuffed in the office's desk drawer, while Mitsuba is overcome with a desire to drink Dr. Wu's silicon-infused water and nori. Yasuho tries to call Josuke to warn him of what she has found when she is attacked and knocked out by a stone fragment entering her ear. Mitsuba, not in control of her own body, drags Yasuho's body into the office and closes the door.
Yasuho awakes and finds Mitsuba pinning her down, her body unusually heavy and covered in weird blisters, until Yasuho yells at her, which brings Mitsuba back to her senses. Yasuho asks Mitsuba if she has taken the Locacaca, knowing it has been causing a series of equivalent exchanges in her, but Mitsuba cannot remember what has happened, as there is nothing physically wrong with her. Yasuho tries to find a way out, but after discovering her cellphone has been destroyed in the previous attack, finds herself attacked once more by stone fragments leaving Mitsuba's hands. Once Yasuho frees herself, she warns Mitsuba that they are under attack by a Rock Human who is only after the secrets of the Locacaca, when Dr. Wu reconstitutes himself from the stone fragments and says he is in the organization for more than that, and asks that Mitsuba stay behind so he may continue his examination. Yasuho drags Mitsuba out of the office, who then asks what else could have caused the equivalent exchange, when she confides in Yasuho that she has been hiding a new pregnancy from her husband and son. As Yasuho realizes the horror of the situation, Mitsuba calls forth her Stand Awaking III Leaves and resolves to get to the bottom of what Dr. Wu has done to her.
Mitsuba uses her power to redirect things through summoned arrows to create a safe zone and then propels herself to kick Wu into a wall then stick him to it. Going up to the gynecology department, Mitsuba and Yasuho expel the remainder of Wu's fragments but Mitsuba sees with horror that the child inside of her has been partially turned into stone. Wu reappears in the elevator, but using her Awaking III Leaves, she triples the acceleration of the elevator to send Wu on the ground, uses tape to stick his fragments and tosses them out of the hospital. Putting the foetus' fragments back inside her, she resolves to save it. Finally Mitsuba reaches the examination room and discovers with Yasuho a secret laboratory doubling as a garden for Locacaca trees.
Mitsuba eats one of them to save her child, but she doesn't realize that Wu has come back and hidden inside the fruits, infiltrating and controlling her body again. However, Yasuho manages to fight him back and Josuke arrives to finish Dr. Wu off. The Locacaca she just ate has taken effect and she loses her nose.
6 days before the Harvest, Mitsuba goes to take Tsurugi from school. But then one of Tsurugi's comrade, who had teased him about Kaato being a child murderer, is crushed between iron gates. Tsurugi is the prime suspect, and though Mitsuba vehemently defends him, she has her doubts. Moreover, she notices on a video recording that the head doctor of TG University Hospital, Dr. Satoru Akefu, is standing near the gates.
Later, she meets Jobin at her house, and her situation becomes more complex as she not only see Akefu again near the estate, but also catches a glimpse of the Locacaca hidden behind cacti in Jobin's possession, causing him to suspect her.
48 hours before the Harvest, Mitsuba is busy cooking for the family. Her peace is suddenly broken as she learns about the death of her acquaintance Maako Kitani and that Josuke is a wanted man. She then spots Satoru Akefu lurking near the house again but in her distraction, cuts her fingers. A freak accident happens but Mitsuba manages to repair her fingers and deflect boiling water into the ceiling. Reminiscing every suspect element she's seen in the past few days, Mitsuba begins to suspect that something his amiss. However, her thoughts are interrupted when a drop of water injures Tsurugi and his Rock Disease finally goes out of control, causing Paper Moon King to seemingly turn Tsurugi's body into an origami.
On the day of the incoming Harvest, Mitsuba suddenly sees Yasuho through one of the camera feeds. Thinking that Yasuho has come for her son, she rushes to Tsurugi's room and sees Jobin watching Paisley Park in a cell phone drown in the toilet of the secondary bathroom. Yasuho cries for help and Mitsuba asks Jobin what is going on and if she can save Yasuho as she was an ally, but Jobin tells her to get out and keep this incident a secret. Mitsuba also reveals by accident where Jobin has hidden his Locacaca plant and Yasuho overhears this. Mitsuba then sees Satoru Akefu from a window and makes up her mind. Determined to protect her son at all costs, Mitsuba ignores Yasuho's cries for help. She reveals to Jobin that she's seen the doctor lurking around the house several times and that his every appearance heralds incoming disasters. Determined to protect the Higashikata Family, Mitsuba takes things a step further and tries to push the cellphone further into the water. However, a water drip falls from the ceiling and pierces her hand. In her confusion, Mitsuba misplaces one of the arrows she sets up and the force is directed into a wall.
The wall is destroyed and reveals the hidden Locacaca plant to the rest of the Higashikata Family. Mitsuba is then forced to witness her family tearing itself apart as Norisuke exposes Jobin's links to Ojiro Sasame's and is taken out (or worse) by Speed King, in addition to Tsurugi's condition worsening by the minute. In her mind, she becomes sure that this string of disasters is a deliberate attack from Satoru Akefu's part. Mitsuba finally sees the head doctor inside of the house as he steadily approaches her in impossible ways, such as traversing a computer screen and then the glass panels of a bookcase. She warns Jobin of the head doctor's presence, but Jobin fails to listen to her when she warns him not to go after the head doctor. Jobin completes his attack and it seems that nothing happens, save for a damaged hair spray that bursts. Mitsuba begs Jobin to get them out of the situation but Jobin realizes that she implies and refuses to let go of the fruit. Eventually, Jobin succumbs to blood loss as the dip tube of the hair spray pierces his chest and lets the blood flow out of his body at a dramatic rate.
Later on, Tooru infiltrates the Higashikata residence to retrieve the Locacaca plant from Yasuho. Mitsuba, along with Tsurugi, Hato, and Daiya, are caught along Wonder of U's calamity as the plane door flying towards Yasuho lands inside the house. At the same time, Kaato Higashikata visits the household only to find her son dead. Mitsuba hears the commotion and crawls towards the garage in a bloodied state. The rest of the family including Yasuho sees Kaato attack Tooru in order to perform an Equivalent Exchange between Tsurugi and Tooru. The exchange is successful - Tooru disintegrates, Tsurugi recovers, while Kaato is revealed to have been stabbed due to Wonder of U's ability. With the family curse broken, the Higashikata family attend to Norisuke, who is in an incapacitated state, while an ambulance arrives in the estate.
Days later, the Higashikata family go to the Higashikata Fruit Parlor to order a cake as a celebration for Norisuke's discharge the next day, as well as a new beginning in the Higashikata family history. Daiya invites Yasuho and Josuke who have been walking nearby. While choosing a cake made by the Higashikata parlor, everyone breaks down into tears, including Daiya, Hato, Tsurugi, and Joshu. Tsurugi then insists Josuke to choose a cake. With the family reunited once again, Yasuho sheds a tear before exiting the room.
- “You know, back in my school days, I was Miss Cherry. Lelo. As the winner of a contest, I got to travel to China and Europe for the fruit of Japan. That's how I got to know my husband Jobin and ended up marrying into the Higashikata family. I was even a model for Higashikata Fruit Parlor ads. Moreso after I had Tsurugi than when I was younger. I had support from the whole family and it helped sales, too.”
- “Getting older is fine and all... but I can't let my nails get dirty or my breasts sag. After becoming the wife of the Higashikata Family, even if I'm a mom, I have to keep turning heads or it's all over for me.”
- “Everything is beautiful and healthy as healthy can be... my body is perfect from head to toe!”
- “What got traded away in the equivalent exchange? Yasuho... I need to find out what happened during my treatment.”
- “One arrow... another arrow... three arrows. Any energy that is attacking me, I can move in a direction up to an arrow. I can move energy to the points of the arrow marks! The name of my Stand is Awaking III Leaves. If I use three arrows, I can move energy the shortest route out of the space they surround!”
- “If I just run away from this with the excuse "I didn't know"... I'll never live it down. I already... have feelings of love welling up in me.”
- “You want to mediate and smooth things over...? Don't spout that nonsense to me! Not you, or you, or you! Or any of your children! If you ever... lay a single finger on my Tsurugi without justifiable grounds again... I'll break those fingers without a second thought.”
- “Everything that's coming to crash into this family, my Awaking III Leaves will flush down the drain and out of there. Now flush away!”
- “Noǃ You must not go towards the head doctorǃ (駄目ッ!!こっちから「院長」への攻撃はッ!!Dame!! Kotchi kara `inchō' e no kōgeki wa!!)”
- With her namesake being the Club, it plays into the theme of the names of women in the Higashikata family being playing cards references, with Kaato standing for "Card", Hato for "Heart" and Daiya for "Diamond". Tsurugi stands for "Sword", which, in earlier versions of the game, "Spade" was replaced with the "Sword" suit.