Wednesdays, 10.00 – 10.54 p.m. from 3 July 2013
Aoyagi Koharu met Shin on a tram platform seven years ago when she was 20, and they got married. She bore two children and their lives were happy. However, Shin died in a freak accident, and Koharu became a single mother to their daughter and son. Koharu decided to love the children for him and protect them at all costs. It is not easy for her to raise them with what she earns for a living. She holds more than two part-time jobs and works hard, but the situation is difficult and she ends up leaving them in the apartment to go to work at an eating establishment even at night. There is no longer time for her and the children to interact. Eventually, the electricity is cut off due to the outstanding balance. A distressed Koharu visits the welfare office to apply for welfare benefits, but the attending officer inquires about her income and the cause of her husband’s death, and is reluctant to grant it to her on the grounds that she does not meet the requirements. Furthermore, Koharu replies that her father is dead and she has not met her mother in 20 years when asked if she has sought help from her relatives. 20 years ago, Koharu’s mother Sachi had left her and her father for the man she loves. Mother and daughter broke off relations after that. As life gets harder, Koharu is pushed to the breaking point. At this point, a welfare officer finally decides that Koharu’s family is eligible for welfare benefits. However, her application is not approved because her mother expressed a desire to help her in response to an inquiry from the welfare office. Koharu cannot believe her mother had actually said such a thing. In order to receive welfare benefits, she decides to meet Sachi for the first time in 20 years. Koharu comes face to face with her mother’s new husband Kentaro when she visits the house. Kentaro is the man Sachi chose over her husband and daughter. Then he tells Koharu something unexpected … …
Mitsushima Hikari as Aoyagi Koharu
She was creative and sensitive as a child. Because of that, she was aware of the strife between her parents. When her parents divorced, she was placed in the custody of her father’s side of the family and was estranged from her mother. At the age of 20, she married Aoyagi Shin, the first man she truly loved and had children. However, this happiness was short-lived. Shin died in a freak accident and she became a single mother. She is poverty stricken but protects their 6-year-old daughter Nozomi and 3-year-old son Riku with her life. She realises that it is her role to show love to them. Even after Shin’s death, she continues to love him with all her heart.
Tanaka Yuko as Uesugi Sachi
Aoyagi Koharu’s mother. She was born to parents who were teachers and raised with a sense of morals. At the urging of the people around her, she went along with an arranged marriage and gave birth to Koharu. But she could not forget about Uesugi Kentaro, the man she was passionately in love with before her marriage. One day, a chance reunion with Kentaro spurred her to abandon everything and choose to be with him. Naturally this was not something which could be forgiven. She got a divorce and could not take Koharu with her too. Her relationship with Koharu was broken off after that. She hears that she has two grandchildren from welfare officers more than 10 years later, and meets her daughter again.
Oguri Shun as Aoyagi Shin
Aoyagi Koharu’s late husband. He was sincere, kind and had a keen sense of justice. He travelled all over the world as a mountaineer. Then he and Koharu married, and he switched to a safe job when their children came along. They were not rich, but just as they were starting to build a happy family, he ironically met with a mishap at a train station. While trying to pick up fallen pears that were a gift from Koharu’s mother, he was hit by a train. He continues to give Koharu moral support now that he is dead.
Suzuki Rio as Aoyagi Nozomi
The Aoyagis’ eldest child. Because she grew up seeing her mother Koharu toil, she is precocious with a fortitude and level-headedness beyond her years. She also takes good care of her 3-year-old brother Riku who suffers from somewhat delayed speech.
Tanimura Mitsuki as Sunagawa Aiko
She aspires to be a doctor even though she is poor and finally becomes a houseman. She later discovers that Aoyagi Koharu has a serious medical condition, and becomes deeply involved with her. She has a son with her husband Ryosuke, who works for a welfare office, but their marital relationship is strained.
Miura Takahiro as Sunagawa Ryosuke
The officer in charge of the welfare office’s social assistance. Sunagawa Aiko’s husband. He personally listens to Aoyagi Koharu’s problems when she comes to the office, but he cannot fight against the government’s policies or public opinion. In the end, it ends without him being able to help her. He later resigns from the office and tries to be there for Koharu but … …
Nikaido Fumi as Uesugi Shiori
The only daughter of Uesugi Sachi and Kentaro. She has been living without really knowing that Koharu is her step-sister, but she is thrown greatly off balance by the appearance of Aoyagi Shin’s appearance at the Uesugi household on one occasion, and builds up an emotional barrier after that. She feels uneasy about Koharu who has been widowed. However, she conceals her connection in Shin’s death, as she makes the acquaintance of Koharu’s children, and gets friendly with them.
Takahashi Issei as Sawamura Yugo
Aoyagi Koharu’s attending physician. An outstanding doctor at the hospital where Sunagawa Aiko works. There was a time in the past when he had to pronounce his beloved wife’s death as a doctor. He is a compassionate person but usually appears cool.
Kobayashi Kaoru as Uesugi Kentaro
Uesugi Sachi’s present husband. He was saved by Sachi, whom he once loved, just as he was about to die like a homeless man due to certain circumstances. He cherishes Shiori, the daughter whom he and Sachi had late in life, very much. A tailor by trade, the small tailor shop that he runs is close to going out of business. He is not a vague person. On the other hand, he has a droll side although he is usually mild. He soon plays a part in bridging the deep rift between his wife and Koharu.
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The heroine is in a really tough spot. This promises to be a gripping scenario.