Rumi Aikawa (相川 留美, Aikawa Rumi) is a support character from the Metal Slug series.
Rumi's primary intention of joining the Regular Army is because of her mother diagnosed with a heart condition as well as her older sister, Madoka, who was physically weak, so that both of them can make use of the Regular Army's medical facilities for treatment.
During her training, she was accidentally shipped to the frontlines after a paperwork fiasco and, despite the fact that her training was not yet completed, she manages to escape fighting unscathed and without capture.
After the first conflict with the Rebellion, Rumi is given a chance to resign from her position, and carry out the rest of her life as a civilian. She declines the offer and transfers into the Regular Army's Intelligence Division.
As a supply sergeant, she packs an incredible amount of cargo into her backpack and tries to deliver them to the friendly forces, out in the battlefield, in hopes to help them win. However she has a horrible sense of direction and often gets lost. This results in her appearing out of nowhere and vanishing without a trace, gaining her the nickname "The Wandering Ghost" by other soldiers.
Her sister, Madoka, also appeared to have joined the military but in a bid to be more fit. Like her sister though, she too has been thrown to the frontlines by problematic paperwork and often wanders off within the battlefield. Rumi is constantly worried about her sister's health even when not in the battlefield.
Rumi is a young woman with blue eyes and blonde hair in a ponytail. She wears an enormous backpack full of supplies, green wrist bands, a white blouse tucked into a green pair of shorts, a dark belt with a silver buckle around the waste to hold her shorts up, white socks rolled up to her knees and green boots.
Unlike other POWs, Rumi is not found tied up, rather just mindlessly wandering around. Tagging Rumi will cause her to fall on the ground, dropping whatever item she's holding, and flee after a salute. If Rumi walks enough steps without being tagged, then she'll drop the item and run away by herself, forfeiting a POW bonus. The player is able to shoot her backpack for more items at the expense of making her walk faster.
In Other Games
Rumi makes her debut appearance in the PlayStation 1 version of Metal Slug in the Another Story mode after clearing Chris Key's story. Her appearance is different than in Metal Slug 2 onward. In the game's manual, she is a brunette dressed in a flashy and revealing medical outfit while in-game she's blonde and wears purple shorts, blouse, and boots.
Her side of the story revolves her and a group of soldiers disguising themselves as old men and willingly surrendering to the Rebels to acquire information and act as a location point for Marco's Special Forces. After a week in captivity, Rumi gets tired of waiting for Marco to arrive and rallies up the group to leave.
Alexander Suvorov soon stops Rumi and accuses her of being a reckless and giddy idiot. He then challenges her to apply the Regular Army's special technique of hiding objects in their pants. She succeeds and Suvorov allows her to run towards Marco's group. However, Suvorov later finds out that Rumi went in the wrong direction towards enemy lines and sends his troops after her. She is found unharmed and apologizes for her error.
In the end, the overall operation has been a success. Rumi believes it's due to her being more active in her role than everyone else and hopes she'll be promoted to a Super Devil if she continues working hard.
In Mission 24 (The Ice Queen), Rumi can be found hidden inside a small room that is accessed by doing a Metal Slug Attack on a specific gap; she gives the E-Armor to the player. Rumi can be only be rescued if Red Eye completes Mission 22 (One Fell Stroke) with the Slug Flyer intact. Every other route puts Red Eye in the final stretch of Mission 24 rather than in the beginning. Tequila always starts from the beginning.
Rumi becomes a more prevalent character, showing up in cutscenes and working as mission control for Marco and company. Rumi also gives the player access to the Garage, where they are able to modify their Slug to be deployed in missions.
In this game, Rumi slowly supplies Action Points (or AP) to deploy units. At every specific threshold, her icon turns from red to green allowing the player to level her up. The rate of AP supplied goes faster and more AP can be held (up to 9999 AP) as the level increases. At level 10 (MAX), Rumi stops walking and stands still at a salute. When a new mission starts, Rumi starts back to level 0.
The player is able to increase the AP supply speed and limit permanently by paying MSP per level up.
Rumi has various animations from what action is occurring on-screen. She trips when the player levels her up, salutes when the player wins and runs away from a loss.
Rumi works the same way as in Metal Slug Defense, with the cap now increased to 99999 AP. The game introduces the Recovery Support (represented by Rumi as a nurse) where activating it restores health for on-battle allies and automatically ends the production delay of units.
As a Unit
Rumi becomes a playable unit in the "Amadeus Revenge" event as a Box Crank unit, complete with new animations. While she doesn't seem like a competent fighter, with her close range attack being a nervous flailing of her arms, she has strong arm strength, able to toss multiple grenades at once from afar.
Her special revolves calling the Regular Army Helicopter and throwing items onto the battlefield while on the rescue ladder. The items can be picked by the player's units, with the Heavy Machine Gun temporarily increasing attack strength and Bomb Crates instantly recharging a unit's special. A unit cannot pick up another item if their attack bonus or their special attack glow is still active. These items will eventually disappear if not picked up.
Two variants of Rumi are also introduced.
- Eternal Summer Rumi: Donning swimwear and floral accessories, ES Rumi ditches critical boost for increased attack power, and her grenades are disguised as ice-cream cones. Her special is similar to Donald Morden's, calling the Regular Army Helicopter to drop bombs onto the opposing army. Unlike Morden's, Rumi's does not have stunning capabilities.
- Christmas Rumi: Wearing a festive robes and a reindeer hat, Rumi is very upset she's sent to the battlefield while in the middle of a Christmas party. To get it over with, Rumi just throws down items while on the helicopter. Rumi can be placed anywhere on the map, but she'll stay put in that location. Unlike other games, instead of running away safely, Rumi gets blown up while the helicopter carries her away.
In Another Story's "Endless Summer Vacation", Rumi blurts out to Beatriz on the beach in a kerfuffle that she and Madoka tend to do their activities (such as eating their meals and sleeping) together and other revealing facts, much to Madoka's horror.
Rumi is a playable support unit only boosting her allies' stats. She stands as far back as possible on the battlefield. Although Rumi has no weapons, she can operate Slugs.
A seasonal variant, called Witch Rumi, has her on a broomstick. She attacks by shooting a long purple bolt at the direction of the closest enemy unit.