Akikonomu is the Rokujō Lady's daughter; it's never stated who her father is. When she's still a child, she's appointed to be the high priestess of the Ise shrine, a huge honor. Suzaku, as emperor, lets her go, despite the fact that he's in love with her. Genji is also interested in her, though he remains unable to pursue her throughout the novel. Akikonomu is thrilled to be able to take her mother with her to Ise, as such a thing is unprecedented. She and her mother return later in the novel and within weeks, the Rokujō Lady dies. However, on her deathbed, she asks that Genji take care of Akikonomu. Genji respects the Rokujō Lady's wishes to not take Akikonomu as a lover and instead, pretends he doesn't know that Suzaku loves her and offers her to Reizei. Because Akikonomu is a painter, she easily wins Reizei's heart and presumably, his hand as well.
Akikonomu Quotes in The Tale of Genji
The The Tale of Genji quotes below are all either spoken by Akikonomu or refer to Akikonomu. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one: Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of The Tale of Genji published in 1976.).
"Though I leave behind a world I cannot endure,
My heart remains with him, still of that world.
And will be muddied by it."
Akikonomu Character Timeline in The Tale of Genji
The timeline below shows where the character Akikonomu appears in The Tale of Genji. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
The Sacred Tree
...week later, the Rokujō Lady dies. Genji arranges the funeral and writes several notes to Akikonomu. The relationship makes her wary, but her ladies encourage her to write. Genji finds her... (full context)
...in the matter, and she suggests that Genji pretend to not know that Suzaku loves Akikonomu. When she accepts Akikonomu as a candidate for Reizei's hand, Genji makes plans to bring... (full context)
A Picture Contest
...collection for royal review. By now, the palace is filled with the Kokiden girl and Akikonomu's favorite art. Their two styles are very different. Fujitsubo, a great art lover herself, decides... (full context)
...that have been in their collections for a long time. Suzaku gives some paintings to Akikonomu, some of which he painted himself. Suzaku and Akikonomu exchange notes and Akikonomu refuses Suzaku's... (full context)
...umpire. The debate is lively and by evening, Hotaru still hasn't reached a decision. Finally, Akikonomu's side brings out one of Genji's paintings from Suma. The painting that the Kokiden girl's... (full context)