Miki has a small tattoo on her left breast of a decorative moon, identifying her as the shrine maiden of Gekko. She keeps it covered at all times.
"Have you heard the Tale of the Two Brothers?"
Mikoto's life began outside of the kingdoms, outside the influence of their power, in a small, little-known town in Mistral. They did not follow the kingdom's laws; no, the town of Gekkō was very... different, in a sense. Though visited by traveling merchants and the occasional huntsman or huntress, the village was quite self-sufficient... For a small village out in the wilds, of course, given the surrounding farmland on one side and forest on the other that provided sustenance. But Gekkō was unique, in a very different way.
"They were two brothers. The older sibling, the god of light, found joy in creating forces of life. Meanwhile, the younger brother, the god of darkness, spent his time creating forces of destruction."
Mikoto grew up as the daughter of the head family in the village, more accurately a priestess in the religion worshiped by the village. They were said to be spiritually connect to the forces of Light and Darkness themselves; whether that was true or not is up for debate, but that was what the people of the village believed. Mikoto was called a Priestess of the Light by her people, and was in short seen as a sort of princess. She grew up believing that two forces existed in the world, and that in order to fight the forces of Darkness, she must constantly believe in the forces of Light.
"The older one would spend his days creating water, plants, wildlife. And at night, his brother would wake to see all the things that the elder had made and become disgusted. To counteract his brother's creations, the god of darkness brought drought, fire, famine, all he could do to rid Remnant of life. Life always returned. So one night, the younger brother went and made something - something that shared his innate desire to destroy anything and everything: the creatures of Grimm."
That was, however, until the village was attacked. Grimm, swarming from every side; they were nearly wiped out, left in shambles, and would have been if not for Mikoto's mother. Valiantly giving her life in the fight, she helped the warriors fend off the Grimm, saving more lives than could be imagined. Mikoto, then, became her successor, and began to go hard on the training she would need to live up to her mother's sacrifice. However, as that went on, things began to change in the village... More accurately, ideals began to change. Barely seven years old, Mikoto was soon coerced into praising not the Light, but the Dark instead; their people began to believe that by worshiping and paying homage to them, the Grimm would leave them alone.
Knowing that their feud couldn't last like this forever, he proposed that they make one final creation… together, something that they could both be proud of, their masterpiece. The younger brother agreed. This last great creation would be given the power to both create and destroy.
That sparked hope in their village... Which in turn did keep the Grimm away, but at the cost of their beliefs. As Mikoto grew older, she began to question those beliefs... Even as things got darker. Things like the thought of sacrificing a child to the creatures in order to keep them away from the village. First, it became a six-month gap between rituals... Then three, then eventually... Monthly. As Mikoto herself neared the age of fifteen, things got more and more dire... And the idea of sacrificing a pure maiden to such a grievous fate became knowledge.
It would be given the gift of knowledge, so that it could learn about itself and the world around it.
This, of course, was all thanks to her father. Finally putting her foot down, Mikoto stood up to their leaders, insisting that such a thing wasn't what her own mother had died for. Of course... That made Mikoto herself a target. And so, she was chosen for the next ritual, to happen one week from that day. Worried that she would become problematic, Mikoto was locked in one of the cells in solitude, hearing nothing but the sounds of her own voice and the occasional guard who came to bring her food. She was kept healthy, but it was a lonely time in a dark cell.
She was taken out in the dead of night, bound and gagged so she wouldn't make any noise. Tossed in a box, wearing nothing but a simple white robe, and left in the middle of the nearby lake, either to be eaten by Grimm, or to sink to the bottom and drown once the box filled with water. She was terrified, and her terror only served to further attract the Grimm. She was going to die, and she knew it; there was no question of it. She would die for nothing, in a dark box... For standing up for what she believed in, for standing up for the right thing. It was wrong, and she knew it was wrong. She knew full well what path she desired... And that was not the path that her village was taking.
She believed she'd never get that chance, until suddenly, sounds broke out around her. The sound of fighting, of combat... Of Grimm, felled to a blade. A creak was heard, and suddenly, Mikoto could see the moonlight from above, illuminating her vision... And before her, she saw none other than her personal guard, Migoto... One of the few people who, it seemed, stood by her side through thick and thin. A boy she'd known from her childhood, who at this point had grown into a strong man, one capable of defending a young, innocent girl from the throes of death.
"And most importantly, it would be given the power to choose, to have free will to take everything it had learned and decide which path to follow - the path of light or the path of darkness."
Springing her from the ritual sacrifice, the two ran as far as they could, taking out Grimm as they went, and eventually finding solace near the City of Mistral. There, they made a vow, a pact: they would become part of the kingdom, doing what they could to help... Following the path of the Light, as they called it. They would not speak of their beliefs, unless they were in the presence of one another; after all, they would not want others to trace their roots back to the village from whence they came. And so, they changed their names: Mikoto became Miki, and Migoto became Gimoto. Leaving behind the village, they travelled the wilds, with Gimoto teaching Miki how to hunt with a bow and arrow, and in particular, how to utilize her Semblance effectively in combat.
Of course, they knew they had nowhere else to go... And if they wanted to live, they would have to hide, and hide well. From there, they traveled to Solitas, eventually enrolling at Atlas Academy as first years. Carefully sticking together for the initiation, they were assigned thankfully as partners, passing the entrance exams with ease, and becoming members of Team MNLT, with Miki as their leader. For four years now, Miki and Gimoto have kept their secret, often spending time alone together to discuss their plans. Eventually, they will return to their village... But Miki herself fears what they will find there when they return.