Minoru Tanaka (田中実, Tanaka Minoru) is the protagonist of the Never Complete One-shot.
Minoru is a young man of average height with black hair and brown eyes. When not wearing his school uniform his casual attire consists of a white jacket and blue pants.
Minoru is shown to be very clever despite his poor performance in school. Like his predecessor, he is good at problem-solving and planning, devising a plan to sell the Death Note and working around the heightened levels of security that have arisen as technology has advanced. His intelligence was praised by Near who, for the first time after he became L, admitted defeat for being unable to track Minoru down.
Unlike Light Yagami, however, Minoru does not seem to have a strong sense of justice. Although he is morally opposed to using the Death Note himself, he has no issue with making it available to anyone who is willing to pay for it, regardless of how they plan to use it once he has sold it to them. In fact, when the USA and China promise, while bidding for the notebook, that they will use it for altruistic purposes, he makes a point of announcing that he does not care why they want it, he just wants to know how much they are willing to pay for it.
Minoru grew up in Japan. At the start of the one-shot, he is a middle school student noted for consistently scoring highest in the nation on intelligence tests. However, despite his high IQ of 142, he performs poorly in all of his school subjects.
In the year 2017, while fretting over his latest failing test grade, Minoru is visited by the Shinigami Ryuk. Ryuk gives the boy a Death Note and explains that it is what allowed Kira to perpetuate his crimes 10 years prior. Minoru is impressed by Kira's ingenuity with the notebook but points out that the advancement in technology since his death has made it difficult to perpetrate such a crime again without being caught. When Ryuk asks if he believes he can replicate such crimes, Minoru realizes that Ryuk wants him to follow in Kira's footsteps and use the notebook as a murder tool. After some consideration, Minoru requests that Ryuk take back possession of the notebook and return in two years' time.
When Ryuk returns with the Death Note in 2019, Minoru explains that, rather than use the Death Note himself, he plans to sell it. Rather than use the internet, which could be used to trace him, Minoru has Ryuk go to a local news station and hold up a teleprompter, announcing the auction on live TV. Knowing that anyone who has already touched a Death Note will be able to see Ryuk, Minoru has the Shinigami travel between his house and the station underground so that no cameras will be able to track him.
Numerous bidders around the world make offers for the notebook, but the bidding is eventually whittled down to just the United States of America and China. After the timeframe for bidding ends Minoru decides to sell the Death Note to the USA for 1 quadrillion yen. In order to keep any deposited money from being traced to him, Minoru has Ryuk announce on live TV that the money should be deposited in equal amounts to the savings accounts of every Japanese citizen under the age of 60.
After confirming that the USA has paid what it agreed to, Minoru gives the Death Note to Ryuk to deliver to America's president, ordering the Shinigami never to return once he has left.
Unfortunately for Minoru, in response to the commotion caused by a Death Note being made available for purchase in the human world, the King of Death makes a new rule that anyone who attempts to sell a Death Note will be killed the moment they receive payment for it. After withdrawing his money from his bank account, Minoru suffers a heart attack and dies. It is revealed that Ryuk was the one who wrote Minoru's name on his notebook, in accordance with the new rule.