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Kouya

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Kouya
Kouya
Race Honshū Wolf
Sym-ayak Ayakashi
Age Around 500
Gender Male
Professional Status
Previous Affiliation Masamori Sumimura
Kouya's Gang
Ginro
Occupation Demon Honshū Wolf
Previous Occupation Masamori's Guide
Leader of Kouya's Gang
Previous Team Kouya's Gang
Previous Partner Masamori Sumimura
Honetaro Trio
Ginro
Base of Operations Sealed Mountain Shinyuuchi
Personal Status
Relatives N/A
Powers
Technique Tail Strike
Claw Strike
Tail Shield
Human Transformation
First Appearance
Manga Chapter 20
Anime Episode 11, Kouya and Madarao
Voices
Japanese Masashi Ebara
English Paul St. Peter

Kouya (鋼夜, Kōya) is a Honshū Wolf Ayakashi and Madarao's childhood friend. He is revered for his strength and speed.

Appearance

Kouya is a dark purple demon wolf, with red eyes and markings over his body that are purple. He has a very long, sharp tail. He also has an X-shaped scar on his chest.

Personality

In his youth, Kouya was a loyal and fun-loving friend to Madarao. But after suffering repeated hardships at the hands of humans, he developed an overwhelming hatred for all humans, until he was ultimately killed by one. Even in death, Kouya was unable to pass on due to unresolved feelings in his past life. After being reborn as an Ayakashi, Kouya's hatred for humans often boiled over, now reinforced by his new-found strength. But yet again, this lead to interference by humans: this time by Tokimori Hazama, who not only caused a rift between Kouya and Madarao, but also expelled Kouya from his home, earning Kouya's eternal hatred in the process. Despite his tough, rigid, and often cruel attitude, Kouya is loyal to his friends above all else, and particularly treasures his childhood bond with Madarao. [1]

Kouya is later resurrected by Masamori Sumimura to serve as his guide. Though Kouya initially hates the idea of serving a human, he agrees only because Masamori swears to undo the seal placed on Kouya's home, or else Kouya is free to kill him for breaking their contract. Gradually, Kouya comes to consider Masamori a friend, though he refuses to admit this or address him by name. Because Masamori keeps his promise, they part on good terms.

History

KouyaMadarao

Kouya and Ginro on their desolate mountain

Kouya and Ginro once lived on a mountain and were Honshū wolves (also called "mountain dogs," though they are actually wolves). Humans came to the mountain, hunting down all the deer and gradually killing off the environment. Kouya wanted to stay and reclaim their territory, but Ginro's hunger pains convinced him to help find another home. Every new mountain they came to already had humans, so Kouya and Ginro were always chased away. Ginro eventually starved to death, while Kouya was killed by humans. Both were reborn as Ayakashi and found each other again. But Kouya became increasingly violent around humans, with Ginro unable to stop him, until Tokimori Hazama and Hakubi came to seal them both. Ginro decided to join Tokimori (who may have given him the name "Madarao"), but asked him to let Kouya go. Tokimori agreed, but he also sealed the mountain afterward, making it impossible for Kouya to re-enter.[1]

Afterward, Kouya met the Honetaro Trio (Honetaro, Uhosuke, and Nagao) became their leader. Kouya's Gang stayed together for four hundred years, and despite Kouya treating them terribly, they remained loyal to him.

Plot

Reunion with Madarao

Kouya's Gang eventually comes to Karasumori, with the original trio acting largely as decoys until they are easily captured by Yoshimori and Tokine. Kouya then appears, and asks Madarao if he would like to become partners once again. Madarao refuses, then asks Yoshimori to break his seal once Kouya begins powering up, disgusted that Madarao would rather serve humans than rejoin him. Yoshimori breaks the seal and Madarao changes into his true Ayakashi form. Madarao and Kouya fight, and Kouya severely injures Madarao using his sharp claws, creating an X shaped wound across Madarao's chest.[1] However, Madarao subtly uses a poison that eventually brings Kouya down. However, Kouya refuses to die, and Karasumori answers his wish, giving him more power. Seeing this, Madarao realizes he cannot give up yet, but this time Yoshimori insists on fighting with him. Yoshimori uses Kekkai to slow down Kouya's strike, and Madarao's tail hits Kouya from underground. Kouya is on his last legs, and asks Madarao to finish him off, not wanting Yoshimori, a human, to do it. Madarao claims he has no strength left, but Karasumori grants him the power to grant Kouya's wish. Yoshimori saves a few strands of Kouya's fur before destroying the remains.[2] He later gives them to Masamori, asking him to take them to the mountain Kouya once lived on.

Contract with Masamori

Kouya-masa

Kouya reminds Masamori of their contract

It is later revealed that Kouya was resurrected by Masamori, using the hair strands that Yoshimori gave him. Kouya made a deal with Masamori to aid him in his search for the truth behind the Shadow Organization's traitor, and in exchange, Masamori was to aid Kouya in taking back the mountain that he and Madarao once lived on. Masamori points out that he is the only one capable of destroying the seal that Hazama Tokimori had put upon the mountain. As part of their contract, Masamori put X shaped-marks around his neck as a curse or seal, and should he betray Kouya, it would free Kouya to kill Masamori.[3]

Masamori eventually returns Kouya to his mountain home. However, in addition to Tokimori Hazama's original seal, the Shadow Organization has added many, as well as a training facility for Shinto priests. Masamori explains it will be difficult and time-consuming to remove them all, so for the moment, the safest and fastest way for Kouya to enter the mountain is to wear a charm reflecting collar, similar in appearance to Madarao's. After putting on the collar and entering the mountain, Kouya is still wounded by the area seals. Masamori offers to increase the collar's power to protect Kouya, knowing the seals will only intensify at night, but Kouya rejects the offer, revealing that all he wanted was the right to die in his birthplace. He runs away before Masamori can stop him.[4]

Equipment

Screen shot 2012-03-08 at 8.30.10 PM

Collar: Kouya wears a charm-reflecting collar, which was given to him by Masamori. Though similar in appearance to Madarao's collar, Kouya's has a different function: it allows him to enter his mountain home, which had been sealed against his presence by Tokimori Hazama. However, due to additional seals being placed by the Shadow Organization, Kouya's collar does not provide adequate protection, and being in the area causes him pain. Though Masamori offered to place more charms on the collar, Kouya refused, saying that he simply wanted the right to die on the mountain where he grew up.[4]

Powers & Abilities

Ayakashi Form

Kouya-stand

Kouya fully transformed

Kouya can most likely use all of his attacks in his normal form, but both their power and his aggression increase as he transforms into his true form, that of a much larger wolf capable of walking and attacking on two legs.

  • Tail Strike: Kouya can swing his tail forward, slashing through anything in front of him (which is powerful enough to tear through Yoshimori's Kekkai). He can also perform a double, X-shaped slash (his signature move), which is more powerful. He can also move his tail in a rapid, zigzag pattern, ending in a strong, spear-like thrust, which is difficult to block.
  • Tail Shield: Kouya can harden his tail and use it as a shield.
  • Claw Strike: When fully transformed, Kouya performs his signature X-strike with both claws instead of his tail.

Resurrected Form

After being resurrected by Masamori, Kouya seems to have retained all of his old abilities, and has gained at least one that he never displayed before.

  • Human Transformation: Kouya is able to assume human form, though his clothing still bears his signature X-strike design. As he still hates humans, he strongly dislikes using this ability.[3]

Relationships

Madarao

Main article: Madarao

Kouya and Madarao (then known as Ginro) grew up on the same mountain with only each other as companions. Their friendship was a strong one, even though their personalities were very different, with Kouya generally being aggressive and Ginro preferring less combative measures. Kouya set his pride aside to ensure Ginro's survival, was driven to rage when Ginro starved to death, and died in an attempt to avenge him. Neither of their spirits was able to pass on, and both became Ayakashi, reuniting on their mountain and resuming their hunt together. Even though Ginro later betrayed Kouya and sided with Tokimori Hazama, who drove him away from the mountain, when they met centuries later, Kouya was willing to forgive his old friend and become comrades yet again.

Masamori Sumimura

Main article: Masamori Sumimura

Kouya initially holds the same dislike for Masamori as he does for all humans. He agrees to a contract with Masamori only to break the seal on his mountain home so he can return to it and (unknown to Masamori at the time) die there. They gradually grow closer during their time together, though Kouya still insists on merely calling Masamori "human" as opposed to using his name, he thanks Masamori for taking care of him as they part ways.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Kekkaishi anime, Episode 11
  2. Kekkaishi anime, Episode 12
  3. 3.0 3.1 Kekkaishi manga, Chapter 252
  4. 4.0 4.1 Kekkaishi manga, Chapter 345

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