* Usopp, Nami and Chopper in ''Manga/OnePiece''. Nami is partly justified because she lacks the insane superhuman strength and/or Devil Fruit powers a lot of her crewmates have, so she must rely on her brain, wits, and Clima-Tact to survive in battle. As she gets skilled with the Clima Tact (and no longer has a crappy party favor toy), she becomes more courageous. Chopper is fairly young, shy, and sheepish. He freaks out a lot and gets shook up in bad situations. Post time-skip, he's more in control.
** Of course, Usopp's a funny case in that as long as everything is fine, he's a total MilesGloriosus. But the instant there's the slightest hint of danger, and particularly when he's the only one who can do anything about it, he upgrades (downgrades?) to CowardlyLion. When any significant danger presents itself, Usopp will panic, then proceed to kick ass despite shaking in his boots the whole time. As Sogeking, he tries to ham it up under the facade of a capable badass, but the disguise melts away as soon as real danger comes his way or he gets annoyed. After he the time-skip, he gets a bit better, and resembles a real badass- though with some cowardly traits still very much intact.
** Karoo from the Baroque Works Saga is a lesser example.
* Shinji Ikari in ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion''.
* Mr Satan in ''Manga/DragonBall''. And to a lesser extent Krillin.
** Gohan as well all the way up until ''Anime/DragonBallZ'''s Cell Saga. But admittedly [[JustifiedTrope he was a little kid.]]
*** [[ZigZaggingTrope Zig-zagged]], especially during the Saiyan Saga, where he's just as likely to panic and cower in a corner at a crucial moment as rise to the occasion. His level of bravery seems directly proportional to how hard the villain is hitting his BerserkButton.
* Hanyuu in ''HigurashiNoNakuKoroNi''. She's really fearful and insecure, but lays the smackdown when it comes to people she cares about, as shown at the end of Kai. [[spoiler:[[MessianicArchetype This isn't always a good thing]] though.]]
* Joe Kido in ''Anime/DigimonAdventure''.
* Grasshop in ''SpiderRiders''.
* Jacuzzi Splot from ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}''. The guy knocked over ''eighteen Mafia-owned speakeasies'' in ''one night'' by himself, with a single Tommy gun, crying hysterically in fear all the way. The week after, he helped save a train from two clashing terrorist groups; to do this, he did battle unarmed but for a single cherry bomb against someone with a shiv knife, a fist-gun and a ''flamethrower'' (which did turn out to be pretty convenient for lighting said bomb) on top of a moving train. He took a couple of bullets in the gut and a knife in the elbow before he tackled the other guy off the train and won. He was later half-carried to the station by his girlfriend, moaning in pain.
* GB in ''GingaLegendWeed''.
* Sir Penwood and Seras Victoria in ''{{Hellsing}}''.
* Sena Kobayakawa. He's a coward that runs at the first sight of trouble... but then [[AccidentalAthlete gets drafted into a football team]], had his team in dire strait, and then, [[ChronicHeroSyndrome forced by his own conscience]], runs into [[TheJuggernaut Seijuro]] [[WorthyOpponent Shin]]. [[{{Eyeshield21}} And the legend of the legendary runningback begins....]]
** It really shows during the match with Shinryuji. At one point, Sena, carrying the ball, was being blocked by [[JerkJock Agon.]] At that point, [[KnowWhenToFoldEm Sena is ready to go down and surrender, rather than letting the ball get stolen.]] But then, Agon says something of the effect, "Your dream for three years? It's '''GAME OVER'''." At that point [[NiceGuy Sena]] is ''[[BerserkButton flipped out]]'', [[{{Awesome/Eyeshield21}} and resulted in series of events in which Sena pass him and delivering a touchdown.]]
** Kobanzame of the Kyoshin Poseidons is another example. A nervous nellie of a quarterback, Kobanzame thinks he's useless and leaves all the major decisions to Kakei. Yet he has perfect ball handling, and on short passes is a perfectly competent player. Reiji Marco, captain and quarterback/safety of the Hakushuu Dinosaurs is a villainous example--he's utterly terrified of getting hurt, yet continues to use himself as his own best piece, risking his neck to lead his team to victory.
* Tsuna from ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''.
* Simon from ''Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' is like this initially. Scared of all the things happening around him that nearly kill him, but if Kamina is in danger he opens up a can of badass at a moment's notice.
* Closer from ''HydeAndCloser''. Always run from battle, [[BadAss Hyde]] always had to bail out his ass, but ''never'' let his friends in danger, even if that means takes the beating all for himself.
* Yukiteru Amano from ''MiraiNikki''. The resident ShrinkingViolet NonActionGuy who usually gets [[TearsOfFear reduced to tears]] in the [[ThereCanOnlyBeOne Survival Game]] prefers to leave the fighting and killing to his [[{{Yandere}} psychopathic girlfriend]], [[AxeCrazy Yuno]]. However, he can still hold his own when he has to, as Third, [[spoiler: [[EyeScream Ninth]], [[BigDamnHeroes Sixth]], and [[ScrewDestiny Fourth]]]] found out.
* Yuu from ''Manga/{{Holyland}}'' personifies this beautifully. Basically, if you took a timid, scared, insecure piece of [[TheWoobie bully-bait]] and gave him the ability to knock a man unconscious with one punch, he would be Yuu. Part of the plot centres around his fear that [[HeWhoFightsMonsters he'll go too far into Lion mode and become the thug]] [[BullyHunter he's trying to fight.]]
* Kamiya Maki of AllRounderMeguru first finds Aya huddled in the corner of a room at a kickboxing event. She darts off like a rabbit the moment Maki tries to talk to her, leaving Maki bemused to discover that Aya is actually her next opponent, and ''astonished'' to find that she's the most formidable opponent she's ever faced in a kickboxing match.
* Italy from ''Manga/AxisPowersHetalia''. So much.
* Asura from ''Manga/SoulEater''. Despite being fear and insanity incarnate, he rose to be one of the world's most dangerous beings, quite possibly surpassing the much more level headed Shinigami-sama himself.
* Kenichi from ''KenichiTheMightiestDisciple'' will not run away, even if he's facing weapon users. However, the knee-trembling terror he feels [[http://www.mangafox.com/manga/history_s_strongest_disciple_kenichi/v40/c375/9.html occasionally leaks out]].
** [[spoiler: At one point, Kenichi is induced with a 'mental seed of fear' after a near-death defeat by one of his enemies. It took the efforts of one of his teachers who essentially invoked this trope when she did not intend to not cure him of his fear, but rather to teach him to weaponize it as a means of self defense in order to overcome its negative effects.]]
* Kain Fuery in ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist''. He's the smallest and youngest member of [[ColonelBadass Roy Mustang's]] hand-chosen unit, and his main value is as the communications specialist. When the team gets [[spoiler:split up and he's reassigned to the southern war front]], he's absolutely terrified and only gets through it by shouting at himself that he's going to live. Later, [[spoiler:he deserts in order to return to Central City and aid Mustang and Hawkeye with their coup]].
** And then we have Warrant Officer Falman, who was literally crying and shaking with fear [[spoiler: as he defied Bradley's order to open the gate to Central palace.]] Captain Buccaneer called him on it.
--> '''Buccaneer:''' Oh come on now. Don't cry like a girl when you act like a man!
* Kai Shiden of ''MobileSuitGundam'' with emphasis on "Lion". An abrasive jerk who perpetually points out the stupidity of the situations they're in and often seems about to panic when sent into combat, Kai's nevertheless a reliable solider who racks up a pretty impressive kill count over the course of the war. He might have easily ended up as one of the Earth Federation's most celebrated aces, if not for being the wingman of [[RedBaron the White Devil]] [[OvershadowedByAwesome Amuro Ray]].
* While Ranma Saotome of ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' is a CombatPragmatist, he's generally pretty far away from anything that resembles cowardice... unless cats are involved, in which case a few seconds after being surprised by a housecat he is literally catatonic and will eventually lose his mind from the sheer terror until he starts thinking that he's a cat and starts kicking the ass of almost everything within eyeshot using the ultimate technique, the Neko-ken. However, when he was tossed into a situation that almost perfectly replicated his initial trauma (being tossed into a pit of hungry cats while wrapped in fish products), he managed to (sorta) maintain his composure until they brought out a tiger that was about as tall as he was, at which point he snapped. Later on, when facing a grandmaster that was casually kicking his ass and holding his manhood hostage, Ranma deliberately strapped a cat onto himself (or rather, herself) in order to pull out the Neko-ken and get his opponent to back down. That is to say, ''he deliberately drove himself insane with fear in order to win a fight.''
* Kasumi of ''Manga/KingOfThorn''. She believes she is [[HeroicSelfDeprecation weak and useless]], having depended on her braver twin sister Shizuku for most of her life. Later she depends on [[GeniusBruiser Marco]] for protection and often needs him to rescue her. However, she's still able to put her fears aside long enough to save someone else's life. She even saves ''Marco'' a few times, and earns his respect for it.
* Arata Hinohara from ''Manga/ArataKangatari'' is understandably scared to fight and follow his destiny in the beginning of the series, but he follows through with completing the task at hand, anyway. As the story progresses, he gradually grows out of it.
* Suigetsu from {{Manga/Naruto}} tried to run away from [[spoiler:Team Taka as soon as he gets the chance,]] despite being made of water and completely impenetrable. Too bad [[spoiler: non-combative Karin is faster then him and prevents him from getting away.]]
* ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'' has many of these, which is understandable considering what they are [[SuperPersistentPredator up]] [[HumanoidAbomination against]]. Among the main characters, the following stand out.
** Sasha Blouse is a CloudCuckooLander, and breaks down during her first battle. She even apologizes to a Titan she'd failed to kill, and agonizes over it later. But she's also managed to charge ''down'' a 50m wall to rescue an injured comrade, and faced down a Titan with nothing but a hatchet and a bow to save a child.
** Bertolt Hoover readily admits to being an ExtremeDoormat, and constantly stands there awkwardly with a slightly terrified expression. He's also ranked 3rd in their class, and is noted by their instructor to be one of the best at physical combat. [[spoiler: He's also the Colossal Titan that smashed open Wall Maria and Wall Rose]].
** Any soldier that shows fear prior to combat. It's not uncommon to see the same person that was weeping hysterically prior to battle turn into a HotBlooded warrior when the chips are down. Unfortunately, since it's [[CrapsackWorld that kind of story]], many of them still die horribly.
* ''Manga/{{Kurokami}}'': While [[MartialPacifist Yakumo]] is perfectly capable of curbstomping Tribal Ends, if at all possible, he'd much rather cut and run. Part of stems from the fact that he isn't as powerful as most other Tera Guardians, though it's mainly because he [[DeclarationOfProtection doesn't want to put Riona at risk.]] [[LetsGetDangerous But if anyone tries to harm her....]]
* ''Manga/GhostTalkersDaydream'': It's no secret that Kadotake is utterly terrified of ghosts and [[http://www.mangapark.com/manga/ghost-talker-s-daydream/v1/c2/3-4 will haul ass]] at the first sign of one. But, if it's just a hood trying to pick a fight with him, that's different. Kadotake knows martial arts and [[http://www.mangapark.com/manga/ghost-talker-s-daydream/v1/c1/3-20 he isn't afraid to use it.]]
* ''PandoraHearts'' has Gilbert Nightray, who is both a skilled BattleButler ''and'' the resident ChewToy [[ButtMonkey whom everyone loves to torment]]. It doesn't help that he has [[WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes a very bad case of cat phobia,]] which caused a ColorFailure when he faced [[EldritchAbomination the Cheshire Cat]]... but in the end Gilbert still stood up and fought him to protect [[KidHero Oz.]]
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