The protagonist of the series, Koinzell is a mysterious half-breed swordsman from the Empire's distant frontier. He quickly reveals that he is one of the "Lances of Betrayal", the legendary swordsman Ascherit, and makes it clear that his main goal is to kill the Seven Heroes of the Empire as revenge for their craven and cowardly killing of him and the three other Lances twenty years ago.
Anti-Hero: Played with. Koinzell himself fully admits that killing the Seven Heroes would bring chaos and confusion to the Empire, but presses on with it anyway, in order to avenge his friend’s murders at their hands. On the other hand, Koinzell always stops to help those in need, even when it interferes with his quest for revenge.
Back from the Dead: Koinzell is actually Ascherit, who survived his fatal wounds by devouring a fairy at the bottom of the ravine Glenn pushed him into.
Berserk Button: Harming innocent people in front of him is a bad idea. So is mentioning how great the Seven Heroes are, or slandering the Lances of Betrayal.
Blessed with Suck: Koinzell's elven body has many advantages: The Black Sword, his one winged angel form, and the fact that it makes him almost unkillable (If he is hurt badly, he is almost always completely healed the next time he is seen). However, at times, it seems like the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. First, his body weakens without a source of moonlight, and he cannot even use the Black Sword without one. Second, he is not able to use his signature technique Black Wing with his new body without severely weakening himself. Third, his enemies have been able to incapacitate him with magic on occasion by taking advantage of the elfish nature of his body.
The Chosen One: The Imperial astrologers predicted that a hero would arise in the frontiers and save the Empire from a dark catastrophe. Koinzell doesn't believe it, and claims that he's more likely to be the catastrophe itself.
Chronic Hero Syndrome: For all his protests and claims that he's a bad person, Koinzell sure does help a lot of people.
Dangerous Forbidden Technique: The Black Wing, a devastating sword strike that uses killing intent to strike a fatal blow. Using it takes a toll on Koinzell's body, however. Also a subversion that as a human he had no problems using it, and that it's his current fairy body that's too fragile to handle it.
Disguised in Drag: He can easily disguise himself as a girl due to his long hair and small stature. Adding make-up helps.
The Dreaded: Koinzell eventually acquires the title of 'Hero-Killing Rebel' or simply 'Hero Killer'.
Emergency Transformation: Covering another person's wounds with his own blood can revive them, turning them into a hybrid in the process. Also happened to Koinzell in the past, who ate a fairy after being left for dead by the Seven after their betrayal.
Mr. Fanservice: He has sex with two girls in the first two chapters, that should tell you something. Later on he also has some with Altea.
Eye Scream: Has a large scar over one of his eyes, though he still has both of them. It's from when Glenn gouged out his eye when he was Ascherit.
Healing Factor: Is shown to possess a very strong one late in the series, capable of regrowing lost limbs.
One-Winged Angel: When things become dire and there is no option left, Koinzell can assume the form of a gigantic fairy with bladed wings. In this form he is essentially unstoppable, but using it takes an even bigger toll on his body than the Black Wing.
Pointy Ears: Very long ones, which is often noted as a rare trait even among half-elves.
Red Right Hand: Under the light of the two moons, Koinzell can summon four massive prehensile black swords from his right arm.
Revenge Before Reason: Surprisingly averted. Although revenge is a big motivator for Koinzell, he never fails to help anyone who needs it and is perfectly fine from running from a battle with the Seven if things aren't going his way.
The princess of a frontier barbarian tribe who initially pursued Koinzell out of revenge for him killing her brother. Eventually she learns the truth about why he did so and since then has become one of his most important allies.
A small child who tried to smuggle herself into the central Empire to escape the war-torn frontier. The attempt fails but she is rescued by Koinzell and spends most of the series following after him.
Accidental Misnaming: 'Peepi' isn't her real name, but one Koinzell made up on the spot so that he could pose as her brother and save her from some corrupt guards. The name sticks and after a while she no longer even bothers to complain about it.
The Load: Sadly she's just a normal child caught up in a war-torn world, though after Barestar’s invasion of Jullas-Abllas she begins to learn some summoning magic.
Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Peepi's made it into the Empire, met people of her own race, is preparing to be relocated to a new settlement with a surrogate family and is just about to part ways with Koinzell peacefully. Then Pago kills her adoptive parents out of pure spite and everything goes to hell again. Luckily Koinzell was there to save her.
Plucky Girl: Surprisingly, despite all the death and suffering she's seen.
Pointy Ears: As a member of the Miruel Mirael race, this is expected.
Stripperiffic: Peepi often ends up in revealing outfits, much to her chagrin.
Summon Magic: She becomes adept at summoning later on, giving her some use in combat to assist the others.
A man from the border town of Rielde-Venem, Vid is heavily involved in the smuggling trade. As such, he knows how to cross the border into the Empire and ends up aiding both Peepi and Koinzell in doing so. However, his motives for helping go much deeper than they first appear...
Bad Ass: Was able to hold his own against a subterranean giant that even Koinzell had trouble with.
The Bodyguard: Is one to Ato's sister, Princess Sharon. Her kidnapping at the hands of Pago led him to cross the border in an attempt to rescue her.
Put on a Bus: He leaves the group after rescuing Sharon, but promises to return at some point in the future.
The head of the smuggling operation in Rielde-Venem, who arranges for people to cross the border for a price. At first she is reluctant to help Koinzell and his group, but a crackdown on smugglers endangers her position and forces her hand.
Action Girl: Not on Ato's level, but as the siege of the city of Jullas-Abllas showed Altea can more than just handle herself in a fight.
In Its Hour of Need: Rallies the people of Jullas-Abllas when it comes under siege from Barestar. Particularly moving since many of the people there were those she smuggled over the border and owed her their gratitude.
Put on a Bus: Stays behind in Jullas-Abllas, and becomes the leader of the civilian militia there.
Scarpia Ultimatum: Altea offers to help Koinzell across the border if he agrees to pay the fee with his body. Amusingly it turns out that Altea is actually a virgin and it's the first time she's asked it of anyone.
During the war with Wischtech twenty years ago, fourteen heroes were sent to the Forest of Death to seal the route used by the invading armies. Three died along the way, becoming known as the 'Precious Departed.' Four betrayed the group and were killed, earning the title of 'Lances of Betrayal'. The remaining seven completed their mission and returned home, where they were hailed as heroes and given everything they could possibly desire by the grateful empire. Or so the story goes.In reality, things were more complicated. The truth is that those known as the Seven Heroes were dirty cowards who never got past the Forest of Death. The other four who would become known as the 'Lances of Betrayal' pressed on and completed their mission, but were ambushed by the seven on their way back. The four were killed and the seven returned home, claiming that they were the true heroes.
The son of the current Emperor, Glenn studied swordsmanship at the same school as Ascherit, though he was never any better than average at swordplay. Twenty years ago he was selected as one of the fourteen heroes. The plan to ambush and kill the four real heroes was mainly his idea.He is the third Hero to be killed by Koinzell. However, he reappeared alive at the end of chapter 105.
The Atoner: Does his best to hold the realm together to atone for his past crimes.
Disc One Final Boss: As the man who masterminded the plot to kill Ascherit, you'd expect him to be among the final villains, but his death occurs less than halfway through the story. Though when he's back from the dead, he apparently reclaims the Big Bad position.
Fake Ultimate Hero: Is fully aware of this and hasn't bought into his own propaganda like some of the other heroes have. Despite his constant sword practice he's still only above average.
Green-Eyed Monster: Towards Ascherit, due to him being so much better at swordfighting despite Glenn training for longer than him.
My God, What Have I Done?: Presumably had a moment like this off-screen. He sincerely regrets murdering Ascherit and the others and fully admits it was the result of his own selfish envy, to the extent that he built four monuments to them as atonement.
Really Gets Around: enjoys the company of beautiful women. Goes through 'em quite quickly after his revival.
Seven Deadly Sins: Most likely Envy. However, the fact that he is pretty much the most powerful man in the series bar the emperor himself politically means that his envy just may not have had much of a setting in which to express itself in the present. In the past though, it was a completely different matter.
A former thief who was pardoned by the Emperor in exchange for becoming one of the fourteen heroes. After returning to the Empire Schtemwolech became obsessed with obtaining eternal life, conducting numerous horrific experiments as a result.He is the first Hero to be killed by Koinzell.
Amazon Brigade: His personal guard, which consists of several Mind Raped elven girls who are trapped in a state of constant agony.
Bishōnen: He used to be one twenty years ago during the war with Wisstech.
Fake Ultimate Hero: Unlike Glenn, he did buy into his own hype and believed he could act however he liked.
Fatal Flaw: His desire for eternal life ends up doing him in. Trying to use Koinzell as a blood sacrifice rather than just killing him wasn't such a great idea.
Genre Savvy: Had the good sense to have his subordinates summon his Amazon Brigade just in case his fight with Koinzell ended poorly.
The son of a merchant who joined the fourteen heroes partially out of a desire to help his father's business. As such he's not really much of a fighter. The appearance of Koinzell and the realisation that his life is in danger severely unnerves him, eventually affecting his sanity.He is the second Hero to be killed by Koinzell.
Sanity Slippage: Barestar slowly goes more and more insane as his plans implode and his armies collapse around him. The knowledge that someone was gunning for him pushed him off the deep end.
Seven Deadly Sins: Greed, which was the main motivator for his attack on Jullas-Abllas.
Tragic Villain: He ends up as this. While the other treacherous heroes were nobles, Barestar was the child of a simple merchant who dearly wanted his friends to come see his homeland one day. At the end, he loses his mind and has no idea that any of the events of the past twenty years have transpired.
The son of a noble who joined the fourteen heroes at the Emperor's request. Along with Glenn, Lebellond was the other mastermind behind the murder of the four real heroes. Over the last twenty years Lebellont has become increasingly prideful and warlike, though Glenn's influence with the Emperor managed to keep his ambitions in check.Lebellond is the sixth hero Koinzell kills.
Fake Ultimate Hero: Like Schtemwolech, the fact that he cowered in fear at the thought of entering the Forest of Death seems to have slipped his mind to the extent that he now wants to invade Wischtech itself to gain more personal glory.
Too Dumb to Live: After taking control he decides to invade Wischtech. You know, the same country that royally kicked the Empire's collective ass twenty years ago and would probably have won if not for Ascherit's group.
Tyrant Takes the Helm: After Glenn's death, the checks on Lebellond's power are removed and he assumes control of the Empire's entire military forces.
Villainous Breakdown: His mind utterly collapses at the end when Glenn revives and crushes his army, leaving him to frantically concoct ways to triumph that have zero basis in reality
Villainous Valor: Despite his many, many flaws, intentionally using himself as bait so his massive army could smash Koinzell was pretty ballsy.
Dragon Chief Ischudien
The Lord who rules over the Dragon Earldom and a strong supporter of Lord Glenn. Ischudien appears to be a level-headed planner with similar views on the Empire as Glenn. He deeply disapproves of Lebellond's current warmongering attitude. Seemingly has been working under Lord Glenn's command for a while.
The Atoner: If his support of Glenn is anything to go by.
Seven Deadly Sins: Presumably Wrath, by process of elimination, though he has not shown too many signs of it so far. However, dragons are creatures that are often associated with wrath, so it is quite possible that he has a hidden side to him.
Hypocrite: Tries to state that Koinzell is Not So Different from Glenn and Lebellond cause he was going to kill his "brothers", despite both him and the other six killing their three comrades and nearly killing Koinzell all those years ago.
We Hardly Knew Ye: Like Gullengurv, we don't have much on him other then he seems to be the keeper of the Lunar Priestess' Airship.
The Lances of Betrayal
The four real heroes who pushed on through the Forest of Death and succeeded in stopping Wischtech's invasion. Their names were later blackened and used as scapegoats so the seven deserters could paint themselves as the real heroes. Keeping with the symbolism of the Seven Deadly Sins with the Seven Heroes, each one of them represents one of the Four Cardinal Virtues
The young master swordsman who earned the title of Blatt Maester at an unprecedented young age. Ascherit was a true prodigy and turned the tide of many battles. See Koinzell above.
The Ace: In a fight he was virtually invincible, and had other talents as seen below.
All-Loving Hero: He's kind, friendly and trusting to a fault. Deconstructed when the people he trusts betray him and his companions in the worst manner possible.
Awesomeness by Analysis: Ascheit's main power is in imitation. This extends to non-martial abilities like blacksmithing.
The three Lances who died on the journey to Wisstech. Presumably, each of them represents one of the Three Theological Virtues.
Elgunaha was a close friend of Ascherit, and was the first of the fourteen Lances to be sacrificed. He cast a spell that creates a gigantic wall separating part of the world from the other. However, the spell's side effect turned him into stone. The wall, called the "Heaven's Lance" was eventually destroyed by Koinzell, after he made his final peace with Elgunaha.
The leader of the 'Seven Lances', an elite force who serve directly under Glenn. At the beginning of the story Rozen is sent to the frontiers to retrieve the prophecised hero who was predicted to arise there.
My Master, Right or Wrong: Whilst at first Rozen completely opposes Koinzell's plans to kill all Seven Heroes, as their corruption and cowardice becomes abundantly clear he finds himself becoming increasingly torn.
Black and White Morality: Believes that the Seven Heroes are absolutely good, and that Koinzell is absolutely evil for trying to kill them. Blows up rather brutally in her face when Barestar orders his army to raze Jullas-Abllas to the ground.
Heroic BSOD: After being forced to watch whilst Barestar's army pillaged Jullas-Abllas with impunity.
Politically-Active Princess: She mostly plays this role after the Jullas-Abllas arc, notably using her influence to prevent a civil war in Glenn's territory which all comes to naught when Lebellond launches an attack on it.
Tsundere: Towards Koinzell, particularly after she is forced to re-evaluate her ideals.
Wide-Eyed Idealist: Played straight at first, but all her preconceptions are mercilessly destroyed in the face of Barestar's invasion. Her idealism was also the reason she was sent after Koinzell in the first place, since it made her less likely to listen to anything he said.
A slave knight who was originally in Glenn's service. Ikfes is the son of Kfer, one of the Lances of Betrayal, and seeks to throw off the stigma of his father and become the next Blatt Maester, Ascherit's former title.
Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Starts off this way, but slowly grows out of it after his battles with Koinzell reveal how far he still has to go.
Character Development: At first Ikfes believes that he could easily defeat the 'Hero Killing Rebel'. Koinzell beating him in combat causes him to realise how inexperienced he truly is.
Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Played with. After Glenn's death, Ikfes jumps ship to Lebellond suspiciously quickly. He also claims not to care whether or not Koinzell kills all the heroes, as long as he can accomplish his own goals of restoring his family honor.
Generation Xerox: To Ascherit more than to his own father. To list the ways: he wields Ascherit's old sword, he inherits the title of Blatt Meister, after 'killing' Koinzell, a title which Ascherit himself used to hold, and other than Ascherit/Koinzell himself, he is the only person who is capable of using 'Black Wing' in the entire world. Hell, Ikfes even LOOKS almost identical to how Ascherit did twenty years ago.
Identical Stranger: My, a lot of readers wondered why Ascheriit was suddenly back to his old appearance when he first appeared.
Order Reborn: His main motivation is to restore the prestige of both his own family and that of the title of 'Blatt Maester', both of which are seen as tainted by the common people.
Worthy Opponent: Koinzell, to the extent that after he finally manages to perform the Black Wing he asks Koinzell to become his mentor.
The False Lances of Betrayal
The main villains from Volume 0. The false Lances are actually minor frontier nobles who fought on the side of Wischtech to protect their own lands during the great war, since the Empire could not spare the resources to aid them. After the war ended the frontiers were thrown into chaos and civil war, prompting the four to take up the names of the 'Lances of Betrayal' to rally their cause and unify the frontiers once again.
Shotacon: The fake Gustav. Played for Squick rather than arousal though.
Villain with Good Publicity: Invoked. The main reason they took up the names of the Lances of Betrayal was to boost their own influence and give the people of the frontier names to fear and/or rally around.
The head of the warrior-monks at the fortress monastery of Rielde-Venem. Both he and the monastery are corrupt and demand extortionate donations from anyone wishing to cross the 'Thousand Lances' mountains into the Empire proper. Lacheb's main task is the capture and execution of smugglers and their human cargo, a task he performs with relish.
Humiliation Conga: Loses his position after the monastery is destroyed, is beaten half to death by a furious mob, manages to escape into the Empire only to find himself embroiled in Barestar's war with Jullas-Abllas. He is forced to pretend to be a demon summoner, only to be casually flicked aside by Geranpen.
Hypocrite: Lacheb himself regularly collects bribes from smugglers.
Pago is Schtemwolech's main vassal and chief supporter. Along with an unwitting Geranpen he was responsible for kidnapping multiple young girls for use in Schtemwolech's immortality experiments. He is also shown to be proficient in Wichtech magic.
Body Horror: After losing his arm to Koinzell, Schtemwolech powers him up by grafting two female elves to his body to augment his Combat Tentacles.