That incident ten years ago... was my "beginning."
The main heroine. Yuuki is the adoptive daughter of Headmaster Cross and works with her childhood friend Zero as a Prefect, monitoring the Day Class and Night Class. She was saved from a vampire attack ten years ago by Kaname, who she has been in love with ever since.
Anchored Ship: In the post-ending bonus chapter, she and Zero are revealed to drink each other's blood alot, but it's ambiguous whether they're actually dating. Although, Yori as an elderly woman asking them when they intend to get married would imply that they were. Eventually they're shown to be living together, and the ending confirms they also had children.
Big Brother Attraction: Played with. She's initially disturbed when finding out she's been in love with her own brother, but Kaname convinces her that it's normal for purebloods to intermarry. Later she finds out that he's not really her brother, but her ancestor, but seeing as he was still raised as her brother, she continues to consider him as such, though she quits calling him "big brother".
Brother-Sister Incest: She is actually Kaname's sister and the daughter of Haruka and Juuri. In spite of this, they still remain a couple because it is common for purebloods to interbreed. Though, it's revealed that, with Kaname really the progenitor of the Kurans, they are still technically related.
Faux Action Girl: She has the potential of being an Action Girl and does try very hard, but ultimately must be rescued by Zero, Kaname, etc etc. She gets better after Kaname re-turns her into a vampire. Well... for a while, at least.
I Owe You My Life: Yuuki feels indebted towards Kaname for rescuing her ten years ago.
Important Haircut: Yuuki's hair grows volumes after her vampire self is resurrected and after living with Kaname for some time, who refuses to let her cut it. She eventually whacks it all off when she makes it clear that she's working with Zero to take Kaname down.
Interclass Romance / Interspecies Romance: With Kaname in the first arc (human and pureblood vampire), then ironically with Zero in the second (pureblood vampire and vampire hunter/level D vampire).
It's All My Fault: Sees herself as the cause of, or at least a big part of the reason for Zero's suffering, and later Kaname's genocide mission.
Master Character Heroines: A triple split between Demeter: The Nurturer (her constant need to care for others above herself, such as Zero), Hera: The Matriarch (she is very supportive to the people closest to her—Kaien, Kaname, Zero, and Yori—and is pained whenever Zero and Kaname keep secrets from her), and Persephone: The Maiden (for her carefree and childlike personality and her willingness to help anyone, whether they are human or vampire).
Master of the Mixed Message: Boy, where to start? Her mentality seems to be that she always wants the guy she can't have (Kaname was a pureblood while she was human, Zero was a hunter who "hated" her while she was a pureblood, Kaname was going to die etc).
Meaningful Name: Yuuki means "tender" or "kind" (yuu) and "princess" (ki). Cross (or Kurosu) is the Japanese pronunciation of "cross" and the kanji chosen for kurosu translates to "black" (kuro) and "master" (su). Yuuki's biological surname—Kuran—translates to "nine orchids" because ku means "nine" and ran means orchids.
Not Blood Siblings: With Zero, as they were both raised by Kaien for some of their childhood. Lampshaded in Volume 2 and Volume 6, where she considers Zero like a "brother," mainly because of their status as childhood friends. As it turns out, she is this with Kaname as well.
Oblivious to Love: She initially has a really difficult time believing that Kaname reciprocates her feelings. It's justified because she has convinced herself since she was a child that Kaname is "unreachable" to her. On another note, she is also oblivious to Zero's feelings until Chapter 46.
Undying Loyalty: Towards Kaname. She even admits to Aidou that she wouldn't even mind if he betrayed her, and Ichijou later admits that he's jealous of how resolute she is when it comes to Kaname. However, she gradually loses this loyalty towards him in the second arc.
I will never allow that to happen... even if it makes Kuran my enemy... and even if you hate me for it.
Yuuki's childhood friend and a fellow Prefect. Zero is often aloof and unfriendly. He has a hatred for vampires ever since his family was murdered by a pureblood vampire five years ago. Zero was bitten by this vampire, Shizuka Hio, which is slowly causing him to grow into one and he will inevitably become a Level E vampire. He has feelings for Yuuki.
Anguished Declaration of Love: Towards Yuuki in Chapter 46. While Yuuki acknowledges his feelings, it's an anguished love confession because he confesses that he only wants Yuuki's blood right after Yuuki admits she only desires Kaname's blood.
Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Despite outward appearances, he remains a kind-hearted character no matter how much he's put through (as Yuuki even calls him out on at one point), and is considered unique in his nigh immunity to pureblood's charisma and control, which is hinted to be one of the reasons Kaname (and nearly all other purebloods we've seen) are so intrigued by, and interested in using him.
Master Character Heroes: Arguably, he fills the role of Poseidon: The Artist because of how he's been despising himself all these years because of his vampire side and his reaction to Yuuki discovering him as a vampire, how his character can often be unpredictable, and his fear of ever harming Yuuki.
Meaningful Name: Zero's first name has the kanji for rei, which means "zero" in Japanese. His last name Kiryuu translates to "auger"/"drill" (ki) and "life" (ryuu).
No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Is treated like the story's, or more spesifically, the love triangle's Butt Monkey for a fair amount of the time despite being the most kindhearted character (stated by the author herself), always remaining loyal and protective of Yuuki (as mentioned below; even after alienating himself from her) and making her happier than Kaname which is even highlighted by the latter towards the end. To add to it, when he finally gets his happy ending, it's entirely skipped in favor for showing Yuuki returning to Kaname's tomb after his (Zero's) off-screen death, to sacrifice herself in order to give Kaname a happy ending as well.
With the release of a bonus chapter however, he's given more of a closure as it confirms their happy ending together next to the stated knowledge that Yuuki loves him, in the deepest sense of the word.
Not Blood Siblings: Zero and Yuuki, who were both raised by Kaien for some of their childhood. Lampshaded in Volume 2 and Volume 6, where Yuuki says she considers Zero like a "brother," mainly because of their status as childhood friends.
Zero: Coming here to talk? You don't really think that would make a difference, do you? Discussing things like turning humans into vampires. But of course you transformed from a vampire into a human. On the other side of this door, I sense an arrogant Pureblood who does nothing but torment people.
Sanity Slippage: In the first arc, he suffers from this as he's slowly turning into a level E, something drinking Yuuki's blood only temporarily postpones. After indirectly recieving Shizuka's blood through Kaname and Ichiru however, he becomes safe.
Single-Minded Twins: Kaien spazzes out when he notices that the twins entered the room with the same pose in a omake. In Chapter 73, when he lightly scolded Maria and carried her back to the Moon Dormitory, Maria noticed that Ichiru said and did the same thing to her when they first met.
Undying Loyalty: Towards Yuuki. Even after alienating himself from her, he still ends up protecting her on several occasions such as from Touma and angered hunters, and offers his own blood to her when witnessing her hunger while she's at the Hunter Association. In the finale, he also attempts to talk Kaname out of sacrificing himself to prevent Yuuki from grieving.
Sacrificial Lamb: Kaito planned to use her as a "sacrificial lamb" at a vampire ball in order for a vampire to bite Yori, as this would allow the hunters a reason to kill the purebloods. Luckily, she was left unscathed.
Secret Keeper: Is one of the few Day Class students who were allowed to keep their memories of the vampire battle at Cross Academy.
Kaname is the president of the Night Class, a pureblood vampire, and the object of Yuuki's affections. He rescued Yuuki ten years ago from a vampire attack. While formal and polite, Kaname can also be enigmatic and distant. Two mysteries that surround Kaname are the death of his parents and his connection towards Yuuki's memories.
Big Bad: In the end, while he's not entirely evil, his increasingly villainous actions and mindset turn him into the main antagonist of the series, to the point where the series actually ends with him as the Final Boss.
Brother-Sister Incest: Yuuki is actually his sister and the daughter of Haruka and Juuri. In spite of this, they still remain a couple because it is common for purebloods to interbreed. Though, it's revealed that, with him really the ancestor of the Kurans, they are still technically related.
Even the Guys Want Him: He has this "problem". He already has Yuuki, Ruka, Sara, and countless screaming Day Class girls who want him. Not to mention all those nobles practically shoving their daughters at him a vampire soiree. But on top of all this, he has a very one-sided bromance with Aidou, and if you look closely there's a guy in line to give him chocolates in the St. Xocolatl's Day chapter. And then there's Ichijou's loyalty and concern for Kaname brought to new and interesting heights as of the latest chapter if his conversation with Yuuki is anything to go by.
Karma Houdini: To a degree. Although he admits to have committed many sins and gives his life at the end to become the hunter's furnace, he equally confesses to not have any regrets, offers no apology to Zero for causing his family tragedy and subsequently treating him bad, and ultimately gets a happy ending by Yuuki turning him human a thousand years later. However, since he's forced to live the rest of his life without Yuuki, he certainly isn't gonna have that much of a happy ending.
My Master, Right or Wrong: He is unable to murder Rido—no matter how much he would want to—because Rido was the one who resurrected Kaname (as the ancestor of the Kurans) from his grave. Not that he wouldn't want to though.
Ungrateful Bastard: His behaviour in chapter 90 falls into this. Yuuki had just slept with him, yet his actions when an amnesiac Zero arrives is to act jealously, taunting him for no reason and biting Yuuki violently in front of him and Takuma. It gets to the point Yuuki slaps him, then hugging and asking him to stop it because she can't ever go back to Zero again.
Well-Intentioned Extremist: In the second arc, he reveals to have been the one to manipulate Shizuka into attacking Zero's family, in order to make Zero into a "weapon" for him. He also goes on a genocide mission that consists of wiping out all purebloods, ending with him intending to use his own heart as furnace for the vampire hunters' metal. All this is apparently because of "the hooded woman's wish" and/or to create a safe environment for Yuuki.
... Grandfather... Let us put an end to the Ichijou line.
Kaname's best friend and the Night Class's vice president. He is very friendly and outgoing, and can usually be found with a smile on his face. Ichijou's grandfather is a member of the Vampire Council. He is good friends with Shiki and Rima.
... And my heart decided. I would become someone who could really protect him.
Nicknamed "Idol" by the Day Class girls, Aidou is Kaname's "right-hand man" alongside his cousin Kain. He displays a fun-loving and playful personality around the Day Class girls, and he fiercely idolizes Kaname. He is jealous of the attention Yuuki recieves from Kaname.
Becoming the Mask: He—along with Kain, Ruka, and Ichijou—was purposely supposed to befriend Fuuka in order to keep an eye on her as she takes the experimental pills to see if it will help her slow down the vampire process of an eventual Level E, but as time grew on, Aidou began growing emotionally supportive and sympathetic towards Fuuka and genuinely wanted to save her.
Berserk Button: You do not want to come between him and his Kaname-sama.
Conflicting Loyalty: His admiration towards Kaname versus his duty as a vampire after he witnesses Kaname murdering Shizuka. Also, his growing attachment towards Fuuka versus his duty to have kept her emotionally distant and think her as just an experimental subject.
Cynicism Catalyst/Failure Knight: Initially, Fuuka—a Day Class student who had been turned into an ex-human vampire—was just a test subject and experiment to him for the (at the time) experimental pills that could slow the vampire process from a Level E. He disliked her because she had a crush on Kaname, but as time grew on, he sympathized with Fuuka and wanted to save her from her eventual fate. After Fuuka took the pills, she was beginning to show signs of recovery, but her body soon developed an immunity against it. Fuuka asks him to kill her so she won't turn into a Level E vampire, and in spite of his protests, he reluctantly abides and kills Fuuka.
Meaningful Name: Hanabusa means "petals of a flower" and Aidou means "indigo temple." The pronunciation of Aidou is very close to the pronunciation of the English word "Idol" in Japanese, which is where the Day Class girls derived Aidou's nickname from.
Mercy Kill: Reluctantly kills Fuuka when she doesn't want to become a Level E.
Number Two: He and his cousin Kain share the role towards Kaname.
Pet the Dog: He gradually grows to sympathize with Yuuki following The Reveal. After the timeskip, he reassures Yuuki he won't tell Kaname that she is writing a letter to someone (presumably Zero), offers blood tablets for her when she had to resort to biting herself to get blood, accompanies her on her mission to confront pureblood vampires, and stands beside her when she decides to reopen the Night Class, in spite of the fact that Kaname murdered his father prior to this.
... If in the future you end up causing her unhappiness... then I will not forgive you.
Nicknamed "Wild" by the Day Class girls, Kain is Kaname's "right-hand man" alongside his cousin Aidou. He is often laidback and reserved. Kain sympathizes with his childhood friend Ruka, who he has feelings for.
Butt Monkey: Kain has a fair amount of bad luck and is a "victim of circumstances," often getting lectured for not stopping fights or gets involved into said fights that he didn't necessarily want to get into.
Green-Eyed Monster: Like Aidou, she is jealous of Yuuki because of the attention she recieves from Kaname. When Yuuki is revealed to be a pureblood vampire and Kaname's "sister", she gradually accepts that her feelings for Kaname are unrequited.
Heroic Sacrifice: chapter 82 where she protects Zero from Kaname and gets stabbed in the process.
That's all right, because a puppet, is now able to move by its own conscious.A young model in the Night Class who is often in the company of Rima. Quiet and introverted, Shiki initially doesn't think too much of himself. Shiki's mother is a former actress who he must take care of because she's fairly helpless on her own. He is good friends with Ichijou.
I Owe You My Life: Feels indebted towards Juuri Kuran for sparing his life sixteen years ago.
I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Eventually becomes this towards Juuri, as by the time he meets her, she's already married to Haruka. According to his bio in the fanbook, when asked what his taste in women is, he says, "She's already married, so..."
Meaningful Name: Kaien means "ashes" (kai) and "village gate" (en). The kanji for en is used to Enma too, which is the ruler of the Underworld in Buddhist mythology. Cross (or Kurosu) is the Japanese pronunciation of "cross" and the kanji chosen for kurosu translates to "black" (kuro) and "master" (su).
I'm so happy, I thought I was dead inside Zero's heart...Zero's twin brother. Ichiru and Zero were once very close as children until Ichiru overheard their parents favoring Zero over him. He willingly went with Shizuka following her attack on the Kiryuu family and became her faithful servant.
And now we have a little lamb... joining the party.
A fellow hunter and an old friend of Zero's who returns to Cross Academy as a teacher-in-training.
Batman Gambit: He used Yori as bait for the purebloods during a vampire ball to test Zero's reactions.
Canon Immigrant: Kaito originally appeared in the light novel based on the series, written by Ayuna Fujisaki. When Hino Matsuri wanted to add another Vampire Hunter character into her story, she liked Kaito so much that she asked Fujisaki for permission use him.
A Day Class student with a crush on Kaname. After attempting to sneak in the Moon Dormitory, the Night Class students — Aidou, Kain, Ruka, and Ichijou in particular — take an interest in Fuuka and let her visit the dorm at night. As these visits progress, a mystery surrounding Fuuka begins to unveil itself. She is introduced in the VK light novel Vampire Knight: Ice Blue no Tsumi.
Fuuka: What would you think if I were to say... I love you?
Aidou:You're too honest... I'm sorry...
Fuuka: Never mind. I... I... I love you, sempai. And that's why I'm happy... to die in your arms...
Because You Were Nice to Me: She feels this way towards Aidou because of how he was her only ally—having rescued her so several times and was the only person who was honest with her. So, naturally, this is why she asks Aidou to be the one who kills her.
Exact Eavesdropping: Just when she visits the Moon Dormitory to ask what kind of chocolates Aidou likes for St. Xocolatl's Day to give him "thank you" chocolates for rescuing her, she overhears Aidou, Kain, Ruka, and Ichijou discussing the exterimental pill's effect on her, and they reveal that she is an ex-human vampire and the pills were an attempt to slow down the vampire process.
Dying as Yourself: Would rather die by Aidou's hand as herself than be hunted down as a Level E vampire.
With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: She was revealed to have been bitten by a pureblood vampire following an accident. The pureblood saved Fuuka's life and altered her memories, but as a result, she was gradually turning into a Level E vampire.
Meaningful Name: Shizuka means "calm and quiet." Hio means "scarlet" (hi) and "cherry blossoms (ou). Her Red Baron name Kuruizaki-hime translates to "flowers of the blooming season" (kuruizaki) and "princess" (hime).
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Her attack on the Kiyruu family was because they were the ones who murdered her manservant lover, who was a vampire who was once a human and was falsely placed on the hunter's execution list as a Level E.
The Rival: In Chapter 72, she suggests she'll "snatch" Zero away from Yuuki if the latter doesn't want him. It's notable since she's not too particularly fond of Zero, but her suggestion may have to do with Zero's resemblance to Ichiru and Ichiru technically being "one" with Zero.
Ship Tease: According to her bio in the fanbook, her taste in men is "Ichiru."
Big Bad Wannabe: Looks like she's being set up as the next major villain.... and does absolutely nothing in the end. Yeah, the implication that she wanted to be the Queen of the Purebloods? That was all a bunch of hot air.
Enigmatic Minion: We have no idea what she's up to or why, but it has something to do with Kaname since she captured Ichijou out of the purpose of getting information on Kaname. It's revealed that she "wants to be Queen"—whatever that means is anybody's guess, but it's very likely that she desires to be the Queen of the purebloods.
It happened so fast that I didn't have time to hold back my power... I couldn't take the risk, because there's a life growing inside me that I had to protect at all costs...
Kaname's and Yuuki's mother, Juuri is the wife of Haruka. Supposedly, Haruka's and Juuri's deaths were the result of suicide. It was later revealed that they were murdered by Rido instead. She is also Haruka's and Rido's sister.
Umbrella of Togetherness: A whole flashback side chapter revolved around this idea—with her looking back on it with both irritation and fondness. When it was raining while she attended a human high school, she got really irritated that Haruka would follow her home and even hid all the umbrellas except for the one he was carrying. When she demanded for an explanation, Haruka replied—
Haruka: It's because I wanted to share an umbrella with you...
How can I stay behind and let my child protect me? Don't destroy my pride of being a father, please.
Kaname's and Yuuki's father, Haruka is the husband of Juuri. Supposedly, Haruka's and Juuri's deaths were the result of suicide. It was later revealed that they were murdered by Rido instead. He is also Rido's and Juuri's brother.
Youngest Child Wins: Haruka isn't the youngest child, but he is the youngest brother who ended up winning the affections of his sister Juuri over his older brother Rido.
Alike... You look like Juuri. I've changed my mind. You will replace Juuri, and let me love you.
Rido is the Big Bad. He is also Shiki's father and the older brother of Haruka and Juuri. Rido had unrequited feelings for Juuri and was resentful of Haruka's and Juuri's marriage. Rido returns to Cross Academy in order to devour Yuuki and take her power. He is also the one who ressurected the Ancestor of the Kurans — Kaname — from his grave. Thus, Kaname is unable to kill him.
The Resenter: Very much indeed. Disliked the fact that his arranged fiancee Shizuka Hio was in love with a vampire who used to be a human enough that he imprisoned Shizuka and falsely placed Shizuka's lover on the Level E list so that he would be killed by the hunters. Oh, and he was a sore loser about the whole Haruka/Juuri thing too.
A girl and boy shown in the last pages at the end of the story after a thousand years have passed. They appear to be in their late teens look-wise, but it's unknown how much older they most likely are.