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King Il of Kouka, a country said in legends to have been founded by dragons, has no male heir, only a young daughter named Yona. As the sole princess she is living the luxurious and carefree life as a princess should. She has it all: the finest clothes and cosmetics, the most divine sweets, a loving emperor as a father, and the hottest cousin crush, Soo-Won, anyone could ever hope to have. Now, if only her bodyguard and childhood friend, Son Hak, wasn't so annoying, her hair wasn't so red and her father would allow her to marry Soo-Won, everything would be just perfect.But on the day of her sixteenth birthday, her nearly perfect world shatters. The man she loves, Soo-Won, murders her father and the path to his ascension to the throne is assured. Hak escapes with Yona, and they retreat to his hometown Fuuga, the capital of the Wind Tribe. A man living near those lands, a priest called Ik-Soo, tells them of a prophecy related to her and the country's future. So Yona resolves to keep on living, to fight and reclaim her place as the true ruler by finding the "dragon warriors", those who have inherited the mythical powers from their ancestors, who helped the legendary dragon king Hiryuu establish the Kouka Kingdom.The manga is written by Mizuho Kusanagi whose previous works include NG Life and Mugen Spiral.An anime adaptation was produced for the Fall 2014 Anime season by Studio Pierrot. It was licensed by FUNimation, although Crunchyroll still possesses streaming rights.
All Love Is Unrequited: Yona was in love with Soo-Won but he didn't return her affections. Tae-Jun made it clear that he wanted to marry Yona but she turned him down. Then there is Kija, Jae-Ha and Hak who either have a crush on Yona or are starting to fall in love with her but how she feels about them are left ambiguous.
Antagonist in Mourning: He may have killed her father and attempted to kill her as well, but Soo-Won is visibly shocked when an equally distraught Tae-Jun informs him of Yona and Hak's supposed deaths.
Badass: Pretty much everyone, especially the dragons, Yona and Hak.
Bling of War: Justified and played with. When Soo-Won "plays" war with Geun-Tae, he makes sure that they are wearing custom made jewelry. Turns out he was advertising gemstones from the local quarry to stimulate the economy.
Blood Knight: The Earth Tribe's General, Lee Geun-Tae, really likes fighting and is more than thrilled when Soo-Won seemingly plans to start a "war".
Bodyguard Crush: Oh Hak... And later we also have Kija. Jae-ha is shaping to follow the trend too.
Determinator: Crawl along an impossibly high cliff where one false move means certain death? Tremble and cry in fear while trying not to be flung to said certain death by high speed winds? Okay. But Yona willget those herbs, even if she has to do it a second time.
Dying to Be Replaced: Once a new "dragon warrior" is born, the previous one slowly loses his powers and subsequently his life.
Everyone Can See It: Everybody at the palace, save King Il, could see that Yona was head over heels in love with Soo-Won, who was also oblivious.
Everyone Calls Him Barkeep: Shin-Ah was only known as the "Seiryuu", his birth parents didn't bother to give him a name, not even the previous Seiryuu, Ao, who did care about him thought of giving him one.
First Episode Spoiler: That naive princess that shows up on the second page? The first page has her future self acting badass as usual.
First Name Basis: Seiryuu was the first of the Dragons to start calling Yona by her name and not "Princess". Afterwards, the others asked her if they could do the same too. Subverted with Hak, as Yona specifically requested him to continue to refer to her as "Princess" so she wouldn't forget that she is the daughter of the king.
Friendless Background: Seiryuu had it the worst where his whole village shunned him and his own mother killed herself when she found out she gave birth to the next Seiryuu.
Good Is Not Soft: The kind and sweet Yona was the one who shot and killed Kum-Ji.
Happily Adopted: Several characters: Hak, his little foster brother Tae-Yeon, Yoon was also sort of adopted by Ik-Soo and Ao was the only parental figure Shin-Ah had.
Hopeless Suitor: Kan Tae-Jun, the second son of the General of the Fire Tribe, in regards of his crush on Yona.
I Just Want to Have Friends: Shin-Ah wished to have friends ever since he was a young child, but he was an outcast in his village, hated and feared by everyone.
Important Haircut: When Yona and an injured Hak are surrounded, Yona is captured by the son of the Fire Tribe's general as he held her by the hair. After seeing Hak fall off the cliff into a raging river below. Realizing she was too weak to do anything, she cuts her hair, freeing herself from her enemy, the last link to her old life, and taking the first step to the Badass she will one day become by jumping off the cliff to save Hak.
Innocent Fanservice Girl: After briefly reuniting with Soo-Won unexpectedly, Yona was in such a daze that after she spilled some porridge on herself she started unbuttoning her outer shirt in front of everyone. Hak was quick enough to cover her with his jacket.
Red-Headed Heroine: Yona. It's even a plot point because her hair color is so rare and matches the legendary dragon king Hiryuu note (it literally means Red Dragon), who was the founder of the Kouka Kingdom.
Royals Who Actually Do Something: Both Soo-Won and Yona. As the next king Soo-Won plans to restore their country to its former glory, and as we can see with what he planned when he "plays" with Geun-Tae. On the other side Yona, who only recently started to become aware of the difficulties that the inhabitants of Kouka face day by day, helps the people in need that she encounters.
Sarcastic Devotee: Hak, who loves to tease Yona yet his loyalty towards her is absolute.
Spell My Name with an "S": Is it "Soo-Won" or "Su-Won", "Yoon" or "Yun", "Heang-Dea" or "Han-Dae", "Mundok" or "Mun-deok", "Yu-Hon" or "Yoo-Hong", "Min-Soo" or "Min-Su", "Joo-Doh" or "Ju-do"? A bit more understandable than most examples, however, given the various romanization systems of Korean.
Spoiled Sweet: Yona at the beginning of the story, when she was just a naive princess. Though YMMV as some fans considered her to be more of a Spoiled Brat.
Tragic Keepsake: An interesting case where Yona kept the hairpin that Soo-Won gave her during her birthday party ... the same night she saw Soo-Won murder her father. Most likely to remind herself what happened that night.
The original Blue, White, Green and Yellow dragons were so loyal to Hiryuu, that they each gave part of their powers to four human warriors so that they would protect him in their stead. Said warriors also grew to become greatly loyal to the King, and said fealty was passed on generation from generation.
What Beautiful Eyes: Seiryuu's eyes are very beautiful to behold but his village terrified of a curse that anyone who looked upon those eyes would become paralyze and die (which wasn't entirely far away from the truth) so Seiryuu always wore a mask to cover his eyes.