Manga: Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden

Welcome to the Legend that started them all.
Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden is a prequel written by Yuu Watase to the popular manga/anime series Fushigi Yuugi. The series premiered on April 14th, 2003 and has a total of 12 volumes. Soon spinned into 5 volumes of Drama CDs depicting the first 5 volumes of the manga, and a video game, Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden Gaiden ~Kagami no Miko~ for PS 2, PSP, and Nintendo DS, marking the first ever video game adaption for a Yuu Watase work.

In the year of 1923, roughly 60 years before Miaka encountered the book, novelist Einosuke Okuda came back to Japan from China obtaining the original Chinese version of an ancient ceremonial scripture called The Universe of the Four Gods (Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho) where he worked tirelessly translating them into Japanese and bind them into book form. Neglecting his ill wife Yoshie and stressed daughter Takiko Okuda, who recently moved from Tokyo to Yoshie's hometown for her mom's further care, has to put up with a new school life, and being constantly teased by her classmates for having a sick mother.

Onto the moment when Yoshie actually died, the father and daughter went into a quarrel that led to Einosuke having an I Have No Son spit out towards Takiko. Grieved of loneliness, and uselessness, Takiko took the translated book from her father and was going to rip it apart until the book suddenly starts to shine bright and absorbs her into the book, becoming the legendary Priestess of Genbu.

The seven Celestial Warriors' backstories and point-of-views play an important part in the storytelling of this work. According to Watase, compared to the previous work, the viewpoints are more evenly distributed around the interactions between teammates as to just the heroine's character/love development POV. Therefore you might notice some surprising tropes that can only be found in the character sheet.

The ending chapter was published in Flower Magazine's Spring Issue in February 14th, 2013, and the final volume in May 17th, 2013. This marked the end of the story spanning 10 years of publishing.

Beware that this page contains SPOILERS.

This manga presents examples of:

  • Action Girl: Takiko, who quite knows how to use the naginata.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Takiko for Uruki, and Firuka for Hagas.
  • Badass Crew / True Companions: The Genbu Celestial Warriors along with their miko, being the first miko out of all four, and team of all 28 seishis of the world to appear. Compared to the future Suzaku and Seiryuu Teams, they are on average, dangerously powerful and badass to the near extreme. Their miko can wield a weapon, the majority of the warriors work very close together as a group, and their relationship is more like a family unit. Literally all bare Elemental Powers, and whom all has to pave way through the hells of prejudice, suppression, and racism to make a better status for the future seishis to come. And this trope pretty much sums up the whole story...
  • Betty And Veronica: Mr. Ohsugi, Takiko's first love (Betty) and Uruki (Veronica).
    • Tomite (Betty) and Uruki (Veronica).
  • Big Brother Mentor: Soruen towards Uruki, Hikitsu towards Tomite.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Hikitsu and Tomite pulled it off, twice. First was to save their crew plus lots of other people from a big fire, second was to save Uruki and Takiko's ass from soldiers.
  • Bittersweet Ending -> Earn Your Happy Ending: Yes, Takiko and Einosuke die, and they're mourned heavily by Ohkuda before he takes the Book away (Einosuke) and by the Genbu Senshi (Takiko). But as soon as Takiko dies, the Emperor of Hokkan does too, and this allows Uruki to ascend to the throne as Emperor Rimudo. Hakkei accepts his loss and soon the war between Kutou and Hokkan stops. Later, Rimudo has a last "meeting" with the souls of Tomite and Hikitsu and sees that Anlu and Takiko's necklace has become what will soon be known as one of the Shinzaho, and not only he lived to ripe age and was The Good King who led Hokkan to peace and prosperity, but he and Takiko are reborn as normal people and are happily reunited.
  • Blade On A Stick: Takiko has, like many girls in Japan had/have, Naginata training. When she gets sucked into The Universe of the Four Gods, she has one constructed for her.
  • Blood Brothers / Heterosexual Life Partners: Hikitsu and Tomite. And not only are they bond brothers, Word Of God said that both of them "came from the same ancestor!"
  • Brought Down To Normal: The Celestial Warriors' consequence of summoning a beast god, in this case, Genbu. For the duration of their priestess's chant to summon the beast's physical appearance, all seven warriors have to surrender their powers onto the priestess, and are at their most vulnerable state. This is the main reason why Tomite and Hikitsu did not survive, because they fell victim from the enemy's undercover attack during the summon.
  • Call Forward: These two guys chuckled over this conversation at the time, but little do they know they would be the ones to fulfill that...
    Hikitsu: "...Even if you say that, I don't think we'll have the chance to meet The Suzaku Warriors anyway. This country (Konan) is peaceful now."
  • Cast Full Of Pretty Boys: And only the Fushigi series out of the whole genre/industry is capable of keeping the fangirls demanding MORE of them!
  • Cleaning Up Romantic Loose Ends / Pair The Spares: It seems Tomite is headed there with Hikitsu's sister Aila.
  • Competitive Balance: If you think about it in another way, this arc is pretty much just a fantasy RPG between the seven warriors themselves.
  • Cooldown Hand-Pat...with SMACKS included: Hikitsu on Tomite.
  • Darker And Edgier: Think this is Fushigi Yuugi from two hundred years ago? Think again.
  • Designated Parents / Token Adults: Hikitsu and Inami.
  • Dying Moments of Awesome:
  • Elemental Powers: The first four are the resident Four Element Ensemble.
  • Everythings Better With Princesses: Firuka. She's Uruki's cousin.
  • Eyepatch Of Power: Subverted as an Eyepatch of Anti-Power. Hikitsu's eyepatch hides his powerful right eye, which on one occasion sends Takiko back to the real world.
  • Fanservice: This is a Yuu Watase work we're talking about here so we're guaranteed to get some. She gives them out generously providing packages full of shirtless scenes and beyond for BOTH genders of her characters.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The country of Hokkan is a spinoff of Mongolia (both inner and outer Mongolia).
  • Foolish Sibling Responsible Sibling / Sibling Yin Yang: The Urumiya Brothers. Older brother Tegu is responsible, calm, thoughtful, and friendly, while younger brother Hagas is the foolish one and reacts to issues in the extreme manner. In his case, a cold concealed persona, along with extreme aloofness.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Since this is a prequel, the reader goes into the manga knowing that Hikitsu, Tomite, Takiko, and her father Einosuke will not survive.
  • The Four Gods
  • Hidden Depths: Out of all characters, it is Hikitsu that you have to be cautious of. By far, he has the most tropes in the character sheet, and he never showed the majority of them within the storyline at all.
  • Ill Girl: It is later revealed that Takiko caught tuberculosis from her dead mother Yoshie.
  • Imperial Japan: Takiko lived in the The Roaring Twenties (more exactly, the Taishou Jidal aka Taishou Era), so this applies.
  • Interrupted Declaration Of Love: Uruki to Takiko.
    Uruki: "Now I realize...that I..."
    Tomite: "Hikitsu, wait!"
  • Like Brother And Sister: According to Word Of God, this is how Takiko and Tomite are, despite the fact that it's pretty clear that Tomite was developing some unrequited romantic feelings for Takiko through their two almost kisses, his rivalry (and a bit of inferiority complex) with Uruki, and how he mutters that he guesses he didn't have a "chance" when Takiko tells Tomite that she is in love with someone else from her world in Volume 4.
  • Love Triangle: Mr. Ohsugi/Takiko/Uruki and Tomite/Takiko/Uruki.
  • Naginatas Are Feminine: Takiko took naginatajutsu classes during her time as an Ordinary High School Student. When she becomes Trapped In Another World she has a naginata made for her.
  • Names To Know In Anime: The Drama CD's have quite the stellar cast. Check to the character sheet to see for yourself.
  • Outdoor Bath Peeping: Tomite came charging into his tribe's hotspring attempting to notify them that the enemies are near when Takiko just started drying herself from her bath. But then his mom just went out for his blood instead.
    • Uruki and Tomite (again) also did this move while Takiko was bathing in the second premium drama.
    • Takiko really only spied on Shigi bathing in a river by accident. She noticed at this point that Shigi was an eunuch.
  • Parental Abandonment: Actually, all of the main crew have this background.
    • Takiko's mother Yoshie dies of tuberculosis in the first chapter, and her father Einosuke is never around because he was researching the Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho to find a way to save his wife, not to mention the fact that he never wanted a daughter to begin with. He apologizes for the last part, though.
    • As for Uruki, it was prophesized when he was born that when Genbu was summoned he would kill his father. As a result, his father is after his life, even going so far as to ally himself with the force trying to destroy his own country, even though he is a member of the royal family. It is these actions that lead many to believe that this will turn out to be a Self Fulfilling Prophecy.
    • In literal terms, Hikitsu and his sister. His whole entire village ditched them because his powers were too powerful and horrifying to his tribe, and his tribe believed in the superstition that he as a Celestial Warrior was a curse upon them.
    • Hatsui and Urumiya's parents have been dead since their childhood.
    • Even though he's the most luckiest dude of the group with a very supportive mom all alive and well, and was raised up with a comedic personality, remember that Tomite's dad died when he was a kid too.
  • Personality Powers: Subverted with Tomite as An Ice Person while holding a plucky Hotblooded personality.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Tomite, the one and only comic relief there is. And we all should really thank GOD for not killing him till the very darn second-to-last chapter, otherwise all readers would really become blood-thirsty monsters on the author.
  • Plucky Girl: Takiko. She works so hard, that this is the reason why all of the joined seishis began to like her as their boss, and have hope in saving the world.
  • Power Trio:
  • Precocious Crush: Takiko's longtime feelings for her first love, Mr. Ohsugi, who is married and has a daughter (Suzuno, who'd become the Priestess of Byakko a few years later). She eventually grows out of this when she realizes her love for Uruki.
  • Rags To Royalty: Takiko.
  • Refusal Of The Call: Would you wanna come out of the closet when it's said that being selected as Celestial Warrior is doomed as a complete curse to mankind and all people of your entire country will discriminate against you? ...We think not. Literally every single Genbu Seishi that Takiko encountered openly refused to join her as their initial reaction once she introduced herself as the Priestess of Genbu. Except for the very very last one.
  • Retirony Death Flag Speech: Tomite's promise with Aira.
    Tomite: "Aira, just you wait! Once this war is over, you, me, with Hikitsu and my mom, we're all gonna spend the rest of our lives together!"
  • Required Secondary Powers: In order to use his power, Uruki has to turn into a woman.
    • Super Gender Bender: Rimudo has the ability to switch between male and female forms (he usually stays male), but his Celestial Warrior abilities are only available when he's in his female form.
  • Role Reprisal: As of the Drama CD and Game franchise, Nobuyuki Hiyama and Tetsuya Iwanaga from their Fushigi Yuugi act are both back for Hikitsu and Tomite respectively.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Uruki and Firuka.
  • Sailor Fuku: Subverted. Takiko uses hakama to go to school instead of the recently implemented sailor fuku, but according to Word Of God she used to wear the fuku when she lived in Tokyo.
  • Second Love: Uruki, for Takiko.
  • Shout Out: The journey to The Konan Country sure is a lot of fun for the gang.
    • Uruki and Hikitsu wore the same kind of top, but Uruki gets even with one unbuttoned just like some future Suzaku seishi guy name Tamahome.
    • The owner of the fabric store where the Genbu gang purchased their local clothing is Nuriko's ancestor.
  • Soap Opera Disease: Takiko and Hagas.
  • Spy Fiction: Takiko's undercover arc into the Hokkan Palace, top it with Hikitsu's secret agent abilities to play it out perfectly.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Shigi and Hien.
  • Warrior Prince: Uruki.
  • World Healing Wave: In the Grand Finale, Takiko's second wish was basically this. More exactly, "a wish for all the living things of this country to be restored to what they once were". It shows when a miraculous water spreads through the country, healing wounded soldiers (which makes both sides of the Hokkan/Kutou war stop their fighting), melting snow, making Namame merge with the water and reunite in death with Anlu.