It is the time of wars.
In the chaotic Empire, a group of seven heroes of the stars, the Hokushin-Tenkun, rose to lead the common folk. Out of the seven a destiny of heated battle unfolds between the "Two Noble Spirits", Hagun and Tonrou. Originally the two should not exist in the same time but the gears of Fate have turned otherwise.
In the current feeble state of the Ken Empire, the conflicting "Two Noble Spirits" - Taitou Shirei of Hagun and Keirou of Tonrou each fight for their view of justice and the peace of the countries and their home country.
In the name of Fate, the justice of whom shall prevail...?
It's illustrated by the author of Fullmetal Alchemist
, Hiromu Arakawa
. and written by Huang Jin Zhou - pseudonym of a group including Arakawa and studios Genco and Flag.
An animated adaptation aired in 2007 for 26 episodes while the manga concluded in 2010.
Provides examples of:
- Action Girl: Rinmei. Doubles as an Action Girlfriend for Ryuko/Keiko.
- Anyone Can Die
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Keiro and his second-in-command break the siege of Goken on their own. Just the two of them.
- Break the Cutie: Laila reaches this point when she finds out Taito's fate as the Hagun resulted in death of her parents and their adoptive father, going so far as to try and kill him in anger before she comes to her senses.
- Chekhov's Gun: Naiden, a technique that allows one to attack through objects without harming anything other than the target, was introduced early on by Kouei. It's used again in Taito's battle with Keiro, who was using Ryuko as a shield.
- The Chosen One: Seven of them, actually.
- Dark Action Girl: Shouka
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Soukiho is a somewhat more mild form of this trope, as it causes thin cuts in Taito if he doesn't control it correctly.
- Dirty Old Man: Sonnei, whose first appearance is patting Laila's butt while remarking Ryuko managed to get food from Laila and Taito and be guided by them. At the end of the chapter, he is in a Corner of Woe at realizing he'll be unable to touch Laila's butt from her for a while due to her going with Taito and Ryuko to get back the Kenkarapu.
- Enigmatic Minion: Shinmei
- Faux Affably Evil: Shinmei
- Heel-Face Revolving Door: Subverted with Ryuko. At first he sided with Taito, then his adoptive father Ryusho tells him he doesn't have to be on Taito's side, resulting in him "siding" with Keiro after Shinmei revealed to him that Keiro's his father. After Shokaku's Heroic Sacrifice, he sides with Taito again in taking down Keiro.
- Hot-Blooded: Taito, in addition to being an Idiot Hero. He doesn't go about his life in halves.
- Idiot Hero: Taito. He grows out of it.
- Ill Guy: Shokaku in the anime.
- Leeroy Jenkins: Taito's kneejerk reaction to any opponent.
- Living Weapon: Shinmei is actually a demon sword who can possess other bodies, living or dead, in order to roam.
- Long Lost Sibling: The emperor of the Kei Empire is actually the younger brother of Taito.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Keiro's revealed to be Ryuko's biological father.
- Mundangerous: In the first chapter, Laila stops Taito in an insane rage from the Hagun by walking up to him, holding his face in her hands... and telling him to get back to his sense while headbutting him.
- She does it again in the next chapter, knocking Taito across the room with a Megaton Punch when he accuses her of being a thief since Taito and Ryuko don't recognize her (because she got her hair done and borrowed extravagant clothes from the landlady).
- My Beloved Smother: Kouei, Housei's master, is a non-relative example. She's very clingy to him.
- No Sense of Direction: Ryuko. His first appearance has him admitting he got lost finding the temple Taito lives at. Ryuko guides Taito and Laila to get the Kenkarapu back, but when they meet Housei, Housei says they're going in a completely different direction to their destination.
- Not Blood Siblings: Turns out to be the case for Leila and Taito.
- Only the Chosen May Wield: Kenkarapu.
- Pregnant Badass: Rinmei is pregnant with Ryuko's child
- Refusal of the Call: Traditionally, the Hagun is the rightful heir to the Kei Empire as it's their duty to protect the empire and the Kenkarapu signifies them as such, once Taito resolves that he would not become the emperor, the Kenkarapu immediately unsheathes for Keiro, the Tonro.
- Shown Their Work: At the end of each volume, Hiromu showcases the lengths she and the rest of the creative team went through on researching ancient Chinese architecture and designs (roofing materials, floors, walls, statues, etc.), starting with a trip to Beijing (though it's also a case of "Suffering For Their Work" in some of the members' case - freezing temperatures of -2 degrees C for them, just a nice spring walk for Hiromu and another member who grew up in the colder parts of Japan).
- Superpowered Insanity: Taitou gets like this whenever he loses control of the Hagun.
- Timeskip: The final chapter of the manga is set seven years after Keiro and Taito's battle, with Taito finally returning to Laila, who had since become chief of their village.
- Weapon of Choice: Each of the heroes wields one:
- Visible Silence: Done by Taito as he listens to Ryuko lecture him about the need to have discipline to his power, combined with Ignoring By Singing as he also covers his ears.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Keiro's desire to overthrow the empire for peace stems from the fact that his village and his wife were slaughtered by the Kei Empire solely because he was the Tonrou, but his rage clouded his judgement to the point where the only action he found acceptable was to wipe out the entire empire, even the innocent, by himself in order to maintain permanent peace.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Keiro absorbs Shinmei when he realizes that the latter is in the way of his plans.
- Zombie Apocalypse: In the anime, after overthrowing the emperor, Keiro gathered everyone in the empire, only to be turned to zombies through the power of Banshou Shinmei