[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ubelblatt_6308.gif]]

A manga created by Etorouji Shiono, running since 2005, though it was put on SeriesHiatus until recently, with new chapters now released bimonthly.

In the Empire of Szaalenden, there is a certain tale told to children and adults alike. In the year 3968 the Empire was at war with a powerful dark enemy called Wischtech. With the Wischtech forces close to overrunning the Empire's defenses and casualties rising every day, the Emperor sent fourteen champions to seal the route used by Wischtech's invading armies. Not all would complete the journey; three died along the way, and were forever known as the 'Precious Departed'. Four betrayed the rest and were killed, their names blackened with the title of 'Lances of Betrayal'. The remaining seven pushed on and completed their mission, bringing peace to the Empire. They became known as the 'Seven Heroes' and were lauded far and wide as saviors of the land.

Twenty years have passed since the war, but there is trouble in the Imperial Frontiers. A mysterious boy named Köinzell appears on the outskirts of the Empire, cutting a bloody swath through the chaos. His one goal: to kill the Seven Heroes no matter the cost. At the same time, there comes word of a prophecy, proclaiming that a hero will come from the frontier to stop a mysterious, deadly catastrophe.

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!!This series provides examples of:

* ActionGirl: Princess Ato, Altea, Elsarea Rahnclave, Gustaf, Supaz, and Kevira. There are also several unnamed women who qualify.
* AlasPoorVillain: In his madness, Barestar [[spoiler:recognizes Köinzell as Ascheriit, then begs him for help and cries about how he only ever wanted to be a merchant like his father]]. Even Köinzell found it pitiable.
* AmazonianBeauty: [[spoiler:Lebelont's daughter, Supaz]], goes from BrawnHilda to this after [[spoiler:Glenn]] grants her new powers.
** Gustav, from what we see of her, was very easy on the eyes and a certified Badass.
* AndIMustScream: People on which Wischtech powers were used are often stuck inside their own bodies, with no control over their actions, [[FateWorseThanDeath in constant, terrible agony]].
* AntiHero: Köinzell, although he still has his high standards about honorable soldiers and knights, though. He would kill any of the [[spoiler:Seven Heroes]] and their supporters in a heartbeat, despite acknowledging that their deaths would only invite chaos. Still the number of generally heroic deeds he carries out outweighs his more "villainous" traits--he is not above [[PetTheDog helping random commoners out]] and even intends to become TheAtoner for all his actions once he's through with his vengeance.
** On top of that, given the shenanigans many of the Seven Heroes have gotten up to since the days of the war, Koinzell's efforts seem to be providing a far greater service than he'd originally intended.
* ArtifactAlias: It's revealed very early that Köinzell is Ascheriit, one of the "Lances of Betrayal" who were killed by the [[FakeUltimateHero "Seven Heroes"]] and is seeking revenge on them. Yet everyone who knows that continues to call him Köinzell even when there is no real reason to hide it, the name just stuck.
** Peepi may be a variation: Köinzell made up that embarrassing name on the spot to pass as his brother and she is interrupted every time she is about to say her real name. So after a while she just goes with it.
* TheAtoner: [[spoiler:Deconstructed with Glenn]].
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking: The series provides several examples; the Emperor himself shows [[BadassGrandpa that he's no slouch, even in his old age]].
* AwesomenessByAnalysis: Köinzell (with both martial and ''mundane'' skills, such as [[spoiler:blacksmithing]]).
* TheAwfulTruth: If finding out that [[spoiler: the four people who you've spent the last twenty years cursing and spitting on the names of are the actual heroes who gave their lives to save you, your family, your nation, and your way of life from complete annihilation, and that the seven men you've spent that same amount of time venerating as the living saviors of the country are ''the men who murdered them and took all the credit'']] doesn't qualify, I don't know what does. Even Koinzell seems wary of people learning the truth, [[TheCassandra not that he'd have a particularly easy time convincing anyone.]]
** This is [[UpToEleven a far worse piece of information]] for [[spoiler:Ikfes, who realizes that he had been serving men who betrayed and murdered his father, blackened his house, forced him and his mother into exile, and brought conflict to his homeland]].
* AwkwardlyPlacedBathtub: Lady Elsarea has one on the bridge of her flying ship.
* BadassBack: Köinzel.
* BadassGrandpa: The Emperor himself is more than capable of kicking some serious ass.
* BackToBackBadasses: Köinzell and Princess Ato. Later on, Köinzell also does this with [[spoiler:Ifkes]].
* BadassCrew: The Lances of Betrayal and The Precious Departed. The former four accomplished a SuicideMission that fourteen were meant to, (and even ''then'' it would have still been a longshot) the latter three sacrificed themselves to ensure the Lances even got that far. The Seven Heroes were an inversion, especially at the time.
* BathingBeauty: Elsarea, to ridiculous levels.
* BattleTrophy: [[spoiler:Supaz thinks of the imperial female commander she defeated and nearly raped as this]] and even [[LampshadeHanging says it out right.]]
* BerserkButton: Köinzell has two: someone mentioning the "Seven Heroes" and [[spoiler:seeing innocents suffer needlessly]].
** Don't ever call Geranpen "Octopus." [[UnstoppableRage Seriously,]] [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone don't.]]
* {{Bifauxnen}}: Ato starts like this.
* BigDamnHeroes: Köinzell, too many times to count. Later on, several other characters pull this off, most notably [[spoiler:Ifkes]].
* {{Bishonen}}: More then a few.
* BloodFromTheMouth: Nearly any time someone gets nailed in the stomach/chest this occurs, even to Köinzell himself. Though he never dies, of course. It's put to good use [[http://www.1000manga.com/Ubel_Blatt/3/29/ here,]] though it's not exactly...what kills the very unlucky guy.
* ChekhovsGun: Many things that appear to be minor details about how that world works later turn out to have significance. Usually, this comes in the form of ChekhovsGunman, in particular, the [[spoiler:"black hats"]], especially the two who appear at the end of the very first chapter. While the [[spoiler:"black hats"]] are running around in the background throughout the story, the two who showed up in chapter one don't appear again until much later. The older one is seen again at the end of chapter 148 and the other ([[spoiler:Vlug Arigy]]) reappears in the following chapter.
* ChronicHeroSyndrome: Köinzell, even though he states that [[spoiler:he doesn't care about casualties as long as he can get his hands on Seven Heroes,]] can't just leave anyone innocent suffering.
* CoitusUninterruptus: In the first chapter no less.
* DangerousForbiddenTechnique: The Black Wind. He didn't much have much problem doing it with his human body, but it takes a much greater toll on his [[HalfHumanHybrid half-fairy]] body.
* DealWithTheDevil: It's obvious that the Seven Heroes, especially Glenn, are getting aid from the Wischtech in gaining LovecraftianSuperpower. [[spoiler:In a twist, it turns out their benefactors were stranded Wischtech troops who helped them in exchange for being protected from persecution. The troops eventually regret this deal when they realized Glenn wants to conquer and possibly destroy their country; most of them were killed by Glenn when they outlived their usefulness]].
* DiedStandingUp: This is what happens to [[spoiler:Kevira's elder brother, Lavaanh,]] thanks to Lebellond using a siege weapon against ordinary combatants. What makes this even more incredible is the fact that the person in question is [[spoiler:usually rational and is covered in scars and [[DisabledBadass missing an arm]]]].
* DirtyCoward: Barestar. The seven "heroes" in the backstory were all this when they chose first to desert, then to ambush the four actual heroes and use them as scapegoats.
* DirtyOldMan: Corrupt individuals in power tend to do this. The emperor appears to be this at one point, however, this turns out not to be the case.
* DoorstopBaby: Ascheriit's backstory.
* DrillSergeantNasty: Vargue, an officer of Barestar's army who thinks it's a good idea raising the morale of his men whom are escaping from a OneManArmy by ''punching them in the face''.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Köinzell could pass for a girl with his scar covered and wearing girl clothes. Used effectively to disguise himself in cities. He didn't like this at first, though.
* EmbodimentOfVice: Unorthodoxically represented by the "seven heroes."
* EmbodimentOfVirtue: Unorthodoxically represented by the Lances of Betrayal and The Precious Departed.
* TheEmpire: A rare good version. But it's ''far'' from being TheKingdom. Wischtech ''could'' be a standard evil one (this is left unclear).
* EnemyCivilWar: [[spoiler:A civil war later in the manga one breaks out between the forces of Lebellond, who has control of the Imperial forces, and the newly resurrected Glenn, who along with much his own forces also controls Ischüdien's forces as well]].
* EnemyMine: With [[spoiler:Lebellond on the verge of starting a new Wischtech war, Elserea's knights, Rozen and the Order of the Seven Lances, Dragon Chief Ischüdien and Köinzell all want to stop Lebelont before things get worse. They really don't join forces though, as Ischüdien winds up showing up with a revived Glenn shifting the entire nation]].
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Glenn believes Barestar to have crossed the line by invading Jullas-Abllas and even refuses to punish the people of Jullas-Abllas' rebellion since it was Barestar who started the mess in the first place and had been held accountable for what he did.
** Later [[spoiler:Dragon Chief Ischüdien, who is shown working against Lebellond's war-mongering ways after Glenn's death when Lebellond should be ''serving'' the Empire, not conquering it]].
* EvilMakesYouMonstrous: Happens a lot as many people, normally the bad guys use different means to gain some sort of inhuman power.
** Subverted in some cases such as [[spoiler:post-resurrection Glenn]] who (so far) goes from average looking older guy with traces of nobility and regret to more of a {{Bishonen}} then in previous flashbacks of his youth and even more cold and heartless.
*** Glen can bestow this onto others as well using a catalyst known as "Gungnirtropfen", which goes either one of two ways. If the ingestor is strong of will and mind then they become more powerful and beautiful. [[spoiler:Lebelont's daughter, Supaz]] is an example of someone who was a rough LargeAndInCharge female commander is morphed into a AmazonianBeauty capable of killing a OneWingedAngel form [[spoiler:of one of her brothers]] without much effort [[spoiler:after joining Glen]]. If they aren't capable, however, then they become monsters.
* {{Expy}}: The Szaalenden empire is obviously based on [[TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}} The Empire from Warhammer]] especially how their armies mix men with swords, dragons and flying aircraft and how eight noble electors elect the new Emperor.
* FaceOfAThug: Geranpen. [[CrowningMomentOfFunny He still winds up in drag at one time.]]
* FakeUltimateHero: Seven of them, in fact.
* FanDisservice: Geranpen... It's worse that he is also an [[MemeticMutation OCTOPUS]] (cue the tentacle doujins).
* {{Fanservice}}: ''Almost every girl'' involved with Köinzell. Even [[TokenMiniMoe Peepi]], [[RunningGag much to her dismay]].
* FakingTheDead: [[spoiler:Lord Glenn returns even though everybody saw him getting slain by Ascheritt. Ascheritt too, after everyone but his allies thought that he was killed by Lebellond]].
* FatalFlaw: For the emperor, it's his unreasoning love for his son. [[spoiler:As he's dying, he basically admits that he wanted to believe Glen so much that he managed to convince himself Ascheritt and the other Lances of Betrayal had sold them out when he ultimately should have known better]].
* FateWorseThanDeath: The best way to distinguish between [[{{Jerkass}} bad villains]] and worse villains is if they inflict this on their victims.
* FourIsDeath: Subverted with The Four Lances of Betrayal (unless you count the fact they were all killed, save Ascheritt who managed to survive).
* FromBadToWorse: [[spoiler:With Glenn dead, the power hungry Lebellond takes action by taking over Glenn's former lands and killing dissidents who gets in his way to become the next Emperor. What's worse? He plans to rekindle the war with Wischtech to achieve more fame than Glenn. A veteran of the war calls him out for it]].
** [[spoiler: It gets worst for the civilians and military, as a mysteriously alive and younger Glenn or someone claiming to be him, has come back controlling Dragon Chief Ischüdien and his forces along with a new super weapon and has ignited a Civil War with his forces and Lebellond]].
* GentleGiant: Geranpen. Don't [[BerserkButton call him "octopus,"]] though.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: When Köinzell gives Ato his blood he does it by cutting his tongue and licking all her wounds in a *ahem* ''suggestive'' way, with the art style changing to match.
* GoodScarsEvilScars: This is ultimately a subversion, since no particular type of scar indicates morality, although they are often interpreted this way, starting with the protagonist (his scars are often in-universe interpreted as evil) and moving on from there. Aside from Köinzell, the best examples are Lashev, the lords of Jebr (later [[spoiler:Kevira]] gets them too), and [[spoiler:Lebellond]].
* GrandmaWhatMassiveHotnessYouHave: Gurye, Ascheriit's sword master. Even her students note she seems hotter once he comes back and she cheers up.
* GratuitousGerman: Everywhere, the most grating example is the title (which would actually mean Bad Leaf). Leaf as in a blade of grass. "Blatt" (or rather "Schneidblatt") is rarely used to refer to blades, and if it is, its use is generally restricted to tools. A saw has a "Blatt", but a sword or knife would have a "Klinge". And that isn't even touching the faulty grammar. The intended translation is probably "evil blade", or "bad blade". The term "Blattmeister" (which is probably supposed to be a blademaster) sounds more like a skilled gardener...
** The chapters are also all named in German.
* HeroWithBadPublicity: Köinzell; played with somewhat, as while he is an AntiHero not afraid of getting his hands dirty, on the other hand more and more people realize the true nobility of his heroic deeds and how he's mostly in the right about things.
* HeroicAlbino: Played with in Köinzell, [[CaptainObvious of course]], since he's victim of the seven heroes' swords and propaganda, and given his AntiHero status, one might think he's an EvilAlbino.
** Also, fairy blood can be passed even from half fairy to another person, thus making the receiver's hair temporarily white in the process (this happens to [[spoiler:Ato]]).
* HeroicBSOD: Happened early in the series with Köinzell realizing [[VillainWithGoodPublicity how much control and power the Seven Heroes had in the Empire]], making him unable to touch them, and then Glen crushed his pride even more when he tells [[BurnTheWitch the angry mob]] to ''forgive his "misplaced anger."'' [[spoiler:It takes the death of a civilian elven couple, [[FateWorseThanDeath in a very horrific way]], to make him snap back.]]
* HumiliationConga: [[spoiler:Lebellond]] and his children.
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: The volumes are numbered one fewer than the total number of volumes in the series (with no side stories and the like), because the first volume in the series is number zero. Makes sense, given that the first volume simply covers Koinzell's introduction, introduces various characters, and showcases the general theme for the rest of the series. Especially because it doesn't do more then lightly touch on the main story right up until TheReveal.
* IronicEcho: Köinzell claims that [[spoiler:Schtemwölech cut apart his right arm during the Seven's betrayal of the Four. Guess which part of Schtemwölech's body Köinzell destroys first...]]
* {{Irony}}: The 'Seven Heroes.' There ''are'' seven heroes, it just isn't ''[[FakeUltimateHero them.]]''
* IntimateHealing: [[spoiler:Köinzell's method of healing Ato is licking all of her wounds.]] Or to be more precise, [[spoiler:covering her wound with his blood, which he gets by cutting his tongue]].
* JerkAss: Many of the villains. The rest [[UpToEleven are worse.]]
* KnightInSourArmor: Köinzell.
* LeftForDead: Köinzell, ''repeatedly''. He's only angry about one of these.
* LovecraftianSuperpower: Another Wischtech {{Magitek}} specialty.
* LukeIAmYourFather: More for the readers than the characters, as most of them know already long before TheReveal; [[spoiler:Glenn is the Emperor's son, and Ikfes is the son of Köinzell's old friend and fellow "Lance of Betrayal," Kfer.]]
* MercyKill: Köinzell does this a lot, much to his dismay.
* NearRapeExperience: [[spoiler:Supaz]] does this to a female Empire commander, only to be stopped because of Köinzell's unit arriving.
* NothingUpMySleeve: The High Priest of Heaven's Lance temple has a pair of cross bows hidden up his.
* OlderThanTheyLook: Koinzell is 36 years old technically.
* OneManArmy: Köinzell, it's even [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] by Elsarea.
* OneWingedAngel: Many of the villains had a contract with demons (really Wischtech techno-sorcery), essentially giving them the power to change their body in a gruesome fashion. It has a different cause, but even Köinzell can unleash this, although he can only activate his power fully under the moonlight, or by getting [[BerserkButton extremely]] [[ThisIsUnforgivable pissed off.]]
* OnlyKnownByTheirNickname: We never know Peepi's real name; everyone just calls her Peepi, much to her annoyance. She slowly accepts it, though. It's also hinted that her real-name might have some importance.
* OurGiantsAreBigger: Wischtech Dekunszuants, towering monstrosities with dozens of eyes, clad in enormous plate mail and wielding gigantic weaponry. Simply seeing one appear breaks the morale of an entire imperial army.
* PunchClockHero: Altea, who smuggles elves into The Empire with a "little fee," is highly regarded by all elves in the Jullas-Ablas. She uses it to ''great effect'' when [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome moving the Jullas-Ablas citizens against Barestar's army.]]
* PunchClockVillain: Geranpen, who kidnaps Ato's sister, [[WellIntentionedExtremist believing that to do so will ensure the safety of his kingdom]]. When he found about [[VillainOverride what happened]] [[FateWorseThanDeath to the girls he kidnapped]] though, [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone he freaked out]], and [[HeelFaceTurn promptly helps Köinzell]] to stop his brother and his commander, one of Seven Heroes, Schtemwolech, and chose to die with his sworn brother, Pago which he personally helped to kill. [[spoiler:He got better, though.]]
* PutOnABus: Quite a few characters are put on a bus, usually they either have something to do (e.g. [[spoiler:Vid, Atlea, Rangsatt, and Bryant]]) or are apparently dead or fade out of the story ([[spoiler:e.g. Geranpen, Zepy, the King of the Forest, Bettsegarm the Undefeated, and Kevira]]). With the exception of [[spoiler:Geranpen]], during [[spoiler:the war against Glen [[TheBusCameBack they all return]] in some capacity, even ''Zepy'', although on the other side]].
** Oddly subverted in the case of the three {{Mooks}}, (Lashev, Vargue, and Polevik) who each served under Schtemwölech and Barestar, who somehow manage to repeatedly live just when they finally appear to have been killed off, and at the point where it appears that [[spoiler:they will do so until the end of the series, they are KilledOffForReal in chapter 152]].
** In a cross between PutOnABus and OutOfFocus, there is [[spoiler:Lebellond's wife]], who is never referred to or mentioned after chapter 102. The only reason the reader understands she's dead is her husband telling the girls he is raping that the one who bares his child will become his wife.
* RealityEnsues: What happens when the emperor gathers together the traditional fellowship of fourteen heroes and sends them on a mission to help defeat TheEmpire? [[spoiler: Only half of them are up to it, and it all ends up horribly when the traitors murder what's left of the real heroes and take all the credit for saving the country]].
** This trope also appears in less substantial ways.
* RebelliousPrincess: Ato, Elsarea Rahnclave.
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: Köinzell's is the whole point of the story. Ato finally grows out of hers, when realizing that Koinzell just did her [[FateWorseThanDeath brother]] [[MercyKill a favor]].
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Ato's whole family appears to be in favour of this, even the ones who are not fighters. Then there's the more notable example of what the Emperor used to be like, which is placed in sharp contrast to what happens when [[spoiler:Glen is killed]]. [[spoiler:He gets better eventually and when the war with his son heats up, the Emperor]] personally picks up a sword and goes to the front lines.
** While not royals, the series has a few noble families, such as the Rahnclave family, who strongly believe in being personally involved in their work and encourage this attitude.
* SevenDeadlySins: [[spoiler:The seven heroes all seem to represent one. Schtemwölech is Lust (thirst for power and his use of women as [[HumanResources youth serum]] and [[AndIMustScream combat thralls]]), Barestar is Greed (merchant background and constant grasping for more and bigger weapons), Glenn is Envy (his actions were motivated by his jealousy towards Ascheritt), Lebellont is Pride (everything he does is motivated by his arrogance and megalomaniacal superiority complex), Nirgenfeld is Sloth (he seems too afraid to do anything except sheepishly following more proactive and charismatic characters' lead), Güllengurv is Gluttony (he's a lot like Nirgenfeld, plus a FatBastard), Ischüdien is Wrath (although we haven't seen his modern self being anything but calm and composed so far, he's also considered Dragon Chief, creatures often associated with Wrath).]]
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Since Shiono's method of creating names is basically "throw a bunch of letters on the wall and see what sticks", this tends to happen a lot, although the spelling of at least some of the characters and places is given in-universe.
* TheRival: Ikfes to Köinzell, he even gets to use Ascheriit's old sword ([[spoiler:it becomes more friendly later]]).
* TokenGirl: [[TomboyishName Gustaf]], among the four Lances of Betrayal. That is, ''if'' Krental is male (it's hard to tell which).
* TomboyishName: Meet Gustaf, a tall, blonde and well endowed LadyOfWar.
* TookALevelInBadass: Princess Ato after being accepted by Köinzell, and [[spoiler:in turn after accepting his blood, turning her part fairy]]. Also, [[spoiler:Peepi]] becomes a good summoner in the course of months.
** Ifkes does this, thanks to [[spoiler:Köinzell's advice to not deny his roots, resulting in two concurrent Blattmeisters]].
** There's also the villainous example of [[spoiler:Glen's second set of subordinates, the Gungnir,]] who all drink a potion to grant them all sorts of abilities and rendering them nearly impossible to kill.
* UnresolvedSexualTension: Between Köinzell and Ato. Also, there are some hints of this between [[spoiler:Ifkes and Kevira]]. Elsarea's feelings of admiration for Köinzell can likewise be interpreted this way.
* VillainousBreakdown: Barestar when he recognizes Köinzell as Ascheriit (this, or he's simply hallucinating) and remembers that he once simply wanted to help his father as a merchant. Köinzell taking him down almost looks like a MercyKill as a result.
* VillainWithGoodPublicity: The Seven Heroes. Also, in early beginning, some border lords using the name of "Four Lances of Betrayals" to gain support for themselves.
* WhiteSheep: Bryant is Lebelont's son, but casts away his ambitions and sides with Ascheriit against his siblings because he recognizes that they're power-mad and hurting the country while his father fully deserved his end at Ascheriit's hand. [[RealityEnsues He still has a bit of a grudge against Ascheriit for his hand is killing so much of his family, though,]] and this is brought up.
* WideEyedIdealist: The heroes at the beginning, also the knights (with their leader, Elsarea Rahnclave) who protect Jullas-Ablas from Barestar, who eventually get their ideal [[DespairEventHorizon destroyed unmercifully in their faces]]. The knights got better, though.
* WorthyOpponent: Although he has other goals, Ikfes ''really'' wants is to fight Köinzell at his strongest. His father, [[spoiler:Kfer]], had the same view.
* YouAreTooLate: [[spoiler:Koinzell arrives too late at the final battle to stop the seal from being breached.]]
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