Characters from the Indonesian novel Nagabumi. Due to the multitude of countries the characters originate, their naming will follow their own local customs.
Beware of unmarked spoilers.
An orphan adopted by his parents when he was a baby, the Protagonist grew up to be one of the strongest martial artist around, loved and hated by friends and foes alike. When he was 100 years old, he was attacked by government forces carrying wanted posters of himself, that insinuated he was a criminal of the state, even though he retired from the world of martial arts for 50 years. Eager to find the truth and the person who set him up, he returned to the world.
Sadly, age has gotten the better of him, as he failed to recall who they were that could potentially be the culprit. Therefore, aside from investigating his own crime, he decided to write down a memoir of himself, in the hope he could explore his mind further to find a clue about his current status.
- The Ace: Aside from being an accomplished martial arts, he was well-versed in history, philosophy, poetry, cultural arts, law, and pretty much anything he put his mind into.
- Anti-Hero: Oh, he'd save the innocent and protect the pretty girls, alright. But he's mostly serving his own goals and intentions, and wouldn't hesitate to kill pugilists from the lawful sects if they got in his way.
- Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: He might hide it behind his polite speech, but even during his early- to mid-twenties when he's at his calmest, he was this. This trope became exaggerated during his youth and after an undisclosed Time Skip, almost to the point of being a Villain Protagonist.
- The Atoner: His current self, for all those people he killed in his youth.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Though not always, this has become his preferred fighting style, since carrying weapons in the open was prohibited when he returned to the world after his meditation. He dual wielded in his youth, but eventually improved enough to be this as well, though he sporadically would use any weapon to gain an advantage.
- Bishōnen: Implied during his youth. Since the story was told from his perspective, we never quite get a good description of his face, but judging from his two Love Interests's reaction when they gossiped behind him, he was this.
- Challenge Seeker: He would purposely hold back during fights that interested him (usually against a strong opponent or a strange technique) to analyze and steal it. Averted during any other time, when he's a Pragmatic Hero.
- Character Development: Almost merging with HeelFace Revolving Door. In his youth, he's somewhat of a reckless martial artist that followed the conventional hero tropes. After another ten years of meditating and creating his two signature techniques, he mellowed out quite a bit, studying other contemporary arts like poetry and philosophy. Then, after an undisclosed Time Skip, he reverted back to an arrogant martial artist that believed he had no equal, challenging people left and right, eventually slaughtering one hundred martial artists from all sects, good or evil, painting his current self as The Villain from the common folks' perspective.
- Chick Magnet: Even when he's shaved himself bald, it's not enough to avoid this trope.
- Counter-Attack: The crux of his second signature skill, Formless Technique. By deconstructing a move not by its concept, like most martial artists did, but by using three-dimensional coordinates and vectoring, he could dissect and counter in the most appropriate way for that particular form, allowing him to one shot his opponent in the next turn. This technique was ever-changing, depending on the opponent's 'form', and was thus dubbed by his opponents as 'Formless Technique'. Basically, this technique allowed him to kill his opponent just by thinking.
- Dual Wielding: His parents' original style, and the first martial art skill he learned, was the 'Twin Dragon Sword Technique'. It required not just wielding two weapons, but to be performed by a couple. He bypassed this requirement just by moving so fast there's effectively two of him fighting at the same time.
- Fighting Fingerprint: His Mirror Image Technique and Formless Technique were so famous they're this.
- Improvised Weapon: The specialty of his current self.
- Lightning Bruiser: Tough enough to withstand a fully-charged blow from martial arts masters with just his internal energy, and fast enough to split himself into doppelgangers even against those same masters. His attacks were almost always One Hit Kills, and if his opponents could withstand his first blow, his two signature techniques were enough to finish the job.
- Guile Hero: His entire fighting style was shaped around this trope. He often wasted time just to analyze his opponent's style and mindset, even though it's not sometimes necessary, to learn and improve on his own techniques. Before he killed them in the next instant, of course. Prevalent in the first chapter, when he ran through his strategy to kill one hundred warriors with ease.
- Happily Adopted: He had no issue with his adoptive parents' parenting, and was living happily until the day they didn't return from a duel, presumably killed. They, too, loved him as their own child.
- Invincible Hero: So far, he has never lost. Ever.
- Likes Older Women: Implied. All of his love interests were older than him. Some were separated by only a few years, and one example was nearly twice his age.
- Lost Orphaned Royalty: He's implied to be this, since his parents found him abandoned in an expensive piece of silk embroidery without a name. They never really investigated it, though, and neither did he, but the trope was giving him some thought regarding his current predicament when being chased by the government.
- Power Copying: The crux of his first signature skill, Mirror Image Technique. First, he analyzed the 'form' of the opponent's entire skillset, usually in the form of philosophy. Then, he thought of a counter-argument to said philosophy, thus he's able to instantly understand and improve on the technique he's observed. Plus, he's able to return said techniques, already modified and improved, in real time during a duel. So far, the only way to counter this technique was just to improvise one's own techniques at the same rate the Protagonist was copying them.
- Master of All: With his first signature skill, Mirror Image Technique, he has mastered every weapon and skill his opponent ever showed him, giving him a limitless repertoire to fight with.
- Master of Disguise: Downplayed, certainly compared to his other skills. He could dress himself up good enough to fool normal people and pugilists, but face-to-face with a master or the secret police, his cover was almost always blown. Plus, he seemed to be the only person in the world who has no name, and whenever he introduced himself as such, everybody knew who he was.
- Never Given a Name: Invoked by his own adoptive parents. They've always called him 'child', 'kid', and so on, and never gotten around to give him a name because of their aversion to name someone else's child. In honor of his parents, he decided to forgo his name as well, but his opponents and allies nicknamed him 'The Nameless Pugilist' as such. Even his technique was hit by this trope. He was hesitant to give a formal name to the Formless Technique, since he considered it'd give it 'form', thus defeating the purpose he created the technique in the first place. Once again, it's his enemies who came up with the name 'Formless Technique', and sure enough, by giving it a name, they're stuck chasing a phantom 'form' that never existed in the first place, and in turn were never able to defeat it.
- Oblivious to Love: Inverted. He was very sensitive to changes in other people's emotions and behavior, and thus always noticed quickly whenever someone's got the hots on him.
- Pragmatic Hero: He always target his enemies' weaknesses.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge and Revenge Before Reason: This happened once during the story, though several minor examples still occur every once in a while. It was when Amrita died during a revolution of her own country. Rather than finishing the revolution to grant peace to the land as she would've wanted, he instead chased down her killer by almost abandoning his then-current objective. Luckily, her lieutenant snapped him out of this one as well.]]
- Spanner in the Works: He was this to Black Dragon and other Big Bads, often only by coincidence. For examples:
- Black Dragon's plan to curry favor with the current ruler included spreading terror by way of murder of innocents so the people depended on the Kingdom more and more, resulting in more taxes collected (and more money for him). Sadly, when one of his unnamed students was tasked with the job of terrorizing a village, the 15-years old Protagonist showed up, having chosen that very village on a whim to rest.
- When Black Dragon planned to rob a considerable amount of royal tributes through one of his students, Crazed Monkey (who was a pirate), it just so happened the raft carrying said tributes was under the protection of the Protagonist, who was just hitching a ride.
- Super Speed and Bullet Time: Fast enough to give himself loads of time to monologue in his mind and temporarily stop time.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: This often lead him to be overcautious, even when prudence was necessary.
The Protagonist's adoptive parents. Their prowess in martial arts was considered good enough to be granted the official title of 'dragon', but they preferred to live simply and humbly in their small hut with their son.
- Abusive Parents: Subverted, mostly because of the difference in culture. They train their techniques, as well as their son's, by throwing and passing him as a baby like a basketball across a rushing river. They didn't mean anything bad with it, because even the Protagonist viewed it as an Awesome, but Impractical training, but in modern context, that's just... stupid.
- Action Parents: Both of them easily killed one idiotic pugilist who dared to kidnap their son. Said pugilist was actually quite decent, perhaps only a step or two behind the couple, but what rubbed even more salt into the wound was the Protagonist's mom didn't even join the fight after securing him, and his dad barely tried to kill the guy.
- Badass Family
- Dual Wielding: Double dual wielding. The 'Twin Dragons Sword Technique' they created were originally performed by both of them, each holding two swords, in effect becoming a four-sword technique. Because they presumed it to be impossible for one person to use it, it was intended to be performed as a couple. However, after their presumed death, the Protagonist used his Super Speed to maximize his mastery of his parents' sword technique.
- Humble Hero: They're good enough to be recognized by the Eight Dragons as their equal. To put it into context, these Eight Dragons were powerful enough to split the entire kingdom in eight equal parts without the government being able to anything about them. When they wanted the couple to be the Ninth Dragon, they politely refused, not interested in such politics.
- Mentor Occupational Hazard: They're the first and only true masters of the Protagonist's, and thus the first to die.
- Parental Abandonment: Not maliciously, but they often left him alone for duels or extended periods of training with no supervision when he's still a little child. Of course, this eventually became permanent...
- The Hero: They suited this traditional trope far better than any other characters, especially compared to their son.
The Protagonist's first love interest, also the physically weakest since she's one of the rare Non-Action Girl in this novel. She was the one who showed him the importance to learn cultural arts alongside martial arts, and a direct inspiration for one of his original sword techniques.
- After Action Patch Up: She nursed the Protagonist when he's injured fighting a student of Black Dragon, ending in Coitus Ensues.
- Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Has this dynamic with the Protagonist.
- The Chief's Daughter: The daughter of the Balinawan village chief.
- Kama Sutra: A master of the eponymous literature, and the one who gave the Protagonist his first sexual experience.
- Mrs. Robinson: Although she's not actually that old, being 20 at the time she appeared in the story, she's the one who made the first move on the Protagonist, who's 15 at the same time.
- Secret Keeper: Not intentionally, but she's the only one who knew the whereabouts of the 'Twin Dragons Sword Technique' and the 'Dragon's Trap' manuals, along with the documents the Protagonist's parents left behind when he's forced to escape from Balinawan village and never returned.
- The Smart Girl: The only literate person in her village, and also knowledgeable about many things, such as herbology, cosmetics, Kama Sutra, philosophy, and so on. She was the Protagonist's figurative school teacher in his teens.
The Protagonist's second love interest. A former prostitute, she was saved by him from bandits during a raid. A few years later, she joined the Kingdom's Secret Police, talented enough with martial arts and commanding skills to be captain despite her young age and gender. She ended up being the Protagonist's first student.—-
- The Apprentice: She was the Protagonist's first true disciple, although he never inducted her formally, sensing that her ties with him would only compromise her standings with the Kingdom.
- Badass Normal: Even before she received formal training in martial arts, she's already quite a capable combatant, able to butcher a bunch of pirates that dared to come near her.
- Hooker with a Heart of Gold: An ex-prostitute, but a very good woman indeed. In fact, a few years down the line, she's become a respected captain for a squad of the Kingdom's Secret Police.
- Military Brat: She came from a military family, and even married a soldier before he died due to his friends' treason.
- Sex Slave: After being bought by the Protagonist to avoid her going to prison and presumably executed, she initially wanted to be this, but was politely refused by the Protagonist before his Time Skip.
- Skilled, but Naïve: She's a supremely talented martial artist, considering she's only started in her late teens (and athletes know that's too late to become a Child Prodigy) and ended up good enough to lead a squad of Secret Police. However, she did lack subtlety and tact when faced with the darker aspects of the world, worrying the Protagonist she wouldn't last long with that attitude.
- Vengeful Widow: Her husband was backstabbed by his own squad mate because said person desired her, and she retaliated by killing him in public after she became a prostitute to make ends meet.
A female pugilist who was the closest the Protagonist had as a rival in his youth. A master of the Suksmabhuta (lit. spirit; soul; ghost) school and the 'Invisible Soul Sword Style' , she crossed paths with him several times throughout his life. Her swordplay was recognized by the Protagonist as one of the top three styles he's ever faced, including his own.
- Color Motif: Not her exactly, but her students wore all-white clothing and white longswords because they are the current Secret Police. Her school's uniform was also this when she hasn't graduated in her youth, but the students were allowed to combine the primarily white garments with other colors, slightly subverting this.
- Energy Absorption: Her signature technique beside her swordsmanship. It requires constant physical contact, but one touch was all she needed to make it stick, because her opponents were physically unable to separate their contact like glue.
- Glass Cannon: Her swordplay even gave the Protagonist some trouble, but he only needed one hit to down her. Granted, she was around 100 years old by that time, but still... Also, she's weak to surprise attacks, poisons, and black arts in general, allowing the Southern Slaughterer King to defeat her with one blow.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She might act like a callous and rude woman, especially around men she considered perverts and chauvinists (the Protagonist included), but she often hunted down members of evil sects and other hero-like actions, despite being from a neutral sect (and thus had no obligation to fight crime).
- Only Known by Their Nickname: She always wore a jasmine-scented perfume everywhere, to the point it became her signature description, and thus nicknamed by everyone as the 'Jasmine Warrior'. Her students eventually adopted this habit as well.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: She hunted down the Protagonist in the current era because she thought he killed her daughter.
- The Rival: Whether she admitted it or not, she respected the Protagonist for his skills both as a martial artist and a man. Of course, she'd never say it out loud.
- Tsundere: Emphasis on the 'tsun' part. The 'dere' part wasn't always apparent, but it's there, subtly.
The leading eight pugilists of Indonesia. Combined, their martial and political might dwarfed even the kingdoms ruling Indonesia. They rule according to the eight cardinal directions: Black Dragon (north), Blue Dragon (north-east), White Dragon (east), Pink Dragon (south-east), Red Dragon (south), Orange Dragon (south-west), Yellow Dragon (west), and Green Dragon (north-west).
- Affably Evil: Pink Dragon, even in the middle of a deadly duel, was always calm, charming, and polite, but he's as ruthless and powerful as his other seven contemporaries.
- Ambition Is Evil: Black Dragon had a desire to not only rule the martial world, but also the kingdoms around him. When he helped a king to usurp the throne and said king failed to pay his dues, he started making more and more daring moves to control the kingdom he helped create.
- Bad Powers, Bad People: The Black Dragon Sword Technique was described as 'evil-looking' and 'dark', and the man in question also possessed a host of shady abilities, all darkness-themed.
- Beauty Is Bad: Slightly subverted, since Pink Dragon mostly kept to himself, but he's not a nice guy either.
- Big Bad: Black Dragon was this to the Protagonist, having been implied to be responsible for his parents' death. He also sent assassins after the Protagonist's life when he found out his students, who were tasked with creating chaos among the populace so the ruler he supported would be depended on and create more votes, was one by one killed by the Protagonist, often by accident.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The eight of them had colors preceding their title 'Dragon'.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Most of them couldn't understand why the Twin Dragons of Kledung Chasm declined to join their ranks and rule the martial world alongside them.
- Dark Chick: Playfully inverted and played straight. Pink Dragon was a man, but was the most feminine-looking among them and mostly acted like a noblewoman through his life.
- Unknown Character: The other six Dragons were just named in passing without any characterization or impact to the story, at least so far.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: Pink Dragon was described as 'the most beautiful man in the world', and often wore female clothing. In fact, a poor pugilist fell in love with him so much so that guy agreed to kidnap the Protagonist when he was a baby just to please Pink Dragon.
The Protagonist's third love interest. A female general in one of the Vietnamese people's revolutionary army, she met him during his travels. Considered one of the strongest female characters, she sadly passed away when she was assassinated by Flying Tiger, a fellow general fighting for the other side, fueling the Protagonist's Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
A master of the Dragon School. He was characterized by his all-yellow garments, from head to toe and even to his sword and sheath, the Golden Dragon Sword. He lived in Indonesia as a guardian for the Chinese immigrants sent by the Chinese Emperor to initiate trade between the two nations.
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: The Golden Dragon Sword, so much so that the Protagonist resorted to stealing its sheath, the only material known to resist its sharpness, just to even up the odds against him. The blade itself was so thin it was almost like golden silk, and a good dose of internal energy was required just to keep it solid.
- Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Even after realizing the Protagonist had his number, he still refused to admit he's outmatched and pridefully retreated.
- Cadre of Foreign Bodyguards: The head of this for the first Chinese community in Indonesia. In fact, it's the purpose of his school, after being ordered as such by the Chinese Emperor.
- Color Motif: Yellow, a symbol of royalty in China and the color most associated with Chinese dragons.
- Legacy Character: The title 'Golden Dragon' was given to the person who had mastered every techniques in the Dragon School, specifically the mastery of the Golden Dragon Sword and its signature technique. Generally, the name was passed down from the master to his son, but this wasn't always the case; any outsider talented and skilled enough to master the techniques was awarded the name. The one who faced the Protagonist wasn't the founder, but one of his students or grand-students.