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Characters / Requiem of the Rose King

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Main Characters

    Richard III, Duke of Gloucester
Voiced by: Mitsuki Saiga (Drama CD)

The manga's central protagonist, the third son of Richard Duke of York,and Cecily Duchess of York. Younger brother of Edward IV and George, and eventually the third and final Yorkist king of England.

  • Adaptation Dye-Job: While he remains a brunet, the real Richard III is often depicted with brown hair. Here, he is given jet black hair.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Far more heroic than either his real-life counterpart or his counterpart from Shakespeare's plays.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: Richard III and The Duke of Buckingham are lovers in the manga. He's also good friends with (bordering on mutual pining for ) Henry VI, when it was unlikely the two would have met in real life.
  • Adaptational Sexuality: Richard III in the manga strays away from romance and other forms of intimacy, due to fear of rejection because of his intersex biology. Though, he reciprocates Henry VI's feelings, until he rejects him due to a traumatic memory. Richard eventually becomes the lover of Buckingham after the latter accepts him despite his intersex biology.
  • All Issues Are Political Issues: The entire series, and Richard's ambitions revolve around the politics of the War of the Roses.
  • Ambition Is Evil: His desperate wish to become king eventually destroys his interpersonal relationships, his reputation, and eventually his mental health. However, he just wouldn't be Richard III without it.
  • Animal Motif: A white boar.
  • Anti-Hero: Richard III does questionable things.
  • Antagonistic Offspring: To his mother, Cecily Neville, due to years of psychological abuse.
  • Ass Kicking Equals Authority: A respected member of the House of York due to his numerous victories in battle.
  • Arranged Marriage: Has an unhappy marriage with Anne Neville.
  • Badass Normal: Shown to have very good combat and political prowess. He really is a normal human being, but due to his good fortune, many believe him to be a demon.
  • Birds of a Feather: With Buckingham, as both have aspirations to obtain more power. Recognizing each other's political mind makes them closer.
  • Bishōnen: Because of his unique biology, Richard grows up to be slender and delicate looking, edging more towards feminine.
  • Black Sheep: His radically different appearance compared to the rest of his biological family (his black hair, heterochromia, and intersex body) caused him to be cursed by his mother when he was born, and alienated by her for all his life. His two older brothers are more tolerant of him and his father adores him, downplaying the trope.
  • Blood Knight: After Plantagenet's death, Richard only found solace in fighting and bloodshed. No matter the hundreds of people he slaughters, he'll need to kill more of them to escape from his thoughts.
  • Brainy Brunette: While his brothers are physical powerhouses and he himself not a slouch in combat, Richard is more successful in strategy and stealth than either of the other two.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Has this with Anne, but more obviously in the two-man relationship of himself and with Henry VI. Both people attempt to provide affection and the emotional support Richard lacked after he lost Plantagenet.
  • Byronic Hero: Outcast of the family and society? Emotionally broken and troubled? Cynical outlook on life? Apparently gorgeous despite it all? Richard is Byronic to the core.
  • Celibate Hero: Strays away from romance, fearful he will be revealed to be intersex. Eventually this does give way as he gets married to Anne has a relationship with Buckingham.
  • Composite Character: While he mostly retains his identity of Richard III, he also takes a lot from who would be his older brother in real life—Edmund, Duke of Rutland. Edmund's role in Plantagenet's death is assumed by Richard, if only in the sense that Margaret uses Richard's supposed murder as a means to mock Plantagenet before she slays him.
  • Cool Uncle: Beloved by his niece, Beth, and services his young nephew. He also adopts George and Isabel's children after having them killed.
  • Dark Messiah: Eventually embraces being called a demon, and continues to desire the throne.
  • Dark Secret: Richard III is intersex, and only a handful of people are aware. This secret causes Richard to become alienated, fearful of the consequences if anyone was to find out.
  • Determinator: Will stop at nothing to become king.
  • Duality Motif: Relates to Richard III's two different eye colors, one grey, the other red.
  • Dude Magnet: Let's just say that his political affairs leave him in the hearts and minds of the rest of the players, and leave it at that. See Everybody Wants the Hermaphrodite below.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: His pale skin and dark hair contrast heavily with the fair skin and hair of the rest of his family, and highlights his troubled personality.
  • Everybody Wants the Hermaphrodite: Many characters, before or after learning his secret, become enamored with him. While his admirers are mostly male (Buckingham, Edward V, and Henry VI), he is romantically sought out by women as well, such as Anne.
  • Evil Uncle: imprisons his nephews in the Tower of London to seize control of the throne.
  • Forced Out of the Closet: Somewhat, Buckingham has a beggar expose Richard III to see if the rumors about his body are true.
  • Freudian Trio: One with Catesby and Buckingham.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Inverted. Richard's refusal to carry Buckingham's baby to term causes the latter man to lash out and begin his historical rebellion against the former.
  • Graying Morality: As the series progresses Richard III is forced to make more drastic decisions to protect himself and others.
  • Guilty Pleasures: Calls his relationship with Buckingham a sin, but indulges in it anyway.
  • Hallucinations: Kind of, has Joan of Arc come to him as a ghost.
  • Happy Marriage Charade: Married to Anne Neville, with a son possibly Edward of Lancaster's son. But they have an unhappy marriage.
  • Harmful to Minors: Eventually imprisons his nephews in the Tower of London. This is actually a step-up from his play counterpart, who instead has them all killed.
  • Her Boyfriend's Jacket: For comfort sleeps with Buckingham's coat.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Catesby.
  • I Am What I Am: Because he is intersex, he is unsure of himself. He eventually embraces himself to an extent.
  • Intersex Tribulations: Perhaps the biggest source of angst in his character arc is his body dysphoria. He hates being smaller and more delicate than the rest of his male family, and the fact that his body made his mother dismiss him as a blight on the royal line, so he's desperate to prove himself as a man. He also runs into problems with people who see him as a man, woman, or don't know what to make of him at all, which leads into more self-hatred as he comes to believe he can't be loved for who he really is.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: When trying to have a baby with Anne, he fails completely as a result of his male parts being infertile. However, his female parts work just fine, as he accidentally gets pregnant by Buckingham. This development, like much of his intersex troubles, does not bode well for either of them.
  • Man in the Iron Mask: Imprisons his nephews in the Tower of London, due to their threat to his claim to the throne.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Schemes about ways to become King, usually uses intimidation and blackmail.
  • Marriage of Convenience: Married Anne to appease his brother, and because she was pregnant.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Much buzz was had of Richard's frail looking body, but he's handily one of the scariest opponents on the battlefield and can behead a person with ease.
  • Oedipus Complex: He has every reason to be wary of his mother, given she believes him to be a bad omen on the royal family and convinces herself that he needs to be rid of. On the other hand, he worships Plantagenet and the ground he walks on, as he was the lone bright spot in his life who continuously showered him in affection.
  • One-Man Army: One of the people carrying the York forces.
  • Pet the Dog: Has moments with his son, Edward, and niece, Beth.
  • Protagonist Journey to Villain: Anyone who knows the history of the War of the Roses knows what is coming.
  • Sexless Marriage: He has likely never been intimate with his eventual bride, Anne.
  • Shotgun Wedding: Quickly married Anne to appease his brother, and conceal the fact Anne was already pregnant.
  • Sibling Murder: Orders the murder of his older brother, George.
  • The Heretic: Seen as a heretic, as he has male and female characteristics, a sign of a demon.
  • The Masochism Tango: Buckingham and Richard III's relationship initially starts out as what would be considered a business deal.
  • The Reveal Prompts Romance: After Buckingham discovers the truth about Richard's body, the two become partners.
  • Youngest Child Wins: The youngest of three, he is considered the most competent brother.
  • You Killed My Father: Swears vengeance on the Lancasters for his father's brutal death.
    Henry VI
Voiced by: Daisuke Namikawa (Drama CD)

The secondary protagonist of the story, and the figurehead of House Lancaster. A peculiar man with a distaste for war and leadership.

  • Abdicate the Throne: When Plantagenet asks for the throne of Lancaster as part of a promise to end the fighting, Henry was more than willing to turn the crown to York. The move does not endear him to Margaret and Edward, as the former finds him a coward and seeks to take the throne back, while the latter sees it as betraying his own flesh and blood for the enemy (rather than considering Edward a king candidate/heir at all).
  • Actual Pacifist: Henry hates bloodshed and cries at the aftermath of battles. It's part of why Margaret is so openly disrespectful towards him.
  • Adaptational Dye Job: While he has very light (bordering on white) hair in colored images, he's also depicted with blond hair in spinoffs.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: Richard III and Henry VI are friends in the manga, when in reality the two probably never met.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: A two boy variant, but he plays the soothing and gentle presence that the ever-moody Richard sorely lacks in life.
  • The Chains of Commanding: The Henry of this manga has made it abundantly clear that he is ill-equipped for and burdened by his crown. He is hesitant to have his subjects take life as it comes into conflict with his faith, his comparatively more peaceful option of surrendering is controversial, and coupled with animosity from his wife and son, Henry is left weary of politics.
  • Doomed by Canon: Most know the story of the War of the Roses, and what the outcome is for the characters. Henry, however, does survive...under the name of a completely different historical figure.
  • Hates Being Touched: Reacts badly when women touch him. It's implied, if not outright shown, that he was raped by a woman in the past.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Henry likes the commoners' lifestyle far more than that of his royal life, and has no interest in political intrigue. He mentions the times when he was happiest were when he passed himself off as a Shepard.
  • The Ingenue: Rare male example. His innocence borders on naivety at times, and he's often described as "childlike" by Margaret and Edward (Lancaster), which comes into conflict with his kingly duties.
  • Innocent Blue Eyes: In colored images, his eyes are a very bright blue. Being one of the nicer characters in the story, he fits under the trope well.
  • Nice Guy: Despite his shoddy reputation on the throne, most commonfolk have spoken nothing but praise for his day to day attitude.
  • Non-Action Guy: All of the politiking and war endeavors are spearheaded by Margaret and occasionally Edward.
  • Older Than They Look: In the adaptation he looks to be around Richard's age, if not a little older. But in reality Henry VI was over thirty years older than the real life Richard III.
  • Parental Neglect: His strained relationship with Edward V is caused by years of ignoring his own kingly duties to pray or remain in his bed. Henry giving up the throne to York was the final nail in the coffin for their relationship.
  • Prone to Tears: He's very much a fragile man, shedding tears for all of the bloodshed the Wars have caused and in empathy for unfortunate people like Richard. Margaret and Edward disdain him for his open fragility.
  • Puppet King: He has always mentioned how he never wanted to be King. His wife, Margaret, is the real power behind the throne.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The Sensitive Guy to Richard and his own son's Manly Men.

House of York

    Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York

  • Alas, Poor Yorick: When Richard III cradles his father's head.
  • Betrayal by Offspring: His son, George temporarily switches sides, joining Lancaster before returning to York.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: Plantagenet is the only parent who shows Richard affection. Richard is devastated when his father is murdered.
  • Defiant to the End: When he is the last man standing of his troop, he continues to fight them off until he is overwhelmed. Even when he is restrained and humilated, he never gives into Margaret's taunts until she tosses what he thinks is his beloved Richard's blood-soaked handkerchief at him.
  • Desecrating the Dead: Victim of this. Decapitated, and his head is placed upon a pike.
  • Doting Parent: Was certainly so to Richard III. While he loved all his sons, Plantagenet seemed to focus on young Richard the most and made certain to spend as much time with him as possible. Between everyone else looking at the boy with suspicion or disgust, Plantagenet praised his smarts and ambition. He outright breaks when Margaret makes him think she killed Richard.
  • Parental Favoritism: He prefers Richard, while his wife prefers George and Edward.
  • The Coup: One of the main forces that instigated the War of the Roses.

    Edward IV

  • Against My Religion: Exploited when he marries Elizabeth. Because he secretly wed her under a Christian marriage, he assures he can't break off the relationship because divorce would mean breaking an oath to God. This causes more problems than it solves, due to Warwick already solidifying Edward's engagement to Princess Bona of France—meaning Edward's marriage is grounds for conflict.
  • Bring Him to Me: Edward demands Warwick be brought to him alive during the Battle of Barnet. After Warwick betrays Edward, and attempts to put the Lancasters back on the throne.
  • The Casanova: Of the three brothers, Edward is most well known for loving and thinking with his little Richard. His serial flirting can be spotted all over the plot, from kissing a lover goodbye before going off to war, to flirting with the noblewomen at banquets, to his instantly setting his eyes on the beautiful Woodville. These tendencies do not go down in any way once he's finally married.
  • Love at First Sight: The moment Woodville came pleading for her husband's lands to him was the moment he decided on her as his queen. Played for Drama, as everyone acknowledged the infatuation as bad news.
  • The Good King: Like his father before him, the citizenship praise his reign and find him a decent enough king to live under. Things start taking a turn for the worse after he married Woodville.
  • Guess Who I'm Marrying?: Marries Elizabeth Woodville, despite her former alliance with House of Lancaster, and opposition from Warwick.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: You can definitely tell he's Plantagenet's eldest. He inherits the flowing locks, the Pretty Boy looks, and his build.

    George Plantagenet, Duke of Clarence

  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: After his wife's death, he attempts to give alcohol to his infant son.
  • Arranged Marriage: Marries Warwick's eldest daughter, Isabel, as Warwick planned to have them become the new king and queen, replacing Edward and Elizabeth.
  • Easily Forgiven: Switches sides from House of York to House of Lancaster before switching back. All is forgiven by his brother Edward.
  • Fatal Flaw: Alcohol.
  • Hollywood Drowning: Drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine.

    Elizabeth Woodville

  • Crusading Widower: Elizabeth's husband, John is killed by Yorkist forces. Swears vengeance on the House of York.
  • Evil Matriarch: Only marries Edward and has his children to secure power that she can use to avenge her deceased husband.
  • Happy Marriage Charade: Doesn't love Edward IV, only married him to gain power, and eventually avenge her husband's death.

    Cecily Neville, Duchess of York

    Edward V 
Eldest son between Elizabeth Woodville, and Edward IV

  • Asshole Victim: Shown to be a brat, and conspires to kill Richard III.
  • Man in the Iron Mask: His uncle, Richard III imprisons him, and his older brother in the Tower of London.
  • Royal Brat: Shown to immature and spoiled.

    Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York 
Second son between Elizabeth Woodville, and Edward IV.

  • Asshole Victim: Shown to be a brat, and conspires to kill Richard III.
  • Man in the Iron Mask: His uncle, Richard III imprisons him, and his older brother in the Tower of London.
  • Royal Brat: Like his brother, shown to be immature and spoiled.

    Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury
Daughter of George Plantagenet and Isabel Neville.


    Edward Plantagenet, 17th Earl of Warwick
Son of George Plantagenet and Isabel Neville.

    Edward of Middleham, Prince of Wales
Son of Richard III-uncertain- and Anne Neville.

House of Neville

    Richard "Warwick" Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick

Known as the "Kingmaker", a powerful supporter of first the York family and then the Lancaster family. From the House of Neville, and father of Isabel, and Anne.

  • Backstab Backfire: Betrays the Yorks, attempts to put Henry VI back on the throne. It doesn't go well.
  • Kingmaker Scenario: Installed and deposed two sovereigns in short succession during the War of the Roses This trope was inspired by the real-life Warwick.

    Anne Neville

Richard III wife, and mother of Edward. Former wife of the late Prince Edward of Lancaster. Second daughter of Warwick, and member of House of Neville.

  • Arranged Marriage: With Prince Edward of Lancaster, and later Richard III.
  • Girlish Pigtails: Keeps her hair in twin braids during her childhood, although she trades them in for one long braid when she grows up.
  • Happy Marriage Charade: Married to Richard III, with a son possibly Edward of Lancaster's son. But they have an unhappy marriage.
  • Marriage of Convenience: Married Richard III because she was pregnant, but not with his son.
  • Sexless Marriage: Have likely never been intimate.
  • Shotgun Wedding: Quickly married Richard III after the death of Edward of Lancaster to conceal the fact she was pregnant with Edward's child.
  • Shrinking Violet: She has a hard time socializing when he's first introduced,and could not deal with men easily. The only person outside family she seemed to open up to was Richard.

House of Lancaster

    Margaret of Anjou

Wife of Henry VI, and mother of Prince Edward of Lancaster. A member of the House of Lancaster, and the power behind her husband's throne.

  • Desecrating the Dead: Decapitates Richard Plantagenet, and hoists his head up on a pike.
  • Evil Matriarch: The real power behind the reign of Henry VI. Very determined, but this eventually proves to be her downfall. Losing her son, Edward, at the Battle of Tewkesbury and her husband, Henry VI being stabbed in the Tower of London
  • Fate Worse than Death: Forced to witness her son's death, and when begging to be killed, this request is denied.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Her killing of Richard Plantagenet is nothing short of sadistic. She first mocks his newly crowned status in Lancaster by giving him a laurel wreath, then intended on killing him when he was at his emotional lowest, and finally fools him into thinking Richard was slain by throwing a blood-soaked handkerchief at Plantagenet and telling him the blood is from his youngest son. To rub it in further, she then tells Plantagenet to wipe his tears with the cloth before beheading him.

    Prince Edward of Lancaster
Voiced by: Yoshitsugu Matsuoka (Drama CD)

The Prince of Wales, and son of Henry VI and Margaret.

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Develops a crush on Richard III, but his advances are continuously ignored or rebuked. Any possible romance between the two becomes impossible when Edward reveals himself to be the Prince of Lancaster. He is shortly after killed by Richard.
  • Stupid Sexy Flanders: He's well aware that Richard is an enemy on the other side of the Wars, but after discovering he's intersex, Edward becomes very enamored with him and plans to take him as a wife.
  • Your Son All Along: Richard and Anne's son, Edward, is almost certainly Edward of Lancaster's.


    Joan of Arc

A French warrior woman who fought for her people in the Hundred Year's War. Believed by the English to be a witch. Appears in visions to Richard III to torment him.

     Jane Shore 
A witch and mistress of Edward IV.

    Henry "Buckingham" Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham
The ally and eventual lover of Richard III. Considered Richard's Kingmaker.

  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: Richard III and Buckingham are lovers in the manga.
  • Badass Bureaucrat: Only seen fighting a handful of times, mainly behind the scenes.
  • Bespectacled Bastard Boyfriend: Subverted, introduced as an ambitious, but manipulative character. Eventually becoming Richard III's lover. Over the course of their relationship, it becomes obvious Buckingham does care for Richard.
  • Birds of a Feather: With Richard III, both have aspirations to obtain more power. This common interest strengthens their bond.
  • Determinator: Very ambitious, wants to make Richard III king.
  • Fake Defector: Appears to betray Richard III, but this was just a way of gaining the trust of Elizabeth and Hastings.
  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Shown to be very ambitious, and manipulative.
  • Freaky Is Cool: Richard III is intersex, viewed as disgusting by Richard and nearly everyone else. Buckingham doesn't care.
  • Freudian Threat: Catesby walks in on Buckingham and Richard III in an intimate situation. Buckingham mentions peeping must be his hobby, and states next time he'll let Catesby see the whole thing.
  • Freudian Trio: One with Catesby and Richard III.
  • I Have Many Names: Instead of being referred to as his real name, Henry Stafford, he is called Buckingham, the region he is duke of.
  • Kingmaker Scenario: Calls himself Richard III's kingmaker, falsely convinces Elizabeth Woodville that he is her kingmaker.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Schemes, and easily persuades people to his side.
  • Non-Action Guy: Can hold his own, but prefers a behind the scenes role.
  • That Was Not a Dream: While under the influence of a spiked drink, Buckingham believes he saw Richard III with breasts. Initially thinks it was the spiked drink, he later finds out that this wasn't a dream.
  • The Masochism Tango: Buckingham and Richard III's relationship initially starts out as what would be considered a business deal.
  • The Reveal Prompts Romance: After discovering the truth about Richard's body, the two become partners.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Buckingham invokes this when he states that Richard III should be king.

    Sir William Catesby

    Richard Grey 
Second son of Elizabeth Woodville and her first husband Sir John Grey of Groby. Half sibling of Elizabeth of York, Edward V, and Richard of Shrewsbury.

    Lord Hastings

  • Backstab Backfire: Betrays Richard III, soon after he is decapitated by Catesby.
  • Foreshadowing: Lady Cecily has a dream of Hastings being killed by a white boar, the heraldic symbol of Richard III.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Attempts to expose Richard III after betraying him. Claims he'd rather die than see a demon become king. Promptly gets his chopped off by Catesby.


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