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Light Novel / Kyo Kara Maoh!

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Shibuya Yuuri was an Ordinary High-School Student with no truly outstanding features aside from his love for baseball. At least, he was, until he tried to break up the bullying of another student and was dunked in a toilet, which sucked him into another reality—one in which his black hair and eyes marked him as the successor to the title of Maoh, or Demon Lord. Unfortunately for Yuuri, he has no knowledge of this kingdom, its customs, or how to go about ruling it... should he even survive to his coronation. Fortunately, he promptly meets a large number of hot guys willing to help him out.

Despite its sometimes serious veneer, Kyo Kara Maoh is first and foremost a comedy, though it grows into an adventure as the story progresses. Along with Wolfram's brothers (Gwendal and Conrad), their mother Cheri, and a few other noteworthy demons, Yuuri might just bring peace to the world which is currently split along human/demon lines...

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Kyo Kara Maoh started off as a series of light novels (began in 2000, went on hiatus in 2010), and was made into a manga series (2005-2016), a TV anime series (2004–06, 2008-09, Studio DEEN), an OVA series (2007-08) and a PlayStation 2 game. The details in each version are slightly different.


Kyo Kara Maoh provides examples of:

  • Aesoptonium: The Miasma in season 2 that causes everyone who is affected to stop trusting each other.
  • Action Mom:
    • Yuuri's mother is primarily a housewife, but if you mess with her kids, she is ready to step directly into the fray—and she took martial arts.
    • Lady Cecilie is just as much of a Mama Bear as Yuuri's mother is when you mess with her kids, and she isn't one of the Three Witches most famous in the demon kingdom for nothing.
  • Arranged Marriage:
    • Julia to Adelbert, although it's completely consensual and the two seem to genuinely love each other.
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    • Nikola to that one guy she leaves at the altar.
  • The Atoner: Geigan Huber wasn't necessarily a bad guy, but he was exiled for a reason and he feels horrible for what he's done in the past, and now works diligently as a spy for Yuuri to make up for it.
  • Badass Normal: Conrad who, due to his human heritage, has no magical ability to speak of is widely known to be the greatest swordsman in the kingdom.
    • And his best friend, Yozak. Half-human spy and master of disguise.
  • Bedmate Reveal: Wolfram has a bad habit of sneaking into Yuuri's bed despite his protests.
  • Beginner's Luck: Yuuri manages to kick ass and defeat his opponents without even knowing how, despite them having years of experience and training. It's the Maoh powers, realy.
  • Big Brother Instinct:
    • Yuuri's brother Shori is obsessively protective of his "Yuu-chan".
    • To a lesser extent, Gwendal and Conrad are always looking out for Wolfram.
  • Bishie Sparkle: Wolfram (in one memorable episode) occasionally sparkles and Gunter sparkles...almost constantly.
  • Bishōnen: Saralegui. To the point where Yuuri seems to crush on him.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead:
    • Yuuri, the brunette, and his "family" in the other world (Wolfram, the blonde, and Greta, the redhead).
    • There's also a trio of maids in Covenent Castle that share these hair colors and are pretty much always together.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Wolfram seems to get possessed an awful lot later on.
  • Call-Back: The anime frequently calls back to scenes in the past, usually times when Conrad saved Yuuri's life. This happens so often in the latter part of season 1 that the same scene is called back to at least once an episode. Season 2 and 3 are also peppered with call backs.
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys: Yuri, Wolfram, Gunter... half the men in The Great Demon Kingdom are ridiculously pretty.
  • Censor Steam: In the OVA #1, Yosak, Yuuri, and Saralegui are enveloped in just enough steam to hide the naughty bits...
  • A Chat with Satan: Yuuri and The Great One. Although technically that blends this trope with Pals with Jesus, especially once Season Three begins and keeps the pocket model.
  • Chained Heat: Yuuri and Gwendal are forced to spend an episode in the first season handcuffed together. They're mistaken for an eloping couple, and asked to say a few words of encouragement at a wedding. The garbled speech Yuuri makes has a comeback in the third season when he performs a real marriage ceremony for the bride of the previous forced wedding and her real chosen groom.
  • Character Tics: Due to his years of knitting as a form of stress relief, Gwendel now makes knitting motions whenever he’s upset, even if there are no knitting needles in sight. They introduce this slightly before the actual knitting, so he does some really weird twitching there.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: In the first episode, a purple-haired girl gives Yuuri some water to drink. She also has a cameo in the opening credits. We find out much later that she's actually a priestess and the one responsible for activating Yuuri's powers.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Yuuri's ability to play baseball, along with Conrad's ability to throw.
  • The Chessmaster: The Great Ones's plan to destroy Soushu involved controlling every major action of the entire demon race for four thousand years. Does this count as an Ancient Conspiracy?
  • Childhood Marriage Promise: Wolfram's proposal to Elizabeth was also this. According to her.
  • A Child Shall Lead Them: Yuuri is only 15 at the beginning of the series yet is crowned the Ruler of a country.
    • The third season reveals that King Saralegui was also crowned at age 15.
  • Chilly Reception: Gwendal all but ignores Yuri upon his arrival at the castle and Wolfram is outright hostile. Despite the fact that everyone else seems pretty happy about Yuri's coronation, these are two of the people who will play a major role in his Demon Kingdom life, so he still has to win them over.
  • Color-Coded Characters: This series is really fond of this trope. The most obvious example are the main characters' uniforms: Yuuri is black, Conrad is brown, Wolfram is blue, Gwendal is green and Gunter is purple. Although the colors don't match up with their personalities in any obvious way, so it's more like Limited Wardrobe Color Range.
  • Close-Call Haircut
  • Clothing Damage: Conrad and Wolfram humiliate a group of thieves by shredding their clothes.
  • Crossdresser: Yozak regularly. Wolfram at least twice (not counting his sleepwear), and Yuuri at least three times (and his early childhood).
    • There's a crossdressing beauty pageant in the video game, in which every one of the main characters is forced to participate.
      • The Crossdressing Pageant is crossed-over into the series via OVA. Wolfram's skirt is very short.
  • Cultural Cross-Reference: Moreso in the novels, where Yuuri's internal monologue at one point mentions that his mother enjoyed The Ring so much that she proceeded to watch The Lord of the Rings under the impression that they were related, among many, many other examples. Even in the anime, Yuuri calls Adalbert a 'football player looking guy' in the original Japanese.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: It applies to most of the Demon Kingdom. There are good people and bad people, but most of the "dark" characters are good and want to do the right thing.
  • David Versus Goliath Yuuri vs The Great One
  • Declaration of Personal Independence: Yuuri of is the teenaged king of the entire demon kingdom, but his mother still tries to tell him what to wear and how to treat people kindly, and his older brother Shori insists he give up the entire kingdom and abandon his people to be safe himself—which Yuuri doesn't take remotely well too, considering Yuuri has to rescue Shori himself more than once.
  • Dem Bones: Basic Demon Kingdom minion is a winged skeleton.
  • Diagonal Cut
  • Disappeared Dad: All three of Cheri's sons have different fathers, and none of them are in the picture. Conrad's father in particular is explicitly mentioned to be dead.
  • Disney Death: Wolfram, at the end of season 2. Faked by Josak in the beginning when Conrad stabs him and pushes him off a cliff..
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: It's apparently perfectly okay for girls to hit the king himself and then remark that 'men need training'. Apparently a certain technically minded woman thinks it is 'enlightened' to jump in right after Yuuri saves the day and slap the crap out of him. What? What the hell did he do wrong?
  • Dramatic Wind
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: While Gisela (whose nickname is "Sergeant") who is normally very nice, but can easily get angry.
  • Elemental Powers: Among the main cast: Yuuri is water, Wolfram is fire, Gwendal is earth and Gunter is air. Other characters are seen using the same powers.
  • Embarrassing Statue: Yuri is hideously embarrassed to find a statue of himself commissioned by Gunter, including what he decries as "puffy pants" to make him look a tad more traditional regal than his normal school uniform.
  • Emotional Maturity Is Physical Maturity: This seems to be the case with most demon, but especially Wolfram, who is over 80 but acts exactly like the moody teenager he seems to be.
  • Everybody Is Single: Except for the minor-character married couple with a kid. And technically Wolfram and Yuuri, but...
  • Everybody Knew Already: Yuuri gets a big shock when he learns that his entire family is aware that he is the Maoh.
  • Every Car Is a Pinto: Conrad stabs the remote-control device that was driving a truck. Without any controls, it veered of the cliff and exploded.
  • Everyone Is Bi: The other characters seem to be very perplexed at the idea of Yuuri being exclusively heterosexual.
  • Evil Laugh: Stuffel's is an evil laugh when he is forming his evil plots...
  • Eyepatch of Power: Gegenhuber wears one of these, since he lost his eye to people looking for the eye to the forbidden box.
  • Face Palm: When Yuuri's klutziness and social faux pas become too much even for Conrad...
  • Fantastic Racism: A core element of the story is the hatred between demons and humans and Yuuri's attempts as Maoh to overcome it.
    • Also, the hatred and fear Double Blacks have to cope with, before The Great One manages to get the Demons to appreciate them, which, by the time the story starts, has expanded into full-blown worship.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The Great Demon Kingdom is based on Medevial Germany, down to the names, although plenty of the wacky culture clash incidents have nothing to do with Germany.
  • Fish out of Water: Yuuri doesn't understand The Great Demon Kingdom at all to star with, but he really grows into his role.
  • Floating Advice Reminder: Miko Shibuya often gives Yuuri silly advice using this trope.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Interchangeably Wolfram and either Conrad and/or Gwendal. Wolfram is the Foolish and Conrad and Gunter are the Responsible ones.
    • Yuuri and Shori could be considered this in their world.
  • Foreshadowing: Jose and Conrart's scripture recitals about the sun and the moon while admiring Julia and Christine's souls.
    • Not to mention that they pretty much end up shoving it down your throat that Wolfram is a key, even though they tried to make it subtle.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Annisina
  • Gambit Roulette: The Original King's plan to make Yuuri into his vessel. It crossed thousands of years and involved Yuuri finding four keys to the Originator.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Saralegui, when giving someone a 'hint'.
  • Good Eyes, Evil Eyes: "Evil" characters have tiny pupils. "Good" characters have large pupils.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: The Forbidden Boxes
  • Grand Theft Me: The Great One's attempt to hijack Yuri's body.
  • Gratuitous German: Most characters' names for starters.
  • Groin Attack: Yuuri, by his mother.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: Demon/human halfbreeds are hated by humans and looked down upon by demons. Entire villages exist with the sole purpose of keeping the halfbreeds away from everyone else.
  • A Handful for an Eye: Josak does this a lot.
  • Handicapped Badass: Gegenhuber is missing an eye, but it doesn't seem to affect his physical abilities much.
  • Hate Plague: One episode featured a cursed miasma that makes a person unable to trust anyone.
  • Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: Yuuri would have you know he likes girls, thank you very much.
  • Heart Trauma: Wolfram, in a way. While it doesn't affect his personality, the fact that he is forced into a reversible death counts as a drastic change.
  • Heir Club for Men: Shimaron's law stats that women can't inherit property. This plays a big role in the plotline involving Caloria.
  • Hidden Eyes: Yuuri does this when he's about to go into Maoh-mode.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: The Great Sage to The Great One. While fairly competent in his own right, it is explicitly stated that the Original King would have lost the war against Soushu, had the Great Sage not become his strategist.
    • Also: Conrad, Gwendal and possibly Yozak, if one wants to call them "sidekicks". Yuuri would be long dead without them stopping him from a) getting himself killed, b) starting an international incident or c) destroying the world while bringing his form of "justice" down on some poor fool's head.
  • Hypnotic Eyes: Saralegui has these.
  • I Am Who?: You are the Maoh!
  • I Kiss Your Hand: Conrad employs this when he first meets Julia. Smooth!
  • Iconic Item: Julia's pendant.
  • If I Can't Have You…: Wolfram, season one, episode fifty-two.
    "Maybe I should just kill you now; then you'd be mine forever."
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Conrad tries to avoid this, but Yuuri is too lost in his angst to pay attention.
  • Implausible Fencing Powers: Just about everyone is a ridiculously skilled swordsman/woman. Most surprisingly, Yuuri's mother.
  • Innocent Innuendo: Wolfram awakens on a ship to hear Yuuri and Conrad having a rather sexual exchange of words. Turns out Yuuri was just getting his contact lenses put in.
  • In the Hood: Generally villains employ this trope, though Conrad and Wolfram have been known to as well.
  • Instant Messenger Pigeon: Or in this case, doves.
  • Interspecies Romance: Demons and Humans
  • Just Friends: Something Wolfram refuses to accept this from Yuuri.
  • Kissing Under the Influence: In the OVA, when Wolfram gets possessed by The Great One and kisses Yuri.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Adelbert von Grantz
  • Kryptonite Factor: Demons are generally unable to use their magic and experience great pain when in the presence of human abilites. A glowing rock.
  • Kubrick Stare: King Belar often uses this stare so that you know he's EVIL.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Justified in that it's their official uniforms, slightly averted when they have to disguise themselves.
    • Averted completely by Wolfram, who is shown to have several other outfits. In the manga, he wears his uniform less than half the time.
  • Literal Cliffhanger
  • Lost Technology: The Okiku death-robot giant thingie conveniently located under Blood Pledge Castle.
  • Luminescent Blush
  • Magic Music: Yuuri's magic flute.
  • Maligned Mixed Marriage: Marriages between humans and the demons certainly count, given all the problems that befall them and their children.
  • Mangst: Adelbert and Conrad and their periodical Mangst sessions where they sit around Mangsting about, who else, Julia.
  • Official Couple: The entire country believes Yuuri and Wolfram are dating, no matter how much Yuuri dislikes this.
  • The Ojou: Cheri, Annisina, possibly Gisela.
  • Older Than They Look: Just about the all Demon Tribe could actually fall under this as they are found to age differently than humans. Wolfram is found to be 82 years old even though he looks about Yuri's age.
    • Especially Cheri, who looks younger than her oldest son.
  • One True Sequence: Barely averted, as the box on Earth can't be found by Big Shimaron, and therefore results in one box not fought over.
  • Open-Minded Parent: Yuuri's parents already knew about his destiny as Maoh long before he was born, much to his surprise (and annoyance), and they happily embrace his accidental fiancé as part of the family, even though they're both male. His mom even plans to take Wolfram shopping for wedding dresses, to Yuuri's dismay.
  • Or Was It a Dream?
  • Oracular Urchin: Ulrike
  • Orgasmic Combat: Elizabeth makes quite a lot of noise while she fights Wolfram. Close your eyes and listen to the fight scene; it's very entertaining.
  • Our Demons Are Different: And how. The demons in the other world are quite possibly some of the least demonic looking ones ever made.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Apparently no one knows who Yuuri is if they can't see his black hair and black eyes, even though everything else looks the same. Justified in that anyone who knows him recognizes him, and all anyone who doesn't know him knows is that he has black hair and black eyes.
  • Parent ex Machina: Played with pretty much literally in a later episode where Shori loses control of his new powers and gets into a magic fight with Yuuri. Ulrike calls the spirit of their mother from Earth to stop them.
  • Pet the Dog: Gwendal has a huge weakness for all things cute, and he spends his spare time knitting dolls.
    • Used in-series to make him less intimidating to Yuuri.
    "If it's about Gwen, there's no way Gwen hates you, Yuuri. Because he loves small, cute things."
  • Playing Pictionary: Nobody can ever figure out what Gwendal's knitted animals are supposed to be.
  • Please Wake Up: Greta (and Yuuri) when Wolfram died (but it was only a faked death).
    • In the S3 finale, Wolfram and Greta while Yuuri is totally zonked out after using 99% of his Maryoku to save Janus and no one knows whats wrong with him.
  • Plot Armor: There's never a reason to worry when Yuuri gets kidnapped. He's always safe really.
  • Portal Pool: Naturally.
  • Portmanteau Couple Name: While Yuuri and Wolfram aren't a 'couple', per se, Greta still names her mini-Bearbee 'Yuuram'.invoked
  • Post-Kiss Catatonia: Subverted slightly in the sense that the kiss actually made Wolfram and Yuuri completely pass out.
  • Power Makes Your Hair Grow: Yuuri.
  • The Power of Love
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: In the OVA, a Pink Bear Bee must be sacrificed in order to stop the dragons from destroying the world.
  • Present Absence: The Great One is supposedly long dead, but in reality his spirit is around and Yuuri and Murata can both speak with him.
  • Promotion to Opening Titles: Jose, Bob, Shouma, Shori, Hube, Julia, and Don Hiri are put into S2's titles, Darcauscos, the Maids, Greta, The Great One, and Bearbees are put into S3's.
  • Rags to Royalty: Every day student Yuuri becomes King of a nation.
  • Ready for Lovemaking: Wolfram tries this at one point (and fails miserably). In the anime this scene is replaced with Yuuri waking up to find Wolfram in bed with him.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Shrine Maiden Ulrike is 800 but looks like a young girl. (Ondine, introduced later in the anime, was the maiden before Ulrike and looks, if anything, even younger.)
    • Murata is an odd variation. He really is about 16, but he's the reincarnation of the Great Sage - and retains his memories from all of his previous lives over the last four thousand years.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Yuuri (Red) and Murata (Blue)
    • Alternatively Conrad (Blue) and Yozak (Red), or even Yuuri (Blue) and Wolfram (Red).
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Gwendal's knitting, Yozak's crossdressing and Wolfram's strange choice of sleepwear (it's implied that the latter may be a deliberate attempt to get Yuuri to like him by making himself appear more feminine).
  • Redshirt: Various soldiers assigned to guard Yuuri get killed as a sign that he is in danger. Attacked by ninjas, the guard get killed first. Attacked by a killer sand panda, the soldiers fall into the trap before them.
  • Redshirt Army: There are so many red shirts that one has to wonder how there's an army left.
  • Reincarnation: Yuuri is Julia's reincarnation and Murata is the reincarnation of the Great Sage.
  • Reincarnation Romance: Because of the above mentioned reincarnation, there are hints that a possible (one-sided?) reincarnation romance could develop between Yuuri and Conrad, who may have had romantic feelings for Julia.
  • Resemblance Reveal: In season three, Geneus's cloak is eventually torn away to reveal he looks exactly like the Great Sage, plus some Facial Markings.
  • Residual Evil Entity: After The Great One defeated the Originators, the remnants were sealed into four Forbidden Boxes, and tainted The Great One himself until Yuuri arrived on the scene to finish the job.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: The Bearbees. Nogisu!
    • Ryan's sandpanda too, once it's no longer threatening to kill everyone...
  • Rōnin: Geigen Huber, Gwendal's cousin. Even more, Adalbert, who is completely comfortable with his role as an free-wheeling post-racial swordsman, and while he slides increasingly toward idealism and believing in The Messiah, never gives up his independence.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Pretty much all of the nobility falls under this, though especially Yuuri as he's the actual king.
  • Running Gag: Anissina's forcing Gwendal or Gunter (or both) to assist in her various demon-magic-based technology experiments.
    • Also Yuuri standing up to bullies in order to rescue a victim only for said victim to run away and leave Yuuri to be beaten up.
  • Runaway Bride: Nikola
  • Save Both Worlds: In the end of Season 2, when the Originators are leaking all over into Earth and not even everyone in The Great Demon Kingdom can keep the massive armies in check. Granted, they don't actually know Earth is in danger.
  • Shoulders of Doom: The Great One's armor has huge shoulder pads, and his later outfit, when he is no longer possessed by the Big Bad, doesn't.
  • Single-Episode Handicap: Yuuri sprains his ankle for a story line, but is perfectly fine by the end.
  • Take Our Word for It: Usually happens when there is violence or one character is injured. Particularly noticeable in episode 27.
  • There Is Only One Bed: Subverted: Wolfram has his own room and bed, but sleeps in Yuuri's anyway, because "I'm your fiancé!"
  • * Threshold Guardians
  • Time Travel: Yuuri gets sent back in time while coincidentally under a disguise to watch the events in The Great Demon Kingdom 20 years previously.
  • Too Spicy for Yog-Sothoth: Yuuri is just too cute to be eaten by the dragon.
  • Tracking Device: Ulrike can find Yuuri's location on a super special soul-map thingie.
  • Translation Convention: It is made clear in the first episode that the characters in the other world are not speaking Japanese, but Yuuri hears it as such, and so we the viewers do as well. This goes double for the English dub, where Yuuri keeps remarking (in English) on the quality of everyone's Japanese in a foreign land.
  • Translator Microbes: Subverted. Aldebert has to unlock the ability to speak the demonlanguage from Yuuri's spirit. Murata probably remembered the language from the Great Sage's memories.
  • Transparent Closet: Yuuri is totally, completely heterosexual. Even though no one in this world knows what that means. He's not just in a transparent closet, he toted that closet over from another dimension. If he really is closeted; there is still room for doubt.
  • Trapped in Another World: And, occasionally, trapped in the original one, too.
  • Triang Relations: Type 3. Sara wants Yuuri (although possibly only for his powers), Wolfram wants Yuuri, and Yuuri wants... nobody.
  • Tsundere: Wolfram and Also Gisela, who can go from sweetness and sunshine to Drill Sergeant Nasty (and back) in the blink of an eye.
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: Elizabeth was formerly engaged to Wolfram, but she loses him to Yuuri badly.
  • Unwanted Harem: Yuuri has an all male one - that's why he doesn't want it.
  • The Von Trope Family: Subverted, as it has nothing to do with personality, and is actually used correctly to mark nobility in the Germanic-based fantasy realm of The Great Demon Kingdom.
  • Wacky Marriage Proposal: Er, right. Watch who you slap, you never know what might happen.
  • Warring Natures: Demons vs. Humans. Conrad and Josak choose to fight for the Demons.
  • We Are as Mayflies: The demons live much, much longer than humans.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: The keys to the boxes are Conrad's arm, Gwendal's eye, Wolfram's heart, and Yuuri's soul.
  • Whip It Good
  • White-and-Grey Morality: Downplayed, in that there are occasional individuals who are spiteful just for the sake of it, but the one major antagonist that's truly evil is more like a force of nature than a character; everyone else is good but misguided, mind-controlled, or just testing Yuuri in the first place. As a result, Yuuri's conviction that any problem can be resolved by talking it out turns out to be true almost all the time, to the amazement (and sometimes exasperation) of his retainers.
  • The Worf Effect: Wolfram is generally the unlucky victim of this trope.
  • Yaoi Fangirl: A trio of castle maids spend all their screentime taking notes, placing bets, and calculating the odds of Yuuri's various romantic prospects.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Time between the two worlds gets closer to flowing at the same rate as the anime progresses, however.
  • Younger Than They Look: Conrad and Yozak are actually an example of this within The Great DemonKingdom, although at their current levels the face is probably not a major factor in guessing age in that culture. When Conrad was thirty he probably looked thirteen, but had spent enough time around humans that he was more mature than most demon sixty-year-olds. Which explains pretty much everything about him, except that weird need he has to have a specific person to be fixated on at all times.
    • It is theorized that some corollary to the demon slow development and longevity gene is that they learn really, really slowly. Not that they're stupid; they can understand things well enough, they just don't form memories, especially procedural memories, without a lot more repetitions than it takes humans.
      • This helps explain things like Wolfram, and also sheds light on Conrad: his particular genetic mix left him a prodigy among demons for his learning speed (hence his scorn of the other students in the flashback scene where Gunter kicks his ass) and with a ridiculous amount of time to practice compared to humans, since by his age even his fellow martial geniuses are normally bedridden.
    • Hube and Nikola's offspring grows a bit fast even compared to human infants. If he turns out to have a max lifespan of thirty years, it will mega-suck.

Alternative Title(s): Kyou Kara Maoh, Kyou Kara Maou

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