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Manga / Totsugami

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Long before her death, high schooler Tasaku Narukami's grandmother told him that he will protect the shrine he will inherit from her after she dies. After his grandmother passes on, Tasaku tries his best to uphold her wish by cleaning the shrine, even though he has no idea what his late grandmother meant when she told him to protect it.

While he sweeps up the shrine, an ominous wind moves by him, causing him to break his glasses. This is a huge annoyance for Tasaku, as he has a unique ability to see youkai and ghosts behind people and his glasses help him cope by blocking said ability.

One day, Tasaku spots the beautiful yet mysterious Chikage with his teacher Kozuka and notices that they are talking about him. Tasaku then follows them to his grandmother's shrine.The three of them realize that the barrier protecting the shrine has been torn and that a spirit called a totsugami is leaking out of it. Just as Kozuka prepares to handle the spirit with his own totsugami, Tasaku suddenly awakens his powers due to his fear and ends up subconsciously reciting a chant to seal the totsugami away.

After the incident is over, Chikage and Kozuka teach Tasaku about totsugami and the role of a totsugamimori, as well as the rips in the ground called mounds where totsugami emerge from. Armed with this information, Tasaku now has to learn how to navigate the world as a novice totsugamimori in order to fulfill his duty as the protector of his family shrine.

Totsugami (or Foreign Gods) is a fantasy seinen manga written by Misaki Saito. The manga is now complete at 10 volumes.

Tropes listed in Totsugami include:

  • Childhood Marriage Promise: According to Saki, she and Tasaku promised to marry each other as children. However, Tasaku doesn't remember making such a promise because his grandmother sealed his childhood memories.
  • Closet Sublet: Nakiri sleeps in Tasaku's closet. It's just a temporary situation as Nakiri's apartment was burned down.
  • Dhampyr: Nakiri is a quarter vampire. He has the ability to touch ghosts and he's much stronger than the average human. He doesn't seem to be as weak to sunlight compared to full-blooded vampires but he still hates to be out in the daylight.
  • Ectoplasm: People possessed by ayakashi release a white substance called ectoplasm from their mouths. The ectoplasm is composed of fingernail and saliva.
  • Guardian Entity: Some people have ayakashi look over them as their guardian spirits.
  • House Fire: In chapter 3, Nakiri and Kozuka's move into Tasaku's place after their apartment gets burned down by an onibi-possessed man.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Chapters are called stories.
  • Invisible to Normals: Totsugami, which are ayakashi/spirits, are only visible to the Totsugamimori. Ordinary people are completely oblivious to their existence.
  • Minor Living Alone: Tasaku starts living alone in his mansion after his grandmother passes away. This doesn't last for long though as Kozuka and Nakiri (who are both adults) move in with him after their apartment gets burned down by an onibi.
  • Oculothorax: One of the monsters that Tasaku used to regularly see at school is a giant eyeball with a miniture body attached to it.
  • Our Mermaids Are Different: The mermaid totsugami looks like a traditional mermaid but instead of swimming through water, it swims through air. Later on, it's revealed that the mermaid’s true body was a shrunken mummy that belonged to the school's biology preperations room.
  • Power Limiter: Tasaku's glasses prevent him from seeing the monsters and yokai he would usually see without them.
  • Raised by Grandparents: Tasaku was raised by his grandmother at a young age due to the death of his parents.
  • She's Not My Girlfriend: In chapter 5, Chikage comes over to Tasaku's house to give him a lunchbox along with all the homework he missed. Nakiri sees her and asks Tasaku if she is his girlfriend. Tasaku gets flustered and then hurriedly denies this.
  • Undressing the Unconscious: In chapter 3, Tasaku awakes in the school's infirmary after being strangled unconscious by the mermaid totsugami he was trying to help seal away. He panics when he realizes he's naked and asks who undressed him. Chikage then tells him that Kozuka did it.