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Samurai Spirit, Meiji Soul

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Created on 2012-09-19 01:22:13 (#1724965), last updated 2015-11-02 (98 weeks ago)

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Name:Kenshin Himura
Birthdate:May 20
Character’s name: Himura Kenshin.
Character’s fandom: Rurouni Kenshin (manga version because there is a HUGE difference)
Character’s DW: xshapedscar

Tell us about the character and his fandom:
Rurouni Kenshin is an anime taking place in Japan’s past, around the late 1800s. It is somewhat historical in nature, following the life of a former samurai after the end of the revolution that brought about the Meiji Era. Within the story, the samurai, Himura Kenshin, used to be a very very skilled assassin during the revolution, but after it was over he has made a vow never to kill. He becomes a wonderer, and moved from place to place for the last 10 years of his life. People are still after him to claim the title of the strongest or because he has killed someone they loved or because they wish to start their own revolution.

The canon point that he is being taken from is during the later. A former assassin who had taken over for Kenshin is trying to throw Japan into chaos and Kenshin has to go back to Kyoto, where it all started, to try and stop him.

Once upon a time there was a legendary manslayer. This young man cut a bloody path through the Meiji Revolution. He was considered the strongest of all the assassins. Yet before the war was over this man disappeared leaving the battlefield behind. He walked away from his life as a killer and into a new life. He has kept on walking for the last 10 years. This man is Kenshin Himura.

He seems a far cry from the man he used to be. Kenshin is a technical pacifist. He believes in peace and the sanctity of life. He thinks that all life other than his own is precious. He also feels that taking one is unforgivable. However, he does still carry the sword, which means he is willing to use it to protect those around him, as he doesn’t wish for others to suffer when he can do something to help them. It is his way of trying to find some forgiveness for the many deaths he caused. Especially since he remembers the name and face of everyone he has ever assassinated and feels incredibly guilty for each one regardless of how justified that killing might have been at the time. He has taken up this reverse blade sword in order to keep a promise to himself to never take another life.

Most of the time he is rather clumsy, slightly eccentric, and completely unassuming. He keeps a very low profile as many people still wish to go after him in order to be the one that slays Hitokiri Battousai. He prefers to meet conflicts with diplomacy instead of with a blade. If he can talk his opponent out of attacking he will do that. Most of his fights are simply because he cannot avoid them in any other way. Even then he is almost painfully polite and soft spoken. He refers to others in honorifics such as “dono” and refers to himself in third person. He even adopts a rather archaic way of speaking using what translates in English as “that is it” at the end of some of his sentences.

In such a way he manages to keep control of his warrior self. Because he takes it upon himself to get involved by putting himself in harms way to protect others, he is often faced with life and death situations. When these situations get out of hand and Kenshin is backed into a corner, he will rely upon the way he was in the past. That catalyst for this personality shift into a nearly completely different persona is usually an opponent who angers Kenshin enough due to that person’s own disrespect for life. However rehashed battles from the past have also been known to trigger the change. The shift is obvious because the way he acts and talks and moves becomes completely different from before. He talks with a cold, selfish, brazen manner, dropping the eccentric way of speaking and refers to himself in first person. His movements are quicker and far more deliberate. Even his face changes slightly, from the gentle peaceful look he normally possessed to a sharp eyed look of frigid anger and deadly determination. He loses all sense of kindness he normally has and becomes a bloodthirsty man capable of killing without hesitation. This is not a separate personality, but a part of his true self that he keeps repressed.

It’s also a part of himself that he fears. He know what he is capable of and he does his best to keep from resorting to such a desperate measure. He fears it because he is aware that it wouldn’t take that much to push him over the edge and make him return to the life of a killer. A life he has been trying to atone for for the last 10 years. A life that he tries not to let touch others.

As a wandering samurai, Kenshin has had few close friends. He’s lived a life of a loner, having been betrayed by people he trusted many times before. It was only very recently that he came across a group of people who accepted him as he presents himself. now. Through these friends he is slowly starting to open up about his past and who he was. He is just starting to realize that he too is a person and worthy of some sort of forgiveness; even if he has yet to forgive himself. Because of this self-enforced independance, he still feels the need to take care of his problems by himself. This is mostly because he is tired to losing his loved ones.

At the canon point he is taken from, Kenshin has just returned to Kyoto.This is a very painful place for him, filled with many ghosts from his bloody past. This is a deeply emotionally trying time for him. He teeters on the edge of returning being the manslayer he was. He has said goodbye to one of the only people who accepts him. He is aware that the mission he has embarked on will most likely lead to his killing someone. His restraint is compromised and in a sense of desperation he has gone back to his swordmaster to finish the training he never finished. He believes that learning the final techniques of the school might give him the edge he needs in order to complete his mission.

"I forgot to say one thing. Hitokiri Battousai’s style of fighting is not that of the Kamiya Kasshin School. It’s an old style of kenjutsu which arose in the Sengoku era, designed to face several opponents at once. Its name is Hiten Mitsurugi. And without the reverse blade, it is slaughter with deadly swiftness." - Himura Kenshin

Kenshin, despite his terribly girly looks, is quite a fearsome and accomplished swordsman. He was trained since he was about 6 or 7 by a very powerful master. He has held and used a sword for the last 22 years of his life. This shows in his fighting skills. His specific sword style, as stated in the quote, is designed for one hit one kill against a number of opponents. It has given him superior speed as well as acrobatic abilities and inhuman reflexes. He can leap high into the air and dodge attacks that would otherwise kill him. It also enables him to fight those far larger and stronger than himself. With his stature that is nearly every enemy he faces.

Most of his techniques were originally intended to be lethal . Because of his vow to to never kill and due to the design of the special sword he uses, Kenshin has had to modify the style somewhat. He has had 10 years to perfect this alteration. His mastery of battojutsu (the art of drawing a katana) is so well developed that he can compensate for the slowness that comes from owning a sword with the edge on the wrong side of the blade.

Combined with his years of combat as an assassin during the Meiji Revolution Kenshin is considered one of the best swordsmen in Japan. This goes beyond the use of a sword though. He has been seen to use his sword skills with a kitchen knife and other such implements of peace. He has not however completely mastered his style as he left before he learned the final technique.

It should also be noted that Kenshin has a working knowledge of medicine from the time period as he was a pharmacist as part of a cover identity during the revolution. He can also cook and clean and does most of the household chores up to and including babysitting at the Kamiya dojo.
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