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Akifumi
Akifumi-haruka2artwork
Character Information
Birthday:
March 4
Age:
16
Height:
164 cm (5'5")
Bloodtype:
O
Family:
Retired Emperor (father),
mother (deceased),
Emperor (older brother)
Motomi (older half-brother)
Occupation:
Heir apparent of the Imperial Throne
Innate Element:
Earth
Weapon(s):
Kaiken (dagger for self-defense)
Specialties:
Creating and wearing new perfumes
Hobbies:
Reading (recently likes history books)
Habit(s):
Gazing into people's eyes and faces
Favorite Scent:
Kikka
Favorite Color:
Mushiguri (light yellow-orange)
Favorite Flower(s):
Chrysanthemum (autumn)
Christmas camellia (winter)
Favorite Spot(s):
House of Records (Zushoryou),
Temple Sushin (Suishin-in),
Mount Arashi (Arashiyama)
Voice Actor(s):
Kouki Miyata
Live Action Actor(s):
First Appearance: Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 2
See Imperial Family (Haruka 2) for a detailed family history.

Akifumi (彰紋) is one of the Eight Guardians in Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 2. He acts as the Suzaku of Earth (地の朱雀, Chi no Suzaku) for his era's White Dragon Priestess.

The particular term used to note Akifumi's status for the throne (東宮) is an archaic title for the crowned prince. Its namesake is the East Palace, which was designated as the crowned prince's residence once Tokyo became the new capital of Japan (Meiji period). The naming motif for the palace follows the onmyouji version of the Five Element philosophy with east representing spring. Following the I Ching's definition, the Zhèn symbol within this direction signifies the eldest son of the family or, in this case, the eldest prince. During the Heian period, the same palace was used to educate the heir apparent rather than act as his residence.

His occupation dictates his political affiliation for the Emperor (帝, mikado). If he is the first guardian the protagonist meets, they will activate the Emperor story route. The player's choice affects the presentation of the game's story events.

Role in GamesEdit

Background StoryEdit

Akifumi was born as the youngest son of the Emperor's most beloved wife. The prince has no memories of her, however, as she died soon after he was born. Her death triggered his father's early retirement and the enthronement of his older brother as Emperor. He became heir apparent for the throne when he was only two years old, which inflamed the nobility with indignance and envy. Combined with the blond pigmentation of his hair, the surrounding nobility disparage Akifumi as the unfortunate "demon child" of the throne. Many consider him an ill omen for the imperial family and accept him only due to the Emperor and Retired Emperor's authority.

The young prince did not become aware of his reputation with the nobility until he was six years old. An ill-natured noble once boldly insulted him as a demon. Hurt by the raw hatred he witnessed, a weeping Akifumi told his concerned brother and father about it. Shortly after, the noble's prestige and his family had vanished from the face of the imperial palace. Realizing that his tattling was responsible for their disappearance, he decided to keep any future misgivings to himself to avoid being a burden to other people. He then tried to live his childhood normally by playing as carefree as he could.

It wasn't until he was nine did he start to take his education and upbringing for a crowned prince seriously. His beloved nanny had one day given him a letter and instructed him to read it once he reached manhood. Six months later, she passed away. Remembering her words to him, a curious Akifumi read the letter after her death. The letter explained the true origins of his older brother, Kazuhito, and the intentions of his aunt, Madam of the Sixth Pavilion. His aunt switched her child into the imperial family and half-heartedly raised Akifumi's real older brother with hopes to one day gain prominence in the court, effectively abandoning motherhood for the sake of her ambition. Being entrusted with the heavy secret changed Akifumi's perceptions of his responsibilities as heir; he felt a need to protect his relatives from harm and to one day tell them the truth.

When he was eleven years old, he experienced his manhood ceremony and intensified his studies as heir. He has since devoted himself to being a worthy heir to the throne by rigorously attending to his daily duties in office and by trying to learn as much history, etiquette, and military training as possible.

Story EventsEdit

Should Karin choose to treasure kindness over all other traits, the White Dragon will assign her to the Suzaku duo. She arrives in the middle of the world's imperial palace and is quickly hailed to stop by guards. If she hesitates to move, Akifumi stops them from arresting her. As he offers his assistance to Karin, Misono and Yukarihime appear to introduce Karin as a priestess.

Puzzled by the revelation, Akifumi is aware that his father has already recognized a Priestess of the Dragon God and hesitates to believe the twins' claim. Regardless of his weak belief in her as a priestess, the crowned prince senses Karin is in dire straits and gladly offers to stay beside her. He respects her determination to cleanse vengeful spirits and curses from the capital if nothing else. By assisting her cause, Akifumi believes he can do his small part to save his home.

His identity as heir to the throne is quickly revealed to Karin as he escorts her, which Akifumi apologizes for not initially telling her. He is worried about betraying the expectations set for him should he support Karin, as it may cause reproachful backlash from the nobility. The proclamation alone could potentially be viewed as an attack against the Retired Emperor or propaganda for the Emperor. His trepidations multiply when he learns Kazuhito is cursing the imperial palace and vies to take his title as crowned prince. When Karin saves the palace from a massive vengeful spirit, however, Akifumi decides to place his utmost faith in Karin and asks that they work together to save the capital from further strife.

Akifumi eventually meets his Heaven counterpart Isato. In either story route, he tries his best to work with Isato's aversion for nobility. As the trio searches for the southern divine aide's talisman, they confront Kazuhito and Tokitomo. Isato presses him to tell the truth of Kazuhito's birth yet Akifumi is reluctant to be so forward with the secret since he dreads to even speak it aloud. Unwilling to hurt another person's feelings, the prince pleads for more time to compose his thoughts as clearly as possible. Before their final confrontation with Kazuhito, he tells Karin the secret he has kept for years. During the Emperor's story route, Akifumi tells it to Kazuhito personally; he entrusts Motomi to tell it in the Retired Emperor's story route.

Once the truth is spoken, Akifumi tentatively addresses Motomi as his brother. They both find the change strange, but they promise to give it time for them to adjust. If Karin doesn't have high bonds with him for the final battle, he may accompany her as an optional partner in her party.

Harukanaru Toki no Naka de Yume no Ukihashi has him and Isato either act as the priestess's starting guardians or be amongst those being held prisoner within the central gates. The scattered guardians work together to reunite their comrades and to find a way back to the parallel world. Akifumi joins forces with Tomomasa to break the seal of one of the gates in the Heavenly Realm.

Personal RoutesEdit

Karin may become intimate with Akifumi in either story scenario. During the Emperor's story route, Karin learns his thoughts about being the crowned prince. He wants to become acquainted with her due to the heavy expectations placed on their shoulders, seeking to prevent her from feeling distressed. The crowned prince responds that he would do anything for the capital and its people's happiness, even offering his own residence if needed. Karin promises to help him in his goal, but she is worried that his methods are self-destructive in nature.

Their third private outing has Akifumi excitedly ask Karin about her world. Since she descended from the heavens, he believes her to be a fallen heavenly maiden. He thinks that her home is actually heaven, a peaceful utopia with no grief or war. As Karin corrects him, his romantic image dissolves. Saddened to learn that absolute happiness doesn't exist, Akifumi begins to wonder if he is fooling himself with his dream. Upon seeing his crestfallen visage, Karin earnestly asks him to consider his definition of happiness as a person and not as a prince.

He contemplates her request and later answers her with absolute uncertainty. He admits that perhaps his selfishness could inhibit his ability to think for others and is petrified to accept the notion. Not wanting to forget his duty to the people, he wonders if he is unworthy of his title. Once Karin assures him that he has the inherent right to satisfy his own desires, the prince is eternally grateful for her encouragement. Gaining the courage to speak as he wishes, Akifumi confesses his intimate feelings for her without restraint.

The Retired Emperor's story route deals with Akifumi's attempts to use his title to unite the supporters of the Emperor and Retired Emperor. He believes that if both parties talk and listen to one another, they can find a peaceful solution. Karin supports his idea yet reminds him that it might not be a painless struggle. Her intuition proves correct as neither side agrees to his concept of trusting one another. Despairing his failure as crowned prince, she cheers him up by believing in his passion to change.

As Akifumi arranges for both parties to meet a second time, his renewed confidence and concise proclamations are enough to convince the nobles of his intentions. Karin congratulates his success yet is disparaged to learn Akifumi's thoughts regarding the meeting. He couldn't convince them to completely alter their ways and he is further isolated than before with the nobility. While he insists he should become their ideal image of the crowned prince, Karin pleads for him to stop forcing himself. Learning that she fondly accepts his true character, Akifumi breaks down in tears and expresses his honest desires for independence to her. Embarrassed by his actions yet grateful, he replies that he will never forget her words to him.

If the player chooses Akifumi as their desired partner in the final battle, he admits he previously gained his older brother's permission to act on his free will. The Emperor is willing to sever his brother's ties to the throne and name a different successor, if it would allow Akifumi to be happy. No longer worrying about the throne's future, Akifumi may gladly express his wish to join Karin to the modern world. The player is the one who decides his fate for either world.

Harukanaru Toki no Naka de Yume no Ukihashi has Akifumi enjoy two of his private fantasies with Karin. The first dream is Akifumi moving as he pleases without servants or reputation bogging him down. Both he and Karin enjoy a cone of ice cream together as they walk through the capital's streets. His second dream is him being freed from his title as the immediate heir. His older brother gave birth to a son and Akifumi is demoted to being the second successor. Pleased to have more time to himself, Akifumi swears to devote himself to Karin as they peacefully watch flowers together.

By the third dream, Karin knows they're in a created world yet hesitates to reveal it for fear of hurting Akifumi. When she confronts him, he confesses he knew they were in a dream from the start. A part of him wants to accept his delusions as reality, ashamed to return to the real world. Karin assures the prince he can enjoy his real life if he puts his mind to it, which lifts Akifumi's spirits. Encouraged by her words, Akifumi wills himself to end the dream and resolves to fulfill their current task at hand.

As they return to the parallel world, Karin catches Akifumi after completing his duties for the day. He has a faint recollection of their dreams together, cheerfully inviting her on a trip to the town for ice cream. Since it doesn't exist in this world, Akifumi instead offers traditional sweets as compensation. Karin thinks she is being too demanding with her visits and wonders if she is bothering him. The prince hushes these concerns with his intimate feelings for her, admitting that he is always happy to be beside her.

Special has him share his twin ending with Motomi. Both princes happen to visit Karin as she enjoying tea within Nandou Xingjun's manor. She tells them news she heard from a servant maiden, saying that a colorful flower garden once flourished nearby. As the trio inspect it, they are surprised to see the supposedly lifeless flowers sprouting buds. The god of life informs them that they are recovering due to them defeating vengeful spirits, which encourages Akifumi and Motomi to try harder. Grateful for their promise to him, Nandou Xingjun promises to send them flowers when the garden recovers.

Their twin ending takes place after Karin has saved the capital and returned to the modern world. Akifumi and Motomi walk through a field of flowers the priestess magically restored and begin to wish for her return. As soon as they utter these desires, Karin magically appears before them and flowers rain from the sky. Akifumi wants to relish the reunion and sight, hoping to never forget the beauty he has witnessed.

Character InformationEdit

DevelopmentEdit

Tohko Mizuno noted that she wanted to present the Suzaku duo in this game in a mature light. In Akifumi's case, she thinks she could have gone "a little overboard". If it weren't for his youthful facial features, she remarks he could have been another Tomomasa.

PersonalityEdit

Akifumi is an innate, modest humanitarian who selflessly desires to help anyone he sees under duress. He is never offended when someone neglects his highborn status, feeling that he only has power when everyone supports him. Generously offering his sympathies to them, the prince seeks peaceful solutions between nobleman and commoner alike. Due to his sheltered upbringing, he has an enthusiastic curiosity of the townsfolk and is well liked for his cheerful politeness. Raised within the realm of detached conservatism, Akifumi became absorbed in the romanticism found in stories, poems, and books which he read during his childhood. As such, a part of him is a true believer of fairy tales and idealistic fantasies. He desires for everyone to be happy without anyone needing to experience suffering, a goal which he strives to keep to an almost naive level. He isn't always aware that his unassuming and uniform kindness may cause pain to people who experience it, and he may be oblivious to their feelings by showing no favoritism. This scorn is mainly expressed by the maidens he saved from poverty whom warn Karin from trusting him too much.

As heir to the throne, the nobility expect Akifumi to educate himself as a patterned gentleman who reserves his feelings and comprehends the complicated history of prestige which surrounds him. Many nobles want him to strive for absolute perfection befitting a prince, especially when their opinions have been marred due to his foreboding appearance and subsequent death of the first lady. Wanting to conform to their ravenousness demands for the sake of a happy capital, Akifumi conducts himself with diplomatic modesty and devotes himself to his various duties within the palace. He cautiously tries to keep his own impulses in check and may agonize over the consequences of his actions. By gaining their trust, he believes he can someday be accepted as a true prince. Therefore, he feels he has to sacrifice his every being for the people. Although he acts resolute in these beliefs, he secretly compares himself to his respected older brother and father and fears he will never measure to their greatness. Akifumi is frightened by the expectations on his shoulders and struggles to relate to those whom ostracize him. Self-conscious of his faults, he simultaneously tries to avoid drawing attention to himself with his humble behavior.

Since she fell from the sky, Akifumi originally believes Karin to be a mystical being who should be revered. His feelings become sincere when he realizes she is as much of an outcast as he is, admiring her bold commitment as a priestess. Her benign truthfulness encourages him to look past the perceived image he believes he should follow and to accept himself as a normal person rather than a tool for other people. She is the only person who Akifumi believes he can be honest to and treasures her unadulterated kindness. Even if he learns the truth of her origins, the prince accepts her as his irreplaceable, beloved "heavenly maiden".

The prince bears no ill will to Isato but is personally troubled by the monk's hotheadedness. He is aware of the nobility's hypocrisy that the monk underlines during their conversations and feels that the accusations Isato makes won't repair the capital's broken state. These discussions often end with Akifumi hesitant to provide a sufficient answer to calm the youth and Isato storming away in frustration. When Akifumi proves his determination to save everyone from grief –by disregarding affluence and prominence– he earns Isato's genuine trust and respect. They then become good-humored friends for one another.

Character SymbolismEdit

His symbolic item is the flowering crabapple. Within Japan, it is known as another treasured flower of spring which blooms directly after cherry blossoms. Like China, Japan regards it as a flower which represents charming beauty or cheerful love. The flower has many legends tying it to Yang Guifeng, Emperor Xuanzong's famous consort. In one interpretation, Yang Guifeng allegedly loved the flower as it was a present to her from the emperor. Another account has the drunken emperor call for Yang Guifeng whilst she slept. When he eventually found her, he was stricken by the beauty's sleeping visage and remarked she must have slept less than the crabapple flower. Thus the flower also represents the sleeping face of a beautiful women or the true feelings for someone's loved one.

Akifumi's favorite scent, Kikka (菊花), is said to be one of the six essential components for understanding the beauty and supposed therapeutic properties of incense during the Heian Period. Kikka is named after its colorful resemblance to blooming chrysanthemums. When burned, the incense was thought to invoke the image of morning dew resting atop fallen leaves. It was used to celebrate the chilly autumn months.

Chrysanthemums are his favorite autumn flower, and it is a flower which has been treasured since ancient times within Japan. It has been argued as the flower to represent the season as the opposing flower for cherry blossoms. Many romantic tales and poems have been mentioned regarding the flower. White chrysanthemums represent sincerity or truth within the flower language.

Within the Otogi Zoushi, for instance, there once was a gentle princess who loved flowers. She particularly favored chrysanthemums and would forsake her sleep at night to tend and gaze longingly at them. When she was fourteen years old, she happened to fall asleep whilst beside the flower. When she awoke, she was greeted by a young prince, and they were both enamored by one another. Pledging themselves to one another under the stars, the young man disappeared by the next morning.

Several days after their meeting, the princess's father was ordered by the emperor to give the chrysanthemums in his gardens to him. Before the day had ended, the young prince appeared before the princess again. He cut off his long hair and gave it to her as a keepsake to remember him. The prince wished for their child within the princess's womb to remember him by his hair before disappearing forever. It is then revealed that he was the spirit of the chrysanthemum near the princess's room. Their daughter grew into a splendid maiden who became a favored consort of the emperor. The story is tied to the flower's deeper meanings within the flower language which asks for the recipient to trust the presenter. It can also mean true love.

His preferred winter flower symbolizes humbleness.

Mushiguri is thought to have gained its namesake from a ripe chestnut's soft inner body or its outer shell. It has also been argued to have been named after steamed chestnuts.

QuotesEdit

  • "A battle? It can't be helped."
  • "I will fight harder to live up to what's expected of me."
  • "What's important is that we have confidence in ourselves."
  • "Keep it up to the end!"
  • "There were wasted movements in this battle, but victory is victory. Congratulations."
  • "I feel honored to fight beside you."
  • "That strong trust is what truly binds us."
  • "I'm so happy to be with you and the other guardians. I am often treated like an outsider by others."
  • "I have no other desire. I want to be like the bright sun and embrace around the world; I want to prevent the cloudy sky from crying tears of sorrow onto the people. For that paradise, I will do whatever it takes."
  • "My dear maiden of heaven, please don't let go of my hand."
  • "I know your happiness lies within your own world. But... It's so hard for me to leave you. Please, please take me with you. Would you please accept me as I am, as Akifumi? I have left the throne for you. All I want is to always be with you."
  • "May I hold your hand? Our fingertips might be able to convey thoughts in a way words can't. Words can only say half of my thoughts for you. I think about you so much."
  • "I just realized... You smell like sunshine. It's as though my heart is gently calmed and filled with warmth. I like it."
  • "It was so enjoyable to say my own thoughts to you. There are so many people who are willing to talk against me and so few who truly support me... Oh dear, that's not what I meant. I'm just blaming others like a child when they mean well. I'm sorry, this is so embarrassing."
"You shouldn't think that. I think you're cool!"
"Huh? Uh, how so?"
"Because you don't run away from your problems and you do your best to face them."
"Is that so? But I'm just doing what I think I can... Still, I'm glad that you're the first person to think of me that way. Thank you very much, Miss Karin."
~~Akifumi and Karin; Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 2
  • "If you feel like talking about it, please tell me. You don't have to force yourself either. I just want to be helpful to you."
"Ah, don't worry. I don't get what's wrong, but you don't need brood on it. Akifumi, don't be so hard on her."
"I didn't mean to be. I just thought that the offer could ease her mind a little..."
~~Akifumi and Isato; Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 2
  • "We have crossed through time unexpectedly, yet we have bonds with one another. If there's something bothering you, please don't hesitate to tell me."
"Understood. Be aware that this is only my first impressions. Your Highness has saved princesses of nobility within his mansion, correct? As a prince, there are those who would think you are taking them in as your consorts."
"That... is true. But, I'll just explain to everyone to not misunderstand my intentions."
"Even so, there are those who would be quick to misjudge you. Who is truly precious to you?"
"Miss Karin, of course."
"Then Miss Karin is the one you don't want to worry with this news. I just want you to consider that."
~~Akifumi and Benkei; Harukanaru Toki no Naka de Yume no Ukihashi

Fighting StyleEdit

Akifumi has stats that are similar to Karin's, though he has a slightly lower defense than her. He sports one of the stronger magic stats in the game. His second spell is exceptionally useful for enduring boss battles and conserving healing talismans. Its resilience gradually weakens in approximately three turns; players can track the shield's lifespan by the damage the party receives after casting. If used properly, then even attacks from the Parade of Hundred Demons may be rendered harmless.

Special AbilitiesEdit

These abilities are only available in Yume no Ukihashi.

  • Support (支援, shien)
Cost - 2 Will
Increases entire party's attack and defense power. Valid as long as green arrows are present near character's names. Can be stacked.
  • Heal (回復, kaifuku)
Cost - 2 Will
Restores the entire party's health to optimum levels. Can also be performed outside of battle.
  • Prayer (祈念, kien)
Cost - none (passive)
Randomly restores his lost health during battle.

MagicEdit

  • Chirai Geki (地来撃)
Cost - 2 Earth
Buries enemy under a cascade of boulders. Average earth damage.
  • Ganken Taien (岩堅耐援)
Cost - 2 Wood, 3 Earth
Significantly increases the party's defense. Effect can be stacked.
  • Taizan Meidou (泰山鳴動)
Cost - 5 Wood, 1 Fire, 5 Earth, 3 Water
Larger rock slide. Strong earth magic.
  • Suzaku Shoukan (朱雀召喚)
Cost - 4 Wood, 5 Fire, 2 Earth, 3 Metal, 1 Water; requires Akifumi to have Suzaku talisman equipped
Summons Suzaku to hit opponent with a fire attack.
  • Gundari Myō-Oh Shu (軍茶利明王呪)
Cost - 3 Wood, 5 Fire, 5 Earth, 4 Metal, 2 Water; requires Isato in party and completely successful retrieval of southern talisman
Suzaku guardians summon Gundari Myō-Oh to hit target with a fierce blaze. Ultimate fire elemental magic.

These unique spells are only available in Yume no Ukihashi.

  • Chimeidou (地鳴動)
Cost - 2 Will; requires Tomomasa in the same party
Strong earth magic.
  • Shinzan Gouchi (震山轟地)
Cost - 2 Will; requires Kagetoki and Eisen in the same party
Strong earth magic.
  • Chirei Bakusai (地霊爆砕)
Cost - 5 Will; requires Shimon and Benkei in the same party
Ultimate earth magic.

GalleryEdit

TriviaEdit

  • One of the history books Akifumi says he is reading is Sangokushi.

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