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Koshirō Fujita

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Makoto
Makoto-haruka5
Character Information
Birthday:
March 20
Age:
21~23 (Haruka 5)
22 (Kazahanaki)
Height:
175 cm (5'9")
Bloodtype:
A
Family:
Yukoku Fujita
(grandfather, deceased),
Touko Fujita
(father, deceased),
Three older brothers,
Chinami (brother),
Five sisters
Occupation:
Chieftain of Mito Insurgency
Innate Element:
Fire
Weapon(s):
Hand fan
Hobbies:
Calligraphy art (shoga), hunting, mountain climbing
Habit(s):
Tilts his head when he smiles
Voice Actor(s):
Masayuki Kato
Live Action Actor(s):
First Appearance: Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5
Historical Information
Real Name:
Fujita Koshirō
Japanese Name:
藤田 小四郎
Born:
1842
Died:
March 20, 1865

Koshirō Fujita is Tōko's fourth son and a Mito samurai who lived during the end of the Tokugawa regime. He is best known for being the youngest leader of the Mito Tengutō, a short-lived group of anti-totalitarianism rioters. Meiji period folklore romanticizes Koshirō as a talented youth who died well before his time.

His Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 counterpart is identified by the historical figure's private given name, Makoto. The game differs from reality by identifying the name as his public alias and using another spelling (マコト). Koshirō Fujita is treated as the character's true name. His political ideology is extremist.

Role in GamesEdit

Harukanaru Toki no Naka deEdit

Makoto is the fourth son of the late Touko Fujita, a Mito scholar and former advocate for the anti-foreigner political reformist movement. During his early childhood in Mito, he became friends with Tadayoshi Oguri since his family are servants and sympathizers to the Ichijo cabinet. Touko recognized Makoto as the heir of their family legacy once his talents became apparent. He gave his son the cursed Suzaku talisman and informed him of the legends regarding the White Dragon Priestess. Makoto and Chinami left their home at an early age to study at Edo.

When Touko perished in a great earthquake, Makoto was named family heir. He chose to wait for Chinami to complete his training before building his social connections to the extremist party. Their earliest followers are exiles from Mito, but Makoto's charisma caused their numbers to eventually swell. Two years before the main setting, Makoto met Katsura in the capital and was convinced by him to organize an armed revolt. Whenever his group goes to fight, Makoto sacrifices his life force to summon Suzaku in battle.

The Mito Insurgency first aid Hisamitsu Shimazu. Fatigue and Shimazu's fall against the shogunate forces convinced Makoto to retreat from the capital. Makoto arranges for an attack at Nikko Toshogu Shrine as he recovers, hoping to transmit their message for unity on hallow ground. Their march towards the temple is temporarily interrupted by Yuki and her childhood friends, and Makoto is well aware of her purpose. He shares brief pleasantries, resumes the march, and controls Suzaku at the shrine until it becomes berserk with Yuki's approach. Yuki and her friends defeat it and vanish when the hourglass flips. Makoto is weakened by the god's loss and is easy prey for the shogunate forces.

Two major story arcs occur during his captivity. In the vanilla game he resists Amami's authority. To repay his courage, the god kills him and converts him and his comrades into the undead. As a consequence of his death, his rite as the Suzaku of Heaven is transferred to Chinami. His corpse is used by the Mashira and Kai to hunt down the rogue Iemochi. Every available timeline has Kai use her bell to direct Makoto in Choushu. Chinami tries to reach out to his brother, but the cat specter's bell increases Amami's spell on him. He is pursued and purified by Yuki's party before they leave Choushu. He shares parting regrets with Yuki and Chinami before vanishing from existence.

Kazahanaki reveals that Makoto and his comrades are being imprisoned somewhere within Edo. The shogunate eventually orders for their execution to serve as an example to the rebellious Ichijo branch. Amami unleashes a horde of vengeful spirits to hone on their freed prisoners, leading to a wild chase in the eastern suburbs. A fire erupts and threatens the innocent townsfolk, drawing Yuki and her party towards the ruckus. Makoto is the last survivor and happens to reunite with Yuki and Chinami within the burning wreckage. He entrusts them with the future as he guards their escape, perishing when the building collapses.

To succeed with Chinami's personal route, Yuki has to go back in time and save him from his death. She warps to the exact place and moment she last parted with him. Yuki sacrifices her life force to eradicate the vengeful spirits threatening him, convinces him to keep living, and tells him a way to escape. Her words move him to survive. Makoto hides from the public eye before paying Oguri a visit at Rindou's manor. During the evening, he confesses his bitter anxieties from their last meeting: he was going to sacrifice the youths for his own survival. Makoto believes his abhorrent callousness for others has forever forsaken his rite to become a guardian.

On the eve of the final battle, Makoto invites Yuki and his brother to enjoy supper with him. He informs them that Oguri has employed him as a family retainer. Before he is bogged down by work, he wants to express his gratitude for the two youths. Makoto welcomes Bauduin's company during their conversation, proud to learn that his younger brother has matured since they last met. The elder brother teases his young sibling during his ending, coaxing Chinami to be more assertive of his intimacy for Yuki.

Ishin no ArashiEdit

Ishin no Arashi includes Koshirō as an optional ally/enemy for the extremist ideology. The first title includes him in the Mito Tengutō's rebellion if he is still alive March 27, 1864. His death poem is included within the brief reenactment. Bakumatsu Shishiden has him gift the protagonist with his father's poem if he is befriended.

During the default scenario in Shippuu Ryoumaden, Ryōma receives an letter from Koshirō calling for Mito Tengutō recruits. The Tosa gentleman wants Koshirō to adopt pacifistic measures to change the era, reasoning that an armed resistance would be a fool's errand. Failing to succeed within the one month deadline leads to the Mito Tengutō's historical execution.

If the player meets Koshirō beforehand, he accepts Ryōma's concerns but refuses to turn his back on his comrades. Should Ryōma's words get through to him, the hot-headed rebel realizes he could have massacred everyone dear to him with his recklessness and cancels the rebellion. He thanks Ryōma for saving their lives and remains alive in Mito for the rest of the game.

Character InformationEdit

DevelopmentEdit

Makoto was designed to be a "dignified and righteous swordsman". His color scheme was made to be an inverse of Chinami's outfit with violet highlights. The colors are meant to match his maturity. Both designs were made to have matching gauntlets between them.

PersonalityEdit

Friendly, humble, and calm, Makoto is driven to achieve peace. He refuses to obey tyranny in any form and seeks to always protect the people and his men. Although he does not lose face before his followers and wields unbelievable strength, Makoto privately fears that he is too young to inherit his father's wishes. He feels his doubts inhibit him from being a honorable warrior worthy of his family name.

Makoto is proud of Chinami's bravery, gently fostering his younger brother's progress with warm encouragement and constructive criticism. He believes his brother has the potential to surpass him. He adores Yuki due to his previous guardian candidacy, fond of her politeness and need for his service. Makoto is respectful of his attraction to her and half-jokes about it to lightly spur Chinami.

Character SymbolismEdit

His symbolic color is akane-iro, a dark red named after the madder. It is alternatively described to resemble the reddish hue of a dusk horizon.

QuotesEdit

  • "I wish I could have... been your guardian..."
  • "The land is corrupt and needs to be righted. I need you beside me to fix it."
  • "The Dragon Gem chose you."
  • "Chinami, no matter what happens to me beyond this point, never forget your dreams. And never forget mine. Carry yourself with pride for the loved one you will meet someday."
  • "Chinami is still inexperienced. But his heart is just and pure. I know he will be useful to you. Please... Please look after my brother for now on, Priestess."
  • "It looks like our days will be lively from now on."
  • "Lady Priestess... No, Miss Yuki."
"Mister Makoto is right before my eyes. I have always been waiting for you. I'm so happy we can meet again."
"Thank you for your kind words, Miss Yuki. I have wanted to see you too."
"Mister Makoto..."
"Miss Yuki..."
"Hey, what gives? Aren't they being a little too friendly with one another? Since when did they get this close?"
~~Makoto, Yuki, and Miyako; Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 Kazahanaki

Fighting StyleEdit

Makoto is a hard hitter who may cause trouble for low-leveled parties. His group attack may be deadly against Metal characters so keep them out of battle if possible. He falls easily against Water attacks.

Historical InformationEdit

Personal InfoEdit

Fujita Koshirō was the public alias for Fujita Tōko's youngest son. His real given name was Makoto (信) and his courtesy name was Shiryū (子立). His mother was Tōko's mistress from the Toki clan. He had three older brothers and five sisters. Koshirō had no named lovers or children.

Ever since his childhood, Koshirō was a tall, calm and studious youth; he strove to always let his opinions be heard and undisputed, never interrupting another speaker and judging his words carefully before speaking. His words were refreshing to hear and agreeable. Koshirō adopted the habit after mispronouncing the name of one of his father's guests when he was seven, swearing to never embarrass his father again. He possessed his mother's stubbornness and his father's intelligence, and was praised for his excellent swordsmanship. Out of Tōko's sons, Koshirō was regarded as the one who best inherited his father's qualities. Tōko particularly favored him as a gift from the heavens; he seemed to only lament Koshirō's brief moments of rudeness and his "lesser heritage" (birth from mistress).

When Koshirō was still a child, Tōko is attributed to have presented the following analogy of his three sons —three because his eldest son had died soon after childbirth: "Let us suppose we had a beautiful woman here and the key leading to a steady life of government paperwork there. Kenjirō (second eldest) would subserviently go to work in the office. Daisaburō (third son) would think of his stomach like he always does and demand for the master of the room to permit his leave. Koshirō would storm into the room without warning, break the lock of the office chamber, and take the woman by force."

Fujita Koshirō Shishō includes a passage from Ōkubo Taka, a female worker at Kishuya. She claimed Koshirō stayed at the rest establishment during 1863 while he was in the midst of conducting negotiations. He was talented wielding a sword, bow, and spear and would half-train, half-perform for the workers. Koshirō was a kind-hearted and friendly joker who went by the names "Kocchan" or "Koshō". He had a vice for wine, a shameless sweet tooth, a love for gossiping with the landlady and women workers, and an uncommon excitement as the inn's occasional errand boy. Koshirō shared pieces of his past if asked but didn't indulge too deeply about himself or the people he would meet at the inn. Taka remarked that the workers "had a feeling" of Koshirō's agenda and knew he was headed into trouble. When the landlady happened to meet him in the streets during the Mito Tengutō's march, she made it clear that it would be their last parting. Koshirō felt the gravity of her words and was last seen by Taka with tears streaming down his face.

The aforementioned paragraphs are a glimpse of the stories about him. They were collected posthumously and recorded by people who wished to remember the patriots of the Bakumatsu, Tanaka Mitsuaki and Kariya Saburō. Unfortunately, the accuracy of these stories are difficult to determine. While it is debated whether or not commoners agreed with their cause during their riots, the Mito Tengutō's fall led to an explosion of hearsay. Men, women, and children who had family ties with the rebels were also mercilessly executed or assassinated, and much of their personal property was either confiscated or razed. Accounts which can be verified mainly details their deaths over the rebels' pasts. Due to the difficulty of their research, contemporary historians are hesitant to label the stories complete fiction or factual truths. Kariya's account has some bias for historical accuracy because he claimed to have been present during the recruitment phases of the party.

Proving whether these stories are true or not can't diminish the acclaim and sympathies the Mito Tengutō received. Ōkubo Toshimichi is famously credited to have wrote, "The deaths of these men are testaments to the errors of our age. I cannot expect the shogunate to last for long." Meiji period folklore commonly depicts them as tragic heroes who died fighting against tyranny. Koshirō especially received praise due to his young age and rank.

Life and DeathEdit

Koshirō was born in Mito, Higashiibaraki District in Hitachi Province (modern day Mito, Ibaraki). When he was two years old, his mother was expelled from the clan. She was known to be an adamant woman who bickered with Tōko and was disfavored by Tōko's mother. The breaking straw to their tolerance of her was when Lady Toki shared the same seating area as Tōko's wife, Yuri, during a festive ceremony at a shrine. Koshirō grew up accepting his grandfather and father's anti-foreigner beliefs and disparity for the shogunate's rulings.

In 1853 Tōko's cousin, Hara Ichinoshin, returned to Mito to become a teacher for the youth at Kōdōkan. Koshirō stayed at the school to obtain his education. Two years later, his father perished in the Great Ansei Earthquake. Koshirō was saved from the same fate because he studying away from home.

Mito had a prestigious history of serving the legitimate heirs of the Tokugawa family. Its ruling daimyou, Tokugawa Nariaki, was in the midst of embittered arguments with Chief Minister Ii Naosuke for shogun. Nariaki favored his son, Yoshinobu, while Naosuke pushed for Iemochi. When Nariaki angered Naosuke in 1859, the Chief Minister used his influences to completely cut off the Mito daimyou from politics. Nariaki was a promoter of the extremist ideology so Naosuke's demotion angered many samurai in Mito. Takahashi Taichirō was soon organizing a team to punish Naosuke and was negotiating for followers. According to legends, the elders of the Fujita clan were aware of the inquires but withheld the news to Koshirō. The young samurai discovered the truth after the Sakuradamon Incident occurred. Accusing the elders of cowardice, he disassociated himself from the Fujita clan.

The extremist ideology gained popularity in 1862 when Chōshū extremists became active. A year later, Koshirō was among the group of rebels who accompanied Tokugawa Yoshiatsu into the capital. They were supporting Yoshinobu's arrival and substituted as his retainers. Koshirō and his cohorts met with Katsura Kogorō and Kusaka Genzui, deepening their faith in shogunate resentment. While Yoshinobu was being ostracized by the shogunate, Koshirō presented the plans to revolt to elder Mito samurai, Takeda Kōunsai. Kōunsai had long fostered thoughts for a rebellion yet lacked the means to do so for many years. Koshirō's negotiations appealed to him and he agreed to organize followers. Sometime by the end of 1863, the Mito rebels were known as the Tengutō.

Reasons for calling themselves Tengutō have been lost to time, but there are three common theories for its naming. Each idea plays on the multiple meanings for tengu.

  1. Tengu was said to have been a common moniker for people who worked for reform. The rebels prided themselves to be hunters of truth.
  2. While most of the leaders of the Mito insurgency were elderly, the majority of its members were young and inexperienced. Conservatives considered them to be a disorganized gang of braggarts and called them Tengutō as a derogatory slur.
  3. Nariaki had praised the elders as tengu, or his talented guardians, and the rebels were honoring his memory.

Kōunsai had his doubts for assigning Koshirō leadership due to his young age. Yet he lost to Koshirō's insistence for the position, begrudgingly naming Koshirō as a vice commander. The rebels worked in two major groups, either following Kōunsai or Koshirō.

By May 2, 1864 Koshirō led 64 other insurgents to Mount Tsukuba to gather troops for their cause. He convinced Tamaru Inanoemon to join them and had him act as the leader of their cause. Six days later, the rebels numbered in 1,400 tried to head towards Nikko Toshogu Shrine to organize their military assault. Their plan was to send a bold message in their desire to topple the shogunate by declaring it at the divine sovereign's resting place. During their march, however, the neighboring lords spotted the terrorists and were organizing troops to subjugate them. Koshirō ordered the troops to flee and hide in Mount Ōhira.

The sudden change of plans cut his side in half and dwindling supplies were becoming an increasing concern. At first, the rebels requisitioned the neighboring town and villages for food and funds. When their demands were not met to their standards, Tanaka Genzō was ordered to lead a unit to plunder from the people. Tanaka and his men were responsible for many incidents of looting, arson, and massacres in late May and mid June within the area. The Tsukuba forces tried and failed to repel the shogunate subjugation troops at Mito Castle and Kashima. Local villagers ratted their headquarters to shogunate investigators, causing the rebels to flee from their post. They reunited with Kōunsai's unit at Nakasendō sometime in September.

With Koshirō's suggestion, Kōunsai decided to redirect their cause to support Yoshinobu as shogun. After the elder had quelled civil arguments and fighting within the group, Kōunsai named himself commander and reluctantly named Koshirō vice commander. The elder instructed the troops to not lay a hand on the people or their property and to protect them from danger. His plans strengthened the group's positive reputation with the populace. Many villages welcomed them and informed them of the shogunate subjugation forces. In spite of their dwindling numbers, they were able to repel many battles with the shogunate forces throughout October and November.

News of Yoshinobu leading a subjugation force of 10,000 came to the rebels in late December. His presence and reports of additional subjugations dealt a crushing blow to the rebels' morale. A clear message was delivered to the Tengutō by December 11 (January 8, 1865 in modern day conversions): surrender or die by December 17 (January 14). When the promised day came, a handful of rebels fought back but were slaughtered. The rest of the 828 rebels surrendered and were imprisoned in various facilities within Kaga.

Despite being promised modest hospitality, the situation changed once Tanuma Okitaka was made in charge of their imprisonment. Tanuma was a part of the shogunate suppression forces and suffered a humiliating defeat against the Tengutō two months prior. As an act of revenge, he revoked them of privacy and cramped many rebels into stifling storage facilities. Living conditions were deplorable. Their diet was restricted to one hot cup of water and one rice ball a day. Prisoners were expected to sleep in the freezing winter next to rotting fish and excrement. Hygiene problems were common place and many succumbed to illness. Over twenty prisoners died during captivity.

Out of the 828 captured, 352 were ordered to be executed at Raikōji by March 1865. They were treated as petty criminals, and many of their families were murdered throughout February and March. Koshirō was the last Tengutō leader to be executed, having to wait and witness twenty days of his comrades' deaths. He died when he was 24 (23 in modern conversions). His decapitated head was displayed with the other three leaders' remains at the base of Mito Castle for three days; the display was to serve as a warning to other rebels still in the Mito domain. Their heads were then haphazardly discarded into the plains of Mito.

In the Meiji period, when the people who fought against the shogunate were gaining sympathy, two graves were erected for him. One stands at Raikōji, the other at the Tokiwa Shared Cemetery next to his father. Somezaki Nobufusa, author of Giretsu Kaiten Hyakushu, grants Koshirō a death poem. Though it is highly considered a fabrication, it generalizes a popular opinion about the Tengutō held in fiction. The poem is roughly translated as:

Vin1 I thought myself to have always been one with my comrades.
For the first time, I felt the truth.
Today, I rejoice joining the marvel we shall present to the tycoon.
Vin2

GalleryEdit

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