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Sou Kiryu

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Sou Kiryu
Sou-haruka5artwork
Character Information
Birthday:
December 27
Age:
14
Height:
161 cm (5'3")
Family:
Birth mother,
Adoptive father,
Adoptive mother,
Shun Kiryu (brother)
Yuki Hasumi (sister)
Occupation:
Middle school student
Innate Element:
Metal
Weapon(s):
Star Clan powers
Hobbies:
Soccer, fortune-telling, messing with his sister
Habit(s):
Brushing back his hair, pouting, pen twirling
Favorite Food(s):
Spicy cuisine, snacks, sweets
Voice Actor(s):
Hiro Shimono
Live Action Actor(s):
Yuki Torigoe
Kaito Kumagai
(Kazahanaki)
First Appearance: Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5
Theatrical actor is a curtain call surprise cameo for the last December show.

Sou Kiryu (桐生 崇, Kiryū Sō) is a secondary antagonist in Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 and its sequel Kazahanaki. He has a personal route in the latter game.

Role in GamesEdit

Background StoryEdit

Shun and Sou are Star Clan descendants who were born in a distant future. He believes they were born and raised within the Combined World, although the siblings truly originated from a future timeline within the parallel world. With living conditions cruel and food scarce, their early childhood had nothing but the desert and tales of the White Dragon Priestess to entertain them. Both bothers awakened to their powers at an early age. Their mother informed them of their ancestral duties in hopes that the legends would live with her sons.

Eight years before the main narrative, the Kiryu siblings were warped to Yuki's world. They arrived unconscious in the Hasumi household garden and were found by Yuki. Sou woke up immediately. After Shun regained his senses, Yuki's parents tried to look for any family members or potential guardians for the siblings. Failing in their search, Shun and Sou were adopted. While Yuki's father favored Shun, Yuki's mother adored Sou. She considered the younger brother to be a potential husband for their daughter. Sou was too young to remember his true home well, the Hasumi household being the only one for him.

Sou was born with potent Star Clan powers and is the strongest user between the two brothers; he has the ability to read the future at will and cast powerful curses. When he first glimpsed into his fortune, Sou saw his own corpse and a future that lived without him. His visions elaborated that his annihilation would be caused by the White Dragon Priestess, a future role for Yuki. Sou wanted to deny his fate so he repeated his divination again and again, too many times for him to count. Every time it was traumatizing and painful for him to experience; every time the conclusion was the same.

He ventured to share his findings to his older brother, yet Shun had accepted their future and vowed to stay true to their Star Clan duties. The older brother instructed his sibling to do the same. Going mad with fear and despair, Sou planned to walk a darker path than his brother. He kept using his fortunes in spite of the pain to research diverging paths to his fate. From them, he learned about Amami and the process for resurrecting forsaken gods. Sou was determined to use any means he could to save the Combined World and himself from obliteration.

His schemes required for the harbinger fusion for the Combined World, when the bonds between Yinglong would be at their weakest. Until then, Sou pretended ignorance to any supernatural activity. Two years later, he accompanied Yuki, Shun, and Miyako for overseas studies and lived in the same apartment.

Story EventsEdit

When his older siblings and Miyako were pulled into the Loophole of Time during their winter break flight, Sou discretely used his powers to keep himself within the ruined modern realm. Left alone to his own devices, he creates the pedestals to summon the Four Fiends. Sou calculated his actions to coincide with Amami's orchestrations. To avoid suspicion, he feigns boyish fears and excitement for Yuki's trips between both dimensions.

Once the four talismans are collected, Sou uses the modern realm's dwindling Five Elements to resurrect the Four Fiends. He reveals about his true character when Yinglong is destroyed by exhaustion and the Four Fiends' malevolent miasma, explaining the phenomenon to the dumbfounded priestesses. Though displeased when the White Dragon and Black Dragon resurrect themselves, Sou adds that their predecessors' deaths have sped up the destruction of both microcosms significantly. Sou is deflected by the gods so he retreats away from the group.

In the original timeline, Sou's fears come true and he is erased from existence. Sou fades into the background when Yuki reverts spacetime, remaining as a passive threat within the modern sphere. Most endings in the original game will kill him and his brother. The original game's non-canonical normal ending will have Yuki unable to recall him or Shun when she returns to her restored home with Miyako.

Shun's personal route has Sou risk revealing the truth of the brothers' fate to Yuki but Shun interrupts him at each opportunity. This scenario elaborates on the details of Sou's schemes. He has spent the time apart from Yuki to locate the cavern hidden underneath Nikko Toshogu Shrine in the modern earth. Seeking to use the distortion of Five Elements to his advantage, Sou wishes to open a portal to the Loophole of Time and conjure Amami to him. The teenager would sacrifice his powers to anoint the god as the Combined World's divine ruler and give an early birth to the once distant future. When Amami is defeated by the priestesses' party, Sou vanishes from the living. Amami is implied to have kept the Combined world intact yet Sou is not seen past this event.

Yuki eventually learns the truth about Shun and Sou after experiencing several timelines. Wishing to save them and Amami, she and her companions warp to the Warring States period and defeat Nankoubou. The White Dragon assures Yuki that the absent Sou would survive in the altered timeline.

Kazahanaki begins with Yuki and her childhood friends returning to her home time at the exact moment the Four Fiends are raised by Sou. Since Amami is no longer plagued with curses, Sou alters his calculations to corrupt the spiritual bonds shared between the two realities to hasten the distant future. Aside from employing the Four Fiends, the teenager manipulates the Five Elements around him to summon Zhulong, a formerly sealed fallen god and devourer of spiritual energy.

Zhulong's defeat leads to Sou trying to steal the White Dragon hourglass from Yuki, hurrying towards his sister with warm affections and an embrace. One of her guardians sees through the ploy and stops him. Sou is too stubborn to listen to the priestess's motivations and runs away into the Loophole of Time. He challenges her in a last desperate attempt to fuse the brittle spiritual links within it. In every timeline, he admits to defeat and reconciles with his childhood friends upon learning of the Combined World's preservation. The Kiryu siblings resume their contemporary lives with Yuki's family.

Personal RouteEdit

Yuki continues to worry for her brother and wants to care for him. She remembers a birthday present she had bought for him: a music box with a melody that matched a larger one from a department store near their home. Sou was proud to show the larger music box to her when they were children so Yuki thought he would be pleased by it. When they break at her family home, Yuki occasionally ventures alone to look for it.

The group visits the ruined department store and Yuki, who is caught by nostalgia, is separated from the group. Sou finds her and trips near shattered glass the moment it appears Yuki wants to leave him. Distressed to see him injured, Yuki rushes back to his side. He gloats she never changes, adding that he did it on purpose and committed similar acts before in the past. Yuki blames herself for ever leaving him and Sou rubs salt into the emotional wound before leaving.

Later, Yuki fails to protect Makoto and researches his fall in her home's library. Sou comes to her when she is most vulnerable, feigning sympathy to hear about her woe and bullying her when she appears to be defiant. In this timeline, Yuki appears to be ignorant of Sou's motivations so he explains them to her. The shock of her priestess duties leading to the lost of the Kiryu siblings adds to her stress and lowered self-esteem. Sou vents his hatred for a priestess's duty to protect the people, irritated by the dragon god's blatant persecution. As if on cue to the threat, the White Dragon repels Sou from getting closer to Yuki. She pleads her deity to spare him but the damage has been done. He storms out and leaves her to grieve her actions.

By the next day Yuki wants to proceed with her search for the birthday present and becomes nostalgic for her childhood with Sou. She hopes to make peace by giving him the gift. They whimsically meet in the garden of her home. When she tries to understand his true origins, Yuki is sadden to learn Sou is fighting for a home which he clearly doesn't treasure.

Hoping to talk to him again, she follows Sou alone into the desert. Yuki relives the isolation she felt from her first reverted adventure during their chat, her honest melancholy giving the boy pause. She keeps reaching out to him, and Sou overpowers and pins her to the ground in frustration. Once he raises his fist to beat her, the pair are startled by his tears. He pounds the dirt beside her as he rants about his loneliness and agonizes her anointed priestess duties. The White Dragon repels him without Yuki's permission driving Sou away from her.

While Yuki speaks with the White Dragon regarding the reasons for being chosen as its priestess, Sou bumps into Shun. The older brother watched their exchange from afar but did not intervene because he felt no threat. Shun proclaims himself an enemy and warns his brother to have no regrets for his path for future encounters. Before leaving the premise, Sou picks up something from the sand and keeps it. Contemplating his crying fit, Yuki concludes that Sou must still love the modern world. Her hunch is backed when the group explores the department store again; everything but the music box is shattered beyond repair.

Provoked to act on his motivations by his brother's passiveness, Sou lures Yuki away from her room and into the desert. He ignores her wishes to protect him and conjures a vengeful spirit to attack her. Yuki defends herself and purifies the beast but collapses when her priestess powers drains her. Sou has his own curse deflected to him and falls as well. When he comes to, Yuki is still passed out. Out of curiosity, he examines her and removes Rindou's pendant. He is stunned to see her body is nearly transparent and correctly deduces that her life force is nearly extinguished by her own deity. Despite the White Dragon's protests to keep him back, Sou is compelled by the realization to carry Yuki to safety. Yuki awakens in her room later that evening and lies about her reasons for wandering outside her home. Shun directs her to stay true to her duty for Sou's sake.

Main story events proceed as normal except Yuki laments her inability to make peace with Sou. Although the three worlds are saved, Sou's body becomes translucent upon his defeat. He drops the object he found earlier in his panic: Yuki's birthday present for him. She implores him to grab her hand, using her powers a final time to plead amnesty to the White Dragon. The deity feels Sou should receive retribution for his crimes and warns that he has the will to hurt others again, but it relents to her wish to spare him. Astonished by the turn of events, Sou breaks down into tears for the future he failed to predict and yells his wishes to live. Yuki gladly volunteers to always stay by his side for a happier fate.

Back in the Hasumi household, Yuki and Shun prepare for Sou's birthday party two days early. Birthday boy is missing yet Yuki knows where is and chides him for breaking his promise to stay put. Sou enjoys his little prank and promises to never rely on fortune-telling to dictate his future. He teases to tell her something good on one of his birthdays. Three years later, Sou calls Yuki to meet him alone in the park and confesses his romantic feelings for her. Feeling that he has matured into a man worthy to be with her, he also asks her to no longer spoil him and be his girlfriend.

Character InformationEdit

DevelopmentEdit

To contrast his brother, Sou was designed to be "an adorable and innocent boy". Ruby Party members wanted to keep these themes but allude to his villainous nature by assigning him bright, hazardous shades of orange and yellow.

Shimono couldn't understand his character motivations during the original game, feeling that his ignorance perhaps personified Sou's character the best. He believed that the youth was insane and lost to reason. His voice actor is a tad sympathetic for his Kazahanaki rewrite and enjoyed the many nuances added to the role.

PersonalityEdit

To the public, Sou is a cheerful ray of sunshine. He enjoys merrymaking, cries easily, and likes setting up minor pranks on his friends to lighten the mood. In truth the happy smile is a deception he constructed to entertain his selfish need for company. His pranks are sarcastic and designed to offend the one suffering from it. Sou loathes being ignored and will resort to hurting himself to gain attention.

Immature and well aware of it, Sou feels he deserves the right because he will be sacrificed for everyone else's future. He gave into despair long ago and envies the living. Victimizing himself to the extremes, Sou would rather hate everyone around him than have the courage to devise another fate. Even if he feels his fate to disappear is inevitable, Sou wants to do everything in his power to live. He tries to convince himself that damning the future is a small price for his survival, but Sou also has fond memories of his second home. The teenager is inwardly torn by his regrets and throws tantrums if they threaten to surface. No one can save him while he so deeply distrusts others.

Yuki is his sister so he believes he knows her by the back of his hand: a normal girl who is scared by simple things. He likes her when she tends to him, despises her when her altruism drives her to someone else. He exploits her kindness whenever he can to get her back to him. Sou brags that her sorrow is his treat because it means his future is secured. Once he becomes aware of her own hardships as priestess, he slowly reflects on his poor show of affection towards her. If he could will it, Sou would have never wanted to be her enemy. He doesn't want her to be worked half-to-death for complete strangers nor be forced to choose between the worlds. As much as he hates to admit it, Sou loves his sister and dreams to live with her. He is overwhelmed whenever his dream becomes a reality.

Shun may be his biological brother, but they have always been distant. His older brother has never spoiled him and always took Yuki's side in their childhood spats. Sou's discrete hostility towards Yuki is the vital wedge between them; once they get past it, the brothers reconcile their differences. Miyako is his "older sister" too yet he frequently bickers with her over trivial matters. He deliberately uses Miyako's retorts against him as an excuse to gain Yuki's attention. In the original game, he speaks about Amami with utter reverence; the respect is superficial and given only because the god served his purposes.

Character SymbolismEdit

"Sou" has dual meanings. The oldest interpretation of the character is synonymous to the flower symbolism of his surname with an added tone of religious faith. A secondary definition is derived from the distortion of a god's nobility and dignity, referring to their absolute malice towards humanity. Fallen gods can emerge from those who lose sight of their divine duties during their hatred, and not even ritual sacrifices or ceremonies can appease them.

His symbolic color is ash gray while his symbolic item is the Japanese aster. The flower is associated with a famous legend from the Kamakura period. Due to the results of the Jyoukyu Rebellion, Emperor Juntoku was condemned to exile in Sado. One day during his solitude, he purportedly said he could forget his fondness for the capital (his home) by gazing upon the Japanese aster in his garden. The blossom's native name borrows from the quote (miyako-wasure) and often means departures from one's home and rest in the flower language.

QuotesEdit

  • "Wah, Sister~! Miyako's being mean to me!"
  • "Why does everyone always gang up on me? It's always Yuki, Yuki, Yuki."
  • "It's so scary being here by myself..."
  • "I know it's pretty. I like this song too."
  • "My world, my life, is almost complete. Isn't it awesome?"
  • "Wanna hear a secret? If you come closer, I might tell you something no else would want to hear."
  • "Ah, come on. I finally made a future good for me. Can't you rejoice a little?"
  • "Sis! Brother! Wait! How come... everyone wants me to die? Don't I have a chance to live? Why am I the only one left alone... It's so cruel..."
  • "Not being saved by the priestess? That was probably their fate. Anyone who isn't selected by the priestess is destined to perish. No, more like, anyone the Dragon God abandons. Because the priestess is gutless, right? She isn't the one who's really doing the saving... She's the one who sits back and watches them die!"
  • "You're pretty stupid, Sis."
  • "Why! Why won't you blame me, Sis!? Call me stupid and laugh at me for denying this future and trying to kill you! I wanted this future so much but I was the one who didn't want to believe in it! I'm a stupid kid you should hate!"
"... I can't. Sou, what drove you to be like this in the first place? You said you wanted to live. That's all you wanted, right? I can't blame for you that. No, I'm the one who was wrong."
"Huh?"
"Sou, I'm sorry that you had to face your fears and suffer alone. I'm sorry for never noticing you were in pain before. For now on, let's worry about our troubles together. In exchange, can you smile with me when you're happy?"
"(sob) Sis! Sister! If I had known, I would've never..."
"No one can know the future for certain, Sou. If you want it to change, you have to do something about it yourself. The one who taught me that, Sou, was you. You were the one who would never give up."
~~Sou and Yuki; Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 Kazahanaki

Fighting StyleEdit

Sou prefers to attack with group magic. His secondary spells may lower the party's defense, silence the party, or randomly paralyze a single person. Bring Shun and Ernest along if status ailments and health are concern, but be aware that Sou's attacks may be hazardous to low-leveled Wood characters. Since his agility is not stellar, Sou tends to be an easy target for most parties.

GalleryEdit

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