YAMI KUZUNOHA THE ELEVENTH aka Ankoku Yami
Music Ankoku’s theme- Random Encounter - Cuphead the Musical (Instrumental)
The Kuzunoha Clan is the most important Devil Summoning clan in Japan, having been protecting the nation from supernatural and otherwordly threats for over 1300 years. Their founders and backers are the ultra-nationalistic organization Yatagarasu, named after and implictly led by the Three-legged God that has been messanger to the Japanese Gods and guidance to the Emperors.
Currently, the Kuzunoha clan is divided in multiple branches, four main families tasked with overseeing key areas of the nation, and several lesser sidebranches given more menial and less prestious jobs. Due to their prestige, each family representative nominated by merit rather than birthright.
In particular, the Yami Kuzunoha Clan, established around the beginning of the 17th century by the son of an european missionary with a Kuzunoha, acts as psychopomps: through a spiritual medium, usually either a familiar of a mythological vehicle, they oversee the flow of spirits across realms and deal with anomalies. In fact, they have inspired the Japanese mythology of shinigami.
However, because of their western view of death as something to control and overcome, as well as their dealings with the afterlife, the Yamis are looked down by more traditionatistic clans. Although the Herald of Yatagarasu calls their job "foreign affairs handled by foreigners", she still considers them an asset and directly supervises them.
To this day, the leadership of the Kuzunohas, from the Yatagarasu to Management has been having trouble figuring out Ankoku Yami: while undoubtedly a novice when it comes to Devil Summoning, having currently only small imps and lesser mythological being, he is a seasoned adventurer in the field of supernatural, displaying lots of first hand knowledge about deites and offering multiple trophies in exchange of a position in the clan.
Once a youthful energetic youth from another world seeking to become a hero and ended up involved in many perilous and disasterous adventures, he came to give up on his dream once he saw his loved ones indifferent even when other lives paid because him. Broken and scarred, he went on a journey to gather his own pieces, and came cynical, yet wiser and still desiring to help others.
He proved himself worthy before the Kuzunohas and was nominated the representative of the Yami household's eleventh generation due to his foreigner roots. Thanks to the representative of the Main Family Genrin the 20th, he was able to cure his scars, turning them into golden markings, to celebrate, but never forget. He currently patrols the streets of the Six Realms and beyond with the purified Midnight Bus 375, all while under the watchful eyes of his superiors. While ordered to kill his heart for the sake of the land, a part of him is still nostalgic about those time, yet he never forgets the promise he made to the friend that fell because of him... Still, Ankoku acts as a self declared diplomat to both humans and devils, while growing out of his depression
Ankoku's fighting skill are considerably above average, having effortlessly taken down common thugs and handled small groups of trained soldiers on his own. His fighting style relies on stalling for time to figure out his opponents' weakness through his sheer endurance, then perform counters. However, his physical attributes are unimpressive to the supernatural threats he has faced, and has a lot to learn.
His greatest talent are his piloting skills, having mastered several kinds of vehicle in a matter of minutes, even those counter-intuitive to humans. In fact, he is the best Kuzunoha when it comes to interdimensional travels: he can theorically perform them even on his own by turning in the crossroad of reality, although it takes considerably more effort and focus.
Despite his rank, his summoning skills are considered mediocre by the higher ups, especially due to his incapability of storing MAG (spiritual power) within his body, being thus forced to employ outer vessels to sustain his summons.
Mind without Mind -Basics (無心の心 -”基”, Mushin no Shin "Ki") - The most elemental level of the zen state sought by many martial artists, when the body moves detached by the mind, performing the most optimal action by sheer instinct. However, as of now, Ankoku can only achieve it defensively only when completely focused in combat, to perform an optimal dodge for what would be an otherwise deadly attack.
Biomancy - Ankoku's magic is a form of contact induced control over organic tissue by glitching reality through soul resonance. While it doesn't consume MAG, to conjure the physical formula to contain and manifest such glitch causes him severe mental fatigue. Applications include:
➤ Healing Magic: Manipulation and restoration of organic tissues through contact. Works on clothes too.
➤ Durability Negation: Damaging organic tissue on contact, no matter how resistant, as long as its biolical make up is recognized.
➤ Healing Factor Negation:
➤Sensory: Feel someone's presence through organic material by pinpointing their weight
Magical Hijacking where the user resonates with another soul to be able to use their magic, Ankoku has developed a form of magic hijack meant to absorb other people’s spiritual power through physical contact and use it against them, thus his nickname Devil Hijacker. While Ankoku can channel spiritual power, he cannot store it and the process would only hurt him.
Observation: A trademark skill from Devil Summoners that imposes damage on supernatural opponents, regardless of their resistances, as long as the user believes he can actually injure their opposition. Even the smallest sliver of doubt would dull the technique and can be nullified by humans with greater willpower.
To better fight off the many perils he faces during his adventures, Ankoku carries a few important weapons and other trinkets we are going to discuss below:
➤ Valis(Valis Less-Than-Three) - A shotgun crafted by Ankoku with two magic guns: the chassis of the witch Kurohime's Whirlwind Dragon (旋龍, ‘Senryu’) and the inner components of Elphelt's Valis II. It is used for either ranged combat or summoning rituals
➤ Natsunagi (夏凪, ‘Summer Soothe’) - A Naginata named after its creator, the Demon Smith Natsumi, from the broken wheel of a Wa Nyudo Ankoku defeated. It has the power to control the wind and it's most useful when fighting evil spirits. Ankoku gifted it to Ventifera
➤ Demon Lord’s Seal of Agony - One of the Spikes used to seal the Demon lord Azi Dahaka. Once the Demon lord freed himself, Ankoku was able to take one during one of their most brutal fights and has used it to injure him. He plans to create someday a weapon out of it