"That person was filled with hatred, and was deeply discontent with the world around him. He wished to solely crush the world with his darkness, and he desired to make all those around him feel the sorrow that suffocated him. With true despair, even the word despair ceases to exist. And I eventually understood that all it left me with was an emptiness deep within my soul. But that person grew up. The one standing before you now is the current Kawahiru Suzaku. I no longer hate this world... I wish only to save it. That is why I will not allow your darkness and hatred to spread. It will not be permitted to advance even an inch. Not while I'm on guard."
|Race||Hybrid (Sōzōshin and Shinigami)|
|Affiliation|| Gotei 13|
|Previous Affiliation|| Datara's Army|
|Occupation||Commander-in-Chief of Basara|
|Previous Occupation|| Third Seat of the Sixth Division|
Director of Datara's Forces
Captain of the Ninth Division
Director of the Security Corps
|Previous Team|| Datara's Army|
Gotei 13 (Ninth Division)
|Previous Partner|| Lucius Ichimaru|
|Base of Operations||Seireitei|
|Relatives|| Seireitou Kawahiru (father)|
Shiori Miyamoto (mother, deceased)
Kamui Kawahiru (uncle)
Utsugi Kururugi (half-brother)
Sayuri Matsumoto (half-sister)
|Bankai||Not Yet Revealed|
- "Piercing through the dark, a sharp gleam burns in his eyes, the soul keeps searching." - Seireitou-shishō
Suzaku Kawahiru (河昼 朱雀, Kawahiru Suzaku) is a male Shinigami born of Sōzōshin blood, the only child conceived from the union of Seireitou Kawahiru and Shiori Miyamoto. He was first introduced in the series as a student of Shinō Academy, and while in this position, participated in the Summer War conflict. Several years following the event and his eventual graduation from the academy, Suzaku was appointed as the Third Seat of the Sixth Division, several months following the death of Sōjun Kuchiki and the subsequent promotion of the former Third Seat, Ginjirō Shirogane, serving under Captain Ginrei Kuchiki. The death of his mother took its toll on Suzaku, influencing his antagonistic actions for a majority of the conflicts perpetrated by Datara Kawahiru. Hearing the final wishes Shiori had for her son, Suzaku eventually came to realize how misplaced his hatred toward his father was and made a final shift between sides; becoming an ally to his father's friend, Raian Getsueikirite. Upon his return to Soul Society, Suzaku managed to become the Captain of the Ninth Division in the Gotei 13 as well as the Director of the newly revived Security Corps. During this time, his two lieutenants were Shirosame Asakura and Shūhei Hisagi. Suzaku's primary goal, once he made his return, was to reach the top as the next Captain-Commander of the Soul Society; hoping to bring out true change in the world around him. In testament to his unique ability, he earned the title of "Thousand-Blades" (千剣, Senken).
After an incident involving the arrest of Rūka Ishida, in which Suzaku permitted Team Kuramoto to mount a rescue attempt despite the fact that it would diminish the non-aggression pact between the Gotei 13 and the Virisancti, potentially resulting in all-out war once more between Shinigami and Quincy, it was ordered by Central 46 that Suzaku be relieved of his duties as Captain and executed for his violation of the ceasefire agreement. Despite the order for his execution having been retracted, thanks to Shunsui Kyōraku, he lost his position as Captain and became a Ryoka, intending to carry out his duties as an independent party. Suzaku would go on to become the "Commander-in-Chief" (総司令官, Sōshireikan) of Basara.
Suzaku has shoulder-length purple hair with a silver tint (a combination of both Seireitou and Shiori's hair colors), which grows longer as the story progresses, and a mixture of pink and purple eyes. Raian always told Suzaku that he has his mother's beautiful hair but his father's fierce eyes. He has lighter skin than his uncle, Kamui, has. Like many other members of his family, his hair hangs over both sides of his face to roughly frame his cheeks, but is sometimes let loose to come down as bangs. A recurring theme in Suzaku's appearance is that he is considered quite handsome by almost all girls near his age. As a student of Shinnō Academy, Suzaku wore the traditional garb of Shihakushō. In the last stage of his studies, he wore a black, one-pieced version of this outfit with many small arm-belts adorning his right arm and left leg. It's known that Suzaku normally wore his Zanpakutō on his back.
Upon his defection, and his resurfacing in the Hell Tournament, his appearance and attire had changed drastically. Suzaku has grown noticeably taller over the years of defection. He was first shown wearing a black long-sleeved shirt which was open at the torso, ending in red cuff-links. The edges of the uniform was shown to be of a light purple material, which ended near the bottom in a unique design. Black lines ran down the sides of the uniform, curving down to fit his body shape. Suzaku seems to also wear a strange golden object around his left wrist, its purpose currently unknown. To keep his uniform together, he wears an obi that is decorated in golden lines. Similar to that of Ulquiorra Schiffer, his robe ends in long coattails, resembling the attire once worn by the Arrancar. Another noticeable trait is that, along with this new outfit, Suzaku began letting his hair hang over his eyes. After seemingly "killing" his father, and left with nothing but guilt for his error, Suzaku changed sides once more. He reappears during Raian's battle with Sao Feng, sporting a new appearance. He had now worn a white kimono with red-laced armor around the sleeves. The edges are lavender, going around his collar. Underneath, Suzaku wears a loose dark-blue shirt which matches his more modern-looking hakama, with a light purple edge. His robe is kept together by a long red rope-belt, which keeps his Zanpakutō on his person.
As a Captain of the Gotei 13, Suzaku wears a standard black Shihakushō with a white scarf, with the white haori that bears the symbol of the Ninth Division. As the Director of the Security Corps, he was shown to wear a western-like black attire, with his Zanpakutō fastened at the hip.
"Suzaku is still a blank canvas... he can be easily dyed any color."
Suzaku, being born of the Kawahiru, is unusual in his values and personality. These unique values and personality separate him from past generations of Kawahiru; as powerful as he is, he does not like fighting much. However, when he is forced to fight, he shows special interest in protecting his family and friends. Like his father, Suzaku has a pure and gentle heart. Besides concerning himself with his family (and his shinigami studies), Suzaku has a strong attachment with his mentor; his father's rival named Ryan Getsueikirite. Because he comes from the Kawahiru, Suzaku is usually shown thinking that only some things will matter and others probably won't (although he's usually right in the long term). This is shown in, at first, his resistance to do anything unless his father is present. As such, he is usually surprised at events he didn't expect. He is even (though very rarely) shown to be cocky, such as when he learns to use Shikai - but when he loses his seeming "advantage", this cockiness dissolves instantly. Molded from his dark lineage, he is very serious and is a determined fighter like his father. He is also the only Kawahiru that doesn't display a great craving for battle. In some cases, Suzaku displays a ferocious perverted attitude just like Seireitou, a trait he presumably inherited from his father.
After affirming his Rakkasen position, Suzaku's personality changed completely. He was now a rattled man, shaken by the death of his mother and consumed by the hatred of his father. He gained the power of darkness in the hopes of find a way to revive his mother, but as the series progressed, he soon strayed from this goal as he became obsessed with power and control. He became cold and unforgiving, unable to accept others as friends. Even his own teammates, by his own claim, are "mere pawns which will hopefully bring personal results." He shows a lack of emotion, save for anger when things don't go according to plan. Besides this occasional anger, he is normally very apathetic and callous. Suzaku seems to be demanding as well, such as when Koga refused to join his cause, the former resorted to cruel threats to get his way.
Due to the sudden change in views, Suzaku is shown being very serious and more aggressive than his former self, but does retain his calm and joking nature, much like his father. Suzaku is shown to be in quite a bit of pain and stress after all the years of regret, and has a sort of "do or die" attitude. However, numerous times he appears to hide it, let go, and just enjoy life for what it is worth. It is noted that Suzaku retains many of his former personality traits, including his cockiness and craving for battle. Possibly carrying over from his father's traits, Suzaku will always assist someone in need, and subsequently, is extremely protective of his friends and family. This latter trait is the driving force behind most of his actions and almost all of the story arcs will have him rushing off to save someone close to him. However, and even his father has called him out on this, but Suzaku seems to not be aware that the reason he truly wishes to save others is that he cannot refuse a challenge, or even a chance to prove his strength over another.
As a newly-promoted Captain, Suzaku appears to value his position as Director of the Investigation Task Force. Fitting of a Captain, Suzaku is very prideful of the status he holds, and as a result of his position, seeks to maintain law and order within Soul Society. Although, as a direct contrast of his pride, Suzaku comes off to most as a sort of cocky layabout, shirking most of his duties and delegating his paperwork to subordinates while sitting idly at his desk with an amused smile on his face as he procrastinates. However, he is quick to take action when it appears that there is glory and military notoriety to be gained. Despite his desire to defend the law and order of Soul Society, his goals go much further than that. Suzaku seeks to reach the top, and become the Captain-Commander himself one day, so that he'd be in a position where he wouldn't have to take orders from anyone. He justifies this as wishing to be at the top and protect as many people as he can, and they, in turn, will protect the people that they can protect, thus forming a chain that will lead to peace. Unfortunately, his self-imposed position as a protector has caused him develop some degree of stubbornness in regards to his pride on the battlefield and a fiery temper, both of which have been shown to cloud his judgment in certain situations.
Powers & Abilities
Suzaku is stated by Seireitou to be on the verge of reaching the "precipice", but still remains within the "Meijin Shell", possibly due to his lack of allegiance to a single craft. Suzaku is easily one of the strongest Captains in the Gotei 13, despite his young age. Because of his accomplishments, Suzaku has been named a child genius by many of his peers and even those among the previous generation of Captains.
Devastating Spiritual Power: From as young as his birth, Suzaku was acknowledged to have within him a seemingly limitless dormant power, which at first only revealed itself when he experienced fierce rage. It was initially displayed in his childhood, involuntarily summoning forth a mere fragment of that force when he became afraid, destroying most of the area in the process in Northern Rukongai. As he got older and underwent his education as a Shinigami, he trained hard and gained access to a significant portion of his power, although a tremendous level of his power was left solely to his dormant potential; inaccessible, save only for those aforementioned fits of anger. Upon becoming an important officer in the Gotei 13, he was shown to be powerful enough to fight off and defeat several Adjuchas-class Menos as well as fight on par with, and ultimately kill, a Vasto Lorde; using nothing but sheer reiatsu to hold them off. Immersing himself into the Rakkasen, his spiritual power vastness and control had increased to devastating ends. The spiritual pressure became so heavy and thick that Captain-level Shinigami would shiver in fear by his mere presence. Despite being young, many Seijin Masters had shown hesitation in facing Suzaku one-on-one, based solely on his level of spiritual power. Suzaku, without putting out any effort, easily incapacitated Koga Tensei and Tenyō Ishida with his reiatsu just by facing the direction they were coming from. Koga has noted that Suzaku's reiatsu has gotten darker and colder than ever. When he would access this power, Suzaku's very presence became even more foul than ever, attaining the shape of an unusual being when manifesting. It was following his realignment that he abandoned the way of the Rakkasen. As his own will and personality returned to its original state, his spiritual energy also took a significant change in accordance with this. Although it no longer possessed a corrupting presence, the intensity behind its reiatsu still remained. However, despite how fierce his energy had seemingly become after all these experiences, Hannuliū had claimed that his true strength has always remained dormant. Subsequently, the Zanpakutō explained that the power he attained as a Rakkasen is nothing but a "rain drop in the presence of a tsunami" if it were to be compared to the dormant power that still lays deep within Suzaku's soul. Kamui had theorized that if he were to ever attain that inner strength in its entirety, he would become the strongest Sōzōshin to ever exist, subsequently surpassing even his own father. However, he is still unable to tap into those reserves, despite his many attempts to do so.
- Lightning Nature: Despite his Zanpakutō not being characterized as an elemental-type, Suzaku's spiritual energy has always been personified by the element of lightning, having been naturally born with a spiritual power that is aligned with lightning and thunder. By releasing his spiritual energy in every direction, an electrical discharge flows from Suzaku's entire body, allowing him to affect multiple enemies. When using this manifestation of his reiatsu on a great number of enemies at once, it can effectively double as an instant defense. The body of the person touched by the reiatsu will misinterpret the lightning nature as "electrical signals from the nerves," making its muscles contract. This causes the body to involuntarily go stiff, while at the same time receives damage. This can also be channeled through the ground to increase the range of the attack or even through Suzaku's Zanpakutō. When using Hadō, the Kidō is often enveloped in electric discharge.
Child Genius: Perhaps the most astonishing trait of Suzaku is his brains and natural talent. Suzaku is established as a genius, even by the battle-excelling Kawahiru clan's standards, excelling at all that he does and finding little difficulty in more challenging tasks. During fights, he easily observes his opponent and accurately sees through their abilities without losing his calm state, then he correctly chooses the most effective means and techniques to counter them. Also, his resolution enables him to pick strategies in which he requires getting hurt in order to defeat the enemy, thereby showing tremendous endurance and willpower. Suzaku has also demonstrated tremendous knowledge in regards to human physiology, as displayed by his ability to affect a person's organ system. Suzaku is expertly manipulative and prone to think several steps ahead of those around him, giving him a remarkable talent for making subordinates act exactly as he wishes despite appearing not to have had a hand in their decisions - all traits which make the fact that he has managed to attain the highly-revered rank of Captain at such a young age a matter of public gossip.
Shunpō Master: Raian says that Suzaku is also helpful and effective because of his high speed. During his battle against the Adjuchas of the Menos Forest, he skillfully dodged multiple attacks from several enemies. Suzaku's already impressive speed saw a huge leap as he trained as a Rakkasen, allowing him to move huge distances in the blink of an eye as if using teleportation. He also greatly increased his speed at bladed combat, being able to do pull off many strikes in a blur. Assimilating Datara's powers within his body had also immensely increased his speed, being able to effortlessly contend with a Bankai-released Raian in terms of movement.
Enhanced Strength: During a fight against a massive Adjuchas, Suzaku had halted its punch with a single open hand, and throw the Hollow aside effortlessly. Later, by slashing downwards, Suzaku is able to cause enough force to generate a burst of wind, blowing all of the surrounding Menos several yards despite their massive size. Raian commented that he was using "brute force."
Hakuda Expert: Having been given preliminary training by his father, Suzaku has shown to have a natural talent and aptitude for martial arts. He reveals that his father has trained him somewhat in the art of taekkyeon; according to Seireitou, Suzaku has the fighting skill of a black belt. He can move swiftly, due to his medium height; he also seems to have a knack for striking pressure points to bring down an opponent. Suzaku was at least strong enough to incapacitate two third-seat Shinigami of the Gotei 13. As his personality darkened, his method of combat followed suit. He would deal more destructive strikes to the opponent, to ensure the maximum input of pain. Suzaku's increase in this skill has allowed him to easily defeat, without killing, hundreds of lower-ranked Seijin in a single battle without sustaining so much as a scratch to himself. His preferred martial art appears to be Piguaquan.
Suzaku is highly skilled in swordsmanship techniques, having briefly trained under Raian Getsueikirite. He has increased his strength and skill to allow him to become a seated Shinigami-level fighter. He fights with seemingly no effort behind his attacks. His ability to wield his combat skills was evident as an academy student. He easily defeated and killed one of the Seijin Masters, who by rank and age should have been more powerful and skilled than him. Suzaku was able to fight his father on-on-one, while still pushing the latter on his toes. He has shown the ability to use extreme speed mixed with a calm composure and precise attacks. He is prone to using same-slash attacks when provoked or enraged, which many times can cause the opponent to be effortlessly overwhelmed.
Influence of Akemegami
- Eishōhaki Master
- Motionless Spellcasting
Mastery of Lightning
Lightning Hadō Mastery: Due in part to Suzaku's spiritual alignment, his greatest and most powerful Kidō abilities lies in lightning element spells. Even if it is a spell he has never practiced before nor has any experience in using, if it is aligned to the elemental nature of lightning, his mastery over the element has granted him an amazing comfortability with lightning-type spells and subsequently makes it possible for him to wield any spell of this type effortlessly as though he had practiced it for several years. Suzaku wills the reishi to become charged at the quantum level and generates his own electricity in various forms. In doing so, it is quite plausible to consider his skill the strongest of all lightning-type specialists, as he can command electricity at its most fundamental level. Additionally, Suzaku can imbue the powerful element into almost any normal spell. Doing so allows him to grant many normal spells with lightning augmentation. This leads to certain products, such as Hainawa being cast and electrifying the victim horrendously or even imbuing it into the Sōkatsui to both grant it a dual nature but also to have it crash into the desired target with the speed and might of a lightning bolt straight from the heavens themselves. In becoming a true master of spells, Suzaku managed to master five specific spells attuned to the lightning nature in total completion to such an extent that each of them are considered to be one with himself.
Raishu (雷手, "Lightning Palm"): Unifying the various principles tempered through his mastery of the various Hadō lightning-type spells — the piercing power of Byakurai, the flowing current of Tsuzuri Raiden, and the explosive instantaneous crushing force of Raikōhō — allowed Suzaku to create a unique spell that is aptly named Raishu. He gathers the charged reishi to his hand which surround it in a fierce lightning aura before manifesting as a coating around his hand, fanning outwards in an intense display of electrical discharge. In doing so, he turns his own hand into a devastatingly powerful weapon, capable of piercing through the strongest of obstacles with ease while simultaneously delivering a tremendous degree of electrical force that can induce severe nerve damage and paralysis. Suzaku has demonstrated the ability to manipulate and expand the Raishu through the same methods that dictate the behavior of the other spells. He is able to unleash fierce lightning bolts from his finger tips that crackle forth and strike multiple targets, almost as if it were an unruly form of Byakurai. Raishu is tied into Suzaku's mental state, meaning that it is far stronger and the lightning vibrates at incredible frequencies when he is emotionally invested into the situation whereas the spell's power weakens if Suzaku is filled with doubts and subsequently stands emotionally unstable.
- Empowered Raishu
- "Ame-no-Uzume is known as the "Great Persuader". She was a deity capable of compelling even the light of the world itself to return once more."
- —Suzaku hinting at Akemegami's power.
Akemegami (明け女神, "Daybreak Goddess"): In its sealed state, Suzaku's Zanpakutō takes the appearance of a regular katana, with an incantation written on the top-most edge, not unlike that of the original design of his father's Hanullim. Its hilt is black with a silver cloth surrounding it, which Suzaku can utilize in the efforts of using Akemegami like a flail. Suzaku, like his father once had, wears it on his left hip. Being among the minority, Suzaku is one of the few male Shinigami that wields a female Zanpakutō. Her personality tends to shine through, not only during battle, but also through active conversation with Suzaku in his mindscape. As its name would suggest, Akemegami is an incarnation of the goddess Ame-no-Uzume, and it has been said that its power was born from the union of his father's Hanullim and his mother's Marishaten, which manifested the spirit of the goddess of the dawn.
It is released by the command, "Strike down to Earth" (地球に打ち倒す, Chikyū ni Uchitaosu). The cloth at the end of the hilt extends out and covers the entire blade of Akemegami. Once it is fully covered, it crystallizes the entire blade into something resembling amethyst, eventually cracking into pieces and splits off into two separate entities. With a brief flash of light, both torn fragments of the original blade reform into individual swords that resemble the sealed form, each with similarly white cloths wrapped around the hilts. Both swords are shown to shimmer brightly and carry tremendous might despite their slender appearance. Suzaku is one of the few Shinigami in all of the Soul Society to possess a Zanpakutō that manifests as two individual weapons, enabling him to be classified as a dual-wielder. He is known to often utilize both swords in conjunction with Kidō.
The spirit of Akemegami is often shown in many mental conversations with Suzaku, often providing insight and even making suggestions in reference to his decisions and predicaments. She takes the form of a young maiden with short black hair, dressed in a white kimono that is tied with a wide striped obi tied in a ribbon in which the knot stays behind her. She is rather nurturing and demonstrates great concern over Suzaku's well being. However, it should be noted that she is incredibly persuasive and even manipulative to a fault, displaying the same tendencies one would find in a sociopath. In her eyes, there is no right or wrong, but only Suzaku and what will benefit him, even if he himself does not share her views. Akemegami is a mild perfectionist with a superiority complex, believing that everything that does not serve her goals nor her master's goals is beneath them and not worth consideration. Of course, it is in this sense that Suzaku often clashes with Akemegami, and although she very rarely will refuse his desires, she will act of her own accord if she believes Suzaku is acting against what she considers his best interests. In many of their dialogues, Akemegami often tries to persuade Suzaku to allow her to fight in his place, tempting him with promises of greater heights if he only were to give into her. Deep down, while she loves her master and her actions all serve this end, it can be said that it is simply born out of a drive to take control and replace Suzaku as the one in control. This seems to resemble the same instincts of a Hollow. Therefore, it is hard to say if Akemegami's sense of care for Suzaku is genuine or simply is meant to serve a means to an end, but nevertheless, the two are able to work together quite effectively as a team.
Akemegami possesses the power to impose decisions upon Suzaku's reiryoku and reiatsu, as well as her own energies, in order to perform various feats that range from offense, defense, supportive, and even supplementary. While the average Shinigami is capable of controlling their spiritual pressure, and those of even greater skill can often channel their spiritual power to produce a medley of effects, Akemegami takes this concept a step further by actually altering the very nature of its purpose in order to suit whatever it is that Suzaku or Akemegami may desire. This ability is exceptionally broad, allowing Suzaku to go as far as to create absolute physical constructs out of his energy or even assign different natures and aspects to his own power. Akemegami will also activate of her own accord if she believes Suzaku's life is in danger or if she believes that he is making the wrong choice in how to act in a particular situation. Her powers seem to also respond to Suzaku's emotional state as well. Rage and hate could possibly transform Suzaku's spiritual pressure to behave like that of a fierce blaze, while sadness and regret could result in his spiritual pressure descending upon the vicinity of his reiatsu like rain or even a subtle snowfall. Of course, it should be noted that while Akemegami changes the behavior of Suzaku's spiritual power, it does not actually transform it into different abilities. Even if his spiritual pressure were to burn through something it came into contact with, it would not manifest in the form of flames, because it is still reiatsu at its core; only its purpose has changed.
Akemegami Sōkoku no Shōmei (明け女神相剋の召命, "Divine Call of the Opposing Daybreak Goddess")
- (To Seireitou Kawahiru) "Is that all you have to say, father? You're a disappointment. That is all that can describe you. Standing before me, as if nothing was wrong... As if the reality of my mother's blood on your hands was just a nightmare! The only silver lining is that it opened my eyes to the darkness that saturates this world... and I am resolved to end it all. I am going to kill you and every last person in the Soul Society. Nothing you can say will change my mind, so make your choice... Either kill me now or become one of my victims. Try and kill me... just like you killed your wife and my mother."
- "No matter how strong, the power of a single person does not amount to much. Even so... I will do what I can and reach the top. I'm going to stand at the highest precipice... and do all that I can, no matter how little it may be, to protect those who are under to me. The people below me, in turn, will protect those that are dear to them. And so on. We insignificant beings... should be able to do that much, at the very least."
- (To Datara Kawahiru) "If there was anything that I am sure about, it's that people are a truly disgusting existence. Selfish, obnoxious, ignorant... There isn't anything redeeming about living beings. Nothing they have accomplished can ever be called anything more than a series of failures... pandering to their self-interests. Without a doubt, they are a complete write-off... and how dare you make me care about them!"
Behind the Scenes
According to the author, although Seireitou is notorious for having had a hand in conceiving many children — a great deal of them becoming prominent characters — Suzaku was designed to stand out as the sole child actually raised by his father as a normal son before the various incidents that would eventually occur that tore the family apart. He was named for the vermilion bird, which is one of the four symbols of the Chinese constellations.