|Height||288 cm (9'5½")|
|Weight||301 kg (662 lbs.)|
|Occupation||Shinigami, Captain of the Eight Division|
|Previous Occupation||Captain of the Seventh Division|
Captain of the Ninth Division
|Previous Team||7th Division|
|Previous Partner||Shūhei Hisagi|
|Base of Operations||8th Division barracks|
|Bankai||Kokujō Tengen Myō'ō|
- "I was glad to know that you had real feelings, and weren’t some saint who could say he loved the world despite what had happened to your dearest companion. That was the reason I decided to reach out and become your friend. If you knew sadness I would embrace it. If you went astray I would guide you. If you would make a mistake, I will forgive you. When you had nowhere to turn, I would be your refuge. I wanted to help, all so that this man who could no longer love the world might love it again."
- —Komamura about Kaname Tousen
Sajin Komamura (狛村 左陣, Komamura Sajin) is the former captain of the Seventh Division and the Ninth Division. Who, following his transformation into a wolf, understood he could no longer fulfil the duties expected of a Shinigami and eventually left the Soul Society with the intention to return to the land which his clan had once forsaken; the Realm of Beasts, Yuanren. Requesting one last favour of the Kidō Corps, he passed over into the torrential lands through the use of an elaborate ritual.
Once there, Sajin went on a pilgrimage to meet with the Ōkami Nobles as a bid to regain his former self, a wish they granted to him on the condition that he remain in the Torrential Lands and served them for nine full years. Whereupon he would take part in the battles they waged against one another, and defend their lands from invasion. Those were difficult times for Komamura, but in memory of the man who gave him a chance at being a Shinigami; he vowed to one day return to Soul Society and resume his office as a Captain.
Constant battles have hardened the former Captain, and although his heart has remained the same. His powers grew exponentially under those circumstances and when he returns, he'll make ripples far greater than those he once made. It wasn't until nine years after the Blood War that Sajin returned to Soul Society to resume his duties as the new Captain of the Ninth Division of the Gotei 13, where his old friend Shūhei Hisagi served as his Lieutenant for a time while Sajin instructed him privately about his future duties, once he believed him ready he relinquished the Captaincy to him and became the Captain of the Eighth Division, with Asuka Shimizu serving as his new Lieutenant.
Sajin Komamura is in many ways a man shaped by his own insecurities, and a lingering sense of low self-esteem that has plagued him his entire life. Hanging over all of his actions and decisions like a pitch black cloud, swallowing up his achievements and making him always second-guess himself. Deeply ashamed of his appearance, he once resorted to wearing a helmet in order to hide who he was, and spent most of his Shinigami days and captaincy like this. Only with his features concealed and his true identity kept away from what he assumed were the judging eyes of the outside, could Sajin properly fulfil his duty.
Yet within this constant adversity towards himself, another quality took hold. Because as he'd grown intimately familiar with the idea of psychological pain and uncertainty, and knew what it felt like to be an outsider, Komamura's heart turned to gold. Compassion is a grand virtue, and one not often seen among Shinigami, yet for Sajin it became a bridge to understand others, to connect with them and thus through their high opinions of him gradually increase his own measure of personal self-worth.
As a superior, he was understanding and just, forgiving of mistakes and always sought to bring out the best in those within the Seventh Division. He rarely berated others for their mistakes, but instead aimed to help them get better, and for this attitude, he was among the most favoured Captains among young Shinigami. Who felt uncertain of their own abilities and could use a leader who made them feel valued in spite of their low experience, and many who joined his squad only left under exceptional circumstances. Such was the sense of warmth and companionship that Komamura and his officers inspired in them.
Following his time in the Yuanren, the shame of his appearance has largely vanished due to being surrounded by others who looked just like him. Even so, his low self-esteem still thrives on the memories of how he failed to save his closest friend. Within his heart, Komamura is still a meagre worm.
But ultimately his love of Soul Society and the overwhelming sense of loyalty he felt towards Head Captain Yamamoto still runs strong in his being. Spurring him to fight for its cause and take up the mantle of Captain once again if necessary in order to protect the legacy of the man who gave him a chance at escaping his self-imposed prison. So he fights and readies himself to face the new threat even as he believes in his heart of hearts that he is deeply unworthy of his accomplishments.
Powers & Abilities
Immense Spiritual Power: While he still served as the Captain of the 7th Division of the Gotei 13, Komamura's level of spiritual power was already among the highest in the entire organization. For it retained the same great magnitude as his immense physical strength, and it reflected the spirit of a being whose inner strength remained unyielding even in the face of a terrible betrayal. Despite his gentle nature, Komamura's spiritual power is one steeped in his resolve to be a Guardian to all who'd rally behind the cause of the Soul Society, and many are instinctively taken aback by how intense it is, and when unleashed in full it causes the earth to split open, and immense pressure to weather down on his enemies. Adversaries whose resolve and inner strength do not match Sajin find themselves brought to their knees, made to crawl along the ground like meagre worms. The colour of reiatsu adheres to his double-sided philosophy in battle, and in heated combat against enemies of the Soul Society, it turns a bright red. But when he fights adversaries for other reasons than to protect it, then his reiatsu is orange. Red represents his fierce determination, whereas orange reflects the virtues of compassion and humility. Given its extraordinary power and great volume, Sajin has developed a great preference for using it to incapacitate his enemies in humane ways where possible, for a single release of his energy, directed towards an unsuspecting opponent is often enough to hurl them off their feet and send them tumbling leagues away. This same principle holds true for attacks as well, with Komamura having mastered the basic principles of using his reiatsu to shield his body from harm, allowing him to shrug off dangerous effects that would see lesser men brought low and defeated. Throughout nine years of partaking in wars for the sport of Ookami Nobles, his spiritual power alone has allowed him to survive many a terrible encounter with Yokai and monsters alike.
- Masterful Reiatsu Control: With great power, comes increasingly greater difficulties in manipulating it; this is a truth accepted by most. For it is no easy feat to stop a coursing river in its tracks, and that is where the essence of spiritual control enters the picture. Reiatsu, when exerted, is a tremendously valuable tool in battle, for it is capable of overwhelming enemy attacks and bringing battles to a halt with ease, Komamura's natural patience and desire for understanding has shaped his ability to maintain an iron grip over his own power. Such that he might direct fluently in ways that allow him to deflect attacks by focusing reiatsu upon the affected body part, indeed, throughout the wars, he participated in, even many of the more powerful Okami Warriors he faced on the field of battle were unable to penetrate his skin for this very reason. As though blocked by invisible barriers that some even confused for magic. Offensively, his overwhelming physical strength mixes well with his masterful grasp over his own spiritual energy, allowing him to slice cleanly through most obstacles, including being able to easily wound opponents far stronger than he is, and in possession of far greater spiritual reserves.
Hakuda Master: The Sacred Art of Hakuda is one in which Sajin has displayed great proficiency, being in possession of naturally good fighting instincts and phenomenal physical strength, endurance and durability. He's a man made for the frontlines, and in his Academy days, Hakuda was a concept he easily grasped. While he vastly prefers the discipline of Zanjutsu his innate skill in the art of Hakuda were noteworthy enough to allow him to temporarily fight on par with the previous Captain of the Second Division, Suì-Fēng; herself one of the greatest masters of the craft at the time. Since then, his skills haven't lessened in this area, but they are vastly overshadowed by his swordsmanship. Never after his academy days has Komamura taken steps to master Hakuda, but throughout the years his own personal application of it has formed one which focuses upon his great natural strength, and the massive weight of his spiritual power to generate simplistic but powerful attacks capable of felling a foe in a single blow. Its therefore not uncommon for Sajin to blend a bit of the two disciplines, using his free hand to pummel enemies into submission even as he defeats the rest with the tremendous power of Tenken.
Shunpo Expert: Throughout his tenure as a Captain, Sajin displayed high proficiency in the art of Shunpo, being able to keep up with other Captains and other opponents of high mobility fairly easily. Komamura's skill in Shunpo is however noted to be one of his weakest points by far, second only to the art of Kidou, which he shuns out of personal reasons, not because of a lack of talent or even skill in the art. His ability to use Shunpo remains at the barest minimum of that expected by a Captain till this day, and there are reports of certain gifted Lieutenants being able to outrun him. Many would decry his decision to focus the remainder of his attention upon Zanjutsu and to neglect the art of Shunpo, but to Sajin the art of Shunpo is no necessity, for its primary focus is to allow one to surprise the opponent, evade a fatal blow or keep up with one's enemy. Komamura's durability is tremendous, and his spiritual energy provides ample protection, meanwhile, his Zanpakuto ensures that most opponents cannot escape his wrath, for its immense range and area of effect leaves avoidance a difficult venture indeed.
Bakudō User: The Spirit Way is by many considered the most powerful part of the Zankensoki, infamous for being the primary weapon of some of the most powerful beings of the current time. Komamura disagrees with these beliefs, labelling it as impersonal and detached, to truly seek to master Kidō is to relinquish ones Zanpakutō, and in casting aside one's Soul Reaper, Sajin believes that a Shinigami has failed themselves and their being. It is a betrayal of the self as surely as how his friend Kaname once gave himself over to Hollowfication in pursuit of power. But Komamura likewise cannot ignore the invaluable tools the art of magic offers, an he thus made a vow, never would he make use of Kidō for anything other than helping others, and when it came to the destructive arts, he never had need of them due to the overwhelming power of his Zanpakuto. Consequently, Komamura relies exclusively upon spells from the school of binding, and in that category, he's largely focused upon utility and healing spells. Offensive spells, even those meant to restrain are eschewed entirely in respect to Tenken and himself.
Monstrous Strength: If there's one element of Sajin's character that permeates his creed in battle, it would be an underlying need of immediate pacification. Komamura seeks to end battles cleanly, and his strength makes this a possibility, for even among the upper echelons of Soul Society, his monstrous physical prowess stands in a league that is mostly untrod save for those who stand at the very pinnacle. But within this tremendous strength is a restraint not often witnessed, many who wield immense strength see fit to demonstrate it in garish and wanton ways, whether it is by destroying the environment or obliterating their foe in a shower of gore. By contrast, the strength of Sajin is deeply subdued and controlled, were they not he knows his every gesture would generate quakes in the earth and shockwaves in the air. So used are most fighters to excessive displays of strength that Komamura seems unthreatening in his apparent simplicity. And in Yuanren monstrous beasts would bar his passage, beasts of mythical proportions and strength, yet even the mightiest of Okami Warriors fell to a single palm thrust. To know Komamura's hostile touch is death, and the enemies of his lords learned that fact as they attempted to fight him at a distance; but what use does distance matter to one who can rend the earth by tapping his blade lightly against the ground? Powerful magic was used to challenge Sajin's strength on many an occasion, but high-ranking binding spells were broken with strict ease, and mighty offensive spells were dissipated by a single swing of his sealed Zanpakuto. But true terror is born when one realizes that the strength of his Shikai and Bankai are directly proportional to his personal strength, whereupon he might empty a lake, or banish the very clouds from the sky with a single swing of Tenken if he so desired.
Enhanced Reflexes: Despite his large build and lack of excellence in the art of Hōhō, Sajin has unusually keen reflexes that stand in stark contrast to his size, allowing him to react swiftly and effectively to most dangers, to the point where he's been able to intercept attacks from the likes of Suì-Fēng in the past. It's believed that this does in large part stem from his powerful bond with Tenken, and his enhanced senses as a man of wolf lineage.
Immense Durability & Endurance: For as long as he's been a Shinigami, taking damage has always been something that Komamura did well. Due to his comparatively restricted ability with Shunpo and large stature making him an easier target to hit, the years have seen Komamura assaulted by mighty spells and extremely powerful attacks delivered by some of the most powerful beings in the Soul Society. Throughout the years he's been made to draw his focus inwards in order to hone his defensive prowess and ability to neutralize damage by virtue of his sheer reiatsu alone, and his immense tolerance to pain has ensured that he no longer as easily felled as he once was and even after weathering multiple attacks of immense potency, the Warrior of Yuanren continues to fight undaunted for what he believes in. During the many wars he was made to participate in, Komamura would often remain unfazed by opposing attacks, as the attacks of common Yokai barely succeeded in ruffling his kimono, much less forcing the former Captain to defend himself in earnest. Many who have thought him dead or defeated have soon come to regret their folly as the wolfman seemingly rises from the dead to fight anew, and no matter how long a battle rages Komamura's sheer persistence ensures that he's the last one standing in such circumstances.
Zanjutsu Master: According to Komamura's beliefs, a Shinigami's Zanpakuto comprises the very essence of their being. It is the truest expression of their most essential self, a lifetime companion and a friend one can always turn to. Thus, to betray that Zanpakuto, to throw it aside in pursuit of magic or martial arts or other ventures, is ultimately the same as forsaking oneself, to lose oneself. Sajin's heart is filled with pity at those who would sooner reject themselves than accept their reality for what it truly is, for it mirrors what once happened to his beloved friend, Kaname Tousen. His views mirror those that Yamamoto held in life, and with this outlook his bond with Tenken has grown exceptionally powerful, powerful enough that he might awaken its true power, pushing him to ever greater heights.
In battle, his attacks transcend the limitations imposed upon them by the typical laws of reality. Neither an object's durability nor size will seriously impede the progress of Tenken as it weaves through the air, bringing ruin to all enemies of the Soul Society in its path, general adherence to logic falls short as Sajin's mastery of Zanjutsu allows his blade to strike twice simultaneously, overriding the rules of cause and effect as it momentarily pertains to his sword swings.
Distance is rendered a moot point as Komamura gives his slashes metaphorical wings as they bring down opponents many leagues away. As long as a foe is in sight of Komamura, he can end their life with an elegant strike of his blade, albeit at the loss of much power, for although he's progressed tremendously through continuous periods of Jinzen in the last nine years, he, ever the humble man admits that he still has much left to perfect. Even so, his newfound mastery of the ancient art of Zanjutsu has seen him become one of the greatest swordsmen in the entirety of the Soul Society, greater still than Kenpachi Zaraki. Who Sajin pitied as a man of supreme skill and fighting instinct, but of a crippled spirit.
- General Kenjutsu Prowess: Although the art of Zanjutsu is largely defined by one's bond with ones Zanpakuto and the extent gone through to nurture it. The truth of the matter is that however extraordinary the powers of Zanjutsu might be, they're inadequate without peerless mastery of the physical aspects of swordsmanship -- like Yin and Yang, both martial ability and martial spirit must exist in a true master of the ancient way of Zanjutsu. Sajin Komamura was always one of the foremost masters of swordplay in the Soul Society, it was a talent he'd gained from attempting to walk in the footsteps of his benefactor and one brought about by a deep-seated need to overachieve, a drive born from a lack of self-esteem.
- So shame would be his teacher throughout the years, driving him to perfect himself and his swordplay so that he might stand as an equal to other Shinigami. The notion that he had surpassed most of them ages ago never once occurred to Komamura, and he kept at it, chasing the lingering illusion of inadequacy that never truly existed. Tirelessly he worked to overcome this self-imposed flaw until at last, it drove him to become a Captain; at which point even Komamura had to admit to himself that he might not be that much of a failure after all.
- While ordinarily a gentle soul, in battle Sajin is a man who favours the ferocious ways of Kōseidō, the Way of Aggression. Placing emphasis on overwhelming his opponent through superior strength, aggression and skill, he follows this path because this is what best serves Tenken, with his Zanpakuto unleashed there are none who might stand against him in a physical battle, and a concentrated offence allows him to fully capitalize on the power of his Zanpakuto. However, although the way of aggression is often marked by acrobatic manoeuvres, Komamura made his own variation that incorporates Chūyōdō as well, the Way of Moderation. Manifesting as a controled and balanced offence, that leaves few openings for his adversaries to exploit, but nonetheless allows him to take them down in a single stroke.
Wonders of the Blade
As a staunch follower of the ideals of Zanjutsu, Komamura is one of the scant few masters in Soul Society at present skilled enough to evoke what are simply known as the Wonders of the Blade, a set of esoteric techniques of extraordinary power who might to the uninitiated be confused for some form of magic, whereas they are little but the result of the transcendent bond between a true master of Zanjutsu and their Zanpakuto. To many, these powers are myths and little else, but they are real all the same.
In what Sajin sometimes refers to as his past life, he was a man who strove to master swordsmanship while grounded in reality, and although this and extraordinary results for his raw swordsmanship it brought him no closer to the core of Zanjutsu. Only by spending time with potent otherworldly creatures for more than nine years has Komamura finally been able to grasp at the Wonders and assimilate their use into his repertoire, growing exponentially in power for that effort alone.
However, ever the meager worm, Sajin admits that he is new to their practice and has only been able to learn how to use four of them to significant success. Those being by name Kiku-Ichimonji, Murasame, Ame-no-Murakumo and Masamune. Amongst these, he's become especially proficient in Kiku-Ichimonji and Ame-no-Murakumo.
Perhaps the most universally useful of the Wonders of the Blade, Kiku-Ichimonj was brought about by a need in times past to overcome the oftentimes mystical defenses of a swordsman's opposition, particularly as it pertains to the defences of magic, although this is merely a common function of Kiki-Ichimonji, and the technique is effective against most supernatural means of defence. During his time serving in the wars of the Yuanren, Sajin was time and again faced with obstacles that couldn't be so easily solved through simple and powerful strokes of his blade, and it was through this realization and spending months and months deep in the trance of Jinzen that brought on the secret of Kiku-Ichimonji, like a flower blossoming within his mind...
Boons of Tenken
For many years, the powers of Tenken were something that Sajin separate from his own, like belonging to an entirely different being. But the truth is that ones Zanpakuto is a pure reflection of the self, and all powers it possesses are born from those of the Shinigami.
While he served the Ookami Lords of the Yuanren, Komamura clung to Tenken as the only reminder of who he was, using it as a way to remain unchanged by the environment of the Animal Realm. Eventually, as he overcomes great obstacles and grew even closer to Tenken, he discovered little by little, that his being changed, shifting to become more like Tenken itself. Ancient masters of Zanjutsu refer to this phenomenon as "Boons", changes to the soul that arise when a Shinigami and their Zanpakuto begin to bleed over into one another. Gradually turning into a perfect being.
Ennetsu Jigoku (炎熱地獄, "Flames of Hell"): There's no way around it, Tenken's true form inspires fear in mortals who witness him, for his eyes are aglow like embers and his breath licks the air like fires from a furnace. In his younger days, Komamura himself would find the appearance of his Zanpakuto overwhelming, and he often wondered why those powers over flames that the spirit showed him were yet beyond his ken. But as he watched how his powers materialized, how the enormous blades of Tenken appeared from empty air in a roar of flame, understanding dawned on Komamura.
It had been hiding in plain sight, Tenken was not a creature of fire, it was not a being with the power to wield it. Nay, it was a blacksmith who forged mighty weaponry from fire alone, needing neither hammer nor anvil. Once this epiphany had been reached, and once Sajin's bond had grown powerful enough, Tenken unlocked a hidden part of the former Captain's soul, once deeply entwined with the memory of the late Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto. Through this essential knowledge, Sajin was granted the Boon of Ennetsu Jigoku.
The power of this Boon is simple, for it allows Komamura to reforge his reiryoku into flames at will, stoking the pyre of the furnace that burns in his heart. When drawing upon the power of this boon, Sajin's appearance begins to match that of Tenken, his eyes turn to smouldering embers and flames crackle in his maw, and when he raises his sword, a wreath of fire surrounds it, burning so hot as to destabilize attacks that bar Komamura's path. Elaborate barriers are quickly felled, and opposing attacks burn away into nothing as they touch the burning blade of Tenken. Opponents who take arms against the Zanjutsu Master find that the heat that emerges from Sajin is like an echo of Ryujin Jakka itself, and immediate incineration awaits those who are touched by the burning blade of Ennetsu Jigoku.
Yet the power of flame isn't solely meant for close combat, and by calling upon the Flames of Hell and having them well forth within his bowels, Komamura can breathe forth a massive inferno of immense heat, fit to set an entire region alight in an instant. But the most powerful use for Ennetsu Jigoku by far is the fact that whatever earth is scorched by its flames becomes a forge for Tenken's enormous blade. As its hilt protrudes from fissures in the ground, where it might be pulled forth at Sajin's command, causing it to roar skywards in an immense pillar of flame. This happens continuously, and as the size of Komamura's forge increases, so too does the presence of Tenken.
Tenken (天譴, Heavenly Punishment; Viz "Heavenly Retribution"): In its sealed state Tenken takes the form of a simple and modest katana, with a rectangle-shaped tsuba decorated with patterns of vertical lines going inwards towards the middle. Its tsuka-itō is made of fine red silk, adding a dramatic flair to the otherwise nondescript blade.
- Shikai: Its Shikai command is "Roar" (轟け, Todoroke). Tenken maintains its regular form.
- Shikai Special Ability: Some believe that the identity of Tenken is that of Bishamonten, one of the Four Heavenly Kings, and truthfully, the Zanpakutō seems to possess a level of power that can be mistaken for the divine, although Komamura modestly admits that this is in fact not the case. Whatever its origins, however, Tenken is a true spectacle to behold in battle, for phantom body parts of a truly menacing giant are conjured into being to mirror even the slightest gesture that Sajin makes, most commonly manifesting in the form of an immense nodachi to perfectly mimic Komamura's sword swings. Its enormous size exponentially increases the already tremendous force behind Sajin's attacks, whilst also extending the Captain's reach massively. Contrary to what most might assume, Tenken is not limited to mimicking the strokes of Sajin's blade alone, but can copy the movement of any of his body parts, and many who think that they can evade Tenken's overwhelming destructive power by darting in close find their hopes crushed figuratively and literally by the phantom giants immense fists. Given its sheer size, it wouldn't be strange to assume that its speed was somehow inhibited, but such is not the case, for its connection to Komamura makes it so that each of its strikes are as quick as he is, and it can even perform extremely fine and precise Zanjutsu applications such as Senmaioroshi with absolutely devastating results.
- Bankai Special Ability: