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Ryutaro Kuki (九鬼隆太郎) is a character that appears in Kurohyō: Ryū ga Gotoku Shinshō.

He is the first patriarch of the Kuki Family, an affiliate of the Tojo Clan, and owner of the Dragon Heat coliseum.

Personality Edit

Kuki is a manipulative crime boss who uses lies, blackmail, and connections to achieve his singular goal: the continuity and profits of his precious fighting circuit, Dragon Heat.

To that end, he often makes false promises, such as faking Toda's death as leverage to force Tatsuya Ukyo into Dragon Heat. He then agreed to release Tatsuya after ten consecutive wins, despite knowing such a win streak was rigged to be impossible.

Beneath his numerous lies, Kuki is torn between his love of martial arts and a desire for money and power within the Tojo Clan. He clings to the platonic ideal of Dragon Heat as a place for fighters to achieve glory and regrets transforming it into a money-making spectacle, in spite of the wealth it brought him. In his final moments, he releases Tatsuya from their bargain and begs him to restore Dragon Heat to its former glory.

Background Edit

During elementary school, Kuki was classmates with Isamu Washio. The two men remained friends into adulthood, but after Kuki became a yakuza patriarch and Washio joined law enforcement, they went separate ways. Kuki later married and had a son, Ryusho, whom he raised as heir to the Kuki Family.

Eventually, Kuki gained stewardship of Dragon Heat, an underground fighting coliseum dating back to the 1960s. In 2004-05, he began modernizing it by encouraging high-stakes audience betting, charging admission and betting fees, and even enabling betting via the Internet. 

At the same time, the Tokyo Police Department began a series of raids on Tojo Clan operations, leading to suspicions of a mole within the Tojo leaking information to the police. This made Dragon Heat a vital revenue source and Kuki one of the richest and most powerful men in the clan, but it also drew accusations of police collusion from other Tojo patriarchs.

In an effort to uncover the informant, Kuki approached Washio, who still frequented Dragon Heat. Washio made him an offer: if Kuki found a fighter who could beat the legendary Tooru Nogi's record of nine consecutive wins, he would reveal the mole's identity.

Kurohyō: Ryū ga Gotoku Shinshō Edit

On September 22, 2010, Kuki witnesses Tatsuya Ukyo fleeing the office of Kuki Family lieutenant Naoki Toda after single-handedly defeating Toda and several Chinese mobsters. Although Tatsuya believed he had accidentally killed Toda, Kuki discovers his subordinate is still alive, but orders him to fake his death and go into hiding.

Kuki's men abduct Tatsuya and bring him to the Kuki Family headquarters, where Kuki reveals that he has security footage of the robbery, and makes an ultimatum to Tatsuya: earn his freedom by winning ten consecutive matches in Dragon Heat, or be turned over to the police alongside the tape. Tatsuya reluctantly accepts.

After Tatsuya picks a fight with Sho Hyuga inside JeweL, a Kuki Family property, Kuki reprimands him by assigning Hyuga to be his second opponent.

Following Tatsuya's sixth victory in a rematch with Hyuga, Kuki is assaulted and grievously wounded by an mysterious attacker who leaves behind a bracelet belonging to Tatsuya to frame him.

Kuki is hospitalized, but escapes and retreats to a secret room in his office to meet with Tatsuya. He reveals that he erased the tape of Tatsuya's robbery and tells him about his secret deal with Washio, begging him to win ten matches and find the mole in the Tojo Clan. When Tatsuya asks about Toda's true killer, Kuki recalls that Toda recorded all his conversations on a microchip, but succumbs to his injury before he can reveal its location.

GalleryEdit

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