|Weapons||Bishamon's Sword & Powder|
Nine Unknown Shadow Weapons
|Manga Debut||Act 155|
Otowa Hyōko is a master of “Shadow Instruments” and a villain from Rurouni Kenshin.
Otowa usually wears a magenta-colored juban and a light blue kimono with a jagged hem, tied with a magenta obi, white tabi and women's zori. His black hair is kept separated into three parts (two in pigtails, and one in a low pigtail covering his left eye), with some short strands always hanging between his black, ever-partially-closed eyes. He also has a liking for Western cosmetics, in the form of wearing red lipstick and pink nail polish. The most noticable part of his outfit is the six spikes that make up the Rikudoko, which at first appears to be an unusual accessory.
Otowa is a very sadistic man, taking pleasure in harming and killing men, women, and children alike. Despite his outward bravado, he is prone to cowardice when faced with an opponent that poses a serious threat to himself.
In general he has a calm demeanor, though easily annoyed. He also has a smoking habit, with a hookah his pipe of choice.
- Six Comrades - member
An amateur with a sword, his strength lies in assassin's tools known as anki (暗器, "dark instruments", a type of concealed weaponry of Chinese origins). He claims to have thirteen, but is shown using only four:
Baika Chuuzen: A concealed crossbow strapped to his left wrist, activated by the pulling of a silk thread on his right wrist. Hiding its true nature, Otowa uses the om symbol on his left palm to make the effects seem like a divine power.
Kasui Busuen: Cubes that create a poisonous vapor upon being immersed in water. When breathed in, the mist paralyzes the limbs for four to five minutes.
Bishamonken ('Bishamon's Sword') and Bishamonpun ('Bishamon's Powder'): A European-style sword that absorbs magnetic properties from magnets inside of the sheath. The Bishamonpun is actually iron filings that, when covering the target, attract the Bishamonken to the person. Otowa disguises this by calling the sword "enchanted".
Rikudouko: The six spikes Otowa wears on his torso. When activated, the spikes thrust forward, skewering the opponent.
Otowa was friends with the ninja, Nakajō, whom he would go on nightly killing sprees with and even gave him a version of his Chusen. However Nakajō was killed by Himura Kenshin and Otowa used this as an excuse to join Yukishiro Enishi's Jinchu campaign against Kenshin. However Otowa just joined it for the pleasure of fighting.
After Enishi began gathering his allies for Jinchu, Otowa arrived at the mansion Gein had rented at the same time as Inui Banjin. Enishi introduced the two and after Yatsume Mumyōi made himself known from the room above them, Enishi said they would be called the Six Comrades, Otowa interrupted and asked if he couldn’t think of a better name. Enishi said he didn’t really care about the name and explained to them all that the Battosai currently lived under the name Kenshin and killing him now wouldn’t be revenge. He told them that they had to corner the former Battosai and make him recognize his past crimes, then they could sever their ties to try and deliver the final thrust. Otowa said he had no objections and Enishi said he had a plan, but instead of him dictating it to them all, they would have equal responsiblities. He explained the plan to each of them and Otowa left with Inui and Kujiranami Hyōgo to begin the first phase of the plan. He headed to Tokyo by train with Inui and Inui was rearing to go, but Otowas asked him if he knew where to go. Inui didn’t and Otowa said he had strong arms, but his head needed work, then showed him the places they were supposed to go. They split up to launch a two point strike with Otowa attacking police chief Uramara’s house and easily took down the policeman there. The chief pointed a gun at the Shadow Instrument user, telling him to lay his weapon down or he’d shoot him. However Otowa used his Chusen to apparently make the gun misfire without doing anything and said all would be according to his will. He opened the door to let in the night breeze, then said it was time to finish things up and Uramura asked Otowa who he was. However he proceeded to impale his sword into the chief’s hand and told him not to feel lonely, since he’d be sending his family after him. Otowa told Uramura not to hold a grudge against him, but at that moment, Kenshin arrived and said he would prefer to end being the target of grudges. Otowa said there was no rule against finishing the former Battosai off early and told him to draw and try his Battojutsu against his Baika Chusen. When Kenshin did nothing, Otowa asked him what was the matter and Uramura warned the former Battosai that he’d somehow made his gun misfire without touching it. Kenshin asked Otowa why he sought vengeance and the Shadow Instrument user said it would be pitiful to send him to the next world without him knowing that. Otowa revealed it was because of his best friend and told Kenshin to quit stalling or he’d kill Uramura, his family, and the policeman with his Baika-Chusen. Otowa proceed to use it, but Kenshin revealed the secret behind the technique by catching the arrow the Shadow Instrument user fired. Otowa pulled down his sleeve to reveal the arrow launcher that was his Baika Chusen and explained how it worked. Kenshin noted such an invention had to have required much thought and practice and Otowa said his mastery was not in
swordsmanship and martial arts, but with Shadow Instruments. Kenshin said if revenge was Otowa’s motive, he would duel, but he had to stop involving innocent people. The Shadow Instrument user pulled his sword out of Uramura’s hand and asked Kenshin if he thought he was stupid enough to fight someone who could catch an arrow. Otowa explained the great power of a Shadow Instrument was surprise and though they were both assassins, he wasn’t Kenshin’s kind. Otowa threw two cubes into the pool outside the house, releasing a poisonous mist and explained it was Kasui Busuen. He went on to say it wouldn’t kill Kenshin, but would paralyze his limbs in minutes and he’d have enjoyed showing him two or three more of his tricks. But Otowa said it was time for Jinchu and left (since Kujiranami was about to fire on the house with his cannon), saying he hoped for another encounter if that were possible. Otowa returned to the mansion where he and the others were told by Enishi that he’d told Battosai they’d have their battle in ten days. Otowa said he didn’t like the fact Enishi had decided on ten days without consulting his comrades. Enishi explained he’d called in some of his men from Shanghai, which is why he’d chosen ten days and Otowa thought to himself, as did Inui and Kujiranami, that in ten days, Kenshin’s head would be his.