|“||It's not like I hate the family. Still, I can't forget what they did to me and I don't think I ever will. That's why I cast off the family name and took a new one to liberate myself. The old Kazuma Kannagi may have yielded to their demands. But Kazuma Yagami never will! Not an inch!||„|
|~ Kazuma to Ren, saying he's through doing what the Kannagi family tells him to do|
Kazuma Yagami is the main male protagonist and anti-hero of the light novel and anime series Kaze no Stigma. He is a former member of the Kannagi family who was exiled four years prior to the story due to his lack of talent for fire magic. After serious training in China, he returns to Japan as an incredibly powerful wind magic user, having made a contract with the Spirit King of the Wind, just like the first Kannagi head had done before with the Spirit King of Fire. He is the second cousin of Ayano Kannagi and the estranged older brother of Ren Kannagi, as well as the love interest of the former.
He is voiced by Daisuke Ono in the Japanese version of the anime and Robert McCollum in the English version.
Kazuma is a tall man (around 5'10) with brown hair, pale skin and orange-brown eyes, which turn blue when he uses his Contractor powers. His usual attire consists of a black shirt, a navy blue jacket, and gray pants.
|“|| Misao: Why did my brother have to die?!|
Kazuma: Because he was weak.
Ayano: If that was supposed to be some kind of joke, then you've got a really sick sense of humour! How could you say something so disrespectful?! Have you already forgotten how weak you were and what it felt like before you discovered how to use wind magic?
Kazuma: You done? Because I am.
|~ An example of Kazuma's brutal honesty|
Kazuma is shown throughout the series to be bitter, rude and selfish, which stems from constant harsh treatments by the Kannagis due to his inability to use fire magic and his subsequent disownment. While it was for his own good as he wouldn't have been in a very good position if he had stayed a Kannagi, as far as he knew his parents simply abandoned him because he was weak, after which he vowed to become stronger. This desire briefly faded after meeting his first love, Tsui-Ling, but was reignited after her death. Having returned to Japan as an extremely powerful Wind Contractor, Kazuma, much like Ayano, is very arrogant, finding it endlessly amusing and ironic that the once powerless 'black sheep' is now possibly stronger than the entire Kannagi family combined.
However, arrogance is the only trait he and Ayano share; where Ayano is short-tempered and impulsive, Kazuma is cool-headed and rational. He thinks things through carefully and frequently proves himself to be the smarter of the two as well as the more powerful. However, he is not above making mistakes, such as when he accidentally freed the demon of Mount Fuji in the process of saving Mayumi Tsuwabuki. Although he takes pride in his almost god-like power, Kazuma also knows his limits, being more than willing to ask others for help and acknowledging that, while he may be a Contractor, he's not invincible.
Kazuma has a very cold, sarcastic sense of humour, never passing an opportunity to tease Ayano about something, though he's prone to snarking at people in general. He never takes back anything he says, to the point that Kirika Tachibana jokes that he doesn't even know how to pronounce the word 'Sorry'. He is also brutally honest and prone to making harsh but true comments about everyone and everything, particularly the Kannagis and their methods. An example of this is when Juugo has figured out the Fuga clan's plan of retribution against the Kannagi family. While Ayano believes their rebellion is completely unjustified, as in her eyes all they've ever done is help the Fugas, Kazuma points out that the Kannagi family has looked down on them for centuries simply for practising a brand of magic they view as inferior, comparing it to his own situation. He even goes so far as to say he doesn't blame the Fugas for what they're doing, and that he instead blames the Kannagi family for pushing them to the point of wanting revenge, which Juugo wholeheartedly agrees with.
Despite this disrespectful attitude, Kazuma is still caring and does not hesitate to protect those who are important to him. He is especially protective of Ren, whom he still considers his brother despite saying the Kannagis aren't his family anymore, with a threat to Ren's safety being one of the few things that can bring Kazuma out of his apathy. He goes to great lengths to pay back debts to others, such as when he went out of his way to save Misao despite her repeated attempts to kill him, simply because she protected him from bullies when they were younger. He also hates people who perform human sacrifice, such as the Fuga Clan and Tsuwabukis, as it reminds him of his failure to protect Tsui-Ling. Ayano even notes that, for all his faults, Kazuma is ultimately a good person who cares about doing the right thing.
As someone who was born without any power and had to suffer greatly in order to gain it, Kazuma has the arrogance of a person who has power, but still understands the feelings of those who are weak. And while he'll protect people who are naturally weak and have no chance of becoming stronger, Kazuma looks down on people who have the opportunity to become stronger, but choose to rely on others instead, and so needs to basically be bribed into helping them. This is most predominant when it come to do with anything involving his family. Since every member has the power to wield fire, there should be very little reason for Kazuma to help, and his bitterness towards them makes him even more unwilling to step in. Theoretically, they could all hone their powers to become stronger, or be like Kazuma and find another element they're more suited for. This is why he has to be bribed into helping Ayano and even his own little brother, Ren, who is the only person in the family who seems to care for him. While he may come off as very cold and arrogant when he comments on someone being weak or being paid to help out, his reasoning is very solid.
Skills & Abilities
As a Wind Magic Contractor, Kazuma has access to a wide number of abilities:
- Wind Blade: Kazuma's wind forms a boomerang/blade, sharp enough to cut through metal.
- Wind Force: Kazuma's wind can be strengthened, enough to knock back or crush multiple enemies. Wind Force can be used in multiple directions.
- Tornado: Kazuma can form a tornado, which can work as a tunnels to travel without being attacked, or simply to knock enemies away. The tornado can crush enemies from above with immense force.
- Wind Barrier: The wind forms a barrier to either protect the users from outer assaults or traps the enemies inside.
- Redirection: Kazuma manipulates the air to redirect any attacks. He's seen doing this in Rage state with his black wind, while redirecting the opponent's laser beams.
- Flight: As a Wind user Kazuma can manipulate the wind to fly and hover at will.
- Invisibility: Kazuma use the air to create a barrier that turns himself invisible. Similar to the bubble that Ayano was trap in when she went to the construction site.
- Tracking: As a wind magic user, Kazuma can sense people's both physical and spiritual/energy presence.
- Contract Activation: Kazuma is a contractor of the Wind Spirit, Kaze no Seirei-Ou, meaning he is entrusted with the Wind Spirit's power of His Domain. In this state, Kazuma is able to draw upon all wind spirits in the atmosphere, which amplifies his powers, and allows him to heal his wounds. When using that power, his eyes turn azure blue. With his contract activated, Kazuma is invincible and omnipotent to the extent that no one was able to touch him and that his power increases ten folds when compared to his normal state which by itself is already enough for Kazuma to overpower his father's godsfire without requiring his abilities as contractor (in contrast to Ren's belief that he couldn't defeat him without being the contractor). However, it has one major drawback; Kazuma needs time for it to activate, forcing someone, usually Ayano, to act as a distraction while he powers up.
- Black Wind: When Kazuma is under influence of great rage, it activates his black wind state. In this state, his eye are crimson red, his wind turns black, and he is seen using mind reading powers. He has no problem about hurting others with his abilities, as long as he gets what he wants, as he loses rationality. However when in this state, his overall powers seem to be weaker due to losing control over it. In episode 23 when Ayano helps him snap out of his rage, he states that his black wind is pathetic. At one point Ayano states that she was never afraid of him in his normal state, and as he is so strong, her fear seems pointless. She takes the fear she feels of him in his enraged state as a sign that he is weaker. Despite being substantially weaker, he has no trouble defeating other strong fire users like Ayano, but not his own father Genma. He was taken out of this black wind state when Ayano used her crimson fire against him.
- Keen Intellect: In addition to being extremely powerful, Kazuma often proves himself to be very intelligent and perceptive; he is easily able to see through Juugo's deceptions to get him and Ayano together (though he ends up falling for her anyway), largely because Ayano shouldn't need a bodyguard since she can easily take care of herself. During missions, he acts as the strategist, often making battle plans for him and Ayano, who has the tendency to just charge in blindly with no strategy whatsoever. He can also be rather manipulative, such as when he uses Ayano as bait to lure out a Yoma.