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Kurenai vol 01.jpg
Cover of Kure-nai volume 1 as published by Shueisha featuring Shinkurō Kurenai (center) and Murasaki Kuhōin (right)
Genre Comedy, Drama, Slice of life, Romance
Light novel
Author Kentarō Katayama
Illustrator Yamato Yamamoto
Publisher Shueisha
Demographic Male
Imprint Super Dash Bunko
Original run December 2005 – ongoing
Volumes 4
Author Kentarou Katayama
Publisher Shueisha
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Jump Square
Original run November 2, 2007 – ongoing
Volumes 2
TV anime
Director Kō Matsuo
Studio Brain's Base
Original run April 3, 2008June 19, 2008
Episodes 12
Anime and Manga Portal

Kurenai ( ?) is a Japanese light novel series by Kentarō Katayama, with illustrations by Yamato Yamamoto. A manga adaptation started serialization in the first issue of Jump Square magazine. An anime adaptation by Brains Base started airing in Japan on April 3, 2008.



Sixteen-year-old Shinkurō Kurenai, a specialist in settling squabbles between people, is one day approached by his employer with the daughter of a powerful plutocratic family asking him to be her bodyguard.


Shinkurō Kurenai (紅真九郎 Kurenai Shinkurō ?)
Voiced by: Miyuki Sawashiro
The main protagonist of the series. Despite his looks and easygoing personality, he is a capable and strong worker who works for Benika as a dispute mediator, although he does many other types of jobs including being the bodyguard of Murasaki. He is trained extensively in Hōzuki-style martial arts as well as being physically strong, and will take any job for Benika, whom he looks up to. His kind demeanor attracts considerable attention from the opposite gender, though without his knowledge. In emergencies, he is able to summon a large 'horn' out of his right elbow which classes him as "Type 1 Class 2 Fighting Demon" which is somehow related to the Hōzuki school of martial arts. This lets him use his full strength in combat, but shortens his lifespan. When he is forced to fight, his personality changes to a more aggressive one.
Murasaki Kuhōin (九鳳院紫 Kuhōin Murasaki ?)
Voiced by: Aoi Yūki
Murasaki is the seven year old daughter of Souju and Renjo Kuhōin. She is the one being protected by Shinkurō. At first very stubborn and snobbish, she soon lightens up and trusts Shinkurō. She lives with him for protection against her family that has a rule of keeping her in the Inner Sanctuary of their home at all times and never experiencing the outside world until Benika took her. Later on she comes to love Shinkurō.
Benika Jūzawa (柔沢紅香 Jūzawa Benika ?)
Voiced by: Sawa Ishige
She is Shinkuro's employer for which he would do anything for out of gratitude for her help when he was young and because he respects her completely. She is a calm and collected person who goes with her intuition. On behalf of Murasaki's mother last wish she took Murasaki out of the Inner Sanctuary and placed her in the care of Shinkurō who she believes is similar to her. Benika seems to look to Shinkurō like an adopted son of sorts.
Yayoi Inuzuka (犬塚弥生 Inuzuka Yayoi ?)
Voiced by: Aiko Ōkubo
She works for Benika as one of her subordinates and has a tendency to overstep her bounds with complaints about Shinkurō. She believes that an important job like protecting Murasaki would better be left in more capable and experienced hands.
Ginko Murakami (村上銀子 Murakami Ginko ?)
Voiced by: Nozomi Masu
A girl with a taciturn personality who works as an information broker, following in her grandfather's footsteps. Her sources allow her to find information of all kinds, as well as finding new jobs for Shinkurō to help his livelihood. She has been Shinkurō's friend since childhood and also seems to have feelings for him as well as she worries about him when he does jobs for Benika. Ginko also works part-time in her family's ramen shop and constantly offers Shinkurō the chance to work (and live) with her, inadvertently asking him to quit being a mediator. Ginko notably gets irritated whenever other girls, especially Yūno, flock around Shinkurō.
Yūno Hōzuki (崩月夕乃 Hōzuki Yūno ?)
Voiced by: Ryoko Shintani
A girl who Shinkurō lived with when he was young and also his sparring partner. She comes from a family that used to be assassins but still practice the martial arts. Her soft demeanor (albeit with yandere tendencies) hides the fact that she is a strong fighter, whom Shinkurō acknowledges to be much stronger than himself, despite her being older by just one year. She also has feelings for Shinkurō and likes to spend time with him, however her advances to him are almost threatening to Shinkurō and scare him into just letting her hear what she wants. Yūno resents the decision Shinkurō made in deciding to move out her household to live on his own and fears he will change into a hooligan. Yūno has a younger sister named Chizuru, who is five, who also has a crush on Shinkurō. Their grandfather expects Yuuno and Chizuru to carry on the Hōzuki family martial arts skills.
Tamaki Mutō (武藤環 Mutō Tamaki ?)
Voiced by: Asami Sanada
She is a university student who lives in the same building as Shinkurō. She can be described as a very flirtatious person, especially towards Shinkurō. She says she is very knowledgeable in the ways of love but doesn't include her own experiences as she has a hard time keeping a boyfriend. She tends to voluntarily watch Murasaki during the day while Shinkuro is at school. Tamaki is an instructor at a karate dojo, and is very formidable at fighting, with notable feats such as stopping a punch with just two fingers, and able to stand on par with Yūno at full strength.
Yamie (闇絵 Yamie ?)
Voiced by: Haruka Kimura
A mysterious woman, she is yet another tenant of the building Shinkuro lives in. She always wears black and calls herself a very sinful woman. She likes cats and usually keeps to herself except when it comes to Shinkurō and Tamaki. Her attitude can be considered sarcastic most times.
Renjō Kuhōin (九鳳院蓮丈 Kuhōin Renjō ?)
Voiced by: Takaya Kuroda
He is Murasaki's father who according to custom had to marry a woman named Kazuko. During her stay she abused Murasaki's real mother named Souju while taking the role of mother to herself to which she was not accustomed. Renjo in the meantime did nothing even when Souju, the woman he really loved, committed suicide. When Shinkurō stood up to him along with Murasaki, who plead to be allowed to live outside the Inner Sanctuary, he granted her wish.
Kirihiko Kirishima (Kirishima Kirihiko)
A fourteen year old girl with sleepy-looking eyes and a large scarf who is actually a well-reputed hitman with the name "Guillotine", who kills with knives. She appears to have somewhat supernatural strength, being able to carve pavement and metal railings into pieces with just one stroke using a butter knife. Much like Yūno Hōzuki, her family Kirishima is also part of the thirteen Inner Families, descendants of assassins. Her male name indicates she is the direct descendant of the head family. While her personality is somewhat passive, weak to heat and cold, and with a somewhat unintentional lecherous reaction to events, such as assuming Shinkurō wanted a threesome with herself and Murasaki after rescuing her from a fight, or pressing his hand against her chest to prove she was a girl, her personality can change dramatically when she has any sort of knife in her hand. Not long after her first interaction with Shinkurō and Murasaki, she develops a crush on him, and slowly makes the effort to make friends within their circle.
Lin Cheng-Shin (Lin Cheng-Shin)
A female imperial guard of the Kuhōin family, Lin is the newest bodyguard of Murasaki, replacing her former guard, Kiba, due to female convenience. Armed with a pair of katana, her fighting skills are formidable, though not at the level of Yayoi Inuzuka. Although she disapproves of Shinkuro, nevertheless, she accepts him as Murasaki's companion, and frowns heavily on all the attention Shinkuro receives from other girls (even if he is unaware of it). Lin takes Murasaki's wishes literally, including attempting to get Shinkuro and Murasaki wedded to each other, despite not having permission from either party (or their families, for that matter). Under Murasaki's care, Lin is slowly learning about normal life, albeit with some difficulty.


Light novels

  1. Kure-nai (ISBN 4-08-630272-1), December 2005
  2. Kure-nai ~Guillotine~ (ISBN 4-08-630290-X), July 2006
  3. Kure-nai ~Shuuakusai~ (Part 1) (ISBN 978-4-08-630342-2), November 2007
  4. Kure-nai ~Shuuakusai~ (Part 2) (ISBN 978-4-08-630416-0), April 2008


A manga adaption is running in Jump Square magazine, with art by Yamato Yamamoto, the original illustrator of the novels.


An anime adaption started broadcast in Japan on April 3, 2008. It is written and directed by Kō Matsuo. The anime version is different from the manga in that the anime takes a more dramatic approach with a slice of life feel.

External links

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