In the Third Age.
Hiroki Hyuga is a member of the Hyuga Clan and father of Unithien Earthhaven through Varalia Earthhaven. He was run through with the family heirloom sword Caraxa by Varalia who escaped with Unithien. He survived by invoking the power of Death, however, and returned to life as a Lich. He and other surviving Hyuga were captured by Kuro Tori's Blue Dragon pirates after the Cataclysm and became the Pirate King's slaves. He was reunited with Varalia and Unithien in Shipwreck Cove during the Second Great War and accompanied the Fellowship of Shipwreck Cove to Devilfish Strait in search of Unithien who had been kidnapped by a sea serpent. During the voyage, Hiroki was revealed as one of the leaders of a conspiracy with plans to overthrow both Kuro Tori and the goddess Tiamat, and he was captured and beheaded for his crimes. Being undead, Hiroki survived the Catastrophe and ended up in the care of Unithien, becoming her mentor in the dark arts in the Fourth Age.
Lord of RyugashiEdit
Hiroki was born to the Hyuga Clan in Yamato and would later become the uncle of the famous Shogun Masamori Hyuga. He was a child prodigy and he specialized in the dark arts which intrigued him. Using his clan's wealth, he lived a carefree lifestyle in his own estate in the clan's capital Ryugashi and occasionally bought slaves, particularly elves who fascinated him with their beauty, to sate his sexual urges.
At the age of 14, the young lord bought his most beautiful slave yet, the elf Varalia Earthhaven, whom she abused sexually until she gave birth to their daughter Unithien. Because of his authority and his clan looking the other way, Hiroki could do as he pleased and spent nights with his many slaves and he got interested in necromancy and shamanism after acquiring ancient tomes, the Twins, which revealed fascinating information to him which he intended to put to good use.
Hiroki's cruelty backfired years later when Varalia, seeing herself and her daughter abused one time too many, finally snapped and got the courage to attack the young lord who wasn't expecting such resistance. The elfess ran Hiroki through with Caraxa, a sword found in the Hyuga Clan's treasury, and escaped with Unithien while leaving Hiroki behind to die in a pool of blood.
Hiroki survived, however, by using forbidden necromantic rites but it left him deformed. In an effort to hide his now horrific look, he masked himself with an elaborate mix of potions and magic to appear as young and fair as he had once been.
Hiroki stayed in the shadows during the years of the Unification of Yamato, Yamatian Invasion and the Great War, instead letting his brothers and nephews rule the Yamato Empire after his nephew, Shogun Masamori Hyuga, had dethroned Emperor Takeshi Ofuchi. When the Grand Alliance's army came to put an end to the threat posed by the Shogun's Yamatian supporters, Hiroki remained in hiding as he was more interested in staying alive and studying necromancy than helping his countrymen in the war.
Eventually the Cataclysm struck and the demons invaded, putting an end to the Great War and ushering in an age of the Four Duchies ruled by four rival archdemons. Hiroki stayed out of the demons' way, and eventually he and his relatives Jaotu Hyuga and Sayuri Hyuga found a safe haven in Shipwreck Cove ruled by the Blue Dragon pirates. He quickly proved himself useful to the Pirate King Kuro Tori and was allowed to live among the pirates as long as he aided them in their efforts against the Western Horde.
Hiroki spent the following years gathering intel on Varalia, who he learned had become a prominent figure in Aison's Grey Cult, as well as on their daughter Unithien who turned out to be serving the Church of the Memory of Cardia in Remon. He had plans for them and used his contacts in the Dwarven Triad as a means to keep an eye on their activities until he'd be ready to make his move and be reunited with them.
A Vision of the FutureEdit
- "Surprised to see me, dear child? Hiroki Hyuga is more crafty than you give him credit for! Stop pouting and come give your old man a hug!"
- —An image of Hiroki to Unithien Greyrain
A vision of a rotting Hiroki showed up in Unithien's mind during the Dresdens' trip through the Land of the Dead. The experience frightened Unithien whose mind was scarred by seeing the father she hadn't expected to see again. The vision quickly faded once the Dresdens had returned to the Land of the Living, and Unithien soon had other things to worry about and thus didn't ponder her father's appearance too much even if she would remember it for a long time.
Hiroki had had specific reasons for contacting Unithien this way, however. He wanted to see first-hand how resourceful his daughter could be in stressful situations and thanks to the information the Triad had provided him with, he saw that Unithien would indeed be very useful to him and the Triad in the future.
Hiroki was in Kuro Tori's court when the Pirate King welcomed the newly arrived group of travellers, which included Varalia and Unithien, to Shipwreck Cove. Varalia and Unithien reacted with shock at seeing him alive after all these years, but Hiroki tried to keep the scene calm as he meekly welcomed them to the port city. He ended up acting as Kuro Tori's spokesman when the Pirate King wasn't willing to converse with the travellers in Common.
More info later.
Hiroki, reduced to a head once more, ended in the care of Unithien who had become a Confessor in the new Kingdom of Zion after dedicating herself to the Clergy of Artemicia. In the years following the Catastrophe that ushered in the Fourth Age, Hiroki, whose connection to Death deepened and granted him powers skirting those of a demilich, became a mentor to his daughter who was eager to learn more of the dark arts to combat them. However, their relationship remained sour despite Hiroki's best attempts to make amends and earn Unithien's trust again.
Aliases and NicknamesEdit
- Lord of Ryugashi
- His former title.
Appears as a handsome, silver-haired man in his late 20s but is actually far older and simply masks his true age with a mix of potions and magic. His unnaturally small earlobes and hair colour also hint at magical deception in his looks.
Personality and TraitsEdit
Charming, calculating, intelligent. Turned out to be a very cunning schemer as well, having directed events in Shipwreck Cove from behind the scenes to achieve his goals. Despises the gods and believes that it's high time for humanity to become masters of their own destiny.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
As an elderly necromancer he has command over the dead and can cast destructive spells. He managed to survive what should've been a fatal wound although why he survived is believed to be tied to the dark arts he practices.
Hiroki and Decanus are both men with ambition and appear to share some sort of a working relationship due to Hiroki's group travelling as 'guests' hidden in the cargo hold of Decanus's ship during the search for Unithien. What exactly this relationship entails remains to be seen.
Hiroki tolerated Gilgamesh despite the warrior's bluntness, understanding that the warrior's help was needed for the conspirators' plot to succeed. However, when Gilgamesh crossed the line by acting independently behind everyone else's backs, persuading Kusotare to side with him, and hurting Unithien, it was too much for Hiroki to ignore. When the time to confront Gilgamesh came, Hiroki put an end to the risen warrior's scheming by shattering Gilgamesh's phylactery and thus banishing the warrior's spirit from the Land of the Living while letting Gilgamesh know that Hiroki would not let anyone hurt his daughter ever again.
Hiroki taught his nephew Jaotu many destructive black magic spells and made him his eyes and ears in the Hyuga Clan during his absence.
After ending up in the Cove, Hiroki became one of Kuro Tori's special slaves. He remained stoic in the face of adversity, which amused Kuro Tori enough to make Hiroki his translator as a reward and punishment. Hiroki followed Kuro Tori's orders without question, appearing as a man who had resigned to a life of servitude under the Hyuga's enemy. However, Kuro Tori never fully trusted Hiroki but chose to bide his time and see whether the elder Hyuga would provide him with amusement.
Hiroki carefully hatched a plan which would force Marcus to make a choice which would end favourably for the Hyuga. Despite his polite interactions with Marcus, Hiroki sees him as a useful pawn and does his best to subtly manipulate Marcus for his own ends. This manipulation came with a cost, however, once Marcus realized that Hiroki was more than he seemed and that the Hyuga may not be as innocent as they appeared to be at first glance.
Moebius doesn't trust Hiroki but is willing to work alongside the fellow necromancer to accomplish his goals. He often makes sure to let Hiroki know which of them is the one in charge. Hiroki, meanwhile, is polite around Moebius, directing the necromancer's powers for his benefit.
Oscar respected Hiroki who, despite being the Pirate King's slave as well as member of the Hyuga Clan who had once opposed the Grand Alliance Oscar had been member of, acted like a gentleman and sage towards him during the years they ineracted in the Cove. The events in Devilfish Strait, however, put Oscar's trust in the sage to the test as he slowly came to realize that Hiroki was more cunning than he had appeared at first glance and was planning something behind everyone's backs. Oscar's frustration with him grew to the point that he openly confronted Hiroki and questioned his allegiance to Kuro Tori. However, Hiroki still continued being polite while reminding Oscar of his oath as a captain to the Pirate King.
Ever since the trapped demon Rahovart was presented to him, Hiroki has been treating him as a slave, using both threats and persuasion to have the demon do his bidding. To him Rahovart represents the invaders who crushed the ambitions of the Hyuga and sees Rahovart having fallen under his power as an ironic twist of fate.
Sayuri hasn't interacted with her great uncle much but shows respect to him. Hiroki hasn't likewise talked to his great niece much but has kept an eye on her activities.
Hiroki viewed Susumu as a simple brute whom he could manipulate as he had done with many other pirates. His overconfidence ended up being his undoing, however, when Susumu acted out of impulse and beheaded the necromancer, forcing Hiroki to take drastic measures to free himself and continue his quest for the remainder of the great war. Susumu's actions ended up having far-reaching consequences for Hiroki who had to come to grips with the call of Death he could no longer fully ignore.
Unithien was born from the union of Varalia and Hiroki, and Hiroki saw great potential in her because of her bloodline. Unithien was horrified by her father and escaped with Varalia although. She still has conflicted feelings about him, and Hiroki does hold her in great esteem despite their dark past.
Varalia was one of the slaves whom the then-young Hiroki abused sexually. She eventually ran him through with a sword and left him to die. Hiroki survived, however, and after regaining his strength he kept an eye on Varalia's progress in the Yamatian military.