Heroes of Freedom City
The Crimson Katana
Anti-Hero Descendant of Orignal Crimson Katana
Name The Crimson Katana AKA Kimiyo Ranaga
Height 5’ 3"
Weight 105 Lbs
Hair Color Black
Occupation Anti Hero
Affiliations None Her father Katanarchists
Power Source Mystic/Training
Power Level Gamma Metahuman
Threat Level Yellow
The original Crimson Katana, Asano Ranaga, lived the life of a petty thief and thug for the Yakuza until he discovered Tegamusha’s Three Flames Katana, named for the intricate flames on the blade. Lord Tegamusha created the katana at the start of the Sino-Japanese War in 1894, forging it in fires fed by the bodies of 300 Chinese prisoners and tempered in their blood. The blade gained infamy in its use against soldiers and innocents alike until Tegamusha himself was slain by a sniper’s bullet in 1895. Stolen by the assassin, the katana was lost for decades until Asano found it in 1935. Rising above his common killer’s status, the Crimson Katana soon stood as the Emperor’s personal bodyguard and assassin. He fled occupied Japan in 1949 after slaying the Human Tank and Gunner. He died mysteriously that same year in Nepal although few knew of his death until years later.
Toshiro Ranaga, the only child of Asano, grew up hearing legends of the blade and his father’s exploits, and he studied martial arts and swordplay all his life. When his father disappeared, Toshiro spent years learning mystical means to find his father. Rather than bring his father back from the dead to him, the young sorcerer’s magic drew him to his father’s resting place, where he found his legacy. Toshiro used the katana’s bloody history and imbued it with some magical abilities during countless rituals with the blade. If his boasts were to be believed, he may also have had the Human Tank’s severed metal head forged into a wakizashi nearly strong enough to scratch impervium (or he simply forged a second blade with arcane properties). The second Crimson Katana operated in Southeast Asia all throughout the 1960s and 1970s as a mercenary ronin, both alone and with his followers, the quasi mystical Katanarchist cult.
Kimiyo Ranaga is the fourth child of Toshiro Ranaga and the only one who survived the 1977 bloodbath ordered by Dimitri Russov. The Russian crime lord hired Toshiro and the Katanarchists to eliminate a number of rivals quickly and quietly, tasks at which they failed, even so Ranaga’s family and cult paid the price. Of 58 total members, only 14 Katanarchists survived in hiding throughout the 1980s rebuilding their forces. Toshiro survived to smuggle his daughter to America to live with her maternal grandmother. She lived as Kimiyo Toronji for nineteen years, unaware of the legacy from which she came. In 1995, the 58-year-old Crimson Katana committed ritual suicide in a sorcerous rite, priming the blade with more mystical powers. The cult then hid the blades and waited. Kimiyo inherited her father’s considerable fortune and real estate holdings.
In 1997, to Kimiyo’s horror, her grandmother, who was now on her deathbed, revealed the truth of her family and her fortune. She discovered the katana and wakizashi, as well as her father’s Crimson Katana armor, hidden behind a secret panel in her San Francisco penthouse. When she touched the blade, she cut her finger on its razor-sharp edge, and her father possessed her body. He banished Kimiyo’s mind into the blade and she fought him, but he used her body to revive and rebuild the Katanarchists, his cult of assassins. Only after the Katana’s defeat by Eldrich in 1998 did Kimiyo regain control of her body.
Now, with her blades mystically hidden as tattoos on her upper arms, Kimiyo can transform instantly into a stylized version of the Crimson Katana’s armored samurai robes when she touches the tattoos. (She can also instantly will the change back to her normal form and the blades automatically become tattoos again.) She lives a life under various identities, forced to hide due to the criminal activities done by her body. She rarely points out to people that she’s not the crime lord they believe her to be, but the Katanarchists seem to know mystically when their master is not in control of his daughter’s body and attack her on sight. She spends much of her time trying to undo her father’s plans and dismantle his cult, but she also takes on contracts only to kill or expose those who contracted her. Eldrich, Foreshadow, and Troy Griffin (son of the Human Tank and head of the Ministry of Powers) are among the few who know her secret.
Crimson Katana is an anti-hero looking to undo the evils her father and grandfather wrought upon the world. She is a driven, emotionally distant young woman who trusts only those who earn her confidence. In her civilian identity, she is a well-to-do trust fund girl whose main interests appear to be martial arts, ancient weapons and swords, and shopping.
If her father possesses her, Crimson Katana is a power-mad sorcerer and leader of a cult of assassins who willingly die for him. He constantly seeks both more magical power and needs to be noticed, always marking his kills so there is no doubt the Crimson Katana struck.