“We are what the world has made us. We have all been lied to about the light at the end of the tunnel…and we have found new life in granting death.” –Ichiro Takahashi explaining what Shinkokira is.
Shinkokira is a barbaric and murderous cult of devil-worshippers. They serve as the main antagonists of The Fires Rise and The Evils of Shinkokira, seeking to deprive Rengoku’s citizens of their faith in God and keep them in a perpetual state of fear.
Through several despicable and horrifying rituals, some members of Shinkokira were able to fully abandon their humanity and evolve into a special breed of demon known as the Corrupted.
Members of Shinkokira are of all ages, sizes, and backgrounds, and as such all vary in appearance. The only common trait amongst them are the black hooded sweaters they wear, helping them to blend into darkness very easily and capture potential victims without them even knowing what’s happening until it’s too late.
How Shinkokira was first formed and how long they were active is unknown. However, there were many activities bearing a resemblance to their own as discovered and shared by Ryuuji Hasashi. Similar organizations involving devil worship were discovered in North America prior to Shinkokira’s arrival in Rengoku, namely a black metal band backmasking its music with subtle triggers that would encourage and in many cases convince listeners to commit atrocities.
Whether this group or any other is related to Shinkokira is currently unknown. Ryuuji however did come across evidence that Shinkokira itself had struck Tokyo some time before arriving in Rengoku, committing large displays of arson and murdering anywhere from twenty to fifty citizens in the span of three months.
The Fires Rise
Shinkokira arrived in Rengoku in the fall of Nobuyuki Honda‘s seventeenth year, their string of atrocities becoming known throughout the city as the “Devil’s Due” murders and thus leading many citizens to call them the Devil’s Debt-bearers. Their murder of a woman near the Hokuso Hotel led Nobuyuki to take interest in them and eventually plot to defeat them by any means necessary.
Little did he know that he was their prime target, having been informed of his importance in the ongoing war between Heaven and Hell and ordered to destroy him. They were particularly pleased to be able to call upon one as powerful as Asmodia for their cause, but to their horror, the archdemon proved no match for their adversary, whose allies continued to increase and include even the divine. Faced with no other choice, they plotted to go on the offensive. If they couldn’t destroy Nobuyuki, they could at least keep him away long enough for them to accomplish their mission.
There was no seemingly no restriction on who could join Shinkokira while they were active, but they mainly recruited those who had very tough lives full of turmoil, particularly those who felt there was nothing left living for and who shared the cult’s nihilistic view that God didn’t care about them anymore. Many of them during their time within the cult have slowly become insane and go to more extreme measures during their activity. As such, they will sometimes commit arson and mayhem out of their own free will and increase the severity of the torture they inflict, some of them even going as far as raping their victims before killing them. Recruits typically ranged from fifteen to forty years of age, unfortunately meaning that many of them were students at Dai Tenshi High School.
There is no sort of hierarchy within Shinkokira’s ranks. There is one singular leader, of course, but groups are able to operate independently so long as their actions met the cult’s end goal. They are all, however, at the mercy and command of any demons that manifest themselves before them.
Known members of Shinkokira are listed below, as is their fate:
Tamiko Aoki (sacrificed by order of leader; possessed by unknown high-ranking demon)
Akeno Sugihara (killed by Ryuuji Hasashi; possessed by Leviathan)
Ichiro Takahashi (evolved into Corrupted; killed by Nobuyuki Honda)
All members of Shinkokira have their deep-seated hatred of God as what they perceive is their greatest strength. Many of them, however, have no prior combat experience. What they excel at are fear tactics and stealth, able to evade and escape law enforcement with relative ease. It appears to be working in their favour; so far, no living member of Shinkokira has been arrested.
When they relinquish their humanity and become Corrupted, however, they become far more of a threat, proving almost as powerful as the demons they summon for their cause. Indeed, one could say that by that point, their greatest strength is their own insanity, or perhaps pure malevolence.
- Shinkokira’s name is a combination of the Japanese words for “faith” (shinkō) and “killer” (kira), therefore making them “faith killers”.