Kaze Hikaru has a large learning curve about Edo period history when first delved into. It also takes a volume or two to get through the exposition of the main characters. However, what has kept me reading is the heroine Sei, also known as Kamiya Seizaburo, 16 year old sworn samurai. Although a girl, Sei decides to hide her gender to become a samurai in order to revenge the deaths of her brother and father. Her devotion to the way of life and her friends is admirable. Only fellow swordsman Soji Okita, knows that Sei is a girl.
The scene below occurs when the troop has been ordered to apprehend some rebels, and Sei is fighting alongside Soji when he goes down. She realizes that Soji is covered in blood. Furious, Sei fights like a demon to take down any of the offenders in their vicinity and protect Soji’s body. While Sei despairs, a higher ranking officer arrives and discovers that Soji is breathing and has actually passed out from a fever.
After recovering with the medic, Soji awakens to find Sei at his side. Once assured that Soji is okay, Sei decides to return to the battle. At this point Soji realizes that Sei was able to protect him despite her small stature, and how dedicated she has become to her chosen path.
This scene is one of the more memorable from the beginning of the series because it shows how passionate Sei is for fellow samurai, Soji Okita, and her determination to fight to protect him with her life. It also is one of the few points of clarity for Soji when he realizes his emotions for Sei as a girl, although at this point it is still respect or awe at her determination. (Soji is the more oblivious type when it comes to girls.) Obviously, Sei loves Soji very much.