Kamiya Kaoru

Name: Kamiya Kaoru (神谷 薫) Style: Kamiya Kasshin Ryuu (神谷活心 流, Gods Valley Lively Heart Style)
Alias: Kaoru-dono, Himura Kaoru (神谷 薫) Seiyuu: Fujitani Miki (涼風真世)
Age: 17 (June 1862) Voice Actor: Reba West
Other Info: Type O, 41kg, 155cm (5’1″) Live Action: Takei Emi (武井 咲)


Kamiya Kaoru (a.k.a. the Raccoon Girl) appears in the series from the first episode/chapter. She is one of the main characters in the series and adopts Kenshin in her dojo despite the fact that he is the Hitokiri Battousai. Kaoru follows the school of Kamiya Kasshin Ryu as she was taught by her father and passes on the technique to her other resident, Myojin Yahiko. Her physical attributes are her black hair, and blue eyes. Her weapons include the Shinai (a Bamboo Sword) and a Bokken (a Wooden Sword).

Kaoru is known for her terrible cooking, stubborness, bad temper, and jealousy when it comes down to Kenshin. However, she is also caring, ambitious, and strong. Although she thinks no one knows it, everyone knows she is in love with Kenshin.


Kamiya Kaoru was born into a loving and caring family. Her father taught the school of Kamiya Kasshin and after his death, Kaoru took over. In the beginning of the series, Kaoru is seen looking for the “Hitokiri Battousai” as a fake Hitokiri has been harming people and using the name of Kamiya Kasshin in order to give it a bad name. As fate would have it, she corners Kenshin (the real Battousai) and demands to know if he is the hitokiri that is disgracing her school. Kenshin claims he is just a wanderer (Rurouni) and Kaoru goes on her way.

As all anime come into play with a bit of violence, she finds Hiruma Gohei who is the cuprlit behind the Battousai claims. She tries to fight him and instead gets her Shinai broken, then of course, at the knick of time, Kenshin saves her and takes her back to the Dojo.

Afterwards, her housekeeper, Kihei and Kaoru meets him one last time as Kenshin leaves. A turn of events take place and once again Kaoru finds herself in big trouble with Gohei, who is actually Kihei’s younger brother. Kenshin, as usual, comes to the rescue and claims that he is the real Hitokiri Battousai.

Kaoru invites Kenshin to stay at her dojo despite his past. And from then on out, Kenshin lives with Kaoru in her dojo. Pretty soon other people come around and Kaoru grows closer to Kenshin as time passes on. Then again, he also gets her into trouble most of the time…

Watsuki’s Character Notes

The following is quoted off of Shonen Jump’s Rurouni Kenshin graphic novel translations of Watsuki:

No specific model here. If pressed, I’d probably have to say the character Chiba Sanako from the novel “Ryoma no Koibito”—the self-proclaimed “Ryoma’s Girl.” There’s also that “commanding” quality which I tried to incorporate of Sasaki Mifuyu in “Kenkyaku Shobai” by novelist Ikenami Shotaro… but Kaoru wound up as a plain, regular girl regardless (Ah, Well.)

As it turns out, though, “just plain Kaoru” seems to be working out for now, so I can’t complain. Certainly many of my female renders seem to be relating to her. Some of them write that they can’t tell if she’s “strong” or “weak” as a fighter, but the truth is that she is strong.

Kaoru is quite independent for her age, and can hold her own against kendo masters of the many dojos in town. That makes her at very least a national-level champion. If Kaoru does appear weak, it’s only because Kenshin and Sanosuke are so powerful. Whether or not she’ll become Kenshin’s love interest in the future, I haven’t quite yet decided.

Design-wise, there’s no real motif here, either. You could say her look was inevitable. For a girl involved in kendo, after all, a ponytail is de rigeur. (Heh.) A blade, a kimono, a ponytail… what’s not to like, right? Drawing her is enjoyable enough, although filling in her hair is sometimes a pain.

In that I am a “men, glorious and women, cute” kind of guy, it’s true that ideally I’d like Kaoru to be drawn a bit more cutely. “Down-to-Earth” and “poor” are also parts of her character, though, and I can’t overlook that. I do wish I could improve the pattern of her kimono, and let her be at least a little more fashionable.

Technique Guide

Thank you Somak for writing this up! Thank you so much.

  • Hawatari – Kamiya Kasshin Ryuu’s SUCCESION TECHNIQUE. User crosses arms when opponents weapon comes towards him. When weapon is near, user brings hands together to trap weapon, then quickly disarms enemy. If user fails to do so, user is left wide open.