Mei (めい) is a Tensen that was formerly affiliated with Rien and Xu Fu but escaped after disagreeing with Rien's methods to unlock immortality. She was soon found by Hōko and chose to live out her life being raised by him as his daughter. Mei eventually became an ally of Gabimaru and his group in their attempt to retrieve the elixir known as Tan from Lord Tensen and escape Kotaku.
Upon being resurrected, Mei currently resides with Gui Fa, while also living amongst the humans on the mainland, and helps to oversee the revival of the deceased Tensens.
- 1 Appearance
- 2 Personality
- 3 Relationships
- 4 History
- 5 Abilities and Powers
- 6 Trivia
- 7 References
Mei is a child with pink eyes and hair that she wears in two braided Chinese-style buns at the back of her head. She wears a red, long sleeve robe, a skirt, and walked around barefoot.
Originally, Mei started off as a full grown woman and wore a lavender robe. However, after defying Rien, she received a scar-like mark that ran down across her back and had her body reduced to that of a child's. After her first use of Tao, Mei's face and body started to mature and grew about the same height as Fuchi. Her body eventually grew back to what it original was after releasing her Tao for the second time to save Gabimaru. After honoring Hōko's wish by extracting his remaining Tao to rejuvenate herself, Mei reverted back to her former child body.
In her Kishikai state, Mei's body turned into a giant moth; with feathery antennae, vines of anthers emerging from her thorax, and five large petals with eye patterns that acted as wings.
After several years passed since the Edo Period, Mei is revived back to her former child body and is shown wearing similar clothes as she did in the past.
Mei is a shy, quiet, and innocent girl that became easily frightened when harm came to her. She is especially kind and caring to the people around her that she viewed as her allies and can also be accepting of others when seeing their good qualities. When they first met, Mei was afraid of Gabimaru because of his intimating demeanor but after showing signs of respect towards her she wasn't afraid to come near him. Mei also has a sense of knowing what's right from wrong, believing that Rien's cruel research on the Hōko needed to be stopped. Unlike the Tensens, Mei does not have a low opinion on humans, or have any reason to look down on them, and was willing to help the survivors who came to the island in any way she could.
Mei's manner of speech is most noticeably short-spoken when trying to speak Japanese. This is due to her earlier banishment from Lord Tensen, who all developed a proficiency in speaking the language at some point in time. After being taken in by Hōko, whose race also had an understanding for Japanese as well, Mei's smattering developed during her time imitating Hōko's words. After being around Gantetsusai, Mei comedically adopted some of his vocabulary and would sometimes communicate in his way of speaking whenever she talked to him, much to the swordsman's wonder as to who taught her how to speak in such a manner.
Gabimaru initially had gotten off to a bad start with Mei after committing actions that caused her to become scared of him, such as pursuing, restraining and threatening her into giving out information about the Elixir of Life and pointing a sword at her to see if she had regeneration powers like Hōko. It was only after Gabimaru showed her respect while the two were taking a bath that Mei saw him as a good person and felt comfortable being near him. Later, after Gabimaru decided to travel to Hōrai by himself, Mei followed him and saved Gabimaru from being killed by Zhu Jin. Though he was not obligated to look after her, Gabimaru became attached to Mei, as he wanted to protect her from the Dōshi and felt that it was only right that he repay her for saving his life from Zhu Jin. Mei in turn also felt connected to Gabimaru. She was concerned about Gabimaru's mental state after sensing that his Tao was not fully restored from his first usage of Tao. After Gabimaru was prepared to risk his life to defeat Chōbei, Mei cried out to him to stop and rushed in to put an end to his fight by using her Tao, knowing full well that it would speed up the process of her Arborification. When the time came for survivors to raid Hōrai, Mei was most concerned about Gabimaru since she was aware of his backup plan that involved him losing his humanity and rushed to his side after his Tao had been negatively influenced by Zhu Jin. Ultimately, in her last moments, Mei chose to happily say her goodbyes to both Gabimaru and Sagiri in a Tao illusion and tells Gabimaru that during their time together she has come to see him as a source of courage.
Yamada Asaemon Sagiri
1,000 years ago on Kotaku, Mei was the first Tensen created from the Tao of a single Tao puppet created by Rien but was born to believe that her creator was Rien's husband, Xu Fu. She then served as Xu Fu's disciple and obeyed all practices of Tao as part of his research in discovering immortality. She also helped to nurture six young Tensens while they trained in the ways of Tao. As time went by, Mei started to develop feelings of disapproval for all that had been going on around her, and upon discovering that Rien had been sacrificing many of the Hōko's lives after favoring the Outer Way of Tan, Mei tried to stop them from going any further. This however led to her being punished by Rien by having her plant ovule broken, her body reduced to a child's, and being sentenced to engage in Bōchū Jutsu with the Dōshi. She eventually managed to escape from Hōrai and was found by Hōko. Mei then went on to being raised by him and lived happily in the abandoned Hōko village, while also choosing to not concern herself with the activities of Lord Tensen.
Lord Tensen Arc
- Main article: Lord Tensen Arc
Mei spots Gabimaru, Sagiri, Yuzuriha and Senta gazing at the village. Gabimaru senses her presence and goes after her. After being captured by him she cries from his frightening behavior. Sagiri calms her down and takes her back to the group with Hōko taken down. Hōko then persuades them into coming to the village.
While Sagiri and Yuzuriha are taking a bath, Mei supplies them with towels and leaves. She then joins the group discussing about the elixir, the island, and Lord Tensen. Hōko shows them that the elixir exist by separating its hand and regenerating it. Gabimaru looks towards Mei with his sword and asked if she is also blessed with this ability, resulting in her becoming scarred. She then goes to take a bath but is walked in by Gabimaru and Sagiri and screams in panic. Sagiri provides the two with a proper bath and offers to clean Mei. After noticing Mei's marking on her back, Gabimaru advised her that appearance do not matter and that she should not to try hide her marking. Mei notices Gabimaru's respectful behavior and finds it safe to come near him. The two then return to the lodging and rest for the night.
Right after Gabimaru left for Hōrai and was on the verge of death from battling Zhu Jin, Mei appears besides him and helps him escape by creating a crater leading down a cliff. While asleep, the two are found by Tamiya Gantetsusai and Yamada Asaemon Fuchi. She later wakes up slightly grown up which surprises Gabimaru. After speaking for the first time to Gabimaru, he quickly asked her if she knew anything about the elixir and her strange power. Mei says that her power is called Tao but confuses them with her odd explanation. The group are then approached by the Sōshin. Wanting to know how to use Tao, Gantetsusai carries Mei on his shoulder and asked her to teach him how to master it while fighting the Sōshin.
Gantetsusai ask Mei for reports on his progress of awakening Tao as he kills the Sōshin. Mei says no because he was using too much of his strength. Gantetsusai then pointed to Gabimaru but Mei says that he is also using too much of his strength. After looking at her with a scary expression she starts to cry much to Gabimaru's disappointment. Mei is then captured by a Dōshi who is pleased with meeting her and addresses her in a polite manner. The Dōshi explains to them that Mei is similar to Lord Tensen and ask her to return to Hōrai for guidance. She then looks towards Gabimaru with tears in her eyes and instantly appears by her side. He explains that even though she was none of his concern he still wanted to protect her.
Gabimaru asks the Dōshi why they wanted Mei. The Dōshi explains that she is a part of their training in Bōchū Jutsu where they preform sexual congress and join their Yang with her Yin, which causes her to become frighten. She continues to tremble as he explains to them her past of being banished from the palace, being scarred by Rien and given the option of dying or being part of the Dōshi's training. Hearing enough of what they had to say, Gabimaru and Gantetsusai stand behind Mei to defend her from the transformed Dōshi's.
After Fuchi interpreted Mei's words about Tao, Mei helps Gabimaru try to sense his Tao by touching his hand. Gabimaru finds it hard to believe that by accepting his weakness he will be able to learn Tao. However, after Mei states that strength derives from weakness, Gabimaru manages to understand and awakens his Tao. After he steps forward to confront the Dōshi's once again, Mei comments on how Gabimaru possess a huge amount of Tao. She then watches as Gabimaru dodges the Dōshi's invisible attacks. Gantetsusai states that Gabimaru was able to understand Tao quickly because of his ninja training, but Mei shakes her head in disagreement. The three are then shocked to see Gabimaru dispel the Dōshi's transformation.
After Gabimaru and Gantetsusai finish off the Dōshi, Fuchi suggests asking Mei for guidance but Gantetsusai thinks that it would be best for her to return home. Gabimaru tells Mei that he was still indebted to her and was willing to go along with whatever she wanted to do. Before she had a chance to make up her mind, she is shocked to see Gabimaru bleeding from his nose and faints. They then travel halfway up the valley and settle in a cave. After Gabimaru awakens, Mei provides information about what she knows about Tao and has Fuchi interpret her words. The group then decides to get some rest for tomorrow. Mei comes out to see Gabimaru and asked if he was okay. He answers that he was okay, however, Mei becomes frighten when she sees that a part of Gabimaru's Tao is missing.
The next day, the group travels up the valley to reach Hōrai. Upon making it to the top, they encounter Aza Chōbei and Aza Tōma. After Chōbei attacks Gabimaru, he counter attacks by snapping Chobe's neck, but after surviving and throwing Gabimaru to the ground, Mei warns Gabimaru that Chōbei had a large amount of Tao.
While fighting Chōbei, the three notices that Gabimaru is acting unusual. Mei explains that Gabimaru's Tao is acting strange and has lost the thing that made him strong. While fighting Gantetsusai, Tōma orders the enslaved Dōshi to attack her and Fuchi, however, Fuchi draws out his swords to guard Mei. She then watches as Gabimaru fights a transformed Chōbei while in critical condition. After Gabimaru sees an opponent to attack, Mei runs to stop him before he attempts to use up his remaining life. Mei ends the fight by releasing her Tao to create a massive crater. Gabimaru and Tōma remain save on the edge while Chōbei falls down the valley. Mei's body then matures further.
She is then given Gantetsusai's robe for coverage and travels with the group to the front gate of Hōrai where they meet Sagiri, Yuzuriha, Yamada Asaemon Shion and Nurugai. Seeing Mei's state, Hōko asked if she used her power which she answers yes. He then expresses his gratitude that the group kept Mei safe. She is then comforted by Sagiri after seeing the state she is in. After realizing that Gabimaru has loss his memories after shortly waking up, Sagiri pins him down to have him cooperate and restore his Tao. Gantetsusai thinks that they are performing Bōchū Jutsu but Mei blushes saying that it was different yet similar.
The group then relocates to a cave to escape from Lord Tensen's sensory field. Mei body becomes ill and Sagiri asks Fuchi to help make a medicine for her. Fuchi agrees but demands that Mei tells him everything they need to know. Mei relays the information to Fuchi, translating that a Hōshi came to the island in search of ways to achieve immortality, resulting in the creation of the monsters and Lord Tensen who have been practicing the inner and outer way of Tao for 1,000 years. After Yuzuriha hears that a prototype elixir known as Tan has been created by Lord Tensen, she asks why they were going so far in their research. Mei answers that it is possible that they are following the will of Xu Fu, the Hōshi that created Lord Tensen.
Mei's conditions worsens and the three see that her arm starts to transform into a tree. Mei explains that her usage of Tao is causing her to turn into a tree and has little Tao due to having a broken tanden caused by Rien. Hōko offers Mei his Tao to recover but can't bring herself to use him as a sacrifice. Hōko insists, explaining that he hopes she forgives him for not fulfilling her desire to leave the island after seeing her as his late daughter. Mei breaks out into tears honoring his final wish and tells him that she sees him as father. After extracting his Tao, Mei reverts back into a child and says goodbye to Hōko.
The four then gather back to the group. Mei returns Gantetsusai's robe and sees that he is disappointed that her body has shrunken back to her child body. She then senses strong Tao that has just landed on the island coming from either a person or a group of people. Shion and Fuchi believe that it is Shugen and the other Asaemon who were sent as reinforcements, along with another group of criminals. While Sagiri tells everyone that Shugen will be helpful in assisting them, Shion informs them that Shugen despises criminals and gives proof by revealing the story of Shugen executing the Silver Serpent yakuza group and their families. The group moves on by listening to Shion's plan of splitting everyone into two teams for finding Tan and an escape route off the island. They also listen to his strategy of using their Tao attributes to hinder and defeat Lord Tensen. After hearing Yuzuriha's suggestion of abandoning the goal of the mission and leave the island in hiding, Shion gives everyone the option of following their own objective or working together in completing the mission. Unanimously, everyone follows Shion and chooses to cooperate in finding the elixir and escape the island together.
- Main article: Hōrai Arc
Mei provides the group with information regarding the sea monsters guarding the island and the ships located deep within Hōrai as a way to escape the island. She also tells them that the elixir is located in Rien's, and her previous, laboratory. The group then sits through lessons instructed by Gabimaru and Yuzuriha on how to use Tao. Once they were done, Mei assists Gantetsusai after becoming exhausted from the lessons by massaging his shoulders. She is then assigned to the Escape Route Securing Team. Gantetsusai suggests that they send her departing without having her wait for the Elixir Team. However, Gabimaru asks Mei if there was anything she wanted to do before leaving the island. Mei confesses that she wishes to live a normal life off the island but to also reunite with Xu Fu and Rien to know why they underwent a major change in the past. Gabimaru honors Mei's request and promises to have her see the two again.
During the making of their strategy in infiltrating the palace, Mei tells them about the layout of the palace building and the temples each Tensen reside in. After finish strategizing, the group decides to make their move tonight. Mei then takes the time to explain to Gabimaru and Tōma how Chōbei managed to fuse with the Flower Tao of the Waitanhua flower. They then walk back to Mu Dan's corpse where Gabimaru takes one of his plant stingers, using the fusion of Flower Tao as his backup plan. Mei is against this idea since it is a dangerous risk and certain conditions must be met in order for someone to obtain the powers of Flower Tao. However, Gabimaru is aware of how Chōbei took control and knows what he has to do in order to do the same.
Mei joins the Elixir Retrieval Team and infiltrates the palace. The teams signals the Escape Route Securing Team that it was safe to enter and then senses the layout of the palace, which causes Mei and Sagiri to become disturbed by the corpses they sense in Rien's laboratory. They then enter successfully into the building but are met by Ran who knew that Mei would be the one to guide them.
Ran tries to have Mei return to Lord Tensen's side, revealing that the Elixir of Life has finally been completed. Mei explains that she is different from the rest of them and came to say goodbye before leaving the island. Despite his disappointment, Ran says that the Rite of Just Consumption will have to continue, which is to capture the humans and offer them as sacrifices to the grandmaster. Seeing as how their plan to avoid Lord Tensen has failed, the group moves on to their second plan of fighting against them. Gabimaru tells Sagiri and Mei to find the elixir, however, Mei warns Gabimaru that they are not in the Rentan Temple. Ran reveals that he has rearranged the layout of the palace before they arrived. He then traps Mei by controlling the Tao on the ground. While Gabimaru and Yuzuriha fight Ran, Sagiri frees Mei from her bindings and the two proceed to head to the Rentan Temple.
While heading to the Rentan Temple, Mei and Sagiri hear loud noises coming from the Dō'in Temple. Sagiri assures Mei that Gabimaru will be okay since he has a backup plan, causing her to worry since she knows what it entails. Sagiri becomes shocked and horrified after Mei explains what Gabimaru plans to do but knows that they must move forward after arriving at the Rentan Temple.
Mei and Sagiri enter the temple but see that Gui Fa is in the room instead of Rien. The Tensen then says that they will stop them if they take a step forward from their spot but is told by Sagiri that she does not wish to fight and would like to apologize to Gui Fa on behave of the humans that have trespassed on their island and asks if her group would be allowed to return home safely. Gui Fa says that they will honor her request but warns her that it would be pointless to return to Japan by revealing Rien's plan to turn every human into Waitanhua flowers and form the giant Banko to create more perfected Tan. Sagiri asks Gui Fa why would they go to such lengths, to which Gui Fa explains that the Tensens only see humans as material to create more Tan. Mei disagreed, saying that Xu Fu tried to help humanity with his research and that using human lives was wrong. However, Gui Fa explains that their plans have changed ever since humans first came to the island in the past.
After the ritual circle reveals that all the Tensens were defeated, Gui Fa prepares to report back to Rien with no intentions on avenging their comrades. However, before leaving, Gui Fa asks Mei why she chose to come back to Hōrai. Mei answers that she finally understood what life meant after remembering her time with Hōko. The three then feel the palace starting to tremble from the Mōnshin breaching the walls outside, allowing the second landing party to enter the palace. Mei and Sagiri come under attack by both the Iwagakure shinobi and the Dōshi but are saved by Yuzuriha, who they become happy to see again. After being aware that Iwagakure shinobi and the Dōshi have raided the palace, Mei is asked by Sagiri if she was willing to accompany them to confront Rien. However, before she could answer, Yamada Asaemon Isuzu appears with the intention of eliminating Yuzuriha, as ordered by Shugen to take down the convicts, but is hindered by Sagiri.
After Zhu Jin fuses with the Banko, Mei's starts to witness her body changing due to her Tao going into disarray from Zhu Jin's influence and worries for her situation. After the remaining surviving humans gather together, Mei explains to everyone that morning is when the Banko will bloom and the Arborification will take effects on those who breath in the Tan particles in the air. The survivors then decide that their best option is to work together to destroy the Banko and scattered to their designated tandens; with Mei being in charge of locating the tandens for the group while staying by Yuzuriha's side to give out the signal to perform a coordinated attack on the tandens.
- Main article: Departure Arc
After the group manages to destroy the Zhu Jin-fused Banko, Mei and Yuzuriha run outside the temple and encounter Gui Fa, as a child, holding the Basin. Gui Fa then tells them the secrets they found in the Rentan Temple, revealing that the Rien they know is actually one of the many puppets created by Rien, the wife of Xu Fu who plans to depart to Japan and turn every citizen into Tan in order to revive her husband Xu Fu, which will happen within two hours, shocking both Mei and Yuzuriha. Not knowing what they should do after this revelation, Gui Fa asks Mei for her suggestion. Before she could answer, Yuzuriha tells Mei in panic that they need to make haste off the island. Before leaving, Gui Fa warns them that if they choose to go after Rien then only two men and one female will survive based on the I Ching ritual they found in the temple.
The survivors gather at the entrance to the floodgates and enter. The group sadly sees that all the ships have been destroyed with the exception of one but is unable to set sail due to the wreckage blocking the water from flowing. As Gabimaru, Sagiri, and Nurugai make a desperate attempt at removing the wreckage, Mei, despite knowing the risk of her life ending, makes the decision to enter her Kishikai to clear a path for the others. Using her large petal wings, Mei blows away the debris and gives everyone the opportunity to head towards the ship. Gabimaru yells out to Mei and reminds her that if she stays in her Kishikai she will die and not have a chance to live a normal life. After hearing him, Mei creates an illusion of herself and hugs Sagiri and Gabimaru, telling them both that this was the only way she could take responsibility and face her fate and thanks them for all they have done for her. She then ends the illusion and have Gabimaru and Sagiri transported on to the ship. After the ship leaves, Mei's crumbling soul apologizes to the people that helped her for not being able to flee with them, to Hōko, to the Tensens, and to Rien for not realizing how sadden they were when they banished her and for not being able to stop them.
At some unknown point in time before leaving the island, Gui Fa had managed to acquire either a replica or the original plant ovule of Mei's and had it cultivate within the Basin to allow her to be revived along with the other Tensens.
After several centuries had passed (presumably during the Reiwa Era), Mei becomes fully ressurrected after finishing her cultivation period within the Basin and is currently living amongst the humans with Gui Fa, who has become an online teacher. After checking in on the deceased Tensens' plant ovules, Mei informs Gui Fa that Ju Fa and Tao Fa are starting to develop earlier and walks along with them to go and revisit.
Abilities and Powers
- Further information: Tao
Mei possesses Water-attribute Tao and has knowledge of its principles. Despite her small body, she has been shown capable of using it to enhance her physical strength and cause harm to her targets. Mei is also able to release a large amount of her Tao to create craters. However, after her tanden was broken, Mei's Tao usage was limited as any large quantity she lost would cause her to mature until she reached her original body and slowly Arborify. This side effect could only be reversed if she absorbed another beings Tao to rejuvenate herself, similar to the consumption of Tan. During her final moments, Mei was also shown capable of creating Tao illusions.
As a Tensen, Mei possesses the regeneration abilities of Flower Tao, which blessed her with an incomplete form of immortality. Since she possesses Water Tao, Mei's regeneration can only be weakened if she were to be attacked by a Tao user who possesses the Earth-attribute, and the only known way of killing her was if the said Earth Tao user completely destroys her plant ovule within her tanden.
As a Tensen, Mei is able to enter into a Kishikai state. Using her large wings like-flower petals, Mei became capable of flight and could release a large gust of wind to blow away anything in her path by flapping them.
- Like the rest of Lord Tensen, Mei is named after a flower. Mei's name meaning "plum blossom".
- Also, like the other members of Lord Tensen, Mei shares similarities to one of the Eight Immortals, Cao Guojiu being the case.
- Both tried to stop a love one from committing atrocities but ended up having to leave their former life behind to live out another.
- Cao Guojiu was regarded as the Chinese deity of acting and theatre. Gui Fa made a reference to this when they told Mei that they viewed her emotions as "play-acting" since Tensens were created to feel nothing.
- Also, like the other members of Lord Tensen, Mei shares similarities to one of the Eight Immortals, Cao Guojiu being the case.
- Mei's rankings in the Popularity Polls:
- In the first popularity poll, Mei ranked 9th place with 390 votes.
- In the second popularity poll, Mei ranked 10th place with 446 votes.
- In the Jigokuraku Fashion Review of Volume 3, Mei's attire received 5 stars.
- On the cover of volume 6, Mei was originally depicted with golden eyes like the others Tensens but was later changed to pink on the illustration color pages.
- Mei's Kishikai bares resemblance to the kaiju Mothra from the Godzilla franchise.
- For reasons unknown, Mei was the only Tensen created without possessing Yang chi. According to a Dōshi, this was supposedly the reason as to why she was banished from Hōrai since she was viewed by Lord Tensen as an "inferior breed". Additionally, Mei's Kishikai does not show any signs of having two bodies representing Yin and Yang.
- Since she was the first Tensen created by Rien, Mei was originally the oldest out of her siblings. This role was eventually passed on to Gui Fa after Mei spent a presumable amount of time reviving from the Basin.
- Mei is the only Tensen whose female form does not have her stand at 173 cm.
- Mei and Gui Fa are the only Tensens who have not showcased their regeneration ability in the series.
- Like the other Tensens, Mei inherited Rien's child-like artistry and Chinese language.