Toji (刀使, lit., "sword-user") are shrine maidens, particularly those who are officially affiliated with the Special Sword Administration Bureau, who are given the duties of responding to the threats caused by Aradama. They are known mainly for using Japanese swords with supernatural power called okatana.
Military units and Toji, as a whole, comprise the Special Ritual Riot Squad, a military service that is organized to specialize in anti-Aradama combat.
Aspiring Toji are female students of pre-adult age—between 13 and 18 years of age. Those who are successfully admitted receive training in both academics and swordsmanship in one of five middle and high schools that specialize in educating Toji. These are Minoseki Academy, Heijou Institute, Renpu Girls' School, Osafune Girls' Academy and Ayanokouji Martial Arts School. At this stage, students are already considered Toji in their own right, and are expected to answer to Aradama sightings, although depending on the threat level of such Aradama, they are taught to defer any action for until senior Toji have arrived.
Uniform and Equipment
As students and government figures, Toji present themselves through the uniforms of the school they are affiliated with. This uniform, which varies among the five schools, bears the elements of military-style attire and both the characteristics of Western-style and Japanese-style school uniforms. Aside from this, they are also given their service weapon, the okatana, which are used primarily to defeat Aradama. Information on the Toji and the okatana registered to them is recorded in an identification booklet.
Toji are also given several additional tools to further aid them in responding to threats. The Spectrum Finder, which replaced the archaic Spectrum Meter, acts as a communication device and a sensor that detects nearby Aradama as well as its threat level. Also, in large-scale Aradama battles and high-risk situations, Toji can gain access to the S-Equipment, which gives a massive but temporary boost to the Toji's combat capabilities.
In order to defeat Aradama more efficiently and to minimize injury in combat, Toji are trained to use several abilities that mainly use the okatana as an intermediary.
- Utsushi - Transforms the user's body into an energy-like state, allowing the user to take damage without direct bodily injury.
- Jin'i - Allows the user to move at superhuman speeds.
- Hachimanriki (八幡力) - Increases one's physical strength using divine power.
- Myougan (明眼) - Gives the user's eyes the ability to visually detect heat signatures.
- Toukaku (透覚) - Alters hearing to be able to audibly detect faint sounds.
- Kongoushin (金剛身) - Coats the user's body in a gold-colored material that momentarily dampens and nullifies the impact of incoming weapons.
Retirement and Dismissal
Upon graduating from high school, Toji can officially enter a process of retirement. In this process, the Toji would return the okatana in their possession and are removed from the roster of active Toji. However, their records remain in the database of the Special Sword Administration Bureau, and these can be accessed by the authorities in certain situations. The okatana returned by retired Toji can thus be registered to a new Toji. Meanwhile, retired Toji generally enter the workplace, at times employed in occupations related to the duties of Toji and the Special Sword Administration Bureau.
The powers of a Toji enter a gradual process of diminishing as soon as a Toji reaches adulthood. For this reason, it is recommended for Toji to retire upon attaining adult age. One exception to this is Yukari Origami who, for unexplained reasons, was able to retain her Toji powers despite being at around 30 years of age at the present time.
Originally, Toji served dual roles. As wielders of okatana, they slayed and purified Aradama, and as shrine maidens, they retrieved any noro gathered from slain Aradama, separated them and enshrined them as part of the shintai in Japanese temples. This practice, however, started declining during the Meiji Era where the number of established shrines was diminished due to economic reasons, and noro from closed shrines were processed into Spectrum Meters or transformed into Aradama.
Several years later, as Japan feared for a wartime scenario, the country sought to militarize both noro and the Toji system. As defensive technology based on noro were developed with the help of the United States, back in Japan, Toji slowly lost their purpose as shrine maidens and adopted their current roles in slaying Aradama and aiding the Origami Family in stockpiling Noro.
List of Toji
Note: All Toji are the current owners of their specified Okatana unless otherwise specified.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Ise and Maezaki are the two remaining named but unspecified contestants of the National Swordsmanship Tournament. One of them is from Renpu, the other is from Ayanokouji.