A small, red-haired man whose deceptively harmless form contains the power to topple governments and fell madmen. Some authorities believe he may actually be an early attempt at battle mecha, rather than a living, breathing being. His usefulness (or destructiveness, depending on one’s point of view) is curtailed by the fact that he is easily controlled by his spunky and somewhat demanding landlady. Also has a weakness for children, and a tendency toward making overly dramatic speeches. Attracts adoring women like picnics attract ants, a phenomenon which baffles most male researchers, while their afflicted feminine counterparts can only rhapsodize about flame-bright hair and Himura’s darker personality.
Himura Kenshin's darker personality, the Hitokiri Battousai breaks free whenever the rurouni is under a great deal of stress -- kind of like a Meiji Era Incredible Hulk (he even does the yellow eyes, but draws the line at the icky green skin). He is stronger, meaner, sexier, and far less polite than Himura's normal self: quite definitely not a force to be dealt with lightly.
In most circumstances, the only way to awaken the Battousai is to threaten the life of someone Himura has decided to protect; however, when it comes to his landlady, even looking at her wrong is grounds for beheading. This process is referred to as "going Battousai", and while Kamiya Kaoru is firmly against killing, protective anger suits her just fine. In fact, it seems likely that the only way she'll ever get some action is to spend quality time with the hitokiri.
(note: Definition shamelessly stolen from h2g2.)
Gohei: "So, do you believe too, that a sword is for protecting people?"
Kenshin: "No. I believe that a sword is a weapon, and Kendo is a technique for killing. Miss Kaoru believes that I cannot kill a man... (smiles) I just love her naive impression of me! I wish that it's the truth, but I'm afraid it isn't."
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