Height: Around 5'3 or 4.
Age: 1 (He appears as a ten year old boy)
Origins: Ichikawa, Shimousa province.
Spirit Bead: "Jin" (Sympathy)
Birthmark: On his left side (in the novels). It is never revealed in the anime.
Born January 1476. Before he was born, his grandfather Bungobee (Nui and Kobungo's father) found a shining bead in the river. Nui accidentally ate it, and since Daihachi's birth, his left hand had been ever closed.
Shinbei was born Daihachi, in Ichikawa village. He spent his first two years growing up in the area with his parents Fusahachi and Nui. When fugitives Inuzuka Shino and Inukai Genpachi stood at the Konaya Inn with Kobungo, Nui and Fusahachi stay coincedentally as well. Later, Niiori Hodayuu and the Ashikaga's men cornered the two ciminals at the inn. Kobungo discovered Fusahachi had turned the men in and goes to protect them, breaking his vow of pacifism. A fight ensued, in which Fusahachi accidentally kicked his son in the side (this is where his birthmark appears). During the rage, Fusahachi fells Nui, and Kobungo took his head in turn.
Later, the monk Chudai stood at the inn, and discovering the three dog warriors, tells that Daihachi is one of them. He renamed him Shinbei (a more honourable name), and Shinbei's left hand opens, revealing the Jin bead. This was the 22nd of July, 1478.
In the anime, Kobungo is going to leave Daihachi in the care of farmers. When he is crossing a stream, Shinbei's left hand opened and reveals the bead. Fuse takes hims here.
On the 5th of August, Fuse's spirit arriveed, and took the boy to care for him. Fuse took him to Mt. Toyama, in Awa, and trained him, divinly increasing his skills and appearance. In March of 1583, Satomi Yoshizane is encountered by Hikita Motofuji's hitmen on Mt. Toyama. Shinbei came down from the mountain and rescues him. He was the first of the Dog Warriors to meet their grandfather.
Shinbei comes off as being very closed minded and self-centered. In fact, he shows little concern for his fellow spirit brothers. He is going to do whatever it takes to ensure the Satomi's victory. He may seem cold, but it was a measure Fuse probably had to take in order for the Dog Warriors' sucess. Of course, he boasts his powers a little too far in the anime, and completly manages to alienate himself from the other dog warriors. I don't think this was his intention though, as he starts crying when evryone gets in his way.
Shinbei is obviously more skilled than the other Dog Warriors. This is due to his super-natural training. He is skilled with many weapons, and has divine agility and strength. In the books, however, his powers seem to fail him on the seas when he is attacked by the pirate Kairyu-oh Shuragorou. He is able to win thanks to his retainer. Other than that, he is nearly invinceable.
In the books, he appears as Daihachi in chapter 37. He re-enters on Mt. Toyama in chapter 108. In the anime, he appears as a baby in Demon's Melody and re-enters in Dog Warriors in the Netherworld.
In the books, he recieves Yoshizane's long sword, Katsukigata. He also has Fuse-hime's mystic short sword. Although he has subperb skills with blades, he uses tessen (iron fans). In the anime Shinbei wields the Murasame.
Shinbei's strength and agility make him deadly. He can perform amazing combat manuevers easily. He just laughs when Hikita's grinding down on him. Of course this puts him far above the Dog Warriors. I don't believe he has skills, though, to take on the super-natural spirits like Fuse and Aboshi all by himself. He is unequaled against human opponents.
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