|“||That's life in the underworld. One wrong step, and you plunge all the way to the bottom, headfirst.||”|
–Yaguruma to the associates, Determination
Kanshichirou Yaguruma (カンシチロウ･ヤグルマ), sometimes known as Yagu (ヤグ) is a Japanese immigrant and the elderly primo voto of the Martillo Family. He becomes a complete immortal in November 1930 after accidentally drinking Szilard Quates' Cure-All Elixir.
Yaguruma is the one responsible for introducing Firo Prochainezo to the Martillos.
Yaguruma has thick grey hair, bushy eyebrows, and a large chevron-walrus mustache. His face is wrinkled, and he has large ears and a strong square jaw. He normally wears a business suit. His hands are heavily callused.
At a glance, he gives the impression of being the proprietor of a Chinatown herbal medicine shop.
Yaguruma is unflinchingly loyal to the Martillo Family, and as such sternly upholds its Camorra law even if doing so causes distress to his fellow Martillos. Still, he has a mischievous streak, and he gets a kick out of both sharing various Japanese folktales with Isaac & Miria...and them inevitably misremembering what he tells them.
Long before the events of The Rolling Bootlegs, Yaguruma emigrated from Japan to the United States of America, where he acquainted himself with the Martillos and became their primo voto.
Sometime in the early 1920s, a street rat named Firo tries and fails to steal Yaguruma's wallet when Yaguruma somersaults him over his shoulder onto the sidewalk. The incident leads to the Martillos taking Firo under their wing and making him an associate. Over the next few years, Yaguruma teaches Firo some of the martial arts he knows.
On the first day of the Feast of San Gennaro in 1927, Yaguruma learns from the Gandor Family that Don Keith Gandor has been kidnapped. He rounds up all the associates who have yet to go to the festival at The Alveare and informs them (including the newly arrived Firo) of the kidnapping, instructing the associates to stay on their guard since the Martillos not that much bigger than the Gandors.
Firo begs Yaguruma to give him permission to go help the Gandors, and Yaguruma dismisses the notion as nonsense. When Firo reaches out to him, Yaguruma takes the outstretched arm and somersaults Firo forward and onto the ground, recalling how Firo is one of the Martillos now—no longer the "thieving brat" he once was. Firo pleads his case, and Yaguruma pulls out his knife and holds it to Firo's throat; Firo withdraws his own knife and drives it into the floorboards, declaring that if Yaguruma turns the knife on him when he returns he'll accept it. Yaguruma calls him an idiot and walks away.
In November, Yaguruma joins the rest of the Martillo executives in the Martillos' basement meeting room for Firo's initiation ceremony. As the primo voto, he officiates the knife fight between Firo and Maiza Avaro; Firo wins the match, sealing his promotion from associate to executive. That night, Yaguruma attends Firo's promotion party along with the rest of the Martillo executives, the three Gandor brothers, Lia Lin-Shan, Seina, and Isaac and Miria. All of them unwittingly become complete immortals upon drinking the Cure-All Elixir.
The next day, Yaguruma, Molsa, and Ronny head out to do some work for the Family while the other executives remain back at the Alveare. Upon spotting an unusual amount of police offers at the speakeasy, they head back to the Alveare—along the way hearing some bushwa about a priest throwing around bundles of money—and find the executives making a racket in the back alley.
On January 2, 1932, Yaguruma and other Martillo members set up dominos in the Alveare. Yaguruma cheerfully informs Firo that he used to set up shogi pieces in a similar fashion all the time when he was young, and that it improves one's concentration. The Alveare is swept up in a dominos craze for the rest of the week.
In September 1933, Firo angers Isaac & Miria by knocking over their dominos, and reduces them to tears after he lashes out at them. Miria calls Firo a touhenboku (ignorant oaf), and Yaguruma wonders how Miria came to know Japanese so well.
In December 1934, Victor Talbot blusters his way into the Alveare to talk with Czeslaw Meyer and Ennis. His arrogant, confrontational attitude catches the attention of every present Martillo member. Yaguruma enters the restaurant as Victor is leaving, and throws him bodily through the air. He offers Victor a hand up, but Victor (having realized that Yaguruma threw him) irritably bats his hand away to stand on his own. Yaguruma grips Victor's wrist in response and yanks him upward, dropping him into a counter seat. Victor's forehead collides with the wood, and Ronny threatens him in turn.
After Victor leaves the restaurant, Maiza takes a seat at the counter next to Yaguruma and Ronny and lightly chastises them for going "too far," and Yaguruma chuckles that he thought he'd been going easy on Victor. He says that if he had been serious, he would have dislocated one of Victor's arms.
Two months later in February 1935, Yaguruma is on his way to the Alveare when a man charges at him from behind, wielding an odd weapon. Yaguruma grabs the man by his shirt and throws him, an act that causes the men's comrades to turn tail and run. He runs into Firo at the Alveare and informs him of the ambush and attempted assault with a laugh. Firo doesn't find the news a laughing matter.
A few shady-looking men appear in the doorway, and ask Seina if Firo is present. The leader jibes that Firo's face really is girly, just like Edward Noah said. Unamused, Firo tells the leader to warn Edward to watch his back—but the detective says Edward is in the hospital for severe injuries he sustained this morning in an ambush. What's more, a hat just like Firo's own hat was left at the scene. The detective assures Firo that Victor doesn't think that Firo had anything to do with the ambush, and elaborates that the hat at the scene was ripped in half and had a note reading "you're next" attached to it that Victor figures was directed at Firo.
Once the men leave, Yaguruma comments that if Edward's assailants were the same men who attacked him then he should have captured one of them. Firo asks Seina where Molsa and Maiza are, and Seina answers that Molsa and Ronny are here but Maiza hasn't arrived yet. Yaguruma stops Firo from going off to search for Maiza, telling him that if he's that worried he should go off to check if Annie is all right instead. When Firo's unease does not dissipate, Yaguruma adds that even though Firo's knife technique may potentially be better than Maiza's own, Maiza is tougher than Firo in a brawl many times over.
- Not only has Yaguruma taught Firo some Japanese, he has told Isaac and Miria plenty of Japanese folktales and information about Japanese mythology.
- Yaguruma often says something about his "genkatsugi for the day"—a good luck superstition.