Tsubasa: Those with Wings (翼を持つ者 Tsubasa o Motsu Mono?) is a shōjo manga by Natsuki Takaya. It was serialized by Hakusensha from 1995 to 1998 in Hana to Yume, and collected in six tankōbon volumes; it was republished in 2007 in three bunkobon volumes. The series is licensed in English in North America by Tokyopop, which began releasing translations of the bunkobon volumes in spring of 2009.
The manga is set at the end of the 22nd century, where the Earth has practically been destroyed by the many wars that have taken place. The rich and the army can live comfortably, whereas the rest of the world lives in a state of poverty.
Tsubasa: Those with Wings revolves around the life of Kotobuki, an ex-thief who tries to find a job for herself. Travelling with her is Raimon, who believes the word genius exists for his sake, which is actually quite true. He used to be a military commander and would often run into Kotobuki, but never caught her. Each has fulfilled their dream, Kotobuki's is to forget about thievery, and Raimon's is to leave the militia and to live with Kotobuki forever. However, people seeking the Tsubasa, a legendary object that grants wishes, never stop causing them trouble. This object appeared long ago, but its current location is unknown. Everyone is trying to claim it as their own and use Kotobuki and Raimon's skills to do so.
- Kotobuki (寿?)
- An ex-thief who used her skills from the age of 6 to survive. She is aged around 15 to 16 and is very agile and strong. Kotobuki does not like to act spoiled. She is a war orphan, a 'nameless one', and as such has compassion for other orphans like her. She was an orphan raised by Ann, and she learns that Hil is the one who burnt the orphanage down in revenge for his older sister leaving him. She falls in love with Raimon, but must temporarily leave him while visiting ancient Japan due to his bomb. Hil falls in love with her as a replacement for Ann, swearing that if she became his, he would free Raimon of his bomb. He often tries to seduce her. She attempts to rescue Raimon after he is kidnapped by the military, and is hated by Touya. At the end, it is revealed that Raimon and Kotobuki are engaged to be married to one another.
- Raimon Shiragi (擂文·シラギ?)
- An ex-military commander who quit his job to be with Kotobuki. He is very smart - a genius even - and his skills always get him out of touchy situations. He loves Kotobuki dearly and if anyone attempts to hurt her, he makes sure they don't try it again. The military put a bomb in his head, so f he leaves the area or goes over the border his head will explode. So in order to save his life like he has saved hers many times, Kotobuki is searching for Tsubasa to wish for the bomb to be out of his head. Raimon does not like his head to be touched. Ross is his foster father, adopting him at a young age after running away from his poor family, in hopes of giving more food to his siblings. He does not get along with Shouka and Addie. He claims that his reason for life is to love Kotobuki. As a depressed teenager, he often attempted suicide. He has a bomb in his head because he knows the military's secrets and will die if he crosses the border to another land.
- Shouka (抄華 Shōka?)
- The leader of a group of thieves who was once caught by Raimon. She specializes in explosives and wants to get the Tsubasa for herself. She runs slowly and has no coordination whatsoever. Rich and kind, Shouka is currently seeking a lover. Because of Raimon's intelligence, she has met nothing but tragedy, which is why she hates him. She goes to Japan with Addie and Kotobuki. One of her lackeys loves her, and attempts to propose, but she claims that she will accept once it is more romantic. Her wish is to revive her younger sister, who was killed by a bandit while they were young. She came from a rich house, killed by bandits, and she was taken in by a thief boss.
- Hilt Guill (ヒルト·ギル Hiruto Giru?)
- Hilt is a colonel, and has a considerable power within the army. He is in charge of the mission to find "the Wing" for the army, and he is the direct superior of Phere, Touya, and Raimon. He intends to use Raimon and his talent to his advantage, but is very intrigued with Kotobuki, who somehow made Raimon leave him. He is very cold and manipulative, but his true purpose is not of an ambition. Hilt's true reason for searching for "the Wing" is hidden until the end of the story, which brings out an incredible twist. Ann was his older sister, whom he loved deeply. She eventually left to run an orphanage, saddening him greatly. During a mission for the army, he reunites with her, but shoots her and the orphans, and burnt down the orphanage. He is fond of Kotobuki because of her relationship with Raimon, and that she was the only survivor of the fire. He intends to make her a replacement for Ann. He keeps her connected to life machines, planning to revive her to be his love. At the end, after seducing Kotobuki for a final time and releasing Raimon's bomb, he opens an orphanage.
- Touya Ingram (十夜·イグラム Tōya Iguramu?)
- Touya is a major in the army, who is very fond of Raimon. He wants Raimon back in the army, so he tries to separate Kotobuki and Raimon. His fondness of Raimon is almost at the level of obsession, although he himself is happily married with a child. He orders private pictures of Raimon, and when a photo of Kotobuki is found, Hil snatches it from him. He is shot by Hil when he disagrees with his goals. He is last seen recovering from his wounds, his daughter and wife nursing him back to health.
- Phere Marshel (フィーア·マイシェル Fīa Maisheru?)
- Phere is a lieutenant colonel. Her main weapon is a whip, but she doesn't hesitate to use a gun if necessary. She has a crush on Hilt, so she feels a little jealousy toward Raimon, whom Hilt is obsessed with (in a non-romantic way). She blindly follows every order Hilt gives out, even whe her heart seems to be in conflict with it. She eventually falls in love with Yan after being used as a prisoner. They get married. Before hand, she kidnaps Kotobuki to lure Raimon to the border to blow him up.
- Yan Mizuchi (ヤン·蛟?)
- Is the leader of anti-army organization known as "the Enemy." His first meeting with Kotobuki was a bit... unusual, but later he becomes a great ally for Kotobuki and Raimon. He has a crush on Phere, although she originally only seems interested in Hilt. However, at the end of series they end up getting married.
- Adelaide Wilson (アデリィート·ウィルソン Aderaīdo Wiruson?)
- Adelaide is usually a brat, but occasionally insightful. She seems fairly attached to Kotobuki, and has been following her and the others since their first meeting. Unlike Kotobuki, she comes from a wealthy family. Her mother is an airhead, and her father died at a young age, so she is headstrong and independant.
- Ross Corpul
- Ross Corpul is a wealthy man, with relations to the army, also, he is Raimon's adoptive father. Raimon left his home at young age because his family had too many mouths to feed. He asked Ross to adopt him, and in return, he would "become the best elite and help you do bad things." Intrigued, Ross accepted his offer. He claims that Raimon used to throw bombs into his study. He often enjoys torturing his son and Kotobuki. He is quite a cunning lady-killer.
- Hokuto & Rikuro (六呂?)
- Rikuro & Hokuto are two mysterious beings shrouded in an enigma only revealed in the final volume. They are two artificial beings containing the two brains of Tsubasa.
- Ann was in charge of the orphanage Kotobuki lived in until the military burned it down. Little is revealed about her until the end and although she's "dead" for most of the series, her role served as a catalyst and major angst factor. She was Hil's older sister, and he had a complex to her. She left her family to open a Nameless orphanage, leaving behind a saddened Hil. Once he joined the military, he shot and killed her and all of the orphans, burning it to the ground. She was then taken by him, and connected to life machines. She dies in peace in the finale after being set free.