|Spoiler Alert: This article/section contains details about future plotlines described in the light novels, not covered in the anime. Do not proceed unless you want to be spoiled. |
16 (Phantom Bullet arc)
Kirigaya Suguha (桐ヶ谷直葉, Kirigaya Suguha?) is the cousin and adoptive sister of Kirigaya Kazuto. Suguha was raised along with him as his sister. She is an accomplished kendo practitioner, following her grandfather's wishes.
Suguha has short black hair and dark grey eyes, almost blackish. Her breasts are also much larger than the rest of the female characters shown so far although the novel mentions that she has grown a lot recently. She also has a cute childish look and is often seen with an embarrassed expression, especially when around her cousin.
Due to her kendo training, she has strong and defined muscles that show up even when she makes small movements. In one volume, Kazuto has described her as monstrously muscular and although he claims he is exaggerating, he does state that she is heavier than she looks.
ALfheim Online Avatar
In ALfheim Online, Suguha appears as a more grown-up person than a child. She has bright green eyes and wears white and green clothes. She also has a white and green collar on her neck. She has long blond hair, often tied up with a flower like hairband. Her hair bangs, however, are not tied up with her hair. Like all of the other players in ALO, her ears are quite long and pointy.
Kirigaya Suguha was raised with Kazuto as his sister since her parents took Kazuto in after his parents died in a traffic accident. Kazuto is Suguha's first cousin; his mother and Suguha's were sisters. They were taught kendo by their grandfather, who was a former policeman and a kendo champion. Kazuto gave up after two years and embraced the world of technology, leaving her behind. Kazuto found out he was not her real brother around this time and the distance between them became further and further apart, until they were practically strangers before the SAO Incident. She continued with kendo and became a national quarter-finalist.
Suguha originally disliked VRMMO games for it hid peoples' nature and reality, as it did with Kazuto. She took up ALO in order to understand Kazuto better when he was trapped in SAO. She won the Sylph tournament, earning the title as the strongest Sylph before the events of the Fairy Dance Arc. She learned how to play ALO from her classmate, Nagata Shinichi. Suguha has become very good at ALO, because of the many years she has practiced kendo and the skills learned there were very effective for fights in ALO. She enjoys flying in the game so much that Recon even nicknamed her as «Speed Holic».
In an obscure part of her childhood, she fell into the pond in her home's backyard trying to catch a water strider. She was saved by Kazuto a few seconds after falling in, but she was afraid of water until the end of the Fairy Dance Arc.
Unlike her cousin Kazuto, Suguha is upbeat and outgoing. She is much more social and converses easily with others. Even when Kazuto began to push her away after finding out they were not really siblings, she still treated him with good spirit and tried to get back in his life. She can be very aggressive towards those that annoy her or cross her and can easily lose her temper. This is demonstrated in one case when Recon attempted to kiss her after confessing his love to her and she punched him.
Despite her positive outlook and slightly aggressive behavior, Suguha can be somewhat fragile and delicate due to her young age, especially when her cousin, Kazuto is involved. After seeing Kazuto in a comatose state due to being locked in SAO, she broke down crying for the first time in years. In addition to this, once she found out that Kirito and Kazuto were the same person, she locked herself in her room away from her cousin and went into a slight depression. Most of the time she is quick to rebound from these moments and return to being the same upbeat girl.
Just before Kazuto logged on to Sword Art Online, Suguha told him that she was heading to club activities. When Kazuto became trapped, she learned of the news, and was struck by grief. Soon after, her mother explained to her that Kazuto was not her real brother, and in fact her cousin, which Kazuto himself had already known about.
Soon, she had begun to wonder about the world which stole her cousin away and asked a classmate, Nagata Shinichi, to help her with VR Games. She selected ALfheim Online, due to the focus on physical ability and without the need for large amounts of playtime.
Suguha was first overjoyed to find Kazuto returning home, and tried to be respectful of his temporary weakness. She was also saddened by her cousin's newfound attachment to Asuna. A couple of months after Kazuto's return, Kazuto challenged Suguha to a kendo duel. Though she won after hitting Kazuto on the head, she was surprised at Kazuto's unorthodox skills, and even more because he could keep up with her even though she was very good at kendo, yet she was also happy that Kirito once again showed interest in kendo.
After logging in on ALO, while flying with her party, they were attacked by a Salamander hunting squad. As the battle progressed, she became the last survivor fleeing from three remaining pursuers. As the Salamanders were about to attack, a Spriggan crash-landed nearby and, soon afterwards, easily defeated two of the three Salamanders, allowing the third one to retreat. After thanking the Spriggan who saved her, Suguha agreed to help him in his journey towards Alne. Later, Suguha learned that the Spriggan she had encountered was actually her cousin, while Kirito had not realized that Leafa was Suguha until she called his name. Suguha felt rather hurt that the Spriggan turned out to be her cousin, as she had already developed a crush on him and was going to overcome her feelings for Kazuto through getting to know the Spriggan. They had a duel, which ended in a draw as both parties discarded their weapons to allow the other to strike, ending with them embracing in midair. With the help of Recon and the Sylph and Cait Sith forces, she helped clear the way through the World Tree, enabling Kirito to clear the Grand Quest and waited for him to log out.
After the events of that day, Suguha met every one of Kazuto's friends from SAO in ALO and, later, in a party held to celebrate the clearing of SAO. That night in ALfheim Online, she was depressed because she felt out of place with the survivors of SAO. Kirito talked to her and cheered her up before showing her the New Aincrad and asking for her help to clear it this time.
Suguha went to the SAO Survivors School to learn to swim from Asuna, Rika (Lisbeth) and Keiko (Silica) whilst Kazuto had what they thought was an emergency meeting. During breaks between learning to swim, she recounted meeting Kirito in ALO, as well as learning how the girls had met her cousin. She later participated in the «Deep Sea Plunderers» quest.
After the preliminaries of the Bullet of Bullets, Suguha talked to Kazuto after finding out that his name had disappeared from her friend list. She then expressed her worries to Kazuto about him leaving her and going some place far away. Suguha, as Leafa, later joined Asuna and the others in Asuna and Kirito's rented home in Yggdrasil City in ALO to watch Kirito's performance in the Bullet of Bullets finals.
She came to Kirito to inform him that other players had found the Holy Sword Excalibur's location. They then talked about the new quest that has appeared, where players were requested to kill the beast-type Evil God monsters. Kazuto then decided that it was time to attempt to get the Excalibur, and formed a party of seven consisting of himself, Leafa, Asuna, Klein, Lisbeth, Silica, and Sinon. The party then proceeded to Jötunheimr, and then to the dungeon holding Excalibur and successfully obtained it.
- Flight As a member of the Sylph race, Leafa is capable of flying with the use of her wings. She is proficient enough to fly without the help of a controller.
- Magic As a Sylph, Leafa specialises in using wind-attribute and stealth magic, though she also knows several healing spells to use when she is acting as the support for her party.
- Shield magic - A spell which covers the target in a shield that blocks attacks at the cost of the caster's mana points.
- Concealment magic - A spell which creates a membrane that hides the caster.
- Healing Magic - Leafa is capable of using several types of healing spells.
- Vacuum blade magic - A spell that allows Leafa to launch five boomerang-shaped blades.
- Wind needle magic - A spell that allows Leafa to launch thirty wind needles.
- Strength Buff Magic - A spell that buffs allies.
- Suguha/Leafa usually refers to herself using the personal pronoun atashi (あたし?).
- As Leafa, she is one of the five fastest Sylphs and has won the Sylph fighting tournament various times.
- In Sword Art Online: Infinity Moment, Leafa is the only main character to not appear with her real-life appearance.
- Suguha was originally meant to be flat-chested, and Kawahara did not care much for the size. However, his editor suggested the change in her chest size.