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This article is about a character in Higurashi no Naku Koro ni.

Teppei Houjou (北条 鉄平 Hōjō Teppei) is Satoko Houjou's abusive uncle who had abandoned Hinamizawa after the fourth year of Oyashiro-sama's curse. He first appears in Tatarigoroshi.

Profile

Satoko and Satoshi's uncle.

When his brother and sister-in-law passed away, he decided to take them in.

He has a bullheaded, very bad temper, and spends his days violently assaulting Satoko and Satoshi while drinking and gambling.

(Translated from Teppei's profile on the 07th Expansion website.)

Satoko's uncouth uncle who has recently returned to nearby Okinomiya.

(From the Gou website)

Appearance

Teppei has blonde hair and wears a red Hawaiian shirt. He's always seen with a cigarette in his mouth. A tiger tattoo is said to be on his back.

Personality

Teppei is very vulgar, greedy and abusive. He hangs out with thug friends a lot and gambles and drinks all day, often using Satoko as an errand girl. He is prone to verbal and physical abuse, but he is smart enough not to let any visible bruises show on his victims. Teppei is also depraved, at one point considering that Satoko could satisfy him sexually if she were older.

In Higurashi Gou and Sotsu, due to influence from Satoko's looping, Teppei's personality takes a drastic change when he becomes much more protective and supportive of Satoko. He still has shades of rudeness, but he is still a kinder person as a result.

Background

After Satoko and Satoshi's parents died in 1980, Mr. Houjou's brother Teppei and his wife Tamae became their legal guardians. The Houjou family was treated poorly by the villagers because their parents supported the dam project, and Teppei was no exception. Teppei abused Satoko and Satoshi a lot by hitting them and taking away meals, and he was also constantly fighting with his wife since they were on bad terms. Though Satoko's friends tried to help her by placing a call to child protective services, the center believed nothing was wrong after some investigation; there was no evidence the kids were being abused since Teppei never left any bruises on them, nor was there any recordings or eyewitness reports. By Japanese law, the situation also couldn't be called abuse unless someone admitted to it.[2]

On the fourth year of Oyashiro-sama's curse in 1982, Tamae was murdered while Satoshi disappeared. Fearing for his life, Teppei fled to Okinomiya to live with his lover Rina Mamiya. The two of them would start making money through gambling and badger games.

Relationships

Overview

Satoko Houjou

Teppei treats Satoko very poorly and keeps her home all day to do chores for him, not even letting her go to school. He yells at and hits her, and intensifies the punishment after the club's failed attempts to get child protective services involved. A TIP in Tatarigoroshi implies that he even raped her,[3] but this is denied in a later Minagoroshi TIP that shows his inner thoughts, where he considers Satoko too young to satisfy him.[4]

Rina Mamiya

Teppei and Rina became lovers sometime after the death of the former's wife in 1982 and moved in together at an apartment in Okinomiya. The two make money through gambling and badger games/marriage fraud scams, which involve Rina getting in bed with someone with a lot of money and Teppei catching them in the act, blackmailing and threatening the catch for money.

Although they often make gross public displays of affection, they yell vulgarities at each other a lot. Rina is also not entirely faithful to Teppei and won't hesitate to abandon him if she ever finds someone better, something she's even said in front of his face.[5]

Role in the Story

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Question Arcs

Tatarigoroshi

Teppei makes his first appearance, where he returns to Hinamizawa and becomes Satoko's legal guardian again. According to Mion he had a falling out with his lover and came back to the village, running into Satoko on the way and forcing her to come live with him. Teppei abuses Satoko throughout the arc by hitting her, making her do housework and running errands for him. The club tries to rescue her by informing Chie and later child protective services, however Teppei and Satoko deny that any abuse is happening, and Satoko has a breakdown at school the next day because of Teppei's punishment.

Keiichi finally decides to kill Teppei and on the night of the Watanagashi Festival sends a fake call to his house asking that he come to the police station to pick up Satoko. Keiichi lies in wait in a forest and eventually sees Teppei driving by on a moped, lunging out and killing him with a bat. Keiichi buries his corpse and disposes of the moped in Onigafuchi Swamp.

Keiichi returns to school the next day expecting Satoko's problems to be fixed however she claims that Teppei is still home. Keiichi is convinced he might be going crazy and goes to see Doctor Irie, soon confessing that he killed Teppei. Keiichi is unsure if he really killed him or not, and Irie raises the possibility he may have killed someone else. He also mentions that the real Teppei has a tiger tattoo on his back. Keiichi leaves to dig up his corpse to check, but Ooishi and the police are waiting for him there. They encourage Keiichi to dig and later finish the job for him, but they discover nothing.

Keiichi becomes convinced that Teppei came back to life and goes to Satoko's house with the intent to kill him again. Inside her house he finds dinner made for two, confirming his suspicions that Teppei was present there the night before. He then discovers Satoko burning alive inside of her bathtub, who says Teppei told her to take a bath and not get out until she counts to 10,000.

In the credits, it is said that Teppei has gone missing.

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai

Meakashi

The credits say that as of 2004, Teppei resides in Tokyo.

Tsumihoroboshi

Teppei makes his first appearance with a sprite. He appears with Rina in a cafe at Okinomiya and takes payment from some men, exploding at them when they don't pay the extra interest. As the men sign a loan agreement, Teppei plots with Rina to scam some money out of her new boyfriend in Hinamizawa, Rena's father. Unbeknownst to them, Rena herself was listening in on their conversation by happenstance. Rena later hears from Shion and Kasai about the badger games Teppei and Rina have been putting on.

Teppei heads to Rena's house and threatens her father as part of the plan; he demands to know where Rina is, but unbeknownst to him she had been killed by Rena earlier. Rena appears and convinces Teppei that she can take him to Rina, claiming it was on her behalf, and lures him to the junkyard. Teppei is killed there when Rena slams a hatchet into his head.

Rena chops up Rina and Teppei's corpses and plans to dispose of them, but the club discovers them before she can. They decide to help her with the disposal, burying them in the middle of a forest. Mion later uses her Sonozaki connections to move the corpses somewhere else after learning that a development project was being planned in the forest.

Minagoroshi

Rika sees that Teppei has returned to Hinamizawa and become Satoko's legal guardian again. She mentions that in previous worlds she let out her hatred of him but that only resulted in Teppei becoming even more abusive towards Satoko. Rika informs the Irie Clinic of what's going on, and Takano mentions that the police are watching Teppei because they suspect his involvement in his lover Rina being murdered earlier; the police believe Teppei will be claimed for the fifth year of Oyashiro-sama's curse.

Rika tells Chie about what's going on and she goes to talk with Teppei, but he swears at her and claims that Satoko is too sick to go to school. Rika and the club later recruit villagers all over Hinamizawa and protest the child consultation center, demanding that they save Satoko. Teppei is soon unable to carry out his regular abusive acts because of surveillance by the school and the center, which infuriates him. As the club continues their protest, Teppei realizes that he can't control Satoko forever and plans to skip town after gaining some money. He believes Satoko is hiding the bankbooks for his deceased brother's wealth and threatens to destroy Satoshi's room to find them.

The child consultation center complies with the club's demands and calls Teppei's house to check up on Satoko one more time. He hands the phone over to her and then whispers that they are a "happy family", promising not to touch Satoshi's room if she cooperates. However, Satoko calls for help instead and Teppei gets angry. She jumps on him and Teppei moves to hit her but the police suddenly bang on his door, having surrounded his house beforehand. Teppei is ultimately arrested.

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Gou

Tataridamashi

Teppei is introduced cussing out a woman when she bangs on the door to his apartment. Teppei is shown to take prescriptions. He winds up taking Satoko back to live with him at the Houjou residence.

Keiichi has a nightmare where he kills Teppei with a bat.

The club learns about Satoko's situation with Teppei and inform Chie, who goes to their house to check it out. Teppei claims that Satoko has a cold and doesn't allow Chie to see her. The club wonders what to do now and Shion says she plans to go over there and kill Teppei herself. Remembering his dream, Keiichi convinces Shion to stand down and proposes they get child protective services involved. The club starts rallying together the village to protest the child consultation center. In the meantime, some villagers see a knocked-down shrine and think that Teppei was responsible.

The protest is successful and a social worker is escorted by police to the Houjou residence. Satoko tells Keiichi on the phone that after the police came, Teppei tried to attack her and Ooishi restrained him.

Higu2020ep13 teppei.png

On the night of the Watanagashi Festival, Satoko takes Keiichi to her house where he is ambushed by Teppei, who yells at Keiichi for trying to frame him. Teppei starts beating him with a bat and Keiichi manages to overpower him, grabbing the bat and beating Teppei to death as Satoko watches in fright.

Satokowashi

Satoko gains Eua's power and starts looping through 1983 Fragments, which inadvertently causes Teppei to start remembering things from previous Fragments because of his connection to her. He has several nightmares of being beaten to death by gangsters and wakes up one morning wondering what he's doing with his life.

Teppei goes to a pachinko parlor and wins some prizes, watching a man and his daughter enjoying themselves. Teppei drives to Hinamizawa and shows some appreciation for the higurashi before inspecting the run-down Houjou residence. He walks through the village and runs into Satoko alone, who drops her grocery bags and puts up a nervous smile at greeting her uncle for the first time in a while. Teppei picks up Satoko's bags and hands them back before giving her a donut prize he won earlier, a nervous smile also on his face. Teppei asks if he can visit at other times with pachinko prizes and Satoko reluctantly agrees.

The next day, Teppei jumps in to save Satoko when she goes to Okinomiya and gets harassed by several delinquents. Teppei is arrested after the scuffle and is taken to Okinomiya PD, where Ooishi shows some slight confusion as to Satoko and many other bystanders claiming he actually protected his niece. Teppei scoffs at the idea he would do nice things like that, and Ooishi sends him off after reminding him that things would be different if Satoko didn't vouch for Teppei.

Higu2020ep23 teppei and satoko.png

Satoko meets Teppei outside the station, and they walk and talk together. Teppei explains the bad dreams he'd been having lately and asks if Satoko would like to try again with him. He promises not to hit Satoko anymore and to stop hanging out with his horrible friends, offering his hand for a handshake. Satoko is about to take it but remembers a previous time of Teppei being abusive and cowers in fear.

Seeing her reaction, Teppei accepts that Satoko won't forgive him yet and bids farewell, hoping they can have a good talk the next time they meet.

Satoko finishes her preparations for Rika's trap and thinks she can make good use of Teppei's reformation.

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Sotsu

Wataakashi

In this world, Satoko goes to Teppei's house, who is still reformed and trying to be nice to Satoko, and helps him earn a lot of money from betting on horse racing. They clean the house afterwards where Teppei gives Satoko some of his winnings and gets drunk. He tells Satoko that he stopped hanging out with his mean friends, but he still has an address book where they're listed under fake names. Satoko uses this information to purchase a gun from one of them.

Tatariakashi

This arc reveals the truth of Tataridamashi.

Sotsu ep7 teppei hug.png

After the barbecue, Satoko plays mahjong with Teppei and his friends, earning some of their respect. Teppei goes on about how he cares for Satoko and will give his life for her, and Satoko asks him for a favor. They go to the Houjou residence in Hinamizawa, where Satoko tearfully explains she's being bullied by everyone in the village and wants to live here for a while. Teppei comforts her and agrees. Meanwhile, news of Teppei's return spreads across the village, and many people think he's still the same vulgar person he was before.

Teppei worries about Satoko going to school by herself, fearing that people will attack and bully her on the way, but Satoko promises she'll be fine so long as Teppei is home waiting for her. Later, when Teppei sees Satoko dirty and roughed up (from rolling around in dirt by herself), he thinks someone beat her up and runs outside, but Satoko stops him. Satoko worries that Teppei will cause a commotion and give CWS reason to actually separate them, wanting to just live a happy life with him. Teppei cries and hugs her.

The next day, Teppei sees Satoko sitting in a corner by herself and "worrying" about being bullied by her class. Satoko says that even the teacher is in on it when Chie knocks on the door. Teppei yells at Chie and claims Satoko has a cold, then sends her away. CWS calls the house later, and Satoko explains the situation to them while telling Teppei that the village is lying to them.

Teppei tries to cook dinner and almost starts a fire. Satoko reprimands him since they don't want CWS to take notice, and Teppei says he just wanted to make something nice for her. The next day, Teppei goes shopping and runs into Ooishi and Kumagai, and asks them for help. Teppei takes Ooishi home and explains Satoko's situation to him. Ooishi decides to help as he's convinced Teppei isn't actually abusing Satoko. Satoko later puts Ooishi and Teppei to sleep using sleeping pills in their tea.

Ooishi, now developing symptoms of Hinamizawa Syndrome, begins framing Teppei for doing horrible things like destroying a statue at the Furude Shrine and peeing on the gate, spreading rumors across the village that Teppei is up to no good. He also convinces Teppei that the villagers are after him by dumping garbage in front of his house. Teppei sees the sight and hugs Satoko, regretting that his bad temper has caused so much harm to his family. Satoko hugs him back for once.

Ooishi brings the social worker Harayama to the Houjou residence so he can confirm that no abuse is happening. Teppei and Satoko watch as Harayama conducts his inspection, and he concludes everything is fine. Harayama gives Ooishi control of the case and leaves. Ooishi tells Teppei and Satoko they may become the next victims of the curse and tells them to stay home while the festival is going on.

Sotsu ep10 teppei gun.png

Teppei gets knocked out for a day when Satoko puts an overdose of sleeping pills in his tea. The day of the festival, Teppei suddenly wakes up with a headache, which inconveniences Satoko since Teppei should've been taken away by police according to her plot. A delirious Teppei asks what's going on and Satoko asks what he felt about the time he spent together. Teppei says he really was happy living with Satoko despite the horrible person he was, and Satoko draws her gun and attempts to shoot him. However, Satoko's human and witch sides start fighting for control of her body, the first gunshot missing Teppei. The human Satoko tells Teppei to run away as he watches in confusion.

The witch side ultimately gains control and shoots Teppei in the head, killing him. Satoko proceeds to beat his corpse with a bat, spraying the room with blood.

Other Appearances

Console-Exclusive Arcs

Tsukiotoshi

Teppei takes Satoko back to live with him in Hinamizawa. Keiichi, Shion, and Rena team up to take care of him. On the night of the Watanagashi Festival, the three bait Teppei outside and kill him, however Satoko witnesses the event.

Miotsukushi (Omote)

This arc is set in an alternate world taking place after Minagoroshi.

Teppei returns to Hinamizawa after Rina's disappearance and tries to take Satoko back to live with him, and some villagers try to stop him. Rika goes to Satoko's house and tries to fight Teppei and his lackeys while telling Satoko she doesn't need to take the abuse. Teppei fights back but runs away when Ooishi and the police draw near.

Teppei runs through the woods and meets Takano, who shoots him in the shoulder and knocks him out. On the night of the Watanagashi Festival, Teppei is discovered as the victim of the fifth year of Oyashiro-sama's curse, having been injected with H173 and made to kill himself by clawing his throat out.

Trivia

  • Teppei's sprites are labeled as "tetu" (tetsu) in the game's files. This may refer to how the first character in his first name (鉄) can be pronounced as "tetsu".

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "作品紹介 — ひぐらしのなく頃に" on the Official 07th Expansion website https://07th-expansion.net/hig_gensaku
  2. Tatarigoroshi Day 8.
  3. Tatarigoroshi TIP 11: :Statistics from the Ministry of Health and Welfare
  4. Minagoroshi TIP 5: Wet Blanket
  5. Tsumihoroboshi Day 6
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