Princess Yona, the titular protagonist of the manga and anime series, Akatsuki no Yona, is introduced as the beloved Crown Princess of the Kingdom of Kouka. As her father, Emperor Il, begins preparing a grand party for her long-awaited 16th birthday, Yona's childhood friend and body guard, Hak, and cousin and love interest, Soo-Won, show up to congratulate her. However, on the night of her 16th birthday, Yona visits her father's chambers and witnesses him him being murdered by Soo-Won, who reveals that he will be crowned as the next emperor of Kouka Kingdom, taking his rightful place on the throne. As Yona sits in a state of shock and confusion, Soo-Won takes this chance to kill her as well, until Hak intercepts and saves Yona. Hak questions Soo-Won's intentions but is given an unsatisfactory vague response. Without hesitation, Soo-Won orders for both Hak and Yona to be executed; Hak takes Yona and successfully runs away using Min-Soo as a decoy. As Hak and Yona become fugitives on the run, they reach Fuuga, the home of the Wind Tribe and take refuge there. Knowing that Soo-Won will send his men after Hak and Yona, they decide to leave and set off to find a high priest that resides somewhere deep in the mountains. On their way there, Hak and Yona are encountered by a group of Fire Tribe soldiers, led by Kan Tae-Jun. In attempts to bring Yona back to Hiryuu Castle as his bride, Tae-Jun shoots Hak with a poisoned arrow and forces Yona by threatening her. However, Yona forcefully declines which sends her and Hak falling off a high cliff to their assumed deaths.