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I'm collecting Demon Fangs, you know. If you have any for me, you can take some of my treasure. People will probably say I'm foolish giving treasure to a wolf. But you're my lucky wolf!
Emperor Takara (「宝帝」?; Takara no Mikado; Emperor Takara) is an aristocrat and former ruler of Sei'an City. Part of his full title, as stated in his name in the original Japanese version of Ōkami above, is Takara (「宝」?; lit. "valuables, wealth").
Emperor Takara used to be the governing figure of Sei'an City, but was succeeded by Queen Himiko. He then moved into the Imperial Palace to the east of the Aristocratic Quarter and was protected by a number of guards. Around the time of Orochi's revival, the toxic demon Blight entered the emperor's body and took control. While inhabiting the emperor, Blight produced a thick toxic mist that covered the city, causing the trees to die and the citizens to fall ill. Takara, under the control of the demon, found the goddess, Kasugami and sealed her in a gourd. He also found Kaguya, a member of the Moon Tribe and locked her away in his palace.
With help from the Lucky Mallet, retrieved from the Sunken Ship off Ryoshima Coast, Amaterasu shrunk down to Issun's size and freed Kasugami from her imprisonment. After reaching Takara's bedroom, they discovered him as the source of the poisonous mist and traveled inside his body. There, they found Blight, the demon controlling the emperor. Upon vanquishing the demon, the mist stopped. Amaterasu took control of the emperor's body and freed Kaguya. Takara had no recollection of the events that transpired while under Blight's control, but thanked Amaterasu regardless. For the remainder of Amaterasu's journey, he acted as a merchant selling items in exchange for Demon Fangs; two of his wares are the prestigious Water Tablet and the Fog Pot purchasable from only a limited number of merchants, the latter only sold by him.
After Queen Himiko's death, an aristocrat stated that Emperor Takara would be her successor[Citation needed].
Spoilers end here.
It is not particularly clear how the same city would have an Emperor and a Queen at the same time. The Official Complete Works states that the Emperor used to govern Sei'an, so it is possible he graduated to governing the whole of Nippon, or abdicated with his title simply a ceremonial one retained out of respect. Given he never expresses any concern with Himiko, he does not seem to be particularly close to her. However, this does not match up with Himiko claiming that her family have governed Sei'an for many generations: about the only way to rationalize these two claims would be to say that Emperor Takara is Emperor of Nippon and directly governed Sei'an for a period when Himiko was too young to do so herself.
Emperor Takara is one of the very few characters in the entire Ōkami series to have their names in the original Japanese versions written not in katakana, but entirely kanji. Naturally, this signifies that Emperor Takara bears a strong cultural relevance and importance.