Akane was born on April 23rd in Sapporo, located in Hokkaido, Japan - during the season of spring. She was born to a father from Hong Kong and a mother from Macau. How Akane would become Water royalty would not be through being born into it, as her parents were not royalty, only Water Elementals (Akane would earn her status through loyalty and hard work).
Both of her parents became Japanese citizens, and adopted a Japanese identity in order to fit in. They became the Igarashis, rather than adopting a Japanese-style version of their original name.
Akane was their only child, and a child prodigy when it came to judo. During her elementary school years in Sapporo, she attended judo for her after-school activity.
While this was taking place, her parents became low on finance. They were frivolous spenders, and had to come to the decision to borrow money from a loan shark, who was secretly affiliated with the Yakuza.
At first, the Igarashis kept up with paying the loan back regularly. But, someone would come to visit them and end up changing everything -- Akane's aunt Jade.
Jade, much like her brother, was a frivolous spender. But she took it to extremes. She had several failed marriages, since she was promiscuous, and worked as a self-employed stage makeup artist - but she was too lazy to find clients. This was a shame since Jade was good at her job.
When Jade visited her brother and her sister-in-law in Sapporo, she asked for money. However, she was unaware that the couple were borrowing money from a loan shark that she was familiar with. The two had parted on dangerous terms, since Jade discovered that the loan shark was affiliated with the Yakuza.
One thing led to another -- Jade's arrival led to the Igarashis losing focus on their payments, resulting in the Yakuza paying a visit. Jade was killed, much to the horror of Ryotaro. Then, Akane arrived home from school, to find the dead body of her aunt. Instead of being scared, she was oddly confused. She knew that the men were bad, but she questioned why they were there more than anything.
The Yakuza henchmen decided to make a deal. They had learned through the loan shark that Akane had become an efficient judoka. They saw how much potential she would have as one of their affiliates. So, they proposed that they would leave the family alone, even giving them money, in exchange for Akane. The family, too scared to refuse and in desperation, agreed.
She would be trained as an efficient member of the Yakuza, being forced to abandon her education. However, they didn't know that she snuck out and attended a judo club that was not based in a school. The teacher was a heavy believer in honour, and he influenced his students (including Akane herself) into believing it also. This conflicted with what the Yakuza wanted her to believe.
So, even though she was under the control of the Yakuza and was classed as a member of the Yakuza, she truly was not a part of them. She was not afraid of any punishment she received, as she was creating a stoic personality for herself.
By the time she was 9, she had already received at least two years' worth of training. Her talent in judo was also developed fully.
Akane's main role in the Yakuza was to be a messenger. She directed people to their deaths, especially if they displeased the syndicate. Sometimes, she would have to resort to her judo skills to incapacitate those people.
When she reached the age of 11, she decided to ask her secret judo mentor for advice on how to weaken "some enemies". She did not state that she was a member of the Yakuza to him. The mentor responded that how she could weaken them could potentially be simple, but it would go against her honourable mindset.
Akane agreed to the mentor's suggestion, even if it would be dangerous and dishonourable morally. But then again, the Yakuza did dishonourable things. To Akane, this could be viewed as a taste of karma.
The plan went successfully and Akane was able to make her escape, even if she was now a fugitive. She was also aware of her Water powers, as she knew that she was an Elemental, but she did not use them. She realised that doing so would have had serious implications.
She headed for her old home, shocked to find that her parents still lived there after 4 years. They had been hoping that Akane would return to them one day. When they finally saw her, they were thrilled. They were even more thrilled when their apology was accepted by Akane - she acknowledged that they did what they did out of desperation.
But it was not a happy ending for them all - they only had a certain amount of time before the Yakuza would track Akane down and try to kill her for her betrayal.
Ryotaro and Chiyoko thought on the spot as to what they could do. They noticed Akane's devotion to honour, so they decided to take her to the Water Kingdom in Elementrium - where she would enroll as a trainee, in the hopes of becoming a fully-fledged Water Knight by the end of it.
The training to become a Knight was just as rigorous as Yakuza training - many crumbled under the intense pressure. Akane, however, passed it with flying colours. Her judo skills benefited her, and she was able to learn English.
At the age of 12, Akane became a fully-fledged Water Knight. She viewed her new role as her redemption from the evil things she was forced to do. Her safety was somewhat guaranteed - as the group of Yakuza that Akane had been with were not Elementals and so were unaware of Elementrium.
Her first assignment was to protect an 8 year old American Elemental, who had been placed under custody of Elementrium, as her family had been abusive towards her. Akane was one of her guardians, even though she was a young girl herself (luckily for Akane, there was also a second guardian for the young girl - an adult who was known for his reliability).
The Elemental girl showed Akane what Western culture was like. Akane was taken aback - it was nothing like what she was used to. She was aware of the existence of anime, as she did come from Japan, but she did not know of how casual Western society was.
One of Akane's happy memories with the girl was when they attended the famous San Diego Comic Con. After watching Attack on Titan, her favourite anime, and reading its manga counterpart, Akane cosplayed as Mikasa.
Akane eventually had to part with the girl, which caused her great upset. However, she knew that she had to move on and fulfill her other duties as a Knight. Once she made sure that the girl was safely taken to Elementrium (when she got older, that is), Akane moved on to her other tasks.
A major accomplishment in Akane's career was her part in trying to control a riot in the Water Kingdom.