|“||We are messengers from the Dragon Palace. We swim in the sky only to warn of a certain disaster. The scarlet mist is a mist of temperament. The scarlet sky is a sign of the disaster to come. The scarlet clouds shall shake the earth. We swim to convey these things.||„|
|~ Iku Nagae|
Iku Nagae is a heroic female youkai from Touhou who serves as the messenger of the Dragon Palace. Her job is to observe the daily mood of the earth's atmosphere. She somewhat questions why humans and youkai fight/duel as a part of their daily life. During the events of Scarlet Weather Rhapsody she finds out that a strong earthquake is going to occur in Gensokyo, so she decides to warn the residents. Afterwards, Yukari tells her that the culprit is hiding in the Hakurei Shrine. She then goes back to the shrine and finds Tenshi, who has just inserted a keystone to prevent the earthquake. Iku questions this and thinks of Tenshi as having been "spoiled a bit too much", so she decides to punish her.
Iku has red eyes and short violet blue hair. She wears a white and red shirt, a long black skirt, and a hat with a red bow and two long ribbons extending out. She has a white and red shawl entwined along her arms and blouse. Both the shawl and the shirt glows in scarlet color.
- Tenshi Hinanawi (student)
- Iku's spellcard declaration pose and some alternate special move poses closely resemble John Travolta's dancing pose from the disco movie Saturday Night Fever, which many doujin work make fun of by linking her to disco dancing. To a lesser extent, they also resemble Bass's lightning attack pose from the game Mega Man & Bass, as well as the start-up of super robot Great Mazinger's move, Thunder Break.
- In Touhou Hisoutensoku, Iku seems to have an alternate color palettes that resembles the fan-made character Maybell.
- Iku's dress resembles that of a Spanish Flamenco dancer, and her movements and poses look a bit like dancing. However, her profile states that it's a special dress, granting the owner the ability to fly. Maybe it's a reference to some dances, where it looks like the dancer is flying.
- Her profile suggests that she is a Youkai of oarfishes. In Japanese, oarfishes are called "Ryūgū-no-tsukai" (リュウグウノツカイ or 竜宮の使い in Kanji), which literally means "messenger from the Dragon's Palace". In this case, a dragon is considered as a god of water. Her shawls (and probably the long ribbons on her hat) are apparently modeled after the shape of oarfishes, which have thin, elongated bodies and red fins.