The Four Courts

The four seasonal courts of Japan represent the four seasons, and keep the balance and harmony of nature in check.  The courts are a mixture of both kami and other spirits, and the center of these courts is located in Kyoto, where power is exchanged between the courts at both solstices and equinoxes.  The courts each have a mortal emmisary, who posseses a spirit of a guardian beast, which grants them great power and at the same time chains them to the court's will.

The Four Courts

Dresden Files: Kyoto ElevenofHearts