Prelude: Hiruma Shonogen

The Emerald Empire of Rokugan. It is a land upheld by honor, guided by fate, ruled by destiny. The Great Clans each support the Emperor, but inter-clan conflict is inevitable—both in the Emperor’s courts and on the battlefield. In the midst of danger and turmoil, honor must be your sword and your armor.

It is an era of sudden change and upheaval in the Emerald Empire. Mortal schemes, elemental imbalances, and celestial turmoil have disrupted the political, military, and spiritual equilibrium of Rokugan. Long-simmering rivalries and fresh betrayals ripple through the courts and on the battlefield. The Chrysanthemum Throne is beset by threats from without and within, and the honor of the seven Great Clans shall be put to the test.
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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Muskrat » Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:59 pm

Seeing that Ringo does not seem to take offense at her presence, Ryoko feels a little more at ease and allows herself an amused smile at the game her new companion is playing with Ichiro. She allows herself to say, "We came to the garden for the sight of the storks. How nice to know the pears are in season as well." She is tempted to ask Ichiro for the other pear, but decides not to put the burden of offering a gift to an outcast on the boy.

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Vardaen » Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:31 pm

The little boy is clearly over his depth at Shonogen starts talking. He frowns, then smiles when the Crab takes the better pair. Ringo nods to his son and ruffles his air, then he adds, "But remember there could have been a worm in either one of those pears. We only can see what is on the outside, not what is on the inside."

He takes the other pear from his son tosses it into the air again, and hacks it in half with a single iaijutsu strike sheathing his blade as it falls to the ground, "Unless you cut it open first." The boy giggles, "But we don't want to cut open the Crab papa! He seems nice."

"No we don't Ichiro, no we don't." He winks at the Crab samurai.

Ringo nods to Ryoko, "Yes these trees flower and fruit fairly consistently now. For many years there were no fruit trees in these gardens, but when I discovered my wife was with child I came here and planted all of the pear trees that you see before you." There are half a dozen trees, well tended.

"Come to see the storks have you? They will be leaving for the Mantis Isles soon, you almost missed them."
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Muskrat » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:12 pm

Ryoko says, "I actually came here on other business, but my Master advised me to see the storks while we were here. A happy coincidence." She approaches one of the pear trees and reaches out for one of the pears, pausing before she takes it to ask, "May I, Kakita-san?"

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Orvost » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:41 pm

Shonogen sees two ways to interpret Ringo's statement about the worm: either their hospitality hides a worm or Shonogen, the stranger, hides the worm. It would be unlikely for a Crane to admit their well-manicured exteriors hide the canker of a worm, and even the child picked up on the second interpretation. In any case, the game is over and the conversation moves on.

"You mentioned the wisdom of the boy's grandfather. Who might his grandfather be?"

As he speaks to Ringo, Shonogen turns to Ryoko and offers her his pear with a respectfully nod. She seems to have been overlooked during the pear game. It may be forward of him to presume they had a close enough relationship to share food in that way, but (he reasoned) she had taken him on this excursion into the garden so she could romance him, so a certain level of familiarity could be presumed.

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Vardaen » Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:07 pm

Ringo nods to Ryoko, "Yes of course, please take one."

Then Shonogen offers her his pear.

There is an awkward silence among the adults for a moment.

Then Ichiro shouts out in that delightful childlike way, "My Jiji is Doji Chomei, he is very important."

The silence is broken and Ringo smiles at his son, "Yes you are right Ichiro." Yet his attention stays on the Samurai-ko Ryoko, "Business in Kōnotori Mura? Seems there is much of that going on right now, too bad. It is far more enjoyable to come here for pleasure." He half glances at the Crab saying nothing. "Your master, who is that may I ask?"
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Muskrat » Tue Aug 20, 2019 5:37 pm

Ryoko pauses for a moment, then shrugs, takes the proffered pear from Shonogen with a bow, then plucks another one from the tree with a bow to Ringo, then proceeds bite alternately from the two. To Ringo, she says, "My master is the Magistrate Doji Kirino. I'm afraid I cannot disclose what mission brings him here, in part because I do not know myself."
Does the name Doji Chomei ring any bells with Ryoko?

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Orvost » Thu Aug 22, 2019 4:01 pm

Shonogen smiles at Ryoko's two pear technique. He withdraws momentarily from the conversation as the Crane start name dropping.

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Vardaen » Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:35 pm

Doji Chomei is known as a skilled ambassador, who deals with the Minor Clan of the Mantis. He is well known as an honorable samurai, stuck among the dishonorable pirates of the Mantis.
Ringo smiles too at the two pear technique, "Ah, I see you have studied with the Dragon and have mastered their Nitten Technique. I am a follower of Kakita's Blade, and use only one hand." He tosses his half in the air, catches it lightly, and bites down finishing it off.

You notice up one of the paths two others wandering about the garden, a noble looking Crane woman and a younger Crane man. They speak to one another, then the woman turns and takes a side trail, the other stands a moment considering his options.
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Muskrat » Mon Aug 26, 2019 6:29 pm

Humoring the child, Ryoko bows to Ichiro, "Ah, I am honored to meet the grandson of such an honorable man with such ... sensitive work." Ryoko smiles at Ringo's joke and replies, "I am afraid I have only mastered the technique in regards to pears. I doubt I could do as well with apples or blades."

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Prelude: Shonogen & Ryoko

Post by Orvost » Tue Aug 27, 2019 3:46 pm

"It appears that news of your generosity is already spreading, Ringo-sama."

Shonogen nods toward the two other Crane samurai approaching.

"Guests who, no doubt, wish to sample the fruit of your orchard as well. By showing kindness to us, you have doomed yourself to spending the rest of the day entertaining visitors who wish the same treatment."

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