Prelude: Gensai

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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Hermit » Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:47 pm

For a seasoned traveler like Gensai, it takes very little time for him to know what supplies and provisions take precedence over others, and as such it isn’t long before his furoshiki swells up slightly from the influx of sundry items. It is at this point that the rōnin finds himself within a well-to-do storefront that sells a myriad of tools to those with a talent or inclination towards the Arts.

Standing within the modest interior of the shop, Gensai begins to truly appreciate Kyo’s earlier comment on the Magistrate’s apparent patronage of the Arts. Several minutes pass simply admiring the diverse array of artisans tools, instruments, materials, and garb before eventually remembering what he originally came to this establishment for, his eyes alighting with something akin to joy at the sight of several chisels of differing shapes, sizes, and styles. Gensai crouches down to examine them more closely.
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Vardaen » Tue Sep 10, 2019 7:12 pm

"Interest you in something?" The merchant is a smiling faced nearly bald older man. His face is wrinkled from the sun, and his hands are stained by ink, his kimono by paint. "Those are for wood carving, making shoji screens and the like, but those there are for stone work, softer stones, those there are for porcelain and again those are for crafting paper. Well I could go on and on."
"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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Vardaen » Tue Sep 10, 2019 8:18 pm

"And he will go on and on." The voice of another man comes from behind Gensai. Standing behind Gensai is a young man, he wears a strange mon, one that you do not at once recognize. Yet he is dressed in powder blue, a fine kimono with a fine cut and very stylish. The young man's hair is pulled up in a top knot, and his daisho in his belt is clearly very expensive. He smiles at Gensai, no look of disdain for the ronin is hinted there. "Are you an artist?"
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"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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Hermit » Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:45 pm

Vardaen wrote:"Interest you in something?" The merchant is a smiling faced nearly bald older man. His face is wrinkled from the sun, and his hands are stained by ink, his kimono by paint. "Those are for wood carving, making shoji screens and the like, but those there are for stone work, softer stones, those there are for porcelain and again those are for crafting paper. Well I could go on and on."
Gensai looks curiously behind his shoulder. As he inclines his head and readies a reply for the kindly merchant, the rōnin is almost immediately alerted to the unexpected intrusion of another in the budding conversation between himself and the shopkeeper.
Vardaen wrote:"And he will go on and on." The voice of another man comes from behind Gensai. Standing behind Gensai is a young man, he wears a strange mon, one that you do not at once recognize. Yet he is dressed in powder blue, a fine kimono with a fine cut and very stylish. The young man's hair is pulled up in a top knot, and his daisho in his belt is clearly very expensive. He smiles at Gensai, no look of disdain for the ronin is hinted there. "Are you an artist?"


Slowly standing up from his crouched position, his looming stature becomes readily apparent as he turns and peers down at the man before him. “I am many things,” rumbles Gensai sternly with a flinty expression to match, letting the silence stretch awkwardly for a couple seconds before breaking into what he hopes to be a disarming smile of his own. “But yes, an artist happens to be one of them.” He pauses and adds modestly, “ Albeit only a novice in terms of skill.”

Suddenly reminded of the disparity in status between himself and this fashionably attired samurai, Gensai provides a civil bow and introduces himself. “I am Gensai. Tales of the Shichinin no Rōnin are what drew me to this town at first, but it seems these lands have more to offer than solely the hope for guidance from those honored men and women.” His hand gestures to indicate the collection of artisan's goods in their midst to emphasize his point.

The rōnin spares a glance towards the merchant to signify that he has not been completely ignored. “My artistic interests tend towards sculpture. The only material I’ve had the opportunity to work with is wood, so I suppose a chisel for woodworking would be ideal.” He looks down at the selection of chisels and rubs his stubbly chin thoughtfully. "Though it might not hurt to have options, should I decide to use a different material in the future."

Returning his focus to the samurai, it occurs to Gensai that he does not know the man's name and quickly attempts to rectify this by humbly asking for it.
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Vardaen » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:09 pm

"You are rōnin, hai?" The powder blue attired young men asks, but the question doesn't need an answer. "A woodworker? You may find some interesting pieces of driftwood on the beach to work with. Then again if you are looking for a new medium might I suggest scrimshaw. It is rather... controversial in Crane lands, but you shouldn't let that stifle a creative spirit."

He smiles and realizes he didn't introduce himself when asked. "I am Tsume no Doji Takashi, you may call me Doji Takashi if it pleases you. I hope I have not interrupted you too much here, you see I find the fine arts a fascinating calling." He looks like he could be an artist, but the paired blades tucked in his obi might suggest his art is not the same as yours.
"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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Hermit » Fri Sep 13, 2019 2:49 am

“Not at all, in fact those are fine suggestions Doji-san,” says Gensai approvingly, doing well to keep his eyes from studying the exquisite daisho. More than once his imagination strays towards envisioning Takashi in the deceptively relaxed stance of a seasoned duelist, conjuring only a vague figment of the master crafted steel likely concealed within those ornate saya* as they draw lurid streaks of arterial crimson upon the ground like the casual brushstrokes of a painter on fresh canvas. Fine arts indeed? he wonders to himself.

Rather than inquire any further, his mind turns back to the more relevant topic of artistic endeavors. “I can’t imagine why carving whale bones might be seen as controversial in Crane lands,” the rōnin ponders aloud whilst tacitly requesting permission from the shopkeeper to appraise the lineup of various chisels in a more hands-on manner.
*- The Japanese term for scabbard.
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Vardaen » Mon Sep 16, 2019 7:02 pm

"I believe there are two possible reasons. The first is, that it is an art that the Mantis greatly enjoy and are well suited to preforming. The other may have something to do with the procurement of the materials, and the taboo of touching dead flesh among cultured Samurai in the Empire." He shrugs. "It seems hardly different than carving ivory, but who am I to say what is what I'm just a simple Crane."

He leans over and looks at the tool again, "Can you afford such tools rōnin? The prices can be rather steep at times depending on our fine merchant's mood."
"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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Hermit » Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:32 pm

Vardaen wrote:"I believe are are two possible reasons. The first is, that it is an art that the Mantis greatly enjoy and are well suited to preforming. The other may have something to do with the procurement of the materials, and the taboo of touching dead flesh among cultured Samurai in the Empire." He shrugs. "It seems hardly different than carving ivory, but who am I to say what is what I'm just a simple Crane."
A Crane with common sense, was what Gensai might have added to that statement if he was certain that Takashi wouldn’t potentially take umbrage against such a slight, despite it being made purely in jest. The rōnin chooses to merely non-verbally agree with a hum over such opinions and continues to examine each of the chisels individually.
Vardaen wrote:He leans over and looks at the tool again, "Can you afford such tools rōnin? The prices can be rather steep at times depending on our fine merchant's mood."
Gensai notes the close proximity of the man and gingerly side-steps to avoid any inadvertent physical contact. Pleasantly surprised by such concern from Takashi, the large vagabond sets aside both any wry quips and the stone mason’s chisel he’d been appraising before turning to face the Crane. “I’m well aware of my monetary limitations, and I can’t think of anything I’ve done to offend to the owner of this store since coming in. Still, as a novice I should focus on the basics first before considering more advanced techniques. Thank you for reminding me of that, Doji-san.”

Calling the merchant over, Gensai points to the set for woodworking and politely asks, “I’m thinking of purchasing this set. How much for it?” Out of his peripherals he gauges Takashi's reaction to whatever estimate is provided by the shopkeeper.
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Vardaen » Thu Sep 19, 2019 1:30 pm

The Crane of the vassal family of the Tsume adds, "Oh you've done nothing wrong, save you've come here. He's just very prickly and I think half Yasuki if you ask me."

The transaction begins, the merchant suggests the price is 8 bu, which seems rather high priced and Takashi coughs. "Eight? Are you mad, its two wood chisels, a gouge, and a mallet! The ronin will give you 2 Bu and not a zeni more." The merchant looks aghast as the Crane inserts himself into the haggling -- commerce is hardly befitting a samurai. "Take it or leave it peasant!" There is a bit of anger in the young samruai's face. The merchant relents and you are able to make off with the tools for a steal!
"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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Re: Prelude: Gensai

Post by Hermit » Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:47 pm

Vardaen wrote:The Crane of the vassal family of the Tsume adds, "Oh you've done nothing wrong, save you've come here. He's just very prickly and I think half Yasuki if you ask me."

The transaction begins, the merchant suggests the price is 8 bu, which seems rather high priced and Takashi coughs. "Eight? Are you mad, its two wood chisels, a gouge, and a mallet! The ronin will give you 2 Bu and not a zeni more." The merchant looks aghast as the Crane inserts himself into the haggling -- commerce is hardly befitting a samurai. "Take it or leave it peasant!" There is a bit of anger in the young samruai's face. The merchant relents and you are able to make off with the tools for a steal!
Half Yasuki, huh? It is a sentiment that Gensai might be inclined to entertain of the merchant, were it not for Takashi’s own flagrant display of mercantile savviness. Unsurprisingly the rōnin finds himself caring little to not at all over such matters once he finds himself paying for the set of tools at what some might argue to be an outrageously discounted price, courtesy of Takashi’s combined method of haggling and intimidation through status. Feigning ignorance of the exchange that had just transpired, Gensai thanks the shopkeeper for supplying such quality tools at a modest price and promises to recommend this establishment to any with an eye for artistic pursuits.

After vacating the storefront, the shugyōsha turns to speak with the Crane vassal family member. “Arigatou, Doji-san,” he says with a grateful bow. “It would seem that I am indebted to you.”
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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