The Era of the Heavenly Empress

Benten's Blade and the Kenshinzen

Kitsu Diaki was set to duel Kakita Masumune. He carefully prepared, but when the duel was met, he was no match for the Kenshinzen’s skill. When Masamune cut his lip, the duel ended and Otomo Takeshi announced The Empress would hold court that night. All were aware that it was so Diaki could request the right to commit seppku.

Ikoma Suigin requested the opp7urtunity to present Daiki, who would only allow it if he was presented as Benten’s Blade. Matsu Juriarranged the Lion’s Pride to act as his honour guard.

Presenting his wakazashi to the Empress, Tenkohime accepted his sword, examined it, and handed it to Shosuro Jimen and gave Daiki her own sword. She commanded him to complete the act on the highest hill in Kyuden Bayushi the next sunset.

Moshi Kikiyo prepared Diaki to meet his end, and Bayushi Yoshimi agreed to be his second. They approached the hill with The Voice of Emma-O. When they arrived, the Empress relieved Yoshimi of his role, and seconded Diaki with Benten’s Blade itself. as she watched, she cried 10 diamond tears, and when the sword fell on Daiki’s neck, the cherry blossoms that flew from it went from white to red. Hantie XL then demanded that Bayushi Paneki build a temple to Daiki, the Fortune of Devotion, on this spot.

Five days later, when Masamune was to duel Yoshimi, he did not show up. Jimen asked Kitsu Kosho to investigate. He learned that Masumune had last been seen leaving Shosuro Manoji’s home, quite drunk. Tiru was able to locate Masamune’s wakazashi at the site of Daiki’s shrine, and the Lion and Scorpion rounded up all those he had scarred, to ensure they did not leave town. Kosho found a charred body stuffed into a crate, and summoned Hida Masori and a Kitsuki investigator. Together, they determined that a bushi with a curved blade had attacked the body from above, and then cut him down, and a shugenja had burned the corpse. The sheathes matched Masamune’s, but his katana was missing. Otomo Kage was able to find a fisherman who testified that he had seen events like this, but they happened so quickl6y even the kenshinzen’s speed hadn’t been enough.

Moshi Kikiyo was suspected, and when she would not answer the shugenja summons sent for her, Yoritomo Naizen declared her a ronin, and offered her death as penance, obviously hoping to appease the crane so that retribution would not have them enter the Mantis Pheonix war on the horizon, evening the sides. The gate guards claim that Kikiyo left the night of Daiki’s death, but this is now under suspicion.


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