The Bloodswords, or Kenchi, [1] were four katana called Passion, Ambition, Judgement, and Revenge [2] forged by Asahina Yajinden in 508 using the Anvil of Despair.

Crafting Edit

Yajinden used the Anvil of Despair to bind the spirits of four great Champions into the blades, twisting their souls to match his designs. He imbued them with a thirst for blood that could never be quenched. He embedded their martial prowess within the steel of the blades, allowing whoever wielded them to channel their power. Finally, he took their vaunted code of Bushido and warped it into a dark reflection of itself. The souls were bound now by the blackest aspects of their personalities, rather than the brightest. [3]

Powerful Nemuranai Edit

Each weapon was of exceptional quality, and granted its wielder unusual abilities for a powerful nemuranai. Each sword was also cursed, however, and its owner would eventually be obsessed by the trait with which each katana was imbued. The bloodswords were each gifted to a daimyo of a great clan with the intent that the weapon would destroy them, causing confusion in the Empire and aiding Iuchiban's attempt to dominate Rokugan. [4] [3] Bloodswords communicated by telepathy, and sought out wielders who would make powerful pawns, encouraging them to take up the blade and experience its power. [5] Victims killed by a Bloodsword were irrevocably slain, their souls trapped forever within the blade. [6]

Bloodswords Edit

Item Created By First Used By Currently Used By
Ambition (Yashin) Asahina Yajinden Bayushi Shoju Mirumoto Kenzo
Judgement (Handan) Asahina Yajinden Hida Tenburo Isawa Mizuhiko
Passion (Jonetsu) Asahina Yajinden Doji Tanaka Believed Lost
Revenge (Fukushu) Asahina Yajinden Akodo Meikuko Custody of the Phoenix Clan

First Uses Edit

The four swords were gifted to the Champions of the Scorpion, Crab, Crane and Lion. The Crane Clan Champion confessed his love for a geisha less than half his age to the assembled court before throwing himself off a cliff into the sea. The Lion Clan Champion engaged in an ill-concieved assault upon the Dragon Clan over a perceived insult, and died in front of the gates of Shiro Mirumoto. The Crab Clan Champion killed his own children in their sleep before turning the blade upon himself. Only the Scorpion Clan Champion Bayushi Rikoji did not use his blade, rather choosing to start an investigation into the origin of these "gifts", leading to the fall of Iuchiban. [4] [3] Ambition laid unused for centuries until the Scorpion Clan Champion Bayushi Shoju used the blade to kill the Emperor Hantei XXXVIII in 1123. [citation needed]

The 5th Sword Edit

Treason, a never-completed fifth Iuchiban blade which Yajinden has finished. [7]

Thirst Edit

Kenchi were powerful weapons, but they also bore a terrible hunger for blood. Whenever a kenchi took a life, the power of the weapon grew, and the more influence it gained over its owner. [1] It was theorized that the thirst of the blades could be quenched. It was necessary a wielder for the blade, someone incorruptible, a man whose heart was endlessly fair and just. And several targets that allowed their kharmic debt to be finally paid. [8]

External Links Edit




  1. 1.0 1.1 Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 181
  2. Bloodsword (Jade flavor)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Iuchiban's Legacy
  4. 4.0 4.1 Legend of the Five Rings; Third Edition, p. 13.
  5. Magic of Rokugan, p. 80
  6. Bloodspeakers, p. 27
  7. Fate of a Hantei, p. 14
  8. Fires of the Heart, by Lucas Twyman

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