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Hantei

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Hantei 
Hantei 
Born: Pre-calendar 
Died: 45 
Parents: Onnotangu,
Amaterasu 
Siblings: Akodo,
Bayushi,
Doji,
Fu Leng,
Hida,
Ryoshun,
Shiba,
Shinjo,
Togashi 
Spouse: Doji Mioko 
Children: Hantei Genji,
Otomo Yamato 
Titles: Emperor of Rokugan
People

Hantei Jimmu Tenno, [1] also known as Hantei I, was one of the eight Kami who fell from the Celestial Heavens into the Mortal Realm of Ningen-do and founded the Emerald Empire of Rokugan. Hantei was the victor in the Tournament of the Kami and so became the first Emperor of Rokugan. He reigned over the Empire until the end of the War Against Fu Leng and founded the longest-ruling of the Imperial dynasties, the Hantei family.

Fall of the Kami Edit

Hantei was one of the ten Kami born to the Sun goddess Amaterasu and the Moon god Onnotangu in the Celestial Heavens of Tengoku. After the birth of Hantei, who was the last and youngest of the Kami, his father, corrupted by his continuing conversations with the Nothing, became jealous of the attention his wife paid to their children and increasingly fearful that they would attempt to usurp his position in the Heavens. Once Onnotangu began behaving strangely due to the Nothing's growing influence over him, the twin Kami Shiba and Bayushi approached their younger brothers Hantei and Fu Leng and suggested something should be done about their father's aberrant behavior. Hantei was apalled at the suggestion of acting against their father and forbade the twins from continuing with their planning, but Fu Leng betrayed their confidence to Onnotangu in the hope of increasing his own influence with the Lord Moon. Faced with the seeming reality of his worst fears, Onnotangu sought out and swallowed each of his children whole. But Amaterasu, hoping to save her youngest son, provided Onnotangu with sake to drink after he swallowed each child, and gradually poisoned Onnotangu with each cup. As he swallowed them down, lady Sun's many tears fell. By the time Onnotangu sought out Hantei to swallow him, the Moon god had consumed his nine brothers and sisters, and nine cups of poisoned sake. While the poison could not kill Lord Moon, it made him so drunk that he mistook a stone provided by Amaterasu for Hantei and swallowed it instead. Amaterasu secreted Hantei away, protecting him from his father, who believed him swallowed. She taught Hantei of the nature of character and virtue as he grew, and of the kind of just man his father had once been. During this time in hiding, Hantei also learned to perfect the art of the sword and knew that one day he would have to confront the monster that the Lord Moon had become. [2] Hantei lived secluded in a cave and fed by the animals of the earth. [3] Wind-spirits made to him the Blade of Clouds, [4] and the Celestial Dragons taught him the art of battle. [5]

The Confrontation Edit

When Hantei finally moved to confront his father, there was an epic duel that shook the Heavens between the two divinities. Hantei was not powerful enough to kill his father, and Onnotangu made a killing stroke. Hantei rolled aside and his father's blade cut a Hole in the Sky, opening a portal from the Celestial heavens into the Mortal Realm. During their duel, Hantei heard the cries of his siblings, who as divine beings had managed to survive even within the stomach of the Lord Moon. Hantei cut open Onnotangu's stomach, and his siblings fell out through the opened hole, and tumbled through the hole in the Heavens that the Moon god had cut. They fell to the mortal world of Ningen-do far below. [2] Only Fu Leng had managed to not fall, but the Lord Moon reached and grasped him tightly. Hoping to free his brother, Hantei sliced his father's hand, breaking his grip, which caused Fu Leng (and the Lord Moon's severed hand) to follow his brothers and sisters to the mortal world below. But, at the last moment, Fu Leng in his panic reached out and grabbed Hantei, dragging his brother down through the hole in the sky with him. [6] While eight of his brothers and sisters fell to the Mortal Realm, Fu Leng slammed through Ningen-do and into Jigoku, the Realm of Evil. Ryoshun, the Tenth Kami, had been the first swallowed by the Lord Moon had been inside the stomach of Onnotangu too long that even his divine form had perished. Rather than falling into the Mortal Realm, Ryoshun's spirit fled to Meido, the Realm of the Dead. Eight Kami, including Hantei, fell to Ningen-do, the Realm of Mortals. [2]

The Creation of Mankind Edit

When Hantei cut open Onnotangu's belly Lord Moon's blood dripped to the earth. This blood formed Obsidian. Wherever a drop of his blood found one of Amaterasu's tears the two combined to form a human man and woman. [7]

Founding Rokugan Edit

As soon as the Children of the Sun and the Moon touched the soil of the Mortal Realm, they ceased being divine. While they were still not truly mortal men, they were also no longer gods. [6] They soon set off from Seppun Hill in order to explore and understand this mortal world they had fallen into, to return five years later. [8]

Tournament of the Kami Edit

The Kami realized that the mortals of the world to which they fell needed guidance and organization that only they could provide. Hantei looked out and saw the people of Rokugan as children who should be taught the wisdom required to flourish. The Kami realized they were just the ones for the task. The siblings organized a tournament, and the victor would become the ruler of the new-formed Emerald Empire of Rokugan and of his or her other siblings and their mortal followers. Hantei was the last contestant in the Tournament of the Kami. Besting his brother, the great warrior Akodo, Hantei proved his worth over his siblings and thus became the first Emperor of Rokugan, founding what would become the long-lived Hantei Dynasty. [2]

When the Last Akodo Falls Edit

Because Hantei spared Akodo, Akodo swore to his brother that he and his family would serve him. Togashi, watching the battle from a distance, whispered: "When the last Akodo falls, so falls the last Hantei." [9] This forewarning was instrumental during the events in the 12th century.

First Emperor Edit

To ensure the continued loyalty of his powerful brothers and sisters, Hantei demanded proof of their loyalty to the new Empire and to the Emperor personally. Each of the Kami broke their original wakizashi. A legendary swordsmith forged them into a single katana, a blade that Hantei carried always at his side as the symbol of the Kami and their Great Clans' fidelity to the Imperial Throne. [10]

Otosan Uchi Edit

While his siblings began to gather followers Hantei remained at Seppun Hill. From there he organized the government of the Emerald Empire, and surveyed the foundation of Otosan Uchi. [11]

The Tenth Kami Edit

"Ten Kami fell from the sky. One fell to Jigoku, but only eight now walk the mortal realm. Let not the mortals sully Ryoshun's memory by speaking his name. Let his grave be a place where only gods may enter."
-Hantei

Hantei commanded that Ryoshun's name be forgotten, so no mortal would sully his brother's name. He also commanded that only gods could enter Ryoshun's grave. [12] The grave site was located where the Badger Clan was eventually founded, and that minor clan was secretly tasked with guarding the grave of the Tenth Kami.[13]

White Stag Edit

Hantei was with his brothers and sisters on a hunt when they spotted a stag. They hunted it all day without succes, but only when Hantei rode alone did he find the beast. Some said a promise was spoken between them, but what manner of promise, none could say. since then the Hantei Dynasty were oftenly associated with a white stag. [14]

The Emperor's Champion Edit

Following the completion of the Imperial capital city of Otosan Uchi, Hantei called for festivities to celebrate the occasion and held a tournament to determine who would become his personal champion, known as the Emerald Champion. Many of the most skilled and talented people in the Empire partook in the festivities, including Hantei's siblings and their followers among the Great Clans. The competition lasted many days until in the end there were only two contestants remaining, Kakita and Matsu. Kakita was victorious, and was made Hantei's Champion. Hantei could not help but notice Kakita's instant affection for his sister, the Kami Doji, founder of the Crane Clan. [15]

Doji and Kakita Edit

"This is my personal champion, Kakita. He has also become my friend, and it would honor me greatly for you two to marry. It would strengthen your house considerably, Doji-chan."
-Hantei

Hantei proposed the two be wed, which left his new Champion and friend speechless. Doji agreed to the arrangement, but only if Kakita could prove his worth as her brother's champion. Kakita would have to "bring the dead to life, measure the width of the world and show her a vision." Kakita sought out the aid of the wise woman Yasuki and successfully carried out each of these seemingly impossible tasks, and won Doji's heart, to Hantei's everlasting pleasure. [15]

The First Imperial Wedding Edit

The first wedding

The First Imperial Wedding

The story goes that Hantei searched the entire lands for a wife. When he arrived in the lands of the Crane Clan the clan's samuari searched frantically for the most beautiful women they could find to receive the Emperor's approval. They searched a small village called Ikieto, but found only old women. The samurai left without knowing that a fisherman had heard of their impending arrival and hidden his daughter, Doji Mioko, on a small island far from the village. Meanwhile the Emperor was shown beautiful and certainly honorable women, but none stirred his heart. One day he was riding through the lands of the Crane, seeking sport and amusement when he got separated from his Imperial entourage. He found himself on the ocean shore, where he heard a haunting melody on the wind. He told the Crane samuari of the voice, and they took him to Ikieto and commanded the fishermen there to take the Emperor to the island. The Emperor found nothing on the island, and returned to the palace empty-handed. Mioko had been hiding in a cave on the island, and asked her father about the young man he had taken out to the island. He lied, saying it was a beggar, but that night she penned a haiku, and attached it to the leg of her pet bird and sent it in hopes of reaching the "beggar". The same night the Emperor heard a disturbance in the bushes and found a white dove entangled in the branches. He read the poem and decided then and there that the girl who had written the poem was the one he would marry. The fisherman attempted to pass off a simple maiden of his village as the girl who had written the poem, but the Emperor saw through the farce when he asked the girl to compose a new poem. Demanding that the fisherman tell him who the girl who wrote the poem really was, the fisherman told him about his daughter. The Emperor was again taken out to the island, and when he finally saw Mioko he cried Jade Tears. The pair were wed, and the island was named after the fisherman's lost daughter. [16] The wedding was dated in the year 26. [17]

It was said that Hantei spent a week in the Bay of Green Coral when searching for his bride. [18]

Children Edit

Hantei and Mioko had several children. The eldest was Hantei Genji, who succeeded his father as Emperor of Rokugan as Hantei II. Another, one of the youngest of Hantei's sons, was Otomo Yamato. Yamato was the first of Genji's siblings to take the Otomo name, beginning the tradition of siblings of the Imperial Heir taking the Otomo name and thus founding what later became known as the Imperial Families. [19]

Fu Leng Edit

Some time after the foundation of the Emerald Empire, Fu Leng appeared in Hantei's court. Unlike his siblings, Fu Leng had maintained his divinity, for he had fallen into the Realm of Evil, Jigoku, rather than the Mortal Realm. The Dark Kami demanded a chance to best Hantei for control of Rokugan, because he had not been asked to attend the first Tournament of the Kami. The assembled Kami refused him the chance, saying that they had now sworn to protect the life of Hantei. The Kami Shiba suggested instead that Fu Leng choose another to fight as Hantei's champion. Fu Leng chose his brother Togashi, and told the Dragon Clan's Kami to choose his weapon. Togashi chose "all that lives in Rokugan." Fu Leng agreed. And with that, the War Against Fu Leng began. [20]

Hantei's Decree Edit

"Those who will not obey will leave or be destroyed."
-Hantei

Out of fear of Fu Leng's demonic powers, Hantei declared that anything non-human within the boundaries of the Empire was to be slain to deny the Dark Kami any more troops for his foul armies.The warrior Kami Akodo led his armies against the Kitsu, and almost destroyed them all before one of his followers, Akodo Mirotai, revealed to him the true, noble nature of the Kitsu.[22] Hantei also decreed that those who would not obey the rule of the Kami were to be exiled or destroyed. [21] Among those was the bandit Tribe of Noriaki, who had been defeated at Seppun Hill by Hantei, the Kami and the Seppun. The few remaining Noriaki who did not agree to become part of the Empire fled south, into the Shadowlands where they, under the leadership of Mutsuhito, swore fealty to Fu Leng. [23]

Grievously Wounded Edit

The Rokugani fought with unswerving fervor, but they were outmatched, and not even the superior tactics of Akodo or the raw strength of Hida could save them. There were simply too many of the terrible Shadowlands creatures. Hantei himself was grievously wounded in battle in the year 42. [17]

Shinsei Edit

At the height of the war, the dark armies of Fu Leng were pushing the defending forces of the Crab Clan back slowly. None of the Kami were willing to confront their mad brother and take his life, and defeat seemed inevitable when a wise man named Shinsei, [24] which means "new way", appeared in the Imperial court. He promised the Emperor that he could defeat the armies of the Shadowlands, but the Emperor was unimpressed. He commanded that the peasant be removed, but Shinsei, completely unarmed, defeated all twenty of the Emperor's finest guards. [6]

The Tao Edit

Hantei and Shinsei

Hantei and Shinsei

Hantei noticed the black crow emblazoned upon the back of the Robes of Shinsei, symbol of the ancient kenku. Even the Kami respected the kenku's wisdom, thus Hantei offered Shinsei an opportunity to speak his piece. [25] Hantei was now curious about the nature of Shinsei. All night long he spent questioning the little man, and while he questioned, Shinsei answered. This conversation was later recorded as the Tao of Shinsei. [6]

Gathering Thunder Edit

At the end of the evening, Hantei was convinced that the wise man could save the Empire. Shinsei had revealed that a small group of seven individuals could infiltrate the Shadowlands and defeat Fu Leng. [24] He wished to send the Kami with Shinsei, but he was told that any who sought to defeat Fu Leng would have to be mortals, for fortune favored the mortal man. [6] Hantei, grievously wounded in a recent battle with Fu Leng's forces, declared that one individual from each of the Great Clans be sent to join in this endeavour. Shinsei personally assembled his companions, later known as the Seven Thunders, and joined them on the quest to defeat the Ninth Kami. [24]

Day of Thunder Edit

The Seven Thunders and Shinsei made their way deep into the Shadowlands, where they found Fu Leng and defeated him. The cost was terrible, as only Shinsei and the Scorpion Clan's Thunder, Shosuro, survived the fight. They fled north, with the First Oni and many other creatures of the Shadowlands pursuing. The timely intervention of the Kami Shiba allowed Shinsei and Shosuro to reach the borders of Rokugan safely, but at the expense of Shiba's life. Fu Leng had been defeated, but at a very high cost for th Great Clans and the people of the Empire. [26]

Black Scrolls Edit

Shosuro returned with twelve scrolls of black leathery parchment that each contained a fragment of the divine essence of Fu Leng, a hand constructed from a strange obsidian, that was actually the Obsidian Hand of Onnotangu and an Obsidian Mirror. Shosuro warned the Emperor to hide the scrolls and died immediately thereafter. Hantei gave the eternal duty of guarding the Black Scrolls to the Scorpion Clan. [6]

Burdens of the Clans Edit

Hantei commanded the Crab Clan to build a great wall between the Empire and the Shadowlands and to forever after guard the Emerald Empire from their evil. The Crane and Lion Clans vowed to protect the Emperor. Kakita was selected to be the first Emerald Champion while Akodo led the Emperor's armies on the field of battle. The Dragon and Clans chose the paths of contemplation. While the Phoenix took the Tao of Shinsei and incorporated it into their own understanding of sorcery, the Dragon Clan retreated into the steep northern mountains of Rokugan to contemplate the truths revealed by Shinsei's words and seek enlightenment. Lastly, the Unicorn Clan, at the time known as the Ki-Rin Clan, left the borders of the Empire behind to discover what lay beyond its borders and if there were any further threats to Rokugan equal to that which had emerged from the Shadowlands. [6]

After the War Edit

Hantei 2

Hantei

Emperor's Spy Network Edit

After Fu Leng's defeat Hantei turned on Bayushi and requested him to create a system of gathering information from the other clans to ensure his dynasty's tenure on the Throne. Hantei told he wished to organize an order of spies, but if his trust was betrayed Bayushi's line would be erased. Bayushi accepted and the Emperor's spy network was born, they were known as the ninja. [27]

Ki-Rin's Exodus Edit

After the defeat of Fu Leng, the Kami Shinjo and her Ki-Rin Clan were tasked by the Emperor with ensuring there were no further threats to Rokugan from outside its borders. Shinjo and the Ki-Rin rode north into the Burning Sands to explore the world. [28] Shinjo left Rokugan and was also accompanied by the Ide, Iuchi and Otaku families. She was given Doji's Mirror to remain in contact with Hantei about what she and her followers had discovered. [29] When the mirror later went dark most in Rokugan assumed the worst -- that the Ki-Rin were destroyed and would not be returning. [30]

Death Edit

Most Rokugani records agree that Hantei reigned as Emperor until shortly after the end of the First War with the Shadowlands in 45. Some records indicated that he died as a result of the wounds he received during the war (and records clearly show that he was wounded in the Battle of the Four Winds in 42 [31]). However, the most accepted version of Hantei's passing was that after the War Against Fu Leng, he quit the mortal world and ascended back to the Celestial Heavens of Tengoku. [32] Other sources told that despite the forces of the Shadowlands had been defeated, a single oni sneaked into the Imperial City, and before the demon was killed by the Imperial Guards, Hantei had been struck by a single poisoned claw which led into his death. [33]

Notable Events Edit

Hantei Sensei

Hantei Sensei

The following notable events in the history of Rokugan occured during the reign of the Emperor Hantei I:

External Links Edit


Preceded by:
None
Emperor of Rokugan
5 - 45
Succeeded by:
Hantei Genji


References

  1. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 136
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Dawn of the Empire, by Rich Wulf
  3. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 87
  4. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 17
  5. Imperial Histories, p. 12
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 The Gaijin's Guide to Rokugan, Part I
  7. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, pp. 18-19
  8. Imperial Histories, p. 11
  9. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 19
  10. Right of Honor, Strength of Steel, by Rich Wulf
  11. Imperial Histories, p. 13
  12. 12.0 12.1 The Death of Ryoshun (Dawn of the Empire)
  13. The Touch of the Void, by Shawn Carman
  14. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 240
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 The Perfect Gift
  16. Way of the Crane, pp. 109-111
  17. 17.0 17.1 Imperial Histories, p. 15
  18. Bay of Green Coral (Test of Enlightenment flavor)
  19. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 38
  20. Bearers of Jade, pp. 124-126
  21. 21.0 21.1 Mountains of Exile (Dawn of the Empire)
  22. Glorious Battle, by Shawn Carman
  23. Shadow, by Rich Wulf
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 A Gathering of Thunder, by Rich Wulf
  25. Way of the Open Hand, p. 16
  26. Day of Thunder, by Rich Wulf
  27. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 185
  28. Way of the Unicorn, pp. 25-26
  29. Secrets of the Unicorn, p. 8
  30. Blood Dawn, Part VIII: Shadows of Yesterday, by Shawn Carman and Rich Wulf
  31. Otosan Uchi, Book 2, p. 7
  32. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 82
  33. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 40


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