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Hantei XXXIX

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Hantei XXXIX 
Hantei XXXIX 
Born: 1107 
Died: 1128 
Parents: Hantei XXXVIII,
Un-named Crane concubine 
Siblings: Daigotsu (half) 
Spouse: Bayushi Kachiko 
Children: None 
Titles: Emperor of Rokugan
Fu Leng

Hantei Sotorii was the childhood name of the only surviving child of Hantei XXXVIII, and Emperor Hantei XXXIX following the death of his father.

Birth Edit

Sotorii, was born of a young Crane concubine, many years after the third wife of the Emperor had died. Immediately upon his birth, Hantei married the courtesan and his mother, a cousin of Doji Satsume, became the Empress. Only three years later, she died of a terrible fever. [1]

Bloodspeaker attack Edit

In 1111, when Sotorii was four years old, the caravan he was traveling in with the Empress Hantei Hochiahime was attacked by bloodspeakers. Sotorii and the Empress were captured, but Sotorii was saved by the ronin Yotsu who sacrificed his own son to allow the imperial heir to escape [2] from the Bloodspeaker's camp in the Treacherous Pass. [3]

The Unknown Sibling Edit

Unknown to most, the Empress carried her child to term. The child was transformed by a ritual that bound an unnamed oni to his soul. He was kept secret, hidden in Jigoku by the bloodspeakers. Once the child was old enough he entered the mortal realm once more, bearing the name of Daigotsu. The son of Yotsu used to fool the bloodspeakers was also alive, now Goju Kyoden, the yojimbo of Daigotsu, and had suffered the same ritual and exile as Daigotsu. [4]

Youth Edit

Hantei Sotorii

Hantei Sotorii

Sotorii was a youth, as impatient rebellious, impetuous and brash as any other boy. He enjoyed falconry, swordplay and stories of his ancestors. He never heard the whispers of Amaterasu, that all Hantei before him had claimed to hear. Instead he heard in dreams whispers speaking of blood and revenge. [5] He grew up and was seen as a brash and furious boy. [6]

Winter Court at Kyuden Seppun Edit

In winter 1122-1123 during winter court at Kyuden Seppun several omens were seen in the sky, but the astrologers did not confirm what they foresaw. Anyhow, many of the events, as the return of the Dragon's Tail Star, or the brilliant red star which shone at dawn on the celebration of the young Prince's birth, were interpreted as consequence of the celestial disapproval of the Prince, which was seen as weak heir. [7]

Scorpion Coup Edit

Hantei XXXVIII with his son

Sotorii with his father

In 1123, the Scorpion Clan Champion Bayushi Shoju attacked and killed the Emperor in the Imperial Palace. Shortly before Sotorii had retired with his retainers, including Isawa Kaede. [8] Shoju sent his half-brother Bayushi Aramoro to kill Sotorii, but the heir was spirited away by Isawa Kaede [9] [10] and the Captain of the Imperial Guard Seppun Ishikawa, [11] after Shiba Tsukune had escorted him out of the Imperial City. [12] The magic of the Phoenix changed Sotorii's childhood playmate to resemble him, and he sacrificed himself to draw attention away of the escaping heir. [13] Believing the heir dead, Shoju proclaimed himself Emperor Shoju I. The Scorpion Coup lasted only six days, when the joint forces of Rokugan defeated the Scorpion Clan. Sotorii returned at the head of the Phoenix army, having been given a hasty gempukku, and was made Emperor Hantei XXXIX. [12]

Life as Emperor Edit

Hantei XXXIX with Kachiko

Hantei XXXIX with Kachiko

One of Hantei XXXIX's first declarations was that he would take Shoju's wife, the renownedly beautiful Bayushi Kachiko, to be his own wife. She would maintain her own family name, as a concubine was not deemed worthy to bear the Emperor's name. [14] The Scorpion Clan were disbanded, as was the Akodo family, for what he percieved to be Akodo Toturi's failing in protecting his father's reign. [15] [16] The only person to escape that sanction was Akodo Kage. [17]

Kachiko Edit

Kachiko had manipulated the young Emperor, only fourteen at the time, into taking her as his wife. From her new position as Empress, she aided those Scorpion who managed to escape the purge led by the other clans, and followed with the poisoning of the Emperor. [18]

Plague Edit

Kachiko tending Hantei XXXIX

Kachiko tending Hantei Sotorii

When the Emperor fell ill in 1124 [19] during the Clan War the Imperial Doctor diagnosed him with the plague. The truth was actually that Kachiko was poisoning her husband in revenge for the fall of her husband and clan. [20] [21] Sotorii had brief lucid moments in the middle of his feverish state. In one of them he saw the green color of the poison before Kachiko gave him a tea, but this memories did not last after the moment passed. [22]

Assassination Attempt Edit

There was an assassination attempt made against Hantei XXXIX, at the onset of the Clan War. It was unknown who instigated the attempt or why, but the Emperor survived thanks to Kachiko, who was wounded in the process. [23] It was secretly a plan of Kachiko's to gain favor in the court, and the assassin gave his life ensuring this plan succeeded. [20]

Winter Court - Kyuden Asako Edit

In 1126 the Emperor and his wife moved to winter court at Kyuden Asako, but his illnes kept him sequestered since his arrival. [24] Kuni Yori exposed the Asako Henshin and the secret of their path of immortality to the Isawa family. [25]

Vessel of Fu Leng Edit

Possessed Hantei XXXIX

Possessed Hantei XXXIX

The Yogo Daimyo of the disbanded Scorpion Clan, Yogo Junzo, had opened the first of the Black Scrolls spreading the Wasting Disease. Fu Leng's spirit escaped its imprisonment and was able to possess the weakened Emperor. [19]

Evil on the Emperor Edit

Eventually Kachiko realized the Shadowlands' hold on the Emperor, so she entrusted Aramoro to find a way to kill her husband. The attempt was made through a ninja named Tantoko, but she failed to kill Hantei XXXIX using one of the Jade Goblets of Taira as a weapon. [26]

Kisada's Ambition Edit

Hida Kisada had been manipulated by Kachiko, and raised in arms against the weakened Hantei in 1126. A tainted and plagued Seppun messenger entered the Imperial Throne room and told that the Crab had raised an army heading north from the Kaiu Wall. The Crab had brought taint north, their armies were not samurai. They brought great machines, Maho-tsukai, oni, and minions of the Shadowlands. Yakamo was fighting with them, surrounded by his Hida Elite Guard. Yakamo had a hand made of iron, steel, and flesh and he was planning to seize the Beiden Pass. As soon as the messenger ended his report, Seppun Ishikawa cut the head from the samurai's shoulders with a clean stroke. The Taint had already begun to spread through Rokugan, and plague seized the lands of the Crane. [27]

Return of Fu Leng Edit

Return of Fu Leng

The Return of Fu Leng

The poisoning weakened the Emperor to the state that the dark Kami Fu Leng could take possession of his body in 1128. The dark Kami had been released by the opening of the Black Scrolls, which began when a grief stricken Yogo Junzo opened the first scroll following the failed Scorpion Coup. [28]

Defeating the Great Bear Edit

Kisada Mortally Wounded

The Mortal Wounding of Kisada

In the Month of the Hare of 1128, [29] believing the Emperor was dying, the Crab stormed Otosan Uchi to place Kisada on the throne. Instead, they found Fu Leng had possessed Hantei XXXIX, [30] who had killed his own Seppun Miharu and the Hidden Guard. Dressed in velvet robes the Emperor charged with Uncanny Speed [31] and mortally wounded Kisada, lodging Akkuai-uo, the Ancestral Sword of the Hantei in his gut. [32] The Crab army was forced to retreat from the capital as his son Hida Yakamo pulled his father from the palace. [33]

Sided with the Shadowlands Edit

Immediately after the Crab daimyo and his son confronted him, the Shadowlands Horde turned on its Crab allies. The Crab navy broke its blockade and turned south, but many koutetsukan were destroyed by Skull Tide Gaki and ghost-ships. Crab and Lion troops were cut down mercilessly as they fled the city. The fallen Yogo Junzo was seen arriving at midnight the following day and the Emperor allowed the mad shugenja entrance to the castle. [29]

Clans United Against the Hantei Edit

After the failed assault on Otosan Uchi, the surviving Crab forces laid a camp near the ruins of Kyuden Doji. In winter this year the possesed Emperor announced the cancellation Winter Court. Hida Tsuru, Hida Kisada's brother, sent invitations to hold a mock Winter Court outside the city, which was soon attended by the leaders of the clans and their military advisors. Now united, the clans began uniting their forces against the Shadowlands. [34]

Second Day of Thunder Edit

Fu Leng's possession of the boy brought about the Second Day of Thunder, where the Seven Thunders (Kachiko one of them) fought him. Fu Leng, now fully in control of the body, was made mortal with the Twelfth Black Scroll which had been hidden within the chest of Togashi. Fu Leng managed to mortally wound Doji Hoturi and Isawa Tadaka before he was killed by a simultanous strike by Hoturi and Toturi. [28]

Funeral Edit

The last Hantei's soul was supposed finally at peace, freed from the taint of evil which had darkened his spirit. The Emperor's body was taken from the Imperial Palace and thrown into the sea, headless and wasted by the dark magics of Fu Leng. There was no funeral pyre, no honorable burial. The body belonged to the Dark Lord, and there was no reason for homage. [35]

Sotorii's Head Edit

After the fight of the Second Day of Thunder was over, Kuni Yori had entered the Imperial Palace and stole the head of the dead Emperor. [36]

Real Fate of Hantei Sotorii's Soul Edit

When Fu Leng possessed the Dark Kami consumed Sotorii's soul. The soul came to Meido, and could not ascend to Tengoku because he was not truly dead. So he had to remain in Meido, the Realm of the Eternal Waiting forever. Finally his soul was not at peace. [37]

Toturi Sezaru Edit

While Toturi Sezaru was traveling in Meido, looking for a way to pass to Yomi, he enraged Emma-O, the Fortune of Death. The meeting had been seen by Sotorii, who shortly after talked to Sezaru and gave counsel to him. [37]

"Keep our fathers' dream alive. Triumph where I failed."
-Hantei Sotorii's soul [37]

See also Edit

External Links Edit

Preceded by:
Bayushi Shoju
Emperor of Rokugan
1123 - 1128
Succeeded by:
Toturi I


  1. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, pp. 101-102
  2. Guardians, by Shawn Carman
  3. Way of the Wolf, p. 37
  4. One Question (Rulebook story Fall of Otosan Uchi), by Rich Wulf
  5. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 102
  6. Otosan Uchi:Book 2, p. 10
  7. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, pp. 81-82
  8. Otosan Uchi: The Scorpion's Sting, p. 15
  9. Clan Letter to the Phoenix Clan (Imperial Herald v.2 #4)
  10. Imperial Herald #14, Legend of the Five Rings History
  11. In the Emperor’s Name
  12. 12.0 12.1 Imperial Histories, p. 142
  13. Otosan Uchi: The Scorpion's Sting, p. 29
  14. Otosan Uchi: The Scorpion's Sting, p. 68
  15. Matsu Toshiro (Honor Bound Foil Chase Cards flavor)
  16. A Gaijin's Guide to Rokugan, Part 3
  17. Scorpion Clan Coup, Scrolls 1-3
  18. The Scorpion Clan
  19. 19.0 19.1 Imperial Histories, p. 152
  20. 20.0 20.1 Long Knives by John Wick
  21. Plans Within Plans (Honor Bound Foil Chase Cards flavor)
  22. Winter Court: Kyuden Kakita, p. 98
  23. Scorpion Clan Coup, Scrolls 1-3
  24. Winter Court:Kyuden Asako, p. 7
  25. Winter Court:Kyuden Asako, pp. 49-50
  26. The Tomb of Yu Weh, by Ree Soesbee
  27. Three Days, by Ree Soesbee
  28. 28.0 28.1 Time of the Void story cards
  29. 29.0 29.1 Time of the Void, p. 55
  30. As the Shadow Falls (Anvil of Despair flavor) (The Doom of Hantei, Part II)
  31. Time of the Void, pp. 71-72
  32. The Story So Far: Anvil of Despair (Imperial Herald v1 #4)
  33. Tunnel System (Crimson and Jade flavor)
  34. Time of the Void, p. 100
  35. Clan Letter to the Scorpion #7 (Imperial Herald v2 #3)
  36. Clan Letter to the Shadowlands #1 (Imperial Herald v2 #3)
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 Voices, by Shawn Carman

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