Please note: This article is about the Keeper of Void. For other uses of the term, please see Hira (disambiguation).
Born: Unknown 
Parents: Asahina Nariaki,
Un-named Asahina 
Siblings: Several un-named 
Titles: Keeper of Void

Asahina Hira, an Ishiken blind Crane Clan Void Asahina, became the Keeper of Void in 1166 after he passed the challenge laid down by Rosoku. Hira was also uncle to the Keeper of Fire Kakita Tsuken. [1] He retired as the monk Hira. [2]

Family Edit

Hira was the youngest son of Asahina Nariaki and a talented Asahina shugenja. [3]

Father Edit

Hira was surprised when he learned his father was a spirit who had returned through the Oblivion's Gate. A ronin called Nariaki, formerly a Phoenix who had been a disgraced criminal, who in the 6th century was forced to undergo The Forgetting ritual, losing his abilities to speak with the kami. [3]

Blind Edit

Asahina Hira

Asahina Hira

Hira showed his mother's aptitude for healing and was trained as Asahina Shugenja. His eyesight was quite bad, and in his mid-thirties his eyes worsened and failed entirely. Hira used his connection to Void to replace his sight, and with the time he mastered it and became an Ishiken. [3] He was one of the many appretinces of the Jade Champion Asahina Sekawa. [4]

Badger Clan Edit

He was assigned as the shugenja advisor of a young Crane courtier, Doji Koin, who considered him a helpless old blind man. Koin was stationed in the Ichiro provinces, while the Badger Clan was under survey and in danger of loseing Minor Clan status. If this would happen, the Crane would request to protect the Ichiro lands. Hira was chosen for this remote duty due to the embarrassment if the Phoenix Clan at his affinity with the Void. It was extremely rare for a shugenja born outside the Phoenix to have an affinity for the Void. [1]

While assigned to the Badger Clan provinces, he heard much information pertinent to the Keepers' investigations. Despite his blindness, he was extraordinarily perceptive. Rather than his conventional senses, he used the Void to understand his surroundings. He was also especially good at reading people. He met the Miya Herald, Miya Tsurugi sent by the princess Otomo Hoketuhime to assess whether Emperor Toturi made a mistake in allowing the Badger to retain Minor Clan status. Hira sensed Tsurugi was predisposed toward finding the Badger incapable of fulfilling their duties and he feared that if they remained a Minor Clabm he would be assigned to what he felt was an insignificant place, on a more permanent basis. [1]

Hideo no Oni Edit

The Keepers wished to aid the Badger to retain his status. When the Ichiro forces led by Ichiro Ryozan chased Hideo no Oni, nemesis of the Badger Clan, they followed. The oni was seen near an old shrine, forced to retreat within the temple, and pinned down by Ryozo. The four keepers, one after the other, argumented with Tsurugi to maintain the Minor status issue, but the Miya would not change his mind, the Ichiro could not fulfill their duty. [1]

Ryoshun's Grave Edit

The Keepers found the temple was an ancient tomb and Asahina Hira read an arcane kanji on the pillars, deciphering them and reading them aloud. The tomb was the Ryoshun's Grave, a temple dedicated to the Tenth Kami, Ryoshun, by his brother, Hantei himself. The first Badger, Domogu had been charged with its protection by the first Emperor. Mortals should not enter this place until the Tenth Kami walked the earth once more. Ryoshun's grave still stood, and the Hantei's charge to the Badger remained. Tsurugi admitted the Badger had to reatin their status to follow the Celestial command. [1]

Keeper of Void Edit

Keeper of the Void

Keeper and Book of the Void

Having saved the Badger Clan from losing their claim as a clan, the old shugenja sat for a moment within the temple, and tracing his hands over the worn rock walls, found a book hidden within a cleft in the wall, the book of Void. [1]

Resolution of the Challenge Edit

Hira completed a task greater than all the other Keepers, succeeding where they had not: the keepers had not convinced Tsurugi to retain Badger Minor Clan status where he had. Hira claimed the Book of Void. [1]

The sage who can perform a task greater than these four things combined shall keep the Book of the Void.

Hira became a liaison between the Keepers and Rokugan's priesthood. He acted as a mediator, who rarely intervened unless requested, but when necessary he acted as a balancing element between the other Keepers. [6]

The Death of Rosoku Edit

Upon the death of Rosoku at the hands of the Bloodspeaker Shukumei, Emperor Toturi III looked to Hira for solace and answers. Naseru took heart in the words;

Asahina Hira: "Time heals all wounds."'

Toturi III: "As two men with only one good eye between us we both know that is not true."

Asahina Hira: "We have overcome our injuries, my lord, and to find strength is a form of healing."

It was during this conversation that Hira sensed that the final keeper, Asahina Sekawa, Keeper of the Five Rings had been chosen. Asahina Sekawa, the Jade Champion, was proven to be enlightened, and became the Keeper of the Five Rings. Toturi III proclaimed him the Master of Enlightenment in a ceremony at Toshi Ranbo. [7]

Heir of Rosoku Edit

The Quest Edit

In 1168 Sekawa had retrieved several scrolls from the Tomb of the Seven Thunders. They informed about an heir of Rosoku, a living descendant of Shinsei. Rosoku himself had left there before he returned to the Empire. The prophet foresaw his own demise, and planted the scrolls that would allow to reach his descendant. Sekawa sent the Keepers to find the boy. Tsuken and Jun'ai came to lion lands, a terriotry under the assault of the Khan's army. Sugimoto and Masae reached the dragon mountains. Hira and Sekawa were in the coastline, to reach Mantis islands. The heir of Rosoku, and of Shinsei, was out there. They must find him or her, or the Empire might not survive. [8]

Rosoku's son is found Edit

The heir of Rosoku was found far from anything of note, in a distant village several days' ride west of the Shinomen Mori, son from a peasant woman. [9]

Leaving the Empire Edit

Asahina Hira 2

Asahina Hira

Ten days after the Khan's assault on Toshi Ranbo in 1169, Sekawa and the other Keepers arrived at the city. While there Sekawa announced to the Protector of the Imperial City and Master of Void, Bayushi Norachai and Shiba Ningen, that he was retiring from the position of Jade Champion. Later the following day he announced to his Champion, Doji Domotai, that he was also stepping down from the position of Asahina Daimyo and Keeper of the Five Rings. He travelled north out of Rokugan, carrying the young child of Rosoku with him, to teach and protect the child so that in the future the Empire would have the guidance of Shinsei's line again. The Keepers remained in the Empire. [9]

War of Dark Fire Edit

In 1171 Hira was alongside with Yoritomo Omura, commander of the Eighth Imperial Legion, seeing the Battle of Dragon Heart Plain, were the minions of Chosai were outmaneuvered by the armies of the Lion, Crab, Dragon, and Phoenix, as well as the cavalry forces of the Shogun. [10]

Retirement Edit

Hira set aside worldly concerns to find peace within the Tao, and began to pass his knowledge to the next generations. [11]

Darkness on the Horizon Edit

Hira feels Enomoto's prophecy

Hira feels Enomoto's prophecy

In 1200 Enomoto had a terrific vision of the Empire's future, which was felt by Hira. [12] Hira began to seek the man, because during his vision Hira saw him writing the prophecies, and the Empire needed this knowledge. Doji Natsuyo was assigned to aid Hira in his task. [13] A small group was assembled to stop it at any cost, including the Agasha Daimyo Agasha Kurou. [14] Hira sought and found Kitsune Narako, the elder known prophet in Rokugan, to ponder the visions they were experiencing. [2] The record that the Isawa family maintained of divinatory bloodlines had been stolen by a ronin and the group began to seek him. [15]

See also Edit

External Links Edit

Preceded by:
Keeper of Void
1166 - ?
Succeeded by:
Iuchi Abodan


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