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Kakita Toshimoko

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Kakita Toshimoko 
Kakita Toshimoko 
Born: Unknown 
Died: 1133 
Parents: Kakita Toshimo 
Siblings: Kakita Yoshi,
Kakita Teinko 
Spouse: Unnamed courtier 
Children: Kakita Ichiro,
Seppun Toshiken 
Titles: Kakita Dueling Academy Sensei
Tsuma Dojo Sensei
Emerald Champion
People

Kakita Toshimoko was sensei of the Kakita Dueling Academy for many years prior to the Clan War. He personally trained the sons of Doji Satsume, Doji Hoturi and Doji Kuwanan, both of whom would become Crane Clan Champions as well as Shiba Tsukune who went on to become the Phoenix Clan Champion. [1] Toshimoko was also Emerald Champion for many years. He died a ronin, having faked his own death to investigate the disappearance of Emperor Toturi I. [2]

Youth Edit

In his youth he was a typical hot headed samurai, eager to test his skills at any imagined insult or dishonor. He served in the Imperial Guard and trained in the Kakita Academy, before traveling frequently in the south of Rokugan. As he got older he mellowed into a man whose motto was; "live as if each day is your last, and you will never live to regret." [3]

Name Edit

Toshimoko was the first son of the Sensei of the Dueling Academy, Kakita Toshimo, and in his youth everyone remarked upon how similar he was to his father. For years he would be called "Little Toshimo", and at his gempukku he took his fathers name to honor his father. The two were extremely alike in temperament, features and skill, and Toshimoko was his father's pride and joy. To tell them apart in conversation the Kakita family began to call the younger Toshimo "Toshimo-ko", using the women's diminutive to imply Toshimoko was the smaller of the two men. After his fathers death the diminutive was kept by Toshimoko in honor of his fathers memory. [4]

Appearance Edit

Kakita Toshimoko 3

Kakita Toshimoko

Toshimoko was a man who often laughed, and his humor was renowned throughout the empire, along with his skill with the sword. He was fond of a drink, and would rarely be serious except for when he was in a duel. His hair was as silver as his sword, earning him the nickname the "Grey Crane", and he would wear it in a long unruly braid going down his back. He stood five feet, seven inches tall, making him just taller than most of his peers, and his eyes were dark blue. [3]

Kakita Blade Edit

The blade that Toshimoko used was one of the finest Kakita Blades ever created. Kandaisa was forged over six hundred years ago, and it is believed that the tradition of testing the Kakita Blades on a huge stone in the mountains above Kyuden Doji was started with the blade Toshimoko carried. [5]

Dueling Academy Edit

"Without a clean cut, your opponent may dishonor himself and you by crying out."
-Toshimoko

Toshimoko was the older of his sibling, and therefore technically the heir to the daimyoship of the Kakita family. That position however would conflict with his lifestyle, and he passed on the leadership of the family to his more politically minded younger brother Kakita Yoshi. Yoshi however was not military minded at all, and the control of the military and training at the Kakita Dueling Academy became the duties of Toshimoko. His skill with the blade was renowned throughout the Empire, and he even taught Hantei XXXVIII and his son Hantei Sotorii the use of the blade. [7] He was appointed as yojimbo to the Crane Clan Champion Doji Satsume. [8]

Tsuma Dojo Edit

Toshimoko was sensei of the Tsuma Dojo. [9] In 1118 [10] Toshimoko attended the Topaz Championship [11] where the Badger Clan Champion Ichiro Akitomo was found murdered. [12]

Living Life Edit

Toshimoko's favorite expression was "You'll not regret it", and he never did. He would live each day to the fullest, enjoying wine, women and other beautiful things. When not teaching at the academy he could often be found on the wharf in the arms of a beautiful geisha or listening to a beggar singing on the road. Some say he did this to forget a bad experience of the past. [13]

Fox Clan Edit

Toshimoko once courted Kitsune Ryoden, the daughter of Fox Clan Champion Kitsune Oshirin, who he had fallen in love with, and he asked the father's permission to marry her, but Oshirin refused. [13] In 1090 [14] Toshimoko led a small army of Kakita to aid the Fox Clan in defense against an invading Hare Clan army. Known as the Night of a Hundred Deaths, there were many losses on both sides despite Toshimoko's best efforts. Oshirin challenged Toshimoko to a duel, claiming his love for Oshirin's daughter had blurred Toshimoko's vision. Oshirin claimed that if Toshimoko had truly loved Ryoden the Crane would have sided with the Fox from the beginning. Toshimoko was forced to accept the challenge, and killed Oshirin in a single stroke. Many times later Toshimoko would attempt to talk to Ryoden, but she would always refuse to see him. Years later she came to a Crane festival wearing her fathers armor and sword. She had cut her hair short and her eyes were cold. She challenged Toshimoko to a duel, claiming he had forever smeared her father's name. Toshimoko was again forced to accept the duel, and again he killed his opponent. He immediately requested from Crane Clan Champion Doji Satsume the right to commit seppuku, but Satsume refused. Since that day he never spoke of love, and never married. [13]

Sons Edit

Kakita Ichiro Edit

Toshimoko's first son, Kakita Ichiro had been born of an arrangement, a planned birth at the command of the Crane Clan Champion. The young courtesan had been beautiful, yes, and of noble birth, but she had never captured Toshimoko's heart. Toshimoko had done his duty, and left the next day for the lands of the Crab. Nine months later, Ichiro had been born. Ichiro was trained by Kakita Yoshi in the ways of politics. [15]

Ichiro was never the son Toshimoko desired, and the hatred in his son grew with the time, refusing his father's teachings. When Ichiro began his career at the Imperial Court he gave support to others instead to his father and spoke against Toshimoko. There were rumors that Ichiro was not son of Toshimoko, and his true father was the Scorpion courtier Bayushi Goshiu, and Toshimoko believed these rumors. [15]

Seppun Toshiken Edit

Toshimoko's second son, Seppun Toshiken, was only brought to his notice thanks to an artist named Doji Teioko, who brought Toshimoko a secret letter which told him that Seppun Jifuhime had borne him a son [15] in 1110. Toshimoko had chosen to deny any knowledge of the boy because he felt that he had failed so greatly in raising his first son, Kakita Ichiro, that to meddle in Toshiken's life would only make matters worse. Toshimoko watched Toshiken from afar and was quietly proud of the boy's progress. [16]

Doji Hoturi Edit

Toshimoko was like a grandfather to his sister's three children, but especially close to the oldest Doji Hoturi, whom he trained in the art of the sword. He served as Hoturi's aide and advisor, and would help him manage the Doji House Guard while Doji Satsume was indisposed. He would also take Hoturi along on his drinking sprees, and Hoturi's easygoing nature was surely affected by this. [13]

Early Studies Edit

Much of Toshimoko's love of women rubbed off on Hoturi, who was very proud of his sensei. When Hoturi was only 13 Toshimoko was walking with him along the Tachibana Road commenting on watching girls, when a Matsu by the name of Shigatori brutishly challenged Toshimoko to a duel. Toshimoko easily provoked Shigatori into attacking him and quickly dispatched him, Toshimoko's blade never leaving it's sata, in an attempt at teaching the young Hoturi more about dueling. [17]

"If you aspire to be a kengo - a master of the sword - you should always be aware of what's around you."
-Toshimoko

Winter Court - 1114 Edit

When Doji Satsume had to go to Winter court at Kyuden Asako, he did not believe his heir could conduct himself honorably as the Crane representative in the Emperor's winter court. Satsume asked Toshimoko who would be the daimyo to be send. Asahina Dorai, the replacement proposed by Toshimoko, was rejected by Satsume as he saw the Asahina as a fool boy of fourteen years old. With no other better option, Satsume was forced to send Hoturi alongside with Toshimoko. [18]

Battle of Ice and Snow Edit

Yoritomo, general of the Mantis Minor Clan, had seized Kyuden Suru Kokai in the Doji shoreline, and the Emperor decided to send an emissary to parley. Shosuro Kachiko, daughter of the Shosuro Daimyo Shosuro Koshurin, gained the Emperor's favor and was sent to the Mantis. Hoturi, Toshimoko, Daidoji Uji, and Yoshi counseled how they had to act, and when Kachiko was taken as prisoner by Yoritomo, Hoturi led a counterattack with Daidoji forces. The Crane fortress was recovered in the Battle of Ice and Snow. [19]

Prior to the Scorpion CoupEdit

Dairya Edit

Dairya was a ronin duelist who studyed under any sensei that would train him. Seeking the perfection and anger to show he was the best swordmaster Dairya challenged Kakita Toshimoko in 1123, who took Dairya's eye in the duel. Dairya, enraged at his loss, swore revenge on the Grey Crane. [20]

Blackmailed by his son Edit

This year Ichiro would pass his gempukku and Bayushi Kachiko held a feast in his honor. As meal the Bayushi prepared a whole cooked crane, so if the Crane refuse the meal the Kakita insulted the Bayushi's attempt to 'honor' the young man. If the Kakita ate the meal they insulted the spirit of their own clan. Ichiro had made a deal with the Scorpion to deliver his father's sword after the feast, taking advantage of the awkward situation to attempt to blackmail his father into giving him the sword. The Scorpion in exchange would support Ichiro as the next Kakita Daimyo. It was not known what was the outcome. [21]

Fighting the Lion Edit

Toshimoko fought in the Lion-Crane War, while his son Ichiro was safe at Otosan Uchi. [22]

Scorpion Coup Edit

When news arrived of the Scorpion Coup, Toshimoko moved with the Crane army that joined the combined forces of the Great Clans at Otosan Uchi in the fourth day of the Coup. [23]

Resumed War Edit

After the Coup the war with Lion resumed, and before the beginning of the Clan War Toshimoko survived a ninja assasination attempt. [24]

Emerald Champion Edit

Kakita Toshimoko 2

Kakita Toshimoko, Emerald Champion

The Test is announced Edit

After the death of Doji Satsume during the Scorpion Coup the position as Emerald Champion was vacant. While the Emperor Hantei XXXIX was indisposed his new wife, Bayushi Kachiko, ordered the tournament to be held once again. [25]

The False Hoturi Edit

The Crab forces were heading Kakita Castle. The Crane Clan Champion Doji Hoturi went to the Imperial City with Toshimoko, for asking the Emperor's help, in the same day the Emerald Champion tournament started. [26] Bayushi Kachiko did not allow them to talk with the Emperor the day of their arrival. The next morning Hoturi commanded Toshimoko to come back and defend Crane lands, after made a journey to the lands of the Unicorn to ask their assistance against the Crab, while he stayed behind to protect the Emperor and his new bride. Toshimoko knew he could not reach the Unicorn lands and return before the Crab armies reached Kakita Castle, but he did not question the authority of his lord. Toshimoko did not know who commanded him was the False Hoturi, a doppelganger of Hoturi made during the night. [27]

Getting the Mantle Edit

Shattered by his Lord's behavior, and convinced that there was something grievously amiss, Toshimoko entered himself in the Test of the Emerald Champion at the last minute. [28] Toshimoko, even though he was recently wounded [29] [30] by a nearly fatal ninja attack, won the tournament, [25] defeating Mirumoto Hitomi and her Obsidian Hand. [31] Emperor's wife Kachiko ordered to rebuild the Emerald Magistrates and investigate rumors of Hoturi practicing maho and leading an undead army. [32] It was only to find that the Emerald Magistrates were almost completely disbanded. He traveled Rokugan searching for those who had once been magistrates, and gathered them up. [citation needed]

Deceived Edit

As the Crane Champion's Shadowlands army marched into Crane lands many armies marched to the plains surrounding Otosan Uchi to face the Shadowlands armies massed there. A messenger claiming to have been sent by Mirumoto Sukune arrived at Shiro Daidoji and warned of an incoming ronin army, warning of Toturi the Black's plans to pillage Crane lands. Toshimoko led a Crane army, blocking Toturi's force in the Valley of the Two Generals. The exhausted Crane army was no match for the fresh Toturi forces. After the skirmish a meeting between the enemy leaders was held, and it became apparent that the Crane had been deceived and manipulated into combating Toturi's forces. The Crane granted Toturi's force free and unharried passage through their lands. [33]

Shinden Asahina Edit

Toshimoko arrived with a rag-tag army of Emerald Magistrates to help defend Shinden Asahina from the attack of the False Hoturi. Toshimoko came to Hoturi's side, who had appeared and tended by the Toturi's Army. The army headed toward the Crane lands from the Beiden Pass. [34]

Second Day of the Thunder Edit

In 1128 Toshimoko fought was alongside Toturi the Black, Hida Yakamo and Doji Hoturi in the assault of Otosan Uchi against the possessed Emperor Hantei XXXIX. He witnessed the acknowledgement of the Mantis as a Great Clan. [35]

The Disappearance of Toturi I Edit

Toshimoko investigating Toturi's disappearance

Toshimoko investigating Toturi's disappearance

In 1130 Toturi I announced a great festival for his second anniversary as Emperor, and important members of the Clans gathered into the Imperial City. Before the celebration began, a guard announced the disappearance of Toturi, and it was found a Scorpion silk scrap in his chambers. The Phoenix Clan Champion Shiba Tsukune gave testimony that Bayushi Kachiko had been in the Emperor's chambers just one hour ago. Tsukune had led the guards through the secret passage beyond the Emperor's room and had found an Akodo Dagger in the hands of the dead Bayushi Tagumura, a minor Daimyo, who also held a piece of Toturi's cloak. Within the dagger's tang was found the name of its owner, Akodo Kage, who had died during the Clan War. Only a Lion could have this weapon, making the matter confuse. [36]

Scorpion Exile Edit

Toshimoko called in the aid of Kitsuki Yasu, acknowledging the Kitsuki Method of evidence on an Imperial scale for the first time in history. Their investigation, unfortunately, yielded no results, and the Regent Takuan ordered the exile of the Scorpion Clan to the Burning Sands. Toshimoko ordered all children of the Scorpion under the age of twelve to be fostered to the Crane. [37] Toshimoko disagreed and spoke with Takao, Keeper of Fire, about of falsehoods too great to bear, and if the sacrifice of life for knowledge. [38]

Toshimoko's Death Edit

Shortly afterward, Toshimoko penned his final haiku standing on a cliff near the sea. The following morning, his swords and armor were found, [39] along with a petition to the Fortunes asking them to forgive him for his failure to his lord. With no Emperor or Emerald Champion, Shinjo Shirasu assumed control of the Emerald Magistrates and attempted to stave off widespread anarchy. [37]

The Grey Crane Edit

Grey Crane

The Grey Crane

In reality, Toshimoko had faked his own death. He disguised himself as a ronin, wearing a mask at all times to conceal his recognizable face. He called himself the Grey Crane, and scoured Rokugan, searching for the truth behind the disappearance of Toturi I. [2]

Dragon's Claw Katana 1

The Grey Crane wielding the Dragon's Claw Katana

Dragon's Claw Katana Edit

Toshimoko changed the blade he had always used for the Dragon's Claw Katana. [40]

Return of the True Champion Edit

Assault on Otosan Uchi Edit

In 1132 the Kami Shinjo and the clans marched to the Assault on Otosan Uchi, to break the control the Shadows hold over the Emperor Toturi. Toshimoko tried to reach the fight through a secret corridor hidden behind the Imperial Throne, which he had been told about by a simple storyteller long ago,[41] but he did not arrive in time. [42]

Grey Crane's Legacy Edit

Return of the True Champion

Return of Toshimoko

After his return Toshimoko was confronted by his two sons. They were resentful of his failure as a father, feeling that he had neglected them. Toshimoko admitted his guilt, but maintained he had little choice but to fullfill his duties. Toshimoko asked his sons for forgiveness. [43] [44] The Grey Crane spoke to Toshiken about how it had been the only chance to save the Empire, taking both of their swords. Goju was waiting beyond the Fields of the Dead, and he believed the Emerald Champion must face him. Ichiro drew a knife to kill his father, [45] but Toshiken cut his half-brother down. [46] [44]

The Tao Edit

Toshimoko gives the Tao

Toshimoko gives the Tao to Rekai

The Grey Crane faced Kage, [47] another man who also had faked his death. [48] Toshimoko knew the kolat had stolen the Tao of Shinsei, including the New Tao, and tried to recover it but was wounded in the fight. [49] Toshimoko had recovered one half, which he passed to Daidoji Rekai. Only Kage knew where the remaining half of the Tao was hidden,[50] but Toshimoko commanded Rekai to find the records. She swore to follow where he had failed. [51]

Death Edit

Grey Crane 2

The Grey Crane

In 1133 Toshimoko fought in the Battle of Oblivion's Gate. He was wounded and one by one, the Crane fell in the Shadow's onslaught. At last, only one ronin fought beside him, Dairya [52] The ronin had become so obsessed with his defeat that the Goju turned him against Toshimoko, to prove who was the better duelist. [53] Dairya faced Toshimoko there, [54] Toshimoko did not attempt to draw his sword, [55] robbing Dairya of a true victory when he killed the Grey Crane. [53]

Toshimoko's Death

Toshimoko's Death

Aftermath Edit

Dairya's spirit became consumed with the vengeance until it was released in 1160 after helping the tainted Daidoji Megumi assassinate Toshimoko's son Seppun Toshiken. [53]

See Also Edit

Toshimoko no Shiryo

Toshimoko no Shiryo

External Links Edit


Preceded by:
Vacant
Emerald Champion
1127 - 1130
Succeeded by:
Seppun Toshiken


Sources Conflict
The sources relating to this article are in conflict with each other.
In "Art of the Duel" page 187 Toshimoko is indicated a Emerald Champion 1129-1130. It is against "Time of the Void, Campaign Settings" page 33, a book devoted to dates and timelines. So Time of the Void 1127 Emerald Championship in the Month of the Monkey remains

References

  1. Phoenix Clan Letter #2
  2. 2.0 2.1 Legend of the Five Rings: Third Edition, pp. 20-21
  3. 3.0 3.1 Way of the Crane, pp. 87-88
  4. Way of the Crane, p. 87
  5. Way of the Crane, pp. 58-59, 88
  6. The Unclean Cut (Scorpion Clan Coup, Scroll 1)
  7. Way of the Crane, pp. 85, 87
  8. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 175
  9. Legend of the Five Rings; First Edition, p. 209
  10. Imperial Histories, p. 127
  11. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 218
  12. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 213
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 Way of the Crane, p. 88
  14. Legend of the Five Rings; Third Edition, p. 13
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 A Son of the House, by Ree Soesbee
  16. Winter Court: Kyuden Kakita, pp. 109-110
  17. 17.0 17.1 Private Lessons
  18. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 10
  19. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, pp. 72-75
  20. Blessings and Curses
  21. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 57
  22. Otosan Uchi:Book 2, p. 82
  23. Otosan Uchi: The Scorpion's Sting, p. 54
  24. Player's Guide: 2nd Ed, p. 55
  25. 25.0 25.1 Test of the Emerald Champion, Imperial Herald #2
  26. Disfavored (Ambition's Debt Foil Chase Cards flavor)
  27. The Story So Far: Imperial Edition (Imperial Herald #4)
  28. Ryan Dancey's Timeline: Forbidden Knowledge
  29. Plains of the Emerald Champion (Ambition's Debt Foil Chase Cards flavor)
  30. Time of the Void, pp. 33-34
  31. Clan Letter to the Dragon #2 (Imperial Herald v1 #2)
  32. Time of the Void, p. 35
  33. Clan War: Ravages of War, pp. 41-44
  34. Time of the Void, p. 74
  35. The Son of Storms (Time of the Void story Cards)
  36. The Exile of the Scorpion, Part I, by Ree Soesbee
  37. 37.0 37.1 Legend of the Five Rings: Third Edition, p. 20
  38. Clan Letter to the Brotherhood #7 (Imperial Herald v3 #3)
  39. Fan of Command (Jade flavor)
  40. Dragon's Claw Katana (Honor Bound flavor)
  41. War in the Heavens, by Ree Soesbee
  42. War in the Heavens (GenCon 99 Storyline Tournament Results)
  43. Masamune Katana (Fire and Shadow flavor)
  44. 44.0 44.1 Hidden Emperor', p. 65
  45. Return of the True Champion (Fire and Shadows flavor)
  46. Brothers in Blood (Soul of the Empire flavor)
  47. Imperial Highway (Ambition's Debt flavor)
  48. Ninja Tricks (Dark Journey Home flavor)
  49. Clan Letter to the Brotherhood of Shinsei #8 (Imperial Herald v3 #4)
  50. Kakita Teacher (Ambition's Debt flavor)
  51. Forgotten Lesson (Honor Bound flavor)
  52. Kosaten Shiro Rise of Honor (Soul of the Empire Storyback)
  53. 53.0 53.1 53.2 Blessings and Curses, by Rich Wulf
  54. Half-beat Strike (Soul of the Empire flavor)
  55. The Grey Crane (Soul of the Empire flavor)



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