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Mercy was the last play written by Matsu Sinoku, a playwright of the Lion Clan. The play was performed only once, ending in a bath of blood by the hands of Akodo Kuinjin. All the copies of the play were destroyed after that performance but one, that had been sent to Matsu Sanuro, Sinoku's cousin.
The play told a different perspective of the famous tragedy of Matsu Uji. The young daimyo married the beautiful Shosuro Sushanume out of love rather than duty. The woman seduced Uji's karo, Sojuno into killing his own lord, but their plot was discovered by a servant girl, and ended in the death of all three of them.
In the play Mercy, though, this tragedy was seen through the eyes of Sushanume herself, neglected by her husband who preferred the arms of different geisha. Meeting the young and passionate Sojuno, she saw how he was mistreated by her husband, and helped him plan vengeance on Uji, both for herself and Sojuno.
The play portrayed the Clan of the Lion from the eyes of an outsider, highlighting the negative aspects of each of the characters in the story who were usually perceived as the righteous victims. The public was touched by the play that portrayed the Scorpion not as a villain but as the victim, and many of those who saw it's first and only performance, were enraged, just like Akodo Kuinjin.
- Way of the Scorpion, pp. 12-14
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