Shiba Shonagon 
Shiba Shonagon 
Born: Unknown 
Died: 1122

Shiba Shonagon was a Phoenix maiden, the writer of the famous and reviled book, Memoirs of an Opium Eater. [1]

Demeanor Edit

Shonagon was observant, talented, insecure, and depressed. She used to fall in love with the wrong man while being involved with an entirely different wrong man. [2]

Training Edit

Shonagon entered a shugenja school but she left it when it was clear she was not gifted by the kami. [3]

Ryoko Owari Edit

Shonagon moved to Ryoko Owari Toshi, and experienced too much there. She drank copiously and often partook of opium. [4] Her money came from the profits made in the silver smithy Star of Silver, which was run by her vassal Shiho. It allowed Shonagon the leisure time and money to indulge in a decadent lifestyle. [5]

Jocho Edit

In 1121 she met Shosuro Jocho for first time in the House of the Morning Star. [3] He was son of the city governor Shosuro Hyobu. [6]

Love Edit

Iuchi Michisuna gave her a painted umbrella during the Days of Generosity of this year. It was the first time they had met each other. [7] Shonagon eventually fell in love with him, but the Unicorn musician did not feel the same for her. [8]

Lover Edit

In 1122, during Michisuna's birthday celebration, Shonagon read a poem that clearly showed her love for him, but Michisuna did not feel the same way. Shonagon left the party with her heart broken, accompanied by Jocho, who seduced her. Jocho was a cynical manipulator and a starry-eyed romantic. He taught Shonagon how to buy Liquid Void, how to feign affection, and how to endure the embraces of a man she did not love. One of the skills was how to see the fool in everyone, exposing Jocho for the buffoon he was. Shonagon saw herself as a fool that once thought Michisuna would love her, or that Jocho did. [9]

Helpers Edit

Shonagon drank and smoked opium too much, and it was clear to others. Ikoma Yoriko, a samurai-ko of high station and standing in the city, offered to help with Shonagon's sorrow. [10] Jocho sent Yogo Osako to threaten her with arrest and public shame, as a way to stop her self-destruction, but Shonagon realized Osako had fallen in love with Jocho, so rebuffed her "aid". [11]

Public Shame Edit

In 1122 Shonagon shamed herself publicy with a jealous outburst in the House of Foreign Stories. She shouted at Michisuna, who, with the owner Magda, was singing a song Shonagon believed told of Michisuna's love for her. The song instead told of Shosuro Kimi and Ide Asamitsu's engagement after the death of Asamitsu's brother, Ide Michikane. Shonagon burst into tears and fled. [12]

Death Edit

This year Shonagon committed suicide of opium overdose. She could not get over Michisuna's rejection. [8] 'Memoirs of an Opium Eater' was published after her death, which caused a great scandal in the community. [1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 10
  2. City of Lies: GM's Guide, p. 44
  3. 3.0 3.1 City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 48
  4. City of Lies: GM's Guide, p. 10
  5. City of Lies: Location Guide, p. 32
  6. City of Lies: GM's Guide, p. 21
  7. City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 18
  8. 8.0 8.1 City of Lies: GM's Guide, p. 36
  9. City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 49
  10. City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 67
  11. City of Lies: Player's Guide, p. 54
  12. City of Lies: Player's Guide, pp. 62-63

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