Noir Posted September 25, 2015 Share Posted September 25, 2015 Jinpachi...With business in Jinpachi concluded, the magistrates set out once again, rested and many with sore backs. LAdy Okimoto and Hito accompany the magistrates back to the main road where they part ways, the Lions heading south to the lands of their Clans while the magistrates continue north. Before parting though, Lady Okimoto stops her horse and addresses the magistrates."I would like to thank you all for the way you carried out your duties with such honor and dedication. I fear that I may never have the means with which to properly express my gratitude for taking a risk to right a horrible wrong and stand up for an orphaned girl. I know that some of you may have some difficulties with the decision that you made, but that does not diminish my gratitude in the slightest. Your aid and honor will not be forgotten. Kakita-san. Shosuro-san. Mirumoto-san. Isawa-san. Kitsu-san." she says in her soft, soothing voice before giving each magistrate a deep, respectful bow, holding for several seconds before straightening up once more, which Hito mimics."If you are an example of the new Jade Magistrates, then I know the Empire is in good hands." she says with a final bow before she and her yojimbo turn and proceeded down the road. Honored Treaty City...Sitting on a large plain near Oboreshinu Boekisho Kawa (Drowned Merchant River) and at the intersection of a half dozen major Imperial and Merchant roads, Mamoru Kyotei Toshi (Honored Treay City) serves as the primary gateway to the lands of the Phoenix Clan and the major crossroads in northern Rokugan The roads spread out from the city reaching off into every directions it seems, allowing one to travel anywhere in this part of the Empire.. Shinsen na Hito Doro (Fresh Soul's Road) crosses the river to the northwest, leading to the lands of the Dragonfly and is the only known path into mountains Dragon Clan, taking a traveler to the gates of Shiro Mirumoto (Last Glance Castle).Michi sano Hikari Senshi (Way of the Radiant Warrior) heads to the southeast, passing Rokugan Yogasha Shiro (Castle of the Emerald Champion) and then the coastal road beyond. Domo na Doro (the Fierce Road) leads south from the city to Shiro Akodo (Loyality Castle). the ancestral home of the Akodo, and Shiro no Yojin (Castle of Vigilance) beyond it. It is on this road that the young Jade Magistrates have largely traveled since leaving Tsuma.Michi sano Dashita Ran (the Way of the Bloody Orchid) leads west to the newest lands of the Crane Clan and Toshi Ranbo wo Shien Shite Reigisaho (Violence Behind Courtliness City) often called simply "Toshi Ranbo" for short.Kohakushoku no Michi (the Way of the Amber Monk) serves as the primary way into the lands of the Phoenix Clan, as the alternative route is much less desirable. The road heads the northeast, through Tanima sano Futatsu Taisho (Valley of the Two Generals) which contains a monument in honor of Kakita and Mirumoto Hojatsu (a popular pilgrimage spot for the most dedicated students of the sword), on its way to the small city of Nikesake.The distant, cloudy peaks of the Yama no Kuyami (Mountains of Regret) can be seen far off to the east and act as a natural barrier forcing traffic around it (friendly or otherwise) to pass through Honored Treaty City or try their luck with the aptly named Kiken na Roka (Treacherous Pass) through the mountains to the southeast, along the coast. Though already dangerous in its own right, Treacherous Pass had the dubious of honor of leading far too close to the cursed city Mori Kage Toshi (Forest Shadow City) for the comfort of many. The city and keep, abandoned since it was cursed over three hundred years ago, has resisted every attempted cleansing by the Phoenix and is said to have been largely reclaimed by the forest and remains haunted to this day.The Temple of the Fourteen Hands, one of the oldest temples to the Seven Fortunes in the Empire (second only to the temple at Otosan Uchi), rests a short ride to the south of Honored Treaty City, a popular placed for many Phoenix to retire to. The Temple itself served as the gateway to the Phoenix long ago in the early days of the empire, but as travel became more common and more samurai began seeking to retire at the temple, it became obvious that even with expansion it would not fill the role well. So it was decided that a city would be built on a plain to the north to relieve the temple of such a burden. That city was eventually renamed Honored Treaty City a few centuries ago when the Lion-Phoenix War ended and houses the treaty both parties signed when they each finally sued for peace.The roads leading to Honored Tretay City are patrolled heavily by the Shiba and lined with fields and little farming villages as they near the city, the crops nourished by the Drowned Merchant River close by (a branch of which passes through Jinpachi). Farmers labor in the fields, many of them working in small groups and singing songs together to help pass the time while their wives and children carry out other chores and prepare meals.The city itself is quite large, protected by a massive wall with large gates on each road permitting entry to the city, and indeed a relatively steady flow of traffic passes through the gates, inspected by the Shiba. Thrugh the gates once can see that the city itself is divided by gated walls into several 'quarters' (Merchant Quarter, Licensed Quarter, Noble Quarter, and so on) as in common in the Empire. Though guarded, the bushi at the inner gates do very few inspections. The Shiba Artisan Academy stood within the city as well, and though small and not as prestigious as the Kakita Artisans, the skill of the students was well known in the region.Following the directions in the letter led to the gate of a small estate, outside of which stood two guards who had apparently been expecting the magistrates. They greeted and led the magistrates inside where servants took the horses to care for.A young man in a kimono, though bearing no mon, stepped out of the house and bowed."Welcome. I am Jiro, yoriki to Seppun Kyuichi. Please come in. Seppun-sama has been expecting you." he greeted and then guided them into the main house.The main room was filled with tables covered in stacks of scrolls, paper, and writing kits. It was clearly now more of an office than a home. The doors were opened to the garden where an older man stood on the deck, hands clasping one another behind him as he looked up at the trees and sky. He had short, dark hair in a topknot with the mon of the Seppun family emblazoned on the back of his green and gold kataginu."Seppun-sama, the rest of the magistrates you sent for have arrived." Jiro said, he voice breaking the silence.-The man looked over his shoulder at Jiro and the magistrates before turning and stepping into the room."I am Seppun Kyuichi, appointed by the Jade Champion as your Chief Magistrate. Pleased to meet you." he greeted with a bow.Seppun Kyuichi was a tall man, obviously in his thirties, though he seemed like the average Seppun in virtually every other way Despite his size, he did not appear imposing in the slightest, though certainly not meek either, instead he seemed to carry himself with a quiet confidence. What set him apart though his warm demeanor. He had a certain relaxed comfort about him, which seemed to extends to anybody who was speaking to as well. It was not so much raw charisma nor sexual appeal as much as just a natural ease he exuded that tended to make people feel relaxed and comfortable with him."Please pardon the clutter, we have yet to acquire proper space and there are many records to go through. Please, have a seat. I am eager to hear how you handled your first outing as Jade Magistrates, even if it was unexpected, but that can wait. I am sure you are more eager to know why you were summoned here." he acknowledged as he took a seat."Let me begin by bringing you up to speed on several matters concerning the Jade Magistrates in general and your duties in particular. Firstly, the Jade Champion has made it clear that the Kuni Tsukai-sagasu (Witch-Hunters) and the Asako Inquisitors will remain as independent organizations, a safeguard to ensure that they will remain in case this office is left vacant once again. Though our purview is magic in a more broad sense which includes magic such as maho, the Witch-Hunters and Inquisitors, along with the Wasp Bounty Hunters to a degree, share some overlapping goals with our own and so one may be calling on the other for aid or expertise at times." he clarified to the magistrates."Secondly, though there are records of specific teachings to aid the Jade Magistrates (i.e. a Jade Magistrate Technique), it is not currently understood and therefor there is no formal school. The dojo in Tsuma will, as you suggested, serve as the dojo for the Jade Magistrates for the time being while the teachings are studied. Once they are understood though, you will not be required to forgo your current training in place of it. Such specialized training, when it becomes available, will be strictly voluntary, though the dojo will always be there to aid in other training related to the Jade Magistrates as well." he explained."Thirdly, this estate and several others will serve as a decentralized headquarters for the Jade Magistrate until such time a proper home can be constructed. The most formal "Main Office", if you will, is located in Otosan Uchi, but that is more of a formality. I will be traveling to Tsuma to set up an office there from which you and the other Magistrates appointed by the Emperor will operate out of and report to me. I received a letter from a Crane, Doji Noriaki, offering up his estate in Tsuma to the Jade Magistrates." he informed his guests as he sat some scrolls aside, clearing the table in front of him."Please pardon my frankness, it is a bad habit I unfortunately picked up from my time among the Unicorn, but there are a few observations that I think is best I share with you." he said surprisingly before he continued, "The Jade Champion did not pick you. You were all assigned to him by the Emperor himself. As such, he certainly cannot dismiss you, but I also doubt you would have been his first choice. He seems more concerned with building a strong, lasting office for the safety of the Empire, which is to be commended of course, but I doubt at this time he concerns himself much with you. This leads to two things. The first is significantly more freedom and less oversight by the Jade Champion. That means that you could simply pay your appointment lip-service and collect your salary while doing as you like, but I feel you are all better than that. Second though, I hope, is a desire to live up to the expectations of of the Emperor and prove that there is a reason why you are the first Jade Magistrates in centuries... that they office would be severely diminished without your contributions." he explained casually in the beginning, though his tone grew slightly more intense as he spoke."I understand that many you may have your own goals outside of the Jade Magistrates as well. The study of the blade, for example, as two of the finest young students of the blade in the Empire sit before me, Kakita-san, Mirumoto-san. And I do not wish to stand in your way. Know though, that as long as you approach your duties as Jade Magistrates with the same dedication as you do the blade, or whatever goal you seek, then you can count on me to aid you in any way I can... each and every one of you." he said as she made eye contact with each of the magistrates sitting before him."I am a Seppun. I have devoted my life to serving the Hantei, and if I am going to be placed to oversee a group of magistrates appointed by the Hantei himself, then I want it to be the best division of the Jade Magistrates possible. You are all young, from different clans and backgrounds. None of you set out to become Jade Magistrates, I know that, but you are clearly some of the finest samurai in generations. I have already heard of your completion of the Topaz Championship, a year in which every attendee passed, which is rare indeed. I know of your courageous actions in defense of the Hantei line, selfless acts worthy of history that bring honor to each of your Clans and families, and hope that I can depend on each of you to continue to do so and aid me in making the Jade Champion see the divine wisdom of the Hantei by appointing you as Jade Magistrates." Kyuichi said, his voice a mixture of understanding, inspiration and hopeful optimism. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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