Legend of the Five Rings: Echoes

Session 20: Destiny: Part 2

Darkness has fallen
The Echoes, victorious.
But, for how long?

Ruined earthThis was the Chapter 2 finale. It was a sombre occasion—a character fell in the final battle, and another allowed himself to be fully corrupted by the powers of Jigoku for the greater good. Because of that, the above haiku is purposefully broken.

The Echoes traveled to their final destination. The final Scar, located high in the Twilight Mountains of the Badger clan, was located and closed. Isawa Kage’s secret realm, a pocket in Jigoku itself, was opened and he was pulled forth. Battle was joined.

It was drawn out and brutal. In the end Kage and his demon fell, but so did Toshiro, cast over a cliff by Kage himself.

Their kharmic duty fulfilled, the Echoes now have their lives to live…

…or do they?

Comments

Fox became a Crane
But never learned how to Fly
Fox again; she cries

Our Karmic Duty has been fulfilled. Isawa Kage and Kage no Oni have been removed from this world, the former removed from existence.

I don’t care.

Hida-san has been tainted and disappeared. The Emperor gave the remaining Echoes leave to form a new Clan, the Mongoose Clan.

I don’t care.

A Dragon and a Kami have warned me of the path Sanjuro-san has been walking, and now he is Lord of a minor clan. Lady Shinjo said that many of her own clan had fallen to that path as well, and Sakura-san is either Unicorn or Mongoose clan, so if she isn’t on that path yet, she most likely will be.

I don’t care.

The Badger Daimyo is most likely being poisoned by someone close to him. The former faceless man has a name and a face. Ineko still walks Ningen-do.

I Do Not Care.

In a twist of fate, I reentered my father’s court exactly a year after I had left for my year of travelling. I have seen the Empire and I have no desire to leave again.

I can’t sleep. I can’t sleep alone anymore and when I do manage to fall asleep, my dreams are plagued by nightmares. After the boys were born, I at least had a reason for the lack of sleep.

Toshiaki and Masuhiro are the little bit of joy I have in this world now. My family, my forest, my crew. They’re all that matter to me now. I never wanted to be an Emerald Magistrate. I never wanted to have to save the Empire. I never wanted to be an Echo.

I never wanted to lose my Love. Again.

He said he’d return to me. I believe him, but I don’t trust in the other forces at work.

He wasn’t in Yomi. He wasn’t in Meido. … neither was Isan.

Curse Isawa Kage, curse the Empire, curse the Fortunes, curse the Kami and curse the Fates.

Father only mentioned me marrying into the Sparrow clan once. Once. I let him know my opinion on the matter.

He spoke to me again after a week or so.

I never wanted to be fully human. I hate being human.

Kitsune Mori needs a guardian. I need to protect my family and my clan.

The boys are almost old enough that my parents can take over much of their care. I will still be a constant presence in their lives. And their children’s lives. And their children’s children’s lives.

I don’t care about anything else anymore.

Blinded by her Grief
The Fox becomes a Hermit
Ignoring outside

Session 20: Destiny: Part 2
 

I am no longer Kakita Sanjuro. I am now Sanjuro, champion of the Mongoose clan. Our karmic duty is finished. The scars are closed. My friends, my brothers, Toshiro and Takeshi, are gone, I mourn them. Yamako, is now without her beloved, I cannot begin to imagine her pain. So she will return to the Fox Clan. The two bits of glad tidings, are that Sakura chan has been cleansed of the lying darkness. For that I am great full, I was afraid she would soon be consumed. The other being, my children are born. Daichiko and Yurika, my two daughters. My wife Hinata is a strong women, so it does not surprise me that she wound up carrying twins.

I must also deal with these people that have a choke hold on me. I understand and sympathize with their motivations, but they have threatened those around me one too many times. I am tired of being thier pawn, cutting ties with them won’t work, either I am going to put myself in a position of leadership in the organization, or, I’m going to try to discover the identities of these people and eliminate them. I’m not sure wich is going to get me killed faster.

I have been given a gift from the emperor. I have been made the lord of a new minor clan, the Mongoose Clan. I was reluctant to accept his offer, I have never held ambitions of lordship like this. However, I have decided to take his offer. As the Daimyo of my own clan, I can truly do some good for others. There is one thing that is going to be different in my lands compared to others. They are not called peasants, but rather citizens. They will be paid a good wage to do their work, and they will be treated with respect. Eta as well must be treated as citizens, they have the most unpleasant jobs in our lands and deserve nothing less than a decent living. Yes, this will be controversial, but the emperor should have thought of that before he gave me a clan.

I am Sanjuro, I am not perfect, I have made many mistakes in the past, but I have taken the lessons I needed from them. As Tatsuya once told me, “show me a person who has never made a mistake, and I will show you someone who’s never learned a thing in their life.”

Session 20: Destiny: Part 2
 

My body and mind are numb with pain. This torment I am receiving to pervert me into Hell’s hunter is ceaseless, yet, I must endure. This was the choice I made, to fill in Kanshu’s position as Hell’s jailor when I defeated him, but I could not allow spirits from Hell and any renegade Oni to run amok in the world, someone has to be around to stop them. I will also not allow myself to become as a twisted shell of my former self as Kanshu had become. I may now serve the very corrupted I have sworn to fight in my li- my former life, however I will hold on to my own will as much as I can.

How did I get into this position? It was my determination to save my friends that had driven me to a point beyond any measure anyone could imagine. My duel with Kanshu should have led to my defeat, yet, I exceeded beyond my own skills. I got to say goodbye, at least for only an instant before I was dragged down to this…hell. I hope my sacrifice to stop Kanshu allowed the rest of the group to rescue Toshiro-san in time.

Yet, I get this feeling as if Toshiro-san is no longer around; we seemed to always have a spiritual connection being the Echoes, yet, nothing. As for Yamako-san, I feel as if she has become a shell of herself, Sanjuro-san and Sakura-san seem to be the only ones that are unaffected by whatever outcome happened when I departed from the world…at least physically and spiritually…who knows about their mental state however.

I hope someday, if this torment ever ends, that I can see my friends again. However, when I return as a twisted Hida Takeshi, how will they react? No, no…I can no longer be Hida Takeshi; he died on that mountain after his duel with Kanshu. This body I inhabit now that is currently being tortured and twisted into an akuma…akuma…Akuma…I hear in my head whispers that I am now Hell’s Echo…yes! That is what I am! Akuma, Hell’s Echo!

Session 20: Destiny: Part 2
 

…ah, gravity. My one weakness.

Session 20: Destiny: Part 2
Deathfrisbee2000

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