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Manchu

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  1. Manchu

    Fiction Library

    There is no regular schedule for new fiction. Product delays, for example, cause delays in releases of web fiction. So far, fiction packaged with dynasty packs has not been released online by FFG, including in the First Scroll compilation. For the purposes of this thread, I have relied on folks who bought those packs posting scans of the fiction.
  2. Manchu

    Coiled Snake

    @Shiba Gunichi makes a strong point. Becoming regent is the opposite of Shoju’s plan for himself and his clan. Kachiko will be thrilled, however. It was so good to see Shoju caught out on not knowing how the Emperor immediately heard what happened at the Scorpion guest house. The worst mistake writers can make with Scorpion is portraying them as conveniently omniscient just because. When Part I came out, I assumed Dairu stepped in to insure Sotorii would win, thus earning Daisetsu’s gratitude and sparing Sotorii’s pride. But it makes more sense that Dairu was acting out of unironic/straightforward loyalty to Daisetsu. He may be the son of the Scorpion Champion, but he is still an idealistic child.
  3. Manchu

    Children of Bushidō

    @Kinzen That’s not a bad spin but the problem is Sumiko is reflecting upon their good relationship after Satsume’s death. It would be incredible that she would not meditate on absolutely mistrusting him in the same moment that she wonders whether Satsume trained but failed to teach Sotorii. I’m willing to take this as, well the RPG stuff is written according separate needs from those of the actual storyline. I’ll stick with the storyline where there is a conflict.
  4. Manchu

    Children of Bushidō

    On the one hand, they respect each other and always work well together. On the other hand, she “absolutely doesn’t trust him.” It’s possible to square this if one is limber enough to bend over backwards.
  5. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    Sometimes there is no distinction between contempt and pity.
  6. Manchu

    Children of Bushidō

    Reading the whole passage and thinking about the purpose it serves in the story, rather than debating each sentence independently and out of context*, I think it’s pretty clear that Shizue has a positive opinion of Satsume. Now, keep in mind that I’m not arguing Satsume is some kind of beloved public figure. This tangent began because I described him as a guy who is tough to get along with. Then the RPG adventure quotes were trotted out to argue that this complicated, multi-dimensional character is actually just a one-note jerk that everyone totally hates. I mean, that is clearly what the adventure material presents and for someone like me who has read these stories again and again, backwards and forwards, that feels like an alternate timeline. *which I am obviously up to do, if we must
  7. Manchu

    Children of Bushidō

    It’s true there is no explicit statement from Shizue’s POV stating she does not blame Satsume for Teinko’s death. But The Stories We Tell isn’t about some kind of political spectrum vis-a-vis Satsume’s family. Narratively, Shizue serves as a foil for Hotaru in that story. Hotaru is characterized as potentially compromised by her emotions, both in terms of her resentment for her dead father and her infatuation with her lover Kachiko. Shizue’s reflection on Kuwanan’s POV shows us that another of Satsume’s children feels exactly opposite to Hotaru about him, supporting the idea that Hotaru is acting on her personal feelings, rather than living up to her duties. But the point here is that Shizue is characterized as neither biased by being the subject of her father’s harsh expectations or his lavish affections. The author presented her as more objective than her siblings. And even so, her opinion is certainly positive. Shizue knows very well what parents in Rokugan are like so she can certainly accurately explain that Satsume is like many other parents in being gruff and distant. And as mentioned above, the phrase “not unkind” is meant as an objective counterpoint to Hotaru’s much stronger feelings because, again, Shizue acts as a foil to Hotaru in this story. More personally, Shizue also reflects on how, where others might stigmatize her handicap, her father did not see it as a source of shame or weakness but as a potential source of strength. If Shizue did blame Satsume for Teinko committing suicide, it would be massively odd for her not to reflect on it while meditating on Satsume’s character.
  8. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    We don’t know what Satsume thought of it one way or another, except he didn’t think either boy was fit. Satsume may not have had the details of how the thing started but he knows Sotorii has to be managed by everyone around him. The Emerald Champion could easily have worked out that Daisetsu had allowed/forced things to go so far.
  9. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    Daisetsu simply failed to stay in control of a situation he created. That’s his weakness.
  10. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    I agree that Daisetsu showed weakness here. He seized the initiative in creating the problem but never managed to regain it afterwards. This is why DGL introduces the story with the concepts of sente and gote in Go.
  11. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    I think this is only the beginning of a look into the interior of Sotorii. An interesting note: In this story, the Emperor asks Shoju, “So, no one is able to see the world the way it truly is?” In Tiger Stalks His Prey, the Emperor says: “And an Emperor so trusting as to have others perceive the world for him—even if out of necessity—is an Emperor open to manipulation.” Also, in Tiger, right after Totrui upbraids Sotorii: “Toturi held his bow until Sotorii had vanished among a stand of sakura trees shading one of the several paths path leading away from the koi pond.” Did Totrui make Sotorii cry, too?
  12. Manchu

    Fiction Library

    updated ~
  13. Manchu

    Children of Tradition

    Once again, this story made me think carefully about what it would be like for someone in a society like Rokugan, especially at the heart of its complex political dimension, which is a matter of the slightest subtleties and finest distinctions, if that person for whatever reason (such as a disability) was not able to parse social clues very well, or perhaps at all.
  14. Manchu

    Children of Bushidō

    And now we have a seventh character’s POV about Satsume, namely the Emperor himself — who not only has a positive opinion of him but also mourns him as a friend.
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