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Schmoozies

New fiction - The Last Leaf Falls

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38 minutes ago, Shadrack said:

Along those lines, shouldn't he and Sumiko know about the wards? Shouldn't that be  something everyone with a position of power be considering?

The wards that Seppun Isikawa can confirm haven’t worked since Iuchi Shahai was playing with them?

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I had it understood their failure was kept a secret. People in power shouldnt consider it because as fara as everyone knew they were up and running and the emperor died of natural causes, right? Only now will they start questioning that kind of stuff. As to why toturi and sumiko didnt question it, the only thing I can think of is that it eother was oversight from the authors or something even they didnt know about (which wouldnt make much sense)

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Kachiko was specifically pointed out as being unaware of the palace wards, and she's Imperial Advisor...so just how many people *actually* know about them, or knew about them before they failed? I'd have to dig around, I think Sumiko was made aware of the issue with the wards after the fact, but not 100% sure. I don't think we've had any update on the investigation into why the wards failed either, so the characters in the story may not have tied that to Shahai stealing kami for her meishodo demonstration...yet.

Also, I mean...Scorpion specialize in wards. Junzo's letter even talks about sending Yogo to help with wards...that's going to look awfully "convenient" if you suspect Scorpion are behind the Emperor's assassination in the first place. 

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The Seppun knows that Shahai was tinkering with the wards for a meishodo remonstration. We know they didn’t work because it was Hantei on Hantei combat. Shahai is close to Daisetsu, who’s best friend the Scorpion Champion’s son was nearly killed by Sotorii.

Even if the Edict is genuine (which we know it is) it looks an awful lot like Shoju‘s been trying to sideline Sotorii and finally got his preferred candidate named heir. 

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41 minutes ago, Doji Hyōkin said:

The wards that Seppun Isikawa can confirm haven’t worked since Iuchi Shahai was playing with them?

Satoshi didn't know they had failed and was confused how Kachiko had gotten around them until she mentioned it was patricide. 

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I'm reasonably sure the Seppun were not aware Shahai was meddling with the wards for her demonstration, not to mention it's highly unlikely they would have allowed it if they had been aware. I also am reasonably sure there was no indication that they failed because it was patricide, only speculation from readers that might be the case. 

I honestly don't have the time or energy at the moment to dig up references or debate it, so take or leave that as you will. 

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“The prince’s behavior as of late… Yes. You’re telling the truth. That’s why the wards didn’t alarm the Hidden Guard…”

That line from The Last Stone Played heavily implies that patricide is why the wards didn't go off.

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2 hours ago, Doji Hyōkin said:

Even if the Edict is genuine (which we know it is) it looks an awful lot like Shoju‘s been trying to sideline Sotorii and finally got his preferred candidate named heir. 

You know, while this does sound very shady and almost wrong, if there are two people in the entire Empire who couldn't blame Shoju for trying to sideline Sotorii then those should be Sumiko and Toturi, both which are painfully aware of Sotorii's... shortcomings. 

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Now I'm curious - if we assume that Sumiko and/or Toturi know about the wards, they'd need to come up with an explanation for how/why the Seppun didn't notice the Emperor got murdered in his own chambers with his own ancestral sword. And the most plausible explanation is that either the wards stopped working without the Seppun noticing - which seems unlikely - or Ishikawa's subordinates have all been subverted. And if the Seppun cannot be trusted...

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7 minutes ago, Mangod said:

 or Ishikawa's subordinates have all been subverted

If I was Toturi, I would seriously consider Ishikawa being in Shoju's team and to that extent, Kaede being in Shoju's team through Ishikawa. Because this is definitely not how the world is ought to work, after all. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Mangod said:

Now I'm curious - if we assume that Sumiko and/or Toturi know about the wards, they'd need to come up with an explanation for how/why the Seppun didn't notice the Emperor got murdered in his own chambers with his own ancestral sword. And the most plausible explanation is that either the wards stopped working without the Seppun noticing - which seems unlikely - or Ishikawa's subordinates have all been subverted. And if the Seppun cannot be trusted...

Or it has something to do with Shahai since she "disappeared" at the same time.  And they described that the Kami were missing not that the wards had been specifically tampered with

Edited by Schmoozies

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43 minutes ago, Schmoozies said:

Or it has something to do with Shahai since she "disappeared" at the same time. 

IIRC the blossoming romance between Shahai and Daisetsu is supposedly not a big secret. 

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Finally saw this...

And the wheels on the wagon aren't wobbling anymore, one of them just flew off.

Shoju is publicly slammed, blindsided, and his legitimacy undermined. Kachiko, who put him in this mess, is now with Hotaru. His ability to usefully fulfill his duty as regent or even to simply maintain order is crippled.

Toturi is plunged into the incredible disgrace of being a ronin. Meaning the Lion, tangled up in their scrap with the Crane and the Unicorn, are about to become wholly Tsuko's to command- Toturi had little influence, but he had some. That's over now.

Sumiko is out of the picture, meaning Hitomi is probably the highest-ranking Dragon in the capital. With that army. In this situation.

Yoshi is ascendant... and Yoshi, as we have seen, is pathologically incapable of doing the right thing, although at least he's not longer moving from easily-avoided blunder to easily-avoided blunder- I think I get to sort of retire his hashtag. Thank heavens. His new one is much better for his narrative role and his utility as a character: #KakitaYoshiisaBastard. Much better. He's still blinkered by thinking everyone is like him, but at least he's good at what he does.

 

Meanwhile, lest we forget, the Daidoji just blew up most of Kyuden Kakita, the Master of Earth is palling around with a tsukai in the Shadowlands, the elemental imbalance is in no way being usefully addressed, both princes are missing, the Crane are at war with both the Lion and with themselves- although Yoshi's status as big dog in the Imperial Court may well swing that in a new direction. The Crab have been quiet-ish on the command level, which is, to say the least, ominous, not least because if Yoshi emerges as the big power in Court, they will hate it and might well do something about it. The Unicorn are implicated in Daisetsu's disappearance and still dealing with their own... issues.

 

Get your popcorn ready folks. This is going to be incredibly messy.

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6 hours ago, Shiba Gunichi said:

Yoshi is ascendant... and Yoshi, as we have seen, is pathologically incapable of doing the right thing, although at least he's not longer moving from easily-avoided blunder to easily-avoided blunder- I think I get to sort of retire his hashtag. Thank heavens. His new one is much better for his narrative role and his utility as a character: #KakitaYoshiisaBastard. Much better. He's still blinkered by thinking everyone is like him, but at least he's good at what he does.

not retired modified #kakitayoshiisafoolishbastard

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7 hours ago, Shiba Gunichi said:

Sumiko is out of the picture, meaning Hitomi is probably the highest-ranking Dragon in the capital. With that army. In this situation.

 

Disclaimer: I have not yet been asked to write anything more about Hitomi, so I don't know whether that's not in the pipeline yet or it's been assigned to another writer, but either way, what follows is purely my speculation.

Hitomi put her army at Sumiko's disposal, but when all is said and done, she's its commander, and her orders from her clan champion were "protect the Prince." There is no prince in Otosan Uchi; furthermore, the evidence she's got (Shojo staged a coup!) leads to the obvious conclusion that she was sent there to protect Sotorii against Shoju's machinations. Which, uh, means she's kind of signally failed, what with misplacing Sotorii and all -- so I would imagine Hitomi's response is to march straight out of the capital to look for him. Though an army is admittedly a rather blunt instrument for that task, so maybe she splits them up.

(Alternatively, Hitomi whacks Shoju and takes control of the capital, calling out for Sotorii to come home, it's safe now. Though I don't expect she'd succeed in whacking him just yet, so it would be more a case of deposing one regent and installing another, either Yoshi or herself.)

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Maybe the story ends up taking that direction anyways, but I wonder if the fact that the 2018 Worlds Story Choice for Dragon Clan has closed the door on the option for Hitomi to take control of Otosan Uchi. Back when that decision was made, the option for choosing Mirumoto was specifically "If selected, a samurai of the Mirumoto Family secures Otosan Uchi against any potential threats." Granted, circumstances have changed since then, but I feel like even in the long term we should see the fact that this was not the option chosen play out in how Hitomi acts going forward. We do also have this briefly referenced alliance between Dragon, Crab, and Phoenix in the works from the Kitsuki side of things, so maybe that plays a role in Hitomi's next move as well. 

Just my thoughts on it, anyways. 

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Heh, I'd actually forgotten about that aspect of the story choice! So yeah, that reinforces my instinct that Hitomi's not going to sit around the capital; if her orders are to protect the prince, and she has every reason to believe that meant Sotorii, then then she needs to go find him.

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Posted (edited)

Honestly, while the situation itself maybe kinda crappy for him personally, I wonder if Shoju wouldn't secretly be pleased.  This put a target squarely on the Scorpion, thus getting them back to their intended roll as the villain to unite the clans, thus fulfilling Bayushi's "I'll be your villain" shtick.

Edited by Silver Crane

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Scorpion potentially being pushed back into the shadows where Shoju wants them to be is probably a very thin silver lining on a rather massive storm cloud for him. His best friend entrusted the future and security of the empire to him, and right now that looks to be going horribly wrong for Shoju. He's failed his friend and emperor, lost both potential heirs to the throne he didn't want and now is being accused of stealing, and two people he'd have thought/hoped to be his most valuable allies in the court (the guy who penned the edict and the gal he'd worked so hard to win over) are the ones doing the accusing. 

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Well, I feel like we just witnessed the death of centralized authority in Rokugan. I mean, if anyone can keep the frayed threads of the tapestry held together a bit longer it's probably Shoju, but it really seems like delaying the inevitable at this point.

On 8/26/2020 at 9:28 PM, Kaito Kikaze said:

The truly burning questions in my mind are, if Toturi has chosen to renounce his titles and name to become ronin, does Kaede become ronin automatically due to their marriage, or is she handled separately? Does it affect the status of their marriage if he becomes ronin and she doesn't? If she doesn't automatically become ronin and for some reason doesn't choose to become ronin alongside him, does she remain an Akodo or does she revert to being an Isawa? 

Considering Kaede's probably caring the rightful heir to the Lion Clan Championship I'd think certain elements of the Lion wouldn't want to give her up.

 

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21 hours ago, Kaito Kikaze said:

We do also have this briefly referenced alliance between Dragon, Crab, and Phoenix in the works from the Kitsuki side of things, so maybe that plays a role in Hitomi's next move as well. 

Wait, what? Where'd I miss this? Last I knew the closest thing the Crab had to an alliance with another Great Clan was the Scorpion bribing us with jade.

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4 minutes ago, shineyorkboy said:

Wait, what? Where'd I miss this? Last I knew the closest thing the Crab had to an alliance with another Great Clan was the Scorpion bribing us with jade.

From "A Discerning Eye and an Unyielding Resolve":

Quote

While Chiari had recently been mingling with representatives from the Asako and Yasuki to build a coalition of support for her clan on behalf of Yaruma...

 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, shineyorkboy said:

Well, I feel like we just witnessed the death of centralized authority in Rokugan. I mean, if anyone can keep the frayed threads of the tapestry held together a bit longer it's probably Shoju, but it really seems like delaying the inevitable at this point.

I'm almost expecting King George III to show up and serenade the people who just ousted Shoju.

Quote

Well, even despite our estrangement, I’ve got
A small query for you:

What comes next?
You’ve been freed
Do you know how hard it is to lead?
You’re on your own
Awesome. Wow!
Do you have a clue what happens now?

Oceans rise
Empires fall
It’s much harder when it’s all your call

All alone, across the sea
When your people say they hate you, don’t
Come crawling back to me

You're on your own.

 

Edited by Mangod

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