Hell and Heaven are in the Hearts of Men

Travel log for Azuma from the Castle of the Emerald Champion to the North/Eastern Unicorn lands.

Travel log for Azuma from the Castle of the Emerald Champion to the North/Eastern Unicorn lands.

For this trip, Asako Ueda is my traveling companion. He is an experienced traveler and the knowledge he imparted to me of the road will surely be invaluable for the rest of my days as a Samurai.

Phoenix Consulate:

We stopped at the Phoenix consulate on the border of the Phoenix and Lion lands. The town was astir with preparations for the Topaz Championship. I had the pleasure of meeting Isawa Yuzriha and Shiba Korhime, the two Phoenix competitors. I was sure to prepare offerings to the Kami for both before leaving the consulate. I made a pinwheel for the Yuzriha and a scroll for Korhime.

I contacted a Shiba scout in the area who had traveled recently to the Unicorn lands. I was glad to hear that the territory I traveled to will be calm. Learning the ways of long travel is in and of itself a trial. To prepare, I also traveled the Unicorn lands in Yume-do. I hoped to find Shinjo Young-Il there to ensure we traveled in the right direction. I was able to acclimate to the wide ranging plains of the Unicorn. I imagine every land of the Empire holds lessons unique to themselves, and I have personally had the pleasure to experience those mysteries of the plains of the horse lords. I did eventually find Young-Il there.

Unicorn Lands

The travel through the Unicorn lands was enjoyable as one could wish travel to be. Little of note happened until we found the residence of Shinjo Young-Il’s father. By happenstance we arrived the night before Young-il’s wedding to Agasha Umino. The wedding was another time of bountiful learning. The Unicorns’ blend of Rokugani and unique traditions was quite fascinating. I spoke with a few of note at the wedding and before it.

The Ide

The artisans and courtiers of the Unicorn are putting forth efforts to share the Unicorn with the rest of the Empire. They wish to show a singular view of the Unicorn to the rest of the Empire though their song and story, something I will surely hear about in the years to come. As one who learns, we Isawa should also teach. As such I prepared a scroll (ink of the void) sharing with the Unicorn my experiences with the artisans of the Crane at Shinden Asahina.

Phoenix in the Unicorn lands:

It seems that the Phoenix are establishing a presence in the Unicorn lands. Courtiers are visiting many of the Unicorn courts. To what specific end, I could not say, but surely this is related to the conflict between the Unicorn and Phoenix.
I spoke with Asako Wataru. He spoke of Kyuden Hida; from everything he said and would not say, it must have been a trying experience. The scar it left on Rokugan is apparent: may the wound knit well.

Shinjo Young-Il and Agasha Umino

I spoke with Shinjo Young-Il and Agasha Umino. At first, I suspected my reason for traveling might be solely to speak with Umino-san. She had prior knowledge of the tablet and a mind sharper than most. Both she and Young-il-san appeared on the tablet, as our conference with Yuuko-san revealed. There we had a fascinating discussion of the potential meaning of the tablet and the nothing who wishes to become something.
I brought both Shinjo Young-Il and Agasha Umino to the Castle of the Emerald Champion. As they are both on the tablet I thought they should, at minimum, be presented to the Hige-sama and could also provide some assistance with tablet. I personally saw to both of their travel papers before leaving the Unicorn lands.

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Hanzo

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