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Kakita Bayishamon
A noble-born scion of the Crane family, Kakita Bayishamon was a rising star within his clan. Married at an early age to a suitable noblewoman, a dutiful and skilled student of the Kakita Academy, Bayishamon seemed destined to be a key figure in the courts of Rokugan. He is - but his road there was long and tortuous.

His studies at the Academy took up much of his time, and he paid little attention to his wife. She was a shugenja of some power, and was a proud and wilfull woman. She did not take kindly to her husband's failings - and left his house in secret. The disgrace and scandal was a terrible one. Bayishamon left the Academy and the service of the Crane, and became Ronin. He searched for his lost wife, but the trail ran cold in the southlands. Bayishamon found his way to the Crab lands, where he was attacked by some creature from the Shadowlands. He slew the beast, but the fetid air of the Shadowlands hung heavy on the Crab lands. Bayishamon turned from his quest, and found his way to Ryoko Owari.

He entered the tournament of the Topaz Champion, and slew the Lion duellist, Matsu Shojuro, to take the title. The Ronin won back a place in the roles of the Crane. He took service with the Scorpion, Bayushi Suko, and trained Suko's nephew Hotasu in the art of the sword. In exchange for his service, Suko despatched two agents to hunt for Bayishamon's wife. Bayishamon served his lord loyally, and was even trusted with chaperoning Suko's beautiful daughter Isamiko at the Winter Court.

After several years, Suko's agents found Bayishamon's wife had taken ship in the Mantis Islands, and sailed far to the east. Bayishamon pursued her, and found his way to the Island At The Edge Of The World. He fought his way to the far shore, and there discovered his lost wife, who was serving the Oracle of Water. As the two were reunited, the foul plot of Asahina Yajinden was revealed. Yajinden used the Stones of Sin to remove the Oracle from the world, to a place where the Oracle was vulnerable. Luckily, Yajinden's host Henshu was able to resist the Bloodspeaker's commands, and Bayishamon used his shining Kakita Blade to reflect sunlight into Henshu's eyes, triggering the Daidoji's epilepsy. Yajinden was defeated, but the Oracle was slain.

Bayishamon reconciled with his wife, and the two returned to the Kakita lands, where Bayishamon is now the youngest of the twelve Masters of the Academy. His legacy is still felt in Ryoko Owari, though - his student Bayushi Hotasu betrayed the Scorpion at Otosan Uchi, and has sworn fealty to the Crane. The defection of one who knows many of the secrets of the Scorpion will be felt deeply as the war with the Shogunate continues...

Appearance: A dapper young Crane duellist, Bayishamon has a slightly wearied air. Though still young, he has endured much, and has lost the devil-may-care attitude of many younger Kakita. He carries his Kakita blade proudly.

Commentary of the GM: Bayishamon was an honourable peg in a dishonourable hole of a city. The character concept started out as a Ronin, but ronin didn't really have a place in the polical campaign I envisioned, so Bayishamon got his name & honour back quickly. The whole thing with Hotasu was great fun. "Rob, roll your honour." "10 10 10 10 10...". "OK, Hotasu just got the junshin disad".

During the Shadowlands incursion, Bayishamon ran. It takes a lot of courage on a player's part to deliberately screw their character over. Bayishamon had a permanent wound, he was terrified of the shadowlands. Most players would have just ignored that, or roleplaying their character's inner struggle, with bushido winning out in the end. Rob (Bayishamon's player) wasn't afraid to let bad things happen.

Sadly, Rob went off to London half-way through the campaign, so Bayishamon left the game. It hasn't been the same without him...

Using Bayishamon in your game: He's a Crane, he slices, he dices, he gets angsty...what more do you need? Bayishamon could make a fine sensei or samurai for a Crane household. His sensei/student relationship with a Scorpion could be fun to run...imagine a Scorpion sneaking into the Kakita Academy. Everyone suspects a plot, but the Scorpion wants guidance on honour and bushido from his Sensei...

Bayishamon's Character Sheet
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