- Character Name:
- Wakahisa Ryutaro
- Place of Origin:
- It is said by some that the men that call themselves the shinobi are warriors without honor.
Thieves, assassins, spies. All amongst the most unsavory of profession, for all require the underhanded techniques that many feel are at best unbecoming of a warrior, and, at worst, the acts and skills of a coward.
Not like the famed samurai, who saw themselves as men of honor, of open combat, the way of the sword. Soldiers willing to fight for their honor and their code, and willing to die for it.
For those most concerned with honor, these views can be said to be correct in most cases. It is indeed a rarity for a shinobi to exercise honor, for by their very nature the man who desires to become one of the famed shinobi-no-mono must be willing to fight in darkness, to steal and to spy and to kill in the methods of the assassin, from the dark, unseen.
Ryutaro was, at one time, no different, and among the best of the shinobi. Sent to assassinate a prominent samurai clan leader, his attempt failed, and he was cornered by the legendary soldiers. Even forced to fight in the open, the assassin managed to, in open combat, kill three of the soldiers before they subdued him.
Ready to strike the killing blow, one samurai stepped forward, raising his sword, thinking that, with his brother samurai restraining the potential assassin, this would be an easy kill. That thought was his final mistake.
Even as the sword was beginning to descend, Ryutaro managed to slip one of the samurai's grip, snatch a tanto blade from his waist, and thrust upwards, sending the point under the samurai's chin and into his brain, ending the man's life.
Another blow was struck to the assassin by the other samurai, and another. Perhaps enraged at the death of a brother, they beat the assassin into bloody submission until the clan leader - the target of the assassin - ordered them to stop. Impressed by the man's will to survive, even when death seemed inevitable, and in open admiration of his fighting spirit, the leader ordered the man imprisoned and his injuries seen to.
When the assassin awoke - after several days - it was to find himself in a room, alone, with the leader of the samurai clan sitting across from him.
His orders had been to kill the samurai leader, and he had failed. Despite his profession, the assassin was not a man completely bereft of his honor, and humbly begged the samurai to end his life for this failure.
The samurai refused. Rather than kill the shinobi, he instead offered a chance for the man to redeem himself, and his honor, by learning from the samurai, even as the samurai learned from him.
As the assassin listened to the samurai speak of his clan's ways and the ways of the samurai, he began to realize that the two were not so very different, save for the methods they used.
Both were men of honor, both in service to others.
The samurai chieftain gave the shinobi no choice in the matter, not even the choice between life and learning or death. He would learn, and there was no argument on the matter.
Slowly, the pair began to feel out this arrangement, talking to each other of small things at first. As time passed, they began to learn other things. For the shinobi, true honor and the way of samurai to serve without a sense of self, as well as greater techniques of open combat, of confronting one's enemy face to face and facing death with honor and without fear.
For the samurai, the techniques of the shinobi, of speed, strength, stealth, and escape. Of the strange and oft-times supernatural abilities they were rumored to possess. Of cunning and resourcefulness, some things of which the samurai knew, and some he did not.
Over time, the two men learned respect, and finally friendship.
So it would come to pass that the shinobi and the samurai were out walking in the spring, amongst cherry trees, speaking of more philosophical matters, when another assassin made his attempt upon the samurai's life.
Ryutaro found himself confronting a fellow assassin, defending his injured and dying friend when the assassin's strike found its mark. Enraged at what he now thought of as he assassin's cowardice at such a blow, he challeneged the shinobi he might have once called brother.
With his newfound sense of honor and combat, in combination with the deadly skills of a shinobi-no-mono, the other had no chance. Death came swiftly for the assassin, and Ryutaro found himself at the samurai's side, listening to his friend breath his last. With his final breaths, the samurai asked for his own sword to be placed into his hand, and with a heavy heart Ryutaro assisted his friend in ending his life with honor.
The samurai's last words to Ryutaro were that he should live his life with honor, for in him the older, honorable ways of the samurai had blended in harmony with the skills of the deadliest of dark warriors. His last instructions were that such a thing should not be allowed to fade with Ryutaro's life, but be passed on when he should find a student fit to learn.
As his friend's life faded, Ryutaro swore to him, upon his honor, that it would be so.
- Shinobi-no-mono and Samurai
- Additional Notes:
- ((OOC Note: Ryutaro is in fact part dragon, though he himself is unaware of the fact. Dragons will be able to sense this, but just about anyone else will also be unaware of it.))
- Date Registered:
- April 13, 2010, 10:13:35 AM
- Local Time:
- March 01, 2021, 07:30:38 AM
- Last Active:
Signature:One should not be envious of someone who has prospered by unjust deeds. Nor should he disdain someone who has fallen while adhering to the path of righteousness.
- Imagawa Sadayo