Kitsune Gate
As the crew rejoins, a high-pitched, fevered battle ensues. The elemental terrors are the most powerful adversaries the heroes encountered thus far. They manage to defeat them without too much trouble, Mitsurigi performs the killing shot, thereby gaining respect amongst his fellow magistrates. He also proposes to the Otaku Battle Maiden who is only too happy to speak to her father about this. While the magistrates recover, they talk about their plans. Buruke explains that there must be a traitor amongst them and he suspects the blind seer Itako. His companions agree that there is a traitor but do not believe it to be the seer.
Meanwhile, both Kakita Yorito and Yasuki Kyoshi are becoming more erratic, discontent and sometimes downright disrespectful. Yorito voices his concern to Hida buruke that he no longer wishes to be a "Koma".
A few day later the caravan arrives at Kyuden Kitsune, a lush and beautiful forest surrounds the location. As soon as the heroes arrive they notice they are being followed. Later it turns out these are "spirits of the forest" but Yorito is gung-ho and jumps into the dark forest to find out what is going on, once there, he uses his new found abilities of the Darkness to remain unseen. In doing so both he and Yasuki Kyoshi recognise each other as being tainted by the Lying Darkness. From this point on, Kyoshi acts very hostile towards the cocky duellist.
Luckily there are no witnesses to this exchange as the heated emotions would cause a stain on their honour.

Kyuden Kistune
After their arrival the magistrates convene in the bathhouse to discuss their plans. While Kyoshi is absent Yorito shows up wearing some kind of toga, which is a bit weird  Another heated discussion flares up, this time between Yorito and Buruke on the subject of Yorito no longer wanting to be a Yojimbo for the large Crab. As the duellist stomps out the bathroom, the others are left baffled and shocked by his words. 
That evening all the visitors are gathered for a banquet. The heroes learn the following:

The Mantis Daimyo has proposed to the Fox Daimyo.
  • The Lion and the Crane are on good terms with eachother.
  • A blight is ravaging the lands of Rokugan.
  • The Crane and Mantis are at war over the abandoned Scorpion lands.
  • The Lion and the Unicorn are about to declare war on eachother.
  • Kakita Yorito has been freed of his duties as Buruke's Yojimbo by Daidoji Uji. Yorito's father did not agree but must comply to the Daidoji Daymio's wishes.

That night after long sessions of boring peace talks, a scream awakens the Magistrates. In the central courtyard they find Doji Harudoki on the ground, here kimono torn open with the Lion Ikoma Otemi standing over her. She accuses him trying to rape her. Even though Yasuki Kyoshi learns trough spellcraft that she is lying, Otemi says nothing. Harudoki chooses Yorito to defend her honour in a duel with Boken. The Kakita wins the duel easily resulting in a proclamation that Ikoma Otemi will commit Sepukku at dusk...

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