The group awoke well rested and pleased. As they ate breakfast and prepared for a day of exploring the largest market in Rokugan, Isawa gave them each 125 zeni (2.5 koku) to spend frivolously on this day. He was quite insistent in the fact that he expected that money to be spend by the end of the day. He and Shiba would be taking the ronin’s daisho to the proper authorities that day. The boat had been a bit delayed so they would be leaving the next day at first light so everyone should be prepared. Besides that everyone should have fun. He gave advice to Kakita Hikaru to take Shosuro and Kitsu to “Bladed Fish Kimonos” since they would find something for their liking there. As Isawa and Shiba departed Hida and Shinjo said they were off to explore the town and would hopefully meet everyone later. The rest followed Isawa’s advice and went off in search of the Bladed Fish Kimonos.
On the way Kakita noticed several paper stores on the way that she wanted to visit when finished at the kimono shop. Upon arrival they were greeted by the 3rd generation store owner, a Kakita artisan, by the name of Kakita Hayate. He welcomed them to the “only” maker and provider of “Silk and Steel Kimonos”. The store inside was quite large and a two story building. At the front desk was a young man, who looked like a younger version of Kakita Hayate, working on a kimono along with several heimin cleaning and performing several other duties around the shop. When asked he explained that each kimono was threaded with a combination of silk and steel offering the same protection of light armor that could be worn anywhere and in any social situation. In addition each kimono had a special advantage, that had been designed by his father, so that with a few simple tugs, folds and adjustments could be made to look like a completely new kimono therefore allowing the wearer to wear the same kimono every day even in some of the most rigid and high class courts. The four of them would very pleased with this and commenced looking at everything.
Kakita Hayate examined his customers and decided to start out with the Akodo in the room. Akodo was quite impressed with the selection and wished to purchase two of them. When questioned he said that one of them would be for his father and the other for him. Liking the sound of this, as someone who was the 3rd generation of this specialty craft himself, said that he would give both of them to Akodo for the small price of 6 koku. Akodo felt this price quite reasonable and accepted. He was demonstrated the different ways of how to wear the kimono and was presented with a small pictured scroll of instructions from a box of them when he requested a written copy. He then went to a back private area to try change into his new kimono.
Seeing that the Kakita was still looking at things he decided to go to the possibly more complicated customer, Shosuro. He walked up behind Shosuro, who was eying the section of Kimonos in Scorpion colors and mons and asked if she say anything she liked. She said that they were all exceptional kimonos and was curious if Kakita Hayate had made her obi. After inspecting it he said no but knew who had. It was probably made by his grandfather Yasuki, founder of this craft, who specialized in such things. He showed her a variety of kimonos including the ones with his own special upgrade to the family line; kimonos that had different layers of colors and could be made to look like completely different Clan based kimonos. He named a price and Shosuro begun haggling. Unfortunately for her Kakita Hayate’s wife came out at that point and Shosuro was only able to drop the price a small bit. After agreeing to a final price the wife showed Shosuro to a separate back area where she to could try on her new kimono.
Next he moved to his clan mate, Kakita Hikaru, who had been looking at the great variety of Crane style and Kakita family kimonos. When she asked if he had anything uniquely special, Kakita Hayate eyed her up and down taking in the unique saya at her waist and the pin of the Topaz champion upon her kimono, and responded that he might have something that she would be uniquely interested in. He went behind a table and brought out a small bamboo box. He opened it and handed her a very unique kimono indeed. Instead of having the Crane Clan mon on the entire back side it had a large, sliced rock with the ocean behind it and the mon was floating above around the shoulder blade area. Kakita was able to understand that the rock in the picture was the same one at Kyuden Doji used to test each Kakita Blade. When she looked questionably at Hayate he explained that the steel in this kimono was from a broken Kakita blade and therefore he made the kimono to represent that. Kakita Hikaru, knowing that this kimono was indeed unique and precious, named a very large amount for the Kimono. Kakita Hayate was pleased with this and instead lowered the price from what she said in response to her honor and status. His wife showed Kakita Hikaru to a back room where she changed into her new purchase. Upon exiting she gave the difference in price to Kakita Hayate’s son as a tip and for him to continue the family tradition.
In the meantime Hayate directed his attention to the last customer of the group: Kitsu. Kitsu had been looking at the different Lion Clan colored kimonos but to his dismay there were none with his family’s mon and design. When Kakita Hayate approached he mentioned the he could, with a day’s worth of hard work, have one modified by sundown in the Kitsu design. Thanking him for his kindness Kitsu offered his services as a sodan-senzo to speak with Hayate’s grandfather and name a price he thought respectful of such a precious item. Hayate said that this service was unnecessary but maybe Kitsu could visit the Yasuki shrine and offer a prayer for his grandfather’s spirit instead. Agreeing upon a price Kakita Hayate said he would send his son, who liked to explore the town’s nightly pleasures anyways, with the kimono once it was finished.
Akodo asked for a postal service in town and Kakita Hayate said there was one next to the guard station in the west and one next to the docks in the north and either was capable of carrying one of his kimonos. Now with their new purchases the four thanked Kakita Hayate and departed. Kitsu and Kakita were headed to Yasuki shine, and getting some paper on the way, while Shosuro and Akodo decided to explore the town for a bit. Shosuro quickly went off to the open air theater and commenced watching one of the stories from “The Tale of Hoshi”.
Meanwhile Hida had been walking thru town looking at the variety of shops and taking his time. Luckily for his size and armor people made a path for him. Shinjo on the other hand had a more specific location in mind and had headed straight for the Unicorn shop. But because of his horse and blandness it took a considerable amount of time. As he tied his horse in the stables next to the shop, which had a purple border and two mons, Hida saw him and made his way to join his companion and together they entered the shop. The shop was very large and had a variety of gaijin items from the beyond the Eastern borders of the Empire. The small shopkeeper came up and greeted them and mentioned that were in luck for his uncle had just returned from a 9 year expedition and brought back a great variety of goods. Hida commenced eying the eastern wall full of weapons while Shinjo talked to the shopkeeper. The topic of boxxeen came up and the small shopkeeper mentioned he MIGHT have something of interest. Proceeding to dig thru a large chest he brought out a book with a picture of two people wearing boxxeen gloves on it. Shinjo was impressed but as he looked thru the book he did not recognize the language, the alphabet or anything else, although the few pictures were beautifully done. The shopkeeper explained that his uncle had met some traders from beyond the normal trade routes of the Unicorn and he had taken an interest in this strange book in its unknown language. After some haggling and unable to come to a accord the shopkeeper struck upon an idea. Questioning Shinjo and finding out that he was escorting the scrolls for the Setsuban festival he proposed that Shinjo take the book for half the original price and see if he could no find someone who could translate it. If he could do this by the end of the Setsuban festival and send the shopkeeper a copy he could keep the book. If not he could either send the book back or the rest of the original price. Of course such a translation would be quite valuable indeed and both agreed to only use it as VERY unique gifts or sell it for a VERY HIGH price. After the arrangements had been made they Shinjo also bought a bag of sugar cubes at a very discounted price.
After both went to see how Hida was doing. Hida had been eying a very large blunt hammer style weapon hanging high upon a wall. The shopkeeper explained that it came from a distant, unknown nation called the Merenae. Unfortunately the Unicorn had no dealings with them and the shopkeeper had actually gotten this item from the Mantis. He explained that due to its weight it could bypass most armor but required someone with good strength to wield it and even stronger to make it worth using. The price of the item was higher then Hida was comfortable with and almost did not purchase it until Shinjo said he would pay for some of it. Agreeing upon this the shopkeeper looked up at the high weapon, scurried off and grabbed a man catcher. Carefully using the Man cathcer he got the maul down and handed it to Hida. As they left Shinjo asked for Hida’s assistance in helping translate the book. Considering that Shinjo had just help pay for Hida’s new weapon and the fact that Hida greatly wished to learn the variety of martial arts the world had to offer he readily agreed. Hida decided that now he was going to make his way to the Yasuki shrine. Shinjo, happy with his purchase and possible future opportunities decided to join him.