The Test of the Amethyst Champion

(Prologue)

 

by Shawn Carman

 

 

            The Crown of the Amethyst Champion is an ancient gaijin artifact with a strange history. Those who possess the crown accrue great glory and wealth so long as it is kept safe, but should it ever be lost, the previous owner will find nothing but ruin for the remainder of their life. The first man in Rokugan to possess the Crown realized its power, and strove to use it for the betterment of his people. He was much beloved by all, and he called himself the Amethyst Champion in recognition of the Crown’s abilities.

 

Over the centuries, the Crown has passed through the hands of many. Some of used its blessings for selfish reasons, while others lived lives of honor and duty. In recognition of one such individual, the Imperial families created the position of Amethyst Champion, named after the first man to possess the Crown, and tasked their champion with safeguarding the Crown while using its blessings for the betterment of the Empire. Now, the Crown has been discovered once more, brought to the Imperial families by a simple merchant seeking to be free of its temptations. In response, the Imperial families have decreed that a new Amethyst Champion must be found.

 

Unlike the Emerald, Topaz, Ruby, and Jade Champions, the Amethyst Champion has no specific duty other than to use the Crown’s blessings wisely. Time and time again, the Imperial families have learned that attempting to administrate those blessings is fruitless, and instead have chosen to seek out a worthy individual to carry the burden and use its rewards as they see fit. Such a Champion must be gifted not only with the blade, but in the arts of oratory, poetry, and debate. The Amethyst Champion must be a shining example of the samurai ideal, lest they succumb to temptation and harm the Empire with their excesses.