Definitions of Honor
Skills: Battle 1, Defense 1, Horsemanship 3, Kenjutsu 3, Sincerity 1, Kyujutsu 3, Etiquette 3, Medicine 2, Investigation 1.
Advantages: Luck (9)
Disadvantages: Small; Gaijin Name; Soft Hearted; Bad Fortune: Secret Love
Shinjo Lily, is the member of a new samurai family. Her grandfather, Uji was granted ji-samurai status for his astonishing display of honor as an ashigaru fighting in the Destroyer War. The honor was a mixed blessing. The family was given a small plot of land and a minimal stipend by the Shinjo daimyo. It was not really enough to maintain the lifestyle expected of a samurai, so Lily’s family has, of a necessity been a little closer to the land, and to the common folk than most members of her caste.
As Lily grew to school age, she was prepared to attend a lesser dojo of the Shinjo style. Her family did not have a high enough standing, enough political clout, or enough money to get her into the more prestigious Battle Maiden school, but the Fortunes it seemed, had a different plan for her. A group of bandits assaulted an Utaku herdsman and made off with a pair of foals. While a young Shinjo Lily was out out in the woods searching for medicinal herbs, she managed to come across the bandit camp. Recognizing the precious Utaku steeds, she could not bear to leave them in the possession of such men. Largely by sheer luck, she managed to lead the bandits away from their camp, stranding one in a vast mud-hole, getting one lost in a dense bamboo thicket, and managing to incapacitate a third with a well placed rock. One of the foals, a particularly strong willed male, had been badly injured, as he kept fighting and trying to escape until the coarse men had beaten him soundly. She returned home with the vindicated foals, and helped nurse the little man back to health. When her father returned the foals to the Utaku daimyo, she was so thrilled, Lily was paired with one of the horses, and given an invitation to attend the the shiotome academy.
When Lily completed her training and it came time for her gempukku and to choose her adult name, she selected a name that would remind her of her mother and so bring her joy. Lily’s mother had been born a merchant. The arranged marriage to her father, Shinjo Jiro, was a mutually beneficial arrangement. Her father’s family gained some much needed financial support and the merchant was happy to see his daughter climb a step higher in the Celestial Order. Jiro and Taka were very happy, until Taka died in a riding accident a few years after Lily’s Little brother Ichiro was born when Lily was only six. The main thing Lily still remembered of her mother was her laugh. Her father told her the story of how, when they were still newly married, Taka had expressed her love for Lilies. Jiro had told her the funny sounding gaijin name for them, and Taka had laughed and laughed, asking him to say the strange sounding word again and again. Taka had always kept lilies planted everywhere they would grow around the house, and would frequently break into laughter when she would see them. Lily has learned with practice, to say the strange gaijin “l” sound properly, but she always takes great pleasure in hearing others try to say it, and remembers her lovely mother’s laugh. She has had to work very hard to hide her amusement at the discomfiture of others when they try to speak her name.
Growing up with an unusual interest in gardening and peasant affairs,she was pressured by the clan to abstain from unhealthy interest in anything of that nature and to become a great warrior. She then turned to zen gardening in her spare time to pursue her true interests. When she was old enough she left on a quest to tour all the peasant, forest and great master zen gardens she could find and also to get away from her well meaning family.