Kuni Yuudai

A Crane in a Crab's Body


Kuni Yuudai’s name means great warrior. The appellation has become terribly ironic.

Yuudai was born to a powerful family of shugenja who became involved in a dispute with the Crane clan when Yuudai’s mother, Kuni Yukimora, fell in love with a handsome Crane and became pregnant by him. In order to avert a cluster of duels and vendettas that could lead the two clans to war, Yuudai’s father committed seppuku and his mother was sent to a nunnery. The Crab and Crane negotiated for his future, and it was decided that Yuudai would be raised by the Crane until his gempukku, but join the Crab clan afterwards. The Kuni family believed that the boy would learn much of use in the Crane lands, and he did, but they were not the lessons they hoped he would learn.

Yuudai was loathed by the Crane who saw him as the physical manifestation of the weakness of one of their own. In order to please his father’s family, he learned all he could of art, poetry, and the ways of the courtier.

Upon his return to the family of his mother, the daimyo of the clan, who hoped Yuudai would prove to be an asset, is instead simply an ass. He is foppish, preening, silly, and vain. He is everything the Crab hate in the Crane. After a particularly obnoxious poetry reading at Kyuden Hida, the daimyo appointed him Lord of Welcomes and Farewells at Shadow Mountain Fort, the one post the daimyo plans on never visiting.

Yuudai is in charge of diplomacy, trade, and bureaucracy under Hida Satoshi. Satoshi, like the daimyo, hates him, but is happy to have someone to look after the day to day running of the fort so Satoshi can focus on warcraft.

Kuni Yuudai

Legend of the Five Rings: Shadow Mountain BenjaminRiggs