Lying Darkness 
Lying Darkness 
Born: (c. 5th century
Died: Unknown

The Lying Darkness was the maddened Nothing that sought the undoing of the world.

Creation of Nothing Edit

The Nothing was existential void that pre-dated the existence of the world. The world was born from Nothing in three stages. One-third of the world was created out of its fear of loneliness, another third out of its desire for companionship, and the last third came from its remorse for accidentally creating the world and therefore ruining the perfect, empty void. [1] This entity avoided getting a name from Lady Sun and Lord Moon when they went about the task of handing out names to everything that existed. Nothing hid within the shadow, looking for a way to destroy this world it had accidentally made.

Creation of the Lying Darkness Edit

Goju Edit

The Lying Darkness approached Goju, who had fled the Kami in fear of their influence. In Goju the Darkness found a tool for acting in the Empire, and the Goju family was created. [2] Because the Darkness existed outside the natural order of things, it could only directly affect those who invite it into themselves. If the Darkness could not gain some advantage with its intended prey, then it could affect them only through its minions. The Goju made the perfect weapons for the Darkness in cases such as these. [3]

Alternative Story Edit

Other accounts said Goju was a Scorpion, a protégé of the 5th century ninja Bayushi Aramoro. When the order of ninja was ordered disbanded and executed by Hantei X, Goju and his followers fled the Imperial Magistrates, and found the Lying Darkness waiting for them. Eager to recruit minions who could act directly in the mortal world, the Darkness offered them the power they required to escape. The Goju became strange, shapeshifting creatures who commanded the shadows. The first demon-ninja were born. [4]

Twisted Edit

Infected by Goju's madness, the Nothing was twisted into the Lying Darkness that eventually would try to claim and unmake all of existence. That which the Lying Darkness touched was granted great power, no longer bound by the laws of the Celestial Order. Everything claimed by the Darkness forfeited its own identity, becoming solely an extension of the undefined Lying Darkness. [5]

Touch of the Darkness Edit

Absorption Edit

It was the most time-consuming, but also the most profitable course. Through absorption the Darkness drew the victim in a piece at a time, slowly stealing away everything that made him an individual. The Darkness lured in the victim, either by giving them special abilities or by breaking down their barriers, emotionally and mentally. They began to lose their memories, features, until it was left only a physical shell as smooth as a pebble. By the time this occured, the Darkness had completely stolen their identity, taking it as its own. The Darkness might use any knowledge or ability that the victim possessed, or unraveled whenever convenient. [6]

Mimicry Edit

The Darkness could also mimic any form it chose, but it not affected the individual copied. Although this method was much easier and required almost no time, the Darkness did not receive any of the benefits of absorption. It could not draw on the memories and abilities of the victim. [7]

Corruption Edit

The Darkness imparted special abilities to a willing vessel, in return for the target's service. These vessels begin to shift, their features did not fade, but they ceased to fit, giving the faces an asymmetrical, deformed quality. These minions were extensions of the Darkness and their forms were subject to its will. When maintaining the extension's integrity required too much attention Darkness withdrew its support entirely, leaving a body which no longer possessed enough cohesiveness to function, who died horribly in few hours. [8]

Undoing the World Edit

Shinjo Edit

Shinjo was kidnapped by the Lying Darkness when she was with the Ki-Rin Clan in the Burning Sands. For centuries she was held in the Black Earth, with dark djinn whispering in her ear. Nobody tried to find her but the Nothing did not corrupt her soul. The Lying Darkness, an ally of Fu Leng at that time, was forbidden by the Dark Lord to twist her, and Shinjo remained uncorrupted until she was released. [9]

Morikage Toshi Edit

In 782 the Shiba governor of Morikage Toshi called off his marriage to Agasha Yuriko. The bride's mother enact a curse upon the city, and as the woman's thirst for vengeance and her power to enact it was so strong that the Lying Darkness heard the Agasha's call and granted her wish, consuming Yuriko and binding her to the castle at the same time. The city became a focus point for Shadows activity, and also opened a flickering "hole" to the Spirit Realm of Toshigoku. [10]

Ebon Stone Edit

Somehow a group of warriors from distant lands released the Lying Darkness in the Ivory Kingdoms. Many of them died upon it, until the Lying Darkness was defeated by Shinsei. The little prophet imprisoned part of it inside the Ebon Stone, who was guarded by the Ebonites, to avoid its release from the imprisonement. [11] Those who failed the Test of the Ebon Stone were seduced and manipulated by the Lying Darkness, becoming members of the necromantic cult of the Jackals. [12] The Stone was destroyed in 1132, during the events of the Awakening, which roused the kami Shinjo from her imprisonment [13] and released the Lying Darkness into the world from where Shinjo had bound it. [citation needed]

Sayel Edit

In the Burning Sands he was known as Sayel, allied with Shilah's son, the jinn Kaleel. It was the Darkness that locked away the fury of the Goddess, and it was the Darkness that masqueraded as the Ebonite's lost prophet and the Jackal's ancient gods. [13]

Awakened Edit

Mirumoto Hitomi became the Dragon Clan Champion following the death of Togashi Yokuni. A fragment of the Lying Darkness, which for centuries had lain dormant within the Obsidian Hand, was awakened by the power she inherited from Togashi, and gradually descended into madness. [14] Then, using the knowledge she had of Darkness (for the Obsidian Hand was the hand of the Moon himself), Hitomi began experimenting with a creature of the Shadow trapped beneath Kyuden Togashi. That creature was Shosuro, the Scorpion Thunder and the Shadow's greatest servant, confined by Togashi long ago. Shosuro's torment awakened the Shadow itself. Eventually Shosuro escaped her clutches and vanished. [15]

Kaleel Edit

The jinn Kaleel was defeated by the Celestial Alliance [16] when Sayel devoured him and his armies. But at great cost, because after unmaking the Jinn, the Sayel threatened to spiral out of control, until Kaleel's brother Israk managed to funnel it into the heavens, where beings greater than those of our world could hope to oppose it. [13]

War Against the Darkness Edit

Following the Second Day of Thunder in 1128, the Lying Darkness began its attempts to destroy the Empire. Slowly but surely it attempted to gain control over the Emperor Toturi I. [citation needed] The only clan he could not infiltrate was the Naga. The Lying Darkness tried to control them through their isolation. He wished to drive their Akasha mad until they could bear no more. [17]

Onnotangu's Death Edit

The assembled armies of the clans under the command of Shinjo assaulted the Imperial City, and Takao defeated the Champion of the Moon, giving Hitomi the courage to kill Onnotangu. Without the Moon, the Shadow flew to the south, carrying its Darkness back to some secret place. [18]

The Twenty Seven Days of Darkness Edit

After the death of Lord Moon, Amaterasu, fled the Celestial Heavens. With Lady Sun's light gone from the Empire, the Lying Darkness's power was amplified tenfold, and its influence quickly spread. [19] The Shadow was Onnotangu's creature; Hitomi thought that by destroying Onnotangu she could erase the Shadow's connection to the Celestial Heavens and thereby make it subject to the attack of mortals. She was right: when the Moon died, the Shadow became vulnerable-but with the First Goju still leading the members of the Shadow, the Shadow had not been defeated. [15]

Naming Edit

Lady Sun and Lord Moon had been replaced by Hitomi and Hida Yakamo they named the Lying Darkness, so as to give it form and take away its power. The Lying Darkness was named Akodo, a name that was unused, but already strong, a name that stood for all that was Samurai and Bushido. [20]

Death Edit

In an instant, the Lying Darkness was completely destroyed. Those who bear the Goju name weakened and fled into the shadows. Those who bear no name appeared without memory save that Akodo was their family name, and joined the fight beside the Empire, driving back the Shadowlands beasts. The dying Dragon of Air saw the last remnant of the Nothing and swallowed it, becoming the heir of the Lying Darkness, the Shadow Dragon. So long as the Dragon could survive the Lying Darkness could never truly return. [21]

Avatars Edit

The Lying Darkness had had several avatars within Rokugan:

External Links Edit


  1. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 17
  2. War of the Dead
  3. Way of Shadow, p. 148
  4. Way of the Ninja, p. 52
  5. Secrets of the Shadowlands, p. 54
  6. Way of Shadow, p. 149
  7. Way of Shadow, p. 150
  8. Way of Shadow, pp. 150-151
  9. A Fallen Kami, by Rich Wulf
  10. Secrets of the Phoenix, pp. 67-68
  11. Legend of the Burning Sands Roleplaying Game, p. 263
  12. Legend of the Burning Sands Roleplaying Game, p. 246
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Re-Awakening, Part 1, by Lucas Twyman
  14. Hidden Emperor, p. 9
  15. 15.0 15.1 The Dragon Clan, by Edward Bolme and Ree Soesbee (Imperial Herald #15)
  16. The Jackals
  17. Nori Farm (Soul of the Empire flavor)
  18. War in the Heavens, by Ree Soesbee (Imperial Herald #10)
  19. Hidden Emperor, p. 55
  20. Voices: The Final Days of Oblivion's Gate, by Ree Soesbee
  21. Hidden Emperor, p. 84
  • The Hidden Emperor Pages 5,6.

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