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Mon of the Scorpion Clan

The Scorpion Clan was founded by the Kami Bayushi. The clan and its members are widely considered to be villainous and untrustworthy by the rest of Rokugan, though they merely attempt to fulfill the duty given to their family by the First Emperor on the day of his ascension.

Scorpion Clan[]


While the Crane was the Emperor's Left Hand and the Lion his right, the Scorpion was often referred to as the Underhand of the Emperor. It was a family of spies, manipulators, and assassins who valued loyalty and duty and for whom the ends justifed the means. The samurai of the Scorpion clan understood that by dirtying their hands, they ensured that no others need do so. [1]

Following the Day of Thunder however, the clan gained another important duty. The twelve Black Scrolls used to seal the power of Fu Leng were entrusted to the Scorpion for safekeeping. The shugenja of the Yogo family had traditionally been the guardians of the Scrolls, adding to their sinister reputation, though only the Bayushi daimyo himself knew the location of all twelve. [2]


The Scorpion was mostly identified with blood-red and black colors. [3]



All Scorpion samurai wear masks, as the Kami Bayushi did, to honor their immortal founder. The style of the mask varies wildly by the wielder, and is always an extremely personal choice. Scorpion take their masks very seriously, and some would no sooner be seen without their mask than without their daisho. [4]

The Scorpion and the Frog[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Tale of the Scorpion and the Frog

Almost all Scorpion are familiar with Shinsei's retelling of the tale of the Scorpion and the Frog to Bayushi. To some, it is the crucial historical moment when Bayushi realized his role in the Empire; to others, it serves as a classic reminder of the first lesson that any young Scorpion learns: nothing is ever as it seems. This tale is the reason why all Scorpion wear their masks at all times. [5]


Childbirth is a welcome event in Scorpion lands. It is an event to be remembered, with the lucky parents celebrating for several days. The lords of the Scorpion often excuse the father of an infant from his duties for a few days so that he may commemorate the birth properly. [6]

Scorpion peasants are generally not treated as well as peasants from other clans, so this custom mitigates their resentment toward the samurai caste. In larger villages someone, somewhere, is always having a child, so there are constant festivities. In the samurai caste this custom strengthens the bonds of loyalty within the family. A newborn Scorpion is welcomed from the first moment of his life. Relatives and friends pay their respects and offer their protection. [6]

If there is one thing the Scorpion take very seriously, it is a celebration. Though most such festivities serve as mere excuses to invite guests into the household (to gain some advantages or favors) childbirth is an exception. Only family members and close friends may visit the household following a Scorpion birth. An outsider is only admitted if trusted utterly. He who participates in honoring a Scorpion birth -- and this does not happen often -- is a Scorpion in the clan's eyes.[6]

Twins are lucky, representing Scorpion friends or lovers from a past life so loyal to each other that they died at the same instant, thus re-entering life together. Also, as Bayushi himself was Shiba's twin, the birth of twins invokes the clan's founder.[6]

Triplets are not viewed with the same joy. The number three is extremely unlucky to the Scorpion, so the birth of three children at once is a dire omen.[6]


Though some clans are secretive about their gempukku ceremonies, the Scorpion are not. Everyone is invited, including visitors from other clans and even strangers who happen to be in the area. A placard is posted outside a household for a week before a gempukku ceremony begins, giving the young samurai's name, parents, sensei and dojo, and inviting all to attend. [6]

The candidate is introduced to everybody in attendance and personally presents a gift to every guest. Ideally the candidate will have created these gifts with his own hands, though extremely wealthly families sometimes "lend" their children koku to purchase expensive gifts. A number of generic gifts, called "face gifts", were set aside for unexpected guests. These gifts did not have to be created personally by the youth. These are not an insult to the unexpected guests, but a sign of respect toward those invited. [6]

Following the young samurai's rather traditional initiation ceremony, sake flows and all present take off their masks to enjoy themselves. The highest-ranking samurai never remove their masks, symbolizing that the Scorpion Clan must always retain some secrets. Entertainment is provided and a good time is had by all. [6]

Later that evening, after the guests depart, the true ceremony begins. The young samurai was not informed of this phase in advance so this often comes as a surprise. The samurai is taken to a private room by his sensei, and is asked the guests' names and what he learned by how each one reacted to their gift. If the young samurai's answers are satisfactory, then he is given his first mask and welcomed as a true Scorpion. Those who fail are given only a scrap of cloth to cover their face, symbolic of the rough scrap Bayushi wore until he could find a true mask. This scrap is immediately recognized by adult Scorpion but meaningless to everyone else. Some samurai choosed to continue wearing this simple mask even after they had proven themselves to their sensei's satisfaction, as a symbol of the progress they have made. Scorpion are forbidden to speak of this ceremony, and vehemently denied its existence. To talk about it would ruin its purpose: testing the future agents of the clan without their prior knowledge. A Scorpion must always be prepared. [7]

Those rare Shosuro who are chosen to receive kage yakiin, Shadow Brands, are branded during this second ceremony. Samurai who learned a great deal about their guests are branded on the back, underarm, or other areas that could be easily hidden. Those who learned nothing are branded in areas difficult to conceal or, in some cases, not branded at all. [8]


In a clan that takes as much pride in family and politics as the Scorpion, courtship is taken very seriously. Marriages are arranged well in advance, always to benefit the family. Marriages for the sake of love are rarer in this clan than in any other. A Scorpion may marry only once. If that marriage is not to the clan's benefit, then he has betrayed the clan through his selfishness. [8]

Samurai weddings are always presided over by a Soshi shugenja. A Yogo presiding bodes ill, even if the shugenja in question has already fulfilled his Yogo Curse. A Yogo officiating the wedding might well invite the family curse onto the marriage. Even Yogo family members avoid such a thing. [8]

Like most Scorpion ceremonies, weddings are great celebrations open to all. Though the initial ceremonies are as stately and reserved as any Rokugani wedding, the subsequent festivities are notorious for their vigor. Even a normally controlled Scorpion samurai relaxes his facade somewhat to display true emotion, crying openly or dancing in joy at the union. Some who know the Scorpion well theorize that this is yet another ploy, intended to draw their guests into lowering their guard. Although the Scorpion seldom refuse such an advantage when it presents itself, they take a sincere joy in weddings. Scorpion see their loyalty to their family as a matter of honor, and the opportunity to share that loyalty by inviting another to their clan fills the heart of a Scorpion with happiness that few outside the clan can ever understand. [9]

The Scorpion see arranged marriages as contracts. Backing out effectively declares war on the other party's family. Any samurai who reneges on a Scorpion marriage can expect immediate retribution. Only a moderator of higher social status than either of the engaged samurai can break off a Scorpion marriage without creating bad blood between both parties, and then only well in advance. A samurai who abandons or mistreats his Scorpion spouse earns the ire of the spouse's entire family, even if the spouse marries outside the clan and is no longer technically considered a Scorpion. [10]

Peasant marriages in the Scorpion provinces are also matters of great revelry. They are usually presided over by monks rather than shugenja; samurai rarely attend. The bride and groom wear masks during the ceremony (a practice normally not indulged in by Scorpion peasants) to remind them whom they serve. [8]


For a clan that prides itself on logic, the Scorpion are highly superstitious. Rokugan is a world filled with spirits that can become wrathful if not placated. Superstition keeps harmony with the spirit world, so the Scorpion may disregard the wrath of invisible ghosts and continue living in a world based firmly upon logic. They do not dwell on their numerous superstitions. A Scorpion samurai says the prayers he needs to say, dons whatever fetishes or talismans he needs to wear that day, and thinks no more on the matter. Many of these superstitions are considered strange among other clans, for example, sprinkling salt on a new garment or never stepping backward through a threshold.

Rats are thought to be lucky, for they serve Daikoku, revered by the clan. Those who kill rats are advised to visit a temple of Daikoku and beg for forgiveness. Cats are creatures of ill omen who kill rats and anger Daikoku. The Scorpion often must keep cats on hand to prevent rats from getting out of control, but attempt to avert Daikoku's wrath by giving their cats rude and unflattering names.

Scorpions have many superstitions regarding beauty, particularly with regard to women. It is said that a girl born with green eyes cannot tell a lie, and to force her to do so draws the wrath of the kami. A woman who does not cut her hair will be faithful to her husband. A samurai who resembles his mother more than his father will grow to be faithful, and trustworthy, especially if the mother (and thus, the samurai) was especially beautiful. [11]

The number three is incredibly unlucky, as Bayushi was the third to fall in the Tournament of the Kami to determine the first Emperor. Scorpion never leave home in a group of three. It is better by far to find a fourth, or leave in two separate groups. [8]


Though the true power lies in the courts, the Scorpion are a clan of warriors. Their army is not large compared to the Lion, Crab, or Unicorn forces, but the wise commander does not relish facing a Bayushi general on the battlefield.

The Scorpion deserve their reputation for ruthlessness in battle. They believe that unnecessary bloodshed weakens the Empire, so the most honorable way to end a battle is rapidly. If this means that a Scorpion must poison the enemy's supplies, hire a ninja to assassinate the opposing general, or pay the enemy's ronin mercenaries to double-cross them, then that is acceptable. It was Akodo who said that, "On the battlefield, all actions are honorable." For the Scorpion, truer words were never spoken. [9]

Failure, of course, is another matter. Scorpion cannot abide failure in battle. For a Scorpion to fail means that all of his dirty tricks, diversions, and underhanded maneuvers were for naught, and thus he has truly been dishonored. Of course, for many Scorpions failure is a relative term. A wily Scorpion general may allow a Lion to triumph on the field of battle and see no dishonor in it if the Lion's victory serves a higher purpose for the Scorpion. [12]


Scorpion samurai look forward to retirement, the great reward for a life of service to the Empire. While a Crab or Lion may look upon a retired samurai with disdain, regretting the lost opportunity to die in service to the Emperor, the Scorpion do not see things this way. Dying for the Empire is good and noble, but living for the Empire is better.

Retired Scorpion samurai are viewed with silent awe. Young samurai show their elders the greatest respect. A samurai seeking guidance would be well advised to visit the remote monasteries in the Bayushi provinces and listen to their retired samurai.

Walking the way of the Scorpion is dangerous indeed, and any samurai clever enough to become an old Scorpion and retire in peace is a hero. [12]


Scorpion funerals are strange events, celebrated with as much joy and enthusiasm as a marriage, gempukku, or childbirth. The Scorpion believe that a samurai who served the clan loyally will be rewarded in death, his soul invited into Bayushi's hidden cavern to share secrets with the First Scorpion. When a samurai dies, the Scorpion tell tales of his loyalty and honor, hoping that Bayushi will overhear the tales and wish to know more.

Like Scorpion marriages and gempukku, all who wish to attend a Scorpion funeral are welcome. Scorpion make a special point of inviting their enemies to clan funerals, especially any enemy responsible for the death. To invite enemies from outside the clan requires the Scorpion Champion's permission, for under Scorpion law such an invitation is an open challenge. Enemies who answer the invitation must be supremely confident or totally unaware of this tradition.

These conventions apply only to Scorpion who died with honor. Scorpion who died disloyal to their clan are seldom given a proper burial. Often their corpses are beheaded and left prone in the field, to be devoured by wild animals. Those who betray the Scorpion and get captured alive prove more unfortunate still. They are brought to the depths of Traitor's Grove, where Scorpion shugenja use a painful process to permanently trap their souls in a tree. Their personal possessions are left hanging from the tree limbs, though thieves know to stay well away. The ghosts of Traitor's Grove enact a terrible curse upon any who steal from it, imposing a painful lingering death.

The Scorpion say that as the tree grows, its bark cuts through the traitor's soul, causing great pain. On quiet nights, one can hear the traitors' moans in the grove, begging forgiveness. On quiet nights, most avoid the grove. [12]

Views on the Other Clans[]

Crab Clan[]

Need to defeat a Crab? Trip him when he charges. [13]

The relationship with the Crab is a complicated one. A Crab is easy to fool, but if he discovers what is done, he will kill without shame or mercy. That is why if a Scorpion plays the game with the Crab, it must be played most delicately. They can never know the source of their pain and misery. However, care must be taken when playing, for their wall stands between the Scorpion and the lands of the Dark Lord. Use their weaknesses, but respect their duty. In the end, Crab hide their hatred of the Scorpion Clan behind a mask of duty. The Scorpion do what is required, as do they. In fact, the duties are nearly identical. But, they know where their enemy lies. The Scorpion are required to be crafty to seek out their enemies. The Crab resent them because they know the truth: strength is no match for cunning. [10]

Once, long ago, Scorpion was walking on a sandy beach with his brother, Crab. "Ah Scorpion," said Crab, "you have tricked Lion, and you have tricked Crane, but you shall not best me. For I am safe within my armored house, and not even your poison sting can reach me here." Scorpion eyed Crab's metal plating and nodded wisely. "That is true, my friend. But how sad for you that you are trapped in such an unwieldy prison." "What?" said Crab. "This is not a prison, it is my home." "Of course." smiled Scorpion. "And that is what everyone tells you. But, if it were not a prison, you would be able to take it off. I have heard that you were cursed, condemned to spend the rest of your life, carrying your own prison on your back." Crab said, "I can take it off whenever I want to!" Scorpion nodded sadly and said, "I'll be sure to tell everyone that." Crab stomped in the sand, "I can take off my shell whenever I want!" Scorpion said "Have you ever tried?" Crab stopped and took his house off his back and threw it to the ground. Scorpion smiled as they looked at each other. And Crab had nothing else to say. [10]

Crane Clan[]

Need to defeat a Crane? Convince him a battle will ruffle his feathers. [13]

The Crane Clan hide behind a mask of refinement to cover their motley collection of vices. All of those poets and singers praise the high virtue of love, but where is love in a geisha house? Scorpion hasn't found it there. Yet, more than any other clan, the samurai of the Crane can be found trying to woo the affections of geisha... and in disguise! If love is such a noble virtue, then why do they hide while pursuing it? The Crane resent the Scorpion as the Scorpion are what they wish to be. They sing songs of noble virtue only because they need to remind themselves that virtue is noble. Or is it to convince themselves of it? [10]

Once there was a Crane and a Scorpion, sitting by the edge of a river. The Crane said, "Isn't it funny how the Fortunes distribute their blessings among the creatures?" The Scorpion eyed the Crane suspiciously, "What do you mean?" The Crane smiled and said, "Look at me. Look at my beautiful wings and feathers. I can fly and I can swim. Look at my perfect neck and my shining eyes. I am the envy of all the creatures in the world." Then the Crane looked down at the Scorpion and said, "Look at you. All you have is your tail." "Ah," said the Scorpion, "but all that means is that you have nothing to gain, and I have nothing to lose. And when you are old and have lost your feathers, you will no longer be able to fly. And when you are fat and half-blind, you will no longer be able to swim. Then, when you are counting everything that you have lost, I will be counting everything I have gained." And the Crane had nothing more to say. [9]

Dragon Clan[]

Need to defeat a Dragon? Make him rely on another's trust. [13]

The Dragon sit in their high mountain keeps. Do you know what they are doing up there? They are hiding. Isolation is their mask, and it hides a dark secret. It hides their fear. Fear of the world. Fear of life. Fear of living. Better to spend a life thinking than living. They wait and watch because they are afraid to take a chance. Afraid to commit to the world. Afraid they may have to make a choice. They are afraid to fall. [10]

One day, Dragon came to Scorpion and said, "I saw how you tricked Ki-Rin." And Scorpion nodded. Dragon continued. "I saw how you tricked Lion." And Scorpion nodded. Dragon continued. "I watched you trick Crane." And Scorpion nodded. Dragon continued. "I was there when you tricked Crab." And Scorpion nodded. Dragon continued. "I knew what you would do to Phoenix." And Scorpion said "And you stood by and did nothing." And Dragon had nothing more to say. [14]

Lion Clan[]

Need to defeat a Lion? Study what his grandfather did. [13]

The Lion Clan are nothing. They cannot threaten a Scorpion with shame. They cannot threaten with dishonor. The only threat they offer is death, and death only returns a Scorpion to their ancestors. The Lion's mask is the flimsiest for it is made of courage and thus of wet paper. Behind that mask he hides two things: doubt and fear. The doubt he hides is doubt in his lord, his family, even his Emperor. The fear he hides is the darkest of all. For every Lion is afraid of the Scorpion. He is afraid that the things a Scorpion will whisper in his ear about honor and glory are true. [10]

Once there was a Lion, sleeping in a sunny field. A Scorpion came to him and said, "Lion, you are so large. I suppose you are the largest creature in all the lands." The Lion replied, "Yes, I believe that I am." "And," said the Scorpion, "You must be the bravest and strongest creature as well." "That is what they say," said the Lion. "My only advantage is my poison tail," the Scorpion said. "And I suppose you could smash me underfoot before I could sting you even once." "I could, quite easily," the Lion said, rising and stretching. "In fact, if I stung you, I doubt you would even notice." The Lion looked down at the little Scorpion curiously. "Perhaps. But I believe that I will step on you now, tiny one, and you will never have a chance." "Oh, but great Lion," the Scorpion said, smiling. "I stung you five minutes ago." And the Lion had nothing further to say. [15]

Phoenix Clan[]

Need to defeat a Phoenix? Make him fight. [13]

In their schools and libraries, the Phoenix are as dangerous as the Lion. They read and learn, but they never know. The mask the Phoenix wear is enlightenment. It hides the face of ignorance. A Phoenix spends his lifetime studying Shinsei and the elements, but put him in a battle and where is he? Frightened like a child, hoping to go home. Put him in a court and where is he? Stammering and pouting, hoping the party will end soon. The Phoenix have no heart, they have no spine, they have no blood. There is no life in them. If a Phoenix gives you trouble, put a pretty girl in his way and watch him run out of words to say. [9]

One day, Scorpion came to Phoenix in his high mountains and said "I have a gift for you." Phoenix backed away. "Oh, no. I know of you, brother Scorpion. I know all about you. I don't want your gift." "Oh really," said Scorpion. "I will leave it here," he said as he put it on the ground. "And if you don't want it, someone else certainly will." Then, Scorpion walked away. Phoenix looked at the gift and thought, "If I take the gift, and it is a trap, then I have been tricked. But if I leave it and it is not a trap, then I have been tricked. What shall I do?" All day long, Phoenix sat and looked at the gift, pondering it. "What does he have in mind? He tricked Crab with anger and the Lion with pride. He tricked the Ki-Rin with her ignorance and the Crane with flattery. How does this mean to trick me?" Soon, Mother Sun had crossed the sky and Father Moon had made his nightly progress, but Phoenix had not moved a single footstep. He was rooted to the spot, pondering Scorpion's gift. When he looked up the next morning, he saw Scorpion watching him and laughing. And Phoenix had nothing more to say. [16]

Unicorn Clan[]

Need to defeat a Unicorn? Tell him the truth.

The Unicorn are not understood, they do not hide their faces, rather they wear them proudly. But there is something, something they are hiding. Something they brought back with them over the mountains. In any case, the Children of Shinjo are cousins of the Crab. They do not play the Scorpion's game, nor are they asked to. They are less than pawns; they are the pieces that didn't have the muster to make it to the board. [17]

One day, the Ki-Rin was frolicking in a field. Her sister the Phoenix had told her to look out for the Scorpion, but the Ki-Rin was so busy playing and looking at all the new things that she only half-listened to her sister's warning. While she was playing, a creature climbed upon a rock to watch. The Ki-Rin saw the creature and said, "I have seen Flower, and I have seen Tree, and I have seen Horse, but I have not seen you. Who are you?" The creature said, "I am Truth." The Ki-Rin smiled. "I am very pleased to meet you, friend Truth. Have you seen the Scorpion? My sister told me to watch for him, but I do not know what he looks like." "Yes, I know Scorpion," said Truth. "Can you tell me what he looks like?" "Yes," said Truth, "In fact, let us go look for him now. If you put me on your back, we will go much faster than if we both walk." "Good idea!" said Ki-Rin. "Climb on my back, friend, and we will be off." Truth climbed on the Ki-Rin's back and together, they went looking for Scorpion.

"So," asked Ki-Rin. "What does Scorpion look like?" "He has two sharp pincers," said Truth. Ki-Rin looked at Truth's two sharp pincers and said, "Ah, I see." "And he has many legs," Ki-Rin looked at Truth's many legs and said "Ah, I see." "And he has a tail that drips deadly poison." Ki-Rin looked at Truth's tail and said, "Why Truth, he looks just like you!" Truth smiled and said, "Yes. Yes he does." Ki-Rin laughed. "Isn't it fortunate I met you before I met him!" The Scorpion nodded. "Yes, it is." And Ki-Rin had nothing more to say. [18]

Minor Clans[]

They are of no matter, they are even less than the Unicorn. If they have something the Scorpion want, the Lion is convinced to crush them. [17]


First Century[]


This section is covered more in-depth in the article Yogo

In the year 36, [19] the Phoenix Shugenja Yogo, husband of Asako, cursed by Fu Leng, was doomed to betray those he loved the most. Bayushi approached Yogo with a strange offer: to join the Scorpion Clan. When Yogo protested that he was cursed to betray those he loved, Bayushi responded: "But you do not love me." Yogo joined the Scorpion and founded the Yogo family. [20]

The Day of Thunder[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Day of Thunder

The Seven Thunders, led by Shinsei, confronted the dark Kami Fu Leng deep within the Shadowlands in Year 42, ending the first war with the Horde. The only known survivor was the Scorpion Thunder, Shosuro. Wounded and dying, she staggered towards the Empire with the Black Scrolls that contained the secret of Fu Leng's defeat. She feigned her death, allowing Bayushi to claim the right to guard the Scrolls, and struggling to control the Lying Darkness's influence within her, she adopted the identity of Soshi (a male shugenja) and founded the fourth Scorpion family. [12]

The Death of Hantei[]

A lingering wound from the war with Fu Leng finally claimed the life of Hantei, the first Emperor of Rokugan in Year 45. Weakened by his wounds, Hantei asked his siblings whether he was to die. Each lied to him except Bayushi, who told him in no uncertain terms that he would die, and that he would be alone. Hantei's outrage was mollified only slightly by Bayushi's assurance that, in time, the other Kami would join him. [12]

The disappearance of Shosuro and Bayushi[]

In 82, after four decades of struggling to control the Lying Darkness, Shosuro surrendered herself to Togashi in an attempt to find a cure for her mystical ailment. Although Togashi was unable to remove the Darkness from Shosuro's soul, he constructed a chamber of pure crystal deep beneath Kyuden Togashi to contain Shosuro so that when the Darkness finally took control, it could be contained.

In 83, Bayushi disappeared. His son found Bayushi's mask and sword and also a brief note on which was written, "I have lost her forever." Bayushi's ultimate fate is still unknown. Some Scorpion whisper of a secret cavern where Bayushi's spirit lives on, presiding over the most loyal of the family's dead. [12]

Founding of the Emerald Magistrates[]

At the request of Emerald Champion, Doji Hatsu, the famous judge Soshi Saibankan drafted the first charter for the Emerald Magistrates and the Emerald Legions. After years of service to the Emerald Magistrates, Saibankan returned to his clan and spent the last decade of his life teaching his kinsmen the law and how it could be circumvented. [21]

Creation of the Gozoku[]

Masterminded by Bayushi Atsuki, the Emperor's master spy and Scorpion Clan Champion, three powerful and influential men formed the Gozoku, a conspiracy to rule the Empire from behind the Throne. Together with Doji Raigu and Shiba Gaijushiko, Atsuki arranged for the Emperor's heir to be kidnapped.

The Gozoku ruled the Empire from 391 to 435, and established a number of progressive social reforms during those years, eventually installing the former, kidnapped heir as a puppet Emperor while they controlled the Empire from behind the scenes. Their puppet's daughter Yugozohime was fostered to the Lion and became a strong, charismatic leader. She duelled her siblings for the right to succeed their father as Emperor and took the Throne. With the support of the Dragon and Lion, she shattered the Gozoku's hold on the Empire. [21]

Battle of Stolen Graves[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Battle of Stolen Graves

In 510, sensing a link between the deaths of three Clan Champions and the recent blades given as gifts to them by Asahina Yajinden, Bayushi Rikoji, the Scorpion Clan Champion decided to set his blade aside and ordered Soshi Takasho to investigate. Takasho tracked Yajinden to Otosan Uchi and, with his rival Akodo Minobe, exposed the Bloodspeaker cult and the threat of Iuchiban. Takasho was personally responsible for the capture of Iuchiban. [21]

Battle of Kenson Gakka[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Battle of Kenson Gakka

Following a failed attempt to annex Lion Holdings to the north, the Scorpion were dealt a crushing blow by the Matsu armies. The only remaining Scorpion settlement north of Beiden Pass, Shiro no Meiyo, was seized, and everyone within it was executed. The town was renamed Kenson Gakka, "Humility's Lesson", as a testament to the Lion Clan's wrath. [21]

Battle of White Shore Plain[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Battle of White Shore Plain

Since 790 the Scorpion had become ascendant in the courts, outmaneuvering the Crane and forging new alliances. [22] In 815, the Unicorn Clan returned to Rokugan, claiming to be the Ki-Rin Clan's children. Many Great Clans resisted this idea, and the Scorpion, seizing an opportunity, sent expendable troops against Unicorn armies at the Battle of White Shore Plain [21]. The Scorpion lost in a spectacular fashion, since Bayushi Tozasu, the Scorpion general, seemed to underestimate the Unicorn. This episode was quite humiliating for the Scorpion Clan, and imediately after this defeat, the Champion, Bayushi Ogoe, apologized for what had happened. As result, the Scorpion lost thousands of men, a potent general, and a lot of credibility. But this made the other Great Clans ignore the Scorpion, thinking they were weak and predictable, and concentrate on other matters. The Scorpion faded into the shadows, beneath everybody's notice, and began doing what the Scorpion are used to doing when they know they aren't being observed. [23]

The Scorpion Coup[]

This section is covered more in-depth in the article Scorpion Coup

Champion Bayushi Shoju had read the Prophecies of Uikku, which stated that the last Hantei would become the vessel of Fu Leng. This knowledge, combined with the influence of the Bloodsword Ambition, led Shoju to plot the extermination of the Hantei line, which could only be accomplished through a coup d'etat. Not only would he be violating the Celestial Order by murdering the Emperor, but he would also be killing his good friend, as well as risking the entire future of his clan.

The Scorpion Coup began when the clan's armies struck simultaneously throughout Otosan Uchi. Shoju deployed ninja, under the command of his brother Aramoro, throughout the city. He also sent courtiers and geisha under his wife, Kachiko, to distract the Empire as his plan unfolded. The Emperor's general, Lion Clan Champion Akodo Toturi, was poisoned by his geisha lover, Hatsuko, on Kachiko's orders. The coordinated attack began when Shoju slew Hantei XXXVIII in his own throne room. [24]

Before long, Toturi recovered and led the imperial legions against the Scorpion in Otosan Uchi. The battle was extremely hard fought, with the Scorpion fighting street-to-street and using hit-and-run tactics. The Imperial legions were nearly exhausted when Hida Kisada's Crab forces arrived. Shoju had thought that Kisada might aid him in his coup, as the Crab had no love for the rest of the empire. Battle stopped as both sides waited to see whom the Crab would join. In the end, Kisada sided with Toturi's forces, sealing the fate of the Scorpion.

The Coup ended five days later when the clan was routed by the combined armies of the other Great Clans and Shoju was slain in a duel with Akodo Toturi. [25] The Scorpion Clan was forced into the shadows to wait.

The Clan War[]

During the Clan War, the Scorpion Clan returned to prominence in Rokugan. Seeing the danger that the new Emperor posed, Kachiko began to poison Hantei XXXIX in an attempt to stop Fu Leng from gaining power over the Empire. On the Second Day of Thunder, Kachiko fought alongside the other Seven Thunders against Fu Leng.[26] Toturi I returned the Scorpion Clan to its seat in the Imperial Court, and the Great Clan status. [27] [28]

The Disappearance of Toturi I[]

Journey to the Burning Sands

In 1130 the Emperor's chambers were found ruined, his bed bloody. A thorough search of Otosan Uchi turned up clues implicating the Scorpion, and Kachiko was brought to the Imperial City to answer for her clan. Countless courtiers and nobles were assembled to bring testimony against the Scorpion. The Emerald Champion Kakita Toshimoko called in the aid of the Kitsuki, acknowledging the Kitsuki method of evidence for the first time in history. The Kitsuki found nothing implicating the Scorpion, but nothing to implicate anyone else either. As the Scorpion were unable to answer the testimony against them, the acting Regent Takuan ordered the entire clan to be exiled to the Burning Sands and all Scorpion children under 12 to be fostered to the Crane. [29] [30]

Stewardship of the Scorpion Lands[]

The Mantis Clan agreed to watch over the Scorpion lands, preventing other clans from taking them for their own. In exchange, the Scorpion fostered Bayushi Aramasu, the son of Bayushi Aramoro to Yoritomo. Yoritomo's forces retreated when they were attacked by their Crane escort. The Crane Clan Champion Doji Kuwanan intended to annex the fertile Scorpion lands. Infiltrators of the Lying Darkness had engineered the conflict, preventing the Scorpion, who knew how to defeat the Darkness, from holding any concrete base of power within the Empire. [31]

Journey to the Burning Sands[]

When the Scorpion entered in the Burning Sands they were attacked by the Senpet led by Abresax, and the Rokugani armies were soundly defeated. [32] The Clan was enslaved [33] and they remain in captivity until 1132 when Duqaq, known in Rokugan as the Hooded Ronin, snuck into the mines of the Senpet and inspired the Hanif and the Scorpion to throw off their chains and turn on their captors. With his leadership they managed to distract the Senpet until the Yodotai arrived to liberate the slaves. They joined the Erba'a Alliance and fought in the Shattering of the Jewel. After the evenement of the Awakening they accompanied the released Kami Shinjo in her return to Rokugan. [34]

Dragon-Scorpion Alliance[]

This year Toturi held a contest to win a boon from the Jade Throne, the Gift of the Emperor. All clans were invited to attend, each sending one candidate. The winner of the contest, a ronin entered by the Dragon Clan, was revealed to be Bayushi Aramoro in disguise. Aramoro requested as his prize that his clan be allowed to retake their lands. Toturi signed an Imperial Edict, but Ryoko Owari was out of the agreement and would remain a Unicorn stronghold. [35] [36] It was the beginning of the Dragon-Scorpion Alliance, [37] which after fourty years still held its full power.

Reinstatement of the Scorpion[]

The Kami Shinjo herself returned to Rokugan at the head of the exiled Scorpion Clan after having been freed from her imprisonment in the Burning Sands. [38] The Scorpion Clan was reinstated by force of deeds. Even when the Emperor did not remove its status as exiles, nobody opposed the return of a Clan led by a Kami itself. [39]

Spirit Wars[]

During the War of Spirits the Scorpion were loyal to Toturi and the Scorpion lands were salted by the Hida Tsuneo. [40] The returned spirit Bayushi Atsuki, masquerading as Shosuro Furuyari, created a vast network of spies to monitor Hantei XVI's forces and gain his trust, [41] while Scorpion Clan Champion Bayushi Yojiro manipulated Hantei into moving his forces through Beiden Pass, [42] when Bayushi Baku cunningly had gained the trust of Hantei XVI and promptly led him into epic defeat in a trap. [43] Once at Beiden Pass, the Scorpion saboteurs and Phoenix shugenja collapsed the mountain pass onto Hantei's forces, crushing his attempt to take the Imperial Throne. [44]

Age of Enlightenment[]

The Scorpion Clan was in a very good position during the rule of Toturi III, as their interest in young Hantei Naseru, claimant to the vacant Imperial Throne at that time, had paid off extraordinary dividends. The Emperor has continued to foster a relationship with the Clan of Secrets, ultimately giving them agents in every court, not only serving the interests of their own Clan, but also working to out the opponents of the Emperor himself. Bayushi Sunetra, the former Scorpion Clan Champion, personally kept watch on Shogun Kaneka. Imperial Chancellor Bayushi Kaukatsu controlled the courts of the land. [45]

Kisada's Return[]

With events going so well for the Scorpion, Champion Bayushi Paneki has devoted his time to an old enemy – Hida Kisada. Kisada is still seen as being primarily responsible for Shoju's failure during the Scorpion Coup, as well as the subsequent disbanding of the Clan. Now that the Great Bear has returned through Oblivion's Gate, many see the opportunity to finally right the wrongs of the past.[citation needed]

Destroyer War[]

In 1172 the gaijin forces of Kali-Ma invaded the Scorpion lands. A portal to Jigoku was opened in 1173 after the death of the goddess Kali-Ma, the Second Festering Pit, in the heart of the Empire. The Crab and Scorpion were appointed to defend Rokugan from the evil demons who would appear from it. [46]

Age of the Conquest[]

The Colonies represents a great deal of temptation offered to other clans. When others fell to darkness, the Scorpion ensured that they were stopped. [47]

Rise of Jigoku[]

In 1200 the rebellious Spider Clan had the upperhand in their goal to take the Imperial Throne. The Scorpion Clan Champion Bayushi Nitoshi devised a plan, offering Daigotsu Kanpeki his services, and the services of half of his Clan. Most of the Scorpion samurai were destroyed or imprisoned by the Lion Clan. During the fall of Toshi Ranbo Nitoshi and his Clan were instrumental to secure the Iweko family, denying Kanpeki's real target, Iweko II. The Scorpion Champion was killed by Kanpeki in the Imperial Throne Room, in a duel with similarities with the one performed by Bayushi Shoju in the Scorpion Coup. [48]


The Scorpion lands were the territories to the south of Beiden Pass, the plains from the River of Gold, and the Plains of Drowned Sorrow, below the bloody waters of Mizu-umi no Fuko. [35]


  • Capital: Kyuden Bayushi
  • Population: 1,810,000 (approx)
  • Military: 102,000 samurai
  • Imports: Raw Materials
  • Exports: Information


The following were the families of the Scorpion Clan:


Map of Scorpion Provinces

The boundaries of the Scorpion Clan lands were set by the Seikitsu Mountains to the north and east and the River of Gold to the west. Their southern provinces bordered on a mixture of unincorporated and sparsely populated regions, including the territory of several Minor Clans. The territory were a mixture of largely featureless plains and low, rolling hills. [49] The following are the most important holdings of the Scorpion Clan (see the map of the Scorpion Clan Province for their location):

Bayushi family:

Shosuro family:

Soshi family:

Yogo family:

Other Scorpion holdings:


See Samurai of the Scorpion Clan for a listing of notable members of the clan, both current and historic. For the leaders of the clan, see also:

Schools & Paths[]


The following are the basic Schools of the Scorpion Clan:

Advanced Schools and Paths[]

The following are the Advanced Schools and Paths of the Scorpion Clan:


  1. Way of the Scorpion, p. 22
  2. Way of the Scorpion, p. 26
  3. Player's Guide: 2nd Ed, p. 15
  4. Legend of the Five Rings Roleplaying Game: Third Edition, p. 60
  5. Way of the Scorpion, p. 19
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 5
  7. Secrets of the Scorpion, pp 5-6
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 6
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Way of the Scorpion, p. 81 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "SS12" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "SS12" defined multiple times with different content
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  11. Legend of the Five Rings Roleplaying Game: Third Edition, p. 40
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 7
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 Way of the Scorpion, p. 111 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "S111" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "S111" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "S111" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "S111" defined multiple times with different content
  14. Way of the Scorpion, p. 58
  15. Way of the Scorpion, p. 30
  16. Way of the Scorpion, p. 56
  17. 17.0 17.1 Way of the Scorpion, p. 34
  18. Way of the Scorpion, p. 26-27
  19. Imperial Histories, p. 24
  20. Secrets of the Phoenix, p. 8
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 8
  22. Imperial Histories 2, p. 155
  23. Way of the Scorpion, pp. 32-33
  24. Scorpion Clan Coup, Part I
  25. Imperial Herald #14
  26. Time of the Void Original Rulebook
  27. Clan Letter to the Scorpion #7 (Imperial Herald v2 #3)
  28. Time of the Void, p. 121
  29. Legend of the Five Rings Roleplaying Game: Third Edition, pp. 20-21
  30. Kakita Yoshi (Jade flavor)
  31. Secrets of the Mantis, p. 8
  32. Blessing Upon the Lands (Honor Bound flavor)
  33. The Tale of the Robber and the Caliph (Rulebook Story, LBS - Shadow of the Tyrant), by Patrick Kapera
  34. Re-Awakening, Part 1, by Lucas Twyman
  35. 35.0 35.1 The Gift of the Emperor
  36. Legend of the Five Rings Roleplaying Game: Third Edition, p. 22
  37. Sword of the Sun (Fire and Shadow flavor)
  38. Four Winds, p. 42
  39. Pressure (Honor Bound flavor)
  40. Small Farm (Spirit Wars flavor)
  41. Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 91
  42. Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 18
  43. Unfinished Business, Part II, by Rich Wulf
  44. Secrets of the Scorpion, p. 9
  45. Vacant Throne, p. 12
  46. Goddesses, Part 4, by Shawn Carman
  47. Age of the Conquest: The Clans
  48. Blood Moons, by Mari Anne Murdock
  49. The Atlas of Rokugan, p. 149
  50. Emerald Empire, Fourth Edition, p. 171