Please note: This article is about the Mantis Clan Champion. For other uses of the term, please see Kitao (disambiguation).
Yoritomo Kitao 
Yoritomo Kitao 
Born: Unknown 
Died: 1167, month of the Ox [1] 
Titles: Mantis Clan Champion

Yoritomo Kitao, captain of the Bitter Flower, became the Mantis Clan Champion upon the assassination of Yoritomo Aramasu. The fact that she conspired with Bayushi Kamnan to assassinate Aramasu was unknown to most at the time. She held the position as Champion until the Mantis Civil War when the daughter of Yoritomo, Yoritomo Kumiko took the position from her.

Demeanor Edit

Kitao was a cold, ruthless, ambitious person who did not shy from decisive action when it was required. She might not be a kind leader, but she could be an efficient and forceful leader. [2]

War of Spirits Edit

Yoritomo Kitao 3

Kitao, Captain of the Bitter Flower

Bitter Flower Edit

Kitao began as a smuggler, [3] reaching the post of first mate in the Bitter Flower, under the command of Yoritomo Leshanu, smuggling weapons and armor to the spirit armies of Hantei XVI during the War of Spirits. She managed to become the leader of the Storm Legion during the this time. Leshanu was promoted, becoming one of Yoritomo Aramasu's advisors while Kitao was made captain of the Bitter Flower. [2]


Aramasu never trusted her, but her exploits during the War of Spirits demanded her promotion. She won much glory and wealth by fighting for both Toturi I and the Steel Chrysanthemum, though she covered her duplicity well. [4]

Finding Revenge Edit

Kitai had been furious that Leshanu accepted the reward that was rightfully hers, and sought revenge since. Years later she stumbled onto a private deal between Yoritomo Leshanu's agents and Yasuki Jinn-Kuen. Leshanu had been embezzling resources from Aramasu and selling them to the Yasuki. Jinn-Kuen accepted Kitao's offer of hiring her own mercenaries at a discounted rate and reported his dealings to Aramasu. Leshanu discovered Kitao's plot and attempted to stop her by attacking Jinn-Kuen's ship in transit, but Leshanu was himself ambushed by the Bitter Flower. Kitao slew Leshanu and sank his vessel. [2]

Plotting Against Aramasu Edit

Though Leshanu's treachery disturbed him, it angered him even more that Kitao had destroyed a Mantis vessel, so Kitao was chastised and removed from his sight. From this day Kitao was decided to remove Aramasu from power. As Aramasu had no heirs to speak of, Kitao could quickly settle into his position. [2]

Becoming Mantis Champion: Death of Aramasu Edit

Show of Strength

Retaliation of the Mantis

When Yoritomo Aramasu was visiting Akodo Kaneka in Otosan Uchi, offering him the support of the Mantis, [5] he was assassinated by Bayushi Kamnan. [6]

Kamnan had been sent by the Scorpion Clan who had secretly been requested to kill Aramasu by Kitao. The Scorpion, seeing Aramasu as a traitor to their clan, were more than willing to avenge the preceived dishonor Aramasu had inflicted upon the Scorpion so many years before. [7] With Aramasu dead Kitao rose to the position of Champion.

No One Wins

Destruction at Empire's shores

Kitao had been notified about Aramasu's troubles in Otosan Uchi, and she went there to help him. Secretely, she delayed her arrival [8] and arrived after Aramasu was dead. In an attempt to show the rest of Rokuganthe proper rage at the death of her Champion, she killed as many Scorpion as possible. [9] The Mantis invaded the mainland of the Empire, seeking vengeance against the Bayushi who had ordered the death of their former champion. [10]

Yoritomo Elite Guard Edit

Yoritomo Kitao 1

Kitao, Mantis Clan Champion

During her reign as Mantis Clan Champion Kitao did not trust the Yoritomo Elite Guard and would assign them to be used as mercenaries frequently. There were rumors that Kitao did not trust the guard, but feared to disband them because of their connection to Yoritomo. [11]

Supporter of Kaneka Edit

Kitao saw Akodo Kaneka as the future Emperor of Rokugan, and led the Mantis in open support of the Bastard, together with the Khan and the Akodo. [12] [13]

Kitao's Opposition Edit

The ascension of Kitao as Mantis Clan Champion was not well aceppted, and eventually rejected by the Mantis. From the within the ranks of the Mantis a group, containing Yoritomo Komori and Yoritomo Kamoto, started to work against Kitao. Komori knew the truth of Kitao's involvement in the murder of the former champion, and actively sought to discredit her. [14]

Yoritomo's Daughter Revealed Edit

Whispers of a true daughter of Yoritomo spread throughout the Mantis Clan, annoying Kitao as she would be a rival to Kitao's leadership. [12] A Shiryo announced to Kitao that the rumor was true, [15] and she immediately dispatched the Storm Legion to scour the islands for the heir.[16]

Shogun Kaneka Edit

After several allies of Akodo Kaneka swore fealty to him and suggested that the Bastard should take the Shogun title, Kitao refused to do it as well. At that moment a petite young Mantis woman drew her wakizashi and shattered it, revealing herself as Yoritomo Kumiko, the daughter of Yoritomo and true heir of the Mantis Clan. [17]

Mantis Civil War Edit

Chasing Kumiko Edit

Kitao promptly dispatched Yoritomo Naizen to chase and kill Kumiko. [18]

Coup at Kyuden Gotei Edit

Aramasu's Ashes

Aramasu's Ashes

In 1159 Kumiko, Yoritomo Komori and Yoritomo Kamoto led the Yoritomo Elite Guard, fighting Kitao's supporters such as the Storm Legion and the newly appointed Elite commander, Yoritomo Ikemoto and seized Kyuden Gotei converting it into his capital. It was a open movement in the Mantis Civil War. [4] Kitao had to move her capital to The City of Lightning. [19]

Aramasu's Ashes Edit

The Crane did not give full support to any Mantis side in the war, but Kitao was gifted by them with the Aramasu's Ashes, recovered from the Scorpion when in transit to Traitor's Grove, expecting she would no doubt bury the ashes with honor to curry the favor of those who suspected her involvement in his death. [4]

Gathering Supporters Edit

Kitao had gathered advisors from those young Mantis who had earned admiration or supporters for their own. She seized upon Moshi Kalani's popularity, a popular kemari athlete, and had made several public appearances with the young samurai immediately after her rise to power, earning Kitao reflected respect. [20] In a similar way she was aware of Tsuruchi Yutaka's supporters, natural leader of those Tsuruchi who despised the Wasp Code. Kitao knew he had little capacity to lead, but he made an excellent symbol, so she selected the inexperienced bushi as one of her advisors. Kitao was all too aware of Tsuruchi Ichiro's support of the pretender, and the family schism was a means of gathering more support. [21]

A Tsuruchi killed a Tsuruchi Edit

In 1159 Naizen came to Gateway Village to met Tsuruchi Yutaka. The Tsuruchi had tracked down Kumiko, and Naizen confirmed him the reward promised by Kitao: Yutaka would raise as Tsuruchi Daimyo if he could send the corpse of Kumiko. [22] The current Tsuruchi Daimyo, Tsuruchi Ichiro would be obliged to step down from his charge or to commit seppuku. The plot was disabled by Tsuruchi Nobumoto, Commander of Gateway Village, and in the rift Tsuruchi Terao killed his cousin Yutaka. [23] This incident was considered by many Mantis the begin of the Mantis Civil War [24] and the Tsuruchi led by Ichiro openly supported Kumiko. [25]

Crane Treaty Edit

In 1160 Midoru brokered a treaty between the Crane and the Mantis. The Mantis guaranteed the Crane Clan's navy unmolested access to Mantis naval trade routes, so long as they performed no aggressive actions against the Mantis and did not interfere in Akodo Kaneka's attack upon Ryoko Owari. [26]

End of the Mantis Civil War Edit

Toturi III Edit

In 1160 Kitao came to Toshi Ranbo to seek the aid of the Emperor Toturi III against Kumiko. She only heard that Naseru would not aid her or Kumiko, the strongest Mantis would triumph. Naseru secretely sent a Crystal Arrow, a Unicorn trinket, to Kumiko's supporter Tsuruchi Okame. Naseru would not aid directly to Kumiko as promised, but he saw Kitao as a mad dog, to be treated with utmost caution. [27]

Raid to Kyuden Gotei Edit

The Shogun's army had been dismished by order of Toturi III, and being Kumiko absent of Kyuden Gotei her supporters where in the weakest position since the beginning of the Civil War. Kitao took it as an advantage and sailed toward the Mantis capital. Ishada summoned a typhoon who covered their approach, but a waterspout appeared and rushed Kitao's flagship, the Bitter Flower. Naizen used the Helm of Thunder to control the situation, but instead turned the balance to favor Kitao, he decided that the best Mantis would triumph, cancelling out both the spout and typhoon. [27]

Facing Kumiko Edit

With the visibility recovered, Kumiko sailed to the Bitter Flower and boarded it. Kumiko faced off with Kitao and defeated her, but spared her live. At this point, the Onisu Settozai, who had been laying in wait and feeding on the clan's emotions during the conflict, was forced out of hiding, weakened with the sincere gift freely given by Kumiko. Tsuruchi Okame fired a Crystal Arrow into the Onisu, and Kumiko single-handedly slew the Onisu. [27]

Kumiko's Ambassador Edit

Kitao was imprisoned and later she had been taken before Kumiko. The Mantis Champion had tossed a knife at her feet. Kitao had four choices, to kill herself, to try again to kill Kumiko and die in the attempt, to return to the prison or to serve Kumiko. Kitao had chosen to live, and to serve as the Mantis Champion's ambassador. [28]

Onboard the Bitter Flower Edit

Kitao was again the captain of her flagship, the Bitter Flower, and had additional crew as Moshi Mogai, Kumiko's watchdog, the Tsuruchi Daimyo's son, Tsuruchi Hiro and Tsuruchi Nobumoto. In 1165 during a trip to the Crane lands they had to take shore for repairs on a small Phoenix port near Toshi no Omoidoso, where Isawa Tekkan was waiting them to act as their escort. The group rode to the City and Kitao met a deep blue eyes gaijin, who introduced himself as the ambassador of Thrane, Garen Hawthorne. The romantic approach he tried was swiftly aborted by Kitao. [28]

Rain of Blood Edit

Once again onboard toward the Crane shores, the Bitter Flower was covered by a Rain of Blood. Kitao succumbed to the taint and the power it promised and knocked Nobumoto over the side of the vessel. Hiro and Mogai, now his eyes pure black, with no pupil or iris, also had been corrupted. They returned to the City of Remembrance and laid it in ruins, being tekkan personally killed by Kitao. Garen approached her again, now revealing himself as the ambassador of the Shadow Dragon. He had a special gift that would suit her, a new vessel, the Eternal. [28]

Dark Wave Edit

Yoritomo Kitao 2

Tainted Kitao

The Eternal was used as the flagship of the Dark Wave Fleet and Kitao continued to plague the Phoenix coast. [29]

Out of Iuchiban's control Edit

Kitao was chased not only by the Mantis and Phoenix clans, she was also the target of Asako Kinuye. The Phoenix bloodspeaker was seeking how to break the control Iuchiban exerted to the cultists, and in 1166 she had reaized with surprise that Kitao was not under the Heartless control. Kinuye wanted to take the Mantis alive, and learn how she and her followers had defied Iuchiban's control. [29]

Shadow Dragon Edit

In 1167 the Shadow Dragon gathered the bloodspeakers that were without a leader after the death of Iuchiban to swear fealty to Daigotsu. Kitao was not between them, because the Shadow Dragon could not summon her without revealing the role it played in her motivation. [30] Kitao had been free of Iuchiban's control when the Heartless was alive, subtly granted by the Shadow Dragon. [31]

Battle of Broken Waves Edit

This year Mogai enslaved spirits of Sakkaku to conceal the Broken Wave. They appeared in the middle of the Battle of Broken Waves, and the tainted ships fired indiscriminately over both sides. Kumiko made her way to the Bitter Flower to engage in single combat with Kitao. [32]

Death Edit

Kumiko threw both herself and her nemesis Kitao into one the beast cannons onboard the Bitter Flower. When the Broken Wave was destroyed the battle ended, and with it the War of Fire and Thunder. [32]

See also Edit

Preceded by:
Yoritomo Aramasu
Mantis Clan Champion
1159 - 1160
Succeeded by:
Yoritomo Kumiko
Preceded by:
Yoritomo Aramasu
Yoritomo Daimyo
1159 - 1160
Succeeded by:
Yoritomo Kumiko

External Links Edit

Yoritomo Kitao 4

Yoritomo Kitao


  1. Vacant Throne, p. 26
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Secrets of the Mantis, p. 23
  3. Secrets of the Mantis, p. 17
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Ashes and Steel, by Rich Wulf
  5. Outmaneuvred by Force (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  6. Nagamaki (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  7. Traitor's Grove (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  8. Show of Strength (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  9. Reassert One's Mettle (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  10. A Letter from Toturi Tsudao
  11. Way of the Samurai, p. 50
  12. 12.0 12.1 Clan Letter to the Mantis #12 (Imperial Herald v2 #3)
  13. Strength in Unity (Dark Allies flavor)
  14. A New Storm Dawns (Season of the Mantis)
  15. Kanbe no Shiryo (Dark Allies flavor)
  16. Kobune Port (Dark Allies flavor)
  17. Right of Honor, Strength of Steel, by Rich Wulf
  18. Port Town (Broken Blades flavor)
  19. Starter Text (Fall of Otosan Uchi)
  20. Secrets of the Mantis, p. 43
  21. Secrets of the Mantis, p. 62
  22. Blood Money (Fall of Otosan Uchi flavor)
  23. Stray Arrow, by Rich Wulf
  24. Four Winds, p. 53
  25. Entrenchment (A Perfect Cut flavor)
  26. Shinsei's Last Hope, Part I, by Rich Wulf
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 Storm Rising, by Rich Wulf
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 Blood Dawn, Part VI: Treacherous Seas, by Shawn Carman and Rich Wulf
  29. 29.0 29.1 The Gift, by Rich Wulf
  30. Gathering Darkness, by Shawn Carman
  31. Four Winds, p. 103
  32. 32.0 32.1 The War of Fire & Thunder, Part 3, by Shawn Carman

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