A.N. My first work of fanfiction to be published! This one is a novelization of Way of the Samurai, a game which has been one of my personal favorites since I first played it way back in 2003. Although short, there's a multitude of things to do and unlock, making this game incredibly addicting. The game gives you the option to name your hero with the default name of Kenji, which I will be using. My goal in this story is to write a chapter for every possible ending as well as each possible ranking obtainable. So, without further ado, Way of The Samurai: Kenji's Tale. Oh, and I do not own the rights to Way of the Samurai or the characters depicted, only my interpretation of the storyline as well as well as Kenji's history prior to the start of the game.
Kenji's life as he knew it was over. His grandfather, a well respected samurai warrior who served the throne with diligence and loyalty unmatched. His father, following in Kenji's grandfather's footsteps learned the ancient art of the samurai and was a respected warrior up until he was cut down defending the emperor's good name. Kenji, very early in life at the time, heard the news of his father's defeat and swore revenge, taking up the way of the samurai for himself. However, just as Kenji was making a name for himself, the worst possible thing happened: the start of the Meiji era. Aimed at modernizing Japan, the country began to shift away from swordplay and towards modern weaponry, such as guns. New laws came into place to make sure that Japan's own industrial revolution didn't fail, one of which utterly destroyed Kenji's future: the outlaw of swords. Thanks to the foreigners Kenji's life was now over. Naturally, he became biased against the foreign people swarming into his country.
When the Meiji era first came to be, the laws were lax and Kenji, who out of bitterness refused to accept the new laws and carried his sword with him, was not punished in any way. However, soon the emperor knew that without strict governing the laws would do no good and his country would fall back into the old way. The once lax police officers were now strict and unforgiving, many of whom became corrupt in the process. This led to many public arrests and beatings in the name of fake justice, causing the commoners to grow a new bitterness towards samurai. Kenji, who at the time was trying to uphold his family's righteous name, became known in his hometown for being a defender of justice and the weak. Cutting down criminals and defending the common people was his duty and he was well known for it. However, soon the corrupt lawmen heard of Kenji's acts and came to teach him a lesson. Kenji naturally stood up to the corrupt officers, but was outnumbered and was beaten to within an inch of his life. His sword, which was entrusted to him by his grandfather, was broken while defending against his attackers. Found by a local he once helped, he was taken to their home, where they restored him back to health over a period of a month. Feeling like his old self, he kindly thanked the villager and left, but was immediately spotted by one of the corrupt officers. Shocked that Kenji could have survived such a brutal attack, he immediately called for backup and went to attack Kenji once more. Now an outlaw and fearing his life, Kenji fled and left the province, heading to parts unknown.
He happened upon a town called Amahara, where he took shelter in the local inn, delivering parcels and doing odd jobs to make a living. There, he tried to live a normal life, but his thoughts constantly turned to the corrupt officers who beat him. The man who cut down his dad so long ago. The empire who turned his very way of life right upon his head. He vowed to make them all pay for their crimes. To restore the age of the samurai to its former glory and live out the rest of his life doing what he knew how to do. But as much as he wished he could do something, he was sword less. Hearing rumors of a gang forming in town who illegally sold weaponry, Kenji decided to pay them a visit.
Walking over to the headquarters of the new Aoto gang, Kenji approached their leader, a man named Hanzaemon, asking to make him a new sword. Hanzaemon laughed at him, refusing to do business until he proved himself loyal. Much to Kenji's displeasure, Hanzaemon asked him to take care of a few jobs for him. Kenji, in too far to back out now, silently complied. Hanzaemon laughed, then upon completion, handed him a medium sized blade. Kenji had the perfect name for it. The government, branching out like a big tree. He vowed to cut deep into the heart of it. So, naturally the name Chuyo-Tou fit perfectly for his new blade. Things started to look up for Kenji.
But, like all good things, it didn't last. As soon as Kenji returned home to the inn, he was confronted about his sword. Learning the truth about him and the Aoto gang, he was thrown out onto the street. Homeless, Kenji returned to the Aoto gang, looking for shelter but was not promised anything and reprimanded for lack of discipline. Lost, Kenji soon felt himself yearning for home. But he knew he could not return. Not until his mission was complete. But he knew he could neither stay there either. But just as he was leaving town, he overheard two people chatting.
"Hey, if you think we have it rough here imagine what the Kurou family is feeling!"
"Yeah, you know that age old family of samurai living in Rokkotsu Pass?"
"Ah, you mean the one who's son founded the Akadama clan?"
"Yeah, that group of people vowing to restore the age of the samurai? I hear that they're both in Rokkotsu Pass now, fighting it out for control!"
"You're right I'd hate to live there..."
Kenji's hopes returned with a bang. He'd go to Rokkotsu Pass! Surely he'd be able to join at least one of those two groups. Either way, his life was not yet over. Purchasing a map, food and some water from the local shop, Kenji began to walk to Rokkotsu Pass, his thoughts his only travel companion. Soon father, soon...your life will not go unavenged...your lifestyle will not be forgotten...
Days and months passed, Kenji only stopping to sleep for mere hours at a time and for the occasional meal, then returning to the road. His thoughts only on the pass and the two factions there. Finally, just before Kenji was about to stop and eat breakfast, he reached a cliff. Walking up and peering over, he saw his destination: Rokkotsu Pass. He followed the trail down the cliff into town. I've arrived. Now to find the factions. No sooner than he could even enter the pass did something strange catch his eye: a girl, clad in yellow was running from a shirtless samurai, covered with tattoos.
A.N. And so the prologue is finished. From here, the various endings will branch out, each with their own chapter as well as the rankings that won't necessarily go with an ending. I hope you enjoyed it, thank you for reading and I hope to see you in the next chapter.