Kensei and the Dragon
|Kensei and the Dragon|
Kensei faces a dragon.
Hiro recalls that his father would tell him many stories about Takezo Kensei. One story in particular was requested every night. The story begins with Takezo wanting to unite Japan. He sought out the dragon of Kiso Mountain and asked the dragon to teach him the secrets of the sword. The dragon did accordingly, and taught the swordsman to become "the Kensei, the Sword Saint". Kensei fought his enemies and won, thus saving his people. But then, the dragon came to Kensei's palace, demanding the life of the princess. Instead, the warrior drew his sword and plunged it into his own heart. Kensei then handed the heart to the dragon and said, "My love is in here. Take it." And then he died.
Hiro laments to Yaeko that there was one final trial of Takezo Kensei - Kensei and the Dragon. He says that Kensei cut out his heart to save his love, and realizes that he must do the same. He tells Yaeko that he must return to the future, and Yaeko vows to tell the story of Kensei. Hiro kisses her, and disappears.
In Chapter 4, Part 1, "Kensei and the Dragon", Takezo Kensei meets a beautiful princess who makes him swear to defeat White Beard with everything in his power. Kensei seeks out the Dragon of Kiso Mountain to help train him. It is rumored that the dragon would only train those who truly needed him and a great price would have to be paid. Professor Karen Chamberlin documents that the Dragon agrees to help Kensei as long as he gives up what he most loves in life. Kensei agrees and is able to then defeat White Beard. Kensei requests to marry the princess and she agrees. Karen Chamberlin comments that their wedding was the most beautiful wedding in Japanese history. However, the Dragon appears at their wedding demanding Kensei to honor their agreement and give the Dragon his love. Kensei takes a sword and stabs out his heart and tells the Dragon, "My love is in here. Take it."
In Chapter 4, Part 2, "Kensei and the Dragon", Professor Karen Chamberlin documents that Takezo Kensei dies in the arms of his princess. Many different stories are recorded through history about how Kensei died, what happened to Kensei after the Dragon came to him, and who the Princess was. Chamberlin believes that Yaeko was Kensei's great love. Professor Donna Dorn believes that Yaeko did in fact exist, but she was not Kensei's great love.
- Hiro buys a reproduction of one of the Kensei Tapestries for Charlie. The reproduction shows the legend of Takezo Kensei and the Dragon, "Hiro's favorite of the stories about the great Bushido warrior". Hiro believes Charlie will love it, and that it will show her how he really felt about her. (Chapter 22)
- Hiro gives Charlie the reproduction of the story of Kensei and the Dragon. Hiro tells Charlie the story , which is his favorite. Hiro explains that Kensei goes to the Dragon to learn the secrets of the sword. Kensei attains skills from the Dragon, enough to fight his enemies and to save his people. But the Dragon demands payment—he wants the life of the princess that Kensei loved so much. But instead, Kensei commits suicide. Charlie says the story has a sad ending. (Chapter 23)
...read the story of Kensei and the Dragon...
...to teach him the secret of the sword.
Rather than give up the princess to the dragon...
...Kensei sacrifices his own life.
Sword Saint tells the story of Kensei facing the dragon.