In a small village over the mountains surrounding Kyoto, the villagers prepare for an annual tradition. All seems to go well until the village is stormed and all the inhabitants are taken prisoner, except one. Simple village girl, Osei, finds herself alone in the misty mountains on her way to the city. A run in with a near death experience brings her to Kilik, an extremely powerful samurai who vows to keep her safe. Their ventures pull them both into a war beyond imagination, and Osei finds herself gradually transforming into something that she grew up to fear...a samurai.
“Do you need assistance, girl?” he asked, with a smile.
“No, thank you, that won’t be necessary...boy.” I chuckled. I thought this gesture would get me into trouble, but he just chuckled back and moved over toward me.
“Allow me,” he said. As I was expecting him to take my hand, he picked me up to carry me in his arms.
“Wow, the hands on approach...” I said. I thought with remarks like this I was sending him a bad first impression, but strangely he seemed to enjoy my humour. He then set me down on the other side, and then moved back over to where he was stood before.
“My name is Kilik,” he said after picking his spear up off the stony ground.
“I’m Osei,” I said with a smile.
“Pretty...” he said. He seemed more fixated on me than the conversation as his eyes were looking me up and down, though strangely this did not make me feel uncomfortable.
“Thank my father...” I sighed. “Sadly, that isn’t at all possible. I don’t think my parents are alive”
“I share your feeling,” he said, hanging his head. “I too have lost someone close to me...I look to the stars every night and hope she is safe.”
“Would that be an old love?” I asked curiously. His expression turned from sadness to anger, and his fists clenched and began to shake.
“No...” he sighed, taking a deep breath to calm down. “Love is a matter I would rather not discuss. My heart is too fragile at this point in time.”
“I’m sorry,” I said softly. He stayed silent and regained his calm state of mind.
“So answer me this...” he began, his tone sounded one of great interest. “What is a helpless girl like you doing wandering around this time of night...especially around a place like this?”
“I’m on my way to
,” I said. “I have no exact destination.
Besides the White Tiger spirit will keep me safe on my journey.” Kyoto
“The White Tiger spirit?” he tittered. “The only thing residing in these mountains is me. To be honest if this spirit did exist, it didn’t do a very good job back there dealing with those thugs!”
“I guess you are right,” I sighed, glancing down at the floor in embarrassment.
“Well, I could escort you there, but after we arrive we go our separate ways. I will only bring you danger...of the worst kind.” he said. He gave me a look of concern which made me feel much safer with him. Not taking into consideration what he just told me, I hastily nodded.
“We should set out as soon as possible,” I said while checking my surroundings “This place makes me feel uneasy”
“As you wish...Osei,” he smiled and escorted me to the nearest tree line.
About Craig Kimber:
Start of Career: I started writing as a hobby at the beginning of February 2011, and my love for samurai stories led me to begin writing "The Rose Warriors: Uprising." Originally named "The Five Rose Warriors," its main influence was the video game, "Way of the Samurai." When playing the game I found that a single samurai building a faction to take down a vast empire was simply exhilarating, so I decided that I need to make that my aim. The story started as a simple village girl learning to be a samurai, but the idea just wasn't special enough. I asked myself "What will make this book different to every other book I have read?" So I did some research and I found that there were hardly any stories written about the historic fall of the samurai, which the movie "The Last Samurai (Tom Cruise)" is revolved around.
After the first four chapters I let my friend read it, and I was told it was the best story he had ever read. I passed it around to get some further opinions, and I was asked every time "What happens next?" with the upmost enthusiasm. I thought up some ideas for how to make the story different to every other samurai rebellion story, so I called upon another genre passion, fantasy. I took the end of the samurai era, and transformed it into a war filled with magic and supernatural beings.
I spent every single night coming up with ideas of how to make it better and all I could think about while living life was the story, and it was from that moment I discovered my calling was to make a living of my newfound passion. More ideas for stories started to fill my head and began to make plans for future novels, including the sequel to "Uprising," "Revival."