Well, colour me surprised, but my ‘test’ is not Chess or Parkour, but rather an unarmed duel with a fellow karate-ninja dude named Gorobei.
Apparently the winner will become a ‘Grandmaster of the Five Winds’. Ha! Since wind extinguishes flame, I will totally dominate Yaemon if I win this initial battle!
I am warned that Gorobei is ‘older, heavier and stronger’ than me, and rocks a loincloth like you wouldn’t believe. In a ‘ding, ding, ding!’ warning, I am specifically told that his ‘rippling muscles gleam with an oil that will make it difficult to keep a grip on him’. I imagine it would serve other purposes well though…
Given the warnings, I avoid using the ‘Whirlpool throw’ and go for the classy-sounding ‘Leaping Tiger kick’.
I proceed to kick the living bejesus out of poor Gorobei’s bald noggin, although he does, before succumbing, reduce my endurance to 14.
I am summoned to the secret enclave of the Grandmasters and asked two questions :
What is my strongest desire (to avenge my father or serve Kwon)?
What is my greatest fear (to fail a mission or to be tortured)?
Since I’m a bad-ass ninja, the second answer is easy. I ponder the first answer, and assume they have mind-reading juju, and that its best to admit that REVENGE is in my heart.
They praise me for answering ‘truthfully and rightly’. I’ve apparently passed the test and get told the ‘secret litany’ of the Ninja grandmaster. It includes enigmatic statements like ‘My Magic is Training’ and ‘My Weapons are everything that exists’. I also get a cool Opal Ring, which will look great in a pawnshop window if I have a bad Saturday at the races.
Poor old Gorobei gets to replace me if I die. If I’m pushed out of a tower window in the dead of night, you know where to look.