riddler13: (Tomoe Ame as a kid)
[personal profile] riddler13 posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Now we reach part 3 and the conclusion of the " Those Who Tread on the Scorpion's Tail" saga. As we saw before, the nefarious Red Scorpion Gang is the prime suspect in kidnapping a local magistrate's son. The boy was held hostage at a fencing school that was hosting Usagi. However, when the bunny ronin confronts the school's head teacher, he confesses to the crime but denies being part of the Red Scorpion Gang. So what were his motivations? And is the Red Scorpion Gang actually involved in any of this?

Before the much-anticipated duel with Usagi, Ishii, the head teacher, explains why the scheme to kidnap the magistrate's son: the school was failing, and they desperately need funds. The boy was stupid enough to recognize his captors and raise the alarm, and that is why he was slain.

As most people in the series, Ishii badly underestimates Usagi, and the duel does not go his way:

(Remember when he chose to let the sensei win? It seems his courtesy paid off).

And that's your part in the UY universe, Ishii. Bye!

Usagi grabs a horse and rides desperately to tell magistrate Maeda that he's heading for a trap! After all, Suzuki, the sensei of the school, is escorting the magistrate with the ransom money. Maeda will be caught unaware and...

Oops, never mind.

Yes, the magistrate is wise to your scheming, Suzuki! Now you'll be punished! You'll feel the full force of the law, you villain! You'll...


As a magistrate, Maeda knew exactly where prime targets, such as wealthy merchants, would be, and sent the gang to intercept them. Government samurai would be sent to check the scene, but too late.

He then dismisses Suzuki, his plan to restore the school's wealth and Suzuki's swordsman(dog?)ship as "pathetic", which angers the sensei. Suzuki-sensei calls on Ishii, who couldn't make it due to a chronic case of death. Usagi shows up instead and tells the magistrate that Maeda Jr. is dead.

Oh, crap Suzuki. You're f...ed.




Yep, Usagi plows through the gang, while the magistrate faces off his son's killer. The rabbit ronin is overwhelmed by the number of criminals, but Suzuki's students come to his aid. Meanwhile, the "pathetic" sensei shows that he can still hold his own:

The Red Scorpion Gang is done without their leader. The news of Suzuki's win will echo through the land, and his school will be renowned once again. The honest students, the ones who came to Usagi and Suzuki's aid, are puzzled though - if Maeda was the Red Scorpion, why did he capture and kill his own son? The sensei tells his students the truth and decides to disband the school. They suggest he keeps it a secret, but Suzuki still has some honour left in him. He can find only one solution to cleanse him of this shame:

"This will be my final lesson!". Wow.

And there you have it, a fitting end to a great story. I'm not much one who 'reacts' to comics, but I did a golf clap after this ending.

There is something I would like to know from you: after your kind reception, I felt encouraged to post more UY. I'm just not sure how exactly to do it. There's simply too much material available, and I also want to encourage you to buy it.

So, I don't know if I should do a character series, focusing on fan favourites; if I should focus on small stand-alone stories; if I should comment the latest ones; if I should devote myself to arcs. God knows how time-consuming it would be to tackle "The Treasure of the Mother of Mountains", let alone "Grasscutter pts. I and II" - but there is a reason why Grasscutter won an Eisner, after all. And there are also the ones outside regular continuity ("Senso", "Yokai" and perennial fan favourite "Space Usagi"). Whew!

You let me know your thoughts, as usual, and I'll be glad to comply!
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