A Note on the Opium Situation

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From Shishinza’s Dossier

Opium is a simple plant, of gaijin origin, brought to Rokugan by the Unicorn upon their return. It is a potent medicine, useful in the treatment of dozens upon dozens of ailments, illnesses, and hurts. It is also a powerful and addictive drug capable of transforming the mundane world into a so-called “Floating World” of pleasure, beauty, and unknowable desire. It is said by some the opium is harmless, that it encourages no barbarity, violence, or public shame, as sake does. Nor does it harm the breath, and thus the overall readiness of a bushi, in the way tobacco does. When one is abusing opium, one ceases to live in the mundane world, and inhabits the floating one. It is night and day. The problem with this argument, of course, is that opium breeds desire and regret, fatal sins indeed. There is no question, illegal opium exists in Broken Wave City. It is a key part of the vice trade which is irrefutably alive and well on the island. The question becomes, of course, what can be done about it? Several ships have been seized with abusable opium filling their holds, though these ships were always independent and undocumented. Many gambling dens and gaming parlors have been shut down, with smokable or liquid opium hidden within. Unfortunately, this was just the fleecing of the most obtuse and the least competent of the opium peddlers. The true trade goes on unperturbed and undamaged by my efforts or the efforts of the local magistrates. Of all of my accomplishments in this office, it is my shame that I have been completely unable to slow the illegal opium trade. Perhaps, the next esteemed Emerald Magistrate may have better luck, though, one should be mindful of the slew of potential enemies which may arise to halt or hinder one’s efforts.

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A Note on the Opium Situation

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