The Isles of Blood
Matoshima was once an independant nation in the eastern part of the world until the Sargonian Empire came. The Matoshi as they were known were proud warriors who kept stories of incredible feats of strength their heroes and leaders had performed. Matoshima was a collection of Islands naturally fortified against intruders and rich in natural resources. After the Empire had taken most of the known world, Matoshima was a symbolic final stand against the imperial advance.
Sargonia lost many soldiers and ships trying to invade Matoshima, and the Matoshi won many battles during those years. Eventually the Sargonian empire which had claimed millions of slaves and soldiers overran Matoshima and it too fell. The Emperor who was frustrated by Matoshima’s resistance, not only took the land but razed it, scattered the people, enslaved or executed the leaders, and even renamed the land Mesokatan.
A group of Matoshi were able to flee the land before the final battle, and took to the sea with no course or hope. This exodus was led by one Hiru Shin, a warrior/ fisherman from one of the provinces of Matoshima. After several months at sea and with dwindling resources, Hiru landed on an unknown island where plentiful food was found. He and his people took shelter and fed themselves, and lived this way for a few days. Eventually their camp was found by a local tribe of Ogres.
The Ogres on this island were not very trusting of visitors and immediately attacked the Matoshi. Quickly however the Ogres were beaten back by Hiru and some of his veteran companions. An Ogre champion fought against Hiru in single combat and was defeated by the great warrior. Because of Hiru’s victory the Ogres gave the Matoshi their respect and started to work with them. It wasn’t long until an alliance was formed and the Matoshi became part of the Ogre people.
When the Martigians came and began fighting the Ogres on the neighboring islands, contention began to sow between the ogres and the Matoshi. It is still unknown who drew first blood, but a battle erupted between the Ogres who feared the humans and those who accepted them. The anti-human faction took the day and formed a raiding party to eradicate the Matoshi the following week. After enlisting help with the Martigians, the Matoshi eventually pushed the Ogres off the island and claimed it for themselves.
After the so-called Ogre Islands had been defeated by the Matoshi, many other Matoshi in the empire fled the empire as well to re-establish their culture and traditions. At first, the island was colonized by many families of Matoshi decent and the people simply divided into small tribes and the land was ruled by a council of elders. It wasn’t until the arrival of a wealthy arms merchant that the Island took its name.
The weaponsmith Umehara arrived on the ogre islands and quickly provided work for the people. As Martigues was forming a militia, Umehara and his smiths crafted arms and armor for the soldiers. Many of the Matoshi became warriors in the Martigian milita and added their knowlege of smelting local materials to Umehara’s technique. The Obsidian blades were forged and were first used to defend Matoshi independance against raiding ogres. The blades were fearsome and even gave the Sargonian military pause.
After Lupin De Garou named himself the Doge of Martigues, the Matoshi decided to choose a leader as well, and Umehara was the clear choice, being considered the most wise and of course wealthy. Umehara Kogi became the Doge and renamed the island Matoshima in honor of the country they had once lost. His son would later join the alliance of The Golden Isles
Today, Matoshima is ruled by the Merchant Prince Umehara Ran. Ran continues his grandfather’s business and controls the military in Matoshima. They provide much of the ores and weaponry in the Isles as well as the fish. Hiru’s family business thrives today providing fresh fish to the shores of The Golden Isles.