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After the execution of her father, the young and beautiful Lady Asano is in grave danger from the powerful Lord Kira. In order to save herself Asano must find Oishi, the leader of the fighting men of her clan. She believes he is three hundred miles to the southwest in the imperial city of Kyoto. Disguising her loveliness in the humble garments of a traveling priest, and calling herself Cat, Lady Asano travels the fabled Tokaido Road. Her only tools are her quick wits, her samurai training, and her deadly, six footlong naginata. And she will need them all, for a ronin has been hired to pursue her, a mysterious man who will play a role in Cat's drama that neither could have ever imagined. . . .