The Water Margin, a famous 14th-century Chinese tale of 108 bandit heroes, became enormously popular in Japan through its 19th-century adaptation, Suikoden. Shi Shin was one of these heroes, nicknamed Kyumonryu, or “the Nine-dragoned,” due to his elaborate tattoo of nine dragons. He began life as the son of a wealthy landowner in the village named after his family. One summer evening he learned that three bandits planned to attack his village. He captured the outlaws, but joined their ranks once he heard their stories of injustice and oppression. Yoshitoshi portrays Kyumonryu in a quiet moment before his outlaw life begins. The moon shines upon his tattooed dragons as he stares into the distance in deep contemplation.