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Inn inhabited by zashiki-warashi



There is a grand old residence in the city of Ninohe in Iwate Prefecture that is said to have been inhabited by zashiki-warashi since olden times. In 1955 it became an inn called Ryokufuso. These days many people who have stayed in an inner room there claim to have encountered zashiki-warashi.


Enju no ma

The zashiki-warashi of Ryokufuso inhabits an inner room called the enju no ma. Many guests who have stayed in this room have seen the zashiki-warashi late at night. A boy about six years old, with bobbed hair and wearing a white or blue kimono, slips across the head of the bed and lies on the person's stomach. At other times nothing can be seen, but people, especially adults, hear the sound of wood splintering, a bird singing, or a drum being struck.

It's said that success or good fortune comes to those who encounter the zashiki-warashi in the inner room. The Enju no ma is decorated with toys and dolls offered as tokens of gratitude by people who have enjoyed good fortune after staying there.

The ancestors of the household were members of a noble family in Kyoto who fled north after being defeated in war about 650 years ago and eventually settled where the house is presently located. The son and heir, Kamemaro, died from an illness at the age of six, however. It's said that he then became a zashiki-warashi and has been watching over the house for the last 650 years.