According to the book, 125 XP on top of a normally created character should take them to rank 3 easily enough.
Muse, any thoughts on the other stuff I asked about? Access to other books, and the unofficial stuff?
Here's an example or two
Obiesaseru: This Emphasis is a specialized form of intimidation, used
only by members of the Imperial families, the Imperial Guards, or the
Imperial Legions (including Emerald and Jade Magistrates on duty under
the Emerald or Jade Champion). By appealing to the target's belief
that the Imperial Legions are the best-trained samurai in the Empire,
and that the entire Celestial Order stands behind them, a member of
the Imperial House or someone with adequate status can freeze a
samurai in histracks. The Imperial character must successfully make a
Contested Willpower/Deceit (Obiesaseru) vs. the target's Willpower to
freeze it for one round (the target can move and defend normally, but
cannot approach or attack).
Raises can increase the duration or add targets. Against non-Rokugani,
this works the same as Intimidation. You must have a token of Imperial
authority in order to use
Rank 7: You gain a Free Raise for using Obiesaseru.
Rank 10: You may use Obiesaseru without a token of Imperial authority
but doing so increase your TN by 5.
Honor Loss: Obiesaseru does not incur an Honor Loss if used for
legitimate purpose by a member of the Imperial Guards or the Imperial
Legions (including Emerald or Jade Magistrates, as stated above).
Emphases: Spell Evasion, Technique Evasion, Trap Evasion, Yadomejutsu
Spell Evasion: This Emphasis allows avoiding hazards of supernatural
origin. The Emphasis bonus applies whenever rolling to avoid the
effects of spells, kiho, tattoos, and similar abilities (if such a
roll is required). Homebrew
Trap Evasion: This Emphasis allows avoiding mundane hazards and traps.
The Emphasis bonus applies whenever rolling to avoid traps, natural
pitfalls, and similar hazards (if such a roll is required). Homebrew,
inspired by Bearers of Jade p.15 and The Way of Shadow p.109
Yadomejutsu: While in the Full Attack posture, the character can cut
arrows aimed at someone within 10 feet (TN equal the archer's attack
roll). On Full Defense, the character can roll Agility/Defense
(Yadomejutsu) and add to his TN to be hit against all ranged attacks
he is aware of. (Note: Perceptive readers will realize that this is in
fact part of the Technique from the Tsuruchi's Swordsman. If using
Yadomejutsu as a skill instead of a School Technique, simply give the
Tsuruchi Swordsman the benefit of 2 Free Raises on any Yadomejutsu
skill rolls.) Updated from Secrets of the Mantis p.67