Seppuku (“chest-cutting”) is Hachigoku's most exalted form of regaining lost honor. The exact circumstances and nature of seppuku were be covered in Chapter 1. This section strictly covers the game mechanics.
You can commit seppuku after any action that loses you Virtue or Glory. Or if you fervently disagree with the orders of your superior, the implication being that following them would either dishonor you or ultimately dishonor them, and seppuku would prevent such a no-win situation. In either case, you must have permission from your superior; seppuku is considered an honor that must be allowed, not a punishment one can inflict by yourself. Only if you contacting your superior is beyond your ability, such as in the midst of Warfare or deep in the countryside or wilderness, is unsanctioned seppuku considered acceptable. You might attempt it otherwise, but doing so would be considered an Act of Vice and not honorable, even if it forestalls greater Virtue or Glory losses.
It's important to note that seppuku is only for the samurai caste, and while samurai belonging to an uji do have an immediate superior and a chain of fealty and command past that, ronin do not. Any uji samurai is a superior for these purposes. Thus, a ronin must ask an uji samurai for permission. Most will be reluctant to interfere with the honor of a ronin, and refer the case to their superior, who often passes it on up to the daimyo. Stories of ronin petitioning daimyo for seppuku are actually fairly common, if not an everyday occurrence. They usually seek out smaller uji daimyo; larger uji rarely take the matter seriously enough to bother their daimyo. For a ronin to petition the Usagi daimyo for seppuku is not unheard of, but for one to petition the Owari daimyo is presumptuous at best, insulting at worst.
There are no mechanics for the rituals surrounding the seppuku or performing seppuku itself. Doing so is a grave matter, and whether witnessed or attempted a matter that should be undertaken for dramatic effect, agreed upon by those Players concerned, and not subject to the whim of dice. Feel free to develop your own mechanics (usually a series of Kenjutsu, Virtue, and Willpower rolls) if you disagree.
The aftereffects of the seppuku are another matter. If a seppuku is successfully completed (meaning either the final cut occurred without crying out shamefully, or the beheading was swift and clean before a shameful cry was uttered), all Virtue and Glory losses the seppuku was requested for are canceled. And yes, a samurai condemned to being exiled or made ronin could appeal for seppuku, even to a superior from another uji.
It happens more often than you think. It is granted less often than the condemned hope.
Marriage & Children
Marriage for samurai is a glorious affair. Once a marriage takes place, the spouse with the lower Glory has it raised to be 1 Glory less than their partner. Whenever a spouse gains or loses Glory, the other gains or loses Honor equal to the new Glory. This is a Glorious marriage.
An Infamous marriage operates a bit differently. If one spouse has Infamy, the spouse with Glory has their Glory reduced by the Infamy of their new partner. If both spouses have Infamy, then the spouse with the lower Infamy has it raised to be 1 lower than their partner. Whenever the spouse gains or loses Infamy, the other gains or loses Honor equal to the new Infamy.
Marriage gives additional benefits using the Season rules, as well.
Children likewise glorify the parent, as long as they're legitimate. Every child when born gives the parent 1 Glory. However, they give no Infamy.
Losing a spouse or child through either divorce, disowning, or death causes a loss of Glory. When such a loss occurs, you immediately lose Glory Points equal to the Glory of whomever was lost. However, all further Glory Point gains and losses are nullified for the rest of the Season as your universe holds its breath.
This has no effect regarding Infamy.