This campaign is set ten years after a previous set of adventures (HERE). This is the Thirteenth session of the current campaign (Session XII can be found HERE). It was an interim session conducted online. This adventure was very much inspired by the three Dragon Gate films (Dragon Gate Inn, New Dragon Gate Inn, and Flying Swords of Dragon Gate Inn).
Xue Lingsu (Purple Cavern Sect)
Xi Kang(Affiliated with Mr. Red Claw)
Zhi Zhu (No Sect)
Long Shu (Purple Cavern Sect)
Min (Purple Cavern Sect)
Rong (Tree-Dwelling Nun Sect)
The party were on their way north to the Ogre Gate Inn. They went back to Huisheng to inspect the Yue residence where they subdued Yue Yen and Yue Ru, then found evidence that the Blood Elixir was planted by the emperor (they found a prophecy encouraging them to bring Water Lily to Ogre Gate Inn so she could take the Blood Elixir). Yen and Ru were the children of Yue Guang, who was the person who planted the elixir in the first place and sent a letter to White Qirin with instructions to bring the child to drink the elixir. The party had already decided the elixir was likely a trap but wanted confirmation, which this provided.
Before heading north they returned to Purple Caverns and placed Yen and Ru in a holding cell. Then they set out and decided to travel through the Banyan Region directly to Ogre Gate Inn. On their first night in camp, they spotted a Zhen Bird flying overhead periodically. The next day they came upon the head of an official they had met on Mount Hai'an, stuck on a pike in the earth. Then they heard the sound of a great drum.
Lingsu recognized the sound as the same one sounded back in the village of Buak, where a Zun Demon Master summoned a reptilian spirit from a ritual vessel. They spotted such a vessel 200 feet away on a nearby mound rising above the tree line.
The party rushed to the mound as smoke billowed up into the heavens from the ritual vessel. Lingsu and Min used great stride to reach it in a blink. Kang relied upon his Flight of the Hawk Technique and Zhi Zhu made her way stealthily through the trees.
When Lingsu and Min reached the mound they found both a Demon Master and one of the emperor's Yao dressed in red robes and wearing a face plate*. The Yao struck at Lingsu with a spear, the tip only grazed his skin but caused a frost to spread across his robes. Lingsu grabbed the Demon Master and hurled him at the Yao with his Eagle Descends Loudly Technique. Min used her Swan Taming Strike to batter the Yao with her sheathed sword. When Zhi Zhu arrived she used Arms of Silk to entangle the Yao, while Kang struck at him with the Wind Sabre of Sunan (causing paralysis). They were able to dispatch both foes but dismembered and buried the Yao to be safe.
Resuming their journey north, they made it over the Banyan Mountains and reached the Li Fan Desert in four days. They crossed the desert successful and came to the Ogre Gate Inn.
Kang, Min and Lingsu went inside, while Zhi Zhu climbed the roof to keep watch. In the Inn they found a band of Kailin Tribesmen and a group of thugs or bandits seated at separate tables. They took a table and demanded wine. When it was served both Kang and Lingsu (who are skilled in Poison Use) sniffed their cups and smelled poison. Kang dumped his cup on the ground and demanded another. The proprietor returned to their table and said he would get them more. Lingsu grabbed the proprietor and slammed him against a rise in the floor, causing a terrible head wound. The man stood up and as he did so, all the thugs at the other table encircled the party.
At this point, Zhi Zhu heard the sound horses approaching. Soon about forty horsemen lead by an imperial official came into view. She snapped Min with her arms of silk and pointed.
While Zhi Zhu kept an eye on the horsemen, Kang walked over to the table the bandit's had occupied and started drinking their wine. They tried to stop him but he used Tai Lan's Staff Strike to crack each of them on the head. The bandits backed down and Min tried to alert the party to the presence of soldiers outside when a hail of arrows rained down on the inn. Zhi Zhu saw this coming and ducked into an inn room, but some inside were surprised and struck by shafts that entered through open windows. Two of the tribesmen were killed, and three bandits died. Min and Kang were both struck but their wounds were not that bad. The party, the bandits and the tribesmen all found safe spots in tavern area to lean against.
The official then demanded that "All guilty parties step into the courtyard".
Lingsu spoke with the proprietor, asking why he tried to poison them (assuming the proprietor worked for the emperor). He admitted to the poisoning but said he knew nothing about the officials, he just wanted to protect his treasure (he also admitted to killing the previous owner). The details were unclear, but the Lingsu convinced him to take them to a safer area below the Inn.
This is where the session ended.
*Yao are martial heroes loyal to the emperor who have had their hearts cut out and placed in lacquered boxes for safe keeping. The process imparts supernatural abilities upon them. They can regenerate and don't seem to die permanently.