This was the fourth session of a new Wandering Heroes of Ogre Gate campaign. See the THIRD SESSION LOG to read about the previous session.
Wandering Heroes of Ogre Gate is our wuxia RPG. It is available HERE in PDF. It should be out in print in about a month.
Peng Ke-Yen: Eccentric daughter of a merchant who goes against conventions and is notable for her white and black streaked hair. From Dashen village.
Peng Pei: Daughter of two low Yen-Li priests. Also from Dashen village.
Zhendao: A former slave of a man named Zhao.
Shin Du: A performer and actor who is a perfect shot with the bow.
Song Pei: A one-armed physician.
The party was still in Nansun at the start of the session. It was also the Demon Moon and the Ghost Festival was underway.
In the morning the party made preparations at the Lover's Bao. Shin Du went to the festivities along the canal and made arrangements for his performance. Song Pei, Peng Pei and Peng Ke-Yen went to enjoy the foods and sites of the Ghost Festival on their own.
Ke-Yen went looking for a fortune teller, one who seemed more reliable than the many who plied their trade on the canal. She spotted a blind man with a small tent, banging a stick upon a table, named Ang Chao. For a fee he read her palm and told her that he saw a wolf and a fox in her life.
Ke-Yen was not very impressed with his reading, but he defied her, saying she should be quite impressed as he knew the information to be true. While Ke-Yen had her fortune read, Peng Pei wandered around to find some sweets. Song Pei remained outside and didn't notice as a horde of men in white masks surrounded him.
Ke-Yen continued to banter with the fortune teller, but left his tent largely unconvinced of his talents. As she exited, it she saw that there were numerous men surrounding them in a circle. They immediately attacked: two with katanas and the rest with shurikens**. With Peng Pei off eating candy, Ke-Yen and Song Pei had to fend them off on their own. They managed for a time. Song Pei was brought down by shrurikens, when Ke-Yen saw her old friend, Brother Wolf running toward the melee from a distance. He leapt into the fray and used Ruinous Array of the Armillary Sphere to drain the life from many of the attackers.
As their foes fell to the ground, Brother Wolf healed Song Pei and told them to follow him. They followed and he brought them to a small inn, where Sister Fox (Brother Wolf's twin and another old friend of Ke-Yen was laying with her eyes closed in a bed. Her flesh had jagged wounds all over, and she appeared pale.
"She was wounded badly, and has long been sick" Brother Wolf said.
He talked with Ke-Yen and asked who the scholar was (referring to Song Pei). Ke-Yen said he was cowardly, and liked to fake dead during battles.
Brother Wolf grasped Song Pei's wrists and felt his muscles. "He is tougher than he looks," he said. "We will make a man out of him soon enough."
Ke-Yen shot Brother Wolf a skeptical look. They continued to talk and Song Pei expressed interest in Brother Wolf's healing technique. He agreed to teach him if Pei kowtowed three times to him and became his disciple (which he did).
Then Brother Wolf taught them some of his claw techniques. Afterwards he explained to Ke-Yen that he had been following her for some time to make sure she was okay. When she told him they were on their way to kill Master Zhao Yi, Brother Wolf told them to retreat a book called Strange Accounts of Hu Qin, which was rumored to contain the location of The Thousand Deaths Flower.
He pointed to Sister Fox and said "The Plum Tree Monk did this to her. I may be able to destroy him if I have the Thousand Deaths Flower."
Song Pei inquired about her condition and Brother Wolf explained she was already sick, poisoned long ago by Life Ebbing Venom (something Song Pei had already deduced on his own). Brother Wolf used special herbs to keep the venom at bay but there was little he could do. The slightest emotional stress could kill her. Already in a sickened state they were hounded and attacked by the Plum Tree Monk, who wounded her terribly. She was recovering and would be okay. But her feared that unless he killed the monk, she was doomed.
Ke-Yen and Song Pei bid Brother Wold farewell and agreed to meet him near Dashen after retrieving the Thousand Painful Deaths Flower.
Meanwhile, Shin Du's performance exceeded all expectations. His audience gave him over 500 spades. A local official took note and arrived with a small group of soldiers. He asked why Shin Du had failed to register with the local performance office. Shin Du pleaded ignorance and the magistrate said he would look the other way for a small tax of 200 spades.
Shin Du expressed outrage at his treatment and challenged the legality of the request, but ultimately paid the fee.
Soon after these events the party headed south to Yun Hu. On the road they spotted a woman being attacked by two men. They asked the men to stop, but were rebuked.
The men were both wearing Golden Raksha talismans (similar to the ones the party found on a group of bandits some days earlier). "Mind your own business," said one of the men. "This doesn't concern you."
The party immediately attacked. The battle was over swiftly with both men dead. They rescued the woman, who was particularly grateful toward Zhendao. He was inexperienced but noticed she resembled the sing-song girls at the Lover's Bao in her dress and attire. Her name was Yi Hui.
Ke-Yen dragged the bodies to the trees and offered them to the spirits. She performed a ritual and did so incorrectly, which filled her with a profound rage. Song Pei heard something whisper in the trees. They chucked the bodies toward it and heard the snapping of bone and ripping of flesh. There was nearly a fight among the party as she insisted on lingering but eventually they moved on.
As they continued, the thing from the trees apparently followed. A giant spirited peacock flew from the forest and attacked, trying to peck out the heart of Zhendao. They were able to dispatch it, gathering its feathers and beak after it was dead.
The Demon Moon is a strange time, and as they approached the city a magistrate came forth. He said "You must come with me" but Song Pei noticed something unusual about his voice. It seemed to be the magistrate they dealt with earlier inside Yun Hu.
The magistrate's head separated from his body and flew toward the party trying to bite them. They eventually destroyed the head as the body tried to flee to the hills (which they detained and destroyed as well).
When they reached the city, the stayed with Master Qian Bei and told him about their plans to attack Master Zhao. He would not be involved himself but offered to train them and give them shelter.
Zhendao went to Master Zhao's and watched from a rooftop. He estimated there were dozens of men inside and spotted people who resembled the ninja they had faced earlier. As he flew from the roof, a man leapt up and attacked with a spear. It was a tough fight, but Zhendao cut the man down and he fell from the roof. Three men in white sprung up on the roof as Zhendao fled and three shurikens at him, but he was able to escape to Master Qien Bei's.
Once there Qian Bei explained that the man was likely Hai Shaonan, the head of Master Zhao's security. They went to bed, intending to attack Master Zhao in the morning (they had determined that the next dawn was the most auspicious time to strike).
That night, Yu Hui tried to climb into Zhendao's bed, but he fled from her and locked himself in a cabinet. She pulled open the door and it revealed she was a painted death (a creature that assumes fake, painted human skin but is really skeletal beast beneath). Her rib cage opened wide and tried to devour him, wounding his body badly. The rest of the party heard the sounds and came to his aid. They were able to destroy Yi Hui, but Zhendao was nearly killed.
This is where the session ended.
**Last session the party made enemies with a group of Ninja from a distant island.