Wednesday, September 26, 2018


I ran a session of Strange Tales the other night, to test out the Treasures of the Starlit Inkstone adventure. In this adventure the players are Anomaly Inspectors investigating islands in a mountain lake filled with monsters. 

They happened upon an island with a Buddhist monastery, where the monks all seemed strangely thin and had fingers that ended in metallic claws. They discovered the monks we using their fingernails to take peoples flesh as a medium for their sutras. The players went into the monastery and found a tome called The Lotus Flesh Sutra, which claimed enlightenment could be attained by the flesh of the Buddha. 

One of the players had a magic vestment that turned him into a tiger, which he used to create a distraction as the other players attacked the monks. In the end some monks fled, but they succeeded in killing most of them (but not before having section of their own flesh peeled off in the battle). 

In a library they found a desiccated corpse. When one of the players approached the orpse its skin wrapped around his body and began to fuse with it. They were able to fend it off before the transformation was complete. But the player character sensed his mind opening as the flesh bound to his body. They decided to write a warning to all who entered "Beware: Flesh Eating, Mind Opening, Monster in the library. 

They returned to their village, where one of the characters, San, learned that her mother was ill from a snake bite. After an investigation, it came to light that a lady by the name of Xi Yen was to blame. Her mother had the woman branded some time ago for poisoning several women in the village. This was her revenge. She also learned that Xi Yen, was the sister of their boat pilot, Xi Gao. Plying him with wine, San learned where his sister resided and more about her personality. 

Investigating Xi Yen's house they found a tunnel that led to an empty snake pit. But inside the floorboards was a corpse stuffed with a curse that made intruders targets for her snakes. One of the player characters was a snake charmer, so he used his knowledge to track her down (and to give an antidote to San's mother). They came eventually to a snake pit filled with hundreds of cobras. Inside the pit, Xi Yen was seated and waiting. They set fire to the snake pit after confronting Xi Yen (who explained that she did the killings because she was angry that no one in the village would marry her). San tried to reason with her, but in the end they decided she couldn't be redeemed. After the adventure the player characters went on to get nice posts in the imperial capital for all of their efforts. 

This is where the session ended. It was the last in a 10 session campaign. 

By the way, if you haven't checked out our latest release, House of Paper Shadows, take a look. It is a great wuxia horror adventure, perfect for Halloween. You can find the PDF HERE or purchase the print version at stores and online (go HERE if you have trouble finding it). 

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