This was the Seventeenth session of my Wandering Heroes of Ogre Gate wuxia sandbox campaign, the Celestial Plume Masters, using the Sons of Lady 87 book, which was just released in print. You can see the first session HERE. You can see the sixteenth session HERE.
Wei Ziying: A skilled poisoner and physician, with ties to the Relentless Corpse Sect, Wei Ziying is a disciple of the Celestial Plume Masters. He also has a longstanding friendship with Kuo Qingzhao, who wishes to know more about the poisons that killed his wife (poisons Wei Ziying knows the secrets of). Grudge: Ravenous Nun Xuanji (for the murder of Red Eagle)
Wang Haoyang: A master of stealth, Wang Haoyang is one of the Celestial Plume Master disciples. He has a lifelong friendship with Pei Ye of the Vermillion Bird Teahouse, but has attracted the affection of another member of that organization, Fan Zhen'er (he does not return the affection but wishes to avoid creating friction within the Vermillion Bird Teahouse, and possibly creating enemies). Grudge: Guan Nuan (for a duel he escaped, she feels she lost face because he was weaker than her and should have been an easy victory)
Hei Ling: A one-eyed chief in the Celestial Plume Masters, Hei Ling is the father of Li Liang, whom he wishes to cease practicing her Toad Style kung fu because of the physical toll on her body. He had Li Liang with Qixia the candied fruit in his youth and since then Qixia has grown hostile. He has a working relationship with the Wu Sisters. Grudge: Qixia the Candied Fruit Vendor (of Hai'an). Grudge: Qixia (many reasons related to their pre-existing relationship)
Iron Tiger: The newest member of the party, sent by Night Thorn to help them expand. He has a longstanding friendship with Iron Beggar Sun Kang, whom he wants to leave his lap of luxury in the House of Flying Lanterns so he can train with the Nature Loving Monks and improve his Kung Fu. Iron Beggar in turn wants Iron Tiger to leave the Celestial Plume Masters. Grudge: Pei Ye (he murdered her favorite client, Golden Cobra).
THE DEEP SLEEP OF THE SEVEN DEMONS^
Wei Ziying sent returned continued his attacks on the Seven Demons in Long Ma Hall with Mule Head Hong, White-Browed Demoness, and Big Sister Hong Na. They followed the same pattern as before, with Big Sister Hong Na sneaking into the bed chamber and attacking the sect leader in their sleep, then the rest of the party would swarm in before an alarm could be issued. In each case White Browed Demoness would use her Strangling Brow to silence foes so they could not sound the alert*.
Art by Jackie Musto
Their next victim was Yao Yun. Hong Na's plunged her Deep Biting Blade into his sleeping body and he awakened, only to be assailed with a storm of White Browed Demoness daggers and killed.
Wei Ziying decided it would be best to take out Zhizhu the leader of the Seven Demons, next. She too was stabbed in her sleep by Big Sister Hong Na and rather easily dispatched by the rest of the party.
Next they went after the Bone General. His hook sword play was known for mutilating foes, so they were cautious. Big Sister Hong Na stabbed him using her Deep Biting Blade once again. He awakened but was put back to death's slumber in a blaze of steel from Mule Head Hong's Blade of the Dancing Fox technique.
Only one of the Seven Demons, the weakest of them, remained: Wuzhi. The poet slept soundly and was awakened by the steel of Big Sister Hong Na's deep biting blade implanted in her chest. She clung to life enough to sound the alarm and also launched Big Sister Hong Na into the air with her hook sword**.
Mule Head Hong rushed in with a flurry of kicks to finish off the last of the demons, and as Big Sister Hong Na soared through the air***, she attempted to imitate Wuzhi's voice**** and said to the followers they heard rushing towards the room "It is nothing, I simply had a nightmare and fell out of bed."
Miraculously the ploy worked, they made sure Wuzhi was dead and fled back to Mai Cun.
THE HOUSE OF PAPER SHADOWS
It was now the 5th day of the Turtle Moon. The appointed day for Wei Ziying to hand over the Sword of Time to the House of Paper Shadows. Failure meant death by the hands of their agents.
A corpse had been delivered to Wei Ziying's room the day before. A corpse that resembled Wei Ziying.
In the stillness of the hall someone announced the arrival of Zuan Yuan of the House of Paper Shadows. The man known also as Silver Haired Beauty, approached Lady Eighty Seven and spoke, "Greetings 87th Lady of the Guan House. We do not wish to disturb you at this time, but merely seek what is owed from a member of your sect, Wei Ziying."
"Silver Haired Beauty, what does he owe the Master of the House of Paper Shadows?"
"The sword of time, but he has failed, so now his life is owed to us."
Lady 87 looked to Wei Ziying and asked for an explanation, which he provided, explaining that he had inherited this debt and that he was unable to obtain the sword, but had heard rumors it was with the House of Paper Shadows themselves.
Lady 87 thought for a moment and turned her head towards Zuan Yuan again. "I cannot," she said. "Wei Ziying is an accomplished member of this sect and deserves our loyalty. If you want him, you will have to take him from us."*****
"Be reasonable Lady, we have no fight with you and you know our reputation."
"If it is my appointed day to die, so be it. But your reputation may not be as deserved as people say."
Zuan Yuan waved his hand and the drone of a suona horn filled the chamber as black silhouettes of shadow puppets appeared upon the wall and danced in the flickering light.
^This entry is short as it just covers a long night of killing in Long Ma Hall. Because this scenario focused on one character in the party (we knew these fights may take the whole session), I had the other three players each take on the role of the NPCs accompanying Wei Ziying to Long Ma Hall: Hei Ling's player was Mule Head Hong, Iron Tiger's Player was White Browed Demoness, and Wang Haoyang's player was Big Sister Hong Na. Note I also do not give a blow for blow account in this retelling
*This ability also enables her to make an additional Kung Fu Technique attack in the same round so it was very useful tactically in this scenario
**She used Hurling Hook to do this
***Hurling Hook keeps a character in the air for one round
****In game terms I asked the player to make a Deception Roll (99% sure it was Deception I asked for) but told them this was only going to work on a TN 9, to which one of the other players said TN 10 seemed more appropriate, so we went with that. The player in control of Big Sister Hong Na rolled a 10.
*****I was not certain that Wei Ziying's plan was sound and that it would work (his aim here had been to work his way into the 87 killers, earn their loyalty then turn the house of paper shadows upon them while faking his own death). I decided the method to determine whether Lady 87 would protect him, and thus cause his plan to work, would be to roll a d10 against TN 9, but deduct -1 to -2 for each successful mission he went on (the number would be based on the power of his foes). At the start of last session it was TN 5 and he brought it down to TN 3 with his success at Long Ma Hall.