Monday, May 8, 2023


This was the Twentieth 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 nineteenth 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).


Wang Haoyang's attack failed. His wife's, did not, and she cut into the hag, Bingyin. 

The next moments saw a blaze of fists and steel. Blood became a mist hanging in the air.

Of the three, Bingyin proved most formidable. But the momentum turned to the party's favor when San, the sister of Bone Breaker, and Chen, sworn brother of Bone Breaker, leapt to attack Hei Ling, only to have their legs cut off by his leg maiming strike. 

Their bodies collapsed to the floor, their mind's conscious but their legs scattered. 

Iron Tiger broke Bingyin's knee cap. She then arced her back and unleashed a wave of blue Qi energy against the party. This had some effect but she surrendered after Iron Tiger's fist sent her crumpled to the ground. 

Hei Ling and Iron Tiger recognized San as Bone Breaker's twin sister. 

Fearless Cat
Art by Jackie Musto 
"You can go, and you can take him," Hei Ling said to Bingyin as he pointed to Chen. "But she stays. She will be treated as our guest, and you can tell Bone Breaker if it is a war he wants, it is a war he will get. Or we can deal with this like civilized people and have a real conversation."

Iron Tiger spoke to the crone as she lifted Chen and hobbled out of the boat, "Tell Bone Breaker this was a misunderstanding. He was given false information by Bronze Master." 

On the trip back they were able to speak with San. Iron Tiger had heard of her dislike for Bone Breaker's wife, Fearless Cat and suggested perhaps the ambush was her idea and not Bone Breaker's^. 

"Yes, she is a despicable woman," San said as she was recovering. 

Over the course of the journey San would put the blame for all her sect's missteps and evils on Fearless Cat. 


Back in Mai Cun another of Iron Tiger's recruits arrived*. It was a woman dressed in the fashion of the empire's upper crust. She presented herself as Twin Dagger Zaun Shanhu. 

They allowed a demonstration and she appeared to display tremendous lethality using two daggers. When asked if she knew the Storming Daggers technique, Zuan Shanhu scoffed and didn't seem to think much of it, preferring her own approach. Then she was permitted to demonstrate the full force of her technique on Hei Ling, who willingly let her blades cut into his flesh. The effect appeared impressive. 

Iron Tiger offered her a position. Zuan Shanhu said she had two requirements: 

"Know that I will never walk anywhere. I expect to be carried by palanquin and have sufficient men for the job, whatever the mission. Also I would like to continue living in the manner I am accustomed. My chambers should be exceptionally high quality and I will receive a stipend**."

Iron Tiger agreed and saw that she was given adequate quarters until more permanent arrangements could be made. 

Iron Tiger then hired a famous local detective named Liu Wan to investigate the matter of the Nature Loving Monks siding against them in the conflict. Wang Haoyang wasn't concerned, but Hei Ling and Iron Tiger were more worried about it. 

Liu Wan carried a parasol and seemed confident in his abilities. He asked for one golden tael upfront and two when he finished the missions. He told them he would find out about the beggars in a say's time. 


Carrying a sack saturated with blood, Liu Wan bowed to Hei Ling. They could see a recent wound upon his face, a rather ghastly one. 

He calmly removed a head from the bag. "The Nature Loving Monks tried to ambush me, but I managed to make this one speak before I cut off the head."

"We are sorry you were attacked but you seem to have handled yourself well," Said Hei Ling. "Please tell us what you learned."

"It seems that he," Liu Wan said pointing to Wang Haoyang, "was seen by a beggar murdering Drunken Cricket, the wife of Chief Qu Wanli. So they have turned against you and you should expect them to attempt assassinations against Wang Haoyang in the near future."

Liu Wan was thanked for his service and given his two golden taels. Iron Tiger asked to retain him permanently and he said he would consider it over the next ten days. Iron Tiger offered to have him a new parasol crafted by Master San in Mai Cun. 

They debated how to handle the matter. Hei Ling sent a gift of 50,000 spades to all the regional Nature Loving Monk chiefs except for Chief Qu Wanli hoping to turn them against him and earn their loyalty. He also included a message that read: 

There was an unfortunate incident involving Drunken Cricket. We did not mean to offend the Nature Loving Monks. But you should also know the truth about Chief Qu Wanli: he was selling dangerously low quality celestial plume that was causing death and social disorder in Tung-On.

This is where the session ended. 

^Prior to the battle, I had asked the players to make a roll to see whether these characters were part of the setting canon or if all the Bone Breaker material was part of the Bone Breaker campaign canon as they are very different. In the campaign, San despised Fearless Cat with a passion. In the books this is described more as a fear of Fearless Cat, but in the campaign, San wanted Fearless Cat to die. This roll also would affect whether members of Bone Breaker sect had certain items and abilities. 

*Iron Tiger had put word out that he was seeking to hire several great masters into his service. 

**For each of the masters that Iron Tiger recruits, I make a roll to see how closely they align with the criteria he gave to his men, then I use the Bedrock App to make a random character and establish the NPC's personality and history based on their kung fu and skills. In the case of Zuan Shanhu, she had a number of skills that seemed more aristocratic so I quickly put together details that included she was born into a wealthy family, had a quirk that she demanded her employers provide a palanquin (but despite this she still trained most of the day to help explain things like her 4d10 Athletics). The visual that hit me was the Eunuch in the original Dragon Gate Inn movie, who spends the entire film being taken to the final battle on a palanquin by his servants. I imagine that is how she approaches all her missions. 

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