“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 40.4 — Inn trouble

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.4, which was held on Sunday, 8 December, 2013:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using the Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (1st Ed.) Oriental Adventures , plus house rulesSkype, and an online dice roller

  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; LNg, Lvl. 1
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) from the Tiger Clan with a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 1
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 1
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 1
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest of Shang-ti and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things; LNg, Lvl. 1
  • Moon Jung-mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki, eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk Yakuza (eastern Grey Elf Rogue); LNg, Lvl. 1

“10 to 11 March 1227 B.C.E.:” The would-be adventurers began their journey with an emissary from the empire of Gokuri to the capitals of their homelands. On the way, they encountered suspicious Kappa and visited a village along the Balef River.

eastern river village
On the banks of the Balef River

At the “Death’s Deck” tavern in Wai Shih, the travelers acquire rooms for the night. Sonny walks around the inn to make sure that it’s secure and that Lady Yun Aei-Yong, the Nannuattan diplomat, can’t leave without being seen.

Toshi finds a tree to keep watch from outside. In a common room, Ember notices two fellow Hengeyokai. Kajuji Manabu, a whiskered carp shaman, invites her to join him for prayers at an ancestral shrine the next morning. Aihara Naho, a Kitsune (fox) weaver, is one of the few female guests at the “Death’s Deck.”

Saigo is served tea and sake by Okubo Kita, a geisha. She performs music that fills the entire inn. Far from his meddling Uncle Manny, Soske’ is content to sip his sake alone and merely listen to the other patrons.

Moon Jung-Mo reserves a room for himself and makes sure that Ember is properly attended to. Since Lady Yun and her Draconian bodyguard Oh Kum-Ja won’t leave their room (and gear) unattended, the “Spirit Folk merchant” pays them a visit.

The Gokuri delegate asks Jung-Mo to find a musician. He goes to Saigo, but the Samurai won’t release Okubo. Jung-Mo and Saigo’s argument is interrupted as more people arrive at the tavern. Most of the local fishermen, loggers, and trappers head home for the night.

Sonny, who is on watch, and Ember, who is eating with Kajuji and Aihara, are the first to see the newcomers. Three giggling girls enter, followed by a few Shengtese and Tsucharim men. A tall being throws back his hood, revealing blue skin and three eyes.

Simakage Haruhiko, the Oni (Ogre Mage), sends innkeeper Ho Sze scrambling for rooms and drinks. Jung-Mo steps forward and offers a friendly greeting. Sonny and Ember hang back and watch, while Toshi changes into baza (bird) form and perches on a windowsill for a better look.

Saigo gets a massage from Okubo, and Soske’ tries to ignore the commotion. Lang Xiaoxuan, captain of the Angry Trout, says that he has brought a chef who will prepare food for all the guests. Lady Yun and Oh Kum-Ja leave their room to join the feast.

Jung-Mo goes to ask some Wolven about another musician, but he is distracted by Chol Byung-Soon, Chung Mi-Na, and Ri Myung-Hee. The stealthy exile notices that the Tsucharim women are well-muscled and carry naginatas (halberds).

Dao Ma Wu cooks dumplings, steamed vegetables, and rice noodles. Lady Yun, Oh Kum-Ja, Sonny, and Soske’ sit down to eat, but wary Ember and Jung-Mo decline. Saigo and Sonny listen for trouble. Simakage and the humans with him seem to suffer no ill effects.

However, Sonny sees Oh Kum-Ja signal Lady Yun, who pushes her food around but doesn’t eat it. Soske’ tastes a hint of poison, a precursor to an attack. Sonny jumps on the table and unfurls his kusari-gama (chain and sickle).

The Kensai swings his weapon at Simakage, Liang, and Kenmotsu Sadayoshi. Wu-Jen Toshi shifts back to Shan Sao form and enters the fracas. Shukenja Soske’ falls back to a corner, grasps prayer beads, and casts Protection From Evil.

Samurai Saigo scowls as he gets dressed and heads to join the fray. Wu Ember throws a dagger at the Oni, scratching him. Surrounded by the three women, Ninja Jung-Mo creates Darkness and dives out a window to go around to the front entrance.

The Ogre Mage swings at Ember but misses, and other tavern patrons flee before the human bandits. Oh Kum-Ja tries to lead Lady Yun away, but they are blocked by Chol, Chung, and Ri. The trio slashes the Draconian with its naginatas.

Liang and Kenmotsu draw zhibei dao (sabers) and square off with Soske’ and Sonny, who is hit but swings again at the Oni. Toshi casts Elemental Burst on the table, killing Kenmotsu. Soske’ draws his bow and tries to stay out of the other bandit’s reach. He kicks over a table and hits Liang with an arrow.

Saigo’s katana initially misses its mark against Simakage, and Ember Wild Shapesinto a panda bear. Jung-Mo hurls a boomerang-like Whippet, but the envenomed blade doesn’t bite into the Ogre’s hide. The three-eyed monster summons a swarm of rats, which crawl up through the broken floorboards and bite Sunny and Saigo.

Oh Kum-Ja and Lady Yun enter melee with the three women. After some misses, Liang renders Soske’ unconscious. Sonny entangles Simakage with his chain, and Toshi casts Magic Missiles, which appear as orange blades, at Chol, Chung, and Ri. The Wizard then heads to Soske’ and apologizes to Jung-Mo.

Samurai Saigo slashes at Simakage, and Jung-Mo stabs the Oni in the eyes with chopsticks. The large creature slams Sonny, knocking him out. Ursine Druid Ember circles the enraged Ogre and tells the rats to leave.

Lady Yun reveals herself as a Mahotsukai (Sorceress) by casting Chain Lightning from a scroll, killing Chol and Ri. Oh Kum-Ja finishes off Chung. Toshi throws dart shurikens to provide cover for his friends, and Saigo and Jung-Mo stab at Simakage.

Liang and Simakage go back to back as Toshi defends Soske’ and Sonny withTien Sha Pai (Red Cloud Kung Fu). Oh Kum-Ja slays Liang, and Saigo and Ember attack the Oni, who has been weakened by Lady Yun’s spell.

Jung-Mo finishes off Simakage with a wakizashi (short sword), and Ember searches for shaman Kajuji to help with the wounded. Saigo observes that cook Dao Ma Wu and other would-be assassins have fled and have likely gotten away on the Angry Trout.

Toshi and Jung-Mo dispose of the dead and confiscate naginatas, dao, leather armor, and several tantos (daggers). They also find 90 tael (180 gold pieces), a potion of Cure Moderate Wounds, and an unsigned note asking the Oni and company to intercept the delegation from Gokuri.

Kajuji tells Ember that even though Sonny and Saigo can be healed, they’ve been infected by the rats. The exhausted escorts rest in the ruined tavern before returning to the river….

It was great to see everyone online last night! I hope you enjoyed our latest session, and I look forward to continuing our perilous journeys.

In the meantime, I’ll see some of you at Jason E.R.’s “Star Wars: Dark Times” game tonight or at The Hobbit: the Desolation of Smaug this coming Sunday. Note that because of the movie and dinner, the next “Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” session may be delayed.