Wednesday, November 22, 2017

LEGENDS OF OGRE GATE CHAPTER 40: THE TEMPEST BOX OF SUN MAI

At Wuxia World, you can follow the story of Sunan and Bao in the Legends of Ogre Gate series by Deathblade. The latest chapter is available HERE. If you want to start from the beginning, check out the INDEX

Here is a new magic item based on events in the chapter: 

THE TEMPEST BOX OF SUN MAI
No one really knows the true history of this object. According to some accounts it once belonged to Sun Mai who used it to contain a powerful magic stone. Other accounts say it was a gift from Bao to Sunan and still others claim it was a gift from the Demon Emperor in his early efforts to persuade Sunan to join him. Whatever the true story, the most popular accounts place it in the hands of Sun Mai. The legends claim that the power from the stone continued to grow inside the box, long after the object was removed. In the hands of Sun Mai, his profound enlightenment and heroic deeds, bestowed the box with even more powers. There are stories of him using it to capture elephant demons and even briefly using it to imprison Supreme Judge Yu. The more vile the being, the longer it can imprison it. 

This looks like a simple box, constructed from the Era of the Demon Emperor. It is made from wood but reinforced with metal bands that create an eye pleasing design. If one looks closely it is clear the design is meant to resemble a phoenix or dragon. The box is small, but when opened it creates an enormous vortex of wind, a tempest that sucks in one being of the users choice. Roll Command against the Resolve of the target. On a Success the target is pulled into the box and shrunken down to size. They can be contained there indefinitely, or until the prisoner makes a successful Meditation TN 10 roll. Creatures or people imprisoned who have -6 to -10 Karma can make 1 Meditation Attempt per year. Those with -1 to -5 Karma, can make 1 attempt per month. Those with 1 to 5 Karma can make an attempt once per week. Those with 6 to 10 Karma can make an attempt once per hour. 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

SONS OF LADY EIGHTY-SEVEN SESSIONS 1-2: RUBY AND PEARL

This was the start of a new campaign where I hope to blend together Wandering Heroes of Ogre Gate and Strange Tales of Songling. The main part of the campaign will occur in Qi Xien, but the World of Songling will exist as a dream-realm that comes up from time to time (it may take a while to get there though). The Lady Eighty-Seven sessions are about the criminal underworld, the thieves, killers and other unsavory characters of the Jianghu. 

Note: These details were largely compiled from Kenny Yeung, who plays Qin Wuji. 

CHARACTERS
Qin Daofeng: Eldest son of apothecary Qin in Daoxu. Skilled in poisons and the use of rope darts. Idolizes the criminal underworld and eager to join the ranks of Lady Eighty-Seven.

Qin Wuji: Youngest son of apothecary Qin, skilled with poisons and rope dart like his brother but prefers the bow. Has no interest in joining a gang but is roped in nonetheless out of concern for his brothers safety.


Boorish Drunken Sword: Married to Guan Nuan the daughter of Guan Rixin, Lady Eighty-Seven's eldest son. He is therefore the grandson-in-law of Lady-Eighty Seven and being paired with new recruits Daofeng and Wuji to prove his worth to the family. Skilled at Swordplay and a notorious drunkard.

SESSIONS
Early in the month of the Monkey Moon, the party was brought before Lady Eighty-Seven. They went to her manor in Mai Cun, a small city in An District of Fan Xu province. There they entered a reception hall flanked by men dressed in black robes, many missing their left eye (too many to be a coincidence). They bowed before the matriarch. 

"Qin Daofeng, I am told you and your brother wish to be a part of our sect," said Lady Eighty-Seven. "I am sending you with my grandson to take care of a small matter. If you perform well, I will consider letting you join. But understand the consequences for failure and disobedience in our organization are strict indeed. Do you two still wish to continue on this path?"

The brothers answered in the affirmative and Lady Eighty-Seven nodded. 

"There is to be a small caravan of goods traveling from River Village to Tung-On. I have good information that they are evading the obvious and safer route through Mai Cun, and Daoxu, and my instincts tell me there may be Celestial Plume, a new and prohibited trade-good, aboard. Attack the caravan, find out if there is Celestial Plume there and make it look like the Temple Hill Gang were behind it. Take whatever you can from the wagons as well. Can you do this?"

"Yes, Lady Eighty-Seven," Said Qin Daofeng. 

"Good, good, there is more. If there is indeed Celestial Plume aboard, find out what you can about the source and its destination. If Celestial Plume is making its way through our territories, we should be the ones making that arrangements. Report back when you've made progress and mind the Patrolling Inspectors*."

They bowed and left, but before departing Boorish Drunken Sword said "Before we go I must stop at my brother's house. I heard a rumor that he just came into possession of some high quality wine and I wouldn't want to miss this opportunity."

They went to the house of Guan Yan, the brother-in-law of Boorish Drunken Sword and the Sheriff of An District. There they waited in the courtyard until Guan Yan arrived. Boorish Drunken Sword drank heavily from his wine vessel. 

"Brother, a bit early for drinking so much, isn't it," Said Guan Yan, flanked by his constables. 

"It is never too early for good wine, and I have heard people say you have just acquired the best; is this true, brother?"

Guan Yan nodded, "I was merely teasing, forgive me. You must have heard about my Divine Phoenix Wine, it is quite excellent."

"Then I must insist you let me have some before I go on this vital mission for our grandmother," said Boorish Drunken Sword. 

Guan Yan nodded and said "Of course, how much would you like?"

"Three containers of wine."

"Let's make it four."

"Good, brother. Bring me some wine!"

Guan Yan gestured to his men who brought four containers of Divine Phoenix Wine. Boorish Drunken Sword punctured the cloth lid and sampled it. It had bite and made him feel a little sluggish. "Good wine Brother, thank you!".

As they left, Qin Wuji became suspicious and inspected the wine. He detected an odor which reminded him of Kang's Spine Freezing Wine. He informed Boorish Drunken Sword but he seemed unconcerned. 

They stopped at Boorish Drunken Sword's house, where he had an argument with his wife, Guan Nuan, before telling her he was going on a mission for her grandmother. 

Guan Nuan told him to bring back a jade comb. 

The party they made their way north toward Tung On and they eventually found a caravan that seemed to be the one they were after. The men of Black Lotus Security company, an organization that recently set up shop in Daoxu, protected the wagons. The party launched an attack immediately and brought the men down with a combination of Storm of Arrows, Daofeng's rope dart techniques and the ferocious stabs of Boorish Drunken Sword. The planted daggers (the preferred weapon of Temple Hill Gang) all over the area and in the wounds of the fallen. Then they inspected the caravan and found 80 pounds of Celestial Plume. 

From there they went to Mai Cun and delivered the Celestial Plume to Lady Eighty-Seven, who told them to find the source. They traveled back to Daoxu and spent time resting at Qin's Apothecary. Then they went to Black Lotus Escort company, and Boorish Drunken Sword waltzed into the main hall. 

"I want to hire you!" He said. 

The leader, who said his name was Weeping Lotus, blinked and said "What sort of services are you in need of?"

"I have a lot of barley hat I need to take through the mountains to the east, the journey may take months, how much will this cost me?"

"The mountain to the east is only a few days travel before one reaches the shore but our rates for a twenty man escort would be 400 a day."

"Do I get a barley discount?"

"No, we have set rates," said Weeping Lotus. 

Boorish Drunken Sword continued to press for the barley discount, which Weeping Lotus continued to refuse. Eventually Boorish Drunken Sword left. 

While Boorish Drunken Sword was occupying Weeping Lotus' attention, Wuji had been prowling the grounds and found the kitchen in the back, in an open-lean-to area. He also spotted a well. They went back to the apothecary and procured a sleeping agent from their father. Then Wuji went back to the well and placed the substance into the water. They waited until he security company ate, wrapped their faces in cloth masks, and went to the main hall. 

There everyone was passed out and Weeping Lotus was pointing at them, in a stupor. They knocked him out and tied him to a tree. 

Wuji did most of the talking, explaining that they didn't want to have to harm him, but would if he didn't tell them what they wanted to know. At first Weeping Lotus refused and said he had orders which he couldn't disobey. But when Wuji presented him with a basket and lifted the lid to reveal hundreds of Phoenix Scorpions, Weeping Lotus lost resolve and began giving them information. 

"There is a man named Qian Xiao, you can find him at the Fei Beast Rice Shop in River Village. He is where we are getting the plume from."

"And where is it going?" Boorish Drunken Sword asked. 

"To Iron God Meng in Tung-On. Friends you do not want to make enemies with this man, I assure you."

"Iron God Feng certainly sounds formidable," Said Wuji, "But these names often mean little when put to the test. Thank you for complying, the Temple Hill Gang is fair if anything else, so we shall let you live."

Weeping Lotus began laughing. "You are not Temple Hill Gang."

The group debated what to do with Weeping Lotus. They decided to kill him, and so cut off his head.

They went back to the Caravan, hoping to acquire some of the goods they might have missed. When they arrived they noticed more bodies on the ground than they had left; a lot more bodies. 

Wuji launched a Storm of Arrows at the men on the ground and heard grunts and groans as the arrows sunk into flesh. Three women then stormed from one of the wagons and a number of the bodies began to stir. 

"Its an ambush!" said Boorish Drunken Sword clashing with the three women. 

Between Wuji's arrows and Daofeng's ropedart, they were able to slaughter the men on the ground before they rose. However one of them began setting off a firework, which Daofeng stopped by plunging his dart into the man's neck. 

Boorish Drunken Sword killed the women and they plundered the wagons. Inside they found 400 pounds of salt, more rice, 17 silver headbands with phoenix on them, and a brazier made of ruby and pearl. 

From there they went back to Mai Cun. In the market Boorish Drunken Sword found a jade comb for 4,000 spades and managed to get 300 spades knocked off by throwing in Divine Phoenix Wine. Then they went to Lady Eighty-Seven and spoke with her again. 

"Very good," She said. "You may keep that brazier as a reward, as for the headbands, find an antique shop and get more information on them. And take this," She gestured to her men who brought them a box with 10 silver taels inside. 

"Shouldn't we let you keep most of the headbands for safe keeping," said Wuji, "In case they are valuable."

"Are you concerned that you cannot protect all 17 headbands?"

Boorish Drunken Sword stepped forward "I am not concerned. We can protect them."

Looking the party over she said "Very well, I will hold on to 16, you take one and have it evaluated." 

Wuji nodded and said "I also wanted to ask; when we tried to convince Weeping Lotus that we were from the Temple Hill Gang, he clearly didn't believe us; are they all women?"

"Temple Hill Gang are mostly women, though they do have a few men," said Lady Eighty-Seven. "They used to be nuns and monks of Hen-Shi Temple, but they were attacked by the Emperor's men when he began his campaign against the Cult of Hen-Shi. They were given facial brands marking them as murderers, so they would be unable to easily join temples elsewhere, and they've since become bandits in the surrounding hills."

"On the matter of the Celestial Plume," She continued. "Find out about this man in River Village and learn more about Iron God Meng. I want to see if we can work with him."

The party nodded and departed to carry out the remainder of their task.

This is where the session ended.


*Presently Lady Eighty-Seven controls or influences many of the Sheriffs and Constables (the civil wing of enforcement in the area) but has considerably less sway with the Patrolling Inspectors (military posts).