2007-03-15 Killing Tatsuki

Last time (2007-02-28 Scouting for Morioka), the party was saved just in time from a {TPK Total Party Kill} by the appearance of Umisachihiko, the kitsune myobu Myung had met in his very first adventure near Nikko. (Both race and class are from the [[Kitsunemori_Campaign_Setting?]].) Umisachihiko had come together with the Hoori priest Konoe who will be joining the party as an NPC. Konoe is a lousy fighter, but he’s a great healer and will come in handy in future encounters.

Umisachihiko healed the party using his Art of Healing myobu powers and led them to the little temple up on the ridge with the stone guardian, not knowing that it had been desecrated and covered by rubble. He suggested they continue to the kappa lair nearby, to rest and heal under their protection.

The party has already killed two or three kappa, but none of the present party members had been involved, thus nobody objected. Opinions are divided regarding the kappa. On the one hand, they obviously kill innocent humans, on the other hand they seem to have a reason: Humans are slowly but surely destroying their rivers and caves, pushing them back further and further. For now, they felt like going along with Umisachihiko.

Once they arrived, Umisachihiko translated for them and talked to Masaru, the kappa that had been guarding the dark lake to the north-east of Musashi’s castle Nijo. Masaru didn’t like the smell of Hitoshi’s poultice emanating from the little box Myung had stolen from Musashi, but was unable to locate its source. He asked for a present before hosting them for the night, but the party had nothing of value they were willing to part with. Masaru then offered a deal: If the party could remove the terrible weapon lying at the bottom of the lake, he’d allow them to stay in his cave. The party agreed.

When Kyoshi took of all his armor and prepared to dive, he had the forethought of tying a rope around himself and telling Kubo San to pull him out when he gave a certain signal. On his first dive, he found the corpse, pieces of armor, and something else – a tentacle wound itself around his arm and pinned him down. Kyoshi gave the signal, Kubo San started pulling, and Myung jumped into the water to help Kubo San. Together, they effortlessly pulled Kyoshi, the octopus, and pieces of rotten armor out of the water.

A second dive then revealed the corpse itself, and a magical cold steel naginata. The corpse must have been the demon hunter Itagaki who had been boasting of his prowess and his weapon made of metal that had fallen from the sky. It seems that he fell victim to the kappas’ traps.

Myung managed to convince the kappa that the party should be allowed to rest in the cave even though Kubo San was unwilling to part from the cold steel weapon. Around the fire, the party, Umisachihiko, and five kappas started an uneasy discussion. It turns out that Manabu had sent three clerics out to conquer the surrounding villages. One of them had been sent to Musashi’s castle, one of them had been sent to Nikko, and the last one had been sent to Tobu. Umisachihiko said he would go and warn Nikko, where as the party decided to ignore the evil cleric in Musashi’s castle and head for Tobu.

The next day, the party took a detour, and watched the Tobu valley from a ridge. Undead were moving beneath the towering walls of Manabu’s castle. In the evening, a group of half a dozen undead and a cleric returned from the swamps and walked towards the castle. The party decided to spend the night up there on the ridge.

Morning broke and the party descended down to the swamps and headed for Tobu, got lost, and ended up at Ueshiba’s Tomb where refugees from Tobu were hiding.

Another day passed while the party observed what the evil cleric did, and in the evening an attack plan was drawn up. There were six bows amongst the surviving able bodied peasants of Tobu, and all three party characters had bows. The evil cleric crossed a bridge alone in the morning, looked for a fetid pool full of putrid corpses hundreds of years old, and animated them, returning in the evening.

The party weakened the bridge so that it would break, hid themselves and the farmers in the early morning of the next day, and waited for the cleric. Soon enough he came, failed to spot them, did in fact fall into the water, got hit by several arrows including a sneak arrow by the rogue, and died in the surprise round.

Awesome!

An unholy yari and 24 small black onyxes each worth 25gp (Animate Dead materials) was found amongst the evil cleric’s equipment.

Notes:

Continued at 2007-03-22 Killing Kazuki.

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Define external redirect: Kitsunemori Campaign Setting