Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.48, which was held on Sunday, 2 August 2015:
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 AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinder, and FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules, Skype, and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:
- “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 (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
- “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; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
- “Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu” [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
- “Ember Talon” [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
- “Soske’ Tiatoshe” [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
- “Saigo Kasugi” [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
- “Tokoro Gawa” [Drew S./departed ]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10
“26 to 28 August 1227 B.C.E.:” While hiking in the Bamor Mountains and hunting a chaos dragon, the onetime diplomatic escorts were attacked by a wyvern-riding Oni. They defeated the Earth Yai and learned more about their quarry.
The adventuring party rests in a winding canyon. Jung-Mo prepares to scout ahead in disguise as the Oni Gu Hyong-Kim, with Niruth enlarged by an Animal Growth spell to appear as adult wyvern Gwang Mi-Ja.
However, Soske’ points out that Wind Walk would enable him or Saigo to travel more easily. Jung-Mo and Ember are glad to not endanger the young wyvern, and the Nannuattan Ninja flies off.
Sonny and Saigo take first watch, while Toshi, Ember, and Soske’ recuperate from recent battles in camp. Jung-Mo flies north over an old battlefield, with bits of armor poking out of the snow.
Wu Jen Toshi swaps out Fireball and Mass Snake’s Swiftness for Suspended Silence on some shurikens (throwing stars). As night falls, Saigo and Sonny spot six furry creatures popping up from the rocks.
Jung-Mo recognizes the panther-headed aide to Kenmotsu Masashi, the mayor of Hei Kuan who fled after a plot to sacrifice villagers to a demonic Yao-Mor was revealed. Still in disguise as the Oni, Jung-Mo lands and asks the Bauh-Yin about Masashi’s whereabouts.
Nadisu Rajendra says that he is tired of babysitting the Bamboo Spirit Folk, but he challenges “Gu Hyong-Kim’s” tale of a close encounter with outlanders (Jung-Mo’s team). Feline Rajendra eventually agrees to report to Kaosu Uirumu. Jung-Mo hopes to lure the chaos dragon into an ambush away from its lair.
Back at camp, the cute critters begin attacking the horses, plunging hollow, needle-like tongues into the animals. Saigo initially plays dead while Sonny wakes the rest of the party.
Kensai Sonny smashes the one attacking his horse Yip, and Samurai Saigo saves his own steed. Toshi kills another with a shuriken, but Soske’ only grazes one with an arrow. The Shukenja identifies the attackers as Keukegen.
Ember keeps the panicked mounts from running away, while one Keukegen latches onto Saigo’s face, draining him of blood and spirit. Sonny fails to rip the furry facehugger off the Bamboo Spirit Folk.
Soske’ dodges a soul sucker, and Saigo manages to slice the Keukegen off with his sword. Toshi finishes off the remaining vermin with shurikens. Soske’ also casts Cure Disease on Saigo to keep him from turning into an Undead, and Druid Ember heals the horses.
Out in the Dragon Pass, Jung-Mo stealthily follows Rajendra as he acrobatically moves through the rough mountainous terrain. The flying Ninja’s attention is diverted by a swarm of snakes or worms headed toward the camp. He descends for a better view and is disgusted by a writhing mass of eyes on crawling stalks.
Jung-Mo backtracks to where Najendra told him that Masashi was hiding. Again posing as the Oni, he interrogates the cowardly mayor and tosses a poison dart at him as a warning. Jung-Mo then sends Masashi after the panther man and toward the eye stalks before returning to his companions.
Sonny recommends that those camped under an outcropping off the main trail stay out of sight. The eyes pass the camp, and Toshi and Soske’ believe that they are some sort of spell cast by the Chole Lung (chaos dragon) rather than a particular type of monster. The group readies for its final confrontation….