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/tg/ - Traditional Games

In a previous greentext thread I began to share stories of Hida Ishigaki, a Crab Clan Samurai. A couple of anons in that thread aksed for more, but since it's pretty damn full I figured I'd just bake some fresh bread for it.
>I have made mention in passing before, but I am not a smart person. If my mind apears to be moving quickly it is an illusion created by a familiar situation.
>Being a parent was most definitely NOT familiar.
>I was so focused on my wife's health during her pregnancy that I never once gave any thought go what would happen afterwords.
>My wife and I were both Emerald Magistrates.
>my home was a week's ride from the wall.
>And I had no holdings to bolster my income
>How then, was I going to wander the length and breadth of the Empire while making sure my family was safe?
>And what of our daughter?
>It's true that traditionally a married woman takes over running the household and raising the children, but enough women went back to court, or regained their figure and donned their armor again that it was just fine to retain some nursemaids.
>But Naomi, so bereft of parental love, would never want that.
>For that mater, a large, belligerent and loving family suited me just fine.
>I looked over at Naomi
>she still looked tired from her ordeal, but the color had returned to her cheeks.
>My daughter grghled happily in her arms.
>She was already on her third meal, and it was only midday
>I tried not to be jealous of my own newborn daughter for monopolizing my wife's prefect breasts.
>I sat down with wife and spoke with her about the future.
>As I suspected she fully intended to raise Daiko herself.
>Besides, Ishigaki-kun, I am still sick.
>I do not wish to slow the rest of you down anymore
>Naomi uses confused blink attack
>it's super adorable!
>Neither your illness nor your compassion have ever been a burden on us.
>You're a water tensai! You heal our wounds, you give us speed and strength in battle, you provide clarity when even Kitsuki-san can't find a clue!
>We need you.
>so does she.
>she was right.
Read through the entirety of the story last thread and just couldn't get enough, keep it up man.
Is Naomi being NPCd?
>So make some Sake.
>The Mantis, as usual, thinks to solve this problem like a merchant
>Look, all you need is a fresh water source to open a brewery, and everyone knows the Crab make great sake.
>You'll have an income, something for her to manage, and you can use that to get a few ji-samurai vassals of your own to keep her safe while you're away.
>The monkey piped up. If you need Koku, Hime-san I can help.
>We all stare at him.
>What, with your one rice paddy?
>No, Hime-san has been quite well, actually.
>I don't how much she's making, exactly, but I get a 5 koku allowence.
>A year?
>No, a month.
>Is that a lot?
>Samurai, as rule, do not bother with matters of money.
>Their lord provides them weapons, armor, food and a place to stay. They have no need of anything else. To suggest otherwise it to insult one's Lord, implying that the Lord cannot provide for his retainers.
>That's how everyone says it works.
>That's not how it works at all.
>It IS true that many samurai have no idea the true value of a koku, or how buisiness actually works.
>When you are in the lands of your Lord, and you need a place to sleep and food, you enter the inn and are given these things as a mater of course.
>You may leave money behind if you wish to especially polite, but there is no shame in not doing so.
>But when you are away from your Lords lands it IS expected that you compensate others, even if they are just peasants, for the things they provide you.
>You are taking from THEIR Lord, he is being a polite host, and you should compsensate him with a gift to be polite as well.
>That traditional gift takes the form of a small piece of metal with a hole in the middle of it.
>The greater the request you make of the Lord's servants, the more pieces of metal you should give in return.
>Yes monkey, 5 koku a month is a fairly decent amount.
>Well, anyway. How do I juggle my duty, my desire to be near my family, and my wife's desire to give our child a warm and loving home?
I hope you don't mind, but I grabbed the screencaps from the previous thread to put here for the uninformed.
We should probably split that up so that it is easier to read.
>A solution, quite literally, fell into our laps
>Winter was soon to be upon us again, and our superior wished for us to attend the winter court at Kyuden Hida.
>Our superior was going to be there, and they wished for us to join them as their attendants.
>This was not exactly what I had in mind when I wanted to stay close to my family.
>I had felt some treipidation bringing my friends into the Crab lands already, now we were being told to go spend a winter in a castle that was a part of the Wall itself.
>Kitsuki-san saw my look of consternation.
>He reread the letter. Twice.
>Ishigaki-san. This letter. It is implying that Naomi must come as well.
>... But she just gave birth last week!
>I am aware. I think it is Them.
>We all felt a chill run down our spines.
>Save Toshiro, who did not yet know.
>A maho-tsukai, who is also a Ninja, had been influencing our superiors since the day we all met, maybe before, and trying to kill us.
>Toshiro grunted sourly.
>And we're still not sure why.
>Toshiro stood up. Leaning on the tetsubo he used for a crutch.
>I will protect them.
>I went and hugged my wife and daughter.
>Greedy pig was suckling again.
>That's right Daiko, you grow up big and strong.
>... I'll get a fresh Kimono for you.
>Kyuden Hida
I really really really REALLY hope your GM hasn't read Mirror Mirror
>We bundled up Naomi and Daiko under as many blankets as we could
>Daiko blurbled and kicked at the cold autumn wind, but she was smiling, enjoying the sensation.
>The monkey watched her.
>nodded his head.
>I want one.
>We'd been avoiding bringing that subject up with him
>His wife was a bit prickly on that matter.
>she could be a bit prickly on any matter, really.
>No, she's not so bad anymore.
>I mean, her letters aren't an endless stream of insults or anything.
>But you haven't been home since we left?
>Well, you know. I'm just calling this my pligramage. Supposed to take a year, right?
>Money's. Just no sense of right and wrong.
>We passed the journey with mild banter and idle speculation on the future.
>Recent events had naturally brought family into everyone's mind and it was obvious all were contemplating marrige and children.
>Naomi tried to protest that we were the ones bearing the Palanquin, since we hadn't kept the porters around and had no place to stop and get more.
>But she was beloved by all of us, and we insisted she rest as much as possible.
>Gurgles and coos seemed to brighten the dearry landscape
>Naomi, hidden behind the screen of the palanquin, allowed herself to be just a silly right back to our daughter. Tickles, tummy blowing, and goofy faces.
>She did have a younger brother after all, so she had practice entertaining infants.
>Toshiro never bore the Palanquin. He had enough work thumpdraging along with us, after all.
>But he kept pace with the Palanquin, stubornly refusing every offer Naomi made to make room for him.
>To the relife of both the Kitsuki, and the Monkey.
>It annoyed me that the mantis' could have handled the extra weight without dificulty, and knew it.
>On occasion, I wonder why I dislike the mantis so much.
>Then I realize that my list of greivences must be so long there is no point in remembering each and every insult.
>Kyuden Hida loomed large in the distance.
Does anyone have a screencap of the illusionist with a cue stone? Background theme is "Tomorrow"
>There are two schools of thought on the construction of a castle.
>In one style the caste is surronded by walls. Not just one wall, but layers of walls forcing an enemy to breach one gate after another while dealing with sorties and archers. This is the style the Crab use most.
>In the other style, the interior is made to be deliberately confusing, with blind turns, right angles, dead ends, and only a single correct path. The more pacifisitc clans use this style. It is eaiser to make the castle pretty in this fashion, then one made clearly and solely for war.
>Of course, the Kaiu are the greatest engineers in the empire. Few realize that the Great Kaiu Wall is, in fact, built in THAT style.
>Within and beneath the Wall there is a twisting labrynth of tunnels, corridors and traps.
>And not the kind of traps most Rokugani think of. There are portcullises that will slam shut, cutting a portion of a force off from the rest, but there are many more deadfalls, spike pits, scything blades, grinders, flamethrowers and the Kami only know what else. Cruely and efficiently destroying any enemy force that gets inside.
>And, since Kyuden Hida forms a part of the Wall itself, on could say that Kyuden Hida is built in BOTH styles.
>It is an impresive and dour edifice, a clearly imposing monument to the might and endurance of the Crab clan.
>Oh, and there's a giagantic Oni Skull hanging over the front gate.
>That's pretty cool too.
>I allowed myself a small grin of satisfaction as the others stopped short, staring at the Crab's Seat of Power.
>Naomi parted her screen, and held out Daiko so our daughter could look.
>There was a tightness in Naomi's eyes.
>Yes, this would be the fate of our daughter. She was born a Crab, and so she would one day shoulder the burden of waging a war that had lasted since the dawn of the Empire itself.
>I swallowed a lump in my throat.
>We passed under the skull and I felt the tingle of trepidation again.
>The skull is as much a warning to those who would seek shelter in Kyuden Hida as those who would seek to assault it.
>That sense of trepidation was swept aside as we entered the courtyard.
>every where you would care to look, large burly hunks of metal drilled and spared.
>Kyuden Hida held Three THOUSAND of the Crab clan's finest warriors.
>Foremost among them were the Champion and the Hida House Guard.
>And it's not like there were no children or civilans in Kyuden Hida.
>All those Samurai need cooks, porters, labor crews to help repairs and cleaning, eta, etc.
>And this was the HOME of the Champion. His family lived here as well.
>Should the Shadowlands attack there are procedures for protecting those who are not warriors.
>Perhaps my time away from the wall, where I saw myself as yojimbo to all those unable to fight, had made me oversensitive to danger.
>That thought worried me.
>That was one of the nine types of false madness.
>I would speak with Toshiro later, to see if my fire had indeed been disturbed.
>We were ushered into a waiting room where our superior, Ikoma Tsabutai awaited us.
>We bowed and made our greetings.
>Tsabutai-sama arched an eyebrow at my daughter's solemn greeting.
>Naomi gave birth but two weeks ago, Tsabutai-sama. Your letter implied you wished for her specifically.
>hrm yes. I had thought her magic would be able to answer many of the questions that are bound to arise in the coming months.
>I did not realize he had given birth such a short time ago, though. I see you didn't even have time to find a proper nursemaid. I must apologize for this inconvenience.
>apologize with your life, fool
>I thought

>Instead my wife and I both assured Tsabutai-sama that it was no trouble at all, and that we were happy to fulfill our duties.
>Good, good. I am delighted to have such splendid subordinates. I shall hold you both up as examples to shirkers in the future.
>Kitsuki-san used the opening to ask
>Forgive me Ikoma Tsubatai-sama, but what questions do you foresee arising? We do not even know what it is you wish of us yet.
>Ah, you need not concern yourselves with trivial details. Just do as you have been so far and I will call upon you when I have need. otherwise, feel free to enjoy the Winter Court here.
>He said that like he owned the place.
>We accepted his dismissal.
>And were shown to our rooms.
>As Kyuden Hida is qualified to host the imperial court, it has many guest rooms for visiting dignitaries.
>Any courtier would be apalled at the spartan quarters provided, while remaining oblivous to the fact that these rooms are some of the safest in the castle.
>As Emerald magistrates we warented middling tier rooms. So, bare with a futon and only three people to a room.
>But the others insisted that they cram the four of themselves in so Naomi, Daiko and I could have some privacy.
>I snagged a servant and asked for some more blankets, explaing Naomi's poor health.
>As he scurried off, I heard a familiar sound from our room.
>Naomi was coughing again. Another bad one.
>I took Daiko up in one arm and held the other in front of Naomi.
>She doubled over it, going limp and allowing the fit to pass.
>Daiko stared intently at Naomi, and didn't make a sound.
>I laid Daiko down as the fit passed, then cradled Naomi with her back to my chest. She was sweating hard.
>The others came in; Kitsuki-san heard.
>They produced small cloths I used to wipe her sweat away as Toshiro brewed her medicinal tea.
>Mantis picked Daiko up when she began to fuss. She calmed down quickly.
>No Daiko. That's a mantis. You don't know where it's been. Icky icky.
>I thought.
>Naomi's eyes fluttered open and she looked up at me.
>I'm sorry everyone, I don't mean to be such a burden on you all.
>Hush, Naomi.
>Toshiro handed me a cup of warm tea for her.
>He politely looked aside as I finished wiping the sweat from her chest and underarms.
>I pulled her Kimono closed and took the tea cup, holding up to her lips.
>As she sipped her tea the Monkey spoke.
>You're not a burden Naomi!
>Mantis. Not even a bit.
>Kutsuki-san Indeed this much is nothing, really.
>Toshiro I think of Ishigaki as a brother. That makes you my sister. Think nothing of it.
>She smiled and leaned back into me.
>The others politely ignored our public display of affection.
>Kitsuki san started the discussion.
>Tsabutai-sama has always given the impression he has things planned out well ahead of time, even making fortunate accidents seem intentional.
>But there was something a bit odd about how he acted tonight.
>What do you mean?
>it's simple math, even you could do it Ishigaki. I cannot believe that Tsubatai-sama "forgot" when Naomi-san would give birth, even if was only a general guess.
>Wait, do you think Tsuabatai himself is tied to THEM?
>I cannot say. THEY have been carefull to use agents to do their bidding, hiding behind cuttouts before. It may be they influnce someone who has Tsubatai-sama's ear.
>But I do know that by investigating his relationships we will certainly grow closer to finding THEM.
>The Monkey cracked his knuckles. Can't wait for that.
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Back later. Don't try and shoot my food.
Here's a terrible pun to entertain you while I eat.
irl, Naomi's player ended up taking over the game from the previous GM. So Naomi was DMPC'd.

But as you can see from these later posts we wanted her to remain active in the campaign.
Bump for great justice!
>With Daiko tucked away in the nursery during the day, the rest of us set to work investigaing
>Step one was straightforward and simple, we just needed to see who was connected to who. Even the real nature of the relationship didn't matter, just that the ties existed.
>As always, there is a right way to meet people in Rokugan.
>Properly, one is introduced to a stranger by a mutual acquaintance. The person making the introduction takes you to the person you're meeting, and greets them. That person the returns the greeting.
>Why hello [introducer]! And this must be...
>at this point the introducer tells them your name.
>It is rude to make someone confess their own ignorance; you may be implying they're just stupid. Or someone who does not know that you've net yet met may get that impression.
>So to save face, the person you are being introduced to acts like they already know you, then trail off
>so that the introducer can act like they are being rude by cutting the other person off when they answer.
>I've never really understood why so many grown ass adults insist on playing pretend so often, but I'm not about to make waves buy saying that out loud.
>Naomi and Kistuki-san both navigate the court with ease. They're quite good at getting introductions, as well as having people who want to meet them.
>The rest of us... well we don't cause any incidents.
>I hover about, rudely joining inconsequential conversations about polite, inoffensive topics such as weather and bonsai gardens. Then I watch other people make introductions and note who's speaking with who on behalf of who.
>I have to dip out periodically to check on my daughter. I use this an excuse to write things down, because there is no way I could track of the tangled web I'm investigating.
>Once I entered the Nursery to find Naomi already there.
>You holding up alright?
>Hai, Ishigaki-kun.
>She been eating again?
>No, I just wanted to see her. You as well, I see.
>I fished my notes out and snagged up the brush and inkpot.
>My calligraphy was...legible. It was very legible.
>Naomi glanced over my shoulder.
>I see.
>Don't judge me, there's a lot of people here.
>I know.
>She's teasing me.
>I glance around.
>No one in sight
>I give her rump a soft smack
>She yelps and rubs at her behind.
>But she's smiling, eager for more playtime.
>We push aside our desires and head back out to court.
>The Mantis is still speaking with the same three people he had been with when we left. He moves slowly in court.
>The Monkey has been flitting about, introducing himself to everyone who will lock eyes with him. He seems oblivious to how much aggravation he's causing.
>The opening rounds of winter court are in full swing.
>That evening
>We present our findings to Kitsuki-san. He's glad I took notes. Naomi's memory proves to quite sharp as well, and she recounts the day with sufficient clarity that even Kitsuki-san is impressed.
>I'll need time to go over all these notes, and figure out which direction we should move in. The rest of you should just act normally, for the time being.
>Normally, eh?
>Good, get out our room. My wife and I have a conversation from earlier to finish.
>The next day we headed down to the same room we had been in the previous day.
>I looked around in dismay.
>I realized I didn't recognize a single person there.
>I wasn't that I hadn't been paying attention, far from it.
>But this was the court of Crab Clan Champion.
>There were a LOT of courtiers here, many high ranking, and almost all of them wondering what they did to deserve this punishment.
>I saw one Asako courtier, so young his cheeks looked like they had never felt the touch of a razor, trying to start up a conversation with one of the House Gaurd standing around the room.
>I didn't catch what the Gaurd said but from the look of horror on the boys face I suspect it was something along the lines of PISSCUNTSHITCOCKNBALLSDOUBLEASFUK.
>No one in the Empire can use foul language quite like a Crab.
>I had just resigned myself to another long day of note taking when Naomi tugged my kimono.
>There, that man is the current Master of Earth.
>I looked to where she indicated and saw a mumified corpse conversing with none other than the Kuni family Daimyo.
>I remembered Naomi's mother saying her husband was a candidate for the next Master of Earth.
>Looking at the current one I could belive it.
>Dark brown skin that was allmost entirely wrinkle was stretched taut on his bony frame. A few wisps of translucent white hair spilled from the back of his skull, and a goate of the same color stretched down to the floor. Both eyes completly clouded over with cataracts, and thin, bloodless lips pulled in over pale pink gums. Not a single tooth left in his head.
>I took a moment to be impressed that that thing had managed to cross the entirety of the empire to be here.
>As I watched, the Mummy of Earth rapped it's tapin stick twice. An atendant rushed to it's side, knelt, and placed a teacup in the outstretched claw.
>I looked closer at the attendant.
>it was Naomi's father.
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It was Naomi's father.
Oh shit.
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>Well shit.
>The way Naomi grips my arm tells me she saw him too.
>Take her and leave.
>Go looking for the others
>Spot Kitsuki-san
>get the fuck over here head jerks from outside the room
>Kitsuki-san excuses himself, comes to join us. Takes one look at my face and asks
>How bad is it?
>Her father is here.
>Do we know why?
>Naomi shakes her head.
>I have sent letters, of course. But I have not heard from them since we left the castle.
>A familer thumpdraging heralded the arrival of Toshiro
>I have something improtant you must hear... and you seem to have made an unpleasant discovery yourselves.
>Kitsuki-san nods.
>I'll get the others, emergency meeting time.
>We head back to our rooms. I snag Daiko on the way, to help calm Naomi.
>She's hiding it well, but now that she's a mother herself she can see clearly just how abnormal her father's behavior has been.
>Her own sense of Honor, and proper conduct, is at war with real feelings for him.
>So smother in cyoot to numb those emotions until she can sort through them.
>We bring Toshiro up to speed on the nature of Naomi's family.
>She makes half hearted excuses for her father, as her Honor demands, and more vehemnt excuses for her mother and older brother doing nothing to stop it.
>I'm will to accept he was probably an ass to Oni-san as well, and that's why Oni-san seems such a daddy's boy.
>But at the end of the day I don't love Naomi's mother, or her brothers. I love her. And their inaction allowed her to be hurt.
>Toshiro grunted.
>Naomi... Your grandfather. Was he a Shugenja as well?
>His element?
>Let me guess, every shugenja in your family?
>All Earth.
>I hadn't know that. Naomi was ill from birth. Jurojin had turned his face from her. Of course she would struggle with the Earth Kami. And that had broken a very old family tradition.
>I understood just a little better why her father despised her so. And I hated that.
>Toshiro then told us what he had learned.
>The Master of Earth was here, and he was dying.
>Yeah we knew about that. Naomi's father is one of his attendants.
>And the later part is obvious once you see him.
>I think you misunderstand. The Master of Earth himself does not think he will ever leave Kyuden Hida.
>Naomi's head jerked up sharpley.
>Are the other masters here?
>No, just him.
>Naomi bit her thumb.
>While the recommendation of the former Master caries great weight, it is ultimately the council that decides who will join their ranks.
>The council of Masters is technically a circle of equals, but seniority does count, and the Master of Earth has been on the council for longer than all the others combined.
>He may intend to simply appoint his successor and not care at all what they rest of the council has to say.
>Safe to say that's a pretty big insult?
>Then all his attendants...
>Candidates for the position, most likely.
>Mantis grumbles.
>So he ran all the way to the other side of the empire just to avoid poloticking over who gets to be the next Master of Earth when he finally croaks?
>Toshiro speaks again.
>No, nostalgia I think. The Kuni Daimyo spent several years studying under the Master of Earth when his father was still the Daimyo.
>As I understand it, in his youth the Master of Earth spent a year on the Wall.
>Everyone was surprised at that.
>You shouldn't be so taken aback, the Kuni family are the foremost practitioners of Earth magic in the Empire. We have always been close to the Master of Earth.
>yes but to come here...
>Well Earth magic does cover spells that call upon Jade, and strikes at the impurity of the taint. One could hardly call oneself the MASTER of Earth without have some experience in the matter.
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>Oh. I see.
>What is it Ishigaki-kun?
>You know Kyuden means that a castle is deemed important enough to host the Emperor's Winter Court, right?
>Well, Kuden Hida has hosted the court only a very few times, and most of those were times when the clans summer wars were threatening to get out of control. It's always used as way for the Emperor to remind everyone not to weaken the Empire TOO much with their infighting.
>So you think the Master of Earth is doing the same thing? Testing to see which of his candidates is trying to master their element, and which is just trying to advance their career?
>Yeah, if he's the kind of guy who would spend time here of his own free will.
>The Monkey was the one to say it.
>Wow Naomi, yer dad's fucked.
>Daiko put an emphatic exclamation point on the monkeys statement by filling her diaper.
>And like that Naomi and I were left alone with our daughter.
>Even my best friend, tears cutting streaks through his face paint, thumpdragged himself outside faster than I thought a man with a club foot could move.
>Out of love for my wife, I ordered her outside. She had enough issue with breathing.
>I would face this challenge alone.
>we spent the next few days gathering as much information about the court as we could.
>Kitsuki-san made some contact with the several of Tsabutai-sama's connections, and began to study them.
>we were all certain of it. Someone, somewhere in this court, was the link that could lead us to our Ninja Blood Sorcerer.
>Toshiro kept watch over the Mummy of Earth, under various pretenses. Since it seemed to wish spend most of it's time in discussion with the Kuni Daimyo, being near his families head was often excuse enough.
>The rest of us tried to avoid being seen by Naomi's father as much as possible.
>We didn't know how much, if any, a grudge he held, but we felt it best not to risk it.
>Hopefully a castle that can house thousands would be large enough to avoid a chance encounter.
>One day, in the third week of the court, a haggard looking nursemaid shuffled nervously at the edge of the room we were in.
>She was staring intently at me.
>Curious I walked over.
>Ignoring the fluttering fans as I initiated conversation with a heimin.
>Um, great samurai, would you hapen to be Hida Ishigaki-sama? She kept her eyes downcast and head bowed.
>I am.
>And your daughter is Hida Daiko-sama?
>Is something wrong with my daughter?
>She looked up in surpise, yelped when our eyes met, then quicly droped her gaze again.
>No, No nothing is wrong! I'm a sorry to have botherd you
>Hey take it easy. I'm not mad or anything.
>I realized that she had commited a serious breech of etiquitte by looking into the eyes of Samurai.
>In this world there are four types of people. Or perhaps it would be better to say there are people, and three other types grouped by how close they are to being people.
>A Samurai is a person.
>A farmer is half a person
>An Eta is not a person at all
>And below even Eta are the Gaijin and things outside the Celestial order. Dirty though it may be, even Eta have souls. Gaijin do not.
Fuck, I've been looking for this forever. Thank's anon!
>It is well within the rights of any samurai to demand whatever they wish from anyone of lesser station, even if what they want is the life of the lesser.
>Of course, it doesn't really work that way.
>Those half people still produce, be it rice, buildings or even, in the case of merchants, coin.
>Slaughtering your lords servants, even though it is your right, is still squandering your lords resources. And if those peasants belong to someone other than YOUR lord, then it becomes a very big deal.
>So this peasant girl had risked coming to the atention of a Samurai, something most peasants hope never to do, and had then looked him the eyes as though she were his equal.
>I understood why she was scared.
>But I've never been the type to care about accidental slip ups like that. And besides that, Samurai have a purpose as well. Those beneath us produce. We protect and administrate.
>I wasn't a very good administrator, but I was one hell of a protector.
>So I spoke softly and reasured her she was in trouble, and asked her tell me what was so important.
>Well, Hida Daiko-sama wont stop crying. I think she's hungry.
>Oh, alright then.
>Naomi has four courtiers surrounding her. She seems the center of attention.
>All are young pretty boys in expensive Kimonos.
>I butt in, and they hide sneers behind fans.
>I speak just loud enough for them to hear.
>Naomi, Daiko seems to giving the nurses a hard time. Our daughter seems hungry. Let's go.
>I can see it in their eyes. They're quite taken aback by this.
>Sweet naive Hana-chan. She didn't even realize she was being courted.
>as we approach the nursery, I see a red and yellow kimono standing outside.
>Naomi's brother turned around and smiled at us both
>Hello! It's been some time! Have you eaten rice today?
no prob dude
>Hohiro! it has been so long!
>Naomi is genuinely delighted to see her older brother, so while I WANT to step between the two and glare at him until he leaves, I settle for an elbow nudge and head jerk in the direction of the bawling infant.
>Hohiro feigns surprise. badly.
>What is this? You have a child?!
>I think he's doing it on purpose
>Hai, She's hungry. Please come in, meet your neice!
>Oh shit Naomi what are you doing?
>I would be honored.
>Naomi opened the door to the nursery with a grin that went ear to ear.
>We entered the room and Naomi scooped up Daiko.
>Ishigaki, help me please?
>I lossened up her Obi just enough for her to get free even as my mind was screaming
>FFS He's right there watching you!
>My cheeks were beginning to hurt. I realized my face had been frozen in a fake smile for some time.
>Politely trying to hide my deep seated disgust
>Every polite smile I had ever seen in my life seemed much more sinister to me now.
>Hohiro walked around me to sit beside Naomi, looking at her intently
>So you really did it?
>You're a real mother now?
>Yes, is it not wonderfull?
>Ishigaki-kun was so kind and gentel, he took care of me through the worst parts of my pregnency. And Toshiro-san as well! He is a Kuni, and knows many prayers to Jurojin.
>I see.
>That is wonderful news Naomi.
>And I'm amazed at how quickly you regained your figure!
>Given what he'd said the last time, I was sure that he suspected Naomi did not, in fact, give birth to Daiko.
>It was true that Naomi lost weight quickly after she gave birth, at the time I was worried she was loosing it too quickly.
>She didin't put on that much to begin with.
>In the last few months she was very weak and had to force herself to eat at all.
>But everyone who knew anything about babies assured me that while it was unusal, Naomi was an unusal case, and that she would be fine with rest.
>Looking at her now, it did seem she was fully recovered.
>>Once Daiko finished her meal, I helped Naomi straighten up while Hohiro held his niece.
>I kept the smile plastered in place and prayed that Naomi would be so focused on her brother she would not notice.
>Hello, little Daiko! I'm your uncle Hohiro! Ah, your parent's gave you a fine name didn't they! Yes you do take after your mother, I can you have her eyes...
>So he finally realized the truth.
>His smile flickered. Seems he was genuinely surprised.
>I felt Naomi's hand on my knee. She was squeezing it tightly.
>She was looking at the floor.
>Oni-san. Why are you so surpised by all of this?
>Whatever do you mean, Naomi?
>I sent letters. I wrote every week. To each of you...
>You did?
>Did... you not get them?
>No... I thought you may have hated us...
>Dipshit. If you knew your sister at all you'd know she's not capable of hate.
>I kept the smile in place.
>I thought my face was going to break,
>No Onip-san, I could never hate you.
>they must have just gotten lost. It is a long way from here to the lands of the Pheonix after all.
>Hmm, yes they likely did just get lost.
>Ah, I am sorry, I must return to father.
>Hohiro gave us back our daughter.
>My wife cradeled Daiko in her arms and wept silently.
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Hi /tg/ I came here to humbly ask for a favor.
Long time ago I read a really long greentext about a D&D story about gods and shit, the players were descendents of the gods and their job were try to rise the beliefs of them, the more faith the more power they get. I remember a guy who tried to revive his beloved, a plan to take the place of the gods and a great war against them. There was this god who knew everything yet he didn't stopped them because he knew that it was their destiny or some shit.
I read that shit like 5 years ago but it was so good that I came here with hopes you guys have it because I can't find it.
I had intended to complete the retelling of the adventure, but as usual the story got away from me again and ran long. I didn't even hit the half way point.

My eyes have stated to burn a bit and everything is out of focus, I need sleep. The plan is to be back in 8-10 hours. Get your screengrabs in now, just in case this thread falls off in the meantime. It it does, just look for my War banner up there at the top.
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Requst fulfilled in 4 minutes
You're doing God's work, OP! Bless you!
>I can read this shit once more
feels fucking good. You just made my week.
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Cheers mate, I always love the L5R stories, even though I've never played.

Rest well.
OH FUG, /tg/ I got another request!
This one was about a war robot class in D&D who sacrifice himself for the party against the final boss. I can't talk much about that part because it would be a spoiler.
ugh, stories about paladins falling are SO cliche...
Doing a hero's work there anon. I hope you're resting well, brave crab bro.
How about one from me then?

Alright so a couple of weeks ago my current main in person group was trying to get together to run a session on Labour day. Sadly one of my fellow players wasn't able to make it. Our DM suggests "Hey why not a high power one shot?" I counter with "What if I ran this L5R mod I've been writing and threatening to run for ages?" The group, long staved of L5R jumped on the idea. Now we ended up running for 8 bloody hours so I'll just focus in on my favourite of the things they did.
The Cast:
> A Kuni trying to get into dragon lands to find a cure for a tainted imperial family child that's tagging along with them.
> A Ronin who's Crane and Lion parents fell in love and abandoned their duty to be together. They had to commit seppuku and where assigned each other as seconds. They both fucking perfect seppuku and all involved go 'Well that's some fucking Destiny BS tm. I guess we don't throw their bastard kid off a cliff.'
> And a Scorpion Courtier. I'd asked this player to not return an old character (named Datsu) because I was certain that he'd blow the mod open with his absurd scorpioning talents. So he makes this courtier the guys descendant, using atemi needles and poison just like him. And calls this little hellion Datsuko. The weebs will understand why I screamed into my hands at that.

The Setup:
> The group is in a small town in northern Crane lands for various reasons. They've been deputised as Yoriki to a Jade Magistrate when a local was murdered and the Magistrate's shugenja woo turned up funky results.
> Now they've been running around all day trying to chase up leads to little success.
> Just as they're concluding that nothing they've seen so far matters they run into the town cop. This young guy is the only lawman in town and had made a good impression on the party.
> Unfortunately they haven't seen him since morning when he'd escorted them to the home of the administrator of the village to explain that there had been a murder and that the Jade Magistrate was investigating.
> The administrator was hella rude and dismissive, offended that anyone was suggesting something was wrong in his village.
> While he couldn't do anything in the face of a JM with reason to investigate he had ordered the poor copper to walk patrols of the village all day.
> And so here is the guy again and the party mostly out of ideas.

It begins:
> The party flags him down and starts talking.
> The copper is reluctant to talk about what's going on with him but the dangerous beauty scorpion courtier just runs him over.
> So he spills his guts and explains that he'd been transferred here as punishment for a failure and that the admin had been threatening him with a bad report and preventing him from doing his job while treating him like garbage. Namely stopping him from investigating some disappearing peasants.
> So the party decide that the scorpion should go and see what info she can get from the admin.
> She cruises in and getting horrific good use out of her tech and dangerous beauty advantage seduces the admin and gets him to spill his guts. As in makes one contested roll so well that I just have to shrug and go 'well let me tell you all of the info now'
> She asks about the cop.
> Turns out the admin had requested a cop be assigned to the village as part of his preparations for a visit this winter from some powerful in-laws.
> He'd turned up and introduced himself in duty uniform giving a bad impression mad worse when days later he'd broken up a bar fight and one of the locals involved had a huge bitch fit about him.
> This convinced the admin that the poor copper was a mindless thug who had to be controlled.
> So when the threat of a bad report worked super well the admin just shrugged and kept using it.
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> So the scorpion proceeds with the seduction.
> By which I mean she scratches him with her long poisoned fingernails.
> The admin chumps the resist roll and goes out like a light.
> At this point the Ronin's player interjects "You should probably toss him off, for appearances sake."
> The Crab's player, who is married to the Ronin's, agrees.
> The Scorpion player looks at them like they've lost their minds and replies "What, do you think I an amateur or something? Of course I do."
> So that mess made the Scorpion heads off into the guy's house to ransack it for blackmail worthy info.
> She finds a diary detailing all about the cop and why it'd happened.
This is actually where that info came from I fucked up that previous bit please ignore my failings like honourable samurai.
> More than slightly miffed that this useful resource has been denied to their investigation because of this petty crap, the Scorpion finds the store of super quality sake that the admin had gotten in to use to welcome his in-laws.
> And she poisons it with the nastiest stomach turner she's got.
> At which point I could but throw up my hands and declare "Well it's not going to be for a month or so but you've ruined this guy's life now."
> They where all very happy about this.

Ah, such bastards this group. They hate the Crane as much as I do.
Later tonight I will redo my screencap into a masterwork screencap series worthy of the tale.
Unless some ambitious anon wants to try their hand at it before that.
For now I sleep.
This one, maybe?
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safety bump
>Naomi took Daiko back to our room
>She said she did not feel well and wished to rest
>I stayed with them until they were both sound asleep
>Then I practiacly ran through the halls until I made it outside.
>I needed to turn my mind off, lose myself in something simple.
>I aproached one of the dueling circles where bushi tested themselves against one another.
>The Crabs standing about, watching matches and waiting for their own turns, gave me some awfully hairy eyeballs.
>My hair was combed and washed, beard trimmed neatly, and I wore a silken Kimono in Crab colors. My only weapons were the Wakizashi and jite tucked into my obi. I wasn't wearing armor.
>And yet I also had the build of a warrior, and the scars to speak of my history of battle.
>To their eyes, I was a contradiction.
>I pointed to largest ball of corded muscle I could see and jerked my head towards an empty circle
>He blinked one, then chuckled as he stepped in.
>What did you have in mind, geisha-san?
>I knew my tsubojutus was just fine. But away from my homeland I had little chance to practice Kobo ichi kai under the eye of a sensei.
>I was worried some bad habits may have crept in unnoticed.
>Would you like to go get some armor first?
>I have my armor here with me, and no I'm fine as is.
>He gave a suit yourself shrug, removed his katana from his obi so the saya would not hinder his movment and took his stance.
>I took mine.
>Stars exploded in my eyes and I almost fell
>Damn he was fast!
>I stomped on his knee, but he twisted with the blow and remained standing. I threw an elbow at his neck that he pushed aside with his palm
>He stabbed his fingers towards my eyes, and I flinched back.
>He followed my backpedal, got his ankle behind my own, and punched me in the sternum. Twisting his hips to add force to the blow.
>I fell on my ass.
>He scowled down at me.
>You haven't practiced nearly enough. Your reflexes are dull.
>I see.
>When I left the Crab lands to become an Emerald Magistrate I had been a warior through and through.
>But as time passed I had spent more and more time learning the ways of courly life, and being a good magistrate. I had let my martial training fall by the wayside.
>Crabs my age, those who had survived this long, were now quite far ahead of me. It would be difficult for me to catch up.
>I stood up.
>again please.
>I spent the day training
>All of it. Kenjutsu, kyujustsu, tsubojutsu, juijutsu, tantojutsu.
>I striped to the waist and went through the old exercises katas we learned at Sunda Mizu to master the Mountain does not Move.
>By exercise kata I mean we take a horse stance while others strike us repeatedly.
>First fists, then boken. Finally tetsubo.
>By the end of it my body was batterd, bruised and bleeding. My nice Kimono was torn and dirty.
>And my renewed commitment to my training had allowed me to regain at least some of the respect of my fellow Crab.
>As I went to head for the baths I caught sight of the Monkey.
>He was staring wide eyed.
>is THAT how you Crabs train?
>A samurai-ko snorted
>HAH. Don't let that softie fool you. Real Crab training is much harsher. We were just going soft on him, ease him back into the routine!
>She was just bragging to the Monkey. I was just a little rusty.
>I wasn't that bad.
>I hoped.
>I'm going to get a bath, did you want something Monkey?
>Oh yeah, Kitsuki-san want's to get everyone together again.
>Did we find something?
>Monkey shruged Iuhknow
>Fine. Tell him I'll be along after I get cleaned up.
>I soaked my aching muscles in scalding hot water, and washed the blood from my cuts and scrapes.
>My body stung all over, like when you peel off some dead skin and a strong wind hits your fresh pink skin.
>I focused on that pain. Then, as I learned to do long ago, I wadded it up into a ball, placed in a sack, tied the sack off, and tossed it aside.
>When I got back to others Kitsuki-san was sitting on the floor with his arms folded up. He looked like nothing so much as a pouting child.
>Took you long enough
>That was very odd. Something must have frustrated Kitsuki-san greatly for him to be in such a foul temper.
>Let's hear it then.
>Kitsuki-san sighed.
>Tsabutai-sama has ordered me to acompany him for "the foreseeable future."
>wait, isn't that a good thing? Now you can
>NO. It is not.
>I am his attendant. I must sit quite and observe, speaking only when I am addressed directly.
>Still don't see how it's bad.
>Every single person he meets with we already know about. And they're ALL on guard around me. The most heated topic I heard all day was a discussion on the merits of various styles of paintings!
>As things stand, he has effectively cut off my attempts to investigate!
>What's worse is he's not even trying to hide the fact that that is what he is doing.
>He never asked me for anything!
>So what your saying is he knows we're snooping around and has cockblocked us by tying your hands?
>Yes. And he wants us all to know he knows. He is warning us to stop.
>The Mantis growled. Makes you wonder what he dosen't want us to find.
>Monkey, laying on his stomach with his chin propped up in his hands, Aside from which one of his friends is a Ninja Tsukai?
>We don't know that our enemy is one of Tsabutai's circle for certain, not yet anyway. It's only a possibility.
>Dosen't him hidding things from us prove that though?
>No. Not really. It is said that everyone has a secret they would rather no one find out about, and it IS rather unusual for a samurai to investigate their superiors.
>That was true. The authority of one above your station was absolute. The Lion Clan Champion could not order a Crane Clan Samurai only because the Crane Samurai belonged to the Crane Champion, who was the Lion's equal in rank.
>We fumed for a bit
>Our best investigator was pinned down
>Of the rest of us, only Naomi had any real chance of being able to continue on discreetly.
>If we continued to peruse our goal, we invited reprisals from Tsabutai-sama.
>He would be well within his rights to punish us quite severely.
>It seemed, for the time being at least, we had no choice but to stop.
>None of us were happy with this turn of events.
>That night
>After Naomi fell asleep I slipped quietly out of our futon and donned my armor.
>I stepped outside our room
>Toshiro was there.
>I'd been sitting out here for the last four days. You never used to be one to hold back what you were thinking.
>Picked up some bad habits away from the Wall.
>He eyed me up and down.
>We left
>The Crab standing gaurd looked us over. Seeing that we were both sensibly dressed they made no attempt to stop us.
>We stepped out onto the southern battlements.
>Onto the Wall.
>A howling wind assaulted us the moment we we set foot outside, and even I had to lean into it lest I be knocked flat.
>100 yards below us, the River of the Last Stand rushed by.
>I breathed in deeply, inhaling the stench that wafted up from the Shadowlands.
>I had feared returning to this place. I feared for my friends, for my family, who were knew nothing of the dangers here.
>because it was the duty of the Crab to keep them warm and safe.
>It was my duty to protect my friends, my family, from the horror that lurked beyond.
>And, now that I faced it once more, I felt serene.
>The Hida family moto is a simple one. I will not fail.
>Toshiro nodded in approval.
>Your Fire is just fine. It was agitated, but that's just the nature of fire.
>Figures he would know what was on my mind.
>And then we heard the scream.
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>And then we heard the scream
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>And then we heard the scream
Is it happening?!
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A long time ago we had a shadowrun storytime PDF. More and more I believe this story may be worth that treatment. Hell, I'm the librarian Anon, and I think it might just be what I accomplish this week.
>On the Wall there is a special duty. The Screamer.
>A Samurai is expected to keep face at all times. Even when peirced by an arrow or cut by a blade, they should not cry out in pain, or fear.
>Shouts of challange, Kiai, and roars of battle rage are just fine.
>But on the Wall some have the duty to Scream. They are placed in most vulnerable positions, so that should the enemy launch a surprise attack, they will be the first targets.
>It is an important duty, to be the Screamer.
>it is also a simple one.
>Live long enough to Scream, and alert the others to danger.
>Follow the Screamer. There you will find the enemy.
>This Scream came not from the Wall, but up from the bowels of Kyuden Hida.
>I bent slightly
>Toshiro leapt upon my back, legs clutching my waist and brandishing his Crutchtsubo
>I ran towards the Screamer.
>As we neared I realized where the Screamer was.
>It was unthinkable.
>Somehow an enemy had managed to get to bypass the Wall, every single gaurd, and enter into the most secure rooms of Kyuden Hida.
>I could hear the Screamer quite clearly, I knew exactly where he was. Three floors up from where Naomi and the others were.
>We rounded the last corner and I set Toshiro down, readying my own Tetsubo.
>Several Crab were lined up outside the room awaiting their turn to step in to fight.
>A bushi came flying out of the room, crashing into the wall.
>The bushi in the front charged into the room with a firece Kiai.
>two others pulled the fallen bushi out of the way. Blood leaked from his armor like soup from a cracked bowl.
>Toshiro and I stepped up.
>The gunso directing the flow looked at us.
>It's not an Ugulu, but something is going on with magic.
>Two bushi came out, one holding the other up.
>They both moved under their own power, but with clear difficulty.
>Toshiro and I stepped in.
>A half dozen red and gold figures lay sprawled about the room. The last one standing hurled a blast of Jade energy at the Creature in the middle of the room. The Energy seemed to wash off it to no effect.
>One of the Crabs spread out around the Oni yelled out a code word.
>Oh great, we've got a Rock Crusher.
>The Crab have several words that are used to quickly convey information about various situations.
>The Crab who spoke up just informed us this Oni was not harmed by Jade or Crystal.
>Some other phrases let us know that we've got a large horde with multiple types of Shadowlands Creatures on the way, the various abilites of an Oni, and if the teahouse you and your friends are in is staffed by monsters in disguise who are unaware that you are on to them, and that your friends should gather up their weapons and meet your outside.
>I'm serious.
>Toshiro grunted an aknowledgment, and fished out a scroll
>I stepped up, taking a warding stance, and stood between the Oni and the Shugenja.
>It was an ugly thing. Squat, all ropey tendons, with four arms ending in black claws. Ichor driped from them and hissed where it fell, scorching the futons.
>The top of it's head was smooth as an eggshell, with two long verticle slits where a nose should have been. I couldn't see a mouth.
>Yep, never seen one like that before.
>It snaped it's arms like a whip at us, and I saw it's arms had two extra elbow joints.
>I took it's blow on my tetsubo, it was strong.
>One bushi hissed as it's claw dug into him. I could see his armor had been melted away by whatever foul substance was coating the beasts talons.
>A shout from Toshiro. A tetsubo, made of magical Earth appeared before me.
>I took hold of it.
>The other Crab struck as one, making an opening for me.
>I Brought my Tetsubo down hard. And again.
>And again. My limbs were invigorated. I moved with a speed I did not posses.
>I spared a glance over my shoulder. Naomi was in the doorway, pointing at me
>The creature was tough, and it fought with wild ferocity
>My fellow Crabs protected me, as I was the one best able to hurt it.
>It howled in frustration, then pain as I struck again, putting all my weight into my strikes.
>Empowered by both Toshiro and Naomi, I felled the beast.
>The other Crabs stabbed it repeatedly making sure it was dead.
>Naomi rushed over to the fallen Pheonix scrolls of healing already in hand.
>But only one of them was still alive. Hohiro, her brother.
>The one that I had seen casting the inefective spell was none other than my dear Father-in-law.
>And there, on the floor, a long mess of intestines the only thing connecting the top and bottom half of his body, was the Master of Earth.
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Holy shit, that would be quite the honor.
>The Crab who had been tossed from the room managed to survive, thanks to Naomi's timely arrival.
>The guards were loathe to allow her and my friends to leave their rooms. Even though she now wore my Clan's colors it was obvious to everyone she was not a Crab by birth. But when she insited that she be allowed to serve her new Clan and informed them she was a Tensai they allowed her to come out.
>His name was Kazuma.
>It was while Naomi was desperately trying to get him to stop showering her with thanks, or at the very least stop trying to break a hole in the floor with his forehead that the Champion of the Crab arrived on scene.
>I am a large man. Most Rokugani must tilt their necks to look me in the eyes. I tower over my wife. I even have an inch or two on most of my fellow Crabs.
>My Champion loomed over even me. With biceps as big around as most mens thighs. His shoulder were the span of the haft of an Ono.
>Ketsuen, the Ancestral armor of the Crab, had gone on a long and strange journey. It had been lost to the Shadow lands, tainted, rediscovered, purified and eventually returned to the Crab Clan.
>The Helmet of that armor, despite it's simple design, nonetheless serves to assist it's wearer in being the scariest motherfucker in any room he cares to enter.
>And this mountain, this battle scared veteran who I could never hope to match up to, this man who can intimidate others with his mere presence, was very very angry.
>And he was looking at my wife, and me beside her.
>Now it was my turn to slam my forehead into the floor. I was of high standing, as an Emerald Magistrate, but I was still firmly within the ranks of the Buke. My Champion, however was Kuge. He was head of both the Hida Family, and the Crab Clan, and so my Lord twice over.
>Crabs do not, as a rule, stand on ceremony. But neither do we tolerate open disrespect.
>And you are?
>I am Hida Ishigaki, my lord. This is my wife Hida Naomi.
>Neither of you are stationed here.
>it was not a question.
>No my Lord, We are Emerald Magistrates in the retinue of Ikoma Tsabutai-sama.
>I see. Why did you come then?
>I had gone for a walk in the night to clear my mind, my Lord. When I heard the Screamer I moved without thinking.
>And you?
>He was addressing Naomi.
>I could tell where the sound of the...Screamer was coming from. I am a a Water Tensai; and I wished to be of service to my Clan.
>Hida-sama glanced at Kazuma.
>You have. Continue to server your Clan well
>Hai, my Lord!
>The Champion then entered the charnal house that was the quarters for the Master of Earth.
>Well? How will the Crab answer for THIS?!
>Isawa Shoji, my father in law, was already raging.
>He was a proud man, and his pride had been wounded severly today. So of course he was looking to blame someone else for the death of the Master of Earth.
>I have no words to express my sorrow at the loss of the Master of Earth. Rest assured we will conduct a full investigation as to how this occurred and those responsible will be punished.
>I had little doubt whoever that was, the Champion would scrape their wakizashi dull on a rock first.
>No matter how you looked at it, this was a big incident. It would have been one thing had the Master of Earth just passed on in his sleep. But an Oni, a creature our Clan eisted to fight, had waltzed into what should have been one of the most secure places in the Empire and ripped the Master of Earth in half.
>In the worst case scenario the Phoenix could raise a stink to the Emperor himself, and the Crab Champion could be held accountable.
>This was, without a doubt, a crisis for the Crab.
>And then Hohiro spoke out of turn.
>Father, please calm yourself.
>This is a great tradgedy for our Clan, the Master of Earth and nearly all his possible successors are now dead. But this Oni was clearly a creature of singular and great power, for it to shrug off the power of so many Earth Tensai.
>Hohiro had given his father a way out.
>Hohiro and Shoju had both failed to protect their Master and their fellow tensai. Shoju, especially was unwounded. That was, embarrassing, to say the least
>So by aknowleding the power of the Oni, Shoji allowed the Crab to save some face while covering his own ass.
>Shoji was temperamental, and vengeful, but he didn't get to where he was by being stupid about it. He knew how to pick his battles.
>He took the out.
>Yes, you have a point my son.
>Still, it is odd such a creature got so deep into the castle, is it not?
>How was this possible?
>THAT is something I would like to know as well.
>Hida-sama's growl promised dire retribution for whosoever had shamed the Crab this day.
>Hida-sama left the room, before Shoji could find a socially acceptable way to bitch some more.
>He aproched me again.
>You said you and your group were Emerald Magistrates yes? And your superior was here as well?
>Hai, my Lord.
>Take me to him.
>we led Hida-sama to where Tsabutai-sama was staying. We waited outside as they exchanged words
>Hida-sama left.
>Enter please.
>We did so and knelt before Tsabutai-sama.
>I have heard what has happened. Hida-sama has aksed me to oversee this investigation. As an Emerald Magistrate, I will have no bias in this mater. I have agreed to render impartial judgment. I shall be relying on you all to bring this matter to a swift conclusion.
>Of course, Tsabutai-sama only sought out testimony. Since no one saw or heard anything unusual until the Oni was already upon the Pheonix, he quickly hit a dead end. And so, with a little persuasion from Kitsuki-san, he gave us leave to investigate on our own.
>We played a game. We had all the gaurds go to where they were just before the attack hapened, and each of us tried to sneak past them.
>we were all caught.
>We enlisted the aid of Shugenja that knew magic to help conceal our movements.
>we were still caught.
>No mater where we entered from, it was only by turning completly invisible that we could get to the Master of Earth's room undetected.
>It was Toshiro who said it.
>If that Oni could become invisible, then it would have been able to escape. It did not.
>We have to consider that the Oni was summoned inside Kyuden Hida.
>Hida's balls, that's horrifying.
>Mantis looked at Kitsuki-san.
>think it might have been THEM?
>Kitsuki-san pursed his lips, tapped his fan to them.
>I have no idea. If we just had some idea of what THEIR goal was then maybe I could say one way or another.
>Alright then. Let's report to Tsabutai-sama. Since we're looking for a Maho-Tsukai we should let the witch hunters take over right?
>I don't think we should, I said.
>Why the hell not?!
>simply because of how stupid it would be to summon an Oni here of all places.
>Look, no one is more paranoid about taint than the Crab clan. you probably don't even know how many times you've all been tested for the taint.
>6 for me.
>you don't count Kitsuki-san.
>Anyway, there's no way a Tsuaki was in here for any length of time without being AMAZING at hiding themselves.
>I'm talking beyond even a finger of corupted jade or Jade Petal tea, because we look for those things.
>We even look out for the mood swings and odd behaviors brought on by the early stages of the taint!
>The others nodded slowly. We weren't looking for a needle in a haystack, we were looking for a needle with a rusty center in a stack of needles.
>The first thing to do then, was clear away as many needles as possible.
>So, who stands to gain the most from this?
>well anyone with a grudge against the Crab, or the Pheonix.
>The Master of Earth was largely pissing on the council.
>I spoke up.
>Naomi... how many of the candidates survived the attack.
>Just one, not counting my father.
>Do you know him?
>I know of him. Some years back he was caught frequenting opium dens.
>I could not look at Naomi.
>I spoke.
>Isawa Shoji did it.
Not op, but ever since I read that fucking thing, I always end up waiting for the Gm to spring that shit when they so much as mention that fucking castle
Thank god, I thought it was jsut me who gets perfectly justified fear whenever they hear the words "Kyuden Hida" and "Winter Court" in the same sentence.
>The master of Earth was going to appoint his successor and damn what the council wanted. This was Shoji's only chance, he wouldn't live long enough to replace the Master of Earth chosen now.
>The attack killed the Master, preventing him form even voicing support for any one of his potential successors.
>It killed almost all of the Shoji's rivals for the position.
>The only ones to survive were a contender with a scandal staining his past, Shoji's own son, and Shoji himself.
>Shoji didn't have a scratch on him
>And he obstinately lobbed useless magic at the Oni.
>There is no way that Oni could have snuck past all the gaurds to enter the Master of Earth's room unnoticed.
>But if it had been summoned form inside the room, or next door, that's a different mater.
>And Shoji would have unfetered access to those rooms.
>I knelt on the floor in the center of the room, surrounded by greatness.
>The Crab Clan Champion, the Kuni Family Daimyo, My superior Emerald Magistrate Ikoma Tsabutai, were all present to hear my testimony.
>As was the man I was accusing, my father in law.
>You would think I would be pleased things turning out this way. I hated that man with a passion. He had hurt my wife so badly I wanted nothing more than to squeeze his neck until his eyes popped from their sockets.
>But this... this was to heavy a crime.
>The crime of being a Maho-Tsukai can and often does blow back on the Tsukai's family.
>Often they are exiled. Sometimes they are even killed along with the Tsukai.
>Being a Tsuaki means you are a traitor to the Empire, and traitors are dealt with in the harshest of ways.
>My wife was a Crab now. She asisted in the investigation that revealed Shoji's plot. She would be spared. But her mother? Her brothers?
>The weight of this had sent Naomi into another fit. So bad she lost consciousness.
>I hated Shoji for doing this. I hated myself more that I could not look the other way for her sake.
>prickly wife
... is that wife a scorpion, by chance?
But if the father is being called out now, it means it can't be him. It means it's the brother, who can use his father as the scapegoat and eventually take power. The way he was surprised at Naomi bearing a child, maybe he used her name to summon an oni, and that she is still alive gives him pause.

Regardless, it's stories like this that make me believe tabletop games are worth playing.
Unicorn. Screencap calls her a Shinjo.
There's no way Naomi would be able to survive nearly that long with her name tied to an Oni. That shit taints you like nothing else.
>The assembled powers confered in hushed tones
>Shoji went purple and sputtered in apoplectic fury.
>Tsabutai-sama spoke
>Indeed Hida Ishigaki-san, we can find no fault with your words. That you must speak out against your own father in law makes them even more damning.
>WAIT! This this this THUG! He turned my daughter against me! Soiled her Honor! I've never approved of their marriage! He only makes these accusations out of jeaolosy and spite!
>be that as it may, Shoji-san, there is enough evidence to call the Witch Hunters. If you are innocent of these ghastly crimes, then they will surely exonerate you.
>The door to the room opened.
>That must be them now.
>The Witch Hunter entered.
>Along with Hohiro.
>Shoji looked at his son with a confused, yet hopeful expression.
>be at ease father.
>The Kuni daimyo addressed his kinsman.
>And? What did your investigation reveal.
>We did indeed find the scroll used to summon the oni.
>Shoji went a deeper shade of pruple
>As well as a pouch of Jade Petal tea.
>What the fuck did he just say?
>Hohiro-san found us, and told us that he saw someone speaking with Isawa Tesai, the other survivor, shortly before the attack.
>He begged us to search that man's room, and while it is expected of family members to lie on behalf of their kin, my instincts told me to trust him.
>Everyone was hanging on every word now.
>Isawa Hohiro-san's instincts were not wrong, as it turned out.
>Ikoma Tsabutai is a Maho-Tsukai!
>Before Tsabutai could finish his outburst Hohiro had drawn his Wakizashi and cut Tsabutai open from gullet to groin.
>maggots writhed inside of his guts, black ichor seeped to the floor instead of blood.
>No clearer proof of the taint was needed.
>I had been wrong.
>I had accused an innocent man of practicing Maho.
>When it was MY superior who had been the one doing it.
>There you see! They're all in it! They framed me to cover for their superior!
>Harboring someone with taint is a capitol offense Hida-sama, your duty is clear! Execute them! ALL of them!
>Like I said, Shoji knew how to pick his battles, and he now had a major advantage in this one.
>Cold eyes turned to me. Everything Shoji had said was terrifyingly probable.
>My fate, and the fate of my friends, my wife, and maybe even my daughter was hanging by a thread.
>The truth is we suspected that there was something amiss about Tsabutai for some time now!
>Arched eyebrows
>Yes, We did not know what, exactly. So we were attempting to investigate, discreetly.
>One must not accuse one's superior lightly, after all, so we wanted to be absolutley sure before we said anything!
>It wasn't QUITE true, but it was close enough.
>They went to fetch my fellows, None of them knew what had transpired yet there had been no time to get our stories straight, if we were indeed conspiring.
>The fact that everyone realized the seriousness of the situation, even without understanding why, and admitted we were investigating Tsabutai went a long way to convincing everyone I was telling the truth.
>My notes helped.
>We were confined to a single room, under strict guard, while they backtracked our investigation. Speaking with those we had spoken too.
>Eventually, they were convicned that we knew nothing of what had transpired.
>Offically, we were duped by Tsabutai. Shamefull in the extreme. We were dismissed from our posts as Emerald magistrates. Though none of us was made Ronin, or ordered to commit sepuku.
>Tsabutai's wife and two young children were executed. We all took very great pains to ensure Naomi never learned of that fact.
>With his past scandal, and being the one that allowed Tsabutai into the Pheonix area Isawa Tessai could not be the Master of Earth.
>The council learned that Shoji had adamantly refused to belive he could not crush the Oni with his own magic. Such obstinance is a hallmark of earth, but the overweening pride behind it was unseemly. The Master of Earth should be the master of his own earth, and so Shoji could not be the new Master.
>In the end, the one who had fought bravely to defend his kin, who had persevered in the face of great hardship, and who had brought forth the evidence that exonerated the Pheonix and condemned the real criminal, Isawa Hohiro, became the Master of Earth.
>Naomi was genuinely happy for her brother.
>The rest of us knew just how terribly we were played.
Friendly reminder that there is Maho that can make Air Kansen transfer the taint from one individual to annother. I'm calling it now: Hohiro was the Tsukai all along!
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I'm going to leave you all here tonight. I've been typing like a madman for several days now.

Rest assured, there are more stories to share. I doubt I can keep up this pace, But I'll always try to get some posts in every day.
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Please do, Anon. This is some of the best greentext I've read in ages.
I second. last time I waited that way for a storytime, it was with the all gardsmen party
Where the fuck do I find non-autistic L5R players to run for?
>didn't highlight spoilers
OP you got a link to the previous thread?
go ask around /l5rg/.
>whole party translates a few words from an ancient plate together before the dungeon starts
>get asked by guardian Elementals who we serve
>plate had the temple's god's name, "burn" and "servants" on it
>druid has to do the talking
>"Ok, what do you answer?"
>looks around the group, tell him to just use the god's name, obviously
>Cleric tells him "Well, I serve Muradin", Barbarian goes "I'm nobody's slave", Pyromancer didn't listen and just starred at the pretty elementals
>rest of party doesn't really react to it
>DM looks at me with shocked eyes
>I look at him with the same eyes
>he facepalms and just says "Roll initiative"

That fucking fight almost killed me, too.
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This story is glorious, and I look forward to your future installments. And to add to the green...

>Playing some 5ed DnD
>Playing Dwarven Artificer
>Urist is a traveling merchant and craftsdorf, quite capable of working damn near anything
>Except wood. Because elves like wood, and elves are faggots.
>Pick up the party shortly after they unleashed a magical apocalypse on it.
>Turns out they have pissed off some dragon cultists, and are being tracked.
>Go to The Library (Yes, it's just THE Library)
>Party finds dragon cultist leader.
>Strict no violence rule in The Library, enforced by Conan the Librarian.
>CN Paladin of Disorder says fuck it, cunt punts the bitch, and high tails it out of there.
>Chased down my Conan. Party passes off the cultist as they are run down.
>Urist just watches the display and continues studying in the library.
>Eventual reunites with the party, several miles down the road.
>Weld the bitch to the side of my wagon with chains.
>Urist's only possession of value is his automated technowagon. Just a wagon that doesn't need a horse, and has all his tools in it.
>Settle down for the night, decide to interrogate bitch.
>Spews some shit about her god smiting us, how we would be hunted to the ends of the earth, blah blah.
>Urist, who had been silent for most of it, breaks out and begins ranting at her.
>"Listen here, you scale shagging twat! Let me guess, they promise you power, influence, control over your lessers! How if you brought them back, they'd shower you in riches and glory. NO! All you are going to get for unleashing an unarguably evil thing back into the world is the right to be EATEN FIRST!"
>Roll an 19+modifiers on my check to persuade her.
>Actually got through to the bitch.
>Next morning, cultists attack. They want their bitch back.
>Proceed to use the Jump spell to suplex a wyvern rider to death, using his wyvern's head spikes to impale him.

>Unanimous throwing of the horns at the sheer brutality of a man being lifted 20 feet into the air by a power armored dorf and them plowed into his own mount until dead.
>Setting is HEAVILY inspired by Brutal Legends (The DM, bless his heart, is the right kind of crazy to pull it off)
>Even the other wyvern rider who saw it threw up the horns.
>Urist was then stabbed in the heart by the wyvern's tail, and bled out on the field.
>That would have been the end of him, but the gods (aka DM) grants favors to those who impress them.
>Urist was struck by a bolt of lightning, heralded by "You've been... thunderstruck!"
>Revived, but still down, the battle rages on.
>The remaining rider manages to steal the cultist bitch, and teleport away. Luckily, it was a weak teleport, and didn't take them very far.
>Somehow, despite having three members in heavy armor, we manage to get the drop on them. Combat is over in the surprise round.
>Cultist bitch fully secured, the party continues along it's merry path of chaos and destruction.
>And that was just my first session.
Fixed the non-highlighted spoiler.
is this all of it or just the stuff from the first thread?
Just stuff from the first thread. Not the screencapper, sorry.
np man thanks for fixing it though
Screencapper here.
Thanks for fixing it.
I was embarrassed to see my goof when I looked it over.
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>We should probably split that up so that it is easier to read.
On it.
Going for a Masterwork level screencap.
Might take a bit.
I just have to say it's all crab-honorific's fault that I spent the majority of last night dreaming about Oni including one that took the form of the floor in order to spread the taint as people walked over it and they tracked it wherever they walked.
Technical issues have arisen.
I will finish my masterwork crab rolls eventually.
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Yeah, L5R onis are scary as fuck
He kept me up two hours past my bedtime. If you aren't tainted yourself, I figure you got off lightly.
Look where we are... I figure we are all at least a little tainted.
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I must be doing something right then.

>The days and weeks following our disgrace were horrible.
>Hohiro became the darling of the court, surrounded by courtiers everywhere he went.
>Fans fluttered and tounges wagged as everyone pondered who the Council would apoint as the next Master of Earth.
>Shoji was in a foul mood for the first few days. His ambitions, while not destroyed, had suffered quite a setback.
>But when he saw Hohiro's popularity on the rise, the wily bastard fell in behind his boy.
>I wouldn't be surpised if Shoji himself started the rumors that Hohiro would receive the appointment.
>Some scoffed, Hohiro had suddenly been catapulted into the limelight, true but his carrer up until now had been good, but not exceptional.
>Others began tendering offers of marriage.
>Each one offering up a better bride then the last.
>Shoji himself talked Hohiro up as well.
>Yes, my son lives up to my high expectiations.
>Due to my stern, yet fair, instruction he has become quite a fine Shugnja.
>Truly, it's only in comparison to me that he falls short. Had he been born another time he would be the best there is!
>I watched this all happen from the corner where I lurked, my stomach churning in disgust.
>if there was a bright side to all this, at least I didn't have to bother with poilite small talk.
>the what the fuck are you even doing here stares were getting on my nerves, however.
>How awful it must have been for you, Hohiro-san, to hear your own sister accuse your father so!
>Indeed, she had stained her honor. Any proper samurai would take their blade up and cleanse their shame
>No, no it was not so far fetched a thing! I belive in my sister still! I am certain she had good reason!
>But she was still wrong, was she not?
>Well, yes, but
>Your loyalty to your sister does you credit, Hohiro-san, but it is misplaced. She is just a Crab now, no longer your family.
>I left before I killed someone.
>I had grown deeply suspicous of Hohiro.
>Of course, I had not one shred of evidence, not one link at all to support this.
>Aside from the fact that it was all to convenient.
>Someone had a grudge against either myself, the Mantis, Kutsuki-san or Naomi. The Shiba had left us, and both the Monkey and Toshiro were later additions.
>That someone had ties to Tsabutai.
>That someone was very likely a Maho-Tsukai,
>They were sneaky enough we called them a Ninja.
>Tsabutai was dead, before we could finish our investigation, to try to find that someone.
>We had been disgraced. Everyone knew that once someone with the power to revoke our status as Emerald Magistrates had a chance to review what happened we would be stripped of our rank.
>Without that commonality, we would likely be split up. Reassigned by our clans somewhere out of the way.
>And there he was. The Golden Boy. Hero of the hour. And now there was talk HE would be the next Master of Earth.
>That, and I hated his guts. At the very least, he never once stood up to defend his little sister from their domineering father. More likely, he followed Shoji's lead and treated Naomi like trash their whole lives.
>The others were unwilling to try anything based on mere conjecture. I couldn't blame them.
>And I couldn't even suggest this to Naomi.
>Her feelings for her father were complex, but she loved the rest of her family unconditionally.
>She was generally happy for her brother.
>She was relived her father was not a criminal.
>There was no way I was going to deliver another emotional blow to her so soon after the last one. She was still recovering.
>I made my way outside, down to the courtyard.
>I was hoping to spar some more and clear out all the clutter inside my head.
>But none of the Crabs would so much as look at me.
>THAT got my attention.
but seriously last time i wanted the story to continue this much it was all guardsmen party
>Of course. We had been the subordinates of a Maho-Tsukai.
>A Crab must remain on alert for posesion, shape shifters, skin stealers, and the Taint.
>Any of these things could cause a Crab to become an agent of the enemy, betraying the Clan to it's enemies.
>It is expected you will watch your immediate superior for sings of these things, because the more responsibility a Crab has, the more damage they could do if they fell.
>At the very least, to their eyes, I failed to remain vigilant.
>And when dealing with maters of the taint, my Clan's paranioa runs deep.
>More than a few must think me a knowing acomplice. As yet untainted, but clearly a servant of Evil all the same.
>I knew what Crabs did when there was someone they all agreed was a liability, even when they could not officially prove it.
>I would find myself surrounded in a stairwell by bushi wearing mempos one day.
>Or I might lose my footing and fall of the south side of the wall.
>They might even target my friends. Among them, my frail and sickly wife.
>I wracked my brains, searching for any possible way to clear this suspicion off of us.
>I realized, quite quickly, that I would need to do something drastic.
>There is a very simple truth to the mater of failure, shame and dishonor.
>Success needs no explanation, failure allows none.
>To make up for our previous failure, we needed to produce a success of equal or greater value.
>We weren't going to be given any assignments, nor trusted with critical duties, in our current state. We were going to have to MAKE a success happen.ourselves.
>But, if we screwed it up again, and compounded failure with more failure, then we would have nothing left but three simple cuts.
>I couldn't risk that for Naomi.
>...but maybe. Maybe.
>I made up mind.
>For all of our sakes, I wold Go Looking for Hida.
>Go Looking for Hida
Please tell me that's not code for "go on a suicide mission looking for the Tomb of the Seven Thunders."
>Many people know of the Twenty Goblin Winter.
>In times where the Clan is desperate for manpower, the Crab Clan will allow anyone to enter into the Shadowlands. Those that return with the heads of twenty goblins will be allowed to join the Clan, joining a vassal family of the Hida, no questions asked.
>There is another tradition that involves entering the Shadowlands and collecting heads.
>Somone who has been terribly dishonored may Go Looking for Hida.
>Hida, you see, never died.
>He simply picked up his Tetsubo one day, and announced that he was going to find Atarsi Hida's son, and the first Crab Clan Thunder.
>That's where the name comes from anyway. You aren't actually supposed to go find the Crab Clan Kami.
>That would be silly.
>Instead you just have to get the heads of eight measly zombies. Sometimes more, if you've really really screwed up.
>This custom arose as a means to salvage warriors who might still be of use to the Clan, so it's usually only invoked when seppuku is the only other outcome.
>But I'm pretty sure just invoking the custom should be enough to convince the rest of the Crab we really aren't traitors.
>I'll go on our behalf.
>The others were nodding along with my plan.
>Except for Naomi. She was worried about me going alone into danger.
>And Toshiro. His mouth was hanging open.
>Aren't you leaving something out?
>Some tiny detail they should probably all know before you seek their aproval for this insanity?
>All eyes turned to Toshiro.
>No, I can't really think of anything else. Just a few minor details.
>So you call going into the Shadowlands, stipped of your daisho, with no jade, food or water, armed with a single masakari and wearing only a white robe MINOR!?
>The others were, of course, less then thrilled that I had left that bit out.
>Toshiro decided to elaborate.
>You're going into the SHADOWLANDS to get those zombies! Collecting the heads is the easy part; it's surviving everything else with no jade or supplies that's hard
>At this point even the Mantis was against my plan.
>They were all protesting, talking over each other even. Naomi the most vocal of all
>I had never bellowed at any of them before.
>I understand your concerns. But I have thought this through. Thoroughly.
>The Crab detest Sincerity. Do you know why?
>It is because when someone is trying to hard to prove their sincerity it seems, to us, that they are simply lying.
>An Akodo, when summoned by his lord, will throw himself violently to the floor, and shout his Lords name so loudly it hurts his own throat. To show his sincere loyalty.
>Crabs have no patience for that kind of crap. Actions speak louder than words to us.
>That's what all this is about.
>Right now we are in a castle full of Samurai who think we were willing agents of a Maho Tsukai! They'll kill us if they have the chance!
>But just invoking the custom proves we were not!
>THAT is Crab sincerity.
>And WHEN I come back, I'll have cleansed our shame as well.
>Toshiro scowled.
>Getting a bit full of yourself, aren't you?
>Even a Hiruma would find it dificult to survive in the Shadowlands without supplies.
>Difficult, Toshiro. Not impossible. It's a race against time, I know. But it's not the first time I've been alone in the shadowlands.
>It's been a long time since your gempuku, Ishigaki. And you had your armor, and jade.
>But I'm a better tracker now. I can do this.
>Naomi butted in
>I am sorry, what did you say Toshiro-san? About Ishigaki-kun's gempuku?
>Did you not know? For their Gempuku a Crab goes alone into the shadowlands and brings back the head of a tainted creature.
>No. I did not know that. So Daiko will have to do that one day as well?
>...I see.
>Naomi wasn't taking that very well.
>I left before my heart broke, and before anymore protests could arise.
>I had to speak to my Champion.
>My friends all followed me, reluctantly.
>I stormed into the room my Champion was in.
>Every voice died.
>every eye turned to me
>My Champions gaze bore down on me, almost crushing me with it's weight.
>What did you say.
>I am sick of the accusing stares following my companions and me. We are NOT traitors, we are NOT servants of evil, and I will prove that to you all! I will go looking for Hida.
>well, the die is cast.
>So be it.
>If you return alive than none may question you or your companions again.
>Make yourself ready.
>You leave now.
>Not quite what I hopped for. But it was alright. I really did plan on succeeding. I had just hoped that even if the worst happend my friends would be absolved.
>I was taken into a private champer. Stipped naked. A Kuni threw water on me, said a prayer to purify my body and soul.
>A pure white robe, the color of death, was placed on me. Belted with a white obi at my waist. I looked for all the world like I was I dressed for my own funeral.
>As I was taken out to the Wall, an improtu parade formed up around me.
>this was all very exciting for the assembled courtiers.
>A secret custom of the Crab Clan, rarely seen by outsiders.
>The solemn air the rest of the Crab carried served to further impress the court.
>My friends came with, to see me off.
>An audible gasp arose from the throng as we stepped out onto the wall.
>Eyes filled with tears as the fierce wind stung them. Frost formed up on eyelashes almost instantly.
>They hid their excitement behind their sleeves, as a fan would simply be ripped from their hands up here.
>They could SEE the Shadowlands.
>All the Crabs about, especially the Champion, dispelled all sense of personal danger.
>It was like coming very close to a dangerous animal in a cage. Scary enough to excite, but in reality quite safe.
>I stepped up to the lift that would lower me into the Shadowlands.
>Hida-sama held out a masakari.
>I took it.
>I got on the lift.
>A cry arose from behind me.
>I looked back to see Naomi reaching out to me. eyes pleading.
>I lose sight of her as they lower me.
>Forgive me, my love. I must do this. For all our sakes, for our future. For Daiko. I must cleanse this stink of shame off all of us.
>It takes a very long time to get to the bottom. I'm still wet from the purification ritual. And there is nothing to shield me from the harsh winter wind on this lift.
>I do not care. I don't even feel the cold. I am a descendant of the Fortune of Fire and Thunder. This much is nothing.
>I reach the bottom.
> The river of the last stand rushes on before me. There is a boat already here for me. Brought out from the tunnels, no doubt.
>I hop into the boat and get to the other side.
>I need to call hida's name until I am well away from the wall. I am looking for him, at least ostensibly.
>That's going to draw some attention. My first real ordeal then.
>Move quickly enough so I can stop letting everything know where I am, then deal with whatever DOES come to see what all this noise is about.
>I break into a run.
>I can just make out the dark shape of all the people up on top of the wall, watching me walk into what they think is certain death.
>I will enjoy the looks on their faces when I come back.
>I attempt to orient myself. I have a plan to find enough zombies quickly. Before the taint gets into me. Or I die of thirst.
>Or worse.
>Finding your way in the Shadowlands is terribly difficult. For a horrifying reason.
>The Shadowlands is a realm of pure taint. There are almost no Kami here. It is known that the most heavily tainted Earth becomes a swampy, soupy mass. And the Taint is constantly pouring into Nigen-do from the wound left by the fall of the Ninth Kami.
>It was Hiruma Furoshoshi who fist realized what this means.
>The land moves.
>the earth upon which you walk is but a thin layer, like tea leaves floating in wide bowl. And as more taint seeps into the world, the tea is stirred.
>fortunately, the drift is slow.
>So long as you know of it, and your knowledge of where things are is fairly recent, you can plan your navigation so that you end up where you intend.
>Most of the time, anyway.
>Oh yeah, one more thing.
>I can still see the wall, beter give out one more shout.
>And a shadow falls over me.
>I look up. I'm on a fairly flat, rocky plain right now.
>I look further up.
>I dive to the side in just in time as a great winged thing slams into the ground where I had been,
>A thick body, covered in matted fur. Legs bent backwards like a chicken.
>A tail. With boney spines at the end. Of course.
>And a head like a human infant. Far to large, of course, but the proportions were right, and there was a layer of what could be called nothing else than baby fat on it's face.
>It's too large eyes were pure white.
>It shrieked at me.
>I ran.
>And dove under a tiny bit of rock that made a small shelf.
>It was apparently used to it's food standing and fighting.
>Still, it came after me.
>There was just enough space for me to wedge my thick frame under the shelf.
>The creature had no hands, only wings.
>The shelf made it difficult to claw me, or strike me with it's tail.
>I jabbed at it with my masakari. I could see whatever this was I was going to need jade to truly hurt it.
>So I hunkered down, annoying it occasionally, until it got fed up and went in search of an easier meal.
>I was scraped up more than I would have liked by it's clawing, but I was a damn sight better off than had I tried to kill it.
>I thanked the shelf that save my life and headed deeper into the shadowlands.
>Seeking out the Fields of Hair.
Crab-anon, what was the approximate time period of the campaign? Were there still Dark Moto around that you had to be careful of?
>I moved as fast as I dared.
>Mostly I kept my ears pricked up for any danger.
>I was no Hiruma Scout, but I knew the basics of moving without detection, and of navigating. I wouldn't have made it back from my gempuku if I couldn't so at least that much.
>Outside of my armor, it was much easier to move silently, and while I was no Kakita or Mirumoto, I was more agile than average.
>So my first day in the realm of evil was spent moving from cover to cover, hiding as mobs of goblins marched past, avoiding the cave where an Ogre clearly lived. and being very, very careful about what I step on.
>I thanked Shiba-san for his teachings. The meditations I learned from him proved invaluable. I did not wish to eat or drink anything native to this place, lest I invite the taint into myself.
>Nor did I wish to sleep. Sleeping would only get me eaten in the night, and any place that looked reasonably safe would assuredly already have a tenant strong enough to avoid being evicted.
>So I meditated, Quiteing my rumbling belly. Setting aside the dryness in the back of my throat. emptying my mind to rest my body.
>And was not surpised when the goblin warmonger came at me with a rusty katana.
>my eyes snapped open as he came into my reach. I took up my masakari off of my lap and struck.
>His blade bit into my shoulder.
>Mine struck his head form his shoulders.
>I bellowed a challange at his followers and they scatterd, not wishing to fight something so strong.
>I would need to be careful for a while. Goblins were dangerous precisely because they were weak and cowardly. They would set up an ambush for me later.
>I was managing to make it deeper without being wounded severely, but I was also being slowed down by my own caution.
>Without jade, I risked being tainted in a mater of days.
>I continued on.
>Sure enough those little shits tried again.
>Up ahead the land rose sharply, into a mesa. Split on two by a narrow path down the middle.
This is where it gets weird. The GM wanted to cherry pick which bits of which time were active. So the Shiro Hiruma and the Hiruma Lands were still lost to the shadowlands, Even though we were well past the second day of thunder. So think of it like a grab bag of classic and new.

I was told that the Dark Moto had been broken, and Moto Tsume killed, but that I COULD find some survivors if I was unlucky.

As an aside, this little one on one session we were playing was quite fun. My GM seemed surprised that I COULD play Ishigaki in this manner, and make use of all those level 1 and 2 skills I took because for RP reasons. It was pretty obvious he thought I was going to jsut stand and swing on the first flying Oni, get eaten, reroll and he could get back on with the adventure he HAD planned.
Were there Spiders and Empresses yet, or are we still in the Toturi dynasty?
>Might as well just hang out a sign that says "COME ON IN AND GET EATEN!"
>Nope, not having that.
>So I tore off the top of my robe, fashioned a qucik tie around my masakari so i could hang it form my neck, and set to work climbing up the mesa.
>It was tough. I lost my grip twice, and got some nice cuts on my hands. But I made it.
>And there they were. Staring down at the route through the mesa, rocks in hand.
>I fell upon them from behind.
>Panicked they tried to flee.
>I hacked and hewed, shoved one over the side.
>I let them escape only once I was certain I had culled enough they wouldn't try a third time.
>Then moved on. My time was running out.
>Every step I took IN,was one more I would need to take OUT. While still going without food, water, or most importantly, Jade.
>What I wouldn't give to run into a friendly nezumi right about now.
>But I didn't speak their languge, nor did I have any baubles with me. So I didn't pin my hopes on that.
>At last I found it. The Fields of Hair.
>The Fields of hair look like a grassy windswept plain.
>In the Shadowlands, looks deceive.
>What, at first glance seems grass is actual hair. Thousands of corpses, buried up to their scalps.
>And of course, in the shadowlands no corpse in just a corpse for very long.
>They wait, patiently for you to draw near.
>When you disturb their hair, they rise up. This disturbs others. You can get overwhelmed very quickly.
>So I stopped well back. I picked up a small pebble. And I tossed at the very first tuft at the very edge.
>I got a bit more than I barganed for.
>A full dozen of the damn things came up.
>So I ran.
>They gave chase
>I turned and struck the one in the lead, knocked it on it's ass.
>And ran through them.
>As they followed I turned and struck. Stringing them out in a line.
>Forcing them to fight me in small groups.
>By the grace of the fortunes and my own prodigious resilience, I got my zombie heads.
>Now to get out of here.
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Go crab husbando!
The CCG story had already killed of naseru, but the race to the throne was still going on, so the GM made up his own Dynasty. Neither of us can remember the name though.

I should also clarify a bit. This >>52402351
might make him seem like jerk. Far from it. I have never had a more just or fair foreverGM.
I was simply really good at hiding my power level, playing up the gigantic lout while actually being well versed in L5R lore.
He's in the chair across the room from me right now, reading the thread on his phone.
Forever GM, if you're reading this, then I wanna say that you're a really cool dude and I respect you. It takes balls to play a female character like Naomi and also marry another player's character.
>Were there Spiders
Forgot to answer this one. The spiders were a thing in the CCG but at the time there was no rpg material on them, so we just agreed they didn't exist. While I played variations if Ishigaki in first and second ed, much of this comes from a third ed game that upgraded to fourth ed mid way through. One of the reasons I decided to skip describing the mechanics in the greentext beyond some In Char elaborations and references.
>I turned to go back along my previous path.
>And I saw a VERY large dark shape moving in the Mesa.
>The size of a house, in fact.
>I decided I wanted nothing to do with that and took off in a third direction. If my navigation was correct, I was now running parallel to the wall, going no further in, but also not getting out.
>The zombie skulls left slimy rot all over my back. I had knotted their hair into the sling I made for my Masakari.
>I was never so glad to have gone so long without eating. If I HAD anything in my stomach, I'm sure the sensation would have brought it all up.
>Being a Crab you have to deal with some seriously gross shit from time to time.
>I hope I didn't really hear that.
>I hope that isn't what I think it is
>I looked over my shoulder
>Yep, it's coming this way.
>Fuck stealth, time to run.
>I run at full speed. jagged rocks tear at my feet.
>I'm covered in shallow cuts, scrapes and burises. As well as a few decent wounds.
>I had anything to eat or drink for nearly two days now. I've not slept.
>I hurt. My whole body hurts. It's telling me to just lie down. To let go.
>When something is chasing you there three ways you can get away.
>One is to be faster than something else that it is also chasing.
>I was alone.
>Another way is to be faster than the thing chasing you to begin with.
>I looked back.
>It was gaining.
>So that's a no on the second one then.
>The only other option is to go somewhere it cannot or will not follow.
>My eyes scanned the horizon desperate for salvation.
>I saw it.
>A forest.
>The Shadowlands takes great delight in being WRONG.
>In this case the leaves of the trees comprising this forest were all on the ground. Roots, not branches, spread out in a tangle above.
>praying that the forest was what I thought it was I ran straight for it.
>It was almost upon me.
>The trees at the outer edge were growing very close together.
>No time to find a better way in.
>I dove for an opening I judged I could fit through.
>My shoulders scraped the edges of the trees.
>The roots twitched.
>Then they spat a sticky sap that burned like fire where it landed on me.
>I fell flat on the dirt, desperatly used my masakari to scrape off the burning jelly. Took a small bit of skin with it.
>My weapon was smoking now, so I slammed it into the dirt, forcing the sap off it's edged and smothering the fire.
>I could see the legs of the monster that had chased me in here beyond the trunks.
>They were like an elephants, but there were eight.
>I didn't try to come in.
>So I had escaped being trampled to death by getting traped in a forest where the trees grew upside down and spit burning sap on you if you so much as touched them. And in the process had damaged my weapon.
>Did I mention I am not a smart man?
>Sensei once said 'Scars are proof a man can survive his own stupidity'
>I had a lot of scars.
>I was very good at surviving my own stupidity, I would survive this as well.
>I began to pick my way through woods. Very. Very slowly, in what I hoped was a northerly direction.
>Eventually, I allowed myself to sleep.
>Few of the larger dangers of the shadowlands wold come into these woods. I thought I could just a little rest, enough to take some of the pain in my body away.
>I was right.
>I made sure to draw an arrow in the dirt pointing to what I hopped was still north before I slept. There wasn't much I could use within this forest to guess my direction, and I didn't want to shift in my sleep and lose my way.
>I took up my masakari, the edge a bit coroded, my grim belt of zombie heads, and set out north.
>When I emerged from the forest, I could see it.
>The Wall.
>Just a dim grey line on the horizon, but it was there.
>If everything went well, I would be out of the shadwolands by the end of day three, or was it four?
>I only had to cross quite a few miles of blasted, barren landscape with no cover whatsoever.
>after everything I'd been through, that shouldn't be a problem
>I began picking my way across the rocks.
>A part of me hoped that, this close to the wall, I would get picked up by a Crab patrol.
>Mostly that part was my stomach. And my throat.
>I wasn't sure I could manage a yell loud enough to reach the top of the Wall in my current state.
>Hold on Naomi, Daiko. Daddy is almost home.
>I'm sorry I didn't bring you a present. Next time I pro...
>My eyes snapped open.
>The relief I had felt, so close to my goal, had almost killed me.
>I was walking and falling asleep at the same time.
>I slapped myself to get my adrenaline going again.
>Not yet.
>Not safe yet.
>I will not fail.
>A shadow fell over me.
>oh you've got to be kidding me.
>I spun and struck with my Maskari before it had finished it's dive.
>I managed to change it's diving assault into a crash.
>Unfortunately, it crashed into me.
>My old friend Oni no Baby Face was back for round two.
>We tumbled, rolling end over end in the dirt from the force of it's momentum.
>It rolled past me, I regained my feet first.
>I had managed to hold onto my weapon.
>An invulnerable Oni COULD be killed without magic or the three sacred substances. But this was only accomplished by lots and lots and LOTS of arrows. Some of the more ingenuous, (and cruel) weapons and traps devised by the Kaiu could do it as well. Set a massive Oni on fire and it WILL burn to death. Eventually.
>I had one corroded masakari.
>Could I get close enough to the Wall the Crabs there could kill it, or drive it off?
>It was picking itself up, shaking it's head like a dog.
>I looked at the Wall. too far.
>I looked around. No shelves, no miracles. Nothing I could use.
>It charged at me, I dove to the side, and managed to fend of a swipe of it's ttail.
>It turned to face me.
>It's foul breath steaming in the winter air as it's sides worked like a bellows.
>No way.
>What are you doing.
>this is insane
>as it charged again, I leapt up over it.
>and wrapped my arms around it's neck.
>It made a gugling sound and trashed around.
>Somehow I held on.
>It rolled on the ground, scraping up my back.
>I held tighter.
>It couldn't reach me with it's legs.
>It tried with it's tail.
>The spines dug deep into me,
>My grip loosened, and it took a breath.
>But I held onto it's back anyway. I had one last desperate thought.
>It swung it's tail again.
>I let go in time.
>The creatures spines stabbed into it's own flesh.
>It howled.
>And took off.
>looking for something to eat that wouldn't put up quite such a fight.
>It was only fact that the thing had the mind of a wild beast that saved me. Had it been smarter, I'd be dead.
>I limped off, heading towards the Wall.
>>My old friend Oni no Baby Face was back for round two.
>I reached the edge of the last stand river. I waved my arms, made a sign to alert the Crab that could see me I was a returning Crab, not a monster to be killed.
>I tried to yell but my throat was too dry. So I made the sign again.
>Several Hiruma poured out from the hidden entrances of the tunnes. One got in a boat to come over and get me, the others drew back their bows aimed at me.
>I was brought to the other side. The lift had been lowered.
>Right. If I was in any way compromised it wouldn't do for them to show me a safe path through the tunnels.
>I tried to ask for water. All I did was croak.
>One Hiruma shook her head.
>Up. First you get tested.
>I nodded wearily.
>I wasn't going to keel over in the next few minutes.
>Up I went
>A Kuni was there. They took my trophies, and weapon.
>The Kuni prodded me with Jade.
>He brought a sliver of crystal near to my flesh.
>He spoke with kami.
>He made sure everyone around heard.
>a laddle with fresh water was pressed into my hand.
>I drank like a pig. Greedier than even my daughter.
>The cool water pained my parched throat.
>I drank more.
>enough, Ishigaki-san. Too much water after so long without can hurt you.
>I was surpised he knew my name.
>A lone man in white, with a masakari and carrying zombie heads? Who else could that be?
>By now the whole of the Wall has heard of your tale.
>He glanced down at my heads.
>You only needed eight, you know?
>I'm an over achiever I croaked out.
>I had to head several down the wall to get back to Kyuden Hida.
>I fully intended to set out immediately, but the Kuni insisted I sit and have my wounds tended.
>This is one hell of a story! I cannont even think of one person who went looking for Hida that came back!
>There was a Kaiu there, bringing up some rice balls and water to help me regain my strength,
>She spoke up.
>That's because going to look for Hida cleanses dishonor. It would be rude to bring it up again after they return, neh?
>Hrm, I suppose your right.
>I woke up.
>Safe to say I had abused my body quite thoroughly. I didn't even know when, exactly, I had fallen asleep.
>I looked around.
>I was sitting where I had been when the Kuni was tending me, a blanket thrown over me.
>resting with her head in my lap was Naomi.
>We tried to stop her.
>We told her you would come back, once you had a chance to sleep.
>But we would have had to tie her up to stop her.
>And then, I think, you would have killed us.
>He might have been right.
>I... what you did for us... Ishigaki
>I only did my duty.
>What I've been doing, all this time Kitsuki-san.
>Being strong so that those weaker than me can take shelter in my strength.
>That's what it means to be a Crab.
>I've explained this all already, haven't I?
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This seems a fine time to call it an evening.
Sleep well anons.
is anybody screen caping this before it disappears?
I hope to.
I can't now.
Worst case scenario is that my masterwork screencap will be green colored.
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>This story
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WTF?! No screen cap yet? HERESY! This is one of the best /tg/ greentexts ever t b h.
Easier to have a good cap at the end of the story
>it ends

Are you saying something can kill the crab?
Crab-anon did say that this was his _first_ character at the beginning. Meaning, there were others after this one.
>Our official dismissals arrived in the last week of the Winter Court.
>Just a curt letter informing each of us our services were no longer required.
>Hohiro set out to return to the lands of the Phoenix a bit early. There was a lot of pomp and circumstance surrounding the raising of a new Elemental Master, and he wanted to make a good impresion on the sitting Council members.
>Shoji went with him.
>In al that time, Shoji never once spoke to his daughter, or tried to see his grandchild. That suited me just fine.
>There was a part of Naomi however, a part that I suspected would never really go away, that still yearned for her father's approval.
>This winter had been an emotional one for her. Honor demands loyalty to her parents, even when they don't deserve it. And as unnatural as Shoji's disdain for his daughter was, it was just as unnatural for a child to NOT seek their parent's love.
>Even though such emotions are not discussed and never admitted too, even the most rigidly honorable of samurai have them.
>But we only acknowledge them in plays, in books and stories.
>Because Desire is a sin. One of the three great sins that gave birth to world.
>The ideal samurai has no emotion. They do not desire things for themselves; a samurai is one who serves. They do not regret; they simply follow the orders of their superiors. They do not fear; death is not failure, and they know they will be reborn again.
>There has never, not once in all the history of Rokugan, existed this ideal samurai. Not even the most blessed of Ancestors dwelling in Yomi have even come close.
>Perfection is NOT for mortals. Only the Divine may be perfect.
>It is through our trials, as we seek this unattainable goal, that we advance along the path towards entering Yomi ourselves.
>Given how badly this life was testing my wife, I was certain she would enter the realm of blessed ancestors.
>I wasn't to sure about myself.
That's why I try to hit clean breaks before calling it a night.

If nothing else, time will do it.
I refuse to believe that Hida Ishigaki dies before his daughter grows up to become an even more badass warrior than her father (or an even more badass shugenja than her mother) and makes her parents proud.
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Well, we can be sure that he's not going to croak in the next couple greentexts, because they did get to find out who the Ninja Tsukai was.
But still, sometimes the hero dies in the end.
And sometimes that End is 50 years later in a bed next to the woman you love
Not a worthy death for a samurai if you ask me.
Not to mention highly unlikely.
>I had been comforting my wife through this emotional time. Quite frequently.
>So the sting of our dismissal was lessened, for the both of us at least, by Naomi making an announcement.
>I did not wish to tell you before you left. I did not wish to add to your worries. But now that you have returned I have something to tell you, Ishigaki-kun.
>She snuggled in against me, eyes closed and smiling. We're going to have another one.
>My mind whirled. It was so soon. Daiko wasn't even weaned yet. And Naomi's health... she had several close calls while carrying Daiko.
>And yet, I couldn't NOT be happy at this news.
>I truly desired a vertible brood of children.
>Crabs. We love big families.
>We were all making ready to return to our own homes, our own Clans, and receive our new assignments.
>At least, after what I had done, we could all count on avoiding being tossed off to some corner and being forgotten.
>Still, our partings were sorrowful. We had no idea when, or even if, our duties would ever bring us together again.
>We needn't have worried.
>Destiny had a plan.
Fine, 20 years later at the head of an army charging down a bunch of Shadowlands faggots.
Better. But still not quite more likely than 3 years later from maho spell to the face.
something something something Destiny Belongs To The Mortal Man.
And who can say that the man in question is the hero of the story?
>It was admittedly, a bit long in coming to fruition.
>Toshiro moved in with us for the time being, to see to Naomi's health.
>In the middle of spring, I was surpised by a visit from my Sensei.
>I wanted Naomi to stay in bed and rest, knowing how things had progresed the last time, but she insisted on being a proper host and housewife.
>She even chided me.
>Ishigaki-kun I am not made of porcelain! Let me out of this bed, I am going mad with boredom! Besides, it is the proper thing to do, neh?
>Form over her shoulder Toshiro smirked at me.
>Fine, fine, I get it. But if you start coughing you're going right back in that bed!
>hai hai, Ishigaki-kun, whatever you say.
>I met with Sensei, and the person he brought with him, as Naomi served us all tea.
>Ishigaki-san, this is Hida Kojiro-sama
>Sama? This guy outranks Sensei?
>I took another look at this Kojiro.
>He wasn't much to look at. Large, like most crabs. In fact you'd have a hard time picking him out in group of Crab. In some of that fancy armor made to look like shells.
>I'm not sure why, but I never really liked that look.
>Then it hit me. If this guy, so eaisly overlooked, outranked Sensei then he must be possessed of undeniable skill.
>Sensei continued.
>Kojiro-sama asked me to introduce you to him, and he has questions for you.
>Kojiro-sama looked me in the eyes.
>Why did you go looking for Hida?
>No one was saying it, but everyone was thinking that I was knowing servant of a Maho-Tsukai. I wanted to dispell those illusions before I got corned in a stariway somewhere.
>You could have resolved the mater with a duel or two. Only Crabs would have done that, so it's not as though you'd be facing a Kakita in an iaijutsu duel.
>I'll ask you again. WHY did you go looking for Hida.
>It wasn't just me, though. All my companions were shamed as well!
>Are they not Samurai themselves? Are you saying your friends are so weak they need you to protect them?
Damn, your GM is great for making such a situation.
>Of course they aren't weak! But they all have different strengths!
>I waved at Toshiro
>He's the last person I would call weak, but he can't move fast with his injured leg!
>I am a bushi! When we are in battle, I stand between him and those who would hurt him! It's my duty!
>It was the duty of an Emerald Magistrate to protect other samurai from the consequnces of their own failure?
>Then show me.
>I scowled. Naomi, come with me please.
>I got into my armor with Naomi's help.
>She looked up at me questioningly.
>I just shook my head. I had no idea what this was all about. I was being tested, that much was obvious. But for what I couldn't guess.
>I went out into the garden, Toshiro handed me my tetsubo.
>Kojiro was there waiting for me.
>We fought.
>Not a spar, a fight. Each of trying to kill.
>Naomi and Toshiro had been in battle with me many times. The could tell right away I was being serious.
>But Naomi is an Honorable woman. She kept her composure.
>Blow after thunderous blow was struck. Armor buclkled and warped. Bones splinted.
>At last Kojiro said Enough.
>I straightened. It was a bit hard to breath. My ribs were cracked.
>I've seen you skill first hand. I know you have something personal to fight for. And to return alive after going looking for Hida I know you know well our enemy.
>I will take you as my student..
>that took me aback.
>My previous Sensei explained from where he had been sitting.
>There was a School that existed only for students who prove themselves part of an elite group. It teaches techniques far above the basic ones of Sunda Mizu.
>Hida Kojiro was a Sensei of that School.
>and I was now a student of it.
>I was a going to be a Defender of the Wall.
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I thought that's what all crabs were?
Defender of the Wall is an advanced school (prestige class, for the d20 folks here).
School names in L5R are a little weird. There's a difference between a defender of the wall and a Defender of the Wall, the Latter being much more badass than the former.
The Crab also have the tendency to give things practical names. Why name a spell "Our Lady of Heaven's Blessed Light Upon the Earth" when "Binding" is much easier to say before the oni guts you.
Ah, thanks.

Love the story, Crab-sama. Maybe I can bully one of my players into running l5r.
Lunch break, play some For Honor all this l5r triggered my transformation into an ultra weeb, so I picked it up Back 4-6 hours.
Do other houses ever send support to the wall? Or is it exclusively Crab?
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They do. Some individuals come for a time because they genuinely want to face the true enemey of the Empire. Some end up serving a post on the wall because they pissed off a Scorpion Courtier.

And when the Shadowlands is putting forth a major assault on the Wall other Clans will send in armies as support.

Daidoji, especially, come to serve for a time. It has to do with WHY Cranes dye their hair white.
The first Daidoji was one of Kakita and Doji's sons. He went into the shadowlands looking for the lost Crane Thunder. He came back with a wife, a scar across his throat so he could not speak, the Ancestral Sword of the Crane, and his hair had been turned white by the shit he had seen. Cranes dye their hair white in remembrance of Daidoji Hayaku, Defender of the Doji.
Fukken bump, this shit is great

Unrelated question, bit since this story had me poking around on a wiki trying to translate the moon runes and this seems a good place to ask about l5r fluff; is the sole purpose of Matsu, founder of the Matsu dynasty, to be second best to anyone who needs to be shown a badass? Her wiki entry seems to say she's super mighty and then every entry in her life is her getting beaten, shown up, or rescued.
Akodo was the embodiment of every good sterotype regarding the Lion clan. Great fighter, even beter general. Warior and Scholar both.

Matus was the embodiment of every negative sterotype regarding the Lion. Brash, tempermental, a bragart and glory hound. (Seriously, the only reason she turned Akodo's offer of marriage down was because "If I marry you I become Akodo's wife. If I mary him HE becomes Matsu's husband.")

I think her real problem was that was one of those Muso characters that is real good at slaughtering hordes of Peons but her attacks were to slow and other officers gave her a hard time. 1000 kills? All day every day. Pursue Lu Bu? Best not.
>(Seriously, the only reason she turned Akodo's offer of marriage down was because "If I marry you I become Akodo's wife. If I mary him HE becomes Matsu's husband.")
Tbh that was the only part I liked. It might not be very 'samurai' but I can totally get/dig it.
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Keep in mind, being an asshole and getting your just rewards for being an asshole doesn't mean you can't also be a badass. Pic Related.
I have no issue with that (or think that's not it; her characterization is a lot like a PC I'm playing started out like, so I may be biased/overly sympathetic) but it just seems like her entry on the l5r wiki was "hard and stronk and fighty, the absolute fightyest, unassailable, (except she lost to every named character she ever fought and had to be rescued from the field by her god)"
Her flaws held her back from being a truly great warrior. She was rash, and overconfident, and you know what they say about overconfidence being a slow and insidious killer.
bump until Ishigaki's back.
bump and please tell me someone is screen capping this.
>I spent some time away from my home training in my new School.
>I thought I would have an advantage, as the techniques of the Defender built upon those of the Hida bushi.
>However there was a surpisingly great amount of spiritual training as well, something my straightforward training at Sunda Mizu had not prepared for very well.
>My first lesson expanded upon the Mountain does not Move. But rather than simply passing the shock of a blow through my muscles and down into the earth, I was learning to fight back. upsetting the taint in an opponent with the purity of my own earth at the moment of impact.
>This was a very difficult thing to get right.
>To teach me this, Kojiro-sensei enlsited the aid of one of the Damned.
>The man would not give me his name.
>A witch hunter watched us practice. Everyone knew he was there to keep a close eye on the Damned Crab that was my sparing partner.
>It took several weeks of nonstop beatings, but eventually Kojiro-sensei and my nameless sparing partner beat the technique into me.
>As he saw me off so that I could return home to my expectant wife he gave me a rare smile. >Now put that to good use, Ishigaki-san.
>Hai, sensei.
>Time passed, and while Naomi did lose strength, she fared much better then she had when she carried Daiko.
>I was feeding her dinner while she rested in bed
>She was perfectly capable of feeding herself, of course, but everyone likes to be spoiled from time to time.
>Toshiro-san must have made some improvments to my medicine; I am feeling much better.
>No, I don't think that's it.
>When I was fighting to get back to the Wall, it was you I thought of. You and Daiko.
>I'm a bushi. A warrior. For my friends, for my duty, I would fight and die without hesitation.
>But for you Naomi, for you I would live.
>And I know you're the same way.
>You've just found a strength you didn't know you had, that's all.
>Naomi threw her arms around my neck.
>Ishigaki-kun you say the sweetest things.
>I say the truth.
bumpirino with wizardinos
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So, my internet has been shitting the bed since an hour after I dipped out for lunch. It's been up and down and my router has been reseting itself all god damn day. So if I end up going silent, that's why.

it's motherfucking CUMCASTIC!
>The night Naomi gave birth, Osono-Wo rode the clouds over my house.
>Rain lashed against the roof, the wind shook the whole house and lightning struck the ground almost in time with my own faked moans.
>I appreciated my ancestor's help in driving the evil spirits away, though I couldn't help think he was laughing as I wandered about the house with a futonbaby stuffed up under my kimono.
>The cries that arose from my second child seemed to be trying to outdo Osono-Wo for sheer volume.
>I came in to find a tired looking Naomi holding an ugly red blob. This one was red because it was screaming with all it's might.
>I picked it up, took a peek. And now I had a son.
>Hey, hey you. Knock it off eh? Your poor mother's been through enough already.
>I stuck out my little finger for him, and he seized it immediatly.
>Quite the grip you've got there, little Tetsute.
>Naomi smiled in approval of the name I gave our son.
>It was a year after the birth of my son that Destiny's plan came to fruition.
>In the meantime, I had served my clan by taking a post on the Wall. My new training came in very handy.
>I came home after getting some time off to find Kitsuki-san in my home, bouncing Tetsute in his lap.
>Not even a leter to let me know you're coming?
How rude.
>I grinned, pleased to see my old friend.
>I wanted to surpise you with how far I've come, but it looks like you've been quite busy yourself!
>Tetsute gurggled with delight at the play.
>Daiko came into the room, toddlerunning at full speed.
>She slammed into the table
>Naomi caught the teacups before they could spill
>Daiko plopped heavily down onto her rump. Giggled, then stood up and took off running in another direction.
>I managed to get the door open before she went through it.
>Tetsute squirmed and fussed until Kistuki san set him down. Tetsute pulled himself up with the edged of the table, took a few wobbly steps, fell, and started crawling after his sister.
>Kitsuki-san's eyebrows climbed up into his hairline. No mean feat considering he wore his hair in the traditional style, with a shaven pate and a topknot.
>Your children are very...energetic.
>Naomi smiled with open pride.
>They are both quite strong. They take after their father in that regard.
>They got some of his bad habits to, it seems.
>Toshiro thumpdraged himself into the room and sat down.
>You'd best teach them some proper manners Naomi-san, or they'll get themselves into no end of trouble when they grow up.
>Hey now!
>Oh I will be certain to do so.
>Kitsuki-san sipped his tea.
>I've missed this.
>So, you said you had come along way? What was that implying.
>Kitsuki-san grinned, and produced three folded leters.
>These are requests to your superiors. The Jade Magistrates have need of our assistance.
>Now, it's not as prestigious as our old posts, I know. And it only Toshiro and Naomi who would be the Magistrates, we would simply be their Yoriki.
>However, the Jade Magistrates concern themselves very deeply with rooting out Maho Tsukai.
>He needn't say anything else. Our nameless, faceless foe was a Maho-Tuskai. We were sure of it. We could finally take up the hunt again.
>Daiko and Tetsute were both grown enough that we could leave them with a caretaker while we set off. Neither of us wanted to be away from them for long, but Naomi and I both knew we needed to find out old enemy, or they might one day target our children.
>We took up the letters.
>page 8

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>After an exhaustive hunt for just the right nanny, Naomi, Toshiro, Kitsuki-san and I headed north, into the lands of the Crane.
>We met up with Monkey and Mantis in a port city named Suitengu's Blessing.
>The Mantis sported a brand new suit of full O-Yori, with such ornate laquerwork I wondered if it was meant to even be worn in battle.
>Clearly, he had been making lots of money in the time we had been apart.
>Oddly, his kama were the same worn ass peasant weapons he'd carried since the day we met.
>The Monkey had put on some muscle since I saw him last.
>Hey, hey Ishigaki-san! I did it! I'm a father!
>Jaws dropped, then congratulations followed.
>The mantis snorted.
>How the hell did you pull that off, anyway>
>Do...do you not know how it's done?
>Don't be stupid! Of course I know. I'm asking how you mangaed to get your Hime-san to go along with it, you twit!
>I didn't.
>She just said she wanted a baby one day.
>She's been nicer to me as well. Especially when mom is around...
>So that was it.
>Monkey's mother had been a Samurai-ko before she settled down and got married.
>I had only met her once, but she seemed to me to be quite strong. Maybe not a great warrior, but one possessed of a deep calm. The kind you feel from someone who is exactly aware of their own strenghts and weaknesses.
>Like the quite you feel deep a bamboo forest.
>I could see her calmly wearing down Hime-san's protestations with pointed logic over the year Monkey was on "pilgrimage"
>Probably taking calm sips of tea, not even bothering to open her eyes.
>I hopped my daughter would turn out like that, instead of an O-Ushi.
>but considering how she was already acting, the later seemed more likely.
>Naomi pressed the Monkey
>And? Boy or girl? What did you name them?
>It's a boy! I named him Tokichiro!
>We stayed at an inn that night, staying up late into the night catching up with one another.
>In the morning as we gathered up our things we were greeted by a very strange sight.
Just want to say awesome story so far!
>A woman lurched through the streets, lugging a heavy bucket.
>Her hair was done up in a bun, but tangled strands fell out all over the place.
>Kimono tied in the front, with a shoulder bared.
>Face painted like a geisha but all smeared, as though she had slept with her makeup on.
>She lurched and staggered, and I could tell it was not just the weight of the bucket causing that.
>Liquid slopped over the side. Yellow and brown liquid. There were chunks.
>GoeeeeeeeeMON! yah bashtard! Get out ere!
>Gots a nice gifth for ya!
>It wasn't really our place to stop what appeared to be drunken geisha lugging a pail full of piss and shit from doing...whatever it was she was going to do, but our curiosity got the better of us.
>Kituski-san asked a nearby fishmonger who Goemon might be.
>That would be Doji Goeman-sama, great samurai! He is the magistrate of this city.
>The fishmonger pointed at two large wooden doors forming a gate to a nice house.
>He lives right there.
>We arched eyebrows at each other. Now we definitely wanted to see where this was going.
>Um. Should we not do something? She might get herself in trouble!
>I shook my head.
>That woman is already IN trouble, and she doesn't care. Get in her way and we'll just become targets of her anger.
>The woman stormed up the gate
>and threw her bucket all over it.
>She lost her balance and fell.
>Naomi broke from us at that point and rushed to her side helping her up
>Just as the gates opened and Yoriki swarmed out with yari.
>Well shit.
>I moved to interpose myself between the Yoriki and my wife. Unfortunately it looked like I was also defending the mad geisha.
>The Yoriki lifted the yari at that, and a man with white hair came out of the home.
>That must be Doji Goemon.
>He looked at me first.
>I had taken to wearing my armor and damn the social niceties again.
>Did I miss something? Are the Crab and Crane at war again?
>No, but I wouldn't be a very good Yojimbo if I wasn't ready at all times for danger.
>You suggest that my city is not perfectly safe?
>I suggest it's much harder to be surpised if you are always ready.
>He narrowed his eyes at me.
>Besides which, it's just polite to wear my armor.
>And I took off my mempo.
>He flinched.
>I see.
>I tied my mempo back on and smirked.
>While I had been distracting him, Naomi had spoken quitely to the geisha.
>Then he looked over at Naomi and the geisha
>And you? What do you have to say for yourselves?
>Naomi produced the chop that was her badge of office.
>I am a Jade Magistrate. Is it true you have been not been investigating the disaperances of several geisha in this city?
>What business is it of yours how I conduct my affairs? How do a few geisha going missing have anything to do with the spiritual purity of the Empire?!
>I would not sear you delicate ears with knowledge of unclean things. Suffice to say the servants of Evil have their ways.
>If you will not investigate this matter, than I will.
>I grinned behind my mask. Naomi may seem soft, but she had a core of fine Kaiu steel.
>Her compassion could bring forth some righteous anger on behalf of those who are wronged.
>and it seemed like we had, quite unexpectedly, gotten our first case as Jade Magistrates.
>he doesn't want his daughter to be O-Ushi 2.0
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Thank you, and thanks to all the other anons who've been responding and letting me know how much they like it. I'm glad to know your all enjoying my little bit of greentext here.

And a very big thank you to everyone who is screencaping this. Even if it's just grabing a few posts so you can share them all with someone who can put it all togother later, you're all contributing to small bit of immortaltity for me, and I'm honored you think my story worth the effort.

I'm calling it a night. tommorow I plan to wrap up this next arc of the story. Later guys.

It's the Crane, isn't it? Man, fuck the Crane!
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Anyone have the tale of eduardo/edgaro and his squid bro?
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No Coke! Pepsi!
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bump yo skinny ass
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Ishigaki, you there?
>I leaned in close to Naomi and whispered in her ear
>You do realize that the cause of these disaperances ACTUALLY falls under our mandate, right?
>I do not care. If it is not within our mandate, then we will turn over what evidence we collect to the magistrate. He will HAVE to act then, if we do his job for him.
>Fair enough.
>We did have a right to go poking around, but we were definitely stepping on toes doing so.
>I didn't mind stepping on toes.
>Especially blue and white toes that smelled like expensive perfume.
>The Doji simmered for a moment as he reached the same conlusion.
>Do as you wish then.
>The gesisha looked up at us both, eyes wide.
>She bowed.
>Thank you. Please, put an end to this!
>Naomi knelt down beside her.
>We will, I promise
>The magistrate gestured and his Yoriki butted in, grabbing the geisha.
>I grabbed Naomi.
>I knew what was coming. No honorable samurai could allow an insult from one beneath their station to pass.
>Leggo! I can walk on my own dammit!
>She straightened up her Kimono as best she could and walked over in front of the Magistrate.
>My name was Satsume she said, without looking back.
>Say a prayer for me, please?
>Doji Goemon didn't say anything. He looked at the mess on his door, with a wrinkled up nose, then back at her.
>She knelt.
>And he drew his blade in an iai and cut her head off.
>A Yoriki handed him a handfull of rice paper squares to wipe his blade.
>Someone clean all this filth up.
>All of it.
>Naomi gave me a quick nod once she had steadied herself.
>Mantis gave us an over hear head jerk
>We followed him.
>What is it?
>While you busy antagonizing the magistrate and finding us work, I asked around the street. I know where ...Satsume, was it? I know where she worked.
>Lead on then.
>The madame bowed deeply as we entered, at first assuming we were all customers.
>But then I walked in.
>What Toshiro right behind me.
>Ah, what is the matter great Samurai?
I am now. Had to confer with ForeverGM, go looking through old notes and whatnot. It's been a while, so I may have to take some artistic liberty with the story from here on out.
>Kistuski-san spoke up, his tone gentle to put the madame at ease
>You had a girl by the name of Satsume, did you not?
>She stiffend at the word 'had'
>what did she do?
>Kitsuki-san related the story of this morning to the madame.
>Oh that fool! Goemon-sama does not care about the plight of a few geisha! What was she thinking?!
>Toshiro spoke up.
>She was hoping someone would notice, and investigate. She was right.
>He set his magistrates chop down in front of her.
>We're going to look into this matter. We will need to speak with you and your girls, in order to get to the bottom of this.
>The madame clapped her hands.
>Girls,girls come out here
>Please, great Samurai, sit. relax.
>We did and a girl paired off with each of us.
>They had sake, but only the Mantis drank. The rest of us asked for tea instead.
>I was on duty, no sake for a Crab on duty.
>The madame spoke first, informing the girls what had transpired.
>Tch. Stupid little bitch. Getting herself killed and bringing attention down on us like that!
>TATSUKI! Satsume gave her LIFE to protect us!
>Forgive her outburst, please. She is still in training. I will speak with her later.
>Tatsuki wilted a bit at that.
>Naomi, Kitsuki-san and Toshiro took turns asking questions, getting all the details of the events in question.
>Two month ago, the first girl went missing.
>I do not belive I am overly harsh with my girls, but some simply cannot adapt to this life. So I thought her just a runaway.
>But a week later another one vanished.
>Like clockwork. One a week.
>For two months.
>We asked after suspicous customers, but there were none.
>Or, at least none of the women were inclined to speak of the Samurai that came to visit them.
>With eight girls gone there wasn't a single customer that they had all been entertaining either.
>Monkey suggested a local peasant. Someone who could not afford to come.
>They DID have a few of those. Three brothers, Isaku, Nisaku, and Sansaku.
>Our first lead.
>Isaku, Nisaku, and Sansaku.
I see what you did there.
What is it?
>3 brothers
>Isaku, Nisaku, and Sansaku
>Ichi, Ni, San
>1, 2, 3
>The three little saku's were all fishermen, so we went down to the docks to wait for them to come in with their day's catch.
>Following the addage of a net cast wide catches more fish, the Mantis spoke to yet more peasants, seeing if anyone had anything else to say about the disaperances of the Geisha.
>They did not.
>However, one old man, his back bent with age, mending a net mentioned that other people had vanished without a trace BEFORE the geisha.
>For nearly a year.
>Before the geisha, it was fishermen. And it was 'only' one a month.
>A younger fellow salting fish and setting the out to dry pipped up.
>Don't listen to old Kisuke there, people fall from their boats and drown all the time.
>It's no great mystery what happened.
>Hrm. I wondered about that.
>The three little Saku's came ashore nets full to bursting.
>They looked horrifying similar. Bulbous noses and thick fat bodies. I realized I would have a hard time telling them apart.
>Kistuki-san addressed them. Isaku, Nisaku, Sansaku?
>They looked surpised, then bowed.
>Hai, great samurai!
>We split them up and began to question them.
>Kitsuki-san gave us all a script to work with, basic things about their lives and daily activities.
>I played bad magistrate to Naomi's good magistrate, the Mantis and Toshiro took another one, and Kistuski san questioned the third with the Monkey.
>None of the questions would yeild anything of note to the investigation. The point of the first round was to see who might be lying..
>After we had read off our scripts we met back up to compare notes.
>So far, all three answered the questions in the same way.
>Kitsuki-san scowled. are these the EXACT things they said?
>Toshiro had taken notes, he nodded.
>So had I.
>He scowled. Their responses are identical.
>When asked a question, each responded in the exact same way.
>Three brothers. Unmarried. Living together. And they took great pains to make it as dificult to tell one apart from the other as possible.
This is awesome dude, keep it coming. We don't care if it's exactly what happened as long as it makes a good story.
>Kitsuki-san, the Mantis, and I searched their house. Naomi checked with magic.
>Toshiro and the Monkey kept an eye on them as the bowed, waiting for us to finish.
>We tested them with jade.
>Of course it wouldn't be that easy.
>So we spoke to their neighbors, and those around town.
>We had asked about their daily activites over the last few months, if we could catch them in a lie...
>but no. All we learned was that they had an unsavory reputation.
>When pressed as to the nature of this, it was nothing in specific. They were just...odd.
>Aside from the fact that no one was sure which one they were dealing with, they largely kept to themselves. Speaking only to sell their fish, or when spoken to.
>We set the Monkey on our three little Saku's, tailing them and observing.
>The rest of us ate, I decided to grab a bath.
>While the Monkey tailed the Saku brothers, I decided to stay up all night and keep watch over the Geisha house. Discreetly. Kitsuki-san had wondered if they were all in on it, or just one, since they were so hard to tell apart.
>He assured us he could though.
>There are small mannerisms unique to each. They are very subtle, though.
>So there was no easy way. You'd have to look closely when the right situation presented itself, to see their individual tics.
>This was proving to be quite difficult.
>I treated myself to a couple sticks of dongo after my bath.
>In keeping with my traidiont of attmpting long shots on the off chance they pay off, I asked the owner of the bath house about the Saku brothers.
>hrm. Them.
>I only allow them to come here because the smell would drive us all mad otherwise.
>Seems this shot in the dark had hit something.
>So I asked him how they had managed to get under his skin.
>I've caught them peeping on the women's bath several times.
>All three?
>No, one at a time. That way they can cover for each other by all denying it! Twins are born sharing a soul, but triplets? Eh, I think maybe there is not enough soul to go around for three.
>Pleased with myself for finding something new, I got one more stick of dongo and headed back to the inn to let everyone know what I had learned.
>And got stabbed in the back.
>As I turned down an alleway to head for the inn, a peasant pulled a tanto from their robe and rushed me.
>I heard the draw, but spun to late.
>Fortunately I'm a thick Crab, and the tanto didn't penetrate very deep.
>I spun and jabbed the peasant in the neck with my dango skewer.
>he was wearing a mask around his face. I could tell by his build he wasn't one of the Saku's.
>What in the fuck is going on here?
>He tried to lunge again, but this time I pushed aside his wrist, grabed it and wrenched his arm.
>I snatched off his mask with my free hand.
>I recognized him. One of the Yoriki.
>No seriously, what in the fuck!?
>He elbowed me in the stomach, hard, and I lost my grip.
>Didn't expect him to be THAT strong.
>He took off, my dongo skewer still in his neck.
>I gave chase.
>But outside the alleyway there were still crowds moving about, even though the sun had set.
>Too many people got in my way, and I lost sight of my would be assassin.
>I made my way back to the inn.
>Naomi was a bit distress at my injury.
>Kitsuki-san was more surprised I got hurt at all.
>I was just careless, that's all. Didn't notice him till I heard the sound of the blade being drawn.
>As Naomi eased life into me and healed my wound I let them know it was one of Goemon's Yoriki that stabbed me.
>Great. Now that Doji is trying to kill us?
>Kituski-san shook his head.
>We do not know if the Yoriki was acting on Goemon-sama's orders, Mantis-san.
>Bullshit. Even if he never gave explicit orders, that Yoriki was acting on Goemon's behalf.
>And the neck wound will prove that's the one that tried to kill Ishigaki-san. I say we confront the bastard with that.
>Toshiro objected.
>We've only got the word of the Yojimbo to a Jade Magistrate. And we'd be accusing a Crane.
>How's your Iaijutsu technique, Mantis-san?
>the Mantis grunted at that.
>Fine then. I'll go keep an eye on them.
>I know. Be discrete. I can take care of myself.
>After the Mantis left, I mentioned my thought to keep watch on the Geisha.
>But with the Mantis and the Monkey both spying on people, maybe I should stay here with all of you.
>But the others assured me they would be fine.
>Toshiro spoke up. Naomi and I can set up symbols. We'll just stay in one room. We'll be safe.
>Be careful, Ishigaki-kun.
>I will.
>Since I was intending to be sneaky, that meant leaving my armor behind.
>My intent wasn't to scare off the cause of the disappearances, should it show itself. But to catch it in the act and dispense with all this running around chasing smoke.
>I found a wagon stacked with crates to hide behind, and settled in to watch the geisha house.
>Samurai entered, Samurai left, and soft music wafted out into the night.
>Of course the Samura all wore masks.
>Love is a thing for poems and plays. A Fantasy.
>Whether engaging in an affair during the winter court, or visiting a geisha whose contract you want to buy, you're supposed to be discreet about it.
>The night wore on. The people in the street thinned, then vanished.
>The last Samurai left the geisha house, weaving drunkenly.
>And then, two shadowed figures emerged from a side door in the geisha house and headed away.
>I followed.
>I caught a whiff of opium, so I was able to keep after them without exposing myself much.
>They stopped in a deserted allway.
>The coal from a pipe lit up one of the figures faces.
>What did you want, anyway?
>Tatsuki san, you were so curel to Satsume today.
>So? Samurai are nothing but trouble! Get em drunk, do a dance, take their money, that's it.
>Any one hoping some rich pretty boy will buy their contract is a fool, and anyone who goes out of their way to get their attention even more so.
>They'll kill you for looking at them sideways!
>I can't say your wrong, Tatsuki. But, you shouldn't have spoken up when you did.
>Those jade magistrates might just wonder if you had some connection to the murders.
>What d'ya mean, murders? They just went missing, it's not like we know they're dead or anything.
>I was already moving at that point.
>Oh but I do know
>I got between the two just as the knife flashed.
>It scraped me, and I returned the favor with my tetsubo.
>Catching the Geisha in the side, I pulled my blow so i wouldn't kill her. I just wanted to take her off her feet. I had questions.
>To my surprise, she not only seemed untroubled by my attack, she kept her feet.
>Okay, that's just not right.
>Tatsuki. Run to the inn. Get my companions and bring them here.
>Tatsuki just stared, slack jawed. Her pipe fallen to ground.
>She ran.
>The not really a geihsa moved to give chase, but I blocked her path.
>Your fight is with me.
>In the dim light of the red paper lanterns, I could just make out the dark stain spreading across her side.
>So I did hurt her.
>As I advanced, preparing to strike again, she swung her knife. Not at me, but at the string of lanterns.
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Going to break for dinner.
Also my technical issues are still ongoing. So yeah. just ran a virus check with malwarebytes, and I'm clean. Going to call the ISP if this keeps up for much longer.
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>The last Samurai left the geisha house
Did he now?
Did you know the story about a crab and a crane entering a teahouse...

Me neither, they both are better duellists than me.
>Ba dum tss!
what happened, did you die or something
>Most fell harmlessly into the road, but enough did drift into the outer walls of the nearby buildings that I had to rush over and put them out, lest they start a fire.
>She used those precious few seconds to break from me and run
>I finished stomping out the lanterns and stood there cursing until Tatsuki came back with my friends. Mantis and Monkey weren't with of course, still investigating.
>Damn bitch is tough. More than simple geisha!
>I wounded her though, think you can follow a blood trail this late at night, Kitsuki-san?
>Toshiro had knelt to examine the blood.
>This blood, it's far to dark.
>Kitsuki-san leaned in, brought his lantern in closer.
>You're right.
>Humans breathe in Air, it mixes with our Water, making our blood bright red. As our water passes it's strength on to our Earth, our bodies, it becomes darker.
>This blood is black.
>Toshiro looked up at me.
>Just like a corpse that has not taken in any Air for a long time.
>Bog Hag?!
>I think so, yes.
>Kitsuki-san blinked.
>I though you said your technique disrupted the taint of your enemies?
>It does, but it's a reflex. I use it when I am struck; it's not as if I would know it's working. Only my opponent would know... ah.
>No wonder it was not eager to fight you.
>Toshiro and I locked eyes, the same thought running through our heads.
>You three go find the Mantis! I'll get the Monkey!
>I'll be fine, Toshiro! You're slow, Naomi is sick, and Kitsuki-san isn't much of a Yojimobo!
>You three NEED to stay in a larger group!
>I was already running, before any more protests could come up.
>As I neared the docks I heard the sound of retching. Turning towards it, I found the Monkey.
>He was leaning against a building, clutching the side of his neck. I could see him panting. As I came closer he leaned over and puked.
>He saw me. Ishigaki-san? I... I don't feel so good.
>I I picked him up. His skin was on fire with fever.
took a nap while I was waiting for my connection to come back up. Seems stable enough, for now.
NO! Don't die on me monkey!
>Some crazy bitch... She was clutching her side, I asked her what was wrong and as I got close she clawed the shit out of my neck!
>Bog Hag tallons carried disease in them. She had used the tanto on me because she did not wish to extend her claws through her fake skin.
>I had no idea how severe the disease was, or how long it normally took to work, but obviously THIS one was working very, very fast.
>I slung the Monkey over my shoulders and ran.
>He didn't complain.
>I got back to the Inn and stomped heavily as I ran up to our room,
>I threw open the door.
>Toshiro said hello by blasting both myself and the monkey with a Jade Strike.
>As the energy washed harmlessley over the two of us I set down the Monkey.
>Hag got him. With her claws.
>Toshiro fished out a prayer to Jurojin. As I explained what that meant to the others.
>Naomi added her own magic, and between the two the Monkey was saved.
>Everyone was quickly brought up to speed.
>The Mantis confirmed for us that the Yoriki I had encountered early that day was also the Bog Hag, as his failure to report in had caused a bit of shouting at the magistrates.
>Okay, now that we know what we're looking for, we only need to find one creature in a city of thousands that could change it's appearance at almost at will.
>There was a reason Bog Hags were able to live in Rokugan for a long time should they just make it past the wall.
>Hey, uh Toshiro-san?
>I'm gratefull and all for the magic healing... but why did you blast us both?
>Wont hurt you if you aren't tainted. If it did hurt you I'd have blasted you again till you stopped twitching.
>I chuckled. Hitting one another in the face with that spell is a perfectly fine way to say hello among the Kuni. It has advantages, since a normal Jade test requires you to get close enough to poke someone first.
>Couldn't you just hold up your own Jade?
>Toshiro took that one.
>There's a mineral that is similar in appearance to Jade, but it's not. Hard to tell the difference at a distance.
>Some fools have, from time to time, tried to pass it off as Jade to our Clan when our own stores were low.
>Now, how do we go about finding this monster?
>Check the geisha. The madame, in particular.
>It was the Mantis.
>That Yoriki not reporting in for duty was a big deal. If the Hag was stepping into their daily lives, then there's an issue.
>Geisha live in their house. They really aren't supposed to leave unless called out by a client, or to run errands.
>Keeping up a double life like that would be hard.
>What? don't judge me! You're the weird ones, being all lovey dovey.
>Before we left we ground up jade and prepared powder. Bog hags were invulnerable. The blood was not the hags, but from the skin she had been wearing.
>It was unusual, bot not unheard of for older, stronger and more cunning hags to be able to take more than just the surface skin.
>This made the disguise even MORE dificult to spot.
>Some even learned maho spells to preserve their skins.
>We returned to the geisha house as dawn was nearing.
>Toshiro placed a ward of flame upon the frame of the door.
>We entered.
>Tatsuki greeted us.
>Oka-san is resting right now, should I go get her?
>As the madame shuffled out, she greeted us warmly.
>Hello great Samurai! I cannot thank you enough for what you did for our Tatsuki last night!
>How may I help you?
Goddammit you just started posting again and now I have to go to bed. This thread better be alive in the morning.
>I walked up to her, and held out the finger of Jade I wore.
>Hold this a moment.
>Oh great Samurai, this one is unworthy of such of a gift.
>She was misunderstanding, going through the three refusals.
>I heard the Monkey snicker.
>No, I'm not giving this to you, I just want you to touch it.
>Whatever for great samurai?
>Some of the other girls had come out of their rooms to see us.
>We just want to be sure.
>the door to the front slid open.
>Oka-san, I'm home! I have the
>As soon as the Geisha stepped across the threshold, she burst into flames.
>Oh shit, which one was that?
>Damnit, THEY KNOW!
>Oh dear, this is going to cause quite the ruckus.
>We will have to leave this city now, no mater what happens.
>Girls, listen up. The one who kills the big one gets the little girl's pretty skin.
>All around us, geisha ripped their flesh off and revealed themselves to be Bog Hags.
>Tatsuki fell to her knees, unable to comprehend her entire world shattering in an instant.
>Including the madame, and the burned one, I counted six.
>I once mentioned we Crabs had a code word for when the teahouse we're in is staffed by demons in disguise, they didn't know they'd been found out, and everyone should grab their weapons and meet out front.
>We also had one that meant the same thing, expect that the demons know they've been foung out, and you should fight way out.
>Toshiro threw Jade fire as we powdered our weapons.
>energy rushed through my limbs as Naomi blessed me.
>I was worried, there were a lot of Hags here, Toshiro and Naomi had both used magic earlier, and we were relying primarily on powder to injure them.
>The burned one leapt onto Toshiro's back, clawing him
>One went for the Mantis, one the Monkey. Two came at me.
>The mantis and monkey both defended themselves, and I knocked aside the first to reach me, the second one got a claw in under my arm as I raised by tetsubo to block.
>She cried out as she struck me, confused.
>Calm down, that's why I told you to work together on him.
>I know what he is doing; it wont harm you.
>As the Geishags eyed me hatefully, Troka-san
reached inside her kinomo, and pulled out a scroll.
>Oh shit.
>She then clawed herself, quite deeply.
>Oh that's a lot of blood...
>And my chest burned. I fell to my knees hacking and couging. Blood poured up from nose and mouth. My lungs ached.
>So this is what it's like, to be Naomi...
>I had to end that bitch, and I had to do it, now. before she cast that spell again.
>With the strength Naomi gave me, I slammed the haft of my tetsubo into the geishag that had clawed into me, knocking it down, while preserving my powder.
>Then I rushed over it and attacked the head of this hag coven.
>I saw surprise and fear in the creatures eyes, it had hopped that spell would slow me down much more than it had.
>I spun my tetsubo, two overhead strikes, sliding my hand down the haft to let the full momentum strike her.
>She was still standing, but swaying about drunkenly.
>I suspected she had overtaxed herself with that maho.
>Behind me the Mantis, Monkey and Kistuski all worked togother. As the Kistuki shoved his blade into one's stomach, the monkey struck at the back of her kneck.
>Then the Mantis burried his kama into the top of her head.
>the hag made a almost comical gurgle as it fell over, dead.
>Toshiro was praying, hard. Another big one. then.
>Naomi whipsred another prayer and touched the mantis.
>Who then spun and struck the burning hag.
>The other hags howled in fury and lunged at the Mantis, taken by surpise at the three on one, he went down under their claws.
>Kitsuki-san grabed the Mantis and draged him back to Naomi.
>She didn't waste any time, not even bothering with a scroll.
>As the Mantis groggily got to his feet, Naomi teetered, sweating and panting hard.
>For that mater, so was I.
>I was still sucking in Air, a terrible panic rising in me at the feeling of not being able to breathe.
>I crushed it ruthlessly. I knew I COULD breathe, even though my body was screaming I needed more.
>Still, my vision was going dark at the edges.
>What the hell did that monster do to me?
>It lashed out with a claw, unable or unwilling to spill more of it's own blood to work any more magic.
>It's talons punched through my chestpeice but only the very tips found my flesh.
>And before she could draw back, I brought my tetsubo down on her head for a third time.
>This time the things skull cracked open. Brains and fluid spattered to the floor. It stood there, head still bent from the impact of my strike, almost as if it was bowing before me.
>Then it crumpled.
>I turned. I needed to repowder my weapon.
>Naomi was spent, or close to it.
>Toshiro was was praying, scroll in one hand, with his tetsubo held out in a warding stance. With that one hand grip he could not defend himself well.
>Mantis was badly hurt, near death. Not even Naomi could heal someone so wounded that quickly.
>And there were still four of the damn things standing. One hadn't even been hurt yet.
>Well let's fix that.
>Panting like a horse in heat (even killing the fucking thing hadn't fixed my lungs... was I going to be like this forever?) I charged at the unwounded Hag.
>And into her.
>She bit at my helmet and clawed at my back as I continued to run, taking her with me
>And out the front door.
>Through the ward.
>When a bleeding Crab in full armor comes crashing through the door of a Geisha house, bearing with him a Bog Hag that is also on fire, people have a tendency to take notice.
>One may then assume that, once their brains can fully register what their eyes have told them, they will scream and run about like chickens with their heads cut off.
>The people in the streets lived up to my expectations. Spectacularly.
>Good, that should bring some more bodies. If we have to we'll just pin them down with sheer numbers until we can bring up enough powder to bring them all down.
>The monkey lashed out at one of the hags, keeping the thing from attacking the Mantis.
>The Kitsuki took a stance from the Dojo. I had seen the Shiba do that once, long ago.
>The mantis spun around slipping to one knee he scythed his blades through the legs of two of the hags, causing them both to fall.
>Naomi drew another scroll from her satchel
>And then Toshiro finished his spell.
>The spell was an old one, in use for centuries.
>It turned wrathful Earth Kami upon those it targeted, disrupting their own earth, weakening them considerably.
>The Earth Kami were particularly incensed should they detect the presence of taint.
>The spell had been made famous by one of the sons of the Emperor Totrui the First.
>It was, in these days, known as the Wolf's Mercy.
>Toshiro managed to get all four of the hags.
>Wounded three died on the spot, their weakened bodies sucumbing to the severe wounds they already bore.
>Only the burning one was still alive.
>Kitsuki-san struck it hard.
>It trashed in my grip, but I managed to hold on, barely. The Mantis and then the Monkey were finally able to still the beast.
>I felt life rush into me, and the pain in my chest eased up at last.
>Just as Naomi began to cough once more. I caught her before she fell, and set her down gently.
>Tatsuki. TATSUKI! My wife needs her medicine, we need a teapot, water, and a fire. QUICKLY!
>My shouts galvanized her, and Tatsuki moved to comply.
>Kitsuki-san saw to preparing her medicine.
>Toshiro, panting hard looked at me and the Mantis.
>Neither of you better get sick from those wounds. I've got nothing left.
>And, far to late to be usefull, the Crane showed up, Yoriki in tow.
A note can be found in the margin of this scroll
>Some may be a bit confused at the actions of Kuni Toshiro-san, and the "flame ward" which seemed to burn what was, at first glance, an innocent geisha, until fortunate circumstance revealed that it was a disguised Bog Hag.
>This is due entirely to the author not being a shugenja, and failing to adequately describe the magic used.
>I do not belive that Toshiro-san used the more modern Symbol of Flame, but rather an older version of that spell created by the Kuni.
>In following with the naming practices of the Crab Clan, they called it Evil Ward
>It is very similar to Symbol of Flame, save that it will only trigger when a being with the shadowlands taint attempts to pass the barrier so erected.
>and so I do not believe any accusations of carelessness on the part of would be critics.
>Doji Goemon looked about with disgust, and more than a little fear.
>What has happened here?
>Naomi was panting hard, still giving little coughs.
>She looked at me. Though her eyes were tight with pain, she gave me a nod to reassure me she would be alright soon enough.
>So Toshiro, as the only other full fledged Jade Magistrate in our group, had to explain the scene to the Magistrate's satisfaction.
>you had a bog hag problem.
>We took care of it for you.
>You're welcome.
>Atta boy, Toshiro.
>That won't cause any problems, I'm sure.
>He then turned and began throwing salt all over.
>Wait, just a minute!
>Toshiro spun and glared at the Doji.
>I had watched Toshiro apply his facepaint several times. He started out pure white. Black, all around his eyes, making them tiny pools of light in deep sea. Then, almost haphazardly dipped his four fingers into red, and pulled them aross his face.
>The visage he created looked like a man with deep black eyes that were far too large, and had been clawed from temple to chin by some great beast.
>In other words, pretty damn scary.
>And he used it to full effect as he glared at the Doji.
>Bog Hags are tainted. They've been hiding in this geisha house for months. People have probably already been tainted. They might be infections even now.
>And I HAVE to deal with that.
>It's what Jade Magistrates do.
>The first step is to Purify this place,
>So shut up and let me do my job!
>Or do you want to explain to your lord why half this city had to be burned down when the taint gets too deep?
>He was bluffing. It was true there were probably people with the taint unknowingly spreading it around, but one geisha house? No way had it become such a crisis.
>Toshiro just didn't want to deal with the Crane, and was using the fact that such knowledge was considered shameful in the rest of Rokugan to device him.
>it worked.
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Librarianon here. I've copied all the text up until this point into a source document. Tomorrow I'll look at starting the process of cleaning it up and editing it.

Keep writing, Crab-sama. Your stories are wonderful and captivating.
>The Doji salvaged his wounded pride by berating his Yoriki.
>Don't just stand there! Get some monks, shugenja! And ETA!
>The Mantis, meanwhile, discretly moved Tatsuki out the back, we all knew from the attempt on her life she was innocent of any wrongdoing.
>But we doubted Goemon would see it that way.
>Several Monks, a small swarm of Eta, and even an Asahina showed up to help with the cleansing.
>And and all protests from Goemon stopped as the Eta began to bring up human skins from a secret basement Kitsuki-san found.
>There were thirty two.
>As well as a very large pile of bones. There was no telling how many people were there. There were only three skulls. Not nearly enough for all the bones.
>I explained to Goemon.
>Bog Hags don't kill just for skins.
>They eat people.
>Especially pretty women and children.
>He excused himself, and hurried off.
>I could hear him vomit.
>I doubted it was compasion for the victims. Rather I suspected it was fear that such a thing had gone on for so long right under his nose.
>I had no doubt he would have much explaining to do when his lord heard of this incident.
>I didn't embarrass him further by looking.
>Hey, Naomi?
>Ha...hai Ishigaki-san?
>Still a little sore.
>Is he doing that right?
>I jerked my head to Toshiro. He had just thrown a second handful of salt at a wall that particularly offended him.
>It always seemed... messy to me, when Toshiro purifyed things.
>Naomi nodded. sipped some water.
>He lacks grace, I admit but It is fine the way he does it.
>Naomi advised Goemon on the Jade test, and the Monk in charge of the local Shrine assured us that, should anyone be found with the taint, he could guide them to a temple that specialized in treating those so afflicted.
>Toshiro pressed him on the details, but was satisfied the temple in question wasn't one that took mercy to far.
>We left, to chase after possible clients with the taint.
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Last one for the evening, Librarian-san. Thank you for your hard work. I think I figured out my technical issues as well.

When I turn my AC off and open the windows, my internet gets pissy. When I close them up and run the AC everything is fine.

So, either my router is little bitch that has to everything just so, or my wifi is escaping out the windows when I open them.
where may i find this shadowrun storytime, perchance?
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>I think I figured out my technical issues as well.
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>I turned. I needed to repowder my weapon.

I fucking lost it here.
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I think this is the latest one, but I've been wrong before.
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bump with content
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Wow my brain has been stuck in neutral all day today. Anyhoo let's get started shall we?
>We were joined, of all people, by Tatsuki.
>What the fuck is this I asked no one in particular, pointing at her.
>Mine. Hands off.
>I stared at the Mantis.
>He pulled a produced a peice of paper.
>I bought her contract.
>From a dead bog hag?!
>Yeah. Got a great price.
>You just took that!
>Look, I know you don't know shit about Geisha, loving your wife as much as you do (Naomi blushed) but the contract is the only thing separating a Geisha from a whore..
>I had no idea if that was true or not.
>Naomi, of course, wanted to know what the half-person thought of all this.
>Naomi's Compasion could really get in the way of her sense of propriety at times.
>I don't have any traveling papers, I can't stay there and I sure as hell didn't want to show my face to the magistrate to try and get some papers....
>So this works. I mean, I could be a lot worse off right now, and you did save my life...several times over in fact.
>huh. That's very upfront. I wondered what is was that she sensed in us to put her so at ease.
>And that's how the Mantis got a Geisha.
>So, you gonna marry her?
>Moneky, of course.
>Naomi hid her smile behind her sleve and tittered.
>The Mantis just glowered at the Monkey, but Tatsuki actually fidgeted a bit.
>I shared a glance with Kistuki-san and Naomi as we noted that.
>And we headed out for the nearest town.
>For a few weeks we spread word of possible taint outbreak. Discreetly, to local lords. We told them how to check, got them in touch with temples to handle anyone found with the taint
>Naomi went through paper and ink quite qucikly, writing leters back home.
>I don't think either of them can read yet, Naomi.
>The nanny will read the letters TO them Ishigaki-kun. Until we got home to see them again.
>I understood. Not a day passed while I was standing my post on the Wall that I didn't think of home.
>When we arrived at the third city, the guard who checked our papers became very excited.
>he ran off, and came back with a Crane wearing heavy armor. Very elaborate ornamentation, high quality lacquerwork.
>Ceremonial Armor, made for show.
>But I recognized Kaiu made armor when I saw it. So despite it's ostentatious frippery, it would serve well in real battle.
>The Crane introduced himself as Daidoji Hideo, the magistrate.
>He asked us to come and see his lord.
>He said all would be made clear once we spoke with his lord.
>Oookay. Can't really turn down this invite without being rude, and we were pretty sure we had used up our rudeness allotment for the month already.
>We entered into the Lord's chamber and knelt, awaiting his arival.
>And were quite stunned when a boy who looked to young to have taken his Gempuku came out to greet us.
>I am Kakita Ren. Welcome, honorable Jade Magistrates, to my city.
>Two others were with him. An older woman who sat out of the way, and a man clearly nearing retirement age.
>This is my mother, Kakita Himeko, and Karo Doji Tenkai.
>I have asked you here because I wish for you to explain why my father rose up at his own funeral and killed my elder brother.
>And THIS shit right here, is why Crabs behead their dead.
I like this kid. He gets straight to the point without pussyfooting around. That's a rare quality in a Crane.
His parents are apparently dead, they didn't have a chance to ruin him.
His mom was mentioned in the post and his dad was still kicking anyway.
>His mom was mentioned in the post and his dad was still kicking

Maybe he's from an affair with someone outside of clan?
>Of course we will do all that we can to see to this matter, Kakita Ren-sama.
>Naomi was much better at speaking formally then Toshiro.
>I take your honorable Lord Father has already been put to rest?
>Toshiro took over at this point.
>Then we will need to speak with everyone who was in the palace at the time of his passing. Before his funeral.
>Toshiro was putting forth his best effort, but was still a bit rough around the edges.
>So I decided to elaborate a bit.
>It is possible a Maho-Tsukai used forbiden magic to defile your father's body, your lordship. We will need to investigate to determine who may have been able to do so.
>Of course, you would know best in such matters. I leave it in your hands.
>Tenkai-san, prepare rooms for them, and see to it they have all they require to conduct their investigation.
>As you wish, my Lord.
>Tenkai bowed deeply.
>Once we were shown to our rooms we began to discuss what we were going to do.
>So, look for the zombie making maho-tuskai, then?
>I doubt it.
>HUH? But you said...
>Ishigaki-san only told the lord a comforting lie.
>hey, I wasn't lying Toshiro!
>Fine. Ishigaki-san told the Lord the least likely reason becuase it was kinder than the most likely.
>Alright, so then what's most likeley?
>That the Lord was tainted and the taint reanimated his corpse after his death.
>Even Monkey knew we couldn't very well raise such a possibility lightly.
>So, we would need to poke around quietly, looking for answers.
>I can do it.
>Manits spoke.
>If the I get caught, I can bluff my way out.
>If the Monkey gets caught,he'll just make it worse for all of us.
>Naomi nodded and produced a scroll. come here, Mantis-san,
>This spell will allow you to read quite quickly, and you will be able to rememeber everything you've read.
>That'll come in handy.
>He took off.
>The rest of us began to interview people, building a rough idea of what happened following the Lord's death.
>As we began our interviews, the Karo spoke to us.
>Of coures, you see the need for discretion in this matter, yes? If word got out that the previous Lord became a Zombie...!
>Toshiro grunted
>The karo smiled.
>I am pleased you understand
>Toshiro arched an eyebrow at me.
>He just dosen't understand you like I do,
>I clapped him on the back.
>C'mon. Lets' go listen to Kitsuki-san and Naomi talk. You can have the first glower.
>Kitsuki-san and Naomi spoke to the interviewees. Toshiro glared. I loomed.
>The Monkey looked bored.
>We managed to get a rough history of what had transpired.
>Four days ago, the previous Lord, Kakita Hosokawa, died choking on a sushi roll.
>Or, more precisely, the bone still in the fish that cook had accidentally left in.
>Hosokawa's eldest son became the Lord
>His first order was to have the cook executed.
>Imporperly filleting a fish so badly you leave a bone in big enough to choke on, and failing to notice as you make the roll, was quite the crime.
>I didn't know if warranted being tied to a post and stabbed with a half dozen yari simultaneously though.
>At the Hosokawa's funeral the next day, as they were preparing to light the pyre, his corpse stood up, shambled over to his eldest son, and quite literally bit his face off.
>The gaurds were able to stab Hosokawa zombie, and held it in the pyre with their yari as it burned to ash.
>Now here WE were, trying to figure out why that happened.
>Maybe it really WAS a Maho-Tuskai, maybe somene related to the cook? Getting revenge?
>The Monkey had a point.
>The MONKEY had a point.
>The Mantis came back.
>He looked troubled.
>We need to speak. In private.
>Okay, what?
>He pulled a scroll from his kimono.
>I can't read this.
>We unrolled it.
>Toshiro and Naomi both frowned.
>It's in a cipher, of some sort. I can't read it though.
>Naomi pulled a scroll from her own satchel and cast a spell.
>Oh no.
>What is it.
>It's a maho spell.
>his corpse stood up, shambled over to his eldest son, and quite literally bit his face off.

I know that this guy is a maho tsukai, but do you really have to kill him? I mean, he did kill that Crane asshole; how bad could he really be?
>Kitsuki-san looked at the Mantis
>You suspected as much?
>Yeah. His journals spoke of secret meetings. A group he'd meet with once a month.
>He'd bitch in his journals about this or that edict his group would want him to make, talking about how "to much of that might expose me."
>He avoided specifics, no names, no numbers.
>Oh. So the Lord was a Maho-Tsukai,whose taint had raised him as a zombie before he could be cremated.
>And was part of a group of Maho-Tsukai.
>This all seemed like a bad comedy.
>but there it was.
>So um. How exactly are we going to broach this subject to Kakita Ren-sama?
>I get the feeling more tact will be required than just 'Bad news, buddy. Yer dad was a blood sorcerer.'
>Toshiro disagreed with me.
>We have proof, as Jade Magistrates it's our duty to persue this.
>Kitsuki-san, any ideas?
>I think we should persue this group of Maho-Tuskai first. We may have stumbled onto a bloodspeaker cell.
>You really think they're still around.
>They're ALWAYS around, they just lay low most of the time. This one was too, until the Lord died.
>Toshiro clapped his hands twice in prayer.
>What are you doing?
>Saying a prayer for the poor fish that gave it's life so we could find this hidden evil.
>Naomi looked shocked.
>What about the cook?
>Toshiro opened one eye.
>He was a terrible cook.
Calling it - the journal was a planted fake,the lord was poisoned, the cook was executed to eliminate the witness.
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Gotta walk up the mini mart, I'm getting low on smokes. I'll be back in a bit
>What about the cook?
>He was a terrible cook.

Top kek.
>a secret group who want him to do stuff
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bumping for crabby jestice
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Awesome shit, saving both of them. Have a story.
>The journal gave us a time for the next meeting, but not a place.
>Three days from now, Hour of Hida.
>I was deeply offended that a group of blood sorcerers would meet in the hour named after my ancestor.
>I vowed to Hida that I would be the instrument through which he could make his displeasure known to them.
>Now to find the place, to go with this time.
>Manits proposed we simply bring the time up in normal conversation. Maybe stage a talk between two of us and speak loudly.
>Kitsuki-san can read people so easily it's scary. When one flinches, we'll have our link.
>Kitsuki-san considered.
>If we must. I don't like it though. We will know,
but they will know we know. And if the one who flinches is highly ranked enough we won't be able to question them further on the matter.
>Well anyone else got any ideas?
>Tatsuki refilled the Mantis' sake.
>The monkey passed Tohsiro some shrimp.
>I was taking great pains to get just the right amount of wasabi on my sushi roll.
>Everyone jumped.
>I held up my sushi.
>How in the hell does THIS kill someone?!
>I popped in my mouth and chewed to make my point.
>We all stared at the sushi rolls.
>That is an excellent point, Ishigaki-kun.
>Now we all felt bad about making fun of the cook.
>Mantis-san, do you think you could reproduce a page from the journal, recreate the handwriting?
>I think I have a spell that can help with that.
>Okay. I'll give it a shot.
>So the Mantis, after a few tries, made a page he said was 'pretty damn close to how it is in my memory'
>Kitsuki-san and went to meet with Kakita Ren-sama.
>Kitsuki-san then explained that he wished to see an edict penned by the former Lord Hosokawa-sama
>I should like to ask what for, Kitsuki-san?
>Ren-sama's mother sat behind him, fluttering her fan.Her eyes were hard.
>Ordinarly, someone glaring at me like that would have seemed suspicious.
>But given that she had lost husband and son so soon, I wasn't about to jump to conclusions.
>Kitsuki-san was ready, of course.
>It may be there was someone attempting to usurp your father's authority, and pass around false edicts in his name. I wish to compare the handwriting to be sure.
>Such a thing can be done?
>Oh yes, Kaktia Ren-sama. My family has developed many techniques for gather evidence outside of testimony.
>Ah, forgive me. I misspoke. Such things are not truly 'evidence' but they often lead us to the ones whose testimony will prove most useful in solving a case.
>My slip of the tongue was due to my family calling it evidence as a means of shorthand. Forgive my crude language, please.
>fluttering calms down
>Oh, it is alright. I would like to hear more of these techniques one day, if you have the time.
>If I do not, I am certain there are many who would gladly fulfill your wishes, Kakita Ren-sama.
>It is a wise lord that seeks to learn much about the world. I am certain your rule will be a prosperous one. Your parents have raised you well.
>I have no idea what forbidden magics she employed to do this, but Kakita Himeko somehow made her fan fluttering convey pleasure at the indirect compliment.
>Thank you for your kind words, of course you may have an old edict to study. Please, just find out what happened to my father. Cleanse him of this shame.
>At those last few words, the illusion shatterd, and the surprisingly Lordly boy was just a boy again. Grieving the loss of his father and brother and trying to understand 'why?'
>I thought of Daiko and Tetsute in that moment.
>I promised them that while daddy might leave for a time, he would always come home.
>A servant came in then, and began to whisper to the Lord.
>Before the young Lord could reply, a Lion stormed into the room.
>oh now what?
>He glanced at Kitsuki-san and myself, surpised, then spoke to the Lord without waiting to be adressed.
>Kakita Ren! I am Matsu Roku! I am here on behalf of my Lord Matsu Banjaku!
>You have already been informed, the Lion is retaking this city that once belonged to them!
>Because our Clan is Compasionate, and my Lord is fair, you have two days to leave this city.
>After which my army will enter. Any Samurai that is not Lion within the city at that time will die.
>I will have your answer, now! Do you choose to leave, and have peace? Or do you wish for war?
>wait...did he say TWO days?
>the meeting is in THREE!
>Kistuki-san and I exchanged horrified glances.
>Of all the times...
>Fuck it. Somone needed to break protocol here, and the Mantis wasn't around.
>Oi, Oi, Matsu-san
>And who are you, to adress me so?
>I'm Hida Ishigaki I'm a Yojimbo to a Jade Magistrate, and that's Kituski-san, one of the Magistrates Yoriki.
>He didn't say anything. Just gave me slow 'go on' nod.
>Look, we're investigating a matter right now so you're going to half to hold off until we're done.
>I cannot. My Lord's orders are absolute. In two days time, every Samurai in this city not a Lion will die.
>He wasn't being poetic.
>Those were his exact orders. And he fully intended to follow them to the letter.
>I found myself wondering if, had their lord forgotten the 'not a Lion' bit, an entire army of Lion would enter a city and then fall on their own swords as soon as they did so.
>Ren spoke up.
>Matsu-san! My father's corpse was defiled by dark magic! You must give the Jade magistrates time to finish their investigation!
>The Matsu's eyebrows twitched.
>Then he chuckled. Maho-Tsuaki would never have plagued this land were it still under Lion rule. I promise I will root out the corruption in my Lord's name once we have this city. Tell your father for me, when you see him.
>The lion spun on his heel.
>He paused at the door.
>Two days. Every Samurai.
>He left.
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And things almost started going well...
>Kitsuki-san and I raced back to our rooms, edict in hand
>All around us the palace was in an uproar as they prepared for battle.
>I caught sight of the Daidoji directing things. His fancy armor made him easy to spot.
>So. Magistrate was just his day job. His true calling was warrior.
>Like me.
>Our eyes met. We exchanged nods.
>Good luck in your battle, Iron Crane.
>Centuries ago, the Daidoji family Daimyo gave his life stopping the forces of Oni no Kinjiro at the Battle of the Tidal Landbridge.
>The Daidoji family, unique among the Crane, had earned the undying respect of the Hida that day.
>What is it? What's going on out there?
>We let everyone know we were going to have to find the Tuskai sooner than just ambushing them at their meeting, abandon our investigation, or be ready to fight in a summer war between the Crane and the Lion.
>The Mantis said it best.
>Toshiro growled. Those idiots aren't getting between me and those Tsukai.
>You are not seriously proposing we join in this war, are you Toshiro-san?
>The Mantis answered for him
>Every Samurai. He made us a part of this war whether we want to be or not.
>But only if we do not leave in time!
>Toshiro grunted.
>The Monkey piped up. Well Kitsuki-san? Can you find them?
>Hold on, hold on. Let me see that journal page.
>Kitsuki-san placed the edict next to the journal page and compared the two.
>Ah. I see why you had such a hard time coppying this page, Mantis-san.
>yes. the person who wrote this journal was left handed. I'm sure of it now. And the lord was not.
>well well well.
>So, someone who had access to the Lord's body, and room, and was left handed. We'd had less to go on, at times.
>However, the chaos in the castle impeeded our investigation. We found several suspects, but eliminated them just as quickly as we could identify them.
>Time slipped away from us.
>In the morning, there would be a battle.
>The castle was naturally built in the maze style. >Since the Crane maintained the smallest standing army of any of the great Clans, they used tactics that took great advantage of the maze style, breaking up large amries, engaging and withdrawing.
>Should the Crane find themelves in a war, they attempted to bleed out the enemy army with One Thousand Cuts.
>The Lion, on the other hand, maintained the Largest standing army.
>it was never a question of would the Lion outnumber their foe, but only how badly they did so.
>In war, the Lion would wear their enemy down as the waves wore down the mountains. The youngest and weakest troops would go first, and any place the enemy faltered would be hit with more seasoned forces. Finnaly, once a breach in the enemy line had been opened, the eilite of the Lion army would deliver the final devastating blow.
>I could not predict the outcome of this battle. Too much relied on the personality of the Matsu General, of reinfocements arriving in time to lift the seige. Of the Cranes allies in court.
>No, perhaps not. The young Lord had unwittingly given the Lion the perfect weapon to wield against him in THAT arena. With news of his father's defilement, of Maho-Tsukai in his city, his allies would distance themselves.
>So, perhaps the Lion held the advantage after all.
>Or perhaps I only came to that conclusion because my wife wished for us to leave.
>The Karo, Doji Tenkai, came to see us that eveneing.
>I am here to convey the Lord's gratitude for all your hard work. Ren-sama has no desire for you to be caught up in the matter however. I have brought you new traveling papers, bearing the Lord's seal, so that you may leave this place in peace.
>he set down the papers.
>Please, look them over to make sure they are all in order.
>We did so.
>Kitsuki-san complimented him on his fine calligraphy.
>Why thank you, Kitsuki-san.
>The Karo left.
>Kitsuki-san was shaking.
>with rage.
>He is left handed.
>We all stared at him.
>The karo is left handed, he said again.
>I had, on a few occasions, been close to committing murder in my life.
>So I knew exactly what that looked like.
>I grabbed hold of Kitsuki-san's obi before he could do something stupid.
>there are times in every person's life when you must do things you never thought you would have to.
>You don't understand! He HAS to die!
>'Not a Lion!'
>This has been the plan ALL along!
>Kituski-san had avoided jumping to conlusions since the incident with his Sensei, but it seemed he was in full swing once more.
>Slow down, spell it out for us. Some of us are just dumb.
>Tenkai leads the tsukai! They probably are a Bloodspeaker cell!
>He arranged to betray the Lord of the Castle in secret, in exchange he would swear feality to the Lion and be allowed to govern the City!
>He could then protect his cell with his authority, allowing them to move much more freely!
>He had the cook poision Hosokawa, then he or one of his cell raised Hosokawa as a zombie!
>THAT cut off the new Lord's polotical allies, so that the Lion are not forced to give the city back during Court this winter!
>A plan this deep, this far reaching... it HAS to be THEM!
>Whoa, you had me right up until that part.
>Don't you see? We were never the goal, just an obstacle! Not the King, but a piece that had to be removed!
>uh, why?
>One of us must already know THEM. Without realizing it, we have the ability to expose THEM. Or perhaps they simply feared we might be able to do so.
>So they tried to get us out of the way first, before they began their plan to gain political power throughout the Empire!
>So let me see if I'm understanding you.
>The Bloodspeaker cult has begun to move again, and they're trying to insert members of cells into positions of political power throughout the Empire.
>And one of us knows a high ranked member of the Bloodspeaker cult, without realizing it?
>Yes, yes!
>I was glad I was sitting down.
>because that was some heavy shit.
>You think that Lion Clan Lord, what was his name?
>Matsu Banjaku
>You think Banjaku is part of the cult as well.
>Possibly, yes.
>I dunno.
>we all looked at the Monkey.
>We had Banjaku over for dinner once, and he seemed a bit thickheaded to me. I don't think he could hide being a bloodspeaker very well.
>what, why did you have him over?
>Hime-san has some business deal or other with him, I don't know the details.
>Why didn't you mention you knew him before!?
>First time I heard his name mentioned.
>My temples began to throb painfully.
>I stood up
>I'm going to get the Daidoji.
>Don't get me wrong, I think you're right Kitsuki-san. But we don't have enough evidence to bring down the Karo, and not enough time to find any.
>You have an idea?
>yeah. We tell the Daidoji our suspicions. He's going to be the one leading the Battle, I'm sure of it. So he watches out for signs of the Karo's betrayal.
>When he spots that, we'll have that peice of shit ball the balls then.
>And we'll make him tell us everything.
>Everyone nodded.
>Even Naomi.
>I do not like war. I do not wish to see any of you in battle like this. But there is a very young boy who will die if we do not act.
>Promise me you will all be careful tomorrow.
>We will.
>I went and spoke to Daidoji Hideo.
>When I was finished, he sat still and looked at nothing for a very long time.
>Finally he spoke.
>I will look for Tenkai-sama's betrayal.
>If I do not see it, and we both live until the end until the end of the first day, I will have satisfaction for your accusation.
>You are so certain?
>I am.
>of your skill with a blade, or the Karo's guilt?
>I took a page out Toshiro's book and shrugged.
>The Daidoji chuckled at that.
>That night, I slept in my armor.
> someone who had access to the Lord's body, and room, and was left handed
In what hand did the mother hold her fan?
>As dawn broke, light glittered off the armor of the Lion army.
>They raised a mighty cry that seemed to shake the very walls.
>And charged.
>I was right where I should be, front and center of the Vanguard.
>The Mantis and the Monkey were in the second ranks. Toshiro was there as well, Tetsubo in hand.
>Naomi was at the gates of the palace, ready to heal the injured. Kitsuki-san was with her.
>The Lion didn't pause to wonder why there was a Crab in the very first gate they assaulted.
>Some tried to rush past me, but I shifted my armored bulk from side to side, knocking them off balance, impeding thier advance.
>Three decided to get me out of the way.
>Matsu, all of them. They rushed me with their Katana, screaming fiercely, attacking with wild abandon.
>I expected as much, so I had prepared myself.
>I spun my tetsubo, knocking aside one blade, into another.
>I shifted my arms and caught the third one on my Sode. It slid off harmlessly
>Having left themselves wide open, thinking they would overwhelm and kill me, I struck back.
>My tetsubo tore through their light armor as though it were rice paper, and I left two of them wounded and bleeding.
>Slowed by their wounds they failed to get past my armor. The third one, however, managed to bury the point of his katana in my thigh.
>I grabbed his wrist before he could withdraw his blade and backhanded my tetsubo across his face. As he reeled I swung from the side with full force.
>I struck him in the chest, and he staggered back a half dozen feet falling onto his back. He did not rise.
>The other two came in again, one swining low at my legs, the other aiming an overhead strike at my head.
>I deflected the overhead, but couldn't get out of the way in time of the second. She cut me across the back of my calf.
>These Matsu fought fiercely, but they seemed to have no sense of self preservation. I endured their assault and retaliated, leaving both of them on the ground, dead or unconscious.
She has the good sense to be right handed.
>I held the line where I was, but there were several gates into the city.
>Behind me I heard the cries of battle.
>The fighting had not yet reached the palace, that I could see.
>I think that cheer came up from where the Mantis was.
>I wonder what he did.
>A red orb blazed past me and exploded among the Lion trying to get past my gate.
>Toshiro limped up to join me, batting aside an Ashigaru with his own tetsubo as he did so.
>Looks like your having fun here.
>I want some.
>I grinned as we readied ourselves for the next wave.
>I waved Toshiro back as I was quickly surrounded. I hacked and swung, the bodies so tightly packed I couldn't miss if I tried. I felt several wounds open on me, though in the press I had no idea who or what had injured me.
>And then I saw a Lion bushi challange Toshiro to a duel.
>Ah, Toshiro was swinging around his tetsubo, maybe the Lion didn't realize...
>Toshiro looked at him.
>And tossed a pair of burning orbs at the Lion.
>The Lion fell in a charred heap.
>I heard a horn sound out. From within the palace.
>The signal from the Daidoji.
>It had happened.
>Toshiro and I were in the thick of it, unable to draw back without exposing ourselves.
>The others would have to handle it.
>I trusted them.
>Toshiro and I fought on, side by side.
>We were both covered in wounds, but we were Crab. We were the Mountain, the Lion were the Waves. The Waves would win, in the end. But many many waves would break upon us before that happened.
>And then the second Horn.
>The banner of the Crane flew high on the walls of the palace still
>And I could just make out the Daidoji, holding up a golden and tufted helm.
>Ah. The Karo must have opened the rear gate to the Lion.
>And the Daidoji had been waiting for it.
>The Lion around us hesitated, seeing that.
>Make way, MAKE WAY!
>It was Matsu Roku
>He looked up at the palace where the Daidoji waved the Helm
>he nodded.
>Susume was a fine officer.
>I see I sent her into a trap.
>He looked at me.
>Your doing?
>Our investigation revealed the Karo's plot.
>I see.
>He looked me in the eyes, sheathed his blade, and took a stance.
>I guess he would rather be killed in battle than admit his defeat.
>I could humor him
>His technique was better than mine.
>But only just.
>I survived his first strike.
>I made certain he did not get a second.
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Alright, it's late and I have to deal with beurcrats and taxes tomorrow. It's going to be a busy day so I don't have a clue how long it will take me to get back.

Jaa ne.
Just to make sure I got this-

He was planning on using a Crane's treachery to win.
It is becoming clear his allies (and master) were traitors to their own lords, and may well have been the blood sorcerers the Jade Magistrates warned of.
And the treachery was uncovered.

And he's still going to die trying to carry out orders from a blood sorcerer, but isn't one himself?
He's going to die so that he doesn't have to live with the consequences and dishonor of his plan being uncovered.
at the moment, the Lion plan was have traitor open gates, win battle. and was between the Lion Lord Banjaku and the Crane Karo Tenkai

Everything else is pure conjectre, but if both the Kitsuki then Tenkai demanded he be made lord of the City after swearing allegiance to the Lion Clan. The kill and shame the lord so the political allies dry up was all Tenkai's plot, and if Banjaku knew anything about it at all it was most likely no more than Tenkai saying "Relax, I've got a plan" At least, if the Monkey is right about Tenkai

The Monkey, having met the Lion Lord Banjaku thinks Banjaku is to dumb to hide being a blood sorcerer. Perhaps Bajaku is, perhaps Banjaku is not. Perhaps Banjaku knew what Tenkai was.
That remains to be seen.

But the Lion commander, Roku only knew they had an inside man to open the gates. At least one defector, but there might have been others. He had his orders and he fully intended to carry them out. If he had issue with using a defector to open the gates he would have committed seppuku in protest and Banjaku would just find an officer who WOULD follow the plan. That fact that Banjaku showed up to the battle at all proves he's okay with arranging a little treachery for resolving a siege quickly.

But, then he learned that the person who was assisting them was a maho-tsukai. Ishigaki implied that without saying it outright, and only Roku would get it, since the other Lion soldiers present would not know that Ishigaki part of a Jade magistrates entourage.

So Roku, seeing that a whole lot of shame was going to blow back on the Lion, and for failing to take the castle, chose to seppuku by duel. Why exactly he did that is unclear. Perhaps he had enough soldiers left to try to take the castle anyway, but didn't want to once he knew what kind of monster his Lord Banjaku had allied with.

There's a high probability Ishigaki didn't win that duel do to skill or high earth, but because Roku threw the fight.
>but if both the Kitsuki

*if the Kitsuki is correct

Started to say one thing, reworded failed to correct it all.
Thank you for breaking that down to me. Crab-sama has been great and I love this look into L5R but some of this moon-think is hard to wrap my head around.
I need to hire a motherfucking proofreader. In this sentence

>That fact that Banjaku showed up to the battle at all proves he's okay with arranging a little treachery for resolving a siege quickly.

Change Banjaku to Roku.
no problem
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Basically just studded beatsticks?
I'm going to bump this thread with stories every so often.
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Thought I'd share a story I don't see posted often.
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Bump for Hida
Didn't crab-anon say that he was going to be too busy for storytimes today?
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Yep, those are tetsubo. Tetsu =Iron Bo=Donatello
Here's another example.
I bump because I hope the thread will be here in 8 hours.
So, if this thread inspired me to look into l5r, where do I begin? How many editions/necessary core books?
The thread will hit bump limit in 18 (17 now) posts. Bump or no bump, crab-anon will have to make a new one.
Currently 4, but 5th may be announced soon. All the books are in the trove in the PDF share thread.
For now, the consensus is that 4th is the best, the first is a close second, and the D20 edition is a heresy.
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Better bump this, I guess.
bwahahahahahaha, that is great
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Does anyone have the cap of the crab who everyone thought was a crane to begin with?

Also whats the current party composition Crab Bro, I'm a little out of it atm.
It was in the last thread, but it's not even in the archive now.

Crab-anon's party is him, a Kuni (Toshiro), a Kitsuki, a Mantis, a Monkey and a now-Crab waifuas DMPC.
From what I've read, the party consists of:

Hida Bushi (Ishigaki)
Kuni Shugenja (Toshiro)
Kitsuki something or other (guessing an investigator/courtier school)
Mantis something or other (I'm guessing Yoritomo Bushi) with a geisha tagging along?
Monkey something or other (almost certainly a Toku Bushi)
Isawa Shugenja/Water Tensai (Naomi/Ishigaki's wife)
It might be better to put crab-hubby into a pdf than a screencap. It's just way too long.
bushi = fighter, knight, martial, samurai
shugenja= caster/cleric???
Tensai = ????
Considering this is the second thread, probably.
Tensai is a type of shugenja in this case.
The Tensai is a specialist caster, specificaly. Magic is based on the five elements Earth, Air, Water, Fire and Void (have to buy advantage to use void magic)

Every Shugneja School has a prefered element, and one they're just terrible with. Tensai super specalize in a single element. The Pheonix clan is run by a Council of 5 people, the best Tensai for each of their respective elements.
>Be me.
>Be currently detailed the Amundsen-Scott Observatory.
>It's at the south fucking pole, even though I'm from Tucson, Arizona.
>Cold as fuck, boring as fuck.
>Why did I even become an astronomer?

Anyway, enough of that.
>New personnel rotation came in before winter closed up.
>One of them had notes for a massive Only War/DH2/Deathwatch/Black Crusade/Rogue Trader game.
>Day three, sign up sheet with forty slots gets passed around.
>Like I said, living here is p. boring, decided to give it a shot.
>Met up at the cafeteria later, we all got split into groups of five.
>Four Only War groups, one Deathwatch squad, one Black Crusade, one Rogue Trader and one Dark Heresy party.
>All given neat little schedules, this group attends at this time, whatever.
>No clue when the fucker sleeps.
>Third week of games just ended.
>My squad blew up a Chaos Titan on some backwater hellhole, accidentally'd a ratling sniper with a krak launcher, currently digging in against cultists of Nurgle in the ruins of a hive.
>The squad medic has taken to using mutated grox for blood transfusions because our pack ran out.
>The sergeant lost his combat knife, is currently using the barrel of a long-las that welded itself up as a spear.
>My character is using his krak launcher as an anti-aircraft platform against the local pigeon population, who may or may not be spreading Nurgle's Rot via their droppings.
>I've heard whisperings from the other Guard groups of similar situations, the Black Crusaders just snicker and change the subject.
>Death Watch is evidently investigating tau-human relations on some fringe world.
>Rogue Trader is running drugs for techpriests on the Lathe Worlds.

It's been fun so far, I guess. Looking forward to the what's going to happen.
Librarian Anon, are you still screencapping this?
Oh shit, I stumbled onto a dedicated storythread and mistook it for a general, my bad.
Tehnically it is a general, just taken over by one particular storytime.
that sounds like an interesting story though id love to know how it all came together in the end
I'm back gents. Fresh Bread here
Sounds pretty sweet. How doy ou get stationed down there?

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