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/tg/ - Traditional Games

Here be ye auld threde

>The bog was growing more noxious the deeper we went in.
>this was the kind of place most Crabs would rather skirt around then explore.
>So it made it a likely place for an army to mass in secret
>here and there pockets of rancid gas would bubble to the surface, poping and splatering mud about
>The sickly, twisted trees began to grow thick, their branches tangling togother overhead.
>it cast the place into a perpetual twilight, and the gloom limited our vision even further
>Mantis-san whispered to me
>Hey, that thing up there...?
>I glanced over.
>A small reptile, nothing but bone and scale was perched in a tree. Bat like wings folded around it's body. it's head was mostly mouth, though a pari of beady red eyes stared at us hungrily.
>Kill it
>He did so
>I hissed over to the Hiruma nearest us, when he looked to see what the twang of Mantis-san's bowstring meant
>Hanemuri. Just one though.
>The Hiruma nodded and passed the word on
>I whispered, explaining to Monkey and Mantis-san
>cowardly things. But get enough together and they'll attack in a swarm.
>Damn things can and will kill even ogres.
>We got lucky, finding an area with several large rocks jutting up from the muck
>Akiyama called a halt so we could get another break, and we ate some more to keep our strength up
>As we ate Akiyama pulled out his finger of jade and scraped it on the rock, getting the blackened bits off
>A single finger of jade would protect the one who carried for about a week.
>Knowing this, experienced scouts could use their jade as a mark of time, guessing accurately how long they had been in the shadowlands by how far the jade had rotted.
>It was easy to loose track of time in the shadowlands, and that was something you did not want to do.
>A day already, I'd say
>Monkey and Mantis-san looked up, surpised
>We've been here that long, already?
>Akiyama nodded
>Mantis-san looked around
>Why is it still so bright then? When did night happen?
>Hiruma Sayako answered their question
>The shadwolands does it's best to confuse those who enter it. Someone who looses track of time, or their way, may not have enough time to get back to the Wall before they run out of jade.
>You speak of this place as though it were alive...
>It is, Tsuruchi-san. It is.
>Mantis-san ate another mouthful of rice.
>Akiyama spoke up
>Alright, this place is at least a bit dry, and clear. let's get some sleep.
>Ishigaki-san, you can handle first watch?
>I nodded.
>The other crabs quickly bulled blankets form thier packs, curled into little balls and slept
>Monkey sat with his back against me, looking the opposite direction of me.
>Mantis-san stood, leaning on his bow, and swung his gaze left and right.
>Now that I'm here, I really can't believe you came in here alone...
>I had to run and hide, Monkey. A lot.
>Monkey laughed.
>good to know there are things even you won't charge straight at!
>I'm never reckless Monkey... I just draw attention to keep the rest of you safe. Safer, anyway.
>Yeah. Thanks for that.
>I felt him shift behind me.
>Still, I feel pretty good all things considered.
>I know what you and Daigo-san over there can do when the two of you set about killing something together...
>Yeah, you two are fucking terrifying when you get going.
>Mantis-san chuckled.
>Thanks for the compliment Monkey, but you're not exactly a slouch yourself, you know?
>I could see Monkey's hand resting on the rock.
>It was clenched into a fist
>It was settling in now, how dangerous this place could be. And he was placing his trust in us, to push aside his own fear. Mantis-san was probably doing the same
>Don't worry, I'll get you both home.
>we know.
>We passed the rest of our watch in silence
>I went over and poked Sayako with the end of my tetsubo
>She lashed out, drawing and striking at it with her wakizashi
>Then she woke up
>Blinked a few times
>Our turn, then?
>I prodded the other two in her group, with similar results
>When you wake a Crab, use a stick.
>I sat down, and folded my legs up as Pheonix-san had taught me long ago.
>Oi, Monkey, Mantis-san?
>If either of you learned to meditate, you should do so.
>It's hard to rest in this place. Meditation is better then sleep
>Sayako snorted
>Right, folding up your legs in an awkward position and pretending to be asleep? I'm surpised you buy into that crap, Ishigaki-san. Planing on becoming a monk?
>No I'm not. And you should really try it.
>Heh, I'll pass.
>I sighed inwardly. My clan's need to to focus on the practical left it a bit ignorant of the benefits of the spiritual. Even our Kenjutsu was more like Kendo in it's first lessons.
>Sayako's attitude was far from uncommon; many dismissed such things outright without a second thought.
>I couldn't blame her though.
>I had been the same until I left to mingle with the other Clans.
>I meditated deeply, restoring my spirit.
>Then I slept
>meditation could only get you so far. Real sleep was needed sooner or latter.
>A sharp hiss woke me from my sleep
>I had risen to one knee, tetsubo in hand, by the time my mind caught up
>A sickening slurching drew my gaze
>Shambling corpses in heavy armor were dragging themselves through the bog towards us
>I gave Monkey and Mantis-san a couple of shakes to rouse them, then hissed
>Whu? Shit!
>Akiyama gave his orders
>Bows! The bog is slowing them down even more then they usually are.
>The Hiruma loosed their volley
>All of them aimed at one, and filled it head to toe. It fell
>Mantis-san however, placed a single arrow in the eyesocket of one, dropping it instantly.
>Monkey, grinned, and matched his feat
>I did not carry a bow, so I dropped down from the rocks.
>I could see Monkey's hand resting on the rock.
>It was clenched into a fist
>It was settling in now, how dangerous this place could be. And he was placing his trust in us, to push aside his own fear. Mantis-san was probably doing the same
>Don't worry, I'll get you both home.
>we know.
>We passed the rest of our watch in silence

Was it all RPed, or is it a later embellishment?
>I could tell by their armor these zombies were once Hida.
>there were far to many for the Hiruma to kill before they reached us, especialy with the heavy armor they were wearing
>Two more volleys, six more zombies fell
>Then they were upon us
>I swung my tetsubo, crushing skulls as quickly as I could.
>I was joined by the ohters,
>Mantis-san tripped and toppled zombies all around, so Monkey and the Hiruma could dispatch them quickly
>Then a pain bruned into my side
>I glanced down at the rusted katana sticking out of my side
>I followed the blade to the rotting hand holding it, and up into the eyes of the zombie.
>The empty eye sockets that burned with green light.
>I struck back, hitting it as hard as I could
>armor cracked under my blow, but it didn't fall
>Akiyama yelled to Mantis-san
>Help him!
>Mantis-san didn't need to be told twice
>He ran up and struck at the creature, attempting to topple it.
>It held it's ground, and lashed out at him, cutting deep
>What the...?!
>Be careful! It's not mindless!
>You can't kill it like a normal zombie, either!
>Monkey stepped in,guarding Mantis-san,and watching the undead carefully
>Sometimes, a corpse animated by the taint within the shadowlands would become one of these things.
>They could think, and plan. They would often move about with normal packs of zombies, pretending to be one.
>Fighting a Hyakurei was like fighting a samurai. Just one that could feel neither pain nor fear.
>Only destroying it's body would have any effect
>So I attacked it's knee, shattering the joint.
>Mantis-san followed my lead, and as Monkey turned aside the creatures attack Mantis-san brought both kama together on it's wirst, severing it's hand
>Monkey spun, stabing his blade into it's side and pulling up, spilling bloated, rotting organs out
>I struck it's head, tearing off it's jaw, then smashing it's skull
>Still it clawed out at me, as I leaned back Mantis-san struck it from behind, finally ending it.
looks like I've got a good bit of catching up to do.
70/30 split. The dialouge was bit more tablespeak then I'm presenting, and the gestures were additions.
>then the zombie twitched
>oh no.
>You've got to be kidding me
>holes began to open in it's body
>and grubs began to come out
>A cry alerted me to the fact that this wasn't the only carrier.
>Grabing Monkey and Mantis-san with either arm I threw them back away as the grubs advanced upon us
>I fell back, squishing the thumb sized worms under the end of my tetsubo
>Part of the problem of dealing with Heart Grubs is that they're so small most weapons don't really work well.
>If you have a katana you're better off smashing them with the saya
>They're easily crushed, of course. They're just bugs
>But if they DO manage to bite you, they burrow into your skin.
>And eat you from the inside out
>eventually, they make their way to your heart, where they lay their eggs.
>Hence the name: Heart Grubs
>I smashed, squashed, stomped and stamped. Backpedaling the whole while
>But in the ooze of the bog I couldn't get far enough away, and heart grubs were very very persistent.
>I tore one off my leg and crushed it in my palm
>milky pus and ichor squelched out between my fingers
>I could hear the others dealing with similar issues around me, as well as the zombies still moving.
>But I had no time to look
>I'm sure there were many Scorpion and Crane who would find the sight of a massive Crab desperately squashing bugs in a swamp hilarious
>I looked around franticly, trying to see if there were anymore, trying to remember if I'd killed all of them.
>Then I felt a stinging in my ankle, from under the mud
>Shortly after the sting came pain, so sharp my vision tunneled
>Being eaten alive is not very pleasant
>Even if it's just a thumb sized worm burrowing through your insides
>I dragged myself back up onto the rock, pulling my tanto
>slicing away my hakama I looked around for the telltale bulge of the creature under my skin
>as another lance of pain shot up my leg I saw it
>Without hesitation I plunged my tanto into my own leg, slicing my body open.
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Holy shit.
>Once I had the little fucker exposed I seized it in my hand and ripped it out.
>There was still some of my muscle in it's mouth
>I threw it down on the rock hard enough it splattered, my own blood bursting from it's body
>Screams told me I had no time to worry about my injuries; there was more work to be done
>Monkey was stomping and hopping about wildly, dealing with a small swarm of grubs
>Mantis-san was doing likewise
>the screams were coming from a Hiruma who had been borne down into the muck by the last two zombies
>I reached him, and kicked the head off one of the zombies
>He managed to drive his own tanto into the eyesocket of the other
>But he kept screaming, and cluthed at his left arm
>I could see a bulge
>Akiyama got to us, and quickly tied the man's arm off
>Sayako came and grabbed his legs
>Mantis-san could read what was going on, and siezed the man's other arm
>I plunged my tanto in, trying to get to the grub
>But it seemed to sense my intent, and burrowed deeper
>He thrashed and screamed, the pain of my cutting and the creature eating away driving him to near madness
>Of course, the howls of a wounded person would attract all sorts of things in the shadowlands.
>But if we didn't get that thing out he'd die, and spawn dozens more
>Of course, I might end up killing him if I cut to much
>Akiyama yelled
>ENDURE IT, KUMORI! You HAVE to hold still!
>Hiruma Heihachi shoved a stick into Kumori's mouth, and he bit down hard before nodding at me to continue
>I dug in, pinching with my hands to try and find the movement
>Kumori screamed into the stick, eyes bulging and face red
>at last I found it, and stabbed it on the end of the tanto
>pus burst forth, into Kumori's wound
>I pulled the grub out, set it on the rock still pinned on my tanto, and crushed it underfoot
>Kumori would have to fight taint and infection, but his life was out of danger for now
>panting heavily he spat the stick out
>Thank... you...
>Then his eyes rolled up and he fainted
....how much of this was added flavor. I mean, I might be dumb but I can't think how these little horror bugs work mechanically.
No matter how much of this was actually rp'd at the table I have to give you credit for making me regret reading this during lunch.
It's all very real. One of the 4e books, I forget which, details all the horrible ways that the Shadowlands can kill you. There's a spider that eats people, attaches them to it's stomach lining, and uses them as food for its young.
>Akiyama stood, arms folded across his broad chest, and surveyed his troops
>No one else had died in this fight, but everyone, even Monkey and Mantis-san, bore wounds now
>Kumori was gravely wounded, unconscious.
>Heihachi looked into his kit and shook his head. He was rapildy running out of medical supplies
>And there was no doubt at all that things were already converging on this place, seeking the source of the wounded cries, seeking easy prey.
>He nodded.
>Alirght, that's enough. We're heading back
>We fashioned up a quick litter for Kumori and began to head out
>Akiyama spoke with me on the way
>two in a row...
>Those were good ambushes
>yeah, they were.
>The Warmonger had used his chuckers to distract us, had them outflank us so our attention was on them, and then sent in the reserves, charging and 'blessed' with magic mud.
>Then a cunning undead had hidden itself in a pack of zombies, and many of them carried a surprise infestation of very deadly grubs
>Akiyama shook his head
>I'm convince, now more then ever, that Masagoro is right.
>Two of those, back to back like that? There must be something else leading them, placing them to intercept our patrols.
>If you say so. I know about how to kill them, and which ones to hit first. What they do outside of fights, and what that means...that's the job of the Kuni and Hiruma. And softening them up. And harrying them when they run...
>Monkey pipped up
>So then, what do you Hida even do?
>A few chuckles at that
>We're the rocks that the things the Hiruma are too smart to fight break on, Monkey.
>That got some honest laughter
>I fell toward the back of the group, and kept my ears open for sign of anything stalking us
>A few Hanemuri were flitting from tree to tree, keeping pace
>I called out and a swift volley or arrows made sure they wouldn't gather enough numbers to try anything
>We managed to get clear of the bog without incident
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Most of the creatures in the Shadowlands have mechanics that are exclusive to them. In the case of heart grubs, I think they burrow into you on a successful attack and cause XkX (not variable, I just don't remember the dice amount) damage each round as they burrow towards your heart, but you can remove them with a Medicine skill roll.

I think they were in Bearers of Jade: The Second Book of the Shadowlands.
Enemies of the Empire. Only got a 1k1 attack roll, but full attack and exploding tens... they come on in swarms so enough dice get rolled, one of em is bound to get lucky

After they hit you they just do 4 automatic wounds every turn till you die and they lay eggs in you. Medicine/Agi roll TN 25 to dig them out, and every ATTEMPT inflicts 2k2 wounds.

And, the larvae hatch in 24 hours. Having heart grubs growing inside a corpse doesn't stop it from reanimating either. And since the shadowlands is suffused with the taint any human that dies there WILL rise as a zombie if you don't decapitate them. So, you know. Zombie surprise grub bomb, for when your PC's start to underestimate zombies.
These thread titles are just perfect
You know. Maybe I was better off not knowing the full extent of how horrible these are.
>reveal life spell

I think you're lost
Uh explain?

It's my setting and magic can work how I want
This is a L5R story thread. There are no elves.
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You will have to excuse me I am looking for the other storytelling thread
No harm, no foul.
It's all good.
now you know what is at stake here, next time be mindful of that when dealing with Crabs
Semi-civil beings that live in the shadowlandhings use chopsticks made of bone instead of wood both as a tainted twist on a Rokugani tradition, and because the trees are often more dangerous and less predictable than the creatures.
Pretty sure these were the things Ishigaki used to avoid that giant oni when he went looking for Hida

>Semi-civil beings that live in the shadowlandhings use chopsticks made of bone instead of wood
Wait, so are you telling me that the Lost have better table manners than the Unicorn?
If you consider cooking samurai up and offering them to their companions "better table manners" then yes.
>Mantis-san blew out a sigh
>Never thought I'd be so glad to see a barren wasteland
>I grinned at him
>I know the feeling
>I turned along with Akiyama
>Heihachi was kneeling down beside Kuromi's liter.
>He looked up
>Kuromi is feverish, gunso.
>Akiyama slammed his fist into his palm
>Right, we make haste then
>You two, take the litter up and move togother
>We need to get him back to the Wall as fast as we can!
>We all took off running, fanning out in a semicircle around the liter bearers
>Some small lizards and such scurried away as we ran, but we encountered no further resistance
>as we closed in on the Wall, I made the sign of a returning patrol, and added in very sick treatment needed urgently
>In moments a swarm of Hiruma burst forth from the hidden entrances to the tunnels, a Kuni in tow
>The Kuni was there by the time the liter bearers had set Kumori down
>Akiyama spoke quickly
>Heart Grub, got into his arm in a bog. We cut it out but it gooped in his arm...
>Noding the Kuni fished out a pair of scrolls and set to work
>Kumori's breath eased a bit
>The Kuni then looked over the rest of us
>You all need to be tested.
>We were boated back across and taken up on lifts, save Kumori.
>The Hiruma that came out carried him back through the tunnels
>On the long ride up I looked at Akiyama
>His mouth was set grimly
>He noticed me staring, and sighed
>I've had patrols go worse...but still.
>We didn't even learn anything!
>I tilted my head
>I wouldn't go that far. We learned that something doesn't want us snooping around in that area.
>I looked back out over the shadowlands
>Everyone I've spoken to thinks highly of Masagoro-sama. I'm sure that he and his advisors can learn something even all he knows is the rough shape of the missing peices
>Akiyama smiled
>You're right of course. He is that kind of man. I just wish I could have brought something more solid...
>Ah, I see. He's worried about the NEXT patrol. Those who will go after us.
>artist draws a living giant cooked crab
And that's why Kuni are grim as fuck.
They get to see that stuff on a regular basis.
Ok. I know this is all for balance of the clans so that the Empire as a whole is strong. But why the crap would this stuff not be told to everyone? Instill the fear of the shadowlands in the Empire, give the crabs all the rice they could ever need, let them no if they don't stop their silly bickering and "oh uncivilised" talk that they will all die painfully corrupted and screaming?

Seems like a good fear of the shadowland would hold the Empire together just fine.
>After some poking and proding from the Kuni we were purified and allowed to rest
>Then it was back to Shiro Kuni to give Masagoro the report
>Kumori was still too sick to make the journey, so we left him in the care of the Kuni at the Wall
>Hida Adachi greeted us on our return
>Masagoro-sama is waiting in the planning room, hurry and give your report
>I went with Akiyama, since Masagoro had asked me to go on the patrol
>We got to the room and saw him hunched over a table, covered in maps of the shadowlands
>He looked up as we arrived
>Akiyama looked down for a moment
>Masagoro scowled, sensing the bad news
>I decided to speak up at that point
>You're right about there being a force somehwer out there. No doubt about that now.
>Oh? Explain.
>We took truns relaying what happened
>One man dead...
>Masagoro hung his head a moment
>But, you say Kumori will live?
>He is in the care of the Kuni now. I'd say his chances are good
>Masagoro nodded
>I agree with your assesment. Two well planned ambushes in such a short time...
>Here, yes?
>Akiyama leaned over the table to look where Masagoro pointed on the map
>yes, there's a bog there now.
>A bog? Hmmm. a bog, a bog...
>Masagoro shuffled through some maps
>He slapped one down over where the map he had pointed to was
>Does this look right?
>Akiyama studied the map, then closed his eyes to think
>...YES! That's it!
>hah! Sometimes old terrain comes back around!
>Akiyama grinned
>It's just as Ishigaki said. You really can grasp the picture by it's missing pieces! I'm amazed Masagoro-sama
>Hiruma Masagoro waved away the compliment.
>I've just seen things like this happen before, that's all. Familiarity makes it seem like I'm more capable then I really am.
>He bellowed for an aide to come, then gave us nods of dismissal
>Akiyama turned to me as we left
>I have to go speak with the Kuni, maybe the Kaiu.
>I must find the families of those samurai whose diasho we collected.
>And write a letter...
Because everyone was always afraid that the Crab Clan would do what Kisada did. And by that I mean storm the Empire and take it by force.

The Lion Clan's massive army is kept in check by it's own Honor

The Crab Clan's massive army is kept in check by a combination of attrition and being about a month away from starving to death due to lack of supplies

The Ki-Rin were kept in check by not being here, and when they came back as the Unicorn, well...It's a good thing their nomadic ways make them ill suited to ruling actual cities. And the Utaku battle maidens are as honorable as any Lion.

It's kind of a viscous cycle. The Crab grew really strong having to face a never ending war with a dishonorable foe, so applying economic pressure to strain their logistics was the only way to keep their power in check. But that just made them have to get better at doing more, with less while simultaneously fueling their resentment of politics<military clans like the Crane and Scorpion. Which, to an extent, is what the Otomo want. They want the Crab pissed at the Crane, not the Imperial Families.

But this nonstop crucible has continued to make the clan stronger and stronger and stronger. As a result, since the Crab CAN handle thier duties with so little, jackasses Otomo a million miles away in the capitol come to the conclusion that they have enough and could probably do with less.

On occasion, the Emperor DOES hold his winter court in Kyuden Hida, and show favoritism to the Crab Clan, but those emperors are rare. Oddly enough one of them was the Steel Chrysanthemum, so you know...little bit of a stigma there.
This kind of stuff IS told to everyone. But there are a few problems that keep the other clans from giving the Crab everthing they need:

1) The Shadowlands is alive. It knows that if it seems like a truely great threat to the Empire, all of Rokugan will unite and purge it. So it will sometimes go (very) long periods without much happening. It wants to be feared, but not so much that everyone bans together to wipe it out.

2) Not everyone believes the Crab. A fair number of people think the Crab exaggerate their stories to use as political leverage. People go into the Shadowlands and come back alive all the time after all, so it can't be THAT bad. Sure sometimes you get an big invasion led by The Maw and it's a close call, but that's the exception, not the rule. Most the attacks are goblins (who are what, three feet tall) with the occasional ogre (who are strong, but fairly easy for a trained samurai to deal with) and maybe an oni or two; hardly the end of the world. This has also been reinforced be "accounts" from Tainted infiltrators in the Empire.

3) Talk of the Shadowlands and the Taint is more or less taboo. You just don't bring it up in polite company. As long as you don't go past the Kaiu Wall, the Shadowlands is a far off threat held at bay by the Crab, and they seem perfectly capable of handling it. Best to put it out of your mind and focus on your own duty.
>I nodded and claped his shoulder
>That part was always a bit hard. Not like there's a lot of glory to be had south of the Wall. >No honorable foes whose heads are worth taking.
>The vile nature of our foes made even acts of great bravery seem lessened in the eyes of the Empire as a whole.
>Think about it. Had Kumori died, who would tell the story of the brave samurai that got eaten by a thumb sized bug?
>I returned to our rooms in the seventeenth baracks
>Mantis-san and Monkey had gone ahead of me when we returned, so I was expected
>Naomi's hands were on me before I'd even finished opening the door, and wounds I had recived began to mend right away
>Nice to see you too, Hana-chan...
>She looked up but said nothing
>Just healed me and hugged me
>I stroked her hair to sooth her. She always calmed down when I stroked her hair
>I looked over to Kitsuki-san
>he had dark circles under his eyes
>You look worse off than I do
>They must not have mirrors in the shadowlands then, if you think that's true.
>I sat down as Naomi poured me some tea
>Getting close then?
>Kitsuki-san grinned.
>Oh, very.
>Just a few dozen more to go.
>Toshiro grumbled form the corner
>There was an attempt on our lives while you were gone.
>I looked sharply at Naomi
>I was not there when it happened, Ishigaki-kun
>I looked back to them.
>So acomplice, puppet or...?
>Kistuki-san snorted.
>No, just dark.
>Do you remember, the winter court in the Phoenix lands, when the bloodspeaker used the spell to blind everyone?
>Ahh, that trick again.
>Kitsuki-san nodded.
>So, we kept him from killing us until he ran away.
>I looked over at Toshiro
>He stared right back at me, then held up his club foot
>And you couldn't just blat him?
>With what?! I couldn't see! Or do you think I should have thrown a giant ball of flame and burned Shiro Kuni down along with him?!
>I glanced over to Kitsuki-san
>He shrugged
>I tripped.
>Mantis-san looked back and forth between the two
>alright, so you're telling me that the bloodspeaker, sensing you getting closer to him, tried to kill you both.
>And while WE were slogging through a tainted bog and fighting worms that could eat our hearts and flaming goblins,YOU were letting the guy that tried to kill you just waltz away?!
>Monkey elbowed Mantis-san
>I'm sure it wasn't like that at all Daigo-san!
>Toshiro tilted his head back and forth a few times, and spoke out of the corner of his mouth
>Actually it kind of wa... wait.
>Nikumizu AND Magic Mud?
>I nodded
>The goblins had a warmonger as well as a shamen, and the Nikumize where the dessert to a zombie main course.
>Monkey spoke up.
>yeah, and that tough zombie... what did you call it? Hyak... hyuk...
>a Hyakuhei?!
>yeah, that was it!
>Kitsuki-san and Naomi were both staring
>Um, would you mind...?
>Toshiro looked over at Kituski-san.
>That is too many dangerous things in too short a timeframe. Hiruma Masagoro-sama is right. There is an army gathering out there somewhere.
>He looked back over at us
>All that and those wounds were all?
>Well, we lost one to the magic mud, and another got bit by the heart grubs. I cut it out in time, but he's fighting an infection now.
>I see.
>Monkey piped up
>Yeah, Ishigaki didn't waste anytime getting that worm out. Not even when one got in his leg!
>Naomi and Toshiro both
>I rubbed at my eyes
>God dammit Monkey
>Naomi turned to Toshiro. What is a 'heart grub'?
>He explained to her
>She grew paler with every word
>I waved my hands back and forth forestalling her
>Yes, but you saved my life back there Naomi!
>She blinked
>I...what? how?
>I've made a study of medicne, you know. For your sake! But becasue of that I also knew how to cut out the little bastards! So really, you saved my life and the life of Hiruma Kumori!
>She took a breath, calming herself
>Well, it does not matter how dangerous it WAS anyway. Because you are here NOW.
Naomi is based waifu.
I want a waifu like her, just too pure.
Such a good healer she can save lives even when she's not there!
Nobody wants to hear about it until its on their doorstep. Certain groups are well aware of the danger (The Daidoji in particular have a constant presence on the wall when the Crab and Crane aren't inches from a war) and do what they can, but two generations from any given major incursion and very few people outside of the Crab have firsthand accounts or want to have secondhand accounts. The taint is well-known as a real threat to your eternal soul, and many believe that even talking about it too much is just asking for kansen and oni to show up. Rokugan in general takes their afterlife very seriously. On top of that, the official stance is that the Empire is at peace. When the divinely backed emperor says that there's no problems, even the pragmatic types have a hard time coming up with contingencies since everyone else either believes it or needs to play along to keep imperial favor. Combine all that with what is perceived as constant whining and demanding from the Crab on the other clans and it just results in apathy and avoidance of the topic until there's a horde of monsters halfway to the Spine of the World.
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>And then Sayako dropped to her needs and exposed her massive breasts and spoke.
>"Let me wrap my fat slutty tits around your cock and tittyfuck you until you blow a load over my face. When you're done you can impregnate me like the bitch I am."
This week's L5R general thread for any interested parties: >>53841721
>Do you know where you are? Your in the Jungle, Stonewall!

Anon, Crab and Scorpion don't have as much resentment towards each other as you imply. Scorpion doesn't mess with Crab unless it's absolutely necessary, and even then they do it very carefully, because, as a clan, Scorpion has a very good understanding of the danger the Shadowland holds. The shugenja families have very strong ties, as well. Scorpion has a agency that hunts maho and creatures that slip through the wall, much like the Jade Magistrates do.
It's not what you eat, it's how you eat it.
>But why the crap would this stuff not be told to everyone?
For a significant part of Rokugani history before the constant bombardment of apocalyptic scenarios that mark the start to end of AEG's CCG time period, most clans could comfortably get by without that knowledge.

Rokugan still seriously frowns on talking about the Shadowlands or anything related to it, but before the CCG helped everyone conflate IC knowledge and meta knowledge re: Shadowlands/Maho/etc, they were hardcore about it. Like many other unsavoury topics, they preferred to ignore them until they went away.

>Because everyone was always afraid that the Crab Clan would do what Kisada did.
Really not. The Shadowlands hasn't been a constantly active high threat for a thousand years. Up until the Second Day Of Thunder, most clans considered the Crab to be blowing the dangers out of proportion, that any assistance or extra trade was unnecessary, and the Crab themselves were a joke. Hence why Kisada took the single, workable, stupid option he had to change that.
Crabs and Scorpions give each other a wide berth, because Crabs might just flip out and kill you consequences be damned, and because Scorpion are all tricky, sneaky liars who never fight fair

But that dosen't change the fact that your average Crab hates the Scorpion Clan.
>Crabs might just flip out and kill you consequences be damned
Crab might do that if they're a permanently wall-stationed berserker. Ichiro are the setting masters of flipping out, tho.
>your average Crab hates the Scorpion Clan
Nah, it's more of the general spite they feel for all the other clans, but everyone agrees the Crane are the absolute worst.
>Kitsuki-san looked over us
>I'm going to be moving on to interviews soon, now that we've got a more managable number.
>But I don't expect anything to come of them. Not right away anyway.
>So instead of helping with that, I'd like you three to watch the ones that are the most suspicious right now.
>I looked between Mantis-san and Monkey
>Then pointed to myself
>Um, you have met me, right Kitsuki-san?
>Kituski-san rubbed the bridge of his nose
>Have you ever heard of hiding in plain sight?
>Sounds like something a ninja would do
>Monkey agreed with me
>If they don't have any riceballs to hide in, yeah
>No, it's... look. Ishigaki-san, all you need to do is walk around and act normally. Just keep your target in your peripheral vision most of the time.
>You won't really raise their suspicions all that much because that kind of behavior is expected of you.
>You're a Crab...in a Crab stronghold. You don't stick out here as much as you do elsewhere
>Huh. Alright then, I'll give it a shot
>So, while Kitsuki-san conducted interviews, Mantis-san and Monkey shadowed their targets.
>I walked about the castle, speaking with Crabs, throwing dice, sparing, and telling stories of my time outside the Clan
>It was during a bout of sparing that the next patrol Masagoro was sending out began to assemble in the courtyard
>I noticed Adachi standing off the side, staring at the patrol and scowling.
>That distracted me just long enough for the Nikutai I was sparing with to knock me off balance and out of the circle
>I congratulated him on his sharp reactions, then looked at the patrol myself
>It took a moment for me to realize what I was seeing.
>I walked up beside Adachi.
>Is that it?
>He nodded slowly
>Are they going to get more from the Wall? Or split up?
>He looked aside at me. THen shook his head
>What.. what the hell?
>There was a full troop assembled in the courtyard.
>that was all wrong
A guess from a non L5R lurker-reader: a troop is the worst of both worlds. Far too many to be unobtrusive, far too few to smash everything they come across.
Sounds like somebody is actively TRYING to get Crabs killed and weaken the garrison with fool's errands.
>I had told Monkey and Mantis-san that the amount of armor you wear is really a matter of preference.
>Heavy armor makes some small dangers inconsequential, but it makes it more likely you will have to fight instead of being able to run or hide should a large danger show itself.
>The same principle applied to the size of a patrol sent into the shadowlands.
>A large patrol WILL draw attention and thus more fights, but will be able to handle those fights. A small patrol will be better able to avoid fights it cannot win.
>Sending in a single troop, a wakizashi, was just consigning the bushi to death.
>There were too many soldiers to be stealthy, and not enough to fight back against the worst that cold find them.
>One of the Hiruma assebmling for the patrol came over to us, and handed me a folded up letter, along with his daisho
>Please, Hida-sama. See that my family gets these.
>I knew it. Adachi knew it. And it was plain that all the Hiruma in that patrol knew it as well
>I took the daisho and letter. wondering what Masagoro knew that I did not, what reason he had for ordering this
>My name is Hiruma Manzo.
>He bowed to thank me, then rejoined his unit
>Adachi, am I just stupid?
>Adachi shook his head.
>I don't know that Masagoro is thinking either.
>Must be some insight he's gleaned from his years as a commander...
>I nodded. The very best commanders knew that there were times to defy common sense, when doing the unexpected would yield impressive results.
>I looked down at the letter in my hand and said a quick prayer that Masagoro's gamble would pay off.
>Two days latter, I was having a small lunch with Naomi when I saw Hiruma Kumori arrive
>I held up a hand and waved him over
>He came by, bowing to me
>Hey, no need for all that.
>you saved my life, Ishigaki-sama. Of course there is a need to show my gratitude
>No there isn't. For one thing, I didn't do it alone, and for another, it's just expected that you save your brother Crab if you can
But it can't be Masagoro, that would be too simple wouldn't it?
>He smiled
>Thank you for that, truly.
>Then he looked down
>I must go and report to my new gunso. But, I am glad that I was able to see you again.
>He turned away before I could ask what he meant by new gunso and began walking
>Not towards the barracks
>towards the tower that lurked just beyond the castle proper
>Naomi followed my gaze
>She pointed to the banner hanging off the side of the tower
>I do not recognize that heraldry, Ishigaki-kun
>It was a Crab, similar to the Hida mon.
>Save this Crab was all black. And rather then clutching a tetsubo, it held a piece of rotting jade
>I gently placed a hand on Naomi's arm and puled it down
>That's the standard of the Damned
>Please, don't point.
>She looked at me
>The... the Damned?
>I have heard that name a few times.
>They are warriors who have become tainted
>Naomi's eyes widened
>As a Lion who is dishonored will sometimes become a deathseeker, so will a Crab who becomes tainted become one of the Damned
>They seek to redeem and purify their souls by dying in battle with the shadowlands.
>So, I saved him from the heart grub, we got him back in time for the Kuni to save him from the infection, only for the taint to take root.
>I shook my head
>I had heard rumors, but I did not think...
>The Damned would only be deployed against another Clan if the future of the Clan itself were at stake, Naomi. They're one of those things we only use against the shadowlands. And we never speak of them to those outside the Clan.
>She looked at the gloomy building, at Kumori's back, at the way the other Crab turned aside as he walked passed.
>I lowered my head
>See, they do not wish to shame him any further. We all know. Secrets are for Scrorpion and Oni. But we will be polite for this.
>She bowed her head
>Because it could be any one of you that has to make that walk?
>I see.
>She shivered and clutched at my leg
The Shadowlands take everything
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>and clutched at my leg
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Hey, as there's no other l5r thread up I'll ask here:
What's the proper thing to do, for the captor and the captive, if samurai (bushi and non-bushi) are for reasons captured alive in combat?
Shugenja are generally offered a chance to surrender in battle so their gifts are not wasted (if they continue to fight, they're fair game however). They will be held in a sort of house arrest, then be allowed to return to their clan once hostilities have ceased. Most bushi would rather commit seppuku than endure the shame of being captured, but assuming they are captured by the enemy the procedure is much the same as with shugenja.

Mind you, it is a fairly common practice for the victorious army to send men armed with small knives to finish off any wounded from the opposing army.
That is more for the foe than their own sakes, though, right? At least, given how Bayushi Kentaro acted during Ishigaki's discovery of him on the battlefield.
Six of one, half-dozen of the other. Sure, a Lion commander would probably say it's to spare a defeated foe from the shame of being captured; a Scorpion commander will probably say it's better to finish a wounded enemy off rather than allow him to heal and eventually return to combat. Works out the same either way really.
I should also add that it isn't inherently dishonorable to spare an enemy after battle, being that you are showing Compassion (and maybe Courtesy) to your foe. It's another one of those funny contradictions of bushido.
Pretty sure Kentaro's protests were less "Do not shame me!" and more "You're the last person I want to save me! B-baka!
Sorta. You can polite fiction your way out of a lot of the related shame if everyone plays ball. You didn't capture the guy, you rescued him from a slow death after he went down. He's not a prisoner, he's an honored guest who has personal guards for his own safety. No need to be rude just because you're at war.
Maybe the goal is, after Ishigaki's report, to draw an unprepared enemy force out of hiding? Potentially trick the forces that are amassing into several smaller, weaker waves on the Wall than the tidal wave it is threatening to be.
>Looking for tainted maho users
>Camp of tainted crab literally next door, which no one would normally investigate
I bet Shoji is to blame for this.
When in doubt blame Shoji.
There are so many Kuni creeping around the Damned, and they have such strict curfews and rules that it would be very, very difficult for one of them to be doing anything they aren't supposed to.
Wow. Rude much? How about you get in the back of the line for healing from now on?
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Oh... yeh. It just occurred to me too.

But that Masagoro is being a puppet of THEM
>The patrol returned the next day
>One man limped back into the courtyard of Shiro Kuni
>Masagoro ran out to meet him, catching him as he stumbled from fatigue
>At Masagoro's command water was brought and then they helped the soldier back into the barracks to give his report
>I made preperations to return Manzo's daisho to his family
>As I crumpled my letter and started over for a third time I glanced over at Kistuki-san
>How are things on your end?
>His eyes flicked up from his own notes
>better then on yours, it seems.
>Five left.
>He arched his eyebrow
>What is that about?
>A boy from that last patrol asked me to get his daisho back to his family
>He knew he would not return?
>Too many to avoid battle, too few to win every battle. Just the wrong number of men for a patrol
>Kitsuki-san cocked his head
>Masagoro did not strike me as the kind to gamble like that
>I nodded.
>Well, we'll find out soone enough if his gamble paid off
>Kitsuki-san nodded and went back to his notes
>with a shwoop the door to the barracks opened up
>Hida Ishigaki-san?
>Masagoro-sama wishes to speak with you.
>I stood up
>Well, let's not keep him waiting
>I felt Kitsuki-san staring at my back as I left
>I entered Masagoro's room to find him donning his armor
>We must move out, and move out quickly
>I would ask you to accompany me
>Taking a breath to wipe the surprise from my face, I spoke
>What is it? what did you learn?
>The patterns of their scouts movements, the places they launch their ambushes...I'm certain I know where they are forming up.
>But I need to see it with my own eyes to confirm
>He stroked his beard, and muttered almost to himself
>And if possible, find out what power guides this horde
>I nodded as I handed him his sode
>Sun-Tao, right? Know your enemy and know yourself?
>What rank did you hold when you served in the army?
>I never rose higher than a gunso, Masagoro-sama
>For now, I would like you take the rank of Taisa
Masagoro is THEM, there's no doubt anymore.

That bit at the end, giving Ishigaki a promotion to cloud his judgement with pride and new responsibilities, was just devious enough for THEM.
>As I came out into the courtyard everyone was there
>No surprise, they came out. A full company was assembling.
>I looked out over One hundred twenty Crabs in formation before the gates of Shrio Kuni, and understood my temporary promotion
>Adachi was there as well. He nodded to me
>Mantis-san and Monkey were in their armor
>Can't let you go in on your own,
>Yeah. Naomi-sama would never let us hear the end of it!
>Monkey grinned at me
>Toshiro stepped up
>I"m going as well, this time
>A patrol this size, my leg won't matter. And you're bound to need me.
>I looked at Kituski-san and Naomi
>You two, stick togother while we're away
>Kitsuki-san nodded
>Naomi came up to me, stood on her tiptoes and kissed me on the cheek
>For luck
>Thank's Hana-chan
>The gates opened, and we set forth from Shiro Kuni at Masagoro's order
>Hiruma Masagor took the first step up onto the wall, flanked by myself and Adachi
>It took time to get so many soldiers formed back up on the other side of the River of the Last Stand, even using both the tunnels and the lifts
>Once the troops were assembled, Masagoro addressed them
>I know where our enemy gathers their strength!
>Today we set out to confirm their numbers, their commander!
>Make no mistake! We will fight for every step we take! The enemy will stop at nothing to keep us blind!
>Do not fear! Do not let their determination slow you advance!
>Know that they disgrace us, insult us, with every day! With every oni, every goblin that joins this horde!
>But when we return with the knowledge we have gathered, we will be able to prepare fully for the assault to come!
>We follow the ancient way! The order handed down from Hiruma, Kaiu and Kuni when they faced Oni no Hatsu Suru!
>We cannot loose here, we cannot fail!
>We must know our enemy to defeat them!
>He turned and pointed south
>NOW! We march...
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>NOW! We march...

That sound you just heard was 120 assholes puckering up so tight they can't even fart
>Shiro Hiruma
>Lost in the advance of the Maw in 716, many campaigns had been launched in the centuries since to reclaim the ancestral home of the Hiruma
>All had ended in failure
>Thousands of Crab had died trying in vain to reclaim it. Of those that did manage to enter the castle, none one month was the longest it was ever held
>The shadowlands seemed to take sick delight in mocking us, and would stop at nothing to hold Shiro Hiruma
>If the horde was truly forming up there, of all places...
>I didn't need to turn to see that the Hiruma in this patrol were even more furious then they were affraid
>Truthfully, I doubted even Masagoro would be unaffected by the knowledge that the horde gathered in his families home.
>Well. Nothing for it.
>Masagoro was right, we needed to see what was coming to prepare properly for it
>We only had to get close, it wasn't as though we were going to try to capture Shiro Hiruma
>At his comand we began to march across the barren plains and into the depths of the shadowlands
>With a patrol this size, we had flank and rear gaurds, as well as a number of Hiruma spread out ahead of the main body
>It would have been nice to have some cavalry for that, but horses were absolutly terrified of the shadowlands.
>Perhaps a Shiotome could keep her steed under control here...
>Everyone else would just have to walk
>Shadows fell over us as we marched
>I looked up, seeing dark shapes wheeling about in the sky
>They did not attack though.
>As expected, with a full company we drew attention right away, but there were few things that would dare attack such a force
>I spent much of the day worrying about the things that WOULD dare.
>As we made our camp and set out the watches for the first day, Monkey and Mantis-san came up to me
>You think he's right?
>Toshiro rested his hand on his chin
>Well, it IS something a trophy for the shadowlands
>We reclaimed the Kuni lands, but we've been unable to retake the Hiruma lands yet.
bump back from page 9
Who's willing to bet that the fortress will prove to be surprisingly unoccupied and Masagoro will order to seize it?
So how did forever gm handle the party being split? was it separate sessions or split sessions?
so, a troop AND a company was sent away from shiro kuni

so now theres WAY less people in shiro kuni...

shiro kuni will burn
split. One scene with group A one scene with group B back and forth.
I can only imagine how the party felt during all this. Even reading through this is like the prologue of the apocalypse.
Seriously. I am sitting here struggling to think just HOW badly everything is gonna go up in flames.
Well we know the castle should be in flames soon
Yeah, but the how is killing me.
My mind is going through all the possible logical twists and is now going through the illogical not a chance in hell ones.
Like Naomi was THEM all along.
Purge that filth from your brain
If I've learned anything from this storytime, it's that one of Ishigaki's greatest flaws is how he deals with superiors who are obviously THEM. He knows that they're wrong, but his indecision and self-doubt binds his hands until it's too late. This is a test by perma-GM for Ishigaki: he must stop his mad (and possibly evil) superior, before he throws away the lives of several thousand Crab samurai.
She cannot be. With all this jade probing made through whole campaign.
Do you betray your Duty and kill one traitor, or let your Clansmen to die?
I'm not envy to Ishigaki. It is a really tough choice, especially for a Rokugani
A man is not your Duty. The general is not the army, the Champion is not the Clan, and even the Emperor is not the Empire
What if the fort's former tainted occupants made way to Kuni fort?
But what if he's not THEM? This could very well help them survive the next push.
You can't let your paranoia make you cut at shadows, because if you strike at an empty shadow, you leave your back open to the real enemy.
t. a scorpion
Words of a fool who does not know his place under the Heavens.
He could not be THEM, but then he is clearly mad. The course of action does not change; the shadow hides the enemy's identity, but not their presence.

If we all thought like that, we'd be under the thousand years of darkness.
If we all thought like that, we would all be honourable.
Well, there is THREE possibilities:
1. He is one of THEM. then we are truly fucked.
2. He is mad and/or fool full of paranoia. Then we just fucked.
3. He is actually a COMPETENT LEADER, a rare specie, and he knows what the fuck we are doing. Then we not really fucked, but in shitty situation nonetheless.
I'm not sure, Khorne, but to me it looks like Masagoro is chasing fever dreams and risking the lives of his men needlessly. I understand the need for intel but there's only so much prep you can do and I'm moderately confident that the Crabs are prepared for most of the things the Shadowlands can throw at them.

Then again it's samurai drama, common sense does not apply.
Your way of thinking is a false wisdom. Allow me to take on the role of a sensei and enlighten you as to why. The social order of the Empire is more than a collection of people and the tasks they perform, it is a mirror of the Blessed Hierarchy of Heaven; bestowed upon us by the Children of the Sun and Moon. To arrogantly go against that Hierarchy is to invite not only treason, but blasphemy as well. Let me give you some examples.
Your way of thinking causes mortal men to forsake the virtue and righteousness they inherited from Lady Sun and instead embrace the petty jealousy, rage and madness of Lord Moon. They arrogantly believe they should control Heaven and Earth, and in doing so threaten the very balance of the cosmos. We know these traitors by a name: Kolat.
Your way of thinking causes a group of men to arrogantly believe that they are more fit to rule the Empire than the Son of Heaven. The violation of the Blessed Hierarchy robs the Empire of it's soul and reduces it to little more than numbers on a counting table. We know these traitors by a name: Gozoku.
Your way of thinking causes a man to give into his ambition and commit one of the highest form of blasphemy possible. To strike down the Son of Heaven and attempt to take his place, nearly bringing about the very ruin he sought to avoid and damning his soul to wander as one of the hungry dead. We know this traitor by a name: Bayushi Shoju.
Your way of thinking leads another man to commit treason and blasphemy. To forsake his oaths and Duty and ally himself with the minions of the Dark Brother, foolishly believing that he can control them and pointlessly sacrificing a member of his own family. Regardless of his noble intentions, he nearly brought the Empire to ruin and doomed the world to a thousand years of darkness. If not for the intervention of the new Son of Heaven, his soul would surely have been damned. We know this man by a name: Hida Kisada.

I hope you learn well from these lessons.
Not him, but all I see are excuses to uphold stagnation and rot. Nothing more nothing less.
Sometimes branches must be pruned. No matter how high they may be found.
To be fair, the Angry Seasons sound like the times the Maw, some other greater oni, or other grand terror leads a force out of the Shadowlands. That would be the sort of thing I could see a Crab leader try to take out early.
Neither the Gozoku, nor Shoju, nor Kisada couldn't have done what they did without minions and armies.
Your way of thinking is the way of those who followed them, those who were their hands and swords, those who made possible their atrocities.
Adversaries will always exist. The only thing my way of thinking does is make it so the adversaries who rise are noble fools, not cunning villains.
I would rather fight a foolish man than a cunning man, or even worse, a cunning not-man.

The hierarchy of the Empire is different to that of Heaven, because the Empire is rooted in earth, while Heaven is suspended from the sky. Heaven will stand as long as it's peak survives, but the Empire will fall if it is not supported from the bottom; being only mortal men, there is nothing we can do to change this.

Therefore, we must remember that our empire must have more than the Heavenly concepts of honor, virtue, and legitimacy. It must also be smart, and efficient, and put what is useful over what is not useful. Because we are lucky, we live in a world where honor and virtue and legitimacy are useful, but there are times when the wiser action is to follow a different course.
Follow your superiors, but not blindly. Question their actions, and when the truth is made clear to you, take action. This is the way a man may best serve the Empire.
Hasn't shifting your taint to someone else been a thing throughout the campaign?
Only happened once so far. Other conflicts have been much more direct.
Once that they know of.
See, I think that they have not been facing the same cell at all. I think they may have been facing multiple antagonists across Their adventure, sometimes related, sometimes not, but with no grand master of the Bloodspeakers. Mainly because a single, over arching villain would be far too simple for where this campaign has come from or gone, perhaps even deflating impact of all the things they have seen. Yes, there may be the leader of a cell, but I just cannot see them completely expunging the Bloodspeakers.
Then you are a fool and perhaps a traitor and a blasphemer as well. Perhaps in your next life you will take the lessons to heart, assuming you are not condemn to wander Gaku-do or worse.

Yes. And do you want to know what became of their followers? They were judged on a life where they upheld their Duty and their karma measured accordingly, while those they served faced the judgment of Emma-O with souls burdened by the karma they had accrued by their failings. You seem to forget that the this life we live is but one step on a long journey. Ask youself, why is that Shoju's son was allowed into Yomi while the father he supported was cursed to wander as a gaki?

Again, you focus too heavily on what you see here, in this world, in this life and foolishly believe that this life is all that matters. This is wrong. In defying the proper order of things, you burden your soul and condemn youself to try again and again. It is by following Heaven's design that we can achieve our dharma and be allowed into Yomi, not by struggling against it.
There are maho users who aren't bloodspeakers and, in fact, most low to mid tier bloodspeakers argue that what they do is an entirely different non-sanctioned form of magic, since their special technique lets the leaders seem to be entirely untainted even though they cast a lot of spells, which is good enough evidence for most to believe that it can't be kansen powered maho until they're so tainted that they don't care anymore. The leaders generally know the truth, but they also know that they are personally safe from the taint as long as they have victims and minions to dump taint on.
I hope the scorpions will just drop the feud. Those manchildren.
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>Our patrol advanced deeper and deeper into the shadowlands
>Our steps dogged the whole way by shadows the ran when confronted, and things flying overhead
>Our flank guards had killed only a half dozen goblins, and those with arrow fire in the three days we since we entered this place
>Tension began to mount in the men
>The enemy knew where we were, and knew our strength.
>We should have been challenged by now.
>On the the third night, I waited until I could have a moment alone and broached the subject with Masagoro.
>One should not question their superior within earshot of others. Discipline is important, after all.
>It is odd they have not confronted us yet. If they know where we are heading, they may have set an ambush ahead of us. Don't you think so, Masagoro-sama?
>I had to choose my words carefully. Even though he had effectively made me his second in command on this patrol, it was a temporary thing on his whim and his whim alone. I didn't have quite the latititude a proper Taisa would.
>To my surpise, Masagoro nodded along with my assesment
>yes, they know that I know. There is only one place we COULD be heading after all.
>This just means whatever leads this horde is more cunning than usual. And strong enough to keep such rabble in line.
>Then, should we not alter our course, Masagoro-sama?
>If they have prepared an ambush we should try to get around it, shouldn't we?
>He looked at me.
>You have sharp mind for military matters. I was right to give you that rank. But we cannot waste any more time. That's why I brought so many.
>We will have little enough time to prepare as is.
>He placed a hand on my shoulder
>I trust you understand. This situation is unusual. Therefore, we must respond in unusual fashion.
>I didn't like it, but I also couldn't say he was wrong.
>I nodded
>He smiled at me
>Yosh. It is good that you ask these things from time to time. I would not want to be so focused on the goal I loose sight of why it is important.
Masagoro raising so many warning flags here it's not even funny.
Agreed. At the same time, would their GM really use the "the party's superior is a Maho Tsukai" twist for a third time?
Third time's the charm
That's what the party would think...
>I could not sleep
>Every instinct in my body was screaming that we were in danger
>Even Monkey could feel it
>His usual jovial self was no where to be seen now
>He ate stiffly, then pulled a blanket about his shoulders and slept
>As the camp bedded down, and the sentries took up their posts he whispered to me
>Well, what do you think?
>About him?
>He's...focused. Perhaps too much, but I can't be certain. All I can say for sure is that he knows how dangerous it is to keep on as we are, and believes the reward worth the risk
>Toshiro frowned and stroked his chin
>What do you think?
>I don't know. I'm not a smart man Toshiro. Like a Lion, I rely on the wisdom of those who came before me
>They do it to honor their ancestors, I do it because I'm too stupid to think of answers on my own
>He sighed
>Try and get some sleep, Ishigaki-san. We'll need everyone's strength soon enough I think.
>Toshiro was more right then he knew
>Midday of the fourth day in, I saw it
>The path right through a mountain. The same cliffs rising to either side
>I knew it was the same place I saw when I went looking for Hida, though of course, it had moved since I was last here
>I grabbed Masagoro's shoulder
>I know that place, I hissed to him
>He looked at it
>Here then?
>yes here!
>He nodded
>I stared at him, incredulous
>Here or elsewhere, Ishigaki-san. We'll have to break through at some point. It may as well be now.
>I looked over to Adachi
>He frowned, but readied his tetsubo
>No choice then. We went in
>All the way to the very end, and then I saw it
>At the very end of the chasm a lone rider
>Seated upon a rotting steed
>Purple armor
>A bare skull with glowing orbs in empty sockets, burning with unholy light
>It skeletal jaw fell open, and shrieked.
>The sound froze the very marrow in my bones
>As the cry echoed throught the canyon I could see the very real effect it had
>All around me warriors went pale, sweat stood out on bare flesh, and I heard several simply fall to their knees, weapons clattering to the ground
>I reached desperately for Mushin no Shin, as I felt fear claw at my own throat
>The Dark Moto pointed one boiny finger and then the killing began
>While our troops were still reeling from the unnatrual terror it caused, boulders and logs began to fall upon us from above
>Not rocks and sticks but large logs, and huge boulders
>I could see goblins using levers to allow the deadfalls to come free.
>I could take no satisfaction in the ones that got caught up in their own traps and crushed
>There were other things on my mind
>Like the undead bursting up from the ground all around us. They had been so skillfully burried no one saw anything, until now
>And, at the far end of the chasam came a dozen riders in black armor. Very, horribly human looking riders
>Behind them, ogres
>I looked to Masagoro, waiting for him to order the retreat
>Be he stood there, blade in hand, and stared at the riders bearing down on us
>I barely got my tetsubo up in time to deflect a Yari
>Masagoro sliced the legs of one as it passed, so he fell from the sadle
>Then he stabbed him cooly through the throat
>The Lost twitched once and was still
>Bursts of flame exploded around the Goblins up above, trying to scatter them
>But, Toshiro was only one man, and it seemed the whole canyone had been lined with deadfalls
>I made up my mind
>Adachi followed my lead, shouting orders to create an organized withdrawl
>The riders wheled, a shocking manuver in the cramped canyon, and came back
>Monkey leapt up and took one's head off
>Mantis-san managed to take the legs out of another one's horse, spilling the rider
>The Crabs around fell upon the Lost, and it died screaming in fury
>Masagoro screamed defiantly at the Dark Moto
Okay, here's some bets
>1. Masagoro is one of THEM and will cause Shiro Kuni to burn
>2. Masagoro is a fool and will cause Shiro Kuni to burn
>3. THEY put a maho on Masagoro which makes him act this way and will cause Shiro Kuni to burn
>4. THEY counsel Masagoro and he unwittingly played into the hands of THEM and will cause Shiro Kuni to burn
>Adachi grabed Masagoro, pulling him back
>NO! We must go on!
>We cannot prevail here Masagoro-sama!
>He scowled, but allowed himself to be lead away
>My body burst forth into green light
>I nodded thanks to Tsohiro, and yelled for the rear gaurd to form up on me
>We fought walking backwards, stones raining down all around us
>I struck again and again at the ogres and zombies around me, and tried not to think about why the ground beneath my feet shifted so much, why it was so uneven
>Flashed of fire and jade energy over my shoulder told me Toshiro was doing his best to clear a path
>Since I didn't find myself facing any more Lost, I guessed he must have been doing a fine job.
>The rocks helped us as much as they killed us, crushing our some of our enemies as well
>But it was just zombies around us.
>I realized that the goblins stopped just ahead of the Ogres advance
>It was odd that the safest place in the rearguard was to be surrounded by ogres, but it was the truth
>I wedged myself in tightly, and fought desperately
>Savage blows rained down on me, shattering my armor.
>One by one, the others in the reargaurd fell
>I glanced back. The rest of the patrol was almost clear
>I turned and ran, a massive club smashing into my back as I did so
>But I could still go, and so I did
>A volley of arrows arced over my head to sink into the Ogres behind me
>I doubted if any Ogre fell, but it would distract them
>We ran
>Breaking clear of the death trap we ran on
>Masagoro was silent, sullen. Looking back over his shoulder over and over
>Adachi was the one giving the orders, moving the patrol as best he could
>Skuttling things on many legs burst froth from the canyon and gave chase
>Troops peeled away from the main body and engaged them.
>More screams, more blood. Few returned to us
>But the many legged horrors were stopped
>Monkey looked at me
>Are.. are you... okay?
>Do...don't talk...you'll...bite your tongue!
>Just RUN!
>shadows flitted across us
>The creatures that had followed above, now dove into our ranks
>Screams marked their passing, as they tore through our ranks
>One landed just in front, and hissed at us
>With a face like a human child
>Oni no Baby-Face.
>Toshiro! It's invulnerable!
>He nodded and as I tossed aside my tetsubo another one, made of earth and studded with jade appeared in my hands
>Toshiro was panting hard
>He'd used a lot of magic.
>And here, in the shadowlands there were very very few kami.
>I saw Mantis-san begin to powder his Kama
>Monkey covered me as I attacked
>Oni no Baby-Face snarled showing it's mouth full of razor teeth.
>I think it does, Ishigaki-san!
>Monkey leapt in, knocking aside the tail it swept at me
>Yeah! Last time I didn't have any jade! NOW WHAT YOU FILTH!
>I struck again, right in it's hideous face
>It reared up and shrieked in pain, trashing about with it's wings and tail
>Uh, I think you pissed it off!
>I glanced back to see if Mantis-san was coming, but he had his hands full with another winged beast. This one was reptilian, with two heads that sported great curved beaks and a forked tail
>I had to make this last one count then.
>I jumped up snapped it's fangs at me, and brought my tetsubo and all my weight down on the back of it's long neck.
>There was a satisfying crunch, and it flopped over twitching
>I turned in time to see three Crabs tackle the oni Mantis-san was fighitng
>They brought it down and he cut off both it's heads with one motion
>Clear for the time being, our flight resumed
>We did not stop, though not even I could run the whole time
>We ate as we walked, drank, pissed and shit on the march, never stopping
>Day and night we walked unable to rest even a moment
>Goblins hounded us the whole way. Thankfully, we endured no more assaults by Lost cavalry or flying Oni
>When we made it back to the Wall, less then forty of us were still alive.
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So much for getting to Shiro Hiruma.


>Oni no Baby-Face.

>There was a satisfying crunch, and it flopped over twitching
Yeeeeeees, fuck that oni bitch
i dont feel that masagoro is THEM, just an old man with PTSD about the familial estate and trying to kill his inner demon in a reckless way

welp, the ruins of shiro kuni awaits them
>Entering a defilade when he knew there's an ambush ahead
That's some PTSD
>In defying the proper order of things, you burden your soul and condemn youself to try again and again
I would gladly tarnish my soul for my duty, especially if it allows the souls of others to remain pure.
I think it's 2
Ishigaki should have left Masagoro behind.
I bet it did only and only one thing:
It pissed off that horde. At it WILL follow to the Wall.
I guess it's time for some good old "oh fuck it's angry season already" episode!
>Bayushi Shoju
Let me remind you, Bayushi acted on the guidance of an oracle of heaven. His mistake was in not seeking allies to avert the prophecy. When one becomes too comfortable in the shadows, one forgets there are times for standing in the light, too.
Look at how flashy he is, that's clearly a crane trying to fake being a scorpion. Real Scorpion agents don't stand out.
Ah, but would it stand out in Crane lands? One has to change the act depending on locale.
Nah man, that guy just knows the Dark Sword of Bitter Lies
We don't talk about the false martyrs.
Is that fun to play? What book are the 4e rules in?
It isn't false if you have to try that damn hard to die
You are no more capable of influencing another man's kharma than you are moving a mountain by hand or pulling the Sun from the Heavens. It is simply not your place to judge these things, my friend. Seek your own dharma so that when you face Emma-O in the Realm of Waiting, he does not find you lacking.

Shoju's failings are noone else's but his own, and though I am ashamed to say it, I find it hard to have sympathy for a man who fails his greatest test not once, but twice.
I've been waiting to read a completed document of Crabanon's story for weeks now. WEEKS.
Keep waitng, anon. It's worth it.
>You are no more capable of influencing another man's kharma than you are moving a mountain by hand
No, I cannot move mountains. But, I can move small pebbles, and the mounting is one pebble closer to having moved. And so it is.
its a saga of like....700 pages now?
the completed pdf will not be the same thing as following the thread. i pity the foo who didnt live the discussions following every story bits
I was around for the early threads, but once I started missing some I bailed so I wouldn't spoil myself on later story bits. They were fun. I think I got passed up around the time they went to that one island in the ocean with the giant snake and the mist trident. It was after the first couple of kids were born.
I hope we keep waiting for some time more tbqh
That's how it's actually pronounced in Japanese. 'N' before 'b', 'p' and 'm' turns into 'm'.

You could read what there is in pdf to catch up. Watching the story as it unfolds and trying to guess how the GM will fuck the players over is fun.
>All this talk about the pdf.

Its 617 pages, mind you. Subject to change as editing continues, which it hasn't gotten that much further.

Caught up with the story and spellchecked as much as quickly as possible. Probably missed a quite.
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gettin the taint be like
>Arrows flew from the top of the Wall, scattering the goblins that were hounding us
>Hiruma poured out of the tunnels to harry finish them off, while a few others led us in and through
>The tunnels are dark, close and cramped. It can be tricky to fight in them. On the other hand, one man can easily hold back dozens of enemies. And that's without making use of the traps within
>The usual paranioa of having outsiders was dismissed, as we were all wounded and exhausted
>Once we made it out of the tunnels everyone collapsed
>bandages and water were rushed to us
>A Kuni checked us all for signs of taint.
>Two men burned as he prodded them with jade
>I elbowed Monkey
>Don't stare, either of you. Just look away
>Everyone did so.
>When a Crab becomes tainted they have several choices. It is up to each individual which one they will choose, and the individual alone.
>We ignore them so that we do NOT shame them. We do not judge them for their decisions. We do not tell them what they should do
>It is the very danger of becoming tainted that makes our duty unclean.
>The other Clans will never admit it
>But they fear this.
>Being wounded neigh unto death and still fighitng honors your Clan and family.
>Covering yourself in the blood of your enemies marks you with glory
>Against the Shadowlands it just means you're more likely to become tainted
>To have your soul poisoned with Jigoku's corruption.
>Even if you die before you are lost, your soul will still bear the marks of Jigoku. And your corpse will rise up and bear arms against all you once held dear.
>Many choose to commit seppuku when they learn they have been tainted
>Returning to the karmic cycle before the stain on their soul can spread
>Others choose to retire to special monasteries. They spend the remainder of their lives drinking jade petal tea and living a live of ascetic purity, hoping to cleanse themselves, at least somewhat, before they stand before Emma-O.
>And some choose to become Damned.
>The Kuni folded his arms in the sleves of his kimono and waited patiently for their decision
>Both chose to carry out their duty one final time
>They were taken away, to be prepared for their final post at the Barracks of the Damned.
>I looked over the remenant that had survived
>and saw Masagoro talking with another officer
>...yes, then we were ambushed. It was one of the remenent of the Dark Moto leading the ambush
>a grunt of surpise
>it terrified the troops, and they stood paralyzed in the face of the ambush. But I was able to rally them and lead them back out
>I blinked
>Did I hear him right?
>The officer nodded
>I doubt anyone else could have gotten even this many back then Masagoro-sama. Good work.
>I did.
>I looked over to Adachi
>He just shook his head
>It IS the commander who bears the responsibility for defeat, so it is also the commander who gets the credit for success.
>Technically, Masagoro was entitled to take the credit for the successful retreat
>But this... rankled.
>I could see him conversing still, giving orders
>Adachi came up to me and spoke
>I'm thinking the same thing, but we should not.
>I just glared at him out of the corner of my eye
>He is still in command, Ishigaki-san. We should not undermine the trust he has earned
>I muttered back
>Tell that to the man that led his troops into an ambush and then froze up when the time to retreat came
>Adachi returned my glare
>That is a minor failure when weighed against the accomplishments of his life, and you know it.
>I looked back at the bleeding and tired soldiers
>You call THAT minor?
>His face darkened
>Yes. I do. Don't forget what is coming.
>I rubbed the back of my head
>Even one who was right there still wasn't sure about Masagoro.
>And the man was one of the highest ranked commanders in the whole of the Crab Clan
>Only the family Daimyo were of higher standing
>I looked at Masagoro again
>A formal complaint wasn't going to get anywhere...not yet.
>Informal complaint then?
>I could find a few who would join me, I'm certain
>But that was mostly for fresh recruits. To break discipline to the point of beating an officer...
>And one as high ranked as Masagoro...
>There would be no way to avoid punishment
>So...without intervention from someone above Masagoro, we would just have to bear with it.
>I am so sick of having to just bear with it.
>We returned to Shiro Kuni
>Masagoro again repeated the lie, claiming credit for the retreat, and drew up orders for more patrols
>It looked like this time he was going to send in several small patrols at once, and see if one could find a route to Shiro Hiruma
>I watched him carefully, but to my surprise he seemed normal once more.
>Even energetic.
>He seemed to be everywhere, talking with the men, taking his meals with them, even training and sparing with them
>it had a profound effect on morale, as trust in him skyrocketed
>In only a few days, he had the whole of Shiro Kuni believing that if he ordered them to die it was for a good reason.
>I almost believed it myself
>I am not a smart man. I decided to speak with everyone else, to see if I had missed something
>Monkey spoke first
>Looked to me like he went mad there. That scream? Maybe it got to him too?
>Mantis-san shook his head.
>It's not just that though. Didn't you say that the last patrol was all wrong?
>I nodded.
>Toshiro folded his arms and bowed his head in thought
>Well, whatever it is I don't think it's madness
>Kituski-san spoke up
>I know about the nine types, but I would like to hear about them straight from a Kuni. My knowledge is second hand, after all.
>Naomi nodded. You and Ishigaki-kun have mentioned that before
>Toshrio nodded
>There are two sources of madness. The true madness caused by the Sun, that's the kind of madness a person is born with and will always have.
>Then there is the false madness of the Moon. It is brought on by the lying of actions.
>Monkey cocked his head
>the what?
>Toshiro picked up a tea cup
>This teacup is full
>He then turned it upside down
>Not one drop spilled out from it
>The lying of words is a simple thing, Monkey
>But when I know the dead don't walk, and you know the dead don't walk and we see a walking dead man...
>That's the lying of actions.
>When the truth is no longer the truth it is an assault on ones mind
>Some minds cannot bear it, and that wound becomes a spiritual imbalance. The false madness of the Moon.
>The one weak in Air cannot lose himself of habits. They'll check and recheck to see if a door is barred, or if their armor strings are tightened up properly.
>Too strong in Air and they become grandiose, braggarts. We laugh in the face of death from time to time, but the one whose Air is too strong can't stop. They become like actors, hiding their own fear.
>Too weak in Water and they gain a great fear, something they see everywhere. He may collapse in the presence of any high wall, as it reminds him of the Wall.
>Too strong in Water and they see too much. they know everything is a threat and cannot judge properly.
>A weakness of Fire is like being in mourning. The become distant, and cannot care about anything
>Too much Fire and they outsmart themselves, sundering their being and becoming many people at once.
>A weakness of Earth will make the person very energetic, but also hateful when ignored. They swing and back and forth between two extremes
>Too much Earth and...well. Those one's believe themselves destined to rule the world. They think nothing can defeat them
>A man whose Void is too strong hears things, sees things we cannot. They whisper to themselves and live in a world we will never understand.
>Monkey spoke up when Toshiro was done
>What about weakness of Void?
>They don't exist. Or, I should say the one too weak in Void just comes undone, like a brick wall having all it's mortar taken out
>Mantis-san spoke up then
>I've seen lot's of people do things like that though...
>Toshiro nodded
>The issue is the imbalance
>Many of these behaviors are normal, more or less.
>It's when taken too far that they become madness.
>A Matsu bragging before the enemy army of his past glories isn't mad, he's just attacking the morale of his enemies and bolstering his allies
>Someone playing with zombie the way a cat plays with a mouse on the other hand, and doing so to be praised as opposed to lifting their comrades spirits...
>Mantis-san nodded
>So if Masagoro was out of balance like that, SOMEONE would have noticed?
>Toshiro nodded.
>I've been watching him closely since we got back, as well.
>Kitsuki-san sipped his tea
>So, it's not madness, and it's not that he's a fool. His past achievements attest to that.
>Mantis-san spoke
>Kituski-san frowned
>I would like to think we are putting too much pressure on him for that to be the case.
>Monkey spoke up
>what about that time with Ayame, the spell on the charm trick?
>Toshiro shook his head
>This is Shiro Kuni. Such a trick would be discovered
>I folded my arms and thought. There was something about Masagoro, when we pulled him away...
>What is it Ishigaki-kun?
>I looked up
>Masagoro...he kind of reminds me of me
>Toshiro narrowed his eyes
>You mean...Before?
>I sighed and looked up at the ceiling
>I...had a close call with madness for a time
>After my family was killed, my Fire died down greatly.
>I didn't think of much, other than how many of the bastards I could kill.
>I might have ended up a dead eyes, had I not met all of you. You espeically, Hana-chan
>Naomi blushed
>Monkey looked around
>What's a 'dead eyes'?
>There are two kinds of Berserkers among the Crab clan.
>One is a natural rage, frothing madness and fury. T
>he other kind is known as a Dead Eye because on the inside they are already dead.
>They give no thought to their own safety or tactics or strategy.
>They just kill until they are killed
>But Masagoro isn't a berserker, is he?
>I shook my head
>No, he's not. But for a moment there he looked like one.
>Kitsuki-san nibbled on his fan
>Berserkers exist within the Lion and the Crab clan, mostly
>It's somehing a bit like Mushin no Shin, though instead of becoming one with everything you shut out everything. The end result is similar though. A perfect warrior who feels neither fear nor pain and acts with the speed of no-thought.
>Among the Lion, there are of course the Matsu.
>But you could say the Deathseekers are also berserkers. So shamed that they wish only for death on the battlefield to cleanse that shame.
>He looked up at me
>The Dead Eyes, they are most often Hiruma, are they not?
>I nodded
>Toshiro added
>Yeah, the shame of their lands being lost frequently drives them to it.
>Kitsuki-san nodded
>A man who has lived a long life, ordering soldiers to their deaths over and over again.
>Whose ancestral castle is the staging ground for a massive assault the likes of which are rarely seen and often very bloody.
>I think Ishigaki is right
>Masagoro himself may not even be aware of it, but I think he seeks his own death.
>I stared
>a soldier making a suicidal charge is one thing
>A commander who does so...
this thread is so fucking stupid its just some circlejerk faggot telling a boring ass garbage story that belongs on netflix and he neds to fuck right off to quest because thats where this kind of trash belongs instead of shitting up /tg/ with this junk.

a thread fucking died for this you know
put a goddamn trip on so i can filter you crabanon your shit is garbage.
>Chikusho looked me right in the eyes
>Her lips waiting with baited breath as I drew my bolter
>She uttered to me "p...please"
>I loaded a clip and racked a slide into the gun and then fired it without hesitation
>her head disintegrated into a beautiful spray of crimson tide
>Kitsuki-san screamed and ran up to me
>"WHY! Why would you do this?!" she shouted, beating on my chest with her skinny arms
>I clicked the shell casing out, it plinked on the ground
>skittering away, being swept up in the flowing tide of blood from Chikusho's lifeless remains
>Kitsune-san was soon to join her
>I didn't even feel regret for what I did
>I stepped over their lifeless remains and began hunting down the rest of the Matsu
>Soon will be the time of the crab battle.
>I drew my katana and nocked a blade, knowing my solemn duty as a demon-knight
>the crab would be a giant enemy
>and I would be death once more.

And that's the end of the tale. Thank you guys for following along, this is the last thread and there is no reason to ever make another one of these d&d 5e LFG threads again.
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The more bumps you use up bitching, the more threads that are going to have to be made to finish this, you know?
Ohhhhhh fuck off on your high horse.

1) This thread is just one anon [ONE] just dumping a stupid fucking story that nobody gives a remote assfuck about in here
2) He does this shit all the goddamn time
3) This is not a fucking blog website
4) Trash like this belongs in >>>/qst/
5) Hopefully there won't be more threads and anon will take the hint that nobody likes or appreciates these garbage threads and if people want to follow it they should just go to his tumblr or facebook or livejournal or deviantart page where he can safely dump this trash in a controlled area off of this website
5) This thread contributes NOTHING to traditional games and should be pruned immediately.
6) Multiple threads like this should be condensed into "storytime general" threads
7) Fuck you.
>posting plebbit memes
You need to go back.
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Here's your You. Plenty of posters come in here to enjoy anons story since people asking for it is why he started, other people have shared theirs as well or discussed L5r in general.
Just ignore the thread or get better material.
Dang anon, chill out. I understand you don't like storytime but this is /tg/. We love our storytimes and this is one of the few for L5R. So fuck off, chill out, and roll some dice.
I love you anon. I want to hug you and kiss you and caress you and lick you and fuck you in your tight virginal boipussy while listening your moans turn from pain to pleasure as you're gradually starting to accept you're nothing but my cumdump now, and enjoy it.
Just filter the word Stonewall, all the thread starts have it.
>a thread fucking died for this you know
It was a thread on /tg/. Let's be real amigo, nothing of value was lost.
>i don't know what this thread is or what quests are
You could just ignore things you don't like, you know.
Is that another Scorpion going meta and playing the part of the bad guy?
You deserve that (You).
If I have affinity to Water, can I learn Rank 2 spells at School rank 1?
Yes. Inversely, you can't learn any spells of your deficient element until rank 2 (when you can learn rank 1 spells of that element)
>A shugenja with an Affinity for an element casts spells of that element as if his Shugenja School Rank were one higher.

contrast with

>You are considered to be one Insight Rank higher for the purpose of learning and using Kiho. (Monk Ancestor)

>Your Shugenja School Rank increases by one. (Phoenix Advanced School)
w, what? i, wtf, GUH
that broke my brain for a second there...
i hope this is a jest, the story is so good.
The sidebar on affinity makes it clear that you can learn spells one rank higher than normal.
The actual problem is that the small boost you get for being 1 school rank higher isn't enough to offset the higher TN of higher ranked spells, making them a bit risky for shugenja who didn't hyperspecialize in their ring alone.
Seeing this has made me realize that some people have only recently started coming to /tg/ and have never experienced it without crabanon's threads. I don't know how to feel about that.
and this is why tensai is bad in 4th ed
high mastery too fast without the stats to back it up.
if you dont specialize in the ring, take non combat spells for your higher level. no need to raise for fast casting
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>Chikusho is a person.

Wow this is some impressive bait. I wonder who would be behind something like this.
I'm insulted. Scorpion bait would be far more dignified than the tripe this fool is selling.

Besides, we love Crabanon's story as much as you do. Always nice to see how our very memory has made a mighty Defender of the Wall mistrust rice balls forever, especially when looking for that which doesn't exist.
I only jest, Bayushi-san. There is much editing to do, and occasionally I take a break to check in on the thread. I am reminded that Jamaican circuit board forums occasionally have... interesting characters.
>Scorpion bait would be far more dignified

Then that would be a Crane bait. Everyone knows you Scorpions are sordid little fucks.
Of course, Editor-san. But rest assured, while I might not necessarily prefer a Crab to stand beside me at court (no matter how...diverting Ishigaki-san has proven himself and his allies have proven themselves to be at the task) there are none of our esteemed brothers I would rather have standing between the Empire and the horrors of the Fallen one.

And you need never worry about being confused for either with that tongue currently loitering in your head.
Thank fortunes not, wouldn't want to be confused for either of these trash clans.
I doubt you would ever be mistaken for a member of any proper samurai lineage.

Stop being so salty dipshit anon.
Are PSUs standardized sizes? Do I have to worry about a run-of-the-mill gold PSU fitting in a microATX tower?
Wrong thread, anon.
You would know, you are in that situation often.
Fuck off, plenty of people enjoy this, and /tg/ is always open to storytime.
No kidding.
Too late, my bad.
Sal'good, have a good one
Shoot yourself in the head at your earliest convenience you son of a fucking whore.

I hope your computer fries and you get electrocuted and land in hospital: people like you are what is killing /tg/s creativity.
Stop giving him attention. He's not worth it.
Exactly, don't feed the troll
the peak of summer?
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>The sidebar on affinity makes it clear that you can learn spells one rank higher than normal.
Can't see it.
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Replying, or trying to help?

See >>53910894 and >>53911413
>The sidebar on affinity makes it clear that you can learn spells one rank higher than normal.
That pic does not.
Oh, yeah, I actually forgot about that. Has this summer been pretty mild or have I just not been paying attention? I haven't noticed a lot of summer children this year. Maybe /tg/ just gets less travel than I think it does.
Trying to help. It states that you cast spells of an element as if your school rank were one higher.
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It's not that section, it's this sidebar.
>The new school rank determines what Mastery Level of spell he can cast

Combine that with
>A shugenja with an Affinity for an element casts spells of that element as if his shugenja School Rank were one higher
and the wording on how shugenja get new spells and its obvious that school rank increasing also increases available mastery ranks. Otherwise, they would have just said that shugenja with an affinity get +1k0 to casting spells in that element, since that's all they would get if it didn't widen their spell pool. Also, schools only go to 5 ranks and there are level 6 spells.

Also also, word of god from one of the devs, although that's lost forever in the bowels of AEG.
Oh, and also
>A shugenja cannot cast spells with a mastery level higher than his school rank

That's important, since he casts affinity spells as if his school rank were one higher, elevating it to the required level. It's literally just like Deficiency, which lowers school rank to a minimum of 0 (Where you can't cast at all because you don't even count as a shugenja for that element), except the other way around.
Bumping haiku
Incoming to this thread
Shitty, but haiku.
Sadly you are wrong
One syllable too short on
The first and second
>Then, we must see to it that Masagoro-sama is replaced.
>I winced at Naomi's words
>it wasn't that simple
>Monkey spun to face her, ankles crossed and holding his feet
>What kind of crappy samurai fears death?
>Naomi tileted her head
>I am aware of that Satoshi-san, however Masagoro may be squandering the lives of his men
>Monkey nodded
>May be.
>But if he leads his soldiers to victory, who cares? The dead go to their ancestors with glory, after all.
>Naomi blinked
>I cannot belive you would say sometihg so callous, Satoshi-san.
>He looked down.
>You're a shugenja, Naomi-sama. A water tensai that holds life as sacred. So of course this is hard for you to understand...
>But right now Masagoro there's no reason to assume Masagoro is wrong. About anything.
>Proper samurai don't fear death, In fact, they embrace it, gladly.
>They'll argue amonsts one another for the chance to be in the rear gaurd, and get all the honor and glory that comes from a heroic last stand
>If the commander squanders his mens lives to the point where the army looses, only THEN does he take responsibilty for his failure.
>And Masagoro has a history of victory that says he's not likely to squander his men.
>We know different because we were there and we saw him freeze.
>So, who among us could meet with Masagoro's lord, and convince them this celebrated hero of the Clan has become a liability?
>He cocked his head, waiting for Naomi's reply
>She bit her lip, and looked over to me
>I could only shake my head
>Then I looked over at Monkey
>He held up his hand
>No problem, I'm sure one day you'll get used to communicating with words
>I rapped him lightly on the head for that
>OW! Naomi-sama!
>hey, he dosen't get to be wise AND make fun of me at the same time.
>We shared a chuckle
>Then Kituski-san tapped his papers.
>It would be easier if the tsukai WERE affecting his mind in some way.
>That would give us an opening, as jade magistrates, at least.
>Otherwise, they would have just said that shugenja with an affinity get +1k0 to casting spells in that element, since that's all they would get if it didn't widen their spell pool.
Not really. A number of spells include school rank; for range, to replace skill ranks, etc.

The third point does cinch it, though.
>Monkey being smart and insightful again
>Mantis-san shrugged
>There is still one thing.
>He looked over at me
>Masagoro-sama seems to trust Ishigaki here
>Kitsuki-san nodded
>Yes, yes. You should stay close to him. Try to limit the damage he does
>I frowned
>He hasn't listened to a word of advice from me yet.
>Then be more convincing.
>Easy for you to say.
>Still, it was all we could do for now.
>For the next couple of days, I stayed by Masagoro as much as I could
>For his part he seemed to welcome me, or not even notice I was there, depending on his mood.
>Masagoro moved about with a youthfull vigor, not only doing the little things that boosted morale but also pouring over maps, hearing reports and issuing orders
>I spoke up, out of turn, on a few of his orders
>He just nodded at my objections
>You're right of course, Ishigaki-san. I doubt they'll get through. But they WILL draw attention, and hopefully weaken the enemy.
>If we can chip away at their numbers it will give us more time, you see?
>So much for being more convincing
>Then, it happened
>Kitsuki-san found the bloodspeaker
>They were hiding out as Kaiu Gintama, an apprentice armor who made basic repairs.
>When cornered, Gintama had chosen to fall on their own blade rather then be captured and interrogated
>A thorough search turned up nothing. No corrupted jade, no jade petal tea, no scrolls.
>The Kuni preformed an "autopsy" and determined that he had the ability to suppress his own taint, as though had consumed Jade Petal tea.
>A rare and terrifying ability, but one that was documented in the Kuni libraries.
>In the end, we were left with nothing. No clues as to what he had done, or may have been planning to do, or even if he was acting alone
>So many unanswered questions left a bad taste in everyone's mouths.
>Kitsuki-san, especially, was frustrated
>Still, a part of me began to hope that Masagoro's odd behavior was the result of some sort of maho, and that he was no longer being influenced by it.
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>mfw catching it live.
>The day after, a single scout came back from one of the patrols
>Masagoro insisted on hearing his report alone
>The scout, torn and bleeding followed Masagoro into the planning room and shut the door
>When Masagoro finally emerged, he yelled for an eta
>I looked at him
>What happened?
>He stared at me
>The man was more seriously wounded then either of us realized. He died.
>I looked over Masagoro's shoulder into the room
>The scout was still folded up in a dogeza
>Adachi found me some time later
>I must speak with you, Ishigaki-san
>I think...Masagoro is not right.
>He frowned, and hesitated, staring at me intently
>I nodded.
>You're right.
>He closed his eyes and breathed out through his nose
>My father is one of Hida-sama's personal guard. I think I may be able to get them to listen to me, or at least to come and inspect things for themselves
>My eyebrows shot up. I really should have been asking him to tell me more about himself all this time.
>I wasn't going to go at first, because I didn't want to leave Masagoro-sama alone like that...but
>I understand. You can count on me. You go get Hida-sama, I'll try to keep Shiro Kuni in one piece until you can get back.
>He nodded.
>I returned to our rooms to let everyone know.
>The words died in my throat however, when I entered
>Masagoro was there
>He looked up at me and smiled
>Ah, good. You're here.
>Then I won't need to repeat myself
>He looked back at Toshiro
>As I was saying, I have a favor to ask, not that your business is concluded.
>The patrols have done a fine job stretching the enemy out, and drawing them away. There is now a clear path to Shiro Hiruma.
>I need only send one last patrol, small, with the very best veterans.
>I would ask that YOU be the ones to confirm the enemies numbers.
>Though Masagoro was speaking to Toshiro, I answered without thinking.
>Of course I'll go, Masagoro-sama.
>He smiled at me.
>I knew you would. Always the first to rush into danger to protect your kin.
>Toshiro nodded
>I will go as well
>Toshiro looked over at the others
>I won't order you too. This is Crab business, and outside our purview as Jade Magistrates
>Monkey grinned
>You're not just my superior, you're my friend Toshiro. And this sounds hard. Of course I'm going
>Mantis-san merely grunted, but we knew what he meant
>Kitsuki-san took a long sip of tea.
>I will go as well. I may be a courtier, but I can fight too.
>I looked at my friends. I was going to protect my fellow Crabs, because I could survive just about anything. Toshiro was going because his magic would be invaluable in dealing with things I may not be able to kill.
>They were going because they were our friends, and for no other reason
>I bowed
>Thank you all.
>I will go.
>We all started at that
>I said: I will go as well.
>Naomi, you can't! Your health!
>She stared at me. Then walked over to the corner of the room and picked up her yumi
>One day, my children will enter the shadowlands alone, and kill something that dwells within. I will see this place with my own eyes, even if it is just once.
>Everyone stared at her.
>Then I walked over to her and leaned in close
>I whispered into her ear
>Do you want another child? Because right now it's all I can do to keep myself from giving you another child.
>She gasped and blushed, then smiled up at me
>Masagoro clapped his hand on his knee
>Good! Such a fine group as this, you will surely prevail!
>He set a map down on the table
>Here is the route you need to take, this will be the least patrolled by the enemy right now.
>Well then, I'll leave you to it.
>With that, he left
>We began to pack rations and gathered jade
>In the morning, we would set out once more for Shiro Hiruma.
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>I knew you would. Always the first to rush into danger to protect your kin.
I knew it!
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It's almost always live.
>>Do you want another child? Because right now it's all I can do to keep myself from giving you another child.
>>She gasped and blushed, then smiled up at me
That's lovely
God dang Naomi-sama needs to stop being so perfect
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Now I am convinced Masagoro know he is wrong, and does not care.
He doesn't seem to be corrupted, just an old man who hopes to leave a legacy upon the earth, no matter the cost.

He should have been retired years ago, perhaps to a school where his experience could be used to train new commanders.
Refresh your page, I deleted the last post because I was distracted and mistyped.
Ah. That was... very odd.
Sadly, Crab only "retire" (read: become sensei) when they are physically incapable of performing their duties, because the Kaiu Wall needs every able-bodied samurai it can get. Masagoro's madness also appears to be a VERY recent thing (likely caused by the Bloodspeaker who arrived before the party), so noone would have thought he needed replacing until just now.
Ishigaki is going to retire soon, too
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>That night, I cleaned my armor thoroughly
>In the morning, Naomi helped me to dress, and helped her
>A sleveless top, with soft pads on her forearms
>simple pants, wrapped around her ankles
>I combed out her hair, and tied it up with a simple headscarf
>Loose clothing could get caught on all sorts of things, but exposed flesh was also at risk. Balance, in all things.
>A second finger of jade for her. One to keep with her rations, and one on a silken cord around her neck
>She fiddled with the second piece of jade I gave her
>Fires, even small ones are not a good idea in the shadowlands.
>For a lot of reasons...
>She touched the pouch with her medicinal tea in it
>I understand.
>I fussed with her clothing a bit more, not wanting to admit she was ready
>I had too much respect for strength.
>Though her body was frail, she was still so determined.
>That willpower was so beautiful, I couldn't say no.
>She took my hands in hers, stilling them
>Let us go, Ishigaki-kun.
>We did
>As we walked to the Wall Toshiro spoke to Naomi of shugenja maters
>Monkey and Mantis-san enjoyed advising Kitsuki-san.
>It's not often you know more about a thing than him, but their past experience meant they did.
>Basic advice, like assume it wants to kill you, and things of that nature.
>This time, we were allowed thought the tunnels
>Outsiders or not, everyone knew why we were here, and they respected us all for it.
>Kitsuki-san's eyes darted every which way as Hiruma Akiyama led us through the tunnels
>I took Naomi's hand in mine as we stepped out into the shadowlands
>I felt a shiver run through her
>It is just as you said it would be, Toshiro-san.
>He nodded.
>So, be carefull Naomi-san
>Shugenja things. I knew that it was dangerous and dificult to work magic in the shadowlands. There were almost no kami around after all.
>But only those two could truly understand what that meant.
>Kituski-san looked about
>This part seems normal enough. Bleak, perhaps.
>Mantis-san spoke
>Just wait. It gets fun the further in you go.
>I pulled the map and checked our route one last time.
>There was no doubt where Masagoro was sending us
>Shiro Hiruma never seems to move, unlike the rest of the shadowlands
>And there is a path that leads to it. A road one can follow, if they so desire
>Few do.
>It was this road we would take
>You two
>I pointed to Mantis-san and Monkey
>Take the sides
>Let's get moving
>We headed off, myself Monkey and Mantis-san forming a triangle around the others
>With Toshiro and Naomi we made our way slowly, carefully
>This time all we encountered was silence
>I found an overhanging ledge we could all fit under and we took a break to eat
>You know
>Monkey said around a mouthfull of rice
>He looked around
>don't you do it
>It's kinda quiet around here, isn't it?
>We all stared at him
>he leaned back
>He yanked an arm up; a vine was tangling around it
>two more lashed out wrapping around him
>Stay back!
>I yelled and then ignored my own advice
>Two more vines lunged at me
>I lashed out at one, knocking it aside
>The other wrapped around my leg
>Monkey struggled with the ones binding him
>Grkk, Kinda....kinda hard to breathe here!
>Toshiro yelled
>It senses bodies that get to close!
>He pulled a scroll
>And turned two tentacles to ash with jade fire
>I grabbed at the one on my leg, wrestling it up and sliced into it with my wakizashi, cutting away
>A twang over my shoulder, and Mantis-san's arrow pinned another vine to the ground
>Monkey tore the last vine from himself, and hacked it apart
>I wasnt sure if the tangle vine had any more vines or not, but I wasn't about to find out
>back, everyone back!
>As we left the small enlcousre Mantis-san smacked Monkey for me
>And THAT is why you don't say things like that, you damn jinx!
Monkey you fucking jinx.
>Monkey went back and forth from rubbing at his head to rubbing at the bruises on his arms from where the vines groped him
>Hey! I'm the one it went after, so how am I the jinx? Isn't it Ishigaki-san's fault for thinking it was safe?
>Mantis-san growled and threw up his hands
>Kitsuki-san peered into the little overhang
>You said it senses living bodies?
>Toshiro nodded
>Then it strangles them.
>Kistuki-san nodded.
>Armor wouldn't really help against that would it?
>I see."Wants"
>We went deeper in, until we came upon the road
>Everyone stopped and stared when they could see it
>A black road, stretching off into the distance
>Up close you could see all the little bits and pieces
>I stepped on it, and the soft rocks crumbled under my weight
>What the heck is this?
>The path Masagoro want's us to take
>Shiro Hiruma never seems to move, and neither does this path.
>It's an insult, a taunt. Daring us to try and take it back
>THIS is what he led the enemy away from with all those doomed patrols.
>Monkey stepped on the road and shuddered
>What is this stuff? Bones!?
>Toshiro answered him
>It's jade
>it's all the jade that rotted from absorbing the taint, cast aside by the thousands that have gone down this path to Shiro Hiruma
>He stepped onto the road, hands folded up into his kimono, as though it were the most natural thing in the world
>Well? You coming?
>It was Naomi who was the first to follow us
>we made our way towards Shiro Hiruma, the sound of rotted jade crunching under our feet barely able to stir the oppressive silence.
>It was like the shadowlands was welcoming us in
>Like it wanted us to see
>I wondered if it would let us back out as eaisly.
>Unlike Monkey, I had the good sense not to say anything out loud
>Naomi stifled a small cough behind me, and I stopped
>She shook her head, took a few tea leaves from her pouch and chewed on them
>He eyes squinched tight and she put a hand over her mouth.
>Ugh. so bitter...
>She opened her eyes and wipped at the tears forming in the corner
>It is alright, everyone. Chewing on them is not the best way to get the medicine out, but it works.
>She gave us all her brave smile
>I am fine. Let us continue
>We went on for a few more hours before I called for another break
>Naomi, Toshiro and Kitsuki-san were all sweating hard
>Naomi for obvious reasons, Toshiro because of the effort of keeping up despite his foot, and Kituski-san...well he WAS still a courtier.
>As we all ate cold rice I checked my jade.
>What do you think Toshiro?
>Looks like three days worth to me.
>Kitsuki-san looked up with surpise
>Mantis-san arched an eyebrow
>Even you lost track?
>he nodded, saying nothing.
>As we stood to resume our march, shadows began to fall around us
>I looked up, ready for more flyers
>Instead dark clouds were flying past.
>Very, very quickly
>No wind was blowing that I could feel
>Monkey said what we were all thinking
>Well that's horrifying.
>Kitsuki-san pointed
>It gets worse
>in the distance, we could see the clouds become a thick wall, casting the shadowlands into a deep black night beneath them
>And they were coming this way
>I narrowed my eyes
>We should move
>The darkness was on us far too quickly
>I felt my body tense, getting ready
>Many things shunned the light, even in this damned place
>In the dark we were more at risk of being attacked
>I waited
>And waited
>But nothing happened
>It just got dark
>I heard Mantis-san grind his teeth
>Wish it would stop fucking with us and just get it over with already!
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Mantits' turn to be a jinx? Signs say yes.
after 3 sortie into the shadowland in like.....three weeks? i sure hope they get respect!
Or at least no taint.
Ishigaki could be prancing around with Seeds of Darkness already, just suppresing it with Earth.
Wouldn't that be detectable, though?
Seeds of Darkness is when it's less than one full rank. At that point it's not detectable.
Ishigaki, Toshiro, Monkey and Mantis are probably ok as long as their jade lasts. Naomi and Kitsuki on the other hand...
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Theory: masagoro is sane, but Adatchi is actually THEM
>THEM Adachi
What if...
Trained as one of the best of the dojo, Adachi nonetheless had tensions with his superiors and was assigned to a section of the wall that almost never saw action. Consumed by boredom, Adachi soon dipped into maho and began to use his newfound powers to play a game by murdering people and manipulating the world on the other side of the TV-- er, the other side of the wall, and now he's toying with the party from behind the scenes and having the time of his life.
I was wondering how long it would take someone to make that joke.
Does that mean that the gorup is going to wake up with Ishiken powers next?
Hey Ishigaki-sama, are you and Naomi's player together?
ForeverGM played Naomi after the original GM of the game peaced out
Ah, wasn't sure about that. Still, a valid question. There seems (to me at least) such genuine emotion there...
That's good roleplaying.
Ishigaki and I are close friends, practically brothers really, so we were comfortable roleplaying Ishigaki and Naomi's love for each other at the table. We kept it at a reasonable level though, not so much as to avoid making the rest of the gang uncomfortable (they were pretty chill about it) but more to keep from boring them with all the mushy stuff. Same reason I didn't really play up Naomi's coughing and such at the table, I didn't want everyone getting bored or annoyed that I was "drama whoring."

And to clarify: Naomi was my player character before I stepped in to take up the GM role (though somehow I knew I'd end up in the seat - like always). When I became the groups GM, I offered to retire her to raise the kids, but to my surprise eveyone wanted to keep her around. It might have just been for the healing and buffs though, heh.
Would it be reasonable to link these threads whenever a "Can a DMPC be done well" thread is posted?

DMPCs have a negative connotation to them, as in that they ruin everything. Naomi is not a DMPC, she is simply a helpful NPC henchwoman/companion. Because during combat she only fights shadowland creatures. Never humans. Mostly supports and heals 99% of the time.
The "Can a DMPC be done well?" question has absolutely no sense if a DMPC is defined as always a negative thing.
Definitions change over time.

Gay was a word that was once used to describe someone who was happy. Nowadays it's another word for fags.
>Despite Mantis-san tempting fate, the calm remained unbroken
>Mantis-san turned to me and Toshiro
>Okay, what the FUCK is going on here?
>Toshiro shrugged
>It's just as you said, Daigo-san.
>The shadowlands is trying to disrupt your spirit by defying your expectations.
>I spoke up
>Like I said before, knowledge is the best thing here. But this place...it knows that. So from time to time it behaves in ways you just don't expect, and for no other reason than to make you doubt yourself.
>Monkey shook his head
>I don't understand.
>I see it and I still don't understand
>Is it HIM? Does the HE still have that much power?
>Toshiro answered Monkey
>Good question.
>Monkey everyone looked to Toshiro expectantly.
>He stared back
>No clue.
>Is the Dark Kami a slave to the will of Jigoku?
>Or did his divine nature allow him to bend the realm to his own will?
>Is it his will that guides this place? Or the will of the realm of Evil? Or is there no will at all, and we simply fool ourselves seeing paterns that aren't there?
>Toshiro shruged again
>My ancestors have studied the Shadowlands, the taint of Jigoku, and the things the bear it for over a thousand years.
>The only thing we know for certain is that just when you think you know something, you'll be proven wrong.
>Come on, we really should stop wasting time
>We resumed our march
>Toshiro and I both knew, of course, that the easier it was to get in, the harder it would be to leave the shadowlands.
>But we said nothing.
>That knowledge would only serve to place even more strain on them.
>Like a siege, sometimes it is easier to break the men inside the castle then the castle walls themselves.
>For now, we both did our best to exude a calm confidence, in order to bolster their spirit.
>The clouds overhead kept our suroundings cloaked, and we took advantage of that as we neared Shiro Hiruma
>Soon enough, the castle appeared on the Horizon.
>It was a simple fortress, with one main keep rising up three stories
>I could see the damage to the walls from the Maw's assault
>We threw ourselves onto our bellies, crawling in the in dark
>daring to get just a bit closer
>Soon the shapes on the outside became more and more distinct
>Though the castle looked small on the outside, the truth is much of it's barracks were located underground.
>Tunnels and ambush pits dotted the land around Shrio Hiruma, as the Hiruma had always favored offense, sortieing to disrupt the enemy with surpise attacks rather then wait for high walls and siege engines to grind their foes down as the Hida did.
>Becasue of that I knew that Shiro Hirma could hold many more troops than one would think
>Yet still, it was not enough to contain the horde that stretched out before us
>Zombies, goblins, Ogres. Lost. Oni.
>I could make out a clump of Oni no Nosloc.
>While many Oni were singularly powerfull and too proud to serve another being, the Nosloc were something like foot soldiers, who could work well in groups, and fought with weapons and tactics
>And were invulnerable.
>There were too many to count.
>Fodder, skirmishers, shock troops, main force.
>This wasn't just a horde. It was a proper army.
>And then I saw it's commander
>tall, lean, covered in chitin and bony plates
>Three eyes
>Three tounges that dripped fire licked out from it's fanged maw
>My blood turned to ice
>Of course.
>Only the spawn of Akuma no Oni could bring such a force to heel
>It howled to it's army and was answered
>The cries that arose were so loud it hurt, even this far back I could feel it threatening to crush me
>Gritting my teeth I inched backwards, tugging at Naomi beside me
>we all crawled away, sweating hard.
>I'm just glad no one screamed
>Once we were far enough away we exhanged glances.
>Kitsuki-san whipsered
>I could see more shapes moving towards the castle
>But it was just a trickle compared to what was already there.
>So, it will come soon.
>We have to hurry back then
>We set out, moving quickly under the darkness, back down the road of dark jade
>But we found our path blocked
>By a creature that towered head and shoulders above me
>It wore a Hakama, and a Jingasa pulled down to hide it's face
>Bulging muscles strained against it's clothing
>It wore a daisho at it's hip
>Were it not so tall, and were it's skin not red, you might be forgiven for mistaking it for a wandering samurai
>As we readied our weapons, it tilted it's head back
>It's mouth split it's head clean in half, and multiple rows of needle like teeth showed inside it
>I thought it might be smiling
>and then it spoke
>I am very sorry, but I will have to take your lives now.
>I simply cannot allow you to return and report what you have seen.
>Not that it would matter anyway.
>You will die here, the Crab on the Wall will die there, the Crab beyond the Wall will die, and only then will the other samurai lift a finger
>All while thinking the world is better off with fewer warlike Crab about.
>It laughed then,
>And you will go before Emma-O, who will say that you did something wrong because Jigoku tainted your soul while you fought so hard to defy it!
>The presists will nod, and say Heaven's Will be Done, and the Samurai will speak of honor and bushido while their own blind foolishness allows this to happen again and again!
>It drew it's blade, and it's voice took on a more sinister tone
>When...when will you mortals ever learn?
>Mantis-san screamed at it and charged
>I heard Toshiro hiss it's name
>Oni no Genso!
>Genso caught Mantis-san's kama on it's daisho and laughed
>You understand, don't you little bug? You know how important money is, yet you must pretend it's not! Still...
>It shoved with it's arms, and Mantis-san was thrown backwards
>All the fine weapons and armor you can buy do not make you a warrior.
>I began to move up to sheild Mantis-san but I was too slow
>Kitsuki-san charged it next
>You will die here, the Crab on the Wall will die there, the Crab beyond the Wall will die, and only then will the other samurai lift a finger
>>All while thinking the world is better off with fewer warlike Crab about.
>>It laughed then,
>>And you will go before Emma-O, who will say that you did something wrong because Jigoku tainted your soul while you fought so hard to defy it!
>>The presists will nod, and say Heaven's Will be Done, and the Samurai will speak of honor and bushido while their own blind foolishness allows this to happen again and again!

Oh, it's on.
>>When...when will you manlets ever learn?
Oh, it's on.
>Enough of your blaspemies!
>Shit. This is what Oni no Genso do.
>They are exelent warriors, but more then their skill with their balde, is their understanding of humans
>They taunt
>they mock
>they belittle and insult
>They drive their opponents to reckless fury, making them forget basic lessons in their rage
>Monkey and I moved as one, stepping up and striking at it, while shielding Kitsuki-san and Mantis-san
>You two...
>It snarled and attacked us both,
>I received it's blow, and it hissed in srupise
>Monkey managed to twist aside at the last minute
>Toshiro produced a scroll and began to chant
>Naomi however, fired an arrow into the Oni
>It hissed at her
>Sickly one, what foolishness is this?
>Is it not enough for you to live so long past your time? You want glory now as well? Greedy bitch.
>It is NOT like that monster!
>Mantis-san tried again, moving around the creature to slash at it's legs
>Though he managed to cut it, it kept to it's feet
>Anoying bug...but first
>It spun it's blade around aiming for Kitsuki-san
>Monkey caught it's first strike
>But it pushed him away with the power of it's strike, and then stabbed it's blade into Kituski-san
>He staggered back, his do pierced through by the monster
>I knew that he would have enough sense to fall back, and I knew that Naomi would heal him
>I knew when that happened it would stop at nothing to kill her
>So I attacked it with everything I had
>Throwing aside caution I struck as hard as I could
>I gouged it's chest deeply, tearing away flesh and revealing blue-black muscle beneath
>I spun, striking it's side.
>I felt what might have been bones crunching under my strike, though no human would have bones there
>Damn YOU! You think you can save her like that?
>How do you think to protect when all you can do is KILL?
>Monkey rammed his sword into the back of the things neck, and out the front of it's throat
>shut up
>He then pulled his blade back and sliced it's back open
>Just shut up and die
>Despite taking such ghastly wounds the Genso was barely slowed down
>You first.
>It spun and rammed a claw deep into Monkey's chest tearing his armor like it was rice paper
>Even as I began to move in, it shoved it's katana backward, and into me.
>Bastard wasn't even looking
>Monkey spat blood as the Genso pulled his claw from his body
>Mantis-san leapt high up with a cry slicing deep into it's shoulder with his kama
>Is that all?
>You really are the worst in this lot
>It spun and cut across Mantis-san with it's obsidian Katana
>He hissed in pain
>Then it turned it's back on him
>You... your a tough one. But that just means you can taste true dispair as you watch me kill all the rest!
>I pulled back my tetsubo for another strike
>And it's claw reached out for my face
>I turned aside at the last moment
>Only for it's blade to peirce my leg
>a feint. The damn thing tricked me
>Pain shot up my leg
>This time it had gotten deep
>Oh, look. The little Crab's shell isn't a good as he thought!
>Now... die
>Another arrow dug into the Oni's arm
>It looked at the arrow that had gone through it's wrist
>Then it turned to face Naomi
>With a wild scream it ran straight at her
>And impaled itself on Kituski-san's blade
>Toshiro yelled out then and it cried out in surprise as he turned it's own earth upon itself
>It was the spell he had used against the bog hags, long ago.
>NGggghh! What are you doing to meeeee!
>Mantis-san, Monkey and I charged together taking advantage of it's momentary weakness
>It fell under our blows and did not move again
>Ah, hold on all of you!
>Naomi got out a scroll
>Toshiro put a hand on her shoulder
>Don't rush, remember where you are.
>She chanted softly, and our wounds began to close
>What the...?
>Monkey was pointing at the Genso
>It's daisho was dissolving, turning first to sludge, then smoke that faded away
>Toshiro gave off his half laugh, half snort
>Nice of it let us know when we've killed it.
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Waifu Bump
they're... they're not tainted... are they?
I doubt it. Genso no Oni is in enemies, it's big thing is you have to make a contested willpower roll against it or loose access to your highest basic school technique for the fight. And he's got a shitton of wounds.

His stats looks like an atempt to make a last boss with TPK potential, but forevergm used him as a MID BOSS. NOW I'm fucking scared for the future.
They could be, but probably not by a lot. Every injury sustained by a tainted creature or weapon forces a roll.
how much does it even take to gain new ranks in taint
you gain taint in ranks divided up in ten point groups, like with honor, glory, and status

at first you get taint from things like being in the shadowlands, failing to cast a spell in the shadowlands, eating tainted food, being wounded by tainted weapons, etc. Once you're past rank 0 you have taint for realsies and can pass it to others. It will grow on it's own from there. You also become detectable at that point, so random jade pokes will burn.
So Naomi is fucked
Not so much. She hasn't been wounded like the others and the jade should protect her from the slow taint of just being in the shadowlands. She shouldn't have had many, if any, rolls by this point.
The real problem is probably her illness
To be fair, the group had reached a very high rank at that point!
Actually it can grows even at rank 0, but you will need to have to really lousy earth to fail the roll to resist it at that level.
What a coincidence that Naomi has Earth 1.
Pretty sure that is not the case.

I don't think so? Bad Health only drops Earth for Wound Calc, I believe and it is wholly possible that she grabbed a ring at some point for spellcasting purposes.
We all know she raised her earth ring for baby making purposes, not spell casting.
This only reaffirms her status as best waifu.
Sorry, Aoi-san. You lose.
>Toshiro stared at the Genso's corpse
>Then he pulled his wakizashi out and cut of it's head
>One of you got a bag for this thing?
>Under the Jingasa it had no hair. Just two little horns
>Mantis-san proffered his bag, and Toshiro bound the head up and slung it over his shoulder
>Monkey shudereded
>Toshiro looked up and shook his head
>Meanwhile, I checked my jade
>Close to half gone.
>Naomi had tended our wounds and the Jade would keep us safe from the taint that suffused this place, but if we stayed too long...
>Toshiro and I could handle a day or two without jade, I was sure.
>And of course, Monkey could.
>I wasn't so sure about Mantis-san
>And I knew Kitsuki-san and Naomi would both be in trouble if the jade ran out.
>We needed to get back quickly
>Kitsuki-san noticed my stares
>You're worried about getting back in time?
>I nodded
>Then I turned to Mantis-san and Monkey
>Think you two can keep up a run, with a heavy load?
>Mantis-san scowled.
>Of course I can.
>I jerked my head towards Toshiro
>If you get tired, trade off with Monkey
>I won't get tired!
>I didn't argue with him
>Instead I scooped up Naomi
>Alright, lets get back
>We took off running down the road of dark jade
>Keep a lookout Naomi, I need to focus so I don't trip
>She wrapped her arms around my neck and held on as we ran.
>The feeling of her pressed into my back made me think of things wholly inappropriate for someone in the middle of the shadowlands
>I settled for squeezing her rump
>Brushes with death really teach you to enjoy life
>Since the road stayed put, we were able to make good time
>And the shadowlands remained blessedly empty
>Of course, I knew now that the reason for that was that damn near everything in it was gathering at Shiro Hiruma
>Mantis-san and Monkey did end up trading off Toshiro several times
>He grumbled about it
>I feel like a sack of rice...
>Mantis-san grunted as he put Toshiro down
>Quit complaining, we're the ones carrying your heavy ass
>His stats looks like an atempt to make a last boss with TPK potential, but forevergm used him as a MID BOSS

Take a look at Arugai no Oni while you're at it - that's what walking TPK looks like.
>An Arugai no Oni is virtually impossible to kill. During the Reactions Stage of every Round the oni regenerates 10 Wounds
>This regeneration does not stop when the oni is slain
Jesus christ, you weren't kidding there.
>Naomi used her magic to relieve our fatigue, and that combined with our faster pace allowed us to get out in half the time it took to get in
>We were met by Hiruma on the banks of the River of the Last Stand, and they took us up right away
>To my surpise, Masagoro was already here, waiting for us on the Wall
>His eyes were wide as he stared hard at us, not even waiting for the Kuni to finish their poking and proding
>Well? Did you make it?
>I nodded
>Oni no Akuma.
>Everyone nearby froze
>Akuma no Oni was one of the great Oni Lords.
>His spawn were rare, but that was due to the care he took in rearing them
>Where other Oni lords would let their spawn fend for themselves, Akuma no Oni took the time to train them.
>As such, they always managed to cause great harm when he judged them worthy of being set loose
>Masagoro smiled at the news
>His horde?
>Toshiro shook his head
>It's not a horde, it's a proper army
>We saw hundreds of Oni no Nosloc
>It has everything. The shadowlands is damn near empty.
>Masagoro's smile grew wider
>Toshiro nodded
>It meant 'big catch'
>Toshrio pulled out the sack
>This bastard tried to stop us from getting back
>He passed it to Masagoro
>he opened the sack
>Well well...
>Masagoro held up the head for all to see
>A moment passed as the Crabs all strained to see, then they realized what they were looking at
>Cheers erupted all around.
>Oni no Genzo was well known to the Crab. They were few, but were well known to wipe out entire patrols.
>Slaying one was a huge accomplishment
>We quickly found ourselves surrounded, praise and hearty backslaps being heaped upon us all
>I grinned at the others
>How does it feel to be honorary Crabs now?
>Monkey almost buckled under a mighty slap
>Like they think I'm choking!
>Laughter erupted among the Crab gathered about
>Masagoro bellowed
>Alright, enough celebration!
>Now, I need to know all about it. As detailed as possible
It's nothing compared to one of the On in Bearers of Jade. It's stats don't translate well to 4e, but its taint giving breath does. If it so much as looks at you, you gain dozens of taint points with almost no contest, and if it gets close, you can rack up enough points for a completely untainted person to go Lost in a matter of rounds.
I forget what it was called though, and it was singularly unique.
>We went inside out of the wind, and Masagoro pulled out a map of Shiro Hiruma
>Tell me everything. The walls, where are they damaged?
>The keep?
>He asked as much about Shrio Hiruma as he did the state of the Horde
>Kituski-san was able to answer everything to his satisfaction
>...and you say the shadowlands are virtually empty?
>He looked up from the map, peering up at us from under his eyebrows. He wore wide smile, ear to ear, with too many teeth showing.
>So we have days, at most...
>He whispered then, as though he were thinking out loud
>Yes. yes this is it. This will do...
>He closed his eyes, took a deep breath, and composed himself
>Then he began yelling orders, calling for attendants, his mind already racing to plan for the battle that was looming over us all
>That night I took a chance
>You should all leave
>My suggestion was met with flat stares and silence
>So I got down on my knees, placed my hands on the floor, and touched my head to it
>On behalf of the Crab, I thank you all. You have aided my Clan deeply, in ways that can never be repaid. But now it is time to fight. It is time for my Clan to fulfill it's duty. I cannot ask you to face what comes next.
>Monkey rested his chin in his hand, and looked at me through half lidded eyes
>You done?
>I choked back my surprise
>I thought for sure that would work
>Mantis-san snorted
>Yeah, we know you wont ask. You never ask.
>We're not going anywhere
>I half rose to my feet
>Don't you fools get it? Any day now THOUSANDS of monsters are going to descend on the Wall!
>A horde like that only attacks once in a generation... no, not even that often!
>Kitsuki-san looked over to me. He was cleaning and polishing his katana
>Toshiro put a hand on my shoulder
>Give it up Ishigaki. If these idiots are so determined to die for us then the best we can do is take their heads when they fall so their bodies do not rise again
Oni no Satsujinko?
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Oni no Satsujinko, the demon of murderous rays
If you burn it's corpse the FUCKING SMOKE can taint anyone who breathes it.

One thousand two hundred twenty one people were so tainted by the oni's corpse being burned the guy who ordered it done also ordered himself and everyone else sealed up in tomb in the year 855.
So theres a campaign idea. Your party of multi-clan emereld magistrates run around for a few sessions before running into one of those fucks, and suddenly there's a Doji Courtier hanging out in the Barracks of the Damned going "what the fuck just happened?" while the DMPC Kuni Witch Hunter hands out quests.

This would be a short campaign, obviously...
>This would be a short campaign, obviously...

Mostly because the party tells the GM to fuck off with such shoddy premise.

Also, why the hell would Crab take non-Crabs into Legion of the Damned? It's Crab business, the rest can fuck off to monasteries or Meido with their taint.
>Mantis-san grinned at Toshiro
>I like how you said it without saying it, but it's not going to work.
>We're going to see this through to the end.
>Not for the first time, I wondered what I had done to deserve such friends
>That night, Naomi clung to me fiercely in our bed
>She was shivering badly
>That happened more often then some think
>While you are in the shadowlands, your senses are hightened, you're on alert, you are ready.
>Only after the immediate threat is gone does the fear break through.
>Even veteran bushi will shake like a reed before a hurricane in the aftermath of a battle
>I stroked her hair, soothing her, until she spoke of it.
>That place...it is so, so WRONG
>And we are going to send our CHILDREN there?! ALONE?
>I know, Naomi. I know.
>Hey, look at me.
>I did it.
>Yes, you did...
>My father did
>So did his father.
>And his father.
>...I think HIS father was a shugenja though...
>She giggled at that. A good sign
>There was a part of me that didn't want to let you go, you know.
>Yes, I know
>But there's another part of me that's glad you did
>When we speak of the sacrifice we make, when we tell stories of the things that lurk beyond the wall, of how evil the shadowlands are...few understand it.
>They think that Yojimbo taking an arrow in place of their Lord is the same kind of sacrifice. >They think a suicide charge against the enemies main camp is the same kind of courage
>But now YOU understand.
>She nodded.
>Yes. I do.
>Just think, now you'll be able to laugh at the Matsu bragging about the enemy heads he took when you realize your children will have faced a thousand times worse
>She giggled again.
>Then nuzzled deep against me and slept
>We awoke to a dark line on the horizon.
>They would be here by tomorrow.
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We're getting close to the bump limit, so I leve the rest of this thread for kibitzing while I get some lunch. Be back in an hour or so with a new thread.
If you fuck in the Shadowlands, will the baby be tainted?
and you forgot the invulnerability to fire, magical fire and mudane weapon.
The Crab will happily take anyone with the Taint into the Damned. One of the early lore stories in Bearers of Jade is about a Crane samurai serving on the Wall who ends up Tainted and joining the Damned.

The Crab do not care about your family, clan or school when it comes to being a member of the Damned. All you need is a desire to take as many minions of Jigoku with you before you die.
BoJ works better when considered apocryphal tales told or written within Rokugan. The Crab very much do care about your family - if you're not Crab, you're a lame pony until you prove yourself, and then you're Moshibaru or similar reinforcements trusted to hold a specific section of the wall with direction and supervision.
So we'll see you tomorrow then. You have a habit of falling asleep after your lunch breaks, Ishigaki-san.
Ninjas don't hide in his riceballs, they spike them.
That's in regards to normal samurai showing up at the Wall, who are usually ignorant at best or arrogant at worst and can't be expected to hold key positions or be effective in battle. If you show up to the Crab bearing the Taint and explaining you situation, they will quietly direct you to Shiro Kuni. Bearers of Jade is just one source, and it should be remembered that the book itself its presented as the in universe writings of the characters within, collected by a ronin shugenja.

Aside from Bearers of Jade, the sample Damned character from Way of the Shadowlands is also a Crane bushi who became tainted in the Shinoman Mori, decided not to commit seppuku, traveled to the Crab lands, and was pointed to the barracks of the Damned. If you are tainted and want to fight the denizens of Jigoku, the Crab don't care who you were: you are one of the Damned now.
Well, it is possible to be born with the Taint if one of your parents carried it. So, definitely could happen.
It might not be possible to fuck in the shadowlands if you aren't already tainted. Natural processes like sleep don't work quite right, and the whole place instinctively puts people on edge (unless it's fucking with you, then anyone in the know becomes even more on edge because it's too safe feeling).
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HAH! No narcolepsy today!
HAH! No narcolepsy today!
HAH! No narcolepsy today!

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