In the shadow of the great famine. (Inactive)

Game Master Havocprince

L5R campaign set during the great famine, all ronin.

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"A Crane yoriki in Lion lands is indeed a cause for concern. And why would she be hunting bear? Magistrates are concerned with law and order and not wild life."

Inoue and Taki, how are you handling the body?


As the body is placed inside, Inoue offers a prayer for the dead Crane.

After he is done with the praying, he offers a suggestion. "That is strange. Maybe she wasn't hunting it, but it was an accident while she searched for a criminal? The bear attacked, she had to defend herself. On the other hand, the spear is not the first choice of weapon, unless on the battlefield."

Clean the blood from the face, twigs and leaves (if there are any) from hair, straighten clothes.

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

I figured wrap cloth around my hands to not directly touch the dead body (I remember reading somewhere that was "unclean" in Rokugan). A tearing from my shirt is sufficient, I think, to wrap around my hands. As for specifics, just assisting and trying to bear the brunt of the load.

Ryuk maintains a straight face as the others perform a job reserved for eta. He resists pointing that out. His track record at showing others his intellect is low in terms of yielding positive results.

Taki and Inoue bind their hands in layers cloth and do many odd things to make sure they do not actually come in to intentional contact with the dead flesh of the crane... it is a long process but they manage to just barely circumvent all of the restrictions. Though at least one of their companions may think less of them now.

The storm continues to roll on as everyone hunkers down for a meal and sleep.

Naga, you may roll your school technique and double the number of people due to your cousin. If Naga can roll high enough everyone will mark off only a half ration except for the samurai who shared his meal with the monk.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

Hunh? The School technique is a flat benefit - 1 person per rank in Hunting. I have 2 ranks. Double for Senno provides the effect for 4 people, two of which would be Senno and me, I'm expecting. I figure paying the samurai who showed compassion back by having him split one ration with the monk satisfy them both would be an appropriate reward. Leaves 1 PC not assisted.

Woops, older edition in my head. Lol, next I'm going to forget you don't need a Shintao of 5 to break 5 on your rings.

As morning light breaks, the group of travelers find they wake to the fast becoming familiar tiny shrine. Dead crane still where you left her the night before and bear corpse still sitting outside. Thankfully the storm has calmed while you slept, now it is only a slight sprinkle that greets the new dawn.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

Once awake, 'Naga takes the time to run through some basic kata (nothing mechanics invoking), working to maintain the skill he's gained. He practices near the bear, but gives it plenty of room.

Ryuk wakes. He greets those awake and performs his morning rituals.


Inoue performs his usual morning rites after he wakes up. He glances uneasily at the dead Crane's body.

"We need to find the Magistrate, tell them what has happened and hope they will not accuse us." He suggests once everyone is done with their routine.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

"Agreed. The right thing to do is to find the Magistrate and inform her. Do any of you know which way the closest town might be?" He looks towards the bear, and thinks about where it looked like they came from the night before. "I believe they came from THAT direction, but, of course, we don't know if that's the same direction she started from."

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

Taki actually had a restful sleep on the cold floor of the temple. He'd experienced far worse, and dry was dry after all. Upon awakening he listens quietly to the others until a question is asked.

"I'm afraid I don't know much of direction, my lord. I simply follow the sound of the storm in the distance, and go where it's fortune takes me, most days. I do believe your plan is a wise one, however."

Taki sighs, and looks to the Shujenja present. "Should we not build a funeral pyre for her m'lord? In know..."

I think this is after the first appearance of the Bloodspeaker, Iuchiban, but before his return. I don't know if it's law yet, but the practicality of it is probably obvious to the priests at least.

"Let us observe the customary funeral rites and wait four days before cremating the honored dead. In the meantime, it is important to inform the Lion authorities immediately of the Crane's death lest we be accused of her death. I recommend that the body remain here lest we transgress acceptable societal boundaries."


"There is a village on the edge of this forest. We can start from there."

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

Taki nods to the others. "Of course, Ryuk-sama. I simply meant to prepare the pyre. What do we do with the body in the meantime? We do not wish to have a passer-by defile it." He furrows his brow. Ugh. Some monk I am. Can't even keep a body safe, but I can kick someone if they touch it, I guess...

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

"We could build a drag-sled, and bring it with us to present to the magistrate. Quite a bit of work, but it should display our sincerity about returning her."

Takishiro of the Osano-Wo wrote:
Taki nods to the others. "Of course, Ryuk-sama. I simply meant to prepare the pyre. What do we do with the body in the meantime? We do not wish to have a passer-by defile it." He furrows his brow. Ugh. Some monk I am. Can't even keep a body safe, but I can kick someone if they touch it, I guess...

"Please nothing so formal as 'sama.' Just Ryuk. In the meantime, the body must be purified. Both physically and spiritually. Clean water and prayers should suffice."

"I do not recommend the body be dragged the length of Lion lands though. This is a shrine and her vigil can be done here."

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

"Yes, it can. Do we desert the body while we seek the magistrate, leave someone here to tend the body and light the fire if we take too long to find the magistrate, leave her goods here or take the important pieces with us as we seek her master? There are many questions to answer."

He looks thoughtful for a moment.

"If we take the important possessions with us, we can prove our intent without dragging the body. It might also make it less likely that anyone will choose to disturb the body."

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

Taki nods to Hikogana. "I can stay and guard the body, and perform the prayers, if you would like. The word of a monk is not as valuable as that of a samurai, anyway."


"We can take the spear point with the streamer, and the magistrate badge. That should prove our words."

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

"But she carries nothing else that should be returned to the family? Not a daisho?"

I don't remember one being mentioned, but it seems very odd for there NOT to be one. At least a Wakizashi.

You do not see either blade upon the Crane's person. Neither is she wearing armor. No traveling pack or belt pouches either.

"There is too much missing from her person. Maybe we should see if the rain washed away all evidence of her passing, or if we can follow her path back to the rest of her possessions."

Said the Hiruma Bushi who forgot to put his character tag on.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

Why, yes. Yes I did.

All been there. It is raven funnier when you accidentally post with the wrong character. So, splitting up, or investigating the direction the bear chased this poor crane from?


"The rain must have washed most of the tracks. But it wouldn't hurt to check for them - maybe we'll find her daisho, or something other that might help identify her."

Investigating the direction sounds like a good idea.

"I am hearing the outline of a plan. So you will all be following her trail back, yes?"

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

"Now that we've mentioned it, it seems like the obvious thing to do.
Senno? You want another chance to prove your self better?
" He pulls his gear back together, and on, and moves out to where the fight happened the night before, looking for signs of the bear's passage, because an angry bear should have left a more obvious trail than a lithe Crane.

The obvious path is not always that obvious.

Senno nods and tightens her armor straps, heading out to find a trail. The previous night's storm had cleared any trace of the crane's passing, but torn bark and broken foliage shows the unmistakable path of the charging bear. A couple of hours' work finds you in a torn up camp, fresh corpses litter the field, a loan deer is found munching among the bodies. As you aproach, the doe snaps up and watches you for a split second before darting off in to the brush.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

Not saying anything as he moves into the camp, 'Naga gives each of the bodies a quick visual examination, looking to verify that they were taken by claw and jaw, or not; which were Samurai; what clan affiliations or obvious rank any displays.

I had expected to be told to roll Hunting. Glad we didn't need to. I'm still expecting a few rolls might be required as we look around, though.


"By Fortunes... That's awful."

Inoue slowly walks among corpses, careful not to step on them or their possessions. "Common wild animals are rarely this savage. If that was the yesterday's bear..."

The shugenja recites the prayer to sense any Air kami around him he can speak with.

Sense (Spellcraft TN 10, Air, 4k3, 1 free Raise): 4d10 ⇒ (2, 4, 2, 10) = 18 Total 16. Any Air spirits to talk to in 60'?

The wind blows a few leaves over the scene, it is almost as if it is mourning the passing of so much life.

Inoue, there is in fact a Kami of the air near. You can use commune with it.

Naga, the bear was easy to follow back because it chased her in a straight line. Best you can tell she may have been running directly for the shrine.

Investigation/Perception and Lore (Heraldry)/Inteligence may both be rolled.


Commune (Spellcraft TN 15 (10+1 Raise), Air, 4k3, 1 free Raise: 4d10 ⇒ (9, 2, 3, 7) = 21
Total 19, that's 2 questions and 2 raises. I'll ask 3 questions and spend 1 Raise for more clarity. Hope I got everything right.

Inoue speaks the customary greetings and prepares himself to be even more patient than usual - after all, air kami are tricky to deal with.

"Do you know what killed these people? Do you know what were they doing here? Can you say where did they come from?"

The small wind swirls and coalesces into the semblance of a face, frankly brows seems to furrow with strain and it's small green beard speaks to the wisdom of this being.

"Were they not obviously slain by the bear? It of the hungry teeth and empty belly. These souls seemed to be resting before he came, I was saddened that he killed the small one... she played such beautiful music on her pipe of forced brethren. The music does please so, and we so enjoy the feel. They came from outside this wood, where from I can not tell. Maybe the one the large one carried can answer you that."

Completely correct. Good call on the clarity, saved me from answering everything in questions and riddles.

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

I know, if I were GM and someone asked those three questions without clarity, my response would be "yes I do, yes I do, and yes I can" because I'm an a@$+~%%

Taki sits quietly while the shujenja consults the kami, wishing he too were born with the gift to speak with the elements. He decided to await their decision before proceeding.

M Rokugani Hiruma Bushi 1

Investigation: 3d10 ⇒ (8, 9, 10) = 27
Explosion: 1d10 ⇒ 2 For 21

Lore (Heraldry) Untrained: 2d10 ⇒ (1, 3) = 4 Well, that's a total I deserve.

The young bushi looks around at the dead and their gear.


Well, the book itself advices to raise for clarity. And I have experience with bad questions/requests wording in a game I'm playing outside this forum.

"Thank you for your answers, spirit." Inoue bows to the small wind and joins Hikonaga in his investigation.

Investigation, untrained, 3k3: 3d10 ⇒ (8, 4, 10) = 22
Lore Heraldry, untrained, 2k2: 2d10 ⇒ (2, 4) = 6

That moment when the untrained samurai does a little better than you.

The kami of air wisps off again into the rustling of leaves, though you all get the strange feeling that it is still watching you. Picking through the bodies, without touching a single one, Naga and Inoue manage to get a count of the dead. The group in camp consisted of a large crane that had been wearing a well made suit of armor, most likely the one the yari belonged to considering the broken haft near his body, his skull smashed in from a blow of great force; a small spindly man with Katana still in hand, whose mons on the tsuka are obscured by blood and whose unarmored form was no match for the beast that struck him down and caved in his chest; and a collection of five peasants that were most likely the attendants of the three samurai.

In what is left of a tent, Naga finds a stand containing a well made daisho, probably belonging to the young woman you had found earlier, and next to the mat is a scroll case bearing the seal of the imperial chrysanthemum.

While searching around the perimeter of the camp, Inoue finds what seem to be human footprints headed off in another direction from the collection of prints leading in to camp. The length of stride and deepness of impact might suggest that this one was running, but maybe the Crab samurai may be more knowledgeable about such things.

There is still more to investigate if anyone else would like to make a roll.

Ryuk spends the time he has, performing cleansing rituals over the body and prayer and meditation. Likewise, he interviews the months on the general layout of the surrounding Lion lands. When not doing so, he exercises by doing kenjutsu kata.

Wound Track - 10/14/18/22/26/30/34/38 (24/38) - Injured Honor: 4.5 | Glory: 1 (gain at 1/4 rate) | Status: 0

Taki looks around, eyes widened at the scene of carnage as the others start to put things together and gather clues. "By the ancestors, what happened here?!" He shudders slightly, and his muscles tense. "There's something unnatural in the air."

While Ryuk is praying over the body, he feels a presence watching him. It does not feel malevolent, but not exactly friendly either.

"Who is there that spies on me? Reveal yourself." Ryuk demands calmly.

Good enough, can I get a reflexive commune cast? Untyped element for now.

Commune using Fire Element

Spellcasting: 1d10 ⇒ 8
Spellcasting: 1d10 ⇒ 1
Spellcasting: 1d10 ⇒ 2
Spellcasting: 1d10 ⇒ 7
Spellcasting: 1d10 ⇒ 6

5k3 equals 21

You start to get the ghost of a spark to form when something else forces itself through the fragile link you are trying to build. The walls of the shrine fold back and warp before your eyes and the world bursts in to bloom. As you take in the sight, a large white stag with antlers entwined in green vine and pink blossoms strides toward you. A gentle breeze stirs cherry blossoms and the scent of fresh rain showers to tickle your nose.

"Oh, kami-sama, what is it you wish of me?"


"Hikonaga-san, I found some footprints. It seems someone might have survived the slaughter."

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