L5R – JYTB Campaign Report 2

30 January, 2010

This episode sees the addition of a new player, the use of fate cards and the establishment of the framing mechanism of the campaign.

Picking up from where the first session left off, the original trio of characters pray at the Lonely Mountain Shrine and then headed back down the mountain with a nun, Hyoko, as a companion assigned to the Soshi samurai-ko.  The journey back down is less eventful.

Toku Kobo -having just delivered a gift to a Crane daimyo for his lord- arrives at Small Lake Village just as the Emerald Magistrate, Doji Akira, and his entourage.  The Emerald Magistrate takes the Toku’s papers and sends him to find the local magistrate.   The Toku gets back just before the quartet from the shrine arrive back in town and head to the inn.  Doji Akira talks to the local magistrate and takes the travel papers from the other characters.  They eat and watch before they are told to return in an hour to talk with Akira.

They clean themselves up and return.  Doji Akira explains that he has a task that takes him North that cannot be delayed but there is a supernatural matter that needs investigating at the small, isolated North Pass Village.  Therefore due to the trio’s heroic efforts combating bandits, the reputation of the Monkey clan and the usefulness of having a nun along, they were all promoted to his yoriki, given papers and jitte of their office and sent off to investigate and solve the problem with orders to meet up with Akira at Cold Wind City afterward.  Toku Kobo tries to engage Matsu Yasu, Akira’s bodyguard, in conversation afterwards, as Kobo is in awe of the Lion Clan, with limited success.

The next day begins with a storm, that continues for the next three days of travel, the characters get to know a little more about each other.  At the end of the third day they are delayed from arriving at North Path Village by a mudslide and are forced to detour and camp in the open.   Where they are approached by a group of people carrying a lantern.  This resolved itself into a lost Scorpion patrol led by Bayushi Rin.  Rin says that they were on patrol and got lost in the rain, but they are quite a way over the Crane boarder.  The Kaiu is troubled by their armor and the Soshi recognizes that the Mon of the Scorpion’s lord is of a lord who dyed six generations ago.  As the characters’ suspicious mount, a wave of sorrow washes over them, almost crippling the Kaiu and the Soshi.  Hyoko strikes her six-ring staff on the ground and the Scorpion patrol are revealed as ghosts.

Combat ensues and the ghosts are dispersed but not before spearing the Toku.  Hyoko identifies them as the ghosts from an ill-fated Scorpion invasion of Crane lands that was washed away in storms and mud slides that buried hundred of the invaders.  When the body of the lost Scorpion are revealed by rains, their spirits are released back into the world to try and continue their missions.   As the new day dawns, bright and clear, they track down the bodies of the Scorpion patrol.  Gathering villagers, they see that the bodies are pulled from the mud and cremated.  The Soshi takes the two daisho they recovered to return to the Scorpion.

Finally arriving at North Pass Village, they are show to the headman’s house.  He feeds them as best he can and explain that over the last two months, five children have vanished.  The children were alone and out of sight of their parents.  As the village only consists of twenty families, this is a difficult loss.

The next day, they begin investigating.  Between time and the rain, most of the clues have washed away but they find a piece of cloth torn off at the Crab’s shoulder level.  In a wood cutter’s shed they found a hand print high on a wall, nearly the same size as the Crab’s but slender.  The Kaiu spotted someone watching them and gave chase.

After much crashing through the woods, they surround the tall man on the top of a hill, he tips back his hat revealing a blank expanse where his face should be.  The Crab charged in with his tetsubo, the Scorpion readied her bow, and the Monkey readied his katana.  The things arm whipped out and wrapped around the Crab’s forearm cracking the armor and tearing the flesh.  The Kiau brings his tetsubo down and the thing take the blow on its back.  The iron staff tears away the cloth revealing tentacles on its back that grasp the tetsubo and tear it from the Crab’s grasp.

The Crab defended himself as the creature struck again, only losing a piece of his shoulder armor.  The Monkey and the Scorpion attacked in the same moment, the Toku’s katana slashing across its body as the Soshi’s arrow pierced it throat.  It collapsed, oozing black ichor.  The Kiau pounded its dying form flat, just to make sure.  They burned its remains, just to make sure.

Further searching over the next day revealed no trace of the missing children or further threats to the village.  At that point, we ended Episode 2.

Notes: As I believe that more Minor Clans are better, the Monkey Clan was allowed to exist (with a different history) far before its traditional founding.

To the next Report (3).


  1. Thanks for posting these journals. I am wondering what “the use of fate cards and the establishment of the framing mechanism of the campaign” is. What are these and where can I find the info.

    • Fate cards are using cards from the L5R CCG to give the players an additional way to interact with the game world. Each player gets to draw a umber of cards equal to their character’s Void at the beginning of each session and they use them how they can.

      The framing element is the fact that the characters have all been chosen to serve as yoriki without warning or training.

      • Thanks,
        Would you give me an example of how a card could be used in a session?

        • As you wish.

          Example 1 (used for in-game bonus) Let us say that the characters need to make a Lore (history) check to remember who fought in the Battle of Seven Peaks. One of the players uses Valley of Heroes and says, “My sensei told me of the great Crane hero that fought in that battle.” I would say, excellent and give a bonus piece of information.

          Example 2 (used to add to the story) The character have stopped at a small castle on their travels. One of the players wants to impress the local lord and says that a poetry contest is just starting so that he can compete. This will not distract from the mission at hand or player enjoyment, so it happens.

          Examples 3 (silliness denied) The players encounter a Miya herald. One of the players says, “She falls in love with my character and runs off to marry him.” Playing An Imperial Marriage. This is just silly so it is vetoed.

          If the card use is approved, they get to draw to replace the used card. If it is vetoed, they do not.

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