Facing a group of burly, tough-looking men rushing toward them, Miyo casts Sleep. Unfortunately, the burly, tough-looking men seem to be a bit tougher than the Sleep spell is able to affect, so the table directly next to them falls asleep in their seats. Kumiko shushes the barista, and succeeds in getting her to stop screaming. This creates an opening for Saeko to cast Charm Person on two of the thugs. Now befriended, she convinces them that everything is fine - they just dropped a barrel of tea. The thugs buy her story and go back to their seats. To sell the deception, Saeko spends a few minutes tending to the patrons and even entertains the tea house with an impromptu performance.
Once things calm down, the group continues their investigation. Beyond the door that Miyo Knocked open is a smaller storage room and yet another door. Asami checks the door for traps, finds none, and picks the lock, which reveals access to the sewers beyond. Everyone groans at the sight of the sewers.
Kumiko questions the barista about comings and goings at the tea house. If the yakuza or cult were using it as a pass-through, certainly the barista would have noticed people disappearing into the back for long periods of time. Unfortunately, Kiko the barista claims not to have noticed anything - she’s too busy tending to her patrons to pay much attention. She reveals that the owner of the teahouse is Suzuki-san, which the characters recognize as the family name of the head of the Golden Hornets. Satisfied that they’ve gotten all of the useful information she possesses, the characters send her back to serving tea.
Asami searches the smaller storage room and finds a barrel of blood meal and some crates containing the mundane components of the zombie poison. They decide to dump the ingredients into the sewer to dispose of them.
The characters take a look around the sewers. There are three tunnels that run off into the distance which they decide to ignore in favor of an alcove containing a circle of inscriptions on the floor. Lining the circle is a set of candles. Saeko deciphers the writing, which appears seems to be a pean to Kobayashi, and decides that interacting with it from a distance is the safest option. She casts Shatter, which destroys the inscription and the circle of candles. When the dust clears, the characters see that a previously hidden door in the back of the alcove has been blown open by the force of the spell. They descend a set of stairs into another set of tunnels and start scouting around.
They find a door, which Asami finds to be unlocked and un-trapped.
Kumiko pushes open the door and makes her way into the room only to discover a black pudding chilling out in the middle of the floor! Kumiko slashes at it with her sun blade and splits it in two, splashing herself with some of the acidic ooze in the process. Miyo casts Burning Hands and burns a portion of it away. The black pudding lashes out at Kumiko with its pseudopods, dealing a tremendous amount of damage and corroding her armor as a result.
Saeko heals Kumiko, who is near death. Miyo manages to cast two very low-powered burning hands. Asami throws multiple daggers. The characters begin an orderly retreat from the amorphous, armor-eating, ooze, falling back into the hall and closing the door.
Unfortunately, the ooze eats through the door and chases the characters. They fend off its attacks and then Saeko finishes it off with another Shatter spell.
Her armor and pride wounded in equal measure, Kumiko stomps off before coming back to stand watch. The characters search the room, and find it to be completely empty. Then they take a short rest.
XP: 2300 xp (575 ea)
Running Total: 11820 + 575 = 1239