The PCs use the iron key to unlock the doors to the courtyard, and Kumiko takes the lead, carefully checking for traps as she goes. She sees Yasu waiting for her, and the two begin a conversation. Yasu attempts to recruit the group to join the Mist Tigers. When that goes nowhere, she offers to buy the jade statuette from the group.
Saeko can feel the tainted energy of Kobayashi’s domain radiating from Yasu, but nobody else does. It appears to be centered on a small jade statue of a boar that she is wearing around her neck. She warns the rest of the party, who then approach the encounter with even greater levels of caution.
The PCs successfully negotiate with Yasu, intimidating and persuading her to pay a far higher price than she was willing to pay, but then Kumiko decides to take her out. Four ninja come out of hiding to protect Yasu, but the characters kill her before she can react. However, the corrupted energy of the boar statuette turns her into a gibbering mouther, which gives the party a little bit of trouble, but not too much.
After they defeat her, they cautiously collect the boar statuette.
Current total: 6850 - LEVEL UP! (5th level)
Asami arranges a meeting between the PCs and Reiko to sell the tainted statuette that night. After lengthy negotiations, Reiko purchases the statuette for four magical items:
- Sun Blade (katana)
- Ninja-to +2
- Magical Flute
- Wand of the War Mage +2
The PCs also learn that Reiko believes the statuettes to be part of a set of six that originated in Mizuta, the tainted village where Kobayashi was summoned, and where Sosuke, the head of the Eaters of the Dead, is believed to be.
Asami then leverages her network to find information about the Daimyo’s court. She conveys the following info to the rest of the party:
- Fujiwara Rei
- Middle-aged female human
- Eldest child of Fujiwara Yu, previous daimyo
- Led several successful campaigns against the lizard riding barbarians - regarded as a war hero
- Believed to be a conscientious and thoughtful leader by her subjects
- Nemoto Kakuzo
- Older male human
- Advises the daimyo on matters of finance and taxation
- Originally me t PCs at a Noh performance at the Onodera Theater in the Dancing Fan district.
- Watanabe Isako
- Female human fighter in her late twenties
- Captain of city guard
- Kadokura Ichiro
- Middle-aged male hanyo onmyoji
- Advises daimyo on matters of astrology and calendar cycles
- Sagawa Sadako
- Kitsune female shinkan with 4 tails
- Head of the Shrine of the Southern Wind
- Fujiwara Juro
- Middle-aged male human
- Daimyo’s younger brother
- City manager
- Fujiwara Shizu
- Middle aged female human bard
- Daimyo’s younger sister
- Minister of the arts, including theater, gardens, and cuisine
Kumiko realizes that it will take some effort to connect with enough of the Daimyo’s advisor’s to ensure a direct audience. To start, Saeko sends out invitations to a special performance that will highlight the accomplishments of the city guard. Asami finds a way to get an invitation directly into the hands of the Captain of the City Guard.
Once they’ve returned to the inn, Aikawa Kosami, the urokobito merchant that the PCs protected from the Golden Hornets, finds the PCs and entreats them to defend his fellow shopkeepers once again. The Golden Hornets are wandering through the urokobito section of town, demanding protection money.
The PCs agree to help, and easily track the yakuza thugs down. Kumiko attempts to use logic, but Hiro, who seems to be impervious to reason, attempts to intimidate the PCs into leaving. When that doesn’t work, he draws his sword, but the PCs kill him before he can move. The rest of the thugs flee, and the party chases down one thug to deliver a message: that the Mist Tigers now run the Golden Lantern District.
Current total: 7750