Back from the Magic Kingdom. Much work to catch up on, but the weather was beautiful, the park not too crowded and the Candy Cane Inn (yes, I say it with pride) was excellent as usual. Two encounters today – a bit of a fight brewing between them.
2842. The deforested hills around a sprawling castle of cream-colored stone are alive with the activity of two companies of shashu no ashigaru, three companies of yari ashigaru and a squadron of samurai in training. Further afield there are meadows of grazing sheep and fields of pulses and barley worked by busy, nervous farmers. The villagers dwell in simple huts located about half a mile from the castle. The village boasts a small tavern run by Myshulai, a raven-haired beauty with a wicked jaw and purple burn scar decorating the right side of her face. A former paramour of the lord, she is the only person known to have defied him and survived, though none know the details of their romance or parting.
The lord of the castle is Chinegan, a thin, malevolent sprite of a man with a long mustache and thinning hair pasted over a spotted scalp. Chinegan always appears swathed in silks, a poisoned dagger grasped in one hand and hidden in a long sleeve. Chinegan covets 2942 more highly than the lives of his wives and daughters, and has long been preparing his forces for an assault. His little army has been funded by a fabulous mine of peach-colored agates discovered many summers ago underneath the castle behind a dungeon wall. Dozens of peasants now labor in the dark, day and night, digging out the stones.
When not plotting the destruction of his neighbors, Chinegan amuses himself hunting outlaws in the woods surrounding his castle using a pack of three shocker lizards. The lizards are wrangled by Anq, a half-ogre who raised them from the egg and keeps them under control with nothing but his commanding voice and a series of hand movements.
Chinegan owns a treasure of 1,630 sp, 1,645 gp, a terracottage aquamanile (painted with a code that means nothing) worth 1 gp, a lapis lazuli water buffalo worth 50 gp, an amber vase worth 70 gp, a sack of agates worth 115 gp, a granite statuette of a five legged gryph worth 80 gp and twenty pounds of red (iron) dye worth 5 sp per pound, and meant for the manufacture of battle flags.
| Shocker Lizards (3): HD 1-1 hp; AC 6 ; Atk 1 bite (1d3); Move 6; Save 18; CL/XP 2/30; Special: Electric shock.
| Anq, Half-Ogre Bujin Lvl 6: 34 ; AC 4 ; Save 11 (10 vs death, 7 vs. poison & disease); CL/XP 6/400; Special: Follow through, ogre’s ferociousness, open door on 1-4 on 1d6. Hara-ate, jingasa, kote, suneate, tetsubo (1d6+1).
| Chinegan, Bujin Lvl 10: HP 36 ; AC 3 ; Save 7 (6 vs death & poison); CL/XP 10/1400; Special: Follow through, parry death blow. Do-maru, kote, suneate, kabuto, katana, wakizashi, tanto, daikyu, 10 arrows.
MON: Red field, white gryph
2942. The gaijin warlord known as the Lord of the Granite Chrysanthemum dwells here in an unyielding safehold (the aforementioned Granite Chrysanthemum). The Granite Chrysanthemum is a castle of concentric rings protected by tall towers that encircle an inner keep. The structure is constructed on the Motherlander model and is ruled by a dwarf warlord called Inthor, a former servant of the Tiger Empress who now rules as a freelord in brazen defiance of the Jade Empress and her court. The castle is constructed of yellowish stone with roofs of red tile and ample stonecarving, as is the wont of dwarves.
Within the inner court of the castle, surrounding the keep, there is a grove of gingko-biloba trees. The gingko is harvested by Inthor’s harem of maidens – all the eldest daughters of foes he has vanquished placed in Inthor’s protective custody to insure the loyalty and good will of their fathers. Despite their imprisonment, the maidens are treated well. The gingko’s essence is extracted by a half-mad wise woman called Gombe. Her elixirs are much sought after by shugenja, for whom they have a 1 in 6 chance of acting as a potion of mnemonic enhancement.
Inthor commands three companies of dwarf warriors armed with teppo or chu-ko-nu and masakiri. They wear Motherlander-style mail and carry shields, as does their lord.
Inthor rules over a tribe of cavemen who dwell in leather tents on the wooded grasslands surrounding the keep. The holding is rich in copper and malachite, and the cavemen are employed as able miners.
| Inthor: HP 31 ; AC 1 ; Save 4 (2 vs. magic); CL/XP 12/2000; Special: Note stonework. Platemail, shield, battle axe, dagger.