Photographed by Okinawa Soba
Mito is roughly L shaped with the longer axis running east west. You entered from the tip of the short axis. It is situated on the shoulder of a steep mountain.
One Inn, located at the turn (try the cave shrimp!).
Shuttered houses here and there. The place reeks of sulphurous gases and there are
steamy plumes rising into the air, here and there. The stream which runs down the middle of the village street is warm.
There are a few detached single family type bath houses here and there.
There is a smithy there (he repairs mining tools) and even a humble magistrate’s house. No sign of the magistrate on the street and the smith is a quiet little bearded fellow with a limp. He has two apprentices and is probably working on repairing a few things.
The low rent district is far stage right where a bunch of eta family dwellings are clustered around a smoking hot pool.
Small shrine to the earth kami up the track there. The path here splits around one of those horrifically steep mountains which seem eternally wreathed in mist.
Avoiding more bandits that throng the Inn of the Silver Blossom, then heading towards humbler quarters near the body burners on the east side of the village. The PCs speak with some of the poorer people, after making sure to calm them.
Two weeks back, the samurai Hoku Yayesu took 20 ashigaru and left, called by his master to serve under the Mountain Lion Banner. Then the Muguru came after that, and they only looked around and then left, bothering no one.
The bandits, ronin, deserters and other scum came next. The bandits tied up the town’s aged magistrate and made merry with the opium left behind by the Muguru scouts. Their bandit leader is the not so famous Jingu Ironhead, not the infamous Raven that the PCs have been hearing tall tales about.
Meanwhile, the Crab watches the cart with the teapot and speaks to a small girl. He meets her mother, and then the blacksmith who came to visit her. He asks the blacksmith to clean his armor for his Lord (oh yeah, the blacksmith will never see through THAT).
The PCs sneak into the Magistrates house and overwhelm the bandit there, assigned to guard the bound magistrate. They free Hoku Jimmu, an older samurai past his prime. He slays the bound bandit after he recovers from being tied up.
Meanwhile some of the PCs are startled to discover a Lady’s Maid has come up to the back of one of the group houses. She is from a mountain spa further up the mountain and begs for help for her mistress, a very important courtesan to young Lord Hitomi. Apparently they just missed going back to Hitomi Castle when it was besieged. So now they are stranded. Her name is Hanno Masyo. The PCs ignored her. (I hate them)
Now the bandits stir in the early hours of the morning, as it seems the gaijin are coming, again. So, some of their sentries are worth a damn. The Bandits bundle everything together hastily and leave town. Hoku comes to realize his only son my be dead and that he has totally failed to protect his humble mining village. He commits seppuku after writing a note, Yonaka is his second. The PCs head north, to Shuho.