L5R : Jade Winds

Tears of a Fox's Heart (Part 3)

Foxes and Hounds

Using pregen adventure “Tears of a Fox’s Heart” plus some stuff kugelblitz made up

During the CB festivities, the Wasp spots a peasant staring at them. A brief chase corners him and the PCs find out that “everyone” knows the Ikeda house is haunted, says Hokui the laborer. There is a bad spirit that shows up there on festival days, and the place is terrifying.

Okaay. The next evening at Ikeda’s is much quieter, with a poetry contest. The hosts retire early, tomorrow is the big day. At one point one of the male samurai (Mirumoto Hideo) is found in the garden, quietly talking to the absolutely ravishing Crane Doji Inoe.

Sometime during the night Otomo Hisayo and Seppun Tadashiro leave.

An hour or two later, a servant humbly wakes the PCs, asking that Lord Ikeda Akimitsu-sama wishes to speak with them, so sorry.

Ikeda Akimitsu-sama receives them in his study, he looks wrought. He gropes for words and then blurts out that his betrothed is missing, and she may be in great danger…

This could really be a big deal, massive face loss for the Matsu Clan, the Lion (they take Honor Very Seriously) and especially the small Ikeda family. He wants Hisayo found before things go tits up, and he will stay back and make sure nobody twigs to the problem beforehand. She likes trips to shrines, he says it is a habit, and he will fob off the curious with that excuse. He seems to Not Be Saying Something but the PCs dunno what.

So the bastards bore in on his story until he breaks. He was engaged last year to Kitsune Chizu, daughter to a local Fox Clan Ambassador. She died of a sudden fever one year ago right before the wedding. He then pulls out a thick braid of dark red hair with a white streak tied up with a green silk ribbon. This was on his pillow when he woke up a while back. It is hers and had been left on her grave last year. There may be more than this but he is NOT SAYING.

• No signs of struggle in the Bride-to-be’s room, Commune reveals that two people argued recently according to a flighty air spirit.
• A Doshin (armed peasant) stationed on the nearest intersection mentions a samurai and lady “heading west”. Hoh.
• Ponies were taken from a nearby stable by a similar couple. double hoh.

The PCs saddle up and haul ass up into the mountains nearby, aided by the Tsuruchi’s good tracking skills. They took the West Road, towards collapsed Beiden Pass. They took a smuggler’s path off the main one.

In the foothills near the mountain, the PCs come upon a kneeling Otomo Hisayo, her head bowed as in meditation, near a tree. Seppun Tadashiro, tired, baffled and uncertain, warns the PCs to approach no nearer to milady. Some heavy diplomacy happens and a fight does NOT break out.

He explains that Hisayo mentioned a Fox shrine aand wished to pray there, and was unmoved by any arguments he made. The shrine is an ancient, worn, four foot high stone plinth covered with vines. A Lore:Spirits role reveals that it is a marker stone to Chikushudo, not a shrine.

• The lantern is lit
• The beads are prayed over, with the kanji being read out loud.
• I don’t know if an exorcism was done, or was a Commune with extra raises was made.

Otomo Hisayo faints dead away, and the beautiful ghost of a girl with a single fox tail rises up. She is weeping, and her smile is a bitter one. She apologizes deeply, sends her love to Akimitsu and fades away, admonishing the PCs to return her braid to her.

Somebody rolls pretty good on perception and sees Kitsune Mara off in the trees. She has SEVEN tails. Mara smiles, bows respectfully and also fades away.

Hisayo awakes from a hazy dream and confirms that she could have been displaced by the ghost FOREVER. She is hustled back to the Ikeda house. Kitsune Mara is back at the house as well, and she just .deflects. any. questions directed at her. Damn.

The wedding goes off without any more complexities and Daimyo Ikeda Taneka announces his retirement, saying that he will of course stay around a bit to offer advice to the new Daimyo.

4 XP, the PCs have gained the gratitude of the (now) Ikeda daimyo; he owes them a favor. Also the Tamori gets +1 honor for putting Chizu to rest.

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ednoria

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