Legend of the Five Rings: Echoes

Session 23: Fork in the Road

Choices are made. Paths are taken.

As the song echoes,
The fallen Crane flies again.
Death holds no power.

As the Mongoose Clan’s first court continued, several of the Echoes (plus Benkei), traveled north, following Kage no Oni. When they hit Badger lands, Yamako, not wishing to cause trouble, stepped through to the spirit realms and headed to her own destination. She was going to rescue Toshiro, man and kami be damned.Forgotten outpost

She indeed did find him. Calling upon Earth kami to scale the sheer cliff face to the Eyrie her husband was being held at, she found herself questioned by curious Kenku. Eventually, she was reunited, and after some discussion, the Kenku council agreed that Toshiro would keep their secret. Before he left, the Crane was given a scroll of the Kenku techniques to continue his training.

Benkei, Hida (now Akuma), and Sakura, meanwhile tracked Kage no Oni back to the site of their battle with Isawa Kage, their enemies body still laying there, almost entirely bones, with a massive hole in its chest. They found the demon attempting to deal with an agent of the Lying Darkness, in an attempt to bring its master back from oblivion. The deal was interrupted, however, and battle joined.

The fight was short and painfully brutal. Benkei, though unable to damage the Oni with his weapons, was able to grapple the beast to a standstill, while Akuma used his nemuranai to smash the creature into oblivion in mere moments. Benkei created a pyre and burned Isawa Kage’s body to ash, to prevent any dark rituals from animating the body, and they left.

They met up at the border with Toshiro and Yamako, and they all headed back to Mongoose lands.

Meanwhile, back at his new estates, Lord Sanjuro was attempting to play both his Kolat and Scorpion allies against each other. He was reluctant to bring harm to either. Shosuro Shinji was his biological brother after all, and Gayan was a true friend. Eventually, however, he realized that both are onto the other, and if he doesn’t do something, one or both will wind up dead.

Knowing it to be a mistake, Sanjuro pleaded with Gayan to leave. The Mantis samurai warned Sanjuro that this could lead to trouble, but Sanjuro was insistent.

Black heartThe session closed with Akuma receiving a vision in Jigoku. He saw Ineko traveling into the Burning Sands. With blood magic, she summoned Kage no Oni. Informing the demon that he had a sliver of her master’s soul, and that she needed it, she performed a second dark ritual. It unravelled the shadow demon, and the sliver of soul that had given it its name was instead bound to a rotted, dried heart. It slowly darkened, filling with blood. It began to beat. With reverence, Ineko placed the heart into a box, and the vision faded.

Appearing in the middle of Sanjuro and his advisors, and causing much stir, Akuma summoned the other Echoes to share with them the vision…

Comments

I had to leave the very borders of Rokugan to find my Husband, my Love, but now he’s back. Now our Family is whole again.

A few days ago, I knew my course. I would become a Spirit, I would protect my Clan and my Forest and my Family and watch over them for the rest of my days.

But now my husband is home, my Love … …. …. I don’t know what’s the right decision.

Future brightens with
Love, Family and Compassion
But Duty Darkens

Session 23: Fork in the Road
Deathfrisbee2000

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