I carry on west, presumably singing an appropriate marching song.
As you do.
The snowfall intensifies, presumably to increase the dramatic tension. I reluctantly confirm that I’m not carrying an Orb of Eo (I knew I should have made that last-minute supermarket run!)
The book pays me a back-handed compliment by confirming that, if not for my training, I’d be dead. I think there have been a significant number of fights so far where that statement has also been true.
I can just keep walking (while praying to Kwon god of….warmth (?), dig a makeshift shelter out of the snow or try and find shelter elsewhere.
I’m not sure if a bed and breakfast is going to materialise out of nowhere, or what.
I remember reading Call of the Wild as a youngster, and Buck and all the other huskie dogs used to dig out a little quasi-coccoon in the snow. If it works for fur-covered huskie dogs, then I guess it will work for a ninja wearing a makeshift fur cloak.
Hole in the snow, be my saviour!
I lose 2 Endurance due to the cold, but manage to survive the worst of the storm before being able to carry onwards, making my way to the foothills of the mountain range.
I made it through the dangerous mountain range, and I didn’t even manage to get Gandalf killed!
I literally walk through birds singing at me, and I assume its just a matter of time before I pass some cute shepherdess walking gracefully through the grass.
No such luck, apparently. I change out of my white ninja costume, presumably brush the snow off, and saunter down the hills, pausing to snaffle some apples, restoring 2 Endurance points.
Just as I was thinking this scene couldn’t get any more idyllic, I see some crows pecking at a man staked out on the ground (!)
Just so you know.
While contemplating this, another (!) samurai walks up to me, stating that both this man and his assassin were ‘without honour’.
He introduces himself as Rin of the Three Blades (recognition alert! Ding! Ding! Ding!) and tells the following story :
- These forests are infested by Bakemono, who are ‘twisted humanoids’.
- A group of these Bakemono attacked river vessels from Takahiri, and he was tasked, along with five sidekicks, with seeking revenge.
- They got ambushed, and he alone survived.
- Aside : That sounds suspicious – he could make up any story he wanted. Who would contradict him?
- Two ninja of the Way of the Scorpion battled, and one staked the other to the ground as punishment for only killing the Daimyo, and not his wife, Singing Wind.
- There is a traitor among Singing Wind’s guard, who will soon try to ‘finish the job’ if you know what I mean.
- Rin states that he intends to make for Iga and catch a ship from there.
Do I have a pair of ivory dice?? Why, yes I do!
He spots the dice, chuckles and refers to Sarissa as a ‘little troublemaker’ and then mentions that she threw the dice in the face of some enemy while they were both in a sake den.
Oh yeah, they totally did it.
More importantly, Rin offers to guide me through the mountains. I’m a little nervous, but hope he hasn’t heard about Sarissa’s offer to also meet me in a sake den.
I accept his help, trusting in the (fungible) bro code to keep me safe.
Stats : All modifiers : 0 Endurance : 20, Inner Force 2, Shuriken 3