Players Discretion Advised

Welcome to Friday Fight-night where this week is really short. Yup going to go straight to the point and call out that the entire combat and/or conflict this week is player discretion advised.


Players Discretion Advised

237FrPlDiAd

This week has a problem to solve. How do you catch a shadow. Whilst not like the incorporeal shadow creature this one is something that uses the shadow to move between the material plane and pocket dimensions it creates. The question is how do we catch it.

For me this week is easy. The first cool sounding, plausible solution the party comes up with we go for. No holding back and jump with two feet. The outcomes is what we will cover tonight.

What ever the solution the creature will dive towards and into the nearest patch of shadow (remember that it’s human size so its got to make sense.) And it will create a portal to its central pocket dimensions. The portal will be big enough for the party to fit through (big-medium or smaller) and it will remain open as long as a source of light is present on both sides of the portal.

Our orb of light friend may pose a solution here but more on that this weekend.

Once open we cut to next weeks adventure, fighting the creature in it’s home turf.


Thanks for dropping by this double post night. Don’t forget to come back this weekend where I look at the Sovereign Smash tournament I am playing at and maybe another less known tabletop game. Intrigued? Well you better not forget to come back this weekend to find out more, and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Orb of Light

Welcome to Thursday where we look at extra things that make our game just that little bit more. Sadly to say I don’t have a battlemap or image for us this week but I do have this little Orb of Light as a peace offering. So let’s crack on with the adventure.


Orb of Light

237ThOrOLi

As the party of adventurers, Kyoko and Liz left the cascade of leaves and vines that separated Che from the outside world a single mote of light drifted down from the unseen canopy. As the mote of light drifted down Che began to stir and though his half closed eyes could not see he smiled at the light.

“My little friend. You have come back to me.” he said as she shakily went to pour a tea – but the stone pot was not where he had left it. As panic began to set into the old mans mind he knocked the cup off the little wooden log he used as a table and reached for the cup as it fell.

Golden digits and golden claws caught the cup and clasped it tightly as they lifted it to the shaking mans hands. As they touched the cup to the man the relief that welled up inside the man overflowed into his face and a peaceful smile replaced the look of concern. “You have saved me again my friend.” he said as he placed the cub down into the little groove it lived in. As golden digits moved the pot back to where it lived Che poured a cup of tea and offered it in thanks to the creature of light.

Sitting in silence and listening to, albeit noisy, slurping from the creature the old man smiled contently and swung his legs. “The young princess is chasing shadows again.” he said with a light giggle. “Much like mother used to when she was young. I don’t suppose you know how to catch the darkness that hides in our halls do you?” he asked the light. After a moment sound of china being placed down onto wood clinked a happy sound.

“I am afraid I do not” said the light. A deep rumbling sound as a creature that was neither light nor flesh but both opened its whiskered covered lips. “But I have faith in the princess and her hunting partners. They will think of something.”

Che nodded and looked towards the light. “I can still see them, the creatures of The Shadow. They dance with mirth as they rip us apart. I can see them reaching into my mind and take my sanity. I fear its slipping little orb of light.” Che said as he sipped on his tea.

“But perhaps I can still help the princess one last time. But I may need your help my little orb of light, my friend.” Che added as he turned to the creature who was floating above the chair. “Can you help her catch the shadow?”

The creature remained quiet for a moment as if weighing up the question and the decision. “I will do what I can – but I must not interfere.” it began to speak before pausing. After a moment it continued as if considering its options “there are things that we can not do and things we can.”

“Thank you my friend.” Che asked as he sipped from his tea. The sound of freshly falling rain splattering on the dark green curtain of leaves brought hope of a cool night.


This week I play a card I was holding in reserve for a bit. The coming of something that I have planned for some time now but wanted to wait for the final few chapters before revealing my hand. The Orb of Light is a creature after all, one that wants to see the creature banished from the halls of Heaven Reach Castle but it can’t be involved. Well not fully…

To find out more you’ll just have to come back this weekend!


Thanks for visiting and coming to read my little blog. Don’t forget that tomorrow night is where we look at our weekly conflict and I may have a bit of a delay this weekend as I attend Sovereign Smash – a local warhammer tournament. So don’t forget to stay tuned for more content this weekend, and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Catching a Shadow

Welcome to Wednesday night where we look at the twists and turns that we find ourselves exploring this week. Tonight isn’t soo much about twists and turns as its about the preparation of catching a shadow, a Lómipilu.


Catching a Shadow

237WeCaSh

As Kyoko lead the party through the final halls in the castle heading past the servants quarters they appeared at a sliding door to a small outside courtyard. The central portion of the courtyard saw a large fountain fed pool that was designed in such a way that the trickling of water resonated through the enclosed area. Kyoko nodded to two guards that stood in the courtyard and walked forward, leading the party and Liz through the tranquil surroundings.

Moving through the courtyard Kyoko led them towards a large curtain of vines and flowers where the slightest trace of diffused smoke and low singing could be heard from within the tangled mess of foliage.

“It must be a rare day indeed for the Princess of the Harimasu to visit me today” a voice said from behind the curtain of leaves. “What can I be of service for our bringer of light?”

Kyoko smiled and pushed past the curtain of vines, her chipper and unable to hide the mirth in her voice. “Master Che, you don’t need to be so formal. You are probably the oldest citizen in then land and the one deserving the most respect here.” she said as the party followed her into a well hidden house under the cascading vines and leaves. “But you are right. I do have service of you.” she added as she sat next to the old man who smiled at where she sat, his eyes unfocused.

“I will be as useful as an old blind man can be princess.” he said turning his head towards the party. “I have had odd dreams of late princess. A shadow in the halls playing tag with a ball of light. The shadow cant capture the light but nor does it want to because the shadow fears what the light will do to it – but it is also drawn towards it. The light doesn’t want to be near the shadow but lingers, waiting and watching. Stepping out to confuse the shadow when it sneaks too close or gets too ambitious.” he said as he reached over for a pot of tea that had been placed next to him. His fingers and hands moving with muscle memory he poured himself a pot of tea, the worn indent of the pot and cups evident that this was a habit of his. “The ball of light has visited me as well. Said sweet things and plied me with riddles that amuse me to no end. It has also helped me around the hut. A kind stranger it is.” he added.

“I fear that these aren’t dreams Che. There is a shadow at court. My spy believes that its something called a Lómipilu. I thought that you may remember something of it and be our best bet. The library was ransacked and our tomes regarding the creatures of The Shadow have been removed or destroyed so we are in the dark.” Kyoko said as she patted the old mans hand.

“The Lómipilu, Shadow Thief. They are creatures much like the Lóminau but instead of having no shadow of their own they are shadow. Able to harness the shadows of this world to stich their own world into ours and fusing their own reality with ours.” Che answered as he turned his head to stare at one of the party members, he was starting to sweat and his eyes were wide with fear.

“Do you remember how to kill them or trap them?” Kyoko pressed, Che was shaking now.

“Alas no princess, I never fought one but I remember my mother, the light prophet, mentioning them. There was an old proverb about catching shadow that she used to say but I took it as a child story or something to praise the light.” he said as he wiped tears from his eyes. The weight of the war and his memories getting too much for him.

“One by one the shadows gathered and writhed like beasts on the prowl. One by one the Shadows tricked their owners until all was dark. One by one they grew and merged into the one true Shadow. But one by one they split from their form….” She began to recite the story.

Kyoko squeezes his hand and started to speak “One by one the lights surrounded the beast and one by one they shrank down. One by one the lights grew and truth was revealed and one by one the shadows hid from the light. One by one the shadows cowered under a box and one by one the lights held the box closed and the world was bathed in light and truth and warmth.” Kyoko finished the story and smiled at the party. “My mother also used to say the same thing to me when I was worried about the monsters under my bed. She would light candles and place them around the room, where the shadows would gather so that they didn’t look so scary when they had no where to gather.”

Che nodded and sipped from his tea. “I wish I could be of more use princess but I can hear my friend calling me.” he said as he lay back slowly, his eye lids fluttering before falling asleep in his chair. As he fell asleep his hand opened and a light shone form his palm. Frowning Kyoko reached in and plucked out a single finger-nail sized scale that glowed and shone like the sun.

“Interesting. I wonder where Che got hold of a dragon scale…”


Tonight is a bit of a puzzle night. I have a bad history and track record of puzzles being either too hard or too finicky and both of those things bode poorly for new and experienced parties. The idea behind this week is the little part about the catching shadow and hopefully our party will work out that they need to use light to corner the creature. The nature of light doesn’t matter but the idea here is that if we have the party come up with something cool then we will use it.


Thanks for dropping by and exploring another night with me here. Don’t forget to come back again tomorrow for additional content and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Wisdom of the Dark

Welcome to NPC Tuesday night. Tonight we get a glimpse at two NPCs where the main interaction will be tomorrow night. Tonight we meet those with wisdom of the dark as the dark ones move in to enact their plans.


Wisdom of the Dark

237TuWiotDa

Che was born a very long time ago and remembers the first wars with the shadow. The son of a Ryokughan Merchant and an elf he has an extraordinarily, some may say unnaturally, long life span. Because of this he is looked after by the Harimasu family and guarded constantly because of the knowledge he holds.

The wars of his younger days may be over but the horrors he saw live with him today. Now that there is a call to arms again he may be the only one who remembers how The Shadow was pushed back last time.


Master Fukiyomo stirred in the dark. His eyes and ears moved about the cities, towns, castles and halls as he struggled to hold onto the connection he had outside of his confines.

Takeo had proven himself useful but the creature, his captor, had began to thwart his efforts in the castle and the spy worried.

The sound of ripping fabric snapped him out of his connection as the creature pushed its way into the dimension where he was kept.

“you know you’re tricks won’t save you forever” the old spy said to the faceless creature as it moved around the room. “The emperor will see through your illusions.” The creature ignored his words and brought forward a bowl of food. The old spy knew there was no poison in it and that the food was a way of keeping the man alive. Resigned to his fate he ate the food quietly.

“What is light and warmth but can’t be seen or touched. What pushes back the darkness but is brittle and breaks with pressure?’ the creature asked as it suddenly appeared crouching over the old man.

Master Fukiyomo considered the creatures puzzle before shrugging and eating the remainder of his food “I guess some form of magic crystal?” he replied. The creature exhaled in frustration before leaving the dimension, the sound of ripping fabric resonating through the small chamber.

The old spy smiled. “Hope” he said to himself as he finished the last of the food. “There is still hope…”


Moving forward with the plot and theme of this month we have the objective of this week we have a bit more detail coming on Wednesday with Catching a Shadow.


Thanks for yet again joining me for another night here at Brazen Wolfe Tabletop. As I prepare for a two day Warhammer tournament I wanted to still give a little something for tonight. In order to progress the story and have a mixture of content I settled for some images and a few bits of insight. Don’t forget to come back tomorrow night for our twist and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Shade Trap

Welcome to another Monday night where we return to Heavens Reach Castle after discovering some more insight into what the creature in the castle is capable of doing. This week we look at how the party will spring their shade trap to catch the creature. Well at least try to any way.


Shade Trap

237MoShTr

After returning to Takeo to reveal what they had seen in the Library as well as heard from the staff in the castle. “It sounds like its as master Fukiyomo was right. A lot of the characteristics of the creature appear to be similar to the Lóminau.” Takeo said nodding, but his affirmation never reached his eyes. “However something doesn’t add up. The Lóminau are said to be vengeful demons who prey on others life force as only once bathed in the light of a creatures failing life do they regain their shadow and leave for their own plane of existence. But this creature, to our knowledge, hasn’t killed anything so according to the scripts it can’t be a Lóminau but there is another creature that it could be,” Takeo began before a sound came from a corner of the room.

Two daggers were hurled through the wall at incredible speed from Takeo’s however the figure caught the blades before they hit the figure. “Good Takeo. But it is most definitely a Lóminau. I have seen it myself” Master Fukiyomo said as he moved forward and handed the daggers back to Takeo. Clasping Takeo’s shoulder the master spy bowed deeply to Kyoko but averted his gaze from Liz. “It is not often that we see one who is blessed by the light in this castle. I dare say its your presence that has the Lóminau stalking these halls.” the old man said with reverence. “The sooner we get you and your guardians away the better, the safer for you and I dare say Lady Kyoko as we will be able to better trap the Lóminau outside of the castle.

Takeo nodded but the party caught the flicker of confusion in his eyes. Walking over to a desk in LIz’s room he grabbed a quill and paper and scribbled something down quickly, folding the paper twice before muttering a short incantation of words.

“Another one of your tricks Takeo?” his master said as he walked over to him.

“Just a list of reagents and supplies to catch the Lóminau” he said as he handed the note to Master Fukiyomo. Taking the note he unfolded the paper and read through it.

“Powdered iron, crushed garnet, Lotus petal. Good. I’d suggest silk as well for good measure but each to their own” the old spy said as handed the note back to Takeo who scribbled down silk before taking it to the party.

“Whilst you follow this note to the letter can you do me a favour my friends?” he said, strange emphasis placed on the words he spoke. “I have neglected my knives – When we fought the Kapa I chipped the top of my knife in the cave. Are you able to get it sharpened?” he said as he clamped the letter tightly in the closest party members hand and nodded knowingly to them. “Remember what I said to you in the Kapa’s lair after we had fought the wolves?” he said – blocking the view of others when he moved in closer to the party as he muttered a string of words. “A blessing for you all. May the light reveal what we seek.”

With that Takeo and his mater left the room.

Unravelling the note the party were confused, there was no record of the ingredients on the note apart from the hastily written “SILK” over the top of a few words.

“Wall”, “Shade”, “Knife” and a single word that was foreign to them “Lómipilu.”

Kyoko looked over their shoulder, a best as she could. “Lómipilu – that’s a name I am not familiar with” she pondered. “but I do know someone in Heavens reach who would know. Che Shenyuo” she said as one of the more astute party members crept towards the wall where Takeo had thrown daggers. Two indents in the wall were present which matched the size and shape of Takeo’s daggers.


Moving forward with the plot and theme of this month we have the objective of this week. Catching shadow by use of a Shade Trap. Whilst not a physical trap the party have a name, some notes and perhaps a lead suspect in the hunt for the creature.

This week makes some big assumptions. In this post the player characters neither hear the daggers hit the wood, investigate Master Fukiyomo or detect magic. Neither do they have true seeing or witchsight.

If they hear the daggers hit the wall (passive perception 18) or investigation check same dc then they will know that Master Fukiyomo is the creature. They also could check arcana on when Takeo muttered either whilst writing the note or when he handed it over to them. A successful Dc15 arcana check would reveal that he cast a spell on them to conceal the contents from those who weren’t the bearer of the blessing. A dc17 arcana or lore check (disadvantage for non Ryokughan natives) would find that the Lóminau is a creature that steals shadows. Not one without shadows. Those who speak elven would understand the words but not the creature.


Thanks for joining me tonight and the continuation of this months adventure. Don’t forget to come back each day this week to stay up to date with the content and, always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Overshadowed Return

Welcome to the first end of week writeup for September where our princess has returned home! However she has come back to an overshadowed return with the revelation that all is not well at home. A creature has taken up residence within the castles wall and not even the spy Takeo has been able to find it yet. But perhaps our party can help?

As always portraits are created in Artbreeder and the normal wonderful tools like Kobold-fight-Club and D&D Beyond are used frequently.


Overshadowed Return

The familiar sights of the city were a welcome blanket of comfort for Kyoko, Hana and, although he would never admit it Kuang. As the party moved down the streets the busy merchants, artisans, guards and farmers stopped and cheered for the return of Kyoko. At the intersection of a busy street where their was a five feet wide line of red bricks that ran the length of it, perpendicular to the one they were travelling on Kyoko turned with a bright smile and looked in the direction of a massive tree.

The tree was ancient. Easily taller than the majority of the buildings around the city and Kyoko searched for when she returned home. In fact it was the first thing she always checked. Amongst the branches of the tree was a strip of red cloth hanging from a branch, fluttering in the wind loosely. Kyoko turned to the party, still smiling and walked closer. “I feel like a drink in celebration of returning home.” and amongst the cheers of those on the streets around her she head down a road to a the Jade Cup.

The Jade Cup was a well known establishment in Heavens Reach providing good food and drinks to the public. As Kyoko ordered a round of drinks for the table a cloaked stranger sat down next to the party.

“I am sorry Lady Kyoko for interrupting your return to the capital but I hoped you had remembered the training.” the stranger spoke softly as he looked nervously around the room.

“I saw the warning.” she said looking around the room, mimicking the stranger. “So what news do you bring Takeo?”

Takeo leaned in, nodding with a smile to the party. “It’s been some time my friends,” he said before leaning in closer to the table. “I can’t confirm it but there is something in the castle that I can’t detect nor find. I spoke directly to it and discovered no taint, no malicious intent but it intercepted your letters to me and somehow got to the vault before I could. There is also something else in the castle, something that eludes me still.”

“So what do we do from here?” Kyoko asked as she drank from her cup.

“Trust only those you rode in with” Takeo said as he stood from the table and stumbled towards the door. The performance he put on as being drunk and being asked to leave was impressive, but perhaps not his most believable one.

“Well. It’s not quite the welcome I was anticipating, but it’s not the first time we have had this situation.” Kyoko said. “So are we up for a bit of a witch hunt?”

Spy Master

“Now,” Takeo began as he walked down the halls of the castle, “the creature is likely posing as a servant, a guard or part of your family…” Takeo added as if almost an afterthought. “we must be careful of what we reveal here as to not give away us being aware of it.” He took a breath after checking around a corner for others. “Likely someone it has killed. I dare say that it wont risk being exposed by wearing the form of someone it may have the chance of being in the same room as.”

“But if it was able to so convincingly deceive you how will we tell it apart from the others?” Hana asked, her voice still sounding uncertain of itself.

“I was hoping our friends or Lady Liz would be of assistance there.” Takeo said smiling at the party as he approached a grand double door.

“Fathers through there isn’t he?” Kyoko said as she smiled and walked towards the door. “It’s been months since I have seen him.” she added as she pushed on the door.

“Remember what I said my lady.” Takeo said as he pushed the doors open for the princess.

The room on the other side of the doors was flooded in light, airy and had was almost serene. The dozen or so guards, members of court and family and the assistants at the castle all knelt in front of an kind faced man who sat at the top of a dais. As Kyoko entered the room the man looked up and his face broke out into an enormous smile. “Praise and thanks to the ancestors, you have returned safe and with companions I see. Takeo and Lady Lizbet have explained that you are the reason that I have my daughter safe at home.”

The emperor said to the party. “You have my sincerest thanks. If we were meeting upon better times I would have you dine with me for a week in celebration and you would want for nothing. But alas I have restricted the banquets until we can sort out our supply lines with the wall.” he emphasised the situation with a loud sigh. “We are having trouble sending supplies and food up there. When ever we do the caravans and their guards are ambushed and the brave men and women fighting back The Shadow go hungry.”

“Father I am sure that my new friends here would be able to assist us. They have bested a Laelóng, defended me from the Yuki-onna that has allied herself with the traitorous snakes the Toshio family. And they brought back my cousin safely home. I am sure that investigating the happenings with our supply lines is child’s play to them at this stage.” Kyoko said with a broad smile towards the party.

The emperor smiled. In fact he beamed. “Hana. It has been far too long.” he said as the quiet young woman moved from behind the party. “If I had known what was happening to you I would have sent troops to rescue you from your corrupt husband.”

“I dare say that she would have joined us sooner or later” a voice cut across the tender moment between family members as the rustling of feather and the slightest gust of wind sounded from outside an open door. A short, slightly hunched man stepped forward and guards rushed to intercept him.

“Halt!” The emperor called as he stood and moved down the steps to his dais. “I dare say that if you engage that man in combat you cant hope to win.” he said as he reached the bottom of the stairs. “It’s been some time Master Fukiyomo. What dark tidings do you bring?”

The old man smiled. “You know me too well it seems. Unfortunately armies of spirit-folk are ambushing your caravans, but it sounds like you have a plan for that.” the man said as he nodded to Kyoko, the party and Takeo. “But I also believe that we have more to worry about from our neighbours than what comes form the walls at this stage. A sizeable force is marching through the Kunagi ranges as we speak. Slowed down by the collapse of some of the large peaks I will add.” the man nodded respectfully to the group again. “But on this way none-the-less.”

The emperor moved down to a map of the lands as his war council positioned more wooden blocks on it to represent the new information. “Are you sure of this Master?” Takeo said as he stepped forward towards the table, noticing that there was a lot of dark coloured blocked near the wall, about two days ride from here.

“I saw them attempting to clear the rubble from your battle with the Laelóng myself,” he paused as he rested heavy on the hilt of a cane-sword. “As I chased down a Lóminau. One who is without Shadow. A demon of the shadow fell.” The court hummed with the panicked murmur from those who had attended the court. “But I lost it when I felt the presence of a Shadow born. And witnessed it being felled by a party of foreign heroes. So I went to pick up where I left off but could not find where the creature had gone to.” his statement causing a different type of murmur to spread through the room. One of disbelief and awe.

“It seems daughter, that we have much to catch up on. And I expect that Takeo also will want to have words with his master too.” the emperor gravely stated.


NPCs

Kyoko Harimasu

Kyoko’s return home is overshadowed as she receives a warning signal from Takeo as she enters the city. Following through with the agrees process with her spy she uncovers that the shadows taint has even spread into her home. Now she asks the party to help expel this darkness from Heavens Reach Castle.

Captain Kuang Ping

Happy to be home Kuang is a bit more relaxed, however quiet and a bit reserved. Feeling guilt for doubting the party and betraying the trust of Kyoko he hides his secret shame and does his best to make up for it in his own way.

Hana Toshio-Harimasu

Happy to be home and safe Hana is a more vibrant person and is quick to step into the affairs of state where she can. However as she has been with the enemy for a number of years, even married to one of the families that has betrayed them and march upon their gates, reportedly, she isn’t trusted with much.

Takeo

On the hunt for the creature that thwarted him in the castle Takeo appears calm but highly alert.

Despite his hunt he welcomes Kyoko, Kuang, Hana and especially the party back with open arms and acts as their guide around the castle.

NPC’s and faces of the Void

We have a few NPCs this week and a creature that can make itself appear like any other creature through illusions. Any portrait or description of a NPC will function for this – even NPCs previously met which could lead into some interesting conversations or interactions with the creature where they are appearing as a NPC that the Party may recognise.


Environment and running the adventure

Inside of the castle – A few hallways but it’s a well flowing castle that provides ample hiding positions for the creature to disappear from sight.

Adventure

Now in order for this week to go smoothly we need to have a few things ironed out. In fact we need to know exactly what the end goal of the month is and for me that’s easy. I want the party to find, confront and then defeat the creature that is so well accustomed to lies and illusion that its existence is in fact one. But how do we confront an illusion. This is the question we need to answer tonight by the following.

  1. Strange happenings
  2. Illusion
  3. Mirrored espionage

Strange happenings

For our party to be truth seekers we need them to have leads. Takeo, Kyoko or even the members of the household may come forth (indeed a few of them will) and advise that they saw other members of staff different ones, acting strangely. The common denominator is that all of them cant remember who it was. but give a generic explanation that they feel as though they were friends and remember them at dinners and festivals.

Each person though, when questioned more, had a jade serpentine bracelet on their right wrist. The party can either ask the question outright or if they are a bit stumped we can assist. To assist the party the second person they question would look uncertain and come back to bring it up that they remembered something that stood out. The jade bracelet. They would explain that the Jade bracelet normally was reserved for a certain level of staff as a symbol of their favour from the emperor.

When finding the member of staff, the keeper of Jade, who is responsible for these bracelets is the next step. Once there they show off the five bracelets they have – as they are returned and stored in a chest every night at which point the party can investigate them.

Illusion

The Jade bracelet is our first clue. One of them is an illusion and DC 15 investigation or arcana check will see through it. Those with witch sight or the ability to detect magic can tell that all of them have an enchantment placed upon them but one of them has a strong illusion magic placed on it.

The Keeper of Jade goes into panic mode and wants to raise the issue with the emperor. The party can let it happen at which point it makes the third step harder or they can urge them to remain quiet – Something that both Takeo and Kyoko would have mentioned to them.

The Jade Bracelet that is missing and an illusion (its a rusted copper ring with fell writing inscribed into it) belongs to a member of staff who deals with serving food, primarily to the emperor and family.

When the person is questioned about the bracelet, if they are, they snap out as if coming out from a trance and become extremely disorientated. Upon questioning they cant remember the last two weeks. They remember walking into the library to take a scholar there some food and that’s the last thing they remember. The staff member has flashes of dream like memories of conversations with new staff where parts of the memory are disjointed or blurry.

As part of this dream memory they distinctly remember that one of the staff had their shadow shift and stir as if a candle was flickering on the other side of them but there was nothing there. The staff of house show the party to the library and to where the new staff reside.

The library has an entire book shelf cast in illusion which is only broken by DC 15 investigation or arcana check. Once broken the party realises that he books are either missing or strewn around the shelf and floor. The illusion is powerful enough that physical interaction from our seekers of truth doesn’t break the illusion.

The staff quarters has no illusion on it.

Mirrored Espionage

During their investigation a successful DC17 perception check will reveal that they are being followed by someone who knows how to tail them. This person (creature) wears an ordinary face of a member of staff. In fact they may have spoken to this person already who came to them to report something odd or out of the ordinary that was completely different to everyone else.

If confronted the creature will move swiftly but in a calculating way through the halls and the party will lose track of them in a door way. The doorway wont be to anything in specific but I would maybe have it lead to a lesser family members room who wont take kindly to being interrupted or questioned.

If not confronted they will tail the party for the rest of the session unless they go to the library – at which point it will hurriedly leave.


Well another week come and gone and its been great having you along for the ride. and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Seekers of Truth

Welcome to a fight night where we may not see that much combat. Tonight we look at the focus of this week more court intrigue as our party become seekers of truth! Tonight we find our parties trying to sought fact from fiction to uncover what’s going on at Heavens Reach Castle.


Seekers of Truth

236FrTrHu

Now in order for this week to go smoothly we need to have a few things ironed out. In fact we need to know exactly what the end goal of the month is and for me that’s easy. I want the party to find, confront and then defeat the creature that is so well accustomed to lies and illusion that its existence is in fact one. But how do we confront an illusion. This is the question we need to answer tonight by the following.

  1. Strange happenings
  2. Illusion
  3. Mirrored espionage

Strange happenings

For our party to be truth seekers we need them to have leads. Takeo, Kyoko or even the members of the household may come forth (indeed a few of them will) and advise that they saw other members of staff different ones, acting strangely. The common denominator is that all of them cant remember who it was. but give a generic explanation that they feel as though they were friends and remember them at dinners and festivals.

Each person though, when questioned more, had a jade serpentine bracelet on their right wrist. The party can either ask the question outright or if they are a bit stumped we can assist. To assist the party the second person they question would look uncertain and come back to bring it up that they remembered something that stood out. The jade bracelet. They would explain that the Jade bracelet normally was reserved for a certain level of staff as a symbol of their favour from the emperor.

When finding the member of staff, the keeper of Jade, who is responsible for these bracelets is the next step. Once there they show off the five bracelets they have – as they are returned and stored in a chest every night at which point the party can investigate them.

Illusion

The Jade bracelet is our first clue. One of them is an illusion and DC 15 investigation or arcana check will see through it. Those with witch sight or the ability to detect magic can tell that all of them have an enchantment placed upon them but one of them has a strong illusion magic placed on it.

The Keeper of Jade goes into panic mode and wants to raise the issue with the emperor. The party can let it happen at which point it makes the third step harder or they can urge them to remain quiet – Something that both Takeo and Kyoko would have mentioned to them.

The Jade Bracelet that is missing and an illusion (its a rusted copper ring with fell writing inscribed into it) belongs to a member of staff who deals with serving food, primarily to the emperor and family.

When the person is questioned about the bracelet, if they are, they snap out as if coming out from a trance and become extremely disorientated. Upon questioning they cant remember the last two weeks. They remember walking into the library to take a scholar there some food and that’s the last thing they remember. The staff member has flashes of dream like memories of conversations with new staff where parts of the memory are disjointed or blurry.

As part of this dream memory they distinctly remember that one of the staff had their shadow shift and stir as if a candle was flickering on the other side of them but there was nothing there. The staff of house show the party to the library and to where the new staff reside.

The library has an entire book shelf cast in illusion which is only broken by DC 15 investigation or arcana check. Once broken the party realises that he books are either missing or strewn around the shelf and floor. The illusion is powerful enough that physical interaction from our seekers of truth doesn’t break the illusion.

The staff quarters has no illusion on it.

Mirrored Espionage

During their investigation a successful DC17 perception check will reveal that they are being followed by someone who knows how to tail them. This person (creature) wears an ordinary face of a member of staff. In fact they may have spoken to this person already who came to them to report something odd or out of the ordinary that was completely different to everyone else.

If confronted the creature will move swiftly but in a calculating way through the halls and the party will lose track of them in a door way. The doorway wont be to anything in specific but I would maybe have it lead to a lesser family members room who wont take kindly to being interrupted or questioned.

If not confronted they will tail the party for the rest of the session unless they go to the library – at which point it will hurriedly leave.


Well that’s what we have for tonight’s content. Thanks for dropping by and don’t forget to come back this weekend where I will be, hopefully, posting some more painting progress for my Flesh eater courts army as well as the end of week writeup. Don’t forget to check out the posts previous to today where I delved a bit deeper into some more finesse driven DM tools for our toolkits and, always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Unwelcome Truth

Welcome to a Thursday night where we look at the bonus content and things that help drive our adventure forward with some unwelcome truth. Tonight I wanted to touch on some rules that will be in play this week that rely on a bit of complexity for us, the DM and a lot of role play for the party. This is something I want to call as Unwelcome Turth but its really misdirection from something that appears trustworthy source. In fact it’s where the creature or thing giving the advice whole heartedly believes it to be true themselves.


Unwelcome Truth

236ThUnTr

Now the thoughts on this are quite simple. The creature that is providing the advice or intelligence is providing miss advice believe what they are saying is true. They are either a secondary or first information provider and either believe what they have been told or believe what they saw or heard or experienced fully.

This means that under the effects of a Zone of truth, or highly insightful people (insight checks) that they appear to be telling the truth. They believe it to be true and so it is. Now this form of unwelcome Truth is something that the party can have issue with as it is pretty powerful. The player and the DM know that what is being said is a lie – but for all intents and purposes there is truth in what is being said. In fact they don’t just say its true they believe it completely.

This can make some tricky situations where the truth is farfetched. Like flying pigs. If someone believes that what they saw was definitely flying pigs and all attempts to detect lies, coerce the truth out of them or otherwise will result in the one result. Flying pigs. But the Party know there isn’t flying pigs but they cant convince the creature who believes in them is that they aren’t real.

In conclusion

This really comes down to belief. If the belief is strong enough then conventional methods of separating truth from lies becomes impossible. This leaves us, the DM, on a rocky road. How do we set up our encounter that there are situations where there is this moment of unwelcome Truth but it’s fair for our players?

Simply enough – make everyone’s version of the truth different from one another except for one element. Perhaps one person saw flying pigs, another saw flying cows and another flying sheep. All of them saw something flying but what else did they see. Perhaps they noticed that there was a particularly high pitched sound could be heard as the creatures flew by. Or that there was a smell of rotting eggs and ta trail of slime from a swamp could be found the following day where they saw the flying animals.

As long as we have a common element of truth we can always turn it into a logic puzzle or test to se how good of a detective our parties are. Then its up to us when we hand them a bone such as a “I didn’t see a pig. I saw a dragon covered in slime flying and grabbing animals from the farms below.”


Well thanks for dropping by for a bit of an update on what I have planned this month. Now to work out what the common element of truth is to help our party filter fact from fiction. Don’t forget to come back each night this week and, always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Spy Master

Welcome to a night of twists and turns where tonight we throw a spanner into the mix. Many months ago you may remember where Takeo went to visit the Lotus clan, the spy master of the Harimasu family. Here he found only empty halls and more questions where he sought answers and advice. Tonight we spring a surprise for our party and the spy, Takeo, in the form of a reunion.


Spy Master

236WeSpMa

“Now,” Takeo began as he walked down the halls of the castle, “the creature is likely posing as a servant, a guard or part of your family…” Takeo added as if almost an afterthought. “we must be careful of what we reveal here as to not give away us being aware of it.” He took a breath after checking around a corner for others. “Likely someone it has killed. I dare say that it wont risk being exposed by wearing the form of someone it may have the chance of being in the same room as.”

“But if it was able to so convincingly deceive you how will we tell it apart from the others?” Hana asked, her voice still sounding uncertain of itself.

“I was hoping our friends or Lady Liz would be of assistance there.” Takeo said smiling at the party as he approached a grand double door.

“Fathers through there isn’t he?” Kyoko said as she smiled and walked towards the door. “It’s been months since I have seen him.” she added as she pushed on the door.

“Remember what I said my lady.” Takeo said as he pushed the doors open for the princess.

The room on the other side of the doors was flooded in light, airy and had was almost serene. The dozen or so guards, members of court and family and the assistants at the castle all knelt in front of an kind faced man who sat at the top of a dais. As Kyoko entered the room the man looked up and his face broke out into an enormous smile. “Praise and thanks to the ancestors, you have returned safe and with companions I see. Takeo and Lady Lizbet have explained that you are the reason that I have my daughter safe at home.”

The emperor said to the party. “You have my sincerest thanks. If we were meeting upon better times I would have you dine with me for a week in celebration and you would want for nothing. But alas I have restricted the banquets until we can sort out our supply lines with the wall.” he emphasised the situation with a loud sigh. “We are having trouble sending supplies and food up there. When ever we do the caravans and their guards are ambushed and the brave men and women fighting back The Shadow go hungry.”

“Father I am sure that my new friends here would be able to assist us. They have bested a Laelóng, defended me from the Yuki-onna that has allied herself with the traitorous snakes the Toshio family. And they brought back my cousin safely home. I am sure that investigating the happenings with our supply lines is child’s play to them at this stage.” Kyoko said with a broad smile towards the party.

The emperor smiled. In fact he beamed. “Hana. It has been far too long.” he said as the quiet young woman moved from behind the party. “If I had known what was happening to you I would have sent troops to rescue you from your corrupt husband.”

“I dare say that she would have joined us sooner or later” a voice cut across the tender moment between family members as the rustling of feather and the slightest gust of wind sounded from outside an open door. A short, slightly hunched man stepped forward and guards rushed to intercept him.

“Halt!” The emperor called as he stood and moved down the steps to his dais. “I dare say that if you engage that man in combat you cant hope to win.” he said as he reached the bottom of the stairs. “It’s been some time Master Fukiyomo. What dark tidings do you bring?”

The old man smiled. “You know me too well it seems. Unfortunately armies of spirit-folk are ambushing your caravans, but it sounds like you have a plan for that.” the man said as he nodded to Kyoko, the party and Takeo. “But I also believe that we have more to worry about from our neighbours than what comes form the walls at this stage. A sizeable force is marching through the Kunagi ranges as we speak. Slowed down by the collapse of some of the large peaks I will add.” the man nodded respectfully to the group again. “But on this way none-the-less.”

The emperor moved down to a map of the lands as his war council positioned more wooden blocks on it to represent the new information. “Are you sure of this Master?” Takeo said as he stepped forward towards the table, noticing that there was a lot of dark coloured blocked near the wall, about two days ride from here.

“I saw them attempting to clear the rubble from your battle with the Laelóng myself,” he paused as he rested heavy on the hilt of a cane-sword. “As I chased down a Lóminau. One who is without Shadow. A demon of the shadow fell.” The court hummed with the panicked murmur from those who had attended the court. “But I lost it when I felt the presence of a Shadow born. And witnessed it being felled by a party of foreign heroes. So I went to pick up where I left off but could not find where the creature had gone to.” his statement causing a different type of murmur to spread through the room. One of disbelief and awe.

“It seems daughter, that we have much to catch up on. And I expect that Takeo also will want to have words with his master too.” the emperor gravely stated.


Well I am happy to finally get back into some creative writing. Thanks for joining me to witness the return of Master Fukiyomo. Don’t forget to come back tomorrow night where hopefully I have some additional content to help flesh out this weeks adventure. I also have the finals for my local Warhammer league tomorrow night so its going to be a big night! Don’t forget to come back each day for the rest of this week so you can stay up to date with the content and, always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Faces of the void

Welcome to a Tuesday night where I return to something that I find, quite relaxing actually – creating NPC portraits. So tonight I have more than one face, several faces of the void to be exact to represent some of the different faces that the creature in the castle can take.


Faces of the void

236TuFaOTVo

Tonight is a bit of a creative content night rather than one full of writing. This weeks baddie, the Faces of the void, can make anyone see what they want to see. The faces, the forms and even the environment around them is all one grand illusion for this creature. So the ability to make the party, the guards and even the Harimasu family heads believe what the creature wants them to is second nature.

As discussed in Forgotten treasure and the other adventures that week where we introduced, well part of the focus for this month – the Blades of radiance and Potion of Radiance the creature is quite the artist when it comes to illusion. However it is not infallible.

All images created in Artbreeder


Unlike Mugrave and the Quaigin who physically change shape of someone that they have met this creature can create unique faces or copy those of one they have seen. This makes them a potent threat for the party and, to be honest, a difficult thing to do right as a DM.


Thanks for visiting tonight to gain some insight into this weeks adventure. Don’t forget to come back tomorrow and each day this week to see how we expand our adventure. Don’t forget that this is the third last monthly adventure as we move rapidly towards the conclusion of the year and a final confrontation… and, always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe