Adventure for Haifa Con. - Minami yama

By: Alex Litvinov


Armor Rules revised : Reduce armor ranking from every dice rolled to damage.

Light armor 1, heavy armor 3.


On the border of the Shadowlands, a small branch of Hida family is guarding the Carpenter's Wall. This particular part of Hida territory was taken from the Akamoro Bakemono clan 600 years ago, and is extremely fertile and with lush vegitation. First of all, layout :


Cities and villages :


Empire -


Minami Torid-e (Southern Keep) -pop. 15000. Daimyo Hida Tawaraki's palace is here. Approx. 5000 standing army after the last battle.


Nozatzi - large, secure village, practically a town. Has a wall and a small palace in which dwells the local Magistrate.  1000 pop.


Ghun-Zhe - large village, has a wall and a keep. 800 pop.


Lo - small village. Population reduced after last battle, wall mostly destroyed. current pop. 250.


Naniro - small village. No wall. Pop. 400.


Shorida - large village, stone walls, the final place of the last battle. Pop. 750.


Satsaru - keep. Garrison of 10 samurai and 40 ashigaru. Survived a 2 week-long siege in the last battle.


Tamori - this is the village which was pillaged and destroyed by Minami Yama no Oni's army.  It is now haunted by ghosts of the murdered.


Gate of Yen Lo - this gate was held together by Akamoro Bakemono and Crab Samurai. However the Oni's army slaughtered all the defenders and now the gate stands broken and empty.


Bakemono -


Li Ne Zhong - large Bakemono city. Centre of local Bakemono culture and society, also the centre of trade with Empire. Pop. approx. 20000 Bakemono. The Daimyo is Akamoro Pang. The city is excellently defended, and has not suffered in the last war.


Kato - a large Bakemono settlement. The local Bakemono had to pay Minami Yama no Oni with food lest they be destroyed in the last war and thus have not suffered. Pop. 1200.


Also, there are many small Nezumi nomadic tribes and tiny Bakemono hunting camps which are also monadic.



Geography :


Empire -


This land is extremely rich and well watered. Most of the forests this side of the wall has been cut down and now lush grasslands dominate it. The Southern Road is passing here as well, and the area around it has been deforestated to reduce possibility of ambush.


Odaya na Mori - this large forest is mostly pine trees. It is dark and deep, and the Nozati villagers do not go there. It's Kami is very warlike and often demands animal sacrifice. A small, Isolated settlement of Bakemono lives there, worshipping Odaya no Kami.


Kada Mori - this is also a pine forest, but not dark nor foreboding. villagers from Nozatzi cut wood there and there are many paths through it.


Mizu-Kada - this huge lake is rich with fish. Villagers from Ghun-Zhe often fish in it, but none would dare live on it's shores. It is rumored that a demon lives in it's waters, going out only at nights. It is true. But the demon is benevolent, and is actually a well-known in the spiritual world philosopher and sage Zhang Dao Ling. Often bakemono from Li Ne Zhong make pilligrimage to this lake. Or at least used to before the last war.


Nezumi na Mori - the Nezumi forest is pine and Kuwaga trees mostly. A few tribes of Nezumi live in it as they have for thousands of years, but they have much contact with the Crab and often are employed as scouts and spies.

The 3 Nezumi tribes - The White Owls (largest tribe, cultured, excellent fighters and have an underground settlement with a dojo, approx. 2000), The Black Fang (Second largest tribe, vicious and cannibalistic, at constant feud with the White Owls, approx. 1200), and the Hedgehog tribe (the smallest tribe, the best merchants with contacts all over the Crab and Shadowlands, approx. 500).


Kita Mori - this small forest is the home of a lone Kenku who came from the Shadowlands many years ago.

His name is Dato Tokanawa, and he often comes to the surrounding villages to trade. He has a single student, a human ronin named Hamuroto (who was once of the Hida clan).



Shadowlands -


Muzi-Tatsu - home of a Kappa clan. The Tatsu rives descends from Yama no Oni and is very fast and deep and cold. Nezumi bushi often come to Mizu-Tatsu to meditate or talk with the Kapa. Also, on the shores of this lake is a small temple in which a lone Bakemono taoist, named Liu Hua Xiayi lives.


Yama no Oni - this is the Oni Mountain, a mass of barren black rock with sheer cliffs. It rises to great height and is said to have fallen from the heavens thousands of years ago.


The forests which make most of the  southern side of Carpenter's Wall are lush and dark, mostly pine and kuwaga. Remains of mani armies are lost in those woods.




Background - Approximately 20 years ago peace was achieved between the Bakemono and the Crab in this area. Trade flourished, and slowly understanding between humans and bakemono was being built.

But an Oni which lived on Yama no Oni has seen this as an excellent opportunity. He descended from his mountain and gathered a small army of Ogres. Then he gathered money and power untill he had enough to buy off a small, wild Bakemono tribe (Kajitsu Bakemono clan). With those forces he went through the Gate Of Yen Lo, and further into Tamori. After destoying the village he waited for the Crab forces to come and destroy his army. For his plan went much further than a simple war. He shapeshifted into a Crab samurai, and celebrated victory along with the other Crab. In Minami Torid-e he murdered Hida Tawaraki and shapeshifted into him. His plan was nearing completion. As the Daimyo, he sent warriors in small groups to hunt Ogres and Bakemono, pretending will for revenge. Thus weakening the Crab forces, he sent a Nezumi messanger to Akamoro Pang, telling him (in an anonymous message) when and where the Crab forces are going to attack in full force. His intent is to weaken the Crab enough, and then take control over the Akamoro Bakemono clan and annex the territory which once belonged to Shadowlands.

This oni, named Minami Yama (Southern Mountain) was expelled from Yen Lo's service for cruelty and bad behavior. After long searches he found a secret community of such expelled demons and joined with them. He was given control over this terrotory (known as The Southern Forest in his time) but lost it to Crab. Bakemono were freed of his domination when the other Oni secluded him on his mountain for his failure. So there he waited for 600 years untill his chance came.

Sustaining him were the Black Fang Nezumi tribe, who worshiped him and made animal and occasionally human and Nezumi sacrifices to him. In return he gave them powers. There is a shrine in Nezumi Forest dedicated to him.


In the meanwhile...

After Hida Tawaraki's would-be victorious would-be return, his wife notices that things are wrong. His tatoos are not exactly as they used to be, he became animalistic in bed and his whole demeanor changed. She amounted it to the shock of the war, in which they lost their firstborn son, Iwasa.

Also, another person noticed that something's wrong. Tawaraki's favourite geisha is actually a scorpion spy. Minami Yama no Oni is hurting her during sex, and she's scared but doesn't know what to do (for all of his samurai would kill her on the spot if she spoke against him).

All the local Samurai talk about the way the last war changed Tawaraki and most believe that it is due to the loss of his firstborn and grief. Many are amazed and shocked because Tawaraki did not pay any homage to the Fortunes or any diety since he was back from the war 3 weeks ago (Tawaraki used to be very religious in some aspects). The palace is also closed to all visitors due to mourning.


The arrival of the party is most fortunate for the wife and the geisha. But Hida Jioko (the wife) would not do anything as yet.


First of all, Bayushi Ayodako (the geisha) will contact them personally. She will secretly gather them and tell them that she's aftaid that something's wrong with him. A Black Fang Nezumi will be listening to the conversation from outside. After they'r done talking, the Black Fang will be noticed and will start fleeing.

Ayodako will tell the chars to kill it because it's surely a spy. The chars will (she will be convincing), and if they will question the Black Fang he will tell them eventually that he was hired by Hida Tawaraki (the knowledge of his true udentity has been erased from the Nezumi's mind). The power of this particular Nezumi is the ability to leap to incredible heights (up to 10 meters) and to great lengh (up to 20 meters).

If the Nezumi escapes, the chars are in deep shit and so is Ayodako. She will tell the chars, no matter how the Nezumi matter is settled, to go to Nezumi na Mori (beg them to do it, practically) and find out what is wrong (it seems to her like the best place to start for the Nezumi has been spying on her and she will remember that she has seen him around usually when Tawaraki is coming to her). She is terrified enough to give up that she's a Scorpion spy if pressured about it. If pressured some more, she's willing to pay a hefty sum and will ofcourse promise glory and great honor if they find out what the problem is and solve it.


If the Nezumi escaped, Crab samurai will be alarmed that the party are assasins sent to kill Hida Tawaraki. This will present a big problem, but not an unsurmountable one.


Nezumi na Mori -


Upon entering Nezumi na Mori the characters will encounter the White Owl guard. Those Nezumi will be very polite while talking to the samurai and inquite about their wishes. They will be helpful in any way they can because they have noticed that the Daimyo started favouring the Black Fang tribe. They might even enquire (carefully and politely) with the characters about it.


On the border into the Black Fang territory the characters will encounter a Bakemono bushi (Might be a bunch of bushi). He came to the lands of the Crab before the war to visit the famous spirit philosopher Li Ne Zhong and now is stuck because the Crab will kill Bakemono on sight. The Nezumi do not bother him however. His name is Akamoro Taro. If talked to about the subject he will reveal to the party that the Black Fang tribe worship a terrible deity called Minami Yama no Oni. If the party's nice to him he will ask their premission to go and talk to Akamoro Pang about their suspicions about the Daimyo as soon as he can for the situation seems somehow dire to him. On the other hand, he might join the party for their trip to Black Fangs for he noticed that they behave strangely of late.

Eventually the party will reach the Black Fang clan. The Black Fang guards will meet them and act stragely happy, violent and insane. Many of them will bear fresh cuts on them. The Black Fangs will talk to the party and invite them to a celebration. The party can refuse, ofcourse, but then the Black Fangs will grow insultive and hint that the party do not wish to participate in the celebrations of mere Nezumi. They will tell the party that some human samurai are also attending and that the party is unsulting them, as their hosts. Either way, the party will be persuaded or they'll leave. If they will leave they will run into a large force of White Owl Nezumi who wish to attack the Black Fangs. After explaining this they will tell that they have found out that the Black Fangs kidnapped a few of the White Owl women and appearently are going to sacrifice them to their God. Many of the Black Fangs will be unarmed and unprepared, and maybe also drunk. So it seems like a good time to attack. The White Owls will ask the party to join them in a way which is hard to refuse - hinting that the party are cowards unless they do join the war party.


If the party agree to come to the celebration they will be led to the Black Fang settlement. Outside of it, the whole clan is gathered around a huge statue of Minami Yama no Oni. Some samurai (who were bought by the Oni) are also there. The White Owl women are indeed about to be sacrificed. At this time the White Owl will attack. There are approx. 1200 White Owls and about the same amount of Black Fangs. However, the first hail of arrows from the White Owls will take a heavy toll. The battle will begin. The party can join either side. Either way, they will notice that many of the Black Fangs exhibit strange powers. They leap to great heights, they occasionally blend into shadows, they move like lightning... but this will not save them. Eventually the Black Fangs will be crushed. Their remains will flee into the darkness and now the wounded can be questioned.

From questioning the party will discover that the Black Fangs believe that their God walks among the living once again. This celebration was supposed to give him the power needed for his complete dominance, or so they say. They might also reveal that the Daimyo is dead.


Now the real shit hits the fan


If the party helped the White Owls, they will wish to give the humans honor and invite them to the Sages Gathering of the White Owl. Thus the party will be invited to the underground White Owl city and will meet the 5 ancient Nezumi. Those will tell the party to go and seek out Dato Tokanawa, the Kenku kensai (for he is rumored to be wise etc).

If the party hasn't, Ayodako will tell them about the Kenku. If all this fails, his student will meet the party and tell them that Dato Tokanawa sensei-sama wishes to see them (make 'em an offer they can't refuse).

Also the party will learn that something occured in the palace while the battle between the Black Fangs and the White Owls was being fought.  The rumors say that screams were heard from it and Hida Jioko has not been seen since.


What in fact has happened was that the Oni's shapeshifting powers slipped slightly because of the loss of his followers. In that moment Ayodako came to him and told him that she knows his secret and that her death will reveal everything to the Crab chiefs.  His wife has witnessed this happening and the Oni chased her, but she managed to flee from the castle. Now a strike team of 4 samurai - who have been bought by the Oni - are chasing her. She is fleeing into Kita Mori and will arrive shortly before the quad that is chasing her.

The quad will run into the party. It's rather easy to notice that something is wrong with them by their yellow eyes, fangs, and the small horns which grow from their foreheads. The Oni embued each of them with the spirit of an Ogre (ruining the karma of both the Ogres and the Humans in the procces), and now those 4 samurai have the physical attributes of an Ogre. Fearsome. But not insurmountable. If the battle is about to be lost, Dato Tokanawa will appear and help a bit (after, ofcourse, making inquiries). If not he will arrive after the battle and make inquiries.


Later he will invite the party for a tea in his house which is also the dojo. His student, Hamuroto, has allready met Jioko (the wife) and Tokanawa will have tea with the party and her. She will tell her story. Now it's understandable that Ayodako has had them by the balls. Used and discarded. Ofcourse, now the party is wanted for the murder of four samurai and kidnapping, murder, and rape of Hida Jioko.


Jioko will propose going to talk with the Crab Daimyo, the Great Bear Hida Kisada. 


Hamuroto will point out that the most logical thing for the geisha to do now is to keep the current situation.

And thus this will remain stable for a few years.


Both propositions are good. But then again, going to the Great Bear is too late. Minama Yama has killed the insulent geisha right after Jioko fled and now is gathering the army to march into the lands of the Bakemono to be slaughtered. He will be finished with the preparations in 4 days. In the meanwhile he sent a Black Fang Nezumi messanger with the anonimous letter to Akamoro Pang. But the messanger never reached it... he was slaughtered by a remnant of the Oni's army.

In the meanwhile Minami Yama no Oni has been sending carrier pigeons to Hida Kisada. The Great Bear bought everything and now the party is considered to be outlawed. Also, Hida Kisada sent would-be Tawaraki a "go" for war against the Bakemono and is also sending 5000 army of reinforcements. Which the Oni doesn't want. Bakemono spies have noticed this movement of forces and sent a diplomat to Minami Torid-e.


No matter what the party decide to do they will run into the diplomat. Her name is Akamoro Uko. She is travelling with 4 yojimbo and with Akamoro Taro as a guide. No matter what the party will tell her she and her Yojimbo will be killed by the Crab and Taro will escape. He will find the party and ask them to go with him to Akamoro Pang and present their case.


In the meanwhile, Pang has sent word to other Bakemono clans in good relationships with him and reinforcements are arriving to Gate of Yen Lo. They will come to the Gate in a week, while the Oni will be forced to wait for 2 more weeks for Kisada's reinforcements. While the armies gather, the party will arrive at Pang's court...

Pang will hear them out and give them gifts. Then he will suggest that if they want this matter settled (and their names cleansed) they should travel, along with Taro, to Yama no Oni.

The mountain is barren and steep but not impossible to climb.On the top of the mountain is the tomb in which Minami Yama no Oni has waited. Only one thing is inside the locked and trapped sarcophag.... a simple procleain mask depicting the face of the Oni. A bit of research will reveal to the party that this mask is the focus of the Oni's shapeshifting powers and all they need to do to dispell his own shapeshifting is to put the mask on him - or even as much as make it touch him.


Now to the nearly final part. The Oni must get the mask. An obvious solution is to give it to him as a gift or to throw it on him in the heat of battle. Giving it to him as a gift is the most likely solution.

Taro will suggest, if the party has thought of this, to infiltrate the city and try to talk to the karo of the reinforcements (Hida Nokika) and convince him to give this mask to the Oni as a test. Either way the mask is obviously magical - everyone touching it can feel the power surging through it.

The other possible way is to wait untill the battle, reach the Oni, and throw the mask at him. The battle stops, ofcourse, and everyone launches themselves at the Oni.


Either way, the Oni will resume his true shape and will immediately strike out at the party and everyone around is confused but most likely will eventually attack the Oni as well.


Eventually after the explanations the party gains loads of Glory (possibly). Are presented before Hida Kisada. If the party knew that Ayodako was a Scorpion spy a few Ninja will be sent to eliminate them.

If Hida will be pleased with them he will award them with great many gifts.





Encounters :


 1 A Crab war party sent to die against the bakemono. They are only 25, and the leader might listen to the characters and be persuaded that the Daimyo is not at all Tawaraki.


2 Crab hunting party will find the party.


3 A remnant of the Oni's army will find the party. 1, top 2 Ogres and a few Bakemono of Kajitsu clan. The Bakemono will do the talking and will most likely try to rob the party. However, the Oni fucked them up and they want retribution so if the party convince them that they indeed are against the Oni they might be of some help. Not to mention telling the party that the Daimyo is most probably the Minami Yama no Oni.


4 A Demon searching for souls of warriors who have been lost in the last battle. Oni's Karma has affected them badly. He might talk to the party as he is bored and starved for conversation. He might reveal the Oni's story.


5 In the Shadowlands, a mad Crab samurai. The poor man lost his mind due to the horrors of war and now is much like a wounded animal. Might attack the party.


6 A Nezumi warrior will encounter the party and offer to see who is the best Bushi. His proposal is Iajitsu, but ofcourse he can be forced into a contest of wits or even Haiku...


7  A geisha will fall in love with one of the chars after entertaining him. Quite possible that she will be able to help in all sorts of ways.


8 The party will meet an urchin child, a sole survivor of Tamori village. She is in total shock, but is very lovable. Age about 7. Maybe adoption is possible. Also, she will tell details of the war.


9 A lone peasant will try to run away from the party after seing them on the road. He's a messager from Ayodako and is carrying an encrypted message from her to a merchant which resides in Ghun-Zhe, telling him to send his own message to Hida Kisada. If the merchant is interrogated he is on a pay from the scorpions and knows little.


10 The party will encounter a lone ronin if they camp outside. The ronin will ask to share a meal with them. He was a kakita duelist untill his Daimyo was killed in a war. He has avenged his Daimyo's death and now is roaming Rokugan for no particular purpose. He calls himself Tsunami. Might join the party.






Characters :


Minami Yama no Oni - F4 (agi 5) W3 (str 7) A4 E4 V4. Wounds 8X8. Attack 10k7 hit/10k3 dmg (whip) + special.

TN 30, armor 5. Special power shapeshifting to anything (takes one action), Whip of The Mountain.

The Oni, in his natural shape, is a 2.5 meters tall man with blue skin and red hair. He has 3 yellow eyes and can summon a whip which is a part of his being. The whip, when striking a living being, bears the weight of a mountain on them, giving them +5 tn per hit to every action they do.


Akamoro Taro - Akamoro Bushi rank 2. F3, A2 (ref 3), W2, E3, V3. Skills : Haiku 3, Shintao 3, Kenjutsu 4, Iajutsu 4, Defence 2, Archery 3, Hunting 4. TN 20. Attack 8k3 hit/5k2 dmg. Techniques - +5 TN, +1 1k0 hit/dmg, 2 attacks/round.

Akamoro Taro is a quite and seclusive Bakemono Kensai. He believes deeply in Shintao and Bushido, and strives to be just and pure. Philosophy is his favourite subject, and his beliefs are Taoist. His goal in life is to achieve enlightement by living a perfect life as a Bushi. But he often finds others are affecting him through their own imperfect ways and hate him for being so perfect. All he really wishes is a quite life, but things just happen to him. Mostly he manages to accept his fate as it is, but occasionally it gets him down.

He hunts often, but dislikes his need to eat flesh.


Dato Tokanawa the Kenku kensai - consider all rings at 8. Can fly. All fighting skills are at 6. Haiku 4. Shintao 6. Origami 5.

Dato is a Kenku, a huge raven with arms. He is ancient and wise, and has lived in this forest for 400 years now. He is silent and his demeanor seems very pleasant and polite, but his speech is often full of riddles and oxymorons. He is freely quoting philosophy and is actually at a perfect peace with himself. He never kills or even hurts. If anyone in the party is a Taoist or has Shugenja lore or something like that they will understand that he is the Boddhisatwa of martial arts, a creature which gave up immortality to help all the mortals reach Nirvana. He wishes people to bring him precious gifts only to show their sincerity.


Tsunami -

F2(agi 4) A3, W2, E2, V3. Skills : Iajutsu 4, Naginata 2, Jiujutsu 2, Hunting 2, Gambling 2, Painting 3, Etiquette 3, Heraldry 2, Defence 2, Archery 2, Sincerity 1, Kenjutsu 2. Shintao 2. Attack Katana 8k4/5k2. TN 20 (light armor).

Technique - The Way Of The Crane (+4 to initiative, attacks with Iajutsu instead of Kenjutsu)

Tsunami is a quiet man. His hair is long and black, contrasting with his green eyes and pale skin. He does not shave often. After having revenged his Daimyo he found that he has little to do with his clan members. He did not swear fealty to anyone since then and is indeed his own master. He speaks little and watches alot. His voice is usually soft. His manners are excellent, but it is obvious this this man has many secrets which he will not tell. He doesn't speak of his past, usually, and if asked, replies softly that the past is in the past. He respects Bushido, but doesn't think that blind devotion is the way. He is suspicious but it is difficult to notice.


Item - The Mask of Minami Yama no Oni.  This simple proclain mask is depicting the face of the Oni. Putting it on will give the wearer powers of shapeshifting, but if he fails a contested willpower roll vs the Oni the demon dominates the wearer. The mask is unbreakable for it is sustained by the mighty Chi of the Oni himself. If the mask is removed, however, the wearer is free of the domination. Then again, even after he's free the Oni knows exactly where he is at all times...