Game Background

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 05 Aug 2004

Our adventure begins in the land of Rokugan, an isolated continent of Toril. Rokugan is based on a feudal society lead by clan rulers under the central power of an emperor. Rokugan is made up primarily of humans, and though other races can be found, they are rare and stay hidden from the prejudices of the ruling clans.

In recent events, the last emperor was killed. Currently the throne is still empty, and the emperor's children (the Four Winds) are battling for the right of succession.

Also in recent times explorers arrived from a continent in the west, called Faerun. Trade caravans and diplomatic envoys soon appeared in their wake, all trying to forge treaties and alliances with various powerful elements in the country.

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Character Background: Hoju

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 29 Jul 2004

Hoju was born as the new year came into being. A comet was passing over head as young Hoju was brought into the world. His mother died in childbirth and his father already had many children to look after. He was a poor farmer in what was once Dragonfly clan lands. Hoju was taken to the local monastery and was eagerly taken in by the monks.

Hoju excelled at his training, both martial and spiritual. He showed wisdom far beyond his years, and a keen intellect. He has always been a fair and kind man who showed little of the xenophobia displayed by many of the peoples of his land. To this end he asked to be allowed to study the religious teachings of the Elven ambassadors from the land of Faerun. He quickly mastered their language and although their culture was less ordered than his he came to see the good in it.

His brother monks realised that Hoju could be a force for good in the world, and his birth pointed to a great destiny. To this end he was sent to the Miyagishima family of the Lion clan to assist with Martial Arts training of their young warriors. It was also felt that this would give Hoju a chance to pass on his wisdom to the young warriors as well as learn of the outside world and how he could help it.

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Character Background: Natsume Sadako (and Lolindir Minyatur)

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 29 Jul 2004

Sadako's father was a diplomat from Faerun. While doing work with the Natsume family, he met and fell in love with Riku. The two had a clandestine affair, as it would not be right for an elf and a noble human to be together. Riku became pregnant and they came out and asked for permission to be married.

Although Riku's father was willing to approve the marriage, he realised that this would be an unpopular union (in particular with his wife) and could possibly cause problems in the household. As such, the request was denied. In order to prevent further troubles, when Sadako was born he was sent off with his father to be raised in a different household. Sadako's grandfather promised that if Sadako were raised as a noble, he could return to the Natsume household in the future (when memory of the scandalous affair would have faded).

As a favour to the Natsume family, the Miyagishima house took Sadako and his father in until such a time as it was appropriate for the child to return. Since then, he has only (secretly) met his mother and grandfather a couple of times. He has also encountered other members of the Natsume household when they have visited the Miyagishima household.

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Character Background: Miyagishima Toshiro

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 29 Jul 2004

Toshiro was born just before his father, Danjuro, went off to fight in the Spirit Wars. In his early years, he showed too much interested in the poetry, songs and tales of great deeds, to the neglect of his schooling in the ways of a Samurai and the Bushido code.

When Toshiro's father returned from the Spirit Wars and his duties as a Lion Clan general, he came to the belief that Toshiro's mother had spoiled Toshiro too much as a small child, and took it upon himself to see to it that Toshiro was raised properly.

Toshiro's father believed that Natsume Sadako, Toshiro's childhood friend and member of the Miyagishima household, had many of the attributes that exemplified the Bushido code, and as a result he spent much time teaching both Sadako and Toshiro the Bushido way, hoping that Toshiro, would learn from Sadako. He saw Sadako as another son.

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Character Background: Ichiro Washi

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 29 Jul 2004

Washi is quintessentially a hedonistic joker, always getting himself into trouble because of his greediness, and usually managing to wriggle out of it using his quick wits, a measure of charm, and sheer luck. His loves are simple: pretty ladies, good rice wine, delicious food, stylish clothes and jewellery. Unlike some hedonists he's not at all lazy and is constantly coming up with harebrained, elaborate schemes to land him in riches, or just play out a prank. He's pretty full of himself and often imagines that he is the hero of any given situation, even when he's a troublemaker.

Washi was born to the very respectable Ichiro family, who have been servants of the Miyagishima nobles for several generations. His mother Misako is Lady Miyagishima's handmaid and his father is part of the house guard. He loves his parents and is always *trying* to make them proud, but then sees some pretty shiny thing and can't resist the temptation to possess it. Despite his magnetism for problems he's still reasonably well-liked in the household because when he manages to focus he's a good, skilled worker. The reputation of his family also helps the nobles tolerate his goofiness, and in fact sometimes his humorous antics make him into a sort of court jester.

Washi has a special affection for both the young Miyagishima heir and his foster-brother Sadako. He has watched them both grow up and admires them greatly, and constantly fusses over Toshiro-kun. He is more wary of Sadako because of his attitudes/superstitions toward the spirit folk, but always treats him with reverence and respect. However, the impish side of him can't resist the urge to influence the two lads toward his own preferences, and he's always trying to trick or convince them to join him in his pranks and schemes.

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Character Background: Hiruma Hirotsuju

Campaign: Rokugan Campagin Date: 29 Jul 2004

Hirotsuju (or Hiro to those who know him) is a 32 year old ranger in the Crab clan. Hiro's father was also a ranger, in particular, a shadow scout; he taught Hiro much about moving silently through the woods, watching while remaining unseen, and to pay attention to his senses.

Hiro completed his ranger training at the Crab school, and has spent 10 years watching his clan's borders, and beyond. As part of his duties towards his clan, Hiro has caught (and, sometimes, killed) bandits. Hiro's skills of concealment and tracking have dispelled many a brigand's false sense of security!

Hiro prefers the solitude of the road, although he occasionally acts as a guide for travellers.

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Chapter 3: Rot, Bones and Dust

Campaign: Changeling: Bellingham Chronicle Date: 26 May 2004

Baron Vortex drives to a quiet, unremarkable holiday house outside of East Sound to make a secret rendezvous. Inside, he meets Elyra, a very slinky snaky pooka. He knows her to be an agent for the Shadow Court, investigating the goings on at the Trod to see how the shadowy ones can turn the situation to their advantage.

The Baron makes it clear he's interested in the Trod as well, and that he doesn't mind working with the Shadow Court for a piece of the action. Elyra seems to play hard to get. She demands that the Baron give her information on how to destroy the monster haunting the Trod before she will agree to assist him.

After the meeting, the Baron returns to East Sound to meet up with the rest of the Motley. They gather in a fish & chips restaurant and go over the information they've uncovered so far-- except the Baron keeps his meeting with Elyra secret. The reports they've heard of the monster is that it's an enormous spider, covered in rotting flesh and made of human-looking bones, as if it was a zombie in spider form. This sparks in Glorin a dim recollection of a Native American myth. Tribes in the Pacific Northwest had a story about spirit creatures called Pu'gwis that looked like rotting corpses. They were supposed to be capable of singing so beautifully they can be alluring and cause forgetfulness.

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Chapter 2: By the Silver Sea

Campaign: Changeling: Bellingham Chronicle Date: 12 May 2004

Although the Motley has prepared to leave the Baroness, young Timor the Troll (possibly prompted by his mother's investigative profession) decides to bring up one unaddressed question to Lady Eleonor. He asks her politely where she was the night of the Rhapsody. The Baroness guardedly replies that she was alone in her freehold that night. Knowing she has less than an airtight alibi, she agrees to speak with Timor later at Boundary Bay.

Baron Vortex meets up with the group after they finish questioning Lady Eleonor and tells them about his fact-finding mission. He doesn't reveal much, but he does know that the Baroness was with Lorcán Baine the night of the Rhapsody. Although most members of the Motley are fairly certain that the Baroness didn't commit the crime, they wonder why she was associating with such a shady figure.

The Motley decide to return to the Crossed Horns Pub, where Lorcán is a regular and question him. Their investigation doesn't result in much-- the renegade sidhe simply tells them that he and the Lady Eleonor were meeting to discuss personal business. Meanwhile, as Timor and Glorin spoke with the sidhe, Glayven goes outside and uses Willow Whisper on the seat of Lorcán's motorcycle. He finds that on the night of the Rhapsody, the bike was parked somewhere out in the woods all night.

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