Shinokage met with the Crab squad who had been seconded to the party, and led them to the the warehouse which hid the entrance to the underground warehouse. After a brief standoff with the guards, he was permitted access. With his permission, the Engineers set to building a guard post so they could control access to the underground docks.
Meanwhile, the sewer team got cleaned up again and decided to wait at the Inn for the rest of the party to gather. Shinokage waited for the Crabs to get started and then headed to the Inn, leaving them to their work.
Chaya and Tsuna arrived a few hours later with Yarou and a squad of (mostly Lion) Imperial Guard. Yarou and Shinokage chatted briefly. It was clear to all that Yarou didn’t like not being in charge – and felt that he was a better choice to lead than Tsuna. Meanwhile, the Crab team sent a runner – it was Nagori, who was surprised to see the rest of the party there – to let them know that the guardpost was done enough for inspection.
The whole party then headed to the underground warehouse. Yarou spent the time on the way comparing himself to Nagori. After all, Yarou is a Lieutenant in the Imperial Guard, and Nagori is just a low-importance messenger. Nagori ignored the insults.
The party discovered that the Crabs had built a surprisingly-good gatehouse in almost no time at all.
At this point, the party decided to split up again.
Tsuna, Oharu, and Daredemo went to speak to the governor so they could search the route that the Heir was going to take into town. They took Yarou and the Guard with them. After bullying their way through the gate (where they left the Guard), they spoke with the governor in her office. Her paper-free pristine office (which is very unusual for her).
She initially resisted sharing the information with the party, but when she realized there were actual Imperial Guard with them, she gave them the information, and they went to search the route for good choke points that could have been loaded with explosives. On the way out of the mansion, they searched a couple of wagons loaded with food for the Heir.
They found a couple of good choke points, and the Guard (grumbled and) checked the sewers underneath the check points. No explosives were found in their search.
Meanwhile, Chaya realized that if the explosives weren’t in the tunnel anymore, there were only two ways they could have gone: Out by ship or up through the warehouse. She shared this information with Fukurokuma, who put the warehouse’s master (Araku) to the question.
He admitted that he was scheming to kill the governor, but denied knowledge of any plot to kill the heir. The reason he wanted to kill her is because he believes she is in Itachi’s pocket. “Every time Itachi needs muscle, ronin appear in town to provide it. When the need for muscle is over, they disappear until the next time.” He questioned Fukurokuma about why he thought the Heir was a target. When he learned the time frame, he was able to point at two suspects – Koinu and Shiyonin. “They’re likely drinking their wages away,” he said. And gave Fukurokuma directions to where they were likely to be – and they were.
Fukurokuma took Shinokage and Chaya with him, and they found the two miscreants drunk off their asses and playing Chō-Han with their wages (and losing big in the process). After funding the losses for a short time, Fukurokuma invited them outside, where Shinokage clubbed them unconscious from behind.
When they woke up, they were in one of the underground prison cells with Fukurokuma and one of his trees. With almost no effort, he got them to confess what they were up to. “As Araku always says, ‘Change happens from the top down,’ and we will probably never see someone as close to the top as the Heir.”
Koinu and Shiyonin appear to be trying to start some sort of peasant revolt, and have co-opted Araku’s power grab. The explosives are in a shed in the governor’s garden, and the temple across the street has a ledge from which Koinu was going to fire a burning crossbow bolt into that shed, detonating the explosives and leaving a significant power void at the top.
It’s now late on Serpent 16, and the Heir is officially later than was originally planned. The Captain of the Guard who assigned Yarou to the party had promised to delay as much as possible, but wasn’t sure she’d get more than a day of delay.