Players: Post your Haiku for bonus xp as a comment here. Feel free also to comment here to add more detail, fill in things I missed, or ask questions.
The day began as expected with the Sumo competition finals. Just as they were about to start, however, riders were spotted approaching the castle. Shohi-en signaled the go-ahead, and defeated his opponent before preparing to meet the riders.
The riders ended up being Miya Kei and her entourage. So far as anyone can recall, this is the first time any Imperial presence has been noted at Shohi-en’s winter gatherings.
That evening at dinner, Shohi-en was preparing to introduce the next day’s calligraphy sample, when Yogo Angai interrupted him with her gift. It was a fragment of a scroll written in the hand of Togashi himself to his son while his son was studying with his mother in Scorpion lands. It appears to be the last line of a haiku, which is a significant portion of how the two communicated.
It read, “We pursue Nothing”
Upon seeing this, Shohi-en paled and fled, retreating first to his library. When the party followed, he was nowhere to be found.
The next day, Iuchi Chaya won the calligraphy competition and was awarded a very fine brush and ink set. She also spent some time communing with the scroll, and discovered that the ink for the word ‘nothing’ was different – it was not there to all magical senses.
Upon realizing this, Chaya retreated to the library to do some studying, where she started to piece together things that she’d thought were known only to the Unicorn were also known to at least some of the Dragon and probably the Scorpion as well.
Meanwhile, Suzume Oharu and Mirumoto Daredemo began searching for Shohi-en, who was last seen entering the library the night before. As they searched, they eventually called upon the aid of Togashi Tedibea, who showed them were a secret door was located.
They discovered how to open it just as Chaya reached the rare books room, and all four party members explored the tunnel which ran to the waterfall just East of Dragon’s Fang Castle. Along the way, they discovered a small room with a pool and several storage rooms containing large sealed clay jars, one of which appeared to be missing.
A mile or so up the winding road behind the mountain, there was a shrine to Shinsei, where the party found Shohi-en and the jar.
After brief discussion, Chaya returned to the castle and the others stayed the night. In the morning, Shohi-en continued to the top of the mountain, where he broke the jar open revealing treated wood of some sort which he placed into a stone brazier. A bit of help from Tedibea, and the fire was lit. After a short time, Shohi-en then returned to his palace with Daredemo, Oharu, and Tedibea in tow.
Tonight is the Unicorn-style feast.