Tag Archives: Yojimbo

Tokuemon Takedown [D&D 5e]

Tokuemon Takedown is the third, and final, session in the Yojimbo mission followed hot on the heels of the Silkworm Inn incident. Starting without pause where we left off the party gathered on the street outside.

Silkworm Inn with street context, it’s the black roofed building in the centre. The alley is to the right of the Inn. (Photo: James Kemp)

A crowd of potential helpers had arrived to put out the fire. As they assembled Harbek had created water inside the Silkworm Inn to dowse the flames. Kohei recognised Kanji, the town clerk of Yojimbo, in the crowd. They both played, and lost, regularly at Tokuemon’s table.

Rescuing Nui

Realising that they still needed to rescue Nui, Sator and Elgon sought out the alley to the side of the Silkworm to work round the back. Sator, being a halfling, lead, allowing Elgon to see over him and provide cover if necessary. On entering the Alley they found it blocked by an armoured human backed up by another human with a bow. This was communicated to the others.

Harbek and Zia decided to go long and outflank from the alley a couple of buildings to the right of the Silkworm. They set off at a run while Sator tried to establish why the men were blocking the alley.

The negotiations were brief. Sator was answered with an arrow, which narrowly missed him, Elgon and the crowd to bury itself at human head height in the Building across the street. Elgon reacted rapidly and used burning hands, scorching both humans and setting some of the rubbish in the alley on fire.

Kohei and Kanji followed up on the commotion in the alley in time to see the larger well armoured human charge Sator and jab him with a sword cut. Sator gave as good as he got, and Elgon used magic missile on the attacker. The bowman at the back shot at Kohei, sticking an arrow in him. Kohei also shot back, but missed.

Narrow Alley

Elgon realised that he was running out of spells, and stepped back. The alley was quite narrow and there wasn’t quite room for two abreast. Kanji healed Kohei a bit while Kohei traded shots with the bowman. Similarly Sator and the swordsman parried each others blows, although Sator got a bit home and drove the swordsman back down the alley.

From the side gate of the Silkworm Inn a third armoured person lead two horses, one with a suspicious package in a blanket tied over the saddle.

Sator and Kohei both shot the swordsman with their bows. Elgon used his last spell to magic missile the third warrior and both horses. The main effect of this was to panic both horses. This in turn caused as yet unseen horses in the Silkworm’s back courtyard to neigh loudly and rear up.

The brief panic bought enough time for Harbek and Zia to come running round the corner. Harbek lead with his flaming axe, and in one mighty blow cleaved the helmet on the third warrior in two. He fell to the ground in a spreading puddle of blood. This so demoralised the others that they immediately threw down their weapons.

Alley Aftermath

On closer inspection the ‘package’ on the second horse was found to be Nui. She had been tied and gagged before being carried downstairs and thrown over the horse. Interrogation of the prisoners, including the unfortunate third warrior who was healed, pointed the finger clearly at Tokuemon. On finding the Silkworm under attack and on fire they’d decided to evacuate to Tokuemon’s country house.

Realising that they weren’t expected to report in yet the party planned a surprise raid on Tokuemon’s country house. They decided to go in the middle of the night and rested up to await darkness.

Tokuemon’s Lair

The party rode out to Tokuemon’s place. They left Oroborus looking after the horses in a copse a couple of hundred yards from the edge of Tokuemon’s house. As you can see from the picture, the house is a grand affair, surrounded by a ten foot high wall. There are guard towers at each corner and a grand entrance with a guard box outside where it joins the main road into Yojimbo.

Neutralising the guards

Sator and Kohei crept up to the guardhouse to take out the guard, bows in hand. The plan was to be as silent as possible. This worked up until Kohei walked into a bush. This alerted the guard, who came out of the guard post to investigate. Sator and Kohei froze, and the guard peered into the darkness shining his lantern around.

The guard was clearly silhouetted against the whitewashed walls of the compound. When he turned to go back to his post both Sator and Kohei loosed arrows at him. Two arrows struck home, followed rapidly by two more. The guard fell to the floor with a clatter. Sator and Kohei tensed. Had anyone heard the guard’s fall?

They listened carefully, but all appeared silent. They waited a few moments longer before Sator snuck forward. Kohei couldn’t hear anything, and Sator established that there was a light coming from a room inside the gatehouse. Closing one eye to protect his night vision Sator went closer. Snores could be heard from within.

Sator slid silently to the door and felt the key in the back of the lock. He gently eased it out, closed the door behind him and then locked it. Taking the key he went back out to signal the others to join them.

Gaining Entry

Sator lead the party into Tokuemon’s compound. Wary in the silence and darkness lest there was an ambush lurking, they slid from tree to tree on the outside of the drive. Checking out the front they decided that a rear entry would be safer.

They worked their way quietly around the back of the building. Sator picked the lock to open the kitchen door. Inside the house was silent and still. A short muffled debate sprang up when Zia wanted to collect snacks for later. She was overruled.

The grand double height dining hall was next. The table was bare, and seats stacked on top of it. Cushions protecting the table top. Moonlight filtered through the windows, the curtains all still tied back.

From there it was Tokuemon’s Parlour, with the gaming table so familiar to Kohei and Kanji. After that it was the entrance hall, and up the stairs to the tower where Tokuemon had his personal quarters.

Tokuemon Appears

The entrance hall was stone flagged with carpets in the main walkway. It also had stone walls and a smooth plastered ceiling. To the left of the main door as you came in was a grand staircase, with a landing as it turned right. This was opposite the wide doorway into the Parlour.

As the party came into the darkened hallway they became aware of Tokuemon standing on the landing. When they were all in the hallway he asked what they were doing in his house in the middle of the night?

Kohei replied “You kidnapped my sister, and I’m here to make you pay”.

Tokuemon smiled.

No! Fireball!

The party tried their best to dodge, but it was rather an enclosed space. The carpets and wall hangings burst into flames, illuminating the space. Several of the party were left reeling, if Tokuemon got a second chance it would be their last.

Harbek shot Tokuemon, a good shot from his bow that went home. Tokuemon reacted without thinking and sent a lightning bolt from his fingertip to Harbek. Harbek writhed in pain, it was almost more than he could cope with. Despite this the others shot arrows into Tokuemon. Even with five arrows sticking out of him he just laughed at them.

Harbek summoned up the last of his energy and cast Hold Person on Tokuemon. His laughter faded as he struggled vainly to escape. Most of the others shot arrows into Tokuemon.

Zia took the moment to hit the button on the lightning javelin she’d found. Not sure what to expect. A blinding flash and a burning smell accompanied a loud tearing sound as lightning joined the staff to Tokuemon. No longer held by the spell Tokuemon was propelled into the wall behind him. He fell limply onto the floor.

Determined to get revenge Harbek launched himself up the stairs and removed Tokuemon’s head with his flaming axe before he could recover.

Tokuemon’s Treasure

Having taken down Tokuemon the party had a look round his house.

In the private quarters they found a number of interesting items

  • A scroll with a spell written on it
  • A mysterious potion in a glass bottle
  • A bag of beans
  • A handy haversack
  • An interesting cube
  • A ring
  • A light hammer
  • A short sword

In the Parlour there were several works of art, and also a load of cash, mainly in gold and silver.

Silkworm Inn catches fire [D&D 5e]

Fire in the Silkworm Inn is the next part of the Yojimbo D&D campaign following on from Taking Yoichiro Home. Having been bailed out of the local jail, and recruited Kohei to help find Nui the group assemble in the town square to discuss their next moves. The local constabulary keep a close eye on them, and Inokichi appears to have a beef with the brewery guards across the square. Under the watchful eye of the constables he is persuaded to save it for another day.

Silkworm Inn

SIlkworm eating a Mulberry Leaf
Silkworm eating a mulberry leaf (image: Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay)

Using Kohei’s local knowledge the group decide to go seek Tokuemon at the Silkworm Inn. He owns a chunk of it and is known to frequent the plush back room of the Silkworm, where he gambles with Kohei (and others). Oroborus decided to wait outside in case there was any trouble. She’d call the others if there was any problem.

The Silkworm Inn was relatively quiet, six regulars were in, all known to Kohei at least by sight. The bouncer was stood by the door to the back room and a barkeep was behind the bar. The group, less Oroborus, ordered drinks at the bar and then took a table in the middle.

Collecting Information

Kohei used the time while the drinks were being poured to chat to a friend and ask about his sister Nui. His friend was nervous about sharing info, but said that he’d heard Nui was back in town. When pressed by Kohei about where she might be he said he ought not to tell, and that Kohei couldn’t tell anyone how he knew, but looking upstairs in the Silkworm Inn might be fruitful.

Sator asked the barkeep about Nui while she was serving up the drinks. He was told Nui was away in the bid city, and that stories she’d been kidnapped were just that, stories. All the while the barkeep looked frequently at the bouncer, and gave the impression of sticking to a script. Needless to say Sator wasn’t convinced by her denials.

Zia chatted to a man at the corner of the bar and asked if he knew anything about the back room and what was upstairs. The man was pretty free with information. He told her that the rich folks, like what Zia obviously was, drank in the back. It was much nicer than the common room, but was about four times the price. She asked about Tokuemon and was told that he often came in, always out the back. On being asked if anyone was out the back Zia was told that there were about four or five people, plus Gonji (the Landlord).

Making for the Back Room

The group sat at their table and had a quiet drink while sharing the information that they’d picked up. Kohei shared that the bouncer was only there to keep the riffraff out from the back. So they decided to go through when they finished their drinks. As they were drinking up Gonji came into the common room from the back room. He took one look at the group, and then whispered something to the bouncer before retiring back through the door.

The group took that as their cue to follow and downed their drinks. When the bouncer realised that they were coming for the back room he banged his club on the door and shouted for backup. The group carried on walking up to him, trying not to look threatening. A somewhat drunk dwarf, sitting near the door to the back room got up and swore at them. The other regulars hurriedly finished their drinks and paid attention to the door.

Bar fight

The drunk dwarf said he was going to kill the $@!* elf. So help him gods. Drawing his sword he lunged at Elgon. Thankfully he was so drunk that all he managed to do was throw the sword across the room, missing Elgon. Sator, who was leading on the way to the door, ducked under a table. This was just as well as the bouncer lunged at him with his club, but missed owing to Sator ducking out of the way. The helpful man at the bar decided to join in the fight and hit Zia over the head with his empty glass. Without thinking Zia spun round and hit him with the flat of her great axe, dazing him.

Harbek spun round too turning on his flaming axe. He pre-emptively hit a dwarf that was going for a club from under the table. This didn’t prevent the dwarf from retaliating. Kohei was grabbed by his friend and they hid between the tables. One of the other patrons also hid between another set of tables when he saw the fight start. The last stood and watched from near the door, as did the barkeep. Elgon shot a magic missile at the drunk dwarf, who wasn’t noticeably affected by it.

Oroborus heard the commotion from outside and came into the bar. As he did the human at that end of the bar hit him with a pewter tankard, spilling beer all over her. Oroborus retaliated, pushing the human into a nearby table and knocking him off balance. Zia traded more blows with the man that attacked her, leaving him unconscious on the floor. Harbek put his opponent down too, and turned towards the back. The barkeep ducked below the bar.

Silkworm Inn burns

At the back of the Silkworm’s common room things escalated. The drunken dwarf persisted in trying to hit Elgon, despite being too drunk for co-ordination. Elgon, frustrated that magic missile hadn’t taken the dwarf out, and worried he was about to be physically assaulted, resorted to Burning Hands. In his panic Elgon put his maximum effort into it.

Unable to dodge the drunken dwarf took the full force of burning hands from Elgon. He also got hit in the rear as it bounced off the stone rear wall of the Silkworm’s common room. Elgon, surprised by the rebound, also took the full force of the cone of fire. The bouncer, Sator, Kohei and his friend all managed to dodge the blast, although got lightly singed despite cover from the benches and dodging. The barkeep popped up from behind the bar with her crossbow as soon as the cone of fire stopped. She hit Elgon square in the back with a bolt. It’s possible the only thing that kept Elgon on his feet was being hit from both sides!

Fleeing the Fire

Most of the people in the bar decided it was time to leave. Oroborus’s opponent pushed past him and ran out the door, with Oroborus in hot pursuit. The drinker hiding between the tables in the middle of the room also dashed for the door. Kohei’s friend crawled under the tables to avoid the melee at the end of where he was hiding. The bouncer took a swing with his club at Elgon as he dashed past. It was a lucky hit, connecting with a sickening crunch. Elgon dropped to the floor. Kohei rolled to put the fire on his clothes out and stop the burning. Everyone else conscious went for the door.

When Kohei rolled back up he spotted Elgon on the floor and dragged him to the door of the Silkworm. Slowed by dragging Elgon, Kohei met Harbek at the door, when Harbek came back in to dowse the flames by creating water above them. This successfully doused the fire.

Smoking Silkworm

Outside Orobus strung his longbow and took aim at his fleeing opponent. The cry of ‘Fire!’ went up and people started running. Sator checked the two patrons that hadn’t been involved in the fight were OK, he then went with them to get buckets and water. Kohei attempted to revive Elgon, but without success. Elgon was too badly injured for his healing words to have any effect.

The bouncer and Zia decided that the fight was over and also went to get help for firefighting. Oroborus shot the fleeing man in the back, he fell face down in the street some distance away from the tavern.

Many townsfolk and the local constable arrived with buckets, ladders and a pump. Just in time to find out that Harbek had put the fire out.

[To be continued…]


Taking Yoichiro Home [D&D 5e]

This is a write up of a D&D 5e session titled Taking Yoichiro Home which is part of a mini-campaign being run for Alexander and his friends.

Taking Yoichiro Home

So last time round you found Yoichiro, the son of Seibei, and persuaded him to go home with you to see his dad before he dies. So it’s time to take Yoichiro and his very beautiful (by dwarf standards) girlfriend Nui to the town of Yojimbo, two days ride away from the big city. Yojimbo is 2 days normal travel to the southwest, but you can do it in one day if you push the horses

On the way you spot a burning village on the horizon several miles off to the East as you are riding SW. Zia and Oroborus can also see other riders making for the village from the city, so you decide to carry on towards Yojimbo. When you stop for lunch you notice that Nui is looking worried.  She tells you that she’s worried about whether her parents will be happy, because she ran off to be with Yoichiro without getting permission

Arrival at Yojimbo

After dropping Yoichiro at his parents home, and leaving Nui to go to her folks, you spend some of the evening mooching about town trying to talk to people and find out rumours. Afterwards you gather in the common room in the Silkworm Tavern and share what you find. You’ve discovered that:

  • Seibei is the richest man in town, and that he is in partnership with the local mayor (Tazaemon) as silk merchants.
  • His right hand man, Ushitori (a human) has recently fallen out with Seibei because Ushitori was hoping to take over the silk merchant business when Seibei died.
  • Nui’s brother has lost loads of money to Tokuemon, the local brewery owner.
  • Tazaemon, the mayor, is a dwarf and also a silk merchant.

You all get a  good night’s sleep and wake up to find that it is market day in the town. There are stalls being set up in the square with a whole host of farming goods. The primary business in the town is silk farming, there’s a single large silk merchant business, and several weavers and silk farmers supporting it. About half of the fields in the couple of miles around the town were mulberry trees, The rest had a mix of crops,

Collecting Rumours

Other rumours, collected after breakfast amongst those in for the market:

  • The local constable, Hansuke (a human) is completely useless, and never intervenes.
  • The hardest fighter in town is Inokichi, but he’s pretty dense
  • Someone broke into the brewery warehouse last night, but nothing was taken.
  • Seibei appears to have made a dramatic recovery
  • Seibei is about to die any minute
  • Seibei is scheming to buy out the brewery so that he owns the whole town
  • Ushitori wants his friend Tokuemon to be the mayor
  • Tazaemon (the current mayor) is losing the plot, yesterday he thought his horse was on the council
  • There’s a room at the back of the Silkworm where you can pay 100 gold pieces and you know what…
  • Hansuke likes dwarf women better than human women
  • Isuzu, Seibei’s wife, is a sorceress and uses mind control spells to make people do what is best for Seibei
  • Yoichiro ran away because he was scared of Kohei (Nui’s brother)
  • Yoichiro ran away because his dad beat him senseless
  • Yoichiro ran away because Ushitora beat him up and threatened to kill him
  • Yoichiro ran away because Tazaemon bought him out
  • Yoichiro didn’t run away, Nui’s parents kidnapped him and had him sent to the mines to stop him courting their daughter. They did the same with their daughter too

While you are having lunch Yoichiro arrives in the Silkworm Tavern, and asks if you’ve seen Nui? She wasn’t at her parents house, and they didn’t see her last night. After some discussion the group splits up, one part to see Nui’s parents and the other to speak to the local constable.

Facts about Nui’s Disappearance

Hansuke, the constable, is eating his lunch at a table just outside the Silkworm tavern.  When he finishes eating Harbek unexplainedly picks a fight with him and ends up unconscious on the floor after hitting Hansuke once with his flaming axe. Orobus attempts to get revenge, but is taken down by a single strike from Hansuke’s halberd.  Hansuke then decides that Elgon is looking well dodgy and thumps him on the head with his baton, making Elgon collapse to the floor. Yoichiro steps in and stops Hansuke from going any further. The three unconscious ones are carried over to the town hall for healing and time in the cells….

Meanwhile, over at Nui’s parents house….

Zia and Sator knock the door. It is opened by a dwarf. Door is about four feet tall. Nui’s mum answers the door. You find out that she definitely hasn’t seen Nui for 2.5 months. Zia asks about Kohei, Nui’s brother, and with a bit of intimidation you find out that he works all hours in the smithy, but that despite this he can’t afford to get his own place and still lives with his parents.

Confirming Stories

So over to the forge in the market square to see Kohei.
Kohei has been told that Tokuemon’s friends have Nui, but he didn’t believe them. They said they’d hold her until he paid up. He doesn’t know you guys well enough, so he wants confirmation from Yoichiro that Nui came here. At the tavern you get directed over to the town hall to find Yoichiro and your friends

In the Town Hall the local cleric has healed everyone and woken them up. Yoichiro has smoothed things over with the authorities and paid a fee for your continued good behaviour.  Harbek just wants to settle with Yoichiro and leave town. However the others agree that Nui has been kidnapped and they should help free her. Tokuemon knows who holds her because he sent Kohei a message. Kohei needs 10,000 Gold Pieces to get his sister free.