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22. Doji Ren

There be goblins

Played on March 24th, 2019

The swamp

Upon somewhat closer inspection, not too close, way too filthy, it turns out we're facing the two Hinin who had just vanished behind the trees. We fight them of, and as we do, they start to shed their skin where we manage to hit them, revealing a green layer of skin beneath it. Sometimes they seem to regenerate some of their health, but we still manage to kill them both, havng them squirt out large amounts of green goo.
Tichuki, with his knowledge of Shadowlands flora and fauna recognizes them as boghags. A type of creature which kills and then uses the skin of their prey to disguise themselves. I wonder if Kiji should've seen through their disguise. I'm glad to learn though that we would definately have seen through it too than. I'm still a bit miffed he set us up with this evil. To make sure they will not regenerate ever again, Aki sets them on fire. With the help of Tichuki's tracking skills and some luck, we manage to pick up the goblin tracks again. We follow them deeper into the swamp but as it is getting dark already, we decide it would be wiser to turn around and head back to the village to gather our thoughts and consider what to do next.

Back in the inn we have some dinner and afterwards I set up a tea ceremony to gather my thoughts on the boghags goblins and contemplate the abundant opium abuse amongst the leaders of this village. That night before I get some sleep I have a conversation with Kiji, interrogating how it is possible that he set us up like this. He apologizes profusely, but reading between the lines he also manages to slip in that after following them for a few hours through the swamp, we should have noticed something was wrong. He's got a point there, and to be honest I'm glad he did. I don't think I would be able to reach out to my daimyo to get a replacement assistant. Although Tichuki somehow might fit the purpose seeing how he keeps close to me often times.

The Golden Dream

The next morning after breakfast we decide to go back to the Wallow to pay a visit to the Golden Dream. The streets are still quiet, but we still manage to get directions to the place. We end up in front of a single story white house with a worn sign showing a man sleeping on a cloud. Inside we are welcomed by a stocky middle-aged woman, Aoi. Who is followed in her footsteps by a bodyguard going by the name of Mugu. Aoi looks quite tired as if she's been working all night and trying to keep up until the end of her shift. Aki starts of wishing er a good morning and asks about a Crane who might have visited this place. She explains that Crane Clan members sometimes do indeed visit this 'establishment'. We go on to specify how Hiroshige looks to see if she's got actual information on him. After some persuasion she admits she remembers him vaguely but it's been a while. If we ask for more information, even flashing our Emerald Magistrate badge, she won't budge. She's got a boss she's quite afraid of, and friends in high places. Boss Hana isn't present this morning, but Aoi provides us with her address in the eastern Wallows.
Next stop, Miss Hana.