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We started up our LR5 campaign again where we left off: about to travel into the Burning Sands. We met up with the O-A-SIS people who travel around in caravans. A lot of culture shocks for our samurai: people eating meat, practising magic seemingly without help from the kami, and a far stricter gender divide than Rokugan’s more egalitarian-but-that-glass-ceiling-does-have-a-fancy-glimmer-doesn’t-it society! It’s fun to finally do some exploration sessions, our second L5R campaign has been all about going up against (or following) the culture we now know very well, so it’s fun to clash that culture up with different ones now. Player Characters

Toshiaki A Kitsune trained Shugenja, with a short attention span.
Asako Ren A Kaiu trained Engineer. Protective and cautious but sometimes hotheaded. (my character)
Kuyaku Sotaro A Hiruma trained Scout. Brash, boastful and rough around the edges.
Yoritomo Taeko A Moshi trained Shugenja. Pretty and bubbly and boastful with a love for fireworks.
Akodo Katsuko A Mirumoto trained Duelist. A gorgeous perfectionist, with a big mouth.

After a long way of hauling rocks, Sotaro and Katsuko are in dire need of salves for the lashings they’ve received for refusing to cooperate. Ren, Taeko and Toshiaki (now dressed only in loincloth – it’s hot here!) made some contacts while working on the site and present the group with a busy agenda for the evening. They attend a burial ceremony in the Valley of the Dead. The funeral rite is called The 19 appellations of Apnu, the judge of the dead (= Emma-O), and there are two different priests doing the calling. One is an acolyte of Sechem, silence. The other of Ma’at, Truth. They try to talk to the acolyte of silence, but he can’t speak, and they aren’t allowed very deeply into the Temple of Silence. At the Temple of Truth, the acolyte gives them a hard time. They are to let go of all lies before entering the temple and the acolyte seems to know when they are lying. They confess looking for The Book of the Dead, and eventually the acolyte in his turn confesses it was stolen 400 years ago, the same night the high priests of silence, truth and judgement were killed. Four people in kimono were in the city at that time. imageThey meet up with Moshen. He and his people, the Hebron, have their own little district. Moshen explains that before they were the Hebron they lived in the far west, as farmers and nomads. On The Day of the Great Judgement, the earth turned to desert. Then a leader came from the east, and took them to the promised land. His name was Hebron (Shinsei!) and he lead them to Sempet. He gave them their laws (don’t kill, etc.). He would carry a staff but the original ornaments were lost to time. Otomo Yama and Hamaed (who both found a way to evade death and make themselves immortal) came from the far west, where the Khasim live now. Life here isn’t all that great, though. The Hebron are second rate citizens and aren’t free to go. Moshen has his own plan to get out of there. He is allied with ‘The old man in the desert’. He also speaks Rokugani and his followers are called Hameshin, night ravens. When the Pharaoh dies and the city will erupt in chaos, they will leave. They meet one of the Night Ravens in the town. He is an Asujit type of desert person, but speaks Rokugani as well. His name is Yoshua. He is willing to take them to the Old men in the desert, but warns them there is no going back from there. The group has a few more leads to follow before they can leave, but also can’t wait around for months while they wait for the ailing Pharaoh to die. Yoshua subtly lets it be known their time table is flexible, the can decide when the moment they are waiting for will take place. Toshiaki is very unhappy with talking to or making deals with an assassin and a hefty discussion breaks out. Sotaro and Katsuko feel they have disgraced themselves for long enough, and scoff at the group for considering staying captives even longer. Have they forgotten about the great Toku’s last words, to not forget who they are? Taeko and Ren state their mission is more important than personal honor, there are things still left to do here. Toshiaki agrees, though he would like to keep their personal honor assassin-free. Harsh words are said, and everyone goes to bed angry.