My wurst continues: Crown of the Shogun, sorry I mean Sword of Kings, … sorry, I mean Sword of the Samurai. Basically the single-book version of the Crown of Kings storyline, but in feudal Japan.
I started my adventure yesterday, and defended a village from an attack by one of the local lords who has decided to stop obeying my shogun. I accept their thanks and some gold, and continue on my way… coming across the castle of Lord Tsietsen, whose men was sacking our village. No way I can just keep riding past, I need to make an example.
I sneak into a hay cart and get past the gate, then simply bluff my way into the castle by acting arrogant. Being a samurai is kind of fun! I stride down the corridors, pushing a few peasants out of the way and barking a few orders… and come across Tsietsin himself. Not only is he wearing the shogun’s crown of office, but he’s accompanied by some demon-spawn things clearly indicating that he’s in league with that shadow demon I’m hunting. Sir, my lord shall have his revenge!
Revenge does come, at some price in my blood. I take a scratch, and another 3 stamina from a sneak attack. I’m feeling a bit hurt now, so I make a hurried search and pick up 100 gold and a set of +1 armor. Sweet! Then I take off down the escape door that Tsietsen was going to use, to hopefully leave the castle.
It’s not a short tunnel. After some time and a few nutritious snacks, I run afoul of some tunnel-dwelling wildlife (a 40-foot centipede thing) and some tunnel-dwelling loot (healing potion, and a -1 cursed helmet, offsetting my new armor). But it does lead back out into daylight, and on the road to the Forest of Shadows.
Guarding the edge of the forest is a dragon, who is apparently very bored because he asks me to answer old riddles or else to fight as he tries to eat me. Yawn. I answer these age-old puzzles, and move on… and that’s it for the Forest of Doom. Shadows! Forest of Shadows.