Battle at the Portal

Summary

Back to Town
The party returns to the imperial capital and leaves word for Inquisitor Soga Shina that they have returned. Some of the party hits the taverns, others shop and some train. A few days pass with no word from Soga. Mai returns to the ministry where Soga has her office and leaves word again, she is told Soga is out of town. Finally, after more than a week, they are summoned to Soga's office. The Inquisitor is obviously recovering from injuries and tells them she had a mission out of town. They detail their exploration of the manor and being attacked by ninjas, gakki and before finally confronting a group of tsuno in the building. They also tell how the charm Soga gave them revealed a view of the past and Daigotsu's plan to open a portal in the old battlefield to the north. Soga is very concerned that a portal could there could allow the Bloodspeakers to raise an army of evil. She orders them to proceed there and try to stop the evil Daigotsu's plans and to stop at their home along the way and tell them to be on guard. She will try to follow as soon as possible with Imperial forces.

On the Road
On the way to Jinchon, the party is attacked on the road by a giant demon octopus, a Garegosu no Bakemono. It strikes them with tentacles that grab and constrict. Riku is seized and squeezed until he passes out, Konni is grabbed by three tentacles after hitting the monster hard. Konni goes into his monkey form and slips from the tentacles, but Riku is raised in the air to be dropped in the beast's mouth. Rei casts an Ice Knife spell at the tentacle, freezing and breaking it so Riku is dropped to the ground. Mai attacks with her no-dachi, severing a tentacle and Hiro attacks with katana and wakizashi and cuts off two more tentacles killing it. Nagai tends to Riku and saves him. They make the rest of the trip to Jinchon safely and warn the forces there to go on alert and send the word to other towns. The party continues on towards the battlefield. Just before they arrive, they spot four figures on the road, apparently samurai walking south. But when they get closer, they see the figures are ghosts whose feet do not touch the ground; Toshigoku spirits. The ghosts draw swords and attack. Rei uses a string of spirit chasers to try to drive them off, but only one is turned. They fight hard against the ghosts, but only magic harms them as Mai discovers when her katana passes through one. And their ghost blades pass through the party's armor. After a long battle, they kill the first three and Jeffakou takes a flying kick into the back of the last. He passes through the spirit and lands in front of it and it stabs him twice in the back. The rest of the party runs up to finish it.

Blood Portal
Finally the party comes to the edge of the valley at dusk and Jeffakou sneaks ahead over the edge. Daigotsu and his Bloodspeakers are here. They have erected five altars around the cenotaph, on each altar is a dead sacrificial victim and a magic artifact. Blood from the victims covers the monument and dimensional portal hovers above. Spirits emerge from the portal and are ordered by Daigotsu to plunge into the ground. They animate bodies of fallen soldiers and dig their way free, then join ranks of other undead marshalling by the monument. A ring of skeletons surrounds the monument, the three Bloodspeakers and two guardians. Rei turns Miki Invisible and he sneaks in to take one of the artifacts to disrupt the spell. But when he grabs the spear, he is hit with a bolt of magical energy as the spell grounds out. He drops the spear and runs back to the party to be healed. The portal closes and Daigotsu turns towards the party. He gestures and the skeletons standing in formation gegin to sweep through the area looking for invisible enemies. He casts a summoning and an ogre-like creature with three eyes and a single horn appears. Daigotsu gives it orders and it vanishes. The creature reappears behind the party and spits a glob of molten copper at Mai. They engage and kill the creature, a common oni, but the Bloodspeakers have recovered the spear and restarted the spell, the portal is open. The party attacks and Miki goes in, still invisible and attacks Daigotsu. He is struck down by one of the henchmen and killed. The party attacks and kills the Bloodspeakers and then attack and destroy the skeletons. Nagai purifies Daigotsu's body and uses Dispel Magic on it to prevent the Bloodspeaker from returning from the dead. The bodies are burned and magic items collected to be examined or destroyed if necessary.On the way bay, they meet Soga riding at the head of a regiment of Imperial soldiers, she congratulates them on their success. The Emperor will reward them for their service.

Silly Quotes and Smart Remarks
The party is attacked by a giant octopus demon
JoAnne "This sucks"
Lee "It does have suckers"

Michael's Hengeyokai was grabbed by three tentacles, he escaped by shapeshifting into monkey form and slipping free
Jim "It squeezed him so hard he de-evolved back into a monkey!"
Konni runs over to grab his clothes so he can change back
Jim "Everyone is going to be saying 'Look! A monkey is trying to steal his sword, kill it!' "

Callum rolls a "1" on a d20
Lee "Worst. Monk. Ever"

The battlefield is quiet
Lee "This place was dead before…"

The party is attacked by a common oni, a three eyed ogre like monster with a horn growing from its forehead and can spit gobbets of molten copper
Callum "Tri-ogre?"
Lee "Trogre"
JoAnne "Well, it's not a one eyed, one horned flying purple people eater"
Lee "Three eyed, one horned, copper spitting people eater"

Callum's monk dies
Lee "Nnooo!! Kkhhhaaaannnnn…!"