Your Too Late!
So there he is! Unfortunately he had already sacked the small temple and gotten what he wanted. He was pretty far away when we saw him but we could clearly hear him taunt us. Then behind us appeared a 9 headed giant bird thing (SM+4). Does not seem to be our day...
Let the Fight Begin!
First up the giant bird, because you know 9 heads and giant size not being enough of a threat. It screams and everyone except Xhai Kiyun failed the HT roll and is stunned, Gushou fails by enough that he shits his pants. eewww.
Turn 1: Scary bird bites Xhai Kiyun 5 times - going for each limb and his torso, I guess to just rip him apart. It spits acid at each of us with the remaining heads. Xhai Kiyun is only hit once but it hurts pretty good (crippling his shield arm) and Gushou being stunned does not dodge and takes a hit to the chest for almost half his HP. Xhai Kiyun steps to attack it but it does a Feverish Defense and Retreating Dodge, avoiding most of his hits - though he does hurt the leg a bit. Shen Feng opts to try and stop the Dark Stranger before he gets his spell off and doesa full move. Gushou fails to recover from stunned. An Rang looks for vulnerable spots and calls them out to us. Our traveling companion gets off to the side.
Turn 2: Xhai Kiyun takes anther step, slashes at the leg, Shen Feng closes in on his target, Gushou is still stunned, and An Rang figures his shuriken will be more effective on the sorcerer so heads that way. Scary bird bites itself in the leg, crippling it and hits Xhai Kiyun again.
Turn 3: Yu Furen casts a healing spell and runs to use it on Xhai Kiyun, nearly fully healing him! Xhai Kiyun tries a stab at the vitals An Rang pointed out and hits twice but does little damage through its thick hide. Shen Feng tries to slam the sorcerer who dodges and continues his spell. Gushou figures this is not going well and opts to go all out. Calling on his shenshou Stormcaller he borrows energy from it and does a Rapid Strike for 5 attacks, plus fueling extra lightning damage. All hit but the first parry is a crit. Spending wildcard points to make it a normal success he is able to land the other 4 with a -7 to its Active Defense. He does solid damage and suddenly there is a bludgeoned and charred bird! The Dark Stranger finishes his spell and teleports away.
Xhai Kiyun says to Gushou"Next time, lead with that" (funniest line of the night). Gushou tries to explain he was scared and shocked, took him a bit to get his wits together. Xhai Kiyun simply repeats himself and Gushou runs to the lake stripping off his clothes and hoping to wash the acid away and clean up.
That pretty much ended things for the night, the GM was unprepared for the fight to end that quickly. I'm not sure how we could have survived a few more rounds though! Well worth spending all that FP on Flurry of Blows to halve the penalty for those Rapid Strikes (already quartered from Weapon Master and magic weapon), though the extra lightning damage turned out not to be needed.
Not something he can do all the time, but I think circumstances warranted it.
What could we have done better?
After the fact it rather belatedly occurred to me that Xhai Kiyun could have used his Wildcard to help Gushou recover from being stunned, or maybe An Rang could have too. However I think Xhai Kiyun could have done it as a Free Action. Xhai Kiyun regretted going for the vitals, his Swing would have penetrated the armor better than his thrust.
I didnt think about using 2 wildcard points to replace that crit, it had to be suggested to me.
Overall I think we did very well and no one made a major error or could have done much different.
The bad guy got away, next session we will check out the temple for clues or maybe get a visit from the lakes dragon. Who hopefully will be understanding about Gushou washing up in the lake.
Were probably going to be chasing this guy down for a bit.
This was the first time I was able to use Kusari against a serious opponent and it worked well. That -4 Parry and -2 Block is nice for getting around cinematic active defense scores, though I expect to be fighting more who rely on Dodge. Testing continues!