HO PO and HO HENG
With Shikibu’s return, the heroes set out on the next leg of their journey. The first obstacle before them is to cross the River Kwung, which borders Qinho and Ginsu. The region is desolate. The river is wide, and after hours of scouting, a suitable crossing is found. With horses and what was left of their wagon after the tornado battered it, the decision is made to utilize Otos’ magical folding boat. It would take only a few trips to ferry the entirety of the party across the Kwung.
Banlak notices giant eel’s coursing the waters near the crossing, and decides they prove too big a risk for safe crossing. He lashes out at them with magical bamboo shards in hopes to chase them away, or kill them if necessary. Little did he or the others realize but that these eels were the pets of two legendary, cursed sisters.
These creatures, in Mung Li legend, were a mythic pair of sad and cursed sisters. They were twin daughters of an ancient emperor who were caught practicing dark and sinister magic (they were plotting to kill their father’s rival enemy king with black sorcery). The sisters, Ho Po and Ho Heng, were found guilty of treason, but because they were so beloved to their emperor father, he had them banished from his land, and magically bound to the river as river spirits. In their grief, and using the last of their sorcery, the sisters empowered themselves with ritual magic and became fey creatures akin to the Ionian mythic Nereids.
The sisters usually don’t attack strangers, rather to use their guile and enchanting gaze to lure men to their lair, releasing them days late when they’d sated their lusts. But when their pet eels suffer attack and injury, the sisters become enraged and lash out at the heroes, misunderstanding their true nature. The eels and one of the sisters were slain, and Ho Po retreated, now forever bitter towards all men, humans or otherwise. She makes the river crossing difficult, but eventually the group crosses, at the cost of only two drowned horses.
Banlak has another journal entry – Linked below. Check out the next log entry for the further adventures of the Wheelbreakers as they traverse Across Adversarial Territory.