Mei Feng panted. The air in the tunnels was close. Not hot, but stale… old. She had dodged Shenlong’s pursuit, by weaving a convoluted route. Sidling left, lunging right, taking a circuitous route to the ritual site. The ritual… the shape of it was emblazoned in her mind. She had studied it for weeks. The orange-hewed stone pulsed in her satchel. She could feel its warmth rhythmically touching the small of her back as she ran. It was a powerful thing. Mei feared it as much as she had hope for what it might unlock.
The monks had spanned out, searching the web-like tunnels. To the uninitiated their movements were random, but subtle hand signals, gentle wall touches to mark their course, and their almost silent hisses and grunts ensured their coordination. Shenlong was in the centre of this orchestrated hunt. His near imperceptible signalling kept the monks on course. Whatever Mei Feng had snatched from beneath the Honeypot would soon be claimed for the Oyiban.
In our last game, Mei Feng narrowly won in a rapidly flowing fight through the sewers. This time we were playing with the Corrupted Ley Lines strategy, which gave a great opportunity to refine the narrative. What was the mysterious ‘lodestone token’ mentioned in the strategy? In this game I imagined Mei Feng needing to draw a mystical symbol by moving the item along a path underground. The location had been carefully chosen. Shenlong didn’t know what she was up to, but disrupting her plans is what he was ordered to do.
Again we’re using the Dungeons & Sewers terrain from the Grinning Gargoyle. We opted not to use schemes and stick to a 35SS game, as we were under a bit of time pressure.
The model carrying the lodestone token can’t be placed, so I’d have to use the strategy-specific ‘throwing’ rules combined with my ‘Ride the Rails’ to play a Kung Fu-influenced game of American Football in the sewers of Malifaux! As the opponent can’t turn off a ‘claimed’ strategy marker, my plan was simple. Get them claimed in Turns 1 to 4, and let the scoring happen on Turns 2 to 5.
In order to enact my plan I needed to play Mei Feng aggressively. I put her put her out front to engage the lodestone carrier from Shenlong’s crew. This worked and slowed Gavin’s plans a bit. I somehow managed to keep her alive as well!
The game then became a scramble for turning on the ley markers. It involved efficient activations and careful positioning, and culminated in Mei Feng trying to prevent Shenlong in turning on the final marker. They ended up facing each other…
This was an epic bit of punch and counterpunch, kick and counter kick, but ultimately Shenlong was able to do what needed to be done. The game ended in a 4:4 draw.
So? Did the ritual succeed? What will be the effect? Will it add to the power of the Hungering Darkness or reduce it? We’ll find out in the next game…
Until next time,