Oni no Snowflower (The Ki-Rin’s Shadow)
When the Moto entered the Shadowlands and become the Dark Moto they brought thousands of horses with them. The horses that didn’t end up becoming food for something became onikage. Kuni scholars have wondered for centuries what would have happened had Utaku warhorses been among their numbers. The following journal was recently discovered in the Twilight Mountains.
The twentieth day of the month of Doji:
It has been ten years since my beloved Tetsuo set off with Moto Tsume into the land of Shadow and did not return. My sisters tell me to forget him, that he is dead. But how can I forget my childhood friend, the man I would have married if they had let us, the man I love? I know he’s alive, I feel it. Now I need to find a way to protect myself and Snowflower from the taint when we enter the Shadowlands to prove it.
The twenty-third day of the month of Doji:
The blind monk has taught me a ritual which will protect Snowflower and I from the Shadowlands Taint. Losing Tetsuo almost broke me, losing the other half of my soul, my Snowflower would finish the job. Tomorrow we leave for Crab lands.
The fourth day of the month of Shiba:
We’ve reached the edge of the mountains. Tomorrow we set of into the Shadowlands proper, it’s time to enact the ritual. The monk said I must summon a small spirit from the realm of tricksters and bribe it to protect us from the Taint. The old man said that the creature would only take a piece of someone name, their soul. I explained what would be required to Snowflower and she agreed to let me use hers. With luck, the next time I write we will have rescued my beloved Tetsuo from the Shadowlands.
Summoned the spirit… it wasn’t a trickster, it was an oni. Gave it Snowflower’s name. It stepped into Snowflower. They became one. Snowflower, my companion since she was a foal, my warsteed, grew a golden horn like she was a ki’rin. I thought her beautiful. Then she stabbed me with the horn, the gold flaked off into the wound. I am weak, poison in my veins. I will die soon, I know it.
I was a fool. Tetsuo is dead… I join him soon. I have damned Snowflower. Forgive me.
Oni no Snowflower was once an Utaku warsteed until her mistress gave her name to an oni. Though Utaku steeds are no human their souls are descended from those of Shinjo’s children. While their names are not strong enough to give an oni the power of an Oni Lord they do allow the oni who has been gifted the name to enter Ningen-do. Oni no Snowflower resembles an Utaku warsteed. She is light brown in color with a white patch on her left side that is shaped like a flower. Her black tail and mane are long and flow freely. They appear to sparkle with flecks of gold. She has a sharp golden horn projecting from the center of her forehead that seems to shed sparkling golden dust. It is this poisonous dust that makes her tail and mane sparkle. Her rock-hard black hooves spark when she crosses hard surfaces and are extremely sharp. It is said that Oni no Snowflower can command onikage and that she can fly, but scholars are not certain if either of these is true.
Attack: Hoof 10k5 (Simple), Gore 10k5 (simple), or Trample 10k6 (Complex)
Damage: Hoof 8k4, Gore 7k3+Poison, Trample 10k5
Armor TN: 25
Wounds: 128: Dead
Poisoned Horn: The Ki-Rin’s Shadow’s horn is coated in a flakey golden poison that resembles the gold leaf that jewelers use to decorate artwork. When Oni no Snowflower gores an enemy with her horn, some of this poison is left behind in the wound. Introduction of the golden poison into the bloodstream reduces the target’s Agility, Reflexes, and Stamina by 1 each round after the target is wounded. At the beginning of the second and each subsequent round, the target may make a Stamina Roll (TN 25) to prevent suffering additional penalties for that round. Otherwise, these penalties continue to accrue until the target succeeds on three consecutive rolls, the poison is treated, 10 rounds pass or the target dies. If the target’s Stamina is reduced to 0 by the poison, his Earth and Wounds become 0 as well, and the victim dies. Reduced Traits return at the end of 24 hours if the victim survives.
Ki-Rin’s Determination: Oni no Snowflower has the determination of the Ki’rin, she suffers no wound penalties until she is slain.
Sky-Dance: The Ki-Rin’s Shadow can not fly like the creature she is named for, but she can take to the sky in her own way. Oni no Snowflower can leap half as far as she could move in a round (when she does so she may reach a maximum height equal to half of her movement as well so long as she has a running start), allowing her to avoid many of the obstacles within the Shadowlands and to escape from some of her more determined foes.
Empress of the Onikage: Onikage instinctively obey Oni no Snowflower and she may mentally command any onikage within thirty feet of her to perform any action she wishes and they will obey willingly.
Fear 4 (6 when charging).