“Where do they get those marvelous toys” you ask. The other hero smiles, “I guess you have not been hooked up.” He hands you a card.
Maker of Devices for the Discriminating Operative
Hanging on the arm of a wealthy upper crust man, she was the perfect arm charm. But you swear, you have seen her before.
A hypercaffinated ball of technical investigation energy.
A mad doctor who dared defy the laws of the natural order, to transcend death itself, and the creature he created.
An quirky Gnome with little patience and much skill with a flame.
A sentient machine which churns out useless items, but may have a more important task. (actually an It).
Carmo keeps a shop in the backstreets of Erezi. It’s not often visited, Carmo makes people feel…uneasy. Even the veterans of the Erezi underworld are uncomfortable being alone with Carmo. But they need to buy their traps from somewhere…
The Jiangsi was the name of an undead being in Chinese folklore and mythology. Usually translated as zombie or vampire for Western palates, the Jiangsi was really neither. They appeared as simply risen, fresh corpses. They moved (peculiarly!) by hopping rather than walking, and sought out the living to suck the Qilife force from their victims.
Perhaps significantly more interesting than the Jiangsi itself, was the lore surrounding them. "Zombie wranglers", or "Corpse Herders", usually Daoist priests, were men tasked with delivering these undead beings back to their respective home towns. Tradition in China placed great importance and emphasis on the return of the dead to their homes and families, and thus the corpse herders came to be. By using magick words and talismans they would animate the dead, and by placing specially inscribed parchments of paper over the Jiangsi heads and faces, the corpse herders would be able to control the hopping corpses. Then like pied pipers, they would lead processions of subdued undead, across many miles, rhythmically chanting and ringing tiny bells.
Special inns were built across China to house these undead caravans, as the zombies could only travel by evening and night, the sun anathema to them. Rows of doors opening to barely a closet-space, lined the walls of these special establishments. Behind these doors, the corpses would be stored upright while the corpse herders rested in rooms.
The Jiangsi under the control of a corpse herder were quite harmless, merely hopping after him, silently and without complaint, for weeks and months. If however, the magicked parchment would somehow be removed from their faces, the creatures would immediately seek living humans to kill. Their thirst for Qi was unquenchable.
The job of a corpse herder was an interesting one to say the least.