Merging the cunning machinations of a gang leader with the ruthless efficiency of a despot, this warlord of Yung Zhi pulls the strings of everyone who seeks power in her City.

by Ali May Sang (the Librarian)
featuring passages from the High Plains Samurai Core Rulebook

Yung Zhi is a City unlike any other in the One Land, a statement personified in its warlord. An elderly woman known only as Xang, her past is cloaked in mystery and there are few who feel they truly know anything about her. Rumours abound of a former prostitute who slew her pimp and seized control of his entire operation before taking over one of the Seven Families; others speak of the mute widow of a notorious gangster who rose to power after removing her husband from the picture. This lack of clear details continues to this day as many who live within the Shell, Yung Zhi’s impoverished outer ring, do not even know she is the big boss. Yet when she needs to make a statement and ensure everyone remembers her grip on power, the message is heard loud and clear.

A slight woman of middle age, Xang dresses in traditional clothes and moves about slowly in her day-to-day activities. It is rare for her to speak; she normally uses interpreters to speak for her as she whispers in their ear. Yet when she does choose to strike (and always before her enemies can even consider making their first move), she is as nimble and as dangerous as a mountain cat.

Ruling an entire City for a decade, even if your focus remains only on the upscale neighbourhoods, requires a crafty mind. This is what made Xang such an excellent choice for the position when she was chosen by the seven major crime families in Yung Zhi, and this is why she remains there today. She also has an uncanny ability to control the gangs like puppets dancing on a stage for children. On an almost daily basis, she plays her underlings like chess pieces on an unseen board, pitting them against each other so that they are far too busy struggling to keep peace with each other to threaten her rule. Sometimes this calls for open warfare between some of the gangs, sometimes between all Seven Families. Most of the time, only a few deaths are required to send the message. Such violence is what keeps new blood and fresh ideas moving into the Pearl.

Perhaps the most intriguing mystery is why Xang took in Bolo, a former lieutenant in Black Scorpion’s Desert Sun Gang, as her second-in-command. As the warlord with the least concern towards the bandit leader and her growing reputation among the downtrodden, bringing Bolo into her inner circle has caused a lot of gossip and concern for her leadership style as the stoic man with the iron fists has never belonged to any of the Seven Families and would assume the throne should Xang perish. Another secret in a long line of mysteries, it seems.