Shadows of The City
The Jade Lady
Motivation: I’m the Jade Lady, and that’s all you need to know
Face of: Diyu
The Jade Lady
Capricious and Loving It; Tell Me Your Dreams; Time Is On My Side
Stunts, Powers, etc.
The Jade Lady is more of a plot device than an adversary. She’s someone you go around, not through. So providing stats for her is probably pointless. Assume she represents a minimum challenge of Superb (5) for Physical, Mental, and Social conflicts. Her magical skills are at least Fantastic (6).
The Jade Lady has been seen in Chinatown since the Great Earthquake, yet she remains an almost complete mystery. She is most often (though not always) associated with Diyu, the Chinese Underworld. She has been variously described as a guardian who protects the journeyer on his path; mistress of one (or more) of the hells, tormenting the journeyer in order to cleanse him of his sins; and a goddess who welcomes those who complete the journey. Outside of Diyu, she has been a benevolent protector, particularly of women; and also a capricious prankster, who enjoys leading people on wild goose chases around Chinatown.
Hang around in a mahjong parlor or tong hall for a while, and you’re likely to hear someone say they’ve had a wish granted by her. Or perhaps that someone they know was aided by her in some way. Or that someone they knew went looking for her, and never came back. Most Chinatown inhabitants agree that offerings of jade, peaches, or flowers left at entrances to underground passages are the best way to get her attention. This has led some to speculate that she is a servant or possibly daughter of Xi Wang Mu, the “Queen Mother of the West.” According to legend, XiWang Mu dwells in a palace in the snowy mountains of Kunlun, though some sources claim the castle is actually in a cave beneath the mountains. She also keeps a peach orchard. The trees bear fruit only once each 3,000 years, and anyone who eats one is granted immortality. In the same way, the Jade Lady is associated with Diyu, which is beneath the earth. She is always reported as a young woman. In other words, she doesn’t seem to age.
She is always dressed in a jade green robe and face paint similar to that worn in Chinese opera. Jade has a prominent place in Chinese mythology, and has long been associated with both longevity and immortality. All of this is just speculation, though. The Jade Lady isn’t granting interviews or writing tell-all books, as far as we know. And her goals, if any, are hers alone.