Fallen - Renegade, Rogue, Exile
Each worse than the last...
There are other ways to get around in Zekiran society, but none of them
pleasant. Renegade status is extremely rare, when any given person
from any Status commits a crime and has not been taken to court over it,
or has somehow escaped notice. Escaped Slaves or runaway Bayaran are the
most common Renegades, and they are not looked on happily when they are
captured. Any use of money or attempt to move through decent society might
tip off the authorities, so a Renegade must either be very careful or
able to somehow otherwise get by. They aren't able to hold any lands,
vote, or anything unless they can do it unseen and off-line. Renegades
might re-claim their former Status after they have been captured and can
prove they ought not to be punished, but most often they find themselves
doing hard labors and such for the rest of their lives.
A twist of the legal system however allows Renegades (usually Slaves)
to "wait it out", and Raise themselves directly to Free Land
Holder status. Since "squatting rights" are used to determine
who Holds any given land plot, if someone is "there before you"
they still Hold that land no matter how many times you insist otherwise.
If they can prove they've been there, it's theirs. So, a small number
of pocket-villages have formed across each Land, where Renegade Slaves
or Bayaran congregate. White Valley in Wo'ad is such a place. Somehow,
information about an Area's safe-zone is spread to Slaves. The tiny communities
form when a sort of underground railroad rescues an escapee - the people
in these change constantly and often meet a violent end. If these communities
last more than 20 years (individuals must remain there this long, not
just the ones who founded it) they are considered Held by those living
there. Since these communities are so small, hard to find, and so few
in number, if they go unnoticed for even longer than 20 years it's no
surprise. The only way to locate some of these spots is to be a Renegade
- but some bounty hunters have taken it upon themselves to locate them
too, with predictably nasty results.
Renegade characters should be created as typical Bayaran or Slaves.
Renegade life usually starts by being either a Slave or Bayaran and running
away from responsibilities. However, there are children being born to
those Renegades in the desert and out in the wilderness. The fact that
their parents chose to escape the regular life leads the Renegade child
to believe more in their own worth above and beyond what would have ever
been expected of them otherwise. (Thus, treat Renegade child characters
with a +10 Courage.) They often have little in the way of education -
or none at all regarding the "real life" of Zekirans in cities
- but they do get a strong set of skills to survive. (Treat as Education
35, Social Skill minus 15) Often, they learn tasks which they could easily
apply to getting a job settling or homesteading for people out in the
middle of nowhere. Farming, herbalism, construction, even swimming or
meteorology (of sorts) are all things that a Slave child otherwise only
learns when their Lord wants them to.
If the Renegade child's parents are captured, they are considered to
be Bayaran, not Owned, to the Lord who keeps their parents. There are
many other stipulations: how long the Renegades have been loose, if their
offspring is fertile and mutated, and how hard they fight for their freedom.
Most times, the Bond amount can be made up in the number of years that
their parents would have been considered free and clear (twenty years
in most zones).
If they are left to their own devices, Renegade Slaves do eventually
become Free Land Holders if they have escaped notice. They have options
at that point as well: they may choose to integrate back into society,
but many do not. Status free, or even Status ignorant, the un-titled enclaves
are gaining in legal circles as extremely problematic. If the small group
or even a pair of Renegades turned Land Masters refuse to play by Zekiran
law, they don't have to be forced. They are considered sovereign and can
make their own rules, and if they are close enough to normal Zekiran laws
for the Area or City zone nearby they may even be adopted as a sub-class.
This allows them to have jobs and make money, but not necessarily to vote
on anything other than their own community.
Self government is a rare but climbing idea for Zekiran cities, some
smaller townships have even taken to harboring Renegades and seeing the
results of their work. The easiest way to equate these communities is
to imagine Native American populations scattered in the USA but with full
sovereignty, money and social systems.
As of 10500 there are perhaps a total of 1400 Renegades and nearly a third of those are almost at their twenty-year mark. Most of them are completely unaccounted for, but some are mentioned in the history and local area sections.
Rusty is an example of the weird breeding of the White Valley Renegades. Though not bred officially, almost all the escaped Slaves that made up the original inhabitants of the hidden locale were in some way special. Rusty herself is a good example of how Renegades can progress into Holdings - she encouraged the others to begin trading and selling their rustic wares to those in Reant, allowing them to be discovered, and also allowing them to legally claim their Holdings!
Rogue status is a nearly invisible group of people, moving among
the populous without its consent nor its knowledge. People with unusually
strong mind control or clouding powers, those with shapeshifting, generally
anyone able to make people believe they have not seen them. You won't
hear about them in any newspapers or feeds, except in the most unlikely
of circumstances: invisible foe beats enraged Owner senseless while spectators
scatter... It's happened.
Rogues are of any prior Status, including both High Holder and Slave,
they may be criminal masterminds, psychopathic manipulators or anything
similar, and they are NOT recommended as player characters. They can be
right beside you, at this very moment, and you'd never know unless you
have powers beyond the normal ken. Caught? Exiled.
Rogue individuals are considered far more dangerous and when they are
known they are sought out. Those who are most sly and rely on their psionic
powers are rarely if ever caught - let alone discovered to exist at all.
It is nearly unheard of for a normal Rogue to have an easy life if they
are remotely known. There are often high rewards for Rogues, enough to
raise Slaves who turn them in or offer information that leads to their
capture. When they are captured, a Rogue is usually set upon by Hern Rats
or other guard beasts, and that is that.
Should a Rogue such as this sire a child (they're almost universally
male, the criminal sort of Rogue) their child is always considered the
mother's Status and only the most base information is taken about the
father in question. Rogue actions are rarely defensible in courts, and
it would be stupid of a woman to claim any kind of relation when she doesn't
There are cases of the opposite, but those are very odd indeed and can
be blamed on madness, mostly.
Viaan's people work a little more quietly, a bit more to the benefit of the world in general, and with some small amount of consent. She does have to deal with the children she wants - she must bear them after all. She does not rely on clones and massive artificial wombs like her father Etan does, and as such, she can be more mobile than one would think. While not Hyperfertile in the classic sense, Viaan can control her biology and therefore knows the right times for conception. There are upwards of 30 individuals with either of them at any time, during that four thousand year period. After that it becomes much more complex.
Demona is the result of Etan's breeding people under the radar. Her mother, Devotion, is Etan's daughter with the extremely annoying Avaur (whose father Zerrik helped house the Exile Jonbyer). Her father is Simon Sengihr, the genrehopper. She will eventually change sides, and patrol with the Viaan folk, but that doesn't happen for a long time.
Exile is the other official non-Status, the result of a person's
unconscionable crimes against other people. The kinder escape would normally
be to kill the subject, but that is not an option open to these criminals.
Exiled individuals have been completely stripped of their Status, Holdings,
money, and all identification. They are made to wander or survive as they
can, they cannot legally trade or have contact with anyone. People found
harboring these Exiled individuals are held responsible for it, often
with Exile themselves. Crimes which may lead to Exile include mass murder,
property damage in excess of a small amount, kidnapping and threat, or
Breeder crimes against their subjects. Usually an Exile is uniquely talented
in their special crimes. It is perfectly acceptable for someone to kill
an exile. They will never be allowed to hold any Status after exile has
Exile characters are not recommended for use by any player. They should
be considered NPCs and most often villains only. If for some reason the
player characters wind UP Exiled, that's another matter entirely...
Exiled individuals do not exist. Move along. No, really. The life of
an exile ought to simply end the moment they have passed through the City
Zone's border. Some of them survive even now, like Renegades, however
if they are caught within a City or anywhere that business or life is
going on, if they tread upon someone's land - no matter whose it is -
they are immediately suspect of any crimes which might have occurred there.
They are not treated like humans any more, and can be put to death the
way a rabid animal would.
Not a pretty sight. Exiles have absolutely no rights to anything that
a normal Zekiran citizen has, nothing at all. Even a Rogue who professes
to want to be reformed can have decent medical attention, and even get
a last meal if they're quite good about it. All Holds, benefits, money,
possessions and any Hard stock is completely divested. No contact is allowed
at all, so it is a wonder that any exiles at all decide to remain wandering
around the world, rather than taking their own lives.
Some exiles manage to keep some of their contacts even though to associate
with an exile can be punished with exile as well. In those cases, the
life of the exile can be quite cushy if a little lonely. The best way
to keep an exile is somewhere out of the way ... don't do what Zerrik
and his daughter Avaur did by keeping the exiled ex-Breeder Jonbyer in
their Emer estate's basement. (As shown below.) It's just not a good idea.
The infamous exile Jonbyer. Even up until he died, he
was an extremely charismatic man - dangerous more than almost any other
single individual has ever been in Zekiran history. Completely insane,
completely amoral. He was a Breeder, obsessed with perfection and perfect
obediance. He created Vanya. Now that explains some things, doesn't it?