Not really the lowest of the low!
They occupy many niches in society that either Free Workers or Bayaran
will- or can-not do. The most apparent of these niches are maids and butlers,
handmaidens, field hands and hard laborers. Since they have no rights
beyond 'shall be fed, clothed and sheltered in a humane way', they are
placed in jobs according to their ability, rather than their want. If
they are Owned by a Breeder, they are both more and less miserable than
assumed. Some Slaves aren't miserable at all, and their duty to their
Lords are genuine, if the Permanent Bond status was ever removed and no
one new could become a Slave beyond those already there and their offspring,
this attitude would most likely pervade the Status.
Fertile female Slaves are much sought after, and used to the utmost of their ability to bear. Unfortunately, they rarely get to live with their own children, since those are Owned as well, usually by the Breeder. These women must be treated with care, by law, for if they are abused in any manner by the Breeder they will be freed. Period. Breeders take many precautions to make them happy, though whether they are or not is always a matter of personality.
Children are mostly raised by their birth mothers, depending on their
Breeding - some of level 4 or above may be removed before they know who
their mother is, but some are carefully placed with 'professional mothers'
to allow them an environment of caring before they are pushed out into
Mutant Slaves are also prized, for their abilities as well as their high
market value. However, as will be described below, being a mutant isn't
what everybody makes it out to be.
Slaves do not have any recourse against abuse, other than the Breeder's
women. As any Owner will tell you, their property is theirs to do with
as they see fit. Simple offenses by the Slave, such as arguing or refusal
of duties can be dealt with on an individual level, but larger crimes
such as escaping repeatedly or physical attacks on anyone can result in
death or mutilation. It was stated before that Zekirans do not believe
in capitol punishment, but that only applies to Free Citizens, not Slaves.
'In a humane manner' means health care included, and any injuries occurring
while a Slave is working shall be taken care of promptly. Owners who do
not comply with these standards will have their stock removed.
Slaves' logo is that of a simple circle, that's all. Obviously, there ought not to be an Earthly equivalent to Slaves, but you know there are people who would disagree.
Not all Slaves start their lives this way. Many of them have been Permanently Bonded by their debts in adulthood, but some have been Slaves for generations. It will be these generation-servants which I will address primarily. It is rare to see a Permanently Bonded person who really loves their new Status.
A Slaves' life usually starts at the bidding of their Lord. When Naturally
born Slaves come into the world, they are often prized more than those
who must be Bred: they come as a surprise and they are cost-free to the
Lord, that's reason to celebrate.
When one is Bred, however, there is an equal chance that they will never
know one or even both of their true parents. In either case, Slaves are
treated pretty much like everyone else when they are younger than ten
Like all children, Slaves are taught to read, write, and do simple math.
They are usually offered this education right alongside other children
of their age, if their Lord has a child in the house and doesn't feel
it inappropriate. Many children of Owners grow up with their own Slaves,
treating them like the other half of a family unit, reinforcing the generational
ties they have. Some are completely removed from the setting, however,
and taught at schools designed to do nothing else. They may get additional
teaching when they are old enough, some for betting on races or area knowledge
for doing simple communication jobs, or even other higher Status professional
Usually, though, a child Slave is going to have to learn to labor. Most
Slaves are on farms, in heavy machine shops doing repetitive work, or
serving their Lords directly as butlers, maids or sex toys. Far more often
than not, when a Slave is able to display talents or strengths in certain
areas, a Lord will place them in a proper job for their ability rather
than let them go to waste: why pay someone high wages if they can put
a Slave in that backhoe?
UnBred Slaves comprise most of the basic work force on a farm or shop.
They tend to be strong and healthy but poor in their social skills, mostly
because they are not encouraged to be so. Those with higher Breeding often
have personalized educations and jobs geared to them specifically. Lené
Rosh runs a Breeding House which specializes in personal attendants who
are pretty to look at, soft to the touch, and fiercely loyal to their
Lords, hence they make perfect body guards or sex toys (or very often,
Most Slaves who are kept by their Owners after birth get to remain with
their parents or mother specifically until they are older. Bred Slaves,
however, may not. They are cared for either by their mother alone, or
even by surrogates who are professionals. Usually Slaves themselves, these
women have training which allows them to care for multiple children even
when they are not fertile themselves. This valuable skill is prized, if
they were to be making money at their job, these "professional moms"
would be Holding high and often. They instill a feeling of belonging at
the same time as a Slave's detachment. Most children who have been nurtured
by professional mothers know they are not with their own mothers, but
it seems to matter less when they are getting care at all.
After ten years of age, or when the child individually is ready to serve,
they are put into a job, trained (hopefully) and able. Some farms are
tended by not only the Owner's Slaves, but those in the neighboring farms
when needed. It is at these times when Slaves develop friendships and
loves, or enemies. When a Slave child is sold before they are 10 years
old, however, they often develop more slowly in those types of relationships.
Slaves are encouraged to become friends within their Owner's stock, mostly.
When cross-Lord Slaves meet it can complicate their lives too much, sometimes
too much to bear. It is not uncommon for Slave lovers to be prevented
from marrying, but rarely for them to be prevented from Breeding.
When Slaves and Lords fall in love, it can be a scandal, it can be disastrous,
but it can be the best thing the world has ever seen. Viridia and her
Slave Torin were such a pair, nearly 500 years before the present timeline.
They produced some of the most important lines of people around today,
among them Paveh, Rhiin, Tiir, Mirage and even Alabaster and Sengihr.
When Viridia died, Torin Inherited most of her Estate. He also inherited
her wishes to see the Breeding lines continue into the next centuries,
and he eventually became a well-known High Holder in his own right by
delivering on his promise to his Lady Wife, that he would make sure their
lines were the best and the brightest.
Alternately, when the wrong Lord falls for the wrong Slave, things go
poorly for both. Eshy, born as a young Vanya Sengihr was first able to
use his Breeding skills, had been Bonded and then Slaved to her Lord Micri.
Micri shared land with one Lord Mo-Daren, who attached to her with leech-like
desire. Neither Eshy or Micri was particularly fond of Mo-Daren, and it
was when he attempted to steal her from Micri's farmstead (when she was
still only a Bayaran) that she voluntarily Lowered into Slavery to avoid
his clutches. Disgusted by the thought of marrying a Slave, Mo-Daren finally
stopped trying for her attentions, and eventually died. Eshy was Raised
to FreeWorker three days later, and still works for Micri, happily - and
For some Slaves, it is status in itself to be seen with their Lord or
Lady. To some, it is eternal shame. The Owner greatly determines the attitude
of the Slave. Treated well, as anyone, a Slave would gladly perform tasks
for their Lord. Treated poorly, they must grudgingly go along with it.
Socially, it can be seen through the condition and attitude of their Slaves
what kind of person a Lord really is. Smiling, laughing Slaves who run
to their Owner at the smallest nod are often the product of a successful,
mild Owner. Ones who are sullen, argumentative or seen to be bruised clearly
come from less kind Owners.
Slaves in general have little to no recourse against any abuse they might
sustain. Frequent visits to the doctor or clinic can result in suspicion
and low respect, but there is little that others can do in most cases,
to prevent physical or even mental abuse. In the case of Breeding females,
of course, this is vastly different. A beaten, pregnant Slave is going
to be Freed if she is taken in too many times. It is very hard to hide
bruises from Breeders, and many of them actually look for such things
when they can. Happily, however, these cases are uncommon and easily taken
Their sisters are less likely to be big-strong types, but are quite often
called upon to do the same work with less social reward. This is one of
the rare cases of sexual inequity, and of course it seems to balance out
the other side of the Breeding case.
Slaves are called upon to do hazardous tasks when they are able, however
this is slowly changing due to Breeder's intervention. There are many
custom-Bred or 6th Degree creations running around these days whose only
tasks are to exist where others cannot. Many of them started out Slaves,
or became them after childhood.
To disobey the Lord is forbidden in many Cities, to do so in public is
often considered an outrage, and punishable as the Owner sees fit: anywhere
and any time that the Lord's word is ignored or argued, their wrath can
be heard. Disobeying a clearly insane Lord can be forgiven; talking back
or (more often misinterpreted) attempting to explain why the request is
not appropriate may also be punishable but when others above Bayaran status
are present their word may have quite a bit of sway if there is a legal
It is usually a good idea for a Slave to know who their Lord's friends
and enemies are, as early as possible in their relationship. For any Lord
or HighMaster can order a Slave, to disobey is not necessarily a crime
if it is not the Slave's personal Lord, but it can be very dangerous to
do so. Alternately, of course, it can be deadly to answer fully, it can
be disaster to tell on the Lord to his deepest enemies.
It is one of the ways that Slaves amuse themselves, some High Owners
would say, to purposefully give away secrets to the enemies of their Lords
while they are themselves most trusted. While it is uncommon for a Slave
to truly have a mean streak (such as High Holders or Owners have?) sometimes
they have been known to get themselves into a position of authority bending
an enemy ear now and again. When they can do so safely, that is. Some
Slaves have even gone so far as to have themselves be sold off to anyone
else, so they may eventually become Freed by the conspiring Holders...
Information is costly, on Zekira, and even Slaves know that.
This mess is complicated by Breeder's rights. A Slave, Ximanh, has a
child, Jix, who later is tested to be Animal Tuned for Psionics. Her Breeder
Raises her to Animal Master status, and keeps the mother at Slave. Years
later, after many attempts by Jix to convince the Breeder to Raise her
mother (she does after all have many of the same mutations), the Breeder
Johan dies, and Jix buys her mother... Then Raises her to Bayaran, which
she works off quite quickly. By the way, Johan the Breeder was Jix's father
too. Complicated enough?
Slaves do not always have to remain by their Lord's side. Many personal
attendants or those who have work that requires it are allowed to move
about their local city or area to do chores, buy items for their Lord
or even themselves. In these conditions, the Slave MUST wear their Status
pin as a form of identification: to hide it is to break nearly every City,
Land or Area law there is. Some Owners offer their Slaves a stipend to
spend on themself or get them gifts at the Year's Turn events, or others
stubbornly give them whatever they feel like handing out of the generosity
of their pockets. Slaves may often be left in charge of locales which
their Lord cannot maintain, such as Vanya and his Inheritance of Snow
in Emer, where not only do the Slaves run and maintain the house and grounds,
but they've pretty much become the only inhabitants of that place from
around '390 until the mid '450s! In cases like these, the Slaves are given
limited access to the Lord's business and credit accounts, and their purchases
are directly accountable by the world network. Unusual spending equals
immediate response. These Slaves are often the most independent and self-reliant
of people, and they are fairly common among Breeders' stock.
Slaves are legally meant to be sheltered and fed, educated and cared
for properly by their Owners. Most times, this is the case. They get a
room or share one with other Slaves - or even share their Lord's room.
They usually eat before or after their Lord (while making dinner, or after
the Lord is finished), they are clothed normally by the same means as
children are bought clothing: they are brought along and told that they'd
look fine in this last year's fashion disaster. They receive health care
when they are ill at the expense of the Owner.
Sometimes, rarely, an Owner will neglect their Slaves, forget to actually
buy shoes, forget that the heat doesn't work in the Slave's Quarters any
longer. Forget that teeth rot out, that injuries on the field can prevent
a person from ever working again. If a Breeder sees this, they usually
go to the local authorities and report it. Some deal directly with the
Owner, often bringing the injured or sickly Slaves in and confronting
the Lord. Most often this doesn't work, or works badly for the Slaves.
How could they get so dirty? How many times do they have to be told to
sew up those clothes?
But sometimes it goes differently altogether. When Slaves decide to escape
their Lord, when things are either so bad there that they feel they must
leave or die, when they have a goal which must be attended to at the expense
of their Status, they try to escape.
Life for an escaped Slave is terrible, to say the least, unless they
can pass themselves off as someone else, moving through society with powers
or charm. They may be able to manipulate people's memories, so they are
forgotten when they pass by, they may be ignored or unknown as yet another
faceless Slave in the crowd, few people actively remember faces unless
there is something dramatically different about them. Once a Slave has
escaped and been noticed as such, the word immediately goes out to the
Hard Stock Network. It is perfectly acceptable to hunt down Slaves, most
often to simply bring them back to their Owner. If they must be captured
more than once or twice, however, they may actually be punished by the
authorities before their Owner gets to them.
If they manage to get out of the clutches of both the Authorities and
their Lord, they are immediately considered Renegade, and that means death,
usually, will follow them. Some Renegade Slaves still live in the Kiran
deserts, making their meager living among the rocks and dunes. Some day,
if they are found out, they most likely will be awarded Land Holder status,
since they've been on the land they are on for quite some time. But by
their very nature, Zekirans need to live in social areas, they need the
contact of even an abusive Lord, and it is hard to live anywhere without
Most Slaves do not think about running away, however. Those who live
with High Holders or High Owners are often very prized, if they are Bred
well and reflect the tastes of the Lord or Master. Who would want to run
away when there are parties to attend? When you can be seen with your
Lady and the rest of her entourage? When you stand a chance of being singled
out by a Breeder at those parties, or at a race, and perhaps you might
even be bought by someone and Raised?
Old Slaves tend to be mellower than all the others, or sometimes just
the bitter, silent type. They have little to look forward to unless their
Owner is kind enough to retire them and offer them a sort of "grandmother"
spot in the family. Token jobs such as simple cleaning or kitchen care,
stables or Steed work which doesn't require much effort, gardening, these
things may be the reward of a long, long Slave life. When a Slave dies,
particularly an old one, even their Owner mourns. They are usually put
to rest wherever the family or Owner decides, but there are interment
places for any Status if no one cares.
The life of a Slave is not always sweet, but it doesn't have to be bitter, either.
Slave Game Information
Who Owns You... An Owner, obviously
Where You Are...
What You Do...
How Breeding Has Affected You...
What is expected out of you as a Slave:
How You Can Become Merely Bayaran...
Keshtel and Havish Sengihr. Sold by Vanya to another Breeder who abused their terraforming abilities for decades until they were bought back from her and Raised to Free Worker. They spent the last years of their lives taking care of the grounds of the Inheritance of Snow in Emer, cared for by Vanya's other Slaves. Irony runs very strong in this family... They have 'twin cousin' children, each sired a daugher in twins, Sarasvati and Lahkshmi are higher status.