Usurper!

Usurper! – Attempt 3, Part 3

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Alright, this is getting serious.  I’ve arrived at Irsmuncast, and I have a sneaking suspicion that I’m not going to be made Overlord by mere popular acclaim.

I suppose this ain’t American Idol.

Then again, thank goodness, because I can’t hold a tune.

In a gesture of humility, I enter the city humbly, barefoot.  All that’s missing is the surfboard.

I walk through the gates, and notice (with apparent disapproval) that many of the inhabitants and soldiers are orcs and halvorcs.  There’s a bit of obvious racial implication to my observations, but I let that slide.  More importantly, the guards at the entrance gate are commanded by a priest wearing the symbols of Nemesis, the Supreme Principal of Evil (ominous organ chord!).

I nevertheless slip into the city unnoticed at the changing of the guard.

Naturally enough, I decide to look for the Temple to Kwon, but I don’t have a signal on my IPhone, meaning I can’t rely on GPS.  I reach what appears to be a park, with paths to the north and east, while noticing booths of fortune-tellers and other hustlers.

I walk along the east road, because this part (at least) I remember from my previous attempts at the book.  I stroll into another park, where the various slides, swings and roundabouts are marred by torture wheels, which bear bodies of worshippers of Dama (the goddess opposite to Honoric’s Vasch-Ro) and Kwon.  A sign describing them as ‘Traitors’ sits above them.

Avenger notes that it ‘seems’ that they have died for opposing the Usurper.

Gee, you think?!!

I walk past these bodies and find the monastery dedicated to Kwon.  I show my birthmark (on my thigh, remember!) to the monk at the entrance and am ushered in to see the Grandmaster.

Oh, I’m sorry, “High Grandmaster”.

I guess someone’s a little insecure.

I show the High Grandmaster my birthmark and my father’s seal. He acknowledges that I may be able to deliver him and the other people from the rule of the Usurper, and gives me the local gossip on the city of Irsmuncast.  In summary :

  • The cruel Usurper (who apparently doesn’t have an actual, you know, name) has terrorised the people since my father’s death.
  • Half of everything earned / grown by farmers is taken as taxes to feed the army of orcs and halvorcs.  I guess we’re about to experience a debate regarding progressive taxation, along with budgetary considerations concerning national defence.
  • For anyone to get married, they must get a permit, with worshippers of the ‘good’ gods, frequently rejected. This is a big deal, because ‘bastards’ cannot inherit their parents’ property.
  • Crippling taxes are imposed on all save those who worship Nemesis.  How this is enforced is open to question.  Does attending temple on Sundays give you a ‘tax free’ token, or is there another identifying sign I should know about?

In summary, he pledges me the temple’s support but, as the temple doesn’t have a ninja tradition, I’ll need to seek out support elsewhere for my uprising.  Apparently merely promising a more equitable tax policy won’t be enough.

Essentially I will need to win over several of the non-aligned power bases in the city.  They are :

  • The Temple dedicated to the god Time, which is exempt from tax and maintains a neutral approach to everything.
  • The merchants, being the equivalent to Wall Street merchant bankers.  They are led by ‘Golspiel of the Silver Tongue’ and have many mercenaries at their beck and call.
  • The Temple to Dama, the ‘shield-maiden of the Gods’. who present as a bunch of Amazons, if Amazons wore full plate armour and kicked ass with swords.
  • Finally there are the blue-collar working class, described in the book as the ‘rabble’ and dispossessed.  It is mentioned that they comprise ‘over half’ of the city, so I guess it would be mathematically incorrect to call them the 99%.

The monks of the temple heal my wounds, which would be awesome if Dore hadn’t already done that on the way to the city.  But thanks for trying.

I pray at the temple to Kwon, and regain Inner Force (although I am already on maximum – again, thanks for nothing, book).

I have the option of visiting various taverns / pubs to obtain information, but I think I’ll sip my scotch and consider my options before leaving tomorrow.

Stats : Endurance : 20, Punch Modifier : +2, Kick Modifier: +3, Throw Modifier : 0, Fate Modifier : +1, Inner Force : 5

Awesome names : Golspiel of the Silver Tongue tells you everything you need to know.

 

 

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