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Rethinking Marriage in the Realm

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  • Thanks.

    I was just making the point that, yeah, he's really old, but some people live a long time. He's the example of a DB who's lived way beyond average without any overtly magical methods of life-extension (though I do imagine he took anagathics), and so is as unhealthy as a human who's lived way beyond average. Not an example of an average lifespan, essentially.

    So, I suppose living a long time has made him pay a terrible price, but it's the terrible price of losing your health which everyone who lives a long time has to pay.

    (Incidentally, has anyone else done plot with Ragara trying to get his youth back now that his ambition, which he'd long given up on, is within his grasp once more? Because I've used it and my friend used it in his game, and I wonder if this is a common thing.)
    Last edited by The Wizard of Oz; 12-30-2017, 09:05 AM.


    "Wizard of Oz, you really are a wizard!"

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    • There are a decent number of people who remain physically and mentally robust well into their nineties, and some who are struggling starting from their sixties.

      Variations in lifestyle, diet and underlying biology are too diverse to make a generalisation like that.

      As I recall factors of senile dementia, it tends to have an onset early enough that exactly how long you spend as an elderly person is kind of irrelevant; it doesn't constitute some kind of instance of your body being too past its sell-by date.


      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
      Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
      https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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      • While Mnemon was physically in her late teens in 2e, my understanding was that the devs (at least the previous set of devs) were changing that in 3e, and she'd now match her 1e depiction from Aspect Book: Earth -- "Mnemon is still young for all her years. She resembles a 30-year-old woman with waist-length red hair, violet eyes and full lips." 3rd core only says that she "will soon celebrate her 400th birthday and is still in her prime."
        Last edited by Verzio; 12-30-2017, 04:02 PM.

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        • Well, fair enough then. It does make sense that she'd make her physical age basically the same as the Empress', considering how important she finds it to appear as her natural successor (should that ever become necessary), and I remember the Scarlet Empress being physically around 30.

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          • I don't think it's supposed to be something deliberately chosen in character so much as the idea that Mnemon can still come across as youthful without if needing to be yet another example of idealising (and possibly sexualising) teenage.


            I have approximate knowledge of many things.
            Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
            https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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            • Originally posted by Seagull View Post
              I wonder how long the history of misandry is in the Realm. I think there were some implications in previous editions (when they bothered to mention it) that it was a tool of the Empress or somehow paired with her rise. I could certainly see that time span indoctrinating mortals, but isn't 768 years a bit short for such a bias to be really baked into people with an average 250-300 year lifespan?
              I don't have time to scour my books but there are definitely implications that the Shogunate was not matriarchal. The history of the Realm's founding includes examples of men refusing to accept the Empress in the early days of her rule; that her rivals seem to always be men carries implications to me. For example on the first day after the Imperial Proclamation she receives an offer of marriage from one of her vassals Araka Jeresh that was "...a condescending reassurance that Jeresh would be happy to assist the Empress in upholding the burdens of power, which were clearly too heavy for her." There's also Nefvarin's refusal to recognize her authority, her eldest son Ragara's attempt to secure his position as heir to the Empire, Manosque Viridian's rebellion to conquer her Empire, and in 3E Tepet's rebellion as well.

              Originally posted by Blaque View Post
              Ragara is about 500 but he is also exceptional. Generally, the heads of households or major organiztations (Ragara Baghwei is also about 400) can get old, but notably no one is actually as old as Her Redness in this, and there's a lot of folks who seem to have their own marraige norms about. (Baghwei is single as I gather, House founders are also unmarried from my gathering).
              A correction: both Sesus and Ledaal "married young and frequently and produced a great many children of their own" (Exalted: The Dragonblooded, page 27 under "The Dynasty Grows"). I don't think there's any reason to suspect that most House founders would follow Mnemon's example of remaining unmarried when expanding their families, which to my reading is presented as exceptional. Even the Empress married four times.

              Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
              (Incidentally, has anyone else done plot with Ragara trying to get his youth back now that his ambition, which he'd long given up on, is within his grasp once more? Because I've used it and my friend used it in his game, and I wonder if this is a common thing.)
              Although it's largely unimportant to our current chronicle we've decided that Ragara is the 5-dot mentor to the current governor of Chaos prefecture, Ragara Nova. Their relationship is somewhat inspired by the friendship of Denny Crane and Alan Shore on Boston Legal, minus the comedy; Ragara might be senile but he's still crafty and eager to pass on wisdom to a protege with different values.

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              • Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
                (Incidentally, has anyone else done plot with Ragara trying to get his youth back now that his ambition, which he'd long given up on, is within his grasp once more? Because I've used it and my friend used it in his game, and I wonder if this is a common thing.)
                Can't deny, moment a DB character of mine learned of peaches of immortality he made a bunch of convoluted deals to get one that he gave to Ragara, exactly because it would throw all the Realm Civil War's build up around its ear. What Ragara actually saw through and so decided not to resume house leadership, turn into a monk, go in spiritual pilgrimage and to wait it out while everybody else wore themselves out and maybe then come as a compromise sucessor. Because our ST was a cagey bastard.
                Last edited by Baaldam; 12-31-2017, 12:24 PM.

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                • Originally posted by Shinjo View Post
                  I don't have time to scour my books but there are definitely implications that the Shogunate was not matriarchal. The history of the Realm's founding includes examples of men refusing to accept the Empress in the early days of her rule; that her rivals seem to always be men carries implications to me. For example on the first day after the Imperial Proclamation she receives an offer of marriage from one of her vassals Araka Jeresh that was "...a condescending reassurance that Jeresh would be happy to assist the Empress in upholding the burdens of power, which were clearly too heavy for her." There's also Nefvarin's refusal to recognize her authority, her eldest son Ragara's attempt to secure his position as heir to the Empire, Manosque Viridian's rebellion to conquer her Empire, and in 3E Tepet's rebellion as well.
                  While that might be the case, I should caution that evidence from 1e and 2e can lead you to conclusions that the writers never intended, if you followed book examples men absolutely dominated non-hereditary positions in the Realm.



                  Assorted homebrew goes here.
                  Please help the Ex3 wiki grow. Even if it's just posting existing homebrew there so there's less chance of losing it.

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                  • I'm not totally sure that any of the writers considered whether the Shogunate was matriarchal to be honest - I'm not totally sure when the Realm's matriarchy even emerged in print - I had a quick flip through of Exalted: The Dragon-Blooded and couldn't immediately spot any reference, nor in MoEP: DB. So it may be that they didn't have any reason to think about the question.

                    MoEP : DB does discuss Lookshy Gentes being led by a matriarch or patriarch, so there's at least that reason to suspect that, to the degree they inherit the Shogunate, they could have maintained a lack of a gender bias there as a custom.

                    (Incidentally a few sections on Dynast marriages, excerpted from MoEP: DB I briefly came across, for interest or contrast, page 22:

                    DOWRIES - Dowries are uncommon in the Realm, because any marriage of Dynast to Dynast is considered an arrangement of two equals, and money is not needed to balance the transaction. A dowry is necessary when a marriage is made between two unequal parties: a Dynast and a mortal. This happens most often when two children from Dynastic Houses are promised to each other at an early age and one fails to Exalt. Marriages are only rarely arranged between such young children for precisely this reason, and when they are, it’s almost always the product of an important political alliance. In circumstances where a dowry is necessary, the money is meant to soothe the pride of the Dragon-Blood’s family and compensate for the decreased likelihood of the marriage producing Exalted. Depending on which Dynastic House and which patrician family are involved, even a single such dowry can effectively bankrupt even an unusually wealthy patrician family.

                    ADULTERY - Seen as the perfect answer to the fact that Dynasts cannot marry the ones they love, adultery is a tacitly accepted fact of life in the Realm. Provided one does nothing to damage the illusion of a happy marriage with one’s spouse, there are few drawbacks worth mentioning. As long as nothing is done to damage the political
                    alliance embodied by the marriage, all is well. Extramarital affairs are quite common, almost to the point of being expected. As long as the participants in the tryst show proper discretion, most family scandals can be avoided. The first law of discretion, then, is that bastards are not tolerated.

                    A female Dynast who gets pregnant by a man other than her husband has three options. Ideally, she should take a strong draught of herbs to induce a miscarriage as early as possible. Failing that, she needs either to convince her husband that the child is his or, in dire straits, take a long leave of absence to travel or “to inspect family holdings in the Threshold.”

                    Male Dynasts have an easier time of it. As long as they quietly support their bastards out of their family stipend, they can usually keep enough distance from the child that no awkward questions ever come to light. Male Dynasts who leave a string of bastards in their wake, however, rapidly find their income stream sorely taxed and might have trouble affording the consequences of their dalliances
                    .
                    Last edited by Ghosthead; 12-31-2017, 04:55 PM.

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                    • Originally posted by Ghosthead View Post
                      I'm not totally sure when the Realm's matriarchy even emerged in print - I had a quick flip through of Exalted: The Dragon-Blooded and couldn't immediately spot any reference.
                      "Gender Roles" Exalted the Dragon-Blooded page 148. It was easily ignored and the "glass ceiling" didn't translate to the reality of the NPCs we were getting.
                      It caused a significant disconnect in the portrayal of the Realm, for example I'm pretty sure whoever created Tepet Lisara had internalised that sidebar and assumed there were lots of effective and competent female officers besides Tepet Ejava that an incompetent one would be unique and interesting but far from the gameline's reality where officers are almost always men.



                      Assorted homebrew goes here.
                      Please help the Ex3 wiki grow. Even if it's just posting existing homebrew there so there's less chance of losing it.

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                      • Oh, in the middle of the chargen. What a weird place for it. Thanks.

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