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Tremere insubordination, how would a Regent punish a PC?

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  • Tremere insubordination, how would a Regent punish a PC?

    I had a PC who openly called the regent an idiot in the chantry while talking to his sire by cellphone (of course the Regent heard this). The chantry is from the House High Saturday, so are their residents except the PC who was recently transferred. Any ideas?

    -Saga

  • #2
    Have one eye put out by fire, submit to a second stage blood bond to sire and Regent.


    I seem to have acquired a site for running play by post games. This is unexpected and frightening and come watch either the glorious play or the magnificent train wreck:

    The Malkavian Madness Network

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    • #3
      Yeah, this sort of disrespect...in front of the person no less...is easily grounds for at least fire eye-gouging. One must remember that Kindred society is not like mortal society. You do not have the right to be rude, especially to an elder, and least of all against the Regent of the city. You can hate them as much as you like - it's expected really - but God help you if you let it slip, and in so blunt a manner. You'd be lucky not to get crucified for that.


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      • #4
        Is that it - just name calling that was overheard by the Regent? Insulting someone in public is much different than private. The former hurts discipline by undermining the authority of the person in charge and needs to be addressed publicly, the latter is only a private slight that should be avenged appropriately. It doesn't sound like the PC intended this to be overheard - which would put it in the public category - but something private that is overheard.

        Overreacting is typically a sign of weakness. So is pettiness. An overheard insult is on the low point unless it is apparent that the apprentice intends to do more than just privately insult. At this point, all the Regent should do is assert his authority and get the apprentice back on track in his proper role.

        If I was the Regent, this is what I would do.

        1) I would be very diligent at calling out any mistake during the normal Chantry meetings. Nothing that is not cause for rebuke (nothing petty), but typically there are things that managers let slide unless they intend to make an example. Well, cell phone boy is now the example. It's perfectly appropriate to have the Regent tell him directly that, "You're not very careful, and that puts the Chantry at risk. You need to learn to be more discrete. Loose lips sink ships."

        2) Be very clear to the other Tremere in the chantry that cell phone boy is not one of us. Telling the others - away from cell phone boy - that he is "not a team player", "under performer", "bad communicator". "not doing his job", etc. is all very vague and therefore defensible and lets the others know close association with him is cause for trouble. "Don't let his bad habits run off on you." The other apprentices will know they can step all over him if he's lower rank, or is open to be torn down if higher than them.

        3) Deny the learning of any more Thaumaturgy until he implements an appropriate corrective action plan to bring his "performance" up to speed.

        The goal here is for the apprentice to learn his place and wise up. If the apprentice does, then the small torments cease and everything goes back to normal.

        Knowing most PCs, that won't happen. Instead, the insubordination gets worse. At that point, the boss needs to call him into his office and have a real, direct talk. "You don't seem to realize this, but I'm the best friend you got here." He'll lay out how he'll need to change, and if not what the consequences will be - transfer to a real shitty chantry, being sent to Vienna, and other disciplinary measures appropriate to the Tremere. Regent likely asks one or more other apprentices to keep an eye out in case he does something stupid like go rogue or reveal clan/chantry secrets.

        if this was meant as a public insult, then skip straight to pulling the apprentice into the office.

        Torture and blood bonding is more likely to make the apprentice hate the Regent, not respect or fear him - certainly not in the long term, and anyone who has made Regent needs to be looking at the long term.

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        • #5
          I'm inclined to agree with Black Fox. Burning out the Tremere's eye would be unwise on the part of the Regent. That creates hatred in the character, a thirst for revenge, and in no way prevents the character from striking out at the Regent at some later date. If the Regent is really that angry and wants to make an example of the character, then just kill them, then at least the Regent hasn't opened himself up for revenge at some future date. From an out of character perspective, any severe punishment against a PC is likely to lead to the player wanting revenge as well and will likely become a major story arch in your chronicle, which you may or may not want.

          What I might have the Regent do is something more subtle. The Regent knows that one of his underlings doesn't respect him, maybe he should keep an eye on the neonate in question, looking for weaknesses, or errors, for more overt disloyalty. Not everything has to be handled publicly. If you can get a position of authority in the most ruthless Clan in existence, you likely know how to ruin an opponent without getting your hands dirty. Perhaps the Regent can subtly undermine the character's activities, make the character look foolish and lose status, maybe even get him killed or terribly hurt in some way that doesn't link the incident to the Regent. Maybe the Regent can even arrange for the neonate to get into some terrible problem and then the regent has to come in and help, making the neonate look incompetent and the Regent appear not only competent but generous.

          The Regent could become one of the character's main foes without him even knowing it.

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          • #6
            In my defense, I would like to point out that I suggested eye-gouging coupled with a second stage blood bond, which would tend to preclude immediate taking of vengeance.


            I seem to have acquired a site for running play by post games. This is unexpected and frightening and come watch either the glorious play or the magnificent train wreck:

            The Malkavian Madness Network

            Comment


            • #7
              For my two cents on the matter, I think the "punishment" would in fact be both severe and limiting. Not because of some form of weakness on the part of the Regent, but because we are not talking about vampire society here, we are talking about Tremere society.

              Consider the Tremere Chantry, depending on which source you go with they are such death traps and so impenetrable that a Tremere Chantry can survive under siege over century behind enemy lines inside a Sabbat city and not fall. Consider how much planning, how much security and how many resources that level of security requires to pull off. Now consider the secrets kept in a chantry, everything from thaumaturgy research materials, to rare alchemical reagents, magical items from night long past, etc. etc. Of course this is before you get to anything that is restricted to regent level access that even neonates are supposed to be in the dark about.

              Very few non-Tremere are even allowed inside a Tremere Chantry. So just by virtue of being part of the clan, a tremere neonate has bypassed a huge amount security and has access to a great deal of restricted information.

              Now with all of that in mind, consider the regents point of view when they see a neonate who doesn't have the common sense to ensure they won't be over heard. A person like that probably doesn't keep their mouth shut very well, and as such is a walking security breach.

              But how do you curtail such behavior? Scolding them rarely does any good because both players and characters tend to do what ever they want. The vampiric form doesn't respond to pain or retain damage like a mortal does, so most forms of beatings or minor tortures have little value.

              I would suggest that the regent have the neonates tongue ripped out (it will grow back in a night or two), the neonate will also lose research privileges for an amount of time (say they can't up their Thaumaturgy for one in game year), and since they have so much free time now that they are not learning Thaumaturgy, they can get some annoying chores around the Chantry that is normally reserved for ghouls or other servitors.

              Of course if the player/character forces the issue, all it does is confirm the Regents suspicions that the neonates is unworthy of both the blood and the knowledge of Clan Tremere. This usually tends to mean the neonate gains the title of "research materials".

              The idea is to make the neonate both remember this encounter and have a minor story arch over either working their way back into the regents good graces or rebelling against the clan and figuring out how to survive.

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              • #8
                I'd go with Black Fox on this one, although I also like Thoth's idea.

                How about achieving Thoth's idea through Black Fox's means? I take everyone seen "A Few Good Men", carefully manipulation as Black Fox described into making the rest of the Tremere pull out a code red on the cell phone boy. You're a liability, better learn to be a team player or else.

                The cell phone boy gets the message but can't point a finger unless he hates the whole Chantry. The Regent makes his point without even revealing himself as an indirect player and enforces the idea the whole is greater than the sum of it's parts and remains unchallenged.

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                • #9
                  Black Fox's ideas all sound correct to me. I don't see the Tremere chantry as a medieval torture dungeon these days; it's more like a department at a small liberal arts college. Step on too many toes and you find yourself missing out on the choice research projects and grants that someone can build a stellar career on. Sure, the university doesn't fire you, but you're stuck teaching eight classes a semester of Freshman Comp 101 or Introduction to Biology and the most promising grad students pick other professors as their mentors.

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                  • #10
                    I agree with both of you, Black Fox and Thoth, giving great points of view. To further understand the situation, this PC (Victor) is of the 5th circle of mystery, above the other two apprentices in the chantry, and his sire is a well positioned Josian, plus his mentor is Pontifex Abe Powell. He has a background from which to brag on, and due to his proficiency and potential in Thaumaturgy he believes he is above the Regent of the recently established chantry of Palos Verdes (LA). I think I will go with the elaborate situation given by Black Fox, that will isolate him from his clanmates and further his relationship with the current PC coterie. Thanks for the feedback ppl.

                    -Saga

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