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Oathsworn [Quest]

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  • Kasai is not qualified to a command position, and he knows it.

    In the case of being a retainer, I thought his Lord would ensure he has things like food and shelter and clothes, in return for his services.

    I know Kasai looks almost entirely human, but I'm pretty sure there are humanoid "beastfolk" in addition to the ones who look like anthro animals. He looks different, people treat him different, and he even acts a tiny bit different. I think of the word in a broad sense, I guess.
    Last edited by Erinys; 02-25-2017, 12:16 AM.

    She/Her. I am literal-minded and write literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to make a joke.
    My point of view may be different from yours but is equally valid.
    Exalted-cWoD-ArM url mega-library. Exalted name-generators.


    • Originally posted by Erinys View Post
      I thought being adopted included being like a retainer, in a sense. In both cases I thought his Lord would ensure he has things like food and shelter and clothes, in return for his services.

      Nope. They are alike, but not the same

      Being a retainer is an entirely-military thing. Either he would be housed in Teriake Castle (which, to be honest, is the more likely thing to happen, as Lord Iysen wants to keep him around), or he would be enfeoffed an estate (again, honestly, comparatively unlikely, as 1) Even Lord Iysen doesn't have estates just laying around, she would have to give him land in the maginal hinterlands of her domain, where he could build his own manor, and 2) again, she would prefer if he stuck around.) [ Finally, accepting an estate would, in a way, essentially remove his Oaths from the "equation", as it were, even more so than becoming Captain of the Guard]. If he gets housed in Teriake Castle, he would get room and board, but if he gets enfeoffed an estate, he is basically on his own.

      As a retainer, he could (and likely would) be asked (read: told) to lead Lord Iysens troops as a minor subofficer, and/or serving in her retinue. When not at war, he likely would be 1) training her household troops, 2) leading said troops against bandits, rebels, or anything else not requiring the whole army, or, 3) doing other tasks that couldn't be trusted to a lesser functionary, like the collection of taxes or the passing of messages.

      On the other hand, getting adopted would basically eliminate his free will in a sense, as Lord Iysen is going to have a great deal of control over his life from that point on. He wouldn't be able to just walk around and talk to people (at least, not without an armed guard), out of fear of assassins, especially after what just happened. He isn't really going to be able to choose whom, when or why he marries. When she goes to war, so does he, and he will almost - overwhelmingly-likely be in a command position.

      Once he gets married and has a kid (or several), Lord Iysen will relax, but until then , Kasai is going to be on a very tight leash. Rank has it's privileges, and rank has it's problems. A large "part" of Mino Shiba's problems with her mother is that she (Mino) essentially feels like she is living in a cage. A very nice gilded cage, but a cage nontheless.

      Meanwhile, becoming Captain of the Guard would arguably be the best of both worlds: he would be considered a retainer of the Lord, a high-ranking member of her inner-circle (at least when she is at home), while remaining relatively independent, and able to interact with the populace and influence social policy relatively easily. Marriage potential, on the other hand, is "diminished" (in the sense that Kasai wouldn't be considered "worthy" of marrying the cultural equivalent of royalty, but he could wed a retainer's daughter/sister/cousin, or even a wealthy/influential commoner if he wanted to defy social convention...... which he has already been doing for 15 or so years at this point), but he would be able to marry for love instead of duty. Kasai is young, and that appeals to him.

      Amusingly, I didn't even consider adoption in my first or even second flowchart of possibilities.


      • I'd argue that a command position is actually ideal for Kasai.

        The one thing I keep noticing about this guy is that, badass warrior though he may be...he is blessed with real charisma. Bandits attacking a village? He motivates the villagers to take up arms and then tries to come up with a tactic to win the battle with the fewest possible losses. And recruits a new minion! Immaculate zealot abusing an innocent? He solves the problem with an inspiring and moralizing speech! And recruits a new minion. Gets sucked into politics? He makes a new powerful friend through his honesty and forthright integrity. Everything is on fire? He whips a mob into an effective firefighting squadron...and would have immediately gotten a new minion out of Whistle Boy if not for his injuries in the resulting duel. Just by being himself he's become a bit of a popular hero-of-the-people.

        Kasai is an intensely charismatic leader, and he genuinely seems to care for the people under his command. Sure, he may not be confident in his tactical experience...but it seems to me that he has the gift. Captain of the Guard would be a waste of his talents-it's a dead end. Kasai should go for a position where it's his job to recruit, train, and command men in the field. The retainer position seems like the best way to do that. Let's ask Lord Iysen if we can become one of her retainers housed here in Tenake Castle (why leave the place where you've already made your name to go have to make it anew?) and be granted a command. While Kasai recovers he can oversee the drilling and training of his forces. It gives him some freedom, it gives him ample chances to prove himself over and over again in the field (instead of being stuck in a defensive position as Guard Captain) and earn more favors from a Lord who has proven herself generous to those who get results...and it gives Kasai a chance to share his success by making his current minions into minor officers under his command. Also, if and when Lord Iysen wins her war or the political situation becomes stable, Kasai retains the opportunity to get enfeoffed in an estate later and build and rule and grow his own fief...but working as a retainer will help him develop a retinue of personally loyal badasses who will likely follow him there.

        That being a wise old matchmaker I once knew used to say, it's just as easy to fall in love with someone rich as someone poor. Getting adopted lets you do all of the above with more clout...and a lack of freedom isn't necessarily a huge issue. Lord Iysen seems to be fair and honorable, I doubt serving her would be a huge pain for Kasai, and I suspect his forthrightness and integrity will earn him fast friends in the land of court politics. Everybody has a vested interest in keeping the honest predictable guy around; he's predictable.

        So I'm making God-Kicking Boot, an Exalted webcomic, now. Updates on Sundays. Full-color, mediocre but slowly improving art. It's a thing.

        The absence of a monument can, in its own way, be something of a monument also.
        -Roger Zelazny


        • Not exactly good at politics. Could be an issue, if we were to be adopted or elevated to a higher station.

          Thoughts ripple out, birthing others


          • Originally posted by FallenEco View Post
            Not exactly good at politics. Could be an issue, if we were to be adopted or elevated to a higher station.
            I think he's better at politics than he thinks he is.

            Politics does not necessitate dishonesty or dishonorable behavior. In fact, much of politics is about maintaining the appearance of honesty and integrity. If I was Lord Iysen, having Kasai in my pocket as a political tool would be AMAZING! His mere presence shows that I'm above board...and he's such a bull-in-a-China-shop easy target that everyone is going to think he's either an amazing schemer and waste energy trying to figure him out or going to think he's a fool and discount him.

            Never underestimate the power of brute, blunt force. Even in politics. Perhaps especially in politics. People like an honorable strong man.

            So I'm making God-Kicking Boot, an Exalted webcomic, now. Updates on Sundays. Full-color, mediocre but slowly improving art. It's a thing.

            The absence of a monument can, in its own way, be something of a monument also.
            -Roger Zelazny


            • So, while Kasai is recuperating, and while you lot of fine worthies debate his future, I am going to discuss several pertinent topics, namely those involved with war, politics, and the like

              1) War in the Hundred Kingdoms

              The Hundred Kingdoms is a region beset by war and bloodshed ..... but often not in a fashion that many recognize.

              Of course, the Lords wage overt war, with banners snapping in the breeze, spearpoints glinting in the rising sun, and warhorses stamping in the chill morning air..... but many, if not most, Lords will actually seek to avert such warfare. Waging war in such an overt fashion might be the stuff of stories, the origin of glory, and a chance to prove one's worth (at least for the nobility), but it is also expensive as hell.

              Overt war is expensive not in just silver, but in blood and sweat, the goodwill of the people, and in prestige. The armies of the Hundred Kingdoms are not professionals, instead being drawn from the agrarian classes. If said soldiers are kept away from their fields for too long (or do not return at all), then the harvest will be impacted, at the very least. Many a Lord has returned triumphant from the campaign, only to be beset by crops rotting in the field, famines and plagues, and a very unhappy, if not outright rebellious, populace. Generally, most field armies will only be kept in the field for the months of summer (aka Ascending, Resplendent and Descending Fire, for those using Shogunate terms), and even then, most Lords allow for several weeks before and after planting/harvesting season, to allow for their feudal levies to both plant and harvest the crops, and allow for troops to move and muster before moving out. With that in mind, "campaign season" generally only lasts about 60 or so days, with many troops outright deserting the army around that timeframe, in order to return home and tend to their farms so their families won't starve. Technically, it is within the Lords rights to punish the deserters, but most will not, understanding that the agriculture of the peasants is, by proxy, the fuel that feeds the machine of their domains, and most of these Lords will actively muster out their forces before the desertion takes place. And nobody, not even the Hill-Tribes, fights in the winter.

              Secondly, when feudal levies are away at war, the farms and villages of the Lords domain are therefore comparatively undefended, making them vulnerable to attack from hostile soldiers, bandits, or the ever-marauding Hill Tribes. Many a Lord has led their army to war, only to get crippled as another party reduces their countryside to waste through raiding. Therefore, long times in the field have to be planned and executed very carefully, and limited in scope, so that the villages are undefended for as little time as possible. Or, alternatively, a Lord will only muster a small section of their domain, leaving a number of levies behind to protect their assets. This, in turn, decreases the amount of available troops for field campaigning.

              Finally, a Lords prestige, and therefor, authority over their subjects, is highly dependent on how they "handle" war. Almost all Lords will personally lead their troops into battle (there are several Lords that appoint a "Field General" in their stead, but doing so will decrease their personal prestige immensely) , so therefore the outcome of every skirmish, battle and campaign directly affects how they are viewed, both by other nobles and by the commoners.

              Lead the troops in battle, and suffer a defeat? Good luck getting anyone to listen to you again. Lead the troops in battle, and neglect logistics, leading to not-adequate amounts of food, medicine and other supplies? The troops will be unhappy, and you will be known as a harsh taskmaster, regardless of what led to poor logistics. Levy troops for too long, leading to harvest-failures and famine at home? Almost certainly face sedition, probably from both commoners and nobility both.

              So, if outright war is avoided as much as possible, how then is war fought?

              As opposed to outright massed warfare, instead many (if not most) Lords will resort to raiding enemy villages (both for food, and to attack the morale of the enemy), assassinations and various methods of rabble-rousing, and "trade warfare"; heavy tariffs, stiff fees, and outright embargoes on products produced in other domains, as well as raiding enemy trade routes and shipping (most domains of any worth are located on the banks of the Red, Black and Blue Rivers, leading to heavy shipping traffic).

              In some cases, bandits (or "bandits", to bring up plausible deniability) will be bribed or coerced into attacking or robbing outlying/weak villages in a rival domain...... and in many cases, as soon as war actually is declared, bandit activity will skyrocket, due to decreased levels of security and roving bands of deserted/ "deserted" troops flooding the countryside. Bandits are the fleas of the Hundred Kingdoms: everywhere, annoying, and impossible to get rid of.

              Lords might order their retainers/Oathsworn to lead rapid cavalry raids on villages, caravans or any other target of value, both to essentially steal whatever materiel the site is producing (and therefore, deny it to the enemy), kill any resistance (most Men-at-Arms are drawn from rural peasantry, and will fight to defend their homes), and attack the morale and fighting-will of the defender. This is the most common form "actual warfare" takes; a series of back-and-forth raids, until one or both sides can't take any more.

              If a rebellion, or even discontented mutterings, can be organized amongst the rural peasantry or the urban townsfolk, then the Lord holding the territory either 1- won't be able to bring as many troops to bear in the field, having to leave a number behind to pacify the populace, or 2- be unable to fight at all, because they either can't levy troops [they are the ones rebelling], or is busy fighting the rebellion, which contrary to "popular belief", is probably going to be pretty badass, being partially made up of the same group Men-at-Arms are from.

              Assassinations could/would cripple the ability of a domain to fight off an invader, either killing or incapacitating the potential leader of the defending army. A less-capable leader would be forced into their place, diminishing the effectiveness of the force as a whole.

              2) Strategy and tactics

              (copied partially from an earlier post)

              Since the Hundred Kingdoms is essentially, a feudal society, the feudal order to a large extent dictates how warfare is fought.

              The heart of most forces will be the Lord, their sworn bannerlords, and their associated retainers/Oathsworn. Said fighters will almost always be in heavy armor, equipped with relatively heavy weapons (mainly the sword, the spear, and the bow), and form the heavy shock infantry and, where terrain and strategy allows, both heavy melee cavalry and ranged skirmish cavalry.
              Now, the Oathsworn are good, skilled, disciplined and motivated, but they tend to be small in number, even in large, wealthy domains. So, Lords pad their forces with both semi-professional Men-at-arms and peasant levies.

              Now, in order to differentiate between the two, one must first understand the difference between a “peasant” and a “serf”. The major difference between them is land ownership. Peasants own their own land, usually given to them by a Lord, while Serfs rent land from their overlord. While both are “commoners”, Peasants tend to be wealthier (due to generally owning more and better farmland), better fed (so, bigger and stronger), more respected (peasants usually are offered positions of management and responsibility by Lords), and sometimes have more free time (since they are wealthier and own more land, they can generally afford a farmhand/servant or two, leading to them needing to do less work personally), leading to more time available for practicing at arms. And, since they tend to have more disposable income, they can actually afford arms and armor.

              Most Men-at-Arms will be equipped with a spear and shield, a halberd, or a longbow, plus a backup weapon and a quilted jacket and helmet for protection. The spear/shield and halberd is self-explanatory, but the longbow, itself a holdover from the Hill-Tribes (for whom it was, and still is, a favorite weapon), has long been a favorite of both Men-at-Arms and their Lords, to the point where the longbow is seen as a symbol for the Peasantry, much like the sword is the symbol of the Oathsworn.

              Much of the land in the Hundred Kingdoms is forested, hills, or forested hills. That means hunting is a common pastime, both for nobility and the peasants that own land. This leads to skill with the bow, but some Lords have taken it even farther, mandating that farmers that own specific values of land have to be proficient with certain weapons. Below a certain amount; Spear and shield. Above a certain amount; Spear, shield and longbow. Even the serfs are not exempt from this, and they have to be proficient with spear and crossbow, in case of invasion.

              Serfs, on the other hand, usually don’t have the money to buy weapons, and their Lords usually wouldn’t want them owning arms anyways. But, in order to comply with the letter of the law, they have to make sure their serfs are at least familiar with arms, in order to defend themselves and their Lords lands. Hence, they usually stockpile spears and, whenever economically possible, crossbows, in their manors, to rapidly equip serfs in case of invasion.

              When the call to war comes (usually given by a mounted retainer riding through every village, screaming their head off ) every land-owner will grab their weapons and armor, as well as however much food and various supplies (blankets, cooking utensils, etc) they can carry, and report to the local manor/castle (more on castles later). From that mustering point, the various groups will proceed to move to a more central point, for organization into regiments.

              A "regiment" isn't a permanent unit like we readers would think of today, instead being an ad-hoc thing formed out of a conglomeration of merged local musterings, for a single campaign or even battle. As smaller groups come together, they get clumped into larger units based on location first, and function second.

              For example, let us say that an average village supplies 3 spearmen, 1 longbowman and 1 halberdier. At the regional muster, the spearmen will be grouped together with other spearmen, to form spear-regiments. Same thing with the longbowman and the halberdier. Almost all regiments will be 100% one "soldier type", meaning depending on what weapon you have could mean you get put into a different regiment from your comrades. However..... most regiments would be made up of fighters that largely know each other, either from previous musterings or from their daily life. This leads to increased morale and unit-cohesiveness..... until your friends and family start dying, that is.

              Each regiment will be under the command of either a retainer of the Lord of the region, or a chosen representative of the same. Sergeants and other subofficers will usually be elected by the soldiers, or rise by evidence of ability. However, the existence of sergeants and subofficers doesn't mean the regiment will be split up into subunits on the actual battlefield; most regiments fight as massed units of dozens of men. Instead, sergeants will take responsibility for subdivisions of soldiers when encamped, or (usually "and") be responsible for discipline, the ordering of camp, distribution and implementation of work-details (the classical "latrine duty", but also picket details as well as cooking and such) as well as the passing-along of battlefield orders (In a group of 60+ spearmen organized in rectilinear blocks, having the commander issue orders by voice alone would be ..... hard. Ergo, orders will be passed along via flags, trumpet-calls, or whistle-blasts, and the sergeants interpret those signals).

              Multiple regiments will be grouped together in battle-groups, and this is where combined arms comes into play. Overwhelmingly most battle-groups will be made up of all the regiments from a particular region, and be made up of Spear-regiments, Halberd-regiments, Longbow-regiments, Crossbow-regiments (levied serfs armed with crossbows, usually only used in the case of invasion, and skittish at the best of times), or Light Cavalry or Oathsworn/Retainer groups. Commanders of battle-groups (usually the Lord of a region, or the representative of the Lord of the domain) will usually be also in command of a reserve-force, itself usually the close Retainers of the Lord, for use when the situation calls for heavy shock cavalry. Battle-groups can be linked with other battle-groups, for use as a larger army, or be tasked with independent missions and objectives.

              As for how battles play out, that depends on terrain and the disposition of the battle-group/ overall army commander. Generally, the BG commander will sit back away from the actual fighting, observing how things are playing out. Orders are passed from the BG commander to regimental officers through runners, mounted messengers, or through flags.

              Actual tactics tend to be pretty simple: Men-at-arms are only semi-professional, and can't really be trusted to be able to understand or implement complex maneuvers. Most battles occur in the following fashion;

              1) scouts and outriders of the armies come across each other. Generally, some skirmishing will occur, but most scouts will try to escape and get word back. Both sides will attempt to do this, while at the same time prevent the enemy from doing so.
              2) Suitable ground for a massed battle will be chosen. The side that has the initiative will, of goddamn course, try to choose terrain that will give them as great an advantage as possible; on top of a slope, or with a flank covered by a swamp or stream, etc etc. Many battles actually get won without fighting, as many commanders will withdraw as opposed to attacking in such detrimental conditions.
              3) Missile troops start long-range bombardment, while melee infantry get set up.
              4) Melee infantry advance, as missile troops stop firing (unless the commander is an asshole), and start maneuvering behind/to the side of the melee regiments
              5) Melee units clash, while missile troops and cavalry groups try to flank the two lines
              6) Fighting continues until one side breaks, then everything is over in minutes.

              Generally, unless one has at least a degree of terrain neutrality (or one could force the opponent from their positive terrain, or take advantage of terrain yourself), most commanders will withdraw instead of fighting. This isn't a Total War videogame, and replenishing troops in the middle of a campaign is excruciatingly difficult at best of times. You, as a commander, will want to "spend your currency" were it is best used. Most campaigns revolve around maneuvering armies around each other, jockeying for position, and an army/battlegroup/regiment that gets outmaneuvered so will usually withdraw or surrender instead of fight. Only when an army/battlegroup/regiment is incapable of maneuvering (like, say, a battlegroup is defending a bridge that the attackers need to cross, or a battlegroup withdraws up to the margins of a river/swamp/impassible terrain, and can't escape), will actual battle take place. Skirmishes, scouting-in-force, yes, but actual set-piece battles are rare.


              • 3) Castles and fortifications.

                Despite the Hundred Kingdoms being famous for its examples of "Vanehan style" (basically.... look up Japanese Castles for ideas,), actual castles are pretty rare, being mainly owned by the Lords of domains (and only wealthy or powerful domains at that), or by special trusted vassals of said Lords. Owning a castle means you have a significant degree of social and military power, and an almost-impossible-to-take base of power, and most Lords 1) want that for themselves, and 2) Don't want their vassals to get big heads, or ideas of grandeur.

                For example: the domain of Xia is about the size of the state of Massachusetts ( ~ 30,000 square miles), and there are about 5 castles in the entire domain. Teriake, the castles held by her vassals, and a small one in the northern hills that was her wedding gift from her late father.

                Most vassal-Lords (and by proxy, landed retainers and Oathsworn) will instead built/inherit a fortified manor, aka a large house, almost always walled, on defensive terrain overlooking their village(s). Against the attack of angry peasants, or marauding bandits, the walls of a fortified manor-house are more than sufficient, while still being comfortable and some degree of opulent. Against actual military assault..... they don't really stand a chance. They don't have enough supplies stored, nor strong-enough defenses, to withstand an actual siege.

                Most fortified manors are going to be built in the siheyuan-style (, of drystone, wood and bamboo, paper and rugs, reed mats and tile. The "outside" walls of the manor will be built of stone, with the interior walls being made of wood and bamboo and paper. The design is very versatile; being used as not only rural manor-houses, but as townhouses for wealthy commoners, hunting lodges, and stations/inns on postroads.

                Actual castles, on the other hand, are going to almost always be built on a hilltop, preferably overlooking a river-valley, mountain-pass, river-ford or some other terrain feature that restricts movement. Almost all castles are going to be built in a motte-and-bailey style, with a central fortified keep surrounded by a number of baileys, or enclosed courtyards. Very simple castles will have a drystone-and-wood tower, with a single bailey surrounded by a wooden palisade and ditch, while larger castles will have multiple baileys (Teriake Castle has two), surrounded by fitted-stone curtain walls and supplanted by wooden watchtowers and hoardings, all watched over by the keep.

                A common saying amongst nobility is that "high walls and towers impress the lowly", and castles serve as much as for intimidation as they do for actual defense. Many a peasant has quieted their grumbling at the sight of the frowning towers of their Lords keep looming overhead. To that end, relatively-simple and cheap castles (sometimes just a manor-house with a tower added) are sometimes built in areas recently conquered by a Lord, to better cow the populace and remind them who their Lord is.

                As above, many Lords retain the right to build castles, but there are sometimes trusted vassals to which this privilege is given. So-called "Marcher Lords", named after the Hundred-Kingdoms term for a border region, are often given the "right to crenellate" by their liege, in order to deter or at least slow down an invasion. Marcher Lords also have other rights other vassals do not, such as the right to declare market-days and market-towns, the right to implement their own laws, grant charters and so on and so forth. Many Marcher Lords have as much, if not more, power as their liege-lords. Lord Isyen's three vassals are Marcher Lords, and she has to try to keep them all happy, lest they decide to declare themselves Lords of new domains (and kicking them out would be hard, as they have castles), or declare loyalty to her rival Great Lords.

                Since the Hundred Kingdoms have been around for a relatively long time in Creation (at least since the collapse of the Shogunate), there are plenty of ruins of manor-houses and even castles scattered around. Either destroyed in war, of because of neglect, these ruins are often used as bandit hideouts. Many of them are rumored to be haunted by the spirits of the dead. Some of them actually are.

                They provide shelter to travellers in the case of inclement weather, they provide havens for bandits (and increase the work required by Oathsworn retainers to burn them out), and, if taken up by an enterprising individual, could serve as a stable and effective power base once rebuilt...........
                Last edited by Boston123; 02-26-2017, 12:03 AM.


                • I actually like the idea of retainer as well. Allows us to play a number of roles. I assume we'll be probably used as an envoy at some point to the hill tribes and being the head of the castle guard would make it difficult for us to get away. We could essentially be used as Iysen's man for odd wetwork which would lead to a lot of growth for Kasai and for his retainers. It seems retainer is the most flexible story wise and doesn't limit us and allows us to keep growing Kasai's skills and rank. I say retainer personally.


                  • So far (by my count, and I could always be reading into something I shouldn't), it looks to be 4-2 in favor of Retainer. I will leave it open until tomorrow or so, to give people who still wanted some time to think about it.

                    For the rest...... a lot could hinge on how we interact with the coming war. If we play our cards right, and do good things in service to Lord Iysen, being enfeoffed an estate, getting entitled, or even getting extended an offer of adoption could all be possible.

                    For those in favor of retainership, would you be in favor of being given command of Lord Iysens already-existing levies, or attempting to raise one (or several) of our own from the inhabitants of Teriake Castle-Town?

                    If we take command of an already-existing regiment, basically all the "work" (training, logistics, subofficers, etc) will already be done, and we will effectively just jump in command and go.

                    If we try to raise our own forces, we will literally have to do most of the work in staffing, equipping, drilling and maintaining whatever forces we do raise. Overwhelmingly most townsfolk lack weapons or military drill, except for those few with militia-experience, who already have a cushy job and won't want to go play soldier, unless the pay is really good. Yep, if we raise regiments of townsfolk, we are going to have to pay them, as they are legally serfs, the majority of them renting apartments as opposed to owning land, and as such are exempt from feudal military obligation.

                    On the other hand, if we use our rapport with the townsfolk right, and play to both our strengths (known to be fair and have their best interests at heart) and to their emotions (many, if not most, of the town are going to be pretty pissed at getting attacked by the agents of Yue), we could very well come up with multiple regiments of eager-to-serve recruits, that while lacking in skill, have the heart to persevere. Oh, and here is the kicker: since the regiments you raise won't be farmers, they won't necessarily have to leave once the campaign season is over, allowing Xia to have at least a token force in the field.

                    In order to get enough money to raise, equip and maintain regiments, we will quite possibly have to needle Lord Isyen for money. This is something we could do with our boon.

                    In a crunch-sense, both actions: using our rapport with the townsfolk and asking for money would be an example of "burning" dots in the Influence Merit. Becoming a retainer of Lord Iysen would, in turn, represent the "Ally/Mentor" merit.

                    In my games, in order to have dots of Command (I use a modified 2E system), one either has to have n+2 dots in either Resources (to represent you paying for the force from your own income), or in Influence (to represent you using, well, personal influence to either get people to join, or to have someone else pay for the force).


                    • I still say adoption but it all looks fun.


                      • Since nothing has been posted since the 26th, I am in favor of Retainer. Though I think Kasai won't be comfortable leading raids on villages.

                        She/Her. I am literal-minded and write literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to make a joke.
                        My point of view may be different from yours but is equally valid.
                        Exalted-cWoD-ArM url mega-library. Exalted name-generators.


                        • Erinys joshopotamus wonderandawe FallenEco
                          Jairain Wise Old Guru L'het'esh semicasual
                          So, it appears your three options are as follows:

                          1) Become a personal retainer of Lord Iysen.
                          2) Request a command position, in one of Lord Iysens already formed regiments
                          3) Request leave to recruit your own forces from the population of Teriake Castle-town.

                          As you go up in number, the level of personal responsibility increases.

                          If Kasai becomes a personal retainer of lord Iysen, he will just pretty much live in her castle, undertake certain small-scale tasks (wipe out bandits, pass along messages to her vassals, etc), and in times of war, he would serve as a member of her Oathsworn reserve, a heavy calvary force. He might be asked (read: ordered, but politely) to do things he might find distasteful, like raiding villages and caravans, procuring food for the army and suchlike, but Lord Iysen is aware of his feelings on the matter, and if there is something else he could do, or someone else she could send, she would try to avoid having him do such things. It all depends on the situation.

                          If Kasai gets thrown into a command position, then things get ...... well, not automatically complicated, but "different". If it is an already-formed regiment, he would just have to listen to Lord Iysens orders on the battlefield and implement them. He would have to sit in on command meetings, help plan strategy, so on and so forth. All the rest of the logistics of running the regiment would largely already be handled, by the sergeants of the regiment and by Lord Isyens quarter, drill and camp-masters.

                          If he recruited his own forces, then he would effectively be thrown into the deep end, so to speak. He would have to recruit the soldiers, train them, equip them, promote sergeants (veterans from prior battles are good for this) and officers (probably train them as well), provide food and supplies, not to mention come up with overall campaign strategies and battle tactics.

                          On the other hand, as you go up, the possible awards for good and loyal service increases as well.

                          If we remain as a personal vassal of Lord Iysen, we will pretty much get room and board for free (pretty decent quarters and food, for what it's worth), as well as a pick of any spoils of war we come across. If we do something really special in combat, like say, capture an enemy Lord, or defend Lord Iysen's life (again) in the thick of battle, we could be rewarded with valuable gear (horses, fine weapons and armor, etc), or entitlements / positions of responsibility (Magistrate, Captains of X, etc), or land

                          If we lead a regiment in combat, a common and traditional reward for successful officers is to be given lands, usually part of which they conquer. Usually after the war is over and done.

                          If we lead our own forces, independently of any command, the sky is the effective limit..... based on what we do, of course. If we were to, say, take and hold one of the castles of a Yue vassal, we could almost be guarenteed to be enfeoffed into that position ourselves. If we were to (and this is a stretch, mind you), besiege and capture Miyakawa Castle (the personal holdings of Lord Yue), and therefore end the war in one fell swoop, well..... we could effectively declare ourselves Lord of Yue if we so felt.

                          Not that that is likely, or even plausible, but ..... hell, this is Exalted. Mortals can do some pretty awesome shit too. For example: in my Hundred Kingdoms campaign, one of my players basically went all Qin Shi Huang and united most of the Hundred Kingdoms, declaring themselves Emperor and planning on taking out Vaneha before logistics got in the way.
                          Last edited by Boston123; 03-02-2017, 05:37 PM.


                          • Choice 1 makes the most sense for Lord Iysen, she has somebody popular to deal with townfolk and could serve as messenger to the hill tribes.
                            Choice 3 would be the hardest for somebody with no army experience. I expect this to win the vote, as it presents the most chances for moving around and having adventures.

                            I vote (1) personal retainer, mostly on the hope of seeing ambassador Kasai.

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                            • Eh, personal retainer.

                              ...does that come with a title? Something equivalent to "Baron" maybe?

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                              • One so we can play politics.

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