Human Antagonists

In the entries for antagonists, some common abbreviations will be used. Within the body category malleable traits, fast-twitch musculature is abbreviated FT, slow-twitch musculature ST, general health GH, and attractiveness A. Within the spirit category malleable traits, willpower is abbre- viated W, drive DR, discipline DS, and sensitivity S. Within the mind category malleable traits, intellect is abbreviated I, guile G, perception P, and motor skills MS. Damage levels of resilience are sometimes abbreviated as DL.

A phrase such as “-1 at 3 DL and enraged” signifies that the antagonist receives a -1 modifier to all rolls when having 3 or less damage levels of resilience remaining, and is filled with rage. Such modifiers to rolls resultant from loss of damage levels of resilience are not cumulative: -1 at 3 DL and -2 at 1 DL result in a net modifier of -2 at 1 DL, for instance.

Average People

The average person is not an adventurer, and has no particular skill in combat. Conflict arises if the average person fears for their life or has any wide variety of thoughts or emotions that drive them over the edge.

  • Body FT: 2, ST: 2, GH: 2, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 2, DR: 2, DS: 2, S: 2
  • Mind I: 2, G: 2, P: 2, MS: 2
  • Resilience 8

The average person is unarmed and unarmored. They might try to grab you, throw a punch, or grab something nearby, like a rock, to use as a weapon. Nearly everyone will have a profession of some kind, and the abilities appropriate to such. The majority of rural people are laborers, with a lesser number of merchants and the one or two steam engineers and doctors necessary to support the community. Cities have a wider variety of professions in one place.

Cathayan Sorcerers

Cathayan sorcerers are the mysterious envoys of their distant empire. Possessed of vast knowledge and spiritual power, these separatists represent the pinnacle of modern IMEM achievement. Through ancient, guarded methods they have attained immortality and mastery of the spiritual world. The ages have left these wise men in decrepit bodies, but have honed their minds and spirits to a knife’s edge. Only a handful of sorcerers are thought to be active outside of the Forbidden City itself, though legend has it that an army of spirits ten thousand strong waits in the earth, bound to statues that bear the likeness of their earthly bodies. In the darkness, the highly disciplined legions of poultergeists stand vigilant against incursions into the heartland of ancient Cathay. Conflict arises when the supremacy of the British Empire is insisted upon or the interests of the Forbidden City are jeopardized. Powerful Western spiritualists may be challenged to a duel as a means of testing potential students before inviting them to study in the distant Orient.

Fig. 7.1: Artists depiction of Cathayan sorcerer and possible manifestation of bound spirit. Operatives, even those of civilian mercantile interests, in Cathay must beware these separatists and their dogged loyalty to the so-called Empire of Qin.
Artist’s depiction of Cathayan sorcerer and possible manifestation of bound poultergeist. Operatives, even those of civilian mercantile interests, in Cathay must beware these separatists and their dogged loyalty to the so-called Empire of Qin.
  • Body FT: 1, ST: 1, GH: 1, A: 1
  • Spirit W: 5, DR: 5, DS: 5, S: 5
  • Mind I: 5, G: 5, P: 5, MS: 2
  • Resilience 8

Cathayan sorcerers have achieved the abilities of fourth-tier skill in binding, spiritualism, trans- mutation, alchemy, herbalism, and umbrapedy. They are always accompanied by a poultergeist, a willing bodyguard whose life after death is sustained by the sorcerer. Additionally, a wardstone and at least five enchanted objects are carried.

Outlaws

Outlaws are commonly found in the less regulated regions of the world, with particular density in the vast expanses of the American West, the Yukon, and the Siberian Taiga. They have spent their lives surviving, doing anything necessary to get by. Conflict arises when the outlaw believes you have something he wants, or when you trespass on gang territory, or if you somehow pose a threat or insult to the virility and supremacy of the outlaw.

  • Body FT: 3, ST: 2, GH: 2, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 2, DR: 3, DS: 1, S: 2
  • Mind I: 2, G: 3, P: 3, MS: 3
  • Resilience 8

+1 to larceny-modified actions, +1 to dodge, +1 to chosen firearm or weapon rolls, +1 to unarmed attacks. Outlaws flaunt the law, and so are equipped more often than not with illegal weaponry acquired by theft or on the black market. Low threat package: Pipes, shivs, and bats, each dealing 1 on a successful attack, manipulation 0 for shiv, -3 for pipes and bats, or brawlers attacking unarmed. High threat package: 1 armor (leather), a knife, and a Saturday Night Special or Rusty Sixgun A thug or street tough can be represented as a low threat package outlaw quite readily.

Policemen

Policemen are universally present to some degree in any major city, and have a smaller presence in most suburbs and hamlets. They are of varying degrees of moral rectitude, as are we all, but generally have law enforcement as their primary objective. Any separatists, criminals, or enemies of the government are likely to have a warrant for their arrest on record. Conflict arises when the policeman believes you to be in violation of the law or to be a known criminal. In either case, the policeman will attempt to bring you to the station for processing and trial. The innocent may avoid direct conflict by cooperating, and even the guilty may do likewise by attempting a bribe, given the right police officer. Attempts to run or to fight will result in combat, and any hint of a firearm will result in immediate violence.

  • Body FT: 3, ST: 2, GH: 2, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 2, DR: 2, DS: 2, S: 2
  • Mind I: 2, G: 3, P: 4, MS: 2
  • Resilience 8

+2 to investigation-modified actions, +1 to run, jump and climb , +1 to unarmed attacks and night stick. Policemen are given a standard kit of gear which includes a uniform, cuffs, an investigator’s kit including fingerprinting materials, a notebook, a no. 2 pencil, and a night stick. The night stick is a modification of the tonfa, a 2 foot long wooden pole attached to a perpendicular handle. It deals 1 damage on successful attack and has a manipulation of -1. The uniform includes a padded vest which provides 1 armor to the chest. It is blue, and comes with a distinctive hat and badge. Undercover policemen lack the above gear. To modify this entry for a sheriff of the American west, change skills to two tiers of western fast-draw, one of athletics, and one of investigation, and substitute a leather duster for the uniform (still one armor) and a six-gun for the night stick.

Royal Shepherds

Royal Shepherds, the boys in red, are a deadly and privileged special forces unit, given the right to act autonomously without liability to legal censure. Only the Queen herself may issue any reprimand against a Royal Shepherd, and only another Royal Shepherd can carry out the sentence. The Royal Shepherds are the silent stewards of the Empire – always present just out of sight, waiting to cull the flock of dangerous influences. Conflict arises when a Royal Shepherd is suspicious or offended, and will not end until you are dead. Becoming an enemy of a Royal Shepherd places you on the Red List, which guarantees that any Royal Shepherd operating in your area will attempt to question and/or kill you. There are many ways to be of suspicion to a Royal Shepherd, from being seen with a witch, separatist, reformer, or enemy of the state to being present at the scene of a disturbance of the peace. A Royal Shepherd will observe and question the suspect whilst incognito, then, if necessary, appear in a more official capacity should the matter fail to be cleared up by questioning.

Fig. 7.2: This image depicting Royal Shepherd Hans Benedict Trefoil is frequently used in reports of his activities by the Royal News Agency. It has been years since Shepherd Trefoil has been definitively spotted by a member of the public, but the Royal News Agency assures the public that his operations continue to meet with success.
This image depicting Royal Shepherd Hans Benedict Trefoil accompanies reports of his daring missions by the Royal News Agency.
  • Body FT: 5, ST: 3, GH: 3, A: 3
  • Spirit W: 3, DR: 5, DS: 5, S: 3
  • Mind I: 3, G: 5, P: 5, MS: 3
  • Resilience 8

The numbers above are good for a last-second addition to a story, but Royal Shepherds should really go through the full character creation process, and then be advanced to the 50-point advance- ment plateau. Royal Shepherds come from all backgrounds, and are nominated to service by other Royal Shepherds. As such, the skills and traits of the order are widely varied. As part of Royal Shepherd training, however, all will have 4 ranks of investigation and at least some martial training. For quick rolling, assume +4 to dodge, one chosen weapon, and investigation rolls. A Royal Shepherd’s gear includes any favored weapons, a standard-issue Royal Shepherd Side- arm, and a uniform which provides 1 armor everywhere except the head, and is a fetching red suit besides. The uniform closely resembles the garb of an early colonial British Army officer, but modified to be both modern and more comfortable for field work. Other gear is a matter of personal taste.

Soldiers

Soldiers are present in alarming numbers for a period of alleged peace, with many active campaigns of ”police actions” waged against the separatists that cluster along the borders of the Empire. In Siberia, in the Himalaya, in western China and south-eastern Africa large numbers of soldiers are deployed in unofficial wars. Conflict arises when a character is seen as an enemy. Appearing more similar to the opposing forces than a typical British citizen may be enough to draw gunfire.

  • Body FT: 3, ST: 2, GH: 3, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 2, DR: 3, DS: 4, S: 1
  • Mind I: 2, G: 2, P: 3, MS: 4
  • Resilience 8

Soldiers generally are poorly-trained but moderately experienced infantry, receiving +1 to rifle rolls, stealth, running, climbing, jumping, and knife combat. Standard issue equipment is a uniform and helmet conferring 1 armor everywhere but the face, a standard rifle, a combat knife, a canteen, a rucksack, extra socks, rations, a tent, and three grenades. Snipers have third-tier training in the Scottish School of Sniping and a ghillie suit and Sniper’s rifle in addition to standard kit and skills.

Witches

Witch is the blanket term used by Jesuits to refer to practitioners of spiritualism who use their powers for evil or irreligious purpose. The edict “thou shalt not suffer a witch to live” has been taken quite literally, and as a result large populations of hedge-wizards, sorcerers, Cathayists, and Mesmerists have banded together to defend themselves against the advances of the Jesuits. Unfortunately for all, the negative element is present among witches, giving credence to the claims of child sacrifice, blood magic, and other foul practice. The only live witch is a crafty one, and so only the strong survive the repeated purges inflicted on the unsanctioned spiritualism community. A witch wishing to join greater society may make petition for a spiritualism permit, but with it comes a registry number and a monthly inspection by witch hunters to ”ensure the spiritual safety of citizens,” conditions distasteful to most. Often it is believed easier to simply hide one’s activities from prying eyes. Conflict arises if a witch believes you to be a witch hunter. Conflict with evil witches arises whensoever the witch believes you to have outlived your usefulness, or simply arises as a form of satiation of some dark and alien fancy.

  • Body FT: 2, ST: 2, GH: 2, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 3, DR: 3, DS: 3, S: 3
  • Mind I: 3, G: 3, P: 2, MS: 1
  • Resilience 8

A witch has four tiers of any combination of Spirit skills. Gear includes clothing, sundries, and at least two magical items of the type appropriate to their skills. To modify these ratings for a powerful, ancient, and evil witch – a true Witch – add 2 to all spirit ratings, 2 to attractiveness, and add one fourth-tier Spirit skill and four tiers of the Ghost skill. These malevolent beings survive by possessing weak, young, attractive bodies and inhabiting them for a time, then transferring to the next after a decade or so of habitation. They leave behind a confused and exploited adult with no recollection of their last ten years of life. These creatures carry powerful magic, and may be in the possession of a secret magical art or item not listed in this general reference (narrator’s discretion).

Witch Hunters

Witch Hunters are proud to be called so. These ardent Jesuits search far and wide to bring unlicensed, dangerous spiritualists to justice, and to deliver their souls into the hereafter, when necessary. To this end, Jesuits have become a more militant order than in times past. Witch Hunters capture witches and bring them back to a monastery where, if they are found guilty of evil practice by inquisition, they are sentenced to immediate death, usually by beheading but sometimes by dunking or pressing in extreme cases where death is deemed insufficient punishment. Witch hunters investigate alone, to better cover more ground, but will arrive in force to capture a witch, generally with three younger witch hunters, one senior witch hunter, a Wytchund, and an exorcist. Conflict arises when a witch is found, or when a citizen attempts to harbor a witch or aid the escape of a witch. Witch hunters are quick and thorough, and receive special training in investigation and the martial arts.

  • Body FT: 3, ST: 3, GH: 3, A: 2
  • Spirit W: 3, DR: 3, DS: 4, S: 3
  • Mind I: 2, G: 1, P: 4, MS: 2
  • Resilience 8

Witch hunters gain +1 on investigation rolls, +2 on jujitsu holds, throws, and attacks, and have two tiers of Spiritualism training. Standard equipment is clothes appropriate to their area and displaying signs of their poverty, a rosary, a silver cross, an iron ring, and silvered iron manacles for both arms and legs. Lengths of cloth are used to gag witches as well, usually torn from the clothing of the Jesuit. A group of Jesuits may be accompanied by a Wytchund. Senior Jesuits often become exorcists. Exorcists have fourth-tier Spiritualism in addition to the usual Jesuit training, and an additional +2 to sensitivity and +1 to discipline. Others remain as witch hunters, and learn fourth-tier Jujitsu and gain +1 to fast-twitch and slow-twitch musculature. These witch hunters almost always have a Wytchund as a companion.