Heir of Mercere to the front!
Early Youth near Lillebonne
Honorine was born in a hamlet near Lillebonne at the mouth of the Seine, as the child of an inn keeper’s daughter. Her mother could – even when pressed – tell her only, that her winsome father called himself Honors, had requested to baptize her Honorine, and had promised to take her with him before her 6th birthday. Was Honors a nix, an ogre, a nobleman or even dead now? Her mother couldn’t tell.
Honorine grew up feisty and handsome. But soon after she was asked to help in the inn, a big man carrying a pannier on his back appeared there. He talked to her mother and showed her something Honorine couldn’t see. Then her mother presented the man as Honors to Honorine. Honors asked her to climb into the pannier, her mother shoved Honorine‘s few childhood treasures on top, and thoroughly unhappy and sobbing Honorine was carried off.
After some time she could not keep track of, the pannier was set down and opened. When Honorine looked out, she saw into 6 unknown faces. Honors told them: „This is Honorine of my own blood and hence that of Mutantus. I claim her as my apprentice.“ Then Honors showed one woman present to Honorine: „This is the Evangelium (TL&tL p.138), our leader. You must obey her as you must obey me.“
And so 5 year old Honorine was entered as apprentice into the group of Redcaps based off Dragon’s Rest (TL&tL p.138). Honors trained her on the road: to do so he carried her around in his pannier for nearly a year still. He soon taught her to sneak out on signal and make herself useful when nobody looked. Afterwards she accompanied him on her own feet on his errands around Normandy, Picardy, Champagne and Lorraine, where he taught her all a Redcap needed to know: the history, language, writing, laws and power of the glorious Order of Hermes, the people sustaining it as best as they could and how to behave around them, how to operate in the wilds, in society, in supernatural areas, and the powers that lay inside her. This took about 15 years.
Finally Honors told Honorine, that she had learned all that he could teach her, and that she was ready to perform the highest legacy of the Order of Hermes now: swearing the Oath. Both went to Dragon’s Rest at an established time and found the Evangelium and the other Redcaps. There older, now more frail Evangelium solemnly administered the ritual which included Honorine speaking the Oath and gave her the sigil to identify herself with from now on: the simple latch to her and her mother’s room at the inn.
Finally Honors admonished Honorine, that her own children might inherit legendary powers from her and were very important for the continued existence of the Redcaps, and told her a last time, that the Order of Hermes depended on its unity. The purpose of the Redcaps was, to protect this unity by all means: trustworthy message carrying, diplomacy, vigilance and subterfuge if necessary.
Her First Station
Then Honors sent his daughter off to her first station as a full Redcap: Triamore.
Saga: A bonfire of tradition
Characteristics: Int +1 (Shrewd), Per +1 (Watchful), Pre +2 (Handsome), Com +1 (Glib), Str +1 (Hearty), Sta +1 (Enduring), Dex +1 (Deft), Qik +1 (Quick Reflexes)
Age: 20 (20), Height: 172 cm, Weight: 65 kg, Gender: Female
Warping Score: 0 (0)
Confidence: 2 (5)
Virtues and Flaws: Improved Characteristics, Social Contacts (Order of Hermes), Well‑Traveled (50/50), Gift of Tongues, Heroes' Birthright [Reqs: AnHeTe, R: Per, D: Moon, T: Ind; Birthright: Disguise of the New Body, Level + Penetration: 15, Speak and Gesture: 15, Speak: 10, Gesture: 5, Neither Speak nor Gesture: 0, Technique: Muto, Form: Corpus], Sure Traveler, Lone Redcap, Driven (Preserve the Order of Hermes), Ability Block (Martial), Heroic Personality, Legacy (Descendant of Mutantus)
Personality Traits: Driven +5, Brave +2, Loyal +2
Reputations: Zealot (Hermetic) 2
Dodge: Init: +1, Attack ‑‑, Defense +4, Damage ‑‑
Fist: Init: +1, Attack +4, Defense +4, Damage +1
Kick: Init: +0, Attack +4, Defense +3, Damage +4
Cloak: Init: +1, Attack +4, Defense +5, Damage +0
Dagger: Init: +1, Attack +7, Defense +5, Damage +4
Fatigue levels: OK, 0, ‑1, ‑3, ‑5, Unconscious
Wound Penalties: ‑1 (1‑5), ‑3 (6‑10), ‑5 (11‑15), Incapacitated (16‑20), Dead (21+)
Abilities: Art of Memory 1 (Messages), Latin 4 (Magic Usage), Artes Liberales 1 (Grammar), Code of Hermes 1 (Wizard's Marches), Finesse 3 (Precision), Dominion Lore 1 (Auras), Infernal Lore 1 (Demons), Legend Lore 1 (Regios), Chirurgy 1 (Bind Wounds), Stealth 3 (Natural Areas), Awareness 3 (Alertness), Survival 3 (Woodlands), Athletics 2 (Swimming), Brawl 3 (Dagger), French 5 (Norman), Order of Hermes Lore 3 (History), Intrigue 3 (Fast Talk), Charm 3 (First Impressions), Folk Ken 3 (Magi), Area Lore: Lorraine 1 (Roads), Area Lore: Picardy 1 (Roads), Area Lore: Champagne 1 (Markets), Area Lore: Normandy 1 (Roads), Church Lore 1 (Customs)
Equipment: Survival Kit
Encumbrance: 0 (0)
Placeholder for early development of Honorine
Repeating my comments from the private message for everybody to know:
Ok, Fra Taddeo looks great. I have more doubts about the redcap.
I feel that Lone Redcap is quite an "old redcap" thing. It is a 2x1 virtue in this saga: +75 xp, like one of the +50XP minor virties, and well travelled in a single minor virtue package. Since all messengers of the Order are like this I would prefer other virtues, really. what do others think?.
I actually find heroic personality to be a so so flaw, since it provides benefits (extra confidence score, another minor virtue) as well as a small problem but it is in line with the Mercere heritage so go ahead with this one.
Regarding this Driven (effectively a -4 flaw) I would require you to set up your challenging objectives yourself, since nobody is really paying much attention to redcaps anymore, so nobody is gonna tell you to go do that extremely difficult mission regularly. Current reformed Order Redcaps are basically celebrated mundane messengers for the most part, like a lot of other messengers that travel for nobles carrying messages and gossip. Only that you carry a symbol that makes casting magic on you (especially information gathering magic) unadvisable.
For the rest, it looks OK to me. A useful power and a drive to perform your duties. Makes for a focused character, even if I would prefer Lone Redcap and Heroic Personality to be converted to something else.
As written in HoH:TL, it is about the Redcaps of before the schism war indeed! There it decribes a Redcap Loner who has cut off his ties to the Redcap organization.
In our saga after the schism war, regular Redcaps are a thing of the past. There are no Mercer houses or Hermetic magi making longevity potions and magic items for the loyal Redcaps any more.
I use the Lone Redcap to describe the logistical situation of a Lone Ranger Redcap without ties to a Redcap organization, but acting in its tradition. I believe that this works nicely.
You are technically correct here. But let's go a little more in depth.
- A&A p.90 Baccalaureus gives +90 xp in addition to the typical 45 xp for a commitment of 3 years during character creation.
- Lone Redcap gives +125 xp (including the 50 xp from Well-Travelled) for a commitment of 15 years during character creation. And at the same time it requires 2 seasons of loyal service per year to the Order for the rest of the characters' life - while other Companion level characters can use their typical two seasons of work per year to e. g. gain labor points (C&G p.37ff Labor) and thus advance their workshops, their wealth and their standing. The Lone Redcap package further provides a minor Bad Reputation, which I faithfully retained as the reputation " Zealot (Hermetic) 2".
Considered all that I should think, that the 35xp bonus of Lone Redcap over Baccalaureus is roughly OK, but not very generous.
I will write that up in Honorine's background. Please give me some time for that. The shorthand for that write up is: Honorine works her ass off to keep the Order together and is thankful to be allowed to do that - but woe to those who get in the way.
Aligned Honorine's background to the changed background of the Order of Hermes.