“To serve is duty, duty is samurai, samurai is immortality.” James Clavell, Shogun “I be the body dropper, the heartbeat stopper, Child educator, plus head amputator.” GZA, Liquid Swords —————————— Somewhere nearby... Some time soon... The desert stretched on forever, and the rider followed its track. The motorcycle he rode on, the engine that powered it, was the only sound for miles, save for the rattle of a snake or the cawing of a crow. Vultures watched from above as the rider and his machine rumbled past. Their stomachs were empty, as the bones of their past meals decorated the landscape alongside cacti and tumbleweeds. They followed the rider, for they knew wherever he roamed, death was close behind. The rider wore a leather jacket on his body, and the primary design was patched on the back. It was the image of a human skull wearing an ornate kabuto helmet, and above the skull was the word Samurai printed on a long patch that went from shoulder to shoulder. Below the skull was a patch of another word: Wasteland. The rider carried two weapons on his person. The first was a dagger, holstered on his right hip, and the second was a katana, holstered on his left, long and powerful enough to stab through multiple men at once. Both weapons were clean now and would reflect the sun’s harsh rays were they unsheathed, but they were not always this way. Many coats of blood had been wiped from their surfaces, and many more would be. The rider’s hair was long and grey, and it was tied tightly into a bun behind his head. He wore sunglasses to protect eyes that held the fire of a man who’d lived more lives than he cared to count in his sixty-two years. His beard was long and braided down the length of his chest, and it whipped in the wind as he rode. After some time had passed, the rider came upon a large tree that cast a larger shadow on the terrain. Beneath this tree, sheltered by the shade, sat a man with his legs crossed and his eyes closed, as still as a statue. He wore a jacket nearly identical to that of the rider’s, and a sword rested in the sand next to him. When the rider approached, the man opened his eyes, and bowed his upper body until his forehead touched his ankles in reverence. “Shogun,” he said. His voice was coarse. He looked to be about half the rider’s age. “Hezekiah,” the older man spoke. He was tall, thin but powerful, and his voice was deep and commanded respect. In the Old World, his accent may have been considered southern, like a cowboy’s. “I take it the vote is over,” said the seated man. “It is.” “Well?” “You’re to commit seppuku.” The man closed his eyes and pursed his lips, his head hanging. “Shogun, I swear to you-“ “The club’s spoken, Hezekiah. Don’t make this any harder than it needs to be.” Tears began to fall down the younger man’s face. His body broke out in a cold sweat and he began to tremble in the desert heat. Still he remained sitting in the sand, legs crossed. “You will be my second?” he asked, voice quivering. “I will.” “Thank you.” Hezekiah reached over with a shaky hand and grabbed his short sword by the blade, slowly moved it in front of his body and faced the hilt outward so that the tip of the sword touched his stomach, which was bare beneath the unzipped jacket. His breathing intensified, and he was openly weeping now. The man called Shogun slowly moved behind Hezekiah, his hand resting gently on the hilt of his katana. With a loud, ferocious scream of anguish, Hezekiah plunged the sword into his own abdomen, and held it there for a few seconds as blood spilled out over his hands and his life began to leave him. With blinding speed, the Shogun’s sword hissed through the air and Hezekiah’s head fell from his shoulders, leaving a trail of blood as it toppled lifeless through the sand. The body fell from its seated position to the earth with a soft thud. The Shogun removed a piece of cloth that hung out of the back pocket of his jeans and carefully wiped the blood from his sword. The vultures circled overhead. —————————— —————————— Welcome to Wasteland Samurai Motorcycle Club. This game contains an amalgamation of various influences from post-apocalyptic, western, and samurai fiction. It takes place in an unnamed location at an unspecified time, decades after a catastrophe has decimated the earth. It is a fun, violent, character-driven tale of a motorcycle club made up of warriors who practice their own interpretations of the ancient art and ideals of the Samurai. The New World Since the beginning of what some deem the apocalypse, or the catastrophe, or the decimation, call it what you will, the world we find ourselves in now has devolved into a lawless land of chaos, divided into two distinct territories: The Wasteland Comprised mostly of arid deserts, this is the primary setting for our game. There are various peaceful settlements scattered throughout the land, made up of all kinds of colorful characters, some of whom you will meet over the course of your journey. However, the land is also plagued by the presence of bandits and marauders, tribes of immoral murderers and robbers who seek anarchy and destruction. You will also come across these groups, and your skills as both a Samurai warrior and negotiator may be put to the test. The City A place that has taken on a mythical element among those who dwell in the Wasteland, the City is where most of the remnants of the Old World rest. Not much is known about this land of asphalt and skyscrapers, and it is all but impossible to enter, as huge walls of concrete and wire have been erected that surround the entire landscape, with highly patrolled outposts guarding every entrance. A very small group of suppliers are able to enter and leave at specified times when transporting goods to and from the Wasteland. The Old World Since it has been at least a couple generations since the end of the Old World, some of its knowledge and culture has been lost to time in the Wasteland. While some books and other materials from past civilizations have made it out of the City, many of these relics are foreign to the residents of the Wasteland. Likewise, the advanced technology from the Old World is also scarce. While some robots and advanced weaponry, vehicles, and other technologies have been obtained by some, these instances are rare. The Samurai The Samurai are known throughout the Wasteland as a group of sword wielding bikers who roam the deserts as guardians and protectors of the innocent and defenseless. It is this group around which our game centers. They follow an ancient ideal from the Old World called Bushido, an unwritten code of honor, respect, and loyalty, and despite their necessarily violent existence, temper their minds with wisdom, patience, and serenity. Other than this ethical belief, there is no one defining characteristic of the Samurai, aside from the decorated leather jackets they wear. Throughout the club’s decades long history, their members have ranged from being as young as sixteen to as old as ninety, and they are blind to gender and ethnicity. All that is required is uncompromising loyalty and the strength to protect the Wasteland. Samurai must not take their responsibilities lightly. The club adheres to their code very strictly, and betrayal or dishonor can be met with the harshest of penalties. The club’s hierarchy starts at the top with the Shogun, the leader and final decision maker. Below that is the Daimyo, the club’s second in command and closest advisor to the Shogun. After the Daimyo come the Samurai, the regular members of the club. Below them are the Prospects, new members of the club who haven’t yet earned the rank of Samurai. For the current roster of Samurai, see the Resource thread here. —————————— Character Sheet: Name: Age: Rank: Appearance: Personality: Equipment: (Every Samurai is equipped with at least a long sword/katana and a short sword/dagger. Any additional equipment is up to you.) Biography: Goals: (For the GM’s eyes only. Let me know what you’d like your character to accomplish over the course of the game, and any plot threads you’d like to see unfold. I can’t promise anything, but I will try my best to work them into the story.) Rules: 1: PM character sheets to me for approval before posting them in the thread. 2: All posts must follow TFN’s terms of service. 3: Godmoding in combat is allowed to a limited degree. Big group of generic bad guys? Bash some heads. Big bad boss? Maybe not so much. 4: If a player fails to respond in a reasonable timeframe and hinders the progress of the game as a result, I will take over the character in a limited fashion until that player has returned. 5: My inbox is always open. If you have any problems, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to send them my way!