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The Doji Courtier School
The reputation the Crane Clan has for being the unquestioned masters of any court activity in which they are involved is well-deserved, and almost exclusively the result of the ancient secrets of the Doji Courtier School. The School’s primary focus is on the creation of vast networks of allies upon whom the Crane can call to accomplish virtually anything, preferably indebting those involved to the Crane in the process. The curriculumin the Doji School is quite broad and encompasses a myriad of topics, more than could be mastered by any single samurai, no matter how talented. Fortunately, the sensei ensure that there are an ample number of courtiers trained in every area so no matter what the need, a Doji stands ready to fulfill it.
The Doji Courtier School is built upon the notion of trading favors. That is not the entirety of their abilities, however; what makes them even more daunting opponents is their ability to perceive what an individual needs, and then offer it to them in such a manner that refusal is difficult if not impossible.
DOJI COURTIER SCHOOL
Benefit: +1 Awareness
Skills: Calligraphy, Courtier (Manipulation), Etiquette (Courtesy), Perform: Storytelling, Sincerity, Tea Ceremony, any one Artisan or Perform skill
Outfit: Extravagant Clothing, Wakizashi, any 1 weapon, Calligraphy Set, Traveling Pack, 10 koku
RANK 1: THE SOUL OF HONOR
Apprentice Doji courtiers are taught to rely on their Honor when dealing with others, infusing their every word and gesture with the power of their purity, and to build networks of allies by discerning what others need and fulfilling those needs. So long as you maintain your Honor Rank at 6.0 or better, you gain a Free Raise on all Courtier, Sincerity, and Etiquette rolls. Also, by conversing with another person for a few minutes, you can make a Contested Roll of Courtier (Manipulation) / Awareness against the target’s Etiquette (Courtesy) / Awareness to learn whether they are in need of any favors or assistance (such as needing travel papers to reach another province, for example).
RANK 2: SPEAKING IN SILENCE
At this Rank the Doji learns Cadence, the art of communicating through subtle gestures and body language. This gives them a huge advantage in the courts by allowing them to share information while their rivals are none the wiser. You can roll Courtier/Intelligence at TN 15 to communicate simple ideas and instructions (things like “distract them,” “this favors us,” or “intercept that person”) with any other Crane who is trained in the Doji Courtier School or who has at least 5 Ranks in the Courtier skill. More complex ideas can be conveyed with Raises, although there is an upper limit (set by the GM) on how complicated Cadence can become.
RANK 3: THE PERFECT GIFT
The Doji build their networks of alliances through selflessness, offering others what they need so that in future the Doji may rely on their assistance. Any time you are in court or in an urban area, you can roll Courtier/Awareness at TN 20 to come up with a suitable gift or a helpful political favor for someone else. By calling Raises on this roll, you can acquire a rarer or more potent gift or favor. If such a gift or favor is accepted, you may immediately take that person as an Ally with 1-point Devotion, without XP cost (subject to the GM’s permission).
RANK 4: VOICE OF HONOR
At this Rank the Doji has learned the art of political maneuvering, making his positions and arguments appear synonymous with Honor, forcing anyone who disagrees with him to take a dishonorable position. In any debate or argument, you may make a Contested Roll of Courtier (Manipulation) / Awareness against the target’s Etiquette (Courtesy) / Awareness. If you win the roll, the opponent is forced to concede that his position conflicts with the demands of Honor and Bushido, and if he persists in his position he will commit a breach of etiquette. (It is the GM’s discretion, based on the circumstances, as to whether it is a minor or major breach.)
RANK 5: THE GIFT OF THE LADY
The final training of the Doji teaches them the art of influencing the emotions of others, making friends and allies out of almost anyone – even bitter enemies. By conversing with someone for a few minutes, you may make a Contested Roll of Courtier (Manipulation) / Awareness against the target’s Etiquette (Courtesy) / Willpower. If the target is an Ally, you gain a bonus of +5k0 to the total of this roll. With a success, you shift the target’s emotions in a favorable direction, persuading them to listen to your advice and counsel. The GM is the final arbiter but in general, the target will go along with anything you suggest which does not conflict with his basic loyalties.