Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Someone of Loxley

Where are you from in this village where you are from? A pseudo-medieval village a bit like these ones, maybe: but more feudal, and more detailed, because you're from there. We'll call it Loxley. Roll d8.

1 – Itinerant. You are not from the village, but attached to some group that has been passing through: maybe you are the child of charcoal burners or nomadic tinkers, or perhaps you are apprenticed to a group of travelling players or the acolyte of a wandering holy man. Whatever your background, you will be an outsider in the village, but you will also know more about the outside world than almost all the villagers. 10% chance you are literate. If this is rolled, whatever group seems most appropriate will be present in an encampment outside the village.

2 – Impoverished. You are among the very poorest people in the village. Possibly you are an orphan, living by begging and stealing or on the charity of the temple; or perhaps your family has fallen into poverty by some stroke of ill fortune in a world where a crippling injury or a sick animal can destroy a family's livelihood. You will likely be an object of pity, scorn or both for most villagers. 5% chance you are literate.

3 – Low-level peasant/serf. You are from the lowest level of stable society, the poorer peasantry. Your family will have little or no land of its own and will live in extremely humble circumstances, working mostly on the lord's land but managing to feed themselves, most of the time. You have probably been helping with that work since you were very young, and are well used to manual labour. 10% chance you are literate.

4 – High-level peasant/freeman. You are one of the more well-off peasants of the village: your family likely works some of its own land as well as the lord's, and probably owns a handful of animals too. Your life is still a hard-working one, though. You may have experience working at simple trades like weaving in the time not spent farming (see the tradesman entry for the experience you might have, but roll d4 on the chart). 20% chance you are literate.

5 – Tradesman. You are from a family of tradesmen who work a specific profession, giving them relatively high status and some personal wealth in the village: you too have been raised with the intention of going into this trade and will have some knowledge of it. Pick a trade if you have strong feelings about it (don't show this list), or roll d8 – 1 weaving, 2 milling, 3 brewing, 4 butchery, 5 tailoring, 6 building, 7 smithing, 8 physick. 50% chance you are literate.

6 – Merchant. You are from one of the village's handful of merchant families. Your family trades goods in and out of Loxley and is likely regarded as wealthy and flashy, though they are not of noble status. You have grown up in a large house and probably travelled a little: you have also begun to learn a little about the family business. 90% chance you are literate.

7 – Minor Loxley. You are a member of the Loxley family, the local nobility – but a minor member, the child of a younger son or similar. You've grown up with status and the need to keep up appearances, but not necessarily with real wealth or power. You are unlikely to inherit much, so your family may be considering a career for you in the priesthood: or they may want you to be apprenticed to a trade. 50% chance you are literate.

8 – Major Loxley. Lucky you: you are a child of the lord of the manor, Lord Loxley, the most powerful man for miles around. You were raised in Loxley Hall and may even inherit it someday: certainly wealth and comfort are yours for the rest of your life. You will have been raised in the ways of the minor nobility – hunting, feasting, dancing – rather than a trade, but you probably have a decent general education too. 75% chance you are literate. Also generate primogeniture: you are the d4th child.