If they never see you coming, you’ve already won. The Night Masques delve into the sordid, mucky work of the city. They tend to get marks better dead than alive, and rarely do they walk away leaving a soul alive. But not all of the Masques take part in the wet work. Most wear masks like the real killers of the group, wrapping themselves in those legends of murder to commit the simpler crimes of theft. And they make out like serious bandits!
Thief Guild | Old City and New City
Not everyone kills and thieves wearing black leathers and menacing masks. Some of the best thieves do their work with a bright smile and friendly conversation. The Scarlet Veil has infiltrated every aspect of the markets and a few businesses with singers, taleweavers, comedians, jugglers, dancers, and friendly folk with alluring eyes and fingers. They have a strong hold on gossip, information, and a fair few goods trade through the night markets. Any one that tries to slip into the market to complete a task better let the veil know. Their response can be deadly with an easy grasp around the throat of merchant.
Thief Guild and Entertainers | Markets
Tarot card reader and owner of the Silk Road, Opala keeps a close eye on the Scarlet Veil. She provides insights into love lives, future business deals, the usual fluff that people flock to when so concerned about their lives. Her readings are usually dead on, typically based on the bits of information she receives from members of the Veil. She is also a member, providing buyers for gathered information, fencing small time thefts of goods, and hiding members of the Veil when they are found or need to lie low.
The Mother’s Hand
Do not underestimate the poor, downtrodden, enslaved, or overworked. No one is sure who the mother is. No single person seems to run this far-reaching group. Their numbers and members include menial workers, staff in the finer households, slaves, pit fighters, dock workers, and the poor and sick begging in the street. Some say they keep a wary eye on the UnderMarket, controlling a few entrances and exits. What they specialize in, what they seek, is damn hard to pinpoint. But when they hit a place, you know. Somewhere is a handprint, and someone missing a hand…
Thieves Guild and Slaves | Slave Block, Docks, UnderMarket
Ships and Pirates
Across the seas and fishing in bays, various ships lead the way in the South. Here are a few for your adventures.
A face even a mother could not love, Pete Hullahan has sailed as a shiphand and pirate working his way through fishing vessels and gunboats. He made a name on being a disgusting comedian, eager to keep people laughing and enemies skewered. When in port, he always buys a round for his best friends or those he wants to curry favor with. And then he had the wild idea of joining the arena for the annual champion battle!
He won the moral champion's bought, excelling far above his kith and kin, gaining respect from the entire docks. Now he has the pick of berth's, gathers favors, and strike's out to see more on the seas! He's a great contact for those just starting out or needing a hard to find favor from captains and pirates.
A fine merchant vessel, the Sundered Sky is a member of a southern family focused in trade. They own just the one ship, but have successfully continued their work outside of Guild controls and sanctions. They pay hefty dues, but hold a place of pride in the eyes of Chiaroscuro.
The family once held a place as an Orkhan until the eldering father died leaving a wife, Hana Pasdar, and a wealth of daughters. They have stayed single, refusing to marry their power away. Investing into the ship, they ladies of Pasdar have kept their independence without taking the grey.
They have taken on quite a few from New City, seeking a new life for themselves. The Sundered Sky trades in crops, beasts, spices, and the like. They travel along the coasts of the South from the Hundred Kingdoms and Varang through to the Lap.
Captain Vidrak and First Mate Shalzar run a tight ship of the Death’s Gambit, a fearsome galleon with a coral reef attached in the shape of a skull. They have a fair few bounties on their heads and hull from the Guild and House Peleps for crimes of plunder, murder, and slave robbing. They may be a blood thirsty crew, but they never stoop so low as to engage in slaving. If they catch wind of a ship of slavers, they destroy them. Most of which fly guild colors.
Captain Vidrak is a scurvy human, a slave escaped by the past captain Kresher that held to this post. He doesn’t quite remember where he hailed from as a lad, his entire life spent in hulls. In his later, salty years, the months are counted now as he looks for someone new to take the helm.
At his side is Shalzar, a god-blooded fiend from the far western reaches. She’s always been with the ship, taking care of the coral, and listening for terrors in the deep. Blood-touched from a watery spirit, she has a second sense attuned to the ship and great oceans.
A merchant galleon with ancient lines, golden hued wood planks, gems inlaid, and a captain of legend. The ship was once a staple in Chiaroscuro…during the First Age. Only the Tri-Khan seems to recognize it. Old records in the dockmaster’s office also mention it about a thousand years back. Captain Jakaou and his first mate Lucien seem open to take on new recruits and staff up the ship, from parts unknown. And it looks like it needs repairs. They are returning to old stomping grounds, seeking the pirate’s life and plundering the Dragon-Blooded for their goods and luxuries. And of course thumbing the nose of authorities.
The first mate Lucien never seems to leave the ship, ever attentive and working on the decks and below in quarters. He has a thin build, looking far more like a bookkeeper than a formidable enforcer of the ranks.
Sire of Sirens
If ever you see a strangely beautiful glittering of light and ocean in the distance, something to strike wonder, use every bit of power you can muster to add distance. For you see the Sire of Sirens, a sloop of sorts that drifted from the wyld of the far western waters into Creation. Anything beautiful and bright is terrifying in this world, hold to this knowledge. We only know of this Rakshan ship from dreamers.
When it passes near a ship with any aboard that slumber, they recall odd dreams of a ship filled with strange spirits. They carry in them a touch of somber sadness, leaving some in tears or a bit torn for not being awake at the time of its passing. When everyone wakes, a couple sailors are always missing, called by the song it sings…
The captain of the ship is a gorgon haired Raksha, cloaking herself in terrible visions and dreams to lure others to her whims and hungers. Each tendril of her “hair” is a living extension of her hunger, paralyzing those she enwraps. Fear this fiend!