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House Asen

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House Asen

 

 

Background: Asen is a blood lineage traced far back to humanity's past, althrough it has existed as nobility only for a few hundred years. Throughout their lordship they have had times of prosperity and dominance, aswell as times of weakness and obscurity, having reached the status of a Duchy at one point but also the equivalent of glorified nametags at other points of time. As such, if the House is weak today, that does not necessarily mean it will remain so in the future, and vice-versa.

 

House Culture: Asen and the populus their rule, or ruled, over, have a rather unique culture incorporated into their everyday lives and motto operandi; below is a list of highlighted qualities or weaknesses that define the Asen blood and their servants:

- Archaic Vrykul-dialect-derived words: Albeit only a few of them exist, they put any non-Asen foreigner to complete bafflement; words such as "Bolyar" and "Rakija" are employed within Castle Karvuna by the nobility and the peasantry alike.

- Olden Folk Traditions: Slightly less odd than the words above, these are a few customs and superstitions that have survived in a twisted form from Asen's first recorded history; initially trying to suppress them, the Church eventually gave up on that task as they were ultimately deemed non-heretical or threatening to the Holy Light (basicly paganism/novoverije stuff from irl).

- Mercantilism: Asen and their subjects are highly commerce-driven; they indulge in trade in all kinds and most of them can haggle pretty well. Their love of coins swapping hands is only outmatched by the Goblins.

- Horses and Sheephearding: In older, more fortunate times, Asen were known for their sheep and horses, riding the latter. While such is no longer the case, vestiges of these practices still survive: for example, a common item or makeshift weapon to have around for a peasant is a herder stick.

- "Rough" personalities: With the decline of the House coupled with the losses suffered during the wars, Asen and its subjects' mentality shifted further - they follow brutal pragmatism as opposed to puritan norms, and possess almost excessive amount of cynicism in their speech, reflected by their dry or dark humour. They can be rather blunt and upfront with whoever they like or dislike, and like to hit the booze often (their prized Rakija!) domestically.

- "Stone Strong": Asen and their subjects have gained the unhealthy obsession with the mountain, the mountain's natural resources, and the fortifications they can build from it. Many peasants follow the creed of "my home is my fortress", preferring to live in an ugly, but durable house rather than vice-versa, while nobility and those manning the walls fantasize about building even more walls around their walls. Upon their walls. Walls.

- Lost Glory: Asen and their subjects still remember the times where the House was one of the bigger players in politics or economy; as such, there is a strong desire to bounce back from the bottom and return to the glorious past of prosperity and might.

 

House Resources: (considered 'renewable' over time, however they can still be depleted)

- Agriculture: Apricot, Plum, Limited Sheep and Goat Herding; dozen or so Stable Horses; limited mountain Fungi harvest;

- Material: Solid and Soft Minerals;

- Production: Fruit Alchohol Distillation, Masonry, Individual Craftsmen Goods;

- Transports: 1x Carriage + 1 Carriage per Player Bolyar, Diplomat or Siege Mason;

- Defense: 12 Professional Millitiamen + individual Player Characters + intact fortifications' of Castle Karvuna;

 

Internal Structure of the House:

- Status: Barony (formerly something greater)

- Vassals to/part of the jurisdiction of: House Tervel [NPC House]

- Current Lordship: Lady Charlotte-Louise Asen

- Ranks and Division of Power:

 

1. Bolyars: (Boyars IRL) roughly translated to "merchant-politicians" or "merchants with [political] power", bolyars, also spelled boyars, are the reason many would define the house as highly decentralized. Bolyars hold disproportionate power in the House, always being not far behind the House's Lord or Lady regardless of whether or not the House is rising in status or in decline - they simply became richer and more influential, or lose luxuries and influence as a result; it is even possible for a bolyar to hold more unofficial power than their liege, althrough they will still rely on their Lord/Lady's official status. Bolyars are ambition driven and often shifty as a result, needing a very strong fervor for commerce to become bolyars to begin with. Bolyars are not hereditary - they are directly appointed by the Lord/Lady or removed (althrough the latter is harder to do). Paralel to their business natures, they also act as councilmen to their liege. While they may often disagree with the decisions of their liege, a wise bolyar understands the importance of prosperity of their House, because that means prosperity to themselves aswell. Being the pragmatists of pragmatists, Bolyars are not above making questionable ventures so long they don't threaten their position or the house's reputation and are legal - for example, they hold no bias against trading with neutral Goblins.

Bolyars are not heirs to the House unless specifically appointed by their Lord/Lady as one, and only if they fit other requirements. The origin of Bolyars can also differ, as explored below:

- Blood-related Bolyars: being able to trace atleast a minor amount of Asen blood in their lineage, these are Bolyars of distant blood connection (Cousins and farther) to the Asen family; this still does not make them eligible of being heirs unless specifically appointed as such.

- Lesser House Bolyars: appointed bolyars from a different, smaller House entirely, who have sworn an oath and wish to integrate into the Asen family;

- Common Bolyars: the majority of bolyars are simply successful people, from commoners to merchants to lesser nobles, who have been appointed and made part of House Asen at some point in time.

As such, all Bolyars are based on meritocracy rather than privilage; they have the freedom but also the responsibility to grow the House's economic might through their mercantile or political skills. While ultimately loyal to their liege, their nature has earned them less than pleasant reputation to some of the more puritan noble Houses or organizations, often called "greedy", "Lightless" (godless), or "potential turncoats".

Player Boylars have the most potential to help create RP with these IC powers. It is their responsibility to be ready to establish contact with other characters and expand House Asen's influence together with their Lord/Lady. More independant Boylars appointed may use their own characters' resources, but for those who wish to use the House's own limited resources as a starting point, here is a list of Castle Karvuna's IC assets that can be claimed to govern over althrough not monopolize completely (you can choose only 1):

A) Fruit Distillation: House Asen grows a limited volume of Apricot and Plum fruits, most of which is processed in homemade brewing distilleries to be made into the spirit called "Rakija". Either through striking a few deals with peasants or possessing a bigger-than-usual system to brew it, this bolyar can work into a way to expand brewing capabilities and sell the alchoholic spirit as a business;

B) Solid Mineral (types of stone): Known for its masonry, House Asen's natural access to the mountain's girth provides them with limited amount of solid material perfect for construction of durable structures or objects. A bolyar may seek to expand Asen's masonry as profitable services, or perhaps sell the material to others with high monetary return;

C) Soft Mineral (graphite and others): Albeit less obviously useful than the big chunks above, these minerals can still be useful in the right hands - for one, they are great to promote, and perhaps sell, arts such as stonecarving or drawing. A bolyar with access to these resources would do well doing so.

D) Mountain Livestock: House Asen has been experimenting with animals befit of living high in the mountains, having a few horses and sheep, but also wishing to breed goats due to their natural preference to the terrain. Investing in livestock not only improves the standards of living of the local populace, but may reap high benefits in the future for a Bolyar and the House!

Player Slots: [0/4]

 

2. Diplomat: a pretty self-explanatory position. Unlike the commerce-driven politicians above, Diplomats dedicate themselves solely to the good image of the House. Often surprisingly tactful, educated and befittingly dressed, these representatives make sure to be on everyone's good side without sacrificing their integrity. Diplomats are almost always on the move, ready to establish first contact with a person or organization of interest and make a friend. Diplomats are excellent politicians and politicians alone, and are allowed to be present in the House of Nobles' meetings in the case of their liege being unable to be present instead, however they cannot vote in their Lord/Lady's absence.

Player Slots: [0/1]

 

3. Siege Mason: commander of the House's small millitia and overseer of the defense of Castle Karvuna, the siege mason must always have 3 plans ready to be executed at a moment's notice at the event of an attack by anyone or anything. Often being of military background, Siege Masons are also required to greatly understand the workings of stonework and fortifications; if not being architects themselves. Unlike the two positions listed above, the Siege Mason is much more immobile, being concerned with the castle's safety above all else; however, should the house Lord/Lady need to participate in personal combat somewhere, the Siege Mason is expected to be their right-hand man and elite bodyguard on the battlefield.

Player Slots: [0/1]

 

4. Servants: From knights to soldiers/mercenaries to craftsmen/traders to simple maids, these are varying levels of service to the House, often under the oversight of either the Lord/Lady of the House, one of the Bolyars, the Diplomat, or the Siege Mason.

Player Slots: Unlimited

 

 

OOC Note: Contact me ingame, on the forums or on discord if you're interested in any of the House positions.

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