Friday, June 4, 2010

Random Immigrant Urban Encounter Table

Any major city, like the City, is likely to be something of a melting pot.  Here are ten random encounters with immigrants of various ethnicities/nationalities, from Ealderde, the Old World. 

Roll 1d10:

01 Doppelkinnian Butcher
- Heavy set man with an outrageously over-sized moustache (waxed at the ends), and thinning hair. For some reason, his artificial left eye is bright blue.  His real one is brown. His large, heavy-knuckled hands always have the faint stain of blood. All he sees and hears gets reported to the Mob, and from there to infernal Syndicate capo Dis Pater.

02 Graustarkian Police Man - Ruddy faced with a bulbous nose like ground-beef. Pay him well, and he'll look the other way. Don't pay him, and he'll look for a reason to crack your head. Despite his accent, don't ever mistake him for a Dawsbergener.

03 Ixanian Dissident Scientist - Thin, bespectacled, chain-smoking man, with a twitchy mouth and nervous eyes. His fastidious suit is hopelessly out of date. He's a bit paranoid--anyone could be a Red agent or an Anarchist fanatic trying to get the secret. What secret? Well, how does he know he can trust you? At some point in the near future, his dead body will be found in the Eldritch River.

04 Karlovan Laundress - Aged, stooped, and bundled in a shawl. She sings to herself constantly in the old tongue--songs bawdy and profane, if anyone understood them. She has a chronic, wet cough which should worry her employers, but doesn't. She knows a few hexes that can make things difficult for those who cross her.

05 Uqbarish Taxi Driver - Oh, the stories he could tell--and will. He'll regale you with fascinating tales of the old country, if you can pick the gold from the dross of his broken Common.  Don't listen!  His homeland doesn't exist in this world (at least not yet), but the more people who come to believe in it through his enchanting anecdotes, the more likely it is to manifest in reality--and like a cancer begin remaking the world around it.

06 Trysteran Pimp - Sleepy-eyed, perpetually smells of alcohol, but a sharp dresser. He always carries a stiletto (since the incident that gave him the still-visible scar on his left cheek) and knows how to use it. He's also got a pistol (souvenir from the War) in his sock drawer.  Has a strange fear of mirrors, and a habit of stroking a rather sinister looking icon of a saint no one is able to recognize.

07 Scirieli Prostitute - Works for the Trysteran Pimp. Beautiful, and brunette, with green eyes that might hold centuries worth of boredom. In the old country she was chosen as a young girl to serve the cult of the old and dread goddess the church father's have tried hard to stamp out, but the peasants stubbornly cling to in secret. She's got a knife, too. An ornate, ancient blade you will not see unless you too are chosen. And by then it's too late.

08 Servian Newsboy - Born in the City and sounds like it, though he parents know not a word of Common. Manages to hear a lot without ever being noticed, and shows up almost like magic at pivotal moments, often to complicate matters. Wields a mean slingshot.
09 Luthan Anarchist - A tall, thin man with long spider-like fingers. Carries a Cerebus-headed cane he fondles like a lover.  His accent is thick, and he tends to mumble, so one can ever be sure they heard him correctly. He has enough explosive secreted on his person to whip up at least a small bomb on very short notice. No one in this decadent City is sufficiently dedicated to the revolutionary cause. He'd see it all go up in flames, if he could.

10 Poitêmien Occultist - Once handsome, but now bald, and growing paunchy. His penetrating gaze is half his mystique. The other half is the shabby, libertine air he tries to cultivate. Does seances for old money, and looks for magical artifacts in the markets of poorer parts of town. He seems to be seeking something specific...


Daddy Grognard said...


Love number 5 - heady with the scent of Borges.

Chris said...

05 Uqbarish Taxi Driver

A Borges reference that confirms my own unexamined prejudice about foreigners all being ghost people. Like.

netherwerks said...

Excellent work! I've been building a table for immigrants for Riskail, bu thave held off on it for until I get more of the river-gates and such fleshed-out. I like how you did this--number 10 really made me laugh out loud. Spot-on. Very cool set of immigrants!

Trey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trey said...

@DG & Chris - Glad you liked the Borges reference--and Chris, always happy to help a man confirm his prejudices. I must confess that none of these country names are my own invention--all are literary references.

I figured what's fictional in our world, is probably real in the City's.

@NetherWerks - Thanks. I'll be looking forward to your Riskail list.