Perks and Flaws

Perks and Flaws

Perks cost Experience Points during Character Creation, while Flaws grant points. There are no limits on the amount of Flaws or Perks that may be taken at Character Creation, but be aware that every one will change your play experience significantly.

Character Perks and Flaws can only be gained or lost after Character Creation with appropriate story and spending Personal Achievement points. 

Common Perks

These Perks may be taken by any character, regardless of background.

Renowned (3)
Dramatic stories of your reputation precede you. Whether as a hero or a villain, your deeds inspire some level of awe that fuels the fire of your notoriety, and when it matters, your stature lends extra weight to your presence. Whether as diplomatic peacekeeper, orc-slaying knight, feared pirate captain, most fanatical of priests, or oft-quoted scholar, define your remarkable reputation in a short statement, which will be listed in the Scriptorium. In any scene where someone (even you) brings up your reputation, all of your Obey calls gain Power if they relate to the topic of your notoriety.

Professional (1)
You are a professional in a trade and have been at it long enough to have acquired tools of your craft. You may swap out any pieces of your starting equipment for pieces that relate to your profession.

Backbone (5)
There is something in you that rises in rebellion against being commanded or coerced. Words that would inspire submission or groveling in others stoke the embers of resolve within you. You have one free use of Discipline against Obey per Rest. 

Wealth (2)
Gain an additional 20 silver that can be spent in starting equipment or saved for starting silver. This can be taken multiple times. You may wish to visit the World Prices Section to investigate what items you might wish to purchase.

Well-Equipped (1)
You may choose an additional starting item from your Social Classes’ starting equipment list during the Equipment step. This can be taken multiple times.

Boon (1-7 Points)
You have some sort of advantage or beneficial circumstance that isn’t represented elsewhere by other Perks. This could be a special writ of allowance by a local power like a noble, a quirk that makes you able to function with less sleep, or something else. The exact nature of this boon and how it works, whether it can be lost, what it costs and other details require express approval by staff, and the benefit you have in mind may not be allowable at all.

Favored (2-5)
Someone local to the area likes you and acts accordingly. This person starts with a Bond of your choice to your character and a relationship defined by your backstory.  While they will not always be available and have a life of their own, they will help you when they can. The cost of this Perk is dependent on the power of the person in the local theater with 2 representing a character who is competent in their field, such as skilled mercenary or Hearthwise farmer, and 5 representing someone with widely accepted authority or dominance in their sphere, such as one of the Prominent Figures.

You may not purchase this Perk more than once.

Unusual Perks

These Perks can be taken by any character, but because of their scarcity in the setting, they require Glory to be spent alongside the Perk cost.
 

Heirloom Relic (5) 
15 Glory
Your family has lived in the ruins of the ancient battles of Witchkings, and either through valor or graverobbing, your family has passed down a relic from those terrible times. It may be nothing more than a trinket, a symbol of your family’s resilience, but you grew up hearing stories of strange happenings surrounding the heirloom. You are the inheritor, and while it’s mostly a reminder of your family, you feel that it may help you in strange ways. Staff will work with you to create an effect for the heirloom based on your character’s family history and background. 

Anacrusis Resistant (5)
5 Glory

For a reason that remains unknown, you are unusually resistant to the reality warping effects of Anacrusis, the spell sickness that accompanies heavy use of magical forces.  You always take one less Anacrusis Point than normal from any spell.

This Perk is not purchasable if you are a Magician, and is refunded automatically if you become one

Mercenary Captain (5)
5 Glory

You are the leader of a mercenary company of modest means. This makes you a Warlord.  Instead of the normal Warmongering rules, Mercenary Captains must pay 1 Influence per Chapter to prevent their army from leaving. This can be paid in advance.  Mercenary Captains arrive in play with 3 Warlord Achievements that can be spent to summon soldiers

Traits

Traits have both a positive and a negative element, and thus neither grant or cost experience.

Alcoholic
Alcohol is not a luxury, it is a necessity. You use it to escape the shambles that have become your life and you feel more in control when you’ve washed away your worries with drink.  When you are not Intoxicated, you cannot gain Inspired from any source or benefit from the Performance Skill, however, whenever you become Intoxicated, you also become Inspired. 

Death Wish
You are the grim husk of a man. It is arguable that you have nothing to wish for, because you are already dead. You are immune to Fear and Obey calls that would make you leave or refuse a fight, but you cannot flee or exit any unwanted combat situation you become engaged in. No combat is unwanted.

Gain the Belief: Never turn down a fight 

Venerable
The glories of youth have passed you by, but left hard, lived experience in its wake.  Your body has grown weak, but your spirit has grown strong.  You may never have a Combat or Physical Skill above Rank 1, and you may never have a Physical Attribute (Strength, Speed or Fortitude) above Ordinary.  However, you immediately gain 20 Experience Points to spend toward this character in any way you wish, and you may negate 15 Glory toward the costs of any Perks, Flaws, or Secrets due to your long and eventful life. 

Regardless of your real age, you must wear age-related makeups or prosthetics in the costume for this character.

Renegade
You are an ex-member of a distinguished guild or Organization. You possess many of their secrets but have none of their support. As a Magician or a Priest, you may not increase your Rank or Circle, purchase any new abilities, or any other forms of support from your old organization, but you no longer possess the Beholden portion of your station – you’ve somehow escaped your prior life and are trying now to start a new one, or perhaps take what you’ve learned to fulfill the destiny you had in mind when you started. 

Solitary
You have always led a solitary life, keeping mainly to yourself and sharing very little of yourself with others. You have learned how to be self-reliant and have as little contact with others as is necessary, creating ways to allow solitude as you go about your affairs. The Streetwise Skill may not be used to investigate anything about you, but you may not join any Organizations.

Common Flaws

These Flaws may be taken by any kind of character, regardless of background, and award points when taken.
 

Beholden (1 to 3)
You are beholden to another character or Organization.  It could be that this character is someone to whom you owe a great deal, or holds an emotional significance to you like a family member.  It could also be that this debt is professional in nature, or even comes in the form of blackmail or another form of coercion.  When they ask, however, you feel the need to do as they ask.  Depending on the points that this Flaw is taken for, the consequences for refusing the requests of those you are Beholden to increase.  The listed consequence occurs if your character is not able to fulfill the request the same Event that they receive it.

  • Minor- For 1 Point, the relationship is personal.  If she fails to meet the needs of the request, she feels intense guilt and gains Despair.
  • Significant- For 2 Points, the relationship is professional and regarding held commitments.  If she fails to meet the request, she may lose other Perks, Allies or gain new flaws like Enemy or Debt.
  • Major- For 3 Points the relationship is critical.  If she fails to meet these requests, it could result in the Enemy flaw or serious backlash and revenge.

In order to take this flaw at a given value, the characters or organization you are Beholden to must be capable of delivering on the consequences, and so most likely are serious people with serious requests.

This Flaw can only be taken twice, excluding those gained automatically from joining Organizations. Note that being Beholden multiple times lends itself to a story of how those loyalties are tested against one another.

Corpse in the Closet (1 or 3)
You have a secret that you do not want anyone to ever find out about. Maybe you were responsible for a tragedy, involved in the murder of a friend’s father, or once worshiped one of the Triumvirate. By taking this flaw it means that while whatever it is remains basically secret, it was not a perfect crime and there are witnesses, conspirators or other lingering evidence that a dedicated person might still discover if they really looked into it, and thus, you are more at risk of it being brought up. For this flaw to be effective, the secret must be something that will cause you serious hardship should it be found out. For 1 point, your close companions would consider parting ways with you. For 3 points, there would be no choice but to ostracize or kill you.

Craven (4)
You are unused to danger, or perhaps a little too used to it, and when danger arrives, you look out for number one. You will never willingly enter a combat situation and must attempt to exit immediately if you find yourself in one, and you must spend a Discipline to attempt to enter an area or circumstance that might have other dangers or participate in combat. If you do join a dangerous situation, you automatically gain Fear.

Cursed (1-3)
Something horrible afflicts your character, some lasting ailment or malady that the character perhaps acquired through previous events or possibly was born with, some flaw passed through the blood or perhaps on your entire lineage. The details and severity of this affliction are variable in nature, though there may be further repercussions than just the curse itself as people’s reactions to one bedeviled can vary wildly. Alternately, you can use this flaw to describe some other severe defect with your character not covered elsewhere by another flaw.

A 1 point Curse is something that is a serious inconvenience to you, and may occasionally prove dangerous.

A 2 point Curse is something that is a serious defect of your character, and might frequently put you in peril.

A 3 point Curse is anything that is critically the matter with your character, having a high likelihood to be the way your character ends their sad story.

Staff reserves the right to deny or revise any suggested Curse flaw, based on its practicality or other factors, and may suggest a similar, existing flaw instead.

Dainty (3)
You are not one for rough treatment and hard work. Taking an Injury to any of your limbs is enough to Down you.

Dirt Poor (3)
Perhaps you are down on your luck, or never had any to begin with. You may also begin the game as a captive or in some other dire circumstance, but in either case you lack all but the most basic property. You begin the game with no items, equipment or property and no starting money save the clothes on your back. You cannot take this flaw if you purchase a Character Perk for joining an Organization such as Knighthood.

Dirt Poor still allows you to take perks that give a special piece of equipment such as Well-Equipped, Pistolier or Ancestral Moorsword, but you may not take Wealth with this flaw.

Enemy – Rival (2)
Someone skilled or powerful within your area of interest has decided that you are their adversary. They will compete with you and attempt to prove their superiority over you in some arena. They may not wish for your death, but they will interfere with your pursuits and attempt to ruin your accomplishments to prove themselves your better.

Enemy – Grudge (3) 
You have earned the enmity of a dangerous person or group who now wish you harm.  They may be your equal personally, but they have resources and a network and will do everything in their power to destroy you and those you care about.

Enemy – Hunted (4)
You have offended or harmed one of the mightiest organizations or people in the world.  They are much more powerful than you and will use that power to seek you out and destroy you and everything you care about.

Finesse Fighter (3)
You have a light touch and quick hands which are fine for small, precise movements, but lack the strength for heavy blows or vigorous striking. You may learn to fight with Light Weapons but you have no talent at all for Arming or Heavy Weapons, and may never learn those skills.

Haunted (3)
Either through your own actions, or by some unfortunate twist of fate, you are innately tied to a Malefic entity. It follows you no matter where you run and interferes with your life in ways both small and deadly. This entity may seek your death or may be driven to cause you harm in other worse ways.  While malefic can be resolved through various means, this flaw represents one that will not be easy to rid yourself of.

The storytellers will work with you to write a malefic and tie it into your Personal Story

Heavy Handed (3)
You don’t know your own strength. You’ve never learned control and handing you something delicate is an invitation for you to break it. Your hamfisted approach doesn’t lend itself well to anything but Heavy Weapons; you can’t get the hang of Light or Arming Weapons and may never learn those skills.

Hedonist (4)
Be it through curiosity or some black attraction, you are at one with the dark side of your soul and feel entitled to all the temptations that others normally deny. You must spend Discipline to avoid indulging in any of the level 1 Sins when the opportunity arises.

Honor Code (1-5)
The character is honor sworn to a specific set of principles or rules. You determine a number of Beliefs, which are “Always” or “Never” statements with no qualifiers such as “unless or” “except when” about your character’s personal ethics. Each tenet should also be “above and beyond” what a normal person would already do. For instance, “Never eat human flesh” would not be acceptable because most people would not do that anyway, whereas “Never eat meat” would be entirely suitable. Violating these precepts works exactly as if you were violating your Devotion, causing a Personal Failure. For each point this flaw awards, 2 Beliefs are required.

(Read more about Beliefs)

Note that Honor Code often requires some additional discussion during character creation, so allow some extra time to make sure that the tenets of this flaw are acceptable.

Memorable (3)
Your bombastic personality, your exaggerated dress, or some other feature about you makes you impossible to forget. Anyone looking into you with the Streetwise Skill spills all of your details, as if they had used Streetwise 5, and you do not gain any resistance to Streetwise from any Skill you possess.

Naive (3)
You’re very trusting of people. It’s adorable. You may never counter a use of an Obey to cause you to believe something.  

Maimed (2, 4 or 6)
You bear the old scars of previous conflict, having some injury from a previous encounter that haunts you to this day. You begin play with a Maim effect. This can be purchased multiple times for different body parts, but more severe maims on a body part supersede and include more mild ones. For instance, if one cannot walk because of crippled legs, they also cannot run and cannot jump.

Mild Leg Maims

Trick Knee – You have a damaged muscle that causes your knee to slip out of place at the worst moments. Any time you are the subject of the Stun, Bleed, Grab, or Pain effects to the leg, you also suffer Knockdown.

Bad Knees – You can’t trek around the wilderness like you used to be able. Moving off of the established roads involves much too many dips, hops and hurdles for you, and thus you cannot step off of ordinary paths to enter Wilderness at all.

Damaged Spine – Injury to your hips and lower back make it impossible for you to crawl on hands and knees through tight spaces, and make crouching and ducking very painful. You cannot enter Stealth or take any action that uses the Ignore sign.

Severe Leg Maims

Cannot Run – Injuries to the muscles or joints are extensive and the character cannot keep his balance while running, and needs a cane or staff to walk uphill or downhill. You may never move at a full run, and can never use Dodge.

Terrible Balance – Great difficulty coordinating your back and hips means you can’t generate the necessary foundation for proper footwork, and can never use a Combat Skill to call a Condition.

Crippling Leg Maims

Cannot Walk – Injuries to the hip, spine or nerves have left the legs useless, and the character can no longer walk at all, even with assistance. He must be moved manually, or rolled about in a cart.

Mild Arm Maims

Weak Grip – Wrist or muscle injuries cause a weak hold on gripped objects. Any strike with a Mighty or Large weapon against your weapon causes it to be Disarmed automatically.

Torn Rotator – Due to a shoulder injury, you cannot lift your arm above your eye-line. You can never climb on anything, draw a bow, or lift a shield.

Severe Arm Maims

Missing fingers – Important fingers like the thumb, forefinger or both are missing from one hand, and it makes fine manipulation with that hand exceptionally clumsy. You must tape down to the palm at least two fingers of the affected hand such that the fingers cannot be used to grip anything. Working with a mechanical device of any kind takes 2 minutes instead of 30 seconds, and you cannot fire a bow or pistol. Additionally performing Arcane Signs (unless with the Still Channeling Technique or possibly Sinistration) is impossible.

Crippling Arm Maims

Missing Hand – Your hand has been removed totally at the wrist or lower, or the hand has otherwise been rendered totally useless by injury. Crafting times double, and no equipment such as weaponry or shields may be used on the affected limb. 

Mild Head Maims

Headaches – You are wracked by painful headaches that get worse as you strain yourself. Resting takes a minimum of 10 minutes as it takes a while for your headaches to subside.

Hearing Loss – Injuries to your inner ear have reduced your ability to pick up certain pitches. Perception abilities that make you Alert based on sound do not work, and you don’t react to sounds from far away.

Vision Loss – Your eyes are blurry, you have some double vision, or perhaps it just hurts to look at light, but tasks that require keen use of the eyes have become very difficult for you. You cannot become Alert by any Vigilance Skill use that relies on sight, and you cannot fire ranged weapons at any target farther away than Speaking Distance.

Severe Head Maims

Scarred – Injuries to your face have ruined any hope of handsomeness or traditional beauty, and try as they might, it is difficult for people to see past your face. You cannot use the Persuade, Provoke, or Sincerity skills while your face is exposed.

Loose screws – All that pounding has broken something. You gain a permanent Severe Insanity.

One Eye – One of your eyes has been completely ruined or lost and you no longer have any vision with it. You must wear an eye patch or other covering as part of your costume that must block the vision of that eye.

Migraines – After exerting yourself you are wracked with blinding pain for a good while after. Resting takes at least an hour, and bright light or loud noises reset the time.

Seizures – Whenever you suffer Trauma, you automatically fall to the ground and suffer Blackout as you struggle with fits.

Crippling Head Maims

Blinded – You have completely lost your vision. You should wear a blindfold or other sight impairing device, but for safety reasons you may take it off to navigate difficult environments, and may use a material that can be partially seen through.

Detachment – Damage to the brain has caused you to become unhinged. Gain a Crippling Insanity.

One Foot in the Grave (7)
Your character is dying. Unless by some miracle, your character will die within 5 Events.

Pure of Heart (5)
There is great virtue in you, and when you fail to live up to it, it is you who is harmed most of all. Whenever you gain any new Depravity from committing a sin, you also gain that much Despair. This flaw may not be taken in conjunction with the wicked flaw. 

Sick in the Head (4 or 6)

4 points.
Your character has some severe trauma in their life that has driven them mad. The character begins play with a Severe Insanity. This Insanity can be suppressed with Discipline and can aggravate to more severe levels but may never be recovered from past the point of a Severe Insanity.

6 points.
Your character’s mind is so different, or they have become so unhinged from normal processes that she is fundamentally and irrevocably insane. The character begins play with a Crippling Insanity, which as above, can never be recovered from by normal means.

Stranger (2)
You are new to this land, or perhaps just have always stuck with your own kind.  You only speak the language of your home country, and no others.  While most people speak Gothic as a sort of international language, you never learned, and thus, you may only speak with people who speak your native tongue.

Gothic characters may not take this flaw.

Vainglorious (2)
Everyone loves it when their egos are stroked; you just like it much, much more. You may not counter any use of Obey while being complimented.

Ward (3 or 5)
You have someone who you are responsible for. This may be a family member, such as children or a spouse, or it may simply be someone you have taken pity upon or are sworn to protect. Wards can get caught up in your affairs, and might be the targets of your enemies.  Your wards are emotionally important to your character, and if something tragic happened to them, you would be devastated, causing you Despair for each individual you failed. The Despair granted in this way is especially tragic, each one only able to be recovered from through a major personal victory relating to your Devotion. Many people who lose their Wards find a new Devotion in revenge for those they lost.

You spend time with your wards frequently between Chapters, and learning about your actions with Streetwise will indicate the identity and location of your Wards to the one who investigated you.

If you have a single individual as your Ward, this flaw is worth 3 points. If you have several such people, like a family, this flaw is worth 5 points and must include at least 3 people. It is possible that your Ward may also be involved with another perk or flaw, such as a Beholden.  Wards require that you feed them, or they may eventually starve.

Wards must be NPC characters and not player characters.

Wicked (2)
You’ve done things in your life that some wouldn’t agree with. Moreover, you’ve done things that most would curse you for; and you don’t especially care. For each level of this flaw, your character begins with 1 Depravity in the sin of your choice for which the character is completely uninterested in forgiveness for. These points of Depravity cannot be atoned for without buying off the flaw. This can be taken more than once.

You may not take this Flaw such that it forces you to enter play above your Morality threshold and be already gaining Insanities.

Wyrd Loathing (5)
You know in your bones that magic is terrible and wrong; whether it is because wizards killed the prophet, Holy Benalus, or because of the terrible world-warping effects of magical misuse, or that magicians with their towering egos go mad and become a threat to the world and humanity, you hate magic and those who use it. You will not willingly work alongside a magician, accept magic being cast upon you, and if beneficial enchantments do get cast upon you, you gain Despair. You also gain Despair if you knowingly use any Wyrd object, touched and tainted by wicked sorceries.

Peasant Perks and Flaws

These Perks and Flaws can be taken by any character of the Peasant class. Characters of other social classes may take these for an additional Glory cost.
 

Respected (1)
You are seen as a forthright and earnest individual and are respected by local peasants. Local people listen carefully to your opinion, and take your words and wisdom seriously.  You know how to manage the uncomfortable class divide between yourself and your betters – know when to show deference, and when to show backbone.

When presenting issues that affect Peasants to someone presenting themselves as a member of the Nobility, you may call Obey: Trust me to speak for Peasants, and one Discipline to resist an Obey that would work against the better interest of Peasants.

Diligence (3)
Your lifestyle living on the land gives you hands-on training that you can put to good use. When you successfully gather from every Common and Uncommon Gathering Node for a given Gathering Skill, you also receive 1 additional Experience Point toward purchasing a greater Skill level. These bonus Experience Points are cumulative over time, and are for the following Skills:

Mining: Grit

Forestry: Survival

Hunting: Archery

Farming: Vigilance

These points are accumulated even if the requisite Attribute for a locked Skill is not attained.

Pillar of the Community (3)
You are a well-known and distinguished member of the local community, when there is conflict, people look to you for advice. Whenever you are attempting to mediate your peers or trying to bring the community together in unity, you may use the Authority gesture, forcing everyone present to be silent and listen to you, unless they also use the Authority gesture.

Hardy (5)
Living off the land has made you tough and strong, and your family has been doing it for centuries. Normally, when Downed, after 5 minutes a character will bleed out and die. Instead, after five minutes, you become Battered and may regain consciousness. Furthermore, once per Event you may Exploit a single node once.

Hayseed (-3)
You were born in some backwater town and don’t have the head for any kind of refinement or sophistication. You may never gain the Academics or Etiquette skills.

Scum Perks and Flaws

These Perks and Flaws can be taken by any character of the Scum class.  Characters of other social classes may take these for an additional Glory cost.

 

Light Sleeper (1)
It usually just means you’re grouchy for the first hour of every day. You automatically awaken from any natural sleep at the slightest noise when danger approaches. Before an intrusion on you while you sleep at night, you will be woken up individually; the intruder must leave, then re-enter. You must denote that you have this perk on your door with a door-hanger or note so that the invader knows who to awaken, or it does not work.

Thug (3)
Sometimes it seems your entire life has been just this one lesson, over and over – the strong get what they want. You’ve had to remind others of that as often as it’s been beaten into you. When you’re interacting with other characters that are presenting themselves as Scum, you gain one use of Obey: I’m in charge and one use of Discipline against their Obey calls when you’re trying to determine the pecking order.

Scorn (3)
After years of rejection and abuse from society, you embraced their hostility. You disdain their approval and find satisfaction in their insults.

Once per rest, you may call Discipline against any Obey call that would require you to follow laws, traditions, or social orders.

When a person of higher social standing (i.e. not visibly Scum) insults, rejects, or belittles you, you may become Inspired by reacting harshly and acting against them; insulting them back, intimidating them, or anything else to show your disdain.

Street Savvy (5)
The dirty sprawls and bastard alleys know something and you know what it takes to make them talk. You may take the Investigation Action in addition to any other kind of Action during each Action Cycle. The Investigation Action may not be taken twice in a single Action Cycle. Furthermore, you automatically know when someone uses Investigation to spy on you, and who used it.

Grime (-3)
Missing teeth, layers of grime, a certain stink, maybe a weird hunch and a scratchy voice. These are some of the hallmarks of your less than trustworthy seeming. You might be a completely legitimate business man with a somewhat adventurous view of hygiene, but let’s not kid ourselves. You must costume and roleplay this flaw.

Merchant Perks and Flaws

These Perks and Flaws can be taken by any character of the Merchant class.  Characters of other social classes may take these for an additional Glory cost.

Leverage (1)
You may begin the game with 20 Silver of additional starting funds, similar to the Wealth Perk, but this money comes as a total debt of 30 Silver. You are required to pay back at least 1 silver per Chapter in repayment or else your creditors will come with demands.

This may be taken multiple times, though each instance increases the amount necessary to repay each Chapter by 1 Silver as well.

Affable (3)
You have an easy going manner and are generally well liked by folks of all walks of life. NPCs are quick to forgive you, moving on from any negative interactions that don’t directly touch their Devotion by the next event. This includes dropping any negative Bonds toward you.

Efficient (3)
You have 2 more Effort that can be used any sort of Crafting Action.

Opportunist (5) 

You are excellent at using the principles of need and fulfillment to understand how to approach problems and exploit needs.  You see opportunities everywhere, and with some thinking, can come up with an approach to take advantage. You may submit a special Research Action to Staff, stating a goal and any relevant facts you know about the situation. Staff will respond with a method by which the goal can be approached in order to achieve success, or at least get closer. It will take into account any information that is common knowledge and suggest a path forward that, if not actually effective, will at least be smart given what is known.

Debt (-3)
You are constantly in debt from various sources and are constantly short on money to pay off creditors or other collectors. This works like the Leverage Perk, except the money is all gone, leaving you only with the debt. Your creditors demand a regular flow of money, and if they find out you are holding out on them, this flaw can become an Enemy flaw instead. You are in debt for 60 Silver, and must pay at least 1 Silver per Chapter to your creditors to keep them off you, though this may not end their harassment. 

This can be taken only once.

Gentry Perks and Flaws

These Perks and Flaws can be taken by any character of the Gentry class. Characters of other social classes may take these for an additional Glory cost.
 

Classical Education (1)
You were raised with the best tutelage and instruction, and your childhood was spent learning about the world. You begin play with the following Basic Studies: The Throne, The Church, History, Nobility, Law, as well as a Study representing your own Organization such as your Noble House, your Ecclesiarchal Covenant, etc.

Servant (3)
You were born into the service of your betters, and know how best to anticipate the needs of those you are serving before they even realize the need is there.

By serving the needs of another character, you may Exert in order to Restore that character from Exhaustion after providing 15 minutes of restful pampering for that character.

Privileged (3)

Though the organization you serve may be quite distant, you have been favored with a means of regular contact such as ravens or messengers.  Once per event, you may send a letter or parcel small enough to be carried in a pack to your organization and possibly receive a response.

Elitist (5)
People can be so tiresome sometimes, and you just really can’t be bothered to explain how to live to everyone who could benefit from it. You may snub someone by issuing a dismissive gesture at someone and an audible “ugh!” noise. Until you interact with them again, you may simply ignore them and are immune to any uses of Obey that they may use on you.  You may use this as often as you wish.

Entitlement (-3)
Having been bred to power and purpose your whole life, you take your role very seriously. Whenever you see something not as it should be, the situation demands immediate correction. This could be an issue of injustice that you as a person of means could resolve, or someone doing their job incorrectly such that you cannot help but intervene. Furthermore, you cannot tolerate your authority being questioned.  If anyone you consider to be a peer or your lesser questions your word, honor, or authority, you must immediately set them in their place and never let them forget it. To do less is to spit upon all you stand for, and by extension the entire Throne and its Emperor.

You gain the following Beliefs:

    • Always Intervene when a peer or social lesser someone is acting wrongly.
    • Never allow a peer or social lesser to insult you.

Cultural Perks and Flaws

Njord Perks and Flaws

Old Ways (1)

You cling to the Old Ways. The Throne and its White Benalus are at war with your ancient Gods, and you are considered a renegade to be put down by the invaders.  You have an alternate Morality system to most characters. You do not follow the Heresy sin, and instead concern yourself with Cowardice.  

Note: This Perk is an advanced concept that may put your character at odds with the Church, Nobility, or other powerful figures.

Ice-Hardened (3)
Ice water runs through your veins and the winter winds fill your sails. During Events the Winter season, or when outside and unarmored in below freezing temperatures, you gain +1 to the Survival, Vigilance, and Stealth Skills, as well as Great Fortitude.

Branded (5)
You are known in the North and have a strong name and reputation to uphold. Men respect you, and will flock to you to to be a part of your legend. Choose a name that the Northmen know you by, such as “The Laugher,” “Dead-Eye”  “Irongut” or “Coldwind”.

This Perk makes you a Warlord.  When tales of your newest great deeds spread, through new ballads being sung of you in public by Performers (or your own Performances with some impressive boasts), or rumors are spread about your accomplishments with Streetwise, or you win battles in Warfare, you will gain additional followers.

You will, however, also attract the occasional Northman who wants to kill you for your deeds, or just to embolden their name by being the one who killed you. You can earn the same renown whenever you prove your might – gain a Warlord Achievement whenever you kill another Branded Man or dominate them in The Challenge. 

Thrall of the Old Gods (-3)
While you may or may not be a true Rimelander, you were never completely converted to the ways of White Benalus, preferring the complex submission of the old gods of the Northlands. Your gods demand sacrifice, and you must perform a ritual sacrifice each day by else be Traumatized until you complete it. An observance of your ancient rites involves ceremonial blood be spilt, chants be used, and other ritual behavior lasting at least 5 minutes. This can be done privately or publicly, the Old Gods care not which, but it must involve at least a prop of an animal to be killed, and stage blood must be visibly left on the site of your ritual as an offering to the Old Gods.

For those characters who are not Rimelanders, this Flaw does not automatically grant Heresy 3 Depravity, as it is an act of abasement rather than worship, though other supplications and prayers for aid from the Old Gods will.

Njord Clan Perks and Flaws

Bearhide

Natural Leader (2) You are looked to as a leader among your people and even some Gothic smallfolk acknowledge your authority. If you are the Leader of the entire Team for a Trial, everyone on the Team gains one more rank of Morale for the duration of the Trial

Honorbound (-2) A man is his deeds and the deeds of the dishonorable should be known to all. You gain the Belief: “Always call out sins when you see them committed” This includes sins of both Heresy and Cowardice, regardless of your own faith, as you struggle to create a personal code of honor. 

Blood Eagles

Fervent Rant (3) Everyone should know the truth just as you feel it in your bones! Once per day, you may rant loudly in public about your Devotion for five minutes in order to become Devoted til the end of the next scene.

Ancestral Shame (-2) You feel the shame of your exile from your previous clan and take the Belief “Never issue or accept a challenge”

Frost Raven

Exceptional Wealth (1) Frost Ravens acquire wealth easily and it is strange to see a member of this Clan that isn’t well off. You start play with 20 extra silver and may purchase goods at character creation using this money.  This perk may only be taken once, but explicitly does stack with Wealth and Leverage.

Forgotten Songs (-3) Your clan’s focus on trade and early adoption of mercantilism has led to a loss of traditional songs and stories among your people. You grieve more deeply than others that your songs will be lost to the ages and this makes it difficult for you to find enjoyment in the arts. You may not benefit from the Performance skill or artwork.

Greywolf

Fearless Hunter (3) Your mind is guarded against the corruptive influence of the Night. Gain a Discipline that may be used against any Hideous Obey call

Pack Animal (-2) You are used to working as a group and are distressed by change. Gain Despair whenever you leave a Morale Team. Even if you overcome this Despair, you are incurably Miserable until you join a Team once more.

Runespeaker

Dwarven Gift (5) The Runespeakers have traditionally had a strong relationship with the Dwarves of Njordr. You’ve received an heirloom, passed down through your family, that your ancestor received as a gift. You start play with a rifle, a firearm that requires two hands but can target someone at Shouting range, and twenty shots of black powder.  You also have contact with a local member of the clan that can sell you more for one silver per shot.  Purchasing shots is a Task and you’ll receive your shots by the beginning of the next Action Cycle.

Doomed (-3) When the runes were cast for you upon reaching adulthood, they foretold a ignominious doom, which is now well known among the Clan. You can never become Branded and you are unable to resist any call with the Hideous Quality.

Shadowhall

Master’s Gift (5) You’ve earned the favor of one of the notable crafters of Clan Shadowhall and been gifted with one of their famous masterworks. Gain one Masterwork Weapon or Shield at character creation.

Isolated (-2) You are used to the tight knit community of your Clan and gain the Belief “Never eat or sleep with someone you don’t have a Bond with” as you struggle to associate with those you aren’t close with.

Snow Lions

Strong Back (3) You are used to working hard and efficiently through the day. Add three to the amount of gathered items you can carry. (Four total without a bag)

Idle Hands (-2) You cannot stand to be idle and struggle to sleep well when you could be working for your people. When you wake up, you are Miserable and it is not removed until you find and pick up at least one gathered item (node or scavenged item)

Stonehearth

Exotic Connections (4) You have made all the right friends in the clan and built off existing agreements to gain access to Exotic Goods. You will receive a list of Exotic Goods available at check-in. You may spend an Action to purchase any number of them for the listed prices.

Hard Lessons (-2) It is said that the last generation fell because they gave up their actions and allies by inches. You are determined to not suffer the same fate. Take the belief “Never admit wrongdoing.”

White Eyes

Ancestral Veneration (2) You hold strong connections to the Disir of your clan calling on their strength when needed. Once per game, you may honor the Disir in a public way by calling upon their name and mentioning their glorious deeds as they relate to the current scene in order to become Inspired.

Firebrand (-2) You are uncompromising when it comes to your ideals, and passionate in making your visions of the future reality. When an action is proposed within your hearing that contradicts one of your Beliefs, you must spend a Discipline or immediately show them the error of their ways with a passionate speech.

Rogalian Perks and Flaws

Collected (1)
Your life of constant danger has made you rightly suspicious that danger can happen at any time. When an emergency situation happens, you remain coldly calm and ready to act. Against attacks with the Stealth Quality, you may call Alert with your Defense, even if you are not Alert, allowing you to react to defend yourself.

Veteran (3)
You have seen all the horrors of battle and there is little left that can faze you. You have long since accepted that you live by your steel and that you will surely one day die by it.  You do not take Trauma as an after-effect of Fear (though still may gain it from other effects), and you do not take Despair when a close friend dies.

Loyalty (5)
As a Rogalian, you know the true value of loyalty, both in yourself to those you serve, and from those who serve you. Loyalty burns like a flame, and when you interact meaningfully with your factors, you continually rekindle that fire.

Your Followers, your Leader, and any member of your Organization gain Inspired any time you successfully use an Obey call on them.  You are affected the same way by their Obey calls on yourself. No one may benefit from this Perk more than once per scene.

War Haunted (-3)
Your time with tragedy has worn you down, little by little and finally, with a gasp and a whimper, it broke you. You are trying to live a different kind of life now, but the ghosts of your old story haunt you to this day. At the end of any scene when combat breaks out, or when people discuss violence around you, you are Traumatized.

Gothic Perks and Flaws

Humorless (1)
You rarely ever crack a smile or make a joke, even in good company. A stern rebuke and possibly a lecture is the only reward for guile aimed at you.  In any scene in which you have remained completely stoic and serious, with no facial expression, you may gain one use of Discipline against Obey calls.

Pious (3)
Your faith in the Lord is the strong pillar that you have built your life upon, and you never falter or shake in your convictions. As a result, you feel blessed that the Lord answers your call when you pray for assistance.

You gain the following Belief:
Always cover your head with a hood or veil in public.

When using the Prayer ability, your Faith is considered one higher than normal.

Spiritual Prodigy (5)
For as long as you can remember, your faith has been everything to you. It is one of the strong pillars that you have built your entire life upon, and it impacts every decision you make. You may use the Prayer ability or the Willpower ability an additional time per day (though only once per scene).

Bigoted (-3)
You cannot suffer people who don’t see the world as you do. Godless heathens, people of opposite Devotion, those who don’t attend regular Church services, even foreigners and their backwards ways make your gut ache and your jaw set. When another character’s ways are very different from those you hold to be right, you must spend Discipline to resist the urge to shun or verbally debase them at each opportunity.

Dunnick Perks and Flaws

Hard Drinker (1)

Your body is used to at least a little poison coursing through your veins. You put it through too much torment on a regular basis to be overthrown by some cutter’s plant paste on a blade. You gain a use of Toughness against drugs or poisons, or anything with the Poison Quality, and can drink 3 more drinks than normal before being Intoxicated or Blacked Out. 

Oral Tradition (3)
Since you were a wee child spent your life hearing stories and legends of great heroes, epic wars, mysterious creatures, and other esoterica, and you’re able to pass that knowledge on to others through the same tales.  

Once per day you may ask a Staff member a single question from any Lore, and get the answer because you heard it in a story.  You can share the information others only if you continue the tradition and tell it to others as a story you make up OOC that includes the answer provided.

Ancestral Moorsword (5)
You are in possession of the sword of your father’s fathers. Its beautiful designs show the heritage of your family line back to the beginning of your clan, and you are its heir. The sword itself is as much a symbol as a weapon, and those that still bear one are the closest thing the shattered Dunnick culture has to Nobility.

You begin play with a moorsword – a masterwork greatsword, that is itself a special work of art: When you hold it aloft and give a short inspirational speech about your Devotion, you grant Inspired to those who take time to listen.  No one may benefit from this ability more than once per day. You should prepare an appropriate prop for this weapon.

As the bearer of an Ancestral Moorsword treated with great respect by others of your culture, especially your own clan.  This makes you a Warlord, and others will follow you if they believe you can lead them to victory, or blessed dream, a free Dunland

Harsh Temper (-3)
You have a tendency to fly off the handle and it takes very little for you to become combative and belligerent. Classically, you will talk back to people that oppose you, throw the first punch, or otherwise behave in an overly aggressive manner whether or not the situation calls for it. When treated with aggression you always must respond more aggressively.

You gain a Belief: 
Always respond to aggression with escalation

Hestralian Perks and Flaws

Braggadocio (1)
Somewhere between sincere generosity and sincere boasting, It brings you a special kind of joy to spend your wealth on your friends, and an even greater joy to spend it on your enemies. Whenever you give someone a personal gift or pay for something on behalf of someone else, become Inspired.

In Flagrante (3)
Your passions are who you are, and they steer you always. You love them, you hate them, you trust them, you are them.  Sometimes you just let yourself go to your fiery Hestrali blood, and devils take whoever or whatever gets in your way. If you have an obvious and loud emotional outburst, followed by wild gesticulations and ranting and raving, some of it in Hestron and whatever else flies from your tongue, any Sins of 2 or lower cause no Depravity, as you are too worked up to be thinking straight. When you come back to your senses, it seems obvious why you did those things – after all, he insulted your mother, what else were you supposed to do?

Daredevil (5)
High risks awaken your blood and you feel truly alive when attempting anything out of reach. In any situation where you stand alone, grossly outmatched or attempting something no sane person would ever attempt, you enter the Devoted condition.

Vendetta (-3)
You are the inheritor of the famous Hestralian passion, and it sometimes gets the better of you. You cannot stand to be upstaged, put down, or otherwise made to lose a competitive contest.  It boils your blood to think that someone is underestimating you, and you will do anything you can to set the record straight, in an elaborate and explosive display, if need be. If you are upstaged or publicly lose face because of another, that person becomes your Vendetta.  Any time you have an opportunity to act against that person and don’t take it, you gain Despair. Your acts against them should be in the same arena you were bested in, physical, social or otherwise, though you can always escalate.  This person remains your Vendetta until someone else becomes your Vendetta, even if you have already proven your superiority over them.

Capacian Perks and Flaws

These Perks and Flaws may be taken by any Capacian character. Characters of other cultures can take these by spending additional Glory.

Romantic (1)
You have a poet’s soul, and are sensitive to feelings and emotions. You feel things profoundly, and have no trouble connecting with your heart.  You may benefit from appreciation of a work of Artistry once per Scene instead of per Day. Additionally, once per Scene, when visibly demonstrating your passion or emotions, you may Bond with another person, both of you taking a Bond for for each other, though you do not choose the nature of their Bond towards you.

(Read more about Performance)

Shared Meal (3)

Once per game, while eating food or drinking with at least three other people you may discuss one of your Bonds or a Bond you would like to have, and add, change, or remove that Bond after the scene.

Pistolier (5)
Your country’s favorable trade with the Dwarves has resulted in the human invention of the pistol, and their design and workmanship is centralized in your lands, making them slightly less prohibitively expensive. You have your hands on one such weapon, and may begin play with a pistol and twenty shots worth of black powder. You also have a contact that you can create orders for more black powder and shot, able to purchase it for one silver piece per use. Orders arrive the next event provided there is normal trade access to the city.

Fop (-3)
What’s the point of life if not to enjoy it? You try to stay away from the nastiness and filth that accompanies the things you love, and just focus on the good things. If you happen to get yourself noticeably dirty or you have to get blood on you (such as injuring another in melee or becoming injured), you are Traumatized.

Shariqyn Perks and Flaws

Shar’aslan (1)
You are one of the Desert Lions, the Shar’aslan who are Shariqyn yet have given up your people’s ways and converted to Church of Mankind.  Unlike most of your people, who pursue the mysteries of Aa’boran, your Morality corresponds to the prevailing notions of the Throne like most other characters.  Instead of the Hubris sin, you reject Heresy and the Anathema that spread it.    You may be seen as an outsider among your people, but you will be welcome in the Throne, seen a blessed example of the eventual conversion of all of your lost people.

Natural Linguist (1)
Your interactions with a variety of cultures and people have left you with a knack for language. You begin play being able to speak Rogalian, Dunna, Hestron, Cappacian, Gothic, Njor and Shariq’a.  Any additional language Techniques you might learn do not require any Studies listed for their prerequisites, but do still require a teacher.

Caravanserai (3)
Travelers from the East need safe, reliable places to sell their wares and make their profits to continue their journeys, and you are that safe place.  You are an insider in a Shariqyn trading cartel, and you have access to their trade routes and networks as a partner, able to bring in exotic goods from the East: pices, silks, cosmetics, and written books.  You may place an order at a time with a trading caravan of any amount of Exotic Goods at a favorable rate – simply double the base rate for a given good (the price of Books varies greatly based on the contents).

Your goods will arrive one Chapter later, though there is a 20% chance of some misfortune occurring and the entire order being lost.  After all, the Throne is a place of misfortune to the people of the desert.

(Read more about World Prices)

Amir (5)
You are an Amir, or if a woman, Amirah.  You are considered a prominent warrior among your tribe, and others look to you to lead them to greatness.  Amir can be of any caste, even jharad.  This makes you a Warlord – when you win victories, Altariq warriors of your tribe will journey to join your cause, and you will take new jharad slaves when you raid.  Additionally, you gain a Personal Victory when you fulfill a tribal Blood Feud by killing a member of a feuding tribe, or enslave someone in play as jharad.

(Read more about Warlords)
(Read more about Amir in Shariqyn Culture)

Outspoken Heathen (-3)
Most Shariqyn are barely tolerated within the Throne because of their religious and cultural differences. You refuse to allow anyone to speak poorly of your people or your ways, and will speak up against any such disrespect and demand satisfaction before you relent. After all, it is they in the West that are truly the unwashed barbarians.

You gain a Belief:
Never allow anyone to speak ill of the Shariqyn culture.

Organizational Membership Perks

Membership in some organizations and the special training that they give their members and adherents require the purchase of a Character Perk. These can be purchased at a later time if membership into these groups is earned in game, and in this case they can be purchased for the cost listed below without the Glory cost. Beginning a character concept that has already gone through recruitment and training means that these Perks are acquired during character creation, and this requires a corresponding amount of Glory to be spent to help ensure the quality and relative scarcity of these character types.

Most of these require some level of commitment to a world organization which requires certain responsibilities of its members in exchange for the benefits that are granted, and this is represented by the Beholden flaw discussed in each Perk, which does not yield any experience points when conferred this way. You may still take the Beholden Flaw during character creation, but it represents a different duty than this, perhaps some above and beyond responsibility, or perhaps something completely unrelated to your affiliations. 

Charismata

30 Glory, 10 exp
You are gifted since birth with the mark of God. In your childhood you showed unusual talents in leadership and kinship with your fellow man. Lay-folk often refer to your kind as “Heaven Touched” and see it as a sign of great destiny in you. Your divinity shows on the surface of your skin as well as on a emotional level. When people see you, they cannot help but perceive that you are somehow special, and you have great force of personal magnetism. This also allows you to be endowed with Paladin Gifts. Almost every Paladin is also a member of the Sacred Order of the White Lion, a Holy Knighthood exclusively for Paladins, and the Glory and Experience cost of Charismata includes Knighthood as well.  
 

Paladins begin play with the Charismata ability, and one Tier 1 Gift of their choice. 
(Read more about Paladin Gifts)

The Charismata blessing confers the Memorable flaw,  and a Beholden (Major) flaw, both for no additional Flaw points.  

Responsibilities

Beholden (Major)
Since they are discovered as children, Paladins are raised aside from society in a special enclave in Holy Lethia, trained their entire lives to harness their sacred gifts and to live their lives with utmost purity.  As warrior monks of the Church, they enter the world both cautiously and courageously, for they know that they bear an enormous responsibility to live righteously.  Paladins who attempt to abandon their responsibilities, or who begin to sink into a life of Depravity may be recalled to Lethia, or, regrettably, might have to face execution at the hands of their former brothers and sisters.

If, by a very strange turn of events, your character is divinely blessed but somehow is not a member of the Sacred Order of the White Lion, you may choose to be undiscovered by the Church and not given normal Paladin training,  but this should not be taken lightly, as the Church will be extremely suspicious or even hostile with such individuals.
(Read more about Paladins)

Knighthood

10 Glory, 2 exp
You are a member of an order of Knights, sworn to God and Emperor. The order gives you access to its resources, and in exchange, you are expected to uphold the orders ideals and interests, and act as protector of an area assigned to you.  Knights Swear Oaths that help reinforce their commitment to their Sovereigns, and grant them a sense of purpose and power.  Many Knights are also granted military forces to wage war against the enemies of their master.  Each new Degree of Knighthood confers additional resources and authority to the Knight, and deepens the trust and resources granted to them.
 
(Read more about Knight Oaths)
 
Responsibilities
Beholden (Significant)
Knights are the vested champions of specific masters, called their Sovereigns, and are expected to obey their masters in all things.  A Knight must always show obedience and loyalty to their master, and much like any military officer, disobeying orders or dereliction of duty is grounds for dismissal, at best, or might be considered treason at worst.  Knights also swear additional Oaths of Service and Valor that deepen this responsibility to their Sovereigns, further enmeshing them into their service.
 
(Read more about Knights)
 
If all other prerequisites are met, it is possible to begin play at a higher rank Knight, but the 2nd Rank costs double the Glory cost of the first rank. The 3rd rank costs triple, and may only be attained by starting characters who take the Venerable Character Trait (see above).

Holy Ordination

10 Glory, 2 exp
You are an ordained priest of your religion. You possess the station of a spiritual leader and you are an authority on the tenants of your faith.  This Perk functions differently for different kinds of characters, but always grants the ability to use the Rituals of your character’s religion.  By default, most characters selecting this Perk will be Priests of Mankind in the Church of Holy Lethia.
 
Priests of Mankind are granted a copy of the Testamonium and are initiated into one of the seven Holy Orders of the Church, and given their gospel.  At character creation, this Perk includes the Basic Focus: Church for no cost, which contains the Setting information in the Church of Mankind page and may be used with the Academics skill to learn more.
 
(Read more about the Church of Mankind)
Responsibilities
Beholden (Significant)
A priest is required to maintain a virtuous life, and to accept orders from higher ranking members of his sect. Priests take on a new name in Aldersabin when they join the clergy – Matthew Kirkwald might become Father Silvarum upon taking his vows.
Each Priest order swears a specific sacred oath called their Covenant.
Nobles who join the Clergy give up their claims to their noble titles, so caution should be taken if taking the Highborn perk along with Holy Ordination.  If a player wishes to create a character who is of Noble birth, yet gave up their titles to join the Clergy, the Highborn perk must still be taken for 5 exp, yet loses all of its official legal power.

Arcane Initiation

15 Glory 4 exp
You are well-trained and apprenticed in the occult arts of one of the magician guilds.  This Perk makes your character a member of one of the Mage Guilds that are active within the Throne. 
 
At character creation, this Perk includes the Basic Focus: Magic for no cost, which contains in character knowledge of all of the Arcane Magic rules found in the Magicians rules areas, Spellcasting, Spellcraft, Techniques, and Anacrusis, as well as the Setting information for the Magician Guilds.
 
You receive one Domain to start which represents your early training and magical inclinations, but may purchase others later. Other mage techniques can also be purchased with Experience Points. 
 
Responsibilities 
Beholden (Major)
When joining a guild and learning its secrets, you become their agent and are trusted to follow the orders of your superiors. Regardless of the stripe, all the arcane guilds are extremely stratified by their Circle, and any outranking individual has complete authority over you. Frequently, you will receive orders to you that represent the guilds interests and may have some long-term goal assigned to you.
 
Nobles are not permitted by Imperial Trade law to join Trade Guilds, and this applies to Magician Guilds as well, and thus caution should be taken if taking the Highborn perk along with Arcane Initiation.  If a player wishes to create a character who is of noble birth, yet gave up their titles to join the Mage Guilds, the Highborn perk must still be taken for 5 exp, yet loses all of its official legal power.  This law does not apply to Highborn from Rogalian families, due to Rogalia’s special legal status.

Highborn

Highborn (5)
Variable Glory Cost (see below)

You are directly related to the ruling house of a region, and bear their surname. You were likely raised in their castle, or possibly fostered at another ruling family’s keep. This gives you certain rights and privileges, such as legal immunity to and authority over all characters without this perk. A character with this perk is literally above the law except in regards to other Highborn characters. As well, few enemies who know your identity will seek to actually kill you, seeking to ransom you to your family instead. Your lands are elsewhere, but your birthright makes you above the common dirt of the peasants and lowborn. In this position, however, enemies are almost a certainty as they seek to supplant you in their schemes.

You begin play with a Signet Ring bearing your family crest, which helps to prevent forgery of your identity.  This Perk grants you membership and Officer status in the Organization of your Noble House.  The Glory cost of this Perk depends on the Tier of the Noble House that you were born into, costing 10 Glory for each Tier.

It is notable that Highborn entering the lands of another noble are bound by the Auctoritas to offer their service to the governing noble.  Often this is a symbolic act or nominal position in the local government, but those who do not offer this are seen as Insulting the ruler of the land.  Services to the hosting lord may not violate existing orders from the visiting noble’s true lord.

(Read more about Organizations)

Njord characters who take this perk are Throne nobles of the Cold Throne, the Throne annexed part of Njordr.
Shariqyn characters should not take this Perk, as they have no legal nobility within the Throne.
Dunnick characters should not take this Perk; they should take the Ancestral Moorsword perk instead.
Some Organizations do not allow their members to be Highborn, including Merchant Guilds, Magician Guilds, Outlaw Organizations, and the Priesthood.  Characters with this Perk must renounce it or keep it secret to join.