Here we have another player-requested project from the Legend of the Five Rings campaign – a unique school designed to help the user rule wisely, justly, and well. Thanks to his extensive efforts at arranging assistance in its development, the school has already reached its final form. Little remains except to polish the techniques a bit. and put them into practice.
The Mandate of Heaven
This “School of Proper Rulership” is a special project of Ninsei’s – albeit drawing heavily on the assistance of the Naga, on the Church of Merenea’s studies on the Proper Uses of Power, and on the assistance of a variety of ancestor and celestial spirits – along with some advice from his relatives and the Senior Crane Ambassador. He has not yet traveled very far along the way – but the path is laid out before him.
The Mandate of Heaven:
Overlord Courtier School
Trait Bonus: +1 Awareness
School Skills: Courtier 2, Theology 2, Calligraphy, Ceremony, Etiquette, Investigation, Battle, and Defense.
FIrst Technique / The Disciplines of Leadership: Favors (Courtier, Lore/Area Ruled [the spirits of the land will notify you of major events, dimensional incursions, and disruptions within the area you rule as one favor per day], and Theology [you may gain immediate responses to appropriate rituals and subtly influence the climate and large-scale events within the area]. Unfortunately, you will tend to attract hangers-on and will find that your ever-increasing staff makes it almost impossible to go anywhere without being immediately recognized (10 -5 = 5), you gain SR free Raises with the Courtier, Etiquette, and Investigation skills (10), and may double the Style bonuses you gain from the Courtier Skill (5).
Second Technique / The Superior Man: Immunity/The Corruption of Power (5), Psychic Power / Truthsayer (Those who attempt to lie to you and fail lose two void points, which you gain. If they can’t afford to pay the possible penalty, they can’t lie, 9), and Precognitive Dreams (6).
Third Technique / Favored of the Celestial Realms: Anyone who attacks you will lose honor points equal to your rank in addition to any other losses attacking you would normally cause (5), Finding/Personnel (You may intuitively locate the best available person for any given task, 9), and Danger Sense (+3 bonus to Initiative, may make a check to sense upcoming attacks, 6).
Fourth Technique / Blessed of the Kami: You gain a daily pool of free raises equal to your Theology skill which you may use on any roll. Unfortunately, you will also be recognized as a great man – and thus will become a priority target for assassination during any dispute (15, -5 for targeting, -5 for half effect). Fortunately, if you have a bodyguard nearby, you may spend a void point to negate all damage from any single attack (15, -5 for conditional).
Fifth Technique / Tongue of the Heavens: If you spend ten minutes speaking to a group who formally acknowledge your leadership, they may each recall your advice up to (Int) times later – gaining a pool of free raises equal to your rank, and two bonus void points, to use on rolls related to the topic of your speech. These must be used within 24 hours once activated, but the bonus void is not subject to the usual spending or pool limits. (15 for any topic, -5 since it can only be used on those who formally recognize your leadership, +10 for the recipients being able to call on this bonus up to (Int) times later on = 20 points).
The Mandate of Heaven is versatile – but it primarily relies on having a major official position. Non-rulers may be able to find the best people around for various tasks, but they may not be able to recruit them. There’s no point in knowing what’s going on in the lands you rule if you don’t rule any – and you can’t give bonuses to your followers if no one acknowledges your rule.
On the other hand, if you do rule an area, this school certainly ought to help you do it well.