Next up, it’s the first part of the Mage Contacts list – seven of the more notable magical figures in Seattle. Given that there are quite a few of them, you can look forward to at least part II, and probably parts III and IV eventually.
Jusai Yoshinori (Sun Shaman) is an elderly shintoist, caretaker of a modest shrine. Unlike most of the world, Jusai took the rise of magic, the awakening of his own powers, real shapeshifting animals claiming refuge in his shrine (a traditional privilege of theirs), and the need to council magical children, completely in stride. On the secular level, he simply added a selection of arcane supplies to the usual collection of statuettes, incense pots, charms, and paper offerings he made available. Jusai tends to be somewhat grandfatherly, understanding, and usually councils against excessive violence. Naturally enough, he dresses as a classical shinto priest, and is pretty obviously an elderly Japanese man. He’s occasionally become a target due to the fact that he’s not at all afraid to tell powerful people that they are committing grave spiritual errors, but at least so far it hasn’t been too serious. Given that he’s been around for decades, and often provides free access to spells and training for promising youngsters, he can easily figure into a characters backstory.
Varif Windwalker (Bear Shaman); This Salish tribal shaman originally arrived in Seattle on a completely different mission – but, exposed to the realities of life in the sprawl for the first time, Varif was somewhat appalled. Since then, he’s been making occasional charitable visits and has been stirring up a few waves back with the tribal shamans by making his fellows look at their responsibilities to people beyond their tribal groups. Varif isn’t available all that often in Seattle, but he’s also an excellent contact with the Salish and the tribal shamans there. Personally, as a traditional Amerindian shaman, Varif dresses the part – despite the fact that, like the vast majority of those in the Indian nations, his Indian blood is actually pretty thin.
Edith Kenshold (“Maya”, Hermetric Mage); Edith is a research mage with Renraku, especially skilled with conjuration and manipulation spells. Given that her usual assignments involve aiding various forms of technological research – handling micro-elements without contamination, isolating systems from outside interference, handling remote couplings, and similar feats – she has a fair familiarity with the physical sciences as well. Edith is a good source for “common” spell formula – which she regards as unimportant – and occasionally “leaks” a spell for testing or has something she wants done out in the streets. Unfortunately, as an ivory-tower academic, she has very few street-level contacts of her own to draw on for such things. Personally Edith is an ethnic Asian Indian, 5’6, and – thanks to having been born and educated in England – an english accent.
Kieron Foy (“Greymist”, a bardic adept with a snake totem) likes to think of himself as a “keltic bard”, but his “ancient traditions” mostly spring from the new age movement of the late 20’th and early 21’st century. Still, he’s certainly on good terms with the local SCA – and with his own “gang” of other musicians, minor shamanic types, and well-off teenagers who like to hang around with the rest of them. They can usually be found working the clubs and streets in various musical combinations – or simply partying. Personally Kieron dresses in his own “punk” version of what he imagines a medieval Celtic bard would have worn if only they had access to programmable light-cloth (and had no detectable sense of style). It must be seen to be believed. Fortunately, he can usually be persuaded to turn it off.
Ethan Tarn (Other: Sorcery, Enhancement, Conjuration/Nature Spirits, and Astral Access. Both Insanity and Villainy); Ethan is (at least superficially) rational, skilled in investigation, and out to destroy modern civilization. Hunter-gatherers, wild shapeshifters, and similar primitives have his full approval. He’s been known to stop and pat children gently on the head after massacring their relatives, to heal injured animals, and to come to the defense of groups being menaced by toxic entities. On the other hand, he’s killed hundreds of people and caused tremendous amounts of damage. Still, there are quite a few people who see him as a hero of sorts – and occasionally find ways to support his “cause”, despite the sizable rewards out for him. Having Ethan as a contact is possible – but dangerous, even if you’re not as fanatical as he is.
Ralin Harbane (“Arawn”, Shaman/Lion Totem); Ralin is a professional mercenary, and has a few bits of high-grade cyberware (such as a smartgun link, enhanced cybereyes, a holdout to store his foci in, a datajack, and some headware memory), as well as a few fixed spells and a couple levels of initiation, to work with. His prices are quite high. Ralin feels that a lot of violence will solve most problems, hence he likes to attack, or at least send a spirit in first. (While there is something to be said for this philosophy, there are times when it’s inappropriate). Perhaps fortunately, he usually lets his much calmer and more tactically-minded partner, “Brand” (Lee Kelsenbock, also a mercenary, as well as a firearms and sabotage expert), take the lead in noncombat situations. The rest of their “Gang” consists of more of their mercenary friends.
Father Anselem, Jesuit Knight of the Order of Michael (Thaumaturgist); Father Anselem is one of the chief mage-priests of the Roman Catholic Church on the western coast, and serves as the Churches chief exorcist, investigator of supernatural phenomena, and guardian for the region. The good father is middle-aged, rather stern, and has very little tolerance for people who misuse their powers. Perhaps fortunately, he is well aware of the potential risks of calling on spirits for magic, and is thus reluctant to use the resources of the church to expand his personal powers.