The Let's Play Archive

King of Dragon Pass

by Haifisch

Part 18: Orlanthi Outsider Rites

Psycho Lawnmower posted:

On that note, does Orlanthi law have precedent for those who, say, make themselves respectable to a community and become honorary kin or a part of the society through hard work, dedication to the laws and traditions and overall good works?
There're multiple ways this can be handled so it's difficult to answer you simply. You can be inducted into an Orlanthi clan with the appropriate rite, but you require a sponsor who is basically responsible for looking after you and will take the heat if you fuck up. You WILL require some version of this rite to hang out on an Orlanthi tula for any length of time. A couple of nights passing through, no big deal, but if you think you're going to be cool camping on the edge of the tula for a month you probably want to think again. Ancestor spirits and local land spirits allied with the clan will start fucking with you, in ways that will get very old, very fast. Your food will spoil overnight as ants break into your rations against all odds, you won't be able to sleep because of noisy birds or just straight up nightmares, and in extreme cases you'll have something like a riverbed rock shifting as you try to put your footing on it, snaring you in the river. This is one of the big reasons the life of an outlaw is so short and hard - you absolutely can fucking not settle down or the local spirits will drive you batty.

Some versions of that rite, like the Guest rite, change almost nothing. The Guests are simply connected to the clan spirits and will be protected as Orlanthi, but that protection is 100% connected to the pleasure of their sponsor. If they fuck up too bad, the sponsor can withdraw their support and the local spirits will NOT take kindly to the intrusion. On the other hand, Guests are not expected to worship like Orlanthi and are generally left to their own devices, so long as they don't commit blasphemy or desecration. All in all Orlanthi are pretty chill on the guest front. Pull your weight, don't get in anyone's way, and you can expect three squares and a warm bed the same as anyone else. Guests even get invited to clan feasts. Orlanthi know how to party, so that's a plus, too.

Other versions of the rite will adopt the initiate as Orlanthi family, with all the rights and privileges that entails. The sponsor is only on the hook to make sure the new person behaves for a year or two, basically to make sure there's a downside to sponsoring a lying, murdering outlaw. It also means that you're expected to assimilate completely with the clan. You are not bringing your gods into citizenship in a clan, you ARE worshiping Orlanth, Elmal, or whoever else, depending on the runes you were born under. This is why 'alien adoption' is so rare - the gods are all very real, and if you are a 30 year old man you've spent those 30 years building a relationship with a patron deity that you most likely feel very comfortable and chill with. If you live any sort of professional or action life, that god has probably lent you powers to save your ass more than once. Simply dropping that to pick up a new pantheon of strange gods is an extremely tall order.