Mehmet Al-Mansur - Former Member of the Sultan's Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri
by Ted Tschopp
Ottoman Imperial Refugee and Sorcerer
- Character Sheet
- Secondary Attributes:
- Character Background
- Character’s Routine in Paris
- Aspects of Islamic Mysticism:
- Rules of for the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Dergahı
Character Concept: Mehmet Al-Mansur, an Ottoman imperial refugee living in Paris in the early 1920s. He is a former member of the Sultan's Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri, a sorcerer corps, skilled in mystical arts and in combat. He is is dedicated to providing safe passage for magical creatures and djinn to the Western world for eventual resettlement in the Americas. He also possesses skills acquired during his service as an Ottoman soldier.
ST (Strength): 10
DX (Dexterity): 12
IQ (Intelligence): 14
HT (Health): 11
HP (Hit Points): 10
FP (Fatigue Points): 11
Basic Speed: 5.75
Basic Move: 5
|Magery 2 (Mysticism):||25||The GM makes a Sense roll when you first see a magic item, and again when you first touch it. On a success, you intuitively know that the item is magical. A roll of 3 or 4 also tells you dangerous, and about how strong it is. Use IQ+2 when you learn spells. Add your Magery level to Perception When you roll to sense magic items roll Perception + 2, and to IQ +2 when you learn Thaumatology skill. Reduce the time required to learn new spells in play to 80% the base time.|
|Cultural Familiarity:||1||(Ottoman Empire - Native/Free, French Culture - This advantage) - You are familiar with cultures other than your own, and do not suffer the -3 penalty for unfamiliarity. This costs 1 point per culture of the same (or very similar) race, or 2 points per alien culture.|
|Language Talent:||2||(French - Speak with an Accent) - You have a knack for languages. When you learn a language at a comprehension level above None, you automatically function at the next-highest level; thus, you can purchase a language at Accented level for 2 points or at Native level for 4 points.|
|Secret Identity:||10||(Membership in Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri) - A Secret Identity is a special kind of Secret; t is another persona that you use for deeds that you donʼt want connected with your “public” self. Only your closest family and friends know, and you are willing to go to great lengths to keep your privacy.|
|Cultural Adaptability:||5||(helps with adapting to a new culture) - You are familiar with a broad spectrum of cultures. When dealing with those cultures, you never suffer the -3 “cultural unfamiliarity” penalty given under Culture.|
|Contact Group:||5||(Ottoman Exiles in Paris)|
|Animal Empathy:||5||(for communicating with mundane and magical creatures) You are unusually talented at reading the motivations of animals. When you meet an animal, the GM rolls against your IQ and tells you what you “feel.” This reveals the beastʼs emotional state – friendly, frightened, hostile, hungry, etc. – and whether it is under supernatural control. You may also use your Influence skills on animals just as you would on sapient beings, which usually ensures a positive reaction.|
|Empathic Healing:||15||(to aid injured mundane and magical beings) - You have the ability to heal others by taking on the injuries, diseases, and Afflictions by removing instead of paying FP. You must be in physical contact with the subject. To activate your power, concentrate for one second and make an IQ roll. Roll at -2 if the subject is unconscious. Heal Injuries: On a success, you can heal any number of HP. This costs you 1 FP (which is removed until you are healed) per 2 HP healed (round up). Failure costs 1d FP, but you can try again; critical failure also causes the recipient 1d damage. Even 1 HP of healing will stop bleeding. By rolling at -6, you can repair a crippled but whole limb if you completely heal the HP lost to he crippling injury. For instance, to heal a hand crippled by 4 points of damage, make an IQ-6 roll and spend 2 FP. Each healer gets only one attempt per crippled limb. Healing cannot restore lost limbs or bring back the dead. Cure Disease: This requires an IQ roll at a modifier determined by the GM – from +1 for the common cold to -15 for AIDS. The FP cost is equal to twice the penalty, minimum 1 FP. For instance, it would cost 6 FP to cure a disease that calls for an IQ-3 roll. If used more than once per day on a given subject, apply a cumulative -3 per successful healing of the same type (injury or disease) on that subject. This penalty accumulates until a full day has passed since the most recent healing. Healing works on your own race and on all “similar” races. In a fantasy campaign, for instance, all warm blooded humanoid races (elves, dwarves, orcs, halflings, etc.) would be “similar.”|
|Patron:||20||Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri - (An ultra-powerful individual (built on as many points as the GM wants!) or a very powerful organization (assets of at least 100,000 times starting wealth). Examples: a super, a limited manifestation of a major god, or a big city.)|
|Charisma:||15||You have a natural ability to impress and lead others. Anyone can acquire a semblance of charisma through looks, manners, and intelli- gence – but real charisma is independ- ent of these things. Each level gives +1 on all reaction rolls made by sapient beings with whom you actively inter- act (converse, lecture, etc.); +1 to Influence rolls (see Influence Rolls, p. 359); and +1 to Fortune-Telling, Leadership, Panhandling, and Public Speaking skills. The GM may rule that your Charisma does not affect members of extremely alien races.|
|Intuition||15||You usually guess right. When faced with a number of alternatives, and no logical way to choose among them, you can ask the GM to let you use your Intuition. The GM makes a secret IQ roll, with a bonus equal to the number of “good” choices and a penalty equal to the number of “bad” choices. On a success, he steers you to a good choice; on a critical success, he tells you the best choice. On a failure, he gives you no information; on a critical failure, he steers you toward a bad choice. The GM can modify this as he sees fit for other situaKons where IntuiKon might logically help. Only one roll per quesKon is allowed. The GM should never allow IntuiKon to short-circuit an adventure – for instance, by lesng the intuiKve detecKve walk into a room, slap the cuffs on the guilty party, and close the case. At the most, IntuiKon would point the detecKve in the direcKon of a good clue. GMs who donʼt think they can control IntuiKon should not allow it in their games. steers you toward a bad choice. The GM can modify this as he sees fit for other situations where Intuition might logically help. Only one roll per question is allowed. The GM should never allow Intuition to short-circuit an adventure – for instance, by letting the intuitive detective walk into a room, slap the cuffs on the guilty party, and close the case. At the most, Intuition would point the detective in the direction of a good clue. GMs who donʼt think they can control Intuition should not allow it in their games.|
|Oblivious||-5||(often lost in thought) You understand othersʼ emotions but not their motivations. This makes you awkward in situations involving social manipulation. You are the classic “nerd”! You have -1 to use or resist Influence skills (see Influence Rolls, p. 359): Diplomacy, Fast-Talk, Intimidation, Savoir-Faire, Sex Appeal, and Streetwise.|
|Sense of Duty||-10||(Fellow Ottoman Refugees) - You feel a strong sense of commitment toward a particular class of people. You will never betray them, abandon them when theyʼre in trouble, or let them suffer or go hungry if you can help. This is different from a Duty (p. 133), which is imposed upon you. A Sense of Duty always comes from within. If you are known to have a Sense of Duty, the GM will adjust the reactions of others by +2 when rolling to see whether they trust you in a dangerous situation. However, if you go against your Sense of Duty by acting against the interests of those you are supposed to be looking out for, the GM will penalize you for bad roleplaying. You cannot claim points for a Sense of Duty toward Allies, Dependents, or Patrons. The point costs of these traits already take such a bond into account. You can take a Sense of Duty toward adventuring companions. If you do, you must share equipment with and render aid to the other members of your adventuring party, and go along with majority decisions. The GM might make this mandatory in games where the party needs to get along. This gives everyone a “free” 5 points to spend . . . but if you start backstabbing, running off on your own, etc., the GM is free to overrule your actions and point to these bonus points as the reason why.|
|Curious||-5||(drawn to mystical knowledge) - You are naturally very inquisitive. This is not the curiosity that affects all PCs (“Whatʼs in that cave? Where did the flying saucer come from?”), but the real thing (“What happens if I push this button?”). Make a self-control roll when presented with an interesting item or situation. If you fail, you examine it, push buttons, pull levers, open doors, unwrap presents, etc. – even if you know it could be dangerous. Good roleplayers wonʼt try to make this roll very often… In general, you do everything in your power to investigate any situation with which you arenʼt 100% familiar. When faced with a real mystery, you simply cannot turn your back on it. You try to rationalize your curiosity to others who try to talk you out of it. Common Sense doesnʼt help – you know you are taking a risk, but youʼre curious anyway!|
|Code of Honor||-10||(Protect Innocents) - This code requires the character to prioritize the safety and well-being of innocent people, intervening to prevent harm, avoid collateral damage, and seek justice for crimes against them. It demands respect for human life and dignity, active assistance to those in need, and reporting crimes witnessed. The character must endure personal hardship for the sake of innocents, avoid harming children under any circumstances, and provide aid while respecting the sanctity of life, even in the face of personal danger or adversity. Breaking this code may lead to moral dilemmas and penalties, but adhering to it offers opportunities for heroic actions and role-playing moments.|
|Weirdness Magnet||-15||(attracts supernatural events) - Strange and bizarre things happen to you with alarming frequency. You are the one demons stop and chat with. Magic items with disturbing properties find their way to you. The only talking dog on 21st-century Earth comes to you with his problems. Dimensional gates sealed for centuries crack open just so that you can be bathed in the energies released… or perhaps the entities on the other side invite you to tea. Nothing lethal happens to you, at least not immediately, and occasionally some weirdness is beneficial. But most of the time it is terribly, terribly inconvenient. People who understand what a Weirdness Magnet is (and that you are one) react to you at -2. The exceptions are parapsychologists, fringe cultists, unhinged conspiracy theorists, and thrill-seekers, who follow you around!|
|Phantom Voices||-5||(occasionally hears voices of nature and the Djinn) - You hear the voices of nature and the Djinn, but you have learned to integrate their voices into your day-to-day life, and in general these creatures and forces are not malicious. These whispers can sometimes provide insights or warnings, but they can also be distracting and disturbing, leading to difficulty concentrating or sleeping. You must make a self-control roll in stressful situations or when you need to focus. If you fail, the voices overwhelm your thoughts, potentially causing you to act irrationally or miss important details. Most people who see you responding to these noises that they can’t hear will react at -2. If these voices persist, eventually, your sanity will start to erode. In any situation that the GM feels is stressful, they may roll 3d. On a 6 or less, you hear voices. The GM will always roll whenever you miss a Fright Check or make the roll exactly, and whenever you fail a self-control roll for another stress-related disadvantage. The voices occur in addition to any other results!|
|Sense of Duty||-10||(Protect Magical Beings) The GM rolls (Quite often/Hazardous - roll of 12 or less) at the beginning of each adventure to see whether it comes into play. Being “called to duty” could delay your plans… or be the reason for the adventure! Alternatively, your master might give you a secret agenda to pursue, or his associates might harass you while you are officially “on leave.” If you try to avoid your Duty, your GM is within their rights to penalize you for bad role playing.|
|Vow||-10||(Protect and Resettle Magical Beings) You have sworn an oath to Protect and Resettle Magical Beings and you take it seriously.|
|Night Owl||Mehmet often finds himself most active and alert during the late hours of the night, which can sometimes lead to unconventional sleep patterns.|
|Keeps a Lucky Charm||He carries a small, seemingly insignificant item as a lucky charm, believing it brings him good fortune and protection.|
|Fascination with Celestial Phenomena||Mehmet has an intense fascination with celestial phenomena, such as stars, planets, and eclipses. He can become completely absorbed in observing these events, even at the most unexpected times, often pausing to stargaze or discuss celestial matters with others.|
|Superstitious||He has a few superstitions he takes very seriously, such as avoiding certain numbers or making small gestures for luck.|
|Collector of Curiosities||Mehmet has a habit of collecting unique and curious objects, which he believes may have hidden significance or mystical properties. His collection can range from antique trinkets to natural oddities.|
|Occultism||14||This is the study of the mysterious and the supernatural. An occultist is an expert on ancient rituals, hauntings, mysticism, primitive magical beliefs, psychic phenomena, etc. Note that an occultist does not have to believe in the material he studies! In worlds where everyone knows that paranormal powers exist, Occultism covers lore about these powers and their users. A good roll might provide insights into phenomena that aren’t related to known powers. However, Occultism provides no details on how talented individuals invoke their powers. For instance, a fantasy occultist would know what magic can accomplish, and could provide advice on slaying demons, but without Thaumatology skill, he could not explain the gestures, words, and symbols used by wizards.|
|Thaumatology||14||This is the academic study of magical theory and the “physics” of mana. Anyone may learn this skill, but it is easier for a mage; add Magery to IQ when learning this skill, just as for spells. The main use for this skill is magical research. When creating a new spell, use the rules for inventing (see Chapter 17), but replace Engineer skill with Thaumatology. A successful skill roll can also identify an unknown spell when you see it cast, deduce the ramifications of a critical success or failure with magic, determine the spells needed to enchant a magic item to perform as desired, etc. The better your roll, the more insight the GM will provide. This is the study of fantasy magic – fireball spells, rings of power, etc. The equivalent skill for traditional, spirit-mediated sorcery is Ritual Magic (p. 218), while holy magic might require Religious Ritual (p. 217) or Theology (p. 226). However, a Thaumatology roll at -5 will allow a thaumatologist to relate these different varieties of magic to “standard” wizardry. Exceptionally weird powers or otherworldly artifacts might give a larger penalty!|
|Hidden Lore||14||(Mysticism) This skill represents knowledge that is lost, deliberately hidden, or simply neglected. Whatever the reason, the general public is unaware of it. It is only available to those who study it specifically. You must specialize in a particular body of secret knowledge. If you wish to enter play with Hidden Lore skills, you must account for this specific knowledge in your character story. The GM might even require you to purchase an Unusual Background before you can learn Hidden Lore skills. Of course, the GM is also free to forbid Hidden Lore skills to starting characters… or to PCs in general! To acquire Hidden Lore in play, you must find a reliable source of relevant information. The GM may choose to tie skill increases in Hidden Lore to specific acts—such as reading moldy tomes—instead of allowing you to spend points freely. For instance, an ancient manuscript might let you spend up to eight points (and no more) on a specific Hidden Lore skill. Remember that most Hidden Lore is secret because somebody powerful wants it kept that way. Thus, discussing or revealing your knowledge can be extremely hazardous.|
|Research||13||This is the skill to do library and file research. Roll against skill to find a useful piece of data in an appropriate place of research… if the information is there to be found.|
|Sleight of Hand||11||This is the skill to “palm” small objects, do coin and card tricks, etc. Make a skill roll to perform one piece of simple “stage magic.” A failed roll means you blew the trick. When you use this skill to steal, you must win a Quick Contest of Sleight of Hand vs. the Vision roll or Observation skill of potential witnesses to perform the theft unnoticed. You can also use this skill to cheat at cards, dice, etc. A successful Sleight of Hand roll gives from +1 to +5 on your Gambling roll. Any failure causes you to be denounced as a cheater! In both cases, the exact results are up to the GM. Modifiers: +3 if the light is dim; +3 if you have a confederate to distract attention; +5 if you have prepared in advance (cards up your sleeve, etc.); -3 if the person you want to fool knows Sleight of Hand himself; modifiers for High Manual Dexterity (p. 59) or Ham-Fisted (p. 138).|
|Guns/TL5 (Pistol)||12||This is the ability to use handguns, including derringers, pepperboxes, revolvers, and automatics hand-held chemical-propellant projectile weapon. Roll against Guns skill to hit your target. Make an IQ-based skill roll to take immediate action (e.g., eject a dud round), should your weapon fail.|
|Brawling||12||This is the skill of “unscientific” unarmed combat. Roll against Brawling to hit with a punch, or Brawling-2 to hit with a kick. Brawling can also replace DX when you attack with teeth, claws, horns, or other “natural weapons.” Brawling improves damage: if you know Brawling at DX+2 level or better, add +1 per die to basic thrust damage when you calculate damage with Brawling attacks – punches, kicks, claws, bites, etc. Work out damage ahead of time and record it on your character sheet. Brawling includes the ability to use the blackjack or sap. An attack with such a fist load is considered a punch at +1 to damage. When you defend with bare hands, Brawling allows you to parry two different attacks per turn, one with each hand. Your Parry score is (skill/2) + 3, rounded down. Brawling parries are at -3 vs. weapons other than thrusting attacks. For more on barehanded parries, see Parrying Unarmed (p. 376).|
|Survival||12||This is the skill to “live off the land,” find safe food and water,avoid hazards, build shelter, etc. You may look after up to 10 other people. To live safely in a wilderness situation, you must make a successful Survival roll once per day. Failure inflicts 2d-4 injury on you and anyone in your care; roll separately for each victim. This skill also gives an “eye for country.” A successful roll shows you the best direction of travel to find flowing water, a mountain pass, or whatever other terrain feature you desire – assuming that it exists. Finally, you can use this skill to trap wild animals. (A city-bred thief could use Traps skill, but heʼs used to differentgame...sotherollwouldbeata -5.) Make one roll per trap. It takes about 30 minutes to improvise a trap from ordinary materials, or 10 minutes to set and hide a commercial steel trap. Pit traps for large game take several hours to dig. Survival often requires skill rolls based on scores other than Perception. The GM might ask for a ST-based roll to dig a pit trap or erect (Desert): a log shelter, a DX-based roll to start a fire using primitive techniques (flint sparking, bow and palette, etc.), or even a HT- based roll to avoid nutritional defi- ciencies from an improvised diet. Land specialties default to one another at -3, while aquatic specialties default among themselves at -4. Island/Beach and Tropical Lagoon default to each other at -4, as do Swampland and River/Stream, but there are no other defaults between land and aquatic specialties. In settings where it is possible to visit other worlds, you must also spe- cialize by planet. Each Survival spe- cialty defaults to the same terrain type for a different planet at -4. The defaults between terrain types given above are at an extra -4 between different plan- ets. All this assumes the two planets are of the same planet type (see Planet Types, p. 180). There is no default at all between Survival skills for two planets of different planet types.|
|Leadership||12||This is the skill to coordinate a group. Make a Leadership roll to lead NPCs into a dangerous or stressful situation. (PCs can decide for themselves if they want to follow you!) You may attempt a Leadership roll in combat if you spend your turn doing nothing but giving orders and encouragement. On a success, everyone on your side who can hear you (including PCs) has +1 on all combat-related Fright Checks and morale checks, and on self-control rolls for disadvantages that would reduce combat efficiency (such as Berserk and Cowardice – or Bloodlust, if you wish to take prisoners). A critical success gives +2. The bonus lasts until your next turn, at which time you may roll again. A group can have only one leader, however! If multiple people attempt Leadership rolls, no one gets a bonus. Note that a minimum level of Leadership is often a prerequisite for high Rank (p. 29). Modifiers: Any bonus for Charisma (p. 41); -3 for Low Empathy (p. 142); -1 to -4 for Shyness (p. 154). -5 if the NPCs have never been in action with you; -5 if you are sending them into danger but not going yourself; +5 if their loyalty to you is “Good”; +10 if their loyalty is “Very Good.” If their loyalty is “Excellent,” you do not have to roll!|
|Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı||12||See Rules Below|
|Language: French||12||Read / Speak French with an Accent|
|Language: Ottoman Turkish||[Native]||Read / Speak Ottoman Turkish as a native.|
|Language: Arabic||[Native]||Read / Speak Arabic as a native.|
|Language: Persian||[Native]||Read / Speak Persian as a native.|
- French Clothing
- Local Ottoman Tribal Clothing from Hometown
- Ottoman Imperial Uniform (Formal and Combat)
- Mystical artifacts (crystals, scrolls, incense)
- Journal and inkpen
- Protective talisman
- A collection of scrolls containing spells to aid magical beings A telescope and astrolab
My purpose is clear: to shield and guide magical beings and djinn seeking refuge in the Western world, especially the land of dreams, America. As I tread the avenues of Paris, a place of art, intrigue, and cosmopolitan allure, I begin a new chapter in my mystical odyssey. In the company of Kasim, my loyal djinn companion, we navigate the intricate dance between realms, working to provide a sanctuary for those who, like us, yearn for a haven of safety and acceptance.
Mehmet Al-Mansur's Travelogue and Diary: A Journey of Mystical
1900 - Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Date: May 15, 1900
Location: Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Today, I experienced something extraordinary. In the courtyard of our family home, I summoned a gentle breeze, seemingly from thin air. Mother and Father watched in amazement as I manipulated the elements. Could this be magic? Their guidance and encouragement have kindled a burning curiosity in me.
1902 - Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Date: August 9, 1902
Location: Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
- Sultan Abdul Hamid II: The reigning Ottoman Sultan during this period and a significant political figure.
- Ahmed Rıza: An influential Ottoman intellectual and politician, part of the Young Turk Movement.
- Halide Edib Adıvar: A prominent Turkish novelist and women’s rights activist.
Famous Buildings and Landmarks:
- Hagia Sophia: A historic cathedral-turned-mosque and a symbol of Istanbul.
- Topkapi Palace: The former residence of the Ottoman sultans.
- Galata Tower: A medieval tower with panoramic city views.
- Dolmabahçe Palace: The Ottoman Empire’s main administrative center.
- The Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmed Mosque): Known for its blue tiles.
- Basilica Cistern: An underground water reservoir.
- Istanbul University: A prominent institution founded in 1900.
Notes: My magical abilities have grown stronger. Father introduced me to the writings of ancient mystics at the Topkapi Palace Library. My mind expanded with the knowledge of the cosmos and the mysteries of the occult. Today, I met the renowned scholar Ibn Al-Khattab, who further fueled my passion for mysticism.
1905 - Cairo, Egypt
Date: February 22, 1905
Location: Cairo, Egypt
Route: Istanbul to Cairo by sea, through Athens, Greece, and Alexandria, Egypt.
Notable Cities: Athens, Alexandria
- Crescent Moon Commendation: For exceptional achievements in illusion and misdirection.
- Khedive Abbas II: The ruling Khedive of Egypt, under British control.
- Saad Zaghloul: A prominent Egyptian nationalist and political leader.
- Ahmed Lutfi el-Sayed: A writer and reformist thinker advocating for reforms in Egypt.
Famous Buildings and Landmarks:
- The Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx.
- Muhammad Ali Mosque: An Ottoman-era mosque on the Citadel of Cairo.
- Khan el-Khalili: A historic bazaar and market district.
- Cairo Opera House: Hosting music and theater performances.
- Ezbekiya Gardens: A public park.
- Egyptian Museum: Housing ancient artifacts.
- Cairo University: A major educational institution established in 1908.
Notes: I have joined the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri and was sent to Cairo to study at Al-Azhar University. The enchanting city, with its bustling bazaars and rich history, invigorated my senses. Under the tutelage of Sheikh Mustafa al-Misri, I delved deep into the study of Islamic mysticism, honing my magical talents.
1908 - Varanasi, India
Date: October 5, 1908
Location: Varanasi, India
Route: Cairo to Varanasi overland, crossing the Red Sea and the Arabian Peninsula, passing through Mecca and Medina, Saudi Arabia, before continuing through the Indian subcontinent.
Notable Cities: Mecca, Medina
- Madan Mohan Malaviya: An influential Indian educationist and leader during the Indian independence movement, key in founding Banaras Hindu University.
- Annie Besant: A British socialist, theosophist, and advocate for Indian and Irish self-rule, associated with the Theosophical Society.
- Pandit Motilal Nehru: A prominent lawyer and politician, father of Jawaharlal Nehru, active in the Indian National Congress.
Famous Buildings and Landmarks:
- Kashi Vishwanath Temple: A central Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, a pivotal religious site.
- Assi Ghat: A significant ghat for rituals and bathing on the Ganges River.
- Sarnath: The site of Lord Buddha’s first sermon post-enlightenment, a major Buddhist pilgrimage destination.
- Dasaswamedh Ghat: Known for its dynamic evening Ganga Aarti ceremonies.
- Ramnagar Fort: The historic fort and residence of the Maharaja of Varanasi, on the Ganges’ eastern bank.
Notes: Varanasi, the spiritual heart of India, called to me. Along the Ganges’ sacred flows, I studied meditation and transcendental techniques with revered yogis. The poet Rabindranath Tagore imparted wisdom on the interconnectedness of life.
1910 - Samarkand, Russian Empire (Present-day Uzbekistan)
Date: May 18, 1910
Location: Samarkand, Russian Empire
Route: Varanasi to Samarkand overland, traveling through northern India, crossing the Himalayas into Tibet, and then journeying through Central Asia via the Silk Road.
Notable Cities: Lhasa, Tibet
- First Class Order of the Mystic Crescent: For exceptional service in espionage, deception, and intelligence gathering within the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri.
- Emir Alim Khan: The Emir of Bukhara, which included Samarkand, a key political figure in the region.
Famous Buildings and Landmarks:
- Registan Square: Featuring the Ulugh Beg Madrasah, Tilya-Kori Madrasah, and Sher-Dor Madrasah with stunning Islamic architecture.
- Gur-e Amir: The mausoleum of Timur (Tamerlane) and his descendants.
- Bibi-Khanym Mosque: A grand 14th-century mosque built by Timur.
- Shah-i-Zinda: A necropolis with a series of mausoleums and tombs, renowned for its blue-tiled architecture.
- Siab Bazaar: A vibrant marketplace for local and foreign goods.
- Samarkand Railway Station: A crucial transport hub for the region.
- Russian Imperial Presence: Various administrative buildings and institutions under Russian control.
Notes: The Silk Road led me to the azure domes of Samarkand’s Registan Square, where I met with a secretive group of mystics who expanded my knowledge of ancient Sufi traditions. I crossed paths with the legendary explorer Sven Hedin, who shared his profound experiences of traversing through Asia.
1915 - Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Date: November 12, 1915
Location: Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Route: Samarkand to Istanbul by sea, taking a ship from the Caspian Sea to the Black Sea. Upon reaching Istanbul, Mehmet enlisted in the Ottoman military to serve during World War I.
Notable Cities: None during this sea journey.
- Golden Imtiyaz Medal: For distinguished service and meritorious conduct.
- Golden Liakat Medal: Awarded for outstanding service and gallantry.
- First Class Order of the Medjidie: A prestigious Ottoman order that recognized distinguished service to the empire.
- Harb Madalyası: Given to military personnel for their participation in wartime service during World War I.
- Sultan’s Secret Service Star: Symbolizing the clandestine nature of their work, awarded for significant contributions to the security and intelligence of the empire.
- Enver Pasha: A prominent Ottoman military officer.
Famous Battles and Events:
- Battle of Gallipoli (1915-1916): A significant Ottoman victory, defended by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and others against the Allies.
- Siege of Kut (1915-1916): An Ottoman victory where they forced the surrender of the British garrison in present-day Iraq.
- Battle of Bitlis (1916): Ottoman forces defended the city against Russian forces, resulting in an Ottoman victory.
- Battle of Erzincan (1916): Ottoman forces won against the Russians in eastern Anatolia, pushing back Russian advances.
Notes: War has engulfed our beloved Istanbul. I joined the Ottoman forces as a soldier, applying my mystical knowledge to protect my homeland. The city is scarred, but through the turmoil, I found purpose. My encounters with Enver Pasha led to my recruitment into the Sultan’s sorcerer corps, where my abilities could be utilized to their fullest in the defense of the empire.
1920 - Paris, France
Date: March 3, 1920
Location: Paris, France
Route: Traveled from Istanbul to Paris via the iconic Orient Express, winding through the scenic landscapes of Europe. Following the end of the Great War, Mehmet’s journey took him through the Balkans, Hungary, Austria, and Germany, with notable stops in Budapest, Vienna, and Berlin.
Notable Cities: Budapest, Vienna, Berlin
- Serpent’s Scales Medal: For the ability to navigate treacherous political waters and gather critical intelligence from enemy organizations or foreign courts.
- Kasim: The steadfast djinn companion of Mehmet.
Famous Buildings and Landmarks:
- The Eiffel Tower: An iron lattice tower on the Champ de Mars in Paris.
- The Louvre: The world’s largest art museum and a historic monument in Paris.
- Notre-Dame Cathedral: A medieval Catholic cathedral on the Île de la Cité.
- Arc de Triomphe: A monument to honor those who fought and died for France.
- Champs-Élysées: One of the most famous avenues in the world.
Notes: In the vibrant City of Lights, Paris, the echoes of the Great War have faded, and the once-mighty Ottoman Empire lies in the annals of history. Here, I have embarked on a noble quest to safeguard and guide the magical beings and djinn seeking refuge in the Western realms, particularly America. As an envoy negotiating the dissolution of the Sultanate, I also work covertly with the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri to establish new alliances and facilitate the passage of mystical artifacts to the Americas. This new chapter in my journey is steeped in art, intrigue, and the cosmopolitan allure of Parisian society.
Character’s Routine in Paris
Paris Police Department
Subject: Mehmet Al-Mansur Date Range: February 10, 1920, to February 17, 1920 Investigating Officer: Officer Philippe Durand
Summary: Upon concluding a brief surveillance operation and a thorough background check on Mehmet Al-Mansur, a recent arrival in Paris associated with the Ottoman delegation, the investigation has been promptly closed due to a lack of any incriminating evidence. Prior to this closure, inquiries were made to the Ottoman delegation regarding Al-Mansur’s official position and responsibilities. The delegation confirmed that Al-Mansur is part of the team working on the peaceful dissolution of the empire and the establishment of the Turkish state, with his specific role being to establish a long-term presence for citizens of the former empire in Paris.
Al-Mansur, who is known to have an interest in astronomy—or astrology, as some suggest—is also a collector of various artifacts, including unique objects, scrolls, and natural curiosities. He is noted for his open and welcoming demeanor towards individuals from diverse backgrounds, dedicating much of his time to cataloging items in Parisian museums and libraries.
During a covert inspection of his residence on February 13th, conducted under the guise of a routine building inspection, it was observed that his house is filled with papers and flyers related to talks given by esoteric scholars like R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz and René Guénon. Additionally, documents were found indicating that he has engaged in extensive debates with an individual known as Chioa Khan, who resides in Cefalù, Sicily.
Throughout the week-long surveillance, Al-Mansur engaged in no activities that could be construed as illicit or suspicious. His behavior was consistent with his cultural and scholarly interests, and there was no evidence to suggest any involvement in activities that would warrant further police attention. The Ottoman delegation’s corroboration of his scholarly and cultural pursuits further dispelled any doubts regarding his conduct. As such, the case on Mehmet Al-Mansur has been concluded and the files marked for closure.
- Café de la Lumière (Café): Frequent morning visits for reading and coffee.
- Bouquinerie du Quartier (Bookstore): Spent several hours browsing and made a purchase.
- Marché du Soleil (Grocery Store): Purchased groceries for the week.
- Parc des Étoiles (Park): Multiple visits for reading and relaxation.
- Musée d’Art et d’Histoire (Museum): Explored exhibits for cultural enrichment.
- Bibliothèque Nationale (Library): Conducted research for several hours.
- Santé Fitness Club (Gym): Visited for a workout.
- Pont de l’Aube (Historical Landmark): Explored and took photographs.
- Galerie d’Inspiration (Art Gallery): Appreciated artwork during a visit.
- Marché aux Saveurs (Market): Routine market visit.
- At Home: Typically spent evenings at home, with activities including reading (2-3 hours), writing (1-2 hours), and telescope observation (variable).
- Café de la Lumière Visits: Mornings spent at the café for an average of 2-3 hours.
- Parc des Étoiles Visits: Averaged 1-2 hours each visit.
- Bouquinerie du Quartier: Several hours.
- Musée d’Art et d’Histoire: Several hours.
- Bibliothèque Nationale: Several hours.
- Santé Fitness Club: Variable, around 1-2 hours.
- Pont de l’Aube Visit: Several hours.
- Galerie d’Inspiration: Several hours.
- Marché aux Saveurs: Approximately 1 hour
Aspects of Islamic Mysticism:
|Islamic Mysticism||The pursuit of inner spiritual experiences, seeking closeness to the Divine, and following the teachings of Sufi masters (sheikhs). Rituals like dhikr (remembrance of God) and meditation are common.|
|Sacred Symbols & Talismans||A great emphasis on the use of sacred symbols, geometric patterns, and talismans. These symbols are believed to hold spiritual power and are often inscribed on amulets and protective items to ward off evil or bring blessings.|
|Local Folklore & Spirituality||Ottoman Mysticism incorporates elements of local folklore, superstitions, and indigenous spiritual practices. These can include reverence for nature, spirits of the land, and local saints and mystics.|
|Divination & Spiritual Insights||Practitioners engage in divination practices, such as coffee cup reading (tasseography) or dream interpretation. These practices are seen as a means to gain spiritual insights and guidance.|
|Ceremonial Magic||Rituals and ceremonies hold a central place; these ceremonies often involve the recitation of sacred verses, the burning of incense, and the use of ritual tools like candles, swords, and bowls of water, each with specific symbolic meanings.|
Rules of for the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Dergahı
Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı: The Arcane Bastion of the Janissaries
Deep within the verdant embrace of the Anatolian heartland, veiled by the mists of the ages and guarded by the whispers of ancients, lies the Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı – The Arcane Bastion of the Janissaries. This secluded lodge is a conundrum wrapped in enigma, where the martial prowess of the Ottoman Empire’s elite soldiers is woven with the clandestine threads of the arcane. The very existence of the Dergahı is known only to the Sultan’s inner circle and to those who have gazed upon its storied walls and walked its hallowed halls.
The Dergahı is not merely a place; it is a crucible where the flesh and spirit are refined through trials that would fray the souls of lesser men. Here, the Yeniçerileri are reborn, not as mere soldiers of the empire, but as vassals of a higher calling where the weave of magic becomes the sinew of war. The training within these walls transcends the conventional; it is a sacred synthesis of ancient wisdom and the art of war, a legacy left by a lineage of warrior-mages who served the empire from the shadows.
Initiates, handpicked from the ranks for their valor and affinity for the mystical, are subjected to a regimen that marries the sword with the spell. Days are marked by the rhythmic chants of spellcraft echoing alongside the clangor of steel. Nights are spent in contemplative study under the watchful eyes of the Dergahı’s masters, the Sihirbaz Ustaları, whose knowledge of the occult is as profound as their martial skill is deadly.
The secrets imparted upon the acolytes of the Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı are as old as the empire itself, rooted in a belief that the world is a tapestry of seen and unseen forces that can be harnessed by the worthy. The adepts learn to channel the latent energies of the cosmos, invoking spells that shield their brethren, confound their enemies, and cloak their movements in a shroud of secrecy. This mystical warfare is not for the faint of heart; it requires an iron will to bend the arcane forces without succumbing to their seductive call.
But the Dergahı is more than a school of war magic; it is a brotherhood, where bonds forged in the crucible of arcane and martial rigors transcend the ordinary. The Yeniçerileri who emerge from the Dergahı do so as envoys of a legacy as enduring as the empire they serve. They are the unseen shield and the hidden blade, the quiet guardians of the realm who walk where shadows dwell, armed with the knowledge that their art is the empire’s secret bastion against the chaos that lurks beyond the light of civilization.
In the annals of the empire, the deeds of the Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı are seldom sung, for their triumphs are the victories that the world must never know, achieved in silence, preserved in the quietude of the Dergahı’s sacred grounds.
The enigmatic members of the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Dergahı embodied a unique duality within the Ottoman Empire, navigating two distinct but interconnected realms of recognition and honor. As dedicated agents of espionage and intelligence, they were shrouded in secrecy, wielding their mystical arts to safeguard the empire’s interests. Yet, their affiliation with the Ottoman Imperial Military added an additional layer of complexity to their service. These shadowy figures, while masters of deception, also marched alongside their fellow soldiers on the battlefield. This dual allegiance allowed them to straddle two worlds, where they could earn accolades and awards from both organizations. Thus, the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Dergahı embodied a unique blend of martial prowess and covert expertise, a testament to their multifaceted contributions within the empire’s complex tapestry of recognition and distinction.
Awards of the Ottoman Emperal Military
In the crucible of World War I, the Ottoman Empire’s military personnel demonstrated unwavering valor and dedication in the face of adversity. Their commitment and gallantry were recognized through a series of distinguished military awards and honors, each carrying its own unique significance. In the turbulent aftermath of World War I and the dawn of the Turkish War of Independence, additional medals and awards awaited those who continued to champion the cause, striving for the establishment of the Republic of Turkey. These accolades, coupled with special commendations and promotions, illuminated the path to honor for those whose exceptional contributions shaped the destiny of a nation.
Imtiyaz Medal: This Ottoman medal was awarded for distinguished service and meritorious conduct. It had different classes, including gold and silver, depending on the level of distinction.
Liakat Medal: Similar to the Imtiyaz Medal, the Liakat Medal was awarded for outstanding service and gallantry. It also had various classes.
Order of the Medjidie: This was a prestigious Ottoman order that recognized distinguished service to the empire. It had several classes, with the First Class being the highest.
Ottoman War Medal (Harb Madalyası): This medal was given to military personnel for their participation in wartime service, including battles during World War I.
Military Merit Medal: Awarded for exceptional acts of valor and bravery during military operations.
Long Service Medals: Ottoman military personnel who had served for an extended period of time with good conduct could be eligible for long service medals.
Turkish War of Independence Medals: For those who continued to serve in the Turkish War of Independence (after World War I), there were additional medals and awards available for their contributions to the establishment of the Republic of Turkey.
Special Commendations: In addition to medals, individuals might have received special commendations or promotions for their exceptional performance in battles.
It’s important to note that the specific awards and decorations individuals received would depend on their rank, role, and the circumstances of their service in these battles. Additionally, some of these honors might have been retroactively awarded by the Republic of Turkey to recognize the contributions of individuals who later played pivotal roles in the establishment of the modern Turkish state, such as Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.
Awards of the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Dergahı
In the intricate world of the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri, a unique system of recognition and accolades emerged to honor those who served as guardians of secrecy, masters of deception, and sentinels of intelligence. In their clandestine pursuits on behalf of the empire, they created the esteemed “Order of the Mystic Crescent.” This prestigious order stood as a testament to the exceptional service rendered by its members, marking them as unsung heroes in the fields of espionage, subterfuge, and intelligence gathering. It was a realm where valor lay in subtlety, and cunning was the highest form of bravery.
Order of the Mystic Crescent: This prestigious order could recognize the exceptional service of Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri in the fields of espionage, deception, and intelligence gathering. It might have different classes, with higher classes representing more significant contributions.
Medal of Subterfuge: This medal could be awarded to members who have demonstrated outstanding skills in the art of disguise, infiltrating enemy lines, and gathering critical information without detection.
Sultan’s Secret Service Star: A star-shaped award, symbolizing the clandestine nature of their work, could be given to those who have made significant contributions to the security and intelligence of the empire.
Crescent Moon Commendation: This commendation could be given for exceptional achievements in the use of illusion and misdirection to deceive and confuse adversaries on the battlefield or in espionage operations.
Order of the Silent Shadows: This order might recognize those who have excelled in the art of remaining unnoticed and unheard while carrying out their covert missions.
Janissary Magician’s Cross: A cross-shaped award could be given to individuals who have displayed exceptional courage and resourcefulness while executing their espionage duties.
Serpent’s Scales Medal: This medal might represent the ability to navigate treacherous political waters and gather critical intelligence from within enemy organizations or foreign courts.
Ottoman Intelligence Star: An exclusive star-shaped decoration for outstanding contributions to Ottoman intelligence, including the strategic use of information to benefit the empire.
Classes of Awards
This is an example of the hierarchy of recognition within the Order of the Mystic Crescent, reflecting the varying levels of expertise, experience, and dedication of its members. Advancement through the classes would typically depend on an individual’s performance, achievements, and years of service, with promotions and awards granted accordingly.
Mystic Crescent, First Class: This would be the highest and most prestigious class, awarded for exceptional and sustained contributions to intelligence gathering, espionage, and deception. Recipients at this level would have demonstrated exceptional skill, leadership, and dedication to the cause.
Mystic Crescent, Second Class: Awarded for significant and noteworthy achievements in the field of intelligence and espionage. Individuals in this class would have consistently shown their expertise and commitment to the mission.
Mystic Crescent, Third Class: Recognizing substantial contributions to the organization and its goals. Members at this level would have proven their value in the field and their ability to carry out critical missions effectively.
Mystic Crescent, Fourth Class: Awarded for meritorious service and notable accomplishments in the realm of espionage and intelligence. Members at this level would have demonstrated proficiency and a commitment to the organization’s mission.
Mystic Crescent, Fifth Class: The entry-level class, recognizing individuals who have successfully completed training and have begun their service in the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri or a similar group. This class acknowledges their potential and commitment to developing their skills.
Skill Name: War Arcana (VH)
Prerequisite: Magery 0; must have attended a Sihirbaz Yeniçeri Dergahı.
Description/Background: The Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri, or “Wizard Janissaries,” are an elite cadre within the Ottoman military structure, trained specifically to blend the arts of war with mystical prowess. Originating from the most promising of recruits, these individuals undergo a secretive and arduous bootcamp, emerging as both officers and clandestine operatives who can bend the weave of magic to the Empire’s will.
During this bootcamp, the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri are introduced to the ancient practices of War Arcana, a skill that allows them to cast spells swiftly and silently amidst the chaos of battle. This training involves not only rigorous mental conditioning to withstand the fog of war but also a deep spiritual connection to the latent energies manipulated during combat. The secrets of War Arcana are closely guarded, passed down only to those who have proven both their loyalty and their valor.
Rules: War Arcana is a Very Hard skill that represents the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri’s ability to effectively use spells in the heat of battle. It allows the casting of any spell known by the character without the usual verbal, somatic, or material components typically required, thus enabling the user to maintain surprise and stealth on the battlefield. However, casting in this manner increases the fatigue cost by 1 for every point by which the spell’s difficulty exceeds the character’s War Arcana skill level.
Upon successful completion of the Sihirbaz Yeniçerileri Bootcamp, the character receives one free level of Magery (if they do not already possess it) and may begin learning War Arcana at the cost of 8 character points. Further advancements in War Arcana cost the standard amount for Very Hard skills as per GURPS rules.
Usage in Combat: When using War Arcana in combat, the character must win a Quick Contest of War Arcana vs. the enemy’s Perception. If successful, the spell is cast unnoticed. Failure indicates that the character’s actions have been detected, but the spell may still be cast normally. A critical failure on the War Arcana roll means the spell fails and the character cannot attempt War Arcana again until they have won a combat or successfully retreated.
Limitations: War Arcana can only be used while in a state of active combat and within line of sight of an enemy. Spells cast using War Arcana cannot be maintained for longer than the combat encounter and cannot be more than two levels higher than the highest spell level the character can cast outside of War Arcana.