Aces Wanted in Graves of the Departed Empire | World Anvil

Aces Wanted

For someone to call themselves an Ace, is to accept a certain mystique and a few responsibilities onto themselves. A mercenary lifestyle, yes, but something more.   An Ace is a force for change in any direction. They are the folk heroes and storytime villains of the broken world left after humanity's fall. They may think they're just in it for the money, rarely seeing the true consequences of taking this contract over that one, of slitting a throat or letting the patrol pass, but they are in a unique position.   A position to choose.    To truly determine their own fate in the face of all this world has to offer. If they wish to slum it in Columbia trying to fix the lower levels or "legally acquire" a starship and head off towards Poseidon to find other likeminded individuals that are willing to do anything to stick it to the world at large. If they wish to stab, shoot, and blast their way through the nearest corporate tower to send a very loud message to act as their gravestone, or if they wish to build their own frontier town in the wilds and defend it from all comers. Aces simply have to reach out and grasp the fate they wish to see.   It is also an acceptance of death. No matter the task, there is always something or someone seeking to snuff out the active fuse that is an Ace, and those efforts are just as successful as they aren't.   Really only one question remains.   Who will you be, when the last hand is dealt?
Aces often maintain a small but flexible group of members, each specializing in a particular field with some overlap. This allows the group to remain functional, even if a key member is downed in a fight or some other situation.    While the numbers of a group of Aces may vary from less than half a dozen to a handful of hundreds, they often organize themselves the same way. Their most influential members are often given titles based on a deck of cards. The King of Diamonds, Jack of Spades. Some groups take inspiration from other things that have meaning to them, like a wolf packs organization, where only the leader matters. Some groups have taken the names of the ancient tarot deck, or even made their own decks, stating it's them creating their own fates.

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Cover image: by Alegria,


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