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The Shadow Propagandists

The Shadow Propagandists, or usually just The Propagandists are the intelligence/diplomatic corp of the Brotherhood of Shadow.  No one, outside of the organization, knows who they are though they seem to be able to identify each other, and they work the war for hearts and minds.  The propagandists spread the information that they are told to get people to believe.



To qualify as a Propagandist, a Vesya must prove his aptitude in Diplomacy and and verbal subterfuge in a test devised by Durga "Ghost" Bloodfist. A Propagandist usually trains for years, from the age of ten if the Brotherhood can get their hands on them that young. Otherwise about 5 years of training is required before one graduates to a full Shadow Propagandist.

Career Progression

If the Brotherhood can get them, potential Propagandists are screened into the training program at age ten. Otherwise, they want them as early as possible, and after twenty you are unlikely to be accepted for training. If the Vesya is of a non-goblin race (The Propagandists recruit from all races), they hope to get them five to ten years before the age of majority, and taking young street hustlers and employing them is a common practice among the Propagandists. After about five years of training and practice, the Vesya is tested. They are set loose in a friendly neighbourhood for a week. In that time, they are to plant a rumor (true or false) within the neighbourhood and have that rumor propagate itself among the population. If they can succeed at that, they go through the Muk-ah Tal Muk (see Ves Coming of Age Ritual), and become full Ves.

As a Ves, the Propagandist is capable of carrying out the orders of his superiors and affecting the hearts and minds of the population. There are very few occasions where the Ves is not practicing these skills in one way or another. It is highly likely that the person will remain here, as a Ves, for the rest of their life as advancement within the Shadow Propagandists is rare with little job turnover. The best that one can hope for is that your department gets expanded and new positions opened up.

A lucky Propagandist will be in an area that is expanding operations. When operations expand, Ves with more than five years experience may have a chance at Kax'Ves. A Propagandist Kax'Ves is in charge of five other Ves, and runs operations on a small town or city quarter level. Though they answer to a Vee or Raa'toka, Kax'Ves are pretty autonomous in their operations by necessity. The ves'a has to be free to move and adapt to the ever changing social and political structure of the Empire. So, while they ultimately must justify their decisions, a successful operation speaks volumes of justification.

Rarely, a Kax'Ves is chosen to lead a large city operation as a Vee (if male) or Raa'toka. These leaders are almost always at least twenty-five years old and will have ten to fifteen years of experience and several successful smaller operations under their belt. The Ves-ka led by these individuals has six Ves'a and a Kax'Ves'a. After about five years as a Ves-ka leader, the Vee or Raa'toka may be offered to lead a Kax'Ves-ka as a Karr or Karra. With about five to ten years experience, the Karr(a) may be offered a position as a Don or Donna of their own Cartel, assuming there is a position for them to take. And a Propagandist who has led a cartel for ten years might be, assuming the position is vacant, offered to take over the Syndicate as a Godfather or Mother.

Payment & Reimbursement

Propagandists have regular jobs within the community they influence. They can be anything from beggars to burghers, from princes to paupers, often in the same Ves'a. Since goblins care more for their Ves'as than any other people, it is expected that the beggar actually lives a good life supported by the burgher. Furthermore, the Brotherhood takes care of the needs of all the Shadow Propagandists, so in all likelihood, the beggar goes home to an apartment owned by the burgher, after collecting bread from the baker's wife, meat from the butcher and cheese from the dairy maid and goes home to the local prostitute, his wife; and, they have a stipend from the Brotherhood of 2 gp per day, split between them. The beggar and his wife also turn over a quarter of their combined income (from begging and hooking) to the Kax'Ves (probably the burgher, but not necessarily so.)

In turn, the Kax'Ves takes one quarter of his earnings and applies it to this pool created by his other five Ves and passes one quarter of that pool up to the Vee or Raa'toka and uses the other seventy-five percent to conduct the business of his Ves'a.

The Vee/Raa'toka collects the money for his own Ves'a, and takes twenty-five percent of that, and applies it to a pool collected from the six other Ves'a. (S)he then takes a quarter of that pool and passes it up to the Karr, and so on until twenty-five percent of each Syndicate's earnings are passed to the Grandfather.

For example, the beggar begs an average of 1 gp per day, 30 gp per month. His wife does 9 gp per day or 270 gp per month. The baker sells 7 gp per day worth of breads and pastries, but spends 3 gp a day for supplies, leaving 4 gp a day in profit or 120 gp per month. The butcher makes 7 gp a day, but meat costs him about 2.5 gp daily, so 4.5 gp per day, 135 gp per month. The milk maid delivers 5 gp per day in milk costing her about 3 gp per day in feed and lodging for the cows, leaving her with 2 gp per day, 60 gp per month. Finally, the burgher is paid 10 gp per day by city taxes, and thus makes 300 a month. Each month, the beggar hands over 7.5 gp, his wife 67.5 gp. The baker's wife gives 30 gp and the butcher gives 37.75 gp. The milk maid hands over 15 gp and the burgher gives up 75gp; a total of 232.75 gp. Then the Kax'Ves takes 58.19 gp and passes it on to the Vee, who puts it with the average 60 gp from the other six Ves'a for 418.19 gp. He then takes 104.55 gp and gives it to the Karr.

This does not include money paid to the Ves'as and the like for a propaganda campaign. This money is likewise split between the Ves'a and the Ves-ka with twenty-five percent passed up the chain and the remainder kept for Ves'a operations.

Other Benefits

The benefit of being a Propagandist is support from the organization. If caught spreading their propaganda, and repercussions occur, the Fraternity will do everything in their power to get the person off the hook, or at least rescue and relocate them, in the worst case. Plus, you can be guaranteed that you won't go hungry nor will your Ves'a. Furthermore, all members of the Brotherhood of Shadow can keep their family sequestered at Shadowkeep.



The propagandists shape hearts and minds
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Alternative Names
The Propagandists The Goblin News Network
For those who want to change societal perceptions, The Propagandists are invaluable, though they are not cheap.


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