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Registered Companions and Prostitution [Aug. 21st, 2006|07:06 pm]
Lexington, KY DnD


In Strathaven, prostitution is legal. However, like most anything of a risqué nature, it is tightly regulated by the United Kingdoms of Strathaven. In Strathaven, there are two types of prostitutes: legal prostitutes are called "companions" (think Firefly/Serenity, if you've seen it) and must be registered with the Companion Guild, while unregistered (illegal) prostitutes are derogatively called whores. Technically, both companions and whores are prostitutes, though calling a companion a prostitute is considered uncouth at best. For example, using the term "prostitute" or a like derogatory term in a Companion House is likely to get you a warning, and repeated offenses will get you kicked out or possibly even banned from that House. Calling a companion a whore will probably get you literally thrown out of the House and banned permanently, with no warning.

Companions, registered with the Companion Guild, usually will operate out of a house designed for companions. To many people, a city isn't really a city if it doesn't have a Companion House, as it is a mark of sophistication and dignity for the Companion Guild to allow a Companion House to be built in a city, village, township, etc.

Becoming a Companion:

To become a companion, one must meet the age limit required by the Guild regarding ones species (see Guild Regulations). Applicants must see the head master or head mistress at the local Companion House, known as The Fer Y Thie (Gaelic for "Master of the House" usually shortened to Fer). The Fer is permitted to register no more than 5 applicants per year as new companions. There are 5 ranks of companions: Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond, and Holy. Higher-ranked companions can expect to have more prospective clients to choose from, and can expect to charge more for their services. Newly-registered companions always begin with rank Silver. A companion may advance to the next rank (and have their registration updated) only with approval from a Fer. In addition to 5 new companion registrations, each year the Fer may send up to 2 companions (which may include brand new applicants) to Gilliosa for advanced companion training. Gilliosa is the Kingdom in which companionship was first made legal and where its main house was founded (also known as the Companion Palace, for good reason). A companion must complete advanced training at Gilliosa to be promoted beyond Silver; for this reason, Silver Companions are sometimes referred to as "local companions". Guild policy places restrictions on Silver Companions that the higher ranks need not endure (see Guild policy 2 for more details).

Becoming a Companion (mechanics):

Within the game, a player must seek out the Fer of a local Companion House to apply to become a registered companion. If chosen as worthy (you either need to have a Charisma above 12 and/or have put points in perform and other skills that would make you a good companion... use your imagination. Each Fer Y Thie has his/her own criteria) then the Fer will accept you into the companion house and spend time giving you basic training. Consecutive training usually last about 3 months. The Fer may decline an applicant if they cannot stay for that length of time but may opt to give lessons when the applicant is available; a Fer will generally not go to such lengths unless the applicant has impressed the Fer such that he/she strongly feels the applicant would make an exceptional companion.

Mechanically, you'll start taking points in Knowledge (companion) and several performing skills. Once completed, the player will be rewarded a free skill point in Profession (companion) to show they are registered (you may not put any ranks in Profession (companion) without DM approval, and receiving local training is generally the only way to get permission for this first rank). A character with no ranks in Profession (companion) who sells sexual services is not a registered companion and thus is an illegal prostitute (whore), until they get a rank in Profession (companion). The number of ranks in Profession companion will determine how popular and desired a companion is for their services. A Silver Companion may not put a 5th skill point into Profession (companion) until they receive approval to advance to Gold (training at the Companion Palace in Gilliosa with the sponsorship of their Fer is required for this); Similarly, a Gold Companion may not put a 10th skill point into Profession (companion) until they receive approval to advance to Platinum, etc. For every 5 skill points a character has in Profession companion, the player will get a +2 synergy bonus to Knowledge (companion) checks and any other sex-related checks at GM discretion (e.g. Perform checks involving companion services, sex-related Knowledge checks, Use Rope if appropriate, etc.).

Companion Laws in the United Kingdoms of Strathaven</b> (laws that carry government-enforced penalties):

1) No being may exchange sexual services or the like for money or similar value without being registered with the Companion Guild.
2) No being may exchange sexual services or the like for money or similar value if they are below the age of consent for their species. (The definition of age of consent for the various species varies slightly from kingdom to kingdom. Consult the DM if there is ever a need to know.)

In addition to the formal laws of Strathaven regarding companions and prostitution, there are also Companion Guild Policies. Breaking these policies is not punishable by law, but may result in temporary or permanent revocation of companion registration, and in the case of temporary revocation may also include fines that must be paid before registration will be reinstated; other restrictions are possible, such as being banned temporarily or permanently from performing companion services outside the Companion House in that particular city, being banned temporarily or permanently from performing any companion services at all in that city, etc.

Companion Guild Policy

1) Applicants to become a companion must see a Fer Y Thie at a local companion house. They must have reached the official age of consent for their species and be in a clean bill of health, to be determined by a Cleric of Aineas (God of Passion). Applicants are selected by the Fer Y Thie and may be turned down for any stipulation the Fer Y Thie sees fit, including personal discrimination. Once an applicant has been declined by the Fer Y Thie in a particular city, the applicant my not be considered again in that city for a year and a day, even if a new Fer Y Thie is selected during that time. If an applicant is turned down in one city, that does not prevent them from visiting another Fer Y Thie in a different city and trying again.
2) Silver Companions may not service outside their registered kingdom, and may only provide services in a Companion House. The only exception to this rule is that, with special permission from Gilliosa,
a Silver Companion may work in the town of their birth, even if there is no Companion House (they must still be trained by a Fer at a Companion House, however). This permission is tied not just to a
particular town but also a particular room in a particular building in the town, which is the only place the companion is allowed to perform services outside a Companion House.
3) No companion of any rank may perform services in public locations, nor in places judged by the Companion Guild to be unbefitting a companion. Private residences are acceptible as long as they are
clean, as are carriages, ships, and any other sophisticated location out of the public eye.
4) Companions, when using the Companion House, must pay a percentage of their earnings to the Fer Y Thie for the upkeep and advancement of the Companion House. This percentage is set by the Fer Y Thie of the local Companion House but may not be lower than 5%. 5% of the monthly earnings of each individual Companion House must be sent to the Companion Palace in Gilliosa to maintain the magic used to keep client lists current and other such services that need be maintained.
5) All clientele of a companion must be cleared by a cleric of Aineas to verify they do not have any diseases that could be passed on to a companion. As such, each companion house is required to employ a cleric of Aineas to keep all companions in good health and be sure their clients are, as well. The cleric of Aineas will also make sure that conception is avoided before any scheduled service. Companions servicing outside the confines of a Companion House are still required to visit a cleric of Aineas before each appointment.
6) Companions choose their clients, their clients do not chose them. A potential client may specify their desires and fantasies for selection but may not demand them of the companion that chooses them. However, if a companion chooses a client with specific desires that he/she cannot or will not fulfill, they must alert the client beforehand. A client is then free to decline the services of a companion that cannot
or will not meet their specifically aforementioned desires. A client may even request a specific companion, if they wish, but it is the companion's decision whether to accept them.
7) Clients of companions may elect to pay more than the prearranged price, for whatever reason, and this extra payment is not included in their official payment to which they must pay dues for to the Fer Y
8) Companions are required to obey the laws of the land while working. This means they should not harm a client (even if asked, unless prenegotiated with a written and signed contract as legal evidence),
steal from the client, steal from the Companion House, or break any other general law within the United Kingdoms. While not working, companions are also required to obey the law, as all citizens and
slaves are. Companions found guilty of breaking major laws may be additionally sanctioned by the Companion Guild. Companion clients are also expected to obey these laws while being serviced by a Companion, as well.

That should do it for Companions. Updates may occur later, if problems seem to occur. If you have any questions or suggestions, please comment.