Welcome to Madripoor
The beaches along Madripoor’s eastern shore lead onto some of the richest fishing waters in the South China Sea. Fishermen casting nets or heading out early in the morning in search of their livelihood settled them long ago.
When resort developers were allowed to build along the north beaches, they complained about the amount of work those beaches would require to be made marketably beautiful, They suggested that they be given the right to buy the land along the eastern beaches which were naturally bright, pristine and scenic. The government refused.
Dharmawijaya argued that he would not allow his citizens to be dispossessed and lose their livelihood just to make life easier for foreigners. If the developers wished to build on Madripoor, they were welcome, but they would have to improve the rocky north coastline. It was not lost on anyone that such improvements would be a permanent boon to the island, even when the developers left many years down the road.
This left the east coastline undisturbed to the present day. The people here are fisherman, many with small homes with docks. Only those seeking solitude and absolute privacy make the east beaches their vacation spot. There is little to do all day except to loll about on the sands watching the fishing boats head out early in the morning and return in the late afternoon.
The fishermen own boats of all sizes. They have fifty-foot boats with crews and large nets. There is also the occasional day cruiser, loaded with tourist fishermen and executives from the island’s capitol Madripoor. The local fisherman also charter their smaller cruisers for the sport fishermen who want to go out and battle the large fish and pretend they are sharing a true experience with the ghosts of past fishermen.
The locals also cluck their tongues in confusion. Fishing is an exhausting, backbreaking way to make a living and these tourists do it for fun. There must be something in the city’s water supply that makes them crazy, they figure. Other boats go out searching for shells. A large lightning whelk can bring almost $100 from the shops in Madripoor where the tourists buy them to take home as souvenirs.
After watching the boats go out, the vacationers can float in the clear ocean waters or go surf fishing. They might also walk through the small villages. There are few 21st century distractions here. There are no nightclubs, although there are bars scattered along the coast.
At night, without the neon, office buildings, clusters of cars or other ambient light sources to filter them out, the stars provide a light show that can be watched for hours. The black sky scattered with thousands of glistening diamonds has provided a backdrop for many a romantic liaison.
And a few illegal ones.
Since the government banned the development of the east beach it has become a favorite spot for smugglers and others who would rather have their activities go unnoticed. It is an impossible job to patrol the almost 100 private and public docks dotting the coast. And many a boat has come in at night, without running lights, to drop off its cargo of drugs, gold, emeralds or even refugees.
The island is only a switching station or refueling point for the contraband. Most of the refugees are also on their way to some other dreamland with streets paved with gold. But some have found their journey ending along the east coast where they carry their own weight, they find a community willing to accept outsiders who mind their own business and do not ask for charity.
The natives tolerate tourists so long as they do not display a condescending attitude or start prying with a lot of questions. They are particularly offended by the kinds of questions a secret agent would ask. However, the players’ characters can find allies here and can hire boats for any sort of ocean-going mission.
NPCs of the East Beaches
Native Language: Indonesian
10th-level wheelman (NPC); CR 10. SZ M; v/wp 95/17; Init +9 (+6 class, +3 Dex); Spd 30 ft.; Def 19 (+6 class, +3 Dex); Atk: punch/kick +11 (1d3+1), Winchester Supreme Field Shotgun +13 (5d4); Face 1 square; Reach 1 square; SA None; SQ Custom ride, daredevil, lucky, kick start 1/session, familiarity +2, elbow grease +4, soup her up (25%); SV Fort +4, Ref +10, Wil +5; Str 13, Dex 16, Con 17, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 10; Skills: Balance +13, Boating +16, Driver +13, Mechanics +13, Spot +12, Swim +14. Feats: One Hand on the Wheel…, Wave Runner, Firm Hand, Oversteer, Baby It, “Hold Together Baby!”, Endurance. Gear: Winchester Supreme Field Shotgun 27 BP left. Gadgets & Vehicles: Fishing boat 7(6) GP left.
Indah Wanita (6 Gadget Points)
Fishing boat. SZ: Huge; Hnd: +2; Spd: 80 ft.; MPH: 8/16; Def: 8; WP: 75; Hrd: 3
Modifications: Autopilot, Hidden Compartment, Improved Handling.
Background: Life is a great joke to Johan. He is always smiling, always kind, and always helpful. He has the same smile whether he is playing with a small child or sending a vicious drug dealer to a watery grave. Johan has set himself up as protector of his little fishing village.
Johan grew up in the village. While a teen, his parents died in a fire that destroyed his home and all his family’s possessions. Johan did not accept charity from the neighbors. Instead he would work to earn their offers of food, clothing and shelter.
With a strong back and almost tireless energy, he became a favorite with local fishermen. Whenever they needed an extra hand to pull in a heavy catch or handle the wheel for a rich tourist, they always sought out Johan first.
Old Sonny, owner of the 27-foot inboard Indah Wanita, came closest to being a surrogate father to Johan. Old Sonny taught Johan the ways of navigating by the stars, by his ears and by his nose. He also revealed the locations of the best fishing spots that kept the tourists returning to the Indah Wanita even though Old Sonny charged higher fees than any other captain did.
When Old Sonny died, Johan was the only one surprised to find he was the old man’s sole heir. Over the years, Johan worked hard not to tarnish the image or reputation of the Indah Wanita. He also promised that he would help the people of his village. He felt for them a deep kinship, for opening their hearts and homes to him when he needed it most.
Whenever someone is in need, Johan hears of it and is there to help whether it is an anonymous donation or the toil of his muscular frame. He is the unofficial mayor of the town and can rally and unite the people far more efficiently than any politician or priest. He also makes sure his village is untainted with drugs.
The other fishermen in the village have occasionally helped smugglers bring in gold, jewels or refugees. Their rationalization was that it was relatively harmless. But then the Golden Triangle druglords started bringing in a lot of dollars for very little work, immoral dollars that Johan could not allow to continue.
The villagers might have continued to look the other way or cooperating, but the first of the drug smugglers were from the Chinese tongs. Ruthless, almost savage, men, whose expensive clothes look out of place, they came into the village looking for a safe haven. Flashing a lot of money and jewels, they were very welcome… until they decided they wanted to take something.
Utami was a lovely young woman who caught the eye of one of the Chinese. She politely refused, which sent the Chinese man into a rage. That night, Utami disappeared. Johan went looking for her. He came back without her, and without his ever-present smile. The villagers knew she was dead and that Johan had found the body.
The next night, the Chinese all disappeared. The next day, Johan’s smile returned.
Reaction: Johan is always outwardly friendly and may even become friends with the characters so long as they present no danger to the villagers.
He will eagerly join with any characters that say they are fighting drug smuggling. He can also rally a fleet of 20 or so boats to provide characters with a task force.
Native Language: Chinese
6th-level pointman (NPC); CR 6. SZ M; v/wp 33/10; Init +4 (+2 class, +2 Dex); Spd 30 ft.; Def 14 (+2 class, +2 Dex); Atk: punch/kick +3 (1d3-1); Face 1 square; Reach 1 square; SA None; SQ Generous, assistance (½ time), lead 2/session, tactics 1/session, backup 1/session; SV Fort +3, Ref +5, Wil +10; Str 9, Dex 15, Con 10, Int15 , Wis 16, Cha 15; Skills: Bluff +11, Diplomacy +11, First Aid +12, Gather Information +11, Hide +11, Move Silently +11, Sense Motive +12, Swim +10. Feats: Iron Will, Old Debts, Traceless. Gear: 68 BP. Gadgets & Vehicles: 4 GP.
Background: You have never seen hate until you mention China in Guideng’s presence.
She comes by her hate honestly. She grew up in China and is well versed in the travesties of justice perpetrated there by the government.
Her father was arrested and thrown into jail. She has not seen him since and does not know if he is still alive. Her mother was beaten by soldiers in front of her when she was only 11.
She became part of the resistance in China and, with the help of benefactors in the United States, made the government very uncomfortable by helping refugees escape the country to America.
These activities ended abruptly when soldiers broke into her home, destroyed it and took her prisoner. She was interrogated for many days and has terrible marks of torture on her feet. For what seemed an eternity, her soles were beaten with a split bamboo rod in hopes she would reveal her allies and give up her entire network.
She never broke, and word of her integrity and bravery soon made her a martyr to her fellow countrymen. This caused a problem for the government who wanted to be rid of her, but did not want to raise her to the level of sainthood in the eyes of the people.
Wishing to discredit her, they came up with an elaborate scheme to make it look as if she had decided to cooperate. The government staged raids across the countryside and disseminated misinformation that Guideng had given them the information. The plan called for her to be found dead of a drug overdose dressed in fine clothes in an expensive hotel with cash and drugs around. Even if it did not totally destroy her image, it would certainly tarnish the halo the people placed around her.
The raids went off and Guideng was taken to the hotel, but the government had failed to take her compatriots into account. They ambushed the guards and escaped in the transport vehicle to the coast. There they had a boat waiting to get her away from China. Guideng was taken to Madripoor left with friends there who nursed her back to full health.
Guideng found that she was tired of the fighting and the experiences of prison and torture made her reluctant to return to China. Her friends convinced her she did not have to. They would spread rumors that she had escaped the prison. She would become a living symbol of the resistance and inspire others. She could remain on Madripoor and operate a clearinghouse for Chinese refugees.
She agreed, but with a shamed heart. She did not take the suggestion because of a sense of duty, but out of emotional exhaustion and the loss of her fighting spirit. She carries with her the feelings of guilt over the fact that she no longer has the fervor of a revolutionary and would very gladly disappear to start a quiet ordinary life somewhere else. But she still has a sense of duty and responsibility. So she meets the occasional boat and helps refugee families find their way to new homes.
Reactions: Guideng would much rather be left alone than get involved in any mission the players’ characters are on. You should play her as almost a tragic figure, wallowing in her own world of guilt and self-pity, unwilling to help the characters unless they can do some heavy-duty convincing.
Any attempt to convince her to help will be at a â€“4 circumstance modifier to the Diplomacy check.
She can, though, put the characters in touch with gunrunners, smugglers and assorted underworld types around the island. She can also help them escape through her refugee underground railroad. Should the characters manage to involve Guideng in a plot, its culmination might potentially bring her out of her rut and back into the revolutionary forefront.
Chases in the East Beaches
The East Beaches have many small fishing villages and roads in between. Many boats also move up and down the coast in the water. During the day it can be very busy but at night everything slows right down.
Terrain type: Open or Close
Common chase types: Ground, foot or water
Initial starting speeds: Â¾ of the fastest vehicle’s maximum MPH (Open) or ½ of the fastest vehicle’s maximum MPH (Close)
Maneuver modifiers: The vehicle with the fastest maximum MPH receives a +2 speed modifier to maneuver checks (open) or none (Close)
Obstacle chance: 1 in d10 (Open) or 1 in d6 (Close)
Obstacle DC: 12 (Open) or 18 (Close)
- The Net Result: Watch out for the nets left out to dry.
- Child’s Play: Children are playing directly in your path.
- Catch of the Day: This man in your way seems very proud of his catch.
- No Bridge Over Troubled Waters: The bridge is out but you can jump it.
- Happy Hour: These drunken fools are crossing directly into your path.