Rokugan Local Governance:
Variations: The Crab Clan
Crab Clan Governance
- Families: Crab clan samurai families often include the widows and orphans of those samurai who have fallen on the wall. Brothers and sisters with families of their own bring in the families of the fallen entire, making them a part of their own family. By custom any child born to a widow within the first five years of a bushi's death is still considered the child of the fallen bushi, and it a quiet, unspoken duty for the family of the fallen to ensure that their fallen sibling has heirs of his own. This quiet duty has allowed the Crab to maintain their numbers even in times of great loss against the Shadowlands, as well as making certain that the widows of the fallen are well cared for in their later years.
- Families: Crab women who do not serve on the wall are highly revered in their role as mothers, considering it their sacred duty to the Clan. Any who insults a Crab mother will find themselves with a tetsubo to the head and no one would blink.
- Families: Crab are generally allowed to arrange their own marriages. If a Crab reaches the age of 22 without marrying, a marriage will be arranged for them by their parents and their local magistrate.
- Families: Crab bushi are required year round for combat, but that does not mean that every Crab bushi lives only at the wall. Service at the wall for most bushi is seasonal, with each bushi serving at the wall for a season, returning home to recover for a season, then returning back to the wall for yet another season. The enemy, always, is the Shadowlands, and there is no lack of opportunities to train against that foe.
- Villages: Crab villages are more likely than villages in the rest of the empire to be walled, though the wall may be a simple wooden palisade. Crab heimin, unlike those of other clans, are allowed to remain armed, though samurai weapons are still forbidden. They will still be executed if they raise weapons against samurai of their own clan. However, if they claim that they were deceived and thought the samurai was working under the influence of the Shadowlands, their transgression may be forgiven. More than one cruel village magistrate has been removed under such a provision.
- Villages: Due to the demands for samurai on the wall, villages are less likely to have a samurai sonchou family in Crab lands. A single magistrate may patrol a large area with many villages. Individual villages would be maintained by their own headman and ashigaru would defend it.
- Villages: Ashigaru are rarely sent to the wall as fighters. Without sophisticated training and discipline, an untrained ashigaru is more of a liability than a benefit to the Crab because they can be turned against the clan as a weapon by the Shadowlands. They are used on the Wall, however, for support, construction, or the operation of seige engines, all under the guidance of samurai taskmasters. When the Crab go to war with forces within the Empire, ashigaru troops are often used.
- Villages: The Crab are fairly free-handed with their peasants. They care primarily about whether the heimin of a village can turn over the supplies they are required to or not, and leave the methods by which those supplies are found up to the local sonchou or magistrate. The Yasuki are not meticulous record keepers except in matters of trade, and it is easy for a village to go unnoticed for generations...for the benefit of the villagers, or to their disadvantage.
- Villages: Due to unwaviering requirements as to what is needed from a village, especially from things like Iron Mines, the Crab can be oppressive to their peasants if they think it is necessary to meet the logistical demands, using samurai taskmasters to get sufficient labor out of the heimin. It is harder for heimin to leave their villages in Crab lands out of fear of the taskmasters or the creatures that haunt the countryside.
- Economics: The Yasuki and Kaiu are masters of logistics. The Yasuki focus on long-distance trade, while the Kaiu manage the short-range supply lines. While both may care little for the details of governance, there is no family better at managing the extended supply lines necessary to make sure the right goods end up in the right places. The Wall would have fallen long but for this skill.
- Cities: The entire population of a Crab city can fit within the enormous confines of a Crab citadel when a serious assault occurs. Conditions at these times are harsh, but the Crab brook no rebellion. They are harsh because they must be and discipline is strictly enforced. But they are sought out because when things are at their worse, there is no place safer than inside a Crab fortress.