Okknos Prime: Bonifant
The Open Hand
This open letter to the people of Amollo was written by Hope the Bard with an addendum by Ashar the Untouchable. It spurred the citizens of Amollo to action against the crime lord McGregor and his organization Ravenous, eventually forcing them from the city. The text of the letter and its addendum are printed below.
Citizens of Amollo,
Long has this weighed heavy on my heart on the matter of evil and its roots set within this world. Evil being that skewed perception of self-interest and self worth that gives one a perception of being above others’ interests. Amollo gives a strong defense of this phenomenon within its sheltered city walls. Amollo’s culture, economic, and social policies have allowed this culture of evil to strive if not flourish. Who is to blame for this? We have only ourselves to blame, but lets not contemplate the finger. Instead let us turn the finger, which is apart of more, into an open hand.
The first of such changes that are required in order for Amollo to move forward is to reevaluate the corruption within its governing offices. Imports and exports of illegal goods must no longer be allowed and a culture that encourages selfless actions concerning such must be encouraged. A decree from the ruling body as well as the adoption of this policy by every official would help in this regard. Amollo is tired of seeing slaves imprisoned by tainted chemicals for the mind and body. We are tired of burying daughters and sons. Let us no longer fade in the shadow of Sunwyn. Let us open our hands.
The second of such is this… The criminal element within Amollo. The shadow market and the underworld of any large mercantile city are always assumed to be, even if not seen. We cannot destroy all of this, but we can limit it and its harmful effects on the community. This can occur through transparency, enforcement, and accountability. I encourage the ruling body of Amollo to lead us in this. I encourage those of us who fight everyday for a loaf of bread to carry this in our hearts. Lets invest in our city. The horrible fact that we have allowed such organizations such as Ravenous to continue to exist is a testament to our lack of resolve in this matter. To our fear and to my own.
Let me tell you of a woman that you know well. Lillium the Flower was a young beautiful lady who had everything she could every want. I knew her well and I wept for her. Her life in our eyes was a lie. She was a slave to Ravenous and to McGregor. She was a piece of meat for a man who we allowed in this city. Who has sought to set his teeth on Amollo and drain it of its daughters and sons. Good men are made into bad men and bad men are turned into horrors. Lillium’s testimony stands alone, at the moment, to convict and prosecute McGregor. I ask that her last words on this earth do not stand-alone. Let us join hands with her for she is dead and can no longer fight. So we must take up her words and fight for her and for us.
I am leaving those in charge of upholding up the law the means by which to continue on with little chance of corruption. I do this in hopes that they can accomplish what I could not. I was wrong in the way I treated the situation. Lillium’s murder clouded my mind with hate and I cannot begin to repay the city for my crimes. I ask that my actions do not taint the words that you are now reading. They are words and are far beyond my past and myself.
To those who would prevent this movement, which I hope will spread through this city like laughter, I warn you. We constitute a large portion of this city. We, therefore, can be a large part of the problem or a large part of the solution. I hope you open your hand and accept ours in return.
I am Ashar. I came to this city to start a new life with my sister. Unfortunately, I was sucked into the nefarious Ravenous because of the money they were able to pay. This did not end well for my sister or me, and it will not end well for the citizens of Amallo.
As long as crime pays there will always be organizations like Ravenous in Amallo. Even if there was a movement to wipe out Ravenous completely yet another criminal organization would take its place.
I say this not to discourage you, but to show you the true meaning of evil.
For every upstanding business owner there is another business owner who is willing to profit on the sale of black market goods and property. For every upstanding politician there is another who is willing to sell out the truth for dishonest gain. For every son or daughter that wants to join the town guard or honorable business, there is are still others that are willing to join a life of crime because it is socially acceptable.
Make no mistake. The only way to eliminate these terrible threats is to make a stand. You must stand strong together as a united front against these organizations. If there are those who do not stand with you they must be ostracized. Otherwise, there will never be a change.
You fear for your life. You fear for your families. You fear for your property. But are you going to live in fear forever? If Ravenous is wiped out will you live in fear of another organization that will rise up to fill that empty void left in the criminal underworld?
Aye, fight and you may die, run, and you’ll live… at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin’ to trade all of that from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take away our lives, but they’ll never take our freedom.