Canadese Book of Laws (Ricasa Supplement)
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Ricasa is a continent whose people, largely as a result of their violent history, despise waste. Government branches are kept bare, architecture is minimalist, weapons designs trade ornamentation for a sleek starkness. Even the books of laws are somewhat less heavy than their counterparts across the seas- and nowhere more so than in Canadia.
The Kingdom of Canadia is rumored throughout Ricasa to have no laws of any kind: a place where the ale flows for free and the thief can do as he wishes. Well, sadly, neither of these are true, though both have a ring of truth. For one, ale in Canadia is required by law to cost at the most, ten golds a mug for the best stuff: far cheaper than the surrounding lands. And, as you may have guessed from the previous statement, Canadia does have a few laws, though admittedly not many. In fact, in standard format, the whole of the country's law is twelve sheets of paper, bound by cheap copper pegs. The copy you now hold normally sits on a table next to the men's room in the great Farpoint Library, but the attitude of the laws alone makes it a worthy read.
Note: Canadese laws are heavy. EXTREMELY heavy. According to the King, the fines are high because they're not meant to be broken, and if you can't remember that, your pocketbook should.
Also, Ricasan money systems are slightly different than other systems. Due to its relative abundance, the platinum-level coin is a mithril coin instead, made of mithril too low in quality for armor or weapons use. The next level, 100 golds, is platinum, and the final level is electrum.
Introduction by King Domic Jacinus
Take a good look: you hold in your hands a historic document. It's the thinnest book of laws ever made in Canadia and it's the thinnest we'll ever see again. Following the overthrow of the corrupted Laculis line, I wanted to remake Canadia completely- it had become a nation of fear and opression, and I didn't want that. I wanted a country I could walk the streets in and get slapped on the back in a friendly manner by any old Joe. A country where they can say what they want about me, but where if I don't like it I'm fully allowed to punch them for it, just like any other man would do. So, I vowed to remake the country as fast as I could, and to hell with whatever case of the bends it got. The fastest way was through the laws: by the end of the Laculis line they took up 14 300-page books. In a public display in Treycona's town square I stacked up all existing copies personally, soaked 'em with lamp oil, and lit a torch. I announced to the confused crowd that I was going to completely remake Canadia, and that they would now see firsthand the first step. Then I chucked the torch on the pile.
Bam. I think that was when they first realized that this was going to be a Canadia without fear or excess government. It's also probably where that no-laws rumor spread: guess a lot of people missed the ceremony where I presented the new book of laws to the country. Took me longer to write 'em than it did to come up with 'em. There were only ten laws at first, kinda symbolic, and it was one sheet of paper with writing on both sides. It's gotten a little thicker since, but not much, and a good chunk of that is just fleshing out the existing laws. The first few, admittedly, left a lot of situations blank, so I filled 'em in with addendums. While I do not want a country in anarchy, I also don't want one where there's rules about going to the bathroom. There was a law about that in the old book, I'm not kidding. So here's the new book of laws. Don't break 'em, and don't bend 'em. I'm serious. Read #2.
The Laws of Canadia
Law #1. Our government is run by a King. He's not God, he's one guy, albeit a pretty powerful guy. He acts and works at pretty much the same speed as all of you. Don't get him mad, don't insult him to his face, and DON'T mess with him. He can be a very mean person.
Law #2. These laws mean what they say. They're the highest authority in the land other than the King, and he has to obey 'em too. The reason we don't have lawyers or courts is because their job is to interpret the law, and we trust you guys to be smart enough to do that. Don't break these laws if you don't want to get punished, and for the love of God Almighty don't try to bend 'em. I'm serious. It says something, it means it.
Law #3: Don't kill anyone. I am absolutely serious. Killing someone is a CAPITAL offense in Canadia and is punished to the HIGHEST degree of the law. In this country, that means death by the state, and there is no appeals court here. Kill someone for any reason and you will
be hanged face the firing squad. (changed 50 A.G.T.) We'll let you say your piece, but the law is the law and we follow it to the letter. Don't think you can get away with it either- Royal Intelligence has their own ways of finding out about murders, not many of which are pleasant.
Law #3a: However. If you can prove WITHOUT A DOUBT to the King himself that it was an accident, or the circumstances were odd, you live. You will have to pay 10,000 golds per stiff though, and anyone with a high-school grasp of math can see how hard that will be. Without a doubt to the King involves at least three witnesses, or possibly being too young to speak. Odd circumstances means what the King says it means, which includes being provoked, to an extent. We expect you to be able to resist taunting. The King who wrote this is fair, and he was a normal guy once too. He has a good idea of what odd is to the average person. Can't speak for future kings.
Law #3b: While we're at it. If someone does something REALLY nasty to you that falls short of murder, there's a few options. Someone breaks a bone of yours, you tell us. That's a 50 gold fine, and you get part of that to help pay for getting medical attention for your arm. Ruptured organs and the like get the same. Actually liberating a body part from your body? 500 gold fine, maybe a month in the slammer if they choose. You get half that as consolation, 'cause no amount of medical attention will replace that. However, if they are overtly provoked into harming you, they get fined 15 golds for harming you, and you get to pay for your own medical expenses, idiot.
Law #4: No stealing. I mean it. If you take something from someone that they didn't want you to take, or without their knowledge, or WHATEVER, you will be punished. While murder has a very few cases where it can be an accident, stealing has none. You steal and you WILL be punished, and for stealing punished means a month in the slammer, or a 500 gold fine, or maybe both. If someone takes something from you, for the love of God don't try and steal it back. Tell a cop. The police are more than capable of handling it.
Law #4a: People only set things down, normally, if they're going to pick them up again. If you see something just lying there, don't pocket it. Do take it to a local police station- we'll find who it belongs to.
Law #5: A man's home is his castle, and like me and my castle, the ruler of the castle decides who comes in. If the owner of the house invites you in, or puts up a sign saying you can come onto his property, it's his responsibility for what happens- go in. Just as it's my responsibility if I let in a guy with five guns and a knife. But it's not an invitation for him to kill my guards- obey the laws or you will still be punished. If the owner has a sign saying keep off the lawn, Keep Off The Freaking Lawn. Disobey it and he has the right to report it to the cops, and that means you're short 9 golds, pal.
Law #5a: If you are stupid enough to disobey the owner's wishes and intrude on his property, he can fine you money. If he does you any harm for simply intruding on the lawn or the house, but doing it no harm in the process, you'll both get fined- you should have kept out but he hasn't the right to break your leg. HOWEVER, if you try to steal his stuff and he catches you and puts a bullet through your arm, that's your fault. He will not be punished for shooting a thief. Be thankful we'll consider the wound enough punishment- you could also be down 500 golds, which you will be if you press the issue or are caught later. If he kills you, it's still an 800 golds fine for him, but you were trying to steal his stuff- you broke 'em first, boy.
Law #6: No wanton destruction. If you pitch a rock through a window, you pay us a gold and you replace the guy's window. Do what you want with your own stuff, but if it's not yours don't mess with it. This INCLUDES accidents- if you broke it, you should be willing to replace it. If you don't, we will replace it, but we don't like doing that and we'll probably be annoyed at the breaker. Having the government annoyed at you is never good.
Law #7: Unmentionable acts are required to be mentioned in law, and so here we go. First off: rape. Rape is absolutely disgusting, and a nasty thing to see in the morning report. Ruining a life like this costs you 10,000 golds every time you do it. Yes, that is the same fine as the murder fine. Be damn thankful it isn't higher- we can make it higher.
Law #7a: No, "just touching" isn't okay either.
Law #7b: That said, to all the ladies out there: shouting rape is not a catch-all. It will be investigated. If it is fake, you will get the fine, and the fine for this is 10 golds.
Law #7c: I am going to come right out and say it. Child molestation, abuse, WHAT HAVE YOU, is even worse to see in the morning report. If you mess with your kids it's going to ruin them for life, and we will not go easy on you for it. There is no excuse, they didn't ask for it or want it, and if you do it we will put you in front of the Royal Firing Squad. Yes, we have an assigned, official, Royal Firing Squad. With their own uniforms. Child molestation or abuse is a CAPITAL OFFENSE, as well as disgusting. Don't even think of it.
Law #8: We don't have one religion in this country. There's at least, like, twenty, and I belong to one of 'em. If you are religious, good job. If you're not, also good job. If you wanna share the fact with the world, do something overt. Wear a little cross on a chain or something. However, if you push your religion into people's faces, we're not going to stop them from pushing back. You might even find us taking 75 golds for it. The same goes for athiestic people- mocking those who are religious will get you a 75 gold fine. You don't have to like 'em, but keep it to yourself.
Law #9: Being a jackass in general is bad. If you mock someone, that's provoking them as we mentioned earlier. We expect them to be able to take it, but if they don't, and decide to punch you, you're the reason they punched you. Ten gold fine to them, you get your wounds as a present.
Law #9a: Such things as open racism or gay-bashing are absolutely ridiculous and have no excuse. Free speech means you're free to talk, not free to discriminate. This is a civilized country: act it. If you act like a jackass to a large group of people, 100 gold fine to you.
Law #9b: You are free to hate the King. It's a free country: you don't have to like how he runs it. We won't punish you for saying you hate him in the street- free speech is generally like that. You don't have to like him. But, if he hears you say you don't like him, he is fully authorized to be able to punch you. Every time he does he pays the country 50 golds, or he gets thrown in his own jail for a day. If you punch him back, well, his guards will take offense.
Law #10: You may like the government. Maybe you don't. But try and respect them. They keep the peace not only with you, but with everyone else in the world too. Obey their laws, pay the fines if you break them, and in turn they'll make sure no little shit of a dictator tries to throw you in irons. If you get in trouble and can't pay the fine right away, tell us that. Not paying a fine because you have a ton to do means we extend the time you have available to pay it- likely another week. Not paying it because you don't want to means the police come directly to your house and request twice the fine you owe. Not paying it there means a day in the slammer. Seriously. Your choice.
Law #11: To all you kids out there: if you are anything from one to eighteen years old, you are a minor. The following laws pertain to you, so listen good.
Law #11a: If you are a minor, you cannot drink alcoholic beverages. There is no excuse, except maybe that little cup of wine they use in Olida's communion services. If you are a minor and you are caught with booze on your breath, first we tell your parents. Then we fine you 20 gold. Learn this well.
Law #11b: Other rules involving drink: if someone asks you, urges you, or God forbid makes you drink booze of any kind, find a cop fast. They shouldn't be doing that, and the 20 gold fine is theirs now.
Law #11c: I hope this one won't come up, but I just know it will. To all minors: if you have sex with anyone, minor or not, that's a 250 gold fine. If, god forbid, you have sex with an underminor (1-10 years), you get the rape fine, and you'll probably be paying that off your whole life. If someone forces it on you, tell a goddamn cop. We take such things very seriously, and they won't like what we have in store for them.
Law #12: Some people own animals, ranging from grazing cattle out in the west to the cat they have on the sill. If you kill an animal belonging to someone, you pay us a gold and you're expected to replace it. Not replacing it means we will, and if we have to replace it you're paying us its cost, plus another 5 gold.
Law #12a: If someone owns an animal, and it's being a general nuisance to you, see if two other people are annoyed by it. If so, get those guys and all of you go to the local police station. We'll see what we can do.
Law #12b: In general sense. If your pet has kids, and you don't want them, try giving them away to your neighbors or taking them to one of the country's shelters- we take care of them. Do NOT kill them and bury them in your yard. We don't like people who do that, and we'll make you pay a whole freaking electrum for EACH ONE. That is 1,000 gold a head, and it is not an idle threat.
Law #13: As pertains to ale, I never want to see anyone have to pay their whole paycheck in any bar for any drink ever again. The country makes this stuff ourselves, it's cheap to make, it should be cheap to drink. Henceforth; the most any barkeep can charge for any drink in the house is 10 gold, unless they brew it themselves. Then it's 20 gold. If the barkeep makes or sells ale that makes you sick without overdrinking it, they have to refund your money twofold. If they don't, tell a cop- we'll fine the bar. If they do, and you tell a cop they don't, you pay them twice what they paid you. Refresher course: Barkeep sells bad ale for 20 gold. You buy it, get sick, they pay you 40 gold. You tell a cop they didn't refund you, and they did, and we find out (we will- we take our ale very seriously), you pay the barkeep 80 gold.
Law #13a: Of course, I don't want to run the inns out of business, either, and I also want the drunken revelry to be kept at a sane level. So, every two drinks of ANYTHING, the price for the next one doubles. Two drinks at the double price, it doubles again, et cetera. Drink responsibly.
Law #14: No-one, from the King himself to the lowest of any musician, is allowed to play music without a goddamn license and hopefully at least a few lessons. Licenses can be obtained from the local police station- requirements are playing two bars of a supplied piece and five silvers. When playing music, the license must be displayed prominently at their feet (means for doing so are provided when such a license is given). Failing to do so is a fine of 50 gold. If music is played without a license, the person will be fined 25 gold and ordered to get one. If they don't do so and play later without one, seven days in the slammer.
Law #14a: Whether a license is held or not, if music being played by anyone- even the King- is considered by the general opinion (that's about a 75% majority) of those who listen to it to be offensive or just plain bad, they will be immediately forced to submit to a jury of their music-loving peers. If that jury deems their playing to be good anyways, they can try again. If they are deemed to suck at playing, their instrument will be confiscated ON THE SPOT, their license will be revoked, and they will be fined 50 golds besides. If they pass the jury, but are deemed later to be playing badly, they will be brought in again for another trial, essentially the same, but the fine for sucking is now 150 golds. For the third offense, the fine is 450 golds. If it happens a fourth time, then the past juries must have been defective. The culprit's license is revoked, the instrument is confiscated ON THE SPOT, and seven days in the slammer. In the case of the King, 7 days in the slammer means 7 days as a normal person. The guards have their orders. I am willing to take this punishment, you had better be willing to take yours.
Law #14b: If a person's license is revoked and they want to play music again, they are required by law to get some lessons from a certified instructor. They must then provide both the cancelled license and the instructor's approval in ink when applying for the new license.
Law #14c: This is a civilized country: we have ethics and taste. Any open, blatant reference things considered by society at large to be immoral- that's music, paintings, plays- will cause you to instantly get a one gold fine, a license revokation, and confiscation of your accompanying instrument. If you don't have an instrument, you get one day house arrest.
This does not outlaw referencing such things, but there are ways to do so tactfully and ways to not. For everyone's sake, show some tact when discussing touchy issues.
Law #15: There are some substances which supposedly give you a buzz or similar. Some few of these are legal, most are not. Those that are illegal include coca (not cocoa), eridna, blackthorn paste, Karal mushrooms, derovynalithominus (DLM), and a specially strained form of saltpeter (Pete's). Use or posession of any of these substances is illegal, and it'll get you a 25 gold fine as well as two weeks in the slammer. Don't be an idiot.
Epilogue by Christoph Arandas, Royal Mage
It is assumed that, because we write our laws less seriously than other countries, we take them less seriously. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I worked in the Canadese Police Force for three years before I took the Arcane Tower test, and six years after that, before I was taken on as Royal Mage to a King about ten years younger than me. He may be young, but he's got common sense on his side, and the thing he cares most about in the country is the police. Any time someone tries to get in on money rather than merit, the King himself has ordered their dismissal. We're a highly competent force and we don't like it when people try to play us for fools. If you see a cop on the street today, say hi to him. You're saying hi to what you just read- you're saying hi to the law of the land.