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Straccio, Citizen of M'Chek and member of BlackHawk

The familiar smiling face is well known to the citizens of Mikona mostly due to his efforts to organize events and classes regarding Psionics at the Avlis Tower University and the Luminous Order. He often can be seen to run around with large posters, with yellow giant letters, to be attached in the various prominent location of the city.

Straccio was a relatively recent citizen of M'Chek, he established himself in Mikona right before the Demon Invasion. He came to the city, after the disbandment of the Solar Brigade, to find a job as a mercenary. After participating in a civilian training he joined the BlackHawk Company, and he has been a soldier ever since. The Psion witnessed first hand all major battles fought by Black-Hawk in recent years. He was there when East-shore was taken by the Shaahesk invaders, and he was there when years after M'Chek was liberated. While in the beginning it was quite common to see him returning from the war-zone in an old and battered full plate barely walking, by the end of the war it was a rare sight. His military abilities initially negligible grew overtime.

Straccio continues to serve in BlackHawk and after many years he has now finally reached the rank of Sergeant, most of the colleagues that have joined the army after him are now lieutenant or even captain, his crazy ideas and complex battle plans are more suited for academic strategy discussion that the reality of warfare, or at least the reality of M'Chek army warfare. The patrons of City Gate Inn have stopped calling the Srg. the Blackpigeon or the Fighting Professor after he has earned a number of medals and his sword forged by the elven mages to inflict the maximum damage to the scale of a lizard creature. Straccio is now a veteran of many battles, if the night is right and the wine is ready he can offer numerous tales and a show of a collection of battle injuries and the Golden Lion Medal.

Straccio, Wandering Years

Straccio doesn't like to talk much about his past, it is known that he spent his youth as a slave on a smuggler sailing ship. His nickname "Straccio" comes from those days, as his knowledge of boats and cooking. He was the aid-cook for the boat for a number of years, the way he managed to free himself are quite unclear, but it had something to do with his first manifestation of latent psionics power ((see Straccio's Journal)).

After he got free Straccio worked on various ships. His love for sailing and his familiarity with many different vessels comes from those years. After a while the young sailor decided it was time to explore the lands and he decided to begin with Elysia. His first day in the city he was nearly killed by an undead Pirate attack. He was saved by Fergus, that helped him, guiding and directing his actions. Fergus influenced the young psion deeply, and he is the reason why he decided to follow Dra'Nar, the God of orphans.

After Straccio joined a group of adventurers that will later be known as the Solar Brigade, he established himself in Ferrell. When he was not adventuring he was following Anca to learn from that great explorer and crafter. In this period the young psion followed the instructions of various mentalists, in particular it is of such years the beginning of a friendship with Arania Moonshadow.

Not having great abilities, nor the patience to emulate his mentor, Straccio decided to travel for a while. Nothing is known of this period of his life. Sometimes Straccio tells his students that the observation and experience he made in that period were the basis for his General theory of Psionics, or the so called theory of "Three Rings", sometimes he simply says to his friends he needed a break. The other odd occurency of this period is that the young psion got married with an extremely jealous and secluded half-nymph. She resides in Ferrell and often Straccio complains about her extreme jealousy, but love lights his eyes every time he mentions her.

When Straccio reappeared he worked odd-jobs as an assistant of Marin, another of the founder of the Solar Brigade, that had made a fortune with his thriving shop in the cooperative market in Elysia. For a short period the Solar Brigade was resuscitated, but it didn't last. That was the time in which Straccio also joined the attempts to resuscitate the Psi-Corp that had been mostly active while he was traveling. Celinda became one of his mentor, and Straccio's initial training in imperial style warfare are due to her teachings.

Eventually these attempts failed, and the Psi-Corp begun to decay. Straccio often links the decay to the fact that most of the corp members had many other affiliations and loyalties and thus the Corp was constantly torn apart in different direction. Particularly problematic were some ethical concerns of some members on the use of some manifestation during combat, and the endless discussion over the leadership and structure and direction of the Corp. The observation of those fruitless discussion led Straccio to the idea to fund the Psionic Theory Research Group (PTRG).

Straccio and the PTRG

The idea of the Psionic Theory Research Group was to create an umbrella organization that would join all psions of southern Negaria with the common goal of researching psionics. The objective of the group was identified in helping and reinvigorating all other Psionics organizations, building a network that would exchange knowledge and coordinate research activities. For that reason the group was always organized as ancillary to other organizations, the Avlis Tower University, the Psi-Corp, the Luminous Order, the Order of the Dragon.

Members of any guilds and groups not banned in Mikona could join. The group would only perform research activities, and would have a participatory structure so there wouldn't be any discussion on leadership, or fights over political issues. Each individual member organization would conduct his own politic, but the PTRG would not concern that, it would only focus on research. There wouldn't be any requirement for joining, and all psions and non psions interested in researching psionics could participate. Each member would be able to propose an independent research project to the PTRG in complete freedom, the PTRG would then proceed to contact all the organizations and the public to gather interest and potential help for such project.

This innovative intermediary structure is still unique in Negaria and constituted a great success in term of participants and number of sponsored activities.

The first member to join the group was Sephira Raynes that had abandoned the Psi-Corp due to Ethical concerns. Then many other joined and participated to the events. The group was extremely heterogeneous, and the heterogeneity had been designed to be its strength. Among the most unusual member of the group were Anomandaari and Ath'nook Nekk'en whose "debates" close to impossible to understand are always remindeded with affection and a smile by Straccio.

The group was established inside the Avlis Tower University, and it soon linked itself to the few other remaining members of the Luminous Order, and to remnants of the Psi-Corp and the psionics branch of the Order of the Dragon. Many conference and research trips were organized. This is the period in which Straccio met Silver Fox, at the time leader of "Midnight Mercenary Company" used by the PTRG as protection in his ventures, and became friend with Sage Miriel and Janur da Medican. The activity and publications of PTRG eventually led Straccio to become a Sage in the University.

Straccio and the Demon Invasion

While PTRG was being established, the Demon Invasion begun. During the Demon Invasion Straccio, Bedlam and Moira where the first to actually spot the advancing demons. Thanks to an idea of Straccio and the incredible power of the spells of Bedlam they collapsed the entrances of Underdark effectively giving the coalition army some precious time to organize. After the Demon invasion, Sage Straccio took a leave of absence from the army and the University and retired himself to Kuras to join the Luminous Order of the mind and try to convince his Master to open a branch south. Not much is known about this period.

Straccio and the Rebirth of the Luminous Order

Two years later Sage Straccio, after becoming a member of the Luminous Order, came back south. Most of the members of PTRG were gone, but without loosing his hope, he began organizing again. He reopened the Psionics department and started teaching Introductory Psionics classes. He also resuscitated the Psionic Theory Research group with the help of Eudaimon, a talented student.

The Luminous Order finally opened a branch south, in a tower built on a natural cliff dominating Mikona. After a few years Elladin, Master Psion of the order granted Straccio to become the first Master psion of the southern branch. The exam to become Master was held in the island of the subterranean lake below the tower. Straccio is quite proud of his exam, but he rarely talks about it. When he is questioned about it, he talks about a close fight with an Adamantium Golem and more than a hint of fear can be spot in his eyes.

The Luminous Order ranks and activities flourished under the management of the new Master Psion. The Master is known, and sometimes feared, for having the youngest and less experienced members of his order to take the lead in important meetings and activities. He is a strong believer in learning by doing. He is also infamous for his fixation with participatory decision making, and his apparently direct methods and extreme stubbornness.

Sometimes hated, sometimes loved, his methods were undoubtedly extremely successful. The Luminous Order, from an unknown niche organization, reached the center of a series of major events that shaped the recent history of Negaria. During the defense of Visimontium from the Illithids attacks many came into contact with the unique style of operation of the order, characterized by careful research, extreme openness to participatory input in the plan generation stage, but at the same time maximal discipline and coordination during the execution stage.

With more than twenty members and a hyperactive set of recently nominated Masters Straccio felt that his wish that he expressed a few years back to the Dream Gatekeeper, "to create an house and a community for all the psions of Negaria" had come true.

At the peak of activity of the guild, and in a moment in which the M'Chek army was consolidating his positions, the Master decided he could safely leave, he took an extended leave of absence from his duties and disappeared. Some of his students say he closed himself in his room to focus on his research, some others that he had run way with a particularly "gifted" new student, his old friends were betting he was in the woods of Ferrel to soothe a new and virulent jealousy attack of his wife. Nobody really will ever know.

Straccio and the end of the Shaahesks invasion

But eventually duty called and the Sergeant came back to help in the final stages of the military campaign against the Shaahesks. His military ability had improved significantly, some saying dodging the blows of his short tempered wife, and his support role in dealing with groups of archers and mobs of soldiers was instrumental in numerous battles and earned the praise of the Brigadier Beign himself, something that he treasures more than all the medals he has accumulated. Straccio participated in both the naval campaign and the final land campaign. M'Chek was once again free, but the war against the Shaahesks was not over yet.

Current activities, restarting the Luminous Order once again

While Straccio was away numerous member of the Order left and the Master is now trying to recruit new members and bring new energy to the Order once again. Thus the Master psion is perpetually trying to expand the activities of the Luminous Order. It is currently rumored that the Order is currently very interested in the situation in Ferrell and the potential return of Se'Fassu's Undead. According to some other rumors members of the order are directly involved in aiding the resistance in Elysia, but there is no real confirmation of an official Order involvment. Additionally the insistence of the Master psion has finally lead the Council of Masters of the Luminous Order to expand the mission of the guild beyond its original mandate. The Order is now actively involved against slavery and the Master Psion, being a former slave, is at the forefront of this new engagement.

Straccio's Research

Straccio's research spans in general the Theory and Mechanics of Psionics, group organization, conflict resolution, military strategy, and Shaahesks culture. After the activity of the Luminous Order in the Dreamscape he has focused on mind-links and dream-traveling field testing a series of innovative mindlinks that use pocket-planes and the dreamscape to alter and amplify manifestations. During the the Defense of Visimontium he begun the research of Null Psionics field through the use of crystalline formations. For some unknown reason a few years back the Sage was interested in the M'Chek government and spent months studying it. Straccio knows almost all the staff of the government district and his nice manners are fondly remembered. The long years spent fighting the Shaahesks have pushed Straccio to study them relentlessly. His knowledge of the Shaahesk has grown over the years, his ability to perfectly understand the Shaahesks language is a well kept secret entrusted only to his closest friends and military superiors. While his research has often been successful, for every success there have been an hundred failed attempts. If the day is right, the Master psion is often willing to tell the stories of the most entertaining ones. Finally his former hobby, military strategy and tactics has become another focus of his studies. His dream to train the Luminous Order to become an effective military unit has recently become one of his major focus thanks to the help of Celinda Mei'ana one of his former mentor and organizer of the Psi-Corp, now a prominent member of the Luminous Order.

Where can you find Straccio?

Straccio, when he is off-duty and not at Finmaegen keep, can be found at the newly renovated Tower of the Luminous Order in Mikona watching the psions teaching the new initiates with the smile of the satisfied granpa, or at the Avlis Tower University in the government district. He used also to frequent a lot the orphanage and school of Dra'Nar, but the kids there haven't seen him in a long time. He has abandoned the habit of fishing for long hours due to the lack of time, but in recent years the desire to sail has come back. His ability to conduct sailing vessel has been refreshed, and when there is a good wind he can be found on a small dinghy running the waves in the port. More than often the Master psion disappear for a few days most probably to go back to Ferrell and his jealous wife.

What is publicly known about Straccio? In general every information contained in this page is considered public knowledge, or something that you might discover if you ask around Mikona a bit. The only exception is the knowledge of the Shaahesk language as specified above. Additionally Straccio is famous for being open, friendly and naive to the limit of idiocy. Some of his friends that dabble in strategy think that is all a rouse to achieve some hidden goal, a few old citizens of Mikona might remember a strange accident involving the death of a noble in Mikona, and some rumors of a lab devoted to experimenting and torturing members of the Drotid army, but nobody can really believe them after three minutes of interaction with the smiling psion. To contact him you just need to leave a note to the Luminous Order tower ((PM: Stravento)), the Master is well known to be very friendly to all type of inquiries.