Machin Shin

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From the East, heralded by our warbanner of great black storm clouds, we of the Machin Shin have come to cleanse the old ways of man and monster, to purge the lands of that which has outlived it's time. Drawn together by the song of the StormWind, we bring eldritch magicks and arcane battle-skill to any who dare resist us.The StormWind lies inside each of us, whispering secrets of our opponents weaknesses and driving us with supernatural fury to perfect ourselves and subdue the Unseeing. Unseen, unknowable as the ways of Heaven,we move among other mortals as a force of nature, unpredictable and unstoppable.

beginnings

After floating in a directionless limbo for eons, Illiak finally found a worthy vessel in the body of an elven wizard.After unfathomable millinea without wearing flesh, Iliak was hungry for war.He found himself in the land of Athis, south and east of Darkpine and the Twilight Citadel. It was a land wild and untamed, savage and untouched by civilized hands.In these lands were a hard and rough people, working and living in tune with nature and the elements.Territorial in the extreme, they attacked strangers on sight by blending in with the land and using it to thier advantage.Illiak encountered a small group of them,striking them down and scattering them, thus earning their respect.He asked if they had a master,they told him indeed, their master was known as Lupus the Grey.The people, known only as the Taig, brought Illiak before Master Lupus, last of the Irda. There was the most odd fealing of mutual familiarity about them, as if they had known one another forever.They saw destinies printed in the eyes of the other men, and read there a merging of their fates.The Taig must have seen this, for they fell to the ground in supplication. Lupus and Illiak knew then that they must leave, that some invisible hand was drawing them west.

The two left Athis then,travelling west toward the Twilight Citadel.The sycophantic Taig followed as well, leaving all but their weapons and tools behind. As the band began to travel, a great storm formed in the skies to the west, it called to something inside Lupus and Illiak, drawing them on.All through the night they marched, the Taig silent and reverent,yet alert. Just before dawn the two sensed a formidable presence ahead of them. As they approached, a strike of lighting revealed a lone monk in the road, apparently unarmed. For Illiak and Lupus, the incorporeal touch grew stronger, almost painful. The monk waited calmly and silently for the band to approach.The pull became a squall inside them as the two approached the monk When they reached him, he said nothing.He turned and walked off the path toward the tallest hill in the area. The two followed without word up the hill, into the stormclouds, leaving the Taig behind. As they rose, the churning inside them grew, threatening to scour their minds away. They continued into the storm.As they reached the top the monk turned to face them, bringing the force of the storm into his presence.As the two looked at the man, his aspect began to change into that of a great cat. Lupus and Illiak were struck by the same familiarity they sensed from each other when they met.As the three stood filled with Fey presence, lightning struck the ground before them before,then struck each of them in turn.It seemed to pierce their spirits and into their minds, aligning them, expanding them, reforging them.At once, they knew the force careening around inside of them as the StormWind. The monk said with a knowing smile,"Well met, Lupus, Illiak. My name is Kato."

The three returned down the hill to their troops, reborn with purpose; to clense the old ways of the world at whatever cost.

Ranks of the Shin

SHINJIN

Only the best warrior-philosophers are invited to train with the Machin Shin. If they accept, they enter as Shinjin, or people of the mind. Here they are trained in the making and handling of a variety of equipment and are indoctrinated into our mysteries.

SOLDIER

Once a Shinjin demonstrates the proper grasp of our tenets, tactics,techniques and principles ,they are tested.If successful, they enter the ranks of the Machin Shin.

MAJIN

The Shin who excel in the use of heavier equipment and stand-and-deliver fighting .After passing a grueling and lengthy test, these soldiers become Majin.

GHEN-JI

Those of the Shin who excel in misdirection, stealth ,tactical movement and guerilla combat.After being properly and thoroughly tested, these soldiers become Ghen-Ji.

MASTER

Those who hear the whispers of the StormWind most closely.Those who have mastered both direct and indirect tactics.Those of whom have taken in our teachings and know what the universe is.Those who are at one with the purpose of the Machin Shin.The Shin must have attained duel ranks of Majin and Ghen-Ji, and surpassed them.This is the highest attainable rank.

SHINLORD

The teachers, commanders, and founding members of the band. They are: Kato, Lupus, and Illiak. They are the heart of the Shin.

The Shin

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