Del Cenere Gang Culture and Customs

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Table of Contents (hide)

  1.   1.  Culture
    1.   1.1  Superstition
    2.   1.2  Animal Husbandry
    3.   1.3  Symbolism and Cultural Significance
    4.   1.4  Events and Holidays
    5.   1.5  Life Events
    6.   1.6  Borders
  2.   2.  Crimes and Punishments
    1.   2.1  Coyote Law
    2.   2.2  Punishments


1.  Culture

Community is built by the hands of the laborer - and the laborer has the right to reap the benefits of their work. Respect is no different, and it’s expected that each personal gain is shared for the good of all; though those who lack the ethic of the community will not go far in it. Above all - each individual’s acts are their own, and everyone has their own skills and perspective to bring to the whole of the community.

While secretive and superstitious, life is about balance - being open to possibilities, to speaking with the Outside, but to keep much of the Gang’s territories a secret to strangers, for the safety of all. Bearing the old Coyote Torch of Inferni - borders are lined with their own grisly warnings at the most obvious, and markings of ash or colored ties in the trees at the least.

1.1  Superstition

Del Cenere is a suspicious lot, who, while they regard most shamanism and other culturally-driven religions with skepticism, blatantly display their own ritualistic mannerisms by means of regards with Luck, and participate in such actions they believe will enhance their own luck. For example - the moose skull, tangled in the long and warped branches of the Angel Oak, has been named and it’s considered good luck to rub between the antlers before departing on a hunt, or going out on a trade expedition.

1.2  Animal Husbandry

Due to a highly transient life before settling, luperci members are usually expected to be able to take care of an animal - preferably a mount-type animal for their usefulness.

As well as horses, the coyotes have of course brought over their bonded raven partners, and have broadened their horizons into the keeping and caring of predatory raptor birds, expanding the repertoire of their rookery. Falconers are well-respected for the bonds with their birds.

1.3  Symbolism and Cultural Significance

Prayer Ties, or Prayer Bundles

While Del Cenere members may not be particularly devout in either monotheism or even polytheism, they may participate in leaving about “Prayer bundles” or “Prayer ties” - physical manifestation of prayers and well wishes. Bundles are filled with curative herbs: tobacco, sage, sweetgrass, tea, or cedar. Colors offer symbolism, white is to heal, yellow to give thanks, or red for ancestral calling. It’s sacrilege to move or disturb a prayer tie, or prayer bundle, once their bound to tree branches as offerings to higher powers. The Angel Oak is littered with decorations of such.

Fire Dancing and Divination, Ash Markings

Prevalent in ancestral cultures hailing from Ceniza Valley, some members may worship fire as a wild god, and may still practice by way of Inferni’s old ways, though several denizens who haven’t hailed from the old coyote clan have adopted the use of ash and soot to mark out borders for their own superstitious reasons.

Wildflowers and Marigolds

Come spring, summer, and through the fall, colors of wildflowers pepper the landscape - these are to mark the graves of the fallen and are often times buried with them - The flowers are often referred to as though they are those who passed away themselves, called “Cavaleras” or the “Mischievous Dead”. It’s bad luck to tread on the graves, and that’s nothing to say of damaging the blooms.

Effigies

Scarecrow-like sentinels, usually comprised of remains draped on a wooden post or stake; made to look like figures standing guard over the borders. Effigies are usually a skull (non-species descript), a makeshift “ribcage” (if not an actual bone one), and some kind of clothing or decoration (or both), and decorated with ash or paint for luck. Each effigy is meant to be unique - to copy someone else’s effigy is an insult.

1.4  Events and Holidays

Bautizo

A coming of age ceremony, akin to a christening or a baptism paired with a sort of obstacle course, and a celebration of the adulthood of young members! Aside from physically proving their worth and meeting alongside the lake for a symbolic “rebirth”, there’s much feasting and reverie for all the newly dubbed ‘adults’.

Luces de Primavera

When the thaw finally sets in around Moosehead Lake, denizens of Del Cenere commemorate the occasion of the ice-breaking by gathering at the Three Sisters and constructing increasingly elaborate paper and wood lanterns to set out on the lake to watch the water take them away as the ice crumbles away and flows down currents.

Dia de los Muertos

Come harvest time, the Coyotes gather in remembrance of the past harvests and the people who are no longer among them - Family homes construct ofrendas and leave out offerings of food and trinkets to invite Cavaleras into their homes. This is the only time where harvesting the petals of the flowers of graves is permitted, and is somewhat symbolic for bringing those lost back homes so they can be with their loved ones.

Agarre de Invierno

At the first freeze, a feast is held beneath the boughs of the Angel Oak to commemorate a successful year past, and the achievements of Del Cenere’s members - it’s a time of gift-giving and well wishes through the shorter days and cold, dark winter. The call of the coyotes drift down from Moosehead Lake and the Burnt Church Mountains, heralding the start of the dark season.

1.5  Life Events

Mateship and Offspring

Marriages between two souls is a tremendous occasion, and to be celebrated with the community - Del Cenerens are expected to bring gifts to the newlyweds, or for newly born young. Everyone is expected to help raise young to instill Del Cenere’s ideals and help to foster their independence in due time - It takes a village to raise a child.

Death and Burial

Burial for the honored involves the making and burning of a funeral pyre; any animal companions will be painted with ash and turned over to the Community and cared for. The ashes of the dead will then be placed in a plot, and buried alongside a pouch of wildflower seeds or marigolds and marked with either a tall stone, plank, or wooden cross - graves will be tended to, and given decoration in memoriam to the deceased. The most popular of such are the skullcaps of deer, cattle, or goats - to which other baubles can be tied onto; these decorative antlers and horns are considered lucky, and are supposed to guide wandering spirits to rest.

In the case of dishonorable deaths, the bodies are usually left to rot far outside pack borders, or worse, scavenged and turned into Effigies as a means of redemption.

1.6  Borders

Border Marking

Deeply inspired by the old roots of Inferni, the hodgepodge Clan embraces motifs with ash, and circles, as well as the creation of Effigies.

Effigies: Scarecrow-like sentinels, usually comprised of remains draped on a wooden post or stake; made to look like figures standing guard over the borders. Effigies are usually a skull (non-species descript), a makeshift “ribcage” (if not an actual bone one), and some kind of clothing or decoration (or both), and decorated with ash or paint for luck. Each effigy is meant to be unique - to copy someone else’s effigy is an insult.

Outside the Borders

Venturing outside Del Cenere’s borders is considered deeply dangerous - as such, it’s usually frowned upon for individuals to leave on their own (and, at the very least, are expected to let higher ranking Ashen know where they are going, in case anything happens), but as such, they implement a “buddy system”. Groups that venture beyond borders are a minimum of two, but rarely above four members, and are referred to as a posse. When in a posse, Del Cenere members are expected to uphold the ideals of their home, give away nothing of where they hail from, and will delegate control to the highest ranking within their Posse, unless circumstances circumvent this.

Trespassing

Del Cenere possesses an open point of contact to outsiders known as a Post - Trailside serves as a trade hub, and is the easiest accessed point to the territory - but this is not to say that outside influences will not be under a constant watch; further locations within the territory are to be kept secret and away from outsiders - tours may only be held at Leader discretion, and are rare. If trespassers are found across borders without supervision, or at any point save for the Trailside post, they are to be chased off, regardless of intentions, or escorted towards the Trade Post.

2.  Crimes and Punishments

While generally freedom-embracing, the Coyotes are not without their laws, and have standards and order to be upheld.

2.1  Coyote Law

Upholding the Family

Where-in the family is either by blood, or by bond to the Gang; the community is to receive its share of any boon or bounty gained for the greater good of the Gang. Every able-bodied member is expected to contribute to the well-being of stocks and safety and communal wealth to the Clan.

Thievery and Libel

The Clan is to conduct with a manner of personal honor - while thievery, trickery, and lies are a welcome and celebrated aspect to the Coyotes’ cunning, they hold no place within borders to other Clanmates. The theft or libel of a clanmate can result in very unsavory punishments.

Sexual Misconduct or Abuse

Unforgivable - the malicious treatment of another Clanmate will be punished severely and accordingly.

Murder

The Clan frowns upon murder in cold blood of fellow Family- the Clan is Family, and to forsake the bond is traitorous to the utmost degree; murder of a fellow Ashen Member is only permissible in cases of self-defense.

Outsider Harassment and Interaction

Whilst outside of Borders, Del Cenerens are expected to behave accordingly. They may not give away the location, nor descriptive details of the Gang’s whereabouts - if you are to start trouble with an Outsider, you could potentially bring trouble back to the Clan, and will be reprimanded accordingly. Needless heckling is frowned upon.

2.2  Punishments

  • Light punishments include the rationing of their take, and a member’s increased contribution to the communal pot; they are allotted less dependent on their crime. If severe enough, a shun may be in order, and the member will be temporarily stripped of any acknowledgement of rank.
  • Mid-range offenses may result in the restraint of an individual, until deemed more trustworthy - the punishment will be adjusted to fit the crime.
  • If a crime is severe, such as continued theft, framing, or libel with malicious intent towards the Clan or a Clanmate, cases of small-scale mutilation may be in order, ranging from the loss of fingers, splitting of the tongue, or lashing. Typically there is also a demotion of rank.
  • Expulsion from the Clan is reserved for dishonorable Clanmates, who must renounce their ties to the Family, and will be chased out after the hearing of the Trial for their Crime.
  • In the most severe cases of crime, which transcends forgiveness after Trial, the incarcerated will be brought out to the Hanging Tree, and strung up until dead (otherwise known as Left to Swing), and left for days, followed by a dishonorable burial.
Category: Del Cenere Gang