Serial Setting 2 ~ Week 17

The Casting Shadows blog’s second Serial Setting appears in weekly installments and is scheduled for a 6-month run. This series is focused on providing basic details for heroic pulp adventures for the Ubiquity Roleplaying System as presented in Hollow Earth Expedition. These ideas, set in a fictionalized and mysticized version of the Korean peninsula in 1936, present a community oppressed by faceless enemies and their own countrymen. It will additionally suggest routes, leads, and hooks for GMs to entice groups based elsewhere in the world to get involved.

17  Kimjang –   Fire in the belly breeds fires in the blood

In many ways the character of a people is fueled and formed by the food that they eat. For a typical Korean, no meal is truly complete without the side dish and spiritual balm called Kimchi. Although most commonly seen as a dish made from pickled and heavily spiced cabbage, there are in truth more than 250 regional variations and varieties, many bearing no relationship to what will become its iconic form in modern times.

Due to it’s inclusion in virtually every single meal every single day, and due to the fermentation process which it reaches readiness for consumption, a group activity known as kimjang is held to prepare huge batches and fill brown clay pots to last through the seasons. This is a time of hard work in which many members of the family assist the older women in producing this staple. Obviously, this is a time of repetitive physical activity in a limited area and so is a time for a great deal of conversation.

Like most who spend any time among the people on the peninsula, the forces of the oppressor have slowly come to appreciate kimchi, and so are reluctant to interfere with its production… much. Rather than large community gatherings, some Overseers require that families stick together to produce it.

In Samhang, there are plans to produce larger quantities of the spicy dish this year in order to sell it in the oppressors’ homeland. The Overseer has arranged for large tents and supplies to be brought together and required the community to work on his behalf. Even prisoners will be used to do the heavy lifting.

It is the perfect time to talk treason.

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