Throughout history, Reapers have always had trouble keeping up with the amount of dead and dying, especially when it comes to wars, famines, and natural disasters. But, for the most part, they had managed to keep up with the steady incline of dead as well as lost souls (souls who have not crossed-over to the Otherside), balancing the physical and spiritual realms. Before Black Rose Academy, Reapers were inducted into the Reaping Realm by Master Grim Reapers. They would approach either a lost soul or someone close to their death date and offer them the opportunity of an apprenticeship as a Grim Reaper. In reaping tradition, after five years of full-fledged reaping, a reaper would take on an apprentice. The apprentice would work under the reaper for a minimum of four years or until the Master felt they were capable of reaping on their own, and then the Master would grant them their status as Master Grim Reaper.
This way of soliciting and inducting new reapers worked for over 4,000 years, but it had one serious flaw: around 1750, several Master Grim Reapers were not taking on apprenticeships. On top of this, several Master Grim Reapers and Great Masters decided to cross over. This chain of events caused a shortage in Grim Reapers. Normally, a Master Grim Reaper can handle up to 200 souls a day, and Great Masters can handle up to 900. Generally, there are around ten Great Masters and anywhere to two-hundred Masters. Because of this lack in apprenticeships, when several wars broke out world-wide in the mid-1800’s – the Taiping Rebellion and Dungan Revolt of China, the American Civil War, and Paraguayan War – Reapers experienced such an intense flooding of souls, there was no way for them to keep up, creating “The Reaper Shortage of 1869”. During this time, there were Six Great Masters and only 97 Masters.
In response The Grim Reaper Shortage of 1869, The Inner Circle, the six Great Master Grim Reapers (known widely now as “The Six Greats”), met to discuss a solution to their problems. During the Circle’s meeting, Ophelia Runewerk and two others (Madame Andrea des Fleurs and Sir Walter of England) proposed the idea of a “Reaper Training Program”. The six were split on the decision. The other three Great Masters dissented because they were sure that the school would create “sub-par” Reapers.
When Black Rose Academy was founded in 1869, The Inner Circle split into two groups: Essentialists who believed that the one-on-one, Master-Pupil, method was the only way to properly teach a Master Grim Reaper, and Institutionalists who believed that it was possible to teach Master Grim Reapers in a more public setting. Black Rose Academy was active by 1871, and the two schools of thought have been bickering since. Within Black Rose Academy’s first four years, it created more than fifteen capable Master Grim Reapers. Within the first year of their graduation, there was a significant decline in the number of lost souls worldwide. The two schools of thought are now more based on money and pedigree. Essentialists are almost always Elitists, while Institutionalists are usually not. However, it can’t be denied that Black Rose Academy’s Reaper Training Program has successfully created enough Master Grim Reapers to capably cross-over the millions upon millions of souls, both lost and dying, that the equilibrium between the Otherside and the Physical Realm has been achieved, a feat that hasn’t been achieved seen since before the Crusades.
As wars began increasing in frequency and their death tolls soared due to technological advances in weaponry and fighting tactics, the need for Master Reapers and Black Rose Academy’s Reaper Training Program has not declined. With the Earth’s ever-climbing rate of population, there are more people dying than ever before, and now the Grim Reapers are even responsible for solving the Earth’s over-population problem. The saying goes: Until the humans nuke themselves and every last soul is crossed over, Black Rose Academy will be a necessity. So every year, Madame Runewerk selects a small number of lost souls, soon-to-be-dead, or human beings interested in death or dying (usually the suicidal, though not limited to the suicidal).
If a lost soul is selected, a Master Grim Reaper is sent to the lost soul (this also includes those in a coma) and offers them two options: either they cross-over or they become part of Black Rose Academy. For the more alive individual, Madame Runewerk sends out this e-mail informing them of their eligibility for Black Rose Academy’s Reaper Training Program.
To Whom It May Concern:
The Black Rose Academy of Reaping would proudly like to offer you enrollment within our Reaper Training Program. We have selected you as a candidate because you have displayed an open-minded nature and an interest in death. I warn you, the path to becoming a Grim Reaper is not easy. You will be required to die in the physical sense, meaning that your friends and family will believe you are dead, although you will not technically be “dead”, which infers that your spirit has moved on from the physical realm and has crossed over to The Otherside. As a Reaper, your soul is bound to the physical realm, as we are the ones who escort the souls of the living to The Otherside. You will become the messenger of Death.
It is common knowledge that the world is over-populated with souls, both living and dead. Currently, there are not enough Reapers to fulfill the requirements necessary to balance the worlds of the living and dead. We implore you to deeply consider our offer. For those of you considering suicide, I beg of you to consider becoming a Reaper. There are already enough lost souls in our world.
If this e-mail has perked a curiosity within you and you find yourself interested in our Reaper Training Program, please respond to this e-mail as quickly as possible. We will send one of our counselors to you via astral projection. I implore you, please consider this offer. If you choose not to attend or do not respond within 24 hours to this e-mail, your memory will be wiped and the e-mail will be erased to protect knowledge of our existence.
Dr. Ophelia Runewerk,
Headmistress of Black Rose Academy
There are two positions available Professors and Students. There are only six slots for professors. You will have to choose a title and field of study.
Quick note: If your character is a Professor or a second year student or above, they must have a minion. Suggested minions are gerbils, hamsters, rats, birds, snakes, dogs, cats, bats, or a human soul. Whatever’s reasonable. You can’t have an elephant or a dolphin or something like that. Must be small and must be oxygen breathing. Also, anything about “moving on to another year-level” is just me assuming that this RP will last.
IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO BE A STUDENT (please follow these instructions)
Please chose a class schedule depending on your year (sorry first years, you’re pretty much assigned. :/) You only have to be in class once a day. Immediately following that class will be your Field Study. The rest of the day will be spent studying, sparring, going on assignments, or doing whatever your characters want to do.
1. The Art of Reaping (Required for first semester of first years)
Lecture. Teaches the basics of reaping, including the 6 Rules of Reaping, the Four Ways of Death (natural, accidental, suicide, and murder) how to become a good reaper, why some reapers fail and where they go wrong, as well as the basics of controlling magic (no magic taught in this class). It introduces crossing-over techniques.
NOTE: This class judges the abilities and intelligence of every reaping student. It is you placement test. The rest of your reaping career rides on how hard you work in this class.
2. Magic I – Beginners (first years)
Hands-on. Class focuses on the smaller magic techniques used by reapers such as shadow-blending, mind-control (cannot be used on reapers and lost souls), mind-erasure, and astral projection, and one-plane vortexing (physically moving yourself through portals, but your stay in the same realm)
3. Your Minion, Their Guardian (second year)
Lecture. Must have a minion by the time you take this class. Class talks about the “spiritual guardians” of humans and lost souls and the dangers they present to Reapers; mind-linking with and controlling your Minion; using your minion to battle a spiritual guardian.
4. Magic II - Intermediate (second year)
Hands-on. Students learn some elemental magic techniques to be used when confronted by a guardian or powerful lost soul. The main focus of this class is vortexing between realms. There’s a week long lecture based around the danger of “losing yourself” between realms and within the Otherside. During Sophomore and Freshman years, cross-realm portal used in Field Study will be provided by the faculty.
5. Advanced Magic (third year)
Hands on. Students that make it this far have displayed enough honesty, integrity, and control of their abilities to be taught the more advanced levels of reaping magic. In this class you will learn Dream and Reality Manipulation (coincides with mind-control taught in Magic I, but you can actually manipulate the human mind to see and hear things), and far more in-depth [/FONT]
6. Assessment (third year)
This semester is spent studying the lecture-based materials you have learned over the past three years. In order to move onto your final year, you must be able to complete a comprehensive, cumulative assessment of what you have learned both in Magic and in Lecture.
NOTE: Because the Assessment does not cover what’s taught in Hands-on classes, only Lectures, you can take the assessment your first semester or second semester of junior year.
7. Advanced Field Study and Assessment of Skills (fourth year, year long)
After completion of your assessment, you will spend an entire year taking on harder and more challenging Assignments. Whereas earlier Field Studies were done mostly in groups, only a minor amount of this will require group work. Most of this will be done on your own. Your assigned Field Master as well as the Faculty Board will review and assess your skills as a Reaper throughout the year, and make a final decision 1 month before graduation as to whether or not you are ready to receive the title of Master Reaper.
Field Study (Required during every semester)
Under the supervision of a faculty member, first year Reapers will initially observe Master Reapers in progress. Students are given hands-on assignments with low-risk “lost souls” – souls that will not provide much danger – with faculty supervision. Students are required to work in groups.
Second year Reapers will be assigned medium-risk lost-souls and some low-risk human souls to cross over under faculty supervision. Students are required to work in groups.
Third year Reapers will be given medium to high-risk lost-souls, depending on their proficiency in their classes, as well as medium-risk human souls. There is no faculty supervision. Students mostly work in groups, sometimes they are given individual Assignments.
Fourth year Reapers are given both high-risk lost and human souls for their Advanced Field Study (refer to Advanced Field Study for information).
Write a short paragraph (3 to 6 sentences or more) as your character responding to Madame Runework’s e-mail (for now, we won’t have any Essentialists in this RP, but they may be necessary later).
Black Student bio:
Cause of Death: (If you are already dead, great. If you are not make a cause of death.)
Date of Death: (DoD for not-already-dead students should be sometime before August 2012)
Minion: (You can get one later if you like, but you should have one by the time you move into your second year)
Classes: (i.e. your required field study and The Art of Reaping)
Example Student Bio:
Name: Tatiana Fontane
Cause of Death: Suicide
Date of Death: April 1, 2012
Minion: None as of now
Appearance: Tatiana is 5’8”, curvy, and tan-skinned. She has medium length brown hair and green eyes. She normally dresses in a hoodie, jeans, black converse, and wears a beanie that she is constantly adjusting. Her face has soft features, and when she smiles the entire room seems to light up.
Personality: Diagnosed with depression at age ten, Tatiana has battled with it her entire life, but she hides her morose attitude from others with smiles. She is charismatic and cares deeply for people who become close to her. Tatiana is gullible and shy; however, when push comes to shove, she will stand her ground. She is highly intelligent and tends to be more of a bookworm than a socializer. If removed from her shell, Tatiana can be light-hearted and fun, but it takes quite a bit to get her out.
Background: Tatiana’s parents were middle-class and loved her endlessly, but no amount of money or therapy could detract her suicidal thoughts or tendencies. As she got older, the thoughts only increased in frequency. She spent most of her life in and out of psyc-wards and the offices of therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrist. By 23, Tatiana had been on twenty different anti-depressants, four mood-stabilizers, seven anti-anxiety medications, and a variety of other pills. At the beginning of the year, she decided to give up the battle. Two days before her planned day of suicide, she received an e-mail from someone named Ophelia Runewerk asking her to attend some school called Black Rose Academy for Reapers. Thinking the e-mail was a cruel joke, she responded that she would gladly attend the school and some three days later, the school counselor showed up in her room to discuss preparations for her enrollment into Black Rose Academy.
IF YOU WANT TO BE ONE OF THE SIX FACULTY (please follow these instructions)
Choose one of the following (I will put taken beside the title once it’s taken)
1. Professor of Basic Studies – as a professor of Basic Reaping Studies, you will teach the class “Art of Reaping” which teaches the basics of reaping i.e. how to obtain a human soul from its body, transferring souls to the Otherside, transferring “lost souls” to the Otherside. Instructor has a proficiency and endless knowledge of all things Reaper based. Only has to be fair in magic abilities. (taken Madame Runewerk)
2. 3 Professors of Magic – Your character must be extensively proficient in magic. (1 out of three taken; Valkarma)
3. Professor of Human Studies – The professor of Human Studies has an in-depth knowledge of a human being’s the inner workings, and tends to work with more emotionless reapers to help them better understand the human mind, most likely a Psychologist or Sociologist during life. This professor will teach “Human Weakness and Death”. Only has to be fair in magic abilities. (taken Foulter)
4. Professor of Minions – Professor will have several Minions (4+) that they control regularly. Class is called “Controlling Your Minion and Avoiding Their Guardian”. Proficient in mind-control magic, and fairly proficient in the other areas of magic. (taken Esiphas)
Age: (between 25 to however old - because reapers are immortal)
Date of Death:
Personality: (whether you are nice, mean, bold, ect)
I will be playing the Headmistress.
Example Faculty Bio:
Name: Ophelia Runewerk aka Madame Runewerk
Age: 232 (looks twenty-three)
Date of Death: October 4, 1780
Faculty Position: Headmistress of Black Rose Academy and Professor of Basic Studies
Appearance: A thin, pale, young-looking woman with long, blonde hair and blue eyes, standing at 5’3”. Most first year students mistake her for another student. She usually dawns the mandatory black robe with The Black Rose Academy’s logo embroidered on the front. Underneath her robe, she wears a variety of clothing, anything from Victorian dresses to the modern dress for kids. Her clothes are always black, red, and purple.
Personality: As a child, Ophelia was rather morose, and that has stuck with her through the hundreds of years she’s been active as a Grim Reaper. She can be tricky, and often feigns being a student to gather information about the school and to watch her students. Ophelia generally looks bored and yawns repeatedly whenever she talks to someone. She is an easy-going Headmistress and tries to refrain from punishing students unless absolutely necessary (i.e. a reaper kills another reaper or abuses their powers).
Background: Ophelia was a sickly child in her youth, and as she got older, her mysterious illness became worse. Her family was well-off, but even in the late 1700’s her medical bills put a financial strain on them. When she was 22, a Grim Reaper by the name of Sir Walter of England approached her and offered her the opportunity to become a Grim Reaper. She accepted. In 1869, during the "Reaper Shortage of 1869" (please refer to earlier in the post for more info), she and the other six Great Master Reapers met. 3 or them (including Ophelia) wanted to start an Academy so that there would never be a shortage again, the other 3 were against the idea, saying that a school would only create "sub-par" Reapers. In 1871, Opehlia both founded Black Rose Academy and introduced Institutionalist teachings (refer to earlier on in post) into the Reaper way of life.
---------- Post added at 10:33 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:32 PM ----------
O.o font got all messed up. Please have fun with this. I know it's long, but I've been working hard on it for a while. ^^;