I’ve been lurking on the Internet for the last couple weeks but I thought I’d surface to share this Fourth Edition Dungeons & Dragons ritual I concocted:

Provide Sustenance
Level: 1
Category: Creation
Time: 8 hours
Duration: 24 hours

Acquisition: Special
Usage: 1 healing surge
Skill: n/a (no check)

Requirement: You must perform this ritual in a settlement of at least average size which must provide work environments, and you must be recognized as a member of the settlement’s Majority.

Additional restrictions may apply depending on the community.

Effect: You provide clean food and water for yourself and up to eight participants, enough to satisfy hunger and thirst for up to 24 hours.

This ritual doesn’t provide shelter, sanitation, or social interaction, and doesn’t meet any other basic living needs.

You or anyone who meets the requirement may extend the effect of this ritual by spending a healing surge and performing the necessary 8 hours of labor once per day. In communities suffering extreme hardship, such as crowding, famine, drought, oppression, or war, additional restrictions or limitations may be imposed.

Special: To master this ritual, you must spend at least one week mingling with the people, acclimating to the environment, learning the social mores, and sussing out potential work. You must “remaster” this ritual if you move to a new community, or go more than one year without performing it.

I used “Acquisition” here instead of “Market Price,” but in some communities it may be necessary to grease some palms to get work. This is intended to reflect the day-to-day maintenance of D&D “nuclear family.” Presumably one person works to provide for a family of two to nine. Servants may be acquired to provide labor and surges.

There are a couple things I want to point out about this ritual.

First is the “average settlement size” I referred to — this may change with the ages, but the community I had in mind when I wrote the ritual was anywhere between a village of five hundred souls, to a sub-metropolis of say, ten thousand. Get about three or four of those cities together and this starts to break down a bit I think.

I’m working on complementary rituals to represent the creation and maintenance of a home, a workplace, and hopefully … actual families. You want job creators? Lol, I’ll give you job creators. One of the next rituals I write will be “Create Industry.”

Edit: I forgot to mention the other stuff I wanted to point out.

I refer to a couple other things that aren’t defined. One of those is the settlement’s “Majority.” This will be defined differently by some communities, but generally refers to “healthy adults.” Healthy adults are usually creatures and characters who have completed a “Rite of Passage” ritual to become formal members of the community.

Some communities may be more or less tolerant of women, children, elders, and anyone who might be considered a “non-person” (citizens of other states, exiles, known law-breakers, etc.), imposing interesting requirements on who can work.

I also defined a couple other “needs” that aren’t provided for, suggesting that there are other needs to be provided for — kind of a big deal. Shelter, hygiene, and social interaction. Characters who are shunned might be well-fed, but socially “starved.”

I could go on and on about the different things implied by this ritual, and I’m sure you’ve figured out a few already just by reading it.