1-The Wise

The Wise started out as just one of tens of thousands of miners who took part in a gold rush, but he quickly realized that his individual claim was not making much money. So he sold the claim early on for some gold dust and brought the rights to what began as a stall, selling food, clean water, and various pieces of mining equipment. He made enough money through that to buy a small store, and then a larger store, and then a whole chain of stores, and then the land rights to a small mine-which hit the mother lode of gold. With this he was able to buy out the rights of many others, and today he is the owner of one of the largest mines, the richest man in the region, and firm friends with the King, who has knighted him. Assuming he stays clear of anything remotely treasonous, he could very well be granted a barony one day.

2-The Desperate

Driven out of his home by a criminal gang, the Desperate has joined a gold rush in a forlorn hope for gold. Most likely, he will be lucky to make enough to survive, but if he does hit paydirt and become rich and successful he wants to hire a band of mercenaries, return to his hometown and mete out a bloodthirsty revenge on the gangsters who drove him out.


3-The Ghost

On Level 9 of the Camp Bird Gold Mine, where the rock shines like silver in the light of a miner's headlamps, is the ghost of a miner who was killed several years ago by a cave in. Seldom seen by the living miners, the tap of his pick is often heard even after everyone else has gone home for the night. He is no danger to any of the living, so the miners are used to him, and they rarely go down there anyway as that particular level has been entirely worked out. As he is no danger to either the miners or the mine itself, the mine boss does not think it is worth the expense of hiring a professional exorcist to banish him to the Otherworld.

4-Stakanovite

Famous largely because of propaganda for his hard work and the amount of coal he has cut, the Stakanovite was truely a hard worker and dedicated to his job, but this has been grossly inflated by the political party in power. He now works as a mine boss with a much better standard of living for himself and his family then he ever had as a miner.

5-Big John

Six foot six and weighing 240 pounds, Big John is quiet and shy, but it would be foolish to get on the wrong side of him. There are rumors that he once lived down south, had a fight in a club over a girl, killed a man with one punch and fled west to avoid justice catching up with him. He has a second job as a bouncer in a club in the nearest town. He does care about the lives of his fellow workers,and would do his best to help them survive if a disaster was to happen in the mine.


6-Ruined Landowner

When his father sold his land to a mining company, they were allowed to use all necessary ways to get at the mineral rights. In his father's time this meant a tunnel dug into the hillside to get at the minerals, and whilst this caused a little bit of pollution from mine tailings, it was relatively low, and most of the surface land was still available to hunt, fish and grow crops in. Modern strip mining has changed all that, killing or driving away the wildlife and the fish in the rivers and taking the land that was used to grow crops. The landowner has now been reduced to working as an ordinary miner in the very mine that destroyed the value of the land that he once owned.

7-Union Man

He was one of those who successfully used his trade union to paralyze the country with a series of strikes, cutting off coal to the power stations when the government tried to lay off large numbers of miners. Now the government is busy stockpiling coal so that when he tries to do that again, they will be ready for him.

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