Udheg

From Traveller Wiki - Science-Fiction Adventure in the Far future
Jump to: navigation, search

The Udheg or Pack is a large, but loose Vargr organzation, the remains of the Vargr Extents in and around the Regency.

The core of the Pack remains the Goenghoedz. Like many human criminal syndicates and cartels, these are composite organizations consisting of coexisting legitimate and illegal activities and parties. No two Goenghoedz are alike, and the extent and kinds of activities they engage in vary widely, even within the proximity of a single refugee camp or community. But generally legal and illegal activities are juxtaposed in a manner that makes it theoretically difficult for either the authorities or rival groups from determining vulnerabilities.

Every Goenghoedz has a Lloengokh, or territory, assigned to it by the mysterious Udhegvol, or Pack Guide. The size of this territory is determined by two factors: the Udhegvol's perception of an individual group's value, and its own ability to carve out turf and gain new allegiances. A Lloengokh can be as large as a system, or as small as a city block. Most are generally no larger than a country, though this can be spread across several systems. A Goenghoedz is titled, or sovereign, inside of its turf, and is entitled to do everything it desires within its boundaries. Rival gang members, either legitimate or criminal, can be disposed in any way the current titleholders see fit, according to the Oekhon, or Code of Conduct. Turf wars are seen as a natural outcome of competition between rival groups, and no attempt is made by the Udhegvol to mediate between warring groups except where the Udheg as a whole are threatened, or where excessive violence and bloodshed threaten profits or territorial cohesion.

Every world or system with an Udheg operation on it has a Rroukhthaeghz, or Pack Boss, in charge of it. This is less formally a hiearchal term than just a name of convenience; on smaller or less valuable worlds the Rroukh will be subordinate to capos or lieutenants on larger or more important worlds. The Pack Boss is generally responsible for keeping the peace where different gangs are operating, and making sure that the Oekhon is observed, and revenue is collected for the Udhegvol. In the political hiearchy of the Goenghoedz, the Rroukhthaeghz is nominally in charge of the planetary council that oversees all local chapters, and is generally responsible for schmoozing with local human politicians, businesspeople and police.

The general hiearchy of a Udheg chapter starts with the Khothong, or ward heelers, who handle tax collection and street level organization. These are overseen by a Khounerr, or Street Boss, who runs a single operation or set of operations from a single base. The next level are the Alakhighors, which are either lieutenants who oversee several Khounerr, or are mid-level managers in Goenghoedz affiliated businesses, charities or bureaucracies. Finally there is the Ngaethaeghz, or Party Boss, the "Capos" that run a Goenghoedz. In the feudal world of the Pack, these are subordinated to a Udhegthaeghz, or "Godfather" in the romantic retelling of human journalists and writers, that control all Ghoenghoedz in a single Udheg. These in turn report to the Udhegsoer, the legendary "La Cosa Nostra" of the Pack, though in reality this is actually a purely political organization that has nothing to do with criminal or commercial enterprise of any kind.

The Ngaethaegz are the primary bosses, and are empowered by both the Oekhon with life and death decisions. Most are more politician than criminal, and when a Alakhigor graduates to becoming a Mgaethaegz, it is referred to as a "coming of age" in the Udheg, with only indirect or covert ties to the seamier underbelly of their organizations. Most Ngaethaegz are Vargr who have their own successful Thoerrets (legitimate businesses) and are therefore able to stand up to the scrutiny of local, subsector and Regency authorities better than their less appealing colleagues. Nonetheless, every Party Boss has a squad of Inksurrang, or assassins, who enforce his or her authority over the lower echelons, and are the only who may legitimately order a Ziz, or hit, on an enemy or threat to their interests.

Peace is kept, and disputes mediated, by two different types of emissary. The most common are the Outhillorgh, an "untouchable" (free from harm or malice) that nonetheless keeps contact between neighboring groups at a common grass roots level. These are essentially couriers that relay general information between various Goenghoedz. All Ngaethaeghz also have special subordinates known as Oekhonguers, who both inspect the lower echelons for failure to live up to their obligations, and provide high level negotiations between different groups.

Above the Goenghoedz, the Pack is more unified by example and common philosophy than by any institutions. All Goenghoedz must report to the Udhegvol, must obey its decrees, and must pay it an annual tax equal to seven percent of their income. To ease organizational tensions, a Udhegthaeghz is appointed. This Overboss has its own Oekhonguers whose primary job it is to trace income, and be on the lookout for betrayal or a failure to comply with the Oekhon. But for the most part the Udheg makes few demands of individual groups, and often provides additional muscle and money to those it perceives as deserving. No Ngaethaeghz has ever claimed to have met the Udhegvol in person; rather it conveys its commands and wishes through special envoys chosen for their persuasive skills and high charisma. The message that is conveyed, and the ability of the medium are both very persuasive it seems, as disloyalty against the decrees of the Udhegvol are rare.

The Pack does possess a handful of transcendant officials and soldiers. Most inter-Goenghoedz money transfers are handled by the Ethueng, which also collects tax money for the Udhegvol. The Ethueng are also solely responsible for money laundering operations, including those into the Federation of Arden. Though many individual groups express reservation at having no control over their finances, this creates an additional layer of frustration for Regency investigators who are unable to trace the means by which Pack money is laundered. The Udhegvol also maintains two loyalty assurance groups, the Fuernuzorg to spinward and the Thengkfelluer to trailing, who are full paramilitary groups armed with military grade weaponry, empowered to eliminate rebellious or disobedient Pack organs.

This article was copied or excerpted from the following copyrighted sources and used under license from Far Future Enterprises or by permission of the author.