Sunday, November 20, 2016

Boardroom and Curia: Apfelbaum Postal and Telegraph Office (TL 5+2)

Pony express or something.
Continuing on the subject of community, here's a generic, slightly magical post office for a TL5 setting. I'm situating it in the farming community I've already built.


Nowadays, the USPS has about 600k employees, and about 30k locations, or 20 employees per office. Assuming that those numbers are slightly small because of advances in transportation and information technology, let's pull a number out of a hat, and say maybe in the 1800s it took 40 people to operate a post office.

The Stats

Apfelbaum Post Office

Mission Statement: To serve as a communication beacon in our community of sprawling farmlands making the world just a little smaller.


TL: 5+2Members: 40
Wealth: Average
Contacts: Administration-12[1], Area Knowledge-15[2] Current Events-15[10]
Member Traits: Absolute Direction[5], Absolute Timing[2], Code of Honor (Professional)[-5] Fit[5], Hidebound[-5], Honesty[-10], Truthfulness[-5],
Notable Resources: Employees at the post office have discounted travel rates with the local train station. This is meant for delivering mail to the furthest reaches of the jurisdiction, but they don't mind free rides every once and again for personal use. The post office has facilities for telegraphy, the cutting edge that lets communication from the furthest reaches of the empire happen in the blink of an eye. They have lots of useful vehicles and transportation assets like horses, wagons, mail cars for the trains, and barges for larger farming canals.
Reaction Time Modifier:+3, first and foremost the goal of the post office is sending and receiving mail. The people who work there put the job first, and then get to other things if time allows.

Costs and Values

Startup Cost: $528kResource Value: $2,640
Patron Value: 5Enemy Value: -5
Ally and Dependent Value: Allies and Dependants will range from 50 to 100 points, the job requires certain proficiencies, but nothing outstandingly difficult. In a magical setting, check out the postal worker lens for the Allied Tradesman template in Urban Magics.

Social Attributes

Type: Commercial, Government
CR: 3Loyalty: Neutral (10;+2)
Rank: Clerical 0-3 [2/level]
Income Range:$550 (Struggling) to $2,200 (Comfortable)


Of the assets they have, probably the most useful in an adventuring context are the vehicles and the telegraph resources. In this setting, the post office and the railroad have a mutually beneficial arrangement. The post office gets free and reduced travel rates while the train stations have reduced postage and access to the telegraph equipment. A few postmen probably have animal handling skills due to caring for horses, and a lot of them probably know morse code. Trivia: USPS isn't funded by taxes.

Other Thoughts and Conclusion

The post office is an important pillar of the TL5 community, and probably throughout other ages in history as well. Magical postmen probably have magic for making the burden lighter and to travel faster, perhaps support to protect from weather as well.


  1. There is something very Miyazakiesque about the idea of a story taking place in a magical post office.

    1. Well, the police station is going to have wooden helicopters named ABII, or "Abydos."


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