Myths Over Miami
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June 5 1997: An interesting article at Miami New Times discusses the folklore prevalent among young homeless children in Miami, Florida.

Many of the myths relate to powerful evil beings that seek to do harm to the children.

The children have some allies and protectors:

  • The Blue Lady - an angel that brings rain, and battles against Bloody Mary
  • Angels that feed on colored neon lights
  • Ghostly but friendly Spirits who bring the children messages and updates on the Angel-Demon war
  • God has gone AWOL, chased out of heaven by the Demons.


Game and Story Use

  • An entire campaign could be set to this backdrop, with a war in the heavens spilling down into Miami. The PCs might be homeless children, or the homeless children NPCs might need to be saved by the PCs.
    • The ex-street kid who is forced to the realisation that the myths he believed as a child are actually real could be an interesting character - especially if he moved away from the city to grow up (juvenile detention? adoption? an out-of-town orphanage? Or just a parent getting a job (or partner) up state). If they actually grow up in an urban fantasy environment, they become Charles Gunn out of Angel.
    • Consider a campaign similar to Stephen King's IT - the kids know the myths, and then grow up and move away. And then the past reaches out and drags them back.
  • The children's take on Bloody Mary is pretty interesting. She's got bits of La Llorona and Mary, Mother of Christ rolled into her. Similar syncretism/bisociation could be used to build complex-yet-familiar NPCs for your campaign.
  • That Bloody Mary could come to life as a Mythago, even if the rest of the kid's stories isn't true in your setting.
  • In any campaign, if the PCs aren't too careful about maintaining The Masquerade when they're "adventuring" (especially in densely-populated bad neighborhoods) bits of their shadier actions might be noticed and mythologized by homeless kids. Whether the PCs are seen as Angels, Devils, or something else is all a matter of context.
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