Jack Paynim, the Self-Insert

Academic Ability: considerable
Athletic Ability: bush-league
Blood Type: AB
Favorite Food: doro wat
Tarot Arcanum: Justice, reversed


You're a nice guy. Friendly to all, even those who aren't particularly friendly back, though you do recognize when you're not wanted or when someone is being seriously belligerent as opposed to gruff. You hang out at the local coffee shop a lot. Everyone knows you by name and face, unless they're really new in town. They probably don't know a lot about you, but what is there to know? You're just a nice, ordinary guy who lives in a weird little town. In fact, your ordinariness is the weirdest thing about you here.

Well, that and the fact that you're the self-insert background character of the artist who draws the webcomic Stranger's Glade (updates M-W-F).

You realized this one morning while shaving. You looked at yourself in the mirror and realized the mirror frame was actually the panel border, and you were watching yourself shave from a perspective over your own shoulder. It was weird! Vertiginous! But you knew, at that moment, that you had been drawing yourself into the background of your comic for twelve damn years, as an inside joke, and as far as you knew, no one except your real-life friends and family had ever noticed.

Well, time to make them notice. Time to break the fourth wall a little. Maybe a lot. Maybe tear this town down and start a new comic. You've learned a lot from drawing Stranger's Glade; you could do a lot more with a fresh start. David Willis blew up the Walkyverse at the end of Shortpacked! so you can do the same. You draw ten times better than he does, anyway, and it's just not fair how you’ve never won any awards.

Stranger's Glade is gonna go out with a bang, not a whimper.

Emotion XP



Cool 3 It's hard for people to mess with you when the artist is on your side.
Friendly 2 A good smile and a kind word can get you a long way.
Digital Artist 2 You're better at art than that taco-sucking bastard David Willis.
Well-Read 1 You've read about all kinds of weird stuff.
Plots and Schemes 0 Your reach exceeds your grasp.


  • 466526028102107136.png?v=1 “Guess you're stuck with me.” If your webcomic self is killed or defeated, your artist self will write himself back into the story, somehow. This interacts with the “Second Self” power of Awakening to accelerate the normal recovery period from months or years to hours or days.
  • 466526029024854016.png?v=1 “It's like a home to me.” [non-magical commercial properties in Stranger's Glade] You're the landlord for a surprising number of businesses in this town. You can use your Connection of 1 to such places to form Intentions to manipulate or intimidate their proprietors/managers.


Currently Pursuing: 466526028102107136.png?v=1 Awakening 4 (0/72)

466526028102107136.png?v=1 Awakening 3


You are vulnerable to the opinion of your fanbase. If they express strong discontent with the direction you're taking the story, to the point of threatening to quit your Patreon and the like, you must bow to their will.

You're also vulnerable to art imitating life. Arranging circumstances in Stranger's Glade to mirror things in your real life sufficiently, and then enacting sympathetic magic by changing those circumstances, can change your real life accordingly!


Once per session you may take a 466526029046087681.png?v=1 (Suffer) Corruption or 466526029046087681.png?v=1 (Suffer) Trauma XP action and immediately receive a point of Sickness (unless your Sickness is already at 5 or has just recently been resolved).

Unworldly (Bond, level 2)

In a town of wizards, cryptids and other freaks of nature, you stand out as being weirdly normal.

Second Self (Imperial Miracle)

You exist not only as a character in the story of Stranger's Glade, but as the creator of that story, and if you take a while to dig through your continuity notes, you can find snippets of information about almost anyone or anything in the town.

Blessings (Imperial Miracle)

  • 0 MP—1–2×/book, conceptualize one or more new blessings
  • 2 MP—conceptualize a new blessing
  • 4 MP—generate a new blessing for immediate sale

You have eight Blessing slots. Your Blessings take the form of minor retcons or favorable coincidences that your artist self can draw into the story on someone's behalf.

Step Away (Imperial Miracle)

When you set aside the comic for a while and go off to attend to real life, you are temporarily replaced by an NPC double.

Step Away (Powered Up) (Imperial Miracle)

  • 0 MP—invoke this power, 1–2×/book
  • 2 MP—invoke this power a third or later time per book

While this power is active, taking observable mundane actions that require you to be in a specific location, taking hurried mundane actions, or being noticed, touched or revealed, all face an Obstacle of 2.

Conversion (Imperial Miracle)

  • 1 MP—with some setup, enlighten 1–2 disciples/clones/servitors
  • 2 MP—with some setup, have a 1–2 chapter outbreak that enlightens multiple targets
  • 4 MP—have a 1–2 chapter outbreak that enlightens multiple targets without any obvious lead-in

Characters you enlighten with this power are revealed to be inserts of your real-life friends, family, etc.

Old Memories (Miraculous Action)

  • 1 MP, 1 Surface Wound—gain access to old abilities

Absorption (Imperial Miracle, [Miraculous Action])

  • 2 MP, 1 Deadly Wound—de-manifest an object or a (willing or defeated) living thing

Re-manifesting the object removes the Deadly Wound and replaces it with a Surface Wound. De-manifested living things will slowly die if not re-manifested.

Deepen the Mystery (Imperial Miracle)

  • 1 MP—spread your spirit through a decent-sized building or space
  • 2 MP—spread your spirit through a neighborhood-sized area

Properties of Jack's Studio:

  • It's really cluttered.
  • There's a gadget for every need (but not necessarily a need for every gadget).
  • There's enough light to work or read by.
  • There is sufficient junk food and caffeine.
  • Any sustained effort must be interrupted by outside distractions.
  • Cats will get into everything unless deliberately shut out.

Established History (Imperial Miracle)

  • 2 MP—revise a single identity's place in the world
  • 2 or 4 MP—revise how a group of characters using the same Alternate Identity/Form (or just your base character sheet) fit into the world

Materialize (Miraculous Action)

  • 4 MP—transform a concept into reality


Mystic 1: 466526028903350272.png?v=1 “Down,” simplified (0/21)

This quest is your descent into the underworld. This is a scary time in your life, when you have to face difficult truths and deal with painful things. At the end things can be good, but not during.

During…they can get very bad.

Major Goals

The HG can award you 3 XP towards this quest when:

  • You visit a throne room and stand before a seated (e.g.) King or Queen.
  • You're sent into an underworld, be it basement, cave, oubliette, dungeon, or literal world of the dead.
  • You're hung on a hook, crucified, tied to a wall, suspended by telekinesis, used as a scarecrow, or otherwise imprisoned or bound above the ground. Agony is optional (you could be in a canvas sack that is hung from a hook, or stage-show-style crucified); suspension and imprisonment are not.

You can earn each bonus once, for a total of 9 XP.

Flavor Goals

1/chapter, you can earn a bonus XP toward this quest when:

  • 466526028903350272.png?v=1 466526024872493066.png?v=1 you have to abandon something precious, leaving it behind
  • 466526028978716672.png?v=1 466526024872493066.png?v=1 you're lost
  • 466526024872493066.png?v=1 you're thirsty
  • 466526025447243776.png?v=1 466526024872493066.png?v=1 you encounter the dead
  • 466526029046087681.png?v=1 466526028102107136.png?v=1 you share a meal with someone while sitting on cracked stones

You can combine this with an XP action, but you're not required to.

Side Quest: 466526029024854016.png?v=1 “Connecting with Someone,” dramatic (0/15)

Target: Ndidi Janet Dhalman

You’re consciously trying to make a connection with someone—to get to know them. You’re looking for ways to deepen your understanding of them and get closer.

Or, you’re consciously trying to fit into a place or situation.

You work hard. You pay attention. It’s a kind of dedicated, intentional learning.

Major Goals

The HG can award you 3 XP towards this quest when:

  • You get in trouble trying to reach out to or connect with Ndidi.
  • You get in trouble trying to help Ndidi, and she in some fashion supports you.

You can earn each bonus once, for a total of 6 XP.

Flavor Goals

1/chapter, you can earn a bonus XP toward this quest by:

  • 466526025447243776.png?v=1 listening to stories about Ndidi
  • 466526029024854016.png?v=1 466526029046087681.png?v=1 consciously trying to connect with Ndidi
  • 466526029024854016.png?v=1 helping out with Ndidi's daily life
  • 466526029024854016.png?v=1 talking about Ndidi's life, or sharing a bit of yours
  • 466526028978716672.png?v=1 spending time with Ndidi and thinking about the bits of that that are “different” from your usual life

You can combine this with an XP action, but you're not required to.

Anytime Quest: 466526029046087681.png?v=1 “Burn It Down” (0/9)

You're torn between two worlds or two selves; between hanging out in Stranger's Glade and plotting its destruction.

Ideally, you'll make a sign for this—a reversible card, which you could in theory have on the table in front of you in play to show which state you're in. You can earn a bonus XP at any time (though only once per scene/15 minutes) by flipping the card, showing that you're moving between the two states.

If you can't actually keep the card in front of you, holding up the card with the relevant side facing people or just saying or emoting something appropriate can earn you the XP instead.

Wounds and Issues





Code Block stuff

[b][url=http://chuubo.wikidot.com/campaigns:chance-made-us-neighbors:jack-paynim]Jack Paynim[/url], the Self-Insert[/b]
[size=1]Fist-Shake XP
Will 8/8; MP 5/5; 2 Surface, 1 Tough, 2 Divine[/size]
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License