Salsola's morality has always been rather flexible; each situation is approached differently, according to context and value. While the pack preaches strictness and total adherence to law, in truth, there is always exceptions. There is no situation in which a Salsolan will not adjust his or her morality according to the greatest personal or group benefit.

Essentially, Salsola has no true moral code: members have individual freedom; so long as they overtly adhere to the social mores and contribute to the pack, the well-kept secrets of their individual lives are of little concern. There are few, if any, true "laws."

The leadership is generally indifferent to transgressions against Outsiders; however, when possible Salsola prefers to stand apart from conflict with other groups. Actions which cause or may cause group retaliation are frowned upon. Basically: if you're going to act out, make sure you leave no connection to the pack.

Salsolian Behavior

Superiors should demand respect; subordinates should display it, especially in public. Canine dominance and submission should be enforced; failure to do so may present opportunities for rank usurping. Committing a grave offense against a higher ranked member may incur severe punishment.

A light slap on the cheek is a prominent display of discipline, as it leaves no permanent damage but has a significant impact on one’s dignity. The slap is never violent or even forceful enough to hurt -- a subtle, light tap on the cheek in the public eye from a higher-ranked member is incredibly shaming and is likely to result in temporary shunning of the slapped individual.


It is common for Salsolians to greet packmates by nuzzling or briskly touching one another on both cheeks with one’s nose. This greeting is reserved for those within the pack and is an allusion to the old human tradition of kissing on both cheeks.


Salsolans should be rather particular about introducing an outsider to fellow packmates. If, for example, Jackal decides to introduce Wolf, a Loner, to his fellow Salsolan Coyote, the introduction differs depending on its purpose.

  • Non-Recruit: If Jackal is simply seeking to make Wolf known to Coyote (i.e., Wolf is a personal friend), Wolf is introduced as "a friend of mine" by Jackal. This places responsibility for Wolf's behavior on Jackal, and lets Coyote know that Wolf will not be recruited.
  • Recruit: If Jackal is seeking to recruit Wolf (i.e., Wolf is a potential new member), Wolf would be introduced as "a friend of ours." This informs Coyote that Wolf is a prospective recruit and is responsible for his or her own behavior.


Members are free to do as they please on their own time, so long as pack duties remain attended to. There are no laws regarding mind-altering substances; however, excessive public intoxication or addiction is self-humiliating. Members would be wise to avoid appearing in public when "trashed", or otherwise at a loss of their senses.


Betrayal is an offense of the utmost seriousness, and may result in punishment. Obviously, the idea of betrayal applies only within the group. One may betray the pack in a variety of ways, including but not limited to:

  • Giving Salsolan secrets to Outsiders.
  • Purposefully giving relevant (not personal) false information to a packmate.
  • Stealing from or damaging the property of another Salsolan.
  • Causing severe, undue physical harm to another Salsolan.
  • Sexual assault on another member of Salsola.

Any acts such as these are liable to be heavily punishable, if discovered.


Bribery is an acceptable form of barter, and extremely commonplace within the Thistle Kingdom. If your character has wronged someone, attempting to bribe them with a gift or promise of service is a good way to avoid punishment. While it is not guaranteed to work, higher ranking members generally enjoy being plied with gifts and offers. Bribery should never be blatant or over-the-top; to be seen bribing someone is to show your weakness to the onlooker.

Unfortunately, extortion and blackmail also inherent in this system -- if the wrong Salsola member picks up on some vital, unknown information, they may levy that against your character. This can result in your character having to give up time, items, or even freedoms so their secret shames don't escape into the public eye.


Punishments are not necessarily as a result of particular wrong-doing. Sometimes the leadership simply suspects a Salsolan's loyalty is less than they claim; in these cases, the member is punished simply to prove their loyalty to the leadership. Those who tolerate punishment without complaint are perceived as stronger and more loyal than those who protest.


The member is required to wrap their arms with thistle and other thorny vines, then go about their usual business, allowing natural movement to bury the thorns into their flesh. This punishment is generally utilized to prove loyalty; occasionally, Salsolans perform the Strafethorn punishment of their own accord as a show of their loyalty.


This is a form of sport for the canines of Salsola; essentially, they release and hunt other canines. This is used for escaped slaves and exiled betrayers; occasionally, it is used to run failed Associates out.


This is a brutal punishment, inflicted for revealing a secret or showing extreme verbal disrespect. The tongue is cut out of the mouth and leaves the victim mute. This is frequently inflicted on Slaves with sharp tongues.


Exile is a rarity. The canine is thereafter ostracized and shunned; Salsola members may not even acknowledge the exiled party's presence if they meet in the neutral lands. Further offenses generally result in further punishment.


This is a form of sport for the canines of Salsola; essentially, the release and then hunt of other canines. This is used for escaped slaves and exiled betrayers; occasionally, it is used to run failed Associates out of Kingdom territory.


This punishment is generally reserved for outsiders who are captured lurking on or near Family territory. It basically entails the offender being abducted into the slave ranks. In very rare cases, members of the Family may be punished with enslavement by the Leadership.


Especially egregious betrayers are sometimes declared to be a "pentiti." Salsola actively seeks retribution for the crimes committed by an individual labelled as a pentiti. If a pentiti is captured, the individual is usually horrifically tortured, with the Hand of Eris mark cut from their flesh. They are put to death -- when this happens, their left (Latin: sinister) hand is cut off. The hand is kept and preserved, displayed for all would-be traitors of the pack as a warning.

Leaving Salsola


Members are expected to retain membership for life. Leaving without notice is a major offense and considered betrayal of the pack. Nevertheless, leaves of absence are sometimes granted -- should a canine feel a need to return to their homeland, they are sometimes permitted to do so. This is done with the understanding that they are to remain Salsolan at heart and someday return. Rarely, the leadership allows canines to permanently leave -- this is typically done via exile.

If you are wanting for your character to leave Salsola but retain peaceable ties to the pack, we thoroughly encourage PMing the Leadership so that they can discuss potential options with you.


Members are sometimes expelled for disobeying the cultural codes and stipulations. Dismissal may be violent and members ejected from the pack are treated poorly when encountered in the neutral territories. However, Salsola does not seek vengeance on these former members, except in the event that they are declared a Pentiti.