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Human male, born LY 340, in First Village. Died 400, in Kurok. Older brother of Mira. Writer and philosopher.

Rico came from a relatively affluent clan of pineana orchardists. He himself claimed to feel neutral toward his clan's business; however, he always assumed it would become his life's work. His only real interests were reading and writing, which there was no money in. (He was born, after all, fifty years prior to the invention of the printing press.) For lack of any particular interests that might be profitable, he thought working his family's orchard would be as good a job as any other. However, as it turned out, he didn't get the chance to spend much time as an orchardist, nor any other regular job. But he would make a lasting contribution to history in the form of a book called Who Watches the Watch Monogs?

Throughout his teenage years, Rico learned all the different aspects of the business, from actually tending trees and harvesting pineanas, to bookkeeping, to dealing with traders. Another duty he had was helping the farmhands drive off intruders, including both wild animals and people. The latter were usually just drifters, rats, or mischievous children, looking to steal a quick snack. However, when Rico was in his late teens, his sister Mira (who was in her mid teens) joined a local street gang called the Miscreants. In spite of frequent warnings from their parents, Mira repeatedly invited her friends to raid the family orchard, and Rico was one of the people who had to keep an eye out for them and run them off whenever they showed up. This behavior was really fairly typical teenage rebelliousness, and while Rico himself had never experienced anything of the sort, he understood that it was just a phase his sister was going through. Moreover, her main reason for joining the gang in the first place was to spend time with her boyfriend, Raven, who had joined the Miscreants a few months before she did.

In 361, Rico, Mira, and their parents decided to join a group of settlers who were founding a new village, Kurok. While the majority of the clan would remain in First Village, their immediate family moved to Kurok, bringing with them a sizable number of pineana trees, to start a new orchard there. Rico and his parents were eager to expand their clan's business, but were also glad this meant Mira would no longer be involved with the Miscreants. However, Raven apparently loved Mira more than than he did the gang, so he quit the Miscreants and also joined the settlers. Within the first year of Kurok's existence, a new gang formed, comprised largely of former gangsters from other villages. They called themselves the Rapscallions, and Raven became their leader. However, by this time Mira considered herself too old to be in a gang, and decided to devote herself to the family business. She continued dating Raven, but told him that she didn't want the Rapscallions treating her family's new orchard the way the Miscreants had done the old one.

For a time, Raven respected Mira's wishes. However, about two years after moving to Kurok, Mira broke up with him, believing that his continued participation in something as childish as a gang demonstrated an unwillingness to grow up. This offended him, in addition to breaking his heart, and he soon began leading his gang on raids of the orchard. At this point, the pineana trees were all still young, and producing very little fruit. But Mira and Rico's family had also begun growing azuki, which was ultimately expected to be a secondary crop, but for the first several years would be the main source of income (other than the money allotted them by the main part of the clan, back in First Village). At first, the Rapscallions didn't steal any fruit, but they did cause some damage, and generally irritated the farmhands. Of course, the gang had plenty of other things to do with their time, so they only intruded upon the farm occasionally.

After one of the gang's intrusions, Rico reported them to the local police, who'd had complaints about them from various other business owners and citizens around town. However, one police detective, Bash, told Rico that they never managed to catch any of the Rapscallions in the act of committing any actual crimes, just occasional instances of being a nuisance. This greatly frustrated Bash, and he said it frustrated many of his fellow police, as well. So he asked Rico to inform him immediately, if he ever saw Raven or any of the other gangsters committing crimes for which they might be arrested and prosecuted. Then, late one night, Rico awoke to shouts of "Fire!" He found that the entire pineana orchard was ablaze, and before anyone could do anything to stop it, almost every tree had been burnt to the ground. The next day, Rico talked to Bash, but there was still no proof that the Rapscallions were behind the arson. However, several police said they were sick of letting such things go unpunished, when they knew who the guilty parties were. They asked if Rico had any idea where they might find the Rapscallions, and in fact he did have an idea. He'd seen their clubhouse a couple of times, when Mira had still been dating Raven. And so, he led the police and several farmhands to the clubhouse the night after the arson, and they attacked the gangsters. Bash had told Rico they weren't going to do any serious harm, but naturally the gangsters defended themselves. This led the police to use deadly force on several of their opponents, including Raven himself. When the farmhands saw how far the situation was escalating, they all left before any killing started. But Rico, enraged at the destruction of the family's financial future, stuck with the police and was personally responsible for two deaths.

A few gangsters managed to escape, and to Rico's astonishment, sought help at the local police station. Rico, Bash, and the patrolmen involved in the skirmish were all arrested. Rico would later learn that Bash had a personal grudge against the Rapscallions, particularly a few of them who had formerly been in a gang in Ship, where Bash himself had been a patrolman before being promoted to detective and moving to Kurok, to help establish that village's police department. He'd been admonished several times by his new chief for harassing and threatening the Rapscallions, who were mostly just teenagers being mischievous. However, Bash had managed to convince a few patrolmen that the gangsters were a serious threat, and worked to make them feel the same resentment he did at not being allowed to take action against them. Investigation of this latest incident finally proved that Bash and his cohorts had started the fire themselves, to frame the gangsters and trick Rico into helping him find and eliminate them, once and for all.

So it was that in late 363, Rico was convicted of murder, and sent to prison. While incarcerated, he had plenty of time to devote to his old passions of reading and writing, and his writing now took on a philosophical bent. In his younger days, he'd learned history from a master his parents had hired to teach him and his sister, so he knew that when the police had first been organized in Tonad a century before his birth, there had been some question of whether the organization could be fully trusted. However, the very reason for their existence was so that there would be a more trustworthy method of dispensing justice than just allowing vigilantism, which is more or less what had been done before the police were organized. Since his early studies of history, Rico hadn't given much thought to the question of just how the police could be trusted, but after his experience with Bash, the question was foremost on his mind. He wrote down his thoughts on the matter, and this formed the basis of what would become his first and best-known work, Who Watches the Watch Monogs?

Over the next twenty years, he would write several other books, from his prison cell, and made several copies of each. He was released in 383, at the age of 43. He considered returning to work on his family's farm, which (even without the orchard) had become modestly successful as the leading producer of azuki on Kurok. However, he found himself unable to face his family, especially knowing that even if Mira had no longer loved Raven, she'd still cared about him. And Rico was horribly ashamed of the part he'd played in Raven's death, even if he wasn't the one who'd actually taken his life. So he began wandering across the Land, distributing copies of his writings wherever he went. When he heard of the invention of the printing press in 390, he went to Pritt, where he met the press's inventor, Talon, and shared a copy of his first book. Talon was impressed by the work, and published it in 392. In the years since then, Who Watches the Watch Monogs? has become required reading for anyone training to join police departments in villages all around the Land.

Rico continued his wanderings, and his writing. His last known book was published in 400, shortly before his death. Historians agree that the book was about the Prophet Movement, but there are no known copies of it in existence. They were apparently collected and burned within two or three years after his death, but certain passages have been referenced in the works of some other writers of that era. As for exactly how Rico died, that is unknown, though he had returned to Kurok in his final days, and it is believed that shortly before his death, he reconciled with Mira. He was buried at his family's plot, next to his parents.

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