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My Role Model
Today we hear a story of how our actions can influence the lives of others. Some have said that no man is an island. This is true. Every time we interact with another person, we have an impact on them, for good or for bad. This tale is by Ariana Mayfair, where she tells us of a person who had a major influence on her life in Britannia.

"It is amazing how quickly two years pass by but some things stay fresh, like the kindness a good friend shows. I have met many people over the course of this time, some dear to me, some sinister, some that I wish I could forget, but all of them have shaped my experience that we call UO and I can't imagine it any other way. This story is about a very specific person by the name of Ryo-Ohki. But before I get ahead of myself, let me take my tale back a few steps to a day very long ago when our lands were not as large as they are now, and much more treacherous…
"I remember my first night in Britannia like it was only yesterday. I walked into Britain and unknowingly headed straight up to the cemetery. At the time, there was no 'young' status and I was dead fifteen minutes after my first login. Being that I was new, I had no idea I could be resurrected and I walked around aimlessly, gray, for a long time, wondering what people meant by, 'You're blue, go to the healer.'

"Finally, I was resurrected by a kind soul, and found that I was standing in front of what is the epicenter of Britannian life, the West Brit Bank. I was not quite sure what to do with myself. As a young lady in a new land, I could not decide where to go first.

"I started asking people what to do. I just wanted some sort of direction. I found 100 gold pieces in my pack and remember thinking what an incredible sum that seemed. I noticed two people nearby talking, JEG and Ryo-Ohki. I walked up and asked if either of them could help me out a bit. About the only thing I had mastered was walking. We left and headed through a moongate, to a tower in which JEG resided in the town of Humility. They cautioned me that the first thing I was never to do was follow anyone unknown to me through a moongate, something I would later learn to be valuable advice. That night, I learned more about Ultima then I would learn in the subsequent two years. Those two people taught me about skills, people, monsters, making gold and the friendships you find in a land called Britannia.

"Ryo and I became very good friends. She took me under her wing and showed me the ins and outs of the Britannian world. That first night, she introduced me to the Celtic Horde, the guild she had been in 'since Beta' and I felt instantly like I belonged. To this day, I am still a member. Many months later she brought me to a monument in Skara-Brae (Felucca) that was dedicated to a fallen comrade of hers. She told me that he had been her mentor as she had been mine and that in turn, she hoped I would do the same for someone. She had set the wheels in motion for my future endeavors in the world by the compassion she had shown on a confused newbie in a new land.

"And so, in honor of a good friend, and her mentor, I started my mission of helping new characters. It started simple. I would offer help when I saw someone new in town or saw someone log in for the first time at the Sweet Dreams. In the old days, it was hard to differentiate between new characters and people faking it but I did my best. I would provide someone with some shovels to mine and show them the mountain wall behind the inn in Northern Britain.

"Then I started to get a bit more ambitious. I began to provide 'newbie bags' that included some food, a weapon or two that I had no use for and some of this and that, depending on their skills. I do not know how many characters I have given these bags to, but it has been quite a few. I have given as much support and time as I could to new players and even people just new to the shard. I think that the most valuable gift that Ryo gave me was a perspective that the best thing one can do in these sometimes cruel lands in which we reside, is to give a hand to someone just coming in.

"And so, as Ryo challenged me to help another as she had been helped, I challenge you to do the same. The greatest gifts we can give in this game are the small ones, and when 100 gold pieces is a great deal to you, there is nothing as valuable as some time from someone who knows how quickly that excitement fades. It will amaze you how much someone else's enthusiasm can rub off on you…

"Live by the virtues of your own soul and be guided by the faith of your spirit."

Is virtue something that can be learned, or is it something that is born within us? If virtue is something that can be learned, how does one acquire it? For Ariana Mayfair it was something that was learned not through books, but by the example of a friend and mentor.

It is with pleasure that we present these tales of your communities and adventures in Ultima Online. Please join again next week as we share another of the many stories of Britannia that you have created. Join us next week as we continue our spotlight on tales of your adventures and accomplishments. Please keep an eye on FYI for new spotlight topics!

Published: October 2000
Please Note: Some dates are estimates as exact dates were unavailable.
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