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Welcome To Wanton Wicked’s
- All Z-Splats are earned post-character-creation. If you meet the prerequisites of an existing one, the actual joining can be done as a Bluebook or a PRP scene, submitted as an XP Expenditure (even if it normally doesn’t cost you anything).
- A character must be sanctioned at least a month before submitting a Z-Splat that requires any amount of customization.
- 2nd Edition Z-Splats (Lodges, Entitlements, Bloodlines, Legacies) that are already published may be taken normally through whatever means is typical, if appropriate to the area and non-antagonistic.
- 1st Edition official Z-Splats may be sent in to the Rulesmaster (as Custom Item/Power) with an attempt to convert them to fit the 2nd edition differences. Once the mechanics are worked out, the Storymasters will approve if they feel it makes sense for the current setting. Once approved, they may be joined like official 2nd edition Z-Splats, as if they already exist.
- Completely custom Z-Splats may be sent to the Rulesmaster and then Storymasters above, and will receive more scrutiny. You MUST meet the prerequisites to create an entirely custom Z-Splat IC, per the rules given in the respective books, as your character is creating it themself. There will be NO exceptions to this.
- Creating a custom Z-splat uses up your custom power creation for the month, and may not be submitted alongside other custom things.
- If the Z-Splat has custom powers of some kind, you’ll need a Justification for each dot of said powers, but these can be spread out over the course of you buying them.
- Lodges specifically need at least 2 founding members, as there’s no way to attract a powerful enough Totem (Rank 2+) without at least that many people.
- Entitlements will use the rules in the Chapter 3 document until we update them, but only need 2 people to form the initial Oath for a new one.
The following bloodlines from Onyx Path blogs are available:
“Where is a man’s ambition? In his heart? What if his heart be still? In his blood? What if that blood is clotted and stolen?”
The Children of Midas are dead men who suck ambition from the blood and marrow of the living. Like the gods of the Aztecs, they can turn blood to gold and gold to blood.The Adrestoi are creatures of the city, but more than that, creatures of its elite. They become one with its monoliths, command kine and beast alike. In death, they retain the vigor of life, but their will to power is dependent on the power of their blood. Fed well, an Adrestos is an irresistible force of command and conquest. Should he fail at the hunt, though, he becomes weak and easily swayed.
The Adrestoi are a young bloodline, the product of their progenitor’s fierce will and the mutations that ancestor wrought in his own Blood. He spawned his brood and line young, and they have evolved together. In the Detroit of the 1980s, Paul Gordon was a man with a mission. Amid the decay of the great automotive firms and the fires that swept regularly through the neighborhoods where he grew up, Paul learned to impose will over fear. He traded his father’s blue collar for white, and he went off to law school. When he returned, a lawyer with a Georgetown degree, he started to make friends. The kind of friends who appreciated a white collar speckled with a little blood. The vampire wasn’t far behind.
He was looking for a servant, a cover, but Paul wore the monster down, manipulated and fought against him until the vampire Embraced him less by choice than force. Paul’s sire was young to begin with, an Ancilla too used to having mortal crutches. Once the attorney became the vampire, he made short and bloody work of his sire. Their merged blood changed fast, and altered in Paul’s image. Invigorated, alive with cannibalized and mutated Vitae, he experienced an urge unusual among young Damned. He wanted to share. So he changed his name to Adrestos, the son of the legendary King Midas, and he Embraced the first of his line, the Adrestoi.
- Interactions with the Danse
The Children of Midas are known for results, but also for obsession. Many Ventrue look at the hunt as a disgraceful necessity, something untidy and to be kept private. The Adrestoi hunt in packs, instead, and those who have joined the Lancea Sanctum are often perceived as zealots as a consequence. Those with no such allegiance are often suspected of affliction with Malkavia or simply to have become too monstrous too fast. Where they are recognized as a bloodline, they are sometimes pitied. When encountered alone, they are often feared. Pitied or feared, Adrestoi are also well-liked. After all, they have a lot to offer. If they hunt frequently and almost openly… well, that habit is no less distasteful than the predilections of some of the other lines. Their tenacity, seemingly wired in the blood, makes them effective allies even when very young; for just as their weakness drains Vitae, it conserves their inner strength. They can turn anything to gold, given their fill of blood…
- Children of Midas
- Bloodline Bane
- Use of discipline aspects with No Cost or that utilize Willpower add 1 point of Vitae to their cost.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Dominate, Animalism, Majesty, Resilience
Bloodline Gift: Scientia est Potentia (•-•••••)
- Scientia is a Style Merit focused on Feeding and Hunting. As such, it grants the following benefits. When joining the bloodline, gain the first dot of Scientia for free.
•Taste of Blood- When feeding from a target, you are drinking more than just blood. For each point of vitae taken, you learn 1 aspiration, desire, or secret about your target.
•• In The Blood - Roll Presence + Manipulation + Scientia vs Resolve + Supernatural Tolerance when feeding on someone. For each success you learn the name of someone the target shares a Connection with (IE: Blood sympathy, supernal sympathy, blood ties like family, etc)
••• I Have What You Need - Roll Manipulation + Persuasion + Scientia vs Composure + Supernatural Tolerance. On a success, when feeding, you learn the subject’s Vice. Furthermore, choose a temporary secondary vice for the target related to the current situation (Example: Gambler, Junkie, Wrathful, etc) that lasts for the scene. If the target indulges in this vice, they gain the Leveraged Condition towards you. On an Exceptional Success, they also temporarily gain Vice-Ridden with the vice you chose until the Leveraged Condition is resolved.
•••• Feed The Beast - Spend 1 WP when hunting a target (person or object). You gain Inspired (Target), Informed (Target) OR Prepared (Target) - Choose at the time of activating this aspect. If activated again, a new target must be chosen. \\Drawback: If you frenzy at any time before finding the target, you gain the Obsessed (Target) condition for the duration of the frenzy and the frenzy does not end until one of the following condition is met: Your WP is reduced to 0, Your Vitae is reduced to 1, or your Obsession is resolved.
••••• Blood Is Power - A good Adrestos knows that you can gain more from blood than just sustenance. When feeding from a target you may choose to do one of the following:
- Spend 1 WP for every point of Vitae taken in and convert that vitae into a temporary skill dot of your choosing that aligns with skills your target possesses at a 3+.
- Spend 2 WP for every point of Vitae taken in and convert that vitae into a temporary attribute dot of your choosing that aligns with what your target possesses at 3+.
The chosen aspect affects lasts for 24 hours. \\Drawback: This ability takes it strong toll on the user. You are unable to regain WP for a number of days equal to the WP spent except by fulfilling your Dirge.
“A thousand minds create the sea that only I may swim through, that only I can truly perceive. Tell me, then, what single thought of yours is supposedly meant to be significant to me?”
Varying from the insular diviner to the insightful psychologist, the Alucinor are a rare and poorly understood bloodline, often so far outside of society or so well integrated into it that nobody really knows who they actually are. Those few who do know one of the Sandmen tend to know one of the elders, those who become so withdrawn and cryptic, so detached from the rest of reality that it becomes impossible to mistake them for anything other than they really are.
It’s said that the first Alucinor was a female, a fairly young vampiress with an innate knack for symbols and emotions, who managed to diablerize an elder Kindred. She wasn’t ready for the result of this, however, and fragments of his soul spread throughout her mind, expanding her conscious perceptions to include not only emotions and thoughts, but the workings of the subconscious, the dreams and sleeping visions of those around her. Some say that a fragment of this soul finds its way to every new Alucinor, forming a figure in their mind that taunts and beckons to them should they dare to perform Amaranth on their own; others say this figure is a dream-born entity of death itself by the name of the Pale Brother, angered with the Incubus for daring to halt the natural process of allowing a soul, even a Vampiric one, to move on. The exact age of the bloodline is uncertain, but it’s thought that they have been around for millennia, spawning the first stories of incubi and nightmarish demons that stalked the minds of the sleeping, slowly draining them of their will and driving them to insanity. It’s hard to say what degree of these stories are born of truth, but the elders of the line seem to have no desire to halt them.
- Interactions with the Danse
- In modern times, Alucinor find themselves most often acting as advisors and information gatherers, learning secrets and seeing omens that not even the most practiced Diviners of the Circle seem to be able to catch wind of. They very rarely take political positions of their own, however, instead simply manipulating or offering advice to those in charge, usually in a way that suits their own goals.
Their connection to the subconscious mind also allows them to act as counselors, of a sort, to certain Kindred that find themselves plagued with nightmares or otherwise weighed down by something deep within their thoughts that they can’t quite figure out for themselves.
- Sandmen, Incubi
- Bloodline Bane
- Alucinor find that the dreaming world encroaches on their senses even while awake, creating hallucinations and problems for them, and to those most severely affected, making their undead lives a never ending nightmare of its own. Most of the time, these involve minor visions, sounds, or distractions that just attract the Alucinor’s attention, but once per session, they may be more severely affected, a horrible vision or distracting cacophony of sounds making life difficult for them. In these cases, apply either the Confused, Spooked, or Distracted condition for the scene (or until resolved), provoke a single frenzy roll (The focus depends on what the vision is of), or simply create a specific hallucination that makes decision making difficult (Seeing multiple enemies instead of a single one, for instance).
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Auspex, Celerity, Obfuscate, Nightmare
Bloodline Gift: Insomnium
The Alucinor have an extra means of perceiving and interacting with the world, relying not on mundane emotion or sight, or even on telepathic powers such as those allowed for with Auspex, but instead are capable of interpreting and manipulating the Sea of Dreams with their gift, known as Insomnium. The Alucinor may use these capabilities whether they’re awake or asleep, though may not take any other actions past moving or distracted conversation if awake when using them.
All Alucinor are capable of utilizing Lucid Dreaming, and can then purchase the other capabilities of Insomnium (as Devotions) for 2xp each if they have the prerequisite Disciplines. In addition, all Alucinor are Lucid Dreamers (Per CtL 2e) for the purposes of defending their dreams from outsiders ONLY (They may not manipulate their own dreams otherwise), using the Dream Form traits listed below.
•Lucid Dreaming: Any Alucinor may attempt to go into a specific dream to observe it. They needn’t be able to see the target or even know who they’re going for (Allowing for a ‘random’ victim), but they must be within a number of miles equal to the Alucinor’s Blood Potency. This requires no roll, unless the target is a Lucid Dreamer or otherwise capable of working against him, in which case a Clash of Wills (Blood Potency + higher of Auspex and Nightmare for the Alucinor) is made. If the Alucinor loses, he’s kept out of the dream.
At this level of capability, they may choose to simply watch the dream, which may provide clues as to the character’s Virtue, Vice, Mask, Dirge, Aspiration, Integrity/Humanity or similar traits. With an Intelligence + Empathy + Blood Potency roll they may determine the type of dream it is or what the ‘meaning’ of it is to the person (Recurring dreams, memory dreams, nightmares, a dream showing guilt over something, etc).
•Chain the Enslumbered Mind: An Alucinor with this capability may, by spending 1 Vitae while utilizing Lucid Dreaming, manifest themselves within the observed dream, granting the ability for them to alter or recreate it in their own vision. This is done with a Wits + Subterfuge + Blood Potency roll, with a penalty equal to the successes rolled on a Wits + Resolve + Blood Potency roll made by the victim once per dream (For those with access to Changeling: The Lost, this is equivalent to their Dream Intensity, and the dice pool used is considered their ‘Dream Riding’ dice pool).
With specific dream alterations, the subconscious mind can be affected, allowing the Alucinor to create penalties for specific actions in the next day, a bonus to his own social dice pool against the target, or similar minor effects (If you have access to Changeling: The Lost, other Dreamwalking techniques may be usable with Storyteller permission, using the same dice pools but replacing Wyrd with Blood Potency). An Alucinor projected this way uses the Dream Form rules listed below.
Prerequisite: Nightmare 3 OR Auspex 4
•Travails of Morpheus: While the powers of Nightmare can overwhelm and destroy a waking victim, an Alucinor can instead cause the victim’s own mind to do the work for him. This power may be used on anyone currently being targeted with Lucid Dreaming (Or other Oneiromancers present in the target’s dream); the Alucinor spends 1 additional Vitae and rolls Manipulation + Subterfuge + Blood Potency - the victim’s Composure, with each success dealing 1 lethal damage to the sleeping victim (mortal, Kindred, or otherwise). If the victim takes damage in excess of their Willpower, they immediately wake up, gain the Soul Shocked condition (see Beast p. 325), and cannot get back to sleep for the rest of the night. On an exceptional success, the power can be used again, but otherwise is limited to once per victim per night.
Prerequisite: Nightmare 5
•Dreams of the Many: By spending 1 Willpower and rolling Wits + Occult + Blood Potency, the Alucinor may dive through the sea of dreams more generally, seeking out prophetic visions, Occult symbols, or important memories that have some bearing on their current situation. This may provide a hint or clue as to an upcoming danger or a solution to a current problem, and provides the Alucinor with the Informed condition, though it fades naturally at the end of the night if not used.
Prerequisite: Auspex 2
•Fangs of the Incubus: While many Alucinor are known to feed on sleeping victims in the mundane world, those that have mastered their dream forms learn to take a form of sustenance from their targets; this power is what originally spawned the stories of incubi slowly draining the life and will of their prey. The Sandman must already be using Chain the Enslumbered Mind to do this, after which they roll Manipulation + Empathy + Blood Potency vs the Victim’s Composure + Blood Potency. A dramatic failure means the Alucinor loses a point of their own willpower due to mental feedback, though a normal failure simply means nothing happens. On a success, one willpower is stolen from the target and given to the Incubus, which also heals one point of their Dream Form’s damage (least severe first). On an exceptional success, two willpower are taken and two damage healed. In either case, the power is usable only once per night.
Prerequisite: Chain the Enslumbered Mind
When projected within the Sea of Dreams, or similar realms, with powers like Chain the Enslumbered Mind, an Alucinor does not have a typical Physical body. Instead, they have a “Dream Form”, which uses the rules as described in the Mage: the Awakening book and Changeling: the Lost. Note that a Vampire with the Soul Shocked condition CAN regain willpower through their Touchstone or Mask, but not their Dirge.
In the case of both attributes and health, the rules are a little different should an Alucinor be drawn into a frenzy (willingly or not) while projecting a Dream Form. Instead of adding Blood Potency to all physical rolls and resistances, the frenzying Kindred may calculate their Dream Form’s attributes from their physical scores instead of their mental scores, if higher (so, Strength instead of Intelligence for Power, for instance), and may then split their Blood Potency dots between those attributes, treating them as the new rating for all purposes for the duration of the frenzy. In addition, the Dream Form’s health track is calculated with the new Resistance instead of their normal Resolve. Becoming Soul Shocked immediately ends a Dream Form frenzy.
The Amara Havana are a curious sort to those outside of the Indian Subcontinent. In fact they are very rarely seen outside of their homeland. They are warriors though, without peer. By and large they seem to have some sort of history as such and hold to it with great fervor. Still, to those Kindred of the West they are a sight that are not often seen. But those elders that do exist who remember the times of British Colonialism have old memories of warriors in the night with weapons of blood who would cut through their martial servants with a deady precision.
The Amara Havana say that they are of one of the most ancient bloodlines. At the dawn of time when the gods still walked the earth is when they were first made. Some of them would even say that the Daeva, not the Amara Havana, are the offshoot from the true clan. They were born when the Goddess Durga became locked in combat with the demon Mahihasura. There was a great battle and blood was spilled on both sides. It mixed and the humans that fell were granted powers by both the gods and the Demons. Thus were the Amara Havana born.
True or not, the Amara Havana have been around as long as any other kindred in the Indian subcontinant. They were of the Warrior Caste, and indeed were counted as the greatest among them. Even while the attitudes of the other Kindred changed and calmed over the years, The Amara Havana stuck to their traditions and honed their craft. It wasn’t until expansion of the British Empire that their power flagged. Got in a civil war with the other powerful bloodlines of India, and assaulted by the Invictus and Lancea the Amara Havan crumbled and their power was dashed. But they survived. They made alliances with their fellows and slowly sent out groups to reclaim their land from the westerners. Once done, they sent out groups to attack the Western Kindred in their homes. Time heals all wounds they say. For now they kindred of India remain to themselves. But there have always been those Amara Havana who have departed to the west to never return. In this global village even more spread out. Perhaps they are curious. Surely such an ancient grudge would survive this long?
- Interest in Martial power. Some level of belief or creed. Preferably of Indian descent.
- Interactions with the Danse
- They are not found in large numbers in Wester society. Those that are tend to be found with The Circle, due to their own beliefs of divine parentage from the Mother Goddess. Some few likely find homes in the Invictus with their ancient and proud nobility. Those more prone to embrace western culture may also find a home with the Carthians. Even fewer join The Ordo Dracul, for science and research do not suit their demeanor. However none can be found amongst the Lancea.
- Bloodline Bane
- The Amara Havana are forever stained with blood, although it’s more a taint of spirit than taint of flesh. Whenever they benefit from The Lost Visage, any reflection, photograph, or other medium that would normally find it difficult to capture them remains unable to do so properly; however, there will always be some telltale mark of blood; often on their hands, but perhaps on their lips or collar depending on what’s visible in the image. While their identity is protected by such, the Masquerade is not, and so they often need to leave themselves exposed or face attention from the Invictus….
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Majesty, Protean, Vigor, Resilience
Bloodline Gift: Sakti Pata
- A gift from Durga to her chosen, Sakti Pata allows the Amara Havana to use their very blood itself as a weapon, armor, and metaphysical toolkit for survival in the violent world they operate within. This is represented as a series of Devotions; all gain Halahala for free, and may purchase the others as desired if they meet the prerequisites.
- Halahala: By reflexively spending a point of Willpower, the Guardian lets the demon-taint of his lineage infect his blood, poisoning it. For the rest of the scene, it becomes a poison with a Toxicity equal to his Blood Potency +3 (maximum of 10). This can also affect Kindred and others immune to poison (if through a supernatural power, it may require a Clash of Wills; the Guardian rolls Blood Potency + Stamina), although the Toxicity is only equal to Blood Potency against them. The poisonous blood may be bled onto weapons, into syringes, or otherwise used outside of the Kindred’s body for the duration; to do its damage, it must be ingested or make contact with the target’s blood.
- Gift of Indra (Protean ••, Vigor •+, Resilience •+): The Kindred’s blood is able to be forged into semi-solid weapons and armor. 1L damage is taken (an external source that pierces the skin is fine), an instant action used, and a point of Vitae is spent. The spilled blood then can be formed into any non-mechanical/electronic weapon or any ‘archaic’ armor of no Availability greater than the Kindred’s Vigor (for weapons) or Resilience (for Armor or shields), which lasts for the scene before ‘dissolving’. This power costs 2 Experiences.
- Rudra’s Blessing (Resilience •••, Vigor •): Also called the Blessing of Fire, this Devotion allows the Kindred to reflexively spend a point of Willpower to become able to spend 1 more Vitae than normally allowed per turn, for the sake of healing only, for the rest of the scene. This power costs 2 Experiences.
- Durga’s Peace (Resilience ••••, Majesty •): Blessed with their goddess’ otherworldly focus, the Guardians are able to resist unnatural powers that would break their will. By spending a point of Vitae and a point of Willpower when targeted by a supernatural power that would alter their mind in a way that would set them away from a current aspiration, make them go against (or alter) their Mask or Dirge, drain their willpower, or that would cause them to work against their own immediate well-being, they may roll a Clash of Wills to shake off the effect; if successful, they’re immune to that same power for the rest of the Night. Used in a frenzy, this will also clash any power that would ‘redirect’ their Beast’s desire. This power costs 2 Experiences.
- Yama’s Benefice (Protean •••••, Resilience •••••): The Kindred becomes able to exist solely as the poisoned blood that animates their form. When starving, but not lacking Vitae entirely, or when her health track has lethal or aggravated damage in one of its final 3 boxes (even the final one), this power can be used as a last resort to escape their demise. A point of Willpower and 3 Vitae (or whatever they have left) is reflexively spent, and the Kindred then takes the form of a misty cloud of blood; this is equivalent to Mist Form, mechanically, except they may not leave the form, and they may not heal (if their health track is full, the rightmost box ‘clears’ upon activating the ability, though). They then have until the end of the night to ‘Embrace’ a mortal by exsanguinating them normally and expending a dot of Humanity, but instead of a typical embrace, they inhabit the corpse themselves, slowly altering it over the course of the next week to match the Kindred’s physical statistics; the final product looks like an odd amalgam of the victim and the Kindred’s old body. This may also be done to a corpse that would be susceptible to a Post-Mortem embrace. If the Kindred fails to find a new body by sunrise, the puddle dries up and they meet Final Death. This power costs 5 Experiences to learn.
- Dance of Kali (Protean •••••, Vigor •••••, Majesty •, Gift of Indra): This power remains one of the fiercest martial abilities of the Guardians. Rather than taking on the form of Mist when using the final level of Protean, a point of Willpower and an additional Vitae may be spent to turn them into a whirling storm of semi-solidified, bloody projectiles and weapons. This has all of the normal benefits of Primeval Miasma, but in addition, they gain the benefits of the Swarm Form merit, despite being in the form of whirling weaponry, treating their base physical attributes as the ‘animal’s’ stats, becoming able to directly attack any within the ‘cloud’ of bloody death. However, they use Mist Form’s rules for being damaged, not Swarm Form’s. This power costs 6 Experiences.
Like their Daeva parents, the Anvari are very sensual in nature, but unlike the Succubi, they do not compensate for their lost passions by manipulating others. Rather, the Anvari have turned to the use of opium and other narcotics to try to recapture their dead emotions. Over the centuries, the Anvari have come to view narcotics not only as a way to ease the torments of unlife, but as a way to ascend to a higher state. The bloodline also relies on the addictive effects of narcotics to tie others to its members. Building herds of pliant kine is not only acceptable to the Anvari, but necessary.
The Anvari claim to be one of the oldest bloodlines walking tonight. According to their legends, their founder was Sepehr Anvari, an opium-dealer in the last years of the Persian Empire.
- What does it take to get into this bloodline?
- Interactions with the Danse
- Other Kindred tend to view the Anvari with distaste at best, and as a constant threat to exposure among mortals at worst. The rest of the Daeva view Pushers as substandard members of the clan who are
incapable of seducing prey through beauty and talent alone. More Anvari are drawn to the Circle of the Crone than any other covenant. The myths of Sumeria and Persia both have a strong female presence, leading many of the bloodline —particularly its elders — to be comfortable with the Acolytes’ general philosophy. Furthermore, as some rituals of the old ways employ psychotropic substances, the Anvari are able to barter influence readily among the cultists. The Carthians are probably the most common choice for young Anvari, if for no other reason than members are slightly less hidebound in their viewpoints than more staid covenants. The Invictus enjoys its share of Pushers as well, whether they are established elders with a secure power base or up-and-coming dealers building fortunes in the drug trade. The Ordo Draculmay interest the occasional Anvari who seeks to escape the Curse or addiction through covenant strictures,but by and large its rites and practices require more self-discipline than most Pushers are willing to devote. It is the rare Anvari indeed who heeds the call of the Lancea Sanctum, as the very nature of the bloodline’s relationship with narcotics is offensive to many orthodox followers of that group.
- Bloodline Bane
- Anvari have become reliant upon the narcotics that they’re so closely tied to. When feeding upon mortals that have no opiates or opium-derived drugs in their system, they must spend a point of willpower, as if feeding from blood unsuitable for their blood potency rating. This does stack with that requirement, in the case of an elder, however, requiring two points of willpower to be spent (this breaks the normal rule allowing only one willpower per action). In addition, they are susceptible to becoming addicted to those same substances when ingested through the blood of those individuals, using the normal system for addiction.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Auspex, Celerity, Majesty, Resilience
Bloodline Gift: Nepenthe
- Nepenthe is the capability of the Anvari to sense, control, and emulate the effects of narcotics, especially opiates. Their bloodline gift is what has helped them to garner the nickname of Pushers, and helps them both feed and manipulate their herd.
The gift is represented by a series of Devotions, though all Anvari start off with Fragrance of Hal’gil as an innate capability.
- Fragrance of Hal’gil: The Anvari becomes able to sense the presence of narcotics, both in raw form and within the blood of living beings, the same way they’re able to sense blood, using their Kindred Senses, with the extent dependent on Blood Potency as normal. They might be able to smell opium-laden blood (and can tell the difference between it and ‘clean’ blood), or hear the languid heartbeat of someone under the influence of narcotics. They can tell the difference between opiates and other narcotics, as well as between pure drugs, cut drugs, and outright fakes by sight, even if it would be just about impossible to tell normally without using it.
Inflict the Empty Soul (Majesty ••, Resilience •): With an instant action and one Vitae, the Kindred may roll Manipulation + Medicine + Majesty, versus the target’s Stamina + Blood Potency (if unwilling). If they gain the most successes (or at least one if uncontested), they can remove the effects of any narcotic from a target, which can include themself, although this does nothing to alleviate addiction, and in fact repeated usage may cause the Deprived condition in someone with the Addicted condition relating to narcotics. However, this can be a good way to punish an addict or to regain one’s senses in an emergency.
This devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.
- Crave the Caress (Majesty •••): The Kindred creates an incredible urge for a chosen drug in a target, by spending 1 Vitae and rolling Manipulation + Persuasion + Majesty versus the target’s Composure + Blood Potency. If the Anvari rolls more successes, the target gains the Addicted and Deprived condition with regards to the drug, which will resolve naturally when the night ends. Providing the drug allows the Kindred to force a door during social maneuvering, counting as hard leverage that forced a breaking point (even if it didn’t), but not requiring any roll.
This devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.
- Blessed Kiss of Hal’gil (Majesty •••• or Auspex ••••, Resilience ••): This devotion allows the Anvari to create the sensation of taking a narcotic within a subject, dulling pain, relaxing them, and perhaps worsening addictions. The Kindred spends 1 Vitae and rolls Presence + Medicine + Majesty or Auspex against the target’s Stamina + Blood Potency. If they roll more successes, the subject is affected as if by a narcotic with a potency/toxicity equal to the Kindred’s dots in Majesty or Auspex (whichever is higher). The Kindred decides if it works normally or as if through an overdose. In the former case, all wound penalties are removed for the next scene, although they also take a −3 penalty to all physical dice pools for the same amount of time, and continued use of this devotion may cause the Addiction condition in a target. However, it will also end the Deprived condition with regards to narcotics. If treated as an overdose, the target rolls to avoid damage immediately, and then once per hour for a number of hours equal to six minus their stamina.
This devotion costs 3 Experiences to learn.
The Baddacelli are true creatures of the night. Condemned to eternal darkness by way of a permanent, magical blindness, they are unable to see the world around them. While the majority of Morlocks hide underground in tunnels, sewers, or bunkers, the newer generations are starting to find their place in the society above ground. They are a unique bunch with phenomenal hearing, smell, and taste as well as a few hidden talents. If it was not so blatantly obvious the Morlock’s were blind, it would be difficult to tell.
(Summarized/Paraphrased from The Chosen pg 26–27)
The Baddacelli bloodline traces its roots back to a Nosferatu who seized the opportunity in the chaos of the Kindred in fighting during the Roman Empire to grow in wealth and power and Embrace a larger number of Kindred. He was nicknamed Botticello, aka “The Barrel” , due to his exceedingly large size. It wasn’t long before his childer grew to become a de facto faction of their own within city politics and became known at the Botticelli, which means “The Little Barrels”.
Naturally, one with so much power and so many in his lineage attracted enemies. Especially when Botticello himself enjoyed humiliating his rivals with uncanny impersonations of their personal foibles. He was an unabashed pagan and worked fervently to undermine the Lancea Sanctum. The conflict brewing, with Botticello at the center, inevitably spilled over into violence that took place over the next several years.
In the end, Botticello was defeated and captured by his rivals. The majority of his brood was slain or scattered. Botticello’s remaining childer were able to rescue him before he met Final Death but after his rivals had already tortured him quite mercilessly. His body was broken and his eyes had been burned from his skull. They fled to the sewers, with intentions to let Botticello heal and then flee the Domain, but it was not to be. His eyes were not healing and over time some who were with him slowly began to lose their eyesight. Rumors were rampant that the Lancea had placed a curse upon their line. Some fled to distant cities in hopes of avoiding the same fate but were unable to.
All over the world, these childer lost their sight and took to the underground. In the endless darkness they hid, slowly obtaining mastery of special talents and honing their senses in order to lure in their prey. A newly embraced Morlock can run, but they can never hide. The Morlock’s Curse will always come to collect.
- Interactions with the Danse
Generally, an entire brood of Baddacelli within a city will claim membership in a single covenant. The nightly struggle for existence means that the broods rarely have the luxury of being able to bicker over politics. As a result, pressure to conform can be intense within a Baddacelli family. The Baddacelli can find a place in any covenant, though are highly revered in the Circle of the Crone for their vocal talents. They are least likely to be found among the Lancea Sanctum, though it is not unheard of and those Morlocks who do take up the Spear are exceedingly zealous.
- Bloodline Bane
- The Baddacelli have taken an interesting path of development. Rather than gaining incredibly sensitive sight after living for millennia underground, they have instead lost their sight entirely and relied on their other senses to get by. As a property of the blood for them rather than an individual affliction, all Morlocks permanently gain the Blinded condition/tilt, which cannot be cured through healing or other methods. However, they still apply their defense against attacks due to exceptionally powerful senses beyond sight.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Nightmare, Obfuscate, Vigor, Auspex
Bloodline Gift: Mimetismo
A series of devotions that give the Baddacelli an edge when it comes to tracking and deception. Third Eye is gained for free upon joining this Bloodline.
- Third Eye
Cost: 1 Vitae Dice Roll: N/A Action: Instant
The Baddacelli, unlike their nickname are completely and invariably blind. Because of this, they have developed a fantastically sharp sense of hearing much the same as humans have developed more powerful senses to compensate for mundane blindness. As a result, while they are unable to see traces of blood in the dark, their blood potency is considered to be two dots higher for purposes of hearing heartbeats and smelling blood. Likewise, they do not lose their defense in the face of blindness unlike a normal human or kindred.
- Impersonate Obfuscate 2
Cost: N/A or 1 Vitae Dice Roll: Manipulation + Subterfuge + Obfuscate
With this devotion, the Morlock is able to successfully impersonate any sound that have heard before, either in person or via a recording. By spending 1 Vitae, they are able to impersonate any person they have heard before either in person or via recording.
- Cacophony Nightmare 2
Cost: 1 Viate Roll: Presence + Intimidation + Nightmare vs Resolve
The Baddacelli lets out a terrifying screech that reverberates through the target, causing them to falter. Inflict psychic bashing damage equal to successes and the Stunned tilt. On an exceptional success, also inflict the Knockdown Tilt.
- Echolocation- Vigor 1, Auspex 1
Cost: 1 Vitae Roll: N/A Action: Instant Duration: Scene
Losing their sight means the Morlocks have learned to hone and rely on all their other senses. As such, they have also learned to channel brute strength into something a little more refined. The Morlock channels their dots in Vigor to enhance their senses, developing a bat-like sonar. While this does not negate the penalties for sight-based perception checks, it does allow the Morlock to add their dots of Vigor to their perception rolls.
It’s easy to stereotype Gangrel as passionate creatures, hissing and snarling at every offense. But there are some who prefer to brood in their dens, wallowing in the painful memories of their failures and the crushing weight of nihilism. The Childer of the Morrigan are an example of this strain of morose Gangrel. This ancient bloodline of Savages from the British Isles have always struggled to resist their despair at their own shortcomings. Nowanight, they struggle against growing fears of irrelevancy: in a night where the Danse Macabre is more often won with political cunning and social acumen then martial skill and tactical brilliance, a bloodline of depressive warriors and generals struggles to find purpose.
The Childer of the Morrigan orginated among the Celts of the British Isles. Of all the Kindred on Britan and Ireland, the Stormcrows were unanimously regarded as the generals and warriors of the Kindred. The Morrigan, the Gaelic goddess of war, death and prophecy was the uniting factor of the various broods and covenants that formed, thrived, and vanished on the Tin Islands. It was not uncommon for an entire coterie of Stormcrows to oversee the protection of their domains, or even make up the entire fighting force of a domain. By the Middle Ages, “Stormcrow” was no longer synonymous with “Gangrel” in all but the most isolated and provincial of domains. Their role shifted from warriors to generals and advisors, poets and historians, always counselling Princes and Hierarchs in all matters of war and conflict.
But that was a long time ago. In the modern nights, Morrigans are respected but no longer hold the positions of prominance and status that they once did- for every celebrated duelist or political leader, there is one renegade vigilante or forgotten relic. The Morrigan blame the modern era’s focus on superior firepower over highly trained warriors for their decline, as well as the All-Night Society’s preference for political intrigue over direct confrontation.
When the Circle of the Crone formed out of the many disparate cults and dying covenants that predated it, the Stormcrows were the leaders of those first Scottish, Welsh, and and Irish Acolytes rebelling against the excesses of the Sanctified. Their role in overseeing the birth of the new covenant won them back a bit of their old respect: at least among the Circles, the words of a Morrigan urging or discouraging war carries great weight.
- Throughout their history, Morrigans were mostly women of European descent, especially those whose ancestors were native to the British Isles, and who were middle-aged or older in age; however, Morrigans are by no means exclusionary in their membership. Few Morrigans Embrace childer directly into the bloodline, prefering to adopt ancillae or elders: Stormcrows favor members who had years of experience as both a human and a vampire. While it would be easy to stereotype Morrigans as all being either former soldiers and law enforcement officers, they come from a wide variety of backgrounds: one of the roles of a war advisor is to know when to prevent war and counsel peace, after all. Some Gangrel who came from more peaceful backgrounds like stay-at-home parents, scholars, musicians, and writers may turn to the bloodline as a way to satisfy a longing for action without joining a more savage bloodline.
- Interactions with the Danse
- Childer of the Morrigan almost always act as advisors to Hierophants and Princes in matters of conflict and warfare. Most Stormcrows live alone, without the benefit of companionship from their brothers and sisters; pairs or trios of Morrigans in a single domain are rare, anything more is unheard of. Some have turned to the role of Sheriff to pass the time, but others have resigned themselves to sitting in their Havens alone, waiting for the night that some brave young warrior will seek them out for training. Most Morrigans are members of the Circle of the Crone, though a large number are unaligned for one reason or another, with the more politically interested serving as enforcers or knights.
- Stormcrows, Morrigans
- Bloodline Bane
- The Morrigan is a dark and brooding goddess, and this leads to her childer being depressive souls. If a Childe of Morrigan ever loses all dots of Covenant Status, fails a roll that she spent Willpower on, or if she takes part in a battle where her side loses, she immediately acquires the Broken (Persistent) Condition, but if she acquires the Condition from one of her bloodline triggers, she can only resolve it by performing the opposite of the trigger (i.e., regaining a dot of Covenant Status, succeeding on a roll she spent Willpower on, or is on the victorious side of a battle).
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Animalism, Protean, Resilience, Vigor
Bloodline Gift: Favor of the Morrigan
- Stormcrows normally eschew learning Crúac, labelling it the domain of witches rather than warriors. However, the Childer of the Morrigan are an ancient bloodline who served the ancient cults that predated the Circle of the Crone, and this gives them an innate understanding of their covenant’s blood sorcery. Every time a Daughter of the Morrigan gains a 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th or 10th dot of Blood Potency, she automatically learns one Crúac ritual whose dots equal to half her total Blood Potency, even if she does not possess any dots in Crúac. The dice pool for these rituals is only made up of an Attribute and Skill, but she may include her dots in Crúac in the dice pool if she ever takes dots in Crúac.
“You call yourselves a Pack?”
Throughout the world, Kindred and Uratha mingle. Not every city, of course, has more than a handful of either, and even those populated by both will sometimes have their populations kept apart by fear, xenophobia, or perhaps just silent agreements. But in nearly every nation both can be found, you’ll find a few together. An Iron Master who’s taken to studying the local Kindred, both seeking out parallels with humanity and how they themselves interact with the human herd. The Mekhet who’s learned of the spirits by silently and respectfully watching from the side as an old friend’s pack performs their rites. A Bone Shadow seeking a strange form of insight by sacrificing his prey over an Acolyte’s altar.
And of course, the Dead Wolf running with the Pack.
- “This Story is True. They say that before the blood reacts beneath the auspice moon, it’s as malleable as any human’s. You can be killed and risen as some zombie, permanently merged with a spirit, or even Embraced by one of our kind. Our founder, if you can call him by such a formal-sounding title, was chosen by Luna, but before his change, his blood was claimed by a Savage who’d taken on a bane forcing her into frenzy any time the full moon shone down upon her. He was just the one that was unlucky enough to be in her path when it did, but somehow, her Beast chose not to kill, but to reproduce, and she did it right in Luna’s face.”
- “This Story is True. You know of the firstborn, Urdur, those known to take on the mantle of our tribes, those children of Father Wolf that came before any others. They became the patrons of our Tribes and that of our… less wise cousins, and are spoken of in countless tales. But Father Wolf’s spirit children were not the only his essence found its way into. Some few say that he sired another, a wolf formed not of ephemera, but the essence of darkness itself, recognizable by yellow eyes among a body that’s otherwise nothing more than Shadow. It refuses patronage to those few of the People that have sought it out, but some say it’s granted a blessing to others…”
- “Yeah, what do they call ‘em, the fuckin’ Dead Wolves? I heard a story about ‘em. One o’ ours, some Mexican guy, I don’ know his name, they say he found his way into some spirit realm, or whatever shit the acolytes are always talkin’ about. Came across his Beast, but like, some creepy haunted version of it, and it, uh, whaddya call it, possessed him, like the damned owls do? And merged with him. But he didn’ lose control. For some reason, grabbed the attention of those lupine guys, and it all broke down from there. No, I don’t fuckin’ know if the story’s true!”
The Dead Wolves are most prevalent in northern Mexico, where the Uratha and Kindred have formed more substantive ties, and thus are less wary about getting close to each other, but despite what many think, the Dead Wolves don’t NEED to have ties with the Uratha. Still, allies or contacts among the Forsaken (or other Werewolves) are common, and those that already have a connection to them are most likely to be noticed and chosen by those of the bloodline, whether to become a Childe in the first place or simply to be brought closer beneath an Avus’ tutelage.
The Dead Wolves are Gangrel, the Savages being the only Kindred that truly understand the form the Beast takes, and thus have the unique ability to shape it to match that which dwells within the soul of the Uratha.
- Interactions With the Danse
Unsurprisingly, in areas where tensions between Kindred and Uratha are high or at least far short of allegiance, but where there’s still communication, a position often forms as a sort of ambassador (when most respected) or message-carrier (when not so well thought of) between the Kindred and the local Werewolves. Dead Wolves, of course, are uniquely suited to such roles, and often serve them even if not made to do so in a formal manner. Beyond that, the Circle likely harbors the highest number of them, followed, oddly enough, by the Sanctified. The Ordo Dracul and Carthians are probably next most likely, for the sake of studying their mixed condition in the former case or simply due to the ‘looser’ structure of the latter fitting them better. The Invictus very rarely take on those of this bloodline, but it’s not entirely unheard of.
- Wolf-Blooded (confusing as that may be among Uratha society)
- Bloodline Bane
The Dead Wolves take on a mirrored aspect of Luna’s influence, and so find themselves vulnerable to the substance that resonates most harshly with her children: silver. At Humanity 6, all Dead Wolves take on Repulsion (Silver) as a bane, though may choose a form of Detachment to stave off as normal, but it inherently counts against the limits of three banes either way.
In addition, those that have aligned with a Pack of Uratha find that their Beast resonates with their distant cousins’. They gain a “Trigger” for their Beast’s frenzy, similarly to a Uratha’s Kuruth trigger, but automatically aligned to The Pack. Whenever they see a member of their Pack harmed (with at least lethal damage), they must roll to resist frenzy. If the roll fails, their Beast will ALWAYS take on their Predatory Aspect, if they know that discipline, but this only applies to frenzy triggered through the Pack.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Animalism, Protean, Resilience, Vigor
Bloodline Gift: Sublunario
Sublunario, the gift of the Dead Wolves, is a manifestation of both Luna’s influence on her Undead children, and the aspects of the Wolf they’ve taken on through their blood. This provides them with a small array of benefits that becomes more potent when the Dead Wolf is part of a Pack.
- All Dead Wolves have a Tell, chosen from those that the Wolf-Blooded have access to, whether they shared the blood of the Uratha in life or not. In addition, they may buy Wolf-Blooded merits if they don’t rely on any trait the Kindred doesn’t have (such as Integrity).
- Given their spiritual ties, Dead Wolves may purchase the Totem merit if part of a pack (whether a Pack in Werewolf terms, Gangrel terms, or both). The Totem provides the normal benefits, but cannot grant traits Vampires are normally incapable of gaining (such as certain merits) to Kindred.
- Dead Wolves treat their Blood Potency multiplied by two as effective Renown for calculating effective Spirit Rank, and may spend a point of Vitae to “flare” their spiritual might similar to a Uratha’s brand, treating their natural Blood Potency divided by 2 (round up) as the effective rating, for the purposes of any respect accorded. This grants Dead Wolves the “Proven“ condition.
Your character is a Proven member of the People, despite having a Kindred’s Beast instead of an inner Wolf. She’s integrated, shown her strength, and can hold her own against the more natural born hunters she stands among. Those Uratha that know of this often feel the need to see for themselves just how well she can withstand their world. Any rolls to test the character’s strength, loyalty, or right to be among the Uratha gains a +2 bonus, but doing so often simply reinforces her right to be there.
- Possible Sources
- A Dead Wolf flaring their Blood Potency by spending Vitae.
- After at least one Uratha character, or a character that’s knowingly a part of one’s pack, has taken advantage of the +2 bonus, you may shed this condition. In doing so, you may add your character’s Blood Potency divided by 2 (round up) as automatic successes to a social roll among the Uratha, or to a roll utilizing one of the skills associated with the auspice of the current moon phase.
Depraved even by the standards and examples set by other Kindred, the Duchagne bloodline originated in 18th century France, and those belonging to it are obsessed with sensation, decadence and other pleasures of the flesh - all fleeting, and easily discarded for fresh and new amusements when they come along.
The Duchagne originate in the escapades the Vicomte Albaric and Vicomtesse Eglatina du Chagne in France. When not playing hosts to debauchery, the du Chagnes toyed with the affections of naïve youths in the Court, tempting them with deviant pleasures and empty promises of power and wealth. Their lifestyle attracted a Daeva, who thought that the pair would make lovely Kindred. Indeed, the du Chagnes prospered in the Danse Macabre, learning new ways to toy with emotion and losing themselves in their won self-gratification.
When the Revolution came, Albaric du Chagne and his sire were destroyed by the sun and Eglatina only barely managed to save herself by entering Torpor. When she rose again, her heart was consumed with grief over the loss of her husband. She took in several mortal retainers, hoping to use them to satisfy her debased appetites and to salve her grief. Strangely, the old methods failed to elicit any joy in her dead heart. Even more bizarrely, the loss of the Vicomte and her sire twisted her ministrations, forcing the protégées (as she preferred to call her subjects) to share her sadness and regret, feeling it as their own. Most broke under the mixture of physical and psychological torment, but a small handful flourished. No matter what she levied against their flesh and minds, these servants begged for more. Impressed, she eventually Embraced them, traning them in the ways of the Vitae as she had been trained.
Modern Duchagne find themselves ostracized by more careful Kindred. Rumors abound about just what the Bacchantes are capable of doing, and few wish to find out from personal experience. Indeed, the grand balls held by the bloodline on special occasions are often more than most care to see. These gatherings are used by members to parade their latest proteges, or to display particularly clever uses of the bloodline’s ability to manipulate the senses.
- Interactions with the Danse
- The bloodline’s place among the various covenants and Kindred Society
- Bloodline Bane
- Duchagne Kindred are prone to ennui and boredom to an extent that far surpasses that of other Kindred. They may never buy the Patient merit, and the maximum number of Extended rolls they can make for a mundane action are capped at their Humanity if it’s lower than their base dice pool. As well, they always suffer repeated action penalties for any action re-attempted in the same Night, even if not in stressful situations, due to boredom as much as frustration or mounting difficulties.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Celerity, Majesty, Nightmare, Vigor
Bloodline Gift: Licencieux
- To some, Licencieux is the greatest achievement of Eglatina du Chagne’s focused grief; to others, Licencieux is the stolen secret of les arts licencieux shared by the Vicomtesse’s unnamed sire. No matter where its true origins lay, Licencieux is the Duchagne’s most prized
possession. With it, the vampire warps the senses of her prey, manipulating others toward her own perverse goals.
Mechanically Licencieux is a series of Devotions combining the effects of Majesty and Nightmare in a way unique to the bloodline; many of them also learn more common Devotions along these lines, such as Cross-Contamination and Wet Dream. All Duchagne learn Intime for free upon joining the Bloodline. The others may be purchased in any order, and cost Experiences equal to their level.
With an instant action, the Bacchante is able to conjure up a sort of Nostalgic aura around themselves. This causes those nearby them to experience momentary flashes of memory, good or bad (at the Duchagne’s discretion), relating to the situation at hand. This causes a sort of positive or negative association with an action or circumstance, granting the Suchagne a bonus equal to the higher of their Majesty or Nightmare (minimum 1) to Manipulation rolls on anyone affected by the aura, so long as it has something to do with correlation formed in their mind (positive or negative, they don’t need to know the exact memory inspired). Kindred (and others with an appropriate Aura) may lash out against the Duchagne when this effect is active; if they’re successful, it has no effect on them. This may not be active at the same time as Awe or Dread Presence, though the Kindred may switch between them.
- La Touche Illusoire
With this ability, the unsettling, near-terrifying illusions inspired by Dread Presence can be altered slightly. When utilizing Dread Presence, this Devotion may be activated reflexively to cause more positive, enjoyable, but still limited and fleeting illusions that may work alongside the less pleasant ones. These more enjoyable sensations may shift the effects of the Kindred’s aura slightly, removing the inability to spend Willpower against them and instead lowering their effective Composure by 1 with regards to the Duchagne’s Social rolls or Powers against them. An instant action is needed to switch between the two effects. Prerequisites: Majesty 1, Nightmare 1
- Douleur Agréable
By applying waves of pleasure or pain onto a subject, the Bacchante is able to more fully sculpt their behavior and personality, correlating pain with those things they discourage and pleasure with those they want the subject to partake in more often. Roll Intelligence + Empathy + (Lower of Majesty and Nightmare) as an instant action vs the subject’s Composure + Blood Potency. If the Duchagne wins, they inflict the Insensate Tilt for a turn, representing extreme pain or pleasure, and then the Swooning or Scarred condition, for pleasure or pain respectively. On an exceptional success, inflict Wanton or Bestial too, even if the target’s already had it within the last month. Repeated (successful) uses of this on the same sort of action for the same subject (more than the target’s Composure in a Story) can cause the Phobia or Obsession condition relating to the action or circumstance, as appropriate. Prerequisites: Majesty 2, Nightmare 2
- New Condition: Phobia (Persistent)
You’ve grown a deep seated fear or someone or something, and find it difficult to remain in its presence, or otherwise confront it. When forced to do so, roll Resolve + Composure; on a failure, you suffer the effects of the Frightened condition relating to your Phobia.
Resolution: Spend time and effort working to overcome your fear. Gain a dot of Integrity, or lose one due to this Phobia.
Beat: Per Frightened’s Resolution.
By removing sensation instead of stimulating it, the Kindred can gain far more direct control over a subject, torture them, or simply cripple them entirely. Spend 1 Vitae and roll Manipulation + Subterfuge + Nightmare vs the target’s Resolve + Blood Potency, as an instant action. If the opponent’s roll is beaten, they lose a sense chosen by the Kindred for the scene, applying the appropriate Tilt if applicable (Blind, Deaf, etc). Prerequisites: Majesty 3, Nightmare 3
- Jardin d’Agrément
The emotional intensity of Majesty is allowed to seep into the illusionary projections of Nightmare to create a fully realized fiction or narrative to a targeted subject. Spend an additional Vitae and a Willpower when activating Waking Nightmare to utilize this Devotion; if successful, the victim (or victims) will find the illusion alters and shifts to fit an emotion defined by the Duchagne. They take a mundane condition related to the emotion (which can include the competitive, wanton, and bestial conditions, even if already experienced this month), and for so long as they’re under the effects of the illusion, they take a penalty equal to the higher of the Bacchante’s Majesty or Nightmare rating to any actions the emotion would inhibit or run counter to. If desired, the emotion can be made rather specific; hatred of a specific person, for instance, but then the penalty becomes similarly narrowed. Prerequisites: Majesty 4, Nightmare 4
(Per Bloodlines the Legendary pg 51)
- Interactions with the Danse
- (Per Bloodlines the Legendary)
- Bloodline Bane
- More so than any other vampires, the Galloi look the part of the walking corpses they are. While not under the effects of the Blush of Life, Galloi apply the same penalties they suffer when interacting with humans to all social interactions, even with Kindred and Touchstones. This includes the penalties imposed by the Nosferatu’s Lonely Curse.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Majesty, Nightmare, Obfuscate, Vigor
Bloodline Gift: Taurobolium
The Taurobolium is a sort of cleansing ritual practiced by the Galloi, where a subject is bathed in a special concoction of herbs, oils, and perfumes. The exact recipe is a secret known only to the members of the bloodline, but there is one ingredient that is very well known – blood. Any character who is bathed in this special mixture, along with at least one point of the pretty’s own Vitae, is cleansed of all blemishes, scars, and other unsightly marks; for a number of nights equal to the Galloi’s Blood Potency, the anointed character’s skin becomes as flawless as porcelain. A living subject appears younger – regardless of his actual age, he looks to be in the prime of his life for as long as the Taurobolium’s invigoration lasts. A Kindred subject retains his apparent age, but benefits from the effects of the Blush of Life for the duration instead.
A Galloi can also learn Devotions that add other, additional effects to the Taurobolium. Each such Devotion has a Vitae cost, which must be added to the bath in addition to the point spent for the basic effects. The first Devotion, Enliven the Flesh, is free, learned automatically as a benefit of joining the Bloodline. Additional Devotions cost 2 experiences each, and have a prerequisite Discipline, which the Galloi must possess at 2 dots or higher in order to learn the Devotion.
Enliven the Flesh
The Galloi can add one additional point of her Vitae into the bath to magnify the subject’s natural beauty, granting him one dot of Striking Looks. If the subject already had Striking Looks, this Devotion increases it to two dots. If the subject already had two dots, he gains a third dot. These Merits are not protected by the Sanctity of Merits rule, and are lost when the effects of the Tarubolium end.
Blessing of the Captive Eye
With this Devotion, the Galloi can spend a point of Willpower when performing the Tarubolium to grant a living subject the benefits of the Lost Visage, or take those benefits away from a Kindred subject. This effect lasts for as long as the subject’s appearance is altered by the Taurobolium.
- Obfuscate 2
Cybele’s Terrible Beauty
At the cost of an additional point of Vitae, the Galloi can grant the subject of the Taurobolium an imposing air until the Taurobolium’s effects wear off. Onlookers are intimidated by the subject’s sheer immaculacy and become flustered when interacting with him, they must make a roll of composure + supernatural tolerance - Pretty’s nightmare, and upon a fail reducing their effective Composure by 2 dots for the duration of the scene.
- Nightmare 2
Consent of the Magna Mater
The Galloi with this Devotion can add one additional point of Vitae to the Taurobolium to bless its creations with unnatural adoration. When a subject, which must be a creation of the Galloi, is viewed by another i before the Taurobolium’s effects wear off, they must make a roll of composure+supernatural tolerance - Majesty of the Galloi or take the Swooning condition towards both the subject and the Galloi that created them.
- Majesty 2
Transgression of Attis
By adding two additional Vitae into the Taurobolium, the Galloi can use this devotion to change the subject’s sex. This change is anatomically and physiologically complete, including reproductive organs, hormones, and bone structure. This change normally fades when the effects of Tarubolium wear off, but the subject can spend a point of Willpower to make the change permanent if they so desire.
- Vigor 2
Risen from the twisted households of the Austrian aristocracy, the Geheim seem to outsiders equal parts depraved extended family, bizarre esoteric society and cunning aristocrats. Never particularly trusted or popular, the Geheim suffered a public relations fiasco in the 20th century when it (its detractors claim) became involved in the Nazi Party. Tonight the family retains positions of prominence throughout Central Europe, spreading beyond the borders of former Habsburg holdings and bringing their syncretic combination of hedonism and alchemy to the rest of the world.
Scattered throughout the ruling class of the Holy Roman Empire, the rise and fall of the lineage’s fortunes have largely mirrored those of the Habsburg family. Dilettantes claim that the founder of their bloodline, a Kindred known to his contemporaries as Count Geheim of Graz, was Embraced from among the sprawling Habsburg family. While the assertion has proven difficult for members of the line to substantiate, there’s little doubt that Geheim of Graz moved in the same social circles as the Habsburgs, as early as 1480. Personal correspondences among the Habsburgs across the centuries often mention a shadowy teacher or similar figure who matches the accepted description of Geheim. (The fact that these letters and diaries occasionally fawn over Geheim has been interpreted as evidence that he kept some of the writers under the bonds of Vinculum.) In a ceremony documented by Invictus, Sanctified and Ordo Dracul records of 1577, Geheim and two childer, Cecilia and Volker, formally announced the formation of their bloodline, making a number of claims of entitlement regarding domains within Vienna and Switzerland — claims which they were apparently able to back up, despite the difficulty of travel during the period.
Tonight the bloodline still reels from its greatest political blunder, which occurred only recently as some European Kindred reckon history. Its three founding figures have all entered torpor, (though members of the line seem to be preparing to ease the return of Count Geheim himself in the near future) leaving the lineage to flounder listlessly without direction. While many of the eldest cleave to the ideals of the bloodline’s past, continuing studies into the unknown and infiltrating and manipulating the highest strata of mortal society, the youth of the line indulge themselves with an almost apocalyptic fervor. The fall of the traditional aristocracy has resulted in the bloodline becoming more closely associated with organized crime and corporate culture, and some of the line’s newest recruits have been garnered from the ranks of those groups.
- Interactions with the Danse
- As their sobriquet suggests, the Geheim have garnered a reputation for failing to fully devote their unlives to any cause. The lineage contains its fair share of spoiled, wealthy Ventrue, many of whom take the bloodline’s philosophy as an excuse to wallow in whatever excesses can hold their attention. The lineage’s deep connections to the aristocracy of Europe garner them only slight esteem and no small amount of derision; the Carthians object to such outdated social structures on principle (plus there’s the whole Nazi thing), while many Invictus feel that the Geheim simply don’t take full advantage of the benefits they are handed. Their love affair with organized crime infuriates the Sanctified (not to mention their study of alchemy, which the Lancea Sanctum generally labels as witchcraft). Even the Ordo Dracul, the bloodline’s chosen patrons, keep the lineage at arm’s length, viewing their discoveries with no small amount of skepticism. Thus far no one outside of the bloodline has been able to precisely reproduce the Geheim’s results. Most Dragons consider that evidence that the Geheim’s procedures reflect some strange quirk of their blood rather than verifiable scientific or occult principles
- Bloodline Bane
- Dilettantes are obsessed with the properties and effects of VItae, and find it nearly impossible to ignore a new opportunity to indulge or study it. They suffer a −2 penalty on any rolls to resist Vitae Addiction, and a −1 penalty on any rolls made to resist the Blood Bond. As well, they suffer an additional −2 penalty to any roll to resist Frenzy when Hungry or Starving.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Animalism, Auspex, Dominate, Resilience
Bloodline Gift: Blut Alchemie
- The unique take on Kindred Occultism practiced by the Geheim, Blut Alchemie is considered as much a science as a sorcery, with many scholars both within and without the bloodline claiming it’s simply an esoteric science born of the applications of Kindred Vitae. Certain Scales and other ‘scientific’ methodologies sometimes can create similar results to the studies of Blut Alchemie, but they’re never quite identical to the results achieved by the Dilettantes themselves.
Mechanically, Blut Alchemie is a unique form of Blood Sorcery, using the base systems for its rolls, but having certain unique requirements and effects. It’s purchased the same way as such Sorceries, costing 4 Experiences for the base Discipline, and 2 Experiences per additional ritual (beyond the free one gained each level).
Unreliant on the tenants of Humanity, Blut Alchemie is not limited by it; instead, performing it requires access to a Laboratory, generally requiring complexity needing a Safe Place or Nest of a rating at least equal to the rating of the ritual (which they call Formulae) to be performed. Alternatively, they can ‘make due’ with a less secure mundane lab with an equipment bonus at least equal to the level of the ritual, but they take a −2 penalty to tactuallyoll (which does not actual gain the lab’s equipment bonus) due to the unspecialized tools they’re working with.
See the new merit “Dilettante’s Lab” below for more specialized equipment that assists with the bloodline’s unique sorcery.
- Dice Pool
- Intelligence + Science + Blut Alchemie
- On an exceptional success, they have the option of taking the Informed (Vitae) condition, and on a dramatic failure they take the Confused condition.
- Vitae equal to the ritual level, or pints of ‘donor’ blood equal to twice the ritual level.
- Note that substances created directly from Kindred Vitae have no ability to sustain life properly; water is oddly foul, food rotted, and air borderline toxic. However, it’s rumored that Elder Geheim are unique among sorcery practitioners in that they may have an ability that allows their Formulae to bypass this limitation with a form of ‘purification’. This will similarly allow valuable materials to be created properly with rituals like Vitae Transmutation. (Mechanically, to do this, an Elder Geheim casts a ritual with twice the cost and twice the successes needed)
Blut Alchemie Formulae
Sanguine Analysis (•)
- Target Number of Successes
Through extended study using questionably odd techniques, the Dilettante becomes able to discern certain properties of blood or Vitae that’s studied. Using this formulae renders the blood useless for consumption. For each point of Potency, one of the following pieces of information is gained. The questions are asked in order, from top to bottom, but successive castings on the same sample will ‘start off’ after the last answer discerned:
- Any information that could be garnered with a Taste of Blood success.
- Any information that could be garnered with a Taste of Blood exceptional success.
- The amount of blood that was in a subject’s system at the time the sample was taken.
- The age of the character (if mortal) or time since the character’s Embrace or last torpor, whichever was most recent (if Kindred).
- Whether the subject is blood bound to someone (if so, another point of Potency can discern who if you’ve studied a sample of their blood before)
- The clan of a ghoul’s regnant, the bloodline of a Kindred, the ‘subdivision’ of a type of supernatural (such as a Werewolf’s Auspice), or a similar ‘detailed’ bit of information about a creature’s type, to the extent the Geheim knows to categorize them (otherwise he simply knows sample X and Y are different).
- An advanced version of this ritual exists, at 3 dots, that allows the player to ask the above or other relevant questions per point of Potency, rather than receiving the information in ‘order’.
Vitae Distillation (•)
- Target Number of Successes
- 4 + target
- Through strange procedures involving the alteration of the Kindred’s own Vitae (or an appropriately processed sample from elsewhere), the Vampire becomes able to ‘create’ liquids from it with this formulae.
The exact volume created depends on the additional ‘target successes’ added, according to the following chart:
|Volume||Addition Target Successes|
- In the case of an appropriate equipment bonus or Toxicity (such as for a poisonous substance), the amount is equal to the Potency of the ritual. Damage ratings of unstable substances are capped at the practitioner’s Blut Alchemie rating, as well, and any failure on a formulae roll creating such a substance causes it to immediately ‘go off’, with appropriately disastrous results.
Substances thus created break down after about a Month, unless upheld by a Dilettante’s Laboratory (see the merit below).
Vitae Sublimation (••)
- Target Number of Successes
- 5 + target
- An extension of Vitae Distillation, which most Geheim will always learn first, this more complex ritual allows the Kindred to transform their blood into gaseous states. Obviously, doing so without proper containment is of limited usefulness.
The volume created similarly depends on the successes added to the target for the formulae:
|Volume||Addition Target Successes|
|1 Cubic Yard/Meter||0|
|5 Cubic Yard/Meters||1|
|10 Cubic Yard/Meters||2|
|20 Cubic Yard/Meters Liters||3|
|40 Cubic Yard/Meters Liters||4|
- In the case of an appropriate equipment bonus or Toxicity (such as for a poisonous substance), the amount is equal to the Potency of the ritual. Damage ratings of unstable substances are capped at the practitioner’s Blut Alchemie rating, as well, and any failure on a formulae roll creating such a substance causes it to immediately ‘go off’, with appropriately disastrous results.
Substances thus created break down after about a Month, unless upheld by a Dilettante’s Laboratory (see the merit below).
Vitae Transmutation (•••)
- Target Number of Successes
- 6 + target
- A further application of Vitae Sublimation, the Kindred becomes capable of creating homogeneous solid substances from their blood (which can be shaped into appropriate equipment in the process).
The size of the created object or substance is dependant on the additional successes added to the formulae’s target:
|Size||Addition Target Successes|
|Up to 1||0|
|Up to 3||1|
|Up to 5||2|
|Up to 10||3|
|Up to 15||4|
- This can be made into any simple (read: non mechanical or electronic) equipment as part of the creation process, so long as it’s made out of a single substance (homogeneous mixtures, alloys, and similar count towards this, it doesn’t need to be a single molecule, just recognizable as ‘one thing’), with a bonus, damage, or other equipment value total equal to the lesser of the practitioner’s Blut Alchemie rating and the formulae’s Potency.
Substances thus created break down after about a Month, unless upheld by a Dilettante’s Laboratory (see the merit below).
Advanced Vitae Transmutation (••••)
- Target Number of Successes
- 7 + target
- By further refining and altering studied blood, the Kindred can create complex substances and equipment beyond what can be done with the lesser version of this ritual.
The size of the created object or substance is dependant on the additional successes added to the formulae’s target:
|Size||Addition Target Successes|
|Up to 1||0|
|Up to 3||1|
|Up to 5||2|
|Up to 10||3|
|Up to 15||4|
Internal Athanor (•••••)
- Target Number of Successes
- Contested by
- Stamina + Blood Potency, if target unwilling
By specially preparing and then consuming the blood utilized in this Formulae (which must be Vitae in this case), the Kindred subject becomes capable of unlocking the potential held within a given Kindred’s blood. The substance created needn’t be consumed immediately, but goes inert at the end of the night, whether consumed or not. Once it is consumed, the Kindred (which can be the Gheim themself) who’s consumed it has their effective Blood Potency increased by an amount equal to the ritual’s Potency, capped by the Geheim’s rating in Blut Alchemie. This applies to all dice pools, derived traits, Banes, and other effects, except for anything lasting, such as the result of being Diablerized. However, the predatory aura, supernatural tolerance, clash of wills, kindred senses, frenzy bonuses, sunlight damage, feeding restrictions, and anything similar are all affected. The bonus fades on the next sunrise.
Bloody Bezoar (•••••)
- Target Successes
- 14+Extra Potency
This complicated ritual creates a sanguine stone capable of curing the few remedies and maladies capable of harming Kindred. To start with, the Kindred must break down the blood used in its sacrifice, which MUST be Vitae in this case, into a special substance, which is then fed to a non-human Mammal of some sort. Over the course of the ritual’s casting, the animal becomes poisoned and dies a fairly painful death, at the end of which its stomach may be cut open to retrieve the stone inside. The Kindred may purposely raise the target number to add the additional successes to the stone’s Potency, in addition to the usual means of determining a formulae’s Potency.
After creation, the stone will last for the next month (or longer if held by a Dilettante’s Laboratory, below). If consumed during that time period by a Kindred or other Undead being, its curative properties immediately take effect.
Its Potency is split between any or all of the following effects, as desired:
- Nullification of Toxicity (whether through disease or poison) equal to the Potency applied; supernatural toxins likely require a Clash of Wills to defeat. If the toxicity is lowered to 0 or less, the toxin or diseased is considered entirely gone, and the Kindred may not be reinfected by the same one for the night.
- Allowing Vitae to be spent (at normal cost) to heal a point of aggravated damage per Potency immediately, instead of needing to sleep for the night.
- Curing a Physical Condition or Tilt that would require a number of Vitae equal to Potency to remove normally, or a flat 3 Potency for any other Physical Condition or Tilt.
- Heal a number of Bashing damage equal to applied Potency without requiring Vitae.
New Merit: Dilettante’s Laboratory (• to •••••)
- Safe Place or Nest Guardian (if Ordo) at same level. Blut Alchemie •
Your character maintains a specialized, blood-centric laboratory explicitly designed for the sake of upkeeping and assisting in the experiments the Geheim are best known for, and the applications of Blut Alchemie.
- The Laboratory’s rating indicates its approximate size or complexity, which must be contained within an appropriately designed Safe Place or appropriately powerful Wyrm’s Nest. Its most basic ability is its allowance of highly complex ‘formulae kits’, that is, small collections of specialized tools and equipment that will allow the Geheim to perform Blut Alchemie without direct presence within the Lab, by expending the contents of such a kit. The merit’s dots indicate the total ‘rating’ of formulae that may be portably cast this way per chapter (so a 4 dot Lab might allow a casting of a 3 dot and a 1 dot Formulae, or two 2 dots, etc).
In addition, the unique tools within make the performance of Blut Alchemie that much more reliable. When using the lab (and the Kindred’s actually inside it), the merit’s rating is added to any Formulae activation rolls, and a number of Formulae cast there that would last at least a scene may be ‘hung’ on the lab, being upkept indefinitely until another replaces it (the Dilettante chooses when replacements occur, it’s not automatic).
Upkeeping the resonance of such a lab requires a bit of living energy; at least one pint of blood or point of Vitae must be ‘fed into’ the strange systems per month per dot of the rating. Although the typical runoff of it produces about the same amount of blood, although with only the purity of animal blood.
Finally, Geheim are incredibly territorial and mystically connected to their Labs; if such a lab is attacked, it’s treated as an attack on the Geheim themself for the purposes of provoking Frenzy.
Those of Les Gens Libres bloodline believe in freedom above all else. Members of the bloodline are Embraced from those who were subject to a cruel or unjust exercise of authority or power. Among their ranks might be a former slave, an ex-criminal, a prisoner of war, a man who has suffered a life of poverty in the hands of a corrupt government, or a battered woman trapped in an abusive relationship. In death, those chosen to become a part of Les Gens Libres finally find freedom. The Gens Libres are a rebellious lot, and they revel in their vampiric powers, seeing their abilities as tools that can be utilized to turn the tables on their oppressors and liberate those who are still oppressed.
Bloodline historians have never been able to pinpoint who exactly was the founder of the bloodline, but it is widely believed that the line is relatively recent in the grand scheme of things. The bloodline clearly originated in Saint Domingue (modern-day Haiti), sometime shortly before or during the Haitian Revolution at the end of the 18th century. Originally, members of the bloodline were Kindred turned from Haitian slaves, still burning with unforgotten hatred remaining from their mortal lives held in bondage. As the years passed, the bloodline grew to encompass a much wider range of cultural backgrounds — any of those among the masses who have been oppressed, and who believe in freedom above all else.
- Interactions with the Danse
- In small numbers, Kindred with more traditional ideals generally see Les Gens Libres as nothing more than a loud and annoying nuisance. When their numbers swell, however, their strength becomes formidable, and not many are more adept at garnering support for their cause than are the Freedmen. As such, the bloodline tends to be closely monitored to ensure they remain contained and easily controlled. For the most part, Les Gens Libres are on relatively friendly terms with the Carthians. Though their motives and methods may differ, the two groups both share a similar progressive attitude. The groups may occasionally find common ground and work together to achieve a mutual goal.
- Bloodline Bane
- Les Gens Libres are incapable of forming a blood bond, and vampires who drink the blood of a Freedman are never subject to the Vinculum. This suits members of the bloodline perfectly well, however, as the majority of Freedmen view the Vinculum as simply another unjust form of slavery. Members of the bloodline believe that this weakness is not a detriment at all; rather, it is a proudly-worn badge of their continued commitment to the proliferation of Freedom.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Obfuscate, Auspex, Resilience, Celerity
Bloodline Gift: Briser les Chaînes (Break Chains)
- Les Gens Libres have developed a fair number of tricks unique to their bloodline, specialized Devotions and abilities allowing them to network more easily with each other, and cast away enslavement in its various forms, especially among Kindred society in particular. All Freedmen gain the Blood Compass devotion immediately upon joining the Bloodline, and may learn additional ones for 2 Experiences each.
- Blood Compass
Those within Les Gens Libres learn a technique to create what they call a ‘Blood Compass’, a small artifact of sorts that allows the user to detect other members of the Bloodline, who are otherwise often difficult to find. An old cloth is used, which must be stained and ragged from actual work and use, and a point of Vitae is spilled onto it. The Kindred then rolls Blood Potency + any Blood Sympathy they have to the nearest member of the Bloodline, modified as below for distance; on a success, the blood will ‘point’ in the direction of that member at all times until the cloth is destroyed, the member meets final death, or the member is met up with.
- Break Vinculum (Resilience •••, Auspex •)
The Gens Libres believe the blood bond is nothing more than another form of slavery. Sadly, the Vinculum is widely used among Kindred to force others into submission. By laying their hands upon a thrall, a Freedman is able to break him free of his bond. 1 Vitae is spent, and the target is touched by the Kindred, at which point a roll of Blood Potency is made as if the Freedmen themself was attempting to fend off the Vinculum when drinking Vitae, with a −1 penalty per step the target’s Bound, and contested by the target’s Blood Potency if unwilling to have their Bond broken. If successful, the bond is reduced a step as if it had been successfully resisted during that initial drink. This may be repeated until it’s broken entirely.
- Liberated Mind (Auspex •, Obfuscate •••)
Over the years, Les Gens Libres developed a technique that, when utilized, makes them less susceptible to being dominated by others. Liberated Mind creates a false mind that shields the true psyche of the Freedman from domination, and makes his would-be controller falsely believe the attempt at control was successful. By spending a point of Vitae, for the remainder of the Night, they may make a Clash of Wills against any supernatural power meant to force them into doing something they don’t want to do; if they win, the power fails, but seems to have been successful, unless its failure to be followed would be immediately obvious (Not sitting when ordered by Dominate to “Sit down”, for instance). Against the Dominate Discipline specifically, the Clash roll gains the 8-again benefit.
- Telepathic Network (Auspex ••••, Obfuscate •••)
Experienced Freedmen are capable of creating a mental network of telepathic communication between groups of Kindred. Once the network has been opened, any Subjects affected by Telepathic Network can send out a silent, mental message to the entire group such as, “I am being attacked, come help me!” or, “I’m currently breaking into the back of the building. Where are the rest of you?” This Devotion cannot be used on an unwilling or unaware subject.
- 1 Vitae
- Dice Pool
- Intelligence + Stealth + Auspex - # of individuals linked
Upon activation, Telepathic Network creates a temporary telepathic bond between multiple willing people. The number of vampires (or otherwise) that can be included within the network penalizes the activation roll, which automatically fails if attempted on an unwilling individual. Those within the network may send out a mental message to the entire group, but may not send out a private message to a specific individual. The network is unaffected by distance once activated (although all who wish to be a part of the network must be present for activation). Telepathic Network lasts for the duration of a Night, unless the character responsible for activating the Devotion chooses to end it earlier.
Additionally, Telepathic Network masks the Beasts of those within the network. While those within the network still instinctively know other vampires by sight, those outside the group will not be able to sense their Aura (even if not the Predatory Aura of a Kindred), and any supernatural attempt to determine their nature reveals them as mortal unless they defeat the Devotion activator in a Clash of Wills.
“The definition of a Lunatic is someone who is mentally ill. Think about that for a moment; those of us that see beyond the veil, see the truth of things, we are called ‘ill’ because we refuse to be as ignorant as the collective masses. But don’t worry, in a moment you’ll see firsthand just how naive your viewpoint really is..”
The Malkovians are madness incarnate, Kindred not only detached from humanity, but so distant in their mannerisms and behavior that many wonder if they’re the result of some disease of the blood rather than the machinations of an Elder. At least, most are… Or rather, that’s the assumption made throughout Kindred society (Those that know of them, at least). Many, though, are so subtle in their delusion that they can pass as any other Kindred, until the moment when their complex machinations are unveiled in a bloody revelation that’s been known to bring a city’s Praxis to its knees.
Compared to the more commonly known bloodlines, the Malkovians are fairly young, born of the machinations of a doctor only decades ago that took a bit too much interest in a criminally insane patient in the Asylum they worked in. A mutual interest, it appeared, when one night the doctor found himself stumbling home, hungering for blood. The specific details are said to be lost to history, but it’s well known that his wife and kids were killed shortly thereafter, and ever since then that lineage has begun a slow trickle of expansion.
The Malkovians have since remained a well kept secret within the Ventrue, a rarity of the blood that most seek to eradicate but that never seems to entirely go away. Part of their success lies in the fact that it can occasionally be difficult to tell the difference between a badly detached, inhuman Ventrue and a Malkovian, leading to the occasional ‘witch hunt’ within the clan itself. Some say that the Malkovians aren’t truly children of a specially designed lineage, so much as the victims of a blood-born pathogen or supernatural illness that permanently seem to rewrite how the Kindred mind sees things, and that is easily passed between sire and childe. Those believing this theory are known to apply the term ‘Malkavia’ to the condition itself, when not speaking of the Vampires themselves. In recent nights, the bloodline has jumped from something that was only found in Ventrues to other clans. This is not looked on by any as a good thing.
- Interactions with the Danse
Malkovians often fall into two categories, depending on their specific delusion (see below); they tend towards either playing the game of control like any other Ventrue, working their own beliefs into the enterprises they build, retainers they build up, and targets they seek out to eliminate or absorb, or they tend to find themselves lurking in the shadows, out of the way of the ‘public’ eye of their clan and perhaps Kindred society itself. In either case, the Malkovian bloodline is said to be more ‘insightful’ than your average Ventrue, seeing things before they happen, or plucking secrets from places nobody could know they even existed within, and either putting that information to their own use or passing it along to someone they figure will do the work for them. Malkovians are most often found within the Invictus, where they can act as any other Ventrue would within, within the Carthians where they can disappear amongst the ‘rabble’ in the eyes of others, or within the Circle, where their insightful ‘gifts’ are more likely to be appreciated.
- Bloodline Bane
- The Malkovians are permanently under the influence of a personal delusion, as described in the Delusional persistent condition, and so long as their Humanity is low enough, they can never ‘disprove’ or otherwise be rid of it; even if they seem to temporarily, it’s not long at all before they’ve found new ‘evidence’ that proves what they’ve been saying all along. With Storyteller permission, their Delusion might change over time, but not completely, and is never negated entirely.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- The Disciplines of those infected with Malkavia function slightly differently to most bloodline powers. Whatever your clan, you keep your clan’s 3 in-clans. However, you may choose either Nightmare or Dominate as your fourth in-clan.
Bloodline Gift: Dementation
- The Malkovian ‘gift’, known as Dementation, is one of insight, revelation, and truth; or madness, delusion, and chaos, depending on who you ask. Every Malkovian has access to the gift, and some of the similarities to Auspex are why comparisons to the Mekhet have been occasionally drawn. However, unlike Auspex, where the user asks a question and then receives an answer, Dementation gives you the answers to questions you didn’t know existed in the first place.
- The character may gain one piece of insight for ‘free’ in a scene with a reflexive action, but thereafter must pay a point of Vitae for each additional piece of information gleaned. The nature of this information is entirely up to the Storyteller; some common possibilities include allowing a Clash of Wills against an invisible character (Use the character’s Wits instead of a discipline rating), revealing the true form of a supernatural being, displaying ephemeral entities to the character’s vision, learning of danger in the area, discovering the object in the room most relevant to the current task, learning a mortal’s Virtue or Vice, or learning what to say to improve an Impression in social conflict. For the character, the information should always be conveyed as some alteration of their senses, or momentary vision; seeing a mage’s nimbus, feeling sudden anger towards a threat, the smell of sweat on an easily intimidated individual, an object seeming to sparkle a little brighter, and similar.
However, the Malkovian has no say in what information is gleaned; this is left entirely to the Storyteller. Alternatively, if the Storyteller wishes to leave it to chance, they may roll on the chart below (but shouldn’t feel limited by these options otherwise). In the case of a revelation not being applicable, roll again.
- Dementation Chart
- (Roll a d10 and gain the insight listed below).
1 - The character learns of the most imminent threat, whether that’s physical or otherwise.
2 - The character learns of the presence of a supernatural entity; invisible, ephemeral, or otherwise (May require a Clash of Wills). Alternatively, if none are present, they might learn of other supernatural phenomena, like a supernatural location or relic, weakened barrier between realms, or anything similar.
3 - The character learns how to immediately (but perhaps temporarily) improve the Impression of an NPC by one step.
4 - The character learns the general emotional ‘mood’ of the room, even if it’s veiled or hidden by the majority of inhabitants; for instance, they could tell when a riot might be about to start, or if a party’s going badly despite pleasantries.
5 - The character sees past some type of illusion, whether innate to a template (Like a Demon’s Cover), created by supernatural powers (Such as a Mage using Prime magic), or somehow ‘natural’ in the world. This may require a Clash of Wills.
6 - The character gains the ability to communicate with somebody or something they normally couldn’t; understanding and temporarily speaking a foreign language, understanding the strange words of spirits, speaking to animals, learning who or what has gone by a building recently in a flash of insight, or anything similar.
7 - The character is lead to those suffering some sort of madness or mental illness; low Integrity, the Insane Tilt, the Delusional Or Madness conditions or certain other mental conditions, and anything similar might apply. This of course reveals other Malkovians.
8 - The character learns of a Bane or similar weakness of another individual (For mortals, this may simply be a severely impeding Condition or low Attribute score).
9 - The character learns of either mundane or supernatural control over someone, whether through blackmail, memory alterations, threats of violence, disciplines like Dominate or Majesty, the blood Bond, the powers of other Supernaturals, or whatever else might apply.
10 - The character discovers some inner secret of another character in the scene, or of the current location, whether mundane or supernatural.
“According to your chart here, you’re due to be released tomorrow night. But we can’t have that, now, when there’s still so much work to do, can we? Just hold still, we’ll make sure they correct this error…”
Not every scream in the ICU is caused by a painful disease wreaking havoc with a patient’s senses. Not every cry in the prison is an inmate demanding to be released or being unwilling to make peace with their situation. Not every wail in the orphanage is a young child simply wishing their parents were still around. Many times, in the darkest moments of the night, these calls are caused not by the situation of those dwelling inside, but by the monsters lurking in the institution’s shadows, the nightmares made manifest of those within. The Morotrophians. They are the doctor known to perform just a few too many surgeries, the bogeyman in the dark corners of the unkempt orphanage, and the brutal guard in the prison. Wherever there’s a group of people that nobody will pay attention to when claims of monsters amongst the staff or in the corners are made, it’s likely that one of the Monks has made their home there.
While the first Monk’s sire is unknown, he himself has been recorded, his modern progeny usually knowing much about him, given the bloodline’s aptitude for record keeping and procedure. His name was Ludoldus, a young german monk that found himself unable to leave the confines of his monastery after being embraced as a Nosferatu, suffering bouts of fear and confusion whenever he left the property. Lonely an existence as that was, it wasn’t too long before he began to sire progeny of his own, using his connections from life to find them homes amongst other monasteries and abbeys when it became clear they couldn’t possibly all stay in the same place without drawing attention. Of course, this cycle quickly repeated, each one a little further away from the standard Ludoldus himself kept with regards to who he would feed on or experiment upon. What followed was a great purging of sorts, some say by God himself, while others claim it was simply a matter of overpopulation and recklessness, as the monks and nuns discovered what was responsible for the sudden deaths. Either way, nearly half the bloodline was killed, and it was in the aftermath that they began to settle in positions where those within wouldn’t be listened to by man or God alike; asylums. It’s had its ups and downs since then, but in modern times the bloodline can be found (in more conservative numbers) throughout civilized societies around the world. For more information on their history, see Bloodlines: The Hidden.
- Morotrophians need to be Nosferatu, and in general must also be free of any persistent mental conditions of their own before their bloodline can properly be activated.
- Interactions with the Danse
- The Morotrophians have no official organization amongst themselves, since so few of them are ever in the same area, and especially not the same building (which few ever wish to leave). They do tend to have reliable lines of communication to others of their kind, however, the better to manipulate the setup of institutions that go up further than the local asylum; using each others’ connections as a group to manipulate the State Department, for instance.
Whether amongst their own kind or amongst Kindred in general, the Monks tend to keep extensive record of debts owed, favors paid, and assistance rendered both by and for others, and are well known for causing trouble for those that welch on a debt. While they rarely leave their homes to do this themselves, other Monks or Kindred that refuse to repay their favors may find themselves hassled by government agencies or news crews that pay a little too much scrutiny to the offending Kindred, often causing no end of problems for them, even occasionally driving them out of their previously safe haven.
With regards to wider Kindred society, those that align themselves with a covenant often find themselves amongst the Invictus, their tendency for rules, order, oaths, and debt tracking innately suiting their talents. Some others that still haunt religious organizations or cults find that the Lancea et Sanctum calls to them, allowing them to play the monster in the dark that punishes the sinful and tests the righteous. Finally, some few join the Ordo Dracul, taking command of an institution that also happens to be a Wyrm’s Nest, often being willing to watch over even those said to be the most dangerous.
Though they may deal with their covenant, very few take positions of power amongst Kindred as a whole, rarely participating in the politics of other vampires unless the rulings involved would affect their own institution. In such a case, they’ll often suddenly call upon the large number of small favors many of them have collected, working to be sure their hunting grounds go unharmed. The one exception to this is the occasional Keeper of Elysium; none can run a proper court quite like one of the Monks.
- Bloodline Bane
- The mind of a Morotrophian works best when steeped in procedures, rules, guidelines, and boundaries, whether physical, social, or simply well known and understood. In fact, when outside of an institution (see Institutionalize, below) or another situation that meets these prerequisites, their mind has trouble working at all; they suffer the Confused condition until they’ve spent at least a half hour clearing their mind in an appropriate institution (and gain no beat for its resolution). Usually, this bane only applies if some sort of social or mental task needs to be accomplished there; simply walking down the street won’t cause them any particular problem.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Nightmare, Obfuscate, Vigor, Dominate
Bloodline Gift: Institutionalize (Facets: Examination, Authority, Operation)
- Despite being stuck within his monastery, Ludoldus found he was able to form a greater connection to it than has ever been seen before amongst Kindred, finding that the secrets of the building itself and those of the people within it seemed to be almost intuitively understood by him. This bloodline gift of the Morotrophians, now called Institutionalize, allows both understanding and control of an institution or similar location. Rules can be made to be followed, the motivations of those supposedly in charge can be understood, and the building seems to just run smoother for the Monk.
There are conditions with regards to what sorts of institutions, buildings, and gathering places can be affected by their Gift. Generally, most of the following conditions must be met:
- It must be a geographical location with easily discernable or at least commonly known boundaries, and must have mandatory attendance of some kind, whether for members of a cult, a prison’s population, or a hospital simply requiring that patients stay for observation and that schedules its staff.
- It must contain some sort of social group or organization that has rules for the ways certain individuals are meant to behave, which can include everything from an orphanage having a curfew for the children, to the Laws of Elysium applying to Kindred within, to the separation between employees and guests at an office.
- Some group within must usually concede some form of control over their life or legal rights. This can include mental patients having no control over their daily schedule and treatment, to developers for a company signing their copyright claims away.
In addition, most buildings that are represented by a merit (Safe Place, for instance, and especially Havens) or that are part of a supernatural society (even if it doesn’t quite follow the rules above) can also be affected by this Gift. When working with such a location, the Monk then gains a number of capabilities, described as Aspects of their gift. The Aspects are Examination, Authority, and Operation, which are each merits rated at one to five dots. Morotrophians start with one dot in each, and may purchase further dots of the Aspect merits as normal. The Kindred’s level of any Aspect always controls either the number of individuals affected or the size of the location influenced, in addition to what’s listed under the effects of each Aspect.
•: A single individual, very small room (a closet, for instance), or similar sized space.
••: A few (up to 5) related individuals of the same type (All are guards, all are inmates, all are patients, etc), or a single regular sized room (A patient’s room would apply, for instance, but not a cafeteria).
•••: A small group (up to 20 people) of related individuals of the same type , a few (up to 5) unrelated individuals in the same area (a guard and the two inmates nearby), a larger room (a waiting room, for instance), or a few related rooms (up to 5 prison cells, for instance).
••••: A much larger group of related individuals (up to 50 targets of the same type), a small group of unrelated individuals (up to 20 people of any sort that match the Gift’s criteria), a very large room or similar sized location (an ICU, a playground), or a large number of related rooms (all bunks on the first floor).
••••• The entirety of a building and the grounds surrounding it, or all of the people within the area.
Unless otherwise stated, any Aspect use that isn’t instantaneous lasts for a scene.
Cost: All Aspects cost one Vitae per dot level used, although the first time each one is used in a scene, this is lowered by one, to a minimum of zero.
Using the Examine Aspect of Institutionalize reveals secrets about both mortal and location alike, the exact information revealed listed below. The roll to discern this information is Wits + Examination + Blood Potency - group/location size (per rating, above), with an additional penalty equal to the highest Composure amongst the targets in the case of a group. In the case of a Clash of Wills being needed, Wits + Blood Potency is rolled.
•: The Morotorphian can discern the social dynamics of a group observed, gaining the ability to ask one question about that interplay per success rolled. Alternatively, he may ask one piece of information per success rolled about the location studied itself. In both cases, this must be purely mundane information, and only covers the specific emotions or physical facts themselves, not the reasons behind it. Example: The Monk’s player might study a group of prisoners sitting together, and ask who is seen as the most dangerous amongst them. He’d learn who it was, but not WHY he’s considered the most dangerous. Alternatively, he might ask which piece of machinery in a room breaks down the most often, but he would have no idea what causes it to fail.
••: The monk becomes able to dig a little deeper. He can learn reasons behind mundane questions asked, in general terms. These do count as additional ‘questions’, however, so further successes must be spent or the power used again. Alternatively, he can now learn supernaturally-oriented information; someone acting a certain way because of a use of Majesty, for instance, or a location acting as a Shadow Gate when certain conditions are met. These still require the proper questions, of course. Example: In the above example, a success might be used to learn that the most dangerous of the inmates is viewed that way because he spent several months in solitary after breaking a guy’s arm. Or he may learn that the machinery breaks down because the janitor keeps sabotaging it out of anger against those in charge.
•••: At this level, the Morotrophian becomes better able to make sense of the supernatural information as well, learning the implications behind it, and perhaps even a bit about supernatural society, if related to the institution it’s being used at. Similarly, locations give up why their supernatural aspects exist as they do, such as who or what caused them. As above, this requires additional successes. Example: A success is spent to learn that the cute nurse is actually a Werewolf, while another tells him that a small group of others respect her because of this. Another success could be then spent to learn she’s a leader of the pack, and further questioning might reveal she’s a Cahalith, which is fairly typical for an alpha.
••••: The vampire moves beyond asking questions and becomes able to project his senses. If targeting individuals, the Kindred becomes able to share the senses of any individual within the targeted group, though can only do so to one at a time. If targeting an area, he can project his senses anywhere within it, as if viewing from behind a glass wall. At this level, this ability does not allow for a Clash of Wills; the perception is purely mundane (unless a targeted individual has a power that reveals supernatural information in use).
•••••: As with the previous rating, the senses of a group or view of a location can be provided, but it’s more far reaching. The Kindred may simultaneously perceive from and understand the sensory input of a number of individuals or spots within the location equal to his Blood Potency. In addition, this perception allows him to see through illusions and similar trickery, allowing a Clash of Wills versus any power that alters perception or conceals something perceptible.
The Aspect of Authority is what gives the Morotrophians their reputation for being able to run a well oiled machine, or at least, it certainly helps them to reinforce that viewpoint. Authority is used to make sure rules and procedure are followed. To utilize Authority, Manipulation + Authority + Blood Potency - size is rolled. Individuals may contest this with Resolve + Blood Potency. Any Clash of Wills resulting uses Manipulation + Blood Potency.
•: At the basic level, a Morotrophian can stop targeted people from doing one specific, named thing that’s against the listed, established rules, though he cannot then make him do the correct thing in turn. For instance, he could stop an orphan from running away, but could not make the child then go to their room and fall asleep despite it being lights out, if he’s already outside. It also cannot cause inaction that would lead to harm coming to the target, however minor. When targeting a location, this makes sure it continues to run properly for the scene; machines won’t break down, locked doors won’t fail, and the power will remain constant. Any attempt to make it do otherwise suffers a penalty equal to the successes rolled, if mundane, and causes a Clash of Wills if supernatural.
••: More advanced levels of Authority allow the Morotrophian to make a given individual or group do as the rules say they should. A nurse that’s avoiding treating a patient she dislikes, for instance, might be forced to do her rounds and treat them as normal. In the case of a location, it not only keeps things running properly, but can make sure that proper procedures and rules, including who can access it, are followed by anyone that might interact with it, rather than needing to target those people individually. Someone attempting to do something against that area’s rules or go somewhere in the area that they’re not supposed to must roll Resolve + Blood Potency as if they themselves were targeted, and beat the successes rolled by the Morotrophian. In both cases, these must still follow already established rules and guidelines.
•••: The Morotrophian learns to work within the spirit of the rules, or rather, the rules as he interprets them. He may do anything the first or second level allows, but may work within the spirit of the rules, even if the letter of the existing procedures does not prevent what’s being done. It’s ultimately a Storyteller call what does or does not follow the spirit of the institution’s guidelines.
••••: At this level, the Morotrophian not only interprets the rules, but creates them. He may use the first or second level of this Aspect with regards to a new rule created by him, by first writing it or otherwise placing it somewhere where it’d be seen or heard by those that should follow it. This includes anything from a “Do not enter” sign on a location he doesn’t want disturbed, to scrawling something on a sign that lists the rules for a swimming pool, or even making an announcement about it before activating the power.
•••••: The ultimate extension of the Monk’s Authority comes when he not only can create new rules and make sure they’re followed, but when he can seem to retroactively put them in place. By using this level, the Monk creates a rule, as above, but in addition to it appearing where he puts it, circumstances come together to make sure the rule is actually entered into the books, or wherever such rules are usually kept. Any individuals in the area act as if this is entirely normal, though powers that discern memory alteration or mind affecting abilities can detect this, and potentially undo it with a Clash of Wills as normal.
While Authority works to make sure rules and procedures are followed, Operation is used to more directly control the day to day operation of the location, or even to take control of the area itself. Stamina + Operation + Blood Potency - size is rolled to active it, contested by Composure + Blood Potency if appropriate. A Clash of Wills, if needed, uses Stamina + Blood Potency. In any case where a dice pool might be needed to perform an action reliably when controlling a location’s operation, use the Kindred’s Intelligence + Wits as their base dice pool.
•: At this level, a brief moment of control over the location is taken, to perform one simple physical task the location or area is built for. For instance, the lights could be flicked off or on, a machine could be activated, or an alarm tripped despite nobody being present. Individuals targeted can have an idea put in their mind as to something that needs to be done (for instance, “That IV needs to be changed”), but it isn’t enforced.
••: More complex operation of a single aspect of an area can be controlled. With concentration (roll Resolve + Composure if he tries to do anything else, or gets distracted, or the effect ends), the Kindred could control what a camera sees, masking the reality of it, for instance, or could cause an industrial assembly line to activate and go through the whole process of manufacturing an object. Individuals targeted feel an urge to perform a task placed in their mind (that relates to the operation of the institution), and will do so as soon as they reasonably can if they fail to resist. In either case, this can last up to five minutes per success rolled.
•••: Continuous control, that lasts an entire scene (or a half hour per success, if specific times are needed), can be provided at this level, which works identically to the second, but allows for the longer timespan. He must still concentrate on what he’s doing at this point.
••••: With the fourth level, the Morotrophian becomes able to more reflexively control the institution. He may perform any actions that the second (and third) level of Operation allows for without needing continual concentration, allowing him to take other actions or be distracted without interrupting what he’s doing.
•••••: The Kindred gains the ability to go into a trance, at this level, to more directly take control of an area, as if an extension of himself. His body goes into a state similar to Torpor for the duration, and he gains control of every physical aspect of the location targeted, able to do anything from opening and closing a door as easily as he could move his hand, to speaking through the loudspeakers as easily as he could talk normally. His senses are limited to what might normally be within the building, such as seeing through cameras or listening through microphones, unless he also uses Examine’s fourth or fifth dot after activating this Aspect. At any point, he may return to his body at will, ending the Aspect and waking up, but he has no sense of his own body otherwise unless he takes damage. When targeting individuals with this level, it works the same as the fourth, but he may continually change the task to be completed whenever it gets completed, for the duration.
“You hear It, don’t you?”
The Renatus Dynasty are a powerful group of Mekhet, said to hear the teachings of what they call The Void, an unknowable entity beyond the typical bounds of reality, capable of imparting knowledge none should be capable of discerning. They’ve been developing their lineage for generations, and as such, it’s no surprise that in recent years, they’ve solidified the power of their blood, and their connection to The Void, that much more.
The Renatus Dynasty is the first and longest-lasting among those in the northwestern United States, and one of the few Mekhet lineages that’s ever been in Portland proper. Arriving in the early 20th century to the area, their progenitor, Seth Renatus, was a renowned Scholar of the Ordo Dracul, well known for his mastery of the Coils, several of which are mentioned by name in the family’s records, but are otherwise unknown in modern times. He worked closely with others in the Covenant as they arrived, and sired no small number of his own children, drawn from the ranks of the more notable occult scholars, early wiccans, and spiritualists of various kinds. These early members are said (among the family, at least) to have been among the first within the United States to revive the practice of the ancient Coil of Sorcery: the Mystery of Zirnitra. Delving into practices that would be forbidden in some chapters, and looked down upon in the rest, many early masters of it and other, related Mysteries arose, bringing the local Ordo to a position of power.
It’s no secret, however, that Seth and his progeny had early issues with the Invictus and their more prominent members, and so their power was often found to be fluctuating and more spiritual than political. Most would never claim the Ordo to be too savvy in the political sphere, but they had to deal with uphill battles simply to make sure they were allowed to keep themselves fed and sheltered. If not for the unique capabilities they could offer to those that DIDN’T wish them harm, they might not have survived.
It’s at around this time, as their founders and elders were recessed into the backdrop, that The Void first began to make itself known, guiding them not to other Kindred, but to mortal psychics, thaumaturges, and minor talents, urging them to create a small Mystery Cult that could act as their more public arm, a collection of power that other lineages in the area lacked.
In the following decades, they managed to cement their power base, rooting themselves within the city and making it clear they weren’t going anywhere. Power grabs and challenges continued, but by now it was clear that they weren’t going anywhere.
The actual origin of the Bloodline proper, though, came as a development of one of the Dynasty’s younger members, Daniel Renatus, who’s been utilizing strange methodologies to improve the potency of his blood to the point of altering it far sooner than most Kindred would be capable of it, in order to forge a closer connection to the same energy as The Void itself.
- The Becoming
- Most Renatus are scholarly and/or occult minded, holding a fascination with mortal magic especially. In life, many were psychics, thaumaturges, or otherwise minor talents themselves, and those that join the Ordo especially tend to work to keep those abilities via the Coil of Zirnitra.
As a rule, Renatus Kindred are focused on enlightenment through the arcane, and so whether they join the Ordo or not, they’re often seen wielding some odd form of power; unique devotions, ancient blood sorceries, or unknown magics, for instance.
- Only the Renatus Kindred (a Mekhet Dynasty) are brought into the Bloodline, period. There’s no mortal lineage that it actually needs to match up with, though most will end up taking an Alternate Identity and using the last name Renatus, especially among Kindred.
- Interactions with the Danse
- The Ordo Dracul, of course, is the most common destination of the Renatus Kindred, but several have joined the Circle of the Crone as well. A smattering join up with other covenants, but none that join the Invictus would actually be allowed within the Bloodline. None that are already in it have ever tried to do so after the fact, but most warn against upsetting The Void by attempting to join up with the lineage’s enemies.
As such, many are apolitical, using what little leverage they might have in those spheres to gain better access to mortal cults, Wyrm’s Nests, or other resources to help them grow their power. Of course, they’re loyal to a fault to each other, and should one come on the bad side of another Kindred (especially an Invictus) the normally out of the way Renatus will often band together to bring down all manner of strange consequences on the offender.
- The Enlightened
- Bloodline Bane
- The Void finds its way into the blood of the Renatus Kindred who join the bloodline. In many ways, it’s a blessing, but this has a few side effects. Renatus Kindred are utterly unable to create human ghouls, as The Void’s nature prevents it from stifling potential, and despite the advantages of Kindred Disciplines, such a change removes the potential for (or existence of) mortal magics of any other kind, instead making them reliant solely on what Kindred teach them. Animal ghouls and Mandragora creation are unaffected by this.
In addition, their blood takes on a nearly-insubstantial quality to it, like it’s more a shadow of itself or an illusion of Vitae than the full thing; those resisting addiction to their Vitae gain a bonus equal to (10 - the Enlightened’s Humanity) to the roll, and each point only counts as ½ for the sake of rolling to resist the Blood Bond (which requires 2 Vitae to be consumed per step). Those already addicted or bound, however, still find themselves sustained by the strange substance normally.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Auspex, Celerity, Nightmare, Obfuscate
Bloodline Gift: Mystery of The Void
The Void changes the Renatus Kindred, or leads them to a form of enlightenment and transcendence, not entirely unlike the Coils practiced by the Ordo Dracul. Their supernatural power and insight into the unnatural world gets heightened to levels unseen by most other Kindred.
This is represented by a power similar to a Mystery of the Dragon, as studied by the Ordo Dracul, but they need not be a member of the Ordo, nor may they teach it to non-Renatus Dragons, for that matter. In addition, even if they do already have a Primary Mystery of the Dragon, they always purchase the Mystery of the Void as if it were their Primary.
Coil of The Void
The Coil of The Void is not some minor sorcerous Coil like Zirnitra, allowing one to dip backward into mortal magics. No, the Coil of the Void heightens the Kindred’s supernatural nature in all forms, attuning the Kindred to the various forms of arcane energy that exist in the world: the Essence of spirits, the Mana of the Supernal, and similar sources of power. Their senses key to power, their mind to the preternatural, and their bodies to the energy that fuels it; in a sense, they become less about their physical undead form and more about the Potency sustaining them.
- Scent of the Unknown •
Before anything else, the Renatus must learn to attune themselves fully to the supernatural, to be certain they’ll never miss its presence in any form, and their Kindred Senses are reshaped to seek it out like Blood. They may sense any sort of supernatural energy (such as Glamour, Essence, etc) as easily as they can blood with their Kindred Senses, for instance noticing a swirl of Glamour being harvested by a Changeling, or catching the rotting scent of the death-tinged Essence radiating from a graveyard.
This does apply to their sense of hearing, too; the heartbeat of a supernatural creature, or even a mortal with a supernatural ability, differs slightly to them due to the influence of the otherworldly, and they can distinguish between them once they know what they’re listening to.
In all cases, it will not get past abilities meant to veil the presence of these energies or one’s supernatural nature, although Changelings may be sensed even if their Mask isn’t pierced.
- Taste of the Forbidden ••
The Renatus Kindred, through The Void’s influence and guidance, learn to sustain themselves less on life force, and more on the unnatural energy found throughout the denizens of the Darkness. They never need Unnatural Affinity to feed on and gain sustenance from any sort of creature that merit could normally apply to.
When feeding on such creatures, the Kindred gains the ability to tap into their power. By spending a point of Willpower, he may take a single point of supernatural energy from such a creature; essence from a Werewolf or Spirit, or Glamour from a Changeling, for instance. He may store that ‘energy’ as a generic ‘Umbral Energy’ trait, which, after the first point, counts towards the character’s Vitae maximum. These may then be spent at any time (subject to Vitae/turn limits, but otherwise able to be spent simultaneously) to grant the Kindred the 9-Again bonus on the activation of a supernatural power.
Multiple willpower points may be spent to take multiple energy over several turns, but the effect is rather obvious to most supernatural creatures; even those willingly allowing a Vampire to feed on their blood might not be so happy with their energy being siphoned away.
- Strength of the Arcane •••
While most Kindred are limited in the Potency of their Blood and their knowledge of Disciplines when it comes to the sheer ‘presence’ of their powers, the Renatus learn to channel supernatural force from elsewhere to bolster themselves further, becoming sensitive to their own abilities in the process.
Those that achieve this level in the Coil are inherently aware of when their supernatural abilities are involved in a Clash of Wills (though they gain no specific details), meaning they may spend Willpower to improve the roll even if not present, and may spend Umbral Energy on it to gain the same bonus as they would for a power activation (if they already did activate the power with Umbral Energy, the bonus applies to the Clash automatically).
If they win a Clash of Wills with an exceptional success, in lieu of a condition they may take a point of the aggressor’s supernatural energy for their own Umbral Energy pool (if they don’t use Vitae).
- Aura of the Otherworld ••••
While few attribute magical might to The Beast, its power can be harnessed by Renatus Kindred to gain a command over similar supernatural forces. The Renatus may ‘Lash Out’ with the Eldritch Beast (rolling Blood Potency + Coil rating, modified as normal), an alteration to their predatory aura that preys on supernatural weakness and the bit of arcane potential present in even the mundane, creating a sort of temporary void in their spirit that invites in the Renatus’ other abilities; if utilized in response to an attempt to enact another power on them, he may Lash Out reflexively for a point of Umbral Energy. It’s otherwise equivalent to Lashing out normally, although Depleted is not limited to once per month.
If he gets an exceptional success inflicting the condition, or an opponent gains a dramatic failure on resisting it, he may steal a point of Umbral Energy as above.
- Soul of The Void •••••
The Enlightened has become more of a supernatural force than a physical predator. He may now use Umbral Energy to replace Vitae costs, and may spend a point of it when activating a power to improve its longevity and presence in the world; powers that are instantaneous are unaffected, but powers that last for less than a scene but more than an instant double their duration, and powers that last a scene or longer are upgraded as follows: scene → night → week → month → year → (Double each extra step). This stacks with duration increases due to the Blood Bond and similar abilities.
The “Scales of The Void” are known internally as Umbral Rites, as they often fall somewhere in between the scientific methodology of the Ordo and the more mystical means of the Circle and Lance. These Rites often provide additional means to gain Umbral Energy, provide the benefits of the Coil to others, or allow for similar experiments related to the Coil.
Many of these Rites rely on Wyrm’s Nests, Umbral Energy, or both. Those few Renatus lacking Umbral Energy may be assisted by another supernatural creature with an energy pool they can ‘donate’ from towards the experiment. A few examples of such Rites are below, and can be developed using the same method as normal for Scales (though they almost exclusively rely on Occult for research).
- Harvest the Black Spark
Prerequisite: Taste of the Forbidden
Ritual: The Kindred takes a ‘physical’ form of supernatural energy (not Vitae), such as a Goblin Fruit, Tass, physical manifestations of Essence at a Locus, or miscellaneous relics, and shatters, crushes, or otherwise destroys it, letting its remnants fall into a bowl that’s been lightly coated with his own Vitae, and then immediately covers it with a specially prepared, inscribed, and treated ‘natural’ wrapping (skin, stomach lining, or even unprocessed vegetable matter can all be used). It’s then left to sit for an hour, as it breaks down in the mystical container.
Outcome: By opening the container and consuming the resulting ichor, the Enlightened becomes able to absorb the previously stored energy into his Umbral Energy pool, providing the same amount that it previously stored, up to his own normal limits. If not consumed immediately, the substance breaks down within an hour. Alternatively, it may be used for other Rites that rely on Umbral Energy.
Feeding the substance to another individual isn’t quite so safe; they may absorb a single point of the energy into their own pool (unless they use Vitae), but they also take the Humble Condition (applying to their equivalent Anchors), as the whispers of The Void make them realize just how insignificant they really are.
- The Void Protects
Prerequisite: Aura of the Otherworld
Ritual: The potential subject and the Renatus Vampire both cut the back of their forearms (specifically), allowing a point of Vitae or Blood from each of them to drip onto the ground within a Wyrm’s Nest. The substance sinks into the nest, and the subject must then meditate successfully on the location, making sure their skin is touching the floor/ground within the Nest.
Outcome: The next time the subject is targeted by or comes into the area of a hostile supernatural effect, and their own resistance fails, the Renatus Kindred rolls a Clash of Wills (Blood Potency + Coil of The Void) against it; on a success, the subject is unaffected, and may not be affected by the same ability from that same source for the rest of the night. Multiple ‘charges’ of this may not be built up, but once used on a subject they benefit until it’s expended. Note that this may NOT be directly used on the Enlightened themself.
- Umbral Font
Prerequisite: Strength of the Arcane
Ritual: The Renatus must remove his own stomach, causing himself 8 bashing damage (due to downgrading) in the process. The organ is then carefully cut open, and filled with at least 5 points of Vitae that’s laced with at least 3 points of Umbral Energy (neither need come from the Kindred themself though). Finally, it’s buried within the Wyrm’s Nest that the Kindred wishes to enhance.
Outcome: The Nest is empowered with the energy of The Void. For the next week, it becomes Open to any ephemeral entities aligned with The Void or the Enlightened himself, and its rating is treated as 1 higher (even going above 5), as are any attached Wyrm’s Nest merits or other enhancements relying on the Nest’s power.
While the Sanctified have long claimed to be the most faithful and godly possible vampires, the Septemi exist as a relatively modern phenomenon set to challenge the covenant’s presumptions. Where the Sanctified attest that the Kindred were personally Damned by God to act as his lash against the back of a sinful mortal populace (thus driving them towards divinity), the Septemi spare the rod, declaring that vampires have no exalted place in the Lord’s creation. They work from the shadows to counter the influence of the Sanctified, driven by their higher soul to undo the work of evil men and lead humanity to salvation through charity and education. Such altruism dooms a Kindred to a difficult Requiem
The genesis of the Septemi is a matter of some confusion. The ostensible founder of the lineage, Robert le Tuteur, served as a soldier in the army of none other than Jeanne d’Arc (known to English speakers as Joan of Arc) during the Hundred Years’ War (and in fact, some claim, received the Embrace on the third night after her martyrdom). He has since claimed that his introduction to the Requiem came at the hands of a Daeva elder who gave only the name Septima and that she told him of her legacy, a long line of Kindred who served God’s true will in the face of great perfidy. She set him on the path he would follow before vanishing into the night, intimating that she was the last surviving member of a bloodline that had existed since before the rise of Rome. No record of such a lineage can be found prior to Robert, however, and the fact that no record remains of any Kindred in France by Septima’s name or description at the time of Robert’s Embrace further muddies the waters (though, as many scholars point out, were Septima a Sanctified heretic she may have given a false name for her own protection). Most Passionate accept Robert’s story, but also claim that whether Robert inherited an older legacy or created the lineage remains immaterial to its overarching goals and beliefs. There can be no doubt that Robert serves as the single most important figure in the bloodline’s modern history, acting as a catalyst for the growth of a small movement of Christian Daeva unwilling to accept the teachings of the Lancea Sanctum. Robert taught his followers that Christianity applied to the Kindred as it did to mortals, and that their fallen state gave vampires no inherent dominion over the living. He rejected the terms Canaille and Kine, refusing to see the mortals as mere feeding stock, and ruffled feathers by denying many of “the pretty euphemisms” (as he put it) of the Damned. He drew to him numerous young vampires, many of whom he initiated into his own bloodline, though he purportedly sired no childer of his own. These schismatic Kindred drew negative attention from the Lancea Sanctum, but the covenant was too distracted by the mortal inquisition during the bloodline’s initial growth to effectively move against it. Misguided vampire heretics seemed a lesser problem than torch-wielding priests. Instead, they largely dismissed the heretics, branding them with the sobriquet “Maidens” due to the founder’s supposed association with Joan of Arc, the Maiden of Orleans.
- Interactions with the Danse
- The Kindred consider the Septemi misguided and naïve at best and dangerous and maladjusted at worst. Neither the Invictus nor the Sanctified would knowingly shelter or admit a member of the bloodline except under the most unusual of circumstances. While the Invictus stops short of branding the entire lineage a heresy to be wiped out, the bloodline’s beliefs and tactics tend to directly counter those of the First Estate more often than not. The Sanctified, on the other hand, would see the Septemi wiped from creation. Their actions, sins in the eyes of Longinus, disrupt Kindred society and endanger all vampires, they claim. Some go so far as to declare that the abilities of the Septemi display an almost certain link to infernal practices, but few other Kindred take such accusations seriously. While the Circle of the Crone would be unlikely to admit a Passionate into its ranks (and the Passionate even less likely to apply for admission), the faith as a whole appreciates the Septemi. The lineage’s tendency to draw heat away from the Acolytes is welcome, though the Circle frowns upon the line’s adherence to mortal religion. Worse yet, in domains where the Sanctified don’t pose a problem to the mortal populace, the Septemi tend to turn their attention towards the blood witches, a group hardly known for its altruistic attitude towards humanity. The Ordo Dracul rarely crosses paths with the Septemi. Each group has quite a bit to offer the other, however, and alliances do occasionally form. The Septemi, for their part, dearly covet the advantages the Coils grant (especially those that minimize impact on the mortal populace, such as the Coil of Blood); they do not, however, appreciate the grisly studies that many Dragons embark on in order to unearth their eldritch powers. The Dragons, on the other hand, find the Abjurism Discipline and its capacity for overcoming the various threats in the World of Darkness fascinating. As a result, short-term relationships between single Dragons and Passionate occasionally occur, but usually collapse when each finds the other’s approach reprehensible. The Septemi assisted the anarchs during the troubles of the 17th century and aided the nascent Carthian Movement when it began to spread across Europe. While bloodlines of the lost generation - septemi 92 ancient bloodlines the line hardly has a position of importance within the covenant as a whole, its philosophies mesh with those of the Carthians more often than they do other groups. As a result, the Movement attracts more Septemi than any other covenant. While the average Carthian finds the Passionate’s dedication to Christianity unusual, few actively work against members of the lineage so long as they pull their weight. Given the bloodline’s weakness, members often rise above the call of duty. The Septemi do possess one major claim to fame (and to the efficacy of their philosophies): The lineage’s founder, Robert le Tuteur, remains active to this night and is rumored to have achieved the much-debated state of Golconda. He leads a nomadic unlife, typically hiding his true nature (and masquerading as a neonate) unless forces conspire to inspire him to intercede in a situation. While detractors point to his supposed achievement of enlightenment as an obvious lie and bit of propaganda spread by the line to further its heresy, those who have met Robert report that there’s something about his pale blue eyes, long sandy hair and beardless face forever frozen at two decades of age that inspires belief. Others point out that a Succubus of his age certainly possesses a stunning mastery of Majesty. Whether tales of Robert’s spiritual puissance will be authenticated or disproved as a hoax remains to be seen.
- The Passionate or Maidens (by those who would use it as an insult)
- Bloodline Bane
- The Passionate, unlike most Kindred, are driven by more human Virtues than most. They retain their Virtue from their mortal life (choose one if the character wasn’t played as a mortal), but instead of gaining a benefit from it, they instead find that they LOSE a point of willpower whenever they resist fulfilling it in a way that would allow a mortal to gain a point.
- Bloodline Disciplines
- Abjurism, Celerity, Majesty, Vigor
Bloodline Gift: Abjurism
The Passionate learn to channel the power of their own blood to not only better protect themselves against supernatural powers inflicted upon them by others, but to extend their will outward, suppressing or even dissipating existing magic. This is represented with a special discipline, which scales similarly to a Physical discipline, but is instead a far more mystic ability.
- None or 1 Willpower per active effect
- Dice Pool
- None, or Clash of Wills
- None (for persistent effects) or Instant (for active effects)
- Permanent (for persistent effects) or varied (for active effects, see below)
Like a physical discipline, it has both a persistent benefit, called “Buttressing the Soul”, and a set of Active effects.
- Your character is trained in the ways of Abjurism, specially the teachings utilizing the power of the Blood to resist the supernatural corruption and influence that might interfere with your dedication to the Septemi’s goals. The passive effect of Abjurism provides an effective bonus equal to the Discipline’s rating to any Resistance trait used to contest, resist, withstand, or otherwise work against a supernatural power. If there is no Resistance of any sort accounted for, it instead causes a penalty equal to the Abjurism rating to the originator’s activation pool. The benefit works against any type of power, from the Disciplines, Devotions, and Blood Sorcery of other Kindred, to the Arcana of Mages, the Numina and Manifestations of ephemeral entities, embodiments and Dread Powers of the Strix, and anything else of a supernatural origin.The Septemi may selectively ‘drop’ this protection for the sake of friendly abilities they’re aware of.
- The active effect of Abjurism works to undo the effects of the supernatural on the world. By spending Willpower, one of the following effects can be activated; this requires an instant action, although multiple can be spent to utilize more than one at once, or the same effect on multiple targets (this breaks the normal per-action expenditure rules).
- Breaking the Weave
- A supernatural effect can be targeted that the Septemi is aware of (or suspects, if they can target an appropriate spot) within range of their perception. A Clash of Wills is made against the effect’s originator (or against a pool decided by the ST, for ‘naturally occurring’ supernatural effects); on a success, it’s suppressed for the duration of Abjurism according to the user’s rating, below, and has no effect for that period. The power’s duration elapses normally while suppressed, and is permanently dispelled if Abjurism’s effect would last longer than that; otherwise, it comes back into effect afterward. Magical Items lose their abilities for the duration, but are never entirely unenchanted before 5 dots.
- Banish the Summoned Servitor
- With a Clash of Wills against the offending entity, the Septemi may end Manifestation conditions of ephemeral entities, and the Embodiments of the Strix (other than Shadow Form). They must have a rating in Abjurism high enough so that the condition or Embodiment’s normal duration would be covered in the chart below; Possessed, for instance, lasts a scene and so 2+ dots would be needed, whereas Resonant can be fleeting and might be wiped away even at 1 dot (though may reassert itself). Abilities like Claimed and Possess Living are permanent, and so 5 dots are needed. Synthesis cannot be undone by this ability.
The active effects of Abjurism last an amount of time depending on the Septemi’s rating in Abjurism. The duration provides an appropriate bonus to the Clash of Wills as normal.
|Discipline Dots||Suppression Duration|
|1 Dot||One turn per dot of Blood Potency|
|2 Dots||One Scene|
|3 Dots||One chapter (or 1 day per dot of Blood Potency)|
|4 Dots||One story (or 1 month)|
You finally nailed down where the claimed and its little cult that have been wreaking havoc on the locals are, had to buy a favor from one of the mages though, the police didn’t made things easy while they were scrambling chasing clues on the ritual killings and the Rose City Guild was too busy erasing the trail of the supernatural off the investigation to help much, though you got a lucky break when you got a call earlier from your vampire contacts and they have managed to buy you a few hours of an uninterrupted hunt, they didn’t like it when a few of their servants ended up on the cults sacrificial altar, now you move on your neighbors turf, the claimed though to run away and has cut a swath through Lost territory but they have Embassy backing and though you not always see eye to eye they take care of their land, you can feel it on the way the old rites help you on the hunt. At the end of the night there just wasn’t any doubt of the outcome.
The lodge itself is not very big and it doesn’t help that the Uratha are divided amongst themselves when it comes to the embassy and the accords, nevertheless this lodge was born out of a desire to promote and secure the position of the Uratha of the tribes of the moon as a faction on the embassy of Portland, though less known too it’s that they also are on the lookout of the possibility of another war being waged and work both to ensure that it doesn’t happen or failing that, that the Uratha come on top of it. One of the things that they focus though is understanding the others supernatural denizens of the city and also networking with the different factions, “keep your friends close and your enemies closer” rings truth and chiefly among them, though who they consider friends and enemies is not something they openly discuss, they do lend themselves to hunting down threats to the embassy when asked or sometimes even when not, giving them a reputation of helpful hunters at best and meddlers at worst.
They draw members from any tribe so long as they aligns themselves with embassy accords, they have a preference on Elodoths and Irraka over the other auspices, drawing on the ease these two auspices have when talking with others for either securing cooperation or drawing secrets out of them.
On the hunt they are not that different from any other werewolves, they do bring however a considerable network of contacts and allies into play when the hunt takes them away from their own territory and are forced through unfamiliar territory, they have a better time avoiding stepping on toes when it does happen and thanks to keeping good or just cordial relationships with the others can in a limited fashion piggy ride on the work the others have done on their territory for their advantage provided they don’t abuse the privilege.
To that end, their given word is specially binding to them, what they agree to they will make sure to fulfill to the best of their abilities, following both the letter and the spirit of the contract they bind themselves to, the accords being one such contract it holds a great deal of importance to them, on the other hand because of this oath breakers are hold on special contempt by lodge members and weaseling out of a deal it’s grounds for a formal challenge or demands of reparation and they have a surprisingly easy time spotting when someone is doing just that or just lying to their face.
- Must be Pro-Embassy/Accords
Totem: The Witness of the Pact
The Witness of the Pact is a spirit born when the Uratha banded together and the war started to take its toll on the werewolves packs on the city, it pledged its support then because the wolves needed a unifying force and it grew on strength while they remained united, though because of its ban it eventually grew weary of them when they gave their word to the Lost and chose to break it when failing to fulfill their end of the bargain.
The spirit however has not forgotten where it came from and stills wishes to honor the alliance it had with the Uratha of the city, with the signing of the accords it forces its lodge members to abide by them but also be on guard when it comes to traitors and oath breakers lets it’s them that end up paying the price, it preaches honesty but not to the point of stupidity, it acknowledges the need for secrecy as well.
Nowadays it has grown with the influence of the embassy and the essence it distills from the peacekeeping done among the factions and while it has ties to the embassy it’s primarily bound and contracted with the werewolves.
- The lodge members enjoy the condition Connected (Embassy/Accords) and once per month you can spend a willpower point to get it back if they have burned it or otherwise resolved it, it also allows them to buy pack tactics that take others into account and use them at the cost of +● if they are packmates (storytellers at the final arbiters of what applies to non-werewolf members when it comes to pack tactics) non packmates don’t count even if they have been added with facets like Lead the Lesser Pack. It’s still required that they practice and train on the use of the tactics for at least a month to master them but at the end it allows the Uratha to subtly read the cues of his non werewolf allies and react accordingly to whatever tactic they are trying to pull off.
- Promoting and securing the Uratha position in the Embassy
- Never willing break your given oaths.
Casually given word won’t trigger the ban, but a formal promise will, the important thing is the intent behind the promise, and as the ban says the character must do everything in its power to keep his word, however if happenstance or just bad luck is what forces an oath to be broken it doesn’t trigger the ban.
- The Sacred Hunt
- On the sacred hunt they can chose to benefit from any territorial merits, rite or gifts they have so long as they are hunting on an Embassy managed territory, it doesn’t apply when hunting on territory that no one manages or that are either neutral or against the embassy and disrespecting others territory can count as a breaking point towards spirit while being a guest.
Members of the lodge can make use of the Lodge Armory, Lodge Lorehouse and Lodge Connections merit when it comes to the network of the Embassy faction.
- Five Talons of the Claw (Fetish ●●●)
The fetish is made of five claws that are handed over to the beneficiaries of it.
Effect: As per the facet Lead the Lesser Pack (WtF. Pg. 123) with a maximum of 5 members, one per claw.
“We’re all stories, in the end.” - Steven Moffat
The lodge seeks to preserve the history and knowledge of the Uratha as a whole, and members display perfect recall and a dazzling understanding of history and lore. They do, however, have an unfortunate tendency to become lost in interesting stories and are therefore easily manipulated.
The tale goes that a young Cahalith was caught up in a Sacred Hunt that ranged across a continent, and involved chasing down a disease-spirit (possibly an idigam, though the lodge denies this) powerful enough to bring whole human populations to heel. It spawned Claimed, Hosts, hundreds of minor spirits, and even traitor Uratha who would rather live deformed than die sick. By the time the hunt was complete and the battle was won, dozens of werewolves had died, and the lore and history of two generations of Uratha was gone.
The lodge’s founder, horrified, determined that this should never happen again, and formed the Lodge of the Chronicle.
- Must be a Cahalith
- Crying Owl, a wise spirit with a long, piercing song, agreed to act as patron to the lodge, and its numbers grew over time.
- Interactions with the People
- Adherents of the Lodge are often well received by an area, as they often have stories to tell that can help local packs. From news of distant shores, to stories of spirits that have moved into the area. Their stories are often bartered for, if even only for a meal or a couple drinks at a local dive bar. There are those who think them soft, because they only see them dealing with the stories themselves, and often don’t see them on the hunt. This is where their nickname from outsiders comes from. They are called the “Librarians” because most Uratha think they sit in their storehouses of information and read, when in reality, they are the ones going out, finding, sifting, creating stories to pass along. They fight, story to story, to rebuild the history of the People.
- Librarians (Outsiders), Chroniclers (Internal)
- Lodge Bonds
- Bond explained here
- Blessing: Perfect Recall- A member of the Lodge, as an adherent of Crying Owl, is able to imprint a story of the Uratha to any medium, at the cost of a point of essence. Any information saved in this way seems more potent, more rugged, and will last through the ages. Books smolder, instead of burn, files saved to a USB drive are incorruptible and use no memory, nor can they be erased. This does protect against supernatural attacks if the offender doesn’t win on a Clash of Wills.
- Aspiration: Learn a story of the Uratha
- Ban: Members cannot turn down an opportunity to learn a new story of the People.
- The Sacred Hunt
- With their bias towards the collection of knowledge, when a hunt is called by a member of the Lodge, they are able to hear whispers of stories of the prey’s progress, as if hearing a narration of the hunt itself. It is vague enough that it does not give away the exact location of the prey, but it does aid in the search for the creatures that they often hunt. This allows the Adherant to track without a scent, as the narrative of the hunted creature tells stories and portents of where they will be. (Allows either a Wits+Occult or a Wits+Streetwise roll to track without a scent)
Members of the Lodge may purchase the following:
- Lodge Lorehouse- Being Chroniclers, there is quite the repository of knowledge that can be referenced by any member who’s taken the time to make the connections to those who hold the information.
- Lodge Stronghold- As a way to safeguard the knowledge that is stored, the Lodge has set up strongholds that act more as grandiose fortified libraries than anything else, and is guarded as if it were a life or death matter.
- Lodge Armory- Sometimes a story must be taken by force, and as such, members of the Lodge are able to request gear from those who guard the storehouses, to guarantee that the Lore is brought back to the Lodge.
Those of the Lodge of Death feel that the greatest mystery lies not in the howls of the Cahalith or some pocket of the Shadow, but in the inevitability of the grave. What lies beyond the veil of death is a question that humans and werewolves alike have tried to answer — unsuccessfully — for thousands of years. All humans have to go on is faith in a few dubious stories of tunnels of light, but the Uratha have the testimony of the spirits. This doesn’t help as much as they’d like, however.
The Lodge of Death hunt ghosts, the undead, and those who would live beyond their allotted time. All things must die, adherents say, and those who cannot (or will not) pass on inevitably bring imbalance should they linger too long. Barghests therefore take it upon themselves to track down such restless shades and send them off to what lies beyond.
Many adherents flock to the Lodge out of sheer morbid curiosity. They want to know death, to better understand their own time among the living and make the most of it, and to know what their own funerals might look like. Others have lost relatives and wish to know that they have passed safely on, or wish to pick their brains for knowledge thought gone forever. Some even join after they lost family, lovers or friends. They wish to find them and ensure that they are safe, or are otherwise put to rest. Still, others regard death as the ultimate test of mettle and courage — a werewolf who does not fear her own death is a truly dangerous foe.
Not all members of the Lodge of Death entered its ranks with benign goals, however. Ghosts cannot, as far as most werewolves know, be bound into fetishes or affected by most rites. What’s more, human ghosts exist in a state of Twilight, similar to a spirit that has crossed the Gauntlet and found a source of Essence to sustain itself. Werewolves of the Lodge of Death wonder how such ghosts maintain themselves, since they don’t seem to gain Essence the same way natural spirits do, and wonder if Uratha could learn to take spiritual sustenance in the same way.
Members of the Lodge of Death approach their work in different ways. Some spend their time conversing with ghosts, searching out haunts and trying to ﬁnd ways to follow ghosts into whatever rewards await. Other members search the Hisil for places associated with death, speaking with conceptual-spirits of murder, starvation, disease and other methods of demise. A few take a darker course, though. Death is regarded as pivotal, even sacred, and they would seek to observe (or even bring it about) whenever the opportunity presents itself. Hence, there have been many instances of one dying with a Pale Hound as a witness, whose eyes are the last thing he sees as they look for answers in his last breath.
- Everything has its time, and not even Urfarah was exempt from this. It is hardly surprising, then, that the Pale Hounds view the Anshega Cult of Bones with contempt. The Gravediggers’ goal of reviving Wolf is sacrilegious to the Pale Hounds’ teachings, and their hunting of the Forsaken’s ancestral spirits further incites their fury. That the Cult has found and allegedly experimented with the corpses of ancients best left alone is another nail in their coffin, and the Lodge of Death routinely declares Siskur-Dah to purge such atrocities.
- It is often rumored that the Lodge of Death has carved out a place for itself in the Underworld, where adherents spend much time hunting obscure prey or learning strange occult lore. Most of these werewolves are lone pilgrims, making the perilous journey to the Lodge’s domain in the wake of a great loss. Others sojourn to the Great Below after their last ties to the world of the living finally passed on.
- Upon initiation, a Barghest is told in hushed whispers the details of her own death by the Lodge’s Totem. Most understand from then on they are powerless to stop it, but there have been many who sought to flee or fight against their fates. A few even dare to break the Ban itself, though they almost always meet their end as Hithelal-Us incinerates them in clouds of black fire and ash.
- The Lodge of Death collects bottled ghosts, assembling echoing vaults of incarcerated dead for questioning or experimentation. These whisper galleries are hidden and guarded in the most remote places, with the largest ones secluded deep in the Shadow. And many of the ghosts enshrined within are hundred of years old, with some warped from either imbibing the waters of cthonic rivers or taking up masks which embody a given aspect of death.
- Simply the desire and fortitude to face Death
- HITHELAL-US, THE ASHES OF THE DEAD
This spirit is invisible most of the time, though it always appears through the smoke of a funeral pyre. When revealed, it is a black smoldering figure shrouded from head to toe by a thick cloud of ash and soot. Its eyes burn fiercely, pulsing like hot coals in a dying fire.
Hithelal-Us is an ancient death spirit. In fact, it is thought to be one of several such spirits formed when Father Wolf died. While many of its fellows howled and raged at their existence, the spirit that would come to be patron of the Ash Wolves was quiet and full of wonder. After all, it awoke to a world newly changed. It witnessed the time of great sorrow that befell the People, and it also watched as an ancient culture that had looked to circles of wise souls for guidance gradually erode in those dark years.
However, the spirit would see such losses as more than an end. It saw how they were one half to a crucial cycle in the worlds, and understood that Urfarah’s demise was perhaps a necessary one for them world to grow further. It saw old tales and lost secrets fading slowly from memory, waiting to be borne once more to impart the lessons they bear.
Hithelal-Us doesn’t speak to its adherents often, but it typically appears whenever one dies and is cremated. In such events, the spirit manifests from within the pyre to remind the surviving werewolves of their mission: to understand the mysteries of death in order to comprehend the true meaning of life. Sometimes, it has been known to commune with a dead adherent’s pack members to offer some parting words on their behalf.
- Interactions with the People
- As a Tribal Pillar of the Bone Shadows, it is no surprise that the bulk of the Lodge is comprised of Hirfarhra Hissu. Many Iron Masters can be found in a number of schisms, though, as they inevitably face ghosts, vampires, and other forms of walking dead while mingling with the human herd. One schism recruits from the Suthar Anzuth, training its members on how to fight those of their kind that have been twisted by the power of death. Ghost-Claimed Su’ur and the fabled Styx Hounds are the prey these Blood Talons favor the most.
- ASH WOLVES, BARGHESTS, PALE HOUNDS
- Lodge Bonds
- Bond explained here
- Blessing: Members of the Lodge of Death know the times and circumstances of their deaths. Therefore, lodge members do not fear an untimely end. Members of the lodge do not fear for their own lives (though they might feel afraid for loved ones), and are immune to supernatural attempts to instill fear. Also, members’ Harmony ratings are treated as two steps closer to 5 when considering triggers for Death Rage.
- Aspiration: To understand death
- Ban: The Lodge member cannot reveal how and when she is meant to die.
- The Sacred Hunt
- The Lodge Sacred Hunt allows your character to strike ghosts with natural weapons and apply the benefits of Honorary Rank towards ghosts.
Lodge members may purchase the Lodge Armory, Lodge Lorehouse, and Lodge Sorcery Merits, and may choose Sorcery Influences from Death, Smoke, and Ashes.
Fetish: Pain Poppet(••)
This fetish resembles a small, human-shaped doll sewn together from scrap fabric and stuffed with sand, straw or gravel (though some more extravagant werewolves use chips of bone). The werewolf can attune this doll to a target and then squeeze or claw the doll to inflict pain upon the victim. The fetish works on living and unliving targets, including other werewolves, mages, and vampires, but it does not work on spirits.
- The user focuses on a target in his line of sight and growls softly. If the fetish is successfully activated, it is attuned to that target and remains so until the werewolf releases it or until the next sunset. Whenever the werewolf “hurts” the Pain Poppet (squeezing it, sticking it with a pin or a claw, etc.), the target suffers a –2 to all rolls and to Defense, just as if he were suffering wound penalties.
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. -Edgar Allan Poe
All people dream, it has long been debated by the more mystical of The people if Spirits can dream as well, or if they are only repeating the thoughts and dreams of humans and animals. Members of this lodge believe that there are spirits of dreams just as there are spirits of nightmares. Birthed at the beginning of the world along with all if the other spirits. Many believe that these spirits of dreams are where humans, and even the Uratha get their inspiration. That answers to most things can be found in dreams.
This story is true.
The Dreaming was a nightmare. The Diharim birthed everything from their blood, bone, and flesh, but have you ever seen a birth? No one’s having fun, least of all mum, dad, and bub. Altjira gave us the land with water to drink and air to breathe. The Numakulla spread animals and plants across the world and Mangar-kunjer-kunja made people from the animals. Like all births, more arrived than just the baby. Lesser spirits spewed forth to feast on this new world and preyed on the living. The Numakulla saw this and were angry. The flesh world was not for spirits. Any spirit destined to become flesh would be born into the world through flesh. The spirits cried, begged, and fought but did not have the strength to defy.
Many Urratha Believe that the beginnings of this Lodge started in Australia in the time when there was no Forsaken, No pure, and when Father Wolf still hunted the border marshes. They called this period of time The Dreaming. The Lodge has changed from what it was in the past. A way for the widespread Uratha of Australia to keep in touch and share information. Today those of the Lodge study the spirits of dreams. To learn from them to share in sort of a universal knowledge.
- Members of this Lodge are often Itheaur or other Uratha with a more mystical mindset. Occult and Academics are highly sought after skills. Many study other sorts of supernaturals as well to learn their secrets, and how they interact with the spirits of dreams.
- The Oneiroi (Greek: dreams) were the sons of Hypnos, the god of sleep in Greek mythology. They were the personification of dreams. They were Morpheus, Phobetor (or Ikelos) and Phantasos.
They lived in caves in the far west, near the gates of the Underworld. They were sent through one of two gates there. One gate was made of horn, from there the true or prophetic dreams come from. The other gate was made of ivory, from there the false and meaningless dreams come from.
The were shown as black-winged daemons.
The most powerful of the Oneiroi was Morpheus. His brothers Phobetor and Phantasos shape parts of dreams, while Morpheus shapes the dream in general. Morpheus shapes human figures, Phobetor shapes animal figures and Phantasos shapes inanimate objects
- Their primary prey are nightmare spirits and other beings that prey on or infect dreams,
- Lodge Bonds
- Blessing: Members of the lodge do not suffer untrained penalties, as they have a low level connection to the universal unconscious at all times, allowing them to channel minor bits of knowledge and muscle memory from the wider world.
- Aspiration: Learn something new about oneiromantic entities and the effects they have on humanity
- Ban: Cannot affect the dreams of others that aren’t prey in a negative way, and they must do their best to avoid causing nightmares (generally including not inflicting Lunacy on mortals when it can be avoided).
- The Sacred Hunt
- Because of their focus on Dreams, members who call a sacred hunt can sense when someone’s Influenced or otherwise infected by a nightmare spirit or similar dream-affecting entity.
Members of the Lodge of the Spirit Dreams may purchase Lodge Lorehouse and Lodge Sorcery. Their options for Influences are Dreams and Mental Strength.
Rite of Oneiromancy (•••)
- Dreams, travel, Passage
- Sample Rite
- The rite Master paints their bodies with the symbols of sleep and dreams before preparing themselves for sleep though meditation or other relaxing practices.
- 1 essence
- Extended (target of 10 Successes). Contested with Composure +Primal Urge if unwilling
The rite master must have some personal object of the person, or spirit they wish to enter the dream of. In the case of a spirit they must know their name, and, or have tasted the spirits essence. In the case of a person who is not in line of sight they must have a lock of hair, have tasted their blood, or have an object with a strong connection.
- Until the person awakens, or eight hours whichever happens first.
:Success This allows the rite master to enter the dream of a specific target and observe that dream. If they have dots in Lodge Sorcery high enough they can attempt to influence the dream. Their target must be within 5 miles.
Every culture has their stories of brave warriors who fought in spite of their fears, whose very courage made them seem fearless. Few stories match that of the Valkyrja, brave women sent not only to fight in battles, but to determine the flow of battle and to carry the bravest souls to their Gods for a greater more vital battle than one that could be found on earth. Even among the Uratha, the Valkyrja are known, fierce Uratha women who fight to stem the tide of Idigam and send the greatest of all Uratha on to prepare for one last greater battle at the side of the All-Father.
Our proud name and legend is tainted by human myth and fancy. They would have you believe our grandmothers were flying about on the backs of grass-eating horses garbed in chrome breastplates and winged helmets. They know nothing of us — most even mistake the fact that the Old Norse for “valkyrie horse” was a play on words for wolf. This much they got right — when the wolves and ravens came to feed among the battle dead, we were not far behind.
The great wolf father, ancestor to us all, did not die. Long before the Forsaken struggled against him for leadership, he journeyed to the base of the World Tree at the heart of the Shadow and found the Well of Prophecy. Only sacrifice could stir its waters, so he dug out his right eye with his own claws so that he could see the future of the Uratha. There, painted in blood, he saw his children’s bid for power, their assumption of his role. More importantly, he saw a last battle far in the future, when the fetters that hold back the idigam would be sundered and the fate of the world would depend upon one apocalyptic battle. He knew what he must do. He did not flinch from his painful sacrifice, neither do we.
To us, his chosen daughters, he gave the task of finding the best for him. Thus, we are called Summis-urdu, the choosers of the slain. That is our sacred duty, to send the greatest warriors to join his hall. At the death of a mighty warrior, we come to perform the Funeral Rite and speed them to the All- Father, Father Wolf in his den. Of course, we, too, will join our father’s pack when the time comes, and, for that reason, we must master the arts of war as well.
Sometimes, only when in great need, our elders may call us to fight together for some cause. For this reason, we often train together, to learn our own special arts of war. Know this: when the Valkyries go to war, we go to victory, or to the hall of the father of us all.
- A female Uratha who suitably impresses a Valkyrie in skill of arms, Renown and her keen discernment may be asked to join. It is improper to solicit this mot for membership. While skill at arms is a given for potential Valkyries, they look for more than Rahu to fill their ranks. Valkyries value all of the auspices, though Rahu, Cahalith and Ithaeur are the most common. The Cahaliths’ natural ability for prophecy is well regarded. The Valkyries’ dependency on rites and their constant need for new fetishes makes Ithaeur a prime choice as well.
Renown and is performed in secret. Simply put, a Valkyrie must approve of the applicant and pass the name on to an Elder who likewise approves. The Valkyrie’s sponsor writes the applicant’s name into the ledger of the Valkyrja mot; even if the initiate fails, she becomes a likely candidate for their Funeral Rites.
Then comes the second test, a test of discernment. This test is also secret. The applicant is put into a situation in which she is asked to evaluate the character and skill of two warriors. If she is correct, she passes. To do this, the Valkyrie proctor will often go to some Uratha who has authority over the initiate, perhaps her alpha or a tribal elder, to enlist their cooperation in actually phrasing the question so that the Valkyrie may hear the applicant’s answer.
It is only at this point that most applicants learn that they are being tested — which forewarns them of what is coming, the test of combat. Within the next month, the applicant will be called out by a Valkyrie, and the applicant must answer the challenge if she wants to join. The challenger places three ritual objects before the initiate: a knife, a wolf’s canine and a drinking horn. Choosing the drinking horn means that the challenge is refused politely. There is no overt shame in this, but the applicant must provide the challenger with a feast to thank her for the honor the Valkyrie has given her. The Valkyrie rarely inquires as to why this invitation was declined. During the feast, the initiate may give a reason for her refusal and seek to be tested again, but most are not offered a second chance to join the Summis-urdu.
If she chooses the tooth, her Valkyrie proctor will immediately shapeshift and bite the applicant, and a hunt begins. The candidate gains a one-hour lead, and she must try to remain uncaught and unconquered by the Summis-urdu for 24 hours. The initiate cannot use human transportation or tools to evade the Valkyrie. If they meet, they will fight in wolf form. If the applicant shows her neck during the ordeal, she is disqualified. If she is judged to fight valiantly enough or successfully evades her pursuer, she wins.
Choosing the knife means ritual combat. The proctor is testing skill and control and, therefore, often fights defensively. Nevertheless, the fight is always a bloody affair, with archaic weapons — knife, sword, axe or spear provided by Valkyrie, if not owned by the applicant - or hand to hand combat. The initiate must score an impressive wound (causing 3 or more Health levels) against her proctor while remaining on her feet and not shifting into Gauru — thus showing her skill at arms and her restraint.
The initiation is likewise secretive, involving the applicant’s adoption by the All-Father, and is always performed under the northern lights in specially prepared circles of stone. The initiations proceedings are never spoken about, but the initiation has a stunning effect, as it turns the applicant’s wolf-coat snow-white. The Valkyries also have their own version of the Funeral Rite. Valkyries only preside over the funerals of those the Valkyries feel will help the All-Father. The body is ritually burned with its weapons, and blood is spilled, normally that of domestic animals but sometimes raven or eagles to honor the greatest warriors. The rite is in every way similar to the normal Funeral Rite, unless the Valkyrie achieves an exceptional success. When this happens, one of the blessed Vettier, the ancestor-spirits of the Valkyries, appears, leading a pack of midnight-black wolves. They then bear the werewolf’s body and spirit into the ancestor realm of Asgard.
The death of a valiant warrior in a chronicle is a great way to get this mot involved in your campaign. Imagine the scene of a Valkyrie interrupting funeral preparations, or even the rite itself so as to send a player’s friend to Valhalla…
- Rank 4 totem: Skuld
Skuld is neither the best known of the Valkyries nor the best known of the Norns, the beauty of Skuld is that she is on the only Valkyrie to be a Norn and the only Norn to be a Valkyrie. Skuld, the youngest of the Norns, sets the length of life for every person in the world, and it was she who was there the day that Father Wolf came to the World Tree seeking answers. Some she gave, those her sisters would allow, then she stole off to watch him at the well. There she saw what he did and there she took pity on him. She sat for days with the All-Father, and together they made a plan. A world of daughters helping him for the battle that must come, the sacrifice he must make. It is said that she was the one who cut All-Father’s thread, and she knew before he did what he would have to do. But she had faith that he would come here for answers, and she showed him the daughters he would need.
Skuld appears as she always has, as she did that day she found Father Wolf at her and her sister’s tree, as a Norn dressed for battle. A silvery blonde haired woman, her hair styled some in braids and some left loose. Her skin pale and glittering like snow catching sunlight, while strange markings in dark blood decorate her face. Her eyes are narrowed on her goal, seeing the outcomes as they play out. Of all the Norns, she is the least likely to share her visions - but to her children, to those she and Father Wolf picked out - to these she shares some things.
Influences of Skuld: Death 4, War 3, Wolves 2, Ravens 2
- Interactions with the People
- Among the mots, this is one of the most prestigious lodges. Valkyrie is the most common name for them in the New World, though Valkyrja and Wælcyrge are more common in the Old. Their counsel bears great weight among the mots, and their mere presence on a battlefield dominated by volk, especially fighting on one chosen side, can cause the other to relent. Even those who don’t believe all the lore surrounding the Summis-urdu may fall back, fearing the wrath of Father Wolf. For these reasons, the Summis-urdu are slow to form allegiances, slow to choose sides in an argument between Uratha. The Summis-urdu do their best never to insinuate themselves in politics, though they know they are fools to ignore it entirely.
Summis-urdu rarely lead packs, for their duties to their lodge often pull them away to seek the slain and fill the halls of their lord. They are most often betas, or battle leaders — their icy demeanor and fearlessness of death make them ideal for this role.
- Summis-urdu (Choosers of the Slain), Valkyrja, Valkyrie, Battle-Maidens
- Lodge Bonds
- Blessing: When a Valkyrie spends willpower to add dice to a brawl roll to defeat a foe in combat (like a Sacred Hunt - though not necessarily specific to the Valkryie’s Sacred Hunt), Lodge Members gain rote quality on that roll, when the outcome of the fight would matter. Bar brawls and sparring do not count for an important fight where something could be lost or gained by the outcome.
- Aspiration: Find the Greatest Warriors to aid Father Wolf in the final Battle - i.e. Uratha with Renown 3+ and humans or Wolf-Blooded that could be marked by their deeds if they were Uratha.
- Ban: A Lodge member must at least once per month send the soul of one high in renown - i.e. 3+ - through the Valkyrie Funeral Rite
- The Sacred Hunt
- Can tell those who have been touched or influenced by an Idigam. Allows Lodge member to gain an amount of defense equal to their highest Renown rating when fighting an Idigam or being influenced by one.
- LODGE ARMORY (••• OR •••••)••: Silver bullets, silver daggers, cold iron staff along with regular guns and ammo, staffs, swords, daggers, and knives.•••• (Bad Bitch (3-dot custom fetish for site), Stalker’s Lament (1-dot pg. 147), Whisper Knife (3-dots pg. 148))
- LODGE CONNECTIONS (• TO •••••)
- LODGE LOREHOUSE (• TO •••••) Lorehouse dots need to relate to Idigams, Empty Wolves, or Spirits
- Scent of the Einherjar Rite (•)The Einherjar is the name of the fallen heroes who reside in Valhalla. This rite allows Valkyries to catch the scent of a fallen hero so that they may perform the Funeral Rite for her. This rite also allows them to identify whether a fallen Uratha has been selected. They will not use this skill to attempt to identify an Uratha they feel is unworthy.
Performing the Rite: This rite is very simple. It is performed by invoking the Vaettir and slowly turning in a circle clockwise, scenting the quadrants. Cost: 1 Essence Dice Pool: Presence+Expression Action: Instant
Roll Results Dramatic Failure: The rite fails and cannot be used for 24 hours. Failure: The rite fails; the point of Essence is lost. Success: The scent of the fallen immediately springs to the nose of the Valkyrie. Any within 10 yards may be identified immediately. Any likely candidates for the Funeral Rite from farther away must be tracked. The Summis-urdu may catch the scent of someone within one mile per point of Primal Urge. Exceptional Success: A raven or wolf appears to identify the dead, and the Valkyrie gains +4 dice to perform the Funeral Rite for the identified Uratha.
Suggested Modifiers +2 The Uratha fell in battle +2 If the dead Uratha’s Brawl or Weaponry skill is above 3 +1 The Uratha fell in a heroic struggle fulfilling the Oath of the Moon +1 Per point of Primal Urge possessed by the dead that is above 5 -2 If neither of the dead Uratha’s Brawl or Weaponry Skills are at least 3 -2 Per point of Primal Urge possessed by the dead that is below 5
Fill out the introduction with what the Lodge is about and their goals and driving force. Basically, what makes them tick.
The story and history, how did the come to be, where did they start out, who was the founder of the Lodge.
- What does it take to get into this Lodge?
- What totem does this Lodge link with?
- Interactions with the People
- The Lodge’s place among the various tribes and Uratha Society
- What do others call them? What do they call themselves?
- Lodge Bonds
- Bond explained here
- Blessing: Here
- Aspiration: Here
- Ban: Here
- The Sacred Hunt
- The special bonus they get on the sacred hunt
ToolsAny Special Things? What do they do?
- Info Here
- Info Here
For eons worship of the Gods was a cornerstone of society, driving men to greater heights in architecture, painting, sculpting, storytelling, forging, battle, and so many other facets of existence and during that time the Silver Ladder smiled for the Order knew that so long as humanity believed in that which it could not see, in beings with powers beyond that of mortals, there was hope. For faith in the unknowable presented a pathway for the sleeper to awaken. Then, in the 18th century, faith began to falter in the populace as the Age of Enlightenment began to take hold. Alchemy was no longer a mystic art as chemistry began to explain the interactions of chemicals, a lighting strike was no longer a sign from above but could instead be harnessed and put to use, those of influence began to see physics as the driving force of the world rather than the will of the Gods, and the Ladder began to fear for their flocks for if something could be explained with just some simple squiggles on the page then what room was there for the unexplained. So it came to be that a Cabal of “Divine Providence” was formed and the six mages, Mastigoes to a one, within the country of Austria and began to take it upon themselves to pick up the mantle of Deities from legend in an effort to remind humanity that the unexplained and unknowable is still a force within this Fallen Realm. Each mage took up the responsibilities of a Deity of of their choosing and began their work.
Over the course of the following decades the Cabal tried many different methods to carry out the goal of the Cabal, some more heavy handed with mortals, others striving for less influence on Sleepers and more turning themselves into representations of the Divine. Conflict eventually arose within the Cabal over these different methods on how best to carry out their goal resulting in the death of one of their own, killed in passion by another claiming righteousness through might. However that death acted as an example for the surviving members now numbering five, at the dangers of coming to believe that they themselves were the Powers they aspired to represent. The result was a middle ground found through the Arcanum of Fate and Mind, able to influence, strengthen, and punish without the danger of driving a magus to delusions of grandeur.
With the death of their Cabal mate though, cracks begin to form between the bonds of the members and not long after ‘Divine Providence’ came to an end. Four of the Warlocks ventured out into the countries beyond Austria; one was reported to have traveled East down the Silk Road into China, it is said another moved south down into British Africa where it is rumored he lost his life fighting beside the mages there against an unnamed evil. The third moved North to eventually come to rest in Ireland and became the first of the group to incorporate Christian symbolism into his aspect. The fourth travel West to Spain before crossing the Atlantic to the New World and integrating himself with the Aspects of the Aztec Gods he learned of disguised as a missionary to the Natives. The fifth member, rumored to be the one that struck down his fellow Cabal member, remained behind where he continued his work. It is said that he out of all found a path for Ascension within his Aspect though no Reliquary has ever been locate to support this.
A Cabal once held a vision. A vision to explore, test, and strengthen themselves, along with the sleepwalkers and sleepers of the city, mentally, physically, and spiritually. That Cabal is no more, perhaps it will come again in another place and another time but this one has failed in it’s vision. Only one remains, Fujin, to wander the halls. But in that silence memories have returned, memories he’s not thought of in nearly a decade. Memories of pain, anger, and just plain stubborn pride. Memories of a monster with a face of red and eyes of yellow, with a bag slung across its back speaking of the iron chains of power and submitting to the weight of their responsibility, to lead, to be worthy of them, to be worthy of a name. He remembers one simple word come up through a throat gone raw and bloody. Through the memories, around him he sees an Order not ready for the war that will come, a Consilium besieged with to few manning the ramparts, and a populace so caught up in their own matters they won’t know the gate has fallen till the world is already burning around them. He remembers and he sees, and he knows he has failed. No longer. He knows that his society needs to be stronger to survive, and he believes that those not among the Wise are just as pivotal to the victory as those that are. To that end Fujin has begun to revert back to the classics, Plato, Aristotle, Locke, Nietzsche, Kant, Hume, always looking for that one thing that makes people better. It’s not till he accidently knocks a copy of Agamemnon off the shelf that he comes across the idea. Faith and fear. Faith can make an army march to the ocean and stab it with spears, faith can move a mountain and fear is the most easily manipulated emotion out of all of them. For a populace to stand together they first need something to have faith in and then a fear of it being taken from them by something different. Simple, obvious even, Priests and news stations have been using the same tactic for years. So he sets aside his philosophy books and goes to the core, he dives into the Bible, the Torah, the Quran, then into the myths and legends of the Ancient Gods. The Greeks, the Romans, the Asians, the Egyptians, the Norse, the Sumerians, the Islanders. Every instance of a Divine power interfering in the lives of mortals he commits to memory. But he knows it’s not enough, such meddling he is fully able to do but the path is to winding, too many dangers to his own soul, he would be lost within a month. But he can’t let it go, not only is it the right path, he is sure of it, it’s also a challenge that should be met. He returns his books to the shelves with resignation before a small rust colored book catches his eye with its title. “Aspects of the Divine: The story of Divine Providence.” Outside the window, the wind begins to howl.
- Mastigoes, Diamond Orders
- Though the members of ‘Divine Providence’ are now all dead and gone their methods and results have been carried on by the Wise in records and still mages among all the Diamond orders have come to follow their examples. The Silver Ladder uses their methods as a means to help humanity climb towards the Truth, members of the Adamantine Arrows find tying themselves to such a lofty concept is a challenge worth facing, those among the Guardians find it to be a useful way to balance Wisdom while still being the instrument of cosmic karma, and the Mysterium finds the knowledge that can be gleamed through the Divine are worth their weight in tomes.
- A member of the Aspects often incorporates a symbol of the Deity they seek to exemplify. An Aspect of Odins knowledge through sacrifice might well sport an eye patch, while a maga of Asteria might wear her hair in a ‘maiden’s braid’ or dress solely in white.
Subterfuge 2, Fate 2
- The Legacy demands a soft touch when it comes to the manipulation of mortals. Despite the rise of Atheism the Legacy is of the mind that Humanity still wants to believe there is something greater out there at their core. So the Aspects utilize the subtle Arcanum because if you do things right people won’t be sure you did anything at all.
- Ruling Arcana
- Utilizing a symbol of a religion (i.e. Cross, Swastika, Ying-yang, Mistletoe,etc) (+1). Invoking the name of a Deity (+1). Dressed like that of a religious leader. (+1).
- Perform a duty in the name of a Deity. Creating a turn of Fate for an individual (Beneficial or detrimental). Encourage someone to be more like a representation of a Deity.
First Attainment: Eyes of the Divine
- The Aspects know that only the truly Divine can see down the many shaded paths of a person’s fate and thus they have granted themselves the same, though in a limited capacity. This attainment works as Serendipity. (Primary Factor-Potency. Reach-Instant casting)
- Optional Arcana
- Mind 1
- Each individual the Aspects influence have their own wants and needs that can could be fulfilled. The trick is knowing what those are, and the mortal who truely open their soul to another is rare. So the Aspect will often gleam the minds of those they have taken an interest in as both a way to understand what they need which would fall in line with the Aspects duties. The effect is that of a Mental Scan. (Primary Factor- Potency, Reaches- Instant Casting)
Second Attainment: Will of the Divine
- Fate 2
- To an Aspect of the Divine things are often simpler than they otherwise would be; an opponent’s iron defense doesn’t seem so strong anymore, the terrain seems to favor them, and difficult tasks come easily. This Attainment grants the same bonus as the spell Quantum Flux (Primary Factor-Potency, Reaches- Instant casting, Advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Mind 2
- An Aspect is not a Deity and would never claim to be one, but, it can often come in handy to make others believe that you might actually speak to/for one when the situation calls for it. To this end an Aspect utilizes this simple trick to add strength to their words, deceiving though they may be. Works as the Alter Mental Pattern spell. (Primary Factor-Potency, Reaches- Instant Casting)
Third Attainment: Blessings of the Divine
- Fate 3
- What many might think of as good luck or random misfortune can easily be presented as divine providence with the right words at the right time. Of course words are merely just words if there is nothing that backs it up and a Aspects knows sometimes a situation needs a little boost to make an impact. Attainment functions as Exceptional Luck. (Primary Factor-Potency, Reaches-Instant casting, Advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Mind 3
- Sometimes an Aspect has to go in and get their hands dirty, perhaps to protect a charge, perhaps to manipulate a situation. In circumstances like these the Aspect deems it best to not be noticed for the hand of the Divine is unseen and often forgotten. This attainment functions as Incognito Presence. (Primary Factor-Duration, Reaches-Instant casting, Advanced Duration)
Fourth Attainment: Divine Aid
- Fate 4
- Throughout every religion are stories of heroes performing feats of greatness in times of need through the power of their God/s resulting in something as simple as a flying stone hitting the right spot to toppel a giant. The Aspect often grant individuals this when they call out in times of strife and need when the individual is trying to take action for themselves but need the best result to save themselves or others. Attainment is as the Make it Look Easy CT. (Primary Factor-Potency, Reaches-Instant casting, Advanced Duration.)
- Optional Arcana
- Mind 4
- The Gods are wealths of knowledge, keen eyes and mountains of will with tongues of honey scattered among them. An Aspect draws upon these gifts for themselves to more effectively carry out their duties and become more akin to those they strive to represent. As per Augment Mind (Primary Factor- Potency, Reaches- Instant Casting, Advanced Duration)
Fifth Attainment: Divine Right
- Fate 5
- Sometimes people need to be made an example of, in both the best and the worst ways, and an Aspect is not above laying down such examples for others to point at in inspiration or horror. For laying down Judgement upon others is the penultimate example of a Deities duties. The Aspect utilizes the CT Charmed Life as this attainment. (Primary Factor-Duration, Reaches- Instant casting, Advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Mind 5
- The anger of the Gods once sent great men cowering in their gilded rooms while others fell prostrate before them in ecstatic worship despite the world falling down around them, and so it is still. An Aspect calls upon the fury of the higher powers to lay enemies low before their terrifying glory. Works as the spell Terrorize (Primary Factor-Potency, Reaches-Instant Cast, Sensory Range)
- Acanthus or Adamantine Arrow
- Background: Most Exiles generally tend to come from one of three walks of life, the largest faction tends to be militants of some variety from soldiers, to gang leaders, or the aspiring Adamantine Arrow. The much smaller populations of Exiles tend to either be those fitted for political acumen with a firm understanding of laws and loopholes or scholars who delve into the power of fairie tales, Jungian archetypes or historians.
Appearance: There is little to any uniformity among Exiles, however it is not uncommon for them to bear marks of Ensorcellment, the favors of the changeling courts, or other most esoteric taboos/customs. It is also not uncommon for their initiation to change them as they acclimate to their story and the land that is now connected to them, many will develop noble, regal or other sort of striking traits.
Prerequisites: Initiation, Life 2
- Initiation: Sojourn of the Broken Crown.Fate understands there are stories yet to be played out, that conflict is the nature of the world and Arcadia sends out a clarion call that drives the Exile to know their place. Following prophetic dreams and omens will lead the exile either to an existing member or into the hedge. By saturating a mage with glamour, the consumption of goblin fruit within the wake of a hollow, their is body filled enough Arcadian energy for them to call upon the deep magics of the wyrd and seal a contract that will bind their bodies and souls into a title capable of existing between worlds. At this time all of the glamour shapes the soul of the mage, perfects their form and mirrors their dedication in the form of their broken sovereignty (Broken Crowns, Torcs, Halos etc) which can only be seen by things that can see through a changeling mask.
Organization: There is no formal organization to the exiles however most realize that if they desire to have any success that working together with other members would be to their benefit, this can lead to loose confederations, mentor-student lines, and solidified local efforts.
Organization: There is no formal organization to the exiles however most realize that if they desire to have any success that working together with other members would be to their benefit, this can lead to loose confederations, mentor-student lines, and solidified local efforts.
- Ruling Arcana
- Partaking of Goblin Fruit(+1/+2 if it gives an adverse condition), Upholding a sworn oath (+2), Being Sealed.
- Experimenting on Arcadia or the Hedge, Striking down or conquering a Loyalist Foe, Removing power from the Gentry, Tending a Bounty, Meditation in a Bastion or Hollow.
First Attainment: The Kings Road
- Initiation and either Weaponry, Occult or Persuasion 1. (This choice will set the required skill for further attainments.)
- Upon taking up the Sojourn to restore their appointed mantle they understand the Oath, the Exiles find themselves able to sense the many wonders of the Hedge and Arcadia with new light, however such senses also allow them to see and hear the dangers.
(Heighten Sense, Primary Factor-Potency. Reach- Instant Cast)
Optional: (Fate 1) As their bodies attune to their realm once more the Exile gains an inherent sixth sense at where the borders and hidden paths that make up their undiscovered country which allows them to sense the Iris’s that lead them home. (Find the Path, Primary Factor-Duration. Reach- Instant Cast)
Second Attainment: The Land is the King/The King is the Land
- Life 2, and either Weaponry, Occult or Persuasion 2.
- As the Exile grows in power they realize they are a step above the beasts that dwell upon their soil and gain an instinctive understanding of the beasts that walk amongst them. The Exile gain a sense of the men and beasts who walk upon the land. (Web of Life, Primary Factor-Duration. Reach- Instant Cast, Duration)
Optional: (Fate 2)
The attunement of the body takes in more of Arcadia’s grace and changes the Exile, by becoming closer to the land of their birthright they may draw upon the power of the land itself and take in or give this recondite power. (Channel Glamour. Primary Factor-Potency. Reach- Instant Cast)
Third Attainment: The King Incognito/The Divine Right of Kings
- Life 3, and either Weaponry, Occult or Persuasion 3
- As the Exile takes on greater understanding of their story that often the King must hide among his people and not be seen, whether to see what they truly think of him or to get closer to the Usurper. The Exile can convincingly appear as one of the lost, to hide their nature. (Through the Looking Glass. Primary Factor-Duration. Reach- Instant Cast, Duration)
Optional: (Fate 3)
No gate, no wall, no labyrinth or lock can keep the Exile from the lands of their birthright, expanding upon their earlier attunement and contract their very will can open and close the gateways leading home regardless of its key.(Unlocking the Secret Garden. Primary Factor-Duration. Reach- Instant Cast)
Fourth Attainment: Long Live the King
- Life 4, and either Weaponry, Occult or Persuasion 4
- It is by the will of the Kings story that he may adapt to overcome the trials that are set before him, as the exile further attunes to their lost homeland they can shift their bodies to better withstand exotic environments, or sense places beyond the ken of standard senses. (Transform Life. Primary Factor-Potency. Reach- Instant Cast, Duration)
It is by the divine right of their story that fortune moves at the behest of the exile, a stoke of a blade that just catches their enemy, or an arrow caught by the joint of their armor, it is the right of the Exile to know nothing but fortune so long as they struggle to take back what is theirs.(Charmed Life. Primary Factor-Duration. Reach- Instant Cast)
Fifth Attainment: The Once and Future King
- Life 5, and either Weaponry, Occult or Persuasion 5
- Now this arc of the story is complete, the King looks upon their accomplishments with pride as the contract has been fulfilled, their birthright accepted and their sovereignty recognized, the crown sits upon their head and a new tale of their reign begins. With unmatched power they command the ability to shape their title into a Kith. (Allows Mage to assume an appropriate Kith. Duration- Indefinite, Treats Gnosis/2 as effective Wyrd for Kith, and may spend mana as glamour.)
Optional: (Fate 5)
By an unmmatched understanding of Arcadia they draw upon the land to aid them and their allies giving them a gift of raw power, they call upon the very emotional and elemental forces to bolster their allies with rich glamour.(Milk of the Wyrd, Primary Factor-Potency. Reach- Instant Cast)
The founding principles and philosophy for the legacy came with the exile of John the V’s (John the Wise) from the English Court in which he took up his stead in Brittany. While he himself was a sleepwalker he was attended by a trio of Acanthus Arrows, which each played a part in the development of the Order of Ermine in the world of the lie and the triptych path philosophies for the Exiles of a Fallen Paradise. The exile proved a pivotal time for them as they reflected on the nature of the Exile, the Divine Right of Kings, the Mastery of Man over Beasts, while they perfected themselves in the War of Roses. It is however this reflection that made them consider the Exile from their watch tower and the gulf of the abyss that kept them away from their Arcadian birthright. Early exploration into the hedge was a brutal affair finding that their very human forms were cut and sliced by the many briars, savaging their souls, that to truly find a way home they would have to do more than strengthen their mortal forms but acclimate it, and with the principles of kingship and nobility they could attune to world of man, the Hedge and Arcadia. Even if the hedge itself had not been hostile to them, their actions had angered a True Fae called the Barrow of Consumption which wreaked havoc upon their allies, stealing women and children off in the middle of the night, stolen by its perverse promises. The conflict against the creature tested the very limits of their abilities facing it both thorn and iron side and constantly harassed by its titles. Never suffering true defeat, the Barrow of Consumption escaped back to Arcadia where it was immune to their influence throwing it in their faces they could not reach it.
Their exile became an obsession for the cabal, realizing that one could not merely enacting physical changes would only go so far as Arcadia is a place of stories, titles and narrative the changes would have to twist their fate as well. However, no story can exist without opposition, no might with the land can exist without struggle, to which they realized to walk down this path they would have to claim portions of the hedge, on their way to the gate of Arcadia, to take back what was lost. A war of defense against Fae incursions was simply untenable, they would have to find ways to strike, diminish and destroy not only the True Fae, but their influence in the hedge to provide a bulwark to the world of the lie.
Each of the Arrows revisited their tactics against the Barrow and developed a path in which they attuned to their story to the way that best befit them. Crucible developed the path of the Crusader, the story of warrior kings and displaced nobles so much like his liege, where military conquest and strength of arms would strip the True Fae of their titles, an announcement to an endless war which at the end one could hope to triumph. Harlequin walked the path of the Wordsmith, a consummate politician that turned the allies of the True Fae against them, twisting them into impossible deals and breaking their contracts with social charm and wit. The last was envisioned by Vizier she developed the path of the Adversary to strike against the True Fae and their minions is a fruitless cause without the raw knowledge of how to defeat them, to know what contracts could be brought to bear and how to use the very hedge and world against them, by occult knowledge would their foes be brought low.
Despite the grand groundwork set up by this cabal the legacy was never realized in their time, having come together at the height of the hundred years war the cabal was ended by an English assault aided by scelesti, overrun with no hope of decisive victory, the cabal secreted their cache into the hands of an ally with hopes it would find its way back into the hands of John the Wise, in their final moments they twisted their forms and fortune beyond the ken of many magi. As Crucible and Harlquen died in battle, Vizier consulted the skeins of fate and time and died laughing as she saw the truth, their battle would end with their deaths, but their forces would retake their home, and too their hopes realized Arcadia may once see its fallen return.
Various luminaries over the following centuries studied the work of the cabal as methods of following the Adamant Way, but only recently did the work fall into the hands of Aion, a gift from a longtime Arrow friend Urd. Given Portland’s rather unique political landscape it gave her an unprecedented opportunity to study the ideals of the Exiles of a Fallen Paradise. Having been one to always feel a longing for the land beyond the horizon the cause resonated in her soul, having embraced the culture and people of the Lost, she was able to study and experience the way of each path realizing the truth within them, from fighting a title within a bastion, convincing a huntsman to give up their quarry and understanding the weakness to make these contacts self-evident, she knew each path could be realized. Where the originators sought to simply strengthen themselves, Aion realized that kingship must also take within it the Arcadian ideal, as a True Faes Regalia and Titles make up the entirety of their little worlds except changelings, an exile would have to be able to sense and adapt to the changes of an alien environment that was nothing but hostile to them. Embracing this deep understanding would call to the hedge knowing its master that it would open to her at her passing and let draw upon the energies of the realm fully. She built upon their initial wisdom realizing that to gain control over the hedge and in turn Arcadia one must take in all that it has to offer. Aion went through various methods by talking to Lost and hobgoblin experts on contracts, traveling to the hedge into goblin markets, hollows and bastions, and learning of the old magic upon which dream hold was built, she developed the understanding to enact the path. By saturating a mage with glamour, the consumption of goblin fruit within the wake of a hollow, their is body filled enough Arcadian energy for them to call upon the deep magics of the wyrd and seal a contract that will bind their bodies and souls into a title capable of existing between worlds. The return of her Queen’s Keeper had only made a fundamental truth more real, the True Fae feared not the realm of Iron, it was time for that to change.
- The Mysterium or Obrimos
- Background presented on pg. 166 of Mysterium 1e.
- Prime 2, Investigation 2, Occult 2
- Most Seekers will only induct a new member if they have solved a supernatural mystery that involved significant puzzle work and investigation rather than simple brute force.
- Ruling Arcana
- Tracing Supernal runes over an object to be investigated (+2), Employing a prismatic lense(+1), Communing with Spirits (+2)
- Studying a mystical artifact; Investigating a Mystery whether physical or mystical; Preparing defensive wards
First Attainment: Seeker’s Insight
- The most basic skill of a Seeker is to see past the Lie and the deceptions around them. If the Seeker cannot pierce the deceptions around them they will never learn the hidden secrets of the world. After an instant action the Seeker is able to detect any mundane deception as the lie that it is, whereas mystically reinforced deceptions trigger a clash of wills. (As per Prime 1 Pierce Deception)
- Optional Arcana
- Spirit 1
- Seekers also truck with spirits in pursuit of the mysteries and these entities have secrets all their own. The first trick Seekers who work in the Shadow learn is discovering the secrets of the denizens there. After an Instant Action the Seeker can discover information from a Spirit whose withstand is overcome. (As per Spirit 1 Know Spirit)
Second Attainment: Seeker’s Ward
- Prime 2
- A Seeker must be able to defend themselves against other Supernal threats in order to safely indulge in their studies and explorations. Apprentices of Prime already possess the ability to counterspell Supernal magicks but the Seekers take this skill a step further by focusing their studies on self defense. Rather than gaining a new attainment, the Seekers improve their mastery of Universal Counterspell. Before rolling the clash of wills the Seeker may opt instead for automatic successes on the clash equal to their dots in Prime rather than rolling for clash.
- Optional Arcana
- Spirit 2
- Knowing a spirit’s bane does the Seeker little good if they cannot exploit the weakness. With an instant action they may prevent a Spirit whose withstand is overcome from coming near their bane without spending willpower and the spirit may not even touch its bane willingly. This effect is transitory and as such the Seeker is well advised to use the time the spirit is held at bay wisely. (As per Invoke Bane with 1 reach to change primary factor to Potency and 1 reach for instant cast)
Third Attainment: Seeker’s Eye
- Prime 3
- Seekers pride themselves on their abilities to uncover hidden secrets whether they are delving into a lost tomb or studying a recovered artifact in the safety of their Sanctum. After an instant action the Seeker may ask a number of questions regarding a subject equal to their Dots in Prime at any time during the scene. If they run out of questions they must once again take an instant action to renew their focus and continue asking questions. (As per Prime 1 Supernal Vision with 1 reach for Instant Cast, 1 reach for studying non-Supernal phenomena, and 1 reach for advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Spirit 3
- The Seeker pierces the Gauntlet to investigate the world on the other side before making a dangerous journey across. This attainment may be used from either side of the Gauntlet but is withstood by Gauntlet strength as per usual. After an instant action, if the Gauntlet strength is overcome the Seeker may see across the Gauntlet for the duration of the scene. (As per Spirit 1 Exorcist’s Eye with 1 reach for instant cast, 1 reach for piercing the Gauntlet, and 1 reach for advanced Duration)
Fourth Attainment: Seeker’s Aegis
- Prime 4
- Seekers explore dangerous supernal realms that can lash out at them in a moment’s notice. However, in attempting to disarm hostile magic they must also be careful not to destroy the very effects they seek to study. With an instant action the Seeker may spend a mana to selectively dispel Supernal effects near them. (As per Dispel Magic with 1 reach for instant cast, 2 reaches for lasting, 1 reach for selective targeting)
- Optional Arcana
- Spirit 4
- Not all spirits are able to be bargained with and so a Seeker must be prepared to defend themselves against hostile attacks. By spending an instant action in preparation the Seeker may ward themselves or another being they are touching against hostile attacks from spirits and even other spiritual attacks such as Werewolf gifts. Such attacks against them first provoke a Clash of Wills before they may proceed. (As per Ephemeral Shield with 1 reach for advanced duration, 1 reach for instant cast, and 1 reach to protect against spirits’ physical attacks)
Fifth Attainment: Seeker’s Mastery
- Prime 5
- Finally, the Seeker learns to wash away Supernal magic with a simple wave of their hand or a mere glance. With an instant action the Seeker may suppress any Supernal effect for up to a week unless the attainment is successfully withstood. (As per Prime 4 Supernal Dispellation with 1 reach used for Instant Cast and 1 reach used for advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Spirit 5
- The Seeker knows that some threats require assistance and learns to call out for aid. With an instant action the Seeker may call out to a spirit that they personally know, the closest spirit of a specific resonance, or simply the closest spirit in sensory range. The spirit arrives if it is able but is under no compulsion to obey the Seeker. Instead, the Seeker must treat with it or use further magic to compel it to act. (As per Spirit 3 Spirit Summons with 1 reach to change the primary factor to potency, 1 reach for advance duration, 1 reach for instant cast)
(Background and History are as presented in Summoners, page 195–197)
- Gnosis 2, Spirit 1 , Occult 2
(Initiation as per Mage 1e)
- Ruling Arcana
- As this Legacy notes the melding of the old with the new, most of the Yantras that are used by them have a very old religious feel to them. They tend to be more apt to ritually cast, using sigils and circles that can take some time to prepare. Ritual Circle (+2): Whether salt, sulfer or chalk, a circle denotes the eternal continuation of cycles, the old becoming the new, and vice versa. Any power using a ritual circle ends if the circle is broken, or the caster steps outside of it.
- Prayer to spirits or other beings, ceremonies meant to celebrate old traditions. Generally speaking done with either a roll of Wits+Occult, or Presence+Occult, depending on the styling of the ritual. Telling inspiring stories of the old ways: Presence+Expression/occult
First Attainment: Understanding the Katsina
The Caretaker’s frst and most important revelation is the nature of her spirit guide; an incarnation of the Primal Wild whose nature most powerfully resonates with the mage’s own. This “spirit” (which is an archetypal ideal, rather than an individual entity) is an animal, elemental manifestation, plant, or something of the sort: coyotes, bears, ravens, mountains, streams, storms, cacti, or cedar trees, for example. When seen in Shadow, the mage possesses features reminiscent of the spirit guide. The player and Storyteller should work together to determine an appropriate spirit guide for the Caretaker.
When activating this attainment, the Mage becomes able to see, hear, and speak with spirits for a couple turns at a time (per transitory duration), though this may be continually re-activated during a conversation to allow for ‘uninterrupted’ perception.
Second Attainment: Veil of the Katsina
- Spirit 2
As connections grow between the Caretaker and their Guide, they begin to realize how to protect themselves from spiritual predation. They internalize the Ephemeral Shield spell, allowing them to activate it with a short ritual to gain its protection for the day.
Third Attainment: Calling the Katsina
- Spirit 3
The Caretaker grows closer to oneness with her spirit guide, embracing its metaphysical qualities. The mage’s Primal connection grants her an Influence (as per spirit Inﬂuences, on pp. 258–259 of Mage: The Awakening and Werewolf: The Forsaken page 187) with a descriptor identical to the nature of her guide, at a rating equal to half her Gnosis, rounding down. (In other words, a Gnosis 4 willworker who identifes with the wolf gains an Inﬂuence of Wolves at two dots, while one with a Gnosis 8 whose spirit guide embodies rain gains an Inﬂuence of Rain at four dots.) The mage rolls Gnosis + Spirit to use this Inﬂuence and spends points of Mana in place of Essence, on a one-for-one basis.
Fourth Attainment: Becoming the Katsina
- Spirit 4
With this Attainment, the Caretaker acquires the ability to temporarily physically incarnate certain of the qualities of his spirit guide, calling its ideal down from the Primal Wild and into himself, and becoming something halfway between spirit and ﬂesh. By activating this attainment, the character becomes able to cross the Gauntlet as if with the spell Reaching with the Reach spent, forming an Iris that lasts for about a turn. They may also activate it without the Reach to become able to interact physically with the other side of the Gauntlet for up to a month at a time.
- Optional Arcana
- Life 4
As an instant action, the Mage may take on effects appropriate to their spirit guide, akin to the Transform Life spell, with a number of features gained equal to the Mage’s Life Arcanum. This lasts for up to a day at a time. As well, the Mage may gain access to these features automatically (for the same duration) upon activating the base attainment to interact with the other side of the Gauntlet (as that closeness draws their spirit guide in more easily).
Fifth Attainment: Purity of Destruction
- Spirit 5
At this level of understanding, the Caretaker understands that even those who try to meld the old with the new, must sometimes cut out a cancer before it has time to spread. Those that advance to this highest of levels are able to Annihilate Spirits at will, though they tend to use this power sparingly… This power is used more often after every other option has been exhausted, and tends to even then, only be used sparingly, as spirits tend to shy away from those with the power to end their very existence completely. This will affect any spirit up to Rank 5, and the Mage gains a number of successes on the ensuing Clash of Wills equal to their Spirit rating.
The practitioners of this Legacy understand everything in the Fallen World has a voice, if only one knows how to listen well enough. Moreover, they can do more than listen to the voices of the objects around them, they can also command the objects to do their bidding. Their ability to command the inanimate world comes with a far deeper understanding of and sympathy for the objects and devices around them. Once they have the ability to do so, most Lords of the Inanimate permanently awaken the spirits of the objects and devices they used most often. As a result, many have spiritually awakened houses, cars, computers, and occasionally cell phones or handguns.
- Thyrsus, Silver Ladder
- Many Animists work with their hands, building or repairing objects. Those who don’t are usually part of some profession that involves interacting with objects in a precise and careful fashion. Members include everything from individuals who authenticate or restore valuable antiques to archaeologists and even chefs. Members of this Legacy come from all social classes and professions but are united by the attention they pay to the objects and devices they use as part of their daily lives. They also tend to be highly physical and even sensual individuals who enjoy physically experiencing the world around them. Members who do not work with their hands extensively in their chosen professions almost always enjoy hobbies where they do so.
- Animists pay close attention to all the goods they regularly use. Regardless of whether they prefer rugged outdoor clothing or expensive and fancy suits, all their clothes are well-made and maintained. Few Animists would consider purchasing shoddy or ill-made goods or goods that will wear out quickly. They prefer to have time to develop a close relationship with their possessions. Animists are also unusually careful in the way they use objects and avoid slamming doors or otherwise harshly using objects unless it is necessary. In stories about Animists Told by other mages, the followers of this Legacy regularly talk to the objects and devices they use, and some mages watch Animists closely to see whether they are actually whispering or listening to their wristwatches or pocketknives. In reality, only a few of the most eccentric Animists talk to objects when not in private or using the Attainments of their Legacy. Instead, to avoid being seen as deeply eccentric and potentially even unbalanced, the vast majority of Animists are far more discrete. However, most touch and sometimes even caress the objects they use; often rewarding a well-functioning object in much the same manner a dog owner would pet a dog that performed a trick particularly well.
Many Animists are exceedingly knowledgeable about the various sorts of objects and devices they regularly use and can go on at great length about the relative merits of different cell phones, cars, computers or different brands of tools. However, most are also at least moderately socially adept and understand at least the basics of how not to bore or annoy those to whom they are talking.
- Matter 2, Persuasion 2, Crafts 1
- The applicant must present at a Conclave (see below) an object of excellent quality that they have crafted themselves by ‘hand’ - meaning that mundane tools are allowed but using magic to shape them is not. The creation is judged by a panel of Lords, who also take the opinion of the object’s spirit into consideration.
- Some Animists get along better with the spirits of their favorite objects than with other humans, including other mages, and many have little time for formal ceremonies or bureaucracy. As a result, Animists have a fairly loose organization, where members keep in touch on a moderately informal basis. In the past decade, this trend has been further exacerbated by the fact that an increasing number of Animists are rousing the spirits of their cell phones and answering machines and having them screen calls and deal with most callers like an especially skilled 24-hour secretary.
In most cases, Animists are connected to one another by ties of personal friendship, with those who are well liked or respected by their fellows having far more contact with other members of this Legacy. The only exception to this loose and informal contact is during the Legacy’s yearly Conclave. Held in a different city each year, this Conclave is a chance for members to meet, for individuals who wish to become members to attempt to convince an Animist to teach them, and for the various Animists to show off the various spirits with which they are working.
With an atmosphere somewhere between an academic conference, a high-end craft fair and a dog show, Conclaves are chaotic events wherein members report about interesting or unusual applications of their abilities. The most chaotic and prestigious part of the Conclave consists of the more experienced members showing off objects whose spirits they have awakened. In addition, Animists also discuss and demonstrate ways they have found to be able to work in tandem with their spirits. As noted, the Conclave is also where prospective members can attempt to convince an Animist to teach them. This in-person contact is crucial, because many Animists decide whether those prospective members are worthy to join this Legacy by watching them interact with the objects around them.
- Ruling Arcana
- Arcana Type
- Carrying out maintenance on an object (+1), building an object from scratch using your hands (+2 when using machines that are powered by the users own muscles, +1 with power tools), laying out plans or scale models, e.g. technical drawing, knitting pattern (+2).
- Polishing or caring for tools and equipment, knitting, carving or performing other handcrafts, selecting materials for use in some craft project.
First Attainment: Commanding the Inanimate
The Mage can control mechanical and electrical objects in a fashion similar to Remote Control (MtA, p155) simply by conversing with it. Objects perform the requests made of them with a maximum dice pool of the Mage’s Matter dots.
- Spirit 1
The Mage may address the spirit of an object directly, as per the spell Exorcist’s Eye (MtA, p180).
Second Attainment: Exalting the Form
- Matter 2, Crafts 2
Objects are inclined to work more efficiently when in the hand of a Lord of the Inanimate. A tool gains the 9- Again quality as per Find the Balance (MtA, p155).
- Spirit 2
The Mage may transfer Essence to or from the spirit of an object in a fashion similar to Channel Essence (MtA, p180). If channelling to a spirit, the Mage is restricted only by their Gnosis-derived Mana per turn rate. The Mage cannot take Essence from a spirit against their will using this Attainment - they must either have persuaded it or placated it through some other obligation.
Third Attainment: Shepherd of the Craft
- Matter 3, Persuasion 3
With a touch, the Mage restores a number of Structure points to a damaged object equal to their dots in Matter. At the STs discretion this may also provide a bonus to further negotiations with the object’s spirit.
- Spirit 3
The Mage may also heal the spirit of that object, restoring two boxes of bashing damage for each dot of Spirit the Mage possesses.
Fourth Attainment: Name
- Matter 4, Crafts 3
The Mage can grant an object a semblance of life and allow it autonomous movement. The Attainment does not grant physical features that the object does not already possess - a humanoid statue could serve drinks or fight enemies, but an animated car can only steer itself and open its own doors.
This Attainment effectively grants the Mage dots in Retainer equal to their dots in Matter as per Golem (MtA 158). The Mage may elect to renew the duration of at any time before the current duration expires, but must be present with the servant to do so.
- Spirit 4
The Mage has the power to grant sentience and self-awareness to an object’s spirit. In addition to the animation granted above, the Mage may enter into a conversation with the spirit (at least for the length of their Ritual Interval) and use Rouse Spirit (MtA, p182) with Advanced Duration on the object. For a cost of 1 Mana the effect can be made Indefinite.
Fifth Attainment: Name
- Matter 5, Persuasion 4
As a person now befitting the title of Lord, the Mage can now reshape matter to their will. By touching an object and speaking gently to it, they may vastly reconfigure an object to any design.
The Mage can reshape Matter in any form as per the Shaping spell (MtA, p156), with Reach reducing the required successes for creating intricate shapes by their dots in Matter and granting the ability to shape solid matter. This includes intricate mechanisms and moving parts - the Mage may change a hunk of steel into a complex gear-driven mechanism, for example. For a cost of 1 Mana, the Mage may affect an object up to Size 15.
- Spirit 5
With their grandest Attainment, a Lord of the Inanimate may reshape an ephemeral being as easily as solid matter. As per the Shape Spirit spell (MtA, p184), they may invoke a number of effects equal to their dots in Spirit with the option of healing Aggravated damage with Mana on a one-for-one basis. The effects use the Advanced Duration Factors and the Mage must converse with the spirit for a minimum of their Ritual Interval.
- Obrimos or Adamantine Arrow
(Background and History are as presented in Mage 1e, page 349)
- Life 2, Athletics 2, 2 dots in Brawl or Weaponry
(Initiation as per Mage 1e)
- Ruling Arcana
- Rigorous Workout to focus the mind (+2), Meditate into a State of Peace (+2), Disregard Worldly Concerns in Pursuit of the Spell (+1, +2 if it imposes a Negative Condition)
- Rigorous Martial Arts Practice, Extended Meditations, Exhibiting Humility
First Attainment: Chi Sight
With but a glance (and an instant action), the Monk can focus on the energies in a living thing call Chi or Prana, and discern information about the body it is contained within. This includes all information as per the spell Analyze Life including health, sex, species, age, conditions, tilts, and physical attribute dots. To focus on another individual, the mage must use this Attainment again. (As Per Life 1 Analyze Life)
- Optional Arcanum
- Forces 1
Learning to use his Chi to subtly enhance his own actions, the Monk is able to run a little faster, jump a little further, or lift a little more. The total distance (in yards) covered on a jump, the subject’s swimming and running Speed, and any climbing or lifting rolls gain a bonus of +1. Actions are also less strenuous when moving so efficiently.The Monk gains a +1 bonus on rolls to resist fatigue. (as per Forces 1, Kinetic Efficiency)
Second Attainment: Body Temple
- Life 2
As long as the Monk practices his daily (ritual) exercise regimen, he maintains full control over his normally autonomous bodily functions, with effects identical to the Life 2 Body Control spell. (Ritual Cast, Advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcanum
- Forces 2
More attuned to the subtle changes in temperature, vibration, and all the other minor variations in the forms of energy surrounding her that are often ignored, the Monk becomes able to intuitively feel as well as see forms of electromagnetic radiation, sound, and kinetic energies, allowing her to operate without penalty in complete darkness, and ignore any penalties from the Blindness or Deafness Tilts or Conditions. She can still see and hear and make out details, even in the dark, although colors and tones are somewhat muted. This increased sensitivity does make the Monk more vulnerable to bright lights and loud noises, which may inflict penalties equal to the Blindness condition. (As per Forces 1 Nightvision, Advanced Duration)
Third Attainment: Chi Force
- Life 3
The Monk’s constant exercise regimen has granted him an unparalleled physique, permitting him to channel his chi into it to enhance the potency of musculature, suppleness of ligaments, or rigidity and durability of his frame. So long as the Monk maintains his daily exercise regimen, he may, each day, increase one attribute by his dots in Life for the remainder of the scene up to his normal maximum. (As per Life 3 Honing the Form, Ritual Cast, Advanced Duration)
- Optional Arcana
- Forces 3
The Monk’s Chi can be channeled into more than his mere form, but can be projected out of his form in the manner of kinetic energy. With an instant action, the Monk may channel his chi into his melee attacks, increasing damage and turning it from Bashing into Lethal. Furthermore, any successful attack causes ripples of chi to pass directly through the subject disorientating them and applying the Stunned tilt. (As per Forces 2 Kinetic Strike, Spell Specific Reach)
Fourth Attainment: Inviolate Form
- Life 4
The Monk may channel his Chi within himself or another to heal damage, as per Life 4 Mend.
- Optional Arcana
- Forces 4
Channeling his Chi around himself the Monk is able to use it to redirect objects that would otherwise strike him. As an Instant Action, the Monk can focus his chi about him; thereafter as a reflexive action he can redirect a number of objects each round equal to his dots in Forces. These must all be of size 5 or less and the monk cannot redirect them unless he could apply his Defense. However, this effect does function against even individuals, allowing the Monk to deflect melee attacks. (As per Forces 3 Turn Momentum, Spell Specific Reach)
Fifth Attainment: Perfect Body
- Life 5
As per the previous attainment, Chi Force, but the Monk may choose two physical attributes to enhance, and he may increase either or both above his normal maximum. (As per Life 3 Honing the Form, Ritual Cast, Advanced Duration, Spell Specific Reaches +2)
- Optional Arcana
- Forces 5
With an instant action, and a point of Mana, the Monk is able to release his Chi as bolts of pure energy in an aimed attack, doing aggravated damage equal to his Forces dots. (As per Forces 4 Thunderbolt, Spell Specific Reach)
The Quiescent started as a philosophical movement borne from the aftermath of the Second World War, where the Awakened saw just how much Sleeper technology has moved on. The Quiet philosophy asks its adherents to working of magic within the limits of the Fallen World, within what the Quiescence already draws the line for. Already prone to drawing suspicion from other Awakened, especially that they were Seer fronts, the Legacy lost what tenuous contact it maintained with the larger Awakened society when one of their founders turned Banisher and started hunting them down.
The Quiet philosophy was largely a product of the 1940s and the 1950s, and when the zeitgeist gave way so did the Legacy’s main appeal. However, the Liars were always good with keeping their heads down from the authorities, especially with a murderous Banisher on their trails, and a few Quiet cabals have survived to the modern era. With the advent of communications and social media technology, there have even been mages who reinvented the Quiet philosophy in the modern age to better hide from prying Sleeper eyes, some of which have successfully inherited the Quiescents’ old mantle.
- Moros, Guardians of the Veil or Nameless
- The original Liars drew from war veterans, or those who were affected by the World War in one way. They were often comfortable with illegal, if not criminal activities, for the Legacy’s founders felt morality less important to their own behavioral code over magic, and morality is best taken in moderation after seeing what horrors a moral man can do. While modern Liars aren’t so familiar with war, they are still adept at evading the law and working in grey zones, especially when it comes to avoiding scrutiny.
- Quiescent mages live on the fringe of society, where they can fade into the background easily. This is easier in the modern era, where big cities that allow such are plenty. Liars dress simply as expected, and get on by with whatever work they find. Many do find work as investigators, or any other occupation where their skills would be needed.
- Time 2, Science 2, two dots in one of the following Skills; Investigation, Stealth, Brawl, Intimidation, Streetwise
- The Legacy draws exclusively from practitioners of Quiet Magic, and even then it’s usually the practitioner seeking them out than the Legacy approaching her. In the applicant’s pursuit the elder Liars judge her ability and character, seeing if she can find them with minimal reliance on magic and on others’ help.
- The Quiescent are one of the most diffused Legacies, the Legacy offering no greater organization to fall back on to and leaving each Liar on their own. The mentor severs regular contact when his pupil learns the Attainment she was calling to him to help on, and the pupil likewise moves on until she deems herself progressed enough for the next Attainment.
- The Quiescent do not think of the Quiescence as a Lie to be challenged, but just another principle of Supernal magic that can be worked through and around. They believe that it exists to protect Sleepers from the Awakened so that they may progress without intervention. Furthermore, they believe Quiescence also protect the Awakened from Sleepers so that they may work lesser but more stable wonders, free from Dissonance.
- Ruling Arcana
- Streets and alleys filled with non-descript buildings (+1); quietly observing the subject (+1); investigatory tools such as magnifiers (+1); confronting but not appearing in front of the subject (+1, +2 if managing the confrontation without verbal interaction)
- Menial chores such as cleaning; solving a puzzle; mixing drinks; shadowing a Sleeper or a group of them
First Attainment: No Mistake
The Liar wishes not to disturb the Quiet, so she learns to tread carefully. This Attainment divines whether the subject’s next Supernal spell will provoke Quiescence with a “Yes” or “No” answer, essentially being a limited version of the “Divination” spell with Reach assigned to instant use.
- Optional Arcana
- Death 1
Provocation of Quiescence and the taint of Paradox tend to go hand in hand, and the Silencer learns to pick up signs telling whether his subject is willing to be Quiet. This effect resembles the “Soul Marks” spell, but is limited to finding out if the subject is Awakened and if she is suffering a Paradox Condition. Reach is assigned to instant use.
While Withstood by Resolve, the mage can bypass it if he uses this effect immediately after his subject casts a Supernal spell.
Second Attainment: No Past
- Time 2, Science 3
The Liar learns to mask themselves from temporal scrutiny into their pasts. This Attainment resembles the “Shield of Chronos” spell, with Reach assigned to Advanced Duration. While providing no protection over the future, the Attainment’s protection over the past extends to mundane investigations as well. Mundane scrutiny automatically fails, and the Liar scores automatic successes equal to her Time dots on Clash of Wills provoked by magical scrutiny.
To use this Attainment, the Liar must spend a scene ritually destroying personal belongings that betray her past life, most often pictures and identification, and other items she has used extensively.
- Death 2
The Silencer can now move subtly enough in the present that he doesn’t leave a past trail that could follow him. He replicates the “Without a Trace” spell, with Reach assigned to Advanced Duration. The required preparation for this effect is identical to that of the Attainment’s main effect and can be taken in conjunction to enable both effects.
Third Attainment: No Present
- Time 3, two dots in a second Skill among the optional prerequisite Skills
Hiding one’s past is only the first step towards hiding yourself from unwanted attention, and the Liar must learn to protect her present self from unexpected encounters as well. This Attainment duplicates the “Momentary Flux” spell, with Reach assigned to instant use, Advanced Duration, and gaining an Initiative bonus when acting on the gleaned information.
- Death 3
The Quiescent is familiar with violence more than they appear to be, and a Silencer quickly learns how to break things when needed to save his own skin. He emulates the “Decay” spell, with Reach assigned to instant use and directly decreasing the object’s Structure.
Fourth Attainment: No Future
- Time 4, Science 4
The Legacy was born in the uncertainty of the 1940s, with any prediction of humanity’s future only a phantom. The modern era sympathizes still with that uncertainty of the future, and the Liar who internalizes it can choose to shift the future to her immediate benefit. This Attainment replicates the “Choose the Thread” spell, with Reach assigned to instant use and affecting supernatural powers including spellcasting.
- Death 4
A Silencer’s pursuit of a Quiet life rarely leaves him with only inanimate objects in his way. He duplicates the “Enervation” spell, with Reach assigned to instant use.
Fifth Attainment: No History
- Time 5, two dots in a third Skill among the optional prerequisite Skills
No one is perfect, and even the most dedicated of the Quiescent find themselves violating their philosophy and the Fallen World. The Liar who reaches the pinnacle of her silent reservation in the status quo of the world gain the ability to amend mistakes of her own or others, changing history itself if needed. This Attainment resembles the “Corridors of Time” spell, with Reach assigned to allowing the Temporal Sympathy Attainment.
With or without Temporal Sympathy, the Liar can only choose moments when the subject provoked Quiescence as the point of divergence, so that the subject never takes the course of action that provoked Quiescence.
To use this Attainment, the Liar must spend a scene ritually creating a portfolio of the subject’s life by using objects and symbols dear to them, and ritually destroying them in their presence.
- Death 5
The Silencer outright destroys his own presence in the world, ensuring that he will not marr the Fallen World’s natural progress. This effect resembles the “Empty Presence” spell, with Reach assigned to Advanced Duration. Instead of violence, however, it is the provocation of Quiescence that breaks the effect. The Silencer scores automatic successes equal to his Death dots in Clash of Wills provoked by Mage Sight or other abilities.
To use this Attainment, the Silencer must spend a point of Mana, and follow the same preparation the Attainment’s main effect requires.
- Mastigos or Adamantine Arrow
Background There is nothing that anyone can say draws the heart of a star out of a person. Adversity and the necessary durability of self that comes along with it. From the gaunt and sleep deprived parent, working two jobs to feed their child and keep a room over their head. To the most muscular and physically capable of trained individuals. It’s never the body that shows the truth of the soul, no, it is the iron will that denotes one of Resolute Cores.
Appearance There’s a quiet sort of determination that is discernible on every Singularity’s features. They’ve seen someone or something that would break those around them. While it has only proved their mettle time and again, it does leave its mark on their physical bodies. During their lifetimes there’s an ever increasing sensation of weight upon the Pulsar, as their power grows, this sensation spreads to those who oppose them.
- Initiation (WP 6+ Or Iron Stamina 2+ Or Indomitable), Forces 2
- Initiation: There is no easy way to unlock the truth of a Hypernova’s soul. It’s a violent and chaotic affair. Though it could be said that it is something that begins from the beginning of their very existence. Pain and Suffering are rife through the initiation, not because the cosmos is a necessarily cruel place. No. But rather due to a simple concept, Conflict necessitates Growth. To truly unlock who they are, the Resolute Core ascending must experience adversity, of some degree, Emotional, Physical, or Mental, within this trial, this crucible? There is enlightenment. This Crucible needs to be something to the point that will drive their Will to move beyond just the limitations of the flesh.
Organization: There’s no real organization within the Legacy. There’s many of those who suggest that the sheer determination, some would say stubborness, of the Legacy doesn’t give way to a lot of group meetings. Celestial Bodies rarely meet, and when they do, it’s usually one of those catastrophic events that leaves a mark upon everything around them.
Theory: The Resolute Cores all consider all adversity to be a growing pain, Your soul, mind and body experience these things with varying degrees throughout your life. The unaware focus on whatever seems to resolve the pain fastest but the Enlightened know, that if you push a little harder, dig a little deeper, the growth is explosively exponential, rather than a lateral maneuver. Everyone deserves Enlightenment, but not everyone is ready, Test them, let them find their own path.
- Ruling Arcana
- Enduring an Attack (+1, +2 if damage is taken,) Intending Full Force (Drop Defense) (+2,+3 If striking an Ephemeral entity Physically. This yantra requires Adamant Hand) Stargazing Ritualistically (+2)
- Meditating in an Extreme Environment, Deprivation, Ritualized Injury to the last 3 health levels when previously unharmed(doesn’t affect and is unaffected by Scouring w/ health levels).
First Attainment: Light Penetrates the Darkness
- Initiation, and either Brawl, Empathy or Investigation 1(This choice sets the skills for later Attainment requirements.)
- The Void of the Cosmos seems to drink in all available light, it leaves one in the depths of one humanity’s first fears, the Dark. Hope is not lost however for the universe is full of stars, sending their Light in all directions. Every Pulsar brings their own light, to break through the depths and be the light you need. (Darksight | Primary Factor: Duration | Reach: Advanced Duration)
- Optional: Space 1 - There are very few things that remain fully within the dark of the Cosmos, even without light, there’s the depiction of the universe through the gravitation wells of all Celestial bodies. Singularities can tap into this sensation and feel around them, able to discern other objects within the void through their disturbance in the surrounding space. (The Inward & Outward Eye | Primary Factor: Duration | Advanced Duration)
Second Attainment: Energy has No Obstacle
- Forces 2, Either Brawl Empathy or Investigation 2
- All things moving through the Cosmos move at their optimal pace, no friction to stop them and the gravity wells only seeking to pull them faster or force them to turn. Every Pulsar hits with the shock wave capable of punching a hole through or at the very least slamming a crater into the celestial bodies in their way. (Kinetic Blow | Primary Factor Potency | Advanced Duration)
- Optional: Space 2 - Surely as a meteor or solar flare carves a swath through the universe unhindered, photons and other energy pelt the universe regardless of the celestial bodies that might cause them to otherwise stop. In this, a Singularity might bypass any solid in front of them passing through and continuing on their path to whatever end they may naturally achieve. (Break Boundary | Primary Spell Factor Potency | Instant Cast)
Third Attainment: Grace of the Habitable Zone / Wormhole
- Forces 3, Either Brawl, Empathy, or Investigation 3
- Without a star relatively near you, the void of space is a desolately cold locale, too close to one and you’re prone to incineration before life might develop, there are but a scant few thousand miles between a star and the edge of its influence where those within it can exist comfortably. (Environmental Shield | Primary Factor Potency | Advanced Duration, Instant Cast)
- Optional: Space 3 - Many have theorized that a singularity, should one figure out how to safely navigate one, are not simply a dead zone of supreme gravitational well, but rather a knot in the Cosmos that brings two distant locations to a singular nexus. Perhaps the only way for humans to achieve ‘FtL’ Travel (Co-Location | Primary Factor Potency | Advanced Scale)
Fourth Attainment: Atmospheric Aegis
- Forces 4, Space 4, Brawl, Empathy, or Investigation 4
- Within the Habitable zone are planets with atmospheres that shield the balls of rock from the cruelty of the Void and the radiation of the celestial furnaces. Some of these shields even convert and warp the energies around the planets into beneficial and life providing rays. A Pulsar at this stage can do the same, albeit upon as slightly smaller scale. (Transform Forces with 1 Mana for Advanced Scale | Primary Spell Factor Potency | Instant Cast)
- Optional: Space 4 - Unfortunately for even the wisest, coming into contact with a true Black Hole, cuts off all method of communication, leaving those that seek to get to close leaving with nought but a hollow feeling for their troubles. ( Cut Threads | Primary Factor Potency | Advanced Duration )
Fifth Attainment: Supernova
- Forces 5, Brawl, Empathy or Investigation 5
- The Universe began with an explosion, supposedly from the smallest cluster of atoms came everything, and it’s with this destructive force caused by the Hypernova that he can bring a massive wave of power to rival the stars themselves exploding and reducing everything around them to nothing. Much as a star’s destruction can decimate a solar system, so too can the Hypernova destroy all around them. (Thunderbolt (Firey Wave) with 1 mana for Advanced Scale| Primary Factor Potency | Instant Cast,Causes Agg Damage 1 mana)
- Optional: Space 5 - However, it’s also said that the Universe will suffer heat death, and rapidly contract possibly reducing itself to its original subatomic particle form, crushing everyone and thing in it, into that finite point of collapse, Ending everything before it begins again. The Singularity can mimic this effect on a smaller, though still impressive Scale. (Collapse with 1 Mana for Advanced Scale| Primary Factor Potency | Sensory Range, Instant Cast)
The story goes that in Eden, before the fall from grace, roses did not have thorns. After Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge, God laid a curse on Adam that (among other things) plants would have thorns and thistles. Roses, then, developed the sharp thorns that would go on to become metaphors for life in general and for the sorrow that seems to follow happiness. This story resonated with an Acanthus mage named Abigail Mitchum who had recently joined the Silver Ladder. During her Awakening to Arcadia, she had seen the possibility of the Wise to earn the title, to delve into mysteries of the past and look to the heart of history’s greatest triumphs and mistakes. The potential to teach, to save and to succor was there, in the Awakened soul of every mage. The Silver Ladder, she was told when she emerged, breathless, from her Awakening, was the society of kings, the shining beacon of…. This sort of talk continued until she’d pledged herself to the order. But then, slowly but surely, she learned that others didn’t share her idealism. Abigail was a veteran of bureaucracy, both from civil service jobs and academia, and she recognized what she was seeing. The Wise, the Awakened, the all-powerful théarchs, weren’t looking beyond their own interests. They saw status within the orders as a goal in itself. Frustrated, she made friends with members of the other orders, and discovered that it was the same everywhere. Even in the Free Council, which didn’t suffer from the same kind of pettiness, mages still saw clout within their own society as a goal. Abigail thought that was absurd. Yes, people have a tendency to seek accolades, and they could still do good things while gaining status. But mage society was artificial, constructed around and in the cracks of Sleeper society as some desperate homage to a time that no living mage could verify, much less remember. Abigail held the Awakened to a higher standard than that, and dramatically left the Silver Ladder. “It’s not enough for her to be a mage,” one of her former colleagues muttered as she left. “She wants to be a superhero.” Abigail dropped out of sight and ventured across the world, meeting with order leaders, new cabals, solitary mages and those rare few who exist outside the Atlantean societal structure. She learned that there were other ways of doing magic. Power over the world could come from many sources, not all of them benign. A man’s burning obsession could create life. A witch’s potions could make someone fall in love. A wolf-skin, properly prepared, could allow a man to change into a beast. What Abigail took away from these meetings, aside from a great deal of arcane knowledge, was that either magic infused the Fallen World to a much greater degree than mages understood, or that they just weren’t willing to admit it. And again, Abigail found that unacceptable. She returned to her original Consilium five years to the day after she left. She approached the seat of the Hierarch and threw a thornless rose at his feet, and then turned to face the assembled Awakened. “I am the Rose of Eden,” she said, “and I have shed my thorns. Anyone who wants to do so is welcome to find me.” A few of the mages in attendance did, in fact, come to see her, but only those on the Path of Thistle have so far joined the Legacy itself. Over the ensuing years, the Roses of Eden have spread out over the world, sometimes working closely with Consilium mages, sometimes shunning them and keeping company with other solitaries and non-Awakened sorcerers.
Induction Once a prospect has found a potential tutor, she must present her case. Why should she be allowed to join the Legacy? Wanting to keep membership in any of the four Atlantean orders (or “pseudo-Atlantean” orders, as some Roses call them) is grounds for immediate dismissal. Individual Noddists can chooseto admit Free Council mages to their ranks, but not all are willing to do so. Only Acanthus mages were permitted to become Roses of Eden untill Recently, when a few prospective members from other paths took a stand to defend a Rose that had been framed for crimes against her concilum, By Leaving their orders and renouncing their ties to the city, These roses have recenetly moved to portland and have become profound supporters of the embassy, They still distrust the orders, and even more so the Seers of the throne but they are willing to tolerate both due to the Attempts of working with in the embassy which appears to live their ideals to a T. The prospect is subjected to lengthy questioning, and all answers are vetted against both mundane and magical investigation. The Roses like to know who they are dealing with. It isn’t that they are afraid of infiltration (they tend to be transparent about their agendas and initiatives), just that they don’t want people grubbing for power within the Legacy. The prospect also needs to present an accounting of what she has done with her life. Has she held down jobs or raised a family, or has she led a life of hedonism and sloth? The Legacy doesn’t disapprove of pleasure, but the Roses can’t abide idleness from mages. Recently Awakened mages, especially those who have careers and families and are still coping with the transition from Sleeping life to Awakened life, are never turned away, even if they can’t actually join the Legacy (due to not being Acanthus or not being magically powerful enough). Such people are given support and mentoring, always with an eye toward building the ideal Awakened society — one in which mages help each other to explore the secrets of the world and protect those who cannot safely look upon those secrets, rather than squirreling them away and sniggering about it. The Roses of Eden don’t go in for showy initiation requirements. They see such trials as exactly the sort of thing that mages should be able to rise above. After all, a mage with even the barest knowledge of the Mind or Fate Arcana should know a lie when she hears one. An Apprentice of Time can get a sense as to whether a given prospect will or will not make a good member of the Legacy. Why not put these talents to use, and save the time that would otherwise be wasted in contests of strength, skill or political savvy — talents that can just as easily be bestowed by magic? The gifts of Awakened are nothing without the moral fiber to make good use of them, and if there is a spell to make someone into a reasonable and honest person, the Roses haven’t discovered it yet. Once a mage is accepted into the Legacy, she is expected to keep regular contact with her mentor for a period of not less than sixth months. During that time, she is also expected to act in some meaningful way, either to help other mages reinvent their society, help Sleepers combat the evils of their society, or find mages and other magic users outside the Atlantean power structure and enlist their help, or at least their knowledge. All of these can be dangerous jobs, and the Roses of Eden make no bones about it — they do not enjoy the same support that other mages do. “But,” Abigail always says when this is pointed out to her, “give the Roses time to bloom.”
- Acanthus Order: Freecouncil/apostate
Almost every civilization has a “time before” story. Before life was the way it was, there was a paradise, a land of ease and comfort, of beauty and pleasure. And then, usually due to some failing on the part of mankind, it all fell apart, and people were forced to hunt, mate, hurt and die. The fact that this myth is so widespread leads the Awakened to surmise that there must be some truth to it — indeed, they tie these uber-myths to their own story of the Fall of Atlantis. The Celestial Ladder shattered and the Awakened City was lost forever. The Orders of the Pentacle (rather, four of them) claim to be all that remains of this “time before.” The Roses of Eden don’t dispute this. They just think it’s pathetic. The Roses of Eden are mages that denounce the Pentacle, and the Atlantean paradigm in general. It isn’t that they claim Atlantis never existed — certainly the temples and Artifacts, to say nothing of phenomena such as ananke, indicate that some civilization of mages predated known history. What the Roses object to is basing the current, modern-day society of the Awakened on a society about which so few concrete facts are known. After all, mages are aware that the Seers of the Throne take their orders (or at least inspiration) from ancient, ascended masters — why, then, do the Pentacle mages insist on doing the same thing? Oracles or Exarchs, it doesn’t matter. Both are inscrutable, both are unknowable, and both are not of the Fallen World. Better, surely, to create a new society, one truly born of the modern era. The Legacy’s members are aware that their philosophies aren’t popular, and so most of them try to meet other mages’ concerns as reasonably and gently as possible. This is especially true of the Noddists, who once claimed membership in one of the orders but left after the labyrinthine politics and rampant nepotism disillusioned them. Yes, the orders have safeguarded important secrets through the centuries — rotes, magical practices, mudras, mystic items and locations — and those should all be preserved. But isn’t it time to cast off the rivalries of the past? Some Noddists, however, are openly hostile to the orders. They might be able to work with order mages, or even to join their cabals, but they refuse to take membership. Some even refuse to claim membership in a Consilium, but most Roses admit that it just isn’t practical to try to make a life as a mage without the protection and support of other mages. Perhaps most controversial of all, some Roses cultivate contact with sorcerers whose power doesn’t come from the Supernal Realms at all. Not all magic is Awakened in nature, and while most mages seem to feel that any magic that doesn’t directly stem from an Awakening is an inferior or even stolen version of their own power, the Roses of Eden view all magic as having a place in their ideal society. The Fallen World is a dangerous place, and having allies that don’t suffer Paradox or engender Disbelief can only benefit the Awakened, even if their powers aren’t as versatile. The Roses of Eden haven’t made a great deal of progress toward establishing their society yet, largely because they have thousands of years of Atlantean tradition to break through. In some Consilii (notably those with a heavy Free Council presence), the Roses have succeeded in doing away with some of the tradition offices. Instead of a Hierarch, a visiting cabal might find a Committee, or even a President, elected for a short time by the mages of the city. Rumor has it that one city’s mages even collectively renounced their order membership and pledged themselves to the Roses of Eden. This city (the exact location varies depending on who is telling the tale and why) lost all of its mages over the next six weeks, and now no Consilium at all remains. The more militant Roses of Eden have their theories about what really happened, but the moderate members of the Legacy doubt the veracity of the story.
- Life 2,and the mage must be able to convince his or her mentor that he honestly does believe in the legacies beliefs that the worlds eco system is more healthy if we try to work with those that live within it, as opposed to utilizing elitism and thinking that the mages are better than everyone else because we have knowledge of the supernal.
- Ruling Arcana
- +1 maintaining a garden,+1 meditating in nature, +1 Scriptures,
- Writing or reading philosophy, volunteering or doing charity work, gardening, reading non-Atlantean occult work, educating Sleepers (not necessarily about magic).
First Attainment: Pulse of The living.
- Gnosis 2, life 1
Through the use of this attainment the mage is able to analyze the well being of any living creature around it. This is normally used to identify any pests or parasites infecting their garden but can also be used to identify other types of supernatural creatures. Or foreign creatures the mage comes across.
This attainment uses Instant casting emulates Analyze life , Life 1
Lay of the land
:Prerequisite Prime 1
By use of this attainment the mage studies the supernal signatures of the land around her and is able to use this information to find the perfect place to plant their garden, this is also used in conjunction with The later Tree of life, and Tree of knowledge attainments to find a suitable place to utilize those attainments.
As per sacred Geometry, Prime 1
Uses instant cast reach
Second Attainment: Cleanse the Garden
- Gnosis 2, life 2
- The mage can create a magica
l lure or repellant for specific types of organisms. This is used to force certain pests to leave the area of their garden, or inorder to bring polinating insects into the garden to promote growth over time. This attainment uses, Advanced duration.
Emulates Lure and repel
Grove Warden’s Mark
The magus uses this attainment to ward his garden or Sanctum from hostile magic.
As per wards and signs Prime 2 Uses Advanced duration factors.
Third Attainment: Tree of life.
- Prerequisites: Gnosis4, Life 3
Right or wrong, people respond better to those who appear healthy, strong and attractive. Abigail noted early in her campaign that if she looked well-rested and hale, her audiences, be they mage, Sleeper or stranger beings still, received her politely and with more respect. This Attainment allows a Noddist to appear perpetually healthy, with the bonus of allowing her to heal damage to her body more quickly into the bargain, by combining her knowledge of plant life with her ability to heal herself. The mage can reflexively restore her pattern as per pattern restoration, except that it is further enhanced by her ties to life arcana and the natural world. The mage now restors 2 points of bashing or 1 point of lethal per mana spent to restore this way. No matter how much she has taken or whether or not she has any more severe wounds,she automatically spends a point of Mana and stabilizes herself. She is still unconscious, but is in no danger of dying unless she takes more damage. To use any of these powers, however, the character must either be in direct sunlight or be able to touch bare earth. The earth must be able to sustain plant life. Even a houseplant is enough, but if the character is in a city alleyway at night, she might have trouble using this Attainment.
Optional Arcanum: Prime 3 A Rose of Eden who is also a Disciple of Prime can grow a true tree of life. The tree needs to be of a variety that bears fruit, and it must be grown without magical assistance (that is, the character must tend and water it normally). The mage must plant the tree herself, though a sapling works just as well as a seed. And it must be planted within a hallow. When the tree bears fruit, the fruits carry within them the power to heal. Anyone who eats the fruit of the tree is granted one point of mana, as well as the ability to use the life version of this attainment. ( this allows non mages to heal them selves this way as well.) Abigail Mitchum was known to tend an apple tree using this Attainment, but she also grew tomato plants in her basement using hydroponics. The tomatoes worked just as well for healing as the apples. The mage must infuse the tree or plant with one point of Mana per day to allow the plant to soak up the necessary magic. Water infused with Tass is acceptable, and some Roses have even been known to infuse plant food tablets with Mana to feed their magical trees. If a plant goes more than three days without a point of Mana, it loses the ability to function as a Tree of Life until infused with a full month’s worth of Mana. A tree is produces a single fruit per day per point of hollow the tree is planted in.
Fourth Attainment: Guardian Of The Grove
- Gnosis 6 life 4
- With the use of this attainment the mage, creates the perfect guardian of the Legacy’s gardens. Altering the form of them selves or a target they touch, they are able to give various traits to augment the target to become a better protector.
This attainment uses Advanced duration, and instant casting reaches Emulating transform life.
- Optional Arcana
- Prime 4
With the mage infuses his patern with supernal energies allowing him self to protect his grove from twilight entities. As per ephermal enchantment prime three Advanced duration and instant reaches
Fifth Attainment: Tree of Knowledge
- Gnosis 8, Life 5 With this attainment The Rose is able to connect With those they share these blessings with, It gives them a deep and profound connection and understanding with all who participate with the ritual. The power allows each participant to empathically feel eachother’s emotional and physical state of being, as well as allowing them all to have a hightened degree of control over their bodies. As they are all connected all the participants also become protected from harm.
This spell emulates the effect of Control Body as well as allowing the participants to sense the condition of their fellows, health level, state of mind, or emotional state
Uses Grant 1/0 armor, Advanced duration and Advanced scale Reaches
Optional Arcanum: With prime 4 this attainment allows those connected by the primary attainment. Share the primary caster’s Mage sight so they could even more intimately see things the way the Rose does.
Prime 4 Apocalypse Advanced duration, Advanced scale Reaches
After the Fall of Atlantis and the subsequent scattering of mages across the world, language became a barrier rather than a tool for the Awakened. The greatest secrets of the Supernal Realms were fractured, shards of power and knowledge spread out among the mages of the world. Without the Island of the Magi’s society to compile the knowledge, the Awakened had to work alone or in small cabals, never knowing enough of the truth to recapture their past glories.
The Sphinx Legacy arose from the frustration of those mages. The Mastigos of the time knew that with the application of the Mind Arcanum they could comprehend any earthly language, but that wasn’t enough. Language wasn’t the true barrier, these mages discovered, because a language is merely a set of symbols. These primordial Sphinxes realized that inherent in the process of making symbols lay the solution to the confusion caused by the destruction of the Celestial Ladder — that they could look beyond graphemes and sounds and simply communicate with pure meaning.
Modern-day Sphinxes sometimes claim that the Legacy was an important part of the formation of the Mysterium, and that might well be true. Whether or not this was the case, the Sphinx Legacy became, over time, the province of the Wings of the Dragon almost exclusively. While a lone Mastigos might occasionally discover and follow the Legacy, the order guarded its secrets jealously
- Magistos, Mysterium, Guardians of the Veil
- Gnosis 2, Fate 2, Investigation 2, one of the following Skills at 2 dots or higher (Academics, Occult, Empathy, Expression)
Initiation: An initiate must impress her tutor with her ability to decipher codes, riddles, and puzzles.
Organization: Sphinxes of the Guardians and Mysterium have a worldwide system of coded messages spread throughout a variety of media. Small radio stations, public access television shows, magazine articles, books and, of course, Internet sites, all serve as bulletin boards for the Legacy. The messages are all heavily coded and require time and effort to encode or decode, but the wealth of knowledge that a Sphinx of the order can draw upon is great. Outside those Orders, Pathfinders have little in the way of formal contact, though when they encounter each other the meeting is usually friendly.
Theory: The name “Sphinx” comes from the mythological creature that Oedipus confronted near Thebes. He solved the riddle of the Sphinx, and she leaped to her death in horror that her secret was revealed. Whether the name “Sphinx” was one that members of this Legacy originally applied to themselves or not, they do not see themselves as jealous keepers of secrets. Indeed, they tend to view themselves as searchers trying to solve a riddle. That riddle is difficult to express, because it is so vast in scope, but the basic idea is this: If meaning can be found in anything, at any level of understanding or consciousness, then what is the ultimate meaning? Where does the truth come from, and to what purpose?
- Ruling Arcana
- Optional Arcana
- Mundanely investigating a target before casting (+1, +2 if spending longer than a turn), collecting samples or recording information (images, sounds, writings) relevant to the spell or target (+1), Using stimulants to keep focused (+1, +2 if a negative condition is caused)
- solving a puzzle (crossword, Sudoku , even certain video games). Translating a written work, transcribing a speech (be it a story, monologue, or even political address). Facilitating communication (by acting as a mediator or translator, for instance), or documenting research
First Attainment: Hidden Meaning:
The Sphinx’s first Attainment allows her to find and decipher wisdom in the mundane. Anything that has a pattern can be used for this purpose, be it cracks in the ceiling or the calls of a flock of birds. The Mage merely needs to study the pattern for a few seconds to gain the information contained therein. This Attainment simulates the “Interconnections” spell as an Instant Action.
- Mind 1
Alternatively, the Pathfinder may take an Instant Action to scrutinize the mental and emotional states of the people around him. This Attainment mimics the “Mental Scan” spell.
Second Attainment: Hidden Fate
- Fate 2, Investigation 3
Knowing the truth of the world by interpreting its many hidden messages is only the first step toward the superlative understanding that the Sphinx hopes one day to reach. As she further hones this talent of the Legacy, she becomes sensitive enough to the currents of Fate to see hints of its plans for the people around her. This Attainment mimics the “Foreshadow” spell, and the Sphinx may either spend time concentrating to target anyone in sensory range or they may activate this attainment as an Instant Action.
- Mind 2
By studying a person’s movements, the subtle messages conveyed by facial expression, body language and breathing and even how others react to him, the Sphinx gains an advantage in dealing with him. This effect is similar to the First Impressions spell, with Reach assigned to make it an Instant Action. Alternatively, the Sphinx may take time studying the target in order to activate this Attainment with Advanced Duration
Third Attainment: Truth Without Knowledge
- Fate 3, Investigation 3, Secondary Skill at 3
The Pathfinder learns to take advantage of the clues that surround her as to the fundamental nature of reality. To the untrained eye, she looks lucky or simply confident. But to a mage, every action she takes is fraught with significance. This Attainment duplicates the “Exceptional Luck” spell as an Instant action, and can be made reflexive by spending a point of Mana.
- Mind 3
By spending an hour listening to patterns of sound in speech or watching patterns of letters in written discourse, the Mage can understand anything she hears or reads. This Attainment duplicates the “Universal Language” spell with a reach assigned for Advanced Duration.
Fourth Attainment: Off the Path
- Fate 4, Investigation 4, Secondary Skill at 3, Unbound Fate Attainment
The Sphinx learns to “walk between” the paths of meaning in the world, disappearing from the cycles of destiny. As far as the world and its many layers of hidden messages are concerned, she does not exist while this Attainment is active. She must spend a scene in silent meditation, perceiving the threads of fate and stepping between them. Once this is done, for the next 24 hours, any Clash of Wills triggered by Unbound Fate gain the rote quality, unless the Sphinx fails such a roll sooner.
- Mind 4
Reading a person’s intentions isn’t difficult for the Pathfinder. And at this stage, a tic of the eye or a shift of the hand betrays everything about a target — his hopes, his fears and even his memories. This Attainment is similar to the “Read the Depths” spell, with Reach assigned to make it Instant and target anyone in sensory range.
Fifth Attainment: Riddle of Life
- Fate 5, Investigation 4, Secondary Skill at 4 OR Secondary Skill at 3 and Tertiary Skill at 3
At the height of her power, a Sphinx has gained enough insight into the subtle patterns of the world to truly impose his influence on them. With this Attainment, she uses the “Chaos Mastery” spell as an Instant Action with Advanced Duration.
- Mind 5
The greatest Pathfinders can use their mastery of Mind to cleanse any and all distractions from their thoughts. This Attainment simulates the “Clear Thoughts” spell as an Instant Action and the Sphinx may choose to make the effects of a given instance Lasting.
- Ruling Arcana
- Arcana Type
First Attainment: Name
Second Attainment: Name
Third Attainment: Name
Fourth Attainment: Name
- Optional Arcana
Fifth Attainment: Name
“I swear to do all I can to encourage others to lead, rather than follow. To forge new paths rather than to blindly walk the old ways. To create, to combine, to experiment, and to let their own desires, rather than the complacent pap of the masses, be their guide.”
- Wyrd 2, Spring Mantle (1), at least one social skill at 3+
- Bodhisattva, Agent of Change, Succubus/Incubus (intended as offensive, but rarely taken that way)
- Becoming an Agent of Change is not hard. Most feel that they are called to the position, or born to it. To become a Bodhisattvas of the Broken Cage all one must do is find another, and prove to them that they really are dedicated to breaking the social norm, and freeing those they feel are trapped by it. This can take a varying length of time, Usually, the Bodhisattva will present a challenge to the new recruit, and see how they go about completing it.
- Huntsman or True Fae attacking a member of the Entitlement does so through their desires, and believe that they are freeing people from the constraints of society. They must attack this by convincing the changeling that instead of helping someone they have actually harmed them.
- The Bodhisattvas are all about change, progress, and evolution, and their mien reflects that in a tangible if disturbing manner. A Bodhisattva’s appearance constantly, but subtly, shifts. These changes are uncontrollable and can, over time, result in significant changes to the Bodhisattva’s appearance, although the changeling’s current visage always seems natural and somehow “right” to them. Eye color, hair color and texture, skin tones, facial features, body shape, stature, and vocal timbre can all shift, although the changes are rarely enough to fool those who see the changeling on any sort of regular basis. Some Bodhisattva’s have been known, over time, to gradually shift physical forms from male to female or vice versa, although this change takes a matter of months or years during which the Bodhisattva manifests androgynous features (neither strongly male or female) or hermaphroditic ones (both male and female, such as a feminine shape but masculine facial hair). These changes do not affect the Mask.
The one feature which does not change, and is considered by some to be the true mien of the Bodhisattva (with the shifting of features being merely an affectation) is a golden glowing aura which emanates from them. This light does not affect Darklings as the sun’s light does, but it is enough to serve as a subtle source of illumination in darkness (or to make it difficult for them to hide in shadowy environs.)
- Not all entitlements have histories which trace back into the annals of time. Although some assume by virtue of the name that the entitlement began somewhere in Asia centuries ago, in truth the advent was much more recent. In the late 1950s, a Beat Generation author used the term Bodhisattva in a book which detailed the main character breaking out
of a mundane existence with the aid of a mentor who showed him a world of possibilities beyond those, he had previously considered. Although the story never received great critical acclaim, it became a cult classic among the Spring Court during the early 1960s; courtiers read a great deal of significance into what they believed was the novel’s intended meaning. Stylizing themselves after the story’s mentors, the first Bodhisattvas dedicated themselves to a common purpose and set out to drive a culturally repressed generation of youth into action and thought previously unheard of at the time.
Social change, however, has a way of becoming the norm, and within a decade the formerly unheard of was nearly mainstream, with an entire sub-culture flocking to the “beatnik” way of thinking and living not because it was true for them, but because it had become the social expectation among their peers. Some among the original Bodhisattvas chose to continue to drive the subculture, pushing trend-setters and freethinkers among the population to continue to push the boundaries, traditions and social mores the generation had begun to establish for itself. Others branched out in other directions, choosing new segments of Lost or human populations to challenge in what they believe to be positive ways.
Bodhisattvas can manifest as elitist-yet-cut-throat social bullies who apply everything from peer pressure to outright threats or physical mayhem to guide others in the directions they believe will improve them and push them out of stagnation. They can just as take the role of inspiration and muse, however, encouraging growth and transformation through subtle manipulation or emotional bribery. Some Bodhisattvas remain aloof from attempts to actively manipulate others, serving as a force of change only by the nigh-unattainable ideal they set in their daily lives and the example they act as, trusting that others will follow
- The social structure of the Bodhisattvas doesn’t just mirror that of the Spring Court; it is the super-charged, ultra-refined, razor-edge version thereof. There is no stagnation within the entitlement, nothing so slow-paced or rigid as rank or hierarchy. While most of
the Bodhisattvas believe themselves to be a vital source of change and growth, they are still of the Emerald Court, and social politics runs through their veins. In truth, gatherings of the Bodhisattvas are rare. Many are more comfortable in the company of those they are trying to influence and encourage than among their fellow Agents of Change. Some claim this is simply a natural reaction to their constant struggle for social change, while others say that Agents simply can’t be comfortable around anyone whom their inherent privilege doesn’t give them at least the hope of a social leg-up on.
Sprung Door ●● (Privilege)
This token takes the form of some variation of a broken door. The stereotypical manifestation (if any such thing can be said to exist) is a tiny golden birdcage with a sprung door. Regardless of the specific symbol, the token is normally crafted in the form of a piece of jewelry (pendant, earring, brooch or bracelet charm), although it can also take the form of a piece of clothing like a batik scarf, embroidered sash or elaborately painted biker’s jacket.
While the gifting of the token from one Bodhisattva to a new member is an important symbolic invitation into the entitlement, the exact cage gifted does not have to be the one empowered to become the token, allowing a new recruit to create (or commission) a piece which suits her own individual style. Should it be stolen or destroyed (or simply become passé) the owner can spend a point of Glamour to disinvest her connection with the old symbol and a point of Willpower to connect herself with a new piece that takes on the qualities of the Sprung Door. Only one token of this kind can be associated with any given character at a time.
The Sprung Door gives a +3 dice to any Social rolls involving removing a Door when attempting to maneuver someone to thwart social norms,, break out of established habits or comfortable patterns, or try new things.
Drawback: On fellow members of the entitlement, any Agent of Change suffers from a –2 penalty to any active Presence or Manipulation rolls (this penalty affects only the character attempting the action, not the defending Bodhisattva.) This disadvantage occurs regardless of whether the Bodhisattva was attempting to use the Token or not, and happens even if the Token is not present (or if the Bodhisattva has temporarily divested herself of the Token altogether).
• Each year the Bodhisattvas have a contest. The winner is the individual who has influenced the most outlandish, least logical or practical trend to be followed by humanity for that year. Past winners include the Bodhisattva who spawned forth pet rocks, shoes with living goldfish in the heels and a series of collectible card games that lured some players into seeing as solid financial investments.
• There’s no rhyme or reason to the ways of the Cagers. They claim they’re trying to guide society in ways that will keep it from stagnating, but sometimes they just want to see how far they can go before someone stops following them.
• Fifty or sixty years back, there was another Entitlement just like the Bodhisattvas. They tried to take over the entirety of the Spring Court, claiming that the rest of the Antler Crown was just a bunch of mindless sheep that didn’t deserve the freedom of choice if they weren’t going to use it. It almost worked, too. But then one night, something hunted down each and every one of them, and the entitlement was decimated overnight. Even now, the old entitlement’s name is never spoken.
“I solemnly vow that I will defend the Dream against all enemies; that I will bear true faith to the sword and scales of Themis; that I make this vow freely, without any reservation or evasion, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of which I am about to enter.”
When those with power brush up alongside those without, abuses will happen. Laws declared by human or even changeling authorities have no sway over hobgoblins and oneiroi and yet there are still customs and natural laws- Mores that dictate what is acceptable and what is not. There are lines that most creatures instinctively hesitate to cross. Dreams are where mortals most often brush up against the fae world, and it’s here that the Justicars of Themis have drawn a line in the sand.
Justicars rarely view themselves as aristocrats. Most still think of themselves as common changelings who have stepped up to perform a particularly difficult and onerous duty. The Justicars cannot prevent every terrible deed that happens and so they focus their efforts on a minimum standard of behavior for those who dabble in oneiromancy. They do not consider the Mores to be law as that would imply they would need proper jurisdictional authority to enforce them. Mores run deeper in that and are born from a common instinct of what must not be.
- The Mores
- Mixing Blood: Physical relations between an incubus and a mortal that result in the birth of a Cambion must not be.
- Mental Battery: Complete destruction, drastic or permanent mental alteration, or the enslavement of an innocent’s mind must not be.
- Plague Bearing: Spreading Dream Poison must not be.
- Murder: Using dreams to murder mortals must not be.
Wyrd 2, Investigation 4 (additional for higher ranks, see below)
Justicar, Scales (Slang)
Justicars of Themis deliberately recruit changelings with sharp eyes and minds as well as those with a strong moral compass. Oftentimes the lowest ranking members Entitlement come across recruits when they travel in pursuit of a suspect and pass word of them up the chain of command. The Banner in charge of the regional office will then come pay the recruit a visit in their dreams and make the offer. The recruit may reject the offer at first and the Justicars will step back and watch for a year and a day. If the recruit is still considered worthy after that time they will arrange for word of a violation of the Mores to reach them. If the recruit acts on the information then the Justicars will make the offer a second time. If the offer is rejected again the process is repeated. Only after a third rejection will the Justicars leave the recruit in peace.
Upon joining the Justicars of Themis, a changeling’s eyes become a bright neon blue. As her Wyrd increases the blue grows out around her eyes, through the Justicar’s veins. Those with high Wyrd find that their blood is completely neon blue and also becomes luminescent.
There are many paths that can lead a changeling to join the Justicars of Themis. For some it is a matter of idealism and a way to protect mortals while others join because they’ve seen the damage that violating the Mores can cause firsthand. A rare few have even violated the Mores themselves in the past and join the Justicars as means of making amends. Members tend to be intelligent and highly skilled oneiromancers with the physical skills to survive the rigors of the Hedge as well as their enemies.
The Justicars of Themis maintain a strict command structure across the globe though the bureaucracy of the organization is minimal and the vast majority of members never become involved in the upper ranks of the order.
Justicars enter the Entitlement as a Shield and most never move beyond it. Changelings fulfilling this roll work in their hometown and freehold to protect the dreams of the mortals around them. They investigate any rumors of violations of the mores, hunt cambions, and sometimes try to help heal those whose dreams have been ravaged. Many also develop extensive networks of informants in the Hedge and keep an eye out for any potential new recruits. Shields report their activities up the chain of command but generally have free reign to protect their area as they see fit.
Prerequisites: Weaponry 4, Merit: Command Intensity •
Swords are Justicars who have gone beyond the basic prerequisites of the Entitlement. They have extensive practice not just as investigators but also as deadly hunters. Many oneiroi and cambions are exceptionally dangerous and Swords are often called in when a situation proves too difficult for a Shield to handle alone. In average day to day operations they act just as Shields do but must also be available to travel within a wider region at a moment’s notice.
Prerequisites: Empathy 3, Politics 3, Socialize 3
Banners sit at the head of a regional office situated in the largest cities in the world: New York, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Mumbai, Cairo, Los Angeles, Paris, London, Chicago, and others all support a regional office with the Shields of the surrounding areas reporting to them. If any need extra support then it’s the Banner that arranges for one of the Swords to come. Tokyo is the single largest office and doubles as the Justicar’s international headquarters. The Banner of Tokyo serves as the Chief Justicar of the Entitlement and any inter-regional cases falls under her authority.
The Scales of Horai (•••)- The Scales of Horai are a miniature set of brass scales that hang from a heavy sapphire ring. It is the badge of office for a Justicar and when worn a drop of their blood may be balanced against a bit of dirt or dust taken from the area. Upon activation an incubus emerges from the sapphire and ordered to aid the Justicar with a single task. The task may be extended, such as navigating the Hedge or interrogating a hob witness, but once the task is complete it vanishes back into the sapphire. While the incubus is highly intelligent and reputed to be incredibly dangerous the Scales of Horai limit the incubus’ abilities to those of its jailer. Mechanically, the incubus has the same dice pools as the character and they may apply teamwork to rolls.
Mien: When active, the sapphire glows with an inner light turns blood red.
Drawback: The next time the user sleeps, the incubus is granted access to her dreams where it has the ability to create a False Memory Dream.
Catch: Once the incubus has completed their task, they do not return to the ring. Instead they are free to act as it will for an entire scene, oftentimes turning on the user violently in an effort to break free from its prison.
Rumors of the Justicars of Themis
- The Justicars hardly ever execute people who violate their Mores, even when they say they did. Instead they take them to a prison deep in the Hedge where the True Fae can take their pick of the prisoners. In exchange, the Huntsmen usually follow their rules.
- Everyone knows the Justicars have a pet incubus that helps them but what most miss is that they have an entire network of oneiroi to slip into people’s dreams and spy for them. They can track people, learn everything about them, and manipulate their minds without anyone ever knowing.
- They say that if one of the oneiroi breaks free it’ll devour the Justicar and take their place and considering how well the creature knows them, it could put on an act that’s convincing enough to fool even the people closest to them.
“I will kneel at the altar of my on weakness no longer.”
Nearly everyone, if asked, will claim they want to change, to give up their failings and to improve themselves. Most of those people are lying. Change is terrifying, and a person’s weaknesses and foibles are as much a part of them, treasured and held close, as their strengths. Faced with the potential for self-improvement, they fear the possibility of failure, and thus never try to begin with. Others take their first steps down those pathways, only to find them too difficult, the price for their change too high. Most find a place where they are comfortable, where they can find a simple balance between strength and ease.
The Pilgrims of the Endless Road are not those people. As far as they are concerned, the journey of self-improvement is the most important journey that a person can take. Changing politics, changing the world, none of these things matter if you do not first master yourself, because the weak can only create further weakness, and the world is full of weak people. As far as the Pilgrims are concerned, very few people have the raw strength of will to understand the need for constant growth, to never become complacent or content with what you have made of yourself. For those few, however, the Pilgrims wait with open arms.
The Pilgrims hold to a philosophy of self-control and striving, a nearly-religious devotion to their ideals that admits no weakness. As far as they are concerned, no one should stop trying to improve themselves until they are perfect, and since perfection is unattainable, the process of self-improvement is an endless road. To walk the Road, as they put it, is to train the body and mind, to study the mysteries of magic to fine-tune them, to dedicate yourself to your own achievement. There are those who consider it a selfish philosophy, because it prizes self-improvement, and disdains asking for help and those who can’t keep up. As far as the Pilgrims are concerned, however, it is a simple logic. Everyone should work to improve themselves. Anyone who can’t doesn’t deserve to have the world handed to them on a silver platter.
Of course, there are those who are intimidated, or even outright frightened, by what the Pilgrims represent. Envious of their capabilities, they think that there must be hidden shortcuts or dark secrets that mask their intent. The Pilgrims laugh at these people, but they aren’t surprised. Such whispered stories are only more proof that the masses aren’t able to reach for what they think they deserve.
This mixture of intense self-focus and indifference to the beliefs of others leaves the Pilgrims without much of the political power that comes with many Entitlements. Where others provide great power or vast connections, the Pilgrims provide little more than a way to focus themselves and to find others that they understand. This is as they like it, however. One of the core tenets of the Endless Road is that one must choose to walk it; with no desire to gain large numbers of converts or to change the world, political power is nothing but a diversion from the Endless Road.
No Attribute at 1, Resolve 3, Wyrd 3
Brother or Sister
Becoming a Pilgrim is not an easy task. The Entitlement demands absolute dedication from its would-be members, and rarely offers membership directly. More commonly, someone who is impressed by the demonstrated abilities of an existing Pilgrim seeks to join the order, and existing Pilgrims must decide if they are worthy.
The first stage in proving yourself to a Pilgrim is to demonstrate that you are not a slave to your weaknesses. Anyone who displays physical addictions, mental obsessions, or similar failings must overcome and abandon them to even be considered for membership. Pilgrims will carefully study their prospective members, and any lies about one’s weaknesses are considered to be a serious failing in and of themselves.
If someone is considered worthy of testing, the Pilgrims advance to the second stage, in which they put their prospective newcomer through an astonishing array of tests, challenges, and hardships to determine their strengths and weaknesses. This covers everything from trial by combat or complex riddles to spending five days without sleeping or swimming across a lake. They do stay on hand to make sure their attempted recruit is never seriously hurt, and passing every test is by no means required – everyone has weaknesses, after all, and these tests serve as much to find areas where the new recruit will have to train as to find their strengths.
Once the tests are complete, the final trial is put into place. As a rule, this involves forcing the new recruit to train and focus on one area of their talents where they are seriously lacking; they can train however they like, with whomever they like, and have a month to focus and dedicate themselves to improving. At the end of that time, a challenge based around their former weakness is put before them, and they must pass it to advance. Those who fail the test are sent away. If they wish to re-apply, they may do so in two years’ time, at which point a new series of tests will be undergone and a new challenge will be issued.
Those who are accepted are sworn in during a simple ceremony, by the Pilgrims who trained and tested them originally. New members of the order swear never to let their dedication lapse, and take on the features and traits of the Pilgrims as they symbolically cast off their old weaknesses.
The physical sign of the Pilgrims is perfection; in a way, that is often subtly off-putting. A proper Pilgrim has no hairs out of place, no stubble unevenly directed across the skin. Their hands don’t develop calluses and their legs are never too hairy — everything is symmetrical, just developed enough without being ostentatious. Buttons never hang loosely on their shirts and loose threads never dangle from their sweaters. This perfection doesn’t make them look more attractive, however — with most people, in fact, it is faintly disturbing, as though they are just a little too perfect to be real.
Pilgrims have no particular preference when it comes to clothing, aside from a tendency towards the functional — tight collars or long dresses are much less common than comfortable and effective clothing for whatever purposes the Pilgrims want. They often prefer simpler clothes, but this is far from a uniform choice on the order’s part.
There are a thousand ways to walk the Endless Road, and the Pilgrims come from every walk of life and every area of focus. However, some things can be said as generalizations about the order. For one, Pilgrims draw from those who believe firmly in the ideals of the Road; lip service to the principles of the Entitlement are not sufficient for entry into the order, nor would someone who managed to make that modicum of effort be satisfied with the position in which she found herself. On the other hand, most of those who will become walkers of the Endless Road have a firm belief in their own superiority that only a few recognize as another failing to work to overcome.
Because the nature of the Endless Road is to overcome one’s weaknesses and confront one’s fears, the majority of its seasonal Court followers hail from the Autumn Court. Its principles of understanding and control resonate well with the concepts that the Pilgrims advance. The other Courts usually find their own emotions get in the way of the Endless Road’s beliefs, and only a few ever seek it out.
There are many pathways to the Endless Road, however, and Pilgrims are as varied in their abilities as in their outlooks. Strong focus on Resistance traits is common, with an emphasis on enduring hardships over bypassing them being common. They also tend to spread out their traits, having several rated at 2 to 4, instead of spending the time required to specialize an Attribute or Skill up to 5. A similar approach is taken to Contracts, with most Pilgrims learning low-level Clauses from a half-dozen sources instead of focusing in one area to the detriment of another. Because Pilgrims are focused on personal growth instead of material gain, they usually have Physical and Mental Merits, rather than Social ones.
Focus on Wyrd tends to run in one of two directions. Some Pilgrims consider Wyrd to be a measure of their personal might, and try to increase it as much as possible. However, most see the weaknesses that appear as Wyrd grows, and are wary of exposing themselves to new risks and problems, regardless of the benefits they might gain. Because of this, it is very rare to see a Pilgrim with a Wyrd rating above 5 — those who do generally raise it as far as they can, as quickly as they can.
Most of the time, the Pilgrims have no organization to speak of. Their philosophy is an intensely personal one, and their lack of interest in the political sphere as a group prevents them from gathering to use whatever clout they might have gained. Furthermore, there is no need for Pilgrims to gather to accomplish their purpose, and thus it is uncommon for more than a few of them to appear in any given freehold.
At the same time, however, there is a deeply spiritual aspect to their quest, one that any Pilgrim will say is not understood by most of those who surround them. Because of this, the Pilgrims keep in touch with each other. They pass on names and abilities, gossip about new recruits or failed tests, and come to visit one another from one freehold to another. When a Pilgrim identifies a weakness in herself and seeks to overcome it, the most common trainer she will seek out is another Pilgrim. Similarly, when she is approached by a potential recruit, she will refer him to whatever one of her Brothers or Sisters she feels will best train him, rather than simply trying to do so herself.
In particular, the Pilgrims have yearly gatherings, where every Pilgrim in a region will come together to discuss their progress, what they have learned, and what they seek to advance. They strive against and encourage each other — after all, competition is among the most effective ways to improve. These gatherings will typically hold a dozen or more Pilgrims, from hundreds or even thousands of miles away. These gatherings rotate from freehold to freehold, always in a new place to prevent stasis from setting in, and the exact date varies from year to year. Individual Pilgrims will often go to different meetings in different years, to meet new followers of the Path and learn new ways to approach their endless quest.
Ultimately, however, the Pilgrims remain solitary people by nature, able to converse with each other but equally comfortable spending time training or researching alone. Despite their gatherings and conversations, they keep to themselves, and trust that others won’t waste their time with trivialities when important matters wait to be attended to.
The Pilgrims of the Endless Road, upon joining the order, gain access to the support of their colleagues if they choose to seek it out, and most develop low-level Allies or Contacts with their fellow Pilgrims. In addition, the final ordeal and oath of admittance that each Pilgrim swears reshapes her body or mind, granting them the following benefit.
The Perfected Body- Upon becoming a Pilgrim, a member of the Endless Road must choose a second kith blessing.
As a rule, pilgrims always develop new kiths that balance out their former flaws, especially those that they had to face as part of their final ordeal. For example, a Pilgrim who has focused on physical perfection and who had to train herself to memorize lengthy passages to enter the order may find that her mind sharpens, granting her the Antiquarian or Oracle blessing, while a Pilgrim who has focused on her social capabilities and had to endure punishing pain to enter the order will develop the power of a Broadback or the resilience of a Stonebones.
A character’s second kith will affect her mien, but never to the same degree as her primary kith. There are no penalties to this second kith. In the case of having a Dual Kith, the penalties shift, putting no penalty on the primary kith, and then applying −1 and −2 to to effective Wyrd for the second and third kiths.
Additionally, to make up for their weaknesses, an additional die to an appropriate skill is granted to Pilgrims upon their joining.
Rumors of the Pilgrims
Endless devotion to self-improvement, and disdain for the foibles of others, leaves the Pilgrims an ominous figure to many, and stories about their true purpose abound among those who have heard of them.
- Many of the Pilgrims come to consider humanity itself to be a weakness. They have decided that the Gentry are demonstrably powerful, far more so than mere Lost, and that they should strive to become like them. They are not loyalists, because no Gentry would subordinate themselves to another, but they are something far more dangerous, because they seek to cast off their empathy and mortality to become monstrous gods.
- The Pilgrims, in their endless quests, have uncovered tokens and Hedge fruits that allow them to transcend their mortal limits, becoming ageless and immortal. They keep their newfound powers a secret, leaving their old lives behind as people start to wonder why they aren’t aging, and only allowing the elder members of the order the benefits of the secrets that they have discovered — after all, why give such gifts to those who would only waste them?
- Many of the Pilgrims are willing to go several steps past simple self-improvement in their quest for perfection. They kill Hedge Beasts, and use arcane magics to steal the creatures’ power and add it to their own. Some people say they can even do this to changelings that the Pilgrims feel are wasting abilities that could be better used by others.
“I vow to never turn down an offer to buy, barter, or sell. Even happiness can be bought and sold, including my own.”
The Pearl Satraps of the Spring Court believe that their happiness is paramount above all things. Not satisfied with mere contentment, the Satraps seek bliss whenever possible. Bliss, however, is rarely easy to come by, and never free. One always finds a cost associated, and the Pearl Satraps have chosen not only to accept that cost but to embrace it.
All things are up for purchase, sale or trade. That is the single overriding principle of the Satrapy of Pearls. But it’s not just about cars, real estate, old books or new technology. They embrace such material wealth, absolutely. The Satraps are glad to possess and enjoy all the toys the world has to offer — and they are equally glad to offer those toys in exchange for other things. Money and luxury are the feathers in every Satrap’s cap. But that’s all wealth is: trifling feathers, mere ornamentation. The Satrapy’s interest goes far deeper.
And that cuts to the heart of the matter: everything is for sale, not just objects and luxuries. Sex, love, hate, betrayal, sorrow… all lie waiting on the auction block, but only the Pearl Satraps believe themselves wise enough to see it and take advantage of it. Commerce extends beyond selling land or buying somebody’s horse. A pretty girl’s heart is for sale, always, but it takes more than money to get it (usually, at least). And every girl is different, her heart demanding a different price from different suitors. One requires a ready kindness, another asks for casual abuse. Her tears, too, are for up sale for those who know the costs. Her tears, scars, memories, desires — all available to those willing to see the value and pay the price. They can be bottled. They can be sold.
And so, this is what the Pearl Satraps do. On one hand, they please themselves above all others. They go out in the world and what they see, they want, and what they want, they purchase. It’s a mad game to serve their vanity, but what else does one have if one is without the joy of conceit? One Satrap sees a silver locket around a woman’s neck, and that locket holds the picture of her dearly departed husband. Oh, but the Satrap wants it, and the woman assures him that she’ll never give it up. But she will. Maybe money will do the trick (people love money more than they’d care to admit, the Satraps say). If not that, then something else. The return of a lost child? A threat against her dear friend? Revenge against a cruel boss? She’ll give the locket up when the Satrap sounds the right price. And he’ll take it only when she’s conceded to that price; no Satrap will accept something without first paying the proper cost. Nor will he ever steal, for thievery is anathema to this noble order. Nothing is free. To act as if it is means a willful refutation of those principles the Satrapy hold dear.
It’s not just about one’s own happiness, though. Many Pearl Satraps place themselves as procurators for others, be they changelings, mortals or any of the odd strangers that skulk around the edges of the freehold. Everybody knows that if you need something bad enough, the Satrapy of Pearls can get it for you. A draught of a child’s blood? The heel from the left shoe of the Winter Court Queen? A simple apology whispered in one’s ear beneath the last full moon of Autumn? Of course. What’s desired can be purchased, the Satraps assure.
Wyrd 3, Persuasion 3, Spring Court Mantle 2
Satraps, Pearl Satraps
One must belong to the Spring Court to join the Satrapy of Pearls. The noble order considers the other Courts to have missed the point, thus eschewing the potential of life and the magic that accompanies it. Life is meant to be enjoyed, and if one cannot understand that most basic of concepts, then one does not deserve membership of such noble standing.
One must still prove oneself worthy of the Satrapy of Pearls, however. The proof demanded is simple enough to understand, but often difficult to procure. One must first gain audience with a Pearl Satrap, which isn’t difficult as most are glad for the conversation (and the possibility of commerce). In asking for acceptance into the Satrapy, one only needs the say-so from a single other Satrap. In obtaining that say-so, however, the changeling must accept a challenge of commerce as determined by the Satrap. The Satrap will demand that the changeling acquire something from someone: a love letter, a favorite brooch, an embarrassing memory, whatever. In obtaining this, the changeling cannot steal or inveigle it freely. It must be acquired by finding a price and paying that price — which is what the Satraps do every day. If the changeling is incapable of playing that game and comprehending the give-and-take of universal commerce, then she doesn’t belong among the Pearl Satraps.
Pearl Satraps dress well as an emblem to project their luxury. The Satrapy has no shared standard for style, and so one changeling might prefer the modern trappings of haute couture, while another might traipse about in a lavish (even gaudy) silken robe once worn by some ancient Persian governess. Ostentatious displays, while rarely tasteful, work to affirm a Satrap’s commitment to wealth of some kind.
A Satrap’s mien shifts slightly, too. Mostly, it simply reflects impeccable grooming: not a hair out of place, perfect nails, heavenly skin. The other change to a Satrap’s mien happens to his eyes: they become pearlescent, as if they are not eyes at all but perfect pearls thrust into the sockets. It’s difficult to tell when a Satrap is looking at you, as his pupils are lost in a sea of opaline white. As a Satrap’s Wyrd increases, however, the mortal world begins to feel it. Those with Greed as a Vice have trouble resisting their own avarice, overtaken by a palpable hunger as the Satrap passes by. Mortals may believe that the changeling suffers from some kind of cataract, as well, seeing past the human guise and peering into those unnerving eyes.
It’s easy to assume that those who join the Satrapy of Pearls were always narcissistic power-mongers believing themselves to be the cream that floats so easily to the top. Certainly this is true for some, but not for the bulk of the order. No, most Pearl Satraps have had to claw their way up from the bottom, and that’s how the Satrapy prefers it. Those who have been poor, destitute or otherwise outcast are the ones who know the true hunger necessary to wear the seeming of the Satraps. And, by proxy, those who know the hunger can therefore experience the true joy of feeding that hunger. It’s not just about searching out the mad joie de vivre that comes with the purchase of 10 favors from nine women or about the sale of one old man’s lifelong dreams, but it’s about experiencing it wholly. It’s about appreciating it.
Some Satraps even seek out those who lurk at the bottom of the food chain and offer a casual reminder that it merely takes the will to pull oneself out of the gutter and climb the ladder that leads to the stars. They don’t offer any other help beyond those few words, because a future Satrap must claw his own way up from the underbelly.
Worth noting, too, is that not all Satraps end up wealthy. Yes most do, as it’s their bread and butter (and a symbol of status within the order). But a Satrap can just as easily be a filthy beggar in a back alley, glee-fully offering his strange services for a handful of coins or a curious bauble. More important than the status of wealth is evidence of one’s conquests in this world of makeshift commerce. Few Satraps care to live without luxury, though, and a truly destitute member of this order is quite rare. (There-fore, most possess Resources 2 at the bare minimum.)
Obviously, what the Satraps do requires them to have a strong reliance on their Social Traits, with Presence and Manipulation usually being higher than average. Any Social Skill, with the exception of Animal Ken for the most part, requires attention; the Satraps can use any of these Skills to work out the parameters of a trade or purchase.
The Satrapy cares little for formal organization. Its members can operate alone or together, it matters little. Provided they uphold the oath given to the other Pearl Satraps, then any sense of unity is thrown to the wind.
Two exceptions to this laissez-faire attitude exist, both of which are events held annually by the Satrapy. Each event bookends the season of Spring. Within the first week of the season, the Pearl Satraps hold what’s formally known as the Opal Auction of the Springtide Pearl, but most know it simply as, “The Auction.” Every Satrap is expected to bring one or several treasures to the table and bid them off at a gala affair (catered to every strange taste, serviced by ensorcelled). The Auction represents a time to show off, as well as a time to demonstrate the Satrapy’s considerable skills at obtaining things people might want. It often leaves the changelings of the freehold talking for weeks. How did that Satrap secure a single night’s worth of boot-polishing and floor-scrubbing from the Winter Court’s second-in-command? Just what kind of creature waited within that blood-colored egg, twitching as it did on the silver platter? How does one keep grief in an oaken puzzle box?
The second event is reserved only for the Satraps themselves. At the end of the season, the Pearl Satraps come together for a kind of brag session and show-and-tell, talking about all their successes and failures. Every Satrapy does it differently. One might rent a yacht and sit upon its deck, breathing in the smoldering narcotic fumes of the seeds of strange fruits brought from the Hedge. Others might relax in club chairs in an air-conditioned room or gather in some poor human’s penthouse suite (with the mortal bound up and made to witness the affair, his mind reeling with what he sees and hears).
After these events, the Pearl Satraps might go the rest of the year without even talking to one another, though certainly there exists an informal network of back-scratching and info-giving. Remember, though, that each Pearl Satrap represents friendly competition for every other Pearl Satrap. He who has the most toys, relatively speaking, wins.
Acquisitions attorney, eccentric antiquarian, gleeful mammonite, high-price prostitute, Iago, procurer of pledges, snake-oil salesman, spider in the center of a web.
Avaricious Finesse- Buying and selling is everything to the Satraps. She can automatically add one success to any successful roll to buy or sell something. Additionally, she may spend a Glamour to add her Wyrd to Presence and Manipulation rolls for the rest of the scene. Also, the Satrap is able to judge the fair market value of any merchandise or service on sight, be it mundane or supernatural. Mundane attempts to force her into a bad deal, or to disguise the value of something automatically fail. Supernatural powers which would force her into a bad deal, or used to disguise the value of something, automatically cause a Clash of Wills (the Satrap using Wits+Wyrd).
Rumors of the Satrapy
- Somehow, the Satraps always have a small item from every Court’s King or Queen except those of the Spring Court. The item is usually small — a single earring, a lucky coin, a knob from one of their dressers — but rumor has it that this small item gives the Satrap major power over the ruler. The Satraps must forge tokens from these items.
- Every Satrap has a secret treasure trove somewhere in the city, usually just outside the freehold’s accepted borders. The boxes are usually fire-safe and locked with three different locks (usually padlocks). The Satrap buries the treasure trove or hides it. Each box is supposed to contain all manner of wonders and horrors. A Fairest from the next city over said she found a haunted money clip, a bullet in a jar tagged with a label that read ‘magic’ and a necklace made of seven severed fingers. After discovering it, she went missing three days later.
- The Satraps know Contracts that nobody else knows, though stories suggest they made terrible bargains to get them. They know some every old and very strange Goblin Contracts, as well. Remember that the Satraps have their price. They’ll teach them, but the cost will be steep.
“I am the waves that crash, the roots that strangle, and the stone that shatters. I am the life-giving fire, the gentle breeze, and the glorious light. Life and death, creation and destruction. We are one. ”
Wyrd 3, Control Elements •••
Sir Tempest, Lady Tempest, Stormborn
There are two methods of gaining entry into the Tempest Knights. The most common is for a Knight to take a promising prospect as her squire. The squire passes through at least a season of rigorous training and testing of her loyalty, passion, and will to succeed. When the squire’s Lord-Knight deems her ready, she is presented to a quorum of her prospective peers. Because of the widespread nature of the Entitlement this process is just as likely to happen by video conference as it is to happen in person. The quorum presents a trial meant to stretch the squire to her physical, mental, and magical limits- and push her beyond them. Successfully completing each task on her own is not required, but having the humility to ask for help is. Asking for help too soon, however, is a sure way to fail. It is a careful balance to strike but the Tempest Knights cannot afford to coddle members.
The second method of joining is exceptionally rare and some even consider it apocryphal. The modern Tempest Knights were founded by several Elementals and a lone Fairest who all felt a call within their souls. It spoke to the water, fire, ice, glass, and light within them and anxiously begged for their aid. They each answered the call and found each other in a large hollow where every element in it was perfectly balanced. It was under attack by hobgoblins attempting to claim it for their own. Together the founders called upon their elements and won the day. The founders claimed that the Entitlement had existed before, that in return for their aid, the elements had shown them the oath of the ancient Entitlement. Every now and then a new Tempest will answer a call for aid or appear at gatherings even though no one knows who they are. The few who claim they were tested and accepted into the Entitlement as the founders were are called Stormborn- though those who don’t believe the stories will argue that the Stormborn were simply inducted by a quorum elsewhere in the world.
Flickers of elements creep into a Tempests mien, whipping up stormlets through their hair and across their skin. In the presence of other Tempests their elements blend together. A Tempest with an affinity for ice meeting one bonded to water might produce a hail storm in miniature between their miens when in close proximity.
Tempest Knights are those who are forced by circumstance to see the advantages of a strong alliance. Each comes from power- social, physical, or mystical but all have acknowledged that their power alone is not enough. Many have lost someone precious that they were supposed to protect or suffered a serious defeat. They have been broken down in one fashion or another and sometimes it leaves scars in their psyche. Many Tempests are affected by persistent Conditions or are simply emotionally fragile. They are keenly aware of their own shortcomings even if they don’t allow it to show. Successful members of the Entitlement are generally well liked in their home courts and Entitlements as they are generous with their talents, and fearless when it comes to defending those that they care about.
Formally, all Tempest Knights are equal. All may call for and expect aid to come but individuals answer to no one but themselves. There is no single Lord-Knight that rules over the others and dictates where they must go. In practice there is a range of influence and respect. The most influential are Free Knights. This is a title given to any who is not bound by oaths that could interfere with the work of the Entitlement. Free Knights spend the majority of their time traveling. They answer calls for aid all across the world, organize meetings of quorums, and train new squires.
On the other end of the spectrum are the those who have refused to answer a call for aid when they could have. It’s the deepest sort of betrayal a Tempest can commit without leaving the Entitlement and those who regularly fail to contribute to the good of the Entitlement are slowly frozen out of society. If they call for help, it will arrive but likely too little and too late to make a difference.
Stormborn Champion - Tempests are unaffected by Environmental Tilts controlled by other members of the Tempest Knights and they add +1 per Tempest Knight present to their effective Wyrd when using any elemental Contract. This bonus includes the individual activating the contract and alone she gains +1 effective Wyrd.
Rumors of the Tempest Knights
- One of the Founders of the Tempest Knights went mad and ran off back to Arcadia. She comes back every now and then, calling for aid. Anyone who answers the call is never seen again. Worse though is that sometimes she’ll come if a Tempest calls for help. Word is that a Tempest in Illapel, Chile asked for help against a loyalist who had sworn a vendetta. Every loyalist in the area disappeared but half the freehold was destroyed in the tsunami too.
- The Stormborn are not actually changelings. They are elemental hobs that can mimic Changeling form. No one knows what they want, but they were never human and the Tempests are still bound to help them with whatever they ask.
“Old myths, old gods, old heroes have never died. They are only sleeping at the bottom of our mind, waiting for our call. We have need for them. They represent the wisdom of our race: the old ways.”
At the dawn of humanity, powerful spirits walked the borders between the earthly and the supernatural. The eldest artworks of Neolithic times depict beings too fanciful to be man, beast, or any other wholly terrestrial thing. Perhaps these entities were the Others, their images captured in ochre and charcoal on the innermost walls of ancient caverns, but some Lost believe that these crude drawings are, instead, images of their own kind — admired, feared, and even worshipped by primitive mortals. They think back to a more primal and mysterious age, an age during which it seems that the otherworldly walked side-by-side with the mundane, and a balance existed between gods and men. These changelings have resolved to be those very gods in a jaded modern world.
This eldritch order is an old one; older, perhaps, than the very notion of “noble title,” and aligned with powers that predate such things as agriculture, walled settlements, and the written word. While many of the outsiders that know of the Lost Pantheon doubt its claim to such extreme antiquity, few deny the primordial energies that are harnessed within each changeling who takes up its banner. Of course, the feudal, almost pseudo-medieval society of the Lost does not necessarily react well to the emergence of one or more primitive would-be gods whose beliefs are in keeping with an epoch that knew nothing of civilization, let alone kings and queens, knights and barons. Friction often exists between the status quo and the fae of the Lost Pantheon, due to mutual unfamiliarity, if nothing else, though the raw power and faded Clarity (and often somewhat skewed morality inherent to both) common to changelings sworn to this entitlement often makes their presence a matter of uncomfortable coexistence, rather than something to be actively driven out.
Beasts and Elementals are the seemings most called to the Lost Pantheon, though any changeling inclined toward a primal vision of the world and willing to draw power from that vision (and those mortals that still subscribe to it, to one degree or another) can be drawn to this entitlement. In modern times, the mortals most commonly associated with these beliefs are practitioners of the so-called Old Ways, religious systems with roots stretching back to pre-civilization archetypes that the changelings come to embody: Earth Mothers and Sun Fathers, Bear Women and Wolf Men, and other such atavistic icons. While the practices have changed, their foundations remain, echoing down from the remotest antiquity, from the very first humans to recognize and acknowledge the existence of the supernatural world. Indeed, the so-called Ancients of the Lost Pantheon reflect an age when the distinction between the natural and the supernatural was a line so thin as to be invisible to all save the most cunning and discerning of holy men and wise women.
Of course, these ideals descended down, through the ages, with rough-hewn divinities taking on sharper edges in the crucible of civilization. However, the fundamental aspects of their origins as the unfathomable gods of hunter-gatherers remained. And, so it is that some Ancients embody newer (though still quite ancient) concepts, drawn from such inspirations as Zeus, Gnowee, Thor, Agni, Punga, Coyolxauhqui, Nemain, Anubis, Coyote, Okuninushi, or other such deities, some of whom are venerated even in modern times. Always, these Ancients are conscious of the primordial origins of the god-forms that they represent. Even more contemporary conceptions of such figures include Bloody Mary (a spirit of death), the Jersey Devil (a chimera), the phantom hitchhiker (who may be a guide to lead people back to the proper path, or a trickster to lead them astray), the chupacabra (a feral vampire), and the black dog (a reimagining of dogs’ traditional association with the Underworld). All of these sorts of divinities can eke out a place within the order, if they are but willing to accept their great station and to celebrate their godliness.
Wyrd 6+, Mantle (Any) 4, Clarity 8+. If Clarity drops below 8 the benefits end till clarity goes back to 8+.
Ancient, Daemon, Totem, Goddess, Kami, Demigod, God, Loa, or other such titles, as appropriate to the culture of the individual changeling.
As informal as this eldritch order is, it should be no surprise that there is no one single initiation into the Lost Pantheon. In fact, it’s rare that one Ancient initiates another. Most feel the call in their dreams, guided by the power of their own Wyrd onto a path that was first trod long ago.
Ancients of the Lost Pantheon often eschew modern trappings, though this tendency is not universal and some few strike a balance between primordial practices and contemporary existence. Far more common, however, are those that deal almost exclusively with the mortals of their cults, and otherwise keep to the company of the Lost and other beings that dwell beyond the purview of the mundane world. Hedge-spun garments are common to the Ancients, as are clothes made from traditional materials, such as pelts and skins, plant fibers, and the like. Simple jewelry, tattoos and even scarification may adorn a given Ancient’s body, and many of them have great difficulty passing among modern mortals.
No single specific change develops in the mien of a member of the Lost Pantheon. Rather, such fae tend simply to become more of what they are, forsaking human appearance for that of their faerie selves: an Elemental of flame transforms into a living conflagration, while a pallid and vaguely necrotic Gravewight comes to look the part of a mummified lich-lord, and a vaguely equine Beast takes on hooves and a windswept mane and seems forever in motion, even when standing still. As Wyrd increases, these changes become increasingly pronounced; particularly potent Ancients actually appear, in many ways, to outside observers like the earthly gods that they believe themselves to be. At the greatest heights of Wyrd, such changelings begin to bend the manifestations of their Mantles, compelling even the blessings of the seasons to conform to their “godly attributes.” Thus, a Winter Darkling whose divine aspect is one of hidden places might find a frozen fog envelops her at all times, or a Summer Ogre embodying primal hunger might manifest licking flames within his mouth that occasionally drop embers to consume random small flammable objects, such as papers, dry leaves, and the like.
Pinning down a “type” of changeling drawn to the Lost Pantheon is difficult, at best. Some come to the entitlement out of a sense of arrogance, to be sure, though many do not. Some grasp for anything to help them with fading Clarity, while others feel, deep down, that they truly are divine creatures; or, at least, those things worshipped as divine by primitive humanity. The reasons are many, and any given would-be mentor might have wildly different standards regarding a prospective student than any other Ancient. The only commonality between those entitled is that they feel called to the Lost Pantheon’s raw, elemental power — the sense of being something far more than mortal, both for good and for ill.
Potent Wyrd and strong Mantles certainly play into the transformations of perception necessary to accept entitlement as an Ancient, but it goes deeper than that. Changelings from more traditional, superstitious, or mystical backgrounds tend to be likelier to embrace the way of the Lost Pantheon, as do those whose human memories and ideals were almost completely scoured away by especial cruel Durances. Perhaps most important to note is the fact that prospective Ancients are not fleeing from their scarred and mutilated humanity; they sincerely believe that they are not human anymore — that Arcadia has already destroyed anything in them that was mortal and replaced it with a wonderful, terrible power of godly origin. Even the most humble Ancient (and they are few) sincerely cleaves to the notion that she is a god clothed in flesh and most implicitly believe so, whether or not they could adequately articulate the notion, even before being accepted into the Lost Pantheon.
The Lost Pantheon has little in the way of organization. Just as the most ancient divine powers venerated by humanity had little in the way of formalized relationships, so, too, do most Ancients forsake a rigid hierarchy or other such linear interconnection. Instead, members of the Lost Pantheon often deal with one another as their respective natures demand: an ocean father may forever rage at an earth mother, but feel a kinship toward a moon goddess, or hold a storm god to be a brother. Ancients need not mentor those who embody godforms similar to their own and may even entitle those with aspects hostile to their own, as divinity is often intemperate and requires conflict. Thus, any attempt to categorize the interactions between Ancients is more often than not doomed to futility.
In places in which two or more Ancients come together (rare, indeed, in modern times), they tend to organize into a sort of “divine family,” arranged according to their godly archetypes. This may involve friendship, alliance, mutual respect, polite avoidance, simmering dislike, outright enmity, or any combination of the above. Individual personalities do not figure into their relationships quite so much as the requirements of their more primal attributes. A primal hunter and an aspect of a prey animal, for example, may, as people and as changelings, have compatible personalities and be thoroughly capable of coexisting as friends but, as Ancient of the Lost Pantheon, they are opposites in the same cycle of life and death, and their divine characteristics demand distance between them. There need not be antagonism between them — as the hunter and the hunted belong to a single natural process — but close friendship cannot grow between them, as they are divided from one another by their appointed roles.
- Fitting In
‘ ’Finding a way to blend back into mortal society is a fundamental part of the story of Changeling: The Lost. How, then, do the Ancients of the Lost Pantheon embody this theme? After all, they seem to spend most of their time actively seeking out and embracing the supernatural aspects of the world, while blatantly denying their former mortality, and they don’t — on the surface — appear to have any interest in rebuilding their connections to humanity. But that’s just the thing; the goals and motivations of the Lost Pantheon are in many crucial ways the same as those of any changeling, just realized in a significantly different way.
The Ancients do work to build a tie to mortals — a distorted and disturbing sort of tie, but a tie, nonetheless. The fact of the matter is that, like all fae, those of the Lost Pantheon are damaged in spirit, with scars that mar their souls and make them unlike the people all around them. Forced to exist a half-step apart from the life that they once possessed, the Ancients strive to be something that hurts less, something that doesn’t remind them so much of what has been taken from them, and they do so by becoming important to the mortals who venerate them. Like the good cop who returns from Arcadia and becomes a violent vigilante, or the psychiatrist whose Durance transforms her into a skilled oneiromancer, the changelings who turn to the Lost Pantheon cobble together a new self out of what they can recall from before the Thorns, the hurts that were done to them by the Gentry, and the shreds of a life that they can pick up after stumbling out of the Hedge.′
Cult leader, reincarnated god, mystical transhumanist, incarnated dream, mad prophet, borderline solipsist, would-be True Fae.
Primordial Incarnation (•••••)- The powers of the Lost Pantheon reveal the path of its members’ supposed “divine transformation” into the entities venerated by humanity in remotest antiquity. Forsaking mortal perspective is easier to an ancient and to embrace the wyrd instead is to embrace their truest nature. Upon embracing the wyrd the ancient is treated as having a wyrd of two higher for the purposes of dice they can add per turn.
Quintessence and Ambrosia (•••••) - Most Ancient’s begin to experience an existence that is filled with the gentle whispers of their worshippers or those who worship the idea of them. It’s intrinsic to an Ancient as they take on the role of the old gods from long ago. They form a sort of painless melody within the glamour saturated essence of their soul, a familiar, constant hum that the god feels somewhat in the way someone would feel a song stuck in the back of her mind. These small offerings offer the Ancient a chance to harvest once a day even when alone. When in the presence of their followers a harvest grants one extra glamour.
Most of the time, though, an Ancient won’t recognize a prayer’s source. The voice will be lost in the sea of infinite notes playing out the prayer song. With concentration (and the expenditure of a willpower point), a god can sometimes listen closely to pick out a single prayer, especially if the practitioner is desperate or passionate. If one voice rises above the rest, an exceptionally successful prayer, the Ancient can’t help but notice the request. Such prayers are loud and clear enough that the Ancient can distinguish the petitioner’s general wishes. Whether the Ancient choses to answer or not is ultimately up to them. Gods can be fickle things but magic to appear suddenly before the practitioner is something beyond the scope of initiation. However, hearing this prayer counts as a sympathetic connection to the practitioner and if the Ancient is capable of it they can target them with magic.
Terrestrial Deity (•••••) - Lastly the Ancient’s of the Lost Pantheon stand firm against the insane influence of the others. What is a god without their worshippers? The Gentry seek out the faithful, the creative, the masterful, and the unique. The compassionate among the Ancient feel a strong sense of duty in protecting their followers while the pragmatic look at those soft voices under threat of the Gentry as just another number. The Ancient gains the connected condition with their followers once per chapter and gains a +3 bonus to defy, attack, of defend against the Gentry, their powers, or their minions.
Rumors of the Ancients
The Lost Pantheon is an object of awe and dread to many of the changelings that know of its existence. Given the potent Wyrd and Mantles with which its members must be favored, it is easy to see the Ancients as the demigods that they believe themselves to be, and the rumors that surround the entitlement thus tend to reflect the raw power with which the Lost Pantheon is blessed. Conversely, fae can be jealous of the mystic might of the Lost Pantheon and terrified of its inhuman nature, and so fearful gossip also circulates with regard to this eldritch order and its membership.
- The Ancients of the Lost Pantheon eventually become True Fae, themselves, when all of their Clarity is — inevitably — at long last, gone. Whether the process is gradual or abrupt, however, none can truly say. Some claim that Ancients wander off into the Thorns, only to later emerge as Gentry, while others believe that they suddenly slough off their human masks entirely and embrace the power and madness of Arcadia all at once.
- The Lost Pantheon keeps gateways into realms of spirit that have nothing to do with the Thorns or distant Arcadia, which may be the otherworlds believed in by ancient mortal societies. Gods and monsters utterly alien to Arcadia wander in those forgotten places, and the Ancients may be enslaved to them. Or, perhaps, they are the masters, and those inhuman entities are their servants.
- Ancients gather once a century to hunt the Others who stalk (or are trapped in) either the Hedge or the mortal world, having long ago learned rituals used to extract the power, and perhaps even the immortality, of the Gentry. For a staggeringly steep price, they might be willing to teach these grim rites to those not sworn into their order, though the prize would almost certainly not be worth the cost. Some rumors say that accepting such a boon from an Ancient binds a changeling’s soul to that Ancient’s will, while others believe that even attempting the process is fatal to one not numbered among the Lost Pantheon.
“It’s good to be the champ. I’ll do what needs doing to stay champ. I’ll win. I’ll kill. I’ll boast. I’ll woo. Whatever it takes to keep succeeding.”
Every freehold has one: the hero. Not a reluctant hero, this hero knows what he is. The best of the best, a platinum band amongst a handful of dirty silver ingots. And it’s not just about having a success here and there. Killing one of the Gentry is a good start, but it has to be done with flair, with narrative panache. And that’s something for the Parliament of Victors.
A Noble Champion in the Parliament of Victors is on par with the king or queen, and may even be more popular. Everybody knows the Champion. They know of his exploits because he tells them of his exploits. It’s not about getting into the legends and earning some kind of twisted immortality the long way. It’s about the hero getting what he deserves now. Not later. He succeeds because he wants. What he wants — wine, women, song, whatever— are earned because he succeeds.
Wyrd 6, combat skill (weaponry, brawl, firearms, athletics) 4+, presence 4+
While a member, the Victor may never lose a noteworthy challenge or they lose access to all their privileges until they redeem themselves in the eyes of the order.
Noble Champion, Victor, Grand Champion, Divine Champion, Hero
Joining is easy, so to speak. Get the attention of the Victors by deed and they’ll come. They’ll wine the changeling, dine the changeling. Then they’ll make their offer along with a challenge of a mighty quest to see if the prospects equal to their reputation. Battling a giant, slaying a dragon, or retrieving a lost artifact from a faraway deep corner of the hedge is not uncommon. However The Noble Champions of the Parliament of Victors don’t get to rest on their hindquarters. They have to keep up momentum. They’re heroes, they need to act like it. Harder still, they can’t fail a challenge. He won’t get kicked out of the eldritch order if he does, but he will lose access to both privileges until he can prove his mettle anew.
The changeling’s mien grows. It becomes larger-than-life, almost mythic in proportions. If the Champion’s mien has antlers, they grow larger, more impressive. If her skin is covered in scales or in ribbons of water, it shimmers. Lithe limbs grow longer and all the more beautiful. Big eyes deepen and shine with a captivating luster. In addition, the mien inspires a mix of intense emotion — the ugliest brute seems suddenly beautiful while the most stunning warrior-queen stirs both fear and self-deprecation in those who gaze upon her. It represents an aura of celebrity, palpable and pervasive.
Mythic Proportions (••••)- Upon joining the lofty ranks of the Parliament of Victors, the character gains a power replicating the Gargantuan kith benefit. Heroes and Victors are larger than life, and their size grows with their legend of being insurmountable in combat, terrifying enemies and inspiring allies
Fortune Favors the Bold (••••••) - In times when it really matters, a hero truly comes into their own. The blessings of Glamour bestow upon the hero the mighty force of fate to back them in their deeds. Mighty fates follow them and mighty deeds it bestows in their Neverending quest for glory and triumph. This effect replicates the 3 dot version of Changeling Fate
Rumors of the Ancients
- They’re forming an army. The Noble Champions, they only get along with one another, right? And so they’re forming an army. Why wouldn’t they? Alone, each one is a deadly foe. Together? They’re like a hurricane and an earthquake and a nuclear bomb shoved into one. No freehold stands a chance when they decide to get over themselves long enough to mobilize. Don’t buy that whole “they’re loners” angle.
- Within the order waits a kind of “inner council”. Think of them as the Olympian gods, right? Zeus and Hera and Apollo and all those guys? These guys have been so favorably looked upon by the Wyrd that the rumor is, they can control fate itself. They have that much might and magic. You want something done? You go to the inner council. Or better still, you join the Parliament of Victors yourself, and they’ll tell you the truth soon as you sign up. Trust me.
- It’s a True Fae recruiting tool (which is ironic given how many of these guys are tools themselves. Get it? Tools?). Seriously, the Noble Champions represent the crème de la crème, and that’s what the Keepers want. They know that changelings of that kind of power can represent a very real threat to them, and so it’s a perfect back-door to find out who’s really got that kind of power, and how to ply them with more of the same to get them on board. You think the Noble Champions are just getting together for dinner or to go hunting in the Hedge? They’re going deep. They’re going to Faerie. Can you say, “indoctrination?” I knew that you could.
“Listen with your eyes and not your ears. The words I speak are naught but pleasant distractions and magicians’ misdirection. Do this and you will begin to read the lines of power, governance, truth, lies, and glamour.”
Lies come naturally to humanity. It is an instinct children develop before they can even speak and they hone it while manipulating their parents. Lies are important. They can keep an individual out of trouble, advance a career, and tear down enemies when applied appropriately. The Principality of the Crooked Tongue are masters of the lie and its members are often social titans among their freehold and courts- expert liars and manipulators who can twist people around their fingers with ease. What each and every one of them realize is that truth is not in words but in deeds.
The Principality is a secret society. Most members do not know precisely who the others of the Entitlement are as gatherings are an exercise in lies where individuals will go to extensive magical and mundane lengths to hide their identity. Princes and princesses are willing to work cross purpose in freehold and court matters but beneath the petty politics is a far more primal alliance dedicated to the fundamental principle of upholding the greater oaths that protect changeling society itself such as freehold bulwarks and the courts themselves. Without these, Huntsmen would run rampant and society itself would crumble.
Changelings know how vital these institutions are, but it is often lost in the day to day pressures of courtly intrigue. The Principality uses every ounce of guile and social expertise to manipulate the courts and freeholds around them into upholding their responsibilities- and if they come out of the process with an incredible amount of wealth, a courtly title, and favors owed to them then all the better.
Wyrd 4, Subterfuge 4, Empathy 3
Every word a Princess of the Crooked Tongue speaks is false or misdirection, and those who join their ranks are changelings who can successfully read their motives through their lies or misdirect and defeat one of the Principality in a social contest. If a member finds a good prospect, they will extend a discrete invitation- not in lying words but by deed. The invitation plays out as a careful courtship extending a tentative offer for an alliance mixed with tests of integrity to make sure the prospective member will uphold the greater oaths. The prospective member may not even realize the potential outcome until she accepts an alliance with the Principality and is given the choice to swear to the order.
The mien of a member of the Principality always contains some golden symbol of authority. The form can vary greatly but it it always something that the changeling considers a symbol of authority. Common forms include golden coronet, torc, a key or badge pinned to chest, or even a golden tattoo. Due to the secretive nature of the Entitlement, some members go to great lengths to hide or disguise the change to their mien.
Most members of the Principality are social powerhouses with their courts with a high Wits, Intelligence, and a focus on social traits. Many are incredibly influential before they ever join but the stereotype isn’t always ring true. Some have never cared for power and instead focus their attention on the mortal world. They keep their ears open and gather intelligence. Some are simply pathological liars. No matter where they come from, Princes and Princesses all have a reason to lie. They have all learned from experience that even words that seem true can be twisted. Loopholes in pledges can be found, and words are merely a tool for manipulating those who aren’t smart enough to read the underlying truth of a situation. They have been taken advantage of in some fashion and in order to never allow it to happen again, they armor themselves in lies of their own weaving.
The Principality primarily gathers in cities where multiple freeholds stand side by side. In each city the Principality is ruled by a Grand Master, a title granted to the most experienced and cunning of their number. The Princes and Princesses beneath her report any machinations they come across that could put the greater oaths at risk and she may then make assignments across the Entitlement to take appropriate measures.
Besides the Grand Master, members of the Entitlement generally do not know everyone else that is a member. Complete secrecy is impossible, of course, but it becomes a game within the Principality to see how many of their colleagues they can identify while remaining covert. Meetings are in person and other methods of communication are generally not trusted- they make it too easy to lie.
- Fitting In
Tongue of Eyes and Lies- Upon joining the Entitlement, all Princes and Princesses gain the 8-again quality to Subterfuge rolls as well as the three-dot Aura Reading merit. Instead of Willpower, they use glamour to activate it. Upon activation the changeling can see an aura of the Wyrd and watch how it ebbs and flows around an individual to read their intentions and emotions.
Rumors of the Principality of the Crooked Tongue
- You can’t trust a Prince or Princess of the Crooked Tongue no matter how sincere they sound or what pledges they make to you. They lie so often and so well that even the Wyrd is fooled and can’t hold them to their word.
- Some claim the Principality serves the freehold and courts but they’ll betray them every time. They’re not just pathological liars, they’re infiltrators and traitors if not outright loyalists. Good luck proving it though, most are too good to be caught.
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