The sixth theme is dust.
Mansion-Cleaning Broom Technique! (Resplendence)
- Cost: 2 motes
- Duration: Instant
- Type: Simple
- Minimum Craft: 2
- Minimum Essence: 2
Essence crackles from the broom of the Exalted as she assumes a perfectly balanced cleaning pose and inhales deeply, which disturbs the air slightly. The motion unsettles dust and dirt in the proximity, making it dance nervously in anticipation. The Exalt then executes a single, flawless sweep of her broom in the air, pulling the dust in a whispering, calm storm to a neat pile at her feet, leaving everything around her immaculately clean. One application of the Charm can clean a large building with several floors and tens of rooms.
Dust: Ebon Tendrils of Entropy Style
The Student's Sutra of Dust:
Once, there was a red-lipped maiden....
Embrace of Ashes (Charlequin)
Cost: 8 motes, 1 Willpower Duration: Instant Type: Simple Minimum Martial Arts: 5 Minimum Essence: 4 Prerequisite Charms: None
...who cast a circle around a crimson flower...
The touch of Ending's Maiden comes to all things, in time. Those who dedicate themselves to the Embrace of Ashes can bring this touch to the things of Creation. The Sidereal must firmly grasp the target of this effect -- to use it in combat, the character must successfully grapple an opponent. The Sidereal then rolls his Stamina + Martial Arts + Permanent Essence. If the target is an animate being with a permanent Essence of 2 or more, she may roll her Stamina + Resistance as an opposed roll. Successes on the Sidereal's roll cause the target to become withered and aged. For each such success, the target loses her topmost health level slot and two points of Soak; she gains the appearance of having aged fifteen years. (For an Exalt, her appearance changes as if she were a mortal who had aged.) Against inanimate objects and mortals, this effect is permanent; against Essence wielders, one success of this effect is healed per week. The Sidereal may choose to freely discard any number of successes after the roll, in order to age someone a specific amount.
An Essence wielder can only be under the effects of one instance of this Charm at once; if the Sidereal uses it on someone already suffering its effects, whichever activation produced more net successes takes precedence, rather than the two effects stacking.
Enclosure of Darkened Cinders (FourWillowsWeeping)
Cost: 10 motes, 1 Willpower Duration: One Scene or Until Released Type: Simple Minimum Martial Arts: 5 Minimum Essence: 4 Prerequisite Charms: Embrace of Ashes
She made it into a house of petals.
Limitation is the first source of confusion. With this Charm, the Discordant creates a limit, so that he may bring things to a collapsing end more gracefully.
He stamps firmly on the ground, and an ebony shockwave spreads out to encircle up to as many Chosen or other Essence-channelling targets as twice the adept's Essence, and any mortals that this area might include. He must be able to see any entities he would like to enclose in the sphere. If there are entities within this circle that the adept would rather exclude, he can use the shockwave to push them away; they roll their Strength + Resistance in a reflexive opposed test against the adept, who has a base pool of 0 and automatic successes equal to his Essence. He may spend 1 mote (uncommitted) per 2 dice to add dice to this pool, to a maximum of Strength + Martial Arts. If the adept succeeds, he pushes the target out of the circle. If the target succeeds, he weathers the shockwave and is included within; he does not count against the limit of entities the adept may deliberately include.
Once the circle reaches this radius, it explodes into an impassable wall of dust. Inside the wall, light is dimmed and animas go dark, replaced by fountains of scarlet petals that flow from the Chosens' mouths, wounds, and eyes. Those trying to pass through the circle suffer terrifying pains and must roll Stamina + Endurance at a difficulty of the adept's Martial Arts to avoid inhaling the cinders and dust that make up the wall; doing so causes one to lose his action for the turn. Only truly spectacular feats of strength, such as the Jumping Spider Strike, can escape this barren prison; it requires an effective Strength + Athletics pool equal to 4 times the adept's Essence to punch through the wall. This has the effect of violently depositing the escapee on the other side, and he automatically suffers the effects of cinder inhalation for ten turns, minus his successes on a reflexive Stamina + Endurance roll. An escapee must break through the wall alone; it is impossible to bring someone with him.
Each turn, the circle contracts, forcing those within it to come closer to one another. The adept controls the rate of contraction; it may be as slow as one yard per turn or as fast as his Essence in yards per turn; alternatively he may stamp his foot again and make a Strength + Martial Arts roll to suppress its expansion for one turn per success; this operation is a dice action. He may voluntarily reduce his successes on this roll. The circle will naturally stop contracting when it would otherwise crush those inside--generally at one yard in radius per Chosen enclosed. When the Essence powering this Charm is released, the dust wall collapses to the earth with a sigh.
Colorless Blood Strike (Quendalon)
Cost: 5 motes, 1 Willpower Duration: Instant Type: Simple Minimum Martial Arts: 5 Minimum Essence: 4 Prerequisite Charms: None
Until she broke every window and burnt down every wall
The body of any mortal creature is full of life and fire. With this Charm, the Sidereal infuses her victim with the Essence of dust, destroying those elements that allow mortal life to thrive. After a successful unarmed strike, the target must roll Stamina + Resistance against a difficulty of the Sidereal's Essence. If the target fails, his health cannot be restored by any natural means; bleeding cannot be stanched, wounds will not heal, and infection can neither be prevented nor halted. Charms and other magics that accelerate normal healing are likewise stymied; those that cure or heal outright will still function, but at double the normal Essence cost. These effects are permanent for mortals. A target with awakened Essence recovers after a number of days equal to the Sidereal's Essence.
Dissolution of the Flesh - (Moxiane)
Cost: 7 motes, 1 Willpower Type: Simple Duration: Instant Minimum Martial Arts: 5 Minimum Essence: 4 Prerequisite Charms: Colorless Blood Strike
...without thinking of those who lived with her.
Everything fades into dust eventually: people, towns and empires all disappear into the immemorial past, and with this Charm the Sidereal can infect a target with this historical fact made into a deadly reality.
The Exalted makes a Martial Arts attack that need only do at least one die of post-soak damage for the Charm to take effect. Mortals are doomed by this Charm, their body immediately begins to dissolve away, as they lose half (round down) the character's permanent Essence from all of their Physical attributes at the moment of the attack and at the start of each turn thereafter - once all three reach 0 then the mortal is gone, even his souls are nothing more than dust.
The Exalted and others with awakened Essence fare somewhat better, the Charm only affects one Attribute (chosen by the Sidereal) at a time, and they are able to resist this effect with a reflexive Stamina + Resistance roll with a difficulty equal to the Sidereal's permanent Essence - each extra success negates the loss of one dot of the Attribute. Again, should all of the victim's Physical attributes reach 0 then they fade away.
Should the target survives the effects of this Charm then any lost dots of Physical attribute return at the rate of one dot per day. A correctly tattooed Lunar Exalted is, by their very nature, immune to this Charm. The effects of Dissolution of the Flesh persist for a number of turns equal to the Sidereal's Martial Arts + Essence after the initial attack.
Your palace has become the home of flames
And your children
The children of dust.
Ebon Tendrils of Entropy Form - (Charlequin)
Cost: 10 motes Type: Simple Duration: One scene Minimum Martial Arts: 5 Minimum Essence: 5 Prerequisite Charms: Dissolution of the Flesh, Enclosure of Darkened Cinders
The Essence of Dust is that of inevitability; with time, all things must return to it. Accepting this terrifying truth into her own being, the Sidereal adopts the terrifying and unearthly stance of the Ebon Tendrils Form. Her skin becomes gray and dry, her hair white, her clothing tattered; her body turns to dust. Each gust of wind carries a little of the cold, ashen powder away from her body, bearing it off in all directions.
While under the effects of this form, the character's ashen form is resistant to attacks; the difficulty of any physical attacks against her is increased by her Martial Arts rating. In addition, the character's strikes carry the Essence of decay, rendering physical protections worthless. All the character's attacks bypass armor and parries with physical weapons; any mundane armor or weapons which intercede between a Concluder and her target become decayed and useless.
Notes for concluding the style
- Two more two-charm paths pre-form: sense deprivation and distance attack/sandstorm.
- Three-five charms post form -- one Ess 6 charm that ruins artifacts.
- Elder Sutra: dust in the wind?
- I have a vision of a Siderealized Seven Storms Escape Prana - perhaps the adept turns herself into a scouring wind of dust, by which means she can attack the senses of people without their being able to counterattack; this leads into the second sense-deprivation effect, which makes something unsatisfying or even painful to percieve.
- Along another branch is an ability to create thorny tendrils of darkness, which break off into wounds when they attack and flower into festering scarlet curses. Perhaps the ability that follows this allows the manipulations of chaos and ill fortune; when an action fails, Entropy snaps it up in its jaws to do the martial artist's dirty work. This should interact well with the Style's already in-place ability to reduce options and dice pools.
- I cannot think of a set of elder Charms for this Style, though I think that at least one less overt and malicious entropy-manipulation has a place there. Something tells me that the Diamond Weave of Destiny Style would be a good thing to mine for ideas.
Betcha didn't expact that. Don't take it seriously though, I'm just bored. I doubt the continuation of the Charm tree is very interesting. Resplendence
Mike posted his Dust charm while I was writing mine up. Since I see no reason to waste all that good work, I present to you the alternate take on the "Dust" theme. -- Charlequin
- Mine wasn't meant to be a serious entry, so thank you. :) Resplendence
BTW, Willows, you did recognize the source of Charlequin's sutra, right? - Quendalon
- Yeah, I sure did. Is my take on it too opaque? ;) - willows
- I didn't. Please share. _Ikselam hates riddles.
- It appears to be that classic of the nursery rhyme genre, "Ring Around A Rosy." - Quendalon, always glad to clear things up
- I was thinking of the monkey chasing the weasel around the mulberry bush, but I knew that couldn't be it. _Ikselam
Like most Sidereal MA, it might be best to rearrange the Charms when we're done so that the sutra flows properly. I'll note that the sutra for Embrace of Ashes may actually make better sense with my Charm, while Embrace of Ashes could get a later slot, either for petals withering away (for the posies) or the line about ashes. - Quendalon
- I think that is a very good idea. I hereby give everyone explicit permission to move Embrace of Ashes around to better fit with the Sutra. -- Charlequin