Apprentice time for ungifted Redcaps

Hi folks!

Been gm'ing Ars for about 18 years now, i guess it was about time to get on the forum aswell :slight_smile:
I have not found an answer to this question and I am hoping some of you know:

One of my players have a demonic child (of a demon of deluders), and so far has been recognised as a man with divine powers. The character wants to become a redcap. Is there any apprentice time to become a ungifted redcap?
Is there any obvious obstacles that i should take into consideration regarding the origin of this companions powers?

Kind regards

According to HoH:TL Mecere took nongifted children and trained them as if they were like his two previous hermetic apprentices. And if you look at the redcap virtue in AM5, you will get as much Xp as if you were a gifted apprentices so I would say that just these two comments is evidence that the time that the redcaps are trained is 15 years. (I think it is stated in the books, but i do not have them with me)

Redcaps, like other members of the Order are to receive 15 years of instruction, but unlike Magi, their masters have no need to perform lab work and so are, IMHO, far more likely to devote more than a single season/year to training their apprentices (Bonisagus himself is said to have favoured this sort of accelerated apprenticeship so the Order probably accepts the practice on some level or another).

I'd say that so long as the Redcap gets 15 seasons of instruction from her parens, it should be OK.

Keep in mind that a redcap has to spend 2 seasons delivering messages, one season training, I would think they would want to keep their 4th season free...

I know the core book says spend two seasons a year delivering messages, but Houses of Hermes: True Lineages expanded Redcaps duties quite a bit, so two seasons of service to the Order could be much broader than just delivering messages. Certainly training an apprentice Redcap is a service to the Order.

I would say arguably, not certainly. Whether it is of benefit to the order would remain to be seen, based on that redcap's performance. Given the way the redcaps are nervous about making sure they present a good image, I sincerely doubt that argument would fly.

Thanks for the replies! I really appreciate it!

Hmm, if the character has the "Demonic Blood" Virtue, as your description seems to suggest, keep in mind that he has Infernal Might, and probably (unless he took numerous picks of "Demonic Might") a pretty low one too. Entering the Aegis of any covenant might be a problem.

But if he's been recognized as a man with divine powers, rather than infernal powers, acquiring a token shouldn't be a problem.

I'd be more concerned with how to maintain that reputation when asked to perform miracles in a church...

I don't really agree. A redcap with supernatural powers/abilities like second sight, enchanting music etc. can still enter an Aegis in the first place. And once inside, he can still perform his job (basically, deliver messages) without the need of his supernatural powers: for the brief duration of his stay, they are simply muted. It's an act of respect and long acquaintance to give a token to a visitor, and certainly you don't do it before he enters the Aegis in case he might be a demon or faerie in disguise! (At least, no magus in any saga I ever played in would).

A redcap who is kept out by the Aegis is clearly not a human, but a denizen of a supernatural realm. Let us set aside the fact that many magi think this disqualifies the "redcap" from Order membership. Divine, Infernal, Faerie or Magic? Most magi in my sagas will not just trust "reputation" when confronted with someone who claims to be an angel or an angelic scion :slight_smile: Instead, their first thoughts will be: "There's a 49% chance that this is a faerie that may or may not be up to some mischief, and a 49% chance that this is a demon - who would certainly be up to no good. Let's cast Demon's Eternal Oblivion as a very first step".

Maybe his patron grants him 50 points of might to resist the DEO? :smiley:

So, he is Divine! DEO didn't work.

Oh, I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm just saying that it's something that needs to be thought out, because in general low-might supernatural creatures have a really hard time entering an Aegis. Which makes sense, since it's the main purpose of the Aegis; handwaving it devalues the role of the Aegis in the saga and everything tied to it.

And I wasn't saying handwave it. I was just outlining that it's established that he has been established as a man with divine powers. A lot of relationships built by confidence men are getting just one person in a social circle to vouch for the con-man. He just needs one gullible magus... Once that's done, it's easy to accept him. Soon magi are telling other magi about this Holy redcap, and greasing his way into covenants...

Makes me think of this guy.

Of course I don't think an Ageis can keep divine influence out, which would bring us to that famous Star Trek question:
"Excuse me, what does God need with a Starship?"

Well, he's not God. And if Angels aren't completely immune to Hermetic magic, then neither should anyone with Divine might be completely immune.

Besides, in many saga I have played, DEO was a spell which was usually put in items with an average penetration of 30, unlimited uses and 5 might points reduction. (advantages: no casting, work in towns, let the sigil of the crafter of the wand rather than the user, can be used by mundanes)

That power was then used on ANY character any SG dared to present and use to talk to the troupe.

When the situation came in the troupe, the player responsible just said:

"the code forbid me to interact with demon, so I'm the only magus who really respect the code by casting this spell on anyone, even magi. When the magi oppose it, I can tell them what I'm casting. If they take it badly, then I ask a quaesitor to inquire them. No magus would ever refuse to be subjected to a DEO voluntarily."

He also said: "It's not scrying, because having infernal might is forbidden for magi as it's a pact with Hell".

There was a player who wanted to do an infernal companion. He tried it first as a temporary NPC given by the ASG. The infernal companion died in the 5 first minutes of appearance due to that wand.

Only "big" demons had no trouble... but "big" demons are outside of range for companions.

As for the aegis, any character blocked by the aegis which is not obviously a magical being (being the familiar of a magus or a magical normal beast seeking help or trouble) is considered, at best, a faerie which is quickly killed (but not refined for vis since it would be molestation) or expelled, and at worst a demon quickly eradicated. Reputations aren't trustworthy.

Yep. This is pretty much what happens in our saga, as well: DEO is cast on every new person that presents themselves to the covenant and asks for permission to enter.

Which, frankly, is fine with me - that just requires that demons be subtle and use Possession on a bird to fly over the wall and through the Aegis, or else work indirectly through mortal agents, rather than walking up and being blatant about it.

15 years is standard.

I wrote an article that appears in SubRosa #13 about using the "Training Packages" approach from Grogs, inspired by Mark Shirley's "Training Packages for Magi" in SubRosa #11, that covers the development of Redcaps.

You may find it useful.

When the 9 month exclusive rights expire and revert back to me as author, I may post the full article to my blog for ease of reference.


Related question: What kind of apprenticeship behavior is an unGifted Redcap master expected to provide? Can someone of House Mercere have five children and claim all five of them as their apprentices, teaching them in a group for the season?