Chthonic magic

I am thinking of having my little pagan Bjornaer character learn Cthonic magic. It seems like the sort of thing she would do. Is there any good reason why I should not do this?

No. There is nothing good about Chthonic Magic. :smiling_imp:

I think it's a great idea. Chthonic Magic is designed to be tempting without necessarily being outright evil, which from what I've seen you say about your character should be a constant source of fun.


For some, corruption happens in small degrees -- wading into the lake to the ankles, getting comfortable, then to the knees, then to the shorts, and THEN diving in.

Your magus strikes me as someone who will cannonball right off the end of the pier.

No. There is no good reason (heh heh heh).

:laughing: Yeah, that's about right. Fear is not one of her noticeable attributes.
However, I am in that ambiguous territory where my character ought to know more than I do. I was just wondering if there is some "Oh and demons will own your soul" aspect that I am overlooking.

Haven't played under the rules and don't own RoP;tI yet. Having said that, keep in mind that in the minds of some anything that smells like diabolism will get investigated as such (and American rules of evidence DON'T apply!).

Don't know how your SG view it, but a great example in some sagas is what happened with the Diedne. Some argue that a lot of thier magic was Cthonic in nature but labelled as Infernal. The Tremere, Jerbitons, Flambeau and Tytalis went after them with glee and determination in thier hearts. It mattered not whether it was ACTUALLY Infernal in nature.

Yes, there are a LOT of different views in this and that is only one, but ANY pagan magus -- particularly a member of a pagan Mystery Cult -- persuing any magic that requires any living sacrifice (even if only occasionally) will be watched. I don't know if your Bjornear has the Reckless vir.. uh ... flaw, but if they don't, they would probably have to have a pretty powerful motivation to take the risk of attacting the attention of the local hot-heads.

Cthonic magic is, I susspect, the virtue that was designed to be so good that a magus would risk his soul to get it.

If you start desecrating things or saying curses to invoke your major magical focus (everything) ability I'd think that someone might take notice.


Probably one of the best game-mechanical AND story motivations for crossing the line. Power corrupts.

The question I have, though, is how about a game-mechanical means of redemption? Could make a very good story.

So I do something just for the purpose of being redeemed of it later? :laughing:

OK everyone, let's all make our COM+Theology rolls! :slight_smile:

That's the beauty of it. You can get into it thinking, "I'll just try it out and see if I like it. I can always back out."

Your character is going to have (and probably cause) a blast. But I'm pretty sure that the end will be very messy. :slight_smile:

There's a chapter in The Infernal on Sin and Redemption, with what I think are some interesting mechanics if I do say so myself. They mostly deal with Personality Traits and Confidence. There's also a bit about making deals with the devil and how Infernal agents try to get around redemption, and the fatal flaw that humans can always break any deal by turning to the Divine for help.

BellaDonna, I can't think of any obvious downsides like that. Characters with Sense Holiness and Unholiness can sense that your magic is unholy, but it isn't actually infernal unless you use the special RDTs or the built-in Magical Focus. You have to do something sinful to activate that, which could draw attention, but you can also do it in secret. Honestly, I think it's a great idea for your character. In fact, I think I suggested it to you when you were first talking about your character, here. :slight_smile:

OH YEAH, you did!!! heh. Then I didn't do it so I have had to learn occult lore, which has taken me a while. I'm a freakin' genius.
She would want to do something and get away with it, though. She wouldn't think about redemption, just not getting caught.
I've had her constantly scaring our "knight" companion and trying to corrupt her fellow mage but she hasn't done anything really bad, just mischievous. I might be crossing that line here.

I can picture it now:

(Cue medium-loud but lighthearted music)

The maga is returning to her sanctum after yet another successful session of frustrating the knight. The is a slightly self-satsfied and devilish smile on her face and probably biting her right thumbnail as she contemplates her next attempt.

Approachng the door, she bumps into a servant who is leaving...

(Cue brief discordant note in the music, which is winding down, slightly, to a somewhat more restful pace)

... she frowns briefly trying to remember the person, but they're off and she turns back to her sanctum. She crosses the antechamber heading for the lab proper. She opens the door, throwing her outer robe across the back of a chair. At this, she notices a leather bag with the seal House Mercere on it. She turns quickly to address the servant who left it, but seeing that they are gone, she proceeds to open it and finds a book of uncommon age and construction.

(The music deepens and gets softter and, perhaps, in the background someone can hear a very low and deep predetory purr...)

Loch Callite is going to be loads of fun with you. (NOTE Azaelle is not like Belladonna.) :wink:

And Stephan is not Verticus (and the world takes a deep sigh of relief)

(from memory) The rules state under the chtonic magic virtue "something about your magic is dark and sinsister."

If a character learns chtonic magic as she develops, does all of her magic get affected (ie, become "sinister?") or just the new magic she learns afterward?

I can see it both ways.

Belladonna's heartbeast might even be affected. Her raven form could always be slightly ruffled, look a little meaner, etc. Though this might get into the "tainted with evil" flaw.

Chthonic magic doesn't give you the "tainted with evil" flaw. The magic is tainted but not the mage.
And, can ravens look meaner? They are an ill omen of death. I would have to give her glowing red eyes or something.

I have to side step around the issues a little because one of the Magi in our game just got this Virtue....

The story is worth repeating, because it relates to this...I think.

Anyway the story goes something like this...

Part I

Someone broke into the Covenant Vis stores...(How's THAT?) Stole all the Vis and made a hasty getaway. The magi were quick to hunt the fella down. One of the magi wound up in an Infernal Regio, and had to battle it out, to get out...
The other magi followed the trail to an Island church...
He found the Covenants boat/ship and the Monks on the beach. The Monks were collecting all the odd bits of things laying in piles all over the place...
Well, after a short discussion, said Magi had to talk to the Head man...Had to make deal to get his 'possessions' back. The Head fella made a deal that his obviously heathen personage (he's also a Diedne) WOULD make periodic trips to the Island to attend Mass and other events...(Said headman obviously knows about the OoH)...Deal struck, and his 'training' would begin...

Part II

Shortly thereafter, said Magi decides to travel to an Infernally tainted forest, and hunt down the Heathen Wizards there (they had dealings before). On the way there, they ran into a Faerie that gave them a magical root...:confused:
Shortly thereafter they ran into a demon(ic fay). After the dust settled, the creature was destroyed and the magus lay near death. One of the others used the root on him...The root saved his life, but it turned him into a tree... :laughing: :laughing:

After more than a year, he was able to turn himself back into a person...sort of. Well, one of the side effects is that now he has scales...(among other demonic traits). He picked up Chthonic magic, and as he uses it, his traits tend to increase/magnify.
His first visit to the Church required a lot of 'penance' to make up for the lapse in time, and required a LOT of explaining..but it did reduce the visible signs of his problem...


Sure, why not. Tainted with Evil would work fine. :smiling_imp:

Thanks Urien! Good Story!

hehe... Actually, now that I think of it, I like the idea of red glowing eyes.

And to top it off said magi, who may or may not be me :blush: already had the blatent gift and was disfigured (significant amount of scars from being burnt)