Hermetic Rune Magic and Creations

The thread going on right now about Rune Magic reminded me that I'd never properly understood the Hermetic variant from Ancient Magic. So I went back and looked at it and...I still can't figure out the part about making real creations. Maybe someone here can explain it to me.

The text box on page 141 states:

And then goes on to give several examples.

That makes sense. But:

Which doesn't make sense to me. How is the rune written on an arcane connection to the platters and pitchers of food and drink?

The description of the Inscription target on page 159 states:

So perhaps touching counts, although it seems to contradict the requirement on p.141. But the effect supposedly can only happen once the food and drink is consumed. How does a tablecloth retain an arcane connection to mead that's now in someone's stomach?

If we play fast and loose with the tablecloth, can we go beyond food and have a single runic spell keep our labs eternally stocked, for example?

Even more confusing to me, page 139 states:

The penetration bit is clear but how do I write runes on an arcane connection to flame that does not exist? Perhaps writing on a hunk of coal would qualify, but I've seen reference in these forums to flaming swords and the like. How can I do this with a rune spell?

Apologies for the length of this post, but this is a question that has bugged me off and on since I first read Ancient Magic.

Creo Ignem would probably depend on what you were doing with it- a sword might be marked in a forge for example, or an arrowhead when removed from a campfire. A hearthstone might be marked in a similar fashion. I wouldn't think this would work so well with wood...

The table cloth is an AC to the feast, not to the plates- you have to think of the feast as a whole thing... even if it is better classified as group...

Well, consider that the "Feast" is a magic item. I assume the "Arcane Connection" is part of the process of enchantment. As to labs, yes. In point of fact, that's a lab virtue in Covenants, Inexhaustible Supplies. (But +1 Warping, dang.)

As to the flame, I believe the Creo Ignem, "Hermetic Magic" part of the spell creates the flame, and the Runic part of the spell makes it "Natural".

Hermetic Rune Magic creating things might rely often on ACs like the ArM5 p.84 box Arcane Connections "frequently used tool". As such a tool ceases to be an AC quickly, it better be first fixed (ArM5 p.94) and only then used in the rune spell:


Thanks to everyone for their thoughts. So far it sounds like understanding the use of the Runes requires a very generous interpretation of arcane connections, one I would hesitate to use in a normal Hermetic setting.

Symbolically and thematically appropriate, to be sure, but I don't think these meet the technical definition of Arcane Connections.

This one seems to be really pushing things...

On the other hand, if you make it work, you have never-ending supplies of real, natural, food that should not cause warping or side effects. So...

The lab virtue was written pre-AM and presumably does not refer to the real creations of the Runes. There's no logical reason why non-magical Runic materials would cause Warping. Quite an effect if there's a way to make it work.


The text box with the requirement for writing on Arcane Connections is explicitly about Hermetic Rune Magic, so I don't think it can be as simple as taking Hermetic creation and adding in a dash of runes.

I'm pretty sure that these are connections to the tool's user, not to things that the tool has touched. I suppose one could argue by analogy though.

This one actually sounds like it might work. Seems a bit complicated compared to the fluff text of:

Determining ACs, but those to people or animals, is mainly an issue for the troupe - as is what's generous and what's stingy there.

There are ACs to fires, as can be seen from ArM5 p.141 Eyes of the Flame. I imagine, that fires with specific purposes - like the fire in Murion' Athanor, the fire that burnt the funeral pyre of the great chieftain Red Snake, or the hearth fire of a peasant family - have identity enough to also allow ACs to them.

I'm not sure the AC in that spell is to the fire itself or to the campfire, taken as the collection of wood, ashes, circle of stones, etc. Getting a connection to the latter sounds significantly easier. Still, I agree arcane connections to specific fires should be possible. A torch lit from a larger fire comes to mind as an obvious example.

It gets more complicated though when you specify a connection to a fire that no longer exists and require that the connection be something a magus can write runes upon.

Maybe not when you consider that the sword

a) Is always on, making it a real PITA to deal with 24/7. If you wanted to be pedantic, you might even require some other sort of enchantment to protect the hilt from becoming overly hot over time.

b) Is a combination arcane connection / intangible tunnel back to the caster. You don't want to pass things like this out lightly.

Levity aside, I don't think that a magus is intended to build a forge and then burn it down to cast rune magic. I'm sure I'm still missing something here. Does anyone actually use Hermetic Rune Magic in their games?