How to destroy the gift

Hi sodales,

For a future adventure, I'm trying to look for the tool my players would want to achieve to pursue the adventure facultative objective, that is "how do you destroy the gift of someone you don't want to injure or kill".

In short description: due to some actions with the protagonoi of magic, they have redistributed the gift in the world. Now only 1 members of the order, 2 someone whose parent is a member of the order, 3 someone whose parents are Gifted and 4 the King of France and his lineage have the gift.

It's the "4" which is targeted; the king died, and his son, Philippe (aka Philippe IV, le bel) has been apprentice of a Tytalus archmagus who intend to push it the most possible because he wants the Code to change ("interference with mundane" etc.)

A NPC magus who was master of the previous king before he dies (and who was with the PCs during the actions with the protagonoi of magic explained before), sees the mistake of 4 now, and wants to stop it before it leads to a war between Normandy and Stonehenge, and magi intervening... More is the fact that the kingdom of England is now ruled by the Queen of Scotland, helped by mysterious men who have a lot of power, magic and all, and are not members of the Order [which is strange seen the redistribution of Gift] and are not infernalists (which was the first idea they had for it, and that some of their armies have a new type of weapon come directly from the east, cannons. It's 1285+ and the "history" as known in our texts is no longer available, but the NPC wants to come back on tracks (or at least, try the most possible to do it).

So he wants to have a king, but a king without the gift, and his descendents without the gift.
Killing the king is out of the picture: it will only lead to more troubles.
The only viable option he sees is: destroy his gift.

Because that may means troubles in the Order and the code - and he is willing to pay the price - but not outside and so the power of countries and lords will not be more changed than it already is because the king of France is almost a fully formed magus.

So how would you do it?

  • hermetic magic option = a breakthrough, obviously. Do we have any guideline published or envisaged for it?
  • another way which you can think of?
  • another tradition? (remember yourself that except infernal, fae and divine traditions, the magic gifted traditions are all dead if they were not integrated in the Order in the "RAW" setting. [So wards are okay, but viktirs or gifted learned magiciens are nowere to be seen; they never existed to begin]

Thanks for your ideas.

For the first point: not a guideline for destroying the gift, but there is one for creating the gift in Mythic Locations (the fallen temple of Mercury).

CrVi(Co) 75 ritual guideline. Gives the target, who must be human, The Gift. The
target of this ritual must be Individual.

It stands to reason there would be a perdo vim counterpart possibly of around the same level. The spell the guideline comes from is mercurian and stopped working with the changing of the astrological age around the 3rd-5th centuries, but you could possibly use the cult of mercury as a source of inspiration for the breakthrough?

As for other possibilities it seems to me that the obvious solution is if the individual gained the gift through the power of a protogonos then it stands to reason that another powerful spirit might be able to remove it. Perhaps time to look into some theurgy?

A related idea would be to enter a microcosm of the king in the magic realm (this may require the aid of a spirit or daimon to do) and destroy whatever represents his gift in the microcosm, which will be reflected in the real world hopefully by removing the gift. Sort of a mystical "Fantastic Voyage" type thing. I came up with a daimon who can help with just that sort of thing for my 30 Daimons for November project: Fractus. Of course characters would have to find a grimoire with a ritual to summon him, or develop the ritual if they have access to theurgy.

That's the best I can think of off the top of my head, though I feel like there is some way I'm forgetting about to do with hedge magic.


The only magic I remember specifically being able to remove the gift is Settut magic from Africa. The way it works is if that someone with an unopened Gift is affected by Disjunction for a year or more, they lose the gift.

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I knew there was a hedge magic method that could damage the gift, just couldn't think of settuten. Unfortunately not applicable here I don't think unless you rule that some of them had joined the order, but if you were researching a breakthrough into how to do it any artefacts related to the settuten and their magic might offer insight.

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I'm pretty sure the Path of Strife can be used... Yes, there it is: HoH:MC p.70. The target must be willing. Given the target's active, knowing assistance, a magus this far along on the Path of Strife can sever the Gift.

Oh, you sent me on a wild goose chase! I was going through Mythic Places and More Mythic Places. It's actually this edition, so Mythic Locations.

Yes, it is a guideline that can be added through integration. I would agree that you could probably do a similar thing the other way around with suitable research.

While this is not, strictly speaking, the answer to your question, there's something that could be used as a starting point for it.

In HoH:MC p. 119 there's the Embrace of Boethis Ritual, which is used to alter the Gift for a magus wishing to join house Verditius from another House.

Embrace of Boethius
PeMe 35
R: Touch, D: Mom, T: Part, Ritual
Req: Vim, Corpus
This spell damages the target’s mind,
heart, and Gift, destroying a part of his
understanding of formulaic spell casting
and forcing him to rely on casting tools.
This highly irregular spell was developed
to initiate Hermetic magi of other Houses
into House Verditius, and is only used in
that rare instance. Because of the bizarre
nature of this spell, the target receives 7
Warping Points and must check to avoid
temporary Twilight.
(Base 15, + 1 Touch, +1 Part, +2
necessary requisites)

You coud use this for inspiration and build from that.

The Amazons from Rival Magic have guidelines to destroy the Gift, Papaios Zoi Base 30.
As their brand of magic seems to be a more primitive version of Hermetic Magic + some other stuff, it's likely only a minor Breakthrough at best to be able to Perdo Vim the Gift Ritually, or even Formulaically.

Whoops! My bad, I've edited the post to refer to the right book.

Someone mentioned settut magic from Between Sand and Sea. It’s especially of interest because it is a tradition that can have ungifted members.

However, it would not be able to assist with removing the gift of someone who is already opened to the hermetic arts- but I suppose you could destroy the gift of the children of any current hermetic French kings.

However, they are likely to want to stop you; for good reason.

Perhaps the Settut could be a source of inspiration for an integration breakthrough to create gift destroying spells. Of course, once that’s been done the entire order may be upset that it’s something that’s possible; they may take extreme measures if they fear it could be used against them.

Grab the Lab Notes and recreate the project Mercere was assisting Bonisagus with in 773?

Maybe one of Himnis' Curses grants the Suppressed Gift Flaw from Apprentices and/or the Broken Vessel Flaw from Grogs? Probably not a permanent thing, but cursing a piece of regalia might allow repeated cursing?

Rewrite a Mystery Script to Sacrifice (or suppress?) the Gift by Ordeal?

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The Amazon Sorceresses (RM) can suppress or destroy The Gift with Papaios/Zoi effects .

Settuten (BS&S) can accomplish something similar with Disjunction - they can't truly destroy The Gift if the target has been Opened to a tradition or possesses Supernatural Abilities, but they can suppress it for 19 Years pretty easily which is much the same.

Criamon magi on the Path of Strife (HoH: MC) also have a method The Golden Cider, but it only works on willing targets and thus isn't really applicable.

Infernalists (RoP: TI) can suppress The Gift too with Incantation/Malediction, but only if the target doesn't possess any Major Supernatural virtues and the effect level will probably be prohibitively high.

Finally, Apprentices lose The Gift occasionally for various reasons - sometimes due to a defect in their own powers, but in at least a few cases it's suggested to be the result of lab accidents and this within the realm of possibility for a Hermetic Magus.

Personally, I think such spells could probably be accomplished via Perdo/Vim, but there is a stumbling block - The Code of Hermes treats damaging a magus' Gift as equivalent to killing him so there's really no advantage to such spells and since the spell is obviously useless against mundane enemies or (realm) monsters, anyone known to be researching such powers is likely to come to the attention of Quaesitors at some point.

There is an argument to be made that The Gift is part of the soul/essential nature and thus protected by the relevant 'Limit', but I personally feel there are enough ways to affect in in canon that one needn't feel beholden to that argument unless you want to.

Only if used to break the Code. Simply knowing it isn't strictly a crime, especially if you only use it to hunt down Marched Magi. OTOH, like spells to knock down the Parma, its a threat to every magus, and so there will be political pressure for suppression, and the possibility for Tribunal rulings outlawing such magic.

There are ways to have somebody cooperate in losing the Gift: HoH:MC p.93f Becoming (especially Transforming the Spirit), LotN p.100 joining the Undying Ones, or such.
Tricking royalty into such endeavours might smack of court wizardry. But it plays on hybris and - once put in motion - leverages Philippe le Bel's inflexible personality to push it through.

Maybe I'm interpreting the op wrong, but it sounds like due to the changes in how the gift is distributed it now runs in the bloodline of the king, so a solution needs to actually destroy it fully (just suppressing it doesn't solve the problem of all his descendants also being gifted).

So amazonian magic has a proper solution, but all amazons were gifted so their tradition is wiped out.

Un-gifted Settuten can't truly destroy the gift in the king so it's possible he would still pass it to his children even if his own was suppressed (but they could do so for the next generation, before their gift is opened). The Un-gifted Settuten could definitely act as a source of inspiration for a hermetic effect though.

Criamon magi can truly destroy it only if the king is willing, so this is a strong maybe. There are actually a few different options if you can convince the king to willingly participate one way or another.

Infernalists also can't truly destroy the gift, only suppress it.

So it seems there are a few permanent solutions:

  1. Trick or convince the king into willingly going along with it, with help from a Criamon on the path of strife, some sort of ordeal etc.

  2. Invent a new perdo vim effect, possible sources of inspiration are the remaining Settuten, mercurian magic, the path of strife, remnants of amazonian magic etc. This one will not make people in the order happy.

  3. Divine intervention - a miracle could do it and is probably the cleanest way, but also probably the hardest to actually make happen.

  4. Intervention by a powerful daimon, via theurgy or something similar.

  5. Magic realm shenanigans. There are two approaches here, because the issue is really in two parts: the king has the gift, and the king's bloodline passes on the gift. When the representations of things are damaged in magic realm cosms it is reflected by changes to the real world thing. So by adventuring into parts of the magic realm connected to the king and his family you could find symbolic representations of the king's gift or the gift-carrying aspect of his bloodline and destroy one or both of these things. The hardest part with this is how to get into the magic realm.

Certain Muto Vim botches destroy the Gift, e. g. bad TMRE p.78 Invocation Magic botches.

A cleverly trapped Casting Tablet (Covenants p. 89f) invoking several Names of Power and then launching into a powerful spell might tempt a Tytalus pupil to try it. Such traps may, however, have already been treated in cautionary literature for apprentices.

There's also the mundane solution: kill them all. Obviously that has consequences if discovered, but it may in fact be easier than removing the Gift from each of them.

Subtle and classic. XD

People always try and come up with a magical solution. Often, the mundane one is easier :slight_smile:

Of course, if its mystically linked to being the King of France, then that just means you have a new problem.

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Or slip them all lweak longevity potions to make them infertile.