Obfuscating a Covenant

I am trying to come up with a way for a covenant to look like something it's not to anyone who doesn't have Magic Resistance (or Parma Magica) from the outside. You would think it would be doable, but danged if I can figure out how.

The concept I have is that an old strong covenant wants to not look like a huge freakin' manor house or whatever, but would rather look like a ruined wall surrounding an overgrown, weed-infested field. My first thought would be Creo Imaginem, but I run into the problem that the image is unaffected by MR once it reaches the magus because the species are completely natural.

Second thought was Creo Mentem, to put the mental image in the mind of the viewer, but (at best) it would only affect anyone within the boundary of the spell (if I use T: Boundary), which is like the opposite of what I want.

Or maybe it's something so completely obvious that my brain refuses to accept its simplicity.

Any ideas or suggestions?

P.S. The Shrouded Glen won't work, in large part because it doesn't fit the fluff text I want, although the whole "this place is creepy and you want to keep moving on" vibe is something I would like to have, if possible (although preferably not itself via magic).

Bjornaer sensory magic?

What about Cr or Mu Mentem at SIGHT range cast by an item?

Yup, thats the way I'd do it, and I'd do it in an item so that its pen could be designed at +0 so that any/all parma resists, non-ritual, and nobody needs to recast it. Probably a few approaches:

(a) Conjure a complex image of a dense forest to surround the area in a donut shape. This is not really what the OP asked for, but it will allow a "barrier" to stop viewing the covenant. Probably the "cheapest" solution, but the target area needs to be complex. Being a created image it also affects magi, but this is better way of not doing passive attacks on Magi.

(b) Or a way would be way-markers which cast a MuMe effect at targets they detect (giving the Parma resists), and then effect them with the changed perception. Something like R: Voice, D:Conc, T: Ind with a heap of uses and the typical constant effects and environmental triggers. Create a few of these which constantly echo a very natural sound in the detection effect. Raises some questions about how many targets it can effect per round if many people come within range.

yes, those devices are casting spells directly on those who approach...such is life. With Pen =0, and pseudo-defensive, I think it is not overtly a worry.

(c) Possibly a way is further away from standard stuff. Change what the person is seeing. I did some tinkering below...

MuMe 25
R: Touch (+1), D: Conc (+1), T: Annulus (+5, a special shape, see below)

Base effect fro MuMe is hard to suss out. Could be Base 2, to make a major change in a persons memory of an event. Or even as far up to base 4, to Completely change a person's emotions, but I thats too high imho. So assume Base 2 equivalent.

Annulus - a two dimensional ring shaped geometric area (the Latin word for "little ring"). The key reason the shape is needed is that the effect should apply to those crossing the target area, but not those within the covenant. Like a moat around the covenant, but Boundary in size.
I suppose a Torus might be a better effect area to gather those who approach who are not directly on the ground, or perhaps a hollow domed shape.

Total effect is ~25, then add all the enchanted device mods and you're probably around a 35-40 level enchanted device.

In creating that Target I think it might be described by the OP as a Boundary (+4), and then increased by +1 to incorporate the complexity of the shape; so final +5 modifier. The Annulus will have to be marked is some manner as well to be effective. In this way the effect is cast upon the Covenant as Touch by the device, but the effect is delimited to the specified area around the covenant, not inside.

Just some thoughts.

You'd need to activate it for every target. Maybe a second Intellego spell to locate them?

There's the legacy canon spell 'Aura of Inconsequence' on HoH:TL p. 73f, which with ReMe very roughly does what you want your spell to do. Hiding a manor that way would probably require some further effort to make it inconspicuous: but if an old, high, overgrown wall is surrounding the manor anyway, then a ReMe effect causing people without MR to never look or climb over it is not too far from a D: Year T: Boundary Ritual based on 'Aura of Inconsequence'.
Animals accompanying people under the ReMe effect might also call attention to what's beyond the wall - so adding a ReAn effect to the Ritual is advisable. Over the years this might cause some talk nevertheless, and the area inside the wall might get some reputation as spooky, uncanny or such.


EDIT: made effect description more precise.

Probably that would be needed since hermetic magic is really bad at doing passive stuff, yes. Since we are talking about a major feature of the covenant making it a major item would work IMS with no problems, since ti defines how the covenant interacts with the outside world. MuMe(In) spell. Please, call it "These isn't the manor you're looking for" :stuck_out_tongue:


* We used to have a Trianoma Mentem specialist that carried a really powerful verditius sword and used to do Star Wars cameos in a past saga (Iberia). It was lots of fun when that NPC came to the covenant for a session or two.


In Art & Academe (Chapter 3) there is an extension to some Mentem guidelines so that they affect the complex of five wits that comprise the rational mind. The relevant one here is the extended MuMe level 3 guideline that can make a major change to someone's common sense. So one solution to your problem would be an enchantment as follows. It's not perfect, but it should do the job.

This is not the Covenant you are looking for
A slab of stone forming the first step of a flight of stone stairs leading into the valley below. The slab is placed at the first point that the covenant can be seen from this direction.
MuMe 35
Pen 0, unlimited uses per day
R: Touch, D: Conc, T: Group
This effect is triggered whenever anyone steps on the slab, and affects that person and any Group of targets that accompanies her. The targets' common sense is twisted so that they perceive the covenant as a broken ruin. The enchantment is complex enough that it changes with the changing perspective of those within sight of the covenant. The hallucination persists until sunset or sunrise (which is when maintained D: Concentration effects cease).
(Base 3, +1 Touch, +1 Conc, +2 Group, +1 complexity; +5 item maintains concentration, +10 unlimited per day)

You might decide that more levels of complexity are needed for the changing perspective.

You could do similar tricks with the imagination (the victims cannot be convinced that the castle is not a ruin, despite the fact their senses tell them otherwise) or the memory (any memories they form are of a ruin, not a castle).


Working on the magic to make this work, and (using Faerie magic), is "Until I am no longer Praeco" valid for the Until (Condition) Duration (Faerie Magic, main rulebook, p. 92-93)? I'm thinking it would be.

How about a Muto Imaginem effect (affects sight, and sound) with duration Ring but Target Structure? Make it look like a large tangle of poison ivy, and disguise the everyday sounds as frogs chirruping or locusts buzzing.
The downsides are that if the ring gets disturbed, the spell collapses (and will flat-out botch if it happens during spellcasting). Also, any covenfolk near (not necessarily in) the covenant would have to deal with the annoying sound.
The upside is that it is not a ritual and therefore requires no vis.

As was told and rejected by the OP, Imaginem will foil magi, who should see the real thing.

I fail--I was skimming and missed that. Apologies!

Anyway, serf's tired parma, but wouldn't the covenant need to be inside the ring for this to work? Concentration, concentration...