Spell checking: Faerie magic abuse

Blessing of the Invulnerable Bloodline
CrCo 75, Faerie Ritual
R: Touch D: Until (Death of Caster) T: Bloodline

Target and his descendants are enchanted such that all wounds are instantly healed; only gross dismemberment is likely to kill them. The bloodline will gain 5 warping points a year, or 1 point if the spell is designed for them. Termination of the spell is likely to be unfortunate for any survivors, especially combatant males but not just them, considering all minor wounds accumulated through childhood, none of which will have healed.
(Base 35, +1 Touch, +4 Until, +3 Bloodline)

I envisioned this as invented by a Merinita for a noble, in return for leaving the covenant alone. The high level, and my just finding that death of the primary target (as well as that of the caster) will end the spell, makes it less interesting than I'd originally hoped for, which was a mutli-generation line of invulnerable but warped nobles. One could make longevity potions for the target but then that by itself would probably be worth concessions.

An equal level ritual would "resolve" all aging crises for the bloodline, which might be more interesting.

Very Dubious Blessing of the Unkillable Bloodline
CrCo 30 Faerie Ritual
R: Touch D: Until (Death of Caster) T: Bloodline
Target and his bloodline are under a sustained Bind Wounds effect; their wounds magically close and become no worse, but they still suffer action penalties.
(Base 3, +1 Touch, +4 Until, +3 Bloodline)

Bonus to Recovery Roll spells would be more useful, but are less immediately obvious to the recipient, and not useful in the middle of combat.

Awakening the Magic Grove
MuHe(Me) 45 Ritual
R: Touch D: Until (Death of caster) T: Group
Awakens a group of up to 1000 trees, per MeHe 25 Stir the Slumbering Tree, for the lifetime of the caster.
(Base 4, +1 Touch, +4 Until, +2 Group, +2 Size)
(Touch + Group seems odd, but see Curse of the Haunted Forest)

What's the level for awakening an animal's consciousness?

Interesting spells indeed.

I would personally approve the first spell as not limited by the noble's death. I understand you interpret the touched noble to be the "primary target" whose death will end the Until duration. I agree it's a reasonable interpretation, but I'd just ignore the vague "primary" (as I have no idea what it means) and go for "target" - when the family dies, the spell dies.
Note that Until spells are broken by the caster's Twilight too, so they may be of shorter duration then you'd think.

Regarding awakening an animal, I'd say it is at least a minor change making it no longer natural (level 5), but possibly much higher. As a compromise, I'd put it on the same level as changing it physically into a human, so I'll rule level 10 with Mentem requisite.

Heh. I was so aware of the Until+Bloodline combo that I didn't notice Until's "primary target" might be vague. I assumed it's whoever or whatever you cast the spell on, particularly the bloodline head if that target is used. But as noted that's less fun.

Even less fun is the Twilight restriction. Mystery Cults extends a similar restriction to going into Arcadia, for Perpetuity spells -- basically any otherworldly travel, which seems limiting given Arcadian travel possibilities. Yet ordinary regios don't terminate the spell, I presume. Need a bunch of Twilight-cautious Merinita for my Until-rich setting.

OTOH, the not-stated-to-be-un-Hermetic Watching Ward can last indefinitely, period, not limited by the magus being around. Admittedly it just holds up a spell, rather than doing something more general, but still...
And Mystery Cults Spell Timing (a minor virtue, unlike the major Perpetuity) allows recurring spells indefinitely, without mention of dead or otherwordliness shutting it off.

BTW, Bargain is said to enforce only for a year, and add +3 to the enforcement spell, but isn't ritual. I'd add an option for Bargain-Until Ritual: makes Ritual and adds +4

Oh yeah, animals. Level 10 is also what it takes to turn an animal into a plant, and then one could awaken the poor plant's consciousness at level 4.

The Animae virtue (Mystery Cults) lets a Merinia turn an animal into a faerie at level 10. Perhaps that's easier than awakening? Not necessarily, since it's level 4 to turn a plant into a faerie. So I'm comfortable with level 10 for animals. But yes, one could make a case for from base 4 to 25.

Interestingly, level 10 ReHe causes a plant to move with intelligence of its own, not that any sample spells use that.

I don't see any awake-elemental type spells, alas.

I'm not entirely sure what you mean when saying awakening an animals conscious.
Are you refering to the rules in the end of the "Broken Covenant of Calebais" adventure? If so it is a creo mentem ritual with a level equal to 25 plus the animals magic might plus or minus five times it's size. The ritual takes a season and costs an amount of Cr or Me vis equal to on fifth of the level.
After the awakening you can instill the creature with powers it can activate using temporary might. The might required can belowered to zero. And I don't think the creature has to have might to be awakened.
This is a discovery made by Ierimyra. I think it could be alot of fun to discover a way to awaken plants this way.

Hail Eris!

Not (I think) what the request was for, but interesting.

I think Ierimyra's discovery breaks the target's Essential Nature and so is the equivalent of an Hermetic Breakthrough. I don't know the specifics of tBCoC, but this seems to be a case of bad design - you brake the rules of the system to accomodate your story, rather than telling a story while using the rules.

Hermetic magic should find it impossible to change a beast (magical or mundane) to have Intelligence instead of Cunning, as this is a change in its essential nature (IMO). A temporary change can be induced by Muto spells, which is what we talked about above. Creo magic can enhance existing Cunning or Intelligence, even permanently through Momentary Rituals that bring the beast closer to its "ideal". But it cannot make an animal or magical beast more like a human.

I agree that such a ritual, permanently gifting an animal with sentience, would seem to break, or at least push the boundaries of, the limit of Essential Nature, and hence require either a Research Breakthrough or Mystery Initiation. However, such a spell would seem to me to be highly appropriate as the focus of a Merinita Mystery Virtue, since there are two Virtues of that Cult, Animae Magic and Awakening, that closely resemble this effect. I also assume that a similar effect might be developed as part of a nature-oriented Hermetic Theurgy Mystery, such as the Huntress in the Wood.

I would guess that as a Mystery Virtue, it would be a minor one. As for original research, I'm undecided whether it would entail a Major or Hermetic Breakthrough.

Hmm the first spell gave me an idea for a nice plot/a possibility to make an werwolfarmy for a covenant.

First speak

Blessing of the Invulnerable Bloodline
CrCo 75, Faerie Ritual
R: Touch D: Hidden (Firstborne) T: Bloodline

In this ritual the patriarch of a family must entomb his firstborn son in a dark and creepy crypt. If the bones are ever discovered by someone else than the existing patriarch the spell ends instantly.
Target and his descendants are enchanted such that all wounds are instantly healed; only gross dismemberment is likely to kill them. The bloodline will gain 5 warping points a year, or 1 point if the spell is designed for them. Termination of the spell is likely to be unfortunate for any survivors, especially combatant males but not just them, considering all minor wounds accumulated through childhood, none of which will have healed.
(Base 35, +1 Touch, +4 Hidden, +3 Bloodline)

After this ritual go on with

Te Beast within you
MuCo(An,Re,Vi)75, Faerie Ritual
R: Touch D: Hidden (Firstborne) T: Bloodline

In this ritual the patriarch of a family must entomb his firstborn daughter in a dark and creepy crypt. If the bones are ever discovered by someone else than the existing patriarch the spell ends instantly.
This spell allows every member of the bloodline to change in something like this:
This transformation can be started at will and ends at will. (ReVi Req)
(Base 25, +1 Touch, +4 Hidden, +3 Bloodline, +1 Vim Req, +1 Rego Req)

Every Member of the bloodline from his first year of live gains 2 warping points every year. The first flaw should be a vulnerability to silver (silver wounds regenerate at a normal speed), thw second should be disfigured (pointed ears, long teeths, a hairy face ect), the virtue should be berserk and the first major flaws (obtained at an age of 53 / 70 / 90) should be lycanthropie, berserk and wrathful (major).

This would be a might family of werwolfes (ore werbears,wercats ect) which have to protect their secret family tomb with full strengh and have to keep the secret of the two starting rituals.

Some plots I think about are:

  • family terrorizes a landscape and mages have to find the secret about their origin
  • the casting merenita (maybe a fearie now) forces the family to be his slaves with his knowledge and uses them against the PC covenant
  • the ghost of the two slaughtered childs are driven to the infernal, so the whole bloodline is courupted and driven insane
  • or the ghost of the two seeks salvation and asks the PC for help, but that means: kill the whole bloodline... or is there another solution?
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I have a major issue with the healing spells posted above. By and large, Creo healing spells do not "keep on healing", even when cast with non-momentary duration, ritual or not. They heal whatever wounds the target had and that's it: they do not make it invulnerable. Now, if you wanted to get a bonus to recovery, that would work, but instant healing, no. I'd argue that even the "Bind Wounds" effect doesn't apply to wounds sustained after the spell was cast.

In my eyes, "Blessing of the Invulnerable Bloodline" and "Very Dubious Blessing of the Unkillable Bloodline" are both inherently flawed.

Don't forget that Calebais was originally written for Ars 1. We've had, what, a couple decades to argue about Magic Theory since that time? I like these discussions as much as the next person (see beginning of this post), but if the rules get in the way of a good story, I'm afraid the rules have to yield, even if it takes a bit of handwaving.

Ierimyra's work is on par with the rules for familiars and the Merinita Nature Mystery of Awakening (no surprise here, Erik Dahl did both the Calebais conversion and the Merinita chapter in HoH:MC). I thus don't think it's a major issue.

I'll play devil's advocate here (but not with overwhelming confidence)

It is a teachable major virtue (using the HoH TL research rules termonology) It does something very similar to the familiar ritual. It enchants the original critter (no more changing the essential nature than creating a magic item that ha a constant effect muto spell on it). The creatures do not always breed true but when they do the "unnatural" state of the child critter is its essential nature.

Familiars can develop human intelligence, but that might be seen as sharing that of the mage.

I can see the objection to Creo Corpus healing new wounds, but I don't think it's clear either way. A Perdo Terram spell with duration is described as continually destroying dirt in its target area, even new dirt tossed into the hole. And long-duration Creo Corpus healing generally isn't good, because the wounds accumulate; it's just the Faerie durations which potentially allow living a life under the duration of the spell. I will note that all the intermediate base effects talk about healing "a X wound"; it's only the top and bottom effects which looked useful for a whole body.

Awakening consciousness: no, I didn't mean Broken Covenant, though reading the comments has been interesting. I meant the MuHe level 4 base effect to awaken a plant's consciousness, used in two cool spells, which has no counterpart in other forms.

I was wrong about no sample spells using ReHe base 10 "move with intelligence": the Treacherous Spear does.

Agreed to this point: IIRC, the writeup of the Spell Timing Virtue explicitly mentions that it is not possible to set up recurring Creo spells in order to achieve regeneration. However, I'm quite sure that it is definitely possible to use ReCo and MuCo to obtain very quick, or in the latter case, instant healing regeneration. What you do is to accelerate and heighten the body's natural healing abilities so that they seem supernatural. With ReCo, I guess you could cause wounds to automatically recover in the space of hours, but you could not (likely) have severed limbs to regrow (but they could re-attach if pressed to the stump). And the spell would have likely side effects like causing the subject's daily food need to increase dramatically. With MuCo, you could have wounds to heal in the space of minutes, including regrowing limbs and eyes.

Note that there are two different ways of setting up such a spell with Faerie Magic Mystery Durations: the Symbol Duration and the Hidden Duration. Using either in conjunction wioth such effects would be good ways of approximately translating in Hermetic terms those legendary magics where a sorcerer or supernatural creature makes oneself immortal in the unkillable sense by putting one's lifeforce or soul in a hidden object. With a further (alchemical ? theurgical ?) mystery virtue allowing Hermetic magic to completely stop aging one might also make self or another immortal in the unaging sense.

The Spell Timing writeup rules out recurrence of ritual spells, sensibly enough, but I was talking about a non-ritual use of Creo Corpus. And Until is less permanent than recurrence, which doesn't seem to have an off switch.

Hmm, yes you appear to be right (ArM5, p. 112).

Well, yes a good story should take precedent but only if it CANNOT be accomodated by the rules. As I said, I'm not familiar with the tale, but couldn't the story been possible with an Hermetic variant? Perhaps as a magic item, perhaps as a Ring spell, perhaps as a Creo effect, I don't know.
Especially for an inaugorinal (sp?) adventure, you just don't want to set a bad example. You want to show how you can tell tales within the rules, not how you have to break them to have fun.

I do not accept that it enhances the original creature. It changes it from an Animal to a Mentem target, if that's not a reflection of a change in Essential Nature then the concept may very well be meaningless to magi.

Now, it IS similar to the familiar ritual. Again I don't know the specifics of the adventure or mechanics. The familiar is a magical creature sustained by the magical enchantment and its life force tied to the magus, a very unique being and its binding a great Hermetic achievement. I don't get the impression that the creatures are as unique and respected as familiars, though.

The proposed method certainly CAN exist within ArM. As was mentioned, it is very similar to other Merinitia effects. Such a thing should be a rare and respected power, however, on par with the discovery of how to bind familiars or the ability of Merinitia to turn themselves to faeries. Furthermore, as I mentioned above, I think it's probably not wise to include it in an exemplar adventure.

When I was writing it, I had the idea that the Awakening Virtue in Mystery Cults is exactly the same thing that Ierimyra had, except that if you learn it from her instead of Initiating it you can only use Creo Mentem, rather than any Technique and Form. She's a Bjornaer, but she might have descended from the Merinitae who came over to the House after Myanar, and thus had access to those Mysteries, though it's nice that it's also vague enough that it could be something completely different, of course.

For a Mystery Virtue, I'd suggest giving Awakening, which is a little more powerful and is still Minor. As an original research project, I'd probably allow it as a Minor Breakthrough, a variation of the familiar enchantment.

Or be a Huntress initiate.

True enough, I hadn't thought it might be construed as a variation of the familiar enchantement.

Removing the Mortal Infestation
PeCo 50
R: T D: Mom T: Structure
All humans (and vulnerable faeries) in the touched building die.
(base 30, +1 Touch, +3 Structure)

Some storyguides would probably want to make this Ritual, since it's a "big effect" and at the border (though core says rituals for levels over 50.) I say have fun.

Pruning the Mortal Branch
PeCo 50 Faerie
As above, but Target is Bloodline, and will kill a touched victim and all his descendants. The Merinita who used this on a kidnapped king is Renounced but still at large. The resulting mundane war still continues.

Finding the Lost Fruits
InCo ??? Faerie
Target Bloodline
This I could use help on -- I figure it should be possible to locate and/or identify all members of a bloodline. But I'm not sure of base, or design. Inexorable Search style, locating people on a map? Getting images of the various descendants? Granting a vision sense, where descendants you run into glow? (Needs Targets Bloodline and Vision, or maybe it becomes MuMe with heavy InCo reqs.)

You can age someone 5 years with a simple momentary PeCo spell. What happens if the spell has duration? Keeps on aging? No real effect, since there's nothing additional to destroy (in the sense that a continuous PeTe spell will destroy new dirt thrown into the hole.)

Anyone have good Fire duration spells that go beyond making a transformed or hidden fire? I guess you could talk to a fire, or scry through one, for as long as it lasted.

Stench of Deceit
InMe (An) 30
R: Personal D: Sun T: Smell
Those who intend deceit toward you, whether human or animal, appear to have a fouch stench, not confusable with real smells, whether they are speaking or not. Developed by a Bjornaer.
(base 10, +2 Sun, +2 Smell)

Clashing Sounds of the Spoken Lie
InMe 30
R: Personal D: Conc T: Hearing
Lies you hear are accompanied by unpleasant harmonics. The spell is a bit more complex than the name suggests: clear non-lies are accompanied by pleasant harmonics, allowing one to tell when the spell was resisted. A Sun version may be more useful in some circumstances.
(base 10, +1 Conc, +3 Hearing)

When would a resister feel themselves resisting these spells? For Clashing I'd guess everytime they spoke in the caster's hearing. Not sure about the first one -- every round, since it provides continous information?