Cycle 2: 1213 - 1220
[Please note that most details of Vocis's exploits in the Shadow Wars are left deliberately vague. No NPCs or locations are mentioned by name. It's entirely possible some of the PCs who participated in the wars encountered Vocis during that time, but I'll leave that to the troupe (or individual players) to decide.]
Vocis spent his first few years in the Shadow Wars behind the lines, coordinating the war effort and providing support where he could. His activities fell into three general areas: communicating with mundane soldiers either verbally or mentally, casting minor ‘prep’ spells on mundane soldiers, and spying on enemy fortifications. Vocis collected and fixed a large number of arcane connections over the years to facilitate these activities. ACs to individual soldiers were provided willingly and only with the permission of the magi to whom they were reporting. ACs to locations were either collected by Vocis personally (mostly ‘home base’ areas) or by Celeste (enemy areas).
[Note: Most ACs from mundane individuals have since been returned/destroyed, but Vocis kept all of the location-based ACs. He does not have ACs to any magi or the interior of any covenants.]
Vocis used any spare time he could find during these years to prepare himself, both physically and magically, for more direct participation in the war effort. In 1218 the Order commanders placed Vocis in a small scout unit of elite grogs and he began to spend time behind the front lines. His unit won a handful of skirmishes, but the information they were able to provide was far more important. In late 1219, his unit was instructed to reconnoiter a series of Roman ruins around which disappearances and other ‘strange occurrences’ had been reported by the local populace. After external scrying failed to yield useful information, Vocis and his unit snuck into the ruins for direct reconnaissance. The ruins themselves were largely empty, but the unit found a series of tunnels that led them (almost literally) to the pits of Hell.
The creatures living in those tunnels may once have been men, but they had since been corrupted to the point of monstrosity. Vocis fought side-by-side with his men, using magic when he could, steel when he couldn’t. Something in the tunnels was impeding his ability to contact his superiors, but he pushed his unit on despite this. Eventually they found what could only be described as a nest of the creatures. Vocis and the unit’s officer discussed the matter, but before a decision could be reached the creatures burst into the tunnel and swarmed the unit. Vocis fought bravely until his wounds and fatigue caused him to lose control of a Pilum of Fire and he was forced into Twilight for the first time.
The Twilight itself was worse than the situation he left – a true glimpse of Hell itself. The creatures he was fighting and demons of the Pit branded him with hot irons while corrupted flames roared all around. Time seemed to stand still as the brands came down and the flames burned away his flesh. Eventually he returned to the tunnel that started it all, surrounded by a handful of injured soldiers and the stench of two dozen corpses.
Vocis’s men were able to get him back to the nearest camp, where he spent several weeks recovering from his physical and psychological injuries. His exploits were discussed extensively by his superiors, with most considering his actions courageous while others thought them irresponsible. Eventually the former group won the day and Vocis was granted the ranked of skilled magus. Vocis returned to Clair de Lune to find his first grandchild had been born in his absence.
20 seasons of Advancement:
10 xp Creo, 7 xp Perdo, 10 xp Rego, 25 xp Corpus, 20 (+10) Imaginem, 15 xp Ignem, 15 (+7.5) xp Finesse, 10 xp Penetration, 15 xp Parma Magica, 15 xp Concentration, 5 xp Infernal Lore, 8 xp Iberia Lore, 5 xp Stealth, 15 xp Leadership, 15 xp Single Weapon, 5 xp Athletics
10 lab seasons:
Learning InIm spells (3 xp Imaginem)
a. Summoning the Distant Image, InIm 25
b. Prying Eyes, InIm 5
Learning CrIg spells (2 xp Ignem)
a. Pilum of Fire, CrIg 20
Learning PeVi spells (2 xp Vim)
a. Demon’s Eternal Oblivion, PeVi 10
b. Unraveling the Fabric of Mentem, PeVi 15
Learning MuCo spells (2 xp Muto)
a. Gift of Bear’s Fortitude, MuCo 25
Learning PeIm spells (3 xp Imaginem)
a. Ambush on the Deserted Road, PeIm 20 (HoH:S 64)
b. Silence the Cockerel’s Cry, PeIm 15 (NWG)
Learning ReCo spells (2 xp Corpus)
a. Leap of Homecoming, ReCo 35
First season of inventing Painted with Fire (3 xp Imaginem)
Second season of inventing Painted with Fire (3 xp Imaginem)
a. Painted with Fire, Cr(Re)Im(Ig) 20 (Base 1, +2 Voice, +1 Conc, +2 Group, +1 Re, +1 Ig) - This spell wreathes the target group in illusory flames which provide illumination. The flames do not burn or even feel warm, but they may cause a brief panic among unsuspecting targets (SG's discretion). The flames also serve to illuminate invisible targets or targets concealed by darkness. Vocis invented this spell during the Shadow Wars to illuminate concealed enemy personnel for friendly archers and magi.
Empower familiar bond – Celeste can mentally convey complex thoughts (2 xp Mentem)
Empower familiar bond – Vocis can mentally convey complex thoughts (2 xp Mentem)
1 season gaining Well-Traveled virtue (10 xp Etiquette, 15 xp Lang: Spanish, 15 xp Area Lore: Iberia, 5 xp Lang: Arabic, 5 xp Lang: Basque)
1 season lost to recovery from battle and Twilight
Warping points: 3 + 8 (longevity ritual) + 4 (Twilight) = 14
All magical flames Vocis creates, whether real or illusory, are a dark and corrupted reflection of the flames of Hell he encountered in his Twilight.