Rules

Spring Magnitude 8

Performing the Ritual

Performing this ritual takes at least 2 minutes of roleplaying. This ritual targets a character, who must be present throughout. The target character must have the battle mage skill.

This spell is an enchantment. A target may only be under one enchantment effect at a time.

Effects

The target gains the ability to call strikedown when wielding a staff. The target must follow all the rules for casting an offensive spell including spending a point of personal mana. .

The effect lasts until the start of the next Profound Decisions Empire event.

Additional Targets

This ritual can affect additional characters from the same coven. Each additional character increases the magnitude by 6. Additional characters must be present throughout.

Description

This ritual harnesses natural forces to grant a magician a potent attack. When the power of this enchantment is invoked it does not literally call a bolt of lightning down to strike an opponent; rather, the force of the staff-strike is greatly enhanced, lifting the target off their feet and slamming them back down to earth. In some cases, especially when the magician's staff is made of wood or bone, the implement might seem to twist around the ankles or legs of the target and wrench them off their feet.

Many magicians find that while under the effect of this ritual their staff becomes a little unruly, occasionally seeming to shift or twist of its own volition. There are also folk-tales in which magicians who use this ritual attract storms, sometimes with dangerous implications for their friends and family - although the magician herself is usually left unhurt even when the story recounts how bolts of lighting are attracted to their staffs.

Common Elements

When performing this ritual, the coven often invokes storms, hurricanes and typhoons. Some magicians, especially Suaq icewalkers prefer to use animal imagery with the spell, evoking the spirit of the wolf-pack, the leaping hare or the charging bull. Among the Urizen the invocation tends to focus more around the idea of disrupting the poise of an enemy - unbalancing them with a perfectly timed strike that causes their own momentum to cause them to fall over.

Regardless of the invocation, it cannot be denied that this is a violent, disruptive ritual. As with many rituals that invoke the destructive forces of nature, clashing, discordant music, thundering rhythms and violent movement are key elements in this ritual. Copper cymbals, especially among Freeborn ritualists, are regularly included in the performance of this ritual - copper is a material that is believed to attract lightning and may feature in other forms in a ritual.

Other elements might include the runes Mawrig or Verys (often accompanied by the rune of dominion; the evocation of The Claw or The Stallion; a violent scene in which characters are at the mercy of powerful storms; or images of horses, bulls or chimerae.

The storm that raged overhead was not natural, Hugo was sure of it. Even embroiled in the heat of battle, the war-witch could feel his staff lurch in the direction of each lightning-strike, while he tried to keep it tightly focused on the enemy before him. Even through his heavy leather gloves, patterned with the rampant gryphon of his House, he felt it jolt as if with lightning of its own every time it hit the enemy. The battle was going well, and all he had to do now was keep fighting hard and not get struck by lightning.

Out of nowhere, a pair of spear-wielding orcs thrust forward out of their line, and by some dire circumstance, struck grievously at the warriors either side of him. Both fell to the ground, one screaming, the other silent. He had a second to act.

Left. He struck, and as he did, the world burst into terrifying brightness. The staff slammed into the orc with a force far greater than any mortal hands could grant it, and a bolt from the heavens flung him to the ground. The moment seared itself into Hugo's brain forever: the hate on his enemies' faces, the axes and spears raised in battle, the dead and the dying on both sides. More than just the sight: the heavy weight of the wood in his hands, the seeping cold of the rain, the shock which ran through him into the thick mud beneath.

If the strike was awesome, the peal of thunder that accompanied it was appalling. The whole battle paused for a moment as each and every warrior, Dawnish and barbarian, winced in pain and shook their heads to clear them of the terrible thunder. At the centre of it, Hugo yelled in pain without hearing himself.

The orc to his right looked at him like a monster, and he roared as if he were one. He raised his staff high over his head, preparing to strike. Then he fled, leaping out of the way of the staff and putting a few more feet between the two of them. He jabbed cautiously, but there was fear in his eyes now. The rest of his group kept a respectful distance.

Hugo glanced over his shoulder and cried out for a healer, and stood guard over his fallen comrades. Soon, they would break. For now, he still had glory to win!