Devastating Scythe of Anguish and Loss
Winter Magnitude 20
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.
The target gains the ability to call impale when wielding a staff as if it were a two-point spell. The target must follow all the rules for casting an offensive spell including spending two points of personal mana.
They also experience a roleplaying effect: you have a sense that everything around you is dying, crumbling, or rotting. Living beings are going to die, and everything will eventually fall apart and be lost thanks to the relentless march of time. You find it extremely difficult to appreciate beauty, seeing the eventual decay into which all things will eventually fall.
The effect lasts until the start of the next Profound Decisions Empire event.
This ritual can affect additional characters from the same coven. Each additional character increases the magnitude by 15. Additional characters must be present throughout.
This ritual grants a magician the power to channel deadly magic through their staff to maim or kill their opponents. With a light tap or a double-handed strike and a muttered incantation, the magician shatters bone, rends ligament, rots flesh, ruptures organs, and either cripples an enemy or leaves them dying on the ground.
This ritual is often viewed as somewhat unwholesome. The magic shields the wielder and her staff from the corrupting influence of the enchantment, but even so they are left with a nagging awareness of the entropy inherent in everything and everyone around them. When they ruffle their son's hair they may suffer a sudden awareness of the slow processes of decay that will eventually leave that child as an old man; when they run their hand along the wall of a building, they know that eventually it will fall into ruins and be gone. People under this enchantment tend to avoid mirrors..
The magic of this enchantment tends to linger and sometimes turns against the magician's own staff; some magicians burn any mundane staff at the end of the enchantment. There are unpleasant stories of otherwise reliable implements breaking at inappropriate moments, often several months after the effect of the enchantment has ended. Magical staffs are less likely to succumb to this effect, but even so once their magical properties fade they, too, tend to become unreliable and may snap unexpectedly.
When performing this ritual, a coven often invokes symbols of destruction, loss and despair. Some magicians spit spiteful invocations of hate and malice, while others engage in pounding war chants or evoke powers of rot, rust, age and ruin. This is a ritual that creates a violent force, and as such the ritual itself is often violent with sudden movement and discordant or clashing music. Drums and cymbals are quite appropriate, but the sound of horns being blown can be a particularly powerful element.
The ritual allows a magician to wield power through their staff, and the role that implement plays in the ritual can be quite important. Some ritualists take it in turn to beat the implement against a solid surface, passing it back and forth as the strength of the ritual grows before returning it to the one who will wield it. Others place the implement in the middle of the ritual and move around it, touching it with their hands and magic as they increase the power of the ritual. Many covens create a specific implement for use in this ritual, usually a staff, and mark that staff permanently with runes of destruction and ending.
Other common elements in this ritual might include runes, especially Yoorn or Mawrig. The rune of hunger or the rune of weakness might also be evoked, as might mighty beasts known for their devastating strength and ferocity such as the chimera or dragon.