Rising Roots that Rend Stone
Spring Magnitude 50
Performing the Ritual
Performing this ritual takes at least 10 minutes of roleplaying. The ritual targets a single mage implement which must be present during the ritual.
The power of the ritual can be invoked only once.
The power granted by this ritual lasts until it is used or for ten minutes, whichever comes first.
This battlefield ritual deals with similar forces to The Forest Remains; by greatly accelerating the growth of roots, vines and other plants at the same time as it attacks timbers and even stone with powerful spores, moss and insects, Rising Roots that Rend Stone damages or even destroys a fortification. The supernatural growth finds the weakest parts of the structure, and forces tiny cracks to become gaping rents, crumbling mortar to be riddled with parasites and mould, old wooden timbers to be infested with termites and fungi, and new wooden timber supports to begin to sprout leaves and branches again - and in extreme cases even fruit! ,
It often takes a short time for the full power of the ritual to manifest, which can make it a particularly dangerous ritual for the contributor charged with delivering the final stage and touching the target fortification. Some brave covens have tried to perform the ritual while physically touching the fortification, while protected by heavily armoured warriors with powerful shields, but the possibility that a single stray arrow or bolt could cause the ritual to fail means it is rarely considered worth the risk. It is much more common to see one or more well-defended ritualists fight their way through to the fortification with the charged implement, relying on the fact that at least one of them will make it into position - and then either hold against the defenders, or retreat while the magic does its work.
This ritual targets the weakest parts of a defensive structure. While it may not collapse or destroy an entire wall, it is likely that the ritual will create multiple breaches, tear down a gatehouse, collapse a row of mantlets or the like.
When performing this ritual, a coven often invokes symbols of natural destruction - not just plants and animals but also wind and rain. The eternal Llofir may be invoked, and it is also common to use broken artisan's tools or the parts of a breached fortification to help grant the ritual power. Some ritualists evoke the spirit of heroes, orc ancestors, Paragons and Exemplars renowned for their strength, such as Inga Tarn or Thrace, or dramatically recreate specific stories where walls, towers or castles were overwhelmed by virtuous armies.
The implement charged with this spell is a key element in the ritual, and the role it plays in the performance is very important. Some Marcher Landskeeper and Dawnish enchanter who has mastered this ritual may use a special staff or rod constructed from the wood of a shattered gate or a siege engine specifically for use with Rising Roots that Rend Stone. The implement may be passed between the ritualists, or placed at the centre of the ritual as a focus for the magic of the coven.
The rune Mawrig is often evoked with this ritual, and some Wintermark ritualists complete their casting by carving or painting it onto the implement - or the contributor chosen to wield it. The constellation of the Key is sometimes evoked, as is The Wanderer.