Shadow of the Bronze Colossus
Autumn Magnitude 21
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 be gaining additional hits from heavy armour.
This spell is an enchantment. A target may only be under one enchantment effect at a time.
This ritual targets a single character who is gaining additional hits from heavy armour. That is, the character must be wearing heavy armour that covers the majority of the torso and at least one other location; valid locations are the head (with a helm), the arms and the legs, or you may cover half of your arms and legs. The enchantment ends immediately if enough of the target's heavy armour is removed that they no longer receive bonus hits from it.
The target gains four additional ranks of endurance. In addition, they can respond to any roleplaying effect that would inspire feelings of altruism, compassion, patriotism or generosity by expressing cool disdain and detachment.
The target experiences potent roleplaying effect: You do not wish to remove their heavy armour. It feels a natural part of your body, and you may even sleep in it. You experience strong mercenary thoughts - the idea of fighting in return for rewards seems very appealing. The idea of fighting without receiving payment, preferably in advance, seems laughable or even offensive.
The effect lasts until the start of the next Profound Decisions Empire event.
Any caster who has mastered the ritual may choose to substitute orichalcum for crystal mana when contributing to it. Every 2 ingots of orichalcum spent counts as 1 crystal mana when contributing to the ritual..
This ritual can affect additional characters from the same banner. Each additional character increases the magnitude by 16. Additional characters must be present throughout.
This enchantment causes a powerful relationship between the target and their heavy armour. The metal plates and rings of their armour seem as natural to them as skin, and the armour itself is heavily reinforced but the power of the ritual. The ritual partly reinforces the handiwork of the artisan who forged the heavy armour, and partly infuses the spirit of the wearer with Autumn magic.
According to eternals and Heralds, the colossi of the Realm of Autumn are massive metal statues that stand at key strategic points through the labyrinth that makes up the Realm. They never move, and are fixed points in an otherwise mutable, shifting maze. While they are immobile, the eternals say that they are in some fashion alive. According to some stories, the eternal Estavus forged the colossi for her own inscrutable ends. Regardless, the ritual taps into some of their immense, immovable power, using it to forge the spirit and the metal of a warrior together. Lesser colossi are known to exist as well; great brass minotaurs serve as guards or guardians from some eternals, for example. These constructs may lack the immense majesty of the bronze colossi but they make up for that in ruthless martial acumen. Some warlike eternals wear magically enhanced brass armour to echo the warlike nature of the brass minotaurs.
This ritual effectively doubles the strength of a standard suit of heavy armour. If there is a downside, it is that the spirit of the target is flooded with cold, metallic sensations that dampen empathy, sympathy and patriotism. The target often becomes incredibly cynical, in addition to the more typical urging to demand payment before they will fight.
Due to the nature of the enchantment, the ritual often ends before its normal duration would expire; few mortals can bear to wear a full steel harness or suit of iron chain for extended periods of time. While their spirits may be comfortable in the armour, their bodies often protest against the strain of long periods cooped up in a metal shell. Allies of warriors bound with Shadow of the Bronze Colossus are advised to ensure that they remove their armour once the threat of battle is past, for fear that they over-exert or injure themselves.
Warriors enchanted with this ritual find it easy to sleep without removing their armour, they often report dreams tinged with an awareness of great shifting vistas under alien skies, and of feelings of tremendous size, weight and strength. It is widely believed by magical scholars that they are sharing briefly in the dreams of the bronze colossi themselves. Sadly for these scholars, warriors rarely remember many details of these dreams on awakening.
In some parts, especially Highguard, a priest will help reduce the negative side-effects of the ritual through exorcism. In The League and among the Freeborn however the spiritual effects that accompany this ritual are often seen as being quite positive.
The characters who are the target of this ritual will always be in heavy armour, and often bring the rest of their marital panoply with them. Ritualists often paint runes or sketch symbols of strength, endurance and stability on their armour and shields, or directly onto their skin, especially in metallic paint. orichalcum and green iron are often used in this ritual, even if the orichalcum is not being used to empower the target directly - tokens made from these materials may be given to the targets. Encouragement to identify with and imagine themselves as the bronze colossi may be used, or invocations to legendary warriors especially Paragons and Exemplars of Courage may be used. The runes Verys or Hirmok are invoked, and a dramaturgical performance often involves The Prince and The Battlefield.