"Why are you here Furia?" Severus asked, his tone polite and friendly but clearly curious. They'd exchanged the traditional greetings and pleasantries, but after half-an-hour it was clear he wanted her to get to the point.
To be fair, it was a good question, one she'd asked herself twice already this morning. She was supposed to be retired. She was retired dammit. Faced with the need to climb the winding stair up to Delving the conviction that she would have to come here in person to persuade Severus to give up the scrolls had nearly cracked. Perhaps a letter by heliopticon would have sufficed after all?
It was good to see Severus though - it had been too long since the two of them had talked face-to-face. She considered telling him that, but decided she owed her old friend the truth. Enough beating around the bush, she would just have to come out and say it.
"I've come to ask you to give up the scrolls. You should put them into lore."
Severus' eye's widened with surprise, his tone hinted at his anger as he responded. "We discussed this several times Furia. My answer was no then, it's still no. I don't trust the Empire to use the spells wisely."
Furia nodded in acknowledgement of Severus' recollection of their past disagreements. She had expected no less, but she had planned for this. "You were right then Severus - I was wrong. But I'm not asking you to put the rituals into Imperial Lore. I'm asking you to consider putting them into Urizen Lore..."
Severus opened his mouth to respond, but then shut it again. It was one thing to argue that some foreign fool might anger the King Under The Mountain by abusing the rituals, it was quite another thing to claim that an Urizeni would be so unwise. Clearly unhappy with the idea, he searched for the right response.
"Why should we give up our great possession? Will other covens do the same? Those that were inclined to be generous gave up their own rituals centuries ago. Those that hung on to them... why does this change anything for them?"
"It changes everything! This is not the Empire's lore Severus - it's ours!" Furia could feel her emotions rising, rather than hold them back, she immersed herself in them, letting them shape her words and fill them with urgency. "It belongs to us and to us alone. Let the Dawnish have their armies, and the Marchers their farms. The Coast and the League can haggle with each other for coins. It is magic that makes this nation extraordinary. Our own lore is something that every Urizeni magician can take Pride in. When was the last time you felt that Pride Severus?"
"They won't value them like they should..." Severus' voice trailed off... He was not yet convinced but her words had hit home.
"No - they won't.", she replied, "They won't value them the way you do. That is true. So make them value them. Put a price on them."
"We're magicians... not merchants..." he spat, the contempt in his voice plain. Furia grinned, she had the old architect exactly where she wanted him now. His Pride was already on the line, now she just had to appeal to his professionalism.
"What was it you once said to the Conclave? We should stop grubbing in the dirt for coins and instead lift our eyes to the stars. Only then will we see what we can accomplish... Well then... lift your eyes to the stars Severus! You have something to offer... what great change could you accomplish with such a treasure?"
- 1 Overview
- 2 The Architects of Stone
- 3 Hall of the Newborn Sun
- 4 Beneath a Bleak Spire
- 5 Sent from the Temple of Swords
- 6 Sentinels Stand Watch
- 7 Song, Mirror and Flame
- 8 Bibliography
When the Grand Library of Canterspire was ceded to the eternal Phaleron by the Imperial Senate it signalled the creation of Urizen Lore. This special body of magical knowledge is only available to Urizen citizens. During the Autumn Equinox 383YE, nearly half a dozen rituals were entered into Urizen Lore by Imperial magicians.
As awareness of it's potential spreads, a number of groups within the nation have come forward to propose magical texts for inclusion in Urizen Lore. Adding a ritual to Urizen lore requires the ritual text to be the target of the Gift of Knowledge ritual - a ritual that is not itself part of Urizen Lore. With that in mind, the custodians of these unique ritual tomes will need to come to Anvil and find someone (ideally a fellow Urizeni) capable of working the magic required.
While motivated by altruism to a point, these custodians are still Ambitious and have a concern for the Prosperity of themselves and their spires. With that in mind, most of the groups have conditions that must be met before they will share their personal lore with their fellow Urizeni. It's also worth noting that none of these magicians are interested in adding their unique rituals to Imperial lore; had they had any desire to do so they would have presented them to the Conclave already.
In each section we've detailed the grimoires that are being proposed to become part as Urizen lore, and the rituals they contain. Each is introduced with a few sentences of in-character text explaining the ritual and an out-of-character box that summarizes the game information about the ritual. These out-of-character boxes are essentially representing the academic details shared by the NPCs who own the books, translated into clear terms. An opportunity to look at the actual text of the rituals as it would appear on the wiki will generally exist during the event, depending on the roleplaying in the field.
In each case, it's impossible to put some of the rituals in a book into Urizen lore without including others without literally tearing pages out of these valuable tomes - something the characters who own them will not countenance under any circumstances. Likewise, none of the spires who are proposing their precious ritual texts for inclusion in Urizen lore have any interest whatsoever in sharing those rituals with the wider Empire - as the flavour text for this wind of fortune indicates they'd have already done that if there were any way to persuade them to.
Where a ritual uses the power of an eternal we've made that explicit and also included the details of the assurance that is built into the agreement with the magicians who formulated the ritual. If the assurance is broken, the ritual ceases to function. While it is certainly possible for the eternal to empower the ritual again it would require a new set of negotiations and there is no guarantee that it will work the same way it did previously.
Finally, all the rituals are listed at the end of the Wind of Fortune in a table which you can find here.
The Architects of Stone
- The architect community at Delving in Redoubt proposes that the grimoire A Year of Perfect Stillness be added to Urizen Lore
- They are asking the Senate to commission an appraisal on their behalf
- The book A year of Perfect Stillness contains three rituals - Raise the Dragonsworn Cohort, Stone's Unyielding Defiance, and Vital Strength of the Earth
- Arbiter Severus of Delving or one of their deputies will attend Anvil on Sunday morning to speak to either the Crystal Architect of the Spires or the senator for Redoubt
Arbiter Severus of Delving, a spire known for their expertise in working stone, in engineering, and in mining. Home to a number of respected architects, they are among the first to see the potential benefits of sharing some of their personal lore with their fellow Urizeni. They are also on good terms with the eternal Adamant, and have been for quite some time it appears. So far Severus has sidestepped questions as to how long, exactly, they have been on good terms with the Throne of Stone given that until recently he was believed to have been ignoring the Empire.
Regardless of the details, the architects of Delving have presented a tome of magic for inclusion in Urizen lore - A Year of Perfect Stillness - which contains three potent rituals formulated with the assistance of the Deep Dragon and his koboldi. Under normal circumstances it is unlikely they would risk offending Adamant by making the rituals more commonly available but by all accounts the eternal is in predisposed to help the people of Urizen. The creation of the Three Watchers and the public thanks issued by the Urizen assembly, as well as the mandate encouraging Urizeni to work with eternals have all apparently factored in to the architects of Delving receiving his blessing to share the magic he helped to create.
The Best Offence
The architects at Delving are deeply concerned about the situation in Urizen at the moment. While they see the benefits of sharing their proprietary knowledge with their fellow Urizen they are not prepared to do so without some kind of recompense - Prosperity demands nothing less. Before they will allow A Year of Perfect Stillness to be placed in Urizen Lore they want the Imperial Senate to commission an appraisal on their behalf.
The appraisal would instruct the civil service to find ideal spots in Urizen where new fortifications might be built to better protect the nation - in Spiral and Zenith where possible as well as Redoubt and Morrow. They have expressed no unified opinion on which of the three prognosticators would be engaged to oversee the appraisal - efficiency, creativity, or diplomacy are all equally acceptable.
Severus - or more likely a deputy given the arbiter's age - will be bringing A Year of Perfect Stillness to Anvil on Sunday morning to be entered into Urizen lore, assuming the Senate has commissioned the appraisal. They have asked to meet with the Crystal Architect of the Spires, or (should the title not have been appointed) with Andronikos of the Lighthouse at Nikephoros the Senator for Redoubt. The expectation is that whoever they meet with will have secured an Urizen magician able to cast Gift of Knowledge although they are prepared to provide the mana and weltsilver themselves.
A Year of Perfect Stillness
The scrolls that encompass A Year of Perfect Stillness contain a trio of magical rituals. Two of the rituals Raise the Dragonsworn Cohort and Stone's Unyielding Defiance - draw directly on the eternal's power while the third Vital Strength of the Earth - was formulated with the assistance of his koboldi but uses only mortal magic.
Raise the Dragonsworn Cohort
Of the three rituals in A Year of Perfect Stilness, I think that this one is the most useful. In return for the right to claim the magical metals produced by a mine, a cohort of koboldi come to serve the owner in battle. While they may be short, they excel as defenders of a fortified position. They are also delightfully friendly, polite company, with a boundless capacity for wonder, which is certainly a refreshing change for those more used to the... difficult... personalities of some other inhabitants of the Summer Realm.Architect Cadamar of Delving
This ritual enchants a mine so that the eternal Adamant can claim all its production for a season. In return, the owner gains command of a miitary unit of koboldi. The mine produces no special materials during the coming season and is effectively transformed into a military unit of the same rank. The koboldi can be assigned to any of the tasks that a normal military unit can undertake, but they are especially well suited to defending fortifications and receive an additional 100 military strength when doing so.This ritual directly invokes the power of Adamant. The magic is potent enough to overcome the supernatural effects of enmity, but performing it in such circumstances have legal repercussions, and risks angering the eternal. The assurance built into the ritual means that it becomes useless if there are ever no fortifications in Urizen-held Imperial territories.
Stone's Unyielding Defiance
This is certainly the most valuable of the three rituals contained in A Year of Perfect Stillness. It infuses an entire fortification with the spirit of Adamant - every brick and stone - repairing damage and transforming it into a true bastion of defence. While the strengthening effect of the enchantment should not be discounted, if the citadel comes under attack behemothic earthen figures with gemstone eyes emerge from the stone and smash flat those foolish enough to assail the walls. BreathtakingSentinel Valensa of Delving
Summer Ritual; Magnitude 90; Enchants a fortification, repairing it and increasing the combat strength by 1,500 for a season
This ritual enchants a fortification, infusing it with the spirit of Adamant. It requires a regio in the territory or may be cast from the Imperial regio if the fortification is in an Imperial territory. If the fortification is not at full strength, the enchantment repairs up to 250 points of damage within the first week. The castle is protected by Adamant and if it is involved in a campaign, giants of earth and stone emerge from the structure to fight alongside the defenders. This increases it's effective strength of the fortification by 1,500 for all purposes for a season.
Vital Strength of the Earth
The other rituals are fine but for me this is the most important. It is not eternals that protect our people but the power of mortal spirits. The supernatural strength imbued in a person by this ritual empowers those most committed to the defence of their homes. At the same time it reminds us of the fragility of our lives, how delicate our sanctuaries are in the face of the mountains on which they are built, and how important it is not to take their safety for granted. An important spiritual insight, I am sure you will agree.Illuminate Leartas of Delving
This enchantment targets a character who gains several abilities while in contact with earth or stone. Whenever they use the unstoppable skill, they regain five hits rather than three. Whenever they use the relentless skill it restores all their crippled limbs rather than just one. When they use either skill, they also purge themselves of the venom condition if it is effecting them. They also experience a roleplaying effect that makes them keenly aware of the fragility of the world and the enduring nature of earth and stone.The ritual does not grant access to unstoppable or relentless; the character must have gained those skills separately through use of character points or magic items.
Click Expand to see details of the rituals.
Hall of the Newborn Sun
- The questor and illuminate community from the Hall of the Newborn Sun propose the Book of the Restless Spirit be added to Urizen Lore
- They are asking the Imperial Synod to uphold a statement of principle on their behalf
- Their grimore contains four rituals: Silence of the Bronze Bell, Resolution of Falling Stars, A Light that Moves, and Net of Gossamer Chains
- If the statement has been upheld Arbiter Aphrodias will attend Anvil on Sunday morning with the grimoire to speak to the priests of the Urizen assembly
Before it was overrun by the Druj the Hall of the Risen Sun in Zenith Occursion, was a grand cathedral dedicated to the virtues of Pride and Ambition. Since the reign of Emperor Walter they had been somewhat reticent about involving themselves in politics beyond the borders of Zenith but in recent years they had been paying close attention to affairs of the Synod and Senate once more. When the orcs came, some of the inhabitants were able to flee with the aid of the Highborn armies but many of the most devout were captured attempting to rescue the centuries of philosophical texts held in the cathedral library. Nothing further was heard from these unfortunate souls until the Spring Equinox 383YE and the desperate rescue launched into the conquered territory. Among those rescued were two dozen illuminates and questors from the Hall of the Risen Sun - some of whom had managed to conceal a handful of valuable tomes from the hateful eyes of the Druj.
Now united with their fellows, and with the encouragement of the Imperial Synod and the support of their erstwhile hosts at the temple of Weave, the priests plan to found a new spire - the Hall of the Newborn Sun - in the mountains of south-eastern Morrow, not far from the Three Watchers. They new arbiter, Aphrodias of the Newborn Sun, has proposed that one of the grimoires recovered from Zenith, the Book of the Restless Spirit, be included in Urizen lore as a way to ensure that the contents are not lost again.
The priests of Hall of the Newborn Sun consider the book to be priceless but it's inclusion in Urizen lore - and by extension in the library of Phaleron - would ensure that it is not lost to the vagaries of fate. There is some disagreement among the priests of the new temple as to the wisdom (and Wisdom) of this course of action. As a consequence of this, and with an eye to recent events, they have asked the priests of Urizen to raise and pass a statement of principle in the General Assembly with the following wording.
The Imperial Synod recognises that it is neither heresy nor blasphemy to teach that auras may impede passage through the Labyrinthe by imposing virtuous choices rather than allowing a pilgrim to come to them through reason and free will.Aphrodias of the Spire of the Risen Sun, Statement of Principle Wording
The priests of the Hall of the Newborn Sun do not require it to reach a greater majority, but if the priests of Urizen cannot secure enough support to have it pass, or it is not raised, then they will not allow the Book of the Restless Spirit to be placed into Urizen lore.
Aphrodias intends to attend the Anvil summit on Sunday morning. They will have the Book of the Restless Spirit and have indicated that they will also be bringing some transcripts of the contents for perusal by anyone who is prepared to make a small donation towards the construction of the new temple. They are expecting to meet with representatives of the Urizen Assembly, ideally including a priest who can perform the Gift of Knowledge, and will be bringing their own crystal mana and weltsilver.
Book of the Restless Spirit
According to Aphrodias, the book contains several rituals relating to matters of faith and the spirit along with short essays compiled over several centuries by the questors and illuminates of the Hall of the Newborn Sun as each faction engaged in friendly rivalry and sought to convince the other of the merits of their particular philosophy of the spirit. In addition to the selected essays the book contains four rituals: Silence of the Bronze Bell, Resolution of Falling Stars, A Light that Moves, and Net of Gossamer Chains. Each was formulated at the Halls of Knowledge either by Provosts from the Hall of the Risen Sun or at the behest of the priests - something that makes its potential inclusion in Urizen lore even more poignant given the destruction of that magical college.
Silence of the Bronze Bell
This centuries-old ritual is a legacy of the original founders of the questor movement. It allows someone already familiar with the most basic of liao ceremonies to carefully unknit an aura that exerts influence over someone's mind - regardless of whether it is spiritual or magical in nature.Aphrodias of the Spire of the Risen Sun
This enchantment targets a character with the dedicate skill and lasts for a season. It grants the ability to use liao to remove an aura on a person, location, or item exactly as if they were using the anointing, consecration, or hallowing skill but without requiring the target to have any of those skills. When removing a durable aura (with this ability or with the appropriate skill), the character can spend up to two additional doses of liao to increase the strength of the ceremony. The character can cooperate with others to destroy durable auras following all the normal rules.The ritual creates it's own roleplaying effect; the target becomes keenly aware of the importance of exercising free will without external influence.
Resolution of Falling Stars
Focus is important; this ritual was devised as a compromise between the questors and illuminates of our Hall. It allows a magician to focus their will to overcome outside influences, but leaves them free to choose to fully experience such an aura if they wish. There are some illuminates who argue that the ability to choose whether to be influenced is a better representation of free will than a dogmatic assistance that all auras are by their nature detrimental; it is unsurprisingly a cause for spirited debate with those who hold the opposite view.Aphrodias of the Spire of the Risen Sun
This enchantment only effects the magician who performs it; it cannot be performed by a coven. It grants the target the ability to spend a point of personal mana as if they were casting a spell to allow them to remain calm and collected when exposed to a roleplaying effect (as if they had spent a hero point). It also applies a roleplaying effect that helps the caster feel centred and in control of their emotions.
A Light That Moves
The Mantle of the Golden Orator is a fine ritual enchantment, but I have always felt there is something fundamentally transactional about Autumn magic. Codified at the Halls of Knowlege in the Second Interregnum, this ritual infuses a temple with auras that draw the congregation into contemplation and discussion of spiritual matters, granting them clarity and focus as they debate the philosophies of the soul. It can provide quite the draw for those who take a more rational approach to religion that we see among some of our peers in the other Imperial nations.Aphrodias of the Spire of the Risen Sun
This enchantment is used on a congregation and lasts for a season. It provides pilgrims with clarity and focus and encourages pursuit of spiritual matters. When next the civil service assess the congregation, enhanced attendance will provides 6 additional measures of liao and 12 votes in the Imperial Synod. The owner of the congregation experiences a roleplaying effect that inspires them to communicate as clearly as possible with those they speak to - the more passionate they are about a topic the more they are encouraged to avoid metaphor and circumlocution and speak from the heart.
Net of Gossamer Chains
This ritual is quite contentious within the Hall - but then as I'm sure you'll have noticed by now almost everything is. It was founded on a contract with the Sovereign Lord of the City of Chains - the eternal Callidus. The Prince of the Argent Tontine is fascinated by faith, and this ritual allows him to send his servants to observe and occasionally interact with the pilgrims at a congregation. In return they spin webs of metallic gossamer that can be rendered down for raw vis. Some of our number theorise that the heralds feed on ideas and words and excrete what they cannot digest in the form of their shimmering metallic webs.Aphrodias of the Spire of the Risen Sun
This enchantment is used on a congregation and lasts for a season. While the enchantment persists the structure will pay host to spider-like heralds that observe the congregation in service to the eternal Callidus. At the end of the season the webs that the spiders spin can be collected and refined providing five measures of Warm Ashes to the owner of the congregation.This ritual directly invokes the power of the eternal Callidus. Because it requires the eternal to send heralds freely, if he has enmity then the ritual does not work. As part of the agreement that created the ritual, Callidus included an assurance that if he is ever under enmity by the Conclave for four continuous seasons the ritual will no longer function.
Click Expand to see details of the rituals.
Beneath a Bleak Spire
- The herbalists and healers of the Bleak Tower propose an old book of Spring magic called The Well of Nine Stars be included in Urizen Lore
- They are asking for the Silver Chalice Conclave order to amend their manifesto in return
- The book contains four rituals - Fountain's Bounty, Woven Strands of Life, Wellspring of the High Peak, and A Goblet of Stars
- The arbiter of Bleak Tower and the holder of the book plan to attend Anvil on Sunday morning to meet with the Custodian of the Bleak Tower
The Bleak Tower is a relatively new arcane spire founded after the Spring Equinox 382YE. Inhabited by refugees from the Gardens of Pallas in Zenith and by healers from the Gardens of Morrow that once stood on the slopes of Caeli in Morrow. Both were burned by the Druj, their people scattered, but given new hope when the Senate commissioned a unique arboretum in north-west Ravion. The spire is relatively new but already securing its reputation as a place of healing and herb lore. While it is built around a Winter regio it is also known for its masters of Spring magic especially that magic that related to herbs an has attracted practitioners of green lore from across Urizen eager to study at the arboretum.
One of these newcomers is Cassirra Greenwell, a refugee from Spiral. She and her surviving spiremates brought with them an old book given to the founders of their spire when they established Fountainhome Spire in the reign of Empress Richilde. Called The Well of Nine Stars it has been handed down from generation to generation containing a wealth of Spring lore relating to green growing plants. The survivors of Fountainhome Spire have proposed that the book be entered into lore as much to reconnect their fellow Urizeni with their pasts as to swell their understanding of the realm of Spring. Arbiter Cyrus of the Bleak Spire agrees and is working with Cassirra and her fellows to facilitate this outcome.
Focusing the Chalice
As with the other groups who have rituals to propose for Urizen lore, however, The Well of Nine Stars does not come without complications. In their case the request is somewhat esoteric. As a requirement before the book can become part of Urizen lore, Cassirra Greenwell and the members of Bleak Tower spire want the newly formed Silver Chalice Conclave order to make a significant change to it's manifesto.
Specifically they want it to officially remove the statement that it exists to "Look into supporting long term efforts to aid the infrastructure (and foundations) of the Empire." Such a change would require a Senate motion under the rules covering formation of Conclave Orders but it would not be Constitutional in nature.
Both Cassirra Greenwell and arbiter Cyrus are quick to make clear that they and their spiremates bear the Order no ill-will. On the contrary, they are concerned that the Silver Chalice has erred by choosing four goals rather than the traditional three. Three is an ideal number, claims Cassirra Greenwell; more than three and the order risks becoming unfocused - especially with a goal that is so open ended as to be functionally meaningless. For the order to be truly successful it must have focus.
Obviously it is very unlikely to pass without the support of the order itself. Taking inspiration from the founding of Bleak Tower spire and from recent events surrounding Uphold Wayhouse, arbiter Cyrus has a proposal. He suggests that if Urizen wishes to convince the Silver Chalice to make this change the Imperial Synod might raise a statement of principle proposing that the citizens of Urizen offer their support to the Silver Chalice and it's good works - either in the National Assembly or the General Assembly. If it passes with a greater majority Cyrus believes a mandate to secure material support for the newly founded order - most likely in the form of bequests from herb gardens to the order vault - would be a likely consequence.
One or both of arbiter Cyrus and Cassirra Greenwell intends to bring The Well of Nine Stars to Anvil during the Winter Solstice. They hope to meet with the Custodian of the Bleak Tower Staurakios, who will hopefully be able to secure someone to perform the Gift of Knowledge; they will be providing the mana and weltsilver of course as it is the least they can do. Arbiter Cyrus cautions however that the ritual will only go ahead if the Senate has already passed the motion to amend the manifesto of the Silver Chalice. Otherwise the book will remain available only to the magicians of the Bleak Tower.
The Well of Nine Stars
The ritual text being offered by Cassira Greenwell and the Bleak Tower contains some old lore and a number of archaic poems on the topic of plants and the natural world. It also contains four Spring rituals: Fountain's Bounty, Woven Strands of Life, Wellspring of the High Peak, and A Goblet of Stars. One of the four - Wellspring of the High Peaks deals with the eternal Ossegrahn and Cassira is quick to offer assurances that it has not been performed since the reign of Emperor Giovanni - often before anyone asks for such reassurances.
Once upon a time rituals such as this were common in Urizen - weaving threads of life to bring forth wholesome food alongside crystalline mana. Since we joined the Empire such workings have fallen out of use. Understandable perhaps, but even in modern times my old spire still made use of them from time to time especially in the years following the invasion of 331YE. I remember as a child the joy that lay in discovering what strange fruit and vegetables were harvested at season's end, and how our cooks had proven their arete again in making an appetising dish from their peculiar colours, textures, and flavours.Cassirra Greenwell of Bleak Tower Spire
This ritual enchants a mana site, infusing it with the resonance of fertility. Over the next season, in addition to the usual production of crystal mana the site also produces seven random herbs, four random measures of forest materials, and wholesome if peculiar mundane fruit and vegetables that provide an additional 36 rings to the owner.
Woven Strands of Life
There is no doubt that pure magic is the essence of life - that the same force that moves our blood gives us the power to shape the world with our will. Just as Kala demonstrated how light may be split into a rainbow of colours with a crystal prism, so we can split and recombine the raw energy of mana to weave strands of pure lifegiving essence. Think of it - all the energy that would be captured in the crystals of a mana site instead set to work driving the growth of healing herbs. What a bounty we reap thereby even in the bleakest of climes!Cassirra Greenwell of Bleak Tower Spire
This ritual enchants a mana site. During the coming season it produces no crystal mana; instead it produces herbs as if it were a herb garden of the same rank, plus an additional 14 drams of random herbs.
Wellspring of the High Peak
Spring is too primal to be a realm of transaction and trade. Yet some of the eternals of the green world understand the idea of reciprocity, and of symbiosis. Sometimes it is possible to secure an agreement based on this principle and it is as binding as any accord reached with an eternal of any realm. In this case, we are able to offer a handful ambergelt to an eternal and in return receive the vis that lets us perform our most potent workings.Cassirra Greenwell of Bleak Tower Spire
This ritual targets ten measures of ambergelt in an opaque container that also contains fresh, pure water. At the completion of the ritual the ambergelt vanishes and a short time later two measures of vital honey may be found within.This ritual trades with the eternal Ossegrahn. If that eternal is placed under enmity it would be illegal to perform, and there may be repercussions if the eternal feels slighted by it's use. There is an assurance associated with the ritual - it loses all power if a location called the Spring of the Grey Falls in Caeli is ever harmed
A Goblet of Stars
I think few people really consider that the herbs we rely on so much - roseweald and bladeroot and the rest - are possessed of natural magic. How else could a physick perform such miraculous healing with a handful of plants? Perhaps the most valuable of the herbs is true vervain - a plant that has nothing less than the power to preserve life. A fraction of that power is intrinsic to all the herbs and a true master, empowered by this enchantment, can unlock that potential. Is it the herb, the enchantment, or the arete of the physick that does the most work? In truth it is a combination of the three I think.Cassirra Greenwell of the Bleak Tower
This enchantment can only be cast on a character with the physick skill. For a season it allows the character to use any of the five magical herbs as if it were a dram of true vervain when treating wounds. The target also experiences a roleplaying effect that fills them with the desire to preserve life.
Click Expand to see details of the rituals.
Sent from the Temple of Swords
- The sword scholar Helos of the Moonfall Blade offers a collection of scrolls called A Single Strike for inclusion in Urizen Lore
- They are asking for fifty doses of liao before they will allow the scrolls to be included
- The scrolls A Single Strike contains three rituals - Chastise the Foolish, The Certainty of Doubt, and Blade of Clear Sight
- Helos and several other sword scholars are planning to attend Anvil on Saturday evening with the scrolls to speak to the Envoy to the Disciples of the Tempest Jade Maiden
History recounts that the sword scholars have not always been as welcome among the Urizeni, or among Imperial citizens, as they are today. At times vilified and persecuted, several of their temples were forced to go underground to survive. While they are warrior-priests first and foremost they are still Urizen, and some of the treasures they took with them into their long internal exile took the form of magical lore. So it is with the grimoire known as A Single Strike
Enthused by the support that the Urizen Assembly and the Assembly of Wisdom have both shown for the creed of the sword scholar, Helos of the Moonfall Blade has proposed to use one of those hidden grimoires as an addition to Urizen lore. The collected scrolls record details of the sword scholar philosophy compiled by the Moonfall Blade temple but also include the texts for three rituals that have hitherto been carefully guarded by Helos' sect.
Bounty of Liao
Not all the sword scholars view such largesse with equimanity however. Some of them still hold a grudge against their fellows - blaming them in part for the massacre at the Temple of the Winds. As an internal compromise, Helos has secured the approval of at least some of their peers by promising to secure a bounty of liao before they will allow the book to become part of lore. The liao will be distributed between several of the sword scholar sects and used to create auras in keeping with the wider goal of spreading the teachings of Sulemaine throughout Urizen and - with the support of the Assembly of Wisdom - across the rest of the Empire. At least fifty doses should be sufficient.
During the Winter Solstice, Helos plans to come to Anvil in the company of several of his peers who wish to protect the scrolls and ensure they are treated with appropriate respect. They anticipate collecting the bounty of liao from the Envoy to the Disciples of the Tempest Jade Maiden Aspar. They further anticipate that assuming the liao is forthcoming Aspar will have secured a suitable expert to perform the Gift of Knowledge on their scrolls, ideally in the presence of any other sword scholars who have made the long trip to Anvil this season. Unfortunately Helos will not be able to provide the mana or weltsilver needed to perform the ritual but they have expressed hope that this will not present much of an obstacle to the accomplished Envoy.
A Single Strike
These scrolls apparently represent something of a primer on their beliefs, exploring the teachings of Sulemaine and her successors, and offering guidance to followers of the Moonfall temple. It also contains three rituals: Chastise the Foolish, The Certainty of Doubt, and Blade of Clear Sight that until recently have been solely available to the sword scholar sects.
Chastise the Foolish
In earlier days, a sword scholar who encountered a foolish or blustering priest attempting to command others through appeals to some perceived authority would have been dealt with swiftly and finally. In these later days, when our freedom to strike down the ignorant has been curtailed, we must often employ different weapons. This curse takes from the arrogant that which they most value - their misplaced confidence - and perhaps teaches them an enduring lesson in the process.Helos of the Moonfall Blade
This ritual is a curse delivered with a pronouncement of doom from one of the contributors. The target of the curse suffers debilitating doubt and becomes unable to perform or contribute to liao ceremonies. The effect of the curse lasts for a year but can be removed prematurely by a very powerful exorcism.
The Certainty of Doubt
Anyone who does not understand that the Imperial Synod is as much a battlefield as the hills of Zenith or the wastelands of Spiral is a fool. The same Empire that has seen Urizen regularly subjected to the Icy Maw that Devours the Spark of Essence cannot complain when ignorant priests are subjected to a similar curse that exploits their hubris and privilege. With the Certainty of Doubt we target that which they hold dearest - the ability to sway innocent pilgrims searching for meaning.Helos of the Moonfall Blade
This ritual is a curse delivered with a pronouncement of doom from one of the contributors. The target of the curse finds it difficult to express themselves clearly; the more they care about a topic the more they stumble over their words and allow doubt to consume them. If the target leads a congregation it will quickly shrink as a consequence. During the next downtime period and for as long as the curse presists the congregation provides only half the liao and votes in the Synod it would normally provide. The curse lasts for a year.
Blades of Clear Sight
Sulemaine said both "The soul is a blade; properly wielded, one strike can change the world" and "Bring strength against weakness and victory is yours." This enchantment empowers a master of the greatsword to strike down their enemies with a single blow, and ensures that they remember that only victory matters.Helos of the Moonfall Blade
This enchantment targets a character with the Weapon Master skill. Three times each day they may call IMPALE with a two-handed weapon they are wielding. They also experience a roleplaying effect that encourages them to resist authority they do not respect. As with similar enchantments, any effect that restores all someone's hero points in one go (such as an Elixir of Exalted Puissance or the Sutannir's Promise ritual) will also restore uses of this ability.
Click Expand to see details of the rituals.
Sentinels Stand Watch
- The sentinel Lutia of Willstone has been chosen to present The Guardian Gate for inclusion in Urizen Lore
- No payment is required; only a magician to cast Gift of Knowledge on the book
- The sentinels have asked that a statement of principle in the General Assembly be made to support the restoration of Zenith.
- The Guardian Gate contains four rituals - Guardian Gate, Irresistible Stance of Force and Focus, Peregrine and Ichimos, and Arete and the Fields of War
- Lutia intends to bring the book to Anvil on Saturday evening to meet with the general of the Citadel Guard and their fellow sentinels
The Court of the White Fountain in Redoubt guards the western end of the Onyx Path into Spiral. Over the last few seasons it has seen an influx of refugees from the east, leaving their homes in the wake of the peace treaty that cedes Ankra, Cinion and Ateri to the Grendel. The Court is once again on the front-line between Urizen and the barbarians - for all that they may be foreigners for the time being.
With an eye to the defence of their nation in the wake of harsh political decisions, several arbiters of citadels in various parts of Urizen have met at the Court to discuss the challenges of protecting their nation. One of the outcomes of that meeting was a decision to offer The Guardian Gate for inclusion in Urizen lore. The meeting appointed arbiter Lutia of Willstone to be responsible for overseeing this process, not least because they are a descendant of the original author.
OOC Note: Any sentinel character is welcome to roleplay that they attended the meeting at the Court of the White Fountain and engaged in nearly a week of planning, discussion, and argument about how best to secure the borders of Redoubt and Morrow, shore up the Citadel Guard, and how to reclaim Zenith from the Druj. The outcome of this meeting, apart from the decision to present the magical tome to Urizen, is obviously beneath the abstraction layer.
Lutia of Willstone is bringing The Guardian Gate to Anvil on Saturday evening. They are hoping to meet with the general of the Citadel Guard - currently Nicassia of Phoenix Reach - and with their fellow sentinels. They expect that the general will be able to find an Urizen capable of casting the Gift of Knowledge and will be bringing the required material components with them. Unlike the representatives of other groups who have grimoires to include in Urizen lore, Lutia and her fellow sentinels want no particular payment. They are offering these rituals freely and without any strings attached because, as the gathering at the Citadel of the White Flame ultimately agreed, it is the correct thing to do.
The Druj are the greatest threat to Urizen, and should be driven from Zenith.Pallidius of Highwatch, Statement of Principle, Urizen Assembly, Autumn Equinox, Upheld (130-0)
Many of the prominent sentinels of Urizen are in agreement that something needs to be done about the Citadel Guard. The army is in decline - the loss of Zenith and Spiral means that the nation simply cannot support it. Even before the loss of the remaining territory in Spiral the army was in trouble. Now, with both Zenith and Spiral in barbarian hands, the situation is truly dire. While the Keeper of the Breadbasket can help delay the inevitable, the Guard will continue to haemorrhage soldiers and supplies. Wisdom, Vigilance, and Prosperity all say that something must be done - the Empire cannot afford to keep expending resources to keep the Guard's head above water. The future does not look good for the unique, irreplaceable Urizen army.
Palladius has already gained the support of the national assembly with their judgement during the Autumn Equinox - but it's not clear to the sentinels what more the Urizen can do. They ask that a statement of principle be raised in the General Assembly of the Synod calling for citizens of every nation to come together to take Zenith back from the Druj. If this is upheld with a greater majority, and worded clearly and strongly, then it will hopefully lead to a mandate that will provide constructive opportunities to support the war effort in the eastern Empire. Assuming the sword scholars do not interfere with it of course.
The Guardian Gate
The Guardian Gate was written during the reign of Empress Varkula by Atallanna of Willstone. An experienced battle mage, Atallanna was a proud sentinel for much of her life before eventually retiring to expand her arete through the study of ritual magic. A self-confessed middling-magician she nonetheless rose to become one of the first Provosts of the Halls of Knowledge. During her tenure she worked almost exclusively on rituals with military applications; her experience as a sentinel and events during the assimilation of Zenith established a life-long commitment to using magic to support the defenders of Urizen. The Guardian Gate is a short book of advice for magicians who support sentinels that also contains four of the rituals she devised as Provost.
The announcement that Zenith was now an Imperial territory was very emotional. I know, I was there. Unfortunately it was built on shaky foundations. The Druj armies were defeated, it is true - I was there as well - but there is more to those hateful orcs than armies. For upwards of a decade the spires of Zenith were harried and occasionally overrun by raiders hiding in the woods and hills and taking every opportunity to strike at our people whenever they showed weakness. We built this ritual as an answer to the foul threat they posed; half the battle lay in persuading the Senate to build a suitable fortification in Zenith that we could cast it on.Atallanna of Willstone, The Guardian Gate
This ritual enchants a fortification, empowering the garrison and any military unit assigned to support it with keen vision and focus that helps them remain vigilant for intruders. It makes it significantly more difficult for a spy network to operate in the territory with the fortification. In addition, before the next event any character who controls a military unit assigned to support the fortification will receive a report in their player pack containing information about any foreign spy network operating in the territory along with details of any enemy campaign army that undertakes an attacking order in the territory including their allegiance; an estimation of their strength; the name of their general, and information about their special qualities.
Irresistible Stance of Force and Focus
Fighting alongside the sentinels requires a great deal of courage. A battle mage relies entirely on a flimsy talisman that will stop neither arrows nor the weapon blows of a committed enemy. In my experience an excellent way to deal with the threat of being hacked apart by an orc warrior is to get the barbarian as far away from you as possible - ideally by hurling them into the midst of your better-armoured allies who can dispatch them without fear of losing an arm in the process.Atallanna of Willstone, The Guardian Gate
This enchantment can only be performed on a magician and grants them the ability to cast repel four times a day as if they knew it without spending any personal mana. They also experience a roleplaying effect that makes the more likely to use their magic on anyone who annoys, insults, or threatens them. If the target regains all spent personal mana by resting in a magical aura such as that provided by the Chamber of Delights, or drinks an Elixir of Empyrean Art, they also regain all spent uses of this ability at the same time.
Peregrine and Ichimos
Anyone who forgets what history teaches will keep making the same mistakes over and over. Peregrine teaches us not only the importance of cutting the head from the beast if you wish to defeat it but that victory always comes at a price. Ichimos taught us that even when we are not at war we should be preparing for war; you can never be too well defended. Historical examples both; I fear that whenever you are reading this there have been many more excellent lessons bought and paid for in the blood of sentinels.Atallanna of Willstone, The Guardian Gate
This ritual enchants a military unit for a season, increasing it's effective strength by 40 whenever it supports an army or defends a fortification. While the military unit is enchanted, the character who controls it experiences a roleplaying effect that means they are always looking for opportunities to cooperate with others and place the success of the group above their own ambitions.
Arete and the Fields of War
It can be difficult to hear, but a magician who fights alongside sentinels is usually there to support the sentinels not to try and claim victory themselves. One of the ways we can support our siblings in battle is with enchantments. They may seem trivial - and I have endured more than one argument about the "efficient" use of crystal mana as it relates to personal enchantments - but they save lives. Having experienced warlike enchantments from both sides they also send a clear message that you value the life of your sentinel higher than the prosperity of your shop or your farm - which is not a bad message to send in my opinion.Atallanna of Willstone, The Guardian Gate
This enchantment enhances the prowess of a warrior, focusing them on martial activities. They can make a single call each day depending on the weapon they are wielding. A one-handed weapon or one-handed spear lets them call CLEAVE; a polearm lets them call STRIKEDOWN; and a great weapon lets them call IMPALE. This ability assumes they have the ability to wield that weapon - the ritual doesn't provide it. In addition, as long as they are gaining hits from wearing either medium or heavy armour they gain an additional point of Endurance.As long as the enchantment lasts they may respond to any effect that would make them afraid or cause them to doubt their abilities by remaining focused on their immediate goals. Finally they experience a roleplaying effect that heightens their interest in military matters both on the tactical and strategic levels.
Click Expand to see details of the rituals.
These three rituals - Mirror of Perfection, Flame and the Flood, and An Echo of Songs - rely not only on the qualities of ilium that allow magic to be made a permanent part of the world but also on the unique magical properties of mana sites, forests, and mines. There are no rituals to do anything similar with other personal resources and any arcane projection attempting it will fail - a business, congregation, military unit or similar all lack the innate spark of magic that is required for a ritual such as this to work.
Song, Mirror and Flame
- The stargazer named Olic the Wanderer is custodian of an old grimoire called Concordance of Earthbound Stars
- They will bring the tome to Anvil for inclusion in Urizen lore if the Empire is enchanted with Bright Eyes Gleam in the Depths before the end of Autumn Equinox 384YE
- The book contains four rituals - Mirror of Perfection, Flame and the Flood, An Echo of Songs, and The Stargazer's Astrolabe
- Olic will visit Anvil as soon as possible after the requisite ritual is cast but will need someone to perform Gift of Knowledge (and cannot supply the materials to do so themselves)
Many stargazers would be among the first to admit that they can come across as a little peculiar. Olic the Wanderer is no exception. A philosopher of magical theory known for their cheerful disposition, the peripatetic naga flouts Urizeni tradition by calling no particular spire their home. "I am a citizen of Urizen," as they frequently put it. "Magic doesn't tie itself down - why should I?" For the past three decades they have moved from spire to spire around Morrow relying largely on charity and the modest income from five books of arcane lore published by Spider's Vantage Spire in Redoubt. The books are considered "trashy" at best - much like the author - and more popular outside the borders of Urizen than within.
So it came as something of a surprise when Olic turned up at the Grand Library of Canterspire in possession of a grimoire of powerful magical rituals, some of them using hithertofore unknown magical techniques. The stargazer is reticent to enter into any discussion of where the book came from, merely offering enthusiastic reassurances that everything is above board and that they are the trusted custodian of the magic contained within. After asking a number of very precise questions about how precisely Urizen lore differs from Imperial lore they have expressed a keen interest in sharing the contents with the rest of the nation.
Quid Pro Quo
While they are keen to share the contents of the Concodrance of Earthbound Stars, Olic wants something in return. After what are described as "extensive discussions with my talented peers", Olic is interested in "harmonizing the omniherdron" as they put it. Specifically they want a coven to perform the ritual Bright Eyes Gleam in the Depths. Both Hallow of the Green World and Wondrous Forests of the Night have been cast already, and the "missing" rituals are still not codified, but Bright Eyes has not been performed in living memory. If nothing else, they're interested to see what happens given how the castings of the previous two rituals have shaken out.
Olic appreciates that it is no easy matter to perform a ritual of this magnitude at short notice, and has announced intentions to take a sabbatical to visit Casinea for a year or so. They'll be on hand if someone completes the ritual and will head to Anvil as soon as possible, grimoire in hand, to have it added to Urizen lore by the coven who performed the ritual. If the ritual hasn't been cast by the end of Autumn 383YE, their offer is withdrawn. Incidentally, Olic will need someone to provide the mana, weltsilver, and mastery to perform the Gift of Knowledge - outside of being custodian of a fabulous magical grimoire, their funds are very limited indeed.
Concordance of Earthbound Stars
The book contains three unique rituals that make extensive use of astronomantic power - Mirror of Perfection, Flame and the Flood, and An Echo of Songs - and one ritual that grants improved ability to examine magical effects - The Stargazer's Astrolabe. Olic claims that the book is very old, handed down from stargazer to stargazer since the rituals were first codified - allegedly as a result of cooperation between legendary Varushkan magician Pakaanan and a trio of ancient stargazers.
Mirror of Perfection
The Great Wyrm and the Door teach fundamental lessons of magic - that things change, move, and transform. With this ritual, the harnessed starlight of that most valuable of metals - ilium - is released to permanently shift the flows of magic into and around a mana site. No two castings are exactly the same - sometimes mirrors or lenses of peculiar design form from the metal and stone at the site while at other times the entire area is reshaped in the most intriguing ways. Regardless of the exact form the changes take the result is the same - a greater bounty of mana that lasts as long as the mana site does.Olic the Wanderer
This ritual creates a season-duration enchantment that permanently upgrades a mana site. It requires a number of rings of ilium equal to the level the resource will be upgraded to which are consumed at the completion of the ritual. Over the next several weeks the target mana site is permanently upgraded one rank. The mana site may also be upgraded using mithril during downtime as normal.
Flame and the Flood
The Great Wyrm and the Spider combine the ideas of change and transformation with the idea that things are watched by a hidden eye. Anyone who has spent time in a truly magical forest knows that there is a mysterious power in the shadows that gather beneath the trees. Whether it be ambergelt, gloaming, dragonbone, or beggarwood there are secrets locked within those magical woodlands. With this ritual the transformative power of the stars is unleashed to mingle and merge with that strange majesty and the woodlands are not left untouched by it. Sometimes the trees change, sometimes the ground or water between the plants is changed, but once the transformation is complete the forest is richer than it was before.Olic the Wanderer
This ritual creates a season-duration enchantment that permanently upgrades a forest. It requires a number of rings of ilium equal to the level the resource will be upgraded to which are consumed at the completion of the ritual. Over the next several weeks the target resource is permanently upgraded one rank. The forest may also be upgraded using white granite during downtime as normal.
An Echo of Songs
The Great Wyrm and the Lock merge the ideas of transformation and change with the idea that things are revealed. There is a profound rightness to bringing together the power of the uttermost skies with the power of the deepest depths. As with the other two rituals, some transformation of the area containing the mine is to be expected but it differs from it's cousins in one specific fashion. In every mine I have heard tell of that has been changed by this ritual, the metal begins to sing. Quietly, almost imperceptibly, the ores resonate with eternally repeating chords that the miners soon become attuned to. I've heard it said that even worked metal - the picks and helmets of the workers for example - begin to echo with song after enough time spent in the depths. Perhaps it is the music of the spheres that we hear in the depths of those night-dark shafts.Olic the Wanderer
This ritual creates a season-duration enchantment that permanently upgrades a mine. It requires a number of rings of ilium equal to the level the resource will be upgraded to which are consumed at the completion of the ritual. Over the next several weeks the target resource is permanently upgraded one rank. The mine may also be upgraded using mithril during downtime as normal.
The Stargazer's Astrolabe
It might not be on par with the power of the other rituals in the book but this is my favourite and I regularly make use of it myself. The enchantment attunes the magician to the unseen world, allowing one to truly appreciate the splendour of magic. It can be a little distracting, obviously. All those colours and sounds! But nobody can deny that these are welcome distractions - and can occasionally offer unlooked for insight into a magical place, thing, or person as well as being entertaining.Olic the Wanderer
This enchantment allows a magician to cast the detect magic spell five times a day without spending any mana. It can only target a single character and if it is performed by a coven the target must be one of the characters contributing to the ritual. As with several such effects these uses can be regained by anything that restores all a magician's mana such as a Chamber of Delights. it also creates a roleplaying effect that makes the magician sensitive to magical auras and prone to experiencing peculiar sensory hallucinations.
Details of these rituals are available below - click Expand to see them.
This table summarizes the rituals, realms, and which book they are contained in.
|Raise the Dragonsworn Cohort||Transforms a mine into a powerful military unit for a season||Summer||20||A Year of Perfect Stillness|
|Stone's Unyielding Defiance||Enchants a fortification, repairing it and increasing the combat strength by 1,500 for a season||Summer||90||A Year of Perfect Stillness|
|Vital Strength of the Earth||Grants additional power to uses of the unstoppable and relentless skills||Summer||28||A Year of Perfect Stillness|
|Silence of the Bronze Bell||Grants a character with the dedicate skill the ability to remove auras with additional potence||Winter||12||Book of the Restless Spirit|
|Resolution of Falling Stars||Grants a magician the ability to overcome roleplaying effects by spending personal mana||Day||6||Book of the Restless Spirit|
|A Light that Moves||Enchants a congregation for a season so that it provides additional votes and liao at the next summit||Day||18||Book of the Restless Spirit|
|Net of Gossamer Chains||Enchants a congregation to produce Autumn vis for a season||Autumn||12||Book of the Restless Spirit|
|Fountain's Bounty||Enchants a mana site to produce herbs, forest material, and money||Spring||12||Well of Nine Stars|
|Woven Strands of Life||Transforms a mana site into a herb garden for a season that receives additional production||Spring||14||Well of Nine Stars|
|Wellspring of the High Peak||Trades measures of ambergelt with an eternal to produce Spring vis||Spring||6||Well of Nine Stars|
|A Goblet of Stars||Enchants a physick with the ability to use any healing herb as if it were true vervain||Spring||8||Well of Nine Stars|
|Chastise the Foolish||Curses a target to be unable to use religious skills for a year||Winter||20||A Single Strike|
|The Certainty of Doubt||Curses a character so that any congregation they control provides half as much liao and votes for a year||Night||16||A Single Strike|
|Blades of Clear Sight||Enchants a character who has the Weapon master skill to call IMPALE twice per day||Day||14||A Single Strike|
|Guardian Gate||Enchants a fortification to gather information about a territory and impede spy networks||Day||80||The Guardian Gate|
|Irresistible Stance of Force and Focus||Enchants a magician to allow them to cast REPEL four times a day||Day||14||The Guardian Gate|
|Peregrine and Ichimos||Enchants a military unit to grant additional strength when supporting an army or defending a fortification||Day||10||The Guardian Gate|
|Arete and the Fields of War||Enchants a warrior with various abilities dependent on weapons and armour||Day||16||The Guardian Gate|
|Mirror of Perfection||Upgrade a mana site with ilium||Night||30||Earthbound Stars|
|Flame and the Flood||Upgrade a forest with ilium||Night||30||Earthbound Stars|
|An Echo of Songs||Upgrade a mine with ilium||Night||30||Earthbound Stars|
|The Stargazer's Astrolabe||Lets you cast Detect Magic loads of times but makes you see funny stuff||Night||8||Earthbound Stars|