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[White Elephant for Isator Levi] Ten Branches Opal, God of the Indigo River

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  • [White Elephant for Isator Levi] Ten Branches Opal, God of the Indigo River

    I am deeply ashamed for my lateness.

    Isator Levi asked for an antagonist. I was working on something like an Unshaped called the Gilded Salamander but it took me until three days ago to finally figure out that my idea was unworkable. Then I wrote up and rejected three Dragon-Blooded antagonists before finally settling on this guy. Thanks to Omicron for helping me out with some idea pitches to pull me out of a rut.

    Ten Branches Opal, God of the Indigo River
    The Indigo River, so named for the flowers that grow abundantly along its rich deltas and not for its brown-grey colouration, is a major southern tributary to the mighty Grey river that flows northwards to the mouth of Nexus. Many of its mazy branches seep out into marshland or forest creeks, but for those that know the way it offers a reliable route to ship goods through the great lakes of the Isthmus and Serpentine and all the way to the Inland Sea. Its steady waters rarely flood and grant a modest but sufficient harvest to the lands that feed on them. Its currents teem with sprat, loach and mussels enough to feed any enterprising forager, and its misty reaches conceal pearl-bellied crocodiles and river dragons to tempt the most daring big game hunters. It is a river that blesses smugglers, hunters, fortune seekers and others who are lucky and canny. The river god Ten Branches Opal once gave these blessings too.

    Ten Branches Opal is an ancient even among gods. He has seen countless empires rise and fall upon his river plain, but only the latest gives him cause for regret. Until recently he was content to live a quiet life for a god of his stature, shepherding the river and accepting the occasional offerings proffered his way by fishermen and thieves, clove incense and semiprecious stones sent floating down his river branches on mats of duckweed. He appeared rarely to offer guidance to the lost or wisdom to the faithful. None knew his secret, that centuries before he had severed his heart and entrusted it to the river itself for safekeeping, that he could fight to defend the Indigo plain against the Prince of Black Glass who then sought to usurp him. None knew until Yarrow, a silver-eyed farmboy from the forests of Inx, caught the god’s heart upon his line. He kept the opal-scaled spirit carp in a water barrel, marvelling at its beauty and fortitude. When he saw that he had no other choice, Opal approached Yarrow and confessed that he desired more than anything for his heart to be returned to the river.

    Alas, the boy Yarrow was no fawning peasant to be cowed by the whims of divinity, but an aspiring prince. Recognising he had the means to realise all his long-thwarted dreams and ambitions and settle all of his petty grudges, he held the heart of the god hostage and bound the unwilling spirit to serve. That was only a year ago, and already the boy-prince’s nascent empire spans the length of the Indigo from the mouth of the Grey to the banks of the Serpentine. More followers are drawn daily to the youth’s miraculous powers, for Ten Branches Opal is sworn to silence. He resents his imprisonment, but he fears for his heart before all other concerns, and he knows the boy is impetuous and callous enough to follow through on his threats. For his part, Yarrow teases Opal along with promises of the heart’s release at an ever-escalating price. For now, the spirit carp swims in an ornamental pond at the heart of his palace, guarded by a small army of mercenaries, cultists and petty mystics.

    When he manifests, Ten Branches Opal takes the form of tall man of indeterminable age, blue-black skin perfectly smooth like stone on a river bed. His hair and long beard are a froth of riverbank foam, crowned with a laurel of his beloved indigo flowers and branching antlers of pale driftwood. He wears a dyed cloak dripping with river-water, and a raiment woven of dark stones. He bears a hunting spear of fish-bitten bone set with a blade of black diamond, ancient and cracked but still keen. He has been peaceful for an age, but he is a warrior god used to defending his realm, and he will prove it if circumstances demand.

    Essence: 5; Willpower: 8; Join Battle: 10 dice
    Personal Motes: 100
    Health Levels: -0x3/-1x6/-2x6/-4/Incap.

    Sample Intimacies
    • Defining Principle: “My heart must be free.”
    • Major Principle: “I will protect my realm against all threats.”
    • Major Tie: Quiet Yarrow (Resentment)
    • Minor Tie: Quiet Yarrow (Fear)
    • Minor Tie: Smugglers (Fondness)
    • Minor Tie: River-Dwellers (Kinship)

    Actions: Feats of Strength: 12 dice (may attempt Strength 5 feats); Navigating the River: 12 dice; Stealth: 11 dice (15 dice in water or mist), Senses: 7 dice; Social Influence: 9 dice

    Appearance 4, Resolve 5, Guile 2

    Attack (Black Diamond Spear): 11 dice (Damage 19, minimum 5)
    Attack (Harpoon): 10 dice at short range (Damage 14, minimum 2)

    Combat Movement: 6 dice (12 dice while in water)

    Evasion 5, Parry 6 Soak/Hardness: 11/5 (River-Stone Raiment)

    Cult 2: The god of the Indigo River never had a strong cult, but he claimed a handful of itinerant priests sailing temple-barges on the river, as well as a scattered network of scoundrels who would pray for his guidance and blessing. His cult has diminished in the last year, as Quiet Yarrow’s has grown.

    Aquatic: Ten Opal Branches’ can breath underwater and can swim against river currents without impediment. Some of his dice pools (listed above) are enhanced when he is in water.

    Offensive Charms
    Principle of Motion (10m, 1wp; Reflexive; Instant; Essence 2): The god moves with blinding speed, taking a flurry without the usual restrictions—he can flurry two of the same action if desired, and he ignores the usual penalties to dice pools and Defense.

    The Spear that Slays Sankhara (8m, 1wp, Supplemental, Decisive-only, Psyche, Essence 3) The nameless diamond-bladed spear of the river-god is a prize from his ancient conflict with the Raksha Prince of Black Glass, a terrible weapon with potent wishes and bans of dissolution worked into its faceted edge. When Ten Branches Opal makes a decisive attack, he can roll his Social Influence pool against his target’s unmodified Resolve. If he deals damage and exceeds his target’s Resolve, the damage becomes aggravated and one intimacy that he knows of is reduced by one level.

    Defensive Charms
    Receding Mist Maneuver (6m; Reflexive; One tick; Essence 3): The god dissolves into morning mist, evading his enemies. Ten Branches Opal can use this Charm in response to a withering attack, in which case he gains 5 soak and eliminates any penalty to his Dodge, or when he attempts to enter stealth, which allows him to make the attempt even when there is no viable cover nearby. He becomes immaterial for the remainder of the tick.

    The River Flows Eternal (-; Permanent; Essence 5): Ten Opal Branches has bound himself to his domain more closely than any god should. While his heart lives independently of him and his river is recognisably whole, Ten Opal Branches cannot be affected by deleterious magic that would alter his mind and body, such as sorcerous curses or Raksha shaping. He heals one level of lethal or bashing damage per hour, even when he does not rest. When he joins battle, he immediately heals a number of damage dice equal to half his successes, rounding up. His heart takes the form of a jewelled river carp. Natural denizens of the river recognise the carp and will never do it harm, but if it is ever deliberately injured, it will deal equal damage to Ten Opal Branches. Should it be slain, he will die instantly, and will not be reborn. The threat of this fate is sufficient to compel the god’s almost complete obedience to his mortal master.

    Social Charms
    Steady Tributary Method (4m; Instant; Essence 1, Eclipse) The Indigo is a river of smugglers and miscreants, and Ten Branches Opal is their patron. When he makes a Persuade action to encourage illicit activities or to convince someone to overlook the same, he can use this Charm to reduce for the instant any intimacies towards law or the persecution of criminals that his target might use in his defence by one level, to a minimum of minor. This Charm can also enhance Bargain actions used for the same purpose, weakening any moral scruples the target may have against taking a bribe.

    Miscellaneous Charms
    Heart of Opal(1m+; Reflexive; Instant; Essence 4): Whenever Ten Branches Opal acts in accordance to one of his intimacies, he can draw on his heart to enhance his actions. He can enhance any action that works to advance one of his intimacies at a rate of 1m per die or 2m per point of static value, with both being capped at the strength of the relevant intimacy. While Quiet Yarrow holds his heart, most of the actions directed by his mortal master will fall under his defining principle of “My heart must be free.”

    Domain Manipulation Scenario (1wp, Simple, Essence 4) Ten Branches Opal is the god of the Indigo River, and he can leverage his divine domain to affect significant changes if he wishes. With a week of meditation and effort, the god can render a change to the Indigo River or the destiny of one that travels upon it or lives nearby. This blessing or curse is broad in scope, but usually manifests as a natural (though obviously unusual) phenomenon within the bounds of a working of the Terrestrial Circle. A blessed fisherman might find that river fish leap unbidden into his net, an accursed silver prospector might never again find so much as a speck of the stuff upon the river plain. This Charm can change the behaviour of wildlife or the river itself, summon a magical familiar from the wilds, or change the weather significantly and in obviously unnatural ways, like having a particular person followed on their journey by a constantly raining storm cloud. The effects of this Charm usually fade after a season at most, and cannot persist beyond the Indigo River plain.

    Drain the Rivers, Drink the Seas (15m, 1wp, Simple, Scene, Essence 5): When truly threatened, the god can draw upon the Essence and coursing prayers of all the spirits and living things of his river realm, swelling himself with vast and primal power and assuming the war form he wore in the young days of the world. His lower body transforms into that of a vast saurian predator with fins of river weed and and scales of slick black stone, his upper body swells proportionately and grows four additional arms, each bearing a deadly weapon of foaming water. He immediately rolls join battle with 5 extra dice. For the remainder of the scene he grows to the size of a yeddim and gains the Legendary Size merit. His Feat of Strength pool doubles and he adds 5 to his Soak, Hardness, Withering damage and Combat Movement. Finally, he gains 10 temporary -0 health levels, and ignores wound penalties while he still retains any of them even if he was previously wounded beyond that point. Even in his current situation, Ten Opal Branches does not enter this form lightly, for it over-taxes the river and will lead to deadly floods and droughts in the coming year that will devastate his protectorate. Once per year.

    Hurry Home (10m, 1wp; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): Ten Branches Opal fades away and vanishes on his next turn, drawn instantly to an underwater sanctum beneath the Indigo river.

    Materialize (50m, 1wp; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): Ten Branches Opal coalesces from a storm of driftwood and river-stone debris.

    Measure the Wind (5m; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): The god can determine the nature of anyone who has drank, swum in, fished on or sailed upon the waters of his river within the last year.
    Last edited by Crumplepunch; 01-11-2018, 07:02 PM.

    Currently writing for Heirs to the Shogunate.

  • #2
    Thank you for the hard work that you put into this.

    I have approximate knowledge of many things.
    Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed) Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)


    • #3
      I like the story here. Very cool.