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Upon the Rock of Tradition: Memorials [Upcoming Fan Splat]

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  • Dragonmystic
    replied
    Probably should poke my head into this thread since I helped create it, haha.

    Any questions or something for me?

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  • PlotVitalNPC
    replied
    Originally posted by Sanctaphrax View Post
    I feel your pain, NPC. What was the fiction about?

    Amber looks cool. Do you have any plans for its mechanics?
    T'was the story of a man returning to his cabin to find an amnesiac girl eating part of the food he meant to be his lunch. Upon discovering her situation, they have a short conversation in which he only just begins to appreciate the weight of history, which she is aware of specifically through its absence. The fiction would end with her exalting as a Memorial through one of his pieces of property, a catalyst which he had acquired unknowingly and never gotten a rise out of.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Originally posted by Sanctaphrax View Post
    Amber looks cool. Do you have any plans for its mechanics?
    Some ideas for 2nd Edition, but with how much 3rd promises to shake things up, we're sort of at the drawing board last we talked about it.

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  • Sanctaphrax
    replied
    I feel your pain, NPC. What was the fiction about?

    Amber looks cool. Do you have any plans for its mechanics?

    Leave a comment:


  • PlotVitalNPC
    replied
    I was going to post an appropriate piece of fiction, but then I hit the backspace button on my mouse on accident and lost my work.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Well, since we're talking about Amber, I might as well put this up:

    AMBER

    Amber, more properly called anamnestic amber, is a memory given solid form. Its typical appearance is similar to that of the the more common fossil amber, but it is more translucent and lacks the flaws and inclusions that discolor its mundane cousin. As with fossil amber, anamnestic amber is most commonly a shade of golden brown, often compared to dark honey, but it also can be found in shades of green, gray, lavender, orange, and blue.

    Anamnestic amber is made by dissolving a memory into molten tree resin, followed by distilling it down into a hardened crystal. Those holding a piece of anamnestic amber often feel a sense of the memory that went into its making, often accompanied by a feeling of nostalgia.

    The principle difficulty in the manufacturing of anamnestic amber is acquiring and manipulating the memories that form the core of the material. Memorial craftsmen have the easiest time in handling raw memory, as their Charms allow them to extract and handle it as a pseudophysical substance. Otherwise, handling raw memory requires specialized artifacts, Fair Folk assistants, or other esoteric techniques. Because of this, anamnestic amber is overwhelmingly the province of the Chosen of Memory.

    Unlike many of the other magical materials, anamnestic amber cannot be worked like steel or other metals, but is instead carved like wood or stone. Where possible, pieces are rough cast while still molten and then pared and polished into their final shape. Other times many smaller pieces, often the scraps from a previous project, are carved to join together without seam and fitted into a larger whole. When other materials are used to join the pieces of an amber artifact together, gold and brass are often the materials of choice, as those metals both complement the aesthetics of the piece and do not hamper the Essence flow of the whole. Ivory is also commonly used as both an inlay and as structural support.

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  • PlotVitalNPC
    replied
    I'd go so far as to suggest that perhaps Blue Amber would have the fluff of not being created by human hands- that it must be found in the general areas of extremely significant events in the history of Creation. Much of it would be from prehistory. In a sense, Blue Amber could be coalesced from the most salient memories of the world.

    On Earth, there won't ever be more blue amber than there is now, unless a tree evolves which produces a near identical resin composition to the extinct species of trees it came from. In Creation, then, the supply is limited by the gradual accumulation of grand historical events.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    I think Blue Amber is cool, but as far as I know we have no special plans for it. It will be a color you can get your amber weapons made from, but it's more a "I think blue is cool" thing. There's really no mythological resonance particular to blue amber that I know of.

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  • PlotVitalNPC
    replied
    So with regards to Amber as the Magical Material of the Memorials, do you guys have any special plans for Blue Amber?
    I'm asking because Blue Amber is special in the real world, only found in the Dominican Republic and universally formed of the resin of a long extinct species of trees.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    So, apparently I can't edit old posts anymore, so that reserved post is useless. Here's a new piece, something to showcase how different they are from the other Celestials.

    MORTALITY

    Like many other Exalted, Memorials can come from all walks of life. Because of their unique method of Exaltation, the Chosen of Mnemosyne are typically born into or join an organization of some kind: a monastic order, a thieves' guild, a knighthood, or a noble family. The size and prestige of the order varies dramatically, from simple village institutions to nation-spanning organizations. They work their way up through the ranks of their order, possibly being groomed for Exaltation. With the possibility of Exalting on the line, competition for positions of higher authority can be fierce. Exceptions occur, of course, but typically the mortal is at least somewhat ready for the moment of Exaltation.

    Those Memorials that weren't chosen to inherit an existing Memorial's Exaltation are usually those that recover a lost Memorial Catalyst. Historians, archeologists, or tomb robbers, they uncover their own Exaltation in ruins, on ancient battlefields, or inside the tomb of an ancient king.

    EXALTATION

    For most of the Celestial Exalted, Exaltation is an unexpected event, a power that comes without warning at a time of need or in a moment of greatness. For the Memorial Exalted, this is rare. Where the Exaltations of the other Celestial Exalted are insubstantial and reside wholly within the soul of their host, the Memorial Exaltation has a physical form known as a Catalyst. Those that would become one of the Chosen of Mnemosyne must touch an unclaimed Catalyst and be found worthy of its power.

    Those who are found worthy to become one of the Memorial Exalted all share an understanding of the power the past holds upon the present. A scholar fascinated by the stories of ages gone by, A treasure hunter well-acquainted with the value and danger of First Age artifacts, an heiress trapped in a marriage arranged before her birth – all of these could become one of the Memorial Exalted. Respect, love, fear: it does not matter; how a candidate feels about the past is irrelevant. Only a comprehension of the weight of history is necessary.

    If the candidate is found unworthy, either for lack of respect for the past or for want of sufficient heroism, nothing happens. The Catalyst is an ordinary object as far as that person is concerned. Should he be found worthy, the Catalyst forges a bond with his soul and he takes the Second Breath.

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  • Armstrong Thunderbolt
    replied
    Man, that's cool. I would love to play one of these, one day.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    *Reserved for future material*

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Here's our broad outline for what their Charms can do:

    Originally posted by Kyeudo
    I can't really whip out examples, since we are designing for Third Edition. However, I can give some of our goals for how their Charms work.

    Memorial Charms draw on themes of memory, recollection, nostalgia, tradition, honor, experience, and history. Memorials are very human in their expression of magic, touching close to some Solar themes. Where Solars are peerlessly talented, Memorials are peerlessly experienced. A Solar is a genius with a sword, but a Memorial has been fighting with swords since swords were invented. Solars magic will still be better. Solars will be able to make impossible shots with a bow, while a Memorial will only be able to make shots that would be possible. However, inhuman experience is only one expression of their themes.

    Other Charms will draw on their incredible memories, such as an Awareness Charm that allows a Memorial to perfectly recall his surroundings, allowing him to move about on spatial memory alone or an Investigation Charm that lets them recall anything that they or any of their past incarnations knew.

    Their power over memories extends to those of others. They can read them, rewrite them, steal them, handle them physically, give them to people, cause people to regard their memories differently. One of their most feared powers is that of stripping a target's entire memory from him, leaving him an amnesiac.

    Further Charms allow a Memorial to manipulate Ghosts and their Fetters and exploit the nature of the Underworld. They can send a ghost on, deny a soul entry to Lethe, pass straight from Creation to the Underworld (and vice versa), be mistaken for ghosts, and more.
    Apparently nested quotes aren't a thing on this board.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    ARTIFACTS CHAPTER FICTION:

    She entered the workshop. The forge along the wall sat cold – Lily would not need it today. Its work had already been done. With it, she had melted pine resin, had simmered her own memories until they dissolved. The result lay on the work table, a rough cast bar of amber five feet long and six inches wide, red-gold in the window's light.

    Lily closed the door, steeling herself for the work ahead. She didn't like making weapons – it felt wrong to make something that could only destroy. Were times different, she would be making a tool to ease the labors of men or even a work of art to inspire the mind. But times were what they were. Change was in the air and change did not come easily. She would need a weapon if she was to protect her family and her home from what was to come. Long experience had taught her that.

    The young Memorial gathered the tools that she would need, planes and chisels and sharp knives. Woodworking tools, not the normal tools for a smith, but her skills would suffice. She reached out and touched the bar, ran her fingers along the grain. Not quite stone and not quite wood, amber was memory given solid form. Her memories, in this case. The memories of her mother's death.

    The memories came back as she set to work. Her mother had died only a few years ago. A fever had taken her, something that had spared most others in town. She recalled the helplessness she had felt, her powers then unable to do anything. But helplessness would not help her family now, so she pared it away.

    Sadness came next to Lily, the melancholy she felt as she tried to go about her day with her mother gone. The sound of her mother's voice, the smell of baking bread, the reassuring touch of her hand – it was all the small things that were missed. But sadness would not save them and so it too was cut away.

    She continued until all that was left was pain. The raw, hollow feeling of something beautiful torn from her life, like a hole in her heart. Pain that had driven her to her knees in grief, had caused tears to fall like rain. Pain like that cut sharper than any knife, cut deeper than any sword, and so she honed it to a razor's edge.

    Tears flowed freely down her cheeks as she finished her work. Hours had passed as she struggled, both with the memories and the material itself. Her tools, fine steel and freshly sharpened, were now dulled by the amber's stubborn resistance. She chipped away the last sliver from the the blade's tang and stepped back.

    The blade was just over four feet from tang to tip, gently curved and four inches wide. A shallow fuller ran the length of it, to lighten the blade and give it strength. Its name was lightly etched into the flat. Loss, she had named it.

    The sword was not finished. It still had to be tempered to give it imperishable strength and the hilt still needed to be forged from steel and copper and set with onyx and citrine, to shield the hand that held it from the blade's cruel power. But the worst was done. Lily wished she could be glad.

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  • Kyeudo
    replied
    HISTORY CHAPTER FICTION:

    Issac stood on the battlements in the fading light, surveying the advancing enemy below. From Red Pass marched the army of the First and Forsaken Lion. Thousands strong, they marched with silent precision, the only sound the echoes of boots on stone and the rattle of armor plates. For some, the sight would terrify, but Issac had seen its like before.

    He turned and made his way along the wall that blocked the pass, inspecting the men standing ready. Many looked grim, but his presence reassured them. At only thirty summers, he was young for the post of Lord Captain, but that mattered little. The sword made up for much. It rode easily at his hip now, a masterwork of amber crystal, as much a part of him as his arm.

    Below, just beyond bowshot, the ghostly soldiers formed up, as many abreast as the steep-walled ravine would allow. Here and there, the shades of men carried long siege ladders or grappling hooks, while in the center a team carried a heavy, iron-shod battering ram. Issac had seen the tactics a thousand times. The forces of the Lion had been trying the walls of the fortress periodically for generations, whenever not distracted by other conquests.

    “Bowmen, make ready!” he called into the twilight. All around him archers nocked arrows and took a firing stance. And there it was, the deep bellow of horns to signal the charge. The war ghosts surged forward, eating ground at an inhuman pace. “Bowmen, loose!” he called and hundreds of arrows answered. Each arrow found its mark, most sending a shade to a second death, but the host before them barely seemed to ripple. A second volley and then a third came before the front lines reached the wall. Issac's men began to drop stones and pour boiling oil down into the front ranks, even as the first ladders and ropes came to rest atop the wall.

    Most were thrown or cut free, but there were too many to get them all in time, and ghosts poured atop the wall. Issac unsheathed his sword in a single smooth motion, taking a fighting stance with the ease of a lifetime of practice, and attacked. He threw himself into the thickest of the fighting, his every strike finding the opening he knew would be there. The last of daylight was gone now, only the torches and the bonfires atop the wall keeping the darkness at bay, but it didn't matter. He knew these walls, knew every crack, every worn stone. He could fight blind if he had to. He had fought here for centuries, had fought here before the slaughter that twisted Red Pass into a shadowland.

    A horn sounded from atop the walls, a higher, warbling cry than the horns of the dead. The gate was in danger. Issac pulled himself from the fighting, letting his soldiers take his place, and ran towards the center of the wall. The battering ram had reached the gate and was already at work, staving in its heavy timbers. The silver wards inlaid in the wood kept the dead from simply passing through, but they did little to stop force of arms. War ghosts armed with heavy shields stood guard around the ram, keeping the arrows and stones of the soldiers above the gate from attacking the ram-bearers.

    Issac cast himself from the wall, dropping thirty feet to land among the dead soldiers. He rolled with the fall, expertly absorbing the impact as though he had done this a hundred times, and came to his feet already swinging. The first ghost fell instantly, shield and armor cleaved through by Issac's sword. The second ghost met its end a moment later, pale flames erupting from a wound, across its chest as his Fetters burned.

    And then the darkness was gone at the base of the wall. A honey-colored glow, shot through with rays of pale violet, surrounded Issac and his blade as he fought, building in intensity as he scythed through the shades defending the ram. As the last fell, he brought his sword down upon the siege weapon's heavy center beam with a two-handed grip. The wood splintered apart, suddenly soft and rotted by age, leaving the ram a useless ruin.

    The sword now a bar of light in his hand, Issac made for one of the enemy's own siege ladders. Arrows fell about him like rain, but the Memorial ducked expertly behind the bodies of his assailants, his would-be killers acting as his shield. He gained the base of the ladder and sheathed his sword as he began to climb. With the soldiers above providing covering fire for his ascent, he quickly regained the wall top and kicked the ladder free to shatter upon the rocky ground below.

    The ram gone and most of the ladders as well, the shades began to fall back from the wall. A cheer came up from the defenders, but Issac raised a hand to silence them. He pointed and all eyes fastened upon the ranks of the dead again forming in the pass. “Back to your posts. The enemy isn't through with us yet.” The men, disciplined as ever, took their places once more, readying for the second charge.

    Though tired and with dawn still far off, the Chosen of Uranus did not doubt that his men would hold the night. They had never failed him before, not in the centuries of his memory, and he would see to it that they did not fail him now.

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