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

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

    Since we've got a brand-new forum to play with, I thought I'd move this over. Dragonmystic and I have been working on a new fan splat to release once 3rd Edition is out and we can properly write Charms for them. In the meantime, we've been developing their history and other fluff elements. Here's what we've decided to show off so far:


    MEMORIALS THROUGHOUT HISTORY:

    THE FIVE-SOULED MISTRESS
    ​Like the other Celestial Exalted, the Memorial Exalted were created in the image of one of the Celestial Incarnae. Their patron was Mnemosyne.

    ​When the Primordials separated all of reality from the raw possibility of the Wyld, they also gave birth to its antithesis, Oblivion. While Creation and its denizens were too well anchored to be drawn into the nascent force of unmaking, there were other things that were not so well protected, namely the souls of the mortals they created to populate their world. The souls, burdened by the memories of their brief lives, needed constant shepherding or they would be inevitably be pulled into the Mouth of the Void, feeding it and making it stronger. Not about to spend their time minding the shades of lesser beings, the Primordials did as they always had before and created a god to deal with the problem for them. That god, or rather godess, was Mnemosyne.

    ​Born to be the Lady of Lethe, Mnemosyne was a soul of five parts, each maintaining a step along the path from death to rebirth. The first and most feared of her aspects was Ceres, the Harvester, who cuts free the hun of the fallen so that they might pass quietly on to their next life. The living feared her and her scythe, for when the dead could not rest for want of justice, Ceres wrought vengeance on her behalf. In the form of Charon, the Ferryman, he carried the souls of the dead through the unformed mists of the Underworld to Lethe. There Neptune, the Lady of the Dark Waters, would wash free the memories of their former life and gather the memories together. From these memories Pluto, the Weaver of Legends, would spin the thread of history and sew it into the Tapestry of That Which Was. Over all this Uranus, the Guardian of Souls, stood watch, standing guard at the edge of Oblivion to keep souls from falling over its precipice and being lost forever.

    THE FOUNDING OF
    THE AMBER ORDER
    ​When the Unconquered Sun unveiled his plan for rebellion, the Five-Souled Mistress wept, even as she agreed to the plan. While the future was not her domain, she could see that this conflict would see much pass beyond living memory. Countless lives would pass through her hands before the war would be over, each shining strand a tragedy about to be woven. But still she spun from Lethe and her own soul the Exaltations that would bear her name.
    ​She walked the world, seeking those with a reverence for the past and a desire to carry onward the traditions and honor of their forebears. These she made her Chosen, the Memorial Exalted, and with them formed the Amber Order, an organization aimed at protecting that which is and was within Creation.

    ​The Memorials were not as powerful as the other Celestial Exalted, particularly at first. Their powers were heavily tied into their memories of the past and so the first generation had little to draw upon. Still, they served the gods with honor and distinction.

    ​Where the Chosen of the Sun were grand generals and the Chosen of the Dragons were soldiers without peer, the Chosen of Mnemosyne found their place more often behind the lines, protecting supply lines, training troops, and guarding cities so that humanity might survive. Rarely was the work glorious, but it was necessary and the Memorials rose to the task.

    THE DEATH OF MNEMOSYNE

    ​Wars are not without tragedy. Early in the war, before the Exalted had yet slain a Primordial, the unthinkable happened. The Dragon's Shadow somehow learned where Mnemosyne had secreted herself, despite the seal that Jupiter had placed to hide the Incarnae from their former masters, and with the knowledge laid an ambush for the Keeper of the Dead. His twisted spawn swarmed into the goddess' sanctum like locusts, turning day to night with their misshapen forms, and lurking behind them was the Dragon's Shadow himself.

    ​The Five-Souled Mistress did not die easily. Ichor slicked the ground around Ceres and legions broke upon the shield of Uranus. Charon cast his foes directly into the Mouth of the Void and Pluto ensnared thousands in unbreakable amber threads. Neptune drowned her foes' minds in the depths of Lethe, leaving them stripped of identity and purpose. No, Mnemosyne did not die easily, but she did die.

    ​After wearing her down with his vile servants, the Shadow of All Things moved in for the kill and poisoned her very Essence. He watched as she rotted from the inside out, her being unraveling in agony. Then he slipped away into the night, his laughter hanging on the wind.

    ​As soon as her death was discovered, the questions started. The first was always “How could this have happened?” Jupiter's seal should have prevented any natural signs of the Lady's presence or a casual slip of the tongue from giving away her position to the enemy. This inevitably lead to the second question. “Who betrayed Mnemosyne?”
    ​Though the Celestial Host searched for a traitor amongst themselves, none were found who could have given away the location of the Lady to the enemy. The demands of the war prevented a thorough investigation into the matter, leaving the question without an answer.

    THE BIRTH OF THE UNDERWORLD

    ​The Five-Souled Mistress would not go unavenged. Her death spurred not only her own Chosen to greater efforts, but the entire Celestial Host as well. Together, they pushed forward in a massive offensive and overwhelmed one of the Primordials. It cursed the Exalted with its last breath and as it died its soul was caught in Lethe's snare and dragged into the Underworld.

    ​The cycle of reincarnation tried to cleanse the dead titan of its memories and prepare it for rebirth, but it could not. Perhaps the soul of a Primordial is too vast for Lethe to encompass or too well anchored to Creation to pass on. Perhaps all that was needed was a skilled hand, a hand now missing since the passing of the Keeper of the Dead, to manage the cycle and prevent damage to the mechanisms of Lethe.

    ​Regardless, the consequences were soon apparent. The cycle of reincarnation cracked beneath the strain, allowing the souls of the dead to escape rebirth. The dead Primordial sunk down into the depths of the Underworld to hover just above the Mouth of the Void, soon to be joined by more of its kin. The titan's nightmares and fractured memories bled forth into the mists of the Underworld, torturing them into the ever-twisting Labyrinth and the beginnings of a mirror-image of Creation atop it. This bled upwards like a bloodstain into Creation itself, forming the first of the shadowlands.

    ​This radical shift in the nature of the Underworld did not go unnoticed by either side. The Underworld became another battlefield in the war, another front to watch for advancing enemies, another route deep into enemy territory. The Memorials found that they were surprisingly better equipped to handle the challenges of this new frontier. The other Exalted had difficulty operating for long periods of time within the Underworld, but they had no such difficulties. They easily developed Charms to deal with the Underworld and the ghosts that now lived there. It became as much a part of their domain as the past.

  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Mostly presentation so far. We hadn't committed to much mechanically due to three years of "It's almost here" feelings.

    Leave a comment:


  • Mr.Jaxus
    replied
    Has Ex3 changed anything for Memorial exalts? Personal I think the build up of past experience would fit right into their themes.

    Leave a comment:


  • Iceblade44
    replied
    Interesting, I'm liking so far.

    Leave a comment:


  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Originally posted by Mr.Jaxus View Post
    What does the astrological sign of Charon look like?
    Something like this:

    Leave a comment:


  • Mr.Jaxus
    replied
    What does the astrological sign of Charon look like?

    Leave a comment:


  • Dragonmystic
    replied
    Originally posted by Zelbinnean View Post
    Are you envisioning the Memorial Castemarks to look like the astrological symbols Pluto, Charon, Uranus, etc.? Like the Sidereals have the astrological symbols of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn?


    Yes, that is the intent.

    Leave a comment:


  • Zelbinnean
    replied
    Are you envisioning the Memorial Castemarks to look like the astrological symbols Pluto, Charon, Uranus, etc.? Like the Sidereals have the astrological symbols of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn?

    Leave a comment:


  • Kyeudo
    replied
    THE CHOSEN OF CHARON

    Memories guide us through life. From the first tottering steps of an infant to the landmarks along a trade route to the advice handed down by an elder, memories make what should come next clear and reassure us as we walk along the path of life. This is the task given to the Chosen of Charon.
    During the Primordial War, the Wayfinders served as scouts, trailblazers, and guides, ensuring that enemies were found and that supply caravans reached their destinations safely. In the golden age that followed the war, they continued their work as merchant princes, rangers, and explorers, helping to map and tame the dangerous places of Creation, the Wyld, and the Underworld.
    After the Usurpation and again after the Balorian Crusade, the Chosen of Charon rebuilt the trade houses, shipping companies, and pilgrimage routes. Their guidance brought great voyages safely to their destinations, armies a sure route into the enemy's fortress, and refugees to a new place to call home.
    Those Chosen to take up the mantle of a Wayfinder are often confident in their self-sufficiency and well-prepared for whatever they may find along the trail. Many are restless, always wanting to be going somewhere and doing something. There are more than a few who are outspoken about what should be done and which path to take. Wayfinders are often natural leaders, their place at the head of any expedition they are a part of.
    Anima Banner: The Chosen of Charon are marked by the Ferryman's sign, a boat beneath the pale sun of the Underworld. Their animas are blends of stormy greys, misty silvers, and pale amber.
    Caste Abilities: The Chosen of Charon are adept at finding their way, at all forms of travel, and in leading men to follow their path. Their Caste Abilities are Awareness and Presence and three Abilities from the following list: Athletics, Ride, Sail, Socialize, or Surival.
    Associations: The color gray, the season of winter, the western direction, and the element of water.
    Sobriquets: Wayfinders
    Concepts: Military scout, merchant prince, ship's captain, ranger, caravan master, diplomat

    Leave a comment:


  • Zelbinnean
    replied
    Definitely want to see Wayfinders!

    Leave a comment:


  • ZealousChristian24
    replied
    Thank you for responding! I would personally prefer either Scholars or Wayfarers, please. Sorry if my last post sounded a little like wineing.

    Leave a comment:


  • PlotVitalNPC
    replied
    I'd like to see Wayfinders.

    Leave a comment:


  • Kyeudo
    replied
    Originally posted by ZealousChristian24 View Post
    This is pretty awesome. Plan to show us any more goodies? Perhaps the other castes?
    There's some that I've been working on, but they haven't quite cleared the standard of awesome yet. Meanwhile, thinking about Memorials leads to thinking about the Underworld which leads to thinking about the changes that Third Edition will surely bring to the Underworld, its politics, the Deathlords, the Abyssals, the addition of the Liminals, the possibility of Lunar involvement, and the current sorry state of ghosts and their mechanics.

    I think the Caste writeups are done and unlikely to change, so I think we could probably spoil one of them. We haven't released the write ups for the Scholars, the Wardens, or the Wayfinders yet. Any preferences?

    Originally posted by Zelbinnean View Post
    Yes I am sure that would end well for those mortals. But this also assumes that random people in the late-Second Age world know how Memorial power works.
    The thing we are going for here is that the Memorials have been around for all of Creation's history and, while less numerous than Dragon-Blooded, are more common than, say, Sidereals. That means that it is reasonable that various entities know that a Memorial can forsake his Exaltation. I can certainly see it as a secret that many would like to keep quiet, though.

    Leave a comment:


  • Zelbinnean
    replied
    Originally posted by Kyeudo View Post
    there isn't anything stopping the Guild or someone else from kidnapping a Memorial's family and using them to blackmail the Memorial into giving up his powers. I'm sure there's more I haven't thought of yet.
    Yes I am sure that would end well for those mortals. But this also assumes that random people in the late-Second Age world know how Memorial power works.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dragonmystic
    replied
    Hmm, it has been a while since we last updated this. To be fair, I've been in somewhat of a holding pattern, waiting to see what 3e brings before proceeding further.

    Kyeudo has put more work into it, I know.

    Leave a comment:

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