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  • Originally posted by TheCountAlucard View Post
    People having a consistent idea of what the canon setting is supposed to be, that's plenty fun.

    If you want to make it your headcanon, great, this is the thread for it, but the default is that there's no sinister neomah conspiracy to produce an army of tiefling cows.
    Yeahnomaybe. I think it's a social contract thing to state how canon you're staying: "100% canon and not deviating from 3e material", "light nuances here and there for the sake of plot, better ask before presuming", or "where we go, we don't need canon". I remember the Doom and Gloam game Vance did back when a Noemah-created kid went awry because shenanigans with the local ley lines, which is probably the best headcanon approach: don't contradict, but expand.

    I'll say it like this: don't do it without a good reasoning, but don't be afraid to use it if you can make it work.

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    • There's been a non-zero number of people over the years who didn't realise that Neomah were supposed to create normal healthy infants and not stitched-together demonic monstrosities. There's a lot of unacknowledged headcanon going around with them due to the lack of impact their ability to create life had on the setting in previous editions.




      The Freedom Stone is back, help it to live again.

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      • Originally posted by Lioness View Post
        There's been a non-zero number of people over the years who didn't realise that Neomah were supposed to create normal healthy infants and not stitched-together demonic monstrosities. There's a lot of unacknowledged headcanon going around with them due to the lack of impact their ability to create life had on the setting in previous editions.
        Honestly, that a same-sex couple who wanted a child could summon a demon to make one out of their semen and/or menstrual blood without it being some sort of trap was part of one of my favorite aspects of the presented setting.

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        • Originally posted by TheCountAlucard View Post
          Honestly, that a same-sex couple who wanted a child could summon a demon to make one out of their semen and/or menstrual blood without it being some sort of trap was part of one of my favorite aspects of the presented setting.
          Oooh, right, I skipped that implication. Good catch.

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          • Originally posted by TheCountAlucard View Post
            Honestly, that a same-sex couple who wanted a child could summon a demon to make one out of their semen and/or menstrual blood without it being some sort of trap was part of one of my favorite aspects of the presented setting.
            Or infertile children. No need for dark prayers for a child. Just summon a demon.

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            • Among cultures where sailing is a regular fact of life, there is a slightly-higher-than-average concentration of mortal sorcerers, and the spell they almost all know and have as control is Keel Cleaves the Clouds. The advantages offered by this spell in shipping and combat cannot be overstated, and so there is a constant demand among wealthy captains looking to add a cloud-sailor to their crew. These sorcerers can command hefty fees for their services, creating a sizeable upper class of mages in some particularly wet parts of Creation, particularly the West. Exalted mages can draw an even higher price, as they have greater efficiency and reliability in casting sorcery through Charms, and a high likelihood of having mastered more spells to compliment Keel Cleaves the Clouds. One almost equally ubiquitous spell is Summon Elemental; it is not uncommon of a sailing sorcerer to have groups of Water and Air spirits at the ready to change currents, winds, or even bring the clouds to the ship so they may sail away into the sky, far from enemy cannons.

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              • Much like our moon, Creation's moon has an effect on the tides. This came about long ago, not long after the Divine Revolution. Luna had always been fascinated with the sea, it being an endlessly deep cauldron of challenges to overcome and strange lifeforms to hunt. With the Masters gone and the Exalted running the world, she was free to more deeply pursue this interest. So she began doing what all gods do best, politics. Luna began to work her way into the Departments that controlled the oceans, but even her position as an Incarne did not make this easy. The gods of the ocean were reluctant to give up their power, and the more uncharitable saw Luna's interest more like greed for power. For millenia she was stalled and run about with red tape, but the Argent Madonna is not easily denied. In time, she won a minor position in the Bureau of Ebb and Flow, which decided the nature of the tides. Her spot was mostly ceremonial and advisory, but the Mother Moon's supreme will have her far more clout then the position would normally allow. This was how tides became part of Luna's preview, a fact so minor and comparatively recent that even her Chosen tend to be unaware of it. This does give the Beloved of Luna and Moonsilver some minor tidal powers, but these have yet to be fully explored, though there are vague rumors of an eccentric artificer who regularly engraves wonders of Black Jade with the protean metal.

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                • While it’s not such a well kept secret that it’s unheard of among learned occultists, the Celestial Bureaucracy in general and the Forbidden Manse in particular have an official policy about gods keeping their damn mouths shut about the origins of Creation. The reasons are obvious if you think about it - they worry about the truth leading to Yozi worship.


                  Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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                  • While I do think that reproduction by Neomah should generally be risk free, I like the idea of them taking liberties every now and then.

                    The aforementioned cows are mostly normal, but after generations of breeding by demon, their behaviour exhibits some oddities. They gather around mute people and low songs to them, they are wild and uncontrollable during Calibration, and once, a cowherd swore he saw them all turn in unison to the setting sun and bow as a green light flashed into the sky.


                    Currently writing for Heirs to the Shogunate.

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                    • Headcanon: This is an artifact green jade weapon - and you really do NOT want to get hit by it:



                      Malfeas F'Tagn - go check out my epic MLP/Exalted crossover "The Scroll of Exalted ponies" @ Fimfiction

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                      • Originally posted by Crumplepunch View Post
                        While I do think that reproduction by Neomah should generally be risk free, I like the idea of them taking liberties every now and then.

                        The aforementioned cows are mostly normal, but after generations of breeding by demon, their behaviour exhibits some oddities. They gather around mute people and low songs to them, they are wild and uncontrollable during Calibration, and once, a cowherd swore he saw them all turn in unison to the setting sun and bow as a green light flashed into the sky.
                        Yeah, as I noted elsewhere the extremely useful thing about minor oddities is that they can make people freak out in ways that becomes the real threat.
                        The livestock are culled out of fear of spiritual corruption, good luck feeding yourself over winter!



                        The Freedom Stone is back, help it to live again.

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                        • Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                          Yeah, as I noted elsewhere
                          Where? I like culture shocks and people reacting to magic

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                          • Originally posted by Accelerator View Post
                            Where? I like culture shocks and people reacting to magic
                            Right here.

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                            • While there are uncounted many pejoratives for the members of the Scarlet Dynasty used throughout Creation, the most widely used pejorative is “Cousin-fucker” and its less vulgar counterpart “Cousin-fondler”.

                              They’re so widely used that in many threshold nations they have supplanted the word “Dynast” is all but the politest of settings.

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                              • Don't know if anyone else tried this linkage:
                                Gen Iza + The Locust Crusade
                                Late in the Era of Dreams during the First Age, the Maiden Mercury appeared in the dreams of the Matriarch of Gen Iza, commanding she gather her Gen, the Dragonblooded whose Gens no longer existed in the wake of the Aftershock War, and all necessary resources. Then set off into the Wyld, for reasons and duration unknown. The Matriarch reported this to her Solar lord, and, once he had confirmed with Heaven this was indeed the will of Mercury, bent all his considerable power, wealth and influence to assisting the Izan Exodus. As Gen Iza predated the movement allowing for "Free" Gens, this constituted an incredible number of Dragon Blooded, as in those days, ALL Dragon Blooded belonged to a Gens which served a Solar. (This part is straight DotFA)

                                Saddened to see his Gens go, but enormously pleased by the opportunity to tie his name to the greatest exodus from Creation ever planned, this Golden Hero Vassal bent his vast might to ensuring the success of the Exodus, as it had by then becomes the means by which the ancient Twilight hoped to win the love of the great Maiden. By the time the Exodus actually happened, it represented the economic and mystic investment of 90% of the resources commanded by one of the largest Tributaries, over a period of two centuries. Mercury had wished for Gen Iza to depart sooner, as plans for the Usurpation were already underway, but there seemed no good way to accomplish this, without arousing the suspicions of the enthusiastic and love-struck Solar. As such, Gen Iza was only nearing the Eastern edge of Creation when the Calibration massacre began.

                                Although Gen Iza had been formally released from their lord's service, the ancient Twilight had been one of the few Solars not riddled with the madness and arrogance which had become endemic to his kind. His Circlemate was the Queen of the (I always forget the First Age name for Whitewall), and they had watched as their brethren grew more and more corrupt. It was for this reason the elder Twilight had withdrawn from the Deliberative and had his domain declared a Tributary rather than a Prefecture. As such, Gen Iza still felt a great deal of loyalty toward their former lord, and turned back when they learned of the bloody-handed treason being perpetrated by their fellow Gens.

                                Mercury herself appeared to Gen Iza, informing them their lord had been among the first to fall. She informed the leaders of the 1,500 Terrestrials who made up the Exodus they were considered Solar loyalists, and would be imprisoned, at best, were they to encounter the great armies even now on the march. She implored the leaders of Gen Iza to consider the safety of the twenty-five thousand mortals who marched with them, who were also considered loyalists to the fallen regime. While the Terrestrials might hope for eventual reconciliation with the victors, the mortals would almost certainly be considered unwanted contradictions to the new narrative concerning the Solars being woven. Eventually, the Elders of Gen Iza chose the bonds of duty and obligation to their mortal followers over their thirst for vengeance upon the traitors. As she turned to lead the host beyond the bounds of the world, Iza Stormdancer looked back at the watching Maiden and said "Great Maiden, I wonder if even You know what You have wrought." Gen Iza and its followers then disappeared from the stage of history for millennia.

                                Feeling betrayed by the Maiden, Iza Stormdancer perverted the design of the Maiden of Journeys. Gen Iza and its followers did NOT become ever-wandering nomads of the Wyld, eventually succumbing to the madness of infinite potentiality. They had been fantastically equipped by their Sorcerer-King, and they were mighty in their own right. Deploying the many Jade Obelisks they carried with them strategically, a great Duchy was calcified from over twenty very large Waypoints of the Deep Wyld. Many battles they waged with Raksha nobles outraged by the invasion into their sovereign territory, but these only sharpened the edge of the soldiers who had cast down the Architects of Creation. Still, it was a hard life, and while the Exiles did not wither, neither did they thrive.

                                The Balorian Crusade, had it been made up of individuals who thought like the Creation-born, could have destroyed the Izan Shogunate effortlessly. In quantifiable military assets, the Crusade so overmatched the Izans as to make it not so much a battle of Goliath versus David, as Godzilla versus David. Fortunately, Raksha are most definitely NOT Creation-born, and the Izans possessed a narrative of unyielding warriors holding what was theirs against all comers strengthened by millennia of objective fact, AND the narratives of all Raksha who had gone up against them in the past, only to suffer defeat. In the face of this narrative, it never entered Balor's mind to assault the unassailable. Creation's narrative was far weaker, and in any case, the Raksha had cause to hope that the destruction of the wellspring of the Creation-born would, by extension, annihilate the irritatingly hardy Izans. After all, the death of the Wyld would mean the end of the Raksha. Why should the converse not be true? The Balorian Crusade thereby swept around Izan territory like the torrent of a great river passing to either side of an immovable stone. Watching the numberless host pass, the Izans were fundamentally incapable of understanding why they had not been obliterated out of hand. Though they feared greatly for the lands of their ancestors' births, they well understood that in the face of the unbridled might of the Hosts of Madness, their interference would constitute nothing more than the pointless destruction of all they hard worked so hard to maintain.

                                When that selfsame host, now much diminished, came rushing back, the Izans knew that..somehow, Creation had survived the impossible force which had sought its life. After much deliberation, and no little dissent, the decision was made to send scouts back into Creation. It was not a decision lightly made, as the Izans well knew that Creation had long since passed into the hands of those they considered traitors to everything they held dear. It was not as explorers returning to their ancestral lands the Izan agents came, but as spies acting behind enemy lines to determine the disposition of their enemies holdings.

                                The world the Izan agents found surpassed their wildest nightmarish imaginings. Everywhere they passed, they found evidence of the pandemic which had nearly ended all life. It was only by the grace of Saturn, acting at the behest of a remorseful Mercury, that the Izans encountered no lingering pockets of the Contagion for which they possessed no immunity. The Izans would never know it, but the Maiden they hated had personally intervened to ensure the agents would not carry the seeds of destruction home to annihilate all they held dear. Reviewing antiquated maps, the Izans were horrified to discover nearly HALF of Creation had been swallowed by the Wyld. Prior to this, they hadn't understood the gradual introduction of increasingly ordered systems as they'd progressed Creation-ward. Their ancestors had spoken of the Creation and the Wyld as things separate and discrete, kept so by the vigilance of the Deliberative. Discovering "the Enemy" had been so inept as to allow nearly half of Creation to be erased, and (from the few dazed or maddened little gods, who were the few beings they encountered that still spoke Old Realm) the bonds between the Terrestrial and Celestial hierarchies to dissolve filled the agents with still more horror and fury. THIS, THIS....ABOMINATION of a reality is what the conspirators had replaced the admittedly troubled, but paradisaical-in-comparison Age they'd murdered with? Full of horror and outrage, the majority of the Dragon Blooded Izan agents hurried back into the Wyld, determined to bring news of their thirty years spent wandering the East. Only ten remained, to investigate further, and determine (if possible) the Enemy's response to the obvious cataclysms which had so recently wracked what remained of Creation.

                                Neither had things remained static within the Izan Shogunate. The rise of the Haanya(sp?) in Pure Chaos was resulting in a slaughter of the less-predatory Unshaped, who were simply outmatched in terms of narrative power. The Haanya mono-focused-narrative as super-predators was indomitable, and those Unshaped unable or unwilling to pare themselves back down to the rapacious eating machines they'd been in their collective infancy were being hunted down and devoured like mighty stags by lean, relentless wolf-packs in the dead of winter.

                                One of these Unshaped, The Whisperer in the Leaves, was fundamentally incapable of becoming a nightmare-siaka like the Haanya. When her wiles finally failed her, she was brought to bay by three (fortunately) young and inexperienced Haanya. The Whisperer's Sword Emanation, Jubal the Hunter was able to ambush one of them and wound it gravely with a narrative-lash of the prey who turns and gouges its pursuer with a last, desperate burst of strength. The badly wounded Haanya was instantly set upon by its two comrades-of-convenience, and the Whisperer Escaped Creation-ward, trailing the ichor of fading dreams and dying fancies. When she butted up against the calcifying influence of the Shogunate Obelisks, the Whisperer grasped her end was at hand. Not at ALL inimical to Creation-born life, Semiramis, She Who Emerged From the Lost Seed, plead for asylum within the Shogunate. Offering her incomparable skill as a Wyld-mutater, and a willingless to swear irrevocable oaths not to act against the commands of the Shogun...within the understood limitations of her nature, if the Izans would only recalibrate their Obelisks to allow her to affix herself beyond the reach of the Haanya.

                                Izan investigators reported the uncharacteristic lack of hostility in the Unshaped, and requested more senior Champions take up the matter. Extensive investigations, using the powerful Charms of the Dragon Blooded proved the veracity of the Whisperer's claims, but they also discovered the inherently hostility to all things Creation-born that was part of the weft and weave of the Whisperer's Ring Emanation, Nhogg, He Who Cuts at the World Tree. Nhogg's devotion to the notion of destroying the Elemental Pole of Wood, as a means to destroy Creation was unacceptable. The Ring Emanations dark intentions were reported to the Shogun, who rendered his judgment. The Whisperer in the Leaves could execute Nhogg herself, and be welcomed, subject to the agreed-upon oaths, within and adjacent to Izan Waypoints, as the Izans redeployed Obelisks calibrated to the exact essence-signatures of the Whisperer so as to free her from their influence...Or she could go back from whence she came. Nhogg's head was delivered to the Izan champions before the Izan ambassador had finished speaking.

                                The Whisperer's first contribution to the new alliance won over the mortal population of the Shogunate, which by this time had grown to nearly a quarter million. Shogunate resource-restrictions made life-extending bio-thaumaturgic procedures so rare as to confine them to only the most vital mortal servants of the Shogunate. After careful consideration, the Shogun allowed the Whisperer to increase the life-spans (Longevity Pox) of any man or woman who agreed to father or bear no more than two children in their (extended) lifespan. For those willing to swear off producing progeny entirely, or at worst produce only a single child, the Whisperer was permitted to enhance their lifespans still further (quadruple life-spans, Longevity Blight). When it was discovered those who'd received the more pronounced life-span extensions now required a quarter greater caloric intake (Hunger deficiency), the provision allowing for a single child was eliminated, to the consternation and resentment of a small, but vocal, minority. It took over a century of lobbying in the chambers of the Shogunate's Deliberative In Exile, but the Whisperer's Cup Emanation, Honeyed Words, in tandem with Semiramis's more stately discourses, eventually persuaded a majority of the senators to recommend the Shogun permit the Whisperer to offer resistance to the hazards found in the outlying Shogunate territories to those who consented. It took another fifteen years, but eventually, and under strict observation, the Whisperer was permitted to resume work among the bordermarches of the Shogunate (Eastern Elemental Adaptation).

                                Meanwhile, a few of the other less inherently hostile Unshaped had observed the Izan willingness to compromise with their new ally. Under increasing pressure from the Haanya, these Unshaped found common cause (as much as the Lords of Chaos can be said to have anything in common) in their desire for continued survival. Seeing that the Whisperer in the Leaves prospered as no Unshaped prospered, they made overtures of first non-aggression, and later, mutual defense. Raksha diplomats, enormously entertained by the spectacle of their unconstrained betters forced to lower themselves to honoring causality, offered their services as promise-bound intermediaries between the Izans and their erstwhile Unshaped non-enemies. During periods when the Unshaped grew less overtly criminally insane, they acted as guides and expert consultants for Izan harvesters, who mined excess and unwanted dross and other sundries from the temporarily quiescent Unshaped. During this period, Izan economics a profound uptick for the first time in centuries.

                                The decades whiled on, and while the "allied" Unshaped were responsible for almost as much havoc as they helped prevent, Izan society adapted and..very slowly, actually began to thrive. Explorers equipped by the growing number of affluent merchant-princes ventured further and further afield, until finally, in what Creation would've deemed RY 640, Izan explorers discovered Ilio Starra, and, more importantly, made contact with the Lunar, No Trouble Zhang. A full picture of what had happened in Creation became available to the Izans for the first time, and what they heard incensed them even more than they already had been, if that were possible. New agents were sent into Creation at the Shogun's order, to determine the veracity of these claims.

                                (This is normally the point where I have the Locust Crusade emerge in the Deep Wyld, some distance between Shogunate territory and Ilio Staara. Depending on the game, I often have Filial Wisdom recovered by Izan agents, and brought back to the Shogunate, before he can wander into Rathess and end up a useless Goblin King.)

                                Edit: I hit on the idea, because I really didn't buy a young No Moon finding an entire super-magical-research city, lost and untouched in the Wyld, and just sitting on it. Now, if he's getting help from experts in magitech AND the Wyld, people with an inherent beef with the people who'd like to skin him and use his tattooed pelt as a temple-rug, well...

                                Also, I would like points for meaningfully using an Unshaped, WITHOUT ganking its fundamental purpose. How many people get mileage out of Graceful Masques, anyways?
                                Last edited by Wyldwraith; 07-23-2018, 11:10 PM.

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