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[Contagion] Plauges of History & origins of Sworn

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  • [Contagion] Plauges of History & origins of Sworn

    With preview of chapter 3 of Contagion Chronicle‘Plagues, Interstitial and Otherwise’ – we got some exemplar Plauges outbreaks and how they started various Sworn groups. As I wanted to deep dive into context of those events – here we have topic for it.

    I’m a bit bised, but want to start from the event that is most concerning my private game – subchapter ‘Exile, Prophecy, and Wrath: 600 CE / 600 BCE’, i.e. Plague of Justinian in Byzantium and creation of Jeremiad Sworn. I try to understand this subchapter, but construction of it makes it really unclear.

    Most I’m interested with what are Symptoms of Cyrus/Vishtapa Contagion – and how it’s relating to Plague of Justinian. ‘Exile…’ describes some spatial breaking of roads leading to cities, man dying each day three times – and rising again, each day. And then text goes how similar things repeat itself from times of prophet Jeremiad up to Plague of Justinian. And here is that I scratch my head.

    I could see ‘thrice risen’ as disturbing symptom in the Black Death ( i.e. Plague of Justinian ) – it still better that people are returning to living than being simply dead from sickness. Still, the weirdest thing is this curvature of space – How, in the greatest, can ‘being risen from death’ related to ‘our cities are closer than it should be’? Maybe you have some ideas how to answer this relation?
    Last edited by wyrdhamster; 05-02-2019, 06:45 PM.

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  • #2
    Writing Plague of Justinian as Contagion Outbreak framework from Contagion Chronicle Storytelling Chapter. I will edit Complications section later on…

    1. Dead by the Black Death can rise again. And again. So we have typical ‘zombie horde’ outbreaks in some parts of epidemic area.
    2. Spatial distortions – some part of areas touched by Contagion seems to lead to other areas of Contagion. Like world blurring with itself.
    1. Rats are on the rise. They seems to be coming like they were controlled by the Contagion itself. Maybe there are…
    Dead by the Black Death can rise again
    1. Mass graves of the sick are dangerous to be around – people are missing there.
    2. Suddenly emptied battlefields.
    Spatial distortions
    1. People are starting to be lost in area of Contagion – they are send elsewhere
    2. Various realms are starting to overlap the same space?
    Rats are on the rise
    1. Beshilu, Rat Host, is high in the area of Contagion – it leads to gnawing of Gauntlet. And by this, to slow merge of Flesh and Spirit World.

    600-800s in Byzantium Empire

    Dead by the Black Death can rise again
    1. (Mass graves) Xenia Acominatus – Sin-Eater – Bereaved Gatekeeper – Sworn: ? – Xenia lost to the Plague her young son, Elpidios. Not being possible to reconcile her loss, she looked for him days and nights in closest mass graves for sick. She was killed by the Black Death, but Bargained with Geist Mother of Lost, for possibility to find her child. Now she try to warn those close to the dead to watch out there is something wrong with the dead by the Plauge.
    2. (Emptied battlefields) Christophoros Diogenus – Vampire – Venture Legion of Damned ( Lancea Sanctum ) – Sworn: Jeremiad – Christophoros was one of leading generals in East Roman Empire wars with Arabs. When he was finally pierced on the battlefield by the blade of unfaithful, he started his descent from the world of the living. Seeing merits in his devotion and strategy skills, he was Embraced by his vampiric sire, in his tent, barely living. He quickly returned to the Army of the Night, fighting in the Longinus name. Now, fighting with the heretics, Chirstophoros found out that dead do not stand dead long enough – and some of the killed are returning to unlife, to fight them once again. Diogenus started campaign against those undead, in the name of God and Unholy Emperor.
    Spatial distortions
    1. (Lost people) Lucas Rhagabe – Hunter – ??? – Sworn: Athantoi ( Cryptocracy ) – Lucas is advisor on local palace court. He is middle-man in Empires great machine. Still, he care about Roman citizens – and founds that inside of Plague, people are missing. On first thought, he connected it simply to the kills by the Black Death. But pattern was much more broad. Now he looks into possible other origins of those missing.
    2. (Realms overlapping) Hecate – Mage – Mastigos Panscryptias – Sworn: Ompahlos ( Rosetta Society ) – Like her Shadow Name patron, Hecate is driven to research crossroads, portals and even other magical realms. She see the line connecting Plague of Justinian with the realms overlapping. She just need to know one thing – WHY?
    Rats are on the rise
    1. Beshilu Red Minister – See Werewolf the Forsaken 2E corebook, page 204

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    • #3
      I listen now to ‘History of Byzantium’ podcast. In its episode on Plague of Justinian he points to those facts and recounts on matter – and what they mean for the CoD settings.

      Fact 1: The Plague – accurately described later as Black Death – was spread by the Black Rat.
      Fact 2: Black Rat has up to 20 pups in one litter.
      Implications: Most of the Beshilu rat monsters are of the black fur.
      Supernatural stories of victims
      1. Most citizens of Byzantine Empire interpreted those apocalyptic events as work of God ( or gods ). They connected those stories with Book of Jeremiah, from Bible.
      2. Many victims claimed they seen ghostly apparitions that touch them just before they fell ill.
      3. Sailors said they seen demonic beings on the water in times of Plague. Boats with headless horsemen.
      4. In Palestine, some demon-angels tell victims they only be spared if they worship bronze idol.
      1. Equating Plague with God’s Wrath starts openly Jeremiad Sworn faction.
      2. Apparitions mean that ghosts – or even Geist – are on the rise in plague areas?
      3. And 4. Any ‘demonic’ being can be related to popular sidebar from Demon: The Descent corebook. ‘Demon-Angels’ sounds very much as DtD Unchained.
      Originally posted by Demon: The Descent, page 23
      In the years since the World of Darkness Rulebook was released, the game lines supporting it have detaileda great many entities referred to as “demons.” One or two of them actually were demons as Demon: The Descent describes them, but most weren’t.
      This game doesn’t make those books “not count.” The World of Darkness has room for all sorts of malevolent otherworldly beings that a mortal witness can call a demon. The majority of these creatures have nothing to do with the God-Machine and wouldn’t mistake the Unchained for their own kind, and the Unchained in turn don’t mistake them for fellow Fallen angels.
      The many entities known as demons include:
      • The inhabitants of the Inferno, seen in World of Darkness: Inferno, are vice-eating malevolent spirits that tempt humanity to sin. Probably the most-developed “demons” other than the Unchained, references to “maejlin” in Werewolf: The Forsaken or some references to “the Lower Depths” in Mage: The Awakening refer to these entities.
      • The Imps and Wraiths of Pandemonium, living symbols of Space and Mind seen in Mage: The Awakening, are called “demons” by the mages who encounter them during their Awakening visions.
      • Still with Mage, mages who explore the astral realms within their souls encounter demon-like representations of their own moral weaknesses, the “goetic demons.” Some mages summon these entities into the world as servants.
      • The Lucifuge, an organization of hunters in Hunter: The Vigil, claim to be descended from demons described as being much closer to the Miltonian, classical, Judeo-Christian demon myths than any of the other entities seen here.
      • The fae of Changeling: The Lost sometimes encounter creatures who claim to be demons while wandering in the dreams of humanity.
      • And, finally, Demon: The Descent demons. A few appear in Promethean: The Created and its line. One cameos in World of Darkness: Midnight Roads.
      Last edited by wyrdhamster; 11-23-2019, 10:29 AM.

      My stuff for Realms of Pugmire, Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E, MtC 2E & BtP
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