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Conspiracy Theory: Lucifuge

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  • Conspiracy Theory: Lucifuge

    Can we just take a minute and appreciate how well thought were the Original Six? I mean, we can clearly see that each of those was indeed meant to represent MORE than just a big organization which hunts down monsters and actually play on "real life conspiracies"- Ancient Relics, Hashashins, Evil Pharmaceuticals Company, Satanic Panic, the Catholic Church and the Men in Black. Each of the conspiracies has a very well defined niche as, well, a CONSPIRACY, something which a lot of later (and fanmade) conspiracies kinda miss (also, one of the main problems in making a "jewish conspiracy"- that's not a niche you WANT to play into and could turn bad if you aren't careful). Some of the later conspiracies have kept that concept, like the Knights of St George and VASCU, but while a lot of later conspiracies have tried to have a conspirator vibe, with hidden secrets and such, most no longer play on such concepts- which is understandable. First, there is only a limited number of popular "Illuminati" like groups, and second- most of those play on themes you, again, DON'T want to play with. The fact that the conspiracies we have which do play with those concepts manage to stay true to the concept while avoiding the, let's say, "baggage" of the real life conspiracy theories is something to be appreciated. Really, good job original Hunter team.

    Aaaaaaaaanyway, let's move to the subject we have in hand- the Satanic Panic parallel in the CofD, aka the Lucifuge. Now, I personally remember a "Satanic Panic" in my childhood (which started here a decade or two later after the US's, because, well, in here we are always late to join the party but still want to act "American"- so we had to have our own version of everything that the US had), and I really remember that fear as real one. I actually remember the teachers warning us in school against the "Satanic Cults", and evil pentagrams and such- like, it wasn't as big of a thing as it was in the US, but it was here, and while people weren't really scared of getting kidnapped by Satanists and more blamed them for things like animal abuse and doing dark magic, the uneasiness that a dark cult is waiting in the shadows to do foul acts was pretty dominant for a long time, and even now we have a "satanic cult" being uncovered every few years for doing some very bad things. And from this basic paranoia, from this internal fear that the Devil Is Around Us, we get the Lucifuge.

    Now, the interesting thing about the Lucifuge is that unlike the other conspiracies which play on being the conspiracy people are afraid from, the Lucifuge deny it- they are indeed a part of the Satanic Panic, yet instead of doing human sacrifice and other evil acts, they go against infernalism, fight against demons and try to redeem themselves in the Vigil- which makes sense. After all, it is HARD to make a dark demon worshiper into a good guy, and it is a nice way to play around the themes, people who view themselves as monsters yet which practice the Vigil as an act of redemption. This whole angle have always created a certain level of dissonance, however, as it felt like some writers weren't sure how to play with it- from one side, we have Beast and C&C and perfectly go into the "Lucifuge are Monsters" angle, and on the other the fact they use Endowments like everyone else and how the Code works in 2e makes it hard to simply brand them as "Monsters". This is intentional- the Lucifuge were meant to blur the lines, but with the Becoming serving as an actual transformation of a mortal into a monster, it makes you wonder if the Lucifuge at which point can a "monster" be count as a "human". This becomes even more difficult to define as the Lucifuge are the only type of 3rd Tier hunters which play on that angle- none of the others are so close to the definition of a "monster" as the Lucifuge (besides the Otodo, but they are a strange case we are going to discuss here). Sure, we have the master of the MM being a ghoul, but it is not the same concept- it is not like all of the MM are ghouls (OR ARE THEY?!?!?!), and it is not like the MM recruits people with natural ability to manifest Benedictions (OR ARE THEY?!?!?!?!). The Lucifuge are, without doubt, different- for the simple fact that while all of the Lucifuge are Children of the Seventh Generation (or Cot7G), not all Cot7G are Lucifuge- something which was mentioned in the original writeup and got thoroughly explored in Inferno. It is not simply that in order to learn Castigations you must be a Cot7G, but that if you are a Cot7G and YOU DON'T join the Lucifuge, you are going to develop Dread Powers- that is, becoming a monster. That truly blurs the lines and make you ask yourself- can other monsters do the same? Can, let's say, ghouls let go of the original gifts of the Blood and become hunters, become human, by embracing the Vigil? And what about Wolf Blooded? Proximi? Changelings? Bound? Vampires? Beasts? Werewolves? Heck, what about slashers? If the Cot7G are Monsters, and they should naturally develop truly monstrous powers, Dread Powers and Potency rating and all, how in the Nine Hells did Lady Lucifuge managed to cheat the system? What was here trick, and can it be replicated? Could we have a potential conspiracy which traps potential mages during their Awakening and turns them into hunters? Or a group of slashers which manages to let go of their craving for murder by focusing it on monsters? Or id it that the Lucifuge are, in fact still monsters- and the "Endowments" they use are more like Dread Powers- abstraction of the system to deal with a complex entity, and that there is no true difference between Castigations and Dread Powers in any way, shape or form?

    Well, let's try to find out the answers, shall we?

    Now, let's start with what we know about the Lucifuge- according to their writeups, the organizations traces its origin to 853 CE, when the Lady, a noblewoman, have founded the organization in order to track down the infernal bloodlines which are scattered all across Europe during the Middle Ages. As the organization claims that they were sired by Lucifer himself, we can get that those bloodlines should show up more or less when Christianity became a thing, as we do know that while we have other variations of the blood (the Otodo), they have their own beliefs about where did they came from, unrelated to Lucifer, which means that there is a cultural aspect for those bloodlines, either an objective one or a subjective one (and considering how Inferno works, aka the corruption of existing concepts, each could work). We also know that the Line of Lucifer has 666 members, a constant number with obvious meaning, and that they are very well confirmed to be Infernal in origin, between Inferno, the Infernal Dread Power (yes, it is not very well designed, but it is here for a reason) and the Contagion Player's Guide. Another thing we know is that those Cot7G which are not recruited by the Lucifuge are always ending up in the hand of the L'Enfant Diabolique- which is ruled by the three blind Chaldeans as a loose alliance of infernal cults and which is devoted to Hell, and that some of the Lucifuge suspect that there is a reason why there are no "neutral Cot7G" (again, not looking as you Otodo, we are going to talk about you later I said!). Again, from C&C, we also know that the Becoming seems very much like a supernatural transformation process, and more interestingly- that the lifespan of each Lucifuge member depends on their status in the organization, something which shows up again in the Otodo's writeup, and that the Lady, being THE organization, is potentially immortal. And that get's a even greater support in 2e, where every Lucifuge hunter carries the Will of the Lucifuge Condition- a lingering psychological effect from their "initiation" which means that some aspect of the Lady's personality is living inside of you. Which is, well, crazy to think about- but again, very fitting for someone who carries the same name as the organization as a whole. The Lucifuge.

    What is the "Lucifuge" anyway?

    Now, one of the things which are often being overlooked at is that Lucifuge is not, well, a reference for Lucifer- while the Lucifuge all claim to be descended from the Light Bringer, their names actually comes from another demon- Lucifuge Rofocale. Now, that is very important for two reasons- the first is that in occult literature, Luicufge Rofocale is the Prime Minister of Hell, being appointed by Lucifer in order to govern "all worldly treasures"- which sounds awfully familiar to the demonic bloodlines, including Lucifer's own children. Lucifuge is also loyal to Lucifer- but there is one problem. Lucifuge is afraid of light- and that includes the light of his master. That's in the name- where Lucifer means "Light Bringer", Lucifuge means "Light Fleeter"- that is, "the One to Flee the Light". The origin of Rofocal, however, is less clear- but at least there is one interpretation which means that it is a mistake derived from the reverse of Lucifer's name, and that the original form was Lucifuge Reficul- which reinforces that Lucifuge is the opposite of Lucifer.

    So we have loyalty tom Lucifer from one hand, yet fleeing Lucifer from the other. Now, the later aspect is very clear- the Lucifuge deny Lucifer, and are basically "fleeing" his influence. But what about the loyalty? What about being appointed by Lucifer to guard the "worldly treasures"? What this is all about?

    Where did Lucifer even came from?

    So, here things are going to get fuzzy- if you accept Christianity as absolute truth in your life and CofD game, than there is no reason to ask about the origin of Lucifer- Lucifer is the Devil, the Light Bringer, Fallen Angel which was banished from Heaven for rebelling against God. However, as Christianity has only started to become a huge thing near the end of the Roman Empire, that means that a group with relation to Lucifer can only form during that time. However, that's not exactly the case- because before he was the Devil, Lucifer was a god. Not a major god, of course, neither a very important one. Simply, Lucifer was the god of planet Venus during sunrise- hence his name, the Light Bringer, and the association with the planet. Now, like many other gods, Lucifer have also has a Greek parallel- Phosphorus, which again means Light Bringer. The origin of those gods comes from the time people thought that Venus in the Morning and Venus in the Evening were two different, yet related, gods- something which expresses itself also in Canaanite mythology, with the twin gods Shachar and Shalim, sons of El, the Father of Gods. Now, the thing about mythologies is that they are fluid and flexible- and when the Canaanite came under Babylonian influence, with them came the discovery that the twin stars are, in fact, the same star- and as such, the twin gods, Shachar and Shalim, were given a unified aspect in the form of Attar, a name derived from Ishtar, who was the son of Astarte- another Istar parallel. And that is important because while most of the Canaanite mythology was lost, some pieces have survived- such as that after the whole war the gods had with Yam, the god of the sea, Attar- under the pressure of his mother- tried to take the throne of Heavens yet felt he was "unworthy" for it and stepped down. Again, it is not like this scene is very clear or detailed because, again, not much have survived- but we do have a greater supporting context in the bible, where a prophet mocks a king by comparing him to Shachar- or at least, "Hilel Ben Shachar", who wanted to rise above the skies to become like El Elyon yet fell to the depths of Sheol- that is, the Underworld.

    So we have a god called Attar, which is a combination of both Shachar and Shalim, who was offered to the throne of Heaven yet "was unworthy", and a prophet using that story in the context of Shachar the Morning Star, in order to mock a Babylonian king. And when the bible god translated into Greek, Shachar became Phosphorus. And when it was translated into Latin, Phosphorus became Lucifer. And When it was translated into English, Lucifer became Morninglord, Son of the Morning- Hilel Ben Shachar, Hilel the Son of Shachar. A story about trying to claim the throne of Heaven which ends in failure that got reincarnated again, and again, and again.

    And why should we care about it?

    Because it means that if, within the context of the CofD, Lucifer is indeed the lord of Hell- then his origin is far, far older than Christianity. Either that, or that it reinforces that Inferno have corrupted the story about Shachar/Attar/Phosphorus/Lucifer for its own needs, in the same way that it did for many other entities in the past. And where there is corruption, there is redemption. Also, did you noticed that all of those entities have a twin god which accompanies them- the Evening Star to the Morning Star, power of darkness which balance the power of light. Shachar and Shalim. Phosphorus and Hesperus. Lucifer and Lucifuge. And ain't that interesting, don't you agree?

    (Also, yes, I know that Wikipedia chose to spell it as Shahar, but I have my reasons for this spelling- and besides, it is not like English speakers can pronounce that sound anyway, right?)

    Ok, so now we have established that a) the story of Lucifer's fall can be traced back to time older than Christianity and b) that Lucifuge could be viewed as Lucifer's "twin entity", let's start talking about the conspiracy itself, shall we?

    The first thing we can notice is that the Lucifuge do have a well defined date for their formation- 853 CE. Now, looking at that date in the context of Milan gives us... well, nothing. Only that during that time, Milan was already under the control of Charlemagne- and that it was way before the noble houses which are commonly related to Italy. Trying to look at this date on a wider context also doesn't giving us much, which could make one think that perhaps this date is just there for no real reason- but as it is the only potential hint for the true identity of the Lady it is weird. It feels like the text tries to make us wonder about the Lady's true identity- one of the mysteries that the Lucifuge themselves wonder about in the setting- yet gives us nothing. However, there is one interesting thing we can draw from this date- for 853 is a potential year for the claimed death of a certain noblewoman- the daughter of Charlemagne, Theodrara. While we do not know much about her, it does seem that she was sent to an Abbey under not very clear circumstances- not sure if it was her own free will, the pressure from her father or something which relates to her half brother's ascension to the throne. However, what is clear is that she was sent to a Abbey, and that the year of her death is not as much documented as it is estimated by referencing for her existence. Also, we do know that the Chaldeans are based in France, which could make you ask yourself- could it be that Theodrara escaped to the Abbey after being chased down by the Chaldeans? Or perhaps was it to hide the fact that unlike other human beings, she didn't age? There is some mystery to Theodrara- which could indeed mean that she is potentially the true identity of the Lady- the daughter of Charlemagne himself, which could make you ask yourself: does it mean that the bloodline of Charlemagne was potentially carrying within itself the infernal gene? Was the Carolingian dynasty, in fact, tainted with demonic blood? Could it be that all of the Lucifuge could in turn relate themselves to that royal bloodline, something which would resonate with them being the nobility of Hell?

    And does that mean that all of the Lucifuge are in turn related to the Lady herself?

    Now, this theory is in fact as old as Hunter- the signs are very, very clear, as the Lady is called Lady Lucifuge, and the fact that her Will is found within every hunter only reinforces that concept that the Lady IS the conspiracy- but let me give a yet another sign that this theory is true, one which is often been looked upon- her title. The Lady. Now, the Lucifuge exist in Milan and speak Italian, it is very likely that for most of her time, she and those around her speak, well, Italian- and as such, she isn't called "the Lady". She is called the donna. A name very likely meant to refer to "Our Lady". Madonna. Madonna Lucifuge. A title generally reserved to the Virgin Mary- the mother of Jesus, which means that the Lady now resonates with aspects of a virgin, supernatural act of birth- but where Mary is related to God, the Lady relates to the Devil, which potentially reinforces her as the mother of the Lucifuge as whole.

    But wait- if the Lady is the mother of the Lucifuge, how would that fit the timeline of her searching after genealogies of infernal families? After all, that means that she was not he first of her kind, and as such she can not be the actual mother of all the Lucifuge, right?

    There are a few options in here.

    The first one is that the Lady is the mother of the Lucifuge- but not the mother of the Cot7G. The infernal bloodlines have already been around, but she is the Madonna of the organization- any bloodline which joins the Lucifuge becomes "adopted" by the Lady, and as such while there is no actual blood relation, Our Lady of the Lucifuge is the metaphysical mother of the conspiracy, as seen by her imprinting her own Will upon her hunters and how the lifespan of the Lucifuge becomes tied to how favorable they are in the conspiracy. In short, she is the mother of the conspiracy, but not of the hunters.

    The second is that the Lady is the mother of a subset of Cof7G- she gave birth only to some of the demonic bloodlines, but not all of them, and she established the conspiracy around her as a method to prolong her lifespan- considering that she went against the foul practices of other devil cults, which meant that she were to age, unlike others of her kind. That explains the Otodo- a different group of infernal families which share nothing with the Lady, as well as her going against other infernal families in Europe. That, however, doesn't explain why she needs other genealogists to track down her own children- as if she gave birth to those lines, it means that she should know about them, right? Especially if she is, indeed, Theodrara.

    The third is that she is indeed the mother of all demon lines.

    I mean, think about it- we don't actually know how old is the Lady- could it be that she traveled all across the world, spawning families upon families of diabolical bloodlines? Could it be that she indeed predated Christianity, and instead was a demonic being which established countless cults around herself, even giving birth to certain ancestors of the Carolingian dynasty, in which she masqueraded as many different people within that line? Could her children have eventually reached Japan, joining that orgy which gave birth to the Otodo? And could it be that after centuries of evil, that old demon spawn have decided that she needs redemption- and under the guise of Theodrara have established the Lucifuge around herself after discovering Christianity? Was the Lady always there, watching in the shadows?

    And if so, are the Chaldeans those who came before the quest for redemption, or after?

    I mean, regardless of who the Lady is actually, we don't know if the Chaldeans came before or after the Lucifuge- the fact that they are based in France may hint that they are related to the Lady, but we don't know if they chased her out of France, and if they are older than her or is it the other way around. It could be that they were former Lucifuge members who got abandoned by her during, let's say the Inquisition- getting blinded and filled with rage towards her. And that division in the "family" mirrors the same division between Lucifer and Lucifuge- those who flee the light, and those who bring it, which creates the very interesting subversion of the themes of the game. Generally, "light" means the Vigil and "darkness" the monsters- but here, the symbolism is opposite, darkness is good and light is bad, which further reinforces the monstrosity of the Lucifuge.

    So, whether the Lady is the mother of the organization, the Lucifuge hunters or the Cot7G in general, whether she is older, younger or contemporary to the Chaldeans, whether the Otodo are a separate "commoner" bloodline from the Lucifuge "royal" bloodline or can they all trace their origin to the same looming ancestral figure, what is the true goal of the Lady? What is the true goal of the Lucifuge?

    Redemption, of course.

    Redemption to the Devil.

    I mean, that's what Castigations are all about- they are a process in which the Lady limits and binds the infernal inborn powers of the Cof7G into a very specific form, meant to serve the Vigil. By joining the Lucifuge, the demon spawn gives up upon the powers of their monstrosity and become, well, "human". Could this method be applied to other forms of monstrosity, or does it relay on the innate "fall from Heaven" that Lucifer resonates with? That's not very clear- but the fact is that Castigation is a punishment self imposed on the hunter- gives up on their own power and narrow it in order to remain relatively human. And that, in the end, is the goal of the Lucifuge- to redeem their own bloodline, and that can only be done by redeeming the father of all evil. That's why they are the Lucifuge- those who flee the light, the keepers of Lucifer's worldly bloodline, twin figure to the Devil. Lucifuge is meant to serve as Lucifer's queen, she who protects his bloodlines, she who rules over Hell, she who is loyal to Lucifer and as such seeks to redeem him. The Evening Star to the Morning Star. Could she be Lucifuge from the grimoires, or was she chosen by them? Unknown. Heck,, maybe her Madonna aspects are not about the past, but about the future- for her goal is to give a new birth to Lucifer, allow him to be reborn as Lucifuge. Turn the one who brings the light, to the one who flees the light. Reversion through rebirth, redemption through bloodline.

    And maybe that's why they fear angels so much.

    Maybe Heaven needs evil to exist- and they don't want to have the Devil back in Heaven.

    So yeah, a lot of fractured pieces which still, more or less, give them overall figure. Let me know what do you think- and next time, we'll have the Other Big Christian Conspiracy- the MM. Hope you liked it!


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  • #2
    An idle counter to come back to-What about tree grafting?

    I will have to explain that later in the day, I gotta run.


    Kelly R.S. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
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    • #3
      Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
      An idle counter to come back to-What about tree grafting?

      I will have to explain that later in the day, I gotta run.
      I think I get to where you are going, but I'll wait to see how you elaborate on it


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      • #4
        Hmm. I think it should be noted that it is only the Reconciliation that believes in redeeming Lucifer. The Denial, which the Lucifuge endorses, actually considers Lucifer the source of evil and that all who pledge allegiance to him (whether literally or metaphorically by indulging in their nature's freely) should be destroyed rather than redeemed. Of course the Lucifuge is a conspiracy for a reason, who knows what she really wants.

        It should also be noted how linked the Lucifuge (the Lady) and Baudolino are. Hell, BOTH watch over bloodlines and discuss secrets and conflicts together even as they lie. While it's possible the Lucifuge only sees the Church and MM as a valuable, exploitable resource, why help each other? Why share over the kept families?

        Now, the possibility of Castigations keeping control of full transformations is interesting (I thought the hunters of the lucifuge could do castigations without her though?). It does lend to the idea that the Lucifuge has found a way to redeem the supernatural on a metaphysical level. But what if that's not true? What if castigations and the mark of the Lucifuge are actually keeping these would be monsters chained rather than freed? After all, the inferno corrupts. And redemption can begin to feel like thankless journey, especially when that tool directly shackles you to the very evil you are told you come from

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Primordial newcomer View Post
          Hmm. I think it should be noted that it is only the Reconciliation that believes in redeeming Lucifer. The Denial, which the Lucifuge endorses, actually considers Lucifer the source of evil and that all who pledge allegiance to him (whether literally or metaphorically by indulging in their nature's freely) should be destroyed rather than redeemed. Of course the Lucifuge is a conspiracy for a reason, who knows what she really wants.
          Well, factions are always less dominant for "endgame" IMO as, again, things are kept hidden from them- so the fact that the Denial would have wanted to destroy the Devil doesn't mean that the Lucifuge as a whole doesn't work towards redemption- especially as redeeming Lucifer may be the only way to END Inferno as a whole

          It should also be noted how linked the Lucifuge (the Lady) and Baudolino are. Hell, BOTH watch over bloodlines and discuss secrets and conflicts together even as they lie. While it's possible the Lucifuge only sees the Church and MM as a valuable, exploitable resource, why help each other? Why share over the kept families?
          Honestly, I really think that the Lady/Baudolino connection is the only part in those conspiracy theories which is, in fact, just a sincere form of kinship, without any greater agenda. I really think that those are two very old, catholic people which each try to protect the world in their own way which find comfort in each other. Sure, we can make some strange relations and weave theories about that part- but I think they are really just friends- a rare instance, but still seems more likely than some dark agenda in here. Besides, if the Lucifuge do seek redemption, it does sound like something with which least people in the Church may align with.

          Now, the possibility of Castigations keeping control of full transformations is interesting (I thought the hunters of the lucifuge could do castigations without her though?). It does lend to the idea that the Lucifuge has found a way to redeem the supernatural on a metaphysical level. But what if that's not true? What if castigations and the mark of the Lucifuge are actually keeping these would be monsters chained rather than freed? After all, the inferno corrupts. And redemption can begin to feel like thankless journey, especially when that tool directly shackles you to the very evil you are told you come from
          Well, it is very clear that the Mark of the Lucifuge is a "chain"- and yes, that's also true for Castigation. It limits their "monsterous potential"- but sometimes, a chain is needed in order to tame the dark passions of the Cot7G. This is a form of a redemption- but no one asked you if you want to be redeemed.


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          • #6
            Originally posted by LostLight View Post
            Well, factions are always less dominant for "endgame" IMO as, again, things are kept hidden from them- so the fact that the Denial would have wanted to destroy the Devil doesn't mean that the Lucifuge as a whole doesn't work towards redemption- especially as redeeming Lucifer may be the only way to END Inferno as a whole


            Honestly, I really think that the Lady/Baudolino connection is the only part in those conspiracy theories which is, in fact, just a sincere form of kinship, without any greater agenda. I really think that those are two very old, catholic people which each try to protect the world in their own way which find comfort in each other. Sure, we can make some strange relations and weave theories about that part- but I think they are really just friends- a rare instance, but still seems more likely than some dark agenda in here. Besides, if the Lucifuge do seek redemption, it does sound like something with which least people in the Church may align with.


            Well, it is very clear that the Mark of the Lucifuge is a "chain"- and yes, that's also true for Castigation. It limits their "monsterous potential"- but sometimes, a chain is needed in order to tame the dark passions of the Cot7G. This is a form of a redemption- but no one asked you if you want to be redeemed.
            Addressing all points in order

            1. Very true. I admit I tend to get VERY narrow minded whenever I think of sub factions.

            2.funnily enough, that may be true. And I actually am in the belief that sometimes, a good story involves mere coincidences of no greater meaning.

            3. They are chains indeed. With the lucifuge leading them all. As an alternate, or possibly even simply added on to the original end game, the Lucifuge could be seeking to overthrow Lucifer just as he tried against God. Telling and brainwashing hunters to go for redemption sure seems like a good cover to really just chain everyone to a new matriarch. Though I do prefer the redemption more than anything else

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            • #7
              Okay, so let's rewind the context.

              One of the central tenets of Chronicles is mystery, a notion that every answer just flips over another question, that the darkness in the world stems from misconception and trailing ends of information. One of the most iconic forms of this is an evolution of the "demon, demon, demon, and demon" problem-two horned and red-skinned beings with power over fire and deal are indistinguishable to any person on the ground, where as an Unchained and a Beast can tell you which one is their particular kin. Of course, this problem does extend even into the major gamelines-"Claimed by the dead is still claimed" is a famous example of how all the information and worldview of one monster can reach a really wrong conclusion about another.

              The general point extends inward with powers. It would take a weird edge case for one pyrokinetic to really get that their powers is the result of unleashed psychic potential, where another pyrokinetic has their powers because granddad slipped down his master's pants, bannisters, and rails to wiggle the snake out*. It takes some perspective to get some difference.

              This leads to that point I ever thump on about and everyone else has a mixed relationship with, what I call the Burning Tree but is more accurately referred to as "What is a Demon and Where Does It Come From?", pg 168 of Hunter: The Vigil, First Edition. Within the scope of first edition (not including Mummy, which is the actual mark for the start of second edition, but that's another topic), the Lucifuge offered a point of view that embraced that "they all kind of look the same to me" problem in a way that really worked for Hunter as extension of the mortal perspective. A lot of these things, be they the denizens of the Inferno, the spirits of the Shadow, the contradictions of the Abyss, the True Fae of Arcadia, or the geists of the Underworld, or more-these all look the same to a mortal perspective, and if you know you have power and authority over one demon, then you also have power and authority over another demon. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

              THis was, of course, a problem for people approaching from the top down, "I have the books, though" perspective-because readers knew that there was an actual difference between a spirit and a True Fae and Hunter's demons (Inferno, btw, wasn't even out at the time of Hunter, though it came shortly afterwards), and it drove some people crazy that the Lucifuge could pull that sort of stunt merely because you could squint your eyes and say "Eh, looks like a demon."

              Now, in a post-Beast world, this sort of sympathetic connection is a little bit easier to grok-possibly the Lucifuge is exploiting a sympathetic connection with the idea of "demon" that Beasts use on the regular with the idea of "monster"-but it does beg a question of how and why that would work for something with less solid background, and how it could be granted across the board to all agents of the Lucifuge**. Maybe some bloodlines are able to pull off that trick due to the mass or nature of their lineage, particularly if one is descended from a goetic/dreamborn demon....but not all of them can. So, how do?

              Now at this point, I do want to drag the concept into the modern age, where (sadly) what I've just been talking about is no longer the case. Between Second Edition's hard ruling on a particular Dread Power and the Contagion's Player Guide flatly stating that the Lucifuge's heritage is Infernal, even if you permit wiggle room by toolboxing the two, modernly the idea is clear that he Lucifuge is a lot more limited. But this does keep up a question of how that infernal power and authority still manages work around, and introduces something weird in the form of the Will of the Lucifuge, where in the....will of Lady Lucifuge becomes a part of agents, a source of power and strength for those who keeps to her mission and goals.

              The presence of that Will takes the ultimatum of Lady Lucifuge's, where you are dragged in front of her, gun to your head, and given the choice to renounce evil and submit yourself to the Lucifuge or take two lead pills, call me in the afterlife-it makes that feels a lot more deliberate, distinctive, neccesary-beyond the usual hard edge line view on how to handle infernal nature versus any kind of nurture.

              One final thing to note, before we go on-the Truth have a question about who and what Lady Lucifuge and what her end goals are for a reason, and there have been a lot of answers coming up to Second Edition, answers that might now be moot but still suggest something.

              So, with all of that laid out, a consideration-What about tree grafting?

              You can, if you know what you're doing, cut branches from one tree, graft it to another, and get it to continue to grow and bear fruit for that tree. If you're really clever, you can graft a branch from a tree to a different enough tree, and it will continue to grow and thrive. Originally, this was an attempt to keep the same harvest going, then people tried to keep the branch alive but produce it's own kind of fruits, and modernly-modernly, some of these grafting experiments there are done to produce entirely new fruit.

              Marriages throughout history are often a form of grafting in a societal form-take a member of this family to bind the power, authority, and resources of the two families together and strengthen them. A lot of people would also extend this to a biolgoical level, seeking to pair children who produce strong, healthy, (more genius, if you wanna get all eugenics about it, bleh) grandchildren, so on so forth. These marriages were contracts done in the interest of building up more power, more authority, more vitality, more resources. When nations conquered other ones, one way of abosrbing a conquered nation's power into their own was through such contracts.

              And that's what it comes down to, the contract. It can be romantic, it can be a consequence of conquest, it can be a lot of things-but if power can be grafted on in a binding way, that cannot be rejected, then the details are dressing.

              The Lucifuge drags every infernally-blooded individual she can sink her talons into before her, and gives them a choice-submit or die.

              What if that submission is there to add branches to a family tree, of which she is the matriarch?

              Comapring her to Beast directly misses the point, but take into account the rest of the theory and ask yourself-is Lady Lucifuge out to make herself a psuedo-Dark Mother for demons? Is the point of researching all these bloodlines, connecting to lost branches, making individual demon-heirs submit and murdering any who don't-is it all to graft that power and authority onto herself?

              It fits with the rest of the theory. It would, in a first edition sense, explain from the top down why the Lucifuge do have so much power and authority over things that might otherwise not make sense for them to do so.

              It would be fucking horrifying if true.

              It's an element to consider.

              it also is a context element that ties the theory to the mood and mentality of Hunter a bit better-why would one hope to be the Lucifuge when one could simply make themselves the Lucifuge?

              Pomegranates as thought.

              *Yes, I just mixed Hoof and Lap with Down at the Midnight Rectory, but if you know where those are from, then you get what I'm saying.
              **Unimportant to anything, within first edition Hunter, the only other core conspiracy that uses the word "agent" to describe their hunters is Valkyrie, with all other uses being found in the Lucifuge. Consider that later, Demon: the Descent drew direct comparisons between "agents" and "angels", realize that doesn't have to be exclusive, and decide from there if you want to dig at that or not.


              Kelly R.S. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
              The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
              Feminine pronouns, please.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                Is the point of researching all these bloodlines, connecting to lost branches, making individual demon-heirs submit and murdering any who don't-is it all to graft that power and authority onto herself?
                *coughs nervously in Tremere*


                Resident Lore-Hound
                Currently Consuming: Demon: the Descent 1e

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                  Okay, so let's rewind the context.

                  One of the central tenets of Chronicles is mystery, a notion that every answer just flips over another question, that the darkness in the world stems from misconception and trailing ends of information. One of the most iconic forms of this is an evolution of the "demon, demon, demon, and demon" problem-two horned and red-skinned beings with power over fire and deal are indistinguishable to any person on the ground, where as an Unchained and a Beast can tell you which one is their particular kin. Of course, this problem does extend even into the major gamelines-"Claimed by the dead is still claimed" is a famous example of how all the information and worldview of one monster can reach a really wrong conclusion about another.

                  The general point extends inward with powers. It would take a weird edge case for one pyrokinetic to really get that their powers is the result of unleashed psychic potential, where another pyrokinetic has their powers because granddad slipped down his master's pants, bannisters, and rails to wiggle the snake out*. It takes some perspective to get some difference.

                  This leads to that point I ever thump on about and everyone else has a mixed relationship with, what I call the Burning Tree but is more accurately referred to as "What is a Demon and Where Does It Come From?", pg 168 of Hunter: The Vigil, First Edition. Within the scope of first edition (not including Mummy, which is the actual mark for the start of second edition, but that's another topic), the Lucifuge offered a point of view that embraced that "they all kind of look the same to me" problem in a way that really worked for Hunter as extension of the mortal perspective. A lot of these things, be they the denizens of the Inferno, the spirits of the Shadow, the contradictions of the Abyss, the True Fae of Arcadia, or the geists of the Underworld, or more-these all look the same to a mortal perspective, and if you know you have power and authority over one demon, then you also have power and authority over another demon. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

                  THis was, of course, a problem for people approaching from the top down, "I have the books, though" perspective-because readers knew that there was an actual difference between a spirit and a True Fae and Hunter's demons (Inferno, btw, wasn't even out at the time of Hunter, though it came shortly afterwards), and it drove some people crazy that the Lucifuge could pull that sort of stunt merely because you could squint your eyes and say "Eh, looks like a demon."

                  Now, in a post-Beast world, this sort of sympathetic connection is a little bit easier to grok-possibly the Lucifuge is exploiting a sympathetic connection with the idea of "demon" that Beasts use on the regular with the idea of "monster"-but it does beg a question of how and why that would work for something with less solid background, and how it could be granted across the board to all agents of the Lucifuge**. Maybe some bloodlines are able to pull off that trick due to the mass or nature of their lineage, particularly if one is descended from a goetic/dreamborn demon....but not all of them can. So, how do?

                  Now at this point, I do want to drag the concept into the modern age, where (sadly) what I've just been talking about is no longer the case. Between Second Edition's hard ruling on a particular Dread Power and the Contagion's Player Guide flatly stating that the Lucifuge's heritage is Infernal, even if you permit wiggle room by toolboxing the two, modernly the idea is clear that he Lucifuge is a lot more limited. But this does keep up a question of how that infernal power and authority still manages work around, and introduces something weird in the form of the Will of the Lucifuge, where in the....will of Lady Lucifuge becomes a part of agents, a source of power and strength for those who keeps to her mission and goals.

                  The presence of that Will takes the ultimatum of Lady Lucifuge's, where you are dragged in front of her, gun to your head, and given the choice to renounce evil and submit yourself to the Lucifuge or take two lead pills, call me in the afterlife-it makes that feels a lot more deliberate, distinctive, neccesary-beyond the usual hard edge line view on how to handle infernal nature versus any kind of nurture.

                  One final thing to note, before we go on-the Truth have a question about who and what Lady Lucifuge and what her end goals are for a reason, and there have been a lot of answers coming up to Second Edition, answers that might now be moot but still suggest something.

                  So, with all of that laid out, a consideration-What about tree grafting?

                  You can, if you know what you're doing, cut branches from one tree, graft it to another, and get it to continue to grow and bear fruit for that tree. If you're really clever, you can graft a branch from a tree to a different enough tree, and it will continue to grow and thrive. Originally, this was an attempt to keep the same harvest going, then people tried to keep the branch alive but produce it's own kind of fruits, and modernly-modernly, some of these grafting experiments there are done to produce entirely new fruit.

                  Marriages throughout history are often a form of grafting in a societal form-take a member of this family to bind the power, authority, and resources of the two families together and strengthen them. A lot of people would also extend this to a biolgoical level, seeking to pair children who produce strong, healthy, (more genius, if you wanna get all eugenics about it, bleh) grandchildren, so on so forth. These marriages were contracts done in the interest of building up more power, more authority, more vitality, more resources. When nations conquered other ones, one way of abosrbing a conquered nation's power into their own was through such contracts.

                  And that's what it comes down to, the contract. It can be romantic, it can be a consequence of conquest, it can be a lot of things-but if power can be grafted on in a binding way, that cannot be rejected, then the details are dressing.

                  The Lucifuge drags every infernally-blooded individual she can sink her talons into before her, and gives them a choice-submit or die.

                  What if that submission is there to add branches to a family tree, of which she is the matriarch?

                  Comapring her to Beast directly misses the point, but take into account the rest of the theory and ask yourself-is Lady Lucifuge out to make herself a psuedo-Dark Mother for demons? Is the point of researching all these bloodlines, connecting to lost branches, making individual demon-heirs submit and murdering any who don't-is it all to graft that power and authority onto herself?

                  It fits with the rest of the theory. It would, in a first edition sense, explain from the top down why the Lucifuge do have so much power and authority over things that might otherwise not make sense for them to do so.

                  It would be fucking horrifying if true.

                  It's an element to consider.

                  it also is a context element that ties the theory to the mood and mentality of Hunter a bit better-why would one hope to be the Lucifuge when one could simply make themselves the Lucifuge?

                  Pomegranates as thought.

                  *Yes, I just mixed Hoof and Lap with Down at the Midnight Rectory, but if you know where those are from, then you get what I'm saying.
                  **Unimportant to anything, within first edition Hunter, the only other core conspiracy that uses the word "agent" to describe their hunters is Valkyrie, with all other uses being found in the Lucifuge. Consider that later, Demon: the Descent drew direct comparisons between "agents" and "angels", realize that doesn't have to be exclusive, and decide from there if you want to dig at that or not.
                  Ok, that is a very cool take. The will of the lucifuge as a corrupting, yet integrating chain is especially awesome. Hell, you can still have the lucifuge herself be of Infernal origin like that, and it gives my second favorite Philosophy faction more cool story hooks (sorry Truth, Reconciliation is too cool)

                  A question if I may, Arcane. In your mind, why would the lucifuge want this, beyond simply having more pawns?

                  EDIT: Also an ingenious way to explore the theme of Hunters not being aware of the other supernaturals like us readers are.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Primordial newcomer View Post
                    A question if I may, Arcane. In your mind, why would the lucifuge want this, beyond simply having more pawns?
                    For the purposes of this thread? I'd loop it back into what Lost already brought up-same idea, just different mechanics.

                    For the purposes of games? None of this would be on the table, I'd work around what seems to be the most fun for the table.

                    For the purposes of books? I wouldn't even bring it up. I might use some of this seed stuff for the Lucifigue to bang their heads over, but if anything, I'd be inclined to throw in stuff that spins off in plausible other directions just to keep ensuring the Lucifuge have stuff to bang their heads over.

                    Answers aren't as fun as ominously overhead implications.

                    Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                    *coughs nervously in Tremere*
                    In your hollowness, you made Me whole.
                    From My wholeness, your hollowness will devour the universe.
                    Last edited by ArcaneArts; 01-21-2022, 01:52 AM.


                    Kelly R.S. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
                    The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
                    Feminine pronouns, please.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                      For the purposes of this thread? I'd loop it back into what Lost already brought up-same idea, just different mechanics.

                      For the purposes of games? None of this would be on the table, I'd work around what seems to be the most fun for the table.

                      For the purposes of books? I wouldn't even bring it up. I might use some of this seed stuff for the Lucifigue to bang their heads over, but if anything, I'd be inclined to throw in stuff that spins off in plausible other directions just to keep ensuring the Lucifuge have stuff to bang their heads over.

                      Answers aren't as fun as ominously overhead implications.



                      In your hollowness, you made Me whole.
                      From My wholeness, your hollowness will devour the universe.
                      Fair on all points. Again though, it's a cool theory I will consider as a story element in the distant future for a chronicle

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                      • #12
                        I must say that "Grafting the Burning Tree" is indeed a much more elaborated (and cool) explanation for what I just dismissed as "adoption"- the act of joining the Lucifuge and accepting the Lady's Will as a infernal contract of some sort which "adds you to the family" and her research after genealogies in order to add those bloodlines through that contract makes a lot of sense IMO, and also gives a some sort of "anti-Inferno" aesthetics- just like the Inferno can corrupts almost everything, the Lady basically "corrupts" those lineages through her "redemption" (that is, grafting to the tree)- using Hell's own tools against it, so to speak, which is a cool twist and emphasize her role as a Madonna/pseudo Dark Mother. Also the resemblance to the Tremere in such a prospect is uncanny, and could make sense if you consider that they too are a "Lowerdepthian Cult". Maybe it is just a thing that the Lower Depths do- fight among each other to eliminate the competition.

                        Cool stuff overall. Cool stuff.


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