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The Monk in the Cathedral (Temple Guardian, Requiem Crossover)

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  • The Monk in the Cathedral (Temple Guardian, Requiem Crossover)

    This was originally on my Patreon and I thought I'd share it here...

    The Monk in the Cathedral (Vampire/Mage)

    Catacombs underneath cathedrals are a stereotype. They exist in places, but they are never as large or grand as pop culture would have you believe. Mostly. Usually. Unless some really strange shit is going down. One such catacomb exists under Saint Januarius’ Cathedral. It isn’t big or ostentatious, but there is a fake wall that leads to a secret chamber. Inside sits a bony man of indeterminate age, waiting in his patient cross-legged pose. He doesn’t leave, he hardly moves, and he never eats. Around him, droplets of blood float lazily through the air.

    The Monk isn’t always alone in his chamber either. The Ordo Dracul labels the secret room and its inhabitant as a Wyrm’s Nest. They respect the Monk and many are convinced that he is a vampire somehow connected to Dracula. When asked, this theory is neither confirmed nor denied by the man himself. Regardless, the Ordo knows something strange is afoot and uses the area as a ritual space. As long as they don’t interfere with him, the Monk doesn’t mind.

    The Monk
    Not everything is as it seems. The Monk was once a living person whose body is animated by ancient magic, but it is a Temple Guardian rather than one of the undead. The Monk’s chamber contains a Verge to a Ruin of the Time Before. The portal in is keyed to supernal magic, thus the vampires are unable to open it and the Monk is perfectly content to allow them entrance. It makes for an extra level of security and truthfully, the Monk is as curious about the Ordo as they are about him.

    Description: The Monk’s material form is a lean and bony human that looks remarkably like an elder Kindred. His ears are angular, his beard long, and his teeth are sharp, gleaming fangs. When not engaged in discussion or activity, he remains eerily still and is easily mistaken for a well-preserved corpse. Charged with gathering information by its past/future/never-were masters, the Monk is significantly more conversational than other Temple Guardians, especially to those it does not deem a threat to the Verge.

    When reduced to ephemeral form, the Monk is a shadowy bat, roiling with smoke and shadows. Its eyes gleam red among the darkness, peering into its enemies. If pushed this far, the Monk turns feral, hunting down its foes one by one like a beast in the night.

    Rank: 3

    Attributes: Power 9, Finesse 6, Resistance 9

    Arcana/Influences: Blood 3 (Influence), Death 3, Life 1, Mind 2

    Numina: Countermagic

    Essence: 20

    Virtue: Curious. The Monk has been instructed to learn about the living dead.

    Vice: Hungry. Most people wouldn’t call the Monk a vampire (the Dragons disagree), but it still thirsts for blood.

    Ban: The Monk must obey anyone who traces a knife blade across their neck without drawing blood.

    Bane: A stake made of Hawthorne and treated with oil from a holly bush

    Corpus: 16

    Willpower: 10

    Initiative: +15

    Defense: 6

    Speed: 20

    Size: 7


    Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

    CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

  • #2
    Mm, wonder what Realm/Path it’s aligned with.


    MtAw Homebrew:
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    • #3
      Interesting image. The idea of a Guardian with at least a cosmetic similarity to vampires that they relate to has a nice feel when compared to other examples.

      Just a minor point regarding terminology: Mage uses the term Iris as a catch all for portals, and Verge refers to places with stronger qualities of the Supernal or Abyss.

      Originally posted by 21C Hermit View Post
      Mm, wonder what Realm/Path it’s aligned with.
      I don't recall that being a feature of Temple Guardians.


      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
      Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
        I don't recall that being a feature of Temple Guardians.
        It can be, though I don't believe it's a necessary part of them. SoS says that ruins can have a 'path aspect', before stating that Temple Guardians are defined by their environment, using a path aspect as an example.


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        • #5
          Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
          Interesting image. The idea of a Guardian with at least a cosmetic similarity to vampires that they relate to has a nice feel when compared to other examples.
          Thanks, that's exactly what I was going for. Temple Guardians are an excellent way to evoke classic monsters in a different manner from the official gamelines.


          Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

          CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Second Chances View Post
            Thanks, that's exactly what I was going for. Temple Guardians are an excellent way to evoke classic monsters in a different manner from the official gamelines.

            I definitely think it's Mage's big space to consistently include some things that don't fit the usual categories. Like that mummy driven insane by picking up on advertising.

            I don't know why, but something specific about the idea of vampires congregating around something like them but not them (even down to the aesthetic of being withered and bearded) is speaking to me as reminiscent of something in the past I've found compelling.


            I have approximate knowledge of many things.
            Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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            • #7
              It has been suggested in some books that the Kindred aren't actually all the same thing, maybe its that? I definitely play Kindred (especially the Ordo) as more willing to accept strange things that are similar to vampires as being "close enough" to being one of them.

              It mystagoges who insist on proper cladistics batshit crazy XD


              Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

              CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

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              • #8
                I actually like the idea for the Ordo vampires latching onto some random monster and thinking it's more significant to them than it probably is. I had a kindred NPC who traded help to my PCs in return for being allowed to meditate in their hallow, with the heavy suggestion that it didn't actually have any great effect on either.


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                  I don't recall that being a feature of Temple Guardians.
                  Oops. Yeah, what Michael said, plus my mind for some reason assuming the default Supernal Entity rules blanket-apply to ‘oddities’ like Temple Guardians and the Bound.

                  Speaking of the latter, now I’m imagining a Supernal lycanthrope that’s been Bound in a certain moon phase rather than a certain location


                  MtAw Homebrew:
                  Even more Legacies, updated to 2E
                  New 2E Legacies, expanded

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Second Chances View Post
                    It has been suggested in some books that the Kindred aren't actually all the same thing, maybe its that?
                    No, I'm pretty sure it's not quite a Vampire: the Requiem thing, or even specific to Chronicles. Just some media property with a similar premise.

                    Possibly where the stand in for the Guardian is some manner of prisoner, or possibly stranded alien.

                    ...It might actually be She-Ra (the recent one), and its rendering of how Hordak comes to be in the world. Or maybe even Bloodborne.


                    I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                    Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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                    • #11
                      Thinking of classic monsters as Temple Guardians made another one pop into my brain.

                      The Phantom
                      No one knows what the Phantom protects, but the Mysterium has confirmed it is a Temple Guardian, so there has to be something. The Phantom stalks the halls of the Palais Garnier in Paris, delighting in the sounds of music and keeping a keen eye open for impressionable young minds. When it uncovers such a person, it tutors them until they achieve musical greatness or until they buckle under the strain and high expectations.

                      At first glance, it appears as if the Phantom wears a porcelain mask, but this is really its ceramic skin. The rest of its body is concealed by a fine tuxedo and leather gloves. When reduced to its ephemeral form, the Phantom becomes a withered and corpse-like figure dressed in rags. Its face becomes a death's head, barely more than a skull with shrink-wrapped flesh, while yellow points of light blaze in its sunken sockets. Tattered and decayed angel wings sprout from its shoulders, a testament to the Phantom’s faded glory.

                      Rank: 4
                      Attributes: Power 7, Finesse 12 Resistance 8
                      Arcana/Influences: Death 3, Fate 1, Mind 4, Music 4 (Influence)
                      Numina: Counterspell, Emotional Aura, Hallucination, Implant Mission, Mortal Mask
                      Essence: 25
                      Virtue: Maestro. The Phantom is a skilled musician who longs to inspire and teach others.
                      Vice: Fury. Hell hath none like the Phantom when it is slighted.
                      Ban: The Phantom must obey the commands of a musician who plays a perfect opera.
                      Bane: The lost music of a world-famous composer.
                      Willpower: 10
                      Initiative: +20
                      Defence: 7
                      Speed: 24
                      Size: 5
                      Corpus: 13


                      Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

                      CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                        No, I'm pretty sure it's not quite a Vampire: the Requiem thing, or even specific to Chronicles. Just some media property with a similar premise.
                        Nope, it's been a long-running piece of subtext in the line.

                        EDIT: Ignore me, late-night brain forgot the context of this post.
                        Last edited by Satchel; 09-20-2021, 12:08 AM.


                        Resident Lore-Hound
                        Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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                        • #13
                          Might I steal for my own games?
                          Originally posted by Second Chances View Post
                          This was originally on my Patreon and I thought I'd share it here...

                          The Monk in the Cathedral (Vampire/Mage)

                          Catacombs underneath cathedrals are a stereotype. They exist in places, but they are never as large or grand as pop culture would have you believe. Mostly. Usually. Unless some really strange shit is going down. One such catacomb exists under Saint Januarius’ Cathedral. It isn’t big or ostentatious, but there is a fake wall that leads to a secret chamber. Inside sits a bony man of indeterminate age, waiting in his patient cross-legged pose. He doesn’t leave, he hardly moves, and he never eats. Around him, droplets of blood float lazily through the air.

                          The Monk isn’t always alone in his chamber either. The Ordo Dracul labels the secret room and its inhabitant as a Wyrm’s Nest. They respect the Monk and many are convinced that he is a vampire somehow connected to Dracula. When asked, this theory is neither confirmed nor denied by the man himself. Regardless, the Ordo knows something strange is afoot and uses the area as a ritual space. As long as they don’t interfere with him, the Monk doesn’t mind.

                          The Monk
                          Not everything is as it seems. The Monk was once a living person whose body is animated by ancient magic, but it is a Temple Guardian rather than one of the undead. The Monk’s chamber contains a Verge to a Ruin of the Time Before. The portal in is keyed to supernal magic, thus the vampires are unable to open it and the Monk is perfectly content to allow them entrance. It makes for an extra level of security and truthfully, the Monk is as curious about the Ordo as they are about him.

                          Description: The Monk’s material form is a lean and bony human that looks remarkably like an elder Kindred. His ears are angular, his beard long, and his teeth are sharp, gleaming fangs. When not engaged in discussion or activity, he remains eerily still and is easily mistaken for a well-preserved corpse. Charged with gathering information by its past/future/never-were masters, the Monk is significantly more conversational than other Temple Guardians, especially to those it does not deem a threat to the Verge.

                          When reduced to ephemeral form, the Monk is a shadowy bat, roiling with smoke and shadows. Its eyes gleam red among the darkness, peering into its enemies. If pushed this far, the Monk turns feral, hunting down its foes one by one like a beast in the night.

                          Rank: 3

                          Attributes: Power 9, Finesse 6, Resistance 9

                          Arcana/Influences: Blood 3 (Influence), Death 3, Life 1, Mind 2

                          Numina: Countermagic

                          Essence: 20

                          Virtue: Curious. The Monk has been instructed to learn about the living dead.

                          Vice: Hungry. Most people wouldn’t call the Monk a vampire (the Dragons disagree), but it still thirsts for blood.

                          Ban: The Monk must obey anyone who traces a knife blade across their neck without drawing blood.

                          Bane: A stake made of Hawthorne and treated with oil from a holly bush

                          Corpus: 16

                          Willpower: 10

                          Initiative: +15

                          Defense: 6

                          Speed: 20

                          Size: 7

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Demigod Beast View Post
                            Might I steal for my own games?
                            Absolutely! That's why its on the forums! If you do, let us know how it goes!


                            Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

                            CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

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