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Ale [Expansion/ Half Damned]

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  • Ale [Expansion/ Half Damned]

    With their dread prophesies and powers over twisting luck and chance to their own favor, it is easy to think about dhampirs as the agents of Fate. It makes sense, at least on a superficial level- dhampirs are beings who were never meant to be born, impossible children birthed by the will and blood, a taint of death upon life. As such, dhampirs do not have a place inside of Fate's delicate web- and it only makes sense that Fate would, in turn, show a great interest in them, as both catalysts for change, and movers and shakers which has to be carefully watched and investigated. It makes sense that those who exist outside of Fate, would have the power to bend and twist it for their will. It makes sense, and as such most vampires and dhampirs just accept it as truth, and carry on in their life.

    That's false, of course. Dhampirs, each and every one of them, is something which was never meant to be. Each and every one of them is am hole in Fate's designs. Each and every one of them is a mistake, something which belongs neither to day or night, an abomination upon both life and death. Such beings are aberrant in Fate's eyes, and do nothing but to terrify the whatever mystical forces which dictate the laws of heaven and earth.

    No, the dhampirs are not beings of Fate.

    They are beings of Doom.

    Since the very moment of their birth, the Half Damned are "blessed" by the forces of damnation. Each of them carries a nascent Doom in their heart, a poisoned seed destined to bloom into a beautiful, defiling flower. As agent of Doom, it makes sense that their immediate victims would be their own parents- they curse the day with night, and the night with day. Their blood is poison to their Kindred, their minds are scarred to be a black mirror to their undead parent's Bane. Each of them is doomed to an uneasy path, so they could never live normal, regular life. Each of them in as herald of destruction, and is motivated to bring sorrow upon the world. They have no place in day. They have no place in night. Their path is not governed by any star, principle or old law from before time. They have no place in the world but in the smallest cracks and the short minutes when the sun dies- and as they walk they lonely, bloody road, they hear the shadows whispering to them, motivating them to bring fourth the doom the world so rightfully deserves for allowing them to exist.

    Being a mistake, however, don't mean you can't have a place in the world- it only means you have to carve it on your own, instead of having it given to you on a silver plate. That makes the life of the Half Damned quit heroic- everything they have, from the most trivial things such as a mate or home to the grandiose achievements of life, came from hard work, tears and blood. They establish for themselves a place in the world which couldn't accept them, and leave their mark wherever they go. Fate twists and bends as it touch them, leaving them free to make their own choices, and write a story of their own. From the twilight of their life, they choose to which path they would go- some choose the day, becoming exemplars of humanity who use their fate bending powers to serve as either the hunters of the dead or as the leaders of men. Some choose the night, serving as high priests of the Crone, saints of night and blood, dedicated researches of the dragon or even simply as movers and shakers of the All Night Society who make the Danse Macabre to dance to their own flute.

    And some, some choose to stay in the twilight.

    They embrace the hidden Doom which lurks in their heart. They recognize the simple truth- that they are beings which have no place in this world, that they have never meant to be. Some are crushed by that truth, and end up mad or worse. Others find in that empty truth a source of strength- they look into their soul, and see their own destined Doom in the shadows, looking at them with golden, mocking eyes. They reach into themselves, and grasp the darkness, kicking and screaming. They devour their own Doom, and the poisoned flower bears a bitter fruit. The winds of Fate blow upon their backs, and they spread black, shadowed wings to soar high. They curse the world which had no place for them, and become messengers of doom for both day and night. They are no longer Half Damned, not anymore- for they passed through their own Damnation.

    They are the Winds of Doom.

    They are the Ale.

    Mechanics

    After passing through the Damnation, the Ale retains all properties of the Dhampir template. They may continue to advance their abilities in Twists and Malisons, as well as their Affliction, Doom and other template properties- with the following exceptions of Blood Sympathy, as any connection to their undead (or living) parent is shattered as they embrace their own, private Doom, and Blood Lust, for their lust for blood is replaced with a much more insidious needs. Instead, all Ale gain the Bane of their parent's Clan (in addition to their Affliction. The Mekhet's Bane makes them to suffer from sunlight and fire as if they were vampires) as well as the following changes:

    - As a part of their Damnation, the Ale has embraced their place as existing outside of Fate's design, and just as it refuse to recognize them, they refuse to recognize it. An Ala is perfectly immune to any power which tries to predict or detect their place through sympathy or the use of Fate's weave. No prophesy heralds their coming, and no spell can connect them to the tapestry of the world. Attempting to scry after them directly by someone who has witness them by their own is possible, but suffers from a -2 modifier to the roll. Any attempt to cast a spell upon them using sympathy suffers from a similar penalty.

    - While they still feel the pull of destiny, their wings lead them to darker paths than the usual Dhampir. Instead of Destiny, the Ala has a Doom, which functions identically to the Anchor with the exception it is bent on bringing destruction or ruin upon either themselves or others. Many Dooms revolve around vampires, for some reason (most believe it is because the Kindred are the source of their Damnation. Others aren't that sure). They still maintain their Virtue and Vice, yet their roles are switched, like in the case of ghosts or Soulless people.

    - While the Damnation has transformed their body and soul, the Ale still maintain the capability to understand humanity. They still have the Integrity trait, even though they do not recognize witnessing the supernatural as a Breaking Point, and gain +1 modifier for dealing with Breaking Points caused by violent events. In addition, any acts which could have been considered Breaking Points which are preformed in the service of their Doom, automatically grant a +5 modifier to the roll. Those acts were destined to happen, after all- and the Ale calmly recognize what the forces of Doom demand to happen. Banes held by the Ala are governed by Integrity instead of Humanity.

    - Any being who can perceive auras would discover a terrifying truth: that the Ale don't have any. Instead, all they could see are twisted, black wings made out of shadow like substance, which shed a trail of black feathers behind them. Also, when witness under those (or similar) powers, it could be seen that their eyes reflect the light in a weird way, granting them a golden shine.

    - While their blood is no more potent than that of a mortal, the darkness of the Ale carries power of its own. All Ale start with one dot in Shadow Potency, which dictates their attribute maximum, Vitae pool, Dread Powers and Banes (they do not gain Embodiments, and they have their own Clan Bane instead of Fire and Sunlight). In order to gain Vitae, they must drink the breath of the victim, as if they were strix. They may spend Vitae in order to activate their Dread Powers and Malisons (instead of Lethal damage), as well as for Healing and Physical Intensity as if they were vampires. They also can not be possessed by the strix, and the Owls seem to recognize it, for they usually won't even try (in fact, a few of them see the Ale as kindred spirits, and may support them instead of ignore them). The Ale may not be Embraced, and those who try would end with a dead corpse, and a smoky and unpleasant taste in their mouth.

    - All Ale has an innate sense toward Doom and Darkness. An Ala starts the game with Owl Eye and Doom Sense, in an addition to the Dread Powers they gain from their Shadow Potency. In addition, at least one of their chosen Dread Powers has to be a Doom Power, even though that each time they gain a new dot in Shadow Potency they may replace the "key Doom Power" with another, and gain another Power in its place. Using the key Power grants a +1 modifier for its roll. Host Powers affect the Ala's own body.

    - Like vampires, the Ale suffer only from reduced damage, even though in their case it doesn't comes from their dead nature, but from their less tangible nature. Some of those who fought the ale and lived report that their wounds bleed shadows and smoke, and that their bodies are seem to be only partially real. While they are not undead, the Ale are, in fact, frozen in time- they are unaging, and their body purify itself through the Cleansing as if they were vampires. Powers who are meant to decide if they are dead or alive would not give a clear answer, signal both or neither. They also suffer Frenzy as if they were vampires (not including it being triggered by sunlight or fire, unless they have the said Banes). While they usually can't preform Diablerie upon vampires, a rare few has developed the ability to do so- consider it as an Host Dread Power of Shadow Potency of 4.

    - Finally, while it is not well known, the fruit of damnation does carry fertile seeds. Any child birthed by the Ale is a dhampir, even though they are not bound to become Ale at one of the days. The Ale may procreate with their own kind, and both the living and the dead, for the state of the being does no longer have any meaning to those who damned themselves before Fate (some whisper that even gender no longer presents a boundary before the Winds of Doom, even though the consequences could be somewhat.. troublesome).


    While most Ale are loners, a few of them have established organizations of their own through the ages- from small cults to actual gatherings of Ale, united by overlapping Dooms or the blowing of Fate's winds. More than one Ala has devoted themselves to guide other dhampirs to the path of Damnation, or worked with hunters to bring Doom upon the Kindred (only to bring similar Doom upon their former allies). The Boogeymen are especially wary of the Ale, and constantly search for signs of upcoming Damnation in their members, knowing that while they should work to fight the undead, not all means are accepted in the struggle. Among all of the occult organization, the Boogeymen are the ones who hold the most information about the phenomena, after investigating it thoroughly, even though they would rarely share it with those Half Damned who choose the ways of the night- not to mention the bloodsuckers themselves. From the Kindred's point of view, the Ale are nothing more than an urban legend- a rumor about the danger of the Half Damned, probably originated from some misunderstanding of a strix possession instant. Nothing to be worry about, for sure. At least, that's what they tell themselves- but when their cursed descendants start becoming more and more nihilistic and their prophets more profound, the common vampire would still keep one eye open, just in case.

    Too bad that at this point, they are already Doomed.


    My Homebrew Signature

    "And all our knowledge is, Ourselves to know"- An Essay on Man

    I now blog in here

  • #2
    I like it. Got the image of a lady in black, with dark angel wings, walking through a party. The kine feel something faint on their body as her eyes brush past them. The lady seems to have a purpose.

    Very cool. Will try to work an Ala into my stories.

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    • #3
      It always seemed odd to me that beings never ment to exist had strong ties to fate, as I haven't gotten the book yet I haven't got any real insight to offer I'm afraid.

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