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The Mystery of the Ouroboros - a heretical mystery

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  • The Mystery of the Ouroboros - a heretical mystery

    The serpent eating it's own tail is a symbol of immortality. Every vampire has a Beast, a Serpent, within their soul; The Mystery of the Ouroboros believe that if they were to push their Beast to eat it's own tail they too can become not just immortal but eternal.

    "Eternal" is the key word of the Mystery. A devotee's interpretation of "Eternal" defines their understanding of the Ouroboros. For some it merely means surviving forever, what good is immortality if the Inquisition hauls you onto hot coals? By taming the Beast and it's demands for instant gratification a prudent long term strategy can flourish. For other's eternal is not about surviving, it is about surviving as yourself. Given half a chance the Beast would devour the man, only by binding The Beast can a vampire retain their identity, and their humanity.

    Because the practitioners are often trying to curtail change in order to retain (and maybe one day regain) their human identities the Ordo frowns upon this Mystery.


    Coil of the Ouroboros

    The Coil of the Ouroboros is about making use of Banes. To the devotee A Bane, at least the consciously designed Banes created by this Coil, is not a weakness. It's a rule, a rule that prevents the Beast, and sometimes The Man, from doing something the vampire will later regret.

    When you're immortal short term gratification lasts no longer but the long term consequences can be long indeed.


    Commentary: The major inspiration I had for this coil were the black ribboners from Discword who overcome their lust for blood by finding a substitute addiction. Banes seemed like the logical way to implement this under the side-ways twist ethos of the Coils. Currently I'm trying to think of what to fill the 3rd and 4th dot with.


    With thanks to LOOK here's an updated version of the coil.


    O: The Vampire increases their Bane maximum by their dots in these coils and gains one Bane every time they increase their dots. The extra Banes created must be actions that The Beast desires to do. Banes created by the Coil of the Ouroboros do not affect Detachment rolls.

    OO: The Vampire may take up to two Banes as touchstones in addition to their usual Touchstones. For example, a Vampire who was religious in life might designate a bane of feeding upon anyone carrying his religion's holy symbol. He draws comfort from knowing that he could never harm what he held sacred in life, and the Beast's fear of holy icons serves as a constant reminder of the Vampire's faith in life.

    OOO: The Vampire may now create Bans, up to one Ban per dot in this Coil. The Bans must be stated as an action that the Vampire cannot do: I cannot feed on children, I cannot enter any door marked with a Christian cross. It cannot force actions, only prevent them, so I cannot refuse a alcohol is an inappropriate Ban. Once a Ban is created the Vampire psychologically cannot make themself perform that action. In addition the Vampire may also state a Ban only applies to the Beast, that is it only limits actions during Frenzy. A Ban that only affects the Beast can be upgraded to affect the Vampire at any time, but a ban that affects the Man cannot be downgraded.

    OOOO: The vampire can select any number of Banes, those created by this coil or otherwise. When one of the selected Banes is triggered during Frenzy the Beast is struck by confusion and panic, the frenzy ends leaving The Man to solve a problem the Beast cannot. The Vampire can always, with some effort, make additional Banes end frenzy but once chosen they remain fixed.

    OOOOO: The vampire may create one final bane, one that affects the beast so powerfully that it sinks into silence when exposed to the Bane. While under the Bane's effects the Vampire cannot frenzy under any circumstances, and enjoys an enormous psychological calm compared to her Kindred. (This is in addition to the previous five Banes, with the full five dots the Vampire increases their maximum Banes by six)

    Drawback: While exposed to the Bane the vampire cannot use any Disciplines or the Predatory Aura. Removing the Bain instantly allows access to both, but also provokes an imediate frenzy check as the Beast comes back with a vengeance. The other obvious drawback is that the Vampire's enemies might make use of the Bane as a weapon.



    Scales of the Ouroboros play with the idea of weaknesses and strength. Many scales inflict great weaknesses on the supposed beneficiary only to grant a potent advantage, seemingly as a side effect. The Mystery's focus on the psychological often leads it's practitioners to use mesmerism, orgone and other theories many would call quackery when designing Scales. Whether because Vitae sits at a half way point between physical matter and a transcendent spiritual essence or life force; or because of some deeper mystery the Dragons get results from these unusual methods.


    Commentary: The weakness is strength idea just came to me when I was writing a post for this thread lower down, it struck me as a good balance between flexibility and a strong common theme that also tied in well with the way the Coil turns a weakness into an advantage. And yes, you could use them to just weaken people you don't like. The mesmerism/psychology theme came about because I remembered someone on the coil preview thread saying they felt mesmerism was left out in the cold. The Coil already has a psychological aim in taming the beast so I thought, why not? Mesmerism is cool. Some possibilities: Giving yourself a weakness to a certain weapon in order to sense it's presence. Giving yourself an addiction to gain extra benefits (like extra vitae) from consuming. Removing someone's ability to feel pleasure, makes it really hard to tempt them. Inflict amnesia, the now empty brain has room to learn quickly before the scale wears off.
    Last edited by The Kings Raven; 01-07-2015, 04:44 PM.


    “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
    My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
    Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

  • #2
    It's an interesting concept.

    Comment


    • #3
      I modified the third dot, it was mechanically dependant on you using Banes to replace the Sins your character actually believed were immoral.


      “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
      My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
      Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

      Comment


      • #4
        Looking this over again, you say in Drawbacks that removing/changing the Banes/Bans provoke frenzy. What does the player spend to change/remove them?

        I really love this this the more I look at it because it really screams Ordo Dracul. I'm not sure Coil is the best thing to label it? It's in between a discipline and a coil. It can't be used by the Beast like disciplines can but it is still mailable unlike a classic coil. I'm just not sure what else you would call it other than something I want my Dragon capable of doing.

        Comment


        • #5
          I think it will be fine to say adding or modding a Bane/Ban just requires time, a quiet place and concentration.
          Last edited by The Kings Raven; 11-26-2013, 08:05 AM.


          “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
          My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
          Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

          Comment


          • #6
            Can I get an example for the 1st dot?

            Comment

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