Soothsay


Omen | Fair is Foul and Foul is Fair | Tattletale | AuguryFate Fire

Soothsay is the art of divination, prediction, and interaction with the Dán, the fae belief in fate.  Dán is like an immense, complex, shifting tapestry, too complicated for most to fathom.  All beings, whether mortal, fae or Prodigal, have the threads of their fates caught up within this tapestry.  Wormlike and blind, they burrow their way along their threads, until they suddenly realize that they have unwittingly caused the end they've achieved.  Occasionally, the forces of Dán make themselves apparent to a person.  The most dramatic of these incarnations are the Norns, or Three Sisters, but the visitation can be more subtle.  A priest glances down and sees a shiny golden coin.  Instead of giving it to the church, he pockets it for himself.  Years later, he is caught embezzling church funds.  This art is for thinkers and contemplative Kithain.  As such, changelings who specialize in Soothsay can often be found as seers and advisers to nobles.  Most Kithain have widely differing views on fae skilled in the art of Soothsay.  Nobles find them useful for court intrigue, and commoners are wary of their knowledge.  In general, they are accorded with much respect.

Attribute: Intelligence

· Omen
(Changeling: Second Edition, pp. 180-181)

In general, most people have difficulty in seeming themselves as part of the "big picture".  This cantrip offers a glimpse of the target's place within the great tapestry of the Dán.  Subtle clues of the ultimate fate of a person, place or thing reveal themselves to the caster.  While this cantrip is too weak to ascertain more than a hint of the target's future, Omen is nonetheless a useful tool.  The information gleaned by Omen is cryptically prophetic.  It hints at the target's future, but is sometimes vague concerning the immediate present.  The changeling may not be able to discover that the target is an axe-murderer, but she might guess that the target's intentions do not bode well for someone.  

System: When casting an Omen cantrip, the Realm determines what the Omen is about.  In most cases this realm will be fae or actor ( since most omens concern people ), though it is possible to cast an Omen upon an object and thus learn a little about its future.  The successes determine what information is available of the subject.  None of the answers provided are straightforward, and the responses are normally framed as symbolic, visual clues.  For example, a caster of Omen achieves three successes on an Unseelie troll with a Savage Legacy.  The image seen might be of the troll wandering naked through a library with a look of confusion on her face.  Suddenly she grabs the nearest book and begins to eat the pages.

1 success -- One clue about an immediate plan of the target
2 successes -- One clue about the Demeanor or general disposition of the target ( if a changeling, one clue about his Court alliance )
3 successes -- One clue about a long term goal of the target
4 successes -- One clue about the inner nature ( or Legacy ) of the target.
5 successes -- One clue about a closely guarded secret of the target.

Again, a changeling casting this cantrip receives no direct information.  She couldn't cast this cantrip over Blackbeard's grave and find his treasure upon rolling five successes, but the cantrip might give her contextual clues as to where to look.  Multiple castings are not cumulative.  Any further castings are at +1 difficulty, and the info has a tendency to be more vague with each successive casting.  The Bunk used to spark the cantrip should involve some traditional form of fortune telling ( Tarot, tea leaves, astrology, entrail reading, etc. )

Type: Chimerical
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·· Fair is Foul and Foul is Fair
(Changeling: Second Edition, pg. 181)

With this cantrip, the caster can more actively affect the target's Dán.  She can curse the target with misfortune, or she can throw a ray of good fortune into the target's path.  In either case, the change is not usually major; the target's situation usually only affects elements not already decided one way or another.  Powerful enemies will not suddenly die, but with a bit of good luck, the target may find a piece of information that changes her enemy's mind about her, or ( with bad luck ) the target's closest ally suddenly decides she is not trustworthy and joins the enemy camp.  Whatever happens, the change is usually unexpected.

System: The realm is determined by the target of the cantrip, the elements affected and any other characters involved.  Multiple castings are not cumulative; they only cause multiple effects.  Furthermore, all successive castings upon a target are at a +1 difficulty, and successive bad effect castings on the same target have a tendency to rebound on the caster.  The number of successes determines the amount of good or ill fortune the target receives.  For "quick and dirty" fortune, the caster can either raise or lower the difficulty of any one roll no higher than 3 or lower than 5.

1 success -- Find or lose a small thing ( car keys; an old friend )
2 successes -- Find or lose a valued acquisition ( your Rage deck; a valued friend )
3 successes -- Find or lose something treasured ( a passionate love; a sizable inheritance )
4 successes -- Find or lose a major element ( a powerful person/enemy; a magical sword; your lifetime companion; the family fortune )
5 successes -- Find or lose something critical ( your health, never fatal; a major magical tome )

Type: Chimerical
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··· Tattletale
(Changeling: Second Edition, pg. 182)

This cantrip provides a way to scrye though an object that is familiar to the caster.  With Tattletale, the changeling can see anything that is within the immediate vicinity of the object.  The image appears in any reflective surface that she desires.  In order to successfully cast this cantrip, the target must be well known to the changeling, or she must possess a part of, or know its True Name.  Once she establishes a connection, she can use any Perception based Ability or cantrip through the object.

System: As with all cantrips involving multiple elements, several Realms are needed to incorporate everything.  For instance, a troll wants to spy on several Nunnehi who stole his favorite goblet, as well as the nearby scenery.  He would need Fae 4, Prop 2, Scene 1.  If he just wanted to view the interaction between the Nunnehi, he would only need Fae 4 and Prop 2.  If he wished other characters present to view the scrying, he would need the appropriate Realm of the characters.  Multiple castings are not cumulative on this cantrip.  There is no limit to the casting's range.  Some users have even caught glimpses of the Dreaming ( if the object is in the Dreaming, Umbra, Etc., subtract two from the total successes.  Assume the cantrip failed if the net result is less than one ).  The more successes gained, the more detailed and intricate the information.

1 success -- Shimmering glimpses, with breaks and gaps if the object is moved.  Visual only, lasting a turn
2 successes -- A good image that lasts approximately five minutes with no sound or color.  The viewpoint cannot be chosen, and it does not change unless the object is moved.
3 successes -- The image is perfectly clear, with full color and fuzzy sound quality ( sounds can be heard from within five feet of the object ).  Viewpoint may be tilted up or down, or pan left to right.  Contact lasts one scene
4 successes -- Same as above, except that everything within normal earshot of the object can be heard.  Furthermore, the caster can focus (or "zoom" ) upon any detail near the object.  With a successful Soothsay + Realm roll ( difficulty is the target's Banality +4 ), the caster may use Omen on any subject she can see with this cantrip.  Contact lasts sunrise or sunset, whichever is closest.
5 successes -- As above, except that the caster can move her point of view where ever she likes.  She can choose a subject and follow him, even if he moves out of eyesight of the original object.  With a successful Soothsay + Realm roll ( difficulty is the target's Banality +4 ), she may use up to Level Two Soothsay cantrips upon the target ( giving new meaning to a "good luck charm" ).  Contact lasts one full day, but a Stamina + Meditation roll (difficulty 7) is necessary to maintain contact every six hours.

Type: Chimerical
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···· Augury
(Changeling: Second Edition, pg. 182)

A changeling uses Omen to get a small glimpse of a person's Dán.  With Augury, he can throw a major element into the path of a person's destiny.  Augury works as a limited form of Fate Fire.  After the Bunk is performed ( which must include some form of divination, as with Omen ) and the cantrip is cast, the changeling describes a scene or even which will take place at some time in the future.  The even could occur anytime, and the caster has no control over when it does.  Furthermore, the adage "Be careful what you wish for ..." is particularly germane here; the changeling describes the scene, but the circumstances leading up to and following the scene can be quite different than what the fae had in mind.  For instance, a caster describes a scene wherein her worst enemy is butchered by his own treacherous guards.  What could happen is something could happen that the caster is forced to cast Elder-Form on herself into an exact likeness of the enemy.  Just imagine her sweating bullets as she approaches her "loyal" guards in the Elder-Form guise of her enemy.  Will now be the time they strike? ( insert diabolical laughter here ).  No one knows whether the caster of Augury engineers the future event, or the caster's own Dán is at work as a moment in the future unravels backward in time, planting a kernel in the Augury of the intrepid caster.

System: Multiple castings are not cumulative; however, multiple castings can "link" successive scenes in the future together.  No more than three scenes may be so linked, and there can be unforeseen plots and elements in between the linked scenes.  ( The more you attempt to control your Dán, the more your Dán controls you, Oedipus ).  The realms describe all the major elements within the Augury, including the target.  To affect large areas outside the immediate vicinity of the target requires Scene.  The number of successes determines the pivotal consequence of the described event.

1 success -- Minor event, a scenic element ( slight weather change ); car keys found, an expected letter arrives
2 successes -- Uncommon event, a major scenic element ( thunderstorm, snow, 3 car crash ); an old friend calls out of the blue, IRS decides not to audit you
3 successes -- Significant event, freakish weather ( lightning strikes a particular person, or a rain of toads falls over L.A. ); a dog reveals his owner's murderer; an ally arrives in the nick of time.
4 successes -- Decisive event, wide ranging elements ( basketball sized hail for 36 hours, or black rain for a week ); the state militia rebels; the IRS sets up a trust fund for you, based on your tax shelter.
5 successes -- Acutely incredible event, nearly impossible elements ( the President admits he is a vampire, a town simply disappears ); the state militia announces its allegiance to Peru; a 3 headed baby holds a press conference.

Note:  The caster receives one free success ( in addition to any successes earned ) if her suggested Augury event is a complimentary element to the target's Dán.  For example, if her target is a person dying of AIDS and she describes a scene where he passed away with all of his loved ones present, she gets one free success.  If no successes are earned, she does not get this free success.

Type: Chimerical
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····· Fate Fire
(Changeling: Second Edition, pg. 183)

Many people have little contact with their Dán; this is why the concept is so elusive.  The day of reckoning does not usually arrive for a while.  Casters of Fate Fire can speed up the process and bring a person's fate to manifest sooner for good or ill, depending upon the balance.  The caster has no control over the outcome.  Of course, he can make suggestions as to what may be the most fitting manifestation of Dán.  Casters of Fate Fire often have vague, portentous dreams of what will come to pass.

System: As with most Soothsay cantrips, the caster needs all of the realms that will play a part in the casting, including that of the target.  As this is an unusually powerful cantrip, there should be some time and thought put into the target's manifestation of Dán ( fate is usually obvious in its manifestation, but this cantrip should not totally unbalance the story, unless one means to have the main plot as the aftershock of Fate Fire ).  The successes determine the degree of Dán brought to bear upon the target.

1 success -- The target receives a chance encounter, warning her of the consequence ( or benefits ) of her actions.  A troubled soldier has nightmares about war; a bad driver is nearly hit by a car.
2 successes -- The target receives a clear illustration of her Dán, suggesting her ultimate rewards.  The soldier receives Jonathan Livingston Seagull in the mail ( no return address ); the bad driver sees two cars smash up.
3 successes -- A sudden turn of events in the target's plans either set her back or propel her ahead of "Schedule".  The soldier is court-martialed; the bad driver suddenly inherits a hot rod.
4 successes -- Fate dramatically steps in and reveals the ends of the target's means.  This may mean either sudden calamity or sudden prosperity.  The soldier's platoon is wiped out ( except for him ), and he throws away his gun in an attempt to save an infant.  The driver's close friend dies in a car accident.
5 successes -- Instant karma.  A character's fate is immediately brought to fore.  The soldier receives a supernatural visitation, informing him that his fate is not tied to warfare, but to saving lives.  The reckless driver has a car accident but may ( or may not ) live to become a safer driver.

Type: Chimerical
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