Faerie Magics: An Elucidation

A sorcerous school formed over untold millennia by extraplanar creatures of the same name, Faerie magic primarily reflects its creators' mindset. In other words, it mainly consists of spells intended to manipulate others, in order for the Faerie to deal with them on their own terms. And typically, the Faerie prefer to interact with other beings in a manner that reflects their own, imagined superiority.

But why is Faerie one of the thirteen major schools of magic, you ask? This is because the Faerie are consummate shape changers, and have a predilection for wandering far and wide for their own amusement. Spread across the entirety of the multiverse, Faerie can be encountered almost anywhere, though those who encounter them (most often their victims) rarely know that they have met such beings.

Most importantly, however, Faerie physiology is invasive. Charged with magic, their bodies allow them to interbreed with just about any living creature, who then passes that supernatural characteristic down to their descendants. Hence, in addition to the Faerie themselves, countless Fae crossbreeds and offshoots of these entities litter reality, which has the effect of bringing their magic along with them.

The Faerie Wizard

Wielders of Faerie magic are generally descended from one or more Faerie forebears. Occasionally, these Fae descendants reveal their true nature at birth, which bodes ill for their continued existence. The horrible treatment of others by the Faerie has become legend over the eons, after all, spawning various myths which often prompt the parents of blatant Fae infants to put them down immediately.

Others who wield Faerie magic were perfectly normal to all appearances, at least until something brought their mystic origin to the fore. Perhaps this is something as simple as puberty, as is the case with mutants and their own, ticking genetic time bombs. Other times, an encounter with the fantastic, bizarre, or alien will draw out the true nature of the Faerie within them, leading to an immediate transformation.

Either way, once a character's Fae origins are made manifest in the world, they can attempt to master Faerie magic. As is the case with anyone else attempting to learn sorcery, they must seek out instruction in the arcane arts, but at least they're guaranteed a seat at some Faerie instructor's table. Those without a Fae background, on the other hand, will have a harder time receiving such tutelage.

Faerie Advantages

Unless a Faerie magic wielder lacks a Fae heritage, which is uncommon but not impossible, they may very well possess one or more traits that reveal such to the outside world. This may often be a mere cosmetic tell, such as a slight build, uncanny beauty, or even pointy ears. However, the simple fact of the matter is that the Faerie have mated with almost everything over time, so the sky is the limit, here.

In other words, Faerie spellcasters may have inherent supernatural powers as well as the ability to wield wizard spells. How this works is that when creating such characters, players may substitute spell slots for posthuman abilities on a one to one basis. This grants them considerable versatility, allowing them to draw from supernatural powers, spells, and magical items over the course of their adventures.

Furthermore, whenever a Faerie spellcaster is in contact with something that is related to the magic of their forebears, they may cast their magic more effectively. Whether they are in an area suffused with Faerie magic (such as a Faerie circle) or are carrying an item ensorcelled with Faerie spells, they may wield their sorcery as though it was +1 CS higher in rank than is normal.

Faerie Drawbacks

The specific nature of a Faerie mage's inherent abilities may be minor or major, may or may not alter the character's appearance, and may or may not be related to their possessor's school of magic. The primary thing to keep in mind when pondering the form such abilities will take is the lineage of the Fae character in question, because the more Faerie one is, the more likely they are to suffer Faerie limitations.

As it is, all Faerie spells are subject to a weakness to iron. Faerie casters who lack a Fae heritage, or those who have one but possess two or less special powers because of their ancestry, will find they are incapable of casting Faerie spells while in direct contact with this metal. This counts as a strong limitation on each individual Faerie spell, but does not affect the character as a whole.

A Faerie caster (or any Fae, really) possessing more than two powers due to their lineage is considered strongly Faerie, and are instead hamstrung by both a weakness and a susceptibility to iron as strong character limitations. When touching the metal, they not only lose spellcasting ability, but cannot use any other powers, and their ability scores are reduced to Feeble (2) in rank while contact with iron persists.

Furthermore, they will lose a minimum of one quarter of their maximum Health total on each contact, on top of any other damage inflicted.

The Tricksy Bixie: A Sample Faerie Wizard

Though their magic is pretty straightforward in and of itself, Faerie wizards can be particularly complicated characters. They're technically aliens, after all, which adds a whole new layer of convolution to them. As such, to give players an idea what one can do with them, an example character is generated here, using the point-based method. Let's see what we can do with fifty points!

Determining the Tricksy Bixie's Basic Abilities

I'm thinking I would like to save points for this character's powers, spells, and artifact, so I go easy on their ability scores. I grant them Good (10) Fighting and Agility scores (1 point each), a Typical (6) Strength score (zero (0) points), Excellent (20) Endurance and Reason scores (2 points each), and Remarkable (30) Intuition and Psyche scores (3 points each), for a total of 12 points.

The sum of this character's Fighting, Agility, Strength, and Endurance scores is 46, giving them that much Health, and their Reason, Intuition, and Psyche scores add up to provide a Karma sum of 80. I leave Resources and Popularity at their base values of Typical (6) and Shift 0, respectively, because I didn't want to expend the points on those values, which can be improved later easily enough.

Determining and Quantifying the Tricksy Bixie's Natural and Magical Abilities

Before choosing this Faerie mage's spells, I opt to make them strongly Faerie in origin, the better to afford more magic later. Sure, that'll saddle this character with two strong character limitations, but who's perfect? Thus, I give this Faerie mage inherent Agelessness (6 points after discount), Excellent (20) ranked Infravision and Flight (1 point each after discount), and Good (10) rank Shrinking (1 point after discount).

That leaves me 29 points to maneuver with. Trying to make the most of them, I choose Remarkable (30) ranked Fairy Dust and Animal Hybridization / Self (2 point each after discount), Remarkable (30) ranked Confusion, Glamour, and Jumbling (2 points each after discount), and Incredible (40) ranked Force Field (3 points after discount). With those limitations in place, all of these spells only cost the character 13 points!

Determining and Quantifying the Tricksy Bixie's Magical Appliance

So, on top of all that, this character is allowed one magical appliance to help them in their career. I find myself thinking a magic wand will be a nice implement for them to wield. It is equipped with an Eldritch Bolt that discharges 'generic' magic bursts at its wielder's foe, of Amazing (50) intensity (2 points after discounts for the strong portable limitation and strong faerie limitations).

Since it is offensive, and provides a boost to the character's sorcery, this object presents a compelling target to this character's foes. As such, I opt to add to its material strength, spending a total of 6 points to bolster it to Class 1000 (from its assumed base of Amazing (50), the rank of the spell housed within). If something strong enough to wreck it hits this character, they have bigger problems!

Determining the Tricksy Bixie's Background Information

Rounding out our Faerie wizard, I choose to take Static as a beneficial mental quirk, for 1 point, and then Abnormal Attribute to get that point right back. The idea is that this character will be unmistakably Faerie in appearance, being slender, having pointy ears, possessing the traditionally insectoid wings of a fairy, and of course they happen to be particularly short (even before invoking their Shrinking power).

In my mind, this character's Fae nature was revealed during their teenage years, so they don't have a lot of professional skills to back them up. Bearing that in mind, I give them Manipulation (1 point), Martial Arts type A (1 point), and Artist 2 (2 points). Not a lot of practical knowledge outside of a fight, I suppose, but the character can attempt to remain afloat financially as a freelance artist.

Finally, contacts. The character will naturally have a level two Mentor contact (2 points), denoting their mystic instructor, as well as two other level 1 contacts - it pays to know people, after all. One is a Lawyer, and the other is an Expert, both of which I opt to leave floating for the time being. These two folks cost 1 point each, which leaves our new Faerie mage all out of points. Woo!

Determining the Tricksy Bixie's Origin Story

Though Trixie Mitchell seemed like any other teenager in her suburban Atlanta, Georgia crowd, there was something in her family tree that had been dormant for centuries. Like her parents, and their parents before them, and so on and so forth, it was highly likely that this condition would persist for Sharon, as well. As luck would have it, though, a chance encounter with a young mutant altered Trixie forever.

When he assaulted Trixie's high school, her own ascendant heritage came to the fore, and her life was forever changed. After her peers decided that she was another mutant menace, Trixie fled for her life, only to be found days later by an older, elfin mage who had perceived her metamorphosis from afar. Knowing that she would need assistance, she volunteered to train Trixie in the full potential of her heritage.

Feeling she had no other choice, Trixie left with this similarly strange and wonderful woman, and began her tutelage in Faerie magic. Already close to mastering her school of wizardry, she adventures on the side for fun and profit, as the mood strikes her. Sometimes appearing normal, other times appearing as some mythological chimera, Trixie has become known to the Southeast as the one and only Tricksy Bixie!

Faerie Spells

While at first there may not seem to be any rhyme or reason to the Faerie school of magic, the overall theme to their sorcery involves getting a leg up on others. While some of their spells can benefit others, these are usually wielded by Faerie wizards with more intent than merely helping out their fellow beings. The rest, on the other hand, can be considered debuffing effects.

These are thirteen known Faerie school spells:

A E F G I J M O T

A

Aciurgy
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank

Aciurgy is the paranormal power to modify living tissues. A sort of super human medical ability, aciurgy can be used to perform procedures that generally require years of academic study and professional experience to execute competently. On the other hand, since it is of super human effectiveness, aciurgy can also be used to indulge in medical behavior that is highly irregular - if not normally impossible!

While aciurgy is in use, the life force of its recipients (or victims) will be artificially maintained, its wielder able to engage in all manner of procedures both simple and arcane. Whether simply removing a sliver or temporarily disassembling his or her patient, the character with aciurgy can complete with their work with the assurance that the subject of this power will not die in the process of it.

In other words, aciurgy itself doesn't cause damage, no matter how extreme the work done with it is. Of course, if someone with aciurgy completely takes the subject of its use apart and leaves him that way, said subject might be in a bit of a pickle! Such 'abandonment' can indeed cause damage, based on the nature of the work left undone (whether intentionally or otherwise), at the Judge's discretion.

When using aciurgy, a character can perform any conventional procedure, from liposuction to a heart transplant, with but a green power FEAT. When engaging in wildly irregular operations, including brain transplants and installing parts where they don't belong, an aciurgeon must pass a yellow FEAT. This power can even be used to engage in cross-species transplants and unnatural modifications on a red power FEAT.

When using aciurgy, most conventional medical concerns are rendered moot. Whether rotating limbs around for fun or even installing body parts foreign to one's anatomy, everything is 'wired' such that it will work properly (for a given value of propriety). Tissue rejection is simply not an issue, and an organism can persist and function indefinitely despite this power's use - assuming nothing else kills it, that is.

Aciurgy most definitely counts as a healing power for the purposes of metabolic overload, whether used to heal or to... modify. It requires one be in physical contact with the subject to work. Furthermore, should they wish to, subjects can resist the use of aciurgy by passing an Endurance (res) FEAT roll against its power rank (assuming they lack resistance to metabolic or warping attacks).

E

Ego Suppression
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: instantaneous or maintenance (see below)
Cost: 1 point per rank

Ego Suppression is an ability that allows its wielder to shut down the portion of one's brain which allows it to properly interact with reality and society. When this happens, one's subconscious desires, or their Id, are allowed to run rampant. The effect of this is that a character so affected will lose all impulse control, a state compounded by an utter lack of morals or conscience.

In this state, a character will typically do the first thing that occurs to them in a given instance, as if they possessed the Impulsiveness quirk - at as high a level as is possible for them. Enemies will be immediately attacked, desires instantly acted upon, and so on. While the person so affected may well ruin their lives or standing in the community thanks to this power, they won't care - at least, not until ego suppression wears off.

One must pass a Psyche (will) FEAT roll against the rank of ego suppression in order to avoid its effects in the first place, and must pass a like FEAT against their current Impulsiveness to avoid doing something totally out of character if desired, or alternately, to avoid doing something the player would rather not have their character do. The effects of this power last 1d10 turns, unless specifically maintained by its user.

Ego suppression works within Near distance of its would-be victims.

F

Faerie Dust
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank

Faerie dust is not actually dust, per se, so much as a collection of loose mystic particles drawn forth from the body of this spell's wielder. This twinkling, dust-like meta-substance can be sprinkled upon any target, and allows its creator to share any one of his or her capabilities with said target. If the target of faerie dust does not wish to be affected by it, they simply need to avoid contact with it (dodge the spell's use).

What faerie dust does is create a bond of sorts between its creator and its subject. Through this bond, the wielder of faerie dust may temporarily impart one of his or her characteristics upon them, whether it be an enhanced ability score, a special spell or power effect, or even a talent. In other words, anything the caster of faerie dust can (or can't) do may be 'shared' with the target as long as the spell is maintained.

So, using faerie dust, a spellcaster can share the ability to fly, enhanced coordination, obscure knowledge of the occult, or even disadvantageous traits like a missing arm or a diminutive size! It all depends on the caster, what he or she is capable of, and their intent, making the effects of faerie dust somewhat inconsistent from caster to caster - and thus hard to predict - until it is actually invoked.

Fey Sense
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank

This curious, mystical sense allows those of a faerie bent to home in on anything representative of their particular school of magic. Unless the target is cloaked somehow, a fey sense can automatically pinpoint every faerie person, place, or thing within its range, as determined on the Middle range table. Though no roll is required to pinpoint fey things, an 'automatic' spell check also conveys no information about what it finds.

On the other hand, successful fey sense FEAT rolls provide additional data about the faerie item(s) in question. Green results indicate what they generally are (a place of power, enchanted being, or artifact), yellow results fill in additional details (whether it is occupied, possessed, or otherwise in use), and red results provide further, specific information at the Judge's discretion.

Fugue
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: maintenance + 1d10 turns
Cost: 1 point per rank

The power of fugue allows its wielder to temporarily prevent others from acquiring long term memories. How this works is that, once the target of fugue fails a Psyche (will) FEAT roll against its power rank, he or she will cease the creation of permanent memories. This state will persist for as long as the power is active on its target, plus an additional amount of time that is equal to 1d10 turns.

A fugued individual's mind otherwise works properly, and since short term memory is unaffected, they can still function - they simply won't remember what's taken place while they were fugued. This is similar to the powers of forgetfulness and mind wipe, but fugue is a more proactive power, in that it doesn't remove extant memories in one's mind so much as it stops them from being created to begin with.

Thus, even the power of mental repair cannot restore memories lost due to fugue, since there's nothing to restore in the first place!

Fugue only works within Very Near distance of its possessor.

G

Glamour
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank

A glamour is a spectacular display of flashing lights, swirling colors, and mysterious sounds. When a sorcerer creates a glamour, they suffuse an area with all of these components, causing general disarray while said area's occupants are distracted and allured by the enigmatic beauty before them. Those wandering into a glamoured area (the glamour's creator notwithstanding) will suffer a -2 CS penalty on all FEAT rolls.

Of course, the creator of a glamour may instead opt to simply target a single individual with this effect. If a glamour is concentrated on a singular foe, it will prompt an Intuition (alt) FEAT against this spell rank. If this FEAT fails, the glamoured target will suffer an increased penalty to all their actions - a -4 CS total - instead of the regular -2 CS. If he or she passes his Intuition FEAT roll, the target suffers no penalty at all.

I

Inspiration
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank

This curious faerie magic allows its wielder to give the mind of its target something of a 'push', possibly allowing one to come up with an idea or solution to a problem that was not readily apparent. This effectively grants the target a bonus Reason FEAT roll when dosed with the inspiration spell, operating at either this spell rank or the character's Reason rank +1 CS, whichever is higher.

If the target is actively working on some sort of invention or pondering the solution to a problem, inspiration will nudge them in the right direction, the magic pointing towards the most ideal solution to whatever plagues them. This is useful for making great strides in technology or helping to rapidly deal with emergencies of any stripe. The spell gets weird when cast on random people, however.

Zapping someone with inspiration who isn't particularly pondering anything (pedestrian passersby, people at work or sleeping) can cause a truly random idea to manifest within someone's head. Someone could be walking their dog when the design for a cold fusion reactor suddenly occurs to them, or maybe a body toiling away at a mill will have an astounding notion to improve the ROI of overseas derivatives.

Whether or not the recipient of this spell can make use of the sudden ideas that occur to them is a different matter entirely.

J

Jumbling
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank

Jumbling is the process of removing someone's ability to communicate coherently. While the character affected by jumbling seems to make perfect sense, at least within the confines of their own mind, the meaning of information they try to convey is butchered beyond understanding. Words come out in the wrong order, when they even come out as the intended words, and sometimes are mangled syllable by syllable.

The effect of jumbling is not limited to speech, either. It similarly confounds sign language, keystrokes, written words, facial expressions, and even more esoteric methods of communication the victim may possess, ranging from telepathy to strange chemical or photonic signals to anything else. One can almost sense a pattern in the output of a jumbled character's communications, but such order can never be determined.

Characters can be affected by jumbling if they fail a Psyche (will) FEAT roll against its power rank. If they fall prey to the power, victims of jumbling will have their communications scrambled until they can pass the FEAT roll they initially failed, allowed again each subsequent turn. While the initial roll might be considered impossible, one should always have at least a chance to eventually shake off jumbling, no matter how slim.

Though poor dice rolling may mean the character is jumbled for quite a while - at least until they can eventually pass that red resistance roll.

One must be within Near distance of his or her foes to wield jumbling against them.

P

Pheromones
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: maintenance + 1d100 turns
Cost: 1 point per rank

A large number of animal life forms make use of pheromones, special chemicals that may be emitted into the environment in order to affect the behavior of other members of their species. While the human receptor of pheromones, the vomeronasal organ, is essentially inert, some characters have the ability to generate pheromones so powerful that they can actually overwhelm this vestigial feature.

While pheromones do not have an odor that humans can ordinarily detect, those produced by this power can definitely manipulate the behavior of others who are exposed to them. Anyone breathing within Very Near distance of a character with the pheromones power while it is active must pass a Psyche (will) FEAT roll against its rank - lest they be subject to that character's influence.

Think of pheromones as a chemically induced version of the emotion control power.

Once a target (or targets) is affected by pheromones, they will linger in their system for as long as the character emitting them is present - plus 1d100 turns. While under their influence, the target(s) will feel as the character with pheromones desires. They will experience any emotion he or she wishes, ranging from love to loyalty to trust to rage to anger to hatred - though everyone present that is affected will feel the same.

The important thing to keep in mind is that pheromones don't affect beings without a sense of smell - or that don't breathe. Would-be targets using their own air supply are similarly immune while the integrity of their life support systems persists. Furthermore, using pheromones on beings not of one's species (or at least very close) may or may not have the desired effect - it all depends on how similar the target life form is.

Power Attenuation
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank

Power attenuation is the power to stifle one or more super human powers, often a great means of containing whatever damage they can cause. Power attenuation works within Near range of its wielder, and an application of attenuation lasts for 1d10 turns unless specifically maintained on a target for longer periods of time - which may be necessary to keep them from retaliating for its use on their person.

Power attenuation works by deciding which power to dampen, and then applying this ability. Targets of power attenuation may attempt a FEAT with the power to be attenuated; if they can match the intensity of power attenuation, they successfully resist it. If victorious, attenuators may apply one negative Column Shift to the targeted power for each rank they have in this ability, negating it when reducing it to Shift 0.

For example, let us consider a hero who has this power at Amazing (50) rank. He's fighting an opponent with a distressing habit of immolating everything in the area with her Incredible (40) ranked fire generation. When using power attenuation on this foe, our hero can completely negate her fiery power if the target cannot pass a red power FEAT roll against this +1 CS assault on her super powers.

A versatile power, power attenuation can be wielded against multiple powers - whether they belong to one character or many. The trick, though, is that each doubling (always rounding up) of powers so dampened will reduce the effective rank of power attenuation by -1 CS - both for the purposes of overcoming the powers it is used against, and the maximum number of Column Shifts it can inflict upon them.

Returning to our example, say the foe of our power attenuator has four powers - and will readily use the others on our hero once her fire generation is knocked out. The power attenuator instead uses his ability against all of his foe's super tricks, and (again assuming she fails to resist) will reduce all her powers by -6 CS in rank. She can maybe use some powers, but those that fail to resist are now much less dangerous.

An attenuator can reduce this penalty somewhat by attempting to hamper less of a power's ranks than their maximum. For each -2 CS he or she chooses not to apply to the powers they are attacking, an attenuator can prevent the operating rank of this power from losing -1 CS of its overall effectiveness. This may not completely neutralize their foes, but allows an attenuator to 'even the playing field' considerably.

In time, a band of the power attenuator's foes gang up on him, sick and tired of being humiliated by him in singular combat. The attenuator may dull one power on each of his eight foes, though this reduces his power's effectiveness by -3 CS, allowing him only -5 CS of attenuation. By reducing his overall effect to only -3 CS, our heroic power attenuator can attempt this action with but a -2 CS penalty.

Splitting one's focus to attenuate multiple powers in this fashion tends to make this ability fail more often than not, however, unless they have it at a particularly high rank - which may just make it easier to go with the power block ability instead. On the other hand, that option cuts off the wielder's own super human capabilities, unlike power attenuation!

S

Sensory Attenuation
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank

Sensory attenuation is similar to powers such as inodoriferous or invisibility, in that it prevents others from sensing something its possessor prefers they would not. It differs, however, in that this power does not affect any properties of its wielder - instead, it actively screens the perceptions of others to ensure they do not experience certain sensory input whatsoever.

When successfully used against another, sensory attenuation will 'switch off' one of their senses, doing so for either 1d10 turns or for as long as its wielder concentrates on keeping the power active. Additional actions may be made to deactivate further senses if desired, though a character can only 'mute' a number of senses equal to the amount of actions he or she can simultaneously concentrate upon.

The power of sensory attenuation can function on anyone within Near range of its wielder. However, the target of this power is allowed an Endurance (res) FEAT roll to shrug off its effects beforehand. If this FEAT is successful against an intensity equal to the sensory attenuation power rank, it simply won't work (that time). Similarly, resistance to metabolic attacks serves to blunt or negate the effects of this power.

Sensory Distortion
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank

A lesser form of illusion projection, sensory distortion allows its wielder to twist the existing sensory input a person experiences. While one won't see things that aren't there while under the effects of sensory distortion, he or she might perceive something close as far away, hear sounds at the wrong pitch or from the incorrect directions, and might find the floor seems to be at a wholly wrong angle.

The 'technical' effect of sensory distortion is to inflict a -2 CS penalty on all physical FEATs attempted while one's senses are so scrambled. This because it's hard to hit someone when you're actually seeing them somewhere they're not, walking normally when the ground is apparently shifting underfoot, or when one's clothes feel lined with razors. Intuition FEATs are made at a -4 CS under the influence of this skill.

Sensory distortion itself lasts as long as it can be maintained, and can affect anyone who fails a Psyche (will) FEAT roll against its skill rank. Of course, one can try to resist sensory distortion anew on each subsequent turn. This skill can be used upon anyone within Near range of its wielder.

Static Field
Type: Faerie Spell
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank

Telepathic powers generally work in a rather straight-forward manner - their initiator makes contact with one or more other minds, and then conveys whatever information they wish. However, this assumes that there isn't a lot of ambient psionic noise drowning out their mental signals. Psionic static is just that - a whole lot of gibberish and interference that stymies the use of telepathic powers.

Characters with the static field power can overwhelm the area within Very Near distance of their person with psionic hogwash. While in the radius of a static field, telepaths must pass a power FEAT against the intensity of the static field in order to operate their telepathic abilities at all. Failure means the information to be conveyed was 'lost' in the noise surrounding them.

As the source of the static field, the user of this ability cannot themselves wield any other telepathic powers while it is active. Similarly, the character gains power rank resistance to psychic influence while their static field is active. On the downside, there is no way to hide the fact that one is generating such a field from other telepaths in the vicinity, which readily allows them to retaliate for the inconvenience, if desired.

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