- Second Thoughts
- Caste: Secrets
- Concept: Bitter Old Maid, Determined to Leave Things Better Than She Found - (by her definition of 'better')
- A cross between the pictures of Eileen Atkins, Wynne of Dragon Age: Origins, and Molly Grue, of the Last Unicorn. Dressed in close fitting long-sleeved green shirt, slight upturn of shoulder cuffs, and flowing skirt, with sandles. Subtle starmetal bracers, holding a hearthstone. Ruddy hair, culy, not that long, with green eyes. Thin to the point of being gaunt. Always has her staff (her war fans, stowed) with her.
Once upon a time, there was a Maiden who lived on the shores of the Yellow River. She loved the frogs, who would croak secrets of the pools, and the worms under rocks, who squirmed of what lay below the earth. She jumped in puddles to watch the splash, she climbed up trees to see what she could see.
None of these were very lady-like things.
And as she grew, she learned that books were quite interesting things, hiding secrets of frogs, and worms, and beetles, and birds, all in one place.
When the slavers came, she was away, reading in a tree, shirking her duties.
Her book dropped to the dirt-now-mud with the life-blood of her family and friends. She rank, barefoot, to find her brothers dying, bleeding out their last heartbeats.
Her mentor waited, sad faced, at the edge of the village, come to take her to Heaven - for all her learning, she lacked knowledge to Survive.
In Heaven, she learned again; that for all the knowledge held in books, there were far more interesting things to be gleaned from a Look, a Smirk, or a Forelorn Gaze.
Knowledge is Power. And with this, she crippled the slave trade along the Hundred Kingdoms, striking non-physical blows that stang and smarted far long after she was gone.
Her metaphorical childhood was over after this, and she was inducted to the Bronze. She guessed it all made sense; certainly it did when Kejak spoke. In service to the East, and to the Bronze, she was asked to sacrifice. It is not your Fate, she was told, to have issue or heirs. Give your womb to one who has need, that they may have children in your stead.
And so she did. The lost eggs of Thorns needed heirs, and their blood was damaged. Prayer scripts hanging from her wrists, waist, and over her eyes, wrapped 'round her fingers, she reached into herself, and took out her womb, placing it in the young dragonblood maiden, who wept in horror and honor.
Only after was the Vizier told that all sexual pleasure was gone with her womb, a sacrifice for both her and the young maiden. Bitterness for the second time crept in her mouth, curled towards her heart.
Now that her metaphorical parenthood was over, she was not meant, she was told, to care the least about the Fates of those she touched. And she did not - except for the young Maiden. She could not help but stop by, in one guise or another, and act the God-mother to the expectant dragonness.
When her divinations failed, and her sight was unable to pierce why, she frowned. And left for the Underworld, to spy. What she saw was indefinite, but disturbing. Things were beginning to Change, and the Underworld was Ascendant.
When returning to Heaven, she voiced uncertainty, suggested that for all the problems of the Solars, things were becoming worse, and perhaps they were needed now? Kejak had her immediately sent on reconaisance to the Wylds of the East - "in case the Fae were mobilizing, too." She fumed, knowing this was punishment not concern, and yet, did not disobey.
She thought she was there for but a day. Or maybe five. She knew she was not Meant to plumb the Wyld, she had not the charms for it.
She did not expect to return more than five years later in Creation.
She uttered one word upon her return, and reading the night skies of Creation.
Thorns was gone, and there was no trace she could find of her God-Daughter. Beyond fury at the petty waste of her time, she has read the past in the sky, knows the gist of the East, and has wept for her loss, and stupidity of the Wise, and for Thorns.
She is barred from Heaven; perhaps Kejak fears the damage of her testimony. She doesn't care; she is sick of inaction and petty infighting. She will go where she is needed, and tip the scales as she has always done. Incense and prayer strips send her word to allies in Heaven; they write in the stars to her.
The stars of the Underworld help the Mask of Winters - he'll need it.
- Revenge for Thorns/Kill Mask of Winters
Whirling mandala of green light and stars
- Strength 2
- Dexterity 5
- Stamina 2
- Charisma 2
- Manipulation 5
- Appearance 2
- Perception 5
- Intelligence 5
- Wits 3
- Investigation: 5
- Larceny: 5 (+3 Ephemeral Theft)
- Lore: 5
- Occult: 3
- Stealth: 4
- Awareness 5
- Bureaucracy 3 (+2 Infiltration)
- Dodge 5
- Melee 5 (+3 Staff)
- Sail 4
- Resistance 3
- Ride 1
- Linguistics 2
- Athletics 3
- Presence 3 (+3 Persuade)
- Integrity 3
- Socialize 2
 Each Background
- Backing, Bureau of Secrets, 5
- Backing, Bureau of Journeys, 5
- Connections, Bronze Faction, 4
- Manse 1: Air, Jewel of the Flying Heart - +1 to DV (+1 to melee if set in edged weapon)
- Manse 2: Water, Mind Clearing Gem
- This sea-blue topaz dodecahedron helps its bearer to resist all attempts to dominate or influence his mind. Bearers gain +1 to both their Dodge and Parry MDVs. In addition, if touched to someone who is under any form of unnatural mental influence, the stone gives the target a chance to break free. If the target’s player wins or ties an opposed Willpower roll against the controller, the stone instantly frees her from this mental influence.
- Celestial Manse 5: Scrying
- The bearer of this black stone can see visions of other times and places in its fl at, highly polished sur-face—visions of the past, the present or the potential future. They either illuminate some aspect of what will happen or lend some understanding of the situation that the Exalt does not yet have. While every vision is a literal view of some real or potential event, the visions come without context or explanation: The bearer’s player must roll (Intelligence + Investigation) to decipher the visions; Excellencies can apply. As with the gem of omens, more successes indicate more exten-sive and precise knowledge—but the scrying stone can also provide information such as a view of an enemy’s face or a chance to watch a long-dead sorcerer cast a spell. (Such potent and precise information would require at least five successes, though.)
- Salary 2
- Artifact 2: Discrete Essence Armor, Starmetal
- Artifact 4: Fate's Rebuke, Goremaul, looking like a staff - twisting Starmetal core, worked blue jade. Speed 5, Acc +2, Dam +19B/4, Def +1, rate 2, attune 5
- Upon hitting and inflicting at least 1 pt of damage, make a reflexive Manip+Essence roll vs. either Spell Circle +2 or Required Essence +2 difficulty; if succeeds, spell or charm is disrupted.
from the Loom 2.0
 4th Excellencies
Optimistic Security Practice, pg. 6
- 5m, Simple, 1 scene. Unnatural Illusion. Adds (Exalt’s Essence) to bashing and lethal soak. Those with Dodge MDV less than (Exalt’s [Connections or Backing in the Bureau of Journeys] + Resistance + Essence = Dodge MDV 13) that would choose to attack him believe that they can not succeed in their attempts to stop him, automatically failing their attacks. Ignored for an action by paying one Willpower, and after spending three Willpower in this way an attacker ignores the effect for the rest of the scene. An attacker with Compassion less than 3 only needs to spend two total Willpower to ignore the illusion for the scene.
Unwavering Well-Being Meditation, pg. 6
- --(2m), permanent improvement to Optimistic Security Practice. So enhanced, Optimistic Security Practice provides (Essence) additional bashing, lethal and aggravated soak. Those subject to Optimistic Security Practice’s illusion who have Temperance less than 3 must spend a total of five Willpower to ignore the illusion for a scene, instead of three.
Salt into Ash Slight, pg. 9
- 2m+2m per target number, Simple, 1 scene. Charisma + Sail against difficulty of a target spirit's Essence; a success causes the spirit's attempts to stealth to be at +1 difficulty, UMI to attend to something elsewhere (3 wp to ignore). Others reduce the target number of their actions to drive away the spirit by 1 for every 2 extra motes spent, min TN 4. Applies to social and physical attacks, and damage rolls - and this persists even if the spirit throws off the influence. Does not assist beings outside Fate. Can only target spirits within Essence x10 yards, and only water-associated elementals, gods, demons, and ghosts whose deaths are strongly water associated; can target spirits outside of Fate.
Stone Skipping Method, pg. 9-10
- 5m, simple, one journey. Eases the journey by: difficulty of navigation & piloting rolls can not rise beyond (6-Exalt's Essence, min 1) due to environmental factors, likewise unstable footing of crew & passengers. No amount of damage can cause the vehicle to take on water nor can mundane environmental hazards inflict damage on the vessel.
Mirror Shattering Method, pg. 10
- 5m, 1wp. Duration up to 5 days. Vehicle and all on it drop into Elsewhere and travel at 2x normal speed. Can't be tracked or found. Will be dropped someplace safe, like it or not. Can go to Yu Shan, takes 5 days. Other Fateful places must be learned to travel there, except if the Sidereal activates Auspicious Prospects, in which case don't have to learn to go there.
Absence, pg. 15
- 4m, one action, reflex. Ignore penalities to Dodge DV except those imposed by own actions.
Duck Fate, pg. 15-16
- 10m, reflexive, one tick. Essence 4+ can spend 1wp and roll reflex Dex + Dodge, extending duration by number of ticks equal to successes, and 5m to switch the source of danger. Perfect Dodge, avoiding consequences that would harm, constrain, or alter the Exalt directly. Can use to defend against theft, or prevent the death of an ally.
Avoidance Kata, pg. 16
- 4m, 1wp, reflexive. Must be activated within first two of Exalt's actions in combat, 1st action in social combat, or 1st two minutes following the introduction of any significant new character to the current scene. Revising fate, Sidereal was never there, was somewhere else the whole time. Similar state warping; should be less dangerous. People don't remember unless they spend 3wp.
Trouble Reduction Strategy, pg. 16
- Add 3m to the cost of any Dodge charm, and can apply to someone else. Counts as Sidereal's charm use, but any rolls are made by the receiving character.
Neighborhood Relocation Technique, pg. 16-17
- 15m, 1wp, 1hl. Physically "drag" an area up to Essence miles large, a discrete feature, under own power. Shadowlands don't work, can target waypoints of Bordermarches and Middlemarches. Another hl lost every hour the area is being moved. 3wp to realize area is being moved.
Stern Essence Replenishment, pg. 20
- Get Conviction x2 motes back after successful compelling behavior or modifying the Policy of a social unit, fulfilling the duties of a savant or sorcerer on a Diplomatic action in the Mandate of Heaven, or any time Conviction is channelled on a successful action.
Impeding the Flow, pg. 25
- 3m, reflex. Enhance Melee or MA parry (not unexpected nor unblockable), and reduce attacker's successes to 0 in step 6 after other effects & penalties. May not use this charm to block an attack favorably enhanced by Sidereal astrological effects or by more than Essence + 1 extra successes from Charms.
Serenity in Blood, pg. 25-26
- Add 1wp to Impeding the Flow to make it Perfect.
Harmony of Blows, pg. 26
- 8m, extra-action. Flurry of three attacks against the same or separate targets, each of which suffers no multiple action penalties and which inflicts only the highest DV penalty of any one attack in the flurry, ignoring the weapon’s Rate.
Meditation on War, pg. 26.
- 4m 1wp, or 12m 1wp, simple, scene. Charm for 4m 1wp, the Exalt chooses one of Archery, Martial Arts, Melee, Thrown or War. For the rest of the scene the target number of physical attack actions or Miscellaneous actions made with those Abilities is reduced by one, to a minimum of 4. In addition, the Sidereal may use Supplemental and Reflexive Charms for the chosen Ability in mass combat without a stunt, recovering motes and Willpower for successful stunts in mass combat normally. Finally, the Exalt may use Harmony of Blows to perform artillery attacks or in mass combat as the leader of a complementary unit. Sidereals with Essence 4+ may use this Charm to lower target numbers on social attacks or Miscellaneous actions in social combat using one of the Abilities chosen from Performance, Presence, Investigation or Socialize. When used in this way, the Ability in question may also be used to make a flurry of social attacks (if amongst the former three) using Harmony of Blows. For 12m 1wp, in Mandate of Heaven a Sidereal sorcerer may activate this Charm for twelve motes and one Willpower (representing a combined activation of Meditation on War and Harmony of Blows) on behalf of her dominion. This allows the dominion to perform an extra action during the turn, but only if that action is Military-based. If the Sidereal is Essence 4+ the dominion’s extra action may be any Self-Destructive, Conquest or Diplomatic action.
Heroic Essence Replenishment, pg. 27
- Gain Valor x2 motes when successfully using Presence to erode an Intimacy, compel behavior, or break someone's Motivation, or any time successfully channeling Valor.
Vermillion District Haze, pg. 27
- 8m, 1wp, Simple, Holy, duration 5 days. Radius of (Essence x100) yards around the Sidereal; creatures of death and natives of Malfeas suffer -1 internal penalty to all actions, while others' DV increase by 1 against the attacks of such intruders.
Auspicious Prospects for Secrets, pg. 30
- 1m per goal. Either a Misc Action to understand of whether a course of action is considered a good and favorable action by the Maiden of Secrets, or contemplate for a few minutes to understand what the Maiden of Secrets thinks she should be doing; decipher it via Int + Investigation. Successes determine granularity/resolution of the mission the Maiden believes should be done. In conjunction with Mirror Shattering Method, can travel to Fateful places.
Marvelous Inclusion of Details, pg. 31
- 5m, 1wp, Supplemental. Inhances any Attribute + Ability roll for uncovering information by +5 successes. Can also use to reshape reality; automatic against Essence 1, otherwise must beat Dodge MDV of target - if that happens, can't resist with Willpower as it isn't a form of influence. Can use to Investigate outside of Fate, can't rewrite outside of Fate, beings outside of Fate are immune to the rewrite.
Efficient Secretary Technique, pg. 31
- 2m per fact. Small spirit viridescent spider, skitters along fate strands to Yu-Shan, returns in few seconds to deliver any single fact known within Creation as long as the fact isn't actively concealed or generally lost. Can't find information happening outside of Fate. The spider can find anything difficulty 5 less on Lore, Occult, or Investigation roll; anything 6+ can be found if it is within the Sidereal's personal libraries.
Creation Smuggling Procedures, pg. 32
- 5m, 1wp, Simple, duration 1 day. !0 yard radius around Exalt is forced to follow basic laws of Creation; Shaping effect targets the environment and must be contested as such.
Sidereal Shell Games, pg. 32
- 1m +2m per die/point stolen, 1wp. Simple, 1 scene. Within Essence yards of target, Wits + Larceny against target's Dodge MDV. Extra successes translate into point of natural soak or dice in a specific attribute + Ability pool that the Sidereal gains as Charm bonus to own pool. May steal up to Essence of any one value, but may use multiple times on same or different targets to steal any number of separate bonuses. Target's pool can't be reduced below 0. Any excess Sidereal could have stolen isn't availble to Target.
Avoiding the Truth, pg. 35.
- 3m, reflexive. Illusion. Makes listener disbelieve the Sidereal's statement. Any listener with Dodge MDV less than Exalt's (connections or backing in Bureau of Secrets) + Lore + Essence believes this is statement is false. 3 wp to ignore, or 1wp if compelling evidence, and if incontrovertable evidence, then breaks automatically.
Systematic Understanding of Everything, pg. 33.
- 2m 1wp, reflexive. Lasts until Sidereal next sleeps. The Exalt sleeps and receives a vision of the world as it must be according to the plans of the Bureau of Secrets. Upon waking, she walks in a world that is filled with portents, the emerald threads of destiny draping everything in their own secrets. This Charm can only be activated when the Sidereal goes to sleep, and it can not be deactivated voluntarily or by any effect until the Exalt next goes to sleep. While it is active the Exalt’s non-reflexive rolls to find or recall information lower their target number by one, to a minimum of four. This includes reading someone’s motivation (Exalted, p. 131), diagnosing a patient (Exalted, p. 137) and most thaumaturgical rituals of the Art of Astrology (Exalted, p. 138). This reduction applies only to actions whose purpose in whole or in greater part is to find or recall information; it would not apply to rolls to create an artifact or build a manse, even though research is a vital part of those actions.
Of the Shape of the World, pg. 35.
- 2m per -1 TN & 1wp, supplemental. This Charm can enhance any roll during the creation of a Sidereal astrology, reducing the target number of the rolls it is used to enhance by one, to a minimum of four. It may be used to enhance the Effect roll.
Of Horrors Best Unknown, pg. 35.
- 10m 1wp, or 10m 5wp 1hl, simple. Shaping. A Sidereal can make an unblockable Dexterity + Lore attack with these threads at a cost of 10 motes and one Willpower, binding the target in the bad luck of the target’s unwantedness. If it hits the Exalt names a circumstance with the same scope and purpose as World-Shaping Artistic Vision (see p. 14). Within the next year and a day for the rest of the scene in which that situation comes up, the target number of others to attack or oppose the actions of the victim are reduced by one, to a minimum of four. A single Exalt may not stack this effect on a target, but multiple Exalts may affect the same target at the same time. This Charm can target anything less powerful than a titan (Primordial, Yozi, etc.), including Deathlords and Third Circle demons. Instead of its usual activation cost a Sidereal may pay ten motes and five Willpower to make this Charm’s attack both unblockable and undodgeable, and to extend the lifetime of the binding indefinitely.
Soft Presence Practice, pg. 37:
- 5m, 1wp, Simple, Duration is 1 day. Reduces Target Number by 1 (TN min 4), to remain concealed or subtle; includes Stealth, Manipulation based social attacks, & attempts to make unexpected social attacks, Larceny rolls for disguise, and Survival rolls to evade pursuit.
Walking Outside Fate, pg. 37-38:
- 5m, 1wp. Simple, Indefinite. Becomes a being outside of Fate; Dodge MDV less than Exalt's (Backing in Bureau of Secrets) + Stealth + Essence can not sense the Sidereal. Beings outside Fate get +3 MDV. Not an influence, but increases to Dodge MDV apply. Perception + Awareness roll when actions directly affect target; even on success, -2 to external penalty on actions directed at Sidereal, and ranged attacks impossible. Bonuses provided by hightened senses do not apply. Survival rolls to tract start at 0 dice before charms. No astrology affects Exalt, no use of Resplendencies, charm lapses immediately if anima banner flares too high. Social attacks auto fail against those who can't perceive, physical actions at -2 external penalty.
Slick Essence Replenishment, pg. 41
- Permanent. Patience draws strength from itself, nourished by its own steady purpose and reasoned conclusions. Any time the Exalt succeeds on a Bureaucracy roll that implements or furthers a plan, Policy or action of a group with Magnitude 3+ and that action is related to the Sidereal’s Motivation or Intimacies, or when the action is part of her official duties in the Celestial Bureaucracy regardless of Intimacy or Motivation, or whenever the Exalt channels Temperance on a successful roll, the Sidereal regains (Temperance x 2) motes of Essence. An Exalt can not regain more than 20 motes in a single action with any combination of Charms including this one, nor can these motes exceed her normal maximum.
Icy Hand, pg. 41-42.
- 1m or 5m 1wp, supplemental, 5 days. With the sterile honor of those responsible for maintaining the world, the Exalt touches and binds others to their proper tasks. By touching a target, which may require a Martial Arts attack, and activating this Charm at a cost of one mote the Exalt inflicts no damage but rolls Charisma + Bureaucracy against the target’s Dodge MDV. Success inflicts a compulsion to fulfill any and all duties the target has associated with their position in an office, place of authority or other formal job. Such actions are completed faithfully and without corruption, either active or passive. Duties for those without the Backing Background usually entail whatever they do for a living even if it affords no firm rules for conduct; those with Backing can at times ironically exercise more freedom, as their organization will have enumerated the rules of their comportment. A target may ignore this unnatural influence for a scene by paying one Willpower, and after paying (Sidereal’s Essence) Willpower the Charm lapses. Alternately, the target may spend (Exalt’s Essence, maximum five) Willpower immediately upon coming under the effects of this Charm to throw it off entirely, but once it is in place it must be resisted per scene. In the Mandate of Heaven a Sidereal sorcerer may enhance his dominion’s Tiger Confounds Bear Legislation with Icy Hand to improve the efficiency of the government. This adds extra successes to the action equal to the Exalt’s Essence, and for the action’s duration the Government-based difficulties of the dominion’s Constructive actions are reduced by two.
Underling Invisibility Practice, pg. 42
- 4m, simple, indefinite. Those who believe themselves above fate are doomed to see naught until it ends them. This Charm is a Stealth effect that completely conceals the physical presence of the Sidereal from those who think they are qualitatively superior to the Exalt. Those fooled by this Charm need not know the true nature of the Exalt, but they must know of the character who uses this Charm and be capable of making the judgment that they are inferior. This constraint is not necessary for those blinded enough by arrogance that they truly believe they are superior to absolutely everyone. Characters who are members of the same organization but have higher Backing than the Sidereal do not necessarily believe that they are qualitatively superior, but such enlightenment is rare. This Charm does nothing to hide one from other Sidereal Exalted. Characters benefiting from this Charm are treated as being completely undetectable by those affected, and are not valid targets for the actions of those it fools. However, those who can not detect the Sidereal’s physical presence are subject to vague feelings pertaining to the caste of the Exalt. Journeys exude a feeling that one must travel or change locations, Serenity give off a sense of contentment, Chosen of Battles tinge the air with a sense of impending conflict, Secrets a sense of déjà vu and Endings a feeling that danger is afoot. This feeling overcomes those who should perceive the Exalt; in the event the Sidereal actually hides himself, those affected by Underling Invisibility Practice would feel nothing unless someone else pointed out the Exalt in such a way that, if not for this Charm, a character should make a valid Awareness roll to detect the Exalt. Those affected by this Charm can not even acknowledge or act on others’ actions that indicate the existence of the Exalt, though they may become aware that those around them are acting on something that the affected character is somehow missing. If there is no evidence for a character to go on, they may overcome the unnatural illusion that forces them to ignore the Sidereal by spending two Willpower. If there is overwhelming evidence indicating the Sidereal’s presence, the cost drops to one Willpower, and if the Exalt’s actions directly target a character they immediately ignore the illusion at no cost. Even when ignoring the inflicted illusion, another illusion targets the Sidereal himself to keep him concealed, rendering him wholly invisible (Exalted, p. 135).
- Essence: 5
- Personal: 20/20
- Peripheral: 43/54
- Committed to Charms:
- Committed to artifacts: 11
- Willpower: 10/10
- Anima status:
- Compassion: 2
- Conviction: 5
- Temperance: 5
- Valor: 2
- (Virtue channels used: None)
 Limit Break
Pride, and gets worse the more Sidereals are around
- Join Battle: 8
- Dodge DV: 9 (+1 from hearth stone)
- Parry DV: 6
- Soak: 6/7/5, Hardness: 3L/3B, reduce attacking roll by 1 dice
- When soak charms up, +10B/10L/5A and those with less than DMDV 13 must spend 1 wp to attack, up to 3 times. Compassion less than 3 spend up to 2. Temperance less than 3 must spend a total of five Willpower to ignore the illusion for a scene, instead of three.
- Move: 5
- Dash: 11
- Join Debate: 8
- Dodge MDV: 10 (+1 from hearthstone)
- Parry MDV: 6 (+1 from hearthstone)
 Health Levels
- -0, -0, -0, -0, -0, -0, -1, -1, -2, -2, -4, Incapacitated
- (wounds are designated as bashing, lethal or
- Discreet Essence Armor (Artifact 2): Soak: +5L/+5B Hardness: 2L/2B Mobility: -0 Fatigue: 0 Attune:5
- Starmetal adds 1 to lethal and bash hardness and reduces attacker's damage rolls by -1 external penalty
- Pillar: 1
- Quiver: 1
- Key: 2
- Sorcerer: 3
- Treasure Trove: 3
- Give us at least two or three short paragraphs
- Give at least one short paragraph
 Each Member
 Each Circlemate
- Earned: 50xp, 10 background
- Spent: 6 xp on Bureau specialty, 3 bg on Dart class ship, 1 on Connections: Silver, 1 Connections: Gold, 7 xp on Occult to 3, 16xp on charms (Resplendent Mark or whatever, and Tell-Tale Symphony), 8xp for Occult 4th Exc, 8xp for Awareness 4th
- Unspent: 5 exp, 5 background