Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Gods of Magic

In the DCC RPG version of magic there are no schools of magic; but they did exist at one time, now most are fallen into ruins.  If a PC is lucky they might find a Master to teach the magic arts, but it is a risky business.  This is because the usual method for acquiring Arcane Knowledge is by making deals with other worldly powers.  According to the DCC Beta Rules… none of these powers have the wizards best interests in mind, and are really just out collecting souls.  So that kindly old man that just offered to teach you magic probably just wants to get you back to his place so he can sacrifice you to his Patron…


I’ve taken the Pantheon published in DCC#35 and re-tasked some of them to provide Good & Neutral Patrons so that there can be a place for wizards in Criestine society… other than at the center of a bonfire. 

Prior to the Interregnum, the normal process for becoming a recognized wizard went like this: at the age of 5 children are taken to a temple of any God(dess) of Magic.  Wandering clerics of Delvyr sometimes stumble upon, or are directed to talented children and then take them on as apprentices.  Sometimes a child is lucky enough to be discovered by agents of the Engineers Guild, which then fosters and teaches them the Guilds Arcane Secrets.  If a child is found to have the talent then the temple that discovers them is the one that does the teaching.  By the age of 15 they would be ready to enter the First Arcane Circle.  Those who become wizards are required by Imperial Law (if male) to add the suffix “Th-” in place of the first letter of their name.  If female, the suffix “Cey-” is used instead.  This is to make them recognizable to normal folk.  The wizard may then use the Patron Bond Spell to offer service (usually) to the God(dess) of Magic who trained them.  If accepted by the God(dess) they will be sent a proxy spirit to act as guide and tutor to assist the wizard in gaining future levels.  This spirit is what gets summoned whenever the wizard casts an  Invoke Patron Spell… not the Deity.  Only a cleric can do that. 

During the Interregnum the process was slowed, but it continued most strongly in the larger cities.  This is due to the fact that many of the most likely candidates for wizard training have been killed off by the frequent feuds/wars between the nobles: either as soldiers or collateral damage.  Most folks are so busy trying to survive that they don’t even care to have the little bit of education offered by the clerics of Shul.  The association of education and learning with wizards has led to a mild prejudice against those who are educated.  Some few folk are still being found and fostered by the Engineers Guild, as well as by wandering clerics of Delvyr, or at nearly forgotten temples of Shul.

Many others still choose to take their chances with finding teachers willing to take on apprentices.  Sadly, the chance of dieing at the hands of a potential teacher is very real.  However, the benefits of magic to a society are too great to ignore even by the peoples of the Criestine Empires who have been disproportionately abused by Evil Wizard Tyrants.

After the Interregnum; and with the rise of the New Empire of Crieste there are more opportunities for wizard training.  Particularly if the wizard is interested in joining the followers of the Goddess Aristemis on the battlefield.  However, most of the schools and civic functions of the Empire are strained due to the fact that the armies fighting against the Scourge still consume most of the Empire’s resources… and maintaining wizards is expensive.

The Gods of Magic:

Any of the following deities will send a spirit to wizards that will act as a Patron acceptable for "good wizards."  A wizard in good standing with one of these Patrons will be considered safe from persecution so long as they obey the laws of the realm.

Name              Alignment         Spheres                Gender          Magical influences

Amun Tor             N            know & magic            m            Protector of Mysteries/ the Tester

In his role as a Lord of Magic, Amun Tor's main duty is to see that magical knowledge isn't given out to those who have not earned the right.  Especially since through him, wizards gain access to the True Speech of Making and Binding.  Amun Tor has few temples and clerics: so wizards must search diligently to find them in order to learn magic from him, or invoke spirits in his name.  If found he grants access to animating & cognitive magic/ true speech of making & binding. 

Azuarr N            know & magic            f            the transitive planes

Her duty is to guard and control how/ where/when the 4 transitive planes (astral, ethereal, shadow, & the dreaming) may be accessed by mortals.  She doesn't rule these domains.  She is also responsible for enforcing the limits on how far wizards may "re-order" matter. She often requires her disciples to be homeless wanderers and/or artists; living on the fringes.  She often demands works of great skill to be sacrificed for her favor.  grants Dimensional / Transmutation / & Summoning Magic

Delvyr             NG            knowledge      m            Light/adventuring/abjurations

Clerics of this Deity move all through the lands to find people with the talent for magic and train their apprentices to be self-sufficient and mobile. Wizards who aspire to an adventuring life sometimes seek Delvyr as a patron for he can teach many skills and spells to aide the adventuring wizard, but always demands that Wizards in his service make copies of all the knowledge they acquire and deliver them to his temples for dissemination to the people through the temples of Shul. Grants practical & defensive magic/ bardic powers/ illusions

Shul                 LN            knowledge      f            Teaching/Diplomacy/Scholarly Works

Wizards who have been accepted by Shul are expected to teach apprentices, and so she grants them powers and spells to facilitate these goals.  She also grants them access to special and rare knowledge from her personal archive to those wizards whom she deems worthy.  Grants spells for communication/ charm/, defensive magic, & for enchanting items

Aristemis            NG            knowledge      f            Battle/Espionage/Strategy

The War Maiden is the patron Goddess of wizards who use their magic in combat.  Whether it is in a dungeon hallway deep under a forgotten ruin, or standing next to their liege on the castle wall laying waste to the enemy with bouncy fireballs.  She requires supplicants to be brave, but prudent and to complete quests, vanquish foes with dueling, or enlist in the army.  grants access to abjuration, evocation, charm, enchantment, & illusion spells to help wizards in her service.

For Elves only:
Ireth                CG            know & mag f            Stars/Divinations/Natural magics
The Mother of the Elves only responds to her children and those rare few Non-Elves who have impressed her sufficiently, as she does not entrust non-elves with the powers of divination lightly.  She is the Astrologer looking to the heavens for signs and portents, but she also cares deeply for all living
creatures and so devotes some of her time to assisting in maintaining the Natural Balance and the needs of her children.  She demands love & respect for nature, & obedience to her will from her children and grants them knowledge of past, present, and future events in detail not available to any others. Divination, scrying, & any nature spells are her specialty.  She can give access to most types of spells if there is a need.  Demands services to the Elven community and sometimes the sacrifice of skilled works of art, or quests for her continued good humor.

Elemental Patrons:
The powers that control the raw 5 elements: available to all wizards as patrons… assuming the wizard can negotiate the pact.

Name                                   Alignment           Spheres        Gender      Magical influences / Title

Denithae (Faerie Queen)            N            Nature            f            Flower of Life [generative / restorative]

Mercurial of temperament, the mother of the faeries is willing to grant favors and boons to those who serve her faithfully.  She is the guardian of the feminine life force of Nature, so her magic has generative, healing, and animating qualities.  She has mastery over all plants & animals.  She only accepts those who are willing to lay down their lives to defend nature against harm.  Grants access to animating, healing, plant based, and summoning magic.  One never knows the price for her continued favor… one time it is pretty diamonds, the next it is a few hairs from the head of Madrah… it all depends on the request and her mood.  She sends a faerie creature of some kind to act as her proxy if summoned by an Invoke Patron Spell.

Madrah (Faerie King)            N            Nature                m            The Hunter [destructive / violence]

The King of the faeries is not to be trifled with petty requests, and those who seek his patronage would do well to become fierce hunters first.  Madrah in his visage of the Faerie King is the embodiment of the male aspects of nature: the hunter, the territorial instincts, and all things sharp and predatory.  He is the embodiment of the thunderstorm or hurricane.  Those wizards who gain his favor are granted access to magic that can aid in hunting, guarding, weather control, and fighting.  He usually demands worthy hunting trophies, dangerous quests, or sex as sacrifice for his continued favor.

Fenwar                                    N            Fire                 m            Prince of Fire

The Prince of fire is born of the Gods Ildavir & Amun Tor and is the eldest & most powerful of the Fire elementals.  He is the embodiment of living fire who governs and regulates the other fire elementals to efficiently balance the forces of fire/heat in nature on behalf of his mother Ildavir.  All normal and magical fires are his purview, but he has no power over the celestial fires of Ormazd.  Anywhere there is fire, heat, or lightning is considered holy to him.  As a patron he will dispatch a fire elemental to act on his behalf to answer Invoke Patron Spells.  He demands that the wizard burn rare and expensive items in sacrifice for his continued favor.  Grants access to all fire & fire based magic

Daenthar                                L            Áereth             m            Lord of Áereth

 To Dwarves he is known as the Stone Father, or the Hallowed Forge; but to everyone else he is the Lord of the element of Áereth (earth).  He is one of the more powerful of the Gods, having been born of the Old Gods Ildavir & Choranus.  He rules over all things of Áereth, stone, metal, soil… and the powerful hoards of Áereth elementals that help (along with Dwarven mining) to regulate the balance of the element Áereth on behalf of his mother Ildavir.  He demands the wizard sacrifice exquisitely crafted items decorated with expensive gems and made from precious metals, or sculptures of expensive stone for his continued good will.  He will dispatch an elemental to act at his proxy when the wizard casts the Invoke Patron Spell.
Grants access to all Áereth (earth) related, and crafting Magic

Thalass                                   N            Water              m            Prince of Water

The River Father is the son of Pelagia and Delvyr and is the eldest and most powerful of the water elementals and he rules this domain, acting to keep the balance of the forces of water in nature.  He inherited the position after his mother lost her sanity to the death of her daughter at the hands of Zhühn.  Formerly responsible for inland waterways and streams, his new role encompasses water wherever it is found.  Usually demands that fine liquors, wines, or expensive meals be fed into the nearest body of water as a sacrifice for his continued good favor.  He will dispatch a water elemental to act on his behalf when a wizard casts the Invoke Patron Spell.  Grants any water and healing related magic

Variag                                     C            Air                   m            Prince of Air

The master of wind is born of the God Valdreth the Lord of Time and Azuarr the Traveler.  He is the eldest and strongest of the air elementals and is most at home in the frozen waste where he may unleash his full strength.  Yet he is the master of all manifestations of air, from the howling hurricane to the masterful playing of a flute; all are sacred to him.  He makes sure that the forces of air are balanced within Nature and usually demands music, or expensive/novel trinkets to be tossed about by the wind until they are broken, or demands services/quests be completed for his continued good favor.  He will dispatch an air elemental to act on his behalf when a wizard casts the Invoke Patron Spell.  Grants access to all air, cold, and sonic based magic

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