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Ancient History
Magic isn't just spells and spirits, totems and talismans. There are places where mana swirls and eddies, and those special people who find them can bend them to their will...or be subject to the power of the place themselves.

Black Mana Pool
In the hidden Andes lie dusty places long forgotten, where the dust and moulder of ancient peoples lie thick on the carved stones. One such chamber lies within the hidden heart of a mountain, and can only be gained by passing through a long and darksome passage. The outer reaches of this descent are roughly eroded, the paving stones cracked and skewed, the images writ on the walls worn by time and the passing of ancient hands. In some places, the living rock of the earth may yet be seen, where the carven passage has partially collapsed.

Farther down, the stale, dry air has preserved the intricate stonework of the forgotten empire that crafted this place. Macabre scenes and skull-faced heiroglyphs adorn the walls between supporting columns of stone. Blind, albino cave-spiders spin their gossamer webs, and scuttle from any light that protrudes in that empty place. Half a mile down, this Tarterian road ends in an unlit chamber, swept free of the detritus of centuries by an unknown hand. It's walls are empty of arcane formulae, no crumbling mummy or oracle may here be found. The ceiling is stout and reinforced, but bears no gems to mark the stars in the sky. There is nothing in the the pool.

A circular pool of black blood, filled almost to the brim, still liquid and of unknown age. The astral resounds with the dark and terrible power within that pool, which sets horrible and still. A void darker than the surrounding blackness. Waiting to be used...

[ Spoiler ]

Ludsgate Forge
Since the Awakening, the clang of hammers and the surge of sparks has sounded within Ludsgate Forge within at Ludsgate, England. The propetiers of the forge, the appropriately named Ludsgate family, have a long history as blacksmiths, tinkerers, and mechanical engineers. Before the Awakening, the stout Ludsgate Forge was simply an automechanic's garage, but when the Awakening came Tony Ludsgate found himself an Enchanter adept, and quickly changed his occupation. The trait has apparently stayed within the varied Ludsgate family, and Tony's heir Ludmilla (the prettiest ogre you've ever seen) continues the tradition with her half-brothers Vili and Ve (both dwarfs, Tony should not have been in charge of naming) and their cousin Carl (a giant). All four are initiated Enchanter adepts of no mean skill, and together maintain their "ancestral forge," supplying foci and telesma to any customer who can meet their price, no matter what race.

The family's quirks, however, gets weirder. All of them are Chaos magicians, and the Ludsgate Forge is much more than your bargain-basement Enchanting Shop. It is quite possible the Ludsgates hold the only Enchanting Facility not in government or megacorporate hands, able to handle any number of diverse applications, from acid-etching, monofilament edging and electroplating to Dikote™, growing crystals from chemical baths, and the manufacture of custom firearms or weaponry whenever the customer requests. The Ludsgates typically spend hours happily working in the forge and shops, huddling within mystic circles of glowing wire and crystal, or researching within the vast database of Enchanting formulae and alchemical lore they possess. The Ludsgates have been known to discretely rent out time within the forge to others, often in return for rare telesma, formulae and exotic materials. Ludmilla herself is also a known to raise and breed stone toads, taking their stones only after they have died naturally.

Rumors suggest a secret vault beneath the shop, which some say holds an ancient druidic standing stone, and others say a cache of powerful unique foci.

[ Spoiler ]

Null Spot
A rare conjunction of manalines occaisionally results in a negation of mana, rather than a place of power. One such location lies in New York, in the penthouse suite of the Gosset Building. The various floors of the 30-story building are leased out to any number of A and AA corporation, but the top floor of the Gosset Building is retained by a professional, androgynous elf fixer who calls itself Gemini. Typically a dealer in information, Gemini utilizes the Null Spot to limit the abilities of magicians to interfere with its dealings...and, for the right price, will extend that protection to certain people or objects for a time.

[ Spoiler ]

The Rune Tree
A twisted, dead oak tree, lying within a desolate and gray plane of broken rock and permafrost in the northernmost reaches of the Scandinavian Union, in the state of Norway. The tree might have been dead for ten years, or for ten centuries. The Lappish shamans avoid it, as do the Grandfather Elk, but it holds a strange attraction to many Nordic cults and magicians, especially the Asatru. Some claim it was this is the Tree of Woe where Odin hung or nailed himself to gain knowledge of the runes. Others claim it is but a fragment of the Axis Mundi. One adept, long-struggling to reach the place, was heard to mutter a fraction of rhyme before dying:
An oak grows upon an upland plain,
Rain does not wet it, it rots not in the heat,
He has sustained a score of hardships...

[ Spoiler ]

The Svartskoli
The Black College is a painful, but powerful school. Typically, students are beginning magicians who are tricked into entering by offers of forbidden knowledge...knowledge which the school willingly provides. For three years, the student is held in a room beneath a cellar, kept in constant darkness and surrounded by illusions and given only their schoolbooks to study. The hidden masters of the school are said to move it often, and to take no more than three students at once. Currently, it is believed to exist beneath Chiba in Japan.

Magical circles from around the world wish to destroy the Svartskoli and its dread masters, rumored to include some of the darker and more treacherous fae. By the same token, its students lead secretive lives, for other magicians covet their schoolbooks.

[ Spoiler ]

Evil... vegm.gif I like it.
the images writ on the walls

Think it's supposed to be written?

never prt with them

Should be part.

But i like them, if only i was advanced enough in SR-du to use them...
Ancient History
'Writ' is an acceptable archaic past tense of 'write.' Among other things.

'prt' -ah, well, nobody's perfect. Must be the evil Toturi was sensing.
The Dark Side, I sense.

ODs on SW Ep3 dead.gif
I think we all know who will be eaten first.
Thanks for these! grinbig.gif cyber.gif
Ahhh, learn something new then everyday eh? I've only ever thought of "writ" as a document, ussually legal, such as a "writ of passage".

I wonder what would happen if you tried to get your various knick knacks published AH? I could see a large portion of DS fainting...
Ancient History
This crap? Nah. I could see a large portion of DS bitching.
Wounded Ronin
You forgot to specify background music for this thread.
Fantastic as usual, AH.

*Also ODs on SW Ep3* dead.gif
Why in God's name are you not doing more freelancing work for fanpro? Or who ever for that matter? And just exactly how much free time do you have?


Ancient History
In retrospect...ah, hindsight is 20/20...this was a bad idea, the result of far too much whimsy and not enough thought.

See, at heart I'm the equivalent of the little old lady that doesn't want to throw anything away. Books, comics, RPGs, movies...I see good material or ideas, I hoard them away. And not-so-good ideas. Like this stuff. It's fine when you take the time and energy to do it justice, but I was being lazy.

I'll tell y'all something I always wanted to put together, but never quite got around to:

Grimberg's Almanack
Not quite Poor Richard's, but a small and ubiquitous publication, covering various holidays, holy days, the lunar calender, important astronomical dates and conjunctions by various calenders, anniversaries of important dates in magical history, etc. A limited-use but possibly invaluable item, it helps a magician to determine when and where astral phenomena might occur.

Oh, any magician could probably tell you to that Stonehenge has a bit more juice on Samhain, but what about a crossroads at midnight under a new moon? Such temporary and localized magical locales might function as small power sites, or as nexi that attract paranormal phenomena.

The use of Grimberg's Almanack requires a bit of work on the part of Player and Gamemaster alike, but generally speaking it serves as a vehicle to carry the plot along.

First, the magician needs to decide what they're looking for, then consult the Almanack and make a Magic Background test against an appropriate target number:

local area (+1)
well known (-1)
world famous (-3, not cumulative with well known)
auspicious time (4)
auspicious place (5)
auspicious time and place (7)
aspected power site (rating+5)
power site or background count (rating +6)
free spirit domain or ghost haunt (2 x Force)
site of destiny (cool.gif

Dowsing or Astology may be useful complementary skills.

If the player is looking for something in the local area, they need a local map, to find the mix of features the Almanack suggests. Local places and times of power are easier to get to and less crowded in most cases than more well-known ones farther away, but are often harder to spot because, well, they're not as well known.

An auspicious time grants the magician +1 dice on a single specific spell, ritual, astral quest, or other magical activity.

An auspicious place acts as a rating 2 power site aspected for a specific spell, ritual, astral quest, or other magical activity.

An auspicious place at an auspicious time is a temporary rating 4 power site aspected for a specific spell, ritual, astral quest, or other magical activity.

Just a few examples of a use of the Almanack:
  • Mama Iaga, a mambo, needs to contact a ghost (at least Force 3), and consults the almanack. The almanack suggests going to a graveyard at midnight under a new moon, and walk widdershins around it. She decides on New Orleans Cemetary No. 1 as her best bet.
  • Johann Georg Hohmann, a hermetic mage, wants to know the best time and place to gather herbal mineral radicals, and consults the almanack. The almanack suggest gathering nightshade blooms by the light of Aldebaran at a crossroads. Johann needs to go out for a trip to the country.
  • Medaron Ti'Ailiu searches the almanack for a portent of things to come. She discovers that at noon on All Saints Day at Druid Hill in Massachusetts, something important will happen. Medaron marks her calender and hopes she can be there to aid-or stop-whatever will happen in time.
I don't know about you but I could seriously see this book being a yearly updated basic stock standard to every hermetic library and more than a few shamen keeping one around in their lodges.
Ancient History
Yaar, that was the general idea.
Ancient History
QUOTE (Thanos007)
Why in God's name are you not doing more freelancing work for fanpro? Or who ever for that matter? And just exactly how much free time do you have?


In order: Gimme time, we'll see, and 'free time' generally includes periods I should be eating, sleeping or studying.
*WearzManySkins activates Thread Necro Spell* This thread is now a live. grinbig.gif


In light of the many things that have been released into publications would you make any changes to your above inputs?

Ancient History
Whoa, unholy thread necromancy.

A couple changes in terminology to bring everything in line with Street Magic, but the only one that would require significant revamp is probably the Rune Tree as the rules for Rune Lore have been removed. Possibly I'd change it to allow the character to take an appropriate critter or spirit power as a metamagic technique. None of the fluff material is directly contradictory to anything currently released or due to be released.
Rune Tree is very nice but yes Rune Lore is not there but there is Galdor ie Lore of Runes.

Also the Runemaster uses the Futhark runes so Rune Lore would be a good thing for them.

Wounded Ronin
This was an oldie but goodie.
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