Exalted – Lunars (Casteless/Chimera)May 18, 2010
There is a fourth option for players, though it comes with significant drawbacks. Instead of receiving the magical, form-fixing tattoos from the No Moons, characters can choose to remain Casteless. This comes with some benefits, but there is a price to be paid.
Primarily, Casteless receive only two Favored Attributes, but they can choose which Attributes they would like. They are not limited. Their anima power changes from Full Moon to Changing Moon to No Moon and back, based on the phase of the moon, so they have more versatility, but they might not have the power they need when they need it.
Most importantly, however, Casteless are susceptible to a condition called Chimerism, whereby they accrue Wyld mutations simply for using their shapeshifting powers. Their Exaltation, warped as it is by the Wyld, has no stability, so their control over it is imperfect. This leads to physical deformity, uncontrolled shapeshifting, and, eventually, insanity.
Lunars who have fallen into this state are called Chimerae, and they are generally wild, ravening beasts, more feral than sentient, and possessed of mad whims and urges that are rarely capable of even interacting with others except through the paradigm of predator/prey. Other Lunars hunt down these Chimerae, murdering them viciously and setting their Exaltations free to seek a new host, hopefully one that the Silver Pact can tattoo to prevent a repeat of the cycle.
Some Casteless willingly accept the risks of becoming Chimerae, choosing flexibility over security, while others are merely ignorant of the dangers (and may never have even been approached by the Silver Pact, so are unaware that they have any other option). In either case, eventually, they will have to deal with the threat of Chimerism, and most do so by either devolving into formless chaos or joining the Silver Pact and being assigned a Caste.