A Few Abyssal Charms More

September 29, 2010

So, for whatever reason, I’ve been really looking at Abyssals over the last week or so, and some strange Charms have come to me (some of them in fever dreams). I’ve written them up, tested them mechanically (by letting the forums pick them apart), and now I present them for your enjoyment!

Subsuming the Pious Spirit
10 motes, 1 Willpower; Mins: Larceny 4, Essence 4; Type: Supplemental
Keywords: Avatar (2), Combo-OK, Obvious, Touch
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: Face-Drinking Bite

It is often not enough for the murderers of the world to simply annihilate a body.  Sometimes, they need a body to murder hope itself.  This Charm enhances an Abyssal’s innate bite attack (see Manual of Exalted Power: Abyssals, p. 95).  Instead of draining life from the victim, however, this Charm allows the Abyssal to force herself into the victim.  As with Face-Drinking Bite, the Abyssal gains no motes from the attack, but must have been able to do so for this Charm to function.  Further, the target must have a physical body for this Charm to affect them, meaning it cannot affect spirits.

As this Charm takes effect, the Abyssal begins to dematerialize, her body growing misty and faint.  When she is entirely immaterial, a process taking no more than an instant, she flows into his victim through the wound she just made, commandeering his body and shunting his consciousness to the back of his mind.  Until she is evicted, the Abyssal uses the body’s Physical Attributes and Appearance, but all her other stats remain the same.  She gains literal (and possibly legal) possession of all the body’s possessions, though she does not gain metaphysical ownership.  She respires Essence as the host does.  Most relevant, however, the Abyssal looks, in every way, like the victim.  In effect, she is him.  Though social analysis may show the Abyssal is not, in fact, the victim, she physically matches him in every way, with one small difference.  Though it inflicts no Health Level damage to the Abyssal, the wound through which she entered the victim will never heal so long as she inhabits the body.  For the duration of this effect, the original inhabitant is considered Inactive, and is not a valid target for most effects, with the notable exception of Social attacks made by the inhabiting Abyssal.

The victim can expel the Abyssal by spending three Willpower, but the victim cannot spend more than one Willpower per day.  Worse, for the victim, while he is inhabited by the Abyssal, he does not regain Willpower daily.  He instead rolls once per week to regain Willpower.  Killing the host is also an option, albeit one that is somewhat final.  Should the body die, the Abyssal is ephemerally ejected from the body, and stunned and Inactive for one Miscellaneous Action as she suddenly and violently shifts back into a material state.  If the Abyssal runs out of willpower points for any reason, this charm ends, ejecting him in the same manner as if the host body had died.  If, for some reason, the original inhabitant suffers damage, this damage is instead inflicted upon the Abyssal, with no chance for avoidance as though the Abyssal had paid Health Levels as a Charm activation cost.

Hollowed Locust Shell
15 motes, 2 Willpower; Mins: Larceny 5, Essence 5; Type: Simple (Dramatic)
Keywords: Avatar (3)
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: Subsuming the Pious Spirit

There are those who are content to dwell within others’ shells, and then there are those who insist those shells become their own.  While inhabiting a body, the Abyssal may activate this Charm, which renders her Inactive for five days (or one day if activated during Calibration).  At the end of this time, if the Abyssal has not been evicted from the body, the body’s original owner perishes, and the body becomes the Abyssal’s permanently.  The body’s previous owner’s hun and po souls immediately depart, most often becoming ghosts (and usually with a negative Intimacy toward the Abyssal).  Any alteration in the Abyssal’s Physical Attributes must be paid for as a Training effect (and should the Physical Attributes lower, the Abyssal has the relevant XP refunded immediately).  Further, the Abyssal must immediately raise (or lower) the body’s Appearance to match her Essence rating, though doing so requires no training time.  As a final benefit, the Abyssal gains metaphysical ownership of the body’s possessions.  For all intents and purposes, it is now her body.  As an unfortunate side effect, she resumes respiring Essence as normal for a deathknight.

Ghoul-Corpse Cannibalization
None (1 Willpower); Mins: Lore 3, Essence 3; Type: Permanent
Keywords: Obvious, Reactor
Duration: Permanent
Prerequisite Charms: Essence-Draining Touch

An Abyssal understands that, like all living things, all Essence is dying.  It nestles in the unquiet dead and can be tapped like a keg.  This Charm grants the Abyssal the ability to drain all the Essence from one walking dead he controls.  When activated as an innate, non-Charm, Reflexive action, the targeted zombie shudders, as each Health Level it possesses is converted into a mote of Essence and shunted to its Abyssal master.  The Abyssal cannot choose to take less than the full amount of Essence, and any Essence in excess of his mote pools is wasted.  Motes regained by the Abyssal restore Peripheral Essence first.  This Charm destroys the targeted walking dead, regardless of how many motes the Abyssal takes, and an Abyssal cannot regain more than seven motes from a single zombie.


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