The Blessing of Shirvain
Ralaith, as the Immortal of bitterness, does not offer his blessing easily. It is perhaps those that resemble him the most - distant, aloof, even forlorn - that draw his attention. Those who have understood suffering are often the wisest of men and women, and it is those individuals in whom the Immortal finds common ground. The Blessing of Shirvain appears as the distorted image of a clock on the back of the Blessed's neck, one that changes with the time - but not the global time that everyone knows. Instead, it is the pocket of time that the wielder exists on, independently of everyone else. For the user of Shirvain is one who can manipulate their own time - and others - in markedly odd ways. As the mark grows in tier, the distorted clock will grow and connect other distorted clocks with lines of strange numerical chronological figures only Ralaith seems to be able to translate. Curiously, it seems that those marked by Ralaith always have a perfect sense of the time.
The clocks can appear anywhere and are as vivid as any tattoo, but do not fade. The numbers and measurements of time are inscrutable to all but the Immortal.
|Ability Name||Ability Description|
|Compendium of Immortal Wisdom||This book exists as one that may store an infinite amount of knowledge for the wielder to explore. The wielder must experience this knowledge first hand to record within the book. The compendium exists as a portion of the blessing itself, and may be stored in a sliver of time and brought forth upon the user willing it. The Compendium does not exist as a normal book. While the pages feel as if merely a high quality parchment, all of the contents of the book are blessed by Ralaith and the way in which this information is accessed is largely variable. You may turn a page and find that there is no words, but instead an image. This image can tap into the past, and play visions in the reader's mind. You may guide your fingertip over a mere word, and entire paragraphs will consume the page of the book, retracting when you are done with them. The Compendium of Immortal Wisdom recycles information that is unimportant or unnecessary, and by the end of a long life a true follower of Ralaith will find that their Compendium is a library of great knowledge that is both true and genuine. Upon the death of the wielder of Shirvain, the Compendium finds itself in the hands of Ralaith, and he will read it and study upon all the knowledge they have gained before offering this Compendium to a library of great pieces of writing.|
|The Bear of Ralaith||Those blessed with Shirvain are granted with a large spirit bear familiar, similar to that of a Sev'ryn familiar. This bear, though at this level cannot effect the Material world, has the unique ability to increase the strength and endurance of the Shirvain, granting a moderate boost when close by. In this form, the bear is a shimmering arrays of colors, all looking like woven strands. It tends to be the species of bear most commonly encountered nearest to the Favored's home.|
|Scholarly Minds I||Add an extra three skill points to any one of the following skills: Meditation, Teaching, Research, Philosophy, Writing. These points can send a skill over the 100 threshold.|
|Psychometry||For the chosen of Ralaith, time is an open pool. While not gifted with the perspective to see all time forward and back as Ralaith can (as the weight of constant sight forwards and backwards would collapse almost any non Immortal mind) a marked can channel their sight through artifacts and mediums to gain insight that would have otherwise been obscured from a more casual observer. The first level of this ability allows a marked of Ralaith to take an item and read the impressions and memories cast upon it. Instances of great passion or importance will rise first, requiring more minor impressions to be gleaned after hours of concentration with the object. At this stage, looking into the past can only go a limited distance, the space of ten years. But almost any event in the object’s history can be seen or experienced within that time. Depending on the intensity of the emotion or event the knowledge is experienced in one of two ways, either in visions ‘whispers’ or immersion ‘shouts’. An axe used to carve up a family, wielded by a man magically compelled to destroy the things he loves would be so intense a moment that the marked would be drawn into the vision, feel the spray of blood on their face, feel the emotions roiling within them, and see the axe carve bone and flesh...whereas a rope used to tie up a criminal might only impart itself as a brief sensation of rough rope on skin and the vision of a man trussed up. Players are encouraged to take creative liberty with this ability. Knowledge is not always comfortable to gain. Easy questions like “Who does this belong to, what was it used for? What important event was it a part of” are the easiest to ask and tend to make the chosen of Ralaith the greatest investigators in Idalos.|
|Eyes of the Antiquated||An ability that allows the wielder to view the ‘weight of time’ upon an object or an individual, allowing them to determine the antiquity of that person or object. Many use this ability in order to determine forgeries of so-called relics, but it can be just as useful on a person. At the level of favored, exact age is not a number but a feeling. Long lived individuals will feel ‘heavy’ with time or experience when observed by a Shirvain. This is, interestingly, a useful tool in determining those who are trying to fake their age or for especially long lived individuals like Mortalborn or Liches. At Adored, the Shirvain has used this ability enough to be able to tell the age, within three years, of an object or person and at Exalted it is said that the marked can determine down to the length of breaks one is from their beginning.|
|Bear Brother||The Favored Shirvain gains a natural affinity for all bears, finding them more docile and welcoming in his presence. He gains the ability to communicate with all bears, regardless of species, and is at home in their dens. Often, mother bears will view him as a cub, and will shelter him and offer him food if he so chooses.|
|Great Minds||With a touch, the user and the touched individual can link their past experiences and share a detailed array of events with one another, from childhood experiences to great findings in the world. In this link time flows stagnantly on the outside world, and so while others may perceive this as two individuals merely meeting with a handshake, a great deal of information could be shared, the user and the one they contact able to look through the lens of time passed to share knowledge of previous events. This can be overwhelming to those who are not Shirvain and caution is warned in attempting to share too much information.|
|Temporary Restoration||With the Domain of Time, many things once lost to the ages can be restored. This ability allows a Shirvain to take a broken object or one that has rusted to nearly nothing and restore it to the grandeur it once had. For this ability to work they must have most of the item before them, or at lease one complete piece. The hilt of a sword, for instance. Once the object leaves their hand, it will swiftly age back to the state they found it in and any material restored to it with the magic will vanish. Some Shirvain keep the rusted hilt of a dagger with them to restore when they need it. This ability could work on any object the Shirvain can hold with one or both hands so long as the damage done to it was at least a Cycle in the past.|
|Pocket of Time (Minor)||With this ability, the user can alter the flow of time for himself or an individual within a fifteen foot radius. This can last for up to a bit (a minute), but at this stage of Shirvain the ability lacks in power. You can speed up the flow of time to allow for the individual to move and process things more quickly, or you may slow a foe to reduce their reflexes, reactive ability and their speed. The effects are notable, and many would say significant, but a foe who outclasses you significantly will not be brought to par with you merely by slowing them down. This can only affect one individual at a time, and can only be cast many times per trial. One's wavelength must stabilize for two bits before this can be re-utilized on them.|
|Ability Name||Ability Description|
|Pocket of Time (Moderate)||The moderate variant of the Pocket of Time may reduce the speed, reflexes, etc., of a chosen individual by a third, or bolster these in an ally or themselves. This lasts for up to a bit, and can be re-utilized many times in one trial before exhausting one's touch with time for the day. One's wavelength must stabilize for two bits before it is utilized on the same target again.|
|Smell the Genius||A Bear has one of the more remarkable noses of the animal kingdom. A Shirvain is granted this power at Adored with an added benefit. Not only can they memorize and track smells over miles, but they can also smell both Wisdom and Bitterness on people. The stronger the sorrow and spite within another, the greater the smell off them will be. Likewise, knowledge and legendary skills have a strong smell associated. A Shirvain would have trouble describing the smell to another, but other Shirvain understand. With a whiff, a Shirvain can ascertain a general idea of the collected wisdom or bitterness of any person they're in proximity with.|
|Scholarly Minds II||Add an extra six skill points to any one of the following skills: Meditation, Teaching, Research, Philosophy, Writing, these skill points can exceed the 100 cap.|
|Secrets of Serendipity||This is known to be perhaps one of the sweeter abilities of Shirvain, one that allows the user to discover secrets of an individual that are not detrimental or locked within the echoes of their mind, but rather things that they like, enjoy, and the qualities they find admirable. If used on a PC, the one targeted may provide the wielder of Shirvain with three or four of their character’s favorite things. The way in which this knowledge is gained is by physical manifestation; if someone enjoys the taste of strawberries for example, this links with the user’s mind and they can ‘feel’ the taste of strawberries in their mouth. Their senses connect to the past of the individual they are gaining knowledge from, and their preferences from scents, to hobbies, to favored treats become crystal clear in the mind of the one using this ability. Persons who have been observed upon by this ability gain their own page in the Compendium, one where positive things about them as well as things you learned from them personally can be read and looked back upon. Often, it is said that Ralaith reads upon the knowledge of Daia and re-lives the adventures that he and she long ago shared.|
|Skepticism||Skepticism is an inherent ability of the marked of Ralaith. This ability strengthens their mind and prevents them from being forced or influenced into compulsions or actions contrary to their personality, including by means of magical manipulation save for those extremely skilled at such magics. However, those who are Exalted by Ralaith or Champion him are entirely immune to mental compulsion that forces them to act out of their moral alignment. This ability can also be used to defend another from such manipulations, though at the expense of your own mental fortitude until you retract this protection to your own mind.|
|Psychometry (Moderate)||At this stage the ability evolves in unique ways. An Adored can read the history of a location by closing their eyes and concentrating on the area around them rather than a specific object. Their ability to see into the past evolves to the space of fifty years. Visions older than this can be accessed, but they must be visions of great emotion or historical importance to be drawn from the nether of time. Psychometry is faster now and even slight impressions on an object can be read with greater speed and clarity than anyone operating at a minor level. At this stage of Psychometry, a user begins to have impressions of the future as well. This manifests as ‘premonitions’ making an Adored difficult to ambush or sneak up on.|
|Deceleration Shield||Raliath's chosen can sometimes get themselves into danger. For those times, Ralaith grants this ability. Twice a trial, a Shirvain can slow time down in the area around themselves in order to avoid injury. This change is enough to slow most projectiles and swings enough that a Shirvain can dodge them, but little else. But inches from the Shirvain's body is an invisible layer of distorted time which slows the passage of anything trying to pass through. This distorted time is the same for the Shirvain and any missile or swing they attempt will pass through the same barrier, slowing at first before picking up its natural speed. This effect lasts for half a break.|
|Touch of Infirmity||With a touch, a Shirvain can confer onto most what they might consider a terrifying fate. When a Shirvain initiates contact with another mortal they can confer 'old age' upon them for the remainder of the trial. Old age will force the victim to instantly assume an elderly age for their race. While their general fitness will allay the effects, the Touch of Infirmity imparts all the aches, pains, and limitations of the elderly onto the victim. This effect lasts the remainder of the Trial and cannot be used on the same person for three trials thereafter. During this time their appearance and health will remain that of an elder, although this ability never causes any fatal complications related to a body's physical age. Most fear this ability immensely, forcing them to confront their own mortality.|
|The Bear of Ralaith II||Growing in power, the Bear of Ralaith gains the ability to flicker in and out of the Material world, granting it the power to attack or defend the Shirvain. Still able to bend time around it, the bear moves insanely fast and is nearly impossible to hit. However, it cannot remain corporeal for more than six trills at a time, and must wait double that to return to the material world. At this level, the bear takes commands from the Shirvain's subconscious, reacting before the Shirvain is aware of his own desires.|
|Ability Name||Ability Description|
|Pocket of Time (Major)||This final variant of the Pocket of Time greatly alters the flow of time for an individual. If slowed, they move at a pace very obviously diminished, on a wavelength of time considered less than half of everyone else. This lasts for up to thirty trills (seconds), but can be re-used rapidly in succession if one remains vigilant of their stamina and endurance. Those blessed with the Pocket of Time's enhancements go through time twice as quickly as everyone else, moving extremely swift and reacting to their surroundings exceedingly well. This may be cast on two individuals at a time, but can be removed from one at any given time, and cast on another individual (whether beneficially or negatively). This can be used in short-bursts nearly infinitely per trial if one spaces out their uses.|
|Scholarly Minds III||Add an extra nine skill points to any one of the following skills: Meditation, Teaching, Research, Philosophy, Writing, these skill points can exceed the 100 cap|
|Psychometry (Major)||At this pinnacle of ability one can reach up to a century into the past. It is said that this ability honestly has no scope on how far one can reach back but there are secrets even Ralaith don’t want his exalted to know. As with the ability before, memories and visions from farther than a century can be gleaned if they were especially historic or emotional. It should be noted that one should hesitate to use this ability on anything touched by an Immortal. There are tales of Ralaith chosen stricken mute, blind, or deaf by the intensity of the visions, unable to fully recall the details of what they witnessed. An investigator should always be careful before relying on such an ability. Small impressions are easy to glean at this level and although the shouts are still difficult to manage, the exalted can end the vision at any point they want and thrust themselves out of the memory, unlike those with a lesser form of Pscyhometry where they were captive by the vision till the end. At this level, Pscyhometry can be used on living beings, even without their permission. It is impossible, however, to obscure what you take from them. Both the user and the victim experience what the Psychometry expert seeks. Additionally at this level, one willing individual can have the visions of Psychometry shared with them, even if they are not marked of Ralaith. Only Exalted level marks can obscure secrets from this level of investigation.|
|Chamber of Wisdom||When the Shirvain was first marked by Ralaith, he gave them a book. This tome was tied to them, existing outside of time until the user wished to call it forth. Upon reaching this ability, Ralaith grants his followers yet another gift. Rather than call forth the book from time, the Shirvain can instead call forth a door. Each door is different depending on the tastes and personality of the Shirvain. It stands, supported by nothing, and can be opened into the Shirvain’s personal sanctum. This Sanctum takes the shape of two or three rooms (roughly the area of a small cottage) where the laws of time are easily manipulated by the user. Turning back time, pausing it, or pushing it forward are all possible in the confines of the tower. This scope is limited, however, to the scale of a season. While the tower remains active, the door remains connected to Idalos. Anyone is capable of trying to open the door into the tower but may find it a poor decision with an active Shirvain tenant inside. Should the door be destroyed, the Shirvain is trapped within their own realm, presumably, till Ralaith comes and lets them out. So many Shirvain would not dare use this ability to escape conflict and only enact it while in a safe location. The laws of time within the room can only be manipulated while an active Shirvain is present. They cannot utilize the time bending of this blessing without physically being present in the room itself. Time is also localized within the tower. The user may not create separate bubbles of time within the Chamber, but may only alter time in a general sense. Unless specified by the user when entering, the time remains the same within as it does outside.|
|The Breach: Pause||One of the fantastic abilities granted to a Shirvain at this level of Exalted blessing is the power to pause time. For a single break, the Shirvain can freeze time and exist in the space between moments. While one would think this would be a capstone ability, a Shirvain has very specific rules stipulating their involvement in time. A Shirvain must resume time in the exact same position they were in at the end of the Break or all their actions and memory of actions is erased from the time line. All things must be in their proper place for time to resume. A Shirvain often uses this ability to strategize, examining the terrain and their opponent closely in order to determine weaknesses. They might freeze time to meticulously inspect the guests of a monarch to spot an assassin or any number of other activities. If the Shirvain interferes with an object or person, they must return them to the state they were before in order for time to resume. This ability can be used once a Trial.|
|Visions of Yore||Even the greatest architecture eventually withers to nothing, lost only to the descriptions that survive it and any art. Raliath grants his followers another option, however, the ability to look into the past directly. Visions of Yore can be used to view what something may have looked like at various points in time. Directed by the Shirvain, they can delve into the ruins of castles and towers to see their once constructed grandiose. While this does not allow them to see any events that happened in the area they are in, they can view the nature of the landscape and how it changed with each passing Arc. This sight is an illusion only the Shirvain can see, unless they choose to pass it to those who are in skin contact with them. This ability cannot be used to view the origin of Idalos, but it can look centuries in the past at any structure or landscape. Prophet assistance may be required to use this ability on plot important locations. This ability, in a smaller form, can also be used to view what a broken or ruined object may have looked like when new, in addition to seeing what an individual may have looked like as a young adult or child.|
|Become the Bear||At this level, the Exalted Shirvain gains the ability to merge with the Bear of Ralaith for one break. At this time, the Shirvain/bear hybrid is a massive bear, double the size of a normal bear. Gaining the bear's ability to flicker in and out of material existence, the Shirvain enjoys an extended period of corporeality. He may stay corporeal for 10 trills, and may only need to rest for 8 trills between. He becomes supernaturally strong and durable, but any wounds sustained while corporeal transfer to his natural form once resumed.|
|The Breach: Rewind|| Yet another ability to manipulate time and requiring the Ancient Language, a Champion is allowed to step back in time anywhere within the last Cycle. This warp of time will only allow them to return for a single Trial and can only be used four times in a Cycle. Ralaith has specific rules that marshal the damage this ability can cause which are enforced by his own influence. When someone steps back in time, they cannot alter any event that has already been destined. In addition they are never permitted to have any interaction with themselves in the past. Not all events are immutable and Raliath gives faith to his Champion that they will choose the correct sequence that time need take. Any breach using this ability will result in a Paradox which Ralaith will erase...along with any alterations the Champion made to the time stream.
((OOC requirements for this ability: Unalterable events are those that have already been threaded about. This ability cannot be used to invalidate a thread but it can sometimes be used to change the course of an event currently happening. Work with both a prophet and any appropriate players in order to ensure continuity. If continuity is damaged by use of this ability, the thread in which this ability was used will be negated by Ralaith as time resets. Use this power responsibly))
|Library of Ralaith||All the marked of Ralaith through the years have recorded their experiences and journeys in the tomes Ralaith grants them. When the marked passes, these tomes become the property of the Immortal and part of his immense collection of knowledge. To a Champion, this library is open for their perusal. When summoning their own Chamber of Wisdom, they can invoke the ancient tongue and instead create a door to the library of the Immortal Ralaith. Here shelves stretch into the distant sky with scaffolding and ladders, a domain of Knowledge where time is variable. A Champion can research almost any subject in this library and find the answers to secrets and legends once thought lost. With Prophet permission, any subject in Idalos lore can be researched or studied here. Sometimes a Champion is lucky and Ralaith will help them. No other is allowed entrance into the library, nor are any of the books allowed to leave. So long as these rules are observed, a Champion may have the same access to Wisdom as their benefactor.|
The Curse of Shirvain
For the Hated of Shirvain, a mortal would have to go fairly far to earn his ire. Supporters of Kata, Mastes, and Syroa...those who subscribe to mad anarchy are those who often find Ralaith's dislike. Even those who burn books or destroy knowledge for the sake of it can find fury from the normally calm Immortal.
When Ralaith marks someone as hated, their entire life changed drastically. They are cursed to forever shift between ages in a simple pattern, at least until natural death or the removal of this curse. Each Trial will be divided into three parts. During the Morning of the Trial, the Cursed will revert to the age of six. Although their mind will remain untouched, all physical capabilities will diminish. For those races of variable years, they will revert to a child's body. Midday they will be themselves, restored to their prime, and in the evening they will become decrepit and elderly. This will continue till their natural lifespan comes to an end, trapped in the cycle between three ages. The Mark of Shirvain manifests as a pale circle on ones skin, like a scar, and a single clock hand. By the time they are Condemned, three clock hands measuring an inexplicable time, moving of its own accord, appears on the skin of the Condemned.
The Despised of Ralaith find some of their experiences tend to loop. When injured or in pain, the Despised will find that the experience loops a random number of times between 2-5. They will be aware they are experiencing the pain multiple times but be unable to escape from its agony.
For the Condemned, their Wisdom is no longer trusted in their mind. Upon receiving the final curse of Shirvain, a Condemned will lose all knowledge and memories of who they used to be. Those memories will immediately magically transcribe themselves in a tome that follows the Condemned around. Any and all can read from the Tome and learn the deep secrets, lessons, and life of the Condemned...including the Condemned, but at the beginning of each day what the Condemned has learned will be transcribed within the book and lost from their mind. This book will always return if stolen or destroyed, within a trial.