The Mark of Power

Those trained to arts of magick carry an invisible stamp upon their spirits, the residue of a will that transcends the natural order. This may be unnerving to animals and requires an Encounter Reaction check on d100 every time a beast is first encountered.

The natural Ambience that flows throughout the Mortal World is completely neutral; it merely makes the natural reaction a little more intense, one way or the other.

IF a Wizard’s Virtues outweigh his Vices, his (TR) is added to make the Encounter Reaction more positive.

IF a Wizard’s Vices outweigh his Virtues, his (TR) is subtracted to make it worse, stoking the animal’s fear and/or provoking its anger.

There are a number of sources from which Wizards can draw mana throughout the Mortal World, however, and several of these leave traces on the Wzard’s spirit that intensify the effects of the stamp of his power on Encounter Reactions. These sources and the manner of their uses are discussed in detail under the heading “The Tools of Power”. Some of the vibrations of “mortal mana” the Wizard may use are easier for beasts to bear than others, as follows.

For those who use Nature Mana (any element, inc. Life, Sun and Moon, Day and Night), the Reaction check roll is increased by (mana POT score), making it more positive.

For those who use Life and/or Carnal Mana, or who have specialized as a Sorcerer or Shadow Weaver, the result of the Reaction roll is modified by [(mana POT score) + (Art bonus)], increased when the initial Reaction roll is 51 or greater, or decreased by the same amount if 50 or less, intensifying the reaction either for better or worse.

For those who use Death and/or Blood Mana, or who have specialized as a Master or Mistress Namer, the Reaction roll is always reduced by [(mana POT score) + (Art bonus)]. One of the character’s Vices is increased one (1) point every occasion on which these types of mana are used. These are the lowest vibration of power and their use can only corrupt the character’s spirit over time with prolonged use. Wizards using these sorts of mana have the feel of predators to animals, and generally react according to their usual relationship to such creatures.

Where more than one of these apply, tally up the positive and also the negative influences and subtract the least from the greater. 

Whatever is left is either a positive or negative modifier to be applied to an Encounter Reaction check for the first time encounters with all animals. 

If any of the “neutral” influences apply, they are applied after the roll, so it can be determined whether to add or subtract it in order to intensify the reaction.

To make life a little easier, perhaps a single check might be made for all the animals of a particular household or estate, as applicable, all the beasts encountered in the streets of a given city, town or village, and so on.

At the greatest extremes, animals may try to either crowd around the practitioner or follow him hoping for some attention or attack him or seek to escape his presence, violently if they are cornered or restrained, regardless of their normal temperament.

The Wizard may try any Beast Mastery he or a hireling may have to try and calm down those animals that react badly (as applicable). Animals may be acclimated/domesticated through the Beastmaster’s craft so as not to react this way to him.

The efforts of a Beast Master or Mistress’ skills can never overcome the reaction response to those tainted with Blood mana if the beast has already reached sexual maturity. This is a visceral predator-prey response that can only be overcome by raising a beast from birth in the presence of that vibration of mana so the response is never learned.

In addition, the loosing of charms within (beast’s AWA) feet of any mundane breed of animal(s), providing there is no barrier between him and the caster to dampen the disturbance (see “Shielding & Safe Havens,” previously) commonly triggers the fight-or-flight reaction towards the caster, regardless of whether the beast(s) have been domesticated/acclimated to exposure to magick or not. 

The Wizard must be careful about using magicks around beasts, no matter if he intends to use a charm such as “Soothing Touch” or simply “Thrall” to eliminate all such reactions, to overcome this very stumbling block to his power. 

The reactions of mythical/magickal beasts is up to your discretion as GM.

In the same manner, the practitioner who is also skilled as a Beast Master-/Mistress by Secondary or Allied trade may acclimate his beast(s) to tolerate the presence and workings of magick, or hire a Beastmaster to reside with him and work with his animals until he has accomplished this for him.