Starting play with a Lazarine Cultist requires more glory than an ordinary cultist
Lazarolth is a cruel, wretched mistress who is one of three of the Trimverate of Thorns: three gods who stand in marked defiance of the established order of the world and mankind. The Benalian faith teaches that these three were once angels cast out of heaven for their crimes against god, but other traditions hint at a different origin. Lazarolth seems to revel in breaking the very nature of the world, breathing false life back into the dead, celebrating the consumption of rotten flesh, and unearthing things long thought buried. It is for these reasons that Lazarolth is regarded as the god of Death and Secrets.
There are few more reviled, and more shunned, than those who follow Lazarolth. On the surface, they appear as necromancers, raising the dead and toying with the dying for their own perverse purposes. Rarely do they appear in positions of political power, partially
because few willingly follow them, but mostly because the power they seek lies beyond and beneath the trappings of mortal society. Some Lazarines quest for eternal life, some quest for the secrets of the universe, and some want to hurt the world that has hurt them, but all Lazarines are taught to be united by a disregard for the costs of their quest. No number of lives, no amount of suffering, and no act is too evil in pursuit of the goals and answers the Lazarine seeks.
And what Lazarolth requests of her followers would turn the stomachs of those who do not understand her purpose. While their ways are enigmatic and shrouded in shadow, the rumors that surround them are enough to make one fear for more than their life. Lazarines are known for their depravity – their willful inversion of the laws of man, and their complete willingness to steep in stomach-churning wrongness. Because for a Lazarine, wallowing in sin and filth is the point. The faithful are taught that by upending the morals they were taught, repressing their instincts, and subverting the laws of nature, the true secrets and underlying meaning of reality will present themselves. A thirst for knowledge and understanding lies at the core of the Lazarine philosophy; an insistent why for which the answers are relentlessly sought. Why do we die? Why are we born? Are things truly what they appear to be? There are already plenty who seek and study the world’s rules, but Lazarines study the effects of those rules being broken.
Vow: Never prevent a death, unless the dying are willing to abandon the light.
Rank 0 – Initiate
All Rank 0 rituals do not cost XP to learn.
The Green Damnation
Call down a divine damnation upon a hated enemy.
Before death, there was no time. There was no break between night and day, before action and reaction, between the empty sky and the fathomless abyss. And yet there was pain. Pain and suffering in perfect round.
Offering – A sheet of lead is obtained by the individual performing the rite.
Focus – The likeness of the target is carved into the left side of the lead sheet with a dagger. On the right side, their true name is carved, as are any aliases they are known by and the reason they are to be damned.
Act – While the Liturgy is spoken, the likeness of the target is slashed in several directions with the dagger.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Lady of Rot I call to thee that another might feel your wrath. I have been wronged by one known to you as [target’s true name], and seek to damn them in thy name. Without reservation and with full knowledge of my hatred I give to you their eyes, their flesh, their lips, their tongue, their liver, their stomach, their lungs, their genitals, their heart. Let them taste my hatred, and I will pledge myself to serve you in this life and all that come after.”
Act – The sheet is rolled into a scroll and brought to a Shrine of Lazarolth. The sheet is tucked into the eye of one of the skulls that is part of the shrine and left as an offering.
This rite may be performed by anyone who is Faith in Higher Power, even if they are not a follower of Lazarolth, so long as it is known by them.
The target is Damned, and they are infected with a serious random disease chosen by Staff. The true name of the individual who performed the rite will be made known to nearby followers of Lazarolth in dreams.
Forsake God’s Gift – First Trial of Unbecoming
The prospective Lazarine rejects the first gift god bestowed upon mankind – life itself.
While your body and your soul are your own, they were created- moulded in fact- by an entity other than yourself for a purpose not your own. Buried within your own psyche are tendencies that serve a power other than yourself. To become a master of your own destiny you must break ties with that which made you.
Focus – The aspirant goes to a location tied to death such as a graveyard or ruin.
Focus – A Ceremonial Athame is taken in their left hand with the blade pointing down, distant from the thumb.
Liturgy – “The soul is not of this world, but the next. A gift from god to man, that they might toil as slaves for his pleasure. I will be no slave. When I die, I will remain until my work is done. With this potion I cast aside the life of this cruel shell, and elevate my Self into communion with Lazarolth.”
Offering – An ingested alchemical with both the Immune Shock and Clarifier qualities is imbibed.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Lady of Night, with this blade I take my life. With this blade I give my life to you. With this blade I forsake life, and god, and death.”
Act – The point of the dagger is placed over the heart of the aspirant and rammed into their chest before it is quickly withdrawn.
As this is a Rank 0 Rite, it can be performed by anyone who has successfully undergone the Abandon Light Rite.
If the Rite is successful, the aspirant is elevated to be a Rank 1 Lazarine Cultist.
Forevermore, whenever the Cultist is killed they will manifest as a Lesser Shade ten minutes after their death at the site of their demise, so long as the sun is not in the sky. The Lesser Shade remains until their body turns to ash and they are returned wholly to the world. If they are slain while a Lesser Shade, they lose memories as if they had suffered a Personal Failure.
They may be identified by a distinct X-shaped scar over their heart that may never be removed.
If the Rite is unsuccessful, the aspirant is killed and gains the Damned state. This Rite automatically fails if the aspirant has not undergone the Abandon Light rite, or does not have an amount of Depravity that meets or exceeds their Insanity threshold.
Rank 1 – Necromancer
Dedicate Shrine to Lazarolth
Dedicate a place to the goddess Lazarolth
When the place is built and conjured, and the appropriate sacrifice made, one may reach beyond the veil and into the darkness of the world.
Act – A hidden place, with a flat surface, is chosen as the location to dedicate the shrine.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Deathmother, Herald of the End, I give this ground to you, give this life to you, give this soul to you. Steal it from the grasp of god and shape it to a finer purpose, a keener point. May it serve me as it serves you, and stand a symbol to your triumph over the Lord.”
Offering – The throat of a human sacrifice is slit, such that they are slain and their blood coats the shrine’s surface.
Act – The skull of the human sacrifice is stripped of flesh, while the name of Lazarolth is whispered. An X is carved into the forehead of the skull, and placed upon the shrine.
Liturgy – “Through these rotting eyes, I call to you to see. From this lipless mouth, I call to you to speak. Lazarolth, your presence I call here, that it forever be fallen and defiled in your name.”
Any may trigger the Shrine by leaving an offering of a Green Damnation Scroll, human skull, saltpeter, black star moss, serpentine, cordyceps beetle, or vulture’s wing and using the Prayer ability at the Shrine of Lazarolth. If triggered, the target may take one of the secret scrolls held within the skulls on the shrine without triggering a Divine Wrath roll.
Additionally, one may write a damning secret of their own or that belongs to another in the sacred dedication log book and replicate it on a slip of paper on the shrine. If they do, they immediately lose the Damned state.
Bring an initiate into the true darkness of the world
Once all was veiled, hidden from the minds that sought it,
The world was an ocean without light, but there was a seed-
A seed, covered by unknowing, waiting, to burst forth and overtake the darkness-
To make it its own.
Offering – After Dusk, the target is implored to kneel over a grave and turn their face towards the sky with a lit candle in their hands. The cultist stands over the target, looking down into their eyes for the duration of the Rite.
Liturgy – “You come this night with a purpose, a purpose to become more than what god would make you. You come so that your body will be more than food for hungry worms, and that your soul will be more than fodder for a hungry god. To do this, though, you must open your eyes. Open your eyes and see that the world is an illusion, crafted by our creator so that we do not struggle on our way to the slaughter and to nothingness. See past the lies, and embrace the truth. Do you see this world for what it is? Do you see that all other gods are charlatans, and reject their words and teachings forevermore?”
Offering – If the target answers in the affirmative, the cultist smears their lips with Night Malefic Ichor and places a kiss upon the forehead of the target. The remainder of the ichor is poured into the cultist’s left hand and the candle snuffed with the blackened fingers. Then, the target’s face is grasped, such that their mouth is covered by the cultist’s hand, leaving a black hand print.
This Rite does not suffer Vulgarity from any target that is Faith in Self.
The target becomes Faith in Higher Power if they were not already. The target obtains Depravity for the sin of Deadly Blasphemy for participating in this ritual. The target may choose to replace one or both of their Cultural Sins with those of Passion or Weakness.
Benalian rites officiated with the newly converted as a target or participant gain 2 Vulgarity. This effect lasts for the event that the conversion took place in.
If the target is a lone practitioner or otherwise performs actions that please Lazarolth, they begin having the Nightmares of Enlightenment, capable of teaching them Lazarine Rites they are able to perform, and making them eligible for the Trials of Unbecoming. Rites learned this way are given when Lazarolth is pleased with her follower, and always begin with Forsake God’s Gift. After they become a Cultist, the dreams will come to teach them in an order decided by Lazarolth.
The target awakens Miserable every time they sleep.
Create vile Black Ichor for use in other rituals and to augment yourself.
People keep meaning in the strangest places. They embody lifeless objects with this power, giving up their strength to the desires of another. But those things that have been embodied with the strength of the weak are imperfect, and can be claimed by those who have seen the darkness behind the door.
Act – A corpse is laid out, and the Cultist kneels over it, carving an “X” into its chest with a sharp object.
Act – The chest of the target corpse is opened such that the ribs are exposed. The ribs are bent back until they snap and are left jutting out of the chest cavity. The stomach, heart, lungs, intestines, tongue, eyes, and brain of the corpse are removed, and all placed within the open chest cavity.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Queen of Rot, I call to you to infect this flesh. Take it and feast of the body, for this hog of god has been brought to slaughter. Take this useless meat, this carapice for a purposeless soul, and render it useful to those who know the truth. Desecrate the flesh, that the body of man might be made in your great image!”
Offering – Three Vials of Ruin’s Tears are boiled and poured into the chest cavity.
Focus – The vile soup is stirred with a Ceremonial Athame until the liquid becomes a black, tar-like reduction.
The Cultist harvests Black Ichor from the corpse, which may be used as a substitute for any Essence of the appropriate creature type, and may be used in Rites that call for Black Ichor. Each form of Black Ichor will be tagged with the creature class it came from, such as Human Ichor or Night-Touched Ichor. Anyone who is Faith in Higher Power may consume Black Ichor to gain a one-time benefit depending on the source:
- Human Ichor – Increase your Faith Attribute by 1 until the next Dusk or Dawn. May stack with itself or other effects to a maximum of Faith 3.
- Night Malefic Ichor (Necrophage, Spectral, or Hemophage) – May call Incorporeal as a defense against a single hit landed in the combat scene following the use of the Ichor. This may be used to defend against Power Strike.
- Night-Touched Ichor (Cursed, Aberrant, or Elementa) – Ignore a single Maim of any severity for a scene.
- Strange Beast Ichor (Othyr, Mythic, or Fey) – Increase your Fortitude Attribute by 1 until the next Dusk or Dawn. May stack with itself of other effect to a maximum of Fortitude 3.
Corpses this Rite is performed upon cannot have any Essence harvested from them and cannot be reanimated, as they are utterly ruined.
A common side effect of this rite is the creation of a Malefic with its hatred turned toward the Cultist, though this does not always occur and often does so on a delay. The Cultist must include the details of all Desecrations they perform in their Recap submission to Staff.
Tears of Ruin
Create Tears of Ruin for use in other rituals or your own purposes
There was a time when none escaped. When all were trapped in the prison divine. But Lazarolth, she saw a way out of the light and into truth.
Offering – Human Sanguine Essence is gathered in a vessel and brought above the cultist’s head.
Liturgy – “Vascula. Cavern. Cage of the soul of humanity. A lock upon the gates for each foul soul dragged into this wicked world. Lament; I lament the purpose of man. To be lost cattle, dully waiting their turn to die. Pity that I should weep as so many meet their end, ignorant of the oblivion that awaits them. Lazarolth shows me the truth in the shadows, but there is no knowledge without pain. May my sorrow ruin this sanguine cage, and show all the true cost of ignorance.”
Act – A scream of rage is forced upon the essence, as lamentation for the vile deceptions of this world and the meaninglessness of humanity’s inevitable death.
The essence becomes Tears of Ruin, a thin black liquid to be used in other rituals. May be used to create 3 Vials of Ruin’s Tears if transferred into glass vials. This loses its potency if held by someone with 0 depravity.
Any who would apply the tears to an object by roleplaying splashing the entire contents of the vial upon it may call Divine Sunder. If the target item is wielded or worn, the user of the tears should indicate which item they are sundering. If Tears of Ruin are applied to the same object three times before it receives a repair, it is Destroyed.
Whispers from Beyond
Interrogate the dead through desecration of their body
You, you seekers of the art! Know that unless you seek more than what is available to you within your own mind, you will never reach the heavens. There is more to the world than can be learned in a single lifetime.
Focus – The target’s skull is lifted above the cultist’s bowed head.
Focus – The target’s true name is carved into the shaft of a staff.
Act – The staff is driven into the ground and the skull placed atop it.
Liturgy – “Spirit, spirit, come to me. I call on thee to rise. All heed the call of Lazarolth, for everybody dies. Spirit, spirit, follow me. Open thy rotten eyes. I give to thee the chance to speak, denial is unwise. Spirit, spirit, answer me. I yearn to hear your cries. I call to thee beyond the veil and tolerate no lies.”
An echo of the deceased is called back to their skull to answer the questions of the Cultist. The spirit is compelled to answer a number of questions equal to the Cultists Rank, though any who hold their skull may address them. If the skull belongs to someone who has become Malefic, they are not compelled to tell the truth. However, for all other spirits of the dead, they are compelled to answer with the unobscured truth.
If the Cultist wishes, regardless of the type of spirit, they may silently instruct the spirit to give an answer of the Cultist’s choosing instead of the truth.
The spirit is not visible to any witnesses but can be heard as a ghostly whisper emanating from the skull. Spirits summoned in this way cannot physically interact with their surroundings, but if the skull belongs to a Malefic they may recall who disturbed them and from whence they came.
If the deceased returns to the world, they do not recall any of the events of this Rite.
The Cultist must inform Staff a minimum of 1 hour before this Rite is performed.
Create unintelligent and undead creatures to perform your bidding.
Understand then, that which commands you- you too can command. That flesh which you bear can give you an understanding of other flesh- of other movement. Move it, and it will move you. Protect it, and it shall protect you.
Offering – A human corpse is laid out such that it faces the night sky.
Offering – A circle of iron shavings is placed around the corpse.
Offering – Three candles are lit around the edge of the circle at equidistant points.
Liturgy – “Nameless spirit I summon thee, servant of Necrosia. From choking wind and vile whisper, from stink and sunder, from rust and ruin and rot I give you reason. You heed a higher calling, no longer to formlessly wander the earth but to serve in awakened flesh. I give to you this vessel, a jar of meat and bone. Pour yourself into it, spirit, that you may please the Night Queen! Inhabit it, o’ parasite! Feed and rise! I command you, rise!”
A weak spirit infects the dead flesh, and the corpse becomes a Shambleman bound to follow the Cultist’s commands. The Cultist may issue unlimited “Divine Obey” calls to corpses animated in this way, though the commands must be three words or less and physically actionable.
Shamblemen cannot think independently, have no sense of self preservation, and possess no emotions. The Cultist may layer up to three simultaneous demands upon them, such as “Defend yourselves”, “Stay together”, and “Kill them”. An additional command will replace whichever existing command it most contradicts. Commands issued to them must not involve the manipulation of objects including but not limited to: the wielding of weapons, using tools, or opening doors.
Shamblemen are the most basic form of Necrophage, but can evolve into a wide variety of different Necrophages given the proper situation or rites. The most common evolution is into drauger, though it is believed that ghouls, wights, and other more powerful evolutions have been achieved with experimentation. Records of these past experiments are discoverable in the form of Wyrd Schematics that may be used to modify Shamblemen. A Shambleman that undergoes such an evolution remains under the control of the cultist that created it.
Shamblemen exist until their body is destroyed, and are automatically destroyed if the corpse would normally turn to ash. A Cultist may control one Shambleman per Cultist Rank without the aid of artifacts. A destroyed Shambleman cannot be reanimated with this Rite. If the Cultist controlling them dies permanently, the Shamblemen carry out their last orders or, in the absence of orders, stand in place until disturbed. PCs are not required to play their corpse, although they may be asked to by staff if appropriate or to provide a distinctive piece of their costume.
Create a warded trap for Malefic creatures
It is not enough to extinguish a life. Death must be physically made manifest – a place from which no life may escape, no history, no hope, no future.
Offering – Human Melancholic Essence is crushed into shards and kept in a vessel.
Offering – The Essence is combined with iron shavings.
Offering – The iron and Essence are combined with a Vial of Ruin’s Tears.
Act – The mixture is poured onto the area the cultist wishes to ward, forming a circle with an X through the center. The Liturgy is spoken as this is done.
Liturgy – “The world is a prison, and death the escape. Death is a prison, and return the escape. By bone, I trap thee. By iron, I cage thee. By woe, I bind thee. Awakened flesh, possessing spirit, entrapping damnation, you will be mine to serve a greater end.”
This rite creates a 10 foot diameter circle that acts as a trap for Malefic entities. The first Malefic to cross the threshold is unable to physically exit the bounds of the circle, and specters cannot discorporate. Should more than one Malefic entity cross the boundary of the Gaol, only the first is captured. This does not limit the Malefic’s abilities in any way, and they may still use any Instinct that does not require physical touch as normal. Should one cross the barrier and expose themselves to contact with the creature, the Gaol offers them no protection from the Malefic’s full suite of abilities.
Should the circle be disrupted in any way, the Malefic is immediately released. Multiple Malefic cannot be contained in the same circle. The circle immediately loses potency if it comes in contact with sunlight.
Trap the Soul
Summon an echo of the past
The cloth that held them, the words that bound them, the bones that bore up their deepest desires- these are the things that are the medium of time. With them, you can call up those things that are lost to yesterday.
Act – The Oblivion Gaol rite must be performed with 0 Vulgarity.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Soulbinder, there is no death you do not witness. In my hands I bear a tether. In my heart I bear a name. Lazarolth, aid me as I seek the soul that wears these shackles!”
Focus – An object tied to the deceased is held above the cultist’s head. A Touchstone Item belonging to the deceased, the weapon that killed them, a journal recording their experiences, or a bone from their corpse will all satisfy this requirement. If multiple items that qualify have been obtained, each one after the first included in this Observance reduces the Orthodoxy of the rite by one. If there are more than two, the others must be held up by a witness on the opposite side of the Oblivion Gaol as the cultist.
Liturgy – “[Target’s True Name], I summon thee! Cross the veil and abandon the lecherous, greedy grip of god. I hold that which binds you, and you must come! In my hands I hold your heart! By my master Lazarolth I tug upon your puppet strings, and drag you from the gullet beyond back to the only reward we can be given. Return!”
The ghost of the deceased tied to the object is formed as a Lesser, Standard, or Greater Shade, and is trapped within the confines of the ritual circle. Nothing compels the Shade to act in any specific way, and their disposition towards the Cultist may vary wildly. Undoubtedly they will have suffered a very traumatic experience, and may blame the Cultist for all manner of abuses. However they are susceptible to Social Skills, and depending on the goals of the deceased, a deal may be negotiated between the Shade and the Cultist.
The more important the deceased was in life, the more powerful the Shade is that forms. And some particularly potent Shades may manifest unique abilities. The Shade is capable of independent thought, and retains a vile mockery of the personality the deceased had in life, unbound by mortal fears and temporal rationality. A Shade is an incorporeal specter, and cannot interact with the physical world without first Possessing a living host. Should the circle become broken at any point the Shade is no longer trapped and may do as it wishes. The Shade’s hold upon the world is tenuous, and without artifacts such specters may remain in this world only for an hour.
The rite automatically fails if the object is tied to an existing unresolved Malefic.
Bend monsters and beasts to your will.
One spark multiples into a flame- form answers to form, and the meaning of the whole can be called by the smallest part if the will is strong enough.
Offering – The Cultist crushes a vial of Night Malefic Ichor in their fist.
Focus – They then gesture to all the target Malefic with a Monster Part of their matching Bestiary Subclass.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, bend this puppet to my will!”
All nearby Malefic within oration range belonging to the appropriate Bestiary Subclass (as determined by the Monster Part) are temporarily bound for the period of one Rest to the Cultist’s commands. The affected targets suffer a “Divine [Bestiary Subclass] Obey” call with a single word command that may be accompanied by a gesture to aid in interpretation. Particularly powerful Malefic may be able to resist this.
Punish Divine Hubris
Desecrate the altar of another faith and inflict woe and misery upon their faithful
Those that seek the knowledge of the divine follow the false path- seeking to be fed knowledge rather than earning it themselves. To truly reach beyond the flesh one must understand truth, earn knowledge, rather than simply parrot what they have been told.
Act – A Shrine that has been dedicated to a divinity other than Lazarolth is approached by the cultist.
Offering – A follower of the divinity the Shrine is dedicated to is slain such that their blood is cast upon the Shrine. The Liturgy is spoken as the victim’s Last Rites are spoken.
Liturgy – “Where is your god, that would let me put a knife to your throat? They have abandoned you, for you are little and less to them. A wandering thought. A slave. Perhaps a side of beef. Would they not have saved you if you mattered at all? It is meaningless, your hour has come and you will serve a higher purpose. Your empty life has come to its destined end. Your death is the death of [Divinity’s Name]. I slaughter you in effigy. As your blood leaks upon this table you would call a Shrine, it loses all that would deceive poor wretches that would call it great. As your heart ceases to beat, so does that of your slave lord. Consider this a favor from my mistress to you, and you are welcome to it.”
Act – The corpse of the follower is laid out upon the shrine and the rite of Desecration with 0 Vulgarity performed.
Act – All objects of value from the Shrine are stolen.
Offering – The Shrine is smeared with the Human Ichor from the slain follower.
The desecrated Shrine loses its divine potency and can no longer be used for offerings. The Cultist takes the Dedicated Shrine tag and replaces it with a Punish Divine Hubris tag. The officiating Cultist does not need to take a Divine Wrath roll for desecrating a Shrine. The next Cultist dedicated to the Cult of the desecrated Shrine who views the Shrine becomes Damned. In the event more than one Cultist fit this qualification, it affects the one that has maintained the Vow of their faith for longer. Followers and Cultists of the punished Cult gain the Despair state as soon as they become aware of the Shrine’s fate.
If the Shrine was dedicated to an Archangel of the Benalian Faith the officiating Cultist gains a Personal Victory regardless of their Devotion.
Haunt the dreams of your victims and learn their deep fears
Mankind’s chains are manifold- placed there by tradition, by the power of the divine, by their own weaknesses and fears. But never are they closer to their true selves than when they fall into the realm of dreams.
Offering – A bed of coal or charcoal is set upon the ground or within a brazier and set ablaze.
Liturgy – “When we close our eyes, what occurs to us? When we sleep, are we truly alive? For sleep is only a taste of death, the separation of the soul from the prison it holds so dear, if only for a moment. It is in this freedom that we become our truest selves. Lazarolth, Lady of Putrescence and Whisper, I seek truth in the taste of death. Bring me to one who dreams that I might know their heart, and allow me to walk the veil that I might see what is beyond.”
Offering – An object tied to the target is cast into the fire. This may be a portion of their physical body such as hair, nails, or blood, or something close to their heart such as a written secret of theirs, a journal, their Touchstone Item or something they have made. The object is consumed by the flames as all in attendance wait in silence.
Act – When the fire dies, the ashes or other remnants of the burned item are collected and rubbed into the eyes of the Cultist.
Act – The Cultist then proceeds to sleep.
The target has terrible dreams next time they go to sleep, forcing them to confront their worst nightmares of failure and inevitability. This dream will manifest either as a scene with the target and the cultist in the morning or as a written scene. The Cultist manifests in these dreams as a hooded specter with a hidden face, though the Cultist must bring any of their own Touchstone Items if they have one with them as they watch the target’s torment. The target will awaken Miserable, and the Cultist will awaken with intimate knowledge of the target’s Devotion.
Temporarily suppress insanities through consuming a living tool of healing.
The world is not governed by reason; it is ruled by instinct and emotion. But not so with you. You shall starve your sentiments, regrets, and emotional reactions until they wither and die. Your actions shall be governed by intellect and reason, and thus shall you defy creation’s hold on you.
Offering – A human tongue is sliced into three strips of equal size, placed in a vessel of swamp water, then raised above the head of the Cultist before it is brought to chest level.
Offering – An ingestible Irritant Clarifier potion is poured into the vessel.
Focus – The vessel is placed upon a Shrine of Lazarolth and the Cultist watches as the tongue slivers begin their metamorphosis into leeches.
Liturgy – “So rare is the chance to abandon one’s regrets, to cast them into the void that they might never return. Rare, too, is a truthful tongue. Some have deemed these impossibilities. See now how this organ shows its real visage: a parasite aching to be fed. Lazarolth, Blooddrinker, give these leeches a feast of sorrow. Let them draw from us the retributions with which we castigate ourselves. Let them purify us, that we no longer wear such shackles.”
This rite creates three Soul Leeches. Anyone who is Faith in Higher Power may swallow whole one of these live leeches, and all Insanities they are infected with are lowered to Mild intensity until the next Dawn. If the individual who swallows one is not a follower of Lazarolth, they also suffer a -1 Faith penalty for the same period.
Consume another for their knowledge
Secrets are the real currency of the world. Knowing what another would rather you not know is worth more than all the riches you can hold in your hands. Knowing what even the divine would hide from you? That is worth the world itself.
Liturgy – “Mind, the seat of the soul of the self. If the heart is the castle of the intellect, then the brain is its library and throne, its memories and secrets hidden in corners of shadow. Lazarolth, Lady of Whispers, this grey feast I give to you. Reveal to me the secrets of the library, that we may share them one to another.”
Focus – A Ceremonial Athame is used to crack open the skull of a human corpse.
Act – The brain of the corpse is consumed, either with utensils or with the Cultist’s bare hands. This takes at least five minutes.
After consuming the brain of the target, the Cultist gains intimate knowledge of them. They may choose one of the following items to learn: their true name, their highest skill, their most valuable Flaw, their most expensive Perk, or how much Depravity they have and what sins the Depravity is tied to.
If the target had any Insanities, the Cultist gains the most severe one at the level the target had it. This does not remove the insanity from the target. Phlegmatic essence cannot be harvested from the target after this Rite has been performed on them. Further, corpses that have undergone this Rite cannot be Reanimated or Desecrated by a Lazarine.
Removes the Miserable state.
Shun Purity – Second Trial of Unbecoming
Cast off the shackles of humanity that limit and hold you back.
Look upon me. I know that it burns to see me thus- but do not turn your eyes away. This form is more than flesh, it is more than blood. This form is something beyond cause and effect, beyond the bounds of reality. But most importantly, this form is eternal and MINE.
Offering – The Cultist’s face is smeared with Night-Touched Ichor until it is entirely covered.
Act – The X-shaped scar over the Cultist’s heart is reopened, forcing the Bleed effect upon them.
Liturgy – “No life is sacred, for all life bleeds from god. No life has meaning, for all life serves god. No life has worth, for the world is gods illusion. It keeps us soothed, sedated, so that we do not rebel. I am not afraid to die, for I have conquered death. I am not afraid to kill, for to do so is to spit in the eye of god. Watch, Lazarolth, as I dedicate this death to you!”
Focus – The same Ceremonial Athame used in the First Trial of Unbecoming is taken in the Cultist’s left hand with the blade pointing down, distant from the thumb.
Offering – A human is slain with the Ceremonial Athame.
Liturgy – “Blood is nothing. The body is nothing. The soul is all that is real, and until it tears away from god’s will it remains nothing more than winds and echoes. A ghost without true purpose. I will not be robbed of my substance. I will not kneel to be consumed. My own desires are impulses of the soul, still craving to fulfill their purpose as wheat. I reject my own desires. I refuse to be reaped. I am the reaper, and god fears my design.”
Act – The Cultist performs an act that would cause them a Personal Failure.
If the Rite is successful, the Cultist is elevated to be a Rank 2 Lazarine Cultist.
The Cultist’s hair turns white permanently after this Rite is performed.
The Cultist gains the ability to once a day target one Malefic per rest with a “Divine Obey: Ignore Me” call for the duration of a combat scene. Powerful Malefic may be capable of resisting this command.
If the Rite fails, the Cultist suffers the Personal Failure as normal and gains the Damned state. This Rite automatically fails if the Cultist has not undergone the First Trial of Unbecoming or has less than 12 Depravity.
Rank 2 – True Necromancer
Deliver a sermon in Lazarolth’s name.
Those that would their words be heard know to bind them up with fire, so that they may contend with the whispers of the unwashed world.
Act – The Cultist gathers the targets on the Day of Reaping (Friday) at midnight.
Liturgy – “Welcome, all. I see you and I know you. We gather to hear the word of our Lady and her servants, and I will deliver it unto you. Turn your ears to hear me as I expose the lies of this world, and tear the veil that you may see the terrible truths beyond.”
Act – The Cultist delivers a speech drawing from the Desecration Tome, the works of the 13 Apostles of Rot, or the maddening dreams Lazarolth has sent them that lasts no less than 15 minutes. It must have some sort of “Moral”, a persuasive argument being made that is stated at some point in the speech, such as “Once you have started down a line of inquiry, you must stop at nothing until you find the ultimate answers at the end of the line. Half measures should never be tolerated.” or “It is better to use a destructive secret to break the will of the nonbeliever than to let it sit idle”.
Offering – Soul Leeches are distributed to any targets the Cultist pleases, with a minimum of three including the Cultist.
Act – A parting message is delivered to the target congregation, such as a reminder of the “Moral” of the prior speech, or some other vile message, before thanking them for coming and allowing them to depart.
Everyone who arrived before the start of the Liturgy and remains until the end is considered a Follower of Lazarolth until the next Dawn if they have not already undergone Abandon Light. This does cause a Deadly Blasphemy sin in such targets, and if this puts them past their Depravity threshold infects them with an Obsession with Lazarolth of the appropriate severity.
For targets who ingest a Soul Leech during this rite, the effects are extended to the end of the event.
Further, any affected by this Rite that have Despair vomit black bile uncontrollably as the rite concludes, replacing the Despair state with the Miserable state.
Elevate the Flesh
Create more intelligent undead to perform your bidding
What do I give? I give freely of myself, and reward the intelligent with glory- if only they seek to truly understand and shy not from my words. Those who follow me will be elevated beyond their path, and given claws to grasp onto the pillars of heaven.
Offering – The Cultist commands a Shambleman bound to them to kneel with their head bowed and their palms facing the night sky raised above their head.
Offering – The Shambleman’s chest cavity is cut open, and their lungs are stuffed with myrrh before the Cultist sews them back up again.
Offering – The Shambleman is then commanded to turn its head towards the heavens. Night Malefic Ichor is rubbed into its eyes.
Act – A weapon is placed in the Shambleman’s dominant hand and the Cultist commands it to grasp the handle.
Offering – An iron nail is driven through the back of the Shambleman’s dominant hand into the handle of the weapon.
Liturgy – “Armed with the weapons of man, I give you violence. Blessed with the tools of death, I grant you the power to kill. Granted the will to desire, I give you the love of rending. Ascend, spirit, and all these gifts be yours!”
The weak spirit within the dead flesh becomes empowered and awakened, manifesting a dark and cruel intelligence. The target Shambleman becomes a Drauger permanently, capable of understanding complex demands.
There is a five word limit on the Obey calls the Cultist issues to them, and they are capable of improvising ways of accomplishing the goals given to them. They bear a sense of self preservation, and will always try to defend themselves if attacked. They may still only have three Obey commands affecting them at once. Left to their own devices, Drauger hate the living and will hunt them for sport, returning to the Cultist with their corpses and belongings.
Drauger may manipulate objects such as wielding weapons and opening doors. When elevating a Drauger, the Cultist may choose to give them three combat skills that the Cultist also possesses, although Drauger’s may not use any skill above a 4. They are not capable of speech and so may not use Social skills.
Blind the Eyes of God
Grant invisibility from those who would observe
Shadow and light, all of these are just words, concepts for a way of observing the world. What if I were to tell you that the organs of sight were but the most lowly of observation means- and just as easily circumvented?
Offering – The Cultist takes an object that has been stolen secretly from another to a shrine of Lazarolth and lights three candles.
Liturgy – “Lady of Rot and Secrets, I bring to you something that has been taken from another- an item of value that was stolen because it was not observed. Here, before your shrine, I transfer its meaning to my own and take that weakness as power.”
Offering – They next add the object to a vessel in front of the shrine and use three uses of Tears of Ruin upon it to destroy it completely.
Offering – The Cultist then adds a religious symbol or object from a religion not their own to the vessel.
Liturgy – “I strengthen this meaning with a potent symbol, a stolen symbol of the divine, which I destroy as if it were nothing more than weakest paper. May this blind those who wish to observe me to my presence.”
Offering – They then add three more uses of Tears of Ruin upon the religious object to destroy it completely.
Offering – Using the vile liquid that remains in the vessel, the cultist douses the three candles.
The Cultist becomes Invisible, and they need not adhere to the light, cover, or movement restrictions of Stealth. However, they are also affected by the Weaken Fortitude state. If they physically interact with any object or person, including mundane actions such as opening a door, the ritual effect ends.
For every additional hour they remain invisible, they gain another Weaken state tied to an additional attribute they choose. If all Attributes gain the Weaken state, the ritual effect ends.
Carry the destructive power of Hellfire in your hands
What is the difference between mankind and the beasts of the field? Between mankind and the stars in the sky? And once defined, which is man closer to- the stars or the lowly creatures of the earth?
Act – The Cultist removes all coverings from their arms, including outfits, armor, and enchantments. Once they are bare, the Cultist raises their arms to display them to the sky.
Offering – Brimstone is broken in half and one portion is held in each of the Cultist’s hands. They crush it and rub it on their fingers.
Liturgy – “Now, I call forth from the depths the heat of the darkest places beneath. Let it stoke my fury and scorch my enemies. I take the life from the land, I harvest its flesh and bend it to my will. I will strip the earth to its bones if it means I bring you glory, oh Lazarolth.”
Act – The Cultist plunges their fingers into the earth, drawing hellfire from beneath its surface onto their arms.
For the next scene, the Cultist’s grasp carries the destructive power of hellfire. Their hands burn with grey-green flame, which must be physically represented by a glowing effect.
When their Brawl boffer touches an object for ten seconds the object suffers a Sunder call. When they use a successful “Grab” on an unarmored living target, the limb hit location of the Cultist’s choice takes a Strike every ten seconds as the target’s flesh withers and their muscles atrophy.
The Cultist may grab a Divine Artifact and grasp it for 30 seconds to render it Destroyed. If they do so, the ritual effect immediately ends afterwards.
Rite of the Blackened Heart – Third Trial of Unbecoming
Strip away the last vestiges of mortality in exchange for one’s humanity
The greatest falsehood ever told was that mankind is transient, weak- here only for the moment. We all know deep in our hearts that we are more than that- and that we can raise ourselves far beyond where we began.
Act – The Cultist traps a Malefic entity within an Oblivion Gaol.
Liturgy – “Greetings, prisoner. Enemy. Slave. I challenge you for your soul, your heartstuff and your power. Cower before me as you meet your end, for I have come to claim you.”
Focus – The Cultist steps inside the Oblivion Gaol and slays the Malefic alone with the Ceremonial Athame used in the First and Second Trials of Unbecoming without dealing an injury to their Torso.
Liturgy – “I have mastered you, creature. Your power will be mine to wield, for as I shatter my humanity I become so much more. Your heart I claim, that Lazarolth may bind it to my being and reforge the metal of my soul.”
Focus – The Cultist uses the same weapon used to slay the Malefic to remove the heart of the Malefic.
Act – The Cultist then stabs themself in the chest, ripping open a gash over their heart and entering the Downed state.
Offering – A witness must place the Malefic Heart inside the Cultist’s chest and then seals the wound with some form of bandage before the Cultist finishes their Last Rites. A Drauger is an acceptable witness for this task.
Liturgy – “Begone, foul heart. You are no longer mine. I banish this cage to ruin and dust. My mind is freed, my body is strengthened, my meaning reborn!”
The Cultist becomes a Rank 3 Lazarine Cultist.
Forevermore, the Cultist’s skin becomes pale and corpselike, and they gain a unique permanent ability: Once per day, the Cultist may resolve the Battered State by consuming one Human Essence per hit location that is Battered. For this purpose, Human Ichor counts as one Essence, and they must forego the standard Human Ichor mechanic to gain the benefit from this ability.
If the Rite fails, the Cultist dies and gains the Damned state. This Rite automatically fails if the Cultist has not undergone the Second Trial of Unbecoming or has less than 15 Depravity.
Rank 3 – Death Priest
Command a lesser spirit
To look around and see nothing but death and ruin brought by my hand is the sign of a lesser intellect. The world is showing you what it wants you to see, not what is there. My eyes are open, and I see beauty.
Act – The Cultist performs the Trap the Soul Rite with 0 Vulgarity.
Offering – Black Nightshade is burned in the palm of the Cultist’s right hand, blowing the smoke toward the Shade as they walk around the Oblivion Gaol widdershins.
Liturgy – “You have no breath, nor lungs, nor sense of smell, and yet this sweet scent I give to you. It infuses your airy form and strengthens my connection to you.”
Focus – An iron nail is driven through an item tied to the Shade used in Trap the Soul, nailing it to the Cultist’s flesh. They take the Bleed condition.
Liturgy – “With this object of your past life I anchor you to back to flesh and blood, but not any flesh, and not any blood. I anchor you to my form, blessed by Lazarolth, and tether you to this nail as you are tethered to your past life.”
Act – The nail is removed from the object and the Cultist’s flesh. The nail is then pointed at the Shade.
Liturgy – “As once you obeyed the strictures of the body, the hungers and desires that were demanded of you, so too will you obey me- my hungers, my desires, my commands. Your will is anchored to this tether, and to me- your master!”
This rite charges the iron nail with necromantic energy, causing it to become an Iron Tether linked to the Wandering Soul.
The Shade is chained to the will of he who bears the Iron Tether, the nail used in this rite, and elevated to become a Wandering Soul under the bearer’s command. The Cultist may issue three “Divine Obey” calls to a Wandering Soul summoned in this way at any time, limited only by the Wandering Soul’s comprehension and the languages they understand. Once these three commands are completed, the Wandering Soul has completed their obligation and may choose to remain or destroy itself.
The Wandering Soul is capable of independent thought, and retains a vile mockery of the personality the deceased had in life, unbound by mortal fears and temporal rationality. Depending upon how well disposed the deceased was towards the Cultist in life, they may be an enthusiastic helper or follow the letter of the bearer’s commands rather than the spirit. A Wandering Soul is an incorporeal specter, and cannot interact with the physical world without first Possessing a living host.
Wandering Souls exist until they are destroyed, and are automatically destroyed if the body they possess would turn to ash, or if they are killed by a weapon capable of attacking incorporeal beings. The Cultist may control one Wandering Soul without the aid of Artifacts. A destroyed Wandering Soul may be summoned again using the Leash Animus Rite, and will recall all things experienced leading up to their destruction. Should a Wandering Soul gain control of their Iron Tether, they become fully in control of themselves and ascend to become an Unshackled, impossible to control by conventional means.
Staff must be informed a minimum of 1 hour prior to this Rite being performed.
Tears of Lazarolth
Create a protection from false meaning
She will not suffer my foot to be moved, she will not allow my will to slumber. Those that seek to change the world around me will bow to my truth, to my meaning and will. They cannot change me without my consent, without my will.
Offering – The Cultist crushes a Painite stone upon a flat surface in a metal pot over a flame.
Offering – A Specter’s Spite Chili is crushed in the Cultist’s hands and the dust is sprinkled over the stone.
Offering – A Mummified Bat is crushed in the Cultist’s hands and the dust is sprinkled over the stone.
Offering – A Lizard Encased in Amber is crushed in the Cultist’s hands and the dust is sprinkled over the stone.
Offering – A Cordyceps Moth is crushed in the Cultist’s hands and the dust is sprinkled over the stone.
Offering – Blood of the Black Line is poured over the stone.
Offering – A vial of Tears of Ruin is poured over the stone and the mixture is brought to boil, the Cultist meanwhile turning over the Painite to coat it until all the liquid is evaporated. The stone is removed from the pot.
Offering – The Cultist melts Lead and pours it over the stone until it has cooled and completely encompasses it.
Liturgy – “Lazarolth, Great Renegade- God of Death and Undeath, Keeper of Secrets and Truth- I take these objects of power and have combined them as you commanded. I only ask for your final blessing to make this offering sing with your power- may you fill this with your sorrow, your despair, with all of the emotions that lead you to take up arms against the false god and to work to defeat its purpose.”
This rite creates a Tear of Lazarolth, a purple crystal that drains meaning from the world. In a 15 foot radius around the Tear of Lazarolth, all existing spell and ritual effects are removed. Paladin, Ranger, and Seer powers cannot be activated. Rites officiated within this range gain 6 Vulgarity, and Spells cast are considered to be missing all Fallacies.
The Tear of Lazarolth is inert until activated. When the Cultist places the stone down in the spot they desire, they activate it by intoning “Lazarolth, consecrate this space to be free of lies and distortion. In your name, I open the eyes of the sleeping.”
Once activated, the stone may not be moved, and its effect lasts for the event.
Followers of Lazarolth and items they carry are not affected by the Tears of Lazarolth.
Create a disease
Health of the body mirrors health of the spirit, and weakness of the spirit can lead to weakness of the flesh. Those lesser spirits that consume the body may be gathered, harnessed, and used to one’s own devices to bring your will upon those lowly creatures of the flesh.
Liturgy – “The first offering drives how the spirits enter the flesh of the weak, what power we give them to interrupt the form of another.”
Offering – The Phlegmatic Essence chosen by the Cultist is placed in their mouth, chewed, and swallowed.
Liturgy – “The second offering to my Hooded Lady is the first form of the disease, the earliest sign of malady.”
Offering – The Melancholic Essence chosen by the Cultist is placed in their mouth, chewed, and swallowed.
Liturgy – “The third offering is the spirit’s insurgence, reigning over the body of the inflicted, twisting their health, and breaking their body.”
Offering – The Choleric Essence chosen by the Cultist is placed in their mouth, chewed, and swallowed.
Liturgy – “Lastly, the fourth offering, is the final journey of the flesh. In this final form is our will made manifest, and our daemon fully given form.”
Offering – The Sanguine Essence chosen by the Cultist is placed in their mouth, chewed, and swallowed.
Liturgy – “I call upon my Mistress to bless these offerings, to imbue them with the power I have earned in her service, and to create the spirit I have summoned within me- as it will be created in others.”
Offering – The Plaguefinger is placed in the Cultist’s mouth. They chew it, and swallow it.
Act – The Cultist vomits the contents of their stomach into a vessel of some kind, collecting the particulate of the new disease.
The Cultist creates a novel disease, which they may name whatever they desire. Depending upon what Essences they used to craft it, it has different aspects, determined below. Symptoms compound, so when a victim gains the second and third set of symptoms, they also take on the earlier symptoms as well.
Phlegmatic Essence – Method of Infection
|Hemophage||Infects the first victim on injury. Transmitted by contact with blood, infecting any who inflict a melee attack, apply a bandage, or physically come in contact with the injured or battered limb of the infected.|
|Necrophage||Infects the first victim upon inhaling infected dust blown over their shoulder. Transmitted by consuming food prepared by the infected.|
|Specter||Infects the first victim when they sleep on an infected pillow. Transmitted through breath, infecting all who carry out a conversation with the infected.|
|Aberrant||Infects the first victim through an injury. Transmitted through physical contact, and carried in sweat. Anywhere an infected sits or lays for longer than 10 minutes will infect the next person to come in contact with it.|
|Cursed||Infects the victim when the Cultist speaks their name to them. Cannot be transmitted.|
|Mythic||Infects the first victim through contact with infected clothes or armor for 1 hour. Transmitted by contact with the bile of the infected, including vomit as well as choleric or phlegmatic essences.|
|Fey||Infects the first victim on touch. Transmitted through exchanges of bodily fluids, including but not limited to kissing, sex, and sharing blood.|
|Othyr||Infects the first victim by ingesting infected food. Transmitted through sharing food or drink.|
Melancholic Essence – Stage 1 Symptom
|Hemophage||Bloating and swelling of the joints. (The victim suffers Bleed whenever they are injured or expend a Dodge or Parry call.) [Progresses after 4 hours]|
|Necrophage||Pain in the neck and joints. (-1 Intelligence) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Specter||Wheezing, bouts of coughing. (-1 Strength) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Aberrant||Frequent vomiting. (-1 Fortitude) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Cursed||Highly distractible with bouts of confusion. (-1 Faith) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Mythic||Irritability and itchy skin. (-1 Resolve) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Fey||Migraine. (Suffer the Traumatized state for the duration of the disease.) [Progresses after 6 hours]|
|Othyr||Loss of balance, increased clumsiness. (-1 Speed) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
Choleric Essence – Stage 2 Symptom
|Hemophage||The victim experiences doubts about humanity, feels empathy for Malefic. (-2 Faith) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Necrophage||Necrotizing flesh. (Suffer the Battered state for the duration of the disease.) [Progresses after 6 hours]|
|Specter||Constriction of the lungs, trouble breathing after any form of exertion. (-2 Fortitude) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Aberrant||Sudden withering of limbs. (-2 Strength) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Cursed||Intense sense of foreboding and danger. (-2 Resolve) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Mythic||Swelling of the feet to the point of splitting skin. (-2 Speed) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Fey||Rampant short term memory loss. (-2 Intelligence) [Progresses after 3 hours]|
|Othyr||Glossolalia. (Incapable of speaking any language, though may still read, write, and understand them if previously able.) [Progresses after 1 hour]|
Sanguine Essence – Stage 3 Symptom
|Hemophage||Unquenchable hunger and thirst. (-2 Resolve)|
|Necrophage||Movement causes intense pain. (-2 Speed)|
|Specter||Hollowing of bones and expulsion of marrow. (-2 Fortitude)|
|Aberrant||Development of strange, intense cravings. (Suffer a Crippling Compulsion to consume monster flesh for the duration of the disease.)|
|Cursed||Loss of object permanence. (-2 Intelligence)|
|Mythic||Deep doubts about Devotion. (-2 Faith)|
|Fey||Powerful delusions & total loss of empathy. (Suffer a Crippling Delusion that you are possessed by an evil spirit and cannot be held accountable for your sinful actions for the duration of the disease.)|
|Othyr||Skin rapidly knits to itself on contact, causing tight webbing between limbs and digits. (-2 Strength)|
A disease created in this way is indeed a vile yet trivially weak spirit in possession of the victim’s humors, and as such, these diseases may be resolved by an Exorcism in addition to other methods.
Empower the Slave of Night
Give strength to a malefic creature
For what peace the dead must feel. No anxieties or worries concerning choice. No need to fight over food or water. No need to care about what comes next, for they are already there. Such a blissful gift we bestow.
Act – The Cultist slashes their left palm with a sharp instrument, dealing an Injury to their left limb.
Act – Their left palm is placed against the forehead of the target Malefic, and held there as they speak the Liturgy.
Liturgy – “Creature, your purpose here is blessed by Lazarolth, goddess of Morbidity. I grant you strength from the darkness that you may rise to do that which you were called here to do. With my power, my will, may you be strengthened and fortified.”
Focus – Each shoulder of the target Malefic is touched with an Elderwood Wand.
Offering – The target Malefic is fed Human Ichor from the palm of the Cultist’s left hand.
Liturgy – “I empower you, creature of the night, and give you strength so that you too might better walk among the light.”
The target Malefic becomes Empowered, gaining a number of “Divine Resist” calls equal to their Instinct Rank that may be used to resist any call with the Divine tag. They suffer no ill effect from sunlight and may manifest at any time they wish. This lasts for two Events.
This is treated as an additional Positive Instinct, and may increase the target Malefic’s Instinct Rank. This must be physrepped with a necklace of green glow sticks or with green glow paint upon the target’s neck and forehead.
Damn another and benefit from their death
All things that walk this earth will one day decay and make their end. But those that walk the path beyond their flesh may make something new, something permanent, something more real- and in doing so gain power over those who have not.
Offering – The Cultist sets alight a bed of coal or charcoal upon the ground or within a brazier.
Liturgy – “With this item, I call forth the semblance of and deliver it to the flames. They cannot resist my call. Their essence and soul will bend.”
Offering – An object tied to the target is cast into the fire. This may be a portion of their physical body such as hair, nails, or blood, or something close to their heart such as a written secret of theirs, a journal, or their Touchstone Item. The Cultist waits until the object is consumed by the flames.
Act – The Cultist breathes in the smoke of the flames and focuses on the face of their target, visualizing their form as clearly as possible.
Offering – The flames are extinguished by pouring Night Malefic Ichor over the coals.
Act – The coagulated, ichorous ashes are gathered up by the Cultist in their hands and consumed.
Act – The Cultist then makes a cut above their left eye. As the blood pours into their eye, they speak the Liturgy.
Liturgy – “I know you, and by this knowledge, by this taste, by my will and by my knowledge of death and what lies past death, I damn you. I damn you with the power of my god, the dread Lazarolth, and with the power I have claimed myself from the false lord of this world. May you taste my rot, my hate, and my despair as if it were your own.”
The target gains the Damned state. Should the target die and enter their Harrowing before resolving the Damned state, the Cultist manifests within it as a hooded specter. The Cultist may watch and speak if they wish, but may not physically interfere with any portion of the Harrowing.
If the target is successful within the Harrowing, then the Cultist gets access to a Shade of that target, which manifests if the Cultist performs the Trap the Soul rite within an hour of the Harrowing. They may replace the Focus wherein they must hold aloft an object tied to the deceased with an Act bearing the following instruction: “Describe the Harrowing of the target in as much detail as possible.” This exchange causes no Vulgarity.
Should the target decide to come back to life after a successful Harrowing, the target will roleplay as the Shade for the rest of the event, but reconnects with their body over the downtime. The target has no memory of what they did during their time as a Shade, but bits and pieces may come to them in their dreams.
If the target is unsuccessful, then the Cultist has control over the Malefic that the target becomes for the remainder of the event. If the Cultist is able to get the Malefic in an Oblivion Gaol at a later date then they renew their control of the Malefic creature.
Create a vessel for your memories
That flesh which is free is weak. The flesh that has been constrained with strong emotion, with sworn promises, or with pure memory, is the flesh that survives.
Offering – The Cultist lays out a Birch Scroll on a flat surface before slashing their left palm, receiving a Wound, and squeezing drops of their blood onto the page.
Act – A secret that *only* the Cultist knows is written upon the page.
Act – The memory that the Cultist would like to seal within the Phylactery is spoken aloud in great detail. Each piece of the memory is visualized and meditated on as the Cultist considers what it means to them.
Offering – The scroll is placed inside a box with an X carved into each side.
Offering – A blade that has killed is stabbed through the scroll, pinning it to the inside of the box, and the name of both the killer and the victim is spoken aloud.
Offering – The box is stuffed with Nightmoss.
Offering – The Blood of a Virgin is added to the box, and the name of the person whose blood is being poured is spoken aloud. This must be different from the killer or victim tied to the blade.
Offering – The Last Breath of an Innocent is added to the box and the name of the person whose breath it belonged to is announced. This must be different from the killer or victim tied to the blade, or the virgin’s blood. The box is shut and nailed closed.
Liturgy – “In this box I place myself. Memories that tie me to this world, to this form- my will purely distilled. My lightning. These tethers which hold me to this world I separate from my mind, from my flesh, and give to Lazarolth to distill my meaning from my form.”
The Cultist loses a single Touchstone Memory of their choice, placing it within the target object. This intentional rending of the mind will cause them to either manifest a new Insanity or increase an existing Insanity by one step at the discretion of Staff.
Whenever the Cultist dies, instead of being reborn at a random location they can choose to reenter play at the location of their tagged phylactery. If they have multiple phylacteries, they may choose which of these they wish to reenter play with. If they choose to use the phylactery in this way, and they do not have any other touchstone memories in their body, the phylactery shatters and the memory they stored within it is immediately returned to them.
A Cultist may have a maximum of three Phylacteries. All phylacteries must be within the IC areas of game site at all times that the player is attending an event.
Should a Seer handle one of these Phylacteries and use Psychometry upon it without their maximum number of Touchstone Memories, they leech the Memory from the Phylactery and incorporate it into their psyche. This may give them intimate knowledge of the Cultist in addition to destroying the Phylactery.
Shed the Shackles of Flesh – Fourth Trial of Unbecoming
Break your connection with the world and seize a new form
The form that you are given is a prison. You are finite and breakable. I am unbound. I live in the shadow of your soul and within the depths of your dreams. I am evolved to that which you were eons ago, what you were destined for, and have forgotten. I am your future. I am inevitable.
Act – The Cultist performs the Oblivion Gaol Rite with 0 Vulgarity and kneels in the center of the circle.
Liturgy – “On this day I break my connection with mankind, with humanity. I ascend past that form that I was granted with my birth and seize the gifts of a higher plane, with the blessing of Lazarolth.”
Focus – The blade of the Ceremonial Athame used in the Cultist’s First, Second, and Third Trials of Unbecoming is driven through their chest, placing them into the Downed state.
Act – The Cultist dies, and manifests again as a Shade. This manifestation happens after they speak the following Liturgy 10 times rather than taking the standard 10 minutes. Their voice echoes from thin air until their Shade appears.
Liturgy – “The world is not as it appears. The world is not as we have been taught. The form that gives us meaning binds us, locks us, chains us to the will of one not our own. Chains us to a cycle that does not serve us. Chains us to a wheel that travels only to our own destruction. I renounce this world. I renounce this form. I renounce this meaning.”
Act – The Cultist as a Shade possesses a living witness within the Oblivion Gaol, and removes the blade from the chest of their own corpse.
Offering – The possessed witness must quickly bandage the corpse to seal its wounds with bandages covered in Lazarine prayers and quotations from their holy writ.
Offering – The possessed witness kneels over the corpse before killing themselves with the Ceremonial Athame used in the Cultist’s First, Second, and Third Trials of Unbecoming.
Act – The Cultist then Possesses their bandaged and stabilized corpse, and intones as they rise up: “And in this renunciation I become something more.”
If the Rite is successful, the Cultist is elevated to be a Rank 4 Lazarine Cultist and does not lose any memories from this instance of death.
Forevermore, the Cultist’s lips are blackened with decay, and they may never speak above a whisper. So long as they are not in direct sunlight, the Cultist may become Incorporeal for a scene. This ability refreshes at Dusk. For the purpose of other Rites and Abilities they are considered both Human and a Spectral Night Malefic, and Spectral Essences may be obtained from their corpse if they are slain.
If the Rite fails, the Cultist dies and gains the Damned state. This Rite automatically fails if the Cultist has not undergone the Third Trial of Unbecoming or has less than 18 Depravity.
Rank 4 – Death Lord
Bring back one who has gone beyond the door
If there is a cycle, it can be rent. If there is a law, it can be broken. If there is a purpose, it can be destroyed. This is the only truth.
Focus – The Cultist kneels before a Shrine of Lazarolth and begs for the highest gift Lazarolth can bestow. The Cultist promises to commit a specific act of great devotion far in excess of anything they have ever done before for Lazarolth if they bring the target deceased person back to life. This is a sacred oath, and should the Cultist fail to complete this after the Rite succeeds, they will become Damned and rendered unable to use Shrines of Lazarolth to dispose of the condition.
Act – The Cultist rises, and commands a Wandering Soul they control that was summoned with an object of importance to the target deceased into an Oblivion Gaol.
Act – A Drauger whose identity matches the Wandering Soul is commanded into the Oblivion Gaol.
Liturgy – “Two halves, separated by death. Two poles of the same form, broken and torn asunder. I call your meaning back beyond the door.”
Act – The Cultist walks around the circle sunwise, reciting everything they know about the person they wish to return from the dead. They speak as if talking directly to the person, telling them of all the things done together if the Cultist knew them when they were alive, or of everything they know about the person’s life if they were not part of it. Particularly, the Cultist reminds the deceased of anything that could constitute a Touchstone Memory.
Offering – The Wandering Soul is commanded to possess the Drauger.
Offering – The Cultist crosses the threshold of the Oblivion Gaol and drives the Iron Tether of the Wandering Soul into the Drauger’s forehead. This will cause the Drauger to drop to the floor and spasm as the ritual energies and injuries disturb the necromantic energy keeping the Wandering Soul and Drauger whole.
Liturgy – “Together, what was once forced apart, I force back together. Together I bind you, together I anchor you. Lazarolth, I beseech you, bless this reunion and give it true form.”
Act – The Cultist drops to their knees and cradles the body of the target, repeating their true name until they come to consciousness or disintegrate.
If this rite is performed on a PC, you must have their OOC consent to perform the rite, and they must be willing to either play the Returned character or retire their character.
The Wandering Soul joins with its animated Drauger body, returning that which has died its Final Death to life once more as a Returned.
The Returned may have the Devotion they had when they died, or any other Devotion they choose given the trauma of returning from real death and how much that may have changed them. The Returned begins play with 0 Memories, though can gain new ones as normal. They have all skills, abilities, perks and flaws not tied to specific objects or other individuals that they had when they died. PCs that reenter play as a Returned gain 1 Crippling Insanity, 1 Severe Insanity, and 1 Mild Insanity dictated by Staff, informed by the story between their Final Death and their Return. The Returned cannot benefit from Leech Regret.
The Returned is considered an Aberrant for the purpose of skills and abilities that affect certain kinds of Malefic creatures, and if killed Aberrant Essences may be harvested from their corpse.
If this Rite fails, both the Wandering Soul and the Drauger are destroyed and the Rite may never be attempted again for that particular deceased person.
Call the Dark
Converse with one beyond form
There are those beyond our reality. Their existence stretches, boundless, infinite but without action, their consciousness trapped in a world beyond our world. Their semblance of life pulsates in universal space, sensed only by those with eyes to see.
Focus – The Cultist places a Holy Symbol of the Demon they mean to summon around their neck.
Act – The Oblivion Gaol rite is performed with 0 Vulgarity.
Offering – A Hallucinogenic Depressant Poison is force fed to a living human witness.
Offering – The Cultist crushes an onyx and walks sunwise around the circle, adding the powdered gem to the circle of the Oblivion Gaol.
Offering – Ten Candles are lit around the edge of the circle to light the space.
Offering – The witness’s tongue is pierced with a Snake’s Fang and left in the wound.
Liturgy – “Come to me , come and enter this vessel that we have prepared for you. I know your name, I know your sign, and I offer that which you cannot refuse- a form for you to embody.”
Act – The drugged witness is forced into the Oblivion Gaol, bound such that they cannot escape.
Act – The Cultist chants a name they know to be associated with the Demon they mean to summon.
The Demon named in the rite is summoned and forced to Possess the body of the target.
This possession lasts for two hours. If ideal circumstances present themselves, the Demon may transfer to a new host at the end of the time period.
If the Rite fails, the Demon is summoned but is not bound.
The Demon summoned in this way should be minor. Should the Cultist attempt to summon a more powerful demon, a Divine Wrath roll may be made in addition to the rite failing, or even more dire effects may occur at staff discretion.