Ink Monkey Bones #20: New Abyssal Hearthstones

After last week’s post about Abyssal hearthstones, I spoke to Holden about the new stones I’d written for the Ink Monkeys blog, asking which ones I should publish here. He said to give you guys the whole set! So here they are. Enjoy!

<2>New Abyssal Hearthstones

Elemental_Jewel__Darkness_by_TimeScar13<3>Black Nadir Stone (Manse 1-5)

<n>Once a character has attuned to this throbbing black jewel, she hears the mad and terrifying murmurs of the Neverborn echoing in her skull. This gives her an effective rating in the Whispers Background equal to the hearthstone’s Manse rating. This does not stack with any Whispers rating she may already possess.

<3>Bloodletting Stone (Manse 1)

<n>When an edged weapon set with this dark red stone is used to perform a blood sacrifice involving the death of a sentient creature, the sacrifice generates additional motes equal to (the victim’s Essence rating x 2). See Exalted, p. 316 or Oadenol’s Codex, p. 134 for rules on blood sacrifice.


<3> Clarification: Blood Sacrifice

<n>Motes generated by blood sacrifice may be spent on anything that requires Essence, including refilling one’s Essence pool, thaumaturgic rituals, spells, Charms and artifact activation costs. These motes must be used immediately after the sacrifice is performed. Otherwise, they dissipate before they may be used. This means that if a character with a full Essence pool performs two or more blood sacrifices in immediate succession, all of the motes are wasted except those from the final sacrifice used.


<3>Gem of the Obsidian Mirror (Manse 1)

<n>This glassy black stone is as reflective as any mirror. When in the Underworld, the reflections in the stone depict the corresponding location in Creation rather than its immediate environment. When in Creation, the reflections in the stone mirror events in the Underworld. In other realms of existence, this hearthstone increases Essence respiration as normal but provides no other benefits.

<3>Night’s Border Gem (Manse 1)

<n>This oblong crystal shades from dull yellow at one end to shining black at the other. Whenever its bearer leaves a shadowland, she chooses whether to exit into Creation or the Underworld.

A similar, three-dot hearthstone allows the bearer to bring a number of additional characters equal to her Essence rating across the boundary. Characters that do not cross at the same time as the bearer do not come with her.

<3>Spectral Replica Stone (Manse 1)

<n>This opaque gem is half black and half white. The stone provides increased Essence respiration as normal when set into a grave good artifact. If set into a normal artifact as a resonant hearthstone, the stone shatters instantly. When the stone regenerates in its manse’s hearthstone chamber, a grave good replica of that artifact appears with the new stone. The replica must be attuned normally, and it evaporates if the stone is removed from it. A replica only appears if the hearthstone chamber has room for it—unlikely in the case of, say, an airship.

A similar, five-dot hearthstone creates fully independent grave goods that remain intact once the stone is removed.

<3>Beast-Perfecting Gem (Manse 2)

<n>If this red-flecked umber gemstone is set in a weapon, its bearer may spend one Willpower when slaying a natural animal to raise a plasmic double of the animal from its corpse as a reflexive action. Treat this as a sacrificial animal (The Books of Sorcery, Vol. V—Roll of Glorious Divinity II, pp. 106-107) bound to the hearthstone bearer. The stone may only generate one plasmic animal at a time; if the bearer creates a new plasmic animal or the stone is destroyed, the previous plasmic animal melts into fog and blows away, gone forever.

A similar, four-dot hearthstone has no limit on the number of plasmic animals it can create. Such animals are as permanent as those created by normal processes.


<3> Clarification: Plasmics and Sunlight

<n>Plasmic creatures are not grave goods. Like ghosts, plasmics are not destroyed by sunlight, though they find Creation’s sun unpleasant and avoid it whenever possible.


<3>Gem of the Shadow Sheath (Manse 2)

<n>A grave good artifact set with this dark blue gemstone is not harmed by sunlight.

<3>Gemstone of the Living Corpse (Manse 2)

<n>The bearer of this lavender stone assumes the semblance of a fresh corpse. His skin grows pale and he does not seem to breathe. No mundane examination will penetrate this disguise; against magical perception, the bearer uses (Manipulation + Larceny) for the disguise roll. Predatory undead, such as zombies and hungry ghosts, are likewise unable to discern that the bearer is a living creature. Treat his Appearance as being one dot lower, to a minimum of 0, for social interactions where others would find his corpselike appearance unpleasant or disquieting. The bearer may spend one Willpower to cancel the stone’s effects for one scene.

<3>Stone of Ghost-Lines (Manse 2)

<n>This grayish stone is mottled with sparkling white inclusions. When set into an edged weapon and used to scratch lines on the ground, the resulting lines block the passage of ghosts and hungry ghosts in the same manner as lines of salt (see Exalted, p. 316). These lines retain their potency for one day.

<3>Ushabti-Shattering Stone (Manse 2)

<n>An artifact set with this dull gray gem will instantly destroy any grave good it touches, as though the grave good were exposed to sunlight. If set in armor, it shatters any grave good weapon that strikes the bearer. A weapon set with this stone disintegrates grave good armor worn by an opponent that it strikes, and destroys any grave good weapon that is successfully used to parry it or that it is successfully used to parry.

<3>Gem of Nightmare’s Mask (Manse 3)

<n>This gnarled, bruise-colored stone twists its bearer’s visage into a vision of horror, reducing his Appearance to 0. He is only moderately recognizable; those who know him can recognize him on a successful (Perception + Awareness) roll, modified by any relevant factors (a disguise, not having seen him for some time, etc). The bearer may spend one Willpower to cancel this effect for one scene.

<3>Soul-Carving Prism (Manse 3)

<n>This wedge-shaped stone brightens from dull bluish-purple at the base to a vivid, ugly orange at its tip. Whenever a weapon set with this stone is used to kill a human, the victim’s po soul is severed from the hun. This immediately and invariably creates a hungry ghost. Unless the sun is shining on the corpse, the hungry ghost immediately surges forth to wreak havoc. Hungry ghosts created in this manner are normal in all respects, except that they cannot attack the bearer as long as she remains in contact with the stone or the artifact it’s set in.


<3> Clarification: Hungry Ghosts of Exalts

<n>The Exalted leave more powerful hungry ghosts than mortals do, for an Exalt’s po soul battens upon her Essence throughout her life, leaving it bloated with raw force once it parts from the Exaltation and the hun. To calculate the strength of an Exalt’s hungry ghost, use the rules from the necromantic spell Links Born of Tumult (see The Books of Sorcery, Vol. II—The Black Treatise, pp. 42-43).

The hungry ghosts of long-dead Exalts often manifest ghostly Arcanoi through which to channel their reserves of necrotic Essence. They typically gain Arcanoi at a rate of one per decade until they’ve been dead for a century, then an additional Arcanoi for each additional century. The Storyteller may change this rate at her discretion in order to provide a more appropriate challenge for her players.


<3>Void-Steel Gemstone (Manse 3)

<n>An artifact set with this dark stone turns as black and lightless as Oblivion. The artifact is treated as soulsteel for all intents and purposes: it negates the penalty that would be caused by other, Creation-formed hearthstones set in it (see The Manual of Exalted Power—The Abyssals, p. 96), and it provides soulsteel’s magical material bonuses if set in a weapon or armor. This supplements existing magical material bonuses in the same manner as All Blades Cry for Blood (see Ink Monkeys, vol. 32: The Dawn Solution [Part 1]).

<3>Jewel of the Sunset Gate (Manse 4)

<n>During the night, the bearer of this deep purple orb may meditate for five minutes and spend one Willpower to step directly from Creation into the corresponding location in the Underworld.

A similar, five-dot hearthstone allows the bearer to step into the Underworld as a miscellaneous action.

<3>The Necromancer’s Aegis (Manse 5)

<n>The bearer of this brilliant blood-red stone may reflexively shatter undesirable Shadowlands or Labyrinth Circle necromancy spells that target her, as per the spell Onyx Countermagic (The Books of Sorcery, Vol. II—The Black Treatise, p. 43).


<3>On The Necromancer’s Aegis

<n>”Necromancy-related magics like this hearthstone will likely see revision after the upcoming Sorcery errata.” —E



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