Minor Cults of Prax Revealed [2/2]

From: Loren Miller (Loren.Miller@marketing.wharton.upenn.edu)
Date: Thu 18 May 1995 - 00:46:16 EEST

And here's the second half of Bryan's post.

                               Outsider Cults

Gorakiki Honey-Mother (Beast, Darkness, Fertility, and Harmony)

   Gorakiki Honey-Mother is a version of Gorakiki Bee known by the Oasis People, River Folk, and farmers of the Zola Fel valley. Her worship seems to be unrelated to the Trollish, the Hsunchen, and the propitiatory cults of this goddess.

   To worship Gorakiki Honey-Mother, a prospective initiate must find a Beekeeper and convince him of worthiness (abstracted as success in Bee Care and POW X 3 rolls). If successful, the applicant can establish a link (by sacrificing a point of POW). Initiates receive free training in Bee Breeding and may learn Gorakiki Honey Mother divine magic on a one-use basis. Initiates may call Gorakiki Honey-Mother with a 1d100 divine intervention roll but only to aid a swarm or hive of bees.

   Beekeepers lead the local cult in the same way that a mastercraft leads others who practice his art. The candidate must have mastered (90% skill rating) Bee Care and Bee Breeding. He must also know the right magics
(Disrupt, Heal 2, and Repair 3). The candidate must also have set up
beehives for at least two queens and successfully maintained them for a year simultaneously. Finally, he has to pass a test of worthiness (abstracted as a special success in either Bee Care or Bee Breeding). Failure meant that the applicant has to wait another year to try again.

   Beekeepers are required to test applicants for initiation. They are required to teach the basics of Bee Care (up to 30%) free of charge to any who wish to know it. They are also required to teach basic Bee Breeding (up to 30%) free of charge to any Gorakiki Honey-Mother initiate. Fortunately, few people want to know Bee Care or Bee Breeding. Beekeepers also have to care for their hives.

   Beekeepers can learn Gorakiki Honey-Mother divine spells reusably. They may use 1d10 for Divine Intervention from Gorakiki Honey-Mother, but only to help a hive or swarm of bees.

   Gorakiki Honey-Mother's Spirit of Reprisal is Stinger, the spirit of an angry bee. Stinger constantly flies around apostates and cultists who have harmed bees and ensures that all bees who are within range of the caster have Bee Rage cast upon them. Furthermore, Stinger's Song ensures that any Bee Balm or Speak with Bees cast by the sinner will fail.

Divine Magic: Divination (about bees), Bee Balm, Bee Gate, Bee Rage, Excommunication, Initiation, Sanctify, Speak with Bees, Worship Gorakiki Honey-Mother. Gorakiki Honey-Mother does not teach the spells known to Bee Hsunchen nor those known to the Trollish or propitiatory Gorakiki cults.

Bee Balm 1 point
instant, stackable, reusable

   This spell calms a small swarm or hive of bees that has been disturbed. Each stacking of the spell adds another "hive size"--see "Insect Swarm" in the RQ Creatures book/chapter--to the calming influence. The hive must be within line of sight of the caster. Note that this spell is of "instant", not "temporal" duration. It calms a hive, but it doesn't keep it calm in the face of further irritation.

Bee Gate 1 point
ritual ceremony, stackable, reusable

   This rite must be performed simultaneously with Insect Fence (cf, Gorakiki above). It creates an opening in the Insect Fence through which bees may enter. Many crops would fail without a Bee Gate in their Insect Fence. Every stacked point of this spell creates another gate.

Bee Rage 1 point
temporal, nonstackable, reusable

   This spell enrages a hive or swarm of bees. The hive cannot be "aimed" but it will not attack the caster.

Kal'karrak (Beast, Death, and Mastery)

   A powerful lion spirit hunts on Basmol's grounds in the spirit plane. He prefers to deal with Basmoli shamans and often oversees the initiation of new shamans. He also leads Basmoli shamans to Basmol's Den and makes them stay there when they die of old age or are unable to self-resurrect.

   To contact Kal'karrak a shaman must perform a ritual using the hide of a lion and the corpse of a sable, impala, antelope or zebra that has been hunted and killed without Peaceful Cut that same day. After the ritual, the shaman discorporates, taking the animal's spirit with him. The supplicant must make a successful Animal Lore roll when offering the animal's spirit. A moderate sacrifice (1 POW) to forms a link unless the shaman is already an initiate of Basmol, then, only a minor sacrifice (1MP) is needed. Most Prax tribes would consider this ritual filthy blasphemy, since it requires the animal's spirit be devoured by Kal'karrak.

   Kal'karrak has not been contacted within living memory in Prax (no lion skins available). The tales of lions among the Basmoli are due to Praxian beast riders not knowing of the various Hsunchen "transform" spells that Basmoli shamans have. The skin of a transformed Basmoli would not suffice for the summoning ritual. A successful contact was made by a wandering Basmoli shaman in 1613 ST at the Wild Temple in Beast Valley.

   Kal'karrak teaches Ironhand, Protection, Spirit Screen, Strength, and Sharptooth all up to level 4. He also teaches a unique spirit magic spell:

Spirit Claws. 3 pts
This spell gives the recipient "claws" that function on the spirit plane, giving the recipient an effective +3 to MP when attacking in spirit combat. A discorporate creature may use MP from its fetch (if it has one) to cast the spell.

Divine Magic:
Blessed Transformation 5pts
ritual enchantment, nonstackable, one use

   This spell is only offered to Basmoli law shamans after many years of service to the people. It turns the caster into a young adult lion, whose POW, INT and shamanic abilities remain the same (i.e., an awakened lion). The casting requires the shaman's lion hide. The casting is a 1 week ritual costing an additional 3pts of POW. If the enchant rolls are all successful, the shaman starts a new life among the Basmoli. If not, the shaman dies.

Turnip Boy (Earth, Light, Truth, and Law)

   In the fields of Sun County, on the banks of the Zola Fel, a young man labored. His hoe chopped away at the weeds that threatened to choke the precious crop. He was a dedicated young man who loved to toil upon Ernalda for the glory of Yelmalio. He was so dedicated worked without resting. He was so dedicated that he worked without drinking. He was so dedicated that he worked without a hat.

   Under the blazing Fire Season sun he toiled until he was confronted by a vision. Where the sun had been in the sky was an enormous Presence, a huge Entity, an imposing Being, a really big Turnip! The Turnip spoke to the young man and revealed that Turnip was the true son of Yelmalio and Ernalda. The peoples of the world had wallowed in sin too long, and it was Turnip's time to purify the world so that Yelmalio might walk upon it. Turnip Boy was commanded to go forth and preach. He went north and performed many wonders.

   In the land of Sartar he slew a Dream Dragon with nothing more than a turnip as a weapon. In the land of Tarsh he converted an entire tribe to Yelmalio worship. In the city of Boldhome he slew a warrior Dragonewt with his bare hands and dragged it through the city streets. Then he called fire from the sky to dispose of the corpse.

   Those who wish to partake of the gifts of Turnip Boy must be initiated to Yelmalio, Yelm, or Ernalda. Darkness creatures are not eligible, except Trollkin, who must be initiated to one of the four above cults or to Argan Argar. Initiates to Eurmal may also join this religion, but they must forswear all ties to the Trickster and embrace the Turnip as their only Lord. Applicants must have never partaken of hazia except for former Eurmali, who must never again partake of hazia.

   The character must plant a field of turnips and tend it carefully. During the height of Fire Season, the applicant must work from dawn to dusk without pausing, drinking, or wearing a hat until he passes out. Trollkin can substitute stuffing themselves with turnips until they pass out during Fire Season for the "Turnip Dance".

   Once the applicant has lost consciousness, he will see Turnip Boy, who will quiz him on Yelmalio's Law. The applicant must pass the quiz
(abstracted as a successful Yelmalio or Ernalda Lore or special Yelm Lore
roll unless the applicant is a Trollkin or Eurmali, in which case he must fail an Argan Argar or Eurmal Lore roll). If the test is passed, the applicant may establish a link (expend 1 POW).

   A worshipper must remain absolutely true to the laws of Yelmalio, prosecute and attack hazia and its use, practice complete chastity (not celibacy sex within marriage is permitted), and must preach to the masses about the virtues of the Turnip at least two hours every day. The worshipper must also keep himself stocked with turnips at all times and must expend 1 MP every fireday. Furthermore, the worshipper is required to wear headgear shaped like a turnip, even if that headgear is a helmet. (Turnipshaped  helmets are special order items that cost 2-3 times normal to purchase.)

   Turnip Boy is is own Spirit of Reprisal. Anyone who violates the Laws of Yelmalio or uses any of Turnip Boy's gifts for personal gain will be visited with nightmares in which the Turnip Boy lectures the sinner mightily
(halving any benefits from that night of sleep). A sinner who persists in
his error for more than a week of his pressure is stripped of all his Turnip Boy spells and is forevermore deathly allergic to turnips. (Turnips act as a poison of POT 20 upon the person.)

   Turnip Boy teaches the spirit spells of Detect Turnip and Endurance (up to Endurance 4). He also teaches the divine spell Truespear (only function if the spearhead is shaped like a turnip) and two unique spells. Turnip Boy's divine magic can be renewed at a Sun Dome Temple or any Major or larger Solar temple or at a Great Ernalda temple. Turnip Boy's Truespear spell can also be renewed at a small shrine in Apple Lane in Sartar.

Turnip Pockets 2 points
ritual ceremony, temporal, nonstackable, reusable

   For the duration of this spell, the caster has turnips. Whenever he reaches into his pocket, into his pack, into his purse, he will pull forth a turnip. The turnips are ordinary, non-magical turnips except that they cannot be used for the Turnip Healing spell (see below). They can be used like ordinary turnips in all other ways. This spell lasts from the time it is cast until the next sunset. The turnips do not disappear at the spell's expiration. It cannot be cast at night. If the caster boosts the spell with MP when casting it, his Orate skill is increased by 5% per MP used. Turnip Boy worshippers often use this spell when preparing to preach to a large crowd. Turnip Boy cultists are often followed about by crowds of stickpickers and other low-income people who are willing to tolerate their constant preaching for access to the free turnips. While the strategic value of this spell could be enormous (food produced in great quantities), Turnip Boy worshippers would be horrified at such a perversion of their Great Teacher's gift. Any Turnip Boy cultist who attempted to use this spell for personal gain would immediately face the wrath of the Turnip (and the loss of all Turnip Boy divine magic).

Turnip Healing 1 point
ritual enchantment, reusable

   This spell permits the caster to create a Turnip of Healing. He must start with a flawless, naturally grown turnip. He may then invest POW into the turnip via this enchantment. The turnip will function as the appropriate ingredients for any curative or healing potion with a POT equal to ten times the POW invested in it. A worshipper of Turnip Boy also gains a +10% to his Craft appropriate potion skill for every POW in the turnip.

Yinkin (Beast, Air, Shadow, and Movement)

   Orlanth's younger half brother was mothered by Kerofin and fathered by the Father of Carnivores. When very young, he tried his hand at many tasks and failed miserably at all of them. Then one night, when Darkness covered the land, Yinkin's sharp eye caught sight of an assassin sent to kill his brother. His soft foot let him sneak up on the would-be murderer. His sharp claw let the criminal's blood feed the earth. Since that time, Yinkin and his children have been guardians and companions of Orlanthi.

   Spirit worship of Yinkin is rare anywhere except among Orlanthi in Prax, where it is fairly common (probably as a result of influence by neighboring Praxian religions). Storm-allied shamans, e.g., Kolatings, can contact Yinkin at any time and may establish a link by sacrificing a point of POW. Other shamans must befriend a Shadowcat for a year and then ask it to call Yinkin. If the Shadowcat feels like it, and Shadowcats can be pretty contrary critters, Yinkin will be called. (The GM can either role-play this for the Shadowcat or abstract it as a POW X 3% roll.) The shaman can then sacrifice 1 POW to establish a link.

   Non-shamans must be initiated into a Storm cult or a cult allied to a Storm cult. They must then befriend a Shadowcat for a year and may then attempt to call upon Yinkin as would a non-Storm shaman.

   Yinkin requires that any who follow him keep at least one Shadowcat as a friend and care for it as one's own brother or sister.

Spirit Magic: Ironhand, Silence.

Divine Magic: Catseye, Catsclaw

Catsclaw 3 points
temporal, nonstackable, reusable

   Both the caster's hands grow retractable claws and do 1d8 damage plus his damage bonus. His chance to hit with his claws is equal to his normal Fist attack. These claws do not interfere with normal hand use.

                                 Holy Sites:

   Altars exist in Prax that would allow bonuses to the chances of contacting many of the above beings. They might also allow powerful shamans to summon the spirits, themselves!

                              Regaining Gifts:

   Most of the divine magics of the above cults are regained in the normal manner, except that the shaman or supplicant merely meditates for a day per point of divine magic in order to regain the spell anywhere in Prax. Outside of Prax, divine magic cannot be regained unless a spirit is specifically known to have influence outside of Prax (e.g. Yinkin spells could probably be regained in Sartar).

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