I’ve talked quite a bit lately about assorted Rites that ought to be written up for Werewolf: the Apocalypse, and the time has come. The Rite of Consecration and the Rite of the Wretched Worm are stated as existing (only the former by name, however) in Werewolf canon, but their details are never actually given. The Rite of Falcon’s Blood was created to plug a perceived inconsistency in the history of the Silver Fangs, and is a cousin to the Rite of Adoption utilized by the Uktena and Children of Gaia. The Rite of Awakening Gaia’s Power is a strictly personal and speculative creation made as a follow up to my recent posts about Fomori and Kami.
The Rite of Falcon’s Blood (level 3 Silver Fang Rite of Accord)
The Silver Fangs argue that the fifth and sixth laws of the Litany together grant them the privilege of claiming the best and the brightest (and the richest or most noble) Kinfolk of other tribes for themselves. Their obsessions with retaining the purity of their blood and to claim the best that all tribes had to offer are incompatible, and so the Rite of Falcon’s Blood was devised. This solemn and somewhat pompous Rite is used to win Falcon’s approval and protection for prospective matches with Pure Bred Kinfolk of other tribes. Claims that this rite justifies Silver Fang acquisitiveness are a longstanding irritant to the rest of the Garou nation, and the increasing insularity and decline of the Silver Fangs as well as Pure Breed in general have caused this Rite to fall mostly into disuse in modern times.
System: Falcon will only accept Kinfolk possessing Pure Breed; any attempt to perform this Rite on other Kin automatically fail. If it is performed successfully, the Kin’s Pure Breed is realigned from their former tribe to the Silver Fangs, as Falcon has graciously adopted (some would say co-opted) them as his own. Three or more successes are required to fully benefit from this Rite: fewer success mean that the Kin is still adopted but their effective Pure Breed is reduced by one per success below three. Failure is considered a sign that Falcon is offended or feels that this particular Kin was taken unjustly; the Kin is to be returned unmolested to their originating tribe, and the ritemaster loses 2 temporary Honor. A Botch offends both tribal totems, destroying the Kin’s Pure Breed outright and costs the ritemaster 3 temporary Honor and 1 temporary Wisdom.
The Rite of Consecration (level 3 Mystic Rite)
There are several variants of this Rite. Through this Rite, a Possessed character’s soul is bonded to a more powerful spirit or being, either a servant of whichever one of the Triat the character serves or a Gaian spirit (in the case of Kami). The character is expected to serve this being faithfully, more out of reverence and respect than out of abject servitude (although Drones simply look at it as a logical chain of command). The consecration usually takes place when the spirit bonds with the host, and is initiated not by the Possessed character, but by a third party involved in the possession (a Wyrm Cult for Kami or a powerful Gurahl sent by Gaia to assist a Kami through its transformation, for example). Many Possessed characters are simply Consecrated directly by powerful spirit patrons rather than by some mortal being, however.
System: The recipient must purchase the Consecrated background to benefit from this Rite. Either Background points must be allocated towards it or experience points equal to 3 x its level must be expended to pay for it. The more dots a character has in this Background, the more powerful the being she’s consecrated to. Each level of Consecrated that the player buys, however, also costs a Triatic character a the amount of Autonomy specified in the entry for that Background. Shapeshifters agreeing to serve as patrons to appropriate Possessed characters receive considerable Renown, but also risk much lost Renown should their charges be destroyed. Characters Consecrated to a Totem Avatar will receive the equivalent benefit that a shapeshifter dedicated to that Totem would receive. See Possessed: a Player’s Guide for more details.
The Rite of the Wretched Worm (level 5 Mystic Rite)
Black Spiral Dancers use this rite, which they consider to be a variant on the Rite of the Fetish, to turn humans or especially animals into Fomori. In fact, they regard these animal-host Fomori as living Fetishes to be treated as simple possessions and tools. Human-host Fomori often wish that they were so lucky.
System: Standard Roll, but the difficulty is 8 – it is even easier for a sufficiently skilled ritemaster to convince Banes to be bound into a Fomor than it is to convince them to be bound into a Fetish. Innocents, untainted individuals and hosts unsuited to the particular Bane are harder to infect, due to the relative lack of purchase a Bane can have on their souls; the difficulty for transmuting them is 9. Accordingly, the Black Spirals will usually either choose prospective hosts that are already suitable or take some time to properly “break them in”. Fomori created through this Rite are generated as per the standard rules in Possessed: a Player’s Guide.
The Rite of Awakening Gaia’s Power (level 5 Mystic Rite)
The existence of this rite is regarded as pure conjecture. Though the Wyrm’s Fomor servitors are numerous and can be created in a wide variety of ways, the Kami are much more elusive, secretive and mysterious. It is generally believed that Gaia alone can will a Kami into being, but that is not strictly speaking true. While the Rite of the Wretched Worm is a cousin to the Rite of the Fetish, this Rite has more in common in execution with the Rite of Spirit Awakening and the Rite of Caern Building. In most cases, there is no foreign spirit being introduced into the prospective Kami: instead, the spirit already within the host is permanently awakened imbuing the host with Gaia’s power. However, should the ritemaster desire and have a receptive Gaian spirit on hand, then one can in fact be bound into the host. This last option can permit the ritemaster to have perhaps a bit more influence over the final form that the Kami will take, by way of selecting a spirit that he believes will suit his (and Gaia’s) purposes. All participants must undergo a Rite of Cleansing before this rite can be performed.
System: Only a willing (or inanimate) host may be subjected to this Rite. The ritemaster rolls Wits + Rituals (difficulty 12). Each point of permanent Gnosis that the character spends during the rite reduces the difficulty by two; going to great length to prove one’s both one’s sincerity and the host’s suitability may also reduce the difficulty by up to one point. At the end of the ritual, the participants must expend a total of 15 temporary Gnosis. If there is insufficient Gnosis available, then participants will suffer unsoakable Aggravated wounds. Each health level suffered counts as 3 Gnosis towards the required total. Failure means that the spirit remains dormant, but living hosts are put at risk: they must pass a Willpower roll at difficulty 8 or die horribly. This Rite cannot be performed on the same subject for at least one year. A botch indicates that bond between the spirit and host is permanently severed, which will enrage the spirit into attacking and lead to an inanimate host’s irreversible decay. Animate hosts die automatically and, if human, will become a Wraith rather than a Gaian spirit.
Success causes the host to become a Kami generated according to the standard rules in Possessed: a Player’s Guide. The transformation is not immediate however: the host will gradually fall dormant and remain so for nine days, after which it will awaken rejuvenated and ready to serve Gaia. The new Kami may roll Gnosis (difficulty 6) to awaken 1 day earlier per success. Similarly to the Rite of Caern Building, performing this Rite attracts the attention of minions of the Weaver and/or Wyrm, who may take action to prevent its success if they are close enough and able to do so. A success in this rare and momentous task will also cause the ritemaster to receive 2 points of Glory, 2 points of Honor and 2 points of Wisdom Renown. Other participants will gain 1 point of Glory and 1 point of Honor Renown. The Rite of Consecration will almost certainly be performed for the new Kami either immediately upon completion (before the Kami falls into slumber) or just after the Kami awakens. Awakening a Kami does not allow any control over it.