Malphas, Archangel of Individuality

Malphas, Archangel of Individuality

The world is an evolving pattern of separate entities – but in the end, the only way to complexity is through individual contribution. Each of us has something unique to offer.

Malphas, as a Kyriotate, isn’t tied down to one appearance. On Earth, it never appears in the same vessel twice, save at great need, as it constantly hungers for different viewpoints.

Since Redeeming, Malphas has had one great advantage: some of its former Servitors of Factions have been slowly but steadily following its lead. For fairly obvious reasons, the new Archangel performs few Redemptions itself, instead petitioning Superiors that are above reproach to perform the task for it. In fact, the Archangel most likely often asked has been David, the Superior most hostile to Malphas … a fact of some bemusement to the Seraphim Council.

Dissonance

It is dissonant for any Servitor of Individuality to deny, hinder or forestall another individual’s right to make a choice, providing that the individual in question is in his or her right mind and is not ignorant of possible consequences. A child, or someone noticeably under the influence of a drug, is considered ”not of right mind” for the purpose of this discussion.

Organization

As noted above, Malphas has had some of its former Servitors follow its lead in Redeeming. Due to the (very likely) possibility that at least a few have done so for the wrong reasons, the Archangel allows others suspicious of it to conduct all Redemptions. This is probably the major reason why David has not been more hostile than he could be.

For those who survive the process, and for those newly fledged, Malphas provides a congenial working environment. Angels in its organization are listened to, and are probably have the most freedom to tell their boss when they think it’s wrong. Just like the days when it was a Prince, Malphas makes every Servitor feel that they have a tough but fair boss who is their best friend: only now, they’re essentially correct.

However, there are two problems with working for the Archangel of Individuality. One is, ironically, that they’re not trusted very much in some – or even most – quarters. To some reactionaries, free will is too intertwined with Falling. Second, dissonance is very unacceptable. Angels of Individuality have to be squeaky-clean, even more so than Servitors of Judgement or Stone. One that manages to become Outcast is under an effective sentence of death.

Choir Attunements

Seraphim

These angels, once per day, can determine the most likely consequences of their actions, and can grant this gift to others with a Will Roll.

Cherubim (Restricted)

Cherubim of Malphas are immune to dissonance if someone that they are attuned to is hurt or killed, if the person so attuned has made an informed, unforced decision to risk injury or death in order to protect something dear to that individual.

Ofanite

The Wheels of Individuality can look at a person and determine what needs to be changed (or disappear!) in order to help that person regain a sense of identity.

Elohim

The Elohite resonance always succeeds when it is used to determine the target’s feelings about self-determination or independence: roll anyway for the check digit.

Malakim

No Malakim has accepted service with Malphas yet, but when they do, they will be able to be always know the greatest threat to individuality within an area equal to (Celestial Forces times 10) yards.

Bright Lilim

Likewise, few Gifters have joined Malphas: those who have may gift a target with a heightened sense of determination and positive self-esteem for a number of minutes equal to their Ethereal forces. The target will not lose interest in those close to him or her … but he or she will see clearly how their friends, lovers and family treat them.

Kyriotates (Restricted)

No Kyriotate may enter a host’s body without permission, or unless the host is unconscious (the Kyriotate may not cause the host to enter this state). However, once they do, they have full access to the host’s memories and skills, and may use them freely, as long as the host does not object to the Kyriotate’s actions and presence. The host vessel may be also used indefinitely, subject to the same conditions. If asked, Malphas also will assign a free vessel of no more than three Forces for the Kyriotate to use (this vessel always counts towards the amount of Forces ‘tied up’). Kyriotates of Malphas tend to have a favorite Soldier for their human host.

Mercurians

These angels work to promote individual effort in larger contexts. On a Perception roll, they know what activities will best encourage a group of people to voluntarily pool their efforts for a positive results (at –1 for a group larger than 10, -2 for a group larger than 20, and so on). They receive a +2 on their check digits for any roll to encourage said group towards this goal.

Attunements

Calm

When in use, every individual within (Celestial Forces times 3) yards will be able to determine whether or not a statement is meant to provoke a response and/or ”push someone’s buttons” on a successful Perception Roll. The check digit will provide the level of the loaded statement (GM call: a 1 will determine merely that the statement is provocative, while a 6 might reveal exactly why the statement was made). If an individual does not know that this Attunement is in effect, he/she still gets the roll, but does not benefit from the check digit unless it is a natural 6.

Moral Courage

This Attunement only works on those who have denied or discouraged another’s individuality recently, and are secretly guilty about it. On a successful Will Roll by the angel, the target gets a plus to his/her own Will Rolls, equal to the check digit, to publicly oppose any further actions detrimental to individual aspirations. This effect will last for a number of hours equal to the check digit.

Distinctions

Vassal of Synergy

An angel with this Distinction can inspire a group of mortals to put aside petty differences in order to produce a joint effort greater than the sum of its parts.

Friend of Glory

This Distinction allows the angel, once per day, to look at a person and determine what great individual deed that person secretly wishes to accomplish. This dream does not have to be realistic, or even possible: however, actually arranging matters so that the subject actually does achieve his ”impossible” (GM call) dream is good for 2 Essence. This dream must be something that consciously serves the side of Good, or no Essence is gathered.

Master of Inner Peace

The angel can calm a person’s nervousness and stage fright at a touch, for as long as it takes for the subject to publicly perform for an audience, ask someone else out on a date, present a proposal to the Board of Directors, etc. The subject will feel no lingering shame if he or she does not succeed, provided that he or she truly attempted to do as well as possible.

Relations

Frankly, the other Archangels are going to be suspicious of Malphas for a long, long time. Most of them were happy enough to accept its Redemption, but Malphas the Archangel? The Word doesn’t help, either: ”Individuality” is certainly a Superior-level Word, but not necessarily angelic. It’s occurred to a few of the more paranoid Superiors that Malphas’ new Word might even be supported by Hell’s Rebellion. All in all, it’s no wonder that the Seraphim Council is not exactly … supportive of its newest member.

Still, there are exceptions. Novalis and Eli, as usual, are willing to give the benefit of the doubt. Janus thinks that his Word and Individuality have no conflict. Jordi couldn’t care less. The Seraphim Superiors are stuck with the ”it’s not putting up any shields, and we’re reading the Truth of its Redemption, so now what?” problem that they had with Haagenti. Khalid goes a little farther, with his new Faith in Allah’s mysterious ways. The Archangel of Gusto’s glad to see another reclaimed soul. And Yves just smiles.

Allied:

Associated: all other Superiors (Gabriel*, Haagenti, Janus, Khalid and Yves are Associated with Malphas)

Neutral: none (Blandine, Dominic, Eli, Jordi, Michael and Novalis are Neutral to Malphas)

Hostile: none (Gabriel*, Marc, David, Laurence and Jean are Hostile to Malphas)

*Gabriel, always capricious, is still undecided. Her reaction towards Malphas ranges from ”warm” to ”burning hostility”: her Servitors usually just keep things Neutral, and hope she makes up her mind soon…

Blandine: ”The longer this War goes, the less I understand it. I trust Yves though: otherwise, why else have Hope?” ”She stands alone, more so then any angel in Heaven. We must remember that, and freely offer our support to her.”

David: ”This is not how I expected my war with Malphas to end. I don’t trust it to not Fall again. Right now, the only thing I can do is make sure that its Servitors are … Tested. We’ll see if stronger measures are needed later.” ”It is ironic that the angel that knows self-reliance so well knows me so little.”

Dominic: ”What can I say? Its sincerity rings True. And so does Asmodeus’ panicked look lately. Malphas might be able to fool me, but not God.” ”He may not publicly admit to the power of my Word, but his actions are clear. I hope to show him that this new trust of his is not misplaced.”

Eli: ”On second thought, maybe someone did spike my drink last night, and I’ve just hallucinated Haagenti’s and Malphas’ Redemption. One of my better trips, if so. Assuming this is actually happening, I’m going to cut the Domination some slack. Let’s see what happens. Dominic’s capable of shutting it down fast If Things Go Boom (not that I’d actually tell him that: then he’d be sure that I was tripping…).” ”Not being able to make Creation Fall was my greatest failure as a Prince. And possibly my Salvation now.”

Gabriel: ”Sparks may combine to become Fire, but does that mean we must have a Word celebrating it? Perhaps. I must gaze upon the Flames and consider.” ”She … confuses … me. Some days she seems to remember that I had a heavy hand in her current difficulties, and her eyes burn with hate: on others, her eyes are merely warm with welcome. I deserve the former, and am grateful for the latter, but both at once? Haagenti is right when he says that it is our responsibility to remove the Infernal focus of her pain.”

Haagenti: ”Get used to it, everyone: Hell’s going down hard. Unlike the rest of my new family, I knew Mal real well when we were both diseased scum together, and let me tell you: he’s better now. I don’t blame you all for being wary, but give the Kyrio time, okay? You did it for me, and it didn’t turn out that bad…” ”I loathed him once: he returned the favor. Now he and I are truly on the same side for the first time. The world is a delightfully mad place. It was his example that brought me here, and my current problems are not his fault.”

Janus: ”I love my brothers, sisters and others dearly, but they are so blipping conservative! Wake up, people: THIS WHAT WE’VE BEEN WAITING AND WORKING FOR, REMEMBER? Lambs returning to the fold, and all that. Sheesh…” ”His Word is closest to mine, and I think that he and Haagenti understand me best. Without what the Wind signifies, my Word is nothing. I’d tell the rest just how unlike Valefor he is, but somehow I’d doubt they’d believe me much.”

Jean: ”Free will. Hmmph. If I thought humans could handle it without supervision, I’d let them acquire more of my discoveries. Just how is having an Archangel dedicated to that Word going to help matters any? Yes, yes, I know the Word is ”Individuality”. Same thing, in the End.” ”We disagree on methods, not goals. That’s enough. It has to be enough: after all, it is his choice…”

Jordi: ”A new Archangel. They come, and they go. Malphas wasn’t a concern of mine as a Prince, and I fail to see how anything should be different now.” ”I did better work than I knew, in the old days. We must all reach out to him. Now.”

Khalid: ”Allah’s will is Allah’s will. Free will has always been part of His Plan: I do not understand it, but I do not have to. If Malphas has been chosen to bear this Word, then, in the words of the youngest mortal generation, ‘you should all just chill out, dudes’.

”The phrase at least caught your attention, did it not?” ”I was certain that he would oppose me most of all, and he has instead offered peace. I will be happier when I have earned this gift.”

Laurence: ”Free will is for humans. We have a job to do. If Malphas remembers that, then there won’t be any problems. I expect problems. I’ve crossed it off the List, though.” ”Mistrustful of me, but what else can he be? I hope that he will one day accept my aid without rancor.”

Marc: ”I don’t really trust him. Surprised? You shouldn’t be. Sure, the Word in itself isn’t bad: I’m just indulging in a little constructive paranoia about Malphas being permanently changed. Hell would dearly love to get a saboteur in, and what could be a better choice than the Prince of Factions? If it works out, that’s great. Otherwise, David and I are right in being wary. Weird that I’m agreeing with David about anything, but these aren’t normal times…” ”I am saddened, but not surprised, by his coolness. In truth, it is no more than I deserve. I trust in his essential fairness.”

Michael: ”Like Khalid, I have no idea what God is up to: also like Khalid, I trust God. Again, end of story. And what’s War without Glory, and what’s Glory without Individual effort for the greater good?” ”Michael is the most terrifying enemy that the Host has, and the best friend. I’m not his friend, but not being his enemy is … relieving. He is willing to let me show how I can contribute: I haven’t earned the right for anything more.”

Novalis: ”Malphas has caused a lot of pain, knowingly. So much so that it’s hard for others to forgive. Still … even if Yves hadn’t spoken on its behalf, I would have. Heaven is about forgiveness. I’m not saying, ‘Forget’. Just … forgive.” ”There is steel underneath that cheerful visage: in some ways, my first private talk with her was more grueling than an interrogation. To sit there, knowing that an entity that embodies forgiveness and peace is sitting across from you with a frown on her face, does not do anything to still your inner anguish. I felt that I was staining my surroundings with past, regretted evil. But to be forgiven by her quenches a soul thirsty for peace. She hasn’t forgotten what I was, though. God help me if I ever Fall again, for nothing less will stop her or even slow her down much. The rest of you may not see this in her, but trust me: do not abuse this Superior’s trust.”

Yves: ”Two down. Or should it be, ‘Two up?’” ”Destiny has the individual’s grandest choice at its core. He is refreshing to work with. I just wonder if he always laughed this much…”

Role in the War

As per his Word, the new Archangel does not emphasize great, sweeping trends and policies: his Servitors try instead to make life better, one person or small group at a time. They’ll concentrate on key people, of course, when that one person could make a difference on a larger scale, but Malphas will often coordinate such efforts with Yves.

Malphas doesn’t push for a violent confrontation with Hell. It’s seen too much of the human fallout that results: in fact, in the old days, it was where Factions did some of its best work. Like Haagenti, Malphas has revealed the wealth of intelligence on Infernal plans, and is using the resultant chaos to cover attempts to repair some of the specific damage that it has caused as a Prince. Still, when fighting is necessary, it’s necessary: a Choice is a Choice.

Renegades ostensibly seeking Redemption will approach Malphas’ Servitors fairly often. Unfortunately, sincere petitioners are rarer: most Renegades assume that Malphas is running a scam of some kind, and hope to join in. Malphas has thus made arrangements with Dominic to quietly run all applicants through the nearest Triad of Judgement (and if there isn’t one near a Servitor of Individuality, one will be placed there). Renegades that don’t pass the Triad’s first inspection are tossed to the Game without a qualm: Asmodeus eliminates these entities without fanfare, presumably because it’s in his self-interest to keep this scheme going (after all, he’s got the other side doing the legwork for him for free: why spoil things?). David or Dominic (never Malphas) personally handles demons that are judged to be seeking Redemption: Stone trusts only himself and Judgement to Test these potential converts, and Individuality has agreed to this as a peace gesture. As a result, David has been slightly less hostile to Malphas, as he can personally vouch for many of Individuality’s formerly demonic Servitors.

Slightly.

Basic Rites

:Play in a sport or game that recognizes individual effort.

:Encourage a person to perform, live and solo, in front of a audience of at least ten people.

Chance of Invocation: 3

Modifiers:

+1 A book on self-esteem

+2 An original sonnet, written by the angel (doesn’t have to be good, but you have to do a new one each time: sadistic GMs will make the player do likewise!)

+3 A talented artist engrossed by creating a masterpiece

+4 A Demon sincerely seeking Redemption

+5 The headquarters (during a normal working day only) of an international organization that protects the rights of the individual

+6 A group of at least fifty thousand, peacefully calling for greater self-determination in politics

History

The Redemption of Haagenti confused Hell. The Redemption of Malphas scared them.

It happened very, very quickly. One minute, the Prince of Factions was sitting like a slim spider in the middle of its complex web of deals, betrayals, plots and counterplots; the next minute, all Hell was rocking from the discordant screech of a Prince’s Heart shattering. It took a full convening of every Infernal Superior to determine exactly who had gone Renegade … and even then, the other Princes refused to believe at first that it could be Malphas who had defected. It was only when its new angelic Servitors appeared on Earth that Hell acknowledged that another Prince had gone Bright. Some still don’t believe it.

To be fair, some Archangels don’t believe it as well.

Few entities on either side of the War understand exactly what happened: Lucifer, Kronos, Alaemon and (possibly) Kobal on the one hand, and Yves, Dominic, Litheroy and Michael on the other. Lilith suspects, but has no proof: at any rate, she’s more concerned at the suspicious eyes turned towards her as the ranks of the Princes diminish. Malphas has not been forthcoming on this intensely private matter. The only thing that its new compatriots are certain of is that the Archangel of Individuality, like Haagenti, owes his new stature to God’s direct intervention.

They just aren’t sure that they like the way that God is directing things…

It began when, somehow, Malphas had a Thought. Whether it came from within, or it was a suggestion by one of its ”peers”, is something that even Malphas isn’t sure about. It came some time before Haagenti’s Redemption, and at first was just a little, tiny, inconsequential Thought. Another Shedite serving Factions would have probably dismissed it forthwith and been done with it, but Malphas’ very self-centered nature was peculiarly vulnerable to this Thought. It stayed, never growing larger or smaller, but always there at the back of its mind.

Haagenti’s Redemption caused a lot of confusion in Hell, however, and Malphas was no exception. The Thought grew, despite all it could do to banish. A simple, ridiculous, petty Thought:

”Nothing exists but Myself. Thus, I cannot trust anything but Myself.

But what if I cannot trust Myself?”

A solipsist who doubts itself is in a state of mind both horrible and pitiful. The simple act of a Prince Redeeming had caused even the Prince of Factions, the most self-centered entity in Hell, to question one of the supporting pillars of its self-image. Malphas began to Doubt.

Even then, it might have ended there, if it wasn’t for two factors. First, the dead Shedite Legion had once successfully regained a piece of its old Kyriotate resonance, and began to again experience multiplicity of viewpoints: thus, it might be then theoretically possible to somehow look at one’s self from another point of view. Second, Malphas was also a Shedite, not to mention a much more intelligent entity than that fool Saminga, who had created Legion in the first place.

Needless to say, Legion’s path was not exactly what Malphas had in mind. Multiple physical viewpoints were not the answer: what was needed was a way to mentally observe one’s self from the outside. The best way that it could determine to do this was to split itself down into two entities, who could then coldly appraise the other and then reintegrate into a new whole. Then Malphas could be secure in the knowledge that it was pure.

It was a good plan. Unfortunately Malphas did not take into consideration that the new entities would both consider themselves to be the ”real” Malphas, and would still be unsure about the purity of its ”core” self. They thus further split themselves again to spy out any impurity, and did it again, and again, and again, and again…

While Malphas descended further and further into self-induced schizophrenia, the rest of Hell (and his minions) completely failed to notice. The Prince of Factions had always worked behind the scenes, and its Word was always low-maintenance. Malphas might still be fragmenting in the middle of Perdition if it weren’t for Francis, a Habbalah of Factions. Francis, thanks to a recent bout of Emptiness, had snapped out of his delusional state and was desperately trying to find his Heart. After finding it, and deciding to retreat and smash it somewhere marginally safer, he came across the whirling morass of catatonic corruption that was his soon-to-be-former-Prince. Luckily, demonic vessels are incapable of heart failure. Francis cowered, literally caught in the act of ultimate rebellion, and helplessly awaited soul-death.

After a minute or two passed without obliteration, Francis carefully opened one eye and looked upon the silent whirlwind. Malphas had shown no notice of his presence. The relief that this provided caused Francis to make what appeared to be an even greater mistake: he actually asked, ”Dread Lord … is that you?” (Francis was later heard to state that, by any objective analysis, this statement was both the most appropriate and inappropriate question that it had ever asked as a Punisher).

The question had been heard by all of Malphas’ fragments of personalities. In unison, clinging to the only external stimuli that had broken their vicious circle of fragment/panic/fragment, they replied ”YES!” Francis cowered again.

The shattered pieces of the Prince of Factions began to re-knit. Malphas had, in fact, succeeded in its aim: as it became one again, it could see what it was, and that the entire suggestion of whether it could trust itself was a meaningless question. Seeing its surroundings for the first time, Malphas noticed the obvious would-be Renegade that had been the catalyst, and casually started to destroy it…

…when another one of those little, inconsequential Thoughts stopped it. This is not Me, but it affected My actions. Therefore, other things besides Me exist. Therefore, there is no ‘Me’, but me … and Others.

The existence of Others can be of help to me. Therefore, it is a mistake to destroy this Other who has been of help to me.

It would be … ‘wrong’.

So this is what ‘wrong’ is. Amazing. I wonder if any other actions that I have done in the past have been ‘wrong’…

Malphas stared at the Punisher, seeing it as only a Superior can. Very carefully, it took the Heart from Francis’ arms, and bid him, ”Look at me.”

Francis did. Malphas began to glide along the corridors of Perdition, bidding its rebellious servant, ”Follow me.”

Francis did (what else could he do?). The Prince brought him to its most secret place, the place of Malphas’ Heart. There, in the sight of another seeker after the light, it raised its Heart up and smashed it to the ground. Francis then looked wide-eyed as Malphas returned his own Heart to him.

”Your turn.” Malphas told him. ”I’d hurry, if I were you:” – at this, the Renegade Prince stopped, bemused at the words that it thought it would never say and actually mean — ”We really don’t have much time.”

After that, being declared the Kyriotate Archangel of Individuality was a bit anticlimactic.

Haagenti, Archangel of Gusto

Haagenti, Archangel of Gusto

The world is full of too much of everything for one person to consume. Ain’t it keen?

This newest Archangel is a particularly colorful Ofanite, all high-speed and flaming beauty. On earth, his favored vessel is a big, burly redheaded young man who can be encountered anywhere. Literally.

He’s only recently been Redeemed, and his Servitors are relatively few. Some of the other Archangels (notably Eli, Janus and Dominic) have loaned him Servitors, until his own organization is built up. Haagenti is fairly free with handing out Attunements, and will cheerfully steal away anyone who shows an interest in a permanent job. His Tethers are greater than what one would expect: some of his old Tethers to Gluttony spontaneously came along with him when he Redeemed.

Dissonance

Haagenti’s Word is Gusto, much to the disgust of more traditional angels, and he certainly means it. It is dissonant for any one of Haagenti’s Servitors to counsel or practice moderation for its own sake. Restraint to achieve long-term goals is acceptable, or to keep a minimum adequate reserve of resources, but Gusto’s angels are expected to live, not penny-pinch. Servitors also acquire dissonance for casually discarding, destroying or wasting resources. Their material goods tend to be old, but very well maintained.

Finally, any use of the Inspire Attunement below that causes the target’s life to decrease in quality overall causes dissonance. The angel may attempt to correct the problem, or at least improve some other aspect of the target’s life to compensate: if this is successful, the dissonance vanishes. Failed attempts to compensate can cause further dissonance: Servitors are counseled to know when to cut their losses and report to the boss.

Organization

Right now, the Archangel of Gusto is building up his Servitors, and his organization is fairly small and intimate. It’s not quite as informal as Novalis’ or Eli’s, but Haagenti is very relaxed for an Archangel, to the point where he’ll call Servitors older than he is his ”kids”, to their bemusement. Servitors of Haagenti are very loyal, however: their Archangel is friendly, nonpolitical, has influence with the Inquisition, and doesn’t send out angels on suicide missions without telling them. Right now, Haagenti’s Servitors are mostly Ofanites and Mercurians, with a good percentage of Seraphim and Kyriotates. Cherubim and Elohim tend to be less common, as those Choirs’ resonance tends to have trouble with Haagenti’s dissonance requirements. Malakites are also uncommon (the older ones are still trying to come to terms with seeing a former Demon Prince in Heaven), but increasing. Interestingly, Haagenti seems to attract more Bright Lilim than other Archangels, possibly because of a common history.

There have been, so far, very few of Haagenti’s former demonic Servitors following his lead (his former self did not inspire much loyalty), but the score or so that have followed him into the light are much prized. Those that were not Seneschals already are usually on the short list for that honor. Dominic has even gone so far as to inform Asmodeus that their ”arrangement” regarding Renegades is no longer automatically in effect for Gluttony’s Orphans. Asmodeus was not pleased.

Choir Attunements

Seraphim (Restricted)

These angels can determine whatever will make an individual Truly cut loose in a positive manner with a glance. They also know the best way to relay a Truth to someone in the above state that will keep that mood from being broken.

Cherubim (Restricted)

Cherubim get a +2 to their check digits if objects of their attunement are genuinely enjoying themselves (if living) or in perfect working order (if nonliving).

Ofanim

Haagenti’s choir-mates share his love of running through life, sampling it to the full. They regenerate 1 Essence if they instigate a party or gathering, lasting at least four hours, where the participants have more fun than they can stand (without hurting anyone or causing permanent damage).

Elohim

Haagenti has few Elohim, as his Word embraces subjective experiences more than they prefer. Elohim of Gusto automatically know the one thing that will break a depressed person’s bad mood, at least temporarily. Haagenti is also more amenable to removing a Power’s dissonance than with other Choirs.

Malakim

Malakim get a +2 to their check digits for any combat action that is done with style (GM call). They are also immune to dissonance from destroying resources if they are fighting a greater evil than what would result from the resource’s destruction. (Haagenti has few Malakim at present, so he’s tended to be free with giving this Attunement to other Choirs. It’s worked out well enough that he’s probably going to keep doing it…)

Bright Lilim (Restricted)

These Gifters, like their former demonic sisters, are Haagenti’s best cooks, only now they cause people to live, not consume. They can spend (4 – their Corporeal Forces: minimum 1) hours in a kitchen to produce a Heavenly meal that will either a) inspire a human to go out and enjoy themselves afterwards, pr b) give a +2 on a human’s next roll to entertain someone else. The Gifter can produce one meal per Celestial force at a time. These meals do not come with an automatic Geas.

Kyriotates (Restricted)

Kyriotates get a +2 to their resonance rolls to enter a depressed or miserly human. At the time of possession, they can choose to act as a ”inner voice”, allowing the host control over his or her actions. If this option is taken, the Domination may ”suggest” a course of action on a Will Roll: if successful, the host assumes that the idea is his/her own and acts accordingly. The Kyriotate gets a +2 to the roll if the suggestion encourages the host to become more cheerful or active. While in this state, the Kyriotate has a +2 bonus to resist being detected by other celestials. Shedites who attempt to possess a host without detecting the Kyriotate automatically fail, but are alerted to the Kyriotate’s presence, and may attempt to dislodge the Domination in the usual manner.

Mercurians (Restricted)

Mercurians of Gusto can enter any gathering or party and subtly shift it away from destructive behavior with a Perception Roll. Given enough time, they can turn a drunken Hells Angel beer bash into an impromptu highway cleanup/food drive/exhibition of trick cycle stunts…

Servitor Attunements

Party Favors

The angel knows where to find everything he or she needs to put on a memorable party, celebration or entertainment … and the people most likely to make the activity a success.

Inspire

This attunement is the Bright Version of Haagenti’s old Consume Attunement. The angel may see the one positive thing that the target has always wanted to do, and inspire him or her to do it. The target must make a Will roll (minus the angel’s Ethereal Forces) or immediately attempt to achieve his secret dream. If the secret dream is potentially life threatening, Mercurians (or Kyriotates acting as an inner voice) will only suffer dissonance if the target actually dies while achieving it.

All Servitors of Haagenti must take this Attunement at character creation.

Distinctions

Vassal of Adventure

The angel can automatically find his way to the most interesting event, activity, or gathering within a 200-foot radius.

Friend of Everyman

The angel can walk into any party or gathering and be automatically accepted as belonging there, providing that he or she is not acting in an inappropriate manner. Minor details like clothes will not matter, but an angel with a black vessel might be hard-pressed to walk into a KKK rally…

Master of Trailblazing

The angel can convince up to his total Forces in people to follow his lead in going somewhere in the quest for a good time, or to do the right thing. If the right people are chosen, the domino effect can result in a hundred people dancing the night away on an open field … or descend upon a abandoned building to rebuild it into a homeless shelter. Or both.

Relations

Haagenti doesn’t really get involved in Heavenly politics, not least because he doesn’t fully understand all the rules yet. His current strategy, if you can call it that, is to smile and nod … and never, ever get involved in any grudge matches. It may take a century or two before he loses the ”starry-eyed shiny new angel” look; in the meantime, his deference has gone a long way in calming jittery angelic nerves on having a former Demon Prince wandering around Heaven. Right now, only David, Jordi and Laurence seem to actively dislike or mistrust Haagenti: the first and third because they’re Malakites whose subconscious reflexes haven’t caught up to current events yet, and Jordi simply because he doesn’t like to give up a good enmity. Everybody else is taking their cues from Dominic, Michael, Novalis and Yves.

Haagenti’s Allies require a brief explanation. Dominic usually doesn’t get along with either Eli or Janus that well, but the Archangel of Judgement was Haagenti’s sponsor, in a sense … and the Archangel of Gusto makes it a point to keep no secrets from his patron. Under the circumstances, Dominic stays appeased: in fact, there’s even a rumor that a certain cloaked woman was seen dancing with the newest Archangel at Novalis’ last party…

Allied: Eli, Janus, Novalis, Dominic

Associated: Yves, Michael, Blandine

Hostile: No one (David, Jordi and Laurence are Hostile to Haagenti)

Blandine: ”His dreams are bright, and he throws himself into them. He is a dream, himself: a dream of Hope. Perhaps … others … may follow his lead.” ”Quiet. Determined. Not having enough fun. I’ve got a couple ideas about changing the first and third: in the meantime, my kids have standing orders to pitch in when they can. I also know whom she sees in the distance when she looks at me. I’ve got a couple of ideas about that, too…”

David: ”My Servitors watch his, and I watch him. If his joining us is true, well and good: if not, he’ll regret it for the rest of his short existence.” ”I don’t deserve his trust. Yet.”

Dominic: ”I don’t agree with his tactics. He’s disconcertingly enthusiastic. I don’t approve of his other allies. And his contributions to the War have yet to be fully determined. But … his courage is unquestioned, and God made him an Archangel, not the Council. He is my responsibility, and I will watch him closely.” ”Maybe it’s because I’m new here, but aren’t you guys a little hard on him? I don’t think that anyone in Heaven really understands how much he’s done to help keep Hell from getting the upper hand. Besides, if he were as blind and as paranoid as his reputation, I’d be a slowly expanding cloud of Forces right now. I trust him to tell me the Truth when I’m screwing up. And he’s not as stuffy as you all say.”

Eli: ”I swear, when I saw Dominic sponsoring a Demon Prince for Redemption, I was sure that somebody had stuck something in my drink the night before. But the old guy’s on the ball this time. We needed somebody else down here letting humanity know that it’s OK to live life to the fullest, as long as you’re not hurting others. Besides, Judgement could use a little Gusto herself, and from what I’ve heard … (wink)” ”Eli? Fun to hang out with, easy to talk to, his Word resonates with mine. I know he finds it funny that Dominic has too much to deal with now that I’m around to concentrate on getting that heresy trial going. Of course, me telling Dom about how that bastard Kobal laughed every time he thought about it might have had something to do with it…”

Gabriel: ”So, one of the Lost is Found. He burns with his new Heart. I wish him well, though I am uneasy with his association with the Hyena. He would do well not to emulate his patron in cruelty, for I do watch…” ”I never realized how much Fire was in me until I came here. She doesn’t quite trust me, either: unlike Dave, though, Gabby might relent if I brought her that lunatic Belial’s head. It’s a good idea on general principles, anyway.”

Janus: ”WOOO-HOOO! Hell’s got egg on its collected faces, Dominic’s got his hands full trying to keep up with an eager-beaver shiny new Archangel, said Archangel is about as stuffy as a hurricane, and his Servitors have all sorts of nifty tricks. This is almost as fine as when I set up the Discordians … oops. Just kidding there. Now, all we have to do is get him a new name, and I’m content.” ”Listen closely: I knew Valefor. Luckily, he wasn’t ever a friend of mine, even when I was … worse. Janus is nothing like Valefor. Janus is a good guy to run with, and his help has been a lifesaver. But I’m not changing my name: let those mocking morons down there wince every time I’m foiling their schemes…”

Jean: ”Interesting. His future activities will provide invaluable data for any future Princes who might decide to seek forgiveness. He seems a typical Ofanite, otherwise.” ”At least he isn’t insane. To think that I thought that all angels were like Vapula…”

Jordi: ”After Haagenti became an Archangel, he went alone to my Savannah, and sat there for three days, defenseless. Certain of my animals came to him: ones that he had devoured as a Prince. He refused to raise a hand to them as they bit, scratched, clawed him. Finally, I came before him myself. It was only then that he spoke, and said, ‘Whatever you feel you must do, do’.

” I sat and watched him for a time, and bid him never come back to my domain without my permission. He left. I still do not forgive him, but … he does not lack for courage. My Servitors will watch him further. And so will I.” ”I figure that, eventually, I’ll get all the holdouts to see that I’ve changed … except him. Or they, or it … Kyrios confuse me. Neat. Anyway, I doubt he’ll ever really forgive me, and I can’t say that I blame him much. In the meantime, note to Servitors: sorry, people, but big game hunting is Right Out. I don’t care how much fun it is to go up against a bear with only a knife: your boss has overdrawn that particular account big time.”

Khalid: ”Allah works in mysterious ways: every time I think I comprehend that, He provides me with another lesson. This is one of His more pleasant ones. I welcome my new brother, though I do not yet see his role in the War. But I have Faith that Allah will reveal it to him – and me.” ”I needed Faith to come here, and Faith came to me. If he had anything to do with it, I’m grateful.”

Laurence: ”Dominic says that he’s Redeemed. Michael’s says that he’s Truly sorry for his past. Yves states that his Destiny has been achieved. But David’s suspicious, and so am I. I’m also uncomfortable with his friendship with Eli and Novalis. If he proves himself worthy, fine. If not, well, he’s picked the wrong place to play spy…” ”I haven’t earned his trust, either, but I think that I’ll earn it a little faster with him. He’s another one that I think some of Hell respects more than some of us do. Mmmmmm … ‘Us’.”

Marc: ”He’s a little free with spreading things around, but at least he’s no longer a personification of wastefulness. And his Servitors have already proven themselves useful to me. And, well, it’s just that he’s so blessed eager to help out. His example might even encourage others…” ”Well, the Words aren’t really in conflict, but they’re not completely compatible, either. Still, no worries – and it’s always good to know where to find someone who can supply you with what you need for that special party. He’s another one of those hopeful types, though resolving Blandy’s little problem going to be much easier.”

Michael: ”I hate to say it, but David and Laurence are wrong and the Hyena is right in this case. In this case. We were all there when God gave him his Word. Let me repeat that. God. End of story. I look at him and the Truth I see is an angel who wants to make sure that nothing in God’s creation goes unappreciated ever again. He needs temporary help to build up his forces, and I’ll give it. I’ll even look the other way if they have to deal with certain others’ Servitors. I expect that I won’t regret it later.” ”Thank God for Seraphs. Without Mike and Dom, I’d be between a rock and a hard place, trying to convince everyone that I’m not a rampaging black hole with fangs anymore. There’s no uncertainty with him, no tricks: you have no idea how refreshing that is after an eternity of lies. I know he expects me to not betray his support, and I won’t. Now if I can just get my two favorite Most Holy to stop glaring at each other, I’ll be making a Real contribution to this War.”

Novalis: ”I’ve heard the story of his Redemption, and I’ve seen the peace that comes from him now. It just goes to show you that we don’t have to kill off all of Hell to win. If we can hold on, keep human hopes alive, and show a little charity once in a while, they’ll all come back. And, who knows: maybe Dominic will get a little more peace of his own, now.” ”Ah, Novy: you know, she’s the only one who I can nickname to her face (these comments are private, right?). Sweet, sweet girl. I don’t know how she survived this War long enough for me to dance with her, but then, I’m here, so what do I know? Her Servitors make my kids’ jobs much easier. They’re going to return the favor … and so am I.”

Yves: ”Of course, Demon Princes have Destinies. Did you really ever doubt it? Haagenti has come through despair and into the light, and we should all make sure that he stays there.” ”Thank God every hour, on the hour, that you’ve got him and not that dour, vindictive, smug mass of corruption Kronos up here. I do. I can’t begin to list the ways that he’s helped me adjust to my new life.”

Role in the War

Haagenti, unbeknownst to most Superiors, is going to be taking an active role in the War soon, and it’s going to be surprisingly hard-nosed, considering his Word. He’ll be big on an eclectic approach, using nonviolent means whenever possible but ready to start Smiting if the situation calls for it. Haagenti has also discovered the joys of subtlety, and has embraced it with a convert’s zeal.

He knows quite a lot about the resources, strategies, tactics, and hidden secrets of Hell, and he’s been cheerfully revealing every single one of them since he went Renegade. Haagenti is not objective about his former allies: to him, they’re all sadistic, mocking bastards who need stomping on, hard — and he knows just the people who will do it. Any unrepentant Renegade who expects a little slack from him is going to be in for a rude surprise.

His attitude towards Demon Princes is the same, only more so. The only ones not immediately marked down for eventual obliteration are Asmodeus, Baal, Beleth & Lilith: not because he’s fond of them, personally, but because annihilating them would upset certain of his new friends and allies. He’s especially keen on eventually settling the entire Gabriel/Belial situation in a simple, straightforward matter.

And he can’t wait to see his good old ”brother” Kobal again.

Basic Rites

: Encourage a human to go do something that will expand their mental horizons.

: Convince someone that life is worth living.

Chance of Invocation: 3

Modifiers

+1 A National Geographic Magazine

+2 A Suicide Prevention Center

+3 A party of more than ten people where everyone is in a creative and/or positive mood.

+4 A Demon of Gluttony, ready to Redeem

+5 A first draft of a book that will give people the urge to explore new frontiers, whether physical, spiritual or mental

+6 Any historical Quest Object (Holy Grail, Spear of Longious, the Lost Ark, ect.)

History

Some things never change.

Haagenti, not too long ago, was the Demon Prince of Gluttony, and generally considered to be even more unlikely a candidate for Redemption than usual. Considered a buffoon, a lout, and incredibly coarse by both sides of the War, Haagenti seemed Fated to spend the rest of eternity looking to shove anything remotely edible down his throat.

Then, one day, Haagenti got indigestion.

It’s not the most inspiring story in the world, and the actual details are sketchy. It’s suspected that Kobal was at least partly responsible, as part of a particularly elaborate Prank. Suffice it to say that the results were very, very messy: in fact, some parts of Shal-Mari are still deserted because of the smell.

Worse than the actual … event … was the other Demon Prince’s reactions (from Haagenti’s POV, at any rate). The humiliation was total: even Lucifer smiled mockingly when he received the news. The story that something existed that Haagenti couldn’t swallow raced across Hell. It was too much for the Prince of Gluttony to stand. There were too many mockers for even him to consume, so he fled.

Haagenti had never been much for movement, but shame (and dissonance, by now, as his Calabite nature began to fray from his inability to destroy – consume – all those who taunted him) can speed even the grossest entity. He fled across Hell, and found no place that did not mock. He moved to the ethereal plane, and watched as Beleth crafted dreamscapes of cruel laughter and sent them to him.

Finally, Haagenti translated himself to the corporeal plane, half-mad with dissonance and confusion. On Earth, he ran. And ran, and ran, and ran. Trying to recapture his nature, he at first tried to Glutton himself on food: the first bite sent him into Discord as his memories lashed back at him. From then on, he couldn’t eat without pain and shame.

Then he tried physical pleasure. Dimly realizing that a trail of bodies would allow him to be traced and mocked by his ”friends”, Haagenti was careful to not consume his partners as he spun into an endless orgy that would have impressed Andreaphlus. After a while, though … it wasn’t enough. He kept hungering for more, different, ever greater sensations. Worse (from his point of view), he began to notice that mere physical joining was not even satisfying his needs. He found himself wanting mental, emotional (he was careful to never even think ”spiritual”) satisfaction from the people that he met.

So Haagenti then tried danger. Danger to a Demon Prince is harder to come by, but it exists even on Earth. Avoiding the mortals that gave him such odd hungers, he climbed mountains alone. He swam in shark-infested waters. He wandered through deserts and glaciers. At first, this seemed to work, but he soon realized that he was constantly thinking about how much more there was to see, and how he couldn’t hope to consume it all. He realized, in fact, that he was thinking more than he had ever done before.

Trying to assuage his new Hunger for thought seemed the next logical step. This proved worse than anything done before had: while, the individual knowledge and insights available on the corporeal plane might be finite, the interconnections between them are enough to dizzy even a Seraph of Revelations. Haagenti, try as he might, couldn’t satisfy this insidious Hunger: it consumed him from within, until he simply sat down one day in a secluded spot in the woods and sat, and stayed there for three months, trying to make sense of it all.

Then, one day, Haagenti had a thought. An answer had come, one that promised to resolve his dilemma and allow him final peace. It would be hard, and the odds were that he wouldn’t be able to get away with it, but there was one sensation that he had never tried … and he realized then that he Hungered for it more than food or sex or danger or thought. And it was, finally, a Hunger he could feed.

Haagenti immediately transported himself back to Hell. There, in a well-hidden place, lay his Heart. All Princes have a safe place where they keep their Hearts, ringed with the best defenses that they can arrange (it is said that even Valefor dares not seek one out to steal unless he is prepared to start a war to the knife). He picked it up and truly looked at it for the first time in his existence. It said everything there was to say about him, really. He gazed upon his Heart – his life – for a long time.

Then he smashed it under his heel and left Hell without a backward glance.

It was a very confused Archangel of Judgement that brought the penitent, Renegade Prince of Gluttony before the Seraphim Council. Haagenti had appeared before a Triad and surrendered. He patiently waited until Dominic made his weekly visit, then put himself directly into Judgement’s hands. No deals, no pleas for asylum, no begging for mercy. It didn’t exactly fit Dominic’s expectations. The Seraph could tell that, in Truth, Haagenti was seeking Redemption, but a Prince was not a normal supplicant. Heaven would have to judge him as a whole.

During his trial/debriefing, Haagenti was a model of remorse. He made no excuses, showed no attempt to justify his past actions, and meekly professed his willingness to submit to whatever punishment was his lot. His only request was, if his eventual punishment was permanent death, he wished to do so as an angel.

Of course, the Council wasn’t about to actually kill the first Demon Prince to ever seek Redemption. But when Haagenti finally was brought in alignment with the Symphony, he emerged an Archangel, rather than the mere Servitor the Council (and Haagenti) had expected: a clear manifestation of the will of God.

And when one of the Seraphs of the Council asked the new Superior what his Word was, for the theme of the Symphony was slightly obscure in the aftermath of Divine Revelation, the new Ofanite Archangel grinned and said, ”Gusto.”…

… and then proceeded to throw himself into his new task of causing everyone he meets to experience every drop of joy, happiness, and creativity out of life. To live, live well, and make others happier in spite of themselves. To remind others that there’s a Big Old World out there, with too much stuff to take it all in, but to try anyway, because it’s fun. Haagenti is the amused despair of most of his new peers, as he runs around, uncaring of his dignity and insinuating his Word into every facet of life.

Some things never change.

Ain’t it keen?

Saminga the Archangel

Saminga, Archangel of Fulfillment

”The world is full of uncompleted tasks, dreams and hopes. What are you just sitting around for?”

Even for a Kyriotate, Saminga multitasks. He’s never in one place longer than absolutely necessary, and can split his focus between two planes with a speed and skill that baffles his peers. Unusually for a Kyriotate, Saminga’s basic personality retains a specific gender, so he’s usually in a male host, but that’s just a character trait, not an obligation.

Unlike his two newly Redeemed counterparts, Saminga has excellent relations with all of Heaven’s war faction, so his organization is running along nicely. This is fortunate, because the new Archangel has had no former Servitors follow his lead in Redeeming, and doesn’t expect to. His former demons are too busy trying to claim his old Word of Death, and serving it by killing each other.

Saminga doesn’t mind: it just makes for less work for him later on…

Dissonance

Angels of Fulfillment are expected to finish what they start. It is dissonant for them to leave undone for more than a day any significant task that they have voluntarily undertaken, or any task given to them by their Superior. Failing completely at a task is also dissonant.

Being sent into Trauma while undergoing a task is not grounds for dissonance, as long as the angel goes back to work within a reasonable time of recovery. Likewise, an angel does not have to rush through his current task, if it is legitimately complex enough to merit spending extra time. Finally, an unfulfilled task that is accomplished by someone else will stop the dissonance from accumulating further.

A habit of not finishing insignificant tasks will likewise eventually cause dissonance. Absent-mindedness is definitely not a good trait for these angels, nor is laziness: a Servitor without a significant task in hand will be assigned one by Saminga fairly quickly.

Organization

Saminga is one of those bosses that humans would alternately hate and love. Slacking off on the job is a definite mistake with him: his angels are expected to stay busy and useful. On the other hand, he’s showing a talent for matching the specific job to the Servitor, he’s liberal with resources and backup, and he’ll accept honest failure and mistakes. Happy Servitors are efficient Servitors, and efficient Servitors get things done. Saminga is also good about vacation time, although he’ll cancel them on you in a nanosecond if he’s got a job that you’re perfect for.

It’s also fortunate that his organization has, so far, been given fairly straightforward assignments. Right now, one of Saminga’s main goals is to finally resolve the problem of undead by removing every single one of them, and the demons and sorcerers who know how to make them, from the Symphony forever. This might take a while, so he’s also cleaning up other messes, but taking out a mummy or Servitor of Death is always good for brownie points. Note that ”discovering an undead or creator of undead and not killing it” (or at least reporting it through channels) counts as ”a significant task left undone”…

Choir Attunements

Seraphim (Restricted)

These angels always can tell exactly how much effort a person is putting into what he or she is doing.

Cherubim (Restricted)

Cherubs do not suffer dissonance if one of their attuned objects must be damaged or destroyed to accomplish one of their assigned tasks. This will never, ever apply to living creatures. In cases where this might potentially happen, Saminga (when alerted) will either remove the task, or the attunement to the entity in question: he doesn’t want to see any more Djinn. Still, Cherubs who serve Saminga are uncommon.

Ofanim (Restricted)

There are almost no Wheels of Fulfillment: the patience needed to accomplish long term goals is difficult for them. As partial compensation, Ofanites are not subject to dissonance for inaction while actively engaged on an assigned task if they make a Will Roll at –2. They also tend to receive the ”Go there, smash every demon you see, and come back once the building is in flames” types of missions…

Elohim (Restricted)

While Seraphim can tell you whether or not a person is trying his best to complete something, Elohim always know why the subject is working hard, or hardly working, to complete it.

Malakim (Restricted)

A Malakite can always find the person that would be the greatest hindrance to one of his tasks. This can be done only once per task. Killing this person still causes a disturbance in the Symphony.

Bright Lilim (RESTRICTED!)

There is currently one Bright Lilim in Saminga’s service, and she apparently has ”merely” had all of her Geases removed (without visible ill effects). Whether or not this will be a standard option for any new Bright Lilim is unknown.

(In actuality, a Bright Lilim of Fulfillment can examine the strains of the Symphony as they apply to Superiors. Upon making a Perception roll, she can either add the check digit to either an invocation roll for any Archangel, or else modify the reaction roll by (the check digit/2, minimum +1): the Lilim must choose beforehand. This is unknown to anyone except Saminga, the Bright Lilim, and certain Archangels … and PCs who find out, and are indiscreet, will have many, many problems.)

Kyriotates (Restricted)

These angels can possess undead or corpses that are currently being made into undead. They also receive a +2 to rolls to possess a living person who is undergoing the ritual to become a mummy or vampire. The possession of the Kyriotate interferes with the ritual, so the person’s soul is not subject to obliteration. In these cases only, they acquire no dissonance for leaving the vessel in worse shape then when they found it.

Note: while this Attunement is listed as ”Restricted”, Saminga has permitted his Malakim access to this Attunement, mostly because it’s fairly funny to watch.

Mercurians

Mercurians may kill sorcerers or those seeking undeath without dissonance. However, when they do so, the usual Symphonic disturbance is increased by 50%. The Song of Thunder is very common among these angels…

Servitor Attunements

Keen Nose

Those with this Attunement can automatically detect sorcerers and the undead within their (Celestial Forces times 5) yards. This manifests as an unmistakable smell of decay and death, which increases as they move closer to the target. Unfortunately, this attunement does not enable the user to determine whether or not the target is using his abilities for good or evil, and cannot be shut off: also, completely ignoring the stench counts as ”a significant task left unfulfilled”…

All Servitors of Saminga must take this Attunement upon character creation. Most of his Soldiers will take this, as well.

Harmony

Angels with this Attunement are masters at bending their tasks so that they fit within the Symphony. Any Symphonic disturbance that results from an action necessary to fulfill an official task is decreased by an amount equal to the angel’s Corporeal Forces. This can be added to a Role, but at a lesser bonus: use (Corporeal Forces/3), rounded off to the nearest number.

Distinctions

Vassal of Cross-Training

Angels with this Distinction receive either the Seraphim or Elohim of Fulfillment Attunements (”doubling up” on those Attunements has no game effect) at no cost. The player chooses which.

Friend of Ingenuity

An angel with this Distinction will automatically know what would the most useful tool available to accomplish a Task, whether it be a hammer or a statistical study. Unfortunately, this Distinction does not include any inherent ability to use that tool. This games as a +3 to any learned skill (not default) that has a direct bearing on a Task. Angels with this Distinction are finding it wise to learn a wide number of skills…

Master of Accomplishment

This distinction allows the angel to smooth the path, once per day, of any mortal (not including Soldiers) who is attempting to fulfill a vital Task or duty. Distractions will disappear, non-celestial interference will be deflected, any illness suffered by the target will go into remission for that day only, etc. If the target succeeds in the vital Task, he or she will get a +2 to the check digit.

Relations

Saminga has entered into his new life with less difficulty than that of his fellow former Princes, oddly enough. Unlike Haagenti and Malphas, Saminga’s new Word does not alarm the Host, and the usual hostile attitudes of David and Laurence disappeared rapidly after the new Archangel began systematically wiping out sorcerers and undead in record numbers. Dominic, of course, keeps an eye on him, as does Michael: between the three new Archangels, the two most powerful Seraphim have been working together more than in … well, ever.

The Archangel of Fulfillment is less popular with the more peaceful Superiors, but relations are fairly good there, too. Novalis disapproves of his violent tendencies, Blandine is uncomfortable with his directness and Eli winces at the finality that surrounds Saminga like a cloak, but they all recognize that he’s sincerely trying to atone for his past. They also appreciate the fact that he’s more than happy to pitch in appropriately with certain problems of theirs. Marc especially likes doing business with him.

One last note: almost no one ever openly discusses the difference between Saminga now and Saminga before the Fall. There’s a definite strain of embarrassment that the Host missed the potential of this Archangel the first time around, and not a little regret. Only Novalis has had the grace to publicly apologize to Saminga, and his only response was that he appreciated the gesture, but he preferred not to dwell on his ”stupidities”. Saminga also gently pointed out that Malphas merited similar treatment, a suggestion that the Host is still mulling over…

Allied: Laurence, Dominic, Michael, Haagenti, Malphas

Associated: David, Gabriel, Janus, Marc, Yves

Neutral: All others

Blandine: ”Work, work, work: that’s our new Archangel. His Servitors are allowed to dream: I hope I never see the inner vision that keeps him from doing the same. Still, he’s polite.” ”I don’t begrudge others their Dreams, and I actually do have one, myself. It’s just that I’d rather have the reality, and I must work to Fulfill it.”

David: ”Finally, someone who’s useful. He’s completely different now, and that’s just fine.” ”Stone understands completion, and David understands what I’m trying to accomplish. I’m sorry that he doesn’t trust my fellow Redeemed, though: he’d be less hostile if he really knew what we were like before the Light…”

Dominic: ”Of the Three that have come to us, he’s needed the least help fitting in. He’s making my job easier, too. Saminga. Who would have thought it? (Noise follows that, if it had come from any other individual, would be recognizable as a chuckle.)” ”I have been Judged, and not found wanting. That is good. I also find that the things I need to Fulfill help him to Fulfill his aims, as well. That is better.”

Eli: ”Well, he’s not exactly my cup of tea. The best Creations aren’t ever finished, after all. Blandine’s right, though: he is polite. Can’t fault his priorities, either. Just so he doesn’t go overboard, that’s all.” ”There comes a time when you have to look at something that you have done or made and say, ‘I am finished’. I know Eli disagrees with me on this. His Word is more important for mine than he thinks, though. I respect that, and hope he realizes that I expect that humanity’s final Fulfillment is beyond all of our meager skills.”

Gabriel: ”He is solid, where I am fluid. He walks below the space where I fly. I am not surprised that few of my Choir serve him. But his angels, when Tasked with destroying the cruel, do so with as much fervor as my own. He’ll do quite nicely.” ”Haagenti was right: she has a Task that requires Fulfillment. How pleasant that particular Task shall be…”

Haagenti: ”You have no idea … the intelligence level alone … I mean, you can actually talk to him now and not want to kill him! Unless you’re a Demon Prince, I suppose, but they kind of have more important things to worry about these days. And the sense of humor! He actually has one now! Sorry, Sam, but you were an aggravating, egotistical lunatic back then…” ”In the old days, I would have tried to kill him for that. Now, I just laugh. He and Malphas are the ones who understand me best, and their friendship Fulfilled a thirst I never knew I had until it was gone.”

Janus: ”Different style and a static Word: I’m not surprised that most of my Choir won’t work for him. As for me, I like him anyway. Why? Well, let me tell you a story…” ”He could care less about what my Word represents. However, he does respect results, and hopefully my results are respectable. Balance is necessary thing for the cosmos: it just doesn’t happen to be my Task.”

Jean: ”If even Saminga can see the foolishness of Rebellion, can the rest be far behind?” ”Jean understands the joys of completion better than most, although he would never admit it or any other emotion aloud. It will be gratifying to actually get reliable equipment for a change.”

Jordi: ”Another Archangel. Seems friendly enough.” ”Animals are capable of Fulfillment, too, and thus need my attention. I won’t do anything to Fulfill Jordi’s self-imposed Task, though: some projects are best completed by never beginning.”

Khalid: ”His arrival is important. Finality has come with him, and I am somehow certain that we have seen the last Penitent. What this means, I do not know, but I have Faith that it will not turn out badly.” ”In t he old days, I scorned his Word: now, I take comfort in its promise that I am not working in vain. And his insights are … very interesting.”

Laurence: ”Takes orders, does them without fuss, and keeps busy. What’s not to like about him?” ”The eternal knight, on his eternal Quest to rid the planes of evil. But Quests have an end, and anything I can do to help him achieve that end will be my pleasure. I look forward to the day when he can finally rest, and truly see what he has been protecting all these weary years.”

Malphas: ”It seems that I am Destined to see those I disliked most when I was … wrong … join me in our new home, cleansed and shining with their unique light. I am glad that he can see me, not as I was, but as I am now.” ”To see him and Haagenti there at the Council when I was cleansed was frightening, and reassuring, and confusing, all at the same time. Now I sit by their side, and I know that we will together do great things, separately and together. We will repay the trust and honor that God and Heaven have given to our unworthy selves, and remake anew what we had shamelessly broken.”

Marc: ”Someone I can dicker with, and he pays and delivers on time. Hard on himself, but that’s not too surprising. His Servitors are useful, too.” ”I never dealt with him much, before, and I’m thus still surprised sometimes by his ways. Trade needs commitment, so his Word and mine are harmonious. I just wish he’d stop telling me that I need a vacation: I have all eternity for a vacation, when we’ve won. Well, probably not even then (multiple small smiles).”

Michael: ”If he had smartened up, but still stayed a rebel, he would have been a nightmare worthy of Beleth. Of course, smartening up showed him that rebellion was stupid, so that was really never an issue, was it? I like his style, too.” ”War can complete some Tasks, and make others impossible to Fulfill. The trick is in knowing when. His trust is … important … to me.”

Novalis: ”He’s … interesting. A bit of a paradox, but then so are all of our Redeemed Superiors. I wish that he’d realize that if peace and love worked for him, then they’d certainly work for all of his deluded former comrades. Violence isn’t the answer, after all: to his credit, I don’t think that he likes it, but he’s a little too quick to use it to get results. We’ll see. He’s still so much more than what he was, even when he was with us the first time…” ”Heaven has underestimated this Archangel more than Hell ever has. In my days of stupidity, she was a constant thorn in my side: now, she is more like the rose that reminds me why I have taken up my Tasks. And she’s right: I’m not fond of violence for its own sake. But it is a tool, and an apt one for many problems … and I enjoy watching any tool do its work for Good. I will be happy, though, when I no longer need that tool.”

Yves: ”And so it begins…” ”I see the permutations of his Task settled about him like a cloak. He has the hardest job of all of us to Fulfill. Whenever we can ease his load, we should.”

Role in the War

Right now, it’s to Smite, Smite, Smite. Saminga always had a fairly good idea about where all his undead minions were located, and his new organization has been putting that to good use. Sorcerers are also on his short list for destruction. His former demonic Servitors are not, however: they’re doing such a good job killing each other that Saminga’s content to wait until the most powerful ones get killed off in the struggle for his former Word. He is, however, willing to stir the pot if things look like that they’re settling down. Just as important is the Task of repairing some of the incredible damage that he caused as a Demon Prince.

Of course, violence isn’t the only tool Saminga uses. Many problems caused by him can’t be fixed with a gun, or flame-thrower, or burning sword: in these cases, he and his Servitors will use the most efficient tool available. A Servitor of Fulfillment is expected to be competent in a wide range of skills, as well as perceptive enough to know when and where his or her talents should be utilized.

And busy, of course. Always busy.

Basic Rites:

: Noticeably aid a mortal in accomplishing a vital Task or duty.

: Kill an undead or Hellsworn Sorcerer (This is a temporary Rite.).

: Take a puzzle or problem (legal, entertainment, mathematical) that someone has left unsolved and solve it.

Chance of Invocation: 2

Modifiers (must have been done, or at least assisted greatly, by the summoning angel, except where starred):

+1 A completed crossword or mind teaser.

+2 The severed head of an undead.

+3 A person who has achieved his or her Destiny. *

+4 An authentic masterpiece of art or craftsmanship. *

+5 A person who has finally accomplished his or her life’s dream.

+6 The instant that a person achieves his or her Destiny (that person must be present at the Summoning).

History

Saminga barely noticed when Haagenti and Malphas left Hell forever, unlike the rest of his peers. It didn’t distract him at all from his own private projects, and they were obviously so inferior, anyway, that they didn’t deserve to be Princes. Saminga had other fish to rot.

Saminga had always been annoyed that the Legion experiment had been never successfully replicated, and he had been toying for centuries with the idea of trying again. However, the other Princes had always thoroughly opposed the idea, for fear that another Rogue Prince might succeed where the first one failed. Grumbling, Saminga had simply let the matter slide.

But now it seemed that Hell was especially agitated, for some reason. All sorts of little projects could be kept hidden, thanks to the chaos that was reigning anywhere. Frankly, something new to do was welcome, anyway. Saminga was struggling with an unfamiliar emotion, and trying to make sense of the Legion fiasco was assuaging it better than anything else was.

The emotion, though Saminga hadn’t realized it at the time, was boredom. Megalomaniacs don’t suffer from it much, as a rule, and paranoids suffer from it even less. However, something had happened that no one had expected; Saminga’s general intelligence level was slowly going up. It must have begun even before Haagenti’s Redemption, but at such a rate that the change was unnoticeable. And with this rise in intelligence came a certain weariness for the mundane work involved with promoting his Word. People were dying all the time anyway: success in his project would be a better long-term use of his time.

At first, Saminga tried using his Servitors as assistants, but his paranoia made that impossible. Mummies and vampires were likewise too … independent for his purposes. None of them could understand how important it was to just shut up and take orders. Zombies, now, zombies could take orders very, very well, so he started to use them whenever he could. And they were of assistance … for a while. But he kept running into a problem: they were obedient, but deeply stupid. After a certain point, they were more hindrance than help.

By now, unbeknownst to everyone (including himself), Saminga was reasonably bright. There was a fairly obvious solution: get the stupid meat-bag humans to conspire in their own destruction. A careful examination of his organization found a Circle of Hellsworn Sorcerers that had bizarrely combined modern science with Diabolic magic. Perfect for his purposes. And this is where Saminga made his big mistake.

The Demon Prince of Death hadn’t been in a living host since he achieved Princedom. There was no need, when one considered the amount of corpses in the corporeal plane. However, he was too paranoid to simply animate a zombie and direct matters that way: he needed to control his unwitting researchers directly, and thus keep constant tabs on who was progressing most quickly. Unfortunately, it never occurred to him that he was still a Corrupter, and that he would have to pervert his hosts or suffer dissonance. The first note of it was both surprising and painful: like intelligence, acting contrary to his nature was a concept unfamiliar to the Prince of Death. Saminga was in a bind: acting contrary to his Band would cause more dissonance (but help serve his Word), but indulging his Shedite nature would soon make this project fail. And he did not dare leave them alone for a moment, now that the project had begun

He decided to go ahead with it anyway. Trying to limit his corruption to as little as possible (a half-hearted attempt even from the beginning, as he became engrossed in the task at hand with a new-found intellectual interest), Saminga flitted from Sorcerer to Sorcerer, trying to push them ahead in their research. A new problem arose: his hosts were unable to maintain such a hectic schedule, and their health suffered. One of them even seemed at the point of death. He was made into a mummy … but his work and insights were never as good afterwards. The schedule of Saminga’s unwitting researchers would have to be lessened if the project was to continue … but that would be considered as ‘encouraging life’. Now Saminga had a worse choice: either shut down the project, or be dissonant to his nature and his Word.

But he had to know. The project continued … futilely.

By now, Saminga was quite mad: mad but very intelligent. The madness seemed to be less when he wandered through the minds of his hosts: obviously, it was more efficient to regularly peruse their inner thoughts. Short-term memories were too full of raw terror, so Saminga routinely looked through their earliest remembrances and, in a sense, relived their lives. It was very, very dreary: pain, humiliation, rage, thwarted desires and repressed lusts … all the petty urges that make a person seek petty power. He started to notice how some of the memories that he experienced second-hand resonated with his own personal experiences. This was … disquieting. Then it became disgusting: and then finally pitiful. That emotion shocked Saminga back into some semblance of sanity, and broke his obsession.

By now, it was obvious that this entire project was a fool’s errand from start to finish: nothing real had been done that he could not have done himself, and the personal cost was too high. So, Saminga casually obliterated the Circle and the lab, and waited for the dissonance to disappear. It didn’t. He had been acting contrary to his nature for too long. Apparently, he wasn’t as smart as he thought he was – a deeply galling notion.

It was a deeply self-loathing Demon Prince of Death that went back to his Bone Citadel. He was angry with himself, angry at a system that would require him to hide his weakness until he could get rid of it, and finally angry at a universe that had forced such a disgusting emotion upon him. And he was still bored, bored, bored. Wasn’t there anything that he could do that would be fulfilling? Had he ever done anything that was fulfilling?

And a tiny memory broke the surface: a memory of quiet day, when a weak, pitiful Saminga had sat and watched the first sunset on earth, and marveled at the colors, and was content. A day that happened before he had even heard the first words of the Lightbearer, or thought of rebellion, or War. A quiet day when he was an angel.

And then came the tears of the Prince of Death.

When the tears stopped, a resolution came. There was, in point of fact, a job worthy of his talents. He started it by summoning his Servitors, who came not knowing that their personal death lay waiting. He only got about a tenth of his total organization of demons in that first battle. It would do for a start. After all, he knew where he could find help to complete his first Task.

And so Saminga smashed his Heart (and his citadel, and a large portion of his Principality) and sought Heaven.