Weaknesses: Infernal magic. Require pneuma to power magics. Slowest race to heal. Can not use Necromancy.
Strengths: Ability to fly. Highly resistant to emotional / psychological manipulation by non-mundane means (magics, mutations, and so forth). Immune to disease. Extremely ancient.
Lifespan: Unknown (Put "1" on your app.)
Susceptible to D13: No
Part of the Consortium: Yes
Race Leaders: The Seraphim, the remaining angels with a connection to Heaven, are led by Michael. The lower orders, or Elohim, are those who can no longer reach Heaven. They have been disavowed by their brethren, written off as casualties of war by Michael. The Elohim, under the direction of a relatively unknown archangel named Zaphkiel, the Heavenly Prince of Wisdom, have joined the Consortium to help protect one of the main pneuma sources left on the planet - humanity. The local leader is known as the Psalm or Canticle, and the local group of angels is called a "Choir".
NOTE: Elohim must start out in their faction, the Lost Psalm. "Rogue" applicants will be rejected unless they are reformed Nephilim.
"In the Beginning, there was God. And God created the Heavens and the Earth. He created Man, and gave man Free Will to choose whether to love Him. And while much of mankind did, it was those who used their Free Will to turn their backs on God which called the lesser gods into being. By choosing to worship falsely, the made a lie into a truth, investing the power of their prayers in all forms of wrongness. As these lesser gods grew in power, they learned magic -- something reserved only for God and God's creations, and bestowed magic upon their followers.
With this magic, the Lesser Gods began to carve out realms and universes from the nothingness. Their actions have shattered reality again and again, breaking time and eroding the very essence of existence itself. Should the Lesser Gods continue to carve up reality, there is a possibility that all of time and space will break down like shattering glass.
Thus, God commanded the Heavenly Host to go forth and do His Will. Some became warriors, and some healers, some guardians, some tenders of the cosmos, and some simply watched the now many realms of men. The greatest among the Heavenly Host was Lucifer, the Morning Star, right hand of God, most beloved of his brethren. He led a thousand battles against the Lesser Gods bearing the Sword of Righteousness.
But Lucifer turned against God, in vanity, and jealousy, and pride. He lifted the Sword of Righteousness in anger, to strike the Lord. And for this, he and his followers were cast out of Heaven, so that their hearts might feel the cold of no longer being in the presence of the Lord. Afraid of what they had done, they fled from the sight of the Lord and hid in Hell.
But they still wish to strike down the Lord, and claim his throne. It is the duty of the Heavenly host to fight against this threat, to reclaim the pneuma of the shattered realms made by the Lesser Gods, and to protect the realms of God and the faithful therein."
These are the words branded on the heart of every Angel with a connection to Heaven. Unfortunately, that connection has eroded and broken for a great many Angels. But as that connection began to snap, the lower orders of Angels, known as the "Elohim", found that they were no longer compelled to follow such strict mandates. They now have Free Will where once they could only hear the voice of God. For many of them it is the first time, in eternity, that they must learn to think, and provide, for themselves. It's extraordinarily disconcerting for most, and many of them simply fall into old patterns. Some have forgotten their angelic nature altogether.
But, even if God has not been seen in years, most of the Elohim still believe in God, and in those words. They take the severing of their connection to Heaven as simply another speed bump in an eternal war. There are many theories as to why the connection with Heaven has broken, with a popular one being that Lucifer has taken control of some of the Seraphim and somehow sabotaged the Throne of God from within Heaven itself. One, or more, of the Seraphim is suspected as being a traitor. Because of this, the Elohim are disinclined, more and more, to trust the Seraphim, and the Archangels, and a distance grew between the two groups.
In order to keep some of their magics, the Elohim have been taught by Zaphkiel how to directly siphon pneuma from humans, as well as objects and places of power. There are many ways to do so, but when it comes to humans, they often involve encouraging the seven heavenly virtues, and preventing the seven deadly sins.
A few of their number have decided to defect and join the Nephilim. But it's really been relatively few. About as few as the number of Nephilim who have repented to reunite with their angelic brethren. Those who switch sides are almost always viewed with suspicion and must constantly prove their loyalty. It is unlikely that Elohim would join other factions of magic users, since they believe magic is reserved for God and those who enforce His Will. Additionally, any faction or race which can be seen to serve another God would be right out, both for the Elohim AND the Nephilim. Lastly, those who defect will be seen as traitors, and suspected of being in league with God's enemies. For this reason, rogue Elohim are rare.
In their true form, the Elohim can look anywhere from dazzling to frightening, may be of any color, but are roughly humanoid. But they always, always have wings and generally some sort of glow, even if just glowing eyes. Elohim have the ability to use pneuma to cloak themselves. It has long been considered bad form to allow humans to look upon one's true form or hear one's true voice. This is not because it harms humans, but because revealing one's true form is a) reserved for the work of God, and b) eventually weakens pneuma generation in a human. Close and repeated exposure to the true form of a Celestial has some effect on humans that is not completely understood, but it definitely reduces their ability to produce pneuma. Over the eons, some angels have been stationed on Earth and become quite familiar with human culture. Others spend the majority of their time at other tasks. It varies from angel to angel. Angels can not reproduce, but are able to have sex.
The Elohim are extremely difficult to kill, but like most beings powered by pneuma, they can become dormant if drained or deprived of pneuma for too long. Pneuma deprivation generally results in the Elohim basically hibernating within their own body. Hibernation is like the Fae phenomenon of "forgetting", where the person will believe themselves human, and exhibit no angelic power. If scryed, they will register as human until they are 'awakened'. Elohim can take an enormous amount of damage before dying, and it is unknown if the Seraphim can die at all. However, Infernal magic or Infernal-enchanted weapons can kill them far more rapidly. If "killed", the Elohim would normally return to Heaven, and have to be "re-made" by their God. However, because they no longer have a link to heaven, Elohim killed in this fashion now end up in the Pale Lands.
Angel blood is toxic to vampires. It tastes like burning. And it has no known positive effects.
NOTE: Famous/well-known angels are considered "Seraphim" and thus, not available for play. References to "God" in this document are analogous to the god known as "Ael", is generally the Judeo-Christian god, but may also be the god of other monotheistic religions. Please do not take any lore here as a commentary upon any world religion, but simply a manufactured fiction for our story.
Faction Stance On Rogues:
The Elohim are not a lenient people when it comes to rogues, however there are varying levels of what constitutes a Rogue. If, for instance, an Elohim merely abandons their Choir in an attempt to strike out on their own they could be captured and sent to Zaphkiel and the 'head office' here on Earth for 'reeducation'. However, if the sin is more grave, such as outing one's choir or otherwise placing them at equal risk, the punishment becomes far worse (though reeducation really isn't that great either). These can range from the removal of an Elohim's wings to the removal of their head (death). Whatever their crime, Elohim Rogues are /never/ tolerated. They are hunted down and brought to justice. They may avoid that justice for a long time, but they will continue to be an enemy, no matter what.
In absolute worst case scenarios there is a fate worse than death for Rogue Elohim. This would be to have their Pneuma leeched from them to the point that they become human and lose their ability to remember themselves as what they once were. They are then deposited remotely within human society and monitored by an Elohim assigned to them as a kind of 'guard'. These (former) Elohim are rarely ever allowed to return to their former glory but often find themselves driven towards religious vocations in some subconscious attempt to make ammends.
The Whispers: The Whispers are, very often, mistaken for demons. This is not because of their appearance, no it is because of their singular goal. They attempt to test and corrupt humanity. They give humans hardships and challenges to overcome and see if they rise to the challenge. This allows them to find out who among them are truly virtuous and faithful. And since the truly virtuous and faithful are the best at generating pneuma for angels, the Whispers then have a record of where their brethren can find excellent power sources. Many Whispers ply their trade by attempting to lure humans into vice...be it lust, or pride, or gluttony, or some other sin. (Whispers can generate pneuma both from the faithful and from those they have tempted into sin and thus 'proven unworthy of God's love'. They can form this pneuma into a shell around themselves to give themselves moderate protection against casted magic. Not all magic is deflected, but casted magic will only be more than half as successful against the Whispers. However, their own casted magic, exiting the shell, is only half as successful as well. They can 'dispel' this shell by touching another magic-caster, and basically giving them the excess pneuma to temporarily increase someone else's powers for a scene. It will take them 48 hours to build up a new 'shell'. They can also dispel their 'shell' into an object.)
The Clarion: The Clarion are warriors, former soldiers for the armies of the Archangels. For thousands and thousands of years, they have fought both the demons and the armies of the "Lesser Gods". For many of them, all they have ever known is the fight. However, with the paths to Heaven shattering, the Clarion suddenly find themselves in a unique situation. For the first time in an eternity, they can CHOOSE whether to fight, and they can choose their battles. There are rumors that some of the Clarion have laid down their swords, but truthfully, most of them have simply taken up more subtle jobs in the mortal world, fitting in where they can as security guards and mercenaries. (The Clarion start with master melee for free, from their eternity of fighting battles and wars. Any melee weapon they hold siphons pneuma on contact with a demon or non-believer, and that siphoned pneuma automatically attempts to heal any wounds they might have. This allows them to fight longer than most other races, though it will eventually not be able to keep up with the wounding.)
The Lullaby: If one is looking for the most traditional Judeo-Christian 'concept' of an angel, the Lullaby are probably the ones they are thinking of. They are the protectors and guardians of God's creations, and from them comes the archetypical concept of "guardian angels". But they are not only concerned with guarding humans, but everything beloved by God. There are Lullabies who protect animals, plants, places, books, temples, rivers and oceans, and more. Since the Severing, they have, many of them, taken up mundane jobs near or working with those things they once guarded and tended. Other Lullabies have gone a bit...off kilter. With only their area of guardianship remaining familiar to them in this strange time, they don't just guard, but relentlessly pursue and destroy any minor perceived threat to their "holy treasure". (The Lullaby get a free level of Healing, unrestricted. If they then take Healing, they get to start with Healing level 2.)
The Voices: The Voices are angels of communication. They deliver not only God's mandates and messages to mankind, but also hear and answer (or reject) prayers on God's behalf. Beyond this, the Voices have the task of overseeing memory, sanity, and language. Following the Severing, they've taken up mortal jobs as everything from powerful philanthropists to psychiatrists, and book writers. However, others have gone very exceptionally insane. Without the Word of God to fuel their movements, their minds tend to fill themselves with...well, voices. Since many of the leaders of the newly formed Elohim come from this choir, finding ways to prevent the further erosion of the sanity of the Voices is high on the list of Things That Need To Be Done. (By touch, the Voices can view and steal recent memories of others. However, every time they do this, the Voices in their own heads will drastically increase their insanity for the next 24 hours. So it is not a power to be used lightly. The further back these memories are, the stronger the person's will to resist, the more intense the backlash will be. Memories over a week old are unavailable to them. They can not probe surface thoughts, only memories of events.)
The Silence: The SIlenceare truly the most terrifying of all angels. Often hideous in appearance, they are tasked both with bringing God's judgment and punishment to mankind, as well as instilling fear into mortals. Humanity does have the option of turning against God, but absolutely nowhere in any Good Book does it say that God won't punish them for doing so. In addition, it has been found that fear inspires faith. Without fear, there can be no hope. Were most people to see a member of the Silence, they would immediately think them a demon. However, most of the Silence have lived extraordinarily lonely, and solitary existences. Now, in the days after the Severing, some of them have come looking for the companionship they have never had in the past. Others are completely fine with being what they have always been -- monsters. (They have the ability to move without being seen, without making a sound and without disturbing the air (can not be smelled when using this power), but only in their true forms. This works only so long as they do not interact with the environment in a major way, such as casting magic, or attacking someone. Small interactions with the environment are fine. However, the Silence can be perceived by a Scrying roll, or a roll by those who can detect the use of magic. (Perception vs. Subterfuge, Hiding, Or Stealth.). If the roll fails, they can not try again for the rest of the scene. The Silence are very weak to wards, and very superstitious, and thus can be kept out of a room by an unbroken line of salt on all entrances. This salt will need to be replaced every 24 hours.)
The Blessed (Non-Elohim, Human Only) (Suggested by Kain Silvershade): The Elohim have long had the tradition of favoring those Most Faithful with gifts of the Faith. These "Blessed" are often those who go on to become Saints of the Church, or venerated holy men or women. The Blessed have their Pneuma linked and dedicated to a single angel, and can not be siphoned by any other Celestial. The linking ceremony requires both to pray together, hands held, and pneuma willingly exchanged between both, a ritual which must be repeated monthly. The Blessed's prayers may be heard by their Elohim anywhere in the world, so long as they are kneeling, eyes closed, hands pressed together in prayer. In return, the Elohim may sing aloud to draw their Blessed to their side, though the Blessed must physically travel that distance. The angel always knows where their Blessed is, and that individual's physical and emotional state. Likewise, the Blessed is aware of the emotional state of their angel, and over time may develop a sense of awe and fervor toward their angel, almost like a minor form of deification. The Blessed has reduced resistance to the angel's commands and must exert great willpower to act against the wishes of their angel. Each Elohim may only have a total of TWO Blessed, generally termed the "Left Hand" and the "Right Hand". The pair must regularly pray together for the human to remain Blessed. Blessed may not have NPCs as their angels, and the angel who makes a Blessed must be in play at least one month before choosing a Blessed. (Human blessed may cast one level 1 magic that their angel has. They may only use one of the schools of magic that their angel is using and may not use any magic their angel does not already know. To do this, they utilize their own pneuma.)
In addition to their race and subracial powers, the Elohim get to start with two level 1 magics.
Weaknesses: Holy magic. Require pneuma to power magics. All demons have a disease, deformity or derangement (insanity) that can not be healed. Can not use Necromancy. Inability to enter places of worship dedicated to the Lord of Hosts.
Strengths: Ability to fly. Can banish scrying in the immediate area. Extremely high pain tolerance. Extremely ancient.
Lifespan: Unknown (Put "1" on your app.)
Susceptible to D13: No
Part of the Consortium: Yes
Race Leader: The High Prince of Hell is Azrael, and currently in control of the Princes, the upper-eschelon of Hell's denizens. The lower orders, or Nephilim, are the rank-and-file demons who can no longer reach Hell. Unable to control the Nephilim now that they are beyond the manipulation of the Princes, they have "graciously allowed" the Nephilim to secede and govern themselves on Earth. It is unknown to most if the Princes made this decision of their own will, or were forced into it by the circumstances. The Nephilim currently operate under the direction of a demon known as Malphas, who was elected from their number as Commander General. The local leader is known as the Arcturus.
All demons began their lives in the service of God, also known as Ael, Yahweh, and the Lord of Hosts, as described in the background for the Elohim. They were, all, once angels, charged by God to destroy his enemies and care for His chosen, His "creations".
Each of them began life with a holy purpose, but...one by one, for myriad reasons, they began to side with Lucifer. Some wished to be able to love, or have Free Will...at the very least more Free Will than they believed God would allow them. Others believed that perhaps God was not telling the whole truth about His own powers, or found his plans malicious in nature. One by one, they began to side with the Morning Star, the Seraphim known as Lucifer.
There are differing accounts of Lucifer during this time. Some recall him as beautiful, radiant, and kind...torn and conflicted over his role in the whole ordeal. Others remember him more as a sharp individual, with keen foresight and burgeoning pride and ambition. Either way, he was, as they say, "as God made him".
Each of the Seraphim are given a sword, a sword of office. And Lucifer's, known as Lightbringer or the Sword of Righteousness, was in hand when he confronted God. Whilst the angels say he raised it against God, either literally or metaphorically, the demons tend to believe that he only engaged it to defend himself, and that God wished to deny him a most basic right -- the right of self-preservation. The truth may never be known. But Lucifer, and all those who bore his mark, were cast out of the realm of Heaven. It was expected they would simply become mortal and perish upon their Fall from Grace. But they did not, perhaps through the foresight and planning of Lucifer to gain enough power and pneuma to allow them to survive. When it was realized that the fallen were not going to die, the angels chased them through the universes and realms, looking to correct the mistake and slay the "traitors".
A deal was eventually made with the guardians of a hidden realm to seek possible asylum. The realm of Hell, ruled by a mad god known as Satan, was said to be both horrible and beautiful. Satan himself had gone mad in his seclusion, but it took a lot of pneuma to maintain his realm, and without an influx, he knew he was in trouble of going dormant. He bade his few minions, known as the Hellhounds or Hellcats, to bring him "dinner", so to speak. But the Hellcats, long tormented by their mad master, saw a better deal. Instead of leading the fallen angels into a trap, it was a double-cross, and Satan was the one who ended up being set up. Instead of the demons being consumed by Satan, it was Satan whose godly pneuma was consumed by Lucifer.
The demons inherited control of Hell, and added the Hellcats to their number. The capitol city of Lys (called "Lies" by those who aren't a fan of demons or hell) became the seat of Lucifer's power, which has led to the moniker, "The Prince of Lys". The former Seraphim which had left with Lucifer became the Princes of Hell (same title for male and female), of which there are several ranks of their own. Below them ranked the Nephilim. While a great many Nephilim were designated soldiers, and organized under the Princes to fight the Angelic threat as well as the threat from Celestials who might wish to usurp Hell, the rest took up positions not unlike they'd had in Heaven. Instead of tending those faithful to God, they attempted to liberate minds from what they saw as mental and spiritual slavery and turn them towards Lucifer's ideals of love and enjoyment of life. They claimed places and objects of pneuma generation and began to protect them.
But, there were some who believed that this left Hell as nothing more than a pale reflection of that which they left. The structure was the same, with the various ranks of Princes at the top and the ranks of Nephilim below. True freedom had not, they believed, been granted. One group, the Fel Ahzel, eventually broke from Hell and struck out on their own, looking for something truly different, a place with more lateral equality. They would eventually find it in the Underkin, as Imps, but not before being hunted by the demons they fled. It seems a rumor had cropped up that the Fel Ahzel's supposed intent of finding freedom was merely a cover for their true intentions -- to sell out Hell to the Angels. In the battles that followed before they found their place amongst the Underkin, many of the Fel Ahzel were tortured horribly by demons in the hopes that they would confess to this treachery.
Hell's social structure did develop, over time, to be very different from Heaven's. It is more cut-throat, with the various Princes vying for higher rank, control over better lands, better access to gates and portals to other realms. One could be the Prince of the Fetid Swamps of Despair, or one could be the Prince of the Pleasure Palaces. Rank is everything in Hell, just as it is in Heaven, the Fel Ahzel were right about that. Cleverness, subterfuge, and political manipulation is everything for the demons. At the top of this ranking system is Lucifer, rarely seen except by the top circle of Princes. His right hand, Azrael, delivers most communication and pronouncements on his behalf. Lady Abaddon, Prince of the Abyss, is in charge of punishments and corrections. Seeing any of these three demons in person tends not to bode well.
It is only the Nephilim, the lower ranks of demons, who have become cut off from Hell. Each day, more of them find themselves waking up on Earth, far from their longtime home. Like the Elohim, the Nephilim are divided. Do they continue to do the work and attempt to follow the goals of their former Princes, however covertly, whilst attempting to publicly maintain a respectable image as Consortium members...or do they follow their own paths?
Over time, it is believed that the insanity absorbed by Lucifer when he usurped Satan's pneuma has filtered down to the demons, making Hell an even stranger place. The ability to absorb pneuma from sin, rather than virtue and faith, arose, as did the slow "mutation" of demons into what is commonly thought of today. Demons come in many colors and forms, but they are vaguely humanoid, always have wings, and always have horns. They may also have tails and cloven hooves, but these are not always true.
"Killing" one of the Nephilim is almost exactly the same as one of the Elohim, except, of course, one would use holy weapons to do extra damage rather than infernal ones. Like the Elohim, demons can have sex but can not reproduce.
Demon blood tends to confer insanity to vampires. The most usual immediate effect is to make them believe that they are invincible gods mixed with intense megalomania. It is addictive, and will also make vampires go rapidly insane of their own accord the more they drink it.
NOTE: Well-known demons from theology and lore are not available for play. They are considered "Princes", and therefore, not a part of the Nephilim.
NOTE: Nephilim must start out in their faction, the Solus Stellaris. Nephilim which go rogue or decide to aid the Elohim may, indeed, forfeit their right to consent unless they have ST approval. (Which means you could possibly be hunted and killed by your faction.)
Orders of the Nephilim (The orders of the Nephilim are, like their leader, the Morning Star, all named after heavenly bodies or constellations. There exist more orders of Nephilim, these are just the ones prevalent on Earth at this time):
The Saiph: (Also known as the Saif al Jabbar, Swords of the Giant). Named for a star in the sword of the constellation of Orion, the Saiph were all largely the Clarion of the Elohim at one time. Now the warriors of Hell, they spend their time in battles on behalf of the goals of the demons as a whole, but also the machinations of the various Princes as they jockey for power within Hell itself. They range from the most crude or bloodthirsty cutthroat to elite, highly trained warriors with their own particular codes of honor. It really depended which Prince was their liege, and what rank they held. Still, it is one thing to take the soldier out of the war, but quite another to take the war out of the soldier. Many of the Saiph believe in continuing the battles of old, despite their supposed peaceful involvement in the Consortium. Not killing humans and staying out of sight in no way precludes killing the Elohim in secret. (The Saiph start with master melee for free, from their eternity of fighting battles and wars. Any melee weapon they hold siphons pneuma on contact with an angel or anyone who does not follow Lucifer, and that siphoned pneuma automatically attempts to heal any wounds they might have. This allows them to fight longer than most other races.)
The Alpha Leonis: (Generally referred to as Hellcats or Hellhounds): There is a notable exception to the rule that all Nephilim were once Elohim. The minions of Satan, who betrayed their mad, destructive and abusive god to Lucifer's horde in the hopes of better treatment were fairly summarily accepted into the ranks of the Nephilim. Fiercely loyal to their saviors, the Hellcats were instrumental in preparing the demons for the dangers of the realm they had inherited. They tend to be guides, trackers, hunters and scouts. But many of them also take up bodyguard positions in the palaces of the Princes. Identifying themselves with the constellation Leo, they took the name of a star in that system for their order. It should be noted that there are some who believe that the Alpha Leonis and the Shifters share a common ancestry, though the lore of the Romani hints that the Hellcats and Hellhounds are formed from the souls of Shifters who have committed such vile acts that even being proclaimed Moxado could not atone for the sin. The Alpha Leonis are generally shunned, if not hunted outright, by Shifters because of this and as such generally hide their identities from Shifters. (The Hellcats get, in addition to their demon form, the ability to shift into a single type of feline, which may be anything from a common housecat to a lion. The Hellhounds may, in addition to their demon form, have the ability to shift into a single type of canine. Like the shifters, they have heightened regeneration and a soul howl, which causes those around them to wish to hurt, emotionally or physically, those they cherish. Also like the shifters, they are weak to silver, lose their tempers easily, and have no control over shifting on the full and new moons.)
Mizari: (Named for Mizar and Alcor or"Horse and Rider") These two stars have long been related to the concept of sight and vision, both eyesight, and supernatural foresight. It is said, in some cultures, that those who can no longer distinguish the two stars as separate in the sky will soon meet their demise. The Mizari demons are the most keenly perceptive of all demons. Very often, they use this perception to learn about those around them, and to manipulate them in the most devious and sinister of ways. Mizari demons are most likely to pose as cult leaders, psychiatrists, politicians, and anyone who can use their abilities of penetrating perception to influence others. Unfortunately, there is a downside to being so perceptive -- Mizari demons are easily overwhelmed by sensory overload, and can become temporarily blind, deaf, or disoriented during the most inopportune of times. (The Mizari always have a good chance of seeing through illusion magic and lies, and can roll a die to see if they do so. 1-8 is a fail, 9-20 is a win, and they may boost their rolls if they buy Perception with XP, though the other person may use Subterfuge to adjust the roll. They can sense surface emotions with a touch, and expend pneuma to manipulate those emotions through touch, however doing so will often cause them to 'mirror' whatever emotions they are forcing on the other person.)
Ophiuchi: (Constellation of the Snake charmer) The Ophiuchi are a strange duality. They are both the healers among the demons, and the makers of poisons. They are chemists and scientists, and also the builders of bombs and creators of Hell's lakes of acid. They are fascinated by utilizing science to control the world around them. In essence, the Ophiuchi can best be described as 'mad scientists'. It's great to have an Ophiuchi on your side when you need them, but they are known to come up with the most creative of punishments when crossed. It has long pissed off the Ophiuchi that they can't seem to master Necromancy. So instead, many of them throw themselves into Alchemy, looking for a way to unlock the doors of undeath through that route rather than necromantic ritual. It is the thought of the Ophiuchi, most often, that whilst magic is powerful...true godhood lays in the mastery of science, and the unchangeable principles of the world around them. (The Ophiuchi may start with grand-mastery of one of the following: chemistry, medicine, pharmacology, toxicology or occult. They also get journeyman mathematics for free. They additionally may, if they take Alchemy, use it to do Necromantic types of spells.)
Order of Serpentis: (Constellation of Serpens) When one thinks of a traditional demon, one might be thinking of the Order of Serpentis. Said to take their inspiration from the serpent that temped Eve, the Serpents are the tempters and corrupters of mankind. In general, each of their kind venerates one of the seven deadly sins: pride, greed, envy, lust, wrath, sloth, or gluttony. Most famous of the Serpents are the Incubi and Succubi, demons of lust, who have built an incredible reputation in Hell's Pleasure Palaces as purveyors of every kind of debauchery. But one should not forget their brothers and sisters, all dedicated to enticing others to join them in defying God by participating and encouraging all those delicious sins. (The Serpentis can regenerate wounds by binging on their chosen sin. It works moderately if they do this alone, but if they get others to participate, it works incredibly well. This makes wrath-based Serpentis warriors a real bitch to go up against. Additionally, they have a moderate ability to inspire the wish to do their particular venerated sin through touch.)
Hydri: (Constellation of the Hydra) There are monsters, there are nightmares, and then there are the Hydri. Named for the constellation of the Hydra, the Hydri are the most twisted and disturbed of all of the demonic orders, in mind or body, or both. Hailing often from the more bizarre, dangerous, and horrifying sections of Hell, they Hydri are legendary in their ability to terrorize and punish. Many of them are so exceptionally dangerous and insane that some Princes allow them to be hunted or driven off of their territories. Other Princes embrace the Hydri, often to utilize them for nefarious purposes. It is often difficult for the Hydri to blend in on Earth. Even though they can cloak themselves using pneuma, the Hydri who are particularly insane tend to end up institutionalized, and those who are unable or unwilling to hide their monstrous nature end up hunted. Most of the Hydri are therefore marginalized, or end up living at the edges of society, or in dangerous places such as the Haunted Forest. Most Hydri, it is believed, were once of the Silence as Elohim. (The Hydri often cause fear in non-Celestials by exposing their true form, though there is nothing particularly magical about this -- they just tend to look horrifying. Hydri blood is acidic, however, the acid must be 'activated' by the Hydri. This allows them to 'blend' in as normal 'people' when wounded, if they wish. In addition, the Hydri may have two useful non-standard physical traits, such as weaponized claws, fangs, tentacles, prehensile tail or tongue, jaw that unhinges, gills, extra limbs, and so forth. The traits must be specified on your app.)
The Damned (Non-Nephilim, Human Only): (Suggested by Kain Silvershade) Just like the Elohim, the Nephilim have long used humanity to extend their influence and secure pneuma sources. These are the Damned, humans of such glorious sin that they come under a particular Nephilim's notice, and eventually, service. The Damned willfully hand over their pneuma to a Nephilim, who becomes the only one able to draw from that person, in return for power. To become Damned, the human must draw a ritual circle, inside of which both their name and the name of the Nephilim is inscribed. They must then invite the Nephilim into the circle verbally, and a willing exchange of pneuma takes place. This ritual must be repeated monthly. To become "un-Damned", either side must use their own blood to write "I forsake thee, (Name)" thrice over a period of three days. Ritual chanting by the Nephilim can be used to summon the Damned to their side, though they must travel this distance physically. Although the Nephilim always knows the physical and emotional state of the Damned, and the Damned the emotional state of the Nephilim, they can not hear the "prayers" of the Damned like the Elohim can hear the Blessed. Instead, they have the ability to manipulate the Damned's sense of pain or pleasure, even from afar, even down to specific body parts and sensations. Over time, a Damned may feel more and more imposed upon by the will of the Nephilim, more and more desirous to please them and serve them. Each Nephilim may only have a total of TWO Damned, generally termed the "Eyes" and the "Ears". Damned may not have NPCs as their demons, and the demon who makes a Damned must be in play at least one month before choosing a Damned. (Human Damned may cast one level 1 magic that their demon has. They may only use one of the schools of magic that their demon is using and may not use any magic their demon does not already know. To do this, they utilize their own pneuma.)
In addition to their subrace magics, Nephilim start with two level 1 magics.
Shards (Other Celestials) (Closed):
Weaknesses: Holy magic and Infernal Magic. Require pneuma to power magics. More difficult to gain pneuma than other Celestials. Can not use Necromancy.
Strengths: Extremely ancient. Can use pneuma to regenerate. Can hide their aura to appear human.
Lifespan: Unknown (Put "1" on your app.)
Susceptible to D13: No
Part of the Consortium: No
Race Leader: The Shards are not organized, because they all served different gods. They have no leader.
Shards are extremely rare. They are those minions of other gods besides Ael/Yahweh that have become trapped on Earth, and can not return or interact with their god directly. Perhaps their god has gone dormant. Perhaps the portal or road between Earth and their home is no longer accessible. Perhaps they were simply exiled here. Whatever the case, they are now trapped, with no support system, and they have had to learn to survive on their own. Shards do not generally get along with other Shards, since they all tend to follow different gods. They tend to fight each other, but may occasionally make alliances. And because their pneuma is an especially delicious snack for the Elohim and Nephilim, they try to hide as best they can.
Not all religions produce Shards. For instance, the gods of Ancient Egypt are almost all associated with Vampires, rather than Celestials. However, there are Norse Shards, such as Valkyries. Shards come from the religions of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. Minor, unnamed, loa can also be Shards. The possibilities are varied and vast.
Shards tend to be unique from one to the next. It should include who your Shard's god is, what you wish your Shard's "subrace" ability to be, a brief synopsis of their background, and what their flaws would be.
Shards start with two level 1 magics.
The Chosen (Non-Shard, Human Only): (Suggested by Kain Silvershade) The Chosen are those humans who the various Shards of the Gods and Goddesses have chosen to represent their will and receive their gifts. Holy men, priestesses, healers and holy warriors, the Chosen are much like the Blessed and the Damned, though each is unique to their particular Shard, and by extension, god or goddess of the Shard. The rituals for binding to each Shard is different, but each ultimately involves a willing transfer of pneuma. Ending that binding is also different, from Shard to Shard, but generally involves either side severing that link willfully over a period of time, or time and distance allowing the link to erode. The Chosen are bound to the will of their Shard, and the Shard is aware of that human's physical and emotional state at all times. Likewise, the Chosen is aware of the emotional state of their Shard. A Shard may draw their Chosen to them via intense meditation, during which they are vulnerable to all attacks, but the Chosen must physically travel to the Shard's location. None but the Shard may draw pneuma from their Chosen. The Chosen is gifted with a minor version of the Shard racial power, they heal much more rapidly than a normal human, consuming their own pneuma to do so -- though this leaves them with less pneuma to provide their Shard. Shards may only have TWO Chosen at any given time. Chosen may not have NPCs as their Shards, and the Shard who makes a Chosen must be in play at least one month before choosing a Chosen.(As with the Blessed and Damned, human Chosen may utilize their own pneuma to cast one level one magic class which their Shard possesses. It should be noted that a human who runs out of pneuma, may fall into a coma.)
NOTE: There are Celestials of other gods which are NOT Shards. Those Celestials are not playable, as they, like the Seraphim and Princes, would be too powerful to be characters.