Nephandi Investments

In Development

Pith

Pith is corrupted Quintessence. A mage stores Quintessence in her Avatar and by the grace of the patron the Quintessence is twisted, soured and transmuted into the rancid quixotic substance known as Pith. This process is accomplished by the Nephandus ingesting some essential fluid or bizarre exrement produced by the Patron that corrupts the Quintessence stored within her warped Avatar. Pith is used to power investments or as currency between the Fallen. The withholding of Pith is often used by Patron's to control rebellious Nephandi.

Pith provides a rush for the Nephandi consuming it but non-Nephandi find it exceedingly revolting. Non-Nephandi are entirely incapable of using Pith as their Avatars are not corrupt. Prolonged exposure to large quantities tends to leave a stain on the body or soul, giving them nightmares or other strange physical deformities or mental problems.

Pith has a strong, often disgusting scent and comes in a variety of forms from sour milk, white plasm, purple blood, or even candy, pharmaceuticals or even radiation. Whatever form the Pith takes is unique to the Patron. Those with out Nephandi lore are generally understand that its toxic but won't know what it is. Those with Nephandi lore are well aware of its value to the Fallen.

A Nephandi may store her Avatar rating in Pith. Pith when infused into a mage's pattern is quite subtle but can be noticed by a successful Perception + Awareness roll vs 10 - 1 for every Pith point above 3. Pith generally isn't carried in a Nephandi's pattern unless she plans to use it. Barabbi in deep cover frequently abstain from its use while working their missions.

Pith and Quintessence

The mage must choose between storing Pith or storing Quintessence since Pith is Quintessence corrupted by the essential fluids of the Patron. This is why many Nephandi learn the Prime sphere in order to mitigate this flaw as Prime allows a mage to store Quintessence above her Avatar rating.

Tasks

Investments begin as a form of seduction but end up being harder and harder to obtain. Investments are rewards for work well done. The following is a range of example tasks often required by Patrons. These are by no mean authorative but provide a rule of thumb for the ratio of work to reward.

Unnaturalness

This is the degree with which you have been corrupted and have become like your Patron. The higher your Unnaturalness rating the more like your Patron you become and the harder it is for you to remain beyond the Gauntlet and the Horizon. Nephandi with high Unnaturalness ratings are forced to dwell in the labyrinths leading their patron's cause from afar. The most powerful and inhuman Nephandi are often confined to Horizon realms or even the hell-dimensions of their Patrons, waiting to emerge as generals for their Patrons.

Each investment has a cost in Unnaturalness that is added to the total rating.

Unnaturalness and Paradox

A Nephandus may choose to sublimate her Unnaturalness as Paradox thereby staving off her eventual confinement beyond the Gauntlet or Horizon. Rolls to detect your Nephandic nature are modified by your Unnaturalness rating. Many Nephandi go to great lengths to develop rotes to disguise their unnaturalness.

Unnaturalness can be converted to Permanent Paradox flaws at a rate of 2 Permanent Paradox for one point of Unnaturalness or a four point permanent Paradox Flaw per one point of Unnaturalness.

Investments

These represent the standard abilities accessed by the Nephandi. They are purchased with XP like cybernetic or augment merits. Costs are based on the cumulative total pool (i.e. if the Nephandi is raising Demonic Reflexes from +2 to +3 it would be purchased as a 3 point merit.) Many Nephandi choose to abstain from taking investments because of the side-effects they cause. However during the course of a Nephandus' existence they are often forced to resort to them, needing a quick source of power to get out of a tight situation.

When seducing others into servitude Nephandi have the ability to offer any of these Investments to their marks, though a smart Nephandi will negotiate these terms with their Patron ahead of time.

Activation - Unless otherwise noted, activated Investments last a scene.