Casket of Firedust Conversion
From DivNull RPG
Created by Shataina, posted on the Exalted wiki.
Each Casket of Firedust Conversion looks fairly mundane: they are smallish boxes, inlaid with a small amount of jade. In order to make one, a sorcerer must first enchant a wooden box using the Ritual of Elemental Empowerment; then he must use a long, draining and puissant ritual to bind either an elemental or a demon aspected to a certain element into the box, and inlay the box with the appropriate colour of jade in order to ensure the creature's binding.
Each Casket is capable of converting firedust into a kind of enchanted dust that works exactly the same as normal firedust, but has an entirely different effect when fired from a firewand, dependent upon which element it is aspected towards. A Casket made with a trapped elemental is capable of enchanting one charge of firedust per day, and no more; a Casket made with a trapped demon is capable of enchanting one charge of firedust per five days, and no more. This is because a demon bound into such a Casket, although it must be relatively aspected towards the Element in question for the Casket to work at all, simply cannot exercise the same amount of control over the element in question as an actual elemental can. (Example of an elementally-aspected demon: Tomescu, the Clamorous Cloud Arsenal [air, obviously]. Example of a non-elementally aspected demon: Teodozji, a Lion Sent Into the World. Both from Games of Divinity.)
However, any sorcerer who binds an elemental into such a casket will almost certainly face the wrath of the elemental's allies, will probably be ostracized from any elemental courts they may try to make contact with, and will also outrage the Celestial Hierarchy; whereas any sorcerer who similarly binds a demon will face no censure whatsoever. In addition, anyone who so much as owns a casket that contains a bound elemental had best keep it hidden away and warded as well as possible, for any members of the Celestial Hierarchy who hear of it will almost certainly attempt to destroy it, thereby freeing the trapped elemental. The owner may also be directly confronted by furious spirits and elementals, etc., at the Storyteller's discretion.
As the firedust is converted into a different element's dust (hereafter "elementdust"), it slowly changes colour, into the same colour as the Casket that enchanted it. It also becomes significantly more potent in the hands of Essence-users. Elementdust is roughly as useful as firedust in the hands of a non-Essence user -- it simply has a different effect when shot from a firewand. However, if an Essence-user commits 1 mote to the charge, then the elementdust has a much more powerful effect. (If the Essence-user in question is elementally aspected towards the elementdust -- if, for example, they're a Dragon-Blood, an elemental, an elemental's child, et cetera -- then they pay only 1 mote to commit for two charges of the appropriate elementdust.) There are, in fact, rare Scarlet Caskets, which enchant firedust to be more potent in a fiery way; in this case, the firedust that comes from a Scarlet Casket is no different from normal firedust in the hands of non-Essence-wielders, but in the hands of an essence-user, it's much better.
Elementdust may be fired normally from any firewand; the magic is released when fired, and the committed mote is released as well. As with normal firewand attacks, all of the following elementdust blasts may be dodged, but not parried.
A water-aspected Casket of Firedust Conversion inlaid with black jade in curling, frothing patterns resembling the ocean's waves, that turns firedust into waterdust.
A firewand with waterdust in it fires a flood of faintly blue-green Essence. The target, if hit, feels her lungs begin to fill with water. She immediately takes 6 dice of bashing damage, soakable only with Stamina, and makes a Stamina + Resistance roll, difficulty 3. If she succeeds at this roll, then she takes a -3 penalty to all her actions for the rest of the round; if she has already acted, then this penalty carries over to the next round. If she fails the roll, then she is unable to act for the rest of the round; if she has already acted, then she is unable to act in the next round.
The flood of blue-green Essence fires from the firewand, and then spreads liquidly, as if puddling. Everyone within this "puddle", which has a radius of about 10 yards, suffers the same effect as the single target of an uncommitted charge of waterdust (see above). The person who fired the firewand is not immune to this effect, should he be within the area of the "puddle".
A wood-aspected Casket of Firedust Conversion inlaid with green jade in patterns of vines and leaves that turns firedust into briardust.
A firewand with briardust in it fires a seed that rapidly opens and begins to put out vines. If the target fails to dodge, she is immediately entangled in vines. She may immediately make one Strength or Dexterity + Martial Arts or Brawl roll, difficulty 5, to attempt to disentangle herself from the vines. (Mobility Penalty, from armour, applies to this roll, even if it is made with Strength.) If she fails the roll, she is entangled and can take no actions until she disentangles herself. Every round, on her initiative, she may make one more Strength / Dexterity + Martial Arts / Brawl roll and add the successes to her previous successes on the roll. She is not free from the vines, and can take no actions, until she has accumulated 5 successes, total.
The vines are extremely strong, having an effective Strength of 5 and an effective Brawl of 5. If the target fails to dodge, they immediately grasp her in a clinch. The target may attempt to escape the clinch every round on her initiative, as normal; the vines do their clinch damage at the end of every round and do not take damage from the clinch. An ally may cut the target from the vines; they need make no roll as long as they have a sharp weapon, but must take a full round to do so.
An earth-aspected Casket of Firedust Conversion inlaid with shining white jade in geometric patterns resembling mountains, that turns firedust into stonedust.
A firewand with stonedust in it fires a cascade of crystal shards. These inflict base 8 dice of lethal damage. In addition, the shards stick in anyone they hit, forcing the target to immediately make a Stamina + Resistance roll, difficulty 3. If she fails, she immediately loses one dot of Dexterity until the end of the scene, as a slow paralysis seeps out from the shards and grips her limbs. This Dexterity loss stacks with multiple uses, and a target reduced to 0 Dexterity is fully paralyzed and can take no actions until the scene ends, although she can still speak (albeit in a slurred and inefficient fashion) and move her eyes, etc.
The crystal shards are magically hard and sharp, inflicting base 12 dice of lethal damage. The target, if hit, immediately makes a Stamina + Resistance roll, difficulty 3, and if she fails, she is paralyzed: her skin takes on a greyish, granite-y sort of cast, and she cannot take any actions, speak or otherwise move a single muscle until the end of the scene.
An air-aspected Casket of Firedust Conversion inlaid with deep blue jade in swirling patterns resembling clouds, that turns firedust into skydust.
A firewand with skydust fires a streak of lightning. This inflicts eight dice of lethal damage and ignores half the target's armour's soak, rounded down. This applies even to magical armour. Extra successes on the attack roll do not grant extra damage dice on this attack.
Committed skydust creates a streak of lightning, which, as always, ignores half the target's armour's soak. If the target fails to dodge, then the lightning hits them for 12 dice of lethal damage, then leaps on from them to hit two more targets -- the two nearest people to the first target.
The original successes from the first attack roll against the first target are halved (rounded up -- these dice will continue to be halved for later attacks until they get down to 1; there are no further attacks after that) and applied to the attacks against these next two targets; the new targets may dodge the branching lightning, their dodge rolls opposing the halved successes. The damage on these two attacks is 6 dice of lethal damage.
If these two targets are hit, then the lightning branches yet again and goes on to hit two more targets from each of them. The successes on the attack are halved again for the purposes of dodging, and the attacks do 3 dice of lethal damage.
The lightning keeps branching and halving the attack's successes and the damage until it either runs out of attack successes or runs out of damage successes (it runs out of damage successes after it makes an attack that does 1 die of lethal damage). At this point, it grounds itself.
Whenever the lightning misses a target, it does not branch, instead grounding itself immediately.
Extra successes on the attack rolls do not grant extra damage dice on these attacks. The person who fired the firewand is not immune to this effect; should he happen to be the closest person (or the second closest) to anyone hit by one of the lightning-branches, and the lightning branches after that person, then one of the lightning branches will go after him.
Example: Ledaal Anything, the Air Aspect, is firing a firewand with skydust. She fires her firewand, using her 5 Dexterity and 5 Archery, at a nobody. Anything gets 10 successes on her attack roll (she did really well). The nobody has 3 dice to dodge, and gets 1 success -- not enough. Luckily for the nobody, he has armour that grants him 4 lethal soak.
The extra successes on Anything's attack roll did not count towards damage, so for her damage against Mr. Nobody, she rolls 12 dice minus Mr. Nobody's armour soak of 4, divided by 2 for the electricity effect. So Anything rolls 10 dice of damage against the nobody.
Now the lightning branches off from the nobody and attacks two more nobodies with 5 attack successes each (Anything's original attack successes, divided by 2). The new nobodies each get 1 success on their respective dodge rolls -- still not enough. However, Anything rolls only 6 dice of lethal damage against them, minus their halved armour's soak of 2, for 4 total damage dice.
Now the lightning branches off again from the second two nobodies and attacks four new nobodies with a total attack successes of 3 each. Two of these nobodies miraculously manage to dodge, so two of the branches of lightning ground themselves harmlessly; however, two of the nobodies are hit. They have the same lethal soak as the first three nobodies, so they take 3 dice of damage, minus 2 -- 1 die of lethal damage.
The lightning keeps branching off from each person it hits until either all of the branched lightnings have been dodged, or the attack successes or damage dice have been reduced to 0.
A fire-aspected Casket of Firedust Conversion inlaid with red jade in patterns of stylized flame, that turns firedust into stronger firedust.
As normal firedust.
If the gout of superheated flame fired by the firewand hits any non-living flammable material, that material automatically catches fire. If it hits a person, then the base damage is 18 dice of lethal.
Summary: A box that transmutes firedust into other elements
Materials: jade, orichalcum, moonsilver, soulsteel, starmetal