Sunday, January 15, 2017

Tul Wan, Mad Cityfather of Hollow
Tul Wan was once the Cityfather of Hollow, the administrative center of the River Provinces during the Shogunate. The wyld energies that permeate Firewander have warped him and driven him mad. He is a gaunt, bearded, old man garbed in green robes of office and a tall hat. His robes are stained with dark splotches down the front. He finger nails are inky black and his eyes reflect the mad flames that imprison him in Firewander.

[For a visual reference, Lo Pan of Big Trouble in Little China was my inspiration for describing Tul Wan.]

Essence: 4; Willpower: 6; Join Battle: 6 dice
Personal Motes: 90
Health Levels: -0/-1x3/-2x3/-4/Incap

  • Administration: 8 dice
  • Calligraphy: 9 dice
  • Notice: 6 dice
  • Oratory: 8 dice
  • Shogunate Era Lore: 9 dice
Appearance 3, Resolve 3, Guile 1 


  • Attack (Scepter): 7 dice (damage 12)
  • Attack (Grapple): 6 dice
  • Combat Movement: 6 dice
  • Evasion 2Parry 4
  • Soak/Hardness: 8/0 
Example Intimacies
  • Defining: Restore Hollow to its former glory.
  • Major: Respect the rightness of proper law (though his grasp on what is proper has been twisted)
  • Major: The Raksha (hatred)
  • Minor: Devour those who defile Hollow.
Offensive Charms
  • Binding Words (10m, 1wp; Simple; Instant; Eclipse; Essence 3) Tul Wan scribes a law into the air with ink dripping from his fingers. The letters of the law fly toward the target character within short range and bind them tight. This charm initiates a grapple that uses Tul Wan's Calligraphy (Wits + Linguistics) skill (9 dice), with a control pool equal to his Administration (Intelligence + Bureaucracy) (8 dice) (Still opposed by Strength + Brawl/Martial Arts). The target is restrained for the duration of the control.

    [Grappling characters suffer -2 Defense and cannot perform flurries. Grappled characters cannot take move actions and suffer -1 to all attacks or -3 to attacks using two-handed weapons.]
  • Burning Law Prohibition (5m; Simple; Instant; Perilous, Uniform; Essence 3) Those bound by the law face Tul Wan's wrath. Tul Wan can sacrifice remaining rounds of control through Binding Words to make Savage attack against the bound target. If the attack is withering, use Tul Wan's Administration as the attack roll. 
Defensive Charms
  • Aegis of Hollow (1m per soak; Reflexive; Instant; Essence 2) Tul Wan hardens his skin with essence, gaining 1 soak for each mote up to twice his essence (8 soak). The Aegis was once much more powerful, but with Hollow but a memory and Tul Wan isolated, he must burn his essence to access its power.
Miscellaneous Charms
  • Mastery of Word and Law (1m+; Reflexive; Instant; Essence 3) Tul Wan may add dice to Calligraphy, Administration, or other rolls pertaining to his domain. The maximum is double his Essence (8). This charm may be used to enhance Binding Words and  Burning Law Prohibition.
  • Hurry Home (10m, 1wp; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): Tul Wan fades away and vanishes on his next turn, reappearing in the center of the assembly chamber in the central administration building of Hollow in the heart of the Firewander district. Should he escape, he would be loath to trap himself again by using this power.
  • Materialize (45m, 1wp; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): Tul Wan materializes as if first drawn by brush, then painted into the world.
  • Measure the Wind (5m; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): Tul Wan can measure any who enter the domain of his city, as marked by the stone pillars 30 miles from the walls of Nexus.
  • Devour (-; Simple; Instant; Essence 1): The Wyld has twisted Tul Wan. He crouches over a fallen foe, his jaw distends revealing sharp needle-like teeth, and he swallows the corpse. Tul Wan must be materialized to use this charm. He recovers 2m for every health level of the devoured creature and 10m for each point of permanent essence. The spirit of the devoured creature cannot become a ghost.

Tul Wan started as a minor god of the blessed ink used to scribe laws in the late First Age. He worked diligently and expanded his domain to include calligraphy and written law. After the usurpation, when the old Citymother of Hollow proved recalcitrant to the demands of the Dragonblooded, Tul Wan was promoted to replace her. He basked in the worship and conducted himself in a fitting manner at all times.

Then came the Contagion, followed by the hordes of the Wyld. Creation's cities suffered, and Hollow suffered more than most. Tul Wan retreated to the Court House Temple at the center of Hollow. The Wyld washed over the city, warping it, but the ancient sorceries of the First Age worked into the temple created an island of order and stability. Try as they might, the Raksha could not approach the temple without crystallizing. The tides of the Wyld eventually retreated, but Tul Wan was stuck, isolated in the center of what would become the Firewander district of the growing city of Nexus. The creatures of the Wyld

The centuries, and the starvation of prayer, have driven him mad. The Raksha, ever anxious to destroy the godling who vexes them, wait for him to emerge so they can destroy him. He is cautions when anyone makes their way through the Wyld to his temple, assessing them carefully. If he thinks they can help him escape without exposing him to the Wyld, he will offer them whatever he thinks will convince them. If they are unable to help him, Tul Wan lulls them into a false sense of security, then devours them, bolstering his Essence.

Using Tul Wan

In my game, the Solar characters encountered Tul Wan while they were trying to recover the contents of a vault beneath the Court House Temple at the center of Firewander. They convinced him to reveal what he knew about the vault and eventually offered to help him escape. One of the characters bound him voluntarily into a spirit jar and they carried him out through the Wyld.

Binding Worlds allows Tul Wan to vex characters who rely on high soak to carry them through their battles. If the characters can convince him to become their ally, the Charm becomes a very interesting option for Eclips characters with good Bureaucracy.

If Tul Wan gets out, he'll go about establishing himself as the Cityfather of Nexus. While the Decree and the Civilities are not the neatly ordered law codes he's used to, his madness convinces him they're a brilliantly balanced legal solution.

In my game, things are even a little more complicated. One of the characters had begrudgingly agreed to offer succor to the dispossessed of Nexus only in the name of the River Whore, a goddess of desire attempting to make Nexus her city. After releasing Tul Wan, she started naming him as well. The recipients of her aid have started offering prayers to both gods, and associating them with each other. The two gods are beginning to compete for worship even as they are drawn together by the association.

Additionally, the Emissary is an Exigent of Tul Wan, created to defend the Hollow during the Contagion and the Balorian Crusade. The Emissary's rise, and prayers directed to him, is part of what sustained Tul Wan during the centuries of his imprisonment. As a final complicating factor, Master Gens of the Council of Entities is also a god, currently the god of Trade in the East, and also wants to become Cityfather of Nexus. 

Re-purposing Tul Wan

Tul Wan's stats, especially his offensive charms, could be used for any god of law, ink, or calligraphy. Overall, he's a little weak for a Cityfather of one of Creation's major cities.

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