New Spectral Caste: Appendages


Mike Spera

It has been argued for years whether Oblivion actually has a consciousness, but the appearance of these new spectres serves as evidence that Oblivion not only watches, but it also learns from its mistakes.


History: Oblivion has apparently taken notice to the fact that some of its dark, never-born children have been slain at the hands of ordinary wraiths or cannibalistic spectres. These Malfean-slayers have always suffered incredible losses, and have never won an easy victory {slaying a Malfean requires a great deal of planning, tactics, numbers, powers, weaponry, and plain old luck}, but it has happened in the past, and it seems to be happening more and more frequently.

Now Oblivion {or the surviving Malfeans themselves - who can really tell?} has decided to evolve the remaining Never-Born in order to better protect themselves while they slumber. This nerve-wracking new line of defense not only protects the sleeping Malfean from harm, but also helps to find it food and relay its dreams and messages to its Nephwrack priests and the rest of spectral society. This new spectral caste that has been evolved in recent years has earned itself the collective name of "Appendages."


Consumption / Genesis: Appendages are made from a Malfean spitting out the soul of a wraith or Spectre that it has formerly consumed.

The soul seems to sprout out from, ooze off of, or otherwise slip itself free from the Malfean's corpus. The soul retains a human shape and may wander off on its own, but only to a certain extent. A black, plasmic strip of flesh, like a hideous umbilical cord, stretches from the Malfean's body to the small of the spectre's back. The length and thickness of this fleshy cord is up the Malfean (and the Storyteller) to decide.

The newly created Spectre can roam about the Labyrinth freely, but its mind and body are still linked to the Malfean that created it. In essence, the Spectre is like a living appendage of the Malfean - an appendage that can travel and spy and talk to others... and lure in lost souls to be fed to the hungering Malfean.


Appearance: Appendages appear to be dark-skinned, yellow-eyed versions of what they looked like before they were consumed. How human or horrific the Appendages appear depends on any Oblivion-taint or Moliation they had before being consumed. Some Appendages look so dangerously close to human that they make a perfect front, while others {usually consumed spectres of another caste} are so hideous that they make the perfect "shock trooper" defense for the slumbering Malfean they sprout from.


Attributes: Appendages have 7, 5, and 3 dots to spend on their Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Attribute groups.

Most Appendages favor Physical Attributes for fighting, but high-Mental and high-Social traits are certainly not frowned upon among this spectral caste. High Perception and Wits are useful for noticing prey and combat reflexes, respectively.

An Appendage with high Intelligence will observe its prey and plot its strikes with a precision that will take most Doomslayers aback. Some Intelligent Appendages may even play dead after being struck, only to rise up and strike when the attacker turns his back on it.

High Appearance, Charisma, and Manipulation may lure in prey, convincing visitors that they're normal, trapped wraiths {until the intended prey sees the telltale appendage attaching the Spectre to something much larger and much hungrier...}


Abilities: Since Appendages do not use as many Abilities as normal wraiths or spectres, they have 11, 7, and 3 dots to spend on their Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Ability groups.

Appendages highly prefer Talents: Alertness, Athletics, Awareness, Brawl, Dodge, Intimidation, and Subterfuge are all useful for luring in prey or fending off attackers. Skills and Knowledges are not as useful, although an Appendage with Leadership skills or one that can Meditate or interpret Enigmas or Occult knowledge is certainly an added bonus.


Backgrounds: Due to their somewhat limited range of movement, Appendages have only 3 dots to spend on Backgrounds. They may only take Allies, Artifact, Contacts, Mentor, Notoriety, Relic, or Status. Allies and Contacts probably represent relationships with other spectres, most likely other Appendages. Artifacts and Relics could easily be pawned off of uneaten remains of prey or from unlucky Doomslayers looking for glory.


Arcanoi: All Appendages start out play with Hive-Mind at level 5 automatically; They are linked both mentally and physically with the Malfean they are an appendage of.

Past that, Appendages have 5 dots to spend on other Arcanos and Dark Arcanos. These powers would be remembered from the powers the Appendage wielded before it was consumed.


Other Traits: Appendages retain their Fetters - if they had any - and retain a small amount of the Psyche (which is created as normal). They start out with 3 Willpower, 5 Angst points, 10 Corpus levels, and 10 points to spend on Dark Passions. Calculate Being as per any other Spectre. Appendages also get 15 freebie points to spend anywhere the creator wishes.


Severing The Strand

Since Appendages are linked to their Malfean progenitors by a fleshy umbilical cord, wraiths might naturally wonder what would happen if an Appendage was literally cut off from its Malfean {or dragged so far away that the cord snapped or tore itself}. The result could be one of two possibilities: Destruction Harrowing for the soul of the Appendage, or freedom from the Malfean that spawned it.

Either scenario could work, and what happens to a severed Appendage is up to the Storyteller. Perhaps all Appendages can be saved, perhaps only a few can be redeemed, or perhaps none of them can exist for even a moment away from the Malfean that spawned them. Does each Appendage have its own fate? Do all the Appendages spawned from the same Malfean share the same fate if they are severed?

The results depend on the Storyteller and the needs of the story.