Path of Desire

No, Mr. Black River Killer... I don't think it's a good thing that you want to hurt people. I think it's bad. Very bad.

And I think that, deep down, you'd agree with me, if only that awful need wouldn't keep getting in the way. Yes, you would, wouldn't you?

Well, see? Now it's gone. And in its place is this: you don't want to hurt anyone - never, ever again.

Now... I could make you want to go to the police and turn yourself in, too. But I think you're a little more useful to me outside than you are in.

And you want to be useful to me, don't you? Of course you do.

In spite of their claims to help others, the Companions are not trusted by many Wraiths. Though they insist that they only use their Arts to rid others of their destructive impulses, there's a general feeling - gained in conversations with them - that they see themselves as superior beings: if they are able to map out someone's desires, and see where people go wrong, are they not better-qualified to tell people how to run their lives than the people, themselves?

Fortunately, Wraiths cannot create a massive change in another through the following methods. All Arts on the Path of Desire but ***** Complete Obsession are required to sit alongside the target's Virtue, or else play into her Vice. If the Wraith doesn't take these into account, the Arts will simply not work, or not work very well, at Storyteller's discretion.

Like the Arts of the Path of Memory, this Path's Arts require the Wraith to be close enough to look the target deep in the eyes - no less than five feet away. As before, the target doesn't have to know the Wraith is there, so these Arts work just fine on the Living. But if eye contact is broken at any time, the Art stops.

These Arts cannot directly harm the target, but taking desires away is no little thing. If someone is emotionally broken or mentally castrated by what is removed, the Wraith takes Tainted Essence, unless she can put a desire of equal strength into the target to make up for the loss. And if someone is sent off to do things that go against her Morality by these Arts, the Wraith takes Tainted Essence if negative consequences occur.


** Tiny Itch

This Art allows the Wraith to place a simple need in the target's mind, or else take one away. The Art is best seen as a step directly up from * Distraction, only with the distraction lasting up to a Scene as the target is compelled to either satisfy a new craving, or deny it. Such things could include the burning itch to go to get a beer, check one's email or the like.

An implanted need cannot go against a Virtue, but can play into a Vice.


*** Small Need

A step up from ** Tiny Itch, the Wraith can now plant a more involved - or more desirous - need into someone's head {or remove it}, and make it last for much longer. This could be used to get someone to give up drinking, or to start, or to fall in or out of love with someone else. The effects can last for up to a Lunar Month.

This Art can't normally get a target to go against her Virtue. However, if it can play into a Vice then there's a chance the Wraith can get the target to sidestep her Morality. If any negative consequences should come about, however, Tainted Essence will be accrued.


**** True Passion

This Art causes the target to become fixated on their desire for someone, or something. The Wraith can implant this near-obsession, or else remove one, or replace it with something else. And the effects could last for several Lunar Months.

This Art can't normally get a target to go against her Virtue, either. However, if it can play into a Vice then there's a chance the Wraith can get the target to sidestep her Morality - especially if the implanted desire is a strong one. But, as with *** Small Need, if negative consequences should come about the Wraith will get Tainted Essence.


***** Complete Obsession

This Art's power is such that it can override someone's Virtue - or Vice - to make them get a hold of whatever they already strongly desire, to the point of obsession, or whatever the Wraith wants them to obsess over. It can also be used to remove an obsession completely and totally, though it's best to replace it with something, so as to avoid Tainted Essence for creating a hole in the target's heart and mind.

What's more, the addition or subtraction can be made permanent, though this is a rather costly - and dangerous - proposition.