She comes to me only at night, when I'm halfway to being asleep. She crawls beside me, in my bed, and whispers sweet things in my drowsy ear. Her kisses are like a breath of fresh air on my lips. Her hands are clouds that move over and within me...

Oh yes, we make love, my lover and I. But she slides inside of me. And when we are done we sleep together, just like that - nestled inside each other like wooden dolls.

She shows me such wondrous and amazing things, in my dreams. She leads me through the gates of slumber and takes me far away...

Oh, I wish you could see these things. I wish I could do them justice. I thought I knew beauty before, but never like this.

I thought I knew love, too, but I was wrong.

They say I'm mad to love the dead. I say I'd be mad not to.

Why can't you just be happy for me...?


- Patient AB-366, Starkmoore-Raven Mental Institute 


Mortals who have the privilege - or misfortune - of being given the special attentions of a Wraith are generally known as Consorts. They are also sometimes called lovers, bitches, toys, victims, thralls, servants or hired hands, depending on the relationship between the Wraith and her Consort. It's also common to put "meat" in front of the term, as in "meat-lover" or "meat-toy." {This is done to keep them from being confused with Wraiths, who have toys, lovers and servants of their own.}

An older term for a Consort is etera - "servant" - though it's a rare Wraith, and usually one from The Order, who chooses to evoke this archaic phrase. They say that once, long ago, Wraiths were encouraged to maintain vast numbers of etera amongst their descendants, who worshiped their ghostly ancestors like gods. But this is often scoffed at by modern Wraiths, who wonder how anyone could have managed so many Consorts at once...

Wraiths take Consorts for many reasons. Sometimes it is a short-term relationship to allow a Wraith to use her Numina while away from her Anchors, or travel some distance from them. Sometimes they wish to keep tabs on a particular mortal, or go do some damage at a place - or on a person - that the mortal frequently goes to. And if all else fails, they make good emergency shelters when a Storm hits.

There's also a measure of protection a Wraith can provide a mortal while she's Marked, which is why Wraiths often make Consorts of friends and acquaintances from their lives. But there's danger for those mortals, too, which is why The Order isn't keen to have its Wraiths keeping Consorts in the first place.


Making the Mark:

A Wraith doesn't have to make a special roll to make a Consort, unless she is using Anchorage to do so. All she has to do is expend 5 extra Essence, or 1 extra Willpower, while using Numina on that mortal, and she gains at least partial "ownership" over that individual. Each use of Numina that counts towards making a Consort must be done at least 24 hours apart from one another, though the Wraith is free to perform other acts upon the mortal in the meantime.

The number of times extra Essence and/or Willpower must be expended to create a Consort depends on how close the mortal was to the Wraith in life. A complete stranger would require five "loaded" uses of Numina to be done upon her, while a friend might take three, a close family member two, and a child, lover or spouse could only require one. {Storyteller's discretion in all matters.}

The Wraith can, if she chooses, expend a dot of Permanent Willpower while using the Numina, instead. This gives her full ownership over the mortal right then and there, but few Wraiths are willing to go to that kind of trouble: not only is it expensive, but it carries the risk of Ossification {see below}.

After the final application of Numina, the mortal is a Consort. She now appears as "real" to the dead as other Wraiths, and Anchors, though she can't see other Wraiths - or Ghosts, for that matter - unless they Manifest to her. She also gains a special sigil upon her forehead, visible only Wraiths, that is known as the Mark: it identifies her as the property of the Wraith that made her a Consort.


The Mark is a sigil that is unique to each Wraith. No one else has the same Mark, and it is supposedly impossible to force the Mark to look like that of another. {It is whispered that some truly old Wraiths know a way to do it, though.}

Marks can be "read," but not without effort. If a Wraith wants to know whose property a Consort is, she must touch the Mark and spend a point of Essence. This gives her a mental image of the Wraith who Marked the Consort, and perhaps a sense of her personality - at the time of the Marking. Unfortunately, it also lets the Consort's owner know that someone asked after her, which is why reading a Consort's Mark is often known as "knocking" {or "ringing," to modern Wraiths}.

Only Wraiths - and perhaps Mediums and Projectors - can see the Mark. Even the Consorts who bear them cannot see them, unless the Wraith chooses to make it momentarily visible. This costs one Essence, and causes the Wraith's Mark to flare, as though it were lit up just under the skin.

At the Storyteller's discretion, other supernatural beings with sensory powers may be able to detect the Mark on a Consort.

Note that more than one Wraith may lay claim to a single person at the same time, though this can have disastrous effects for the Consort. A mortal who's "owned" by more than one Wraith bears all their Marks upon her forehead, and suffers from all their Echoes {see below}.

A Wraith can choose to end her relationship with a Consort any time she chooses. All she has to do is spend a turn in concentration, as though she were using Anchorsense, and will that it be done, and it is. It doesn't cost the Wraith anything to end it, but there is a danger of Ossification {see below}.

There's also a social stigma to those who "drop" their Consorts on a regular basis. Some see them as highly stylish and urbane, like a rich mortal who never wears the same suit, or pair of shoes, twice. Others see them as vain and wasteful, if not highly callous.


Owners Manual:

Consorts mostly behave like slightly-limited ** Anchors, except that they don't add to a Wraith's Essence Pool, and won't save her from falling through the Barrier if she loses the rest of her Anchors.

Those caveats aside, Wraiths that claim Consorts gain a number of advantages, along with a few disadvantages, for their pains.

Advantages are:

* Anchorsense: a Wraith can extend her senses out to sense the environs of the Consort, just as though she were a ** Anchor. When doing this, the Wraith's five senses register everything the Consort does, as though she were the Consort. This sensation is not unlike the Possession Basic Art of Bios, only without actually being there.

*Numina: Wraiths can use Numina in the presence of a Consort without having to pay an extra dot in Willpower. The Arts can be used on the Consort, or else around her, but no more than twenty yards beyond her person, as though she were a ** Anchor.

* Manifestation: Wraiths can manifest to, or around, Consorts with less effort. They get one extra die for the roll, as though the Consort were a ** Anchor, and the first dot of Essence they would have to spend is negated. As with Anchors, this means that a no-Essence and one-Essence Manifestation is free, and only one Essence need be paid for a two-Essence Manifestation. Wraiths can also choose to Manifest to the Consort only, and not others nearby, for the same Essence cost.

* Travel: Wraiths can follow along after a Consort, as though she were an Anchor, without suffering the usual modifiers for being so far away from her real Anchors. However, she can only venture up to twenty yards away from the Consort, or else she feels the pull of her nearest Anchor once again. Wraiths can also spend a dot of Willpower to travel to her Consort,, as though she were an Anchor.

* Essence: A Wraith can gather Essence by being in the presence of a Consort, using any of the means listed in Anchors. The Consort is treated as a ** Anchor, which limits how much Essence can be gained. Wraiths should also be very cautious about using Larceny, as failure on the roll to maintain the connection completely severs her from the Consort.

* Healing: Wraiths can heal herself inside the Consort, as though she was a ** Anchor.

* Storms: Wraiths can slip inside their Consorts and hide while the Storm rages around them, so long as the Storm could be deflected by a ** Anchor. If it's stronger than that, the Consort isn't much help.


Disadvantages are:

* Echoes: Much like any Anchor, there is a sense that the Consort is "touched" by the supernatural, which adds a modifier to rolls to detect that something is truly odd about her. How much of a Modifier it is depends on how close the Wraith was to the person at the time of her death: a complete stranger has +1, while a beloved, lifelong spouse or favorite child has +3. And for each additional Wraith past the first who claims the Consort, another +1 Modifier is added on.

* Letting Go: A Wraith can sever the connection between herself and the Consort anytime, as stated above. However, if she's below half of her Willpower when she does it, she has to roll against Ossification due to the loss of time and effort the dropping represents. And if she gained the Consort by spending Permanent Willpower, then she has to make the roll no matter where her Willpower may be at that moment.

* Sympathy: The connection between the Wraith and the Consort is both spiritual and physical. If the mortal has damage done to her, the Wraith feels it - point for point, type for type. While this doesn't do damage to the Wraith, she does suffer any dice penalties the Consort does, up to and including being Incapacitated.

* Death: Should the Consort die before the Wraith can sever the connection, the Wraith goes into a Harrowing without the Shadow having to spend any Tainted Essence. And if she used Permamnent Willpower to make the Consort, she must make a roll against Ossification once she gets out of the Harrowing - even if she rolled an Exceptional Success for the Harrowing.

May Break - Handle With Care

As a Consort's horror, pain and death is reflected back upon the Wraith, it's usually not a good idea to use dangerous or maddening Numina in their presence. If they go suicidal, or start having shocking lapses in self-control or self-preservation, the Wraith might be able to sever her connection to the Consort just before she dies. But that's still a massive waste of time, energy and effort.

To try and avoid this, Wraiths often use their "Consorts of Convenience" as Trojan Horses. They walk alongside them into someplace they really need to be, do their damage once the Consort's out of sight, and then do their best to keep the Consort from even knowing about what went on. This isn't always possible, but it's a lot better than letting loose right in front of the poor dope.

As for more long-term Consorts, Wraiths often try to let them know what's going on - or a highly doctored version of it, at any rate. If they can help the mortals understand what the stakes are, they may not only gain willing partners, but get their Consorts to bend their sanity and morality around to the Wraith's needs. How can it be "murder" if they're doing away with the bastard who killed the Wraith in the first place?