02. The Runelands
Tempest • Madlands • Inferno • Maelstrom
As the Midrune Worlds turn widdershins to each other, the immortal remains of the Prime Elementals are ground and fragmented between them. Their reaction fuels the ongoing workings of the World Machine. Between the worlds, a nearly unimaginably large expanse of open skies, filled with churning air current, drifting clouds, and towering thunderheads. Between the worlds lies an almost unimaginably large expanse of open skies filled with churning air currents, drifting clouds, and towering thunderheads. In these unnavigable depths between, hell-prisons afloat in the Chaos bind gods too powerful to kill. At the centre of it all lies Fulcrum, the City of Brass.
As might be expected, the Chaos itself has no clearly-defined boundaries. While certain Storms can be said to concentrate in particular cardinal directions, there is absolutely no guarantee that a Storm of one particular Element will not show up in an area largely dominated by another. It is the Chaos, where boulders rain through endless skies and crash through sea-globes which are themselves plummeting toward an endless sea of fire, where savage, fiery typhoons scour all life from battered earthmotes. Surprisingly, these inhospitable conditions teem with life. Elementals of all descriptions make their homes here. Called Furies, they are detailed later in this entry.
A "Storm" is taken to mean a large concentration of elemental energies of a given type. These generally fall into one of four descriptions, and each of these descriptions has been given a name for ease of reference. While hybrid Storms are far from unheard-of, the examples which follow are the most common and numerous types.
Air permeates, often forgotten, rarely perceived—until it makes its presence or absence felt. The Tempests of the Chaos are powerful things; where they encounter globes of water, they become typhoons or squalls of epic proportion. Where they encounter earth, they become scouring sandstorms. The Tempest is pervasive; it occupies every open spot between the other Storms.
Air is an Ethereal Element. Born of Fire, it creates Water and is the Complimentary Opposite of Earth. It is associated with thoughts and ideas.
Earth is a Corporeal Element. It is born of Water, creates Fire, and is the Complimentary Opposite of Air.
The other Ethereal Element, Fire is born of Earth, creates Air, and is the Diametric Opposite of Water.
"Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle; You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend" – Bruce Lee
Water always seeks a level. It is a Corporeal Element, born of Air. Water creates Earth, and is the Diametric Opposite of Fire.
Furies of the Storm
Summoners with an Elemental Pact can summon minions. Minions Summoned from the Storms of the Chaos are called Furies (sin. Fury), with subtypes labels reflecting their particular nomenclature. While they are mechanically no different than any other type of Minion, their elemental nature begs a little description.
Looking like a fistful of their element, Wisps possess little power or intelligence. However, they are the simplest of elementals to summon, and they are well suited to simple tasks, especially those where Prowl or Vim are called for—they receive a +4 to both. Unless they're improved, they are almost useless in a fight, however, having no stress boxes and no ability to take consequences.
Differences by element are largely cosmetic between wisps, but their variations can get quite exotic. Wisps are the elementals most likely to be found in nature, and many who have lived away from the storms for too long have “gone native,” adopting characteristics of native flora and fauna. These “native” wisps can be bound like any others.
An elemental body the size of a dog, the Drudge is not any brighter than the Wisp—and is often dumber—but is substantially stronger and more patient. They receive a +2 to Endurance and to any Vigour roll related to carrying loads. They are well suited to performing long, boring tasks, but are not great combatants, having no stress boxes and only able to take a -2 consequence.
Servitors are human-sized and often a rough approximation of humanoid in shape, having some number of arms and legs, though rarely any kind of head. While not geniuses, they are smart and capable of following complicated instructions or of fighting on their master’s behalf. Servitors have 2 stress boxes and can take two -2 consequences.
Attendants are what most people imagine elementals to be, some element of the Storm given life. Larger than a person, they look to be a walking whirlwind of the Storm they come from. They are also intelligent, able combatants. Attendants have 3 stress boxes and can take a -2 and a -4 consequence.
|ELEMENT (STORM)||WISP||DRUDGE, SERVITOR, OR ATTENDANT||NAMED|
|Earth (Madlands)||None||+2 Stress||+4 Stress|
|Water (Maelstrom)||None||Additional mild consequence||Additional mild consequence, Armor: 1|
|Lightning (Tempest)||None||Attack range 1 zone||Range 2|
*All Furies have the ability to blend into their native element, gaining a +4 to Stealth so long as there is some present for them to vanish into. Additionally, they receive benefits based on their element as outlined in the Elemental Bonuses table.