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RPG Document... C&S: Character Creation C&S: Magic in Middle-earth C&S: Faith in Middle-earth

Chivalry & Sorcery: Faith in Middle-earth

Faith in Middle-earth Priestly Spells Priestly Vocations & Skills


Introduction to Priestly Power in Middle-earth:


Faith during The Age of Sauron

In 2007 I began a campaign which I called The Age of Sauron. In it Sauron recovered his ring and promptly smashed the major population centres of Free Peoples of Middle-earth. I mention The Age of Sauron throughout this document, for this is what prompted its development, but these Faith rules should, I hope, be able to be used in any Age of Middle-earth. I began The Age of Sauron campaign as a result of a friend showing me the Midnight Campaign World for the D20 system. I'm no fan of D20 particularly, but some of the material (story wise) is great, and Midnight is one of those.

For the last few years I have taken great pleasure in messing with the history of Middle-earth, from a campaign that saw Galadriel claim the One Ring when Frodo offered it to her (using the Rolemaster Standard System), to an invasion of Gondor in the Fourth Age by Haradrim led by a Queen empowered by a fragment of the ancient Southern Lamp, Ormal (using RMSS again), to the defence and redemption of Doriath after the Girdle of Melian had been breached by a Balrog (using Amber Diceless), to this new campaign, The Age of Sauron (using Chivalry & Sorcery Rebirth, which is pretty much all I use now). Looking back, it seems shocking to me that I didn't think to do something like this before the sledgehammer prompt that was Midnight. So, thanks to Midnight, without which I probably wouldn't have thought about running a campaign in a Middle-earth ruled by Sauron.

In all of these campaigns I have struggled with magic and faith in terms of giving the players something they can use, enjoy and is not too restrictive, whilst remaining faithful to how magic and faith are Middle-earth. Until now, I have simply used the standard C&S magic and faith systems and made on the spot changes of that just isn't going to work in Middle-earth. But this is unsatisfactory when I like to be upfront with my players in terms of rules, so they know what is possible and what isn't, so we can all concentrate on the role-playing element of the game.

So, these rules are an attempt to build a workable solution to the issue of Faith in Middle-earth (I am trying to develop a tweak to the magic system, but it is slow going), whilst keeping true to Middle-earth, but using the Chivalry & Sorcery system. I may not have achieved this, but I hope it does some of it, and it can always be refined at a later date.

The purist Tolkienits among you will no doubt point out that the peoples of Arnor and Gondor had no priesthood, as Tolkien says himself in one of his letters, and the King filled the role of both ruler and priest for his people.  And from a purist point of view I would not dare to argue with the Great Maker himself.  However, I would argue that an RPG game is more attractive with a priesthood.  It's not necessary by any means, but it does add a BIT of colour to the game if nothing else.  Hence this (incomplete) suite of documents.



Priestly Power in Middle-earth

What do the individual Valar stand for? And what are their Priests capable of?

These two questions demand answers if we are to build an idea of the kind of power faith can bring to the Middle-earth faithful.

Importantly it must always be noted that the Valar do not directly intervene in the everyday affairs of the peoples of Middle-earth in any shape or form. Not even in the trying times that are The Age of Sauron. They are simply not allowed to. So the Priests of the Valar do not channel power from their deity, as it is common for Priests to do in most campaign settings. The power Middle-earth Priest's use is a form of sub-creation** and so the power is within them. To this end, and in Chivalry & Sorcery (C&S) terms, Priests of the Valar have more in common with traditional C&S mage-Priest classes, like Druids, Shamans and Witches, rather than traditional C&S Christian-like Priests, Monks or Clerics.

** If you have not already read it, it is worth reading the essay by Tolkien called
"On Fairy-Stories", published in a small book called "Tree and Leaf". In it you will find
a full explanation of what sub-creation means - at least so far as Tolkien himself is concerned,
and since he coined the phrase in the first place, we might consider this to be "deus ex machina".

What effects a Priest is capable of is greatly determined by the Valar they worship. The below is of course only a guide, for if one takes the power to sub-create literally, then I guess you could argue that any of the Valar could attempt to do anything they could think of, given how Tolkien envisaged sub-creation:

Letter 155: To Naomi Mitchison
...The basic motive for magia - quite apart from any philosophic consideration of how it would work - is immediacy: speed, reduction of labour, and reduction also to a minimum (or vanishing point) of the gap between the idea or desire and the result or effect...

As anyone can envisage, if not think of, an idea, then if one could sub-create then one could attempt any effect following on from that thought.

But there has to be some limits and I have chosen, logically hopefully, those limits to be what the Valar is most closely associated with, i.e.: Manwë with Wind and Authority, for example, and Ulmo with Water, etc. These limits are what really differentiate a Priest of the Ainur to a standard mage-Priest from C&S. Additionally, as Middle-earth is, on the face of it, a place where magic is rare and hard to come by, some spells listed are at a higher ML than presented in the standard C&S books, and Ainurian Priests only get certain spells when they achieve the appropriate ML (i.e.: they can only gain MR 5 spells once they have achieved ML 5), and then they must have learnt all the spells for MR 1-4 before being allowed to acquire the MR 5 spell. In the lives of Ainurian Priests, as with a lot of other things in Middle-earth, there is structure, and sometimes it is very rigid.



The 'Divine' Beings

The Highest Power

"Eru"

He is God in the vein of the God of Catholic worship! However there are few peoples who worship Eru exclusively. Of course, most who worship the Ainur (except the servants of Melkor and Sauron) also give deep reverence to Eru, possibly even the same reverence. But worshipping Eru is probably more fruitless than worshipping any of the Valar, if only a touch. Eru cannot influence the world other than he already has, i.e.: allowing the Valar to dwell within the bounds of Arda as his messengers/servants and to do his bidding; nor can he allow his personal power to enter the world, for when he/it does HUGE things happen, such as the sinking of Númenor. The finite existence of Arda simply cannot contain the infinite power of Eru, so when he enters he enters only in part, and he does so very infrequently.

History of Middle-earth Volume 10 - Morgoth's Ring
ATHRABETH FINROD AH ANDRETH

(The Debate of Finrod and Andreth)
... Finrod, however, sees now that, as things were, no created thing or being in Arda, or in all , was powerful enough to counteract or heal Evil: that is to subdue Melkor (in his present person, reduced though that was) and the Evil that he had dissipated and sent out from himself into the very structure of the world.
Only Eru himself could do this. Therefore, since it was unthinkable that Eru would abandon the world to the ultimate triumph and domination of Melkor (which could mean its ruin and reduction to chaos), Eru Himself must at some time come to oppose Melkor. But Eru could not enter wholly into the world and its history, which is, however great, only a finite Drama. He must as Author always remain 'outside' the Drama, even though that Drama depends on His design and His will for its beginning and continuance, in every detail and moment [my emphasis]. Finrod therefore thinks that He will, when He comes, have to be both 'outside' and inside; and so he glimpses the possibility of complexity or of distinctions in the nature of Eru, which nonetheless leaves Him 'The One'...

The Greater Powers

The Valar are worshiped across Middle-earth, but it is the Aratar (the High Ones of Arda) among them who tend to have more followers then their lesser brethren. However, even amongst the Aratar, in the trouble times of The Age of Sauron, two Valar gain more worship than all others.

Ulmo has never been able to distance himself from Middle-earth, and as he can travel all the waters of Middle-earth, there are few places he cannot achieve or gain some knowledge. Ossë and Uinen are servants of Ulmo and their love of Middle-earth has allowed Ulmo to maintain a constant presence, knowledge and contact with the people who have and continue to worship him.

Aulë is still honoured and worshiped by most of the Dwarven people, mainly those who still dwell in Ered Luin, and since there are probably more Dwarves free of Sauronic influence than of any other of the Free Peoples, Aulë still feels great strength of worship from Middle-earth. In The Age of Sauron the Dwarves of The Iron Hills are not so fervent in their belief in Aulë. Indeed they have very much turned away from the Valar, for they feel the Valar have turned away from Middle-earth, and more importantly the Dwarven people and dwarves can be a stubborn race.

Of the rest, it is probably Varda that has the most active worshippers, for the few Eldar that are free still give her reverence above all others.

The other Valar, whilst they are still all honoured by those who know of them, it is only Oromë who has people who follow him, but those numbers are no doubt dwindling as Sauron increases his grip on the lives of those who dwell in Middle-earth.


The Lords of the Valar

Manwë *

Lord and ruler of Arda, he is the Elder King of the Valar. He is the Lord of Winds and Clouds, from the utmost borders of the Veil of Arda to the breezes that caress the grass. He is Master of the Air and Weather and all swift birds, strong of wing he loves, and they come and go at his command. He sees further than all others, through mists, through darkness and across the long leagues of the sea.
(aka: King of the Valar. Wind Lord. Master of the Air and Weather.)

Ulmo *

Lord of all waters of Arda, and the one who dwells alone. He moves through all the deep waters of the Earth and under it. He keeps all Arda in his thoughts, but he seldom walks on the land and rarely takes form as his brethren. When he does it is as a Great King of the Ocean arising from the water and all who behold him are filled with dread. But he has never abandoned the people of Middle-earth.
(aka: Ocean Lord. Master of the Waters.)

Aulë *

Lord of all the substances of which Arda if made. The fashioning of the Lands was his labour and he is a mighty smith and master of all crafts, from the smallest jewels to the mightiest mansions.
(aka: The Smith. Master of the Earth. Lord of Crafts. Maker of Mountains. Maker of Dwarves. Also called Mahal.)

Oromë *

Most dreadful in anger and he loves the lands of Middle-earth, leaving them reluctantly. He is a hunter of monsters and fell beasts and delights in horses and hounds, and all trees he loves.
(aka: The Huntsman. Tamer of Beasts. Forest Lord. Master of the Wilds. Hornblower. Also called Araw, Aldaron or Tauron.)

Mandos *

Keeper of the Houses of the Dead and summoner of the slain. He forgets nothing and knows all things that shall be. He pronounces dooms and judgements at the bidding of Manwë.
(aka: Master of Spirits. Keeper of the Dead. Doomsmaster. Lord of the Halls of Waiting. Also called Namo.)

Irmo

The Master of dreams and visions and his gardens are the fairest of all in Arda and many spirits dwell there.
(aka: Dream Master, Lord of Visions, Lórien.)

Tulkas

Greatest in strength and deeds of prowess. He delights in wrestling and in contests of strength. He can outrun all things that go on feet, and he is tireless. His weapons are his hands. He gives no heed to the past or future, is no counsellor, but is a hardy friend.
(aka: Champion of the Valar.)

* The Aratar, the High Ones of the Valar.

The Queens of the Valar

Varda *

Lady of the Stars who knows all the regions of Ea. Spirit of Light, which is her power and her joy. With Manwë she hears more clearly than all other ears the sounds of voices that cry from east to west, from the hills and valleys and from the dark places that Melkor made upon the Earth. Eldar give reverence to Varda more than any other Valar.
(aka: Queen of the Valar. Lady of the Stars. Spirit of Light. Also called Elbereth or Elentári.)

Yavanna *

Giver of fruits, she is the lover of all things that grow in the earth, and all their countless forms.
(aka: Nourisher. Mistress of the Earth. Giver of Fruits. Keeper of Plants. Also called Kementári - Queen of the Earth.)

Nienna *

Lady of pity and endurance in hope. She brings strength to the spirit and turns sorrow to wisdom.
(aka: Mistress of Grief, Pity, and Suffering. The Weeper. The Conscience.)

Estë

The Gentle and healer of hurts and weariness. Rest is her gift.
(aka: Healer.)

Vairë

Weaves all things that have been in time in to her storied webs that cloth the Halls of Mandos.
(aka: Weaver of Fate, wife of Mandos.)

Vána

The ever-young. All flowers spring as she passes and open as she glances, and all birds sing at her coming.
(aka: Mistress of Flowers and Song.)

Nessa

She is lithe and fleet-footed, swift as an arrow. In dancing she delights.
(aka: Dancer and Mistress of Youth and Celebration.)

* The Aratar, the High Ones of the Valar.

The Lesser Powers

These are the Maiar, they are Ainur and therefore the same in nature as the Valar, but they are generally of far less native power. They are not worshiped as such, but they are given reverence and mini-cults have grown around their purpose, throughout the history of Middle-earth, within churches that are dedicated to the Valar under which the Maiar is attached. Indeed all worshippers of a specific Valar will give a certain degree of reverence to the Maiar who are connected to their Lord/Lady. In The Age of Sauron such mini-cults are likely to be rare indeed. Worship of the Ainur is likely to be restricted to those about which the most is known and expected, i.e.: the Valar themselves. The time needed for considered deviation/devolution from the key faiths (and the key Valar) is not something that is available to the Free Peoples of Middle-earth, whose main purpose is to stay alive from day to day.

In worshipping a Maiar the Priest has deviated from the true faith and they therefore lose some power gained as a result of worshiping the Valar in favour of a more personal power, related to their Maiar. This loss and gain is restricted to the specific gift they are capable of due to them as worshippers of a specific Ainur. In all other respect Priests of the Maiar are the same as the Priests of the Valar they are linked to.

The Maiar

Ilmarë

Handmaid of Varda.

Eönwë

Herald and banner-bearer of Manwë. Mightiest in skills at arms of all in Arda.

Ossë

Master of the Seas that wash the shores of Middle-earth. He loves the coasts and the isles and rejoices in the winds of Manwë. In storm he delights and laughs amid the roaring of the waves. Sometimes he delights in violence and at times he will rage in his wilfulness without any command from Ulmo his Lord. Those who dwell by the sea may love him, but they do not trust him. He is one of the greatest of all the Maiar.

Uinen

Lady of the Seas. All creatures she loves that live in the salt streams and all weeds that grow there. She can lay calm upon the waves, restraining the wildness of Ossë. She was given equal reverence as the Valar by the Númenóreans.

Arien

A spirit of fire and the guide for the Sun. None of the Eldar could look upon her so bright was her guise. She was a mighty Maiar indeed.

Tilion

The guide for the moon. A potent Maiar in the service of Oromë. He is lesser than Arien.

Salmar

Maker of the Horns of Ulmo. Significant enough to be mentioned in the first place.


The Dark Powers

Melkor

Melkor was named by Fëanor and the Noldor as Morgoth The Black Enemy. He was once the mightiest of the Aratar, and indeed of all the Ainur within or without Arda, but he fell from grace and was been cast into the Void. Originally named Melkor "He who arises in might", he became jealous of his lord Eru and coveted power. He was King of Darkness and the origin of Evil - Evil incarnate. Priests of Melkor were numerous amongst those who served the darkness until well into the Second Age of the Sun. But as it became clear the Melkor would not return for a second time, and Sauron, his servant, now commanded the forces of evil in Middle-earth, true Priests of Melkor diminished in numbers, taking up the worship of Sauron instead.
(aka: Bauglir 'The Constrainer', Dark Lord, Morgoth Bauglir.)

Sauron

A Maiar of Aulë and mighty in the crafts is he. He was seduced by Melkor before the formation of Arda and he was Melkor's mightiest servant. Priests of Sauron are non-existent during the First Age of Middle-earth, for Morgoth simply would not have countenanced anyone being worshipped other than himself. Priests of Sauron grew during the Second Age of Middle-earth, probably achieving an apex shortly after the forging of the One Ring, at which point Sauron's power of dominion of the forces of darkness was un-paralleled in the history of Middle-earth.
(aka: Annatar, Artano, Aulendil, Gorthaur, Base Master of Treachery, The Black Hand, The Dark Lord, The Dark Power, Lord of Barad-dûr, Lord of Gifts, Lord of Mordor, The Lord of the Rings, The Necromancer, The Red Eye, The Ring-maker, The Sorcerer.)

Valaraukar

Balrogs, Spirits of Fire corrupted to Melkor's service before Arda was formed. Arien was a spirit of fire too, and it is not mentioned whether she or a Balrog was greater, or whether they were equal. I can't think that they were equal, and I would think that Arien was a far greater and wiser fire spirit than a Balrog. Hence her rejection of Melkor's seductions in certain writings. Priests of the Valaraukar would not, could not, exist until after the Third Age 1980, when Durin's Bane arose from the depths of Khazad-dûm, having been awakened by the Dwarves (unless your campaign has another Balrog arising elsewhere in Middle-earth before this date). There would have be no worship of them during the First Age, for the same reasons as Sauron had no worshippers. Balrogs were not subject to Sauron, although Sauron could certainly have forced one into his service should they have ever met. Therefore it is feasible that religious cults could have grown around Durin's Bane. Moria would probably have been the only place though, for all other centres of evil would most likely have already fallen to Sauronic influence. In Moria, where Durin's Bane would have been strongest, a mini-cult could certainly have flourished, but the Balrog itself would possibly have not noticed such protestations in its name.
(aka: Balrog, Durin's Bane.)


Racial Influences

Race also plays an important role in how Priesthood manifests.

Worship of the Valar

This has never been a particularly organised affair in most of the history of Middle-earth. Temples were built and Priesthoods were formed, but religion never gained a foothold in the lives of the peoples of North Western Middle-earth, as it is suggested it did elsewhere in Middle-earth, or, for example, as Christianity did in the Middle Ages in Europe. The key exception to this is where Morgoth and Sauron are concerned, for they used worship of themselves as a tool to control and coerce their subjects, much as Christianity did...in...the...Middle......Ages............hey!

Eldar

The Eldar are very informal in their worship of their Valar, having few, if any, recognised Priests. There will be those who are more formally trained, or who have actively researched/considered the specifics of a Valar, and by doing so have gain certain understanding of the Valar that is greater than is available to their fellow Eldar. But in general an elven Priest is a rare breed. Of course those Noldor who returned to Middle-earth have firsthand knowledge of the Valar, but I would suggest that a Noldor Priest is one of the rarest beings in Middle-earth. Priesthoods thrive in conditions where faith is required. The Noldor do not need faith in the Valar. They KNOW the Valar exist, they know their power and they know the Valar are the guardians of Arda. Eldar Priests probably only really exist in Eldar societies that have degenerated a lot to a rural, rough and rude existence, where it is probably Oromë and possibly Yavanna who gain the most followers.

Dwarves

Probably the most formal and zealous in their worship of their Valar than any other race, where such worship is a matter of choice that is. Priests of Aulë are common and given much respect and authority in Dwarven society. During The Age of Sauron a schism has developed in Dwarven society. The Dwarves of Ered Luin still maintain a strong Priesthood and worship of Aulë, however the dwarves of the Iron Hills have turned their backs on the Valar, for they believe the Valar have turned their backs on Middle-earth.

Men

Human worship varies greatly, more so than any other Free People. Those mannish people of traditionally high lineage, such as the descendents of the Edain of the First Age, tend to be fairly informal in their worship but still with plenty of scope for Priesthoods and temples, such as there were in Númenor. But some can also be very strict and formal, particularly the Black Númenóreans. The more numerous and common mannish tribes who were trapped into worshipping the Dark Lord, worship in fear. They have strong organised religion which pervades all facets of society, and use coercion and fear to rule and dominate the masses. These religions have great power in these societies. Those mannish tribes who do not worship the darkness, such as the descendents of the House of Bor of the First Age, have varying degrees of formality to their worship, depending on their culture and their proximity to other strongly formal religions, but in general religion will also play a large part in their lives too, possibly as a counter-balance to the strong religious belief of their evil cousins.

Halflings

Halfling worship is totally informal, and is less a worship of beings such as the Valar, of which they have no real knowledge, and more an exercise in celebrating nature. This can mean that 'worship' of certain things overlaps with the jurisdiction of a certain Ainur, but Halflings tend to be none the wiser and even if details of the Valar were known to them, it probably wouldn't make any different to their everyday lives.


Faith Powers

Priestly powers are all results of sub-creation on the part of the Priest. There is no channelling of power from the Ainur themselves, for the Powers would not partake in such acts. Mainly because they are not allowed to by Eru's edict, but also given what Melkor did to his own power, the channelling and lending of one's power has taken on a Melkorian aspect to it, and ought to be avoided by the faithful. The powers exhibited by Ainurian Priests do, nevertheless, tend to come easier to the Priest if they are using powers that are in line with the Valar they worship.

Faith Skill

The skill of FAITH is still an important skill for the Middle-earth Priest to develop, but it does not directly determine the potency of the Priest. All Ainurian Priests develop a new Mode of magic, Ainurian Priestly Mode and Ainurian Priestly Method. Faith and the Ainurian Priestly Mode and Method must be developed in conjunction if the Priest is to follow the true path. Whilst the Priests magical Mode determines their magic Level, just like any other mage-Priest, the Priest cannot learn spells of an MR greater than their level in their Faith skill.

The details of the new Mode and Method skills are as follows:

Ainurian Priestly Mode
DF: 6 (Priests learn at -3 DF) Stats: INT + PTY
Ainurian Priestly Method
DF: 3 Stats: INT + PTY

Ainurian Priests do not learn spells as a normal Priest. They still have to learn the spells available to them when they achieve certain levels in Faith and Magic Level, but they only get access to specific spells as a result of the study of their religion, whether that be the study of literature, or sudden epiphanies or enlightenment after considerable meditation.

The Priest can acquire (through study) the spells of a specific MR listed in the Spells section. There is no need for the Priest to look for and find a spell book containing the spells. The spells are acquired by the Priest as a result of their dedication and study, and are not, necessarily, as a direct result of studying specific tombs.

Importantly Priestly spells are not subject to Corruption (a fundamental part of most other magic use in Middle-earth) that normal sub-creative magic is subject to, particularly magic that uses the Morgothian Element, common to just about all the substances of Arda. This absence of Corruption is due in part to the firm conviction of the Priest that his power is being used for the purpose of furthering their Ainurian Lords desires and because all the power comes from within the Priest and has no need for any support from other sources of magic, such as materials which are probably infused with the Morgothian Element.

Whilst a Priest's pure faith is the source of their uncorrupted power, it IS still magic, and can therefore be noticed by others skilled in, or attuned to, the magical arts, and may attract undue and unwanted attention. Also the Priest's faith, although being their greatest strength, is also a great weakness, for it determines what they cannot do as well as what they can do.

Priestly powers are far more static than standard mage powers. Whereas a mage can acquire new spells as they find them, given time to study, a Priest's ability to acquire new spells is necessarily restricted (as detailed above, re: Faith, Magic Level and MR), in no small way due to the psychology of the Priest worshiping a specific Ainur. New powers are attained by the Priest as they gain higher levels in their Faith and Priestly Mode. Higher levels in these represents new enlightenment in the path of their choosing and opens up new powers to them.

The dark powers are another thing entirely. Indeed Morgoth's dissemination of his essence into the fabric of Arda (the Morgothian Element) allows his Priests to draw power from it directly, so they sub-create themselves and also access the power of their dark master. Sauron, through the Rings of Power, is able to allow his servants to channel a certain amount of power from him for their desired miracles, even if they could only channel a small amount, but they sacrifice their wills at the same time. These are the only exceptions to the ban on channelling an Ainur's power. But then the bad boys always get it easier. Comes from selling your soul!

Dark Priests still advance as any Ainurian Priest, but the repertoire of magic they have access to is greater than a standard Ainurian Priest.


Priestly Core Spells

There are a core group of spells that all Priests, regardless of the Ainur they worship, are capable of, some of which mirror some Miracles already in the standard C&S rules. These are:

Celebration of Feast and Holy Days

Effect: There are no specific benefits to this celebration other than a general feel good factor. However failure to observe these specific and significant days of celebration can have a small detrimental effect due to psychological regret. This regret is greater the higher the piety of the worshiper (this is not restricted to just Priests). For every 3 points of Piety over 11 a worshiper will suffer -1% to all actions not involved in the worship of their Ainur until they confess their failings and can enact some penance. This could be as simple as receiving a blessing and then doing a deed considered good by the Priest they are confessing to. No bonuses will be gain from this blessing or any subsequent blessing until the act of penance has been completed, however any negative will be wiped out for the time being. These Celebrations should not be viewed as onerous by the worshiper. They are an integral part of the lives of a worshiper and should be acts of enjoyment. There may only be one or two of these days in a year, so the detrimental effect of missing them could remain small for a long time. But then how many times have you just made that D% roll by 1% and how frustrating would it be to start to miss it by 1%!
MR -
Casting Time Variable, from a short prayer before a meal to celebrations that can last for hours, even days in some cultures.
Duration -
Range Varies. From Voice to a lengthy period of celebration that could involve visiting several individuals or families in a single day, or simply have a huge celebration with a group of people.
Cost -

Prayer of Giving Thanks

Effect: A simple prayer that is uplifting for those who are present. All those who are present at the time will feel spiritually better and uplifted for having given thanks. The worshippers all gain a +1% benefit per 5 FULL Piety points to all actions. And other effects that give bonuses to actions replace this prayer, for this prayer is very low powered.
MR 1
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 2 hours
Range Voice
Cost -1 FP from Priest

Prayer for Guidance

Effect: As the standard prayer of the same name. The Valar do not directly intervene or 'talk' to their Priests, but they do give feelings and indirect guidance. To this end the Middle-earth version of this miracle is probably not as directly effective as the standard miracle.
MR 1
Casting Time 1 round
Duration -
Range Self
Cost -1 FP from Priest

Prayer for Resilience and Fortitude

Effect: The prayer has the effect of strengthening a worshiper's mental resilience and fortitude (stamina) against the influences of any who seek to turn them from the course laid out by their worship of their particular Ainur. The recipient gains +1% per point of Piety over 5 to all roles that involved in resisting any effect that seeks to coerce the worshiper away from his true path.
MR 1
Casting Time 1 round of concentration
Duration 1 hour per 3 Piety of beneficiary
Range Self or touch
Cost -3 FP from Priest

Celebration of Union (Marriage)

Effect: Fundamentally the same as the Sacrament of Matrimony from C&S.
MR -
Casting Time 30 min to 2 hours
Duration Permanent in most cultures, particularly Eldar
Range -
Cost -

Blessing of the Valar

Effect: As the standard C&S miracle Blessing.
MR 1
Casting Time Variable, but at least 1 round
Duration 1 hour per 5 Piety
Range -
Cost -1 FP from Priest


The Blessings of <Named Valar>

These are blessings that effect worshippers of a specific Valar. If this blessing is attempted on anyone other than a worshiper of the specified Valar then the effects are as Blessing of the Valar only.

The Blessing of Manwë - Gift of Authority

Effect: This gift gives the recipient +2% per point of Piety they possess over 5 to all actions involving the commanding of others. This includes all Charismatic Skills plus Courtly Love and Courtly Manners. Any spells of Command also gain a +25% to target and are cast as though the Priest is 2 ML's higher.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 minute per point of recipients Piety
Range Voice
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Ulmo - Gift of Water

Effect: This gift can have a number of effects, subject to GM approval at the time of the blessing. This could include beginning a new stream, to the blessing a volume of water which could sustain the drinkers of the water without the need for food, for up to 1 week per 2 Piety points of the Priest. Each blessing enhances enough water to sustain 1 person per 5 full points of Piety of the Priest. The volume of water equates to a pint per day per person. After this period the recipient would have to take food as normal or rapidly deteriorate as though they had been 3 weeks without food, i.e.: suffer huge weight loss and loss of muscle mass, etc. over the course of a day or two. This blessing can only be enacted once a month by the Priest.
MR -
Casting Time 1 hour
Duration 1 week per 2 Piety of Priest
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Aulë - Gift of Earth

Effect: This gift can have a number of effects, subject to GM approval at the time of the blessing. It can be used to harden, or soften naturally occurring inanimate (and non-living) materials. Hardening is more difficult and less successful. In game terms this hardening can have the effect of increasing the hardness of armour to increase its absorption amount by 25% (min 1, round down at all times). However in terms of softening it can reduced any armour by one point of absorption per 4 Piety possessed by the Priest (leather was once living and cannot therefore be effected by this miracle). This gift can also be used to cure or create imperfections in natural inanimate (non-living) materials. In this manner, slightly flawed gems can be made perfect, or a perfectly made steel blade could be flawed so that it would break upon its first use. This gift lasts a number of rounds equal to the Priests Piety score. As it requires touch and a full round to complete, it is difficult to see it as a combat useful effect, unless one is wrestling with one's opponent.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 hour per 5 points of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Oromë - Gift of the Wild

Effect: This gift allows the benefactor to gain any outdoor skill or animal language at a level equal to half their Piety (rounded down, DF and stat bonus are calculated as normal). A recipient of this Gift may only benefit from one blessing at a time.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 hour per 5 point of recipient's Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Mandos - Gift of Foresight

Effect: The recipient gains the special ability Premonition and the skills Read Character and Detect Lie at a level equal to the Priests Piety (DF's and stat bonuses are worked out as normal).
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 minute per point of recipient's Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Varda - Gift of Light

Effect: The Priest can cast any spell from Basic magic Fire lists with an MR up to one quarter of his Piety (round down).
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration Depends on spell replicated
Range Depends on spell replicated
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Yavanna - Gift of the Living

Effect: This gift allows the Priest to heal damage to any living thing (animal or plant). The Priest can heal an animal's Fatigue and/or Body by a total amount equal to his Piety score, plus the critical die multiplied by 2, or he can heal any amount of damage to a plant based organism. The affects of such healing is restricted when used on Eldar and other humanoid beings. Its potency is reduced by half. It does not work at all on Dwarves. A single living thing can only benefit from such healing once a month.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 12 min less 1 min per 2 Piety of Priest
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Nienna - Gift of Conscience

Effect: This gift bestows a bonus to all the recipients' actions so long as they are acting in line with what is understood to be good actions (as understood by the Valar). Whilst under the effect of this gift the recipient can still commit acts that do not confirm with this, but they will not benefit from the bonus. If any evil act is committed they will instantly lose the benefits gained and never be able to benefit from this gift again in their lifetime. The bonus given are +2% per 2 points of Piety of the casting Priest.
MR -
Casting Time 5 minutes in the form of an uplifting speech
Duration 1 hour per 3 Piety of recipient
Range Voice
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Irmo - Gift of Dreams

Effect: As the miracle, Visions.
MR -
Casting Time As visions
Duration As visions
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Tulkas - Gift of Strength

Effect: As Strength of the Holy and Smite the Godless combined.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 5 Piety of Priest
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Estë - Gift of Rest

Effect: This gift speeds up all forms of time based healing, which primarily means Fatigue and Body recovery. Whether Fatigue or Body is to benefit from this gift must be determined when it is cast. For every 5 points of Piety possessed by the Priest the recipient healing rate increases by one factor. For example, a Priest with 15 to 19 Piety can increase the healing rate of the recipient by a factor of three.
MR -
Casting Time 1 hour
Duration Fatigue: 1 hour per 5 Piety of recipient
Body: 1 day per 5 Piety of recipient
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Vairë - Gift of Dreams

Effect: As the miracle Visions
MR -
Casting Time As the miracle Visions
Duration As the miracle Visions
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Vána - Gift of Youth

Effect: This gift gives the Priest the benefit of retaining their youth long beyond the natural process of aging would have laid the low. The recipient will live free from the effects of aging until the last 2 years of their life. When they enter this period they will know their death is certain within 2 years, and they will begin to age quickly, starting within 6 months, to assume their true physical age. They also gain a +10% lifelong resistance to all poisons, and a +50% lifelong resistance to all disease.
MR -
Casting Time 1 year's devotion to study and meditation of Vána, praying several times a day, studying sacred texts etc.
Duration A lifetime
Range Touch
Cost 10FP. This Fatigue is permanently sacrificed until the devotion is complete or abandoned

The Blessing of Nessa - Gift of Speed

Effect: The recipient gains a number of action points per combat round equal their Piety score for the purpose of movement only. The rate at which they can run is also increase by an additional 5 feet per action point.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 Piety of the recipient
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Melkor - Gift of Power Effect

Effect: Melkor was the greatest of all the Ainur, and had knowledge of all things. His Priests are not necessarily the greatest Priests in Middle-earth, but their gift follows the power of their Lord. However Melkor was also a nihilist and nothing a Melkorian Priest gains comes without cost. The recipient of the gift gains any one of the following benefits, but may only benefit from each effect a certain number of times in their lifetime:
  • +2 to any stat - fives times (stat cannot be duplicated)
  • +25% to any skill - fives times (skill cannot be duplicated)
  • Doubles Fatigue recover rates - one time
  • +10 Fatigue Points - two times
  • Doubles Body recover rates - one time
  • +10 Body Points - two times
  • +25% on all spell targeting - one time
  • Improve magic Level for casting spells by 25% - one time
Other effects are possible, which is basically up to the GM, but nothing too silly (if the ones above are not already too silly). This gift cannot be cast on any other than worshippers of Melkor/Morgoth. So a non-worshiper does not gain a Blessings of the Valar. Simply nothing happens.
MR -
Casting Time 1 hour per point of Piety of recipient. The greater the benefit, the longer it takes
Duration Determined by the Piety of the recipient:
  • Piety 2-10 1 round per point of Piety

  • Piety 11-15 1 minute per point of Piety

  • Piety 16-19 1 hour per point of Piety

  • Piety 20+ Permanent

Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table


The Blessings of <Named Maiar>

These are blessing that only affect the Priests of a specific Maiar. Worshipping a Maiar is simply not as effective for your fellow man as worshipping a Valar.

The Blessing of Ilmarë - Gift of Alkar

Effect: The Priest appears to be more powerful than they would otherwise appear to be. A bit like the effect that 'those who have dwelled over the sea' (e.g.: Glorfindel) can turn on at need. Beings wishing to do harm, verbal or physical, to the Priest must make a willpower check to do so, minus the Priests Ainurian Priestly Mode PSF%.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per point of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Eönwë - Gift of Arms

Effect: The Priest gains a +25% to hit and +2 Crit Die bonus with a chosen weapon (determined at the time of the casting) for the rest of the combat. The Priest can only benefit from this gift once during a combat.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Ossë - Gift of Rage

Effect: The Priest is effect by the Berserk Rage spell. However the Priest remains compos mentis enough to know friend from foe, no matter how mad they get.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Uinen - Gift of Calm

Effect: The Priest gains a +35% bonus to all Willpower checks
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per point of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Arien - Gift of Fire

Effect: The Priest can cast a midday sunlight bright Light spell located anywhere within 10 feet per point of Piety, with a radius of 5 feet per point of Piety. Any agent of darkness within this radius gains a -2% per point of the Priests Piety to ALL actions until they leave the radius. They must all make a willpower check (minus the Priests Faith PSF%) or flee from the circle immediately. Any agent of darkness seeking to cross the boundary must make a willpower check (minus the Priests Faith PSF%), and even then they are still subject to the minus for being inside the radius, but they do not have to make another willpower check or flee. The effect against any being already fearful of daylight, i.e. Orcs but not Uruk-Hai, is doubled in all metrics.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Centred 10 feet per point of Piety
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Tilion - Gift of the Hunter

Effect: The Priest gains a +50% bonus to all Outdoor Skills involved in tracking, snaring or finding water and food. The Priest also gains the benefit of the spell Night-vision. The recipient can only benefit from one of these blessings at a time.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per point of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Salmar - Gift of the Horn

Effect: The Priest can blow a note on a horn that echoes the potency and power of the horns of Ulmo, crafted by Salmar. All agents of evil hearing it must make a willpower check (minus the Priest's Ainurian Priestly Mode PSF%) or flee the scene by the speediest manner possible. Any agent of evil caught within 10% of the maximum range for the Priest must make a Stamina Check (minus the Priests Faith PSF%), or be knocked to the ground, which if unsuccessful, must make a second stamina check (minus the Priests Ainurian Priestly Mode PSF%) or be knocked out for a number of minutes equal to the Priests Piety.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Touch - can be heard for 25 feet per point of the Priest's Piety
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of Sauron - Gift of Dominion

Effect: All persuasion and influencing skills gain a +25% bonus. Any spells of Command or Summoning cast by the Priest gain, where applicable, a +10% bonus to target, are increased in duration by 25% and cost 1FP less (min 1FP).
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table

The Blessing of The Valaraukar - Gift of Fire

Effect: The priest can temporarily immolate. This has the effect of burning anything attached to the priest (yes, the priest will end up naked). Anyone touching the priest will suffer 2d10 per combat round fire damage for as long as they maintain their hold, or indeed, so long as the priest maintains his hold on them. When immolated the priest is immune to damage from natural fire and takes quarter damage from magic fire. Combustible materials will catch alight if they come into contact with the priest while immolated. By expending a further 2FP per round the priest can extend this effect to any weapon they hold (a wooden staff will alight naturally and be ruined) in which case the weapon will do an additional 1d10 fire damage each time it critically hits (NO roll up on 10's for this extra fire damage). Any easily combustible materials struck by such a weapon (critical hit or not) have a 25% chance of catching fire.
MR -
Casting Time 1 round
Duration 1 round per 2 points of Piety
Range Touch
Cost Crit Die result from prayer cost table




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