Unknown Armies - Seattle
Rituals are powerful magick spells because they’re independent: most of them, anyone can use. It helps to believe in what you’re doing, of course, but exerting your magickal will is about as difficult as learning to ride a bike. Of course, you need a bike – or a ritual.
The power of ritual magick is limited, and truly powerful rituals are incredibly rare. But some forms of ritual magick have subtle powers imaginative users can unlock to the detriment of their enemies.
Mak Attax rituals
The Ritual of Correspondence
The Ritual of Fealty
What nobody can do is make new ones. The art of creating rituals is lost, or has been nullified somehow. Worse, most of the old ones are lost to history.
Many of those that remain don’t work anymore. But they get passed around anyway by people who claim they work, or heard they work, or believe they work with results too subtle to measure.
The Legion has shown Grimm a ritual. They haven’t gotten it to work yet, but they’ve never given it to a Bibliomancer before. They think it can be used to summon a demon, control the demon, and trap it in a book.
| Poison Ward
|This ritual negates the effects of any poisons in the targeted cup. This includes alcohol, bacteria, viruses, and other toxins. It won’t work on food, only on beverages.|
| Back Monkey
|If someone has cast a spell or ritual on you with a duration longer than a month, then Back Monkey shows you the name and face of the duke who put the spell on you. It does not tell you the nature of the magick, only the source, and it only reveals the most recent instance of such magick that’s still in effect.|
| Plague of Hiccups
|When the victim of your spell speaks a cursed word or phrase of your choosing, he is immediately struck with hiccups. These convulsions last anywhere from a few minutes to an hour. They eventually fade on their own, but if the person speaks the phrase or word before the effects wear off, the hiccups return.|
| Seek the Lost Tome
|This ritual points you in the right direction to find a book you once owned but no longer have. If the book has been destroyed, the ritual materials burst into flame. If you fail the ritual attempt, it points you in a random direction.|
| Portal Glyph
|Mark a door in some significant way, such as writing on it, taping a sign to it, or even hanging a bent hanger on the door handle. Once the door is marked, whisper “Qui sum?” and go through the door. Anyone pursuing you will automatically pass over the door in question in favor of looking in another direction, no matter how absurd such a decision would be (i.e., ignoring the only door in a hallway and instead searching the ventilation system). The ritual fades in ten minutes.|
There’s also no reason to trust that any given ritual does what it says. Any given ritual is almost certainly bogus. There are lots of trap rituals out there that hurt you when you use them, even opening you up to possession by unknown forces.
On the other hand, many dukes are obsessive, pure and simple. They chase after fragments of alleged ancient wisdom like they’re buying lottery rickets, certain that this time it’ll pay off. Sometimes it does. Then everyone wants to steal it.