Exalted: A Tale in the Time of Tumult

Exalted Types: an Overview

a part of “Exalted: A Tale in the Time of Tumult”, a fictional universe by Wake.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Wake on Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:50 am

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The fourth Maiden, Jupiter, selected twenty Sidereal Exaltations and made them hers, the Chosen of Secrets. Into them, she wove twenty threads from the Loom of Fate, threads which represented the most intricate, convoluted, and intriguing mysteries and secrets in all Creation.

The Caste Abilities for the Chosen of Secrets are Investigation, Larceny, Lore, Occult, and Stealth. Through their Abilities, the Chosen of Jupiter find ways to guide mortals into and through the mysteries and secrets that will shape their lives and the lives around them. More than any of the other Viziers, the Chosen of Secrets manipulate events indirectly, by revealing an important secret here or keeping one hidden there.

The Chosen of Secrets know that life is a mystery. It is by learning all we can and constantly seeking to understand the secrets around us that we grow and become more, that we truly enlighten ourselves and improve the world. It is in the unknown that true satisfaction lies.

Chosen of Secrets have a reputation for being busibodies and know-it-alls, which they certainly can be. However, a good Chosen of Jupiter knows when to reveal a secret and when to keep it secret… and more importantly, when to reveal that they HAVE a secret to conceal. The webs of lies and half-truths blend with webs of truth and half-lies, until sometimes, not even the Chosen themselves know what is fact. This, they say, is the truest art of keeping secrets, even from oneself.

If someone seeks out the greatest mysteries available to them and encourages others to do the same, to delve into the darkness for new knowledge, no matter the cost, they likely resonate with the Chosen of Secrets.
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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Wake on Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:52 am

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The fifth Maiden, Saturn, selected twenty Sidereal Exaltations and made them hers, the Chosen of Endings. Into them, she wove twenty threads from the Loom of Fate, threads which represented the purest, cleanest, most important conclusions in all Creation.

The Caste Abilities for the Chosen of Endings are Awareness, Bureaucracy, Integrity, Martial Arts, and Medicine. Through their Abilities, the Chosen of Saturn find ways to guide mortals into and through the endings and conclusions that will shape their lives and the lives around them. Any ending, whether a death or a birth, whether an illness (an end to health) or a recovery (an end to sickness) falls into the purview of the Chosen of Endings.

The Chosen of Endings know that life is a series of endings. Moreover, they understand that each ending is a new beginning, but they also understand that those beginnings tend to happen on their own. It is the endings, in the convincing of people to let go, where the challenge of their existence lies.

Chosen of Endings have a reputation for being cold-hearted assassins, and while some of them are exactly that, others couldn’t be further. Ending a life is an important moment for anyone, and the Chosen of Saturn understand that they will be called upon to do this at some point in their careers. It will be for the greater good, of course, but things must end, and those ends are rarely painless. Some steel themselves against this, while others come to embrace the pain, using it to remind themselves what they have lost themselves.

If someone seeks out the greatest endings available to them and encourages others to do the same, to recognize the moments when all things must cease and to not fight that moment but embrace it, they likely resonate with the Chosen of Endings.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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Of course, like all Exalted, morality is left to the player to decide, but the next type of Exalts walk the line a little more questionably.

First, we’ll discuss the Abyssal Exalted. There are two sides to these Exalts – what most people know, and what almost no one knows.

Most people know they’re bad news. They’ve been appearing out of and around Shadowlands (those places where Creation and the Underworld meet) for about five years now, serving the Deathlords and generally mucking up everything. They’re powerful, fearsome, and Gothic, but don’t call them emo, or they’ll eat your soul.

The truth, of course, is the part no one knows. Right after the Usurpation, the dead Neverborn came to several ghosts of murdered Solars and offered them great power to serve Oblivion. The ghosts, grieved or just maddened, agreed, and thus were born the Deathlords. For centuries, their plans were subtle and invasive, and they essentially conquered the Underworld.

Then, one of their conquered brethren came to the Neverborn and told them about the Jade Prison, the artifact housing the imprisoned Exaltations of the deposed Solars. This Yozi whispered to the Neverborn a way to corrupt those Exaltations, in exchange for their help in opening the prison and fifty Exaltations tithed to the Yozis.

The Neverborn cracked the prison, but only captured about half of the three hundred Solars. Of these, fifty went to the Yozis. The remaining hundred were broken, corrupted, and turned into black, hateful mirrors of the Solars. These are the Abyssal Exalted.

Servants of the Deathlords (at least for now), each Abyssal was a mortal, given a choice at the moment of death: pass on and take your chances with reincarnation, or be saved but serve the End of All That Is. The Abyssals are those who made the choice, even for an instant, to serve Oblivion.

Some of them do regret their decision and seek to redeem themselves, but the path to redemption is long and with no guarantee of success. Most accept their damnation, and seek to draw everything that exists into the Underworld, where Oblivion will eventually consume it all. Their powers are mirrors of those of the Solars, but dark mirrors, two sides of the same coin.

The Abyssals are probably the single greatest threat to Creation: individuals with the indomitability of Solars, everlasting life, and the power of Oblivion running through their corrupted veins. In the end, even the Deathlords may draw back in terror from the weapons their Exalted have become… for in the end, even the Deathlords will fall before their world-ending powers.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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All the castes of the Abyssals are the dark mirrors of their Solar counterparts, and the first of these is the Dusk Caste, counterpart to the Dawn. Like the Dawn, the Dusk are the most martially inclined of all the Abyssals, but the difference is in how those inclinations are applied.

While the Dawn stands as a shining bulwark, leading the armies of righteousness and Creation against the enemies of the light, the Dusk is the black general, the obsidian champion that leads armies of the undead out of shadowlands, swarming over the living and slaughtering them in the name of Oblivion. Both castes define their Exaltations through conflict, but one tends to preserve life, while the other strives to send it violently off this mortal coil.

Like the Dawn, the Dusk’s Caste Abilities are Archery, Martial Arts, Melee, Thrown, and War. If it involves killing someone, the Dusk can learn to do it, and learn to do it well. They work just as well as rogue agents, slaughtering entire communities singlehandedly, as they do generals, leading legions of shambling corpses to consume entire nations.

Rebel Dusk Castes often find their lives least difficult of all those Abyssals who seek redemption, or merely to avoid damnation. Heaven knows there are enough things seeking to destroy Creation that they can simply murder. While they cannot directly oppose the Neverborn, lest the feel the dead titans’ displeasure, there are Fair Folk, demons, rogue spirits, behemoths, monsters, and even evil men who need killing.

However, every death, no matter how noble, still empowers Oblivion, and that is the truth the Dusk must carry with them at every step.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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The Midnight Caste are the dark mirrors of the Zeniths. While the Zeniths are the holy priests of the Unconquered Sun, spreading his light to all the dark corners of Creation, the Midnight Caste are the blasphemous priests of Oblivion, encouraging the hopeless worship of the End of All That Is.

Like the Zeniths, the Midnight Caste Abilities are Integrity, Performance, Presence, Resistance, and Survival. There is almost nowhere they cannot go, no hardship they cannot endure, and no mind so strong they cannot sway it into despair and love of death. They are cruel priests, soul-flaying orators, peeling hope like an onion and laying bare the core of destitution at the heart of every mind.

Loyal Midnights are the truest servants of their masters… and the cause of greatest worry for the Deathlords. After all, the Midnights do not usually preach worship of the Deathlords, or even of the Neverborn, but of Oblivion itself. This suits the Neverborn just fine, but the Deathlords are often uneasy about the thought that they are simply glorified middlemen.

Rogue Midnights are tortured souls, filled with the power and glory of death but seeking to weaken the power of Oblivion. Many choose to become death-speakers, serving ancestor cults and spreading the glory not of Oblivion, but of the Underworld, and the eternal pleasures to be found there. In the end, however, they must come to terms with the knowledge that every death, every ghost, every ending, furthers the cause of the Neverborn and expands Oblivion.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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As the Twilight Caste uses its inventions to defend Creation from the threats that emerge at their eponymous hour, so does the Daybreak use its creations to assault the world of the living in their weakest moment.

The Caste Abilities for the Daybreak are the same as those for the Twilight: Craft, Investigation, Lore, Medicine, and Occult. They are the inventors, the sorcerers, and the necrosurgeons of the damned, but they also specialize in Necromancy, the Underworld equivalent of Sorcery. Necromancy uses the dreams and nightmares of the not-entirely-dead Primordials to shape the Underworld the way Sorcery shapes Creation.

The creations of the Daybreak are horrific, monstrous things, engines of destruction built of death and the dead. The Daybreak come closest to breaking the curse of the Neverborn, for their powers do allow them to create rather than solely to destroy. However, even in this the curse applies, for their creations turn inevitably toward destruction and death. Whether they be soulsteel artifacts wielded by warlords or necrotech war machines sewn from once-living flesh, even their creative powers lean toward destruction.

Loyalist Daybreaks are some of the most frightening individuals Creation has ever seen, their nightmare inspiration treading the amoral line between genius and madness with acrobatic flair. They turn their powers wholeheartedly to the annihilation of all that lives, and if there are any Abyssals who could accomplish that, it would be these mad inventors. Rogue Daybreaks are potentially wondrous resources for Creation, for their insight into the character and power of the Neverborn, but even they are cancerous genius, the tumor that brings maddening insight as surely as it brings death.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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The opposite side of the coin from the Night Caste is the Day Caste, the hand of the Deathlords slipping into the lighted world and showing the living that they are never safe, not even when the Sun burns brightly overhead. They are the thieves and assassins, slipping unseen into Creation and spreading the plague touch of the Deathlords into the living world.

The Caste Abilities of the Day are Athletics, Awareness, Dodge, Larceny, and Stealth. They are singularly well-equipped to slip into hard-to-reach homes or castles, serving as the surgical scalpel to the Dusk Caste’s daiklave. Where one death, one poisoned well, one loss of a single treasure could cause the most harm, there you will find the Day Caste.

Loyalist Days are terrors, evading any guard, slipping past any defenses to murder the hope of Creation when it feels it is safest, under the bright light of the Unconquered Sun. They are the hands of their masters in Creation, and the secret police in the Underworld, ensuring that the lands that belong to the Deathlords remain under their control. They are precise and effective, leaving corpses and fear in their wake.

Renegade Days have an easier time of it than most renegades, as they can often channel their murderous powers to do the least harm while doing the most damage to the Neverborn. Indeed, it may well be the hand of a renegade Day Caste that slices the tethers keeping the Neverborn even half alive. Yet, in the end, any death still serves Oblivion, and the Day are nothing if not murderers.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

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The last of the Abyssal Castes, the Moonshadow serve as the black mirror to the Eclipse Caste, traveling the Underworld and binding the nations of the dead into the service of the Deathlords. They are excellent at moving within societies, and they use their powers to infiltrate the enemies of the Neverborn, whether in Creation or the Underworld, and bring them down from within.

The Caste Abilities for the Moonshadow are, like the Eclipse, Bureaucracy, Linguistics, Ride, Sail, and Socialize. They are travelers, traversing any distance to reach their next destination, where they insinuate themselves and tear down societies, slaying them as surely as the Dusk Caste slays armies.

Loyalist Moonshadows are truly terrifying beings, serpents in the beds of the high and mighty. They move through courts and kingdoms, whispering poison into the ears of their leaders, and watching everything crumble around them. When they leave, if everything is not in destructive disarray or indolence, it soon will be.

Rogue Moonshadows, on the other hand, infiltrate the societies of the Deathlords themselves, sidling up to their dark masters and poisoning them as surely as they would envenom the living. However, theirs is a more dangerous path, for should the Deathlords discover them, they would surely be destroyed. Worst of all, in the end, when all the socieites that worship the Neverborn are dragged down, the dark power of the Moonshadow will begin to erode the societies of the living… or they will have to destroy themselves. Even the diplomats of the Abyssals cannot escape their own power.

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Re: Exalted Types: an Overview

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Wake on Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:20 pm

Some quick facts about the exaltation itself

The shard of exaltation is a fragment of a god's own divine essence, sheered from themselves in order to raise up an ordinary mortal into a champion of the gods. Though the exalted with feel a natural affinity for the god their shard came from, they are under no compulsion to obey that gods decree. This was intentional, to prevent the primordial's from simply ordering the gods to end their own uprising.

In the world of creation, humans have two components to their souls. The hun soul, or higher soul, which maintains their capability for logic and reason and the po sou, or lower soul, which governs emotion and instincts. When a shard of exaltation find itself a new host it grafts it self onto the soul and becomes a third component that greatly enhances and regulates the flow of essence through it's host body.

Sometimes though, the exaltation carries with it fragments of it's previous host. This is more the case for celestial exalts than Terrestrials (whose are instead passed down through their lineage). When these shards pass from a the dying body of a previous wielder and into a new it will sometimes carry with it some of the memories and pieces of personality of those that came before. The new host will experience these memories from time to time as dreams in their sleep, or as brief visions when they encounter something their previous incarnation had also witnessed or been involved in.

The process of exalting, sometimes known as the second breath, generally occurs during a dramatic point of the exalt's life. While this can vary between exalted types it usually comes in either a moment of intense stress or intense focus, particularly when they are attempting something significant. For Solars, this tends to be when they attempt the impossible. For lunars, this is usually when they are in a struggle for survival. Sidereals are said to be fated to exalt from the day they are born. The process for dragon blooded is poorly understood but generally is considered a natural part of their life circle. And for Abyssals, their Deathlord makes them the offer of eternal life in exchange for servitude at the moment they sit on the precipice of death.

In each case the outcome remains the same. The young exalt is invigorated with a sudden burst of power, unlocking their essence and allowing them to overcome whatever challenge was laid before them at the time of their exaltation.

While the number of terrestrial exalted is in constant flux, the number celestial exalted (that is, the solars, lunars, sidereals, and abyssals) is fixed, as the Celestial only made a specific number at the start of the primordial war that have been continually reincarnating since. In total there are 300 Lunars, 150 solars, 100 sidereals, and 100 abyssals. Originally there were 300 solar shards of exaltation, but a third of their number was corrupted into the abyssals when the deathlords pillaged the jade prison. As for the number of terrestrial shards that empower the dragon blooded, the Realm touts that it has 10,000 dragon blooded that make up it's great houses and savants estimate another two to three thousand wandering the thresholds.

Of the remaining 50 solar shards though, there is a mystery. They do not pass through the wheel of reincarnation to empower new host. Nor have they been accounted for among those solar's or abyssals that roam creation's soil. Few know where they have gone or who has taken them but their absence leaves many to worry.

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