Art legerdemain


(Changeling: the Dreaming 2E, pp 175-178)

“The Power of the Mind”

Legerdemain is the Art of sleight of hand and illusion. Originally based on illusions and “stage magic,” Legerdemain transcends such parlor tricks, allowing a changeling to affect physical reality. Changelings who are the entertainers in Kithain society (jesters, clowns, pooka, etc.) generally specialize in this Art. While this is also considered a commoner Art, a user of Legerdemain is not as suspect as with Chicanery; however, an Unseelie pooka armed with this Art bears watching.

While many of the effects of Legerdemain duplicate Chicanery, use of this Art differs in that it creates a substantial illusion that is visible to all changelings and enchanted brings rather than altering a single individual’s perception. There are those who claim that some uses of this Art actually create temporary chimera.

Attribute: Dexterity

Level 1: Gimmix

Gimmix permits a changeling to maneuver objects telekinetically. With this cantrip she can move, twist, throw, lift and crush things. Fine motor coordination, such as typing or dialing a telephone is impossible, however. Anything a real person could do with her hands, if her fingers and thumb were glued together is possible. Gimmix can be used in extremely small places, handling objects that the changeling couldn’t normally see or reach.

The Bunk for this cantrip must incorporate some hand gesture that mimes the effect of the cantrip.

The number of successes indicates the force of the telekinesis. For objects thrown, the damage possible is determined by the strength of the cantrip (e.g., Strength 2 inflicts two Health levels of damage against a target). Multiple castings of this cantrip are considered separate castings and cannot be accumulated for greater strength. Five successes (depending on the target’s weight) is necessary to directly affect a human’s body with this cantrip.

The effects of this Art only last one turn, so the cantrip must be continually recast to maintain any telekinetically lifted object. Alternatively, once a single object has been affected, the character can spend a point of Glamour for each additional turn he wishes to maintain the Gimmix.

*1 success = Lift six oz. Str = 0
*2 successes = Lift five lbs Str = 1
*3 successes = Lift 40 lbs Str = 2
*4 successes = Lift 100 lbs Str = 3
*5 successes = Lift 200 lbs Str = 4

Type: Wryd

Level 2: Ensnare

This cantrip has two major uses; the changeling can cause a large object to move about quickly, or she can entangle an opponent with any scenery at hand, such as roots, old tires, tripwires, etc.

If the changeling is attempting to trip an individual, any vines, rope or other small objects suddenly move to trip and bind the intended target. if no such objects exist the target believes that there are, tripping over his own feet and becoming bound by chimerical vines or rope.

Targets Ensnared remain trapped until they can break free. Multiple castings of this cantrip are not cumulative (use the Ensnare cast with the highest success in the case of several castings upon one target).

Type: Wyrd

Level 3: Effigy

This cantrip creates a duplicate of an object or person that the changeling can see and touch. The copy has all the features of the item that could be seen and felt. An Effigy of a book is tangible, and if the original were open when copied, the Effigy would be open to the same page and have the same writing on the page.

The coping of the Effigy is only skin-deep, however, so none of the internal qualities of the original are transferable. The Effigy-book may be open to the same page as the original, but a person couldn’t close it or read other parts. The caster can supply “special effects” to the copy by spending one Glamour point per effect (i.e. making the book open and close, writing on the other pages, etc). Creating realistic movement and coherent speech in Effigy-created beings requires a successful roll of Manipulation + Subterfuge (difficulty subject tot he complexity of the action taken).

An Effigy lasts until the caster ceases concentration, stops thinking about the Effigy, or it is eroded by Banality. An Effigy can be out of the caster’s line of sight, but the caster cannot create any special effects or supply movement or speech for it.

An Effigy in the presence of banal individuals begins to erode. (Any changeling who has a Banality score higher than his Glamour rating is considered to be banal for these purposes.) Each turn that the Effigy is in the presence of a banal person, one success is subtracted from the cantrip’s successes. An Effigy in the presence of an Autumn Person deteriorates twice this rate. The Effigy completely disorporates when the Banality erodes the successes of the Effigy’s casting to zero. An Effigy with six extended successes cast on it lasts six rounds, or sooner if the caster stops concentrating on it (any action other than concentrating is at a + 1 difficulty). On the seventh, the Effigy discorporates. As it erodes, the copy loses its “resolution” and its imperfections become more apparent. Multiple castings on the same Effigy are cumulative.

Effigies cannot be easily damaged. An Effigy damaged by Wyrd or chimerical effects loses one from its total successes but suffers no other ill effects. An Effigy reduced to zero successes in this manner completely discorporates.

The number of successes indicates the copy’s accuracy, as well as the amount of damage an Effigy can inflict on a foe.

*1 success = Bad copy
*2 successes = major differences
*3 successes = minor differences; can inflict 1/2 chimerical damage
*4 successes = nearly perfect copy; can inflict chimerical damage
*5 successes = exact duplicate; can inflict Wryd damage (only if the caster initially specified the Effigy as Wyrd)

Type: Wyrd or Chimerical

Level 4: Mooch

The changeling can instantaneously move things from one place to another. A favorite of pickpockets, Mooch can remove a trinket from a mark’s pouch and replace it in the caster’s own. The cantrip only works if the caster can see the object, or he has seen it within the past minute. A coin could be Mooched in plain sight, though anyone watching would spot the Mooch.

The number of successes determines how well the changeling performs the Mooch. To determine if her object is missing (unless she was holding the object in plain sight, in which case the Mooch is apparent), the target may make a Perception + Alertness roll (diff 4 + number of successes gained for the Mooch).

Characters who possess the Pickpocket Skill receive one automatic success when they cast Mooch.

Type: Chimerical or Wyrd

Level 5: Phantom Shadows

This cantrip is the true art of illusion creation. Whereas Effigy creates an unmoving copy. Phantom Shadows creates original illusions and engenders them with sentience. The created illusion can be of any subject the caster desires and is difficult to differentiate from the real thing, unless those who examine it are mystically aware or possess faerie sight. The Phantom Shadow intrinsically knows what its caster wants and carries out her wishes; however, if the caster forgets (or is made to forget as with Fugue) the existence of the Phantom Shadow, the casting essentially becomes a free-willed, uncontrolled chimera and acts on its own whim (a sleeping caster does not forget merely because she sleeps; her unconscious mind still remembers).

A Phantom Shadow has exact parameters with unique limitations. A Phantom car does not necessarily have gas, and a Phantom Shadow soldier may not appear with a gun, although the cantrip does create cloths for the soldier to wear. A created computer possesses operating software, but nothing else (no spreadsheets, word processing or gaming software).

Phantom Shadows cannot be used to make a target appear as something else.

The casting of this cantrip actually creates a malleable chimera. The chimera created thusly can be either animate or inanimate at the caster’s choice. The number of successes gained determines how believable the illusion is as well as how powerful it is. Multiple castings are cumulative in the same manner as with Effigy. Each time this cantrip is cast, the caster receives 5 chimera creation points for each success earned. The caster can then build his chimera using the chimera creation rules on page 220 (in CtD 2E) for animate chimera or see the chart in the Appendix (of CtD 2E) for inanimate chimera.

A chimera created by Phantom Shadows remains for as long as the caster continues to supply it with Glamour. The caster must supply the Shadow with at least one point of Glamour per day or it vanishes. A Phantom Shadow that has been released and becomes a true chimera begins to seek out its own Glamour — by whatever means necessary.

Phantom Shadows can inflict chimerical damage on anyone, including enchanted mortals and supernaturals. A target may disbelieve on an extended Perception + Kenning roll, diff 7. If the disbeliever achieves more successes than the caster of the Phantom Shadow, the Shadow immediately disperses.

Banality also tends to erode the illusion in the same way as Effigy, but the decay is slower; the total number of successes reduces at a rate of one per hour of exposure. (Illusions that are patently “unbelievable,” such as tap-dancing fish, tend to erode faster, thought this is at the St’s discretion.) Autumn People cause Phantom Shadows to discorporate at twice this rate.

*1 success = Fuzzy image
*2 successes = Looks real if it’s not studied too closely
*3 successes = All but the finer details are complete
*4 successes = Only the slightest imperfections
*5 successes = Perfect image

Type: Chimerical (A Phantom Shadow made “real” by calling upon the Wyrd must be maintained by spending a point of Willpower every turn.)

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