Faerie Circles

A Faerie Circle is a place where the faeries maintain contact with the physical world. It's manifestation is always circular in some manner....a circular cloud, a spiral current, a round pond, a ring of toadstools or monoliths...maybe even a road that is a circle. Within the circle, it is easier for Faeries to travel back and forth between the mortal and Arcadian realms. On the two equinoxes, the two solstices, and on the four sabbats (Walpurgis, Samhain, Beltaine, and ) some sort of pathway to Arcadia will open at the site when the sun goes down and last until the sun rises again. This path can be used by both man and faerie. On these days, the faerie revel and flood forth to harass the mortal world. The local gauntlet drops by 4 within ten miles of the circle. (or by 2 needed successes for Magi...) Faerie circles are normally hidden away in secluded places to remove them from prying eyes.

Faerie Regios

Some faerie circles are powerful enough to generate regios...areas where the gauntlet thins and unwary travellers can cross over into the Umbra. This is easiest around the sabbats, equinoxes, and solstices. This usually happens when the circle is old and powerful and faeries have moved into the umbral area corresponding to the circle and its environs. To enter, or leave a regio, each person who enters the area in the physical world rolls a certain number of dice--determined as shown below:

Ordinary Human--1 die

Vampire, Ghoul, or Hunter with Numina--2 dice

Garou, Mage without the Spirit Sphere-3 dice

Mage with Spirit Sphere: 3+Spirit.

Faerie: Five dice

The Difficulty is 9 in the day, and 8 at night normally. On Sabbats, it drops to 6/5. On Equinoxes and Solstices, it drops to 5/4. Botch the enterance roll and you can't enter the regio until the next equinox or sabbat. Botch the exit roll and you are trapped for that long. You can try once an hour to enter/exit the regio.

The regio resembles an enchanted version of the area in the physical world. Everything is more perfect and magical enchantments abound. Many Circles with Regios have a permanent gate to Arcadia...which is the most common cause of a regio.

Areas with Regio have an effective gauntlet/shroud of three for Garou and other shifters and wraiths, or a 1 success gauntlet for mage purposes. Technomagic is always vulgar in a faerie regio unless it resembles a tinker device....

Arcadia, the land of the Fae

The true nature of Arcadia is a mystery. It is known that it corresponds in some way to the dark side of the moon, and mages and Garou who travel to the umbral darkside have had success in entering Arcadia from that point. It also connects to a near umbral realm known as the Arcadian gateway. Some faerie circles have temporary or permanent gateways to Arcadia, and all of them correspond to a circle in an arcadian domain.

Arcadia seems to be a chaotic dreamworld to most travellers, but there are some laws to its apparent madness. Arcadia is divided into domains. Each domain is fairly stable within its own set of rules. Domains are created by the united will of the faeries and others who dwell there. A domain that lost all of its inhabitants would dissolve back into chaos. Domains range from the size of a single room to entire continents. The larger the domain, the more powerful the faerie lord or lords who rule over it. The High Kings of the Faerie Courts rule over continent sized domains...

Arcadia cannot be mapped, because geography is not stable. But if you find a river, you may be able to get to any domain that has a river running through it. It is easier to pass from one yew forest to another rather than from a forest to a desert. It is easier to travel between realms that have "correspondences" or similarities. Some domains also have special qualities. The celestial domains are in the sky, so you have to move upward to get to them. The aquatic domains are underwater...so moving down into water helps you get there. The seelie domains tend to be in the east towards the rising sun or to the south where it is warmer, and the unseelie in the west towards the setting sun, or the north where it is colder.

While Arcadia has no fixed geography, there are several major "regions" of Arcadia:

Celestial Arcadia, Aquatic Arcadia, Terrestrial Arcadia, The Lands Forgotten, Subterranea, The lands of the fallen, The great fire, The mists.

Celestial Arcadia: This is the realm of the sky faeries, a sea of cloud islands and cloud castles. It is most easily reached from mountaintops and by those with the power of flight. The pixies are often to be found here, along with dopplegangers, and bird-related pookas. Some Alfar sorcerers dwell in cloud castles here. (And perhaps a legendary goblin Giant...)

Aquatic Arcadia: This is the realm of the sea faeries. Nixies, dopplegangers, fish related Phookas, and gremlins dwell here. It can be reached from any body of water in Arcadia. Any mortal brought here by the water faeries can breathe water for as long as he or she keeps their blessing.

Terrestrial Arcadia: This is the great wilderness of Arcadia. It resembles the surface of the earth before the coming of man. It is full of perfect ancient forests, huge trackless deserts, pristine swamps, uneroded mountains, etc. It is marked by the cities of the Alfar and other "civilized" Faeries. These cities are larger and more organic than human cities. The buildings seem to be grown out of the rock and trees >from which they are made. They are beautiful almost beyond human understanding. They are connected by Faerie Trods. (see below in the navigation section....) Virtually every kind of faerie can be found somewhere in Terrestrial Arcadia. It is the special home of the Alfar and land animal related Phookas. Most Faerie circles are located in Terrestrial Arcadia. It also contains many places that resemble the major spiritual/historical/magical sights of earth...revealing their true nature in some way.

Subterranea: This is the great world of the caverns of Arcadia. It is most easily reached by descending into caves, canyons, sea trenches and other holes in the ground. It is a great maze of tunnels. The Brownies and Goblins make this their special home.

The Great Fire: This is the home of the Salamanders. It is a world built out of flame. Those who have the blessing of the Salamanders will not burn. It is much like Terrestrial Arcadia, except that everything is made of different kinds of fire. It can be reached from any flame, but Volcanoes, forest fires, and burning buildings provide the easiest access. It is said that those with a salamander to guide them can travel from flame to flame across other realms by taking short cuts inside The Great Fire.

The Lands of the Fallen: This realm contains many legendary homes of the dead. It is not known for sure if it is inhabited by faeries who believe they are the spirits of the dead, or if those who dwell here really did live upon the earth at one time. It is known that few new dead have arrived in many centuries. Still, the Elysian fields, Annwyn, and the Happy Hunting Grounds can all be found here. The dead are unable to leave, whatever they are. Wraiths who are brought here will have to lose all their corpus or get the aid of a sorceror to leave. But while they are here, their Shadow is silenced and powerless.... These lands are ruled by various "gods" of death...their true nature is also unknown. Faeries slain in Arcadia by non-mortals will awaken here within days or months (The more stability, the sooner they awaken). The lands of the fallen are most easily reached by travelling West, towards the setting sun.

The Lands Forgotten: Many lands and peoples of myth and legend can be found here. When they were defeated/destroyed, some of the survivors found a way into Arcadia, where they slowly became faeries and recreated the land they had known in mortal life. Others were created by the belief of mortals in their existence, or who were so touched by their stories they wished they were real. Atlantis, Lemuria, Mu, the isle of the Amazons, the kingdom of Prester John, Lilliput, Utopia, the kingdom of Cockaigne, Hobbiton, and Sherwood forest have all been seen by people who have visited the Lands Forgotten. Many of the faeries here seem completely human, using Iron freely in some areas, and in many other ways not acting like faeries. Most suspect that the inhabitants of this area are indeed largely human, touched by faerie power, but not fully faeries. (or maybe everyone just has iron tolerance...)

The mists: There is a region of faerieland that is without form...The mists. They can be reached from any region of arcadia. No one knows what lies beyond them. But they can be reshaped by those with creativity to create new arcadian domains. Anyone who enters the mists can try to shape them to match hir own desires. This works best when a group of people work together. It is much easier for Mortals or human changelings to shape the mists than it is for Faeries, because faeries have too much creativity. They have a hard time limiting themselves to a single vision of a place for long enough to make it stable. They need humans to pick and choose between the infinite possibilities they see. This is the highest goal of the kidnapping of humans as changelings. They can combine the self-control and focus of humans with the creativity of the Faeries, and help to give birth to new faerie domains.

To create a realm requires several steps. The person must enter the fog and face their own fears. This requires a difficulty 8 fearlessness or Courage check. Failure forces the person to run away. They will be unable to return until a 10-WP days have passed.

The second step is to express one's creative vision. This requires a roll on Cha+Performance or Per+Expression at difficulty 9. The more successes, the more the realm will resemble what you want it to be.

Botch: You are trapped in a nightmare realm that is a perversion of what you wished to create

Fail: Nothing happens. You can try again in a month.

1 success: You get the terrain types you wanted.

2 successes: You get the kind of weather you wanted, and the geography is correct.

3 successes: You can have buildings and inhabitants if you want them.

4 successes: The place can have unusual features...like water up hill, night all the time, etc.

5 successes: Exactly what you wanted.

This process can also be used to reshape a realm which has not been stabilized with permanent WP...Or to try to warp someone else's not yet stable realm...

The realm remains intact as long as its creator remains in it. If he or she leaves, it loses size levels at the rate shown below...That is also the rate at which it forms from the mists. Your stability (or WP, whichever is lower) determines how big a realm you can create. You can create one with inhabitants...but you can't guarantee they will like you.

The realm can be made permanent by spending permanent WP = to its size....Or ownership can be transferred to another being...but he/she must have as much stability as you or the realm will shrink. Also, the new owner will have to spend permanent WP too...or the realm will lose its stability if you die. The ritual of transference takes 1 day per size level. Unless a realm is made permanently stable, nothing native to it can leave or be taken out of the realm.

Stability               Size              Time
1                      10' Circle         1 round
2                      100' circle        1 minute
3                      1000' circle       10 minute
4                      1 mile Circle      1 hour
5                      10 mile Circle     6 Hours
6                      100 mile Circle    1 day
7                      500 mile circle    1 week
8                      1000 mile circle   2 weeks
9                      2000 mile circle   1 month
10                     3000 mile circle   2 months.

There are several ways to navigate around Arcadia. Some domains are connected by Roads, known as Trods. These roads often resemble some road in the physical world. As long as you stay on the path, it will eventually get you where you are going. But if you leave the path, it will vanish and you will get dropped into some domain you were not looking for. Per+Faerie Lore at Difficulty 6 will identify where a Trod goes...the more successes, the more precise the identification. A Trod is easy to follow, but creatures often lurk along it, striving to lure you off the path so they can amuse themselves with you.

The second technique involves using correspondences. The more you know about what/who you are searching for, the easier this is. You simply search for examples of those correspondences, moving always in the direction where they become more intense. This may require a lot of traveling through various realms. Roll Per+Faerie Lore (Variable difficulty--Storyteller's discretion). If you botch, you wander into the wrong kind of realm and get in trouble usually. If you succeed, you reach a more similar domain to what you want. You need to accumulate usually five to thirty successes to get where you are going.(Five to get from one mountain guardian realm with a river to another...ten to descend to a foothill guardian realm...30 to go from an underwater Seelie court in the far south to a celestial Unseelie court in the far north....)

If you are unaware of any correspondences, you can try to create one. This is done through artistic activity. You must create art or stories which attribute the desired correspondences to the thing,place, or person to be found and spread them about. The difficulty of this is pretty hard....and only non-faeries can create correspondences, so you may have to get some help. Human Changelings, Vampires, ordinary humans, Garou, and Mages can create correspondences...To do this requires a creativity of at least three on the part of a vampire(see Toreador book). It requires five successes at difficulty 9 on a Art+Wits or Cha+Expression roll and publicity of the same...It is hard, but you can wreak real changes in Arcadia by this method...although it tends to make court leaders irritated with you...

Arcadian Time Dilation

Time flows strangely in Arcadia. Different realms have different time-flows. It is hard to keep track of days or even hours. Clocks and watches malfunction. The effects are entirely up to the storyteller, and should be hand designed for each trip. Keep in mind that long trips will seem to pass in minutes if nothing happens--in dream like time. Time in Arcadia flows like a dream...fast when nothing is going on, slow when things get busy.

Faerie Food in Arcadia

It is unwise for mortals to eat the food or drink offered to them in Arcadia. A mortal who does so cannot leave until the faeries release him. Any effort to remove him or her from Arcadia will fail unless the magic used to get him out gets at least 5 successes, and the difficulty will go up to 10.

If a Garou eats faerie food, he must get five successes to get out, but the difficulty remains the same. Anyone with Faerie Blood gift can eat faerie food with no ill effects.

Faerie drinks tend to be highly intoxicating. Roll Stamina at Difficulty 8 or be intoxicated. Each additional drink adds one to the number of successes needed to resist.

Combat in Arcadia

Arcadian combat is usually like combat anywhere else...when mortals participate. If a mortal takes part in a combat in Arcadia, it is run just like combat anywhere else. Faeries can only die in arcadia if mortals (Humans, Garou, or Magi) participate. Vampires and Wraiths do not count as mortals...

When non-mortals fight in Arcadia, they cannot permanently die. Wounds heal at the rate of one wound a turn(even for Vamps and Wraiths...). A non-mortal brought to the point where they would die appears to die, but they will awaken one day later in the lands of the fallen. Vampires find themselves in the same condition they were in at the start of the battle, as do Faeries. But they lose everything they were carrying. Wraiths discorporate when "slain", and reform in the Land of the Fallen. But they cannot get out without the help of a sorceror or knowlege of Argos. They appear completely solid while there. They function as mortals, although their Arcanos remain active. A wraith with Argos can get out of the land of the fallen, similar to entering the tempest.

Fallen Faeries dissolve away in about an hour...then reform a day later in the land of the fallen. Any possessions not taken from them will reform with their new body. This can sometimes destablize the poor faerie...He/She must roll their stability at difficulty 7. If they fail, they lose one point of stability. If they botch, they get a derangement also.

Faeries sometimes bring mortals to Arcadia for the sole purpose of making a battle permanently fatal. Wars between fae can drag out for centuries if no mortals get involved...because the armies keep rising from the dead the next day. Only if Mortals get involved can faeries die permanently in Arcadia. This is another reason why faeries bring changelings to Arcadia...