Lodge of Hallowed Halls
Academics ••, Wisdom ••, Cunning •, Subterfuge • and the Merit: First Tongue.
Though the lodge is most commonly associated with the Bone Shadows, other tribes are not excluded from membership. The only other tribe that petitions for membership with any regularity, however, is the Farsil Luhal.
A werewolf who wishes to join the Lodge of the Hallowed Halls must contact an existing member and ask to be admitted. The members of the lodge are usually pressed for time, and so the test to join isn’t a complicated affair. The test has three parts — Body, Mind and Soul. The Body portion of the test is, as the name suggests, physical in nature and involves a race, a fight, a test of endurance or pain tolerance or some other measure that allows the werewolf to demonstrate his abilities in this arena. The Body portion of the test is frequently tailored to the prospect’s abilities. In many cases, the prospect is given some say in the particulars of this test, or allowed to have the test “waived” if he has performed some great feat of physical prowess in the past (and can produce witnesses to that effect).
The Soul portion requires the werewolf to enter the Shadow and interact with a spirit (other than his pack totem); the lodge uses this as a gauge of the prospect’s commitment to the tribal vow of the Bone Shadows, as well as his general ability to deal with the Hisil.
The Mind section is probably the most important to the lodge. Only academics with some credentials or some good research behind them are admitted. The werewolf presents a curriculum vitae (essentially a resume of his published works) and a dissertation, the subject matter of which must be of interest to the prospect’s chosen field and to the People. If the research is sound and the subject matter contributes something to the lodge, the werewolf receives word that he has been accepted. If not, he is rejected, but may re-apply after six months.
Members keep in close contact through written correspondence (email, of course, is the commonly used method nowadays). Since travel to conferences is common for academics, members are expected to help their fellow members find lodging and safety in strange areas, should the need arise. This includes getting access to loci, avoiding the Pure and other dangers and navigating the local Shadow, should it become an issue. Likewise, a visiting Iminzu-Ur is expected to contribute anything he can to whatever problems a local member’s pack might be facing.
Members of the lodge benefit from their association. Academics have access to slush funds, scholarships that no one ever touches and material resources that can be converted to cash. In game terms, a member can draw on monies equal to Resources 2 for a few weeks (but is expected to pay into these accounts when he has his own income again). Also, members of the lodge receive the Merit: Contacts (Lodge of the Hallowed Halls), which gives them access to information on almost every scholarly field imaginable. This might be worth a bonus of one to three dice on an Academics, Medicine, Science or Politics roll if the character has time to consult with a fellow lodge member. Finally, the lodge members learn to deal with bureaucracies in such a way as to avoid notice. The Subterfuge, Socialize and Persuasion Skills can be purchased at a lower rate (new dots x 2 rather than new dots x 3).