Lodge of the Spirit Chains
Lodge of the Spirit Chains
Source: Signs of the Moon, Pages 65 & 66
Things dwell in the Shadow that are more powerful than the mightiest Uratha. Many are asleep, entombed deep in the forgotten places of the spirit wilds. Others roam free, warping the very nature of the world wherever they tread, drawing servants of lesser choirs to them and devouring any who would not join them. If you destroy them, they will rise up again, weakened but still mighty. They cannot be bargained with or intimidated, and the knowledge that banished the Idigam to the bleak emptiness of the moon is long lost to us. Only one option exists to deal with these ancient demons of the Shadow: bind them with ephemeral chains. Trap them in sacred bottles and spirit jars, entomb their essence within sacred fetishes. Thus caged, their wrath is spent in hatred of their prison and not loosed upon the Earth. This is our sacred duty. This is our bond. We must trap the enemies of Father Wolf in prisons of wood and stone, bone and metal. And we must guard those tombs unceasingly, lest some fool sunder the bonds that hold the prisoner fast and unleash a doom upon us all.
As much as the Uratha like to tout that they are the guardians of the Shadow and will smash any spirit that steps out of line, the fact of the matter is that permanently destroying a spirit is not something the children of Father Wolf have easy means to do. A spirit whose Corpus is rent to shreds still reforms at full strength some days or weeks later. Only by ensuring that a spirit has expended all of its Essence before discorporating it can a pack truly destroy a creature of the Shadow, and few spirits are foolish enough to expend that final Essence if it feels it is in even the slightest danger of destruction. The Rite of the Sacred Hunt allows a pack to consume a vanquished spirit’s Essence, but using that to destroy the target of the hunt is a grievous sin. Likewise, few packs wish to risk tainting their totem with the murderous resonance that comes from wholly devouring another spirit.
The Lodge of the Spirit Chains devotes itself to trapping particularly powerful and dangerous spirits (of Jaggling rank or higher) and binding them into fetish prisons where their ability to influence the world is greatly diminished. Since a fetish made with an unwilling spirit is usually dangerous to use, the lodge maintains vaults around the globe where these mighty spirits’ prisons are held and guarded constantly by Rahu and Ithaeur devotees.
The locations of these caches are among the greatest secrets the Lodge of the Spirit Chains holds, since any number of beings would love to get hold of those fetishes: Pure werewolves and spirit cults might wish to free the imprisoned spirits, mages might wish to exploit the power within the fetishes, and witch-hunters might see such a trove as an armory waiting to be exploited. Indeed, the lodge has had frequent, violent contact with an order of monster hunters originating in Greece, many of whom wield mystic artifacts of their own.
Long ago, the Lodge of the Spirit Chains captured and bound a spirit known simply as the Broken One into a three-foot-high basalt statue of a leering humanoid figure with a head like a goat and limbs twisted as though from extensive torture. The spirit’s nature is unknown outside the most senior members of the lodge, but nevertheless the Broken One serves as the lodge’s totem. Reputedly, in exchange for acting as the totem spirit of the lodge, the Broken One is released from its prison for one week each year, given free reign over the Shadow. Of course, that’s just a rumor......surely the lodge’s leaders would not allow the sort of monstrous spirits they bind away to roam free unsupervised?
- Wisdom •••
- Cunning ••
- Must know the Bind Spirit Rite and Fetish Rite
Membership: Membership in the Lodge of the Spirit Chains is open to any werewolf with the ritual knowledge and Renown required to execute the lodge’s duties. Because of the stringent nature of the requirements, most members are Ithaeur, with quite a few coming from the Iron Masters.
Initiation into the lodge is a grueling trial by ordeal. The prospective member is sent into a particularly dangerous region of the Shadow (some Ritemasters send candidates that show particular promise into Wounds, just to see how good they really are) with no ritual tools or preparations. If the candidate can survive and return with a spirit of at least Lesser Jaggling rank, she is offered a place within the lodge......if she can complete a week-long vigil standing guard over a cache of fetish prisons. Based on the candidate’s performance in these two tests, she is either sent out into the world to help packs capture and imprison powerful spirits who threaten their territory or is tasked with guarding a cache of fetish prisons (obviously, unless the chronicle is planned to focus heavily on the fetishes in question, players’ characters should be put in the former group if they join the lodge).
Benefits: Members of the Lodge of the Spirit Chains are wise in ancient tricks of summoning, binding, and fetish-crafting spirits. The player adds the character’s Wisdom Renown to her Harmony when calculating the dice pool of any rite used to call, bind, or trap within a fetish a hostile spirit. The lodge’s tricks rely on the targets hatred and wrath; thus, summoning or binding a neutral or allied spirit does not gain this benefit. In addition, if the member knows the ban of the spirit he is calling or binding, the player adds two dice to the dice pool.
Spirits Trapped (During Chronicle)
- Script Kitty: A Rank 2 Magath of a Cat and Electronic Communications Spirit. Captured by William Rainsford