Grimoire Of The Pale (d66 spells)

In a folio of strange near-white leather, oddly sheened — like metal? like jade? — a collection of spells on parchment and silk, paper and great feathers ...

Here are 36 system neutral, rules-light spells to play around with. 
There’s more than a few themes and sub-themes at work here, but that’s fine —

11. To Hold Grief: Conjures a palm-sized lacrima, a flask or phial of alabaster, that bottles up a source of pain for a day. Tempting as it may be, repetitive castings inevitably prove disastrous; the shattering of the lacrima heralds far greater pain.

12. Bygones: A memory of other, older times is called up on the scent of faintest lavender; all in 20’ find themselves wrapped in nostalgia for an hour, distracted and diffident.

13. Scribe’s Own Gift: Touch one’s own self and draw away a signature of fine parchment, at the expense of feeling heightened physical pain for the day that halves all physically exerting activities.

14. Drover’s Feast: Transform up to 5 gallons of water, or any other fluid, to thick and heavy cream. This may be further processed, for example into butter or clotted cream or the like. White meats produced in such a way have a faintly pearly sheen and unearthly tang.

15. Rebuking Mantle: Conjures a pale yellow-white mantle, hood, veil, or similar headcovering or drapery of a translucent, delicate nature. For the next four hours, any who strike at the one wearing the mantle are blinded, their eyes burning, until they flush their eyes with water or milk.

16. Immortal Mortality: Simultaneously cast upon a peach and either oneself or another subject. Subsequently, all soul- or spirit- or life-injury — such as from undead — that the subject may receive is channeled to the peach, which withers and blackens instead. The proxy lasts for one day, or six separate corruptions.

21. Rest, My Child: An intangible shroud settles over one unliving being, who promptly becomes an inert corpse (if physical), the undead spirit passing on in peace. Requires a scrap of mourner’s linen. Some that truly wish for release may not resist; some powerful revenants may be enraged by the attempt rather than succumb.

22. Nacreous Fortune: Cast over a powdered pearl, then consume the powder, for one of four possible effects — 1) purge toxins of all kinds, 2) conjure a hand-size orb of heatless, colourless flame for a day, 3) call a single stroke of pearly lightning, 4) bring gentle but constant rains in a 10 mi. area for a day.

23. Those From Before: Invokes the presence of the Past Ones; these stick-bundle shades of chalky robe and bleached bird-skull and tattered lace are pleased to indulge in long and detailed conversation, and will answer two questions, but they cannot speak or debate upon the present time. After six questions, the Past Ones will make a request of their own.

24. A Fragile Revolution: The subject is struck by the ‘revelation’ of the first philosophy or creed presented to them; prior influences fall away, and they will pick up this new banner with the fervour of the enlightened. But this is a false faith, and if challenged it will shatter; after an hour’s shaken fear, the subject sees the ruse.

25. Fame’s Flicker: For the next two hours the subject of this spell positively glistens and gleams with charisma, charm and the aura of great fortune. All who encounter them are inclined to aid them — and, potentially, follow them, being utterly fascinated. But when the enchantment fades, so does the phantom fancy.

26. Salt-foam Warding: An area up to 30’ in diameter suddenly glistens faintly, as if sporting the most delicate fogging of salty crystal. Elemental creatures and forces, and any incoming malefic magics, burn away and shy from its touch; the more it repels, the more the glittering ward darkens with impurities. Lasts 12 hrs.

31. Ran’s Soothing Anointment: A gentle sprinkle of silky white dust drifts over 2d4 subjects, who find themselves eased of any environmental discomfort for 4 hours (good for easing dungeon dampness) and healed of any minor injuries (scrapes, rashes, etc).

32. Rain-and-Thorn Entrapment: Conjures an area up to 60’ cubed (or 60 1’ cubes, however you like to think of it) of twining rose canes formed from pale rosy mist and glittering droplets. Passing through the briars causes one to become dizzied and confused for ten minutes; did you ever want to be anywhere but amongst these ephemeral roses, at all? The canes fade after 6 hours.

33. Once Again Ocean: Cast upon an intact seashell, transforming the shell into sleek small craft capable of carrying up to six+gear, or equivalent in cargo. The shelly ship is enclosed and self-propelled, and may travel on the surface of the water or below it. After 12 hrs, reverts to shell form.

34. Ghostwalk: For the next 12 hours, the subject is nothing but an insubstantial phantom, a colourless shade like unto a departed soul, and subject to all the same limitations and restrictions save for one — they are unaffected by banishments of any kind. They may interact physically with other phantasmal forms.

35. Winter’s Waltz: For the next 6 hours, cross all snow and ice without sinking, slipping or being soaked or chilled, gliding gracefully across the surface as if skating or dancing. Anything carried or pulled by you personally receives the same benefit.

36. Beckon The Cavalier: Summons the Cavalier of Roses and Ash; and that skeletal warrior and their dead courser, resplendent in bone-plate and dead garlands, will carry out one wish or quest with grim certainty if the request is deemed pained and true. The Cavalier does not look kindly on being called for frivolous — or, worse, black-hearted — tasks.

41. Sweetness Of Death: Cast on a corpse, a pale vine erupts from the remains and unfurls bone-white leaves; two hours later, a creamy blossom emerges. A corpse so cultivated cannot be animated nor resurrected. The nectar drawn from the blossom is sweet and pleasant beyond all things, and will sustain a creature for three days.

42. Remarkable Mundanity: For 1 hour, no one will notice the recipient of this spell unless they wish it; to onlookers, they are a nondescript nobody. One’s gaze just slides away. Six hours later everyone remembers someone absolutely spectacular and shocking — but it is still nothing matching the recipient’s description.

43. A Touch Of Pleasantry: One’s next meal is more satisfying, at least to the senses — watered wine becomes a refined vintage, biscuit has a buttery sweet or savoury taste, and so on — but the actual quality of the sustenance is not changed. Up to four people can be affected by the spell.

44. Courteous Calling: Summons the Lady In White, resplendent in colourless lace and bleached-silver mail, who — if pleased to do so — will offer advice in courtly politics, social maneuverings, wartime strategy or, perhaps, a lesson in swordsmanship.

45. Memory’s Bite: Conjures a sleek, featureless blade of ivory that wounds as a longsword and lasts for one hour. Any slain by the blade have their memories captured by it; an egg of ivory grows from the pommel nut and falls free, and the memories of the dead rest inside to be hoarded or consumed.

46. Harvestaff: Transmutes any wooden staff or similar object of vegetable matter into a preternaturally sturdy stalk of maize, still strong enough to be a staff. Six milky-kerneled cobs grow from the head of stalk; four are edible and sweet, while the last two may be 1) throwable and explosive; 2) entirely filled with dewy cornsilk than can wash away illness; 3) sports glass beads for kernels; 4) filled with pale fungal growths that will induce a vision of a faraway land.

51. Ancient Blossom Endurance: The subject’s flesh is traced with white silhouettes of magnolia flowers; while the patterns remain (1 hr), any action made in the name of a truly-sworn oath or goal doubles its chance of success. The spell’s effects may be expended all at once to shrug off a wound completely, or to deflect or destroy one spellcasting. One’s spirit can only support this enchantment once a day.

52. Borrowed Beauty: Drains the colours from up to a tree’s worth of flowering plant, condensing it into a shimmering fluid usable as ink, dye or stain — a rose, for example, will furnish enough to write a dozen pages. The colour must be used promptly unless stored in glass or crystal.

53. Unravelling: A single object is broken down into its component materials, which are laid out in neatly sorted piles (or equivalent) — a woolen cloak, for example, becoming undyed wool locks and little mounds of dyestuff and mordant. Will not work on enchanted objects, animated constructs or inanimate additions to a living body.

54. Beast Of The Old Sun: Beckons an otherworldly creature to serve as mount, guardian or messenger (as horse, wolf or eagle). Regardless of purpose the beast is sleek, alien and of a gleaming frosted-fawn colour, almost metallic, with a voice like chiming bells. It remains for two hours, or as long as required to perform one designated task.

55. Life From A Stone: A conjured phantasmal seedling, suspended above one’s outstretched palm, acts as a gently tugging lodestone towards the nearest source of fresh water, sustaining greenery, or a consecrated area or standing stone.

56. Taste Of Bitter Ashes: Cast on a target that has truly and deliberately caused grief or harm, it destroys their own joys — victories are hollow, entertainments give no pleasure, and even food is as ashes in their mouth until they truly make effort to atone for their deeds.

61. Open To The Universe: 2d4 targets are stunned for 1d4+1 actions and take psychic damage (as if shortsword) as their awareness is briefly wrenched into comprehending the great equilibrium of the multiverse. This can have extra side-effects.

62. Blade Of The Tearing Sky: Calls on one of the Cloud Rulers to annul an incoming calamity, whether that be deflecting or interrupting a would-be grievous wound, unraveling a hex, impressing a lord about to give judgement, or castigating a rival. This may involve various methods; Luth loans white-blue panoply, Gua constructs rain-webs, while many write cloud silk decrees, manifest lightning blades, and so forth. It is very seldom that the Rulers do not expect an acknowledgement in return.

63. Archivist’s Escaping Wings: One document or text dissolves into a swarm of white butterflies and flutters away in all directions, disappearing from sight. After no less than a day and no more than a year, the butterflies converge at a designated location and become the text once more.

64. Ghost Tiger’s Hymn: Conjures a colourless phantom in the shape of a tiger from smoke or still-warm ashes; the beast is insubstantial but may interact with other intangible beings, and it can sense and also respond — and will give an accounting of the fire, what it consumed, and that witnessed it in a chant of heartbreaking melody. It will remain for a year and a day as a guardian of any that were consumed by the flames.

65. Flesh-Eating Lash: Creates a coiling whip in one’s hands, pale orange-pink and slick to the touch. A strike from the lash initially stings but does not injure; over the following three actions the welts rise and then eat away at the flesh in steps, dagger-shortsword-longsword, causing excruciating agony. The wielder of the lash may choose to halt the pain and injury at any step, and the lash exists for an hour or for three successful strikes.

66. Chains Of The Moon: An oath sealed with this spell is marked by a silver brand on the flesh, around the throat or wrist or heart of those who so swear. If the oath is not fulfilled within a cycle of the moon, the brand grows silvery barbs and begins to constrict, causing bloodless wounds that mark one as an oathbreaker and compel strangers, and even distant acquaintances, to refuse all aid and shelter.

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