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Lavinia in Adastra
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"The Native Outsider is an Outsider of the Material Plane, and the material plane is ruled by the flow of natural forces, as well as Orgone, the form natural forces take when controlled by life. Hence, while aren't elementals, they often express their abilities in similar manners. The starting Aspects of the Native Outsider are fixed like those of the Pinnacle, and are:

Null Presence, which makes it difficult for hostile magic to interact with you;

Solipsistic Integrity, the previously discussed Aspect which enables you to use all Potential you generate as you see fit;

Bolstering Influence, which strengthens your magic and that of your allies and makes you easier to target with helpful spells,

and Living Nexus, which exists mostly in potentia at the moment but which at higher Ascensions will allow you to redefine your location to include any places where your symbol is carried or your name is spoken."


"--Sorry, are you saying it makes me a god?"


"The similarities and differences between gods and Outsiders, especially Summoned Heroes, have been the subject of many works of scholarship. The primary differences are that gods can also perceive anything relating to their domains, cannot be destroyed as long as anything relating to their domain persists, lack physical bodies by default, and come into existence at a much higher level of power--speculated to be approximately the equivalent of the fiftieth Ascension."


So, yes, but a very small god. …Also probably her children don’t get the Demigod icon by default, which is important.


"If you have no further questions about the Pinnacle or Outsider Icons, I will explain magic, glamour, orgone, and psionics."


"Magic calls upon Natural Law to inform the world how it should be. A law of fire will tell you that things ought to burn, that it is a commandment that they do so. Magic is the force of order, and each law is a broad thing that countless principles can be derived from, called relationships. These relationships explain how the Law can express itself."

"Magic is uniquely suited to command not only magic, but Glamour and the flow of Nature, and its imperative way of interacting with the world can simplify many things. For example, while Druids primarily manipulate The Flow of Nature through External Orgone, they use magic as a medium to interact with and target what they wish to manipulate, even if that manipulation is done through Orgone, and they use magic to understand and hold absurd complexities of what their transformations and command must express. While this isn't the only way to do this, it is the easiest, and so even a 'pure external Orgonist' like a druid uses magic in subtle but pervasive ways."


"Can you explain more about Natural Law?"


"On every plane, there are laws of how things are and should be in the absence of living things. On the Material, the laws say that fire burns and light refracts and water flows downhill. Why these laws and not others? Because these are the laws set by the form magic naturally takes here. Under the command of a wizard, the laws have whatever exceptions the wizard chooses, and the new laws they build hold sway."


“I see. Thank you.”


"Glamour is the expression of a story, a narrative. It gives connection and direction. Glamour spawns infinite dream realms that exist and are destroyed every moment, all without mattering. Without the Astral Deep from which magic arises, those stories are incoherent and say nothing. Without the Flow of Nature, they are insubstantial. While Glamour is infinite on its own, it can only matter or have substance when it interacts with the magical or the physical, thereby limiting it. Glamour can tell a story, bring the world into a story, or bring a story into the world. The last is known as an Arcadian Manifestation, and is... dangerous."

"Glamour suffers banes. Some banes are specific - most undead fear the sun, for example--but others are universal, like how iron breaks Glamour. Generally speaking, the more degenerate states of The Flow of Nature are universal banes to Glamour. Iron is the most degenerate, and therefore the most stable, form of the cycles of matter. More dynamic states may be the bane of particular expressions of Glamour, but not Glamour in general."

"Spirit, usually harvested from souls though there are more innocuous ways to generate it as well, can greatly stabilize Glamour, and give it an existence not subject to its banes. Well 'fed' glamour can also resist its banes, but if what it fed on was not spirit, that state is not stable and will revert over time. The use of glamour is called Enchantment."


Interesting. Lavinia nods to indicate that they can go on. 


"The Material World is formed out of the Absurd Flow of the Cycles of Nature. The Absurd Flow, or The Flow of Nature, is the substance of the material world. Not only is matter made from it, but so are space, time, and the tendencies that rule them. The Vard call The Absurd Flow "Cosmic Energy", and maybe that more closely matches the understanding you have from your world. The Absurd Flow is the wellspring of chaos, an ever-changing, inconstant force of substance."

"As chaos is self-defeating, The Flow of Nature defeats itself, conflicts with itself, forming into cycles. These cycles can be concrete, like Iron or Helium or Light, and also more abstract ones, like Entropy or Time. They form the riverbed of expression that the Absurd Flow of Nature traps itself in, and hence creates the illusion of constancy over the seething chaos of the physical world."

"When the Flow of Nature becomes part of a living system, that system taints the flow with narrative and law, turning the Flow of Nature, the Cosmic Energy, into Orgone, the Flow of Life. Orgone is almost still part of The Absurd Flow, but orders itself and has direction.

"Most people who manipulate the material world do so through Orgone. It behaves itself in a way nature doesn't. Such people are either Internal Orgonists, controlling and developing their internal energy and using is as a tool, or External Orgonists, turning the flow of nature outside themselves into their own Orgone, and then using that to direct and control nature."


“So Orgone isn’t specifically a sex thing?”


"It is not. There are those who use the connections of sex, childbearing, and kinship to manipulate orgone, but there are many other paths: religious practice, discipline, ritual, meditation, exercise, or the sympathetic shaping of the natural world with human infrastructure."


"Can you be an Internal and External Orgonist at the same time?"


"Certainly. There is even an Orgonist Icon among your Icon options, which would empower you in working with all forms of Orgone."


She's not currently leaning towards taking it, but that makes sense. Probably there are icons for magic, glamour, and psionics, too. 


"The final power is Psionics. We don't really understand it, as very few psychic phenomena occurred on Adastra before the opening of the Sky-Shift Bridge. Afterwards, it spread to Adastra, but it's new to us. What we can say was that it isn't wholly new: it's a hidden element that was always there. It's associated with thought and the mind in a way that's clearly related to Glamour, and Glamour and Psionics work well together as if they were two pieces of the same puzzle. Still, we don't really know how it fits into everything. Psionics appears to apply will to directly change the world. Perhaps others have discovered more of its true nature since my creation."



That does sound cool. 

"Are there any...gaps, between things, such that you can predict the existence of more things like Psionics, that were always there but haven't been discovered?"


"I would say no, but I would also have said that before the discovery of psionics."


Having summarised the powers, I will now list your options for a third Icon. You will eventually be able to bind other Icons, but not for several Ascensions, so this choice will shape your abilities and how you gain a lot of your Potential early on.

The Icons available to you are:

- Wizard, which enables a broad mastery of magic,

- Druid, which does the same for external Orgone,

- Orgonist, which does the same for internal Orgone,

- Psion, which does the same for psionics,

- Enchantress, which does the same for Glamour,

- Warrior, the Icon of violent struggle,

- Bard, which grants power over and through music and stories,

- Mastermind, for the farsighted manipulation of others towards your own ends,

- Student, the jack of all trades which shifts quickly between skills,

- Challenger, whose Aspects are determined by what its bearer overcomes,

- Rogue, which grants a large number of weak Aspects based on nonmagical skills honed to supernatural perfection,

- Perfumist, the alchemical equivalent of the Bard which works through scent and Glamour,

- Alchemist, a broad Icon through which to study the transmutation of matter,

- Summoner, focused on communication and bargaining with Outsiders for aid,

- Mind Over Body Adept, which enables the use of psionic energy to enhance the user's body,

- Sensualist, which builds and stores power through ritualistic sex acts,

- Binders, which can borrow the power of Outsiders or Gods through rituals or the shared conception of a child, 

- Cobalt Mage, which draws power from the opponents they defeat,

- Nightmare Psychic, which draws vast but poorly controlled power from the fear and pain of others,

- Seeker of Delights, for perceiving and appreciating all things and people,

- Spellblade, which synergizes martial and magical skill,

- Changeling Knight, which imitates the powers of those reshaped by the Fae,

- Priestess, founded on cooperation with a God and enabling the bearer to channel that God's power,

- Artificer, which enables the creation of wondrous tools and devices and which you would receive an additional reward for taking,

-  Ritualist of the Congress, which also uses ritual sex and which you would receive an additional reward for taking,

- Lady, which revolves around being desired and sought, and which you would receive an additional reward for taking,

- and Circle of Towers Druid, which works through connections between people and through reshaping of the landscape, and which you would receive an additional reward for taking.


"The last four options, would they all provide the same reward? What would the reward or rewards be?"


"In all cases the reward is an extra selection from the array of available Gifts, physical and mental refinements we can include as part of the templating process. Everyone starts with five; various choices you make can grant or cost additional ones."

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