#Crux entry on the Knights of the Blood. A personal philosophy of mine is that faiths in settings should be multifaceted. They should have positive and negative sides to them. The faith of the Summer Rose is about Birth, Youth and Flame- a religion about the kind of warm fire that protects you from the cold of the wild. It needed its own dark side, and in a recent story arc in my home game, I needed a different kind of antagonist to get things done.
Here it is, the Knights of the Blood. Intended to be a kind of Chaotic Evil side to the Summer Rose, they are important in that they think of themselves as performing a necessary evil. The pain they cause is "needed" from their point of view.
Church of the Summer Rose: The Bloody Knights (Antipaladins)
Knights of the Summer Flame originate the ideal of the Paladin in shining armor. They wear fire on their bodies, and they brave any fear to save the innocent. Like all faiths, however, the Summer Rose has its own dark servants, Knights whose actions are darker than one might consider possible.
Knights of the Blood are Anti-Paladins sworn to the Summer Rose. Where the Summer Flame shines in the sun, Knights of the Blood bring fire to the night. They can use infant's blood to grant renewed youth to anyone, the Blessing of the Summer Rose.
But they can do more with blood taken from the young. Often Knights of the Blood work with children and teenagers. They never kill their charges, but take their blood. Lots of blood. They often use bloodletting to treat their young charges, especially infants against disease.
Their blood magic allows them to perform miracles no one else in the Church of the Summer Rose can replicate. They can perform rites of that allow painless births, end disease, destroy buildings, or even change the weather. Blood is used to create a circle, around which the Knight prays to the Summer Rose to intercede. Their most dire trick, however, is turning blood into a weapon.
Knights of the Blood can turn blood into knives, bullets, even spears. They can ignite the flesh of others, turning them into living candles. This is perhaps the most heretical of what the Knights of the Blood do is use the blood of the young to assassinate enemies of their faith.
Rather than entrust the Church of the Black Rose, Blood Knights stalk prey and kill them. Most Knights of the Blood target known criminals or monsters, using their blood rites to slay enemies. But there are a few who believe the Summer Rose blessed them to spread her fire. They experiment, trying to unlock eternal youth.
These experimental rites kill more than they ever save. Renewed youth is a brief respite; but Blood Knights dream of helping the Summer Rose remake the world into a fiery din of the forever young. Their targets almost always never realize they've been selected to be blessed. A rarer few survive the rite, alive, only for strange things to happen to them. Some age backwards. Others shrivel into odd horrific looking things or worse things happen to them. Nightmarish horrors.
Despite their darker experiments, most only know of the Blood Knights for their professional associations. Some work with children, operating orphanages or teaching the young. The most common role Knights of the Blood serve is as midwives. They are excellent at the task.
They make use of the Birthing Flame, wherein a holy fire is used to help the birth pass. The Knight anoints and lights a fire around the laboring mother. Instead of harming the flesh, the fire instead takes away pain. Babes emerge, caressed by white flames. Then the flame is extinguished, burning away the remnants of the birth in the process.
In this role, most Knights of the Blood make sure to also bloodlet the newborn as a precaution against disease. The midwives are adept at this, using leeches upon the newborns with skill. After all, they are there to help.
Possible Aspects: Knight of the Blood; Summer Rose Midwife; Sister of the Blood Order
Knights of the Blood Stunts
Cost: this stunt costs 2 fate refresh.
Permission: Must have be a Knight of the Blood.
You can use the blood of the young to cast major spells. The flavor of your spells must be Blood or Youth. The skill you use to manage these spells is Faith, and each time you cast a spell it inflicts 1 mental stress onto you.
When you cast spells, if you add blood of the young as a component to the spell. If you do, you also can spend a Fate point to perform a miracle. Performing a miracle is a form of adding a detail, only that is only limited to being related to aging, blood or health. It cannot create something from nothing- immortality, eternal youth, or limitless energy. Such miracles have a easier time destroying rather than creating.
You know rites and rituals that help with the childbirth. You can identify and help with the process. You give the mother a +2 on any rolls to overcome obstacles during labor.
Blessing of the Sun
You are resistant to the effects of the blood-based magical manipulation of Vampyres. You get a +2 on Will to defend against such attempts.