Sunday, January 17, 2016

The Center Cannot Hold: The Skein

The Skein is a plane of dreams in the setting of #Crux.  The Skein connects the minds, and serves as the spawning ground of dreams and ideas.

All reality, planar or otherwise, all that exists, comes from a single point in the multiverse: The Aether.  The Skein grew out of the Aether.  But where the Aether burns as eternal possibilities cast in flame, the skein is a web that all minds touch.

The Skein is where dreams dwell.  They are born and they die.  Each time a mortal mind imagines, it spawns something new upon the web of the Skein.  Ideas are hard or difficult for most to kill.  Their imaginations are tied to the Skein, only the most psionic, most potent minds can control what they create in the Skein.

Walking into the Skein itself is mind boggling for mortal minds.  The vertigo of walking physically through one's own dreams can drive madness.  The Skein is the land of dreams, but physically walking in it is far different.

Skein Magick

Divine magic tends to draw itself through the psionic matrices of the Skein.  Some religions exploit this.  The Cult of the Revolution can channel fervor through the Skein.

Because all mortals share a dream connection through the Skein, it's possible for all sorts of mind magic.  Sendings, detect thoughts, and so many others exploit this planar interplay.  Skein magick also touches on the substance of dreams themselves.

There are enchantments and other wards to alter or introduce particular dreams into sleeping mortals.  These can vary from restoring lost memories to creating vibrant artwork via dreams.  Fey and other potent beings also enjoy using the skein, often using skein-based magic to help reinforce their control over their subjects.

There are also beings that live within dreams.  They feed upon the emotions and ideas that bubble up into the Skein.  These creatures sometimes can become parasites, sometimes driving victims into bouts of dreamcrafted madness.

Example Skein Artifact: The Blurring Edge.

It's a mad bit of metal held in the hand.  The weapon seems to vibrate on its own.  The steel is blue, the same color as the sky above.  Runes cover the hilt.  Each rune tastes of dizzying psionic magic.  The kind that leaves holes in one's memories.

The Blurring Edge has the shape of a sword.  But it slices away memory, not flesh.  Those cut by it bleed thoughts, not blood.  When struck by it, it reverberates into the plane of Dreams, the Skein.  The verberation cuts into the mind, slicing memories.  The wielder can learn to strike at particular memories or dreams.  But sometimes the Blurring Edge cuts off more than just the one memory it hits.

An expert swordsman who bonds with the Blurring Edge can erase memories as easily as limbs.  It blurs.  Sometimes those struck by it wake up later, bleeding and unaware where the wounds came from.
Aspect: Cuts Away Memories.