[center]Twenty-one figures watching over me.
Twenty-one fathers watching over fate.
Twenty-one mothers watching over life
Twenty-one sons watching over our land.
Twenty-one daughters watching over truth.
Twenty-one sleepless nights.
Twenty-one pair of lips, whispering to me dark secrets.
Twenty-one, taught me the Art.
Twenty-one Arcanas, I will remember.
The Magus' Pledge, as forgotten by mankind.[/center]
Tarot, that is the common name we have for this simple game of cards. Innocuous enough, after all, there are hardly any incidents related to it, and then those that do exist are merely tricks of our feeble minds.
Or are they? Is it merely that us, humans, have forgotten about the truth of eons past? That the magicians once told of in the tomes of ancient lore did actually exist but that this was a very different world then?
If that is what you believe, then you might be closer to the truth than you expected.
The Ancient World, that is how we knew it. In this world, long forgotten in a past turned to dust and silenced in a history that wants itself politically correct, magic was not merely the impotent tricks of a simple public entertainer, but a very real, fearsome, force to reckon with. Under the watchful eyes of the Twenty-One Arcanas, the laws of magic were both respected and revered, and the might flow of mana was available for all to tap into, should they truly wish to learn to do so.
However, this would not last.
None knows what It looks like.
None knows what It desire.
Its only name is Om, and with it echoes the very creation of our universe.
The Twenty-One Arcanas were powerful entities at heart, and they desired nothing more than to be free from any rules and do as they please. With their nearly godlike abilities and reign over the material world, they felt nothing could challenge them or stand in their way. Not even their maker, not even Om.
This would prove to be their undoing, which would take the form of the fall of the Ancient World into the New World.
One day, mankind woke up as if all that had been at the tip of their fingers had vanished, the almighty flow of mana all but beyond their grasp now. This was the dawn of the New World, and where our story trule begins.
The Twenty-One Arcanas were sealed away into an eternal prison by Om, forever to be forgotten for their arrogance and petty pride. Their prison took a very peculiar form, an object we would learn to call the tarot deck.
Or, as one may comprehend from this story, the first tarot deck. As a work of art regal and beyond human comprehension, it was soon copied by a simple artist who found herself down on her luck, and spread itself across the world. They held no true power, but the one of the selfish desires and illusory dreams of their owner.
However, the first deck, was quite different from its children of sort. It held a much greater value, for as the prison of the Twenty-One Arcanas, it also became a portal of sort from which their power could leak back into our world. For those brave enough to use that deck, the Arcanas would sometimes answer questions, sometimes deceive, sometimes bless, sometimes curse and sometimes simply play with them. However, as eons passed and the New World grew into the world, pure and simple, they once mighty and revered forgotten, acquired a simple idea from this situation. After all, if their powers could leak into this world like this, then perhaps they could find a way out.... to escape from this wretched prison of theirs.
One cold winter's night, a desperate woman used the first deck. Using all their combined might, the Arcanas managed to speak in but a whisper within the psyche of the woman, offering her all she desired if only she would grant them her unborn child.
So she accepted, and the deck was passed to another, who too accepted.
Thus were born seven children, seven avatars of the lucky Arcanas who managed to overpower their bethren as their vied for the chance to bestow a child with a small fragment of their soul, so that they may become their avatar unto this world.
An avatar which they would use one day to escape their cage and earn back their rightful glory. A chance to bring back what was stolen from them, the Ancient World, into existence.
However, all was not well in the world, and not all of the Arcanas who earned their rightful place into the world wished for a peaceful comeback, or one where they once anew shared the power.
No, some even went as far as to desire divinity for themselves, and would influence their avatar in any way they can imagine to get what they want. For they have no remorse.
This is how what was once lost was recovered, and that the Art which had been ridiculed and forgotten, came back into our world for a select few.
It is also how what would later be known as the War of Arcana took place, a bloody and brutal battle between selfish and emotionless entities wishing only to gain ultimate power.
The seven young avatars of the Arcanas.
II. Character Sheet
Name: Please pick something that makes sense in a modern, realistic, setting. Your parents weren't freaking elves, they picked a human name, damn it.
Age:: Since the Major Arcanas aren't known for their patience, the avatars were born relatively close in age to each other. They can be as young as 15 years old and as old as 24 years old. Of course, if that really bothers you and you have a great idea or good reason to go along with your displeasure, feel free to PM me with whatever you got. We'll work something out.
Gender: Are you male, female or Bridget? =o (You better get that one Jay! *shakes fist*)
Ethnicity: It's self-explanatory, I believe. They are no other races than humans, but I'm curious to know the ethnicity of your character.
Location: All characters live either in the bustling city of Serene Hallows in the United States or in the suburbs of said city. For details on that, please see 'Appendix I'. In any case, what I'm asking is where exactly in Serene Hallows or its suburbs does your character live.
Occupation: Is your character a student? Unemployed? An average salaryman? What do they do for a living really?
Arcana: This is the Arcana of which your character is an avatar. It must be one of the twenty-one major arcanas of tarot, excluding the World. Meaning you may pick the Fool. For details, please see 'Appendix II'. Furthermore, Judgement is not to be taken either and if someone wishes to take the arcana of Death, then they better not make it some stupid cliche crap.
Personality:Influenced by your Arcana, but otherwise feel free to customize and imagine it as you please. For the details on how a certain Arcana influence your character's personality, please see 'Appendix II' again. Also, I'd appreciate it if you told me in this how your character deals with their status as an avatar and whether or not they accept to obey the Arcana from which they gain power.
Appearance: The appearance of your character, obviously. Not just how their clothes look though, thank you very much, but how THEY look. I expect to hear just as much about their personal looks as I hear about how they usually dress. I'm sick of hearing a earing described in scrupulous detail with stuff like "Her eyes are blue and her hair is brown.". That's just plain insulting to my intelligence.
Avatar Blessings: The powers granted to you by your status as an avatar of a certain Arcana. The powers must be related to your Arcana. I don't want to hear no bullshit about psychic powers from, let's say, the avatar of the major arcana Justice. That wouldn't make much sense. I'm being nice here and letting you imagine whatever crazy stuff you can come up with, so don't dissapoint me. Be good about it. Impress me.
History:Tell me about your characters life. From childhood to the present, in as painfully excruciating details as necessary. I'll read it carefully and lovingly, promise. <3
- Code: Select all
[b]Name:[/b] Please pick something that makes sense in a modern, realistic, setting. Your parents weren't freaking elves, they picked a human name, damn it. =P
[b]Age:[/b]: Since the Major Arcanas aren't known for their patience, the avatars were born relatively close in age to each other. They can be as young as 15 years old and as old as 24 years old. Of course, if that really bothers you and you have a great idea or good reason to go along with your displeasure, feel free to PM me with whatever you got. We'll work something out.
[b]Gender:[/b] Are you male, female or Bridget? =o (You better get that one Jay! *shakes fist*)
[b]Ethnicity:[/b] It's self-explanatory, I believe. They are no other races than humans, but I'm curious to know the ethnicity of your character.
[b]Location:[/b] All characters live either in the bustling city of Serene Hallows in the United States or in the suburbs of said city. For details on that, please see 'Appendix I'. In any case, what I'm asking is where exactly in Serene Hallows or its suburbs does your character live.
[b]Occupation:[/b] Is your character a student? Unemployed? An average salaryman? What do they do for a living really?
[b]Arcana:[/b] This is the Arcana of which your character is an avatar. It must be one of the twenty-one major arcanas of tarot, excluding the World. Meaning you may pick the Fool. For details, please see 'Appendix II'. Furthermore, Judgement is not to be taken either and if someone wishes to take the arcana of Death, then they better not make it some stupid cliche crap.
[b]Personality:[/b]Influenced by your Arcana, but otherwise feel free to customize and imagine it as you please. For the details on how a certain Arcana influence your character's personality, please see 'Appendix II' again. Also, I'd appreciate it if you told me in this how your character deals with their status as an avatar and whether or not they accept to obey the Arcana from which they gain power.
[b]Appearance:[/b] The appearance of your character, obviously. Not just how their clothes look though, thank you very much, but how THEY look. I expect to hear just as much about their personal looks as I hear about how they usually dress. I'm sick of hearing a earing described in scrupulous detail with stuff like "Her eyes are blue and her hair is brown.". That's just plain insulting to my intelligence.
[b]Avatar Blessings:[/b] The powers granted to you by your status as an avatar of a certain Arcana. The powers [u]must[/u] be related to your Arcana. I don't want to hear no bullshit about psychic powers from, let's say, the avatar of the major arcana Justice. That wouldn't make much sense. I'm being nice here and letting you imagine whatever crazy stuff you can come up with, so don't dissapoint me. Be good about it. Impress me.
[b]History:[/b]Tell me about your characters life. From childhood to the present, in as painfully excruciating details as necessary. I'll read it carefully and lovingly, promise. <3
III. The Life and Times of an Avatar
Being an avatar isn't all fun and pink bunnies m'dears! Oh no, it isn't. Let me tell you a bit about it, so you may better comprehend what kind of contract your mother has got your little unborn selves into!
You were born with a strange mark, almost like a tattoo. This is a symbol that within your soul, a small sparkle of an Arcana's soul dwells. This is what makes you an avatar. As you grew up, you would hear voices whispering to you strange things, a bit like a conscience. Depending on your Arcana, it could have been lectures on proper behaviour or even inciting you to commit terrible deeds! In the end however, you were always free to obey or disobey the voice within you, although it did promise much if you obeyed. As time went on, you understood the nature of the 'voice' as a part of you, whether you liked it or not, for it was undeniably 'there' for you.
The 'voice' would calmly and thoroughly explain who and what they were, and what they expected from you in exchange for their tremendous power and blessing. Whether you accepted or not, they would forever pressure you into doing their bidding. Into fighting the other avatars as a symbol of the Arcanas vying for power over the material realm.
From a long time, you could tell easily when one had crossed the path of the Arcanas, and in due time even if one was an avatar, alike you. You felt deeply attracted to a place known as Serene Hallow, as to why that was, you could not tell. But the voice would encourage this tendency heavily, and so you did either move in Serene Hallows, or perhaps were even born there! Many an avatar was born there after all.
The game, so to speak, starts as you wake up from a long, intensely realistic dream, in which you were facing a strange figure who pretended to be "Judgement". They spoke of many things, but mostly that this was not as your Arcana told you. In fact, Om had given a select few this opportunity to test them, and so you. What was the subject of the test? That was irrelevant. All that was asked of you was to follow your heart and path. Whether that was one of compassion or sadism, creation or destruction.
After that mysterious dream, many of your kind will meet you, and perhaps even hurt you. Things would never be the same again.
Serene Hallows, a bustling fictional metropolis somewhere in the United States. As the third largest concentation of population in the states, one can find virtually anything they desire if they know where to look and accomodations of all sort are available, at an impressive range of prices. Of course, with such a large city, comes equally sprawling suburbs, which too are part of our story.
Your characters, as avatars, are attracted toward each other by a magnetism of sort that makes them likely to gather at the same places if they are close enough. By all bringing them over to Serene Hallows like this, the Arcanas hoped to not only find who were the avatars of the other competing Arcanas, but also to possibly get rid of them, or something else, depending on their personal ethics.
In other words, I don't care how, but find a reason for your character to live in Serene Hallows, or at least for them to be one of its citizen for a while, and by a while I mean a few years.
This appendix's purpose is to give a rough explanation of each Arcana's meaning, symbolism and effects on one's personality. For further details that you may wish to use, please consult this webpage: http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/learn/meanings/
The Fool: The Arcana of infinite possibilities. The dawn of all. The beginning. Fresh and new, spirited and full of energy, it is the card of youth, of those who are nothing yet, but thus have the potential to be anything. The Fool's journey may have just begun, but the sky is the limit, so to speak. The Fool promotes a positive outlook on life and an energetic personality, but it also promotes carelessness and ignorance, which all affect its avatar's personality. The Fool is also somewhat more likely to appreciate purity, as it incarnates untainted youth.
The Magician: The Arcana of wild creation. Without direction, it is unrefined energy at its finest. It is the soul of all that create on a material level, the builder, the creator, the conceptor. The Magician's avatar is likely to have at least some level of appreciation for science and engineering. The Magician is likely to promotes a tendency to have a 'one-track-mind' and obsess over anything new, but it is also just as likely to promote callousness and irresponsibility for one's creation, for all the Magician Arcana cares for is creation, however it might be done.
The High Priestess: The Arcana of secrets and mystery, arcana knowledge that is beyond rationality. It holds secrets yet untold and perhaps even dangerous, but it might be willing to share them with you, if it so desire. It is all a matter of whim with the High Priestess. The avatar of the High Priestess is likely to be secretive, sneaky, discreet and thoroughly enjoy a good mystery, which will probably lead to an healthy curiosity, which in turns can be considered a tendency to be nosy.
The Empress: The Empress is the motherly aspect of creation. What the Magician creates, the Empress nurtures. It is caring, tender, loving and gentle. Those who would be her avatar would find themselves with a strong motherly instinct and an healthy dose of kindness, though that might turn into a tendency to be overprotective and clingy.
The Emperor: The Emperor is, as his name may hint, sovereignty and sheer power. It is the Arcana of dominance and charisma, of leadership. Those who would be his avatar are born leaders, charismatic and with a good sense of authority, but they might as well turn into tyrants and petty children who cannot be challenged without throwing a tantrum. The Emperor is both extremes balanced. The Emperor's avatar is likely to hold a powerful political office of some sort or something at least related to traditional power.
The Hierophant: The one who brings forth the divine unto heart, the Hierophant is the spirit or religion, faith and tradition. Deeply faithful and spiritual, the Hierophant is the one who answers the questions of the every day man about their spiritual lives and even their daily problems without hesitation. At his best, the avatar of the Hierophant is a spiritual person who sooths others with their wise words and inspiring speeches, at their worst they are an unbending traditionalist. The avatar of the Hierophant is likely to hold a spiritual position of some sort, likely in any of many religion's churches.
The Lovers: The Lovers, as one may suspect, incarnations love, infuation, affection and passion. Be it passionate, consuming, lust or tender, romantic, eternal love, it is both, yet neither. The one who incarnates the lovers is likely to be an unpredictable, whimsical, changing person, who jumps from one relationship to the next without much thought to the consequences yet no real bad intentions. At heart, its avatar would be a person who wish to spread love, and love a lot would, but in doing so goes pain to those left behind. The defining point of the Lovers' avatar would be their limitless, consuming, love. They love, a lot, and they love hard.
The Chariot: The Chariot represents struggle, opposition, war, victory and other such. It is the warrior who fight until their last breath, the one who never gives up. The Chariot's avatar is likely to be extremely stubborn and willful, yet also often earn victory despite being the underdog. There is a slight chance that they might work within the military or police, but that is not significant.
Strenght: Strenght represents both the untamed lion that roars and the serene maiden that holds its maw shut, proving the superiority of spirit over matter. Strenght is the victory of inner strenght over physical strenght. The one who proves to be the avatar of Strenght will tend to be indomitable, unafraid, undaunted, courageous and brave. Honour is likely a value dear to their heart.
The Hermit: The Arcana of introspection and analysis, it is the wisdom of ones who knows themselves perfectly and who is deeply perceptive. It also incarnates sharp deductive skills. Obviously, the avatar of the Hermit possess all those qualities, along with the flaws of being solitary, shy and somewhat untalkative most of the time. The avatar of the Hermit, in the right circumstances, can be inspirational and awe others with their ability to observe the world around them and extract almost imperceptible fact out of it. Although they are unlikely to be one, they would make a marvellous private detective.
The Wheel: This Arcana represents luck, fortune and prosperity. There isn't much else to say about it, beside that with it can also come a sense of unhealthy invulnerability and greed. The one who is the avatar of this Arcana is likely to be a gambler of sort, happy-go-lucky and deeply irresponsible. Chances are they are naive and take things for granted too, due to their absolutely ludicrous amount of luck.
Justice: Justice is about cold, objective balance through reason or natural force. It is pure rationality, the cold objective judge of the world and itself. The avatar of Justice is likely to be fair but cold, loyal and steadfast but unbending and self-righteous. Obviously, a job in the legal system is the perfect match for this one.
The Hanged-Man: This is the Arcana of meditation, selflessness, sacrifice and prophecy. This is the one who lets himself go and make himself vulnerable, so that they may reach enlightenment. Ascetism is a very likely value of its avatar and there is a serious chance of them being poor or homeless, as they care very little for the material world. They are completely tuned to the spiritual world and may even have limited psychic abilities, but by doing so neglect the material heavily.
Death: This is the Arcana of change. That which build the new upon the ashes of the old. Death is when you completely throw away something to replace it with something radically different. Thus, Death is not an end, but an end from which is born a new beginning. The avatar of Death is likely to be a visionary, an idealist and a revolutionary with very different ideas who wish to completely bulldoze the old system to put forth a completely new one that suits their vision. They may even be an anarchist! However, it is to be noted that they very rarely have any bad intentions. If they choose a cause, then they do believe it to be just and good for the sake of the whole. Although some may think they always are, they are not likelier than anyone else to be cruel, although they may be.
Temperance: This Arcana represents moderation and balance. The one who is its avatar is very likely to be frugal, simple and above all else very normal. They can easily see both sides of the coin, and generally prefer the center to either of the extremes presented. They are likely to be very neutral individuals with centrist ethical and moral convictions. Otherwise, their personality can be extremely widely varied, as a varied personality is more balanced.
The Devil: The Arcana of materialism. Spirituality is meaningless to it, and only the material matters, binding people in shackles of pleasure and desire. However, one should remember that one willingly submit to this devil, it does not enslave. The one who is the avatar of the Devil is likely to be extremely materialistic, selfish, egoistical and short-sighted. However, they are also likely to be charming, cunning and spirited, seemingly unbreakable behind all their wealth and power. They are likely a powerful member of a Fortune 500 company or something to that effect. Wealth is almost mandatory with someone of this Arcana.
The Tower: This Arcana is hard to understand, for it represents both lies and truth. The clash between the two is what brings forth ruin and misery. The Tower is a dangerous Arcana, one of suffering, pain and despair, and perhaps the most negative of them all. The avatar of the Tower is likely to be cynical, bitter and full of sorrow and hatred. Furthermore, they are likely to be at a constant war with themselves between the lies they have built for themselves to keep their sanity and the truth that attack them from all side, since they still live within reality.
The Star: The Star is the Arcana of healing, hope and compassion. It sooths the wounds of those hurt and gives a smile to those who's heart has long closed to the invasions of the outside world. It mends and repairs, shine as a lone light in a darkened sky of hopelessness. The avatar of the Star is likely to be selfless, compassionate, tender and thoughtful. They give without thinking, and are likely working either as a social worker or in a charity. Their idealistic approach to life is commendable, but the pitfalls are all too obvious. Overworked, stressed and stretched thin, they can easily become sick and forget to take decent care of themselves.
The Moon: The Arcana of insanity, creativity, imagination, unconscious and poetry. This Arcana is a shining symbol of what lurks within the unknown void of the night, both the wonders and the monsters. The avatar of this Arcana is likely to be insane is some way, be it schizophrenia, a bipolar disorder or any of a number of mental issues. Perhaps even more than one at once! They are likely very chaotic, unstable and creative. Their imagination is something to behold and chances are they may even have a cult-following for what poetry they manage to write despite their issues. They likely work as an artist of sort.
The Sun: This Arcana is science and math, beautifully constructed music, carefully reasoned philosophy. It is a card of intellect, clarity of mind, and feelings of youthful energy. It is the radiance of the Sun vanquishing the darkness of the night, bringing forth a bountiful harvest and prosperity. The avatar of the Sun is likely to do any number of jobs that is of benefit to the public at large, because of their willingness to give a bit of themselves to 'light' the lives of those less fortunate than themselves. They are very likely to have a passionate affair with mathematics, science, philosophy or music, possibly even all four! They are reasonable and coherent, calm and composed. However, they can also be easily distracted and tend to have a bad attention span.
Judgement: Wouldn't you like to know?
The World: The opposite of the fool, it is the end of the journey. All that was desired has been acquired, all that was needed is within reach and has in fact been grasped. The happy ending, in other words. It doesn't work very well for this game, so it is forbidden.
At best, I will let in seven people. Not one more. And even that many is unlikely, as I like having some NPCs to further along the story. You should keep that in mind while applying.
Considering the massive amount of data I had to type down and the many ideas I had to include within, I might have forgotten something, if that happened, please forgiven me and notify me asap via PM. I will correct my oversight in a timely manner.
And now.... may the sign-up begin!