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True Fae (WOD)

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Changeling the lost escape by moritat
The True Fae (the Others, Gentry, Kindly Folk or simply Fae, among many other names) are the native denizens of the Faerie realm of Arcadia which lies beyond the Hedge, who abduct humans from the mortal realm, transforming them into changelings.

They seem to have no names for themselves as a "race", and indeed do not think of themselves as such; each of the Fae is unique, and they refer to other denizens of Faerie by titles and names. The euphemisms used by changelings are many, which helps to prevent them being summoned at the sound of their names. When used to mean the True Fae, "Fae" is always capitalised; "fae" without the capital refers to any creatures touched by faerie, including changelings.

The Fae's perceptions, motivations and actions are alien to humans. They seem to understand the world through relatives rather than absolutes; many are bound by obscure and bizarre oaths and rules; others act seemingly at random, obeying a logic opaque to all humans. While they may sometimes take the form of human-like beings or animals, they are often incapable of understanding mortals, one of the reasons they find them so fascinating.

In their home realm, and to a lesser extent the Hedge, they possess god-like abilities, able to shape and command all the elements of their domains at will. Their powers in the mortal realm are greatly lessened, but still awesome; their influence extends there by means of Contracts they made with the mundane elements long ago.

The Power of Names and TitlesEdit

Explained in the CTL: Equinox Road Bullet-pdf Bullet-nip supplement, the True Fae play a game that revolves around the acquisition of titles. Each member of the Gentry has both a name and at least one title, but the more they have, the greater their power, as the title grants them control over certain elements and concepts. To lose all ones titles is to either be destroyed or be banished from Arcadia.

Titles are gained and lost by having the Gentry challenge each other to Feuds, or what the changeling Winter Court has codenamed Legends. A legend revolves around conflict between two or more warring Kindly Folk, who — after asking and acquiring permission from their opponent(s) — must play out key parts within the legend.

The Game of ImmortalsEdit

Legends mean something to the Gentry. They are a means to existing. Through the conflict of the Feud, True Fae are able to experience challenge and potentially become even more powerful. Why is this important varies from member to member of the Kindly Folk, but most do so in the name of ambition towards Wyrd Transcendence, a mysterious fate, even to the Gentry, that they are instinctively drawn towards accomplishing. In order for this to happen, however, they must acquire a number of titles and names within the Game of Immortals.

In truth, however, it is during these story games that the Gentry are at their most vulnerable, as they become forced to play out their parts, lest they risk losing their coveted title. Changelings that enter Arcadia may find this to their advantage, and may choose a side (or not), to gain assistance in destroying one or more of the True Fae. This can also lead to the creation of alliances through pacts with the two factions, the Gentry being sworn to uphold their end of the bargain in the name of the Wyrd.

Forms of the GentryEdit

Despite what most changelings believe, the True Fae are not simply powerful creatures that you can stab and kill. They are beings given power over aspects of the Wyrd, their names and titles allowing them to take on a plethora of shapes and forms. Also, if a Kindly One has multiple titles, they can take on several forms at once. Of these forms, there are the following:

Actor - The most common shape that most changelings see a Kindly One as, the Actor is the sentient avatar of a given True Fae, using a title or name to grant itself attributes and power over certain elements and concepts. It is used most often when attempting to converse with Others, or hunting in the Hedge and mortal realm. The Gentry can put as many titles into their Actor as they desire, but can only have one Actor out at a time.

Prop - A sneakier form to take, the True Fae can take the shape of an object in character with the title it is created from. This is usually used to spy on slaves within a given Gentry's domain, or enhance the powers of an Actor, be it the owner's, or an ally Kindly Folk.

Realm - Under this form, the Gentry becomes a location within its domain in Arcadia—though there's always tell-tale signs of the place being one of the Kindly Folk, reflected in the title used to create it.

Wisp - Despite the name, wisps are not singular creatures when revolving around the True Fae, rather, they are a group of "minions" or "servants" that are relevant to the title that made them. They are considered less than automotons by other True Fae, and are used usually to maintain and/or defend a given Gentry's domain from invasion.

Pieces of a WholeEdit

Sometimes a given title is too precious to a member of the Gentry to lose, but is so attractive to other players that the Fae is forced to constantly fight for its ownership. The solution to this comes in the form of tossing the title out of Arcadia- literally.

What happens to the title in question is that it becomes an avatar of the True Fae that discarded it, allowing the Gentry to be in two places at once, while protecting the title from being taken by rivals. The avatar's nature is reflective of the title it was born from, and can sometimes even be mistaken for a changeling, much to the glee and pleasure of its True Fae progenitor.

Optional TruthsEdit

Although a lot is covered about the True Fae, the storyteller is always given the final voice in what they actually are. In contrast with the Fae of Arcadia from Mage: The Awakening, the Changeling version of the Fae offers them up as being fetches of the "real" denizens of Arcadia, which explains why the Gentry are able to create the dopplegangers in the first place.

Another possibility is that the True Fae are merely dreams given sentience and life through the power of the Wyrd, reasoning that this is why the Gentry are so capricious and unable to create anything without human intervention. Without dreamers, there are no dreams.

ReferencesEdit

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