On the Shoulders of Giants
Vaktri bound to be Ash's bodyguard
The glittering, deadly vakrtri serve as emissaries to the subterranean spirit courts of earth elementals and deep gods. They appears as statues of varicolored prisms, each gemstone segment no larger than a mortal’s thigh bone. Rows of crystals slide in and out like pistons as a vaktri moves. It has three legs and five arms, though it can shift its crystals around to flow around obstacles or through narrow spaces as a long, snake-like pillar of crystalline spars. Its voice sounds like glass breaking. Its heart is a single fist-sized jewel. It has no face.
These taciturn, expressionless beings seem to have unlimited patience in discharging their duty, whether that be investigation, negotiation, or assassination. At rest, a vaktri’s utter stillness is disquieting, such that onlookers wonder whether it ever moved at all. But it is no automaton. Though the passions of the cold, calculating vaktri are slow to rouse, once aroused they are equally difficult to appease. The heart-jewel shines with an inner light equal to its ardor, colors shifting to divulge its emotional state.
Essence: 2; Willpower: 8; Join Battle: 6 dice Personal Motes: 70
Health Levels: -0/-1×2/-2×2/-4/Incap.
Actions: Feats of Strength: 9 dice (may attempt Strength 5 feats); Read Intentions: 6 dice; Navigate Underground: 7 dice; Social Influence: 8 dice; Senses: 8 dice (see Earthsight); Stealth: 6 dice
Appearance 5, Resolve 4, Guile 6
Attack (Crystalline fist): 9 dice (Damage 16) Attack (Grapple): 9 dice (10 dice to control) Combat Movement: 5 dice
Evasion 1, Parry 3
Crystalline Anatomy: The gemstone body of the vaktri does not bleed, and is immune to all mundane poisons and diseases. Some crippling effects may not apply to it due to its unique anatomy.
Earthsight: Vakrtri do not have the conventional senses of sight, hearing, or smell, but instead perceive the world through vibrations travelling through the ground. This sense is acute—they can dodge an arrow by sensing the vibration of the archer’s feet as he looses it, or hear a person’s words through the subtle resonance that travels from their throat to the ground. However, in cases where earthsight would not apply—such as being attacked by an aerial enemy—the vaktri suffers the penalties of blindness and/or deafness.
Diamond Needle Strike (7m; Simple; Decisive-only; Instant; Essence 2): The vaktri extends a single needle of its gemstone body as it makes a decisive attack. Every extra success on the attack roll allows it to reroll one die that turned up a failure on the damage roll. The vaktri may
pay three Initiative to actually fire the spike from its limb, allowing it to attack out to medium range.
Shattered Crystal Spray (15m, 1wp: Simple; Decisive-only; Instant; Essence 2): Once the vaktri has taken any levels of damage to its health track, it may use this Charm to unleash an eruption of broken fragments from within its body. It rolls a decisive attack against all enemies within short range, dividing its Initiative evenly among them to determine the raw damage of the attack and adds any wound penalties it suffers to the damage of each attack, resetting to base Initiative only after all attacks are completed. Once per fight, unless reset by taking enough damage to increase its wound penalty.
Unbreakable Gemstone Armor (5m, 3i; Reflexive; Instant; Essence 1): The vaktri gains bonus soak and hardness against an attack equal to the number of dice that turn up failures on the attack roll. This Charm must be invoked before the attack roll is made.
Needle-Body Extrusion (15m, 1wp; Simple; Indefinite; Essence 2): The vaktri may reconfigure the crystalline spars that make up its body to enter narrow or tight spaces, allowing it to move through any opening the size of a man’s forearm. It cannot actually bend the crystals of its body, making it impossible for it to maneuver through extremely twisty spaces. If the vaktri uses this Charm to assist in a feat of strength to tunnel through a structure or barrier, it doubles 7s on the roll.
Stone-Spider Grip (5m; Reflexive; One scene; Essence 2): The vaktri may climb up stone or metal surfaces as easily as it can walk, its crystalline limbs merging seamlessly with the surface before releasing. It is even possible for it to climb upside-down across a roof or scale an otherwise unclimbable surface with no need for a roll.
Faceless Envoy Proclamation (8m; Supplemental; Instant; Essence 2): The vaktri serve as emissaries of earth elemental lords or subterranean deities, for they are the most excellent messengers among the earth courts. Whenever the vaktri makes a social influence roll on the orders of another character, it may add that character’s Essence in bonus dice to the roll. Most of the spirits that the vaktri serve are of Essence 4 or 5.
Many-Faceted Radiance (10m; Reflexive; One scene; Essence 2): Glowing with the radiance of its diamond heart, the vaktri becomes a beautiful living mosaic, converting any bonus dice it receives from its Appearance on social influence rolls to successes and doubling 8s on all Appearance rolls. However, the luminous glow is telling of the crystalline being’s emotions, imposing a -2 penalty to its otherwise impeccable Guile, and it cannot use stealth at all. If the vaktri’s passions are inflamed by a successful inspire action, this Charm activates automatically and for free, but the vaktri cannot willingly end it.