Secretarial Ways

   Today it’s a bit of material for Rolemaster – a quiet little spell list from an old character that, in fact, saw an astounding amount of use. Why rummage this out? Partially because the list might be useful in a vartiety of settings and to a variety of characters – and shouldn’t need too much adaption for such use – and partially because I ran across it in the old files and felt like it.

Secretarial Ways :

   -While it’s one of the more unassuming spell lists around, “Secretarial Ways” is invaluable to a clerk – and, later on, may become invaluable to any diplomat. As a combination of mental- and essence-based magics, Secretarial Magic is primarily the realm of Mystics and the occasional “Professional” Diplomat.

Lvl

Spell

Area Of Effect

Duration

Range

01

Take Notes

Stack of paper

5 Min/Lvl

Touch

02

Sketch Scene

Sheet of paper

Instant

Touch

03

Psychic Seal

Envelope/Sheet

“P”

Touch

04

Stamp

Small package

“P”

Touch

05

Secret Scribing

One missive

“P”

Touch

06

Locate Document

One library

1 Minute

100′

07

Identify Document

One document

1 Minute

3′

08

Airmail Stamp

Small package

“P”

Touch

09

Copy

Sheet of paper

P

Touch

10

Insured Mail

Small package

P

Touch

11

Search Clauses

One document

10S/Page

3′

12

Formal Witness

One agreement

P

20′

13

Ward Paper

Pad/Book/Sheet

P

20′

14

Analyze Document

One Document

1 Minute

3′

15

Forgery

One document

P

Touch

16

Endless Volume

One book

P

Touch

17

Read B. Lines

One document

10S/Page

3′

18

Diplomatic Pouch

Special

Constant

Touch

19

Consult Akhasic Records

Personal

Instant

???

20

Review The Minutes

One room/area

Special

50′

25

Pact Arcane

One agreement

P

Sp.

30

Ambassadorial Binding

One agreement

P

Sp.

40

Selective Memory

Personal

Constant

Self

50

Force Treaty

Special

P

Vocal

 

   Take Notes (P*) Allows the user to take detailed and accurate notes – regardless of whether or not he/she is actually in any position to do so or would usually run short of paper and/or ink. If you happen to want to have detailed notes on exactly “what it’s like” to be dragged by a horse, then this is the spell for you.

   Sketch Scene (P) Produces a near-photographic line drawing (Or water-color type painting) of a scene the caster is witnessing or has witnessed within the last few minutes.

   Psychic Seal (P) “Attunes” an ordinary seal to the psychic aura of a particular individual or group. Any other individual who attempts to tamper with the seal or document must first succeed in “attuning” the seal to themselves (“Sheer Folly”), or their efforts (This includes their attempt to attune) will simply destroy the document in question. Extremely powerful casters (Level 15+) may opt to spend 12 extra PP to make such destruction spectacularly violent (10′ R Fireball, at +25%). Once the seal is broken, the spell ends.

   Stamp (P) The classic method of “sending a letter” was to pay a courier – who would be paid again by the recepient. Less wealthy correspondents entrusted such missives to travellers, and hoped that they’d be handed on until they reached their addressee’. Surprisingly, this worked much of the time. This charm facilitates that process; increasing the chance of arrival to 95% (There are always accidents), and considerably reducing the time required (GMO, according to setting). Once the letter has been delivered the spell ends.

   Secret Scribing (P) Attunes a flask of ink so that only those for whom it is intended can see it. This is usually used to add secret messages to documents – although a truly careful inspection, with appropriate magic, can often pick out the impressions left by the pen and the water base containing such “invisible ink”.

   Locate Document (I) Locates any document, book, or reference the user specifies within a collection – if it’s there and hasn’t been magically concealed. This is much easier, and much faster, then physically searching for such an item.

   Identify Document (I) Determines the author, basic age, and source, of any document or extract thereof (An effect extremely useful in identifying forgeries). It is also very handy at “telling you where to look” for the rest of this tantalizing fragment.

   Airmail Stamp (P) While this cute spell “arranges” for the fastest available method of travel (Including things like being blown along by the wind, carried by a bird – or teleported along with a traveling mage), it’s otherwise pretty much identical to “Stamp”.

   Copy (F) “Photocopies” one mundane page, in color. This includes any relevant seals and signatures – and may be used to duplicate artworks. Each extra PP invested yields an additional copy. Water-damaged, blurred, or torn “originals” may be “reconstructed” (in the copy) with a successful skill check (Lore or “artistic”, as seems relevant).

   Insured Mail (F) This spell teleports a package to it’s destination. This does not guarantee that anyone there will give it immediate attention – or that it’s intended recipient will be there at all – but it will get it there promptly and securely.

   Search Clauses (U.) Allows the user to read thru a document extremely quickly, locating references, fine print (IE; Tricky wording), studying, and editing, with an accuracy equal to his or her reason attribute.

   Formal Witness (F*) Invokes the notice of whatever entities and forces watch over oaths. The caster may “witness” any kind of bargain, contract, or promise – placing all those (voluntarily) involved under a kind of “geas” to keep their words. If they fail to do so, then “something nasty happens” (Whatever the entities involved decide to do; if the failure was involuntary or accidental the “penalty” is likely to be minor. A bit of deliberate treachery however.).

   Ward Paper (D) Renders a book, document – or sheet of paper – as durable as a piece of “sheet metal”. In effect, it takes a serious, and deliberate, effort to destroy them. (For those clowns who insist on trying to use warded sheets to make paper armor, such sheets can be used to turn leather into “reinforced leather” without penalty. It’s not thick enough for anything heavier – and nothing short of leather will provide the backing to hold it).

   Analyze Document (I) Permits the user to translate documents in unknown ciphers, codes, or languages, as well as subsuming “identify document”. If the caster happens to be interested, he or she can also identify things like the ink composition and paper type.

   Forgery (F) Allows the user to create near-perfect forgeries, including relevant signatures, seals, ink, and paper. While near-perfect as far as conventional examination is concerned, such spellcrafted forgeries can be revealed by magical means – although this is a difficult (“Very Hard”) task.

   Endless Volume (F.) Allows the user to keep all of his or her notes in one book. Such a book is “tied” to the caster; it’ll always get back to him or her in short order if it’s lost somehow, it’s indestructible as long as the caster lives (And “Warded” thereafter) – and can hold one rune per level of the user, although these must be cast by him or her.

   Read Between Lines (I) This weird spell allows the caster to analyze the style, content, and wording, of a document – determining the nature, motivations, and emotional state of the author. If the caster has ever encountered the author’s works before, he or she will know it – and will be able to identify the link. This goes well beyond handwriting analysis – it’s somewhat harder to analyze a document that’s been written by a scribe from dictation, copied, or translated – but it can be done.

   Diplomatic Pouch (F*) This spell allows the caster to store physical objects in the depths of his or her mind, within limits; living things may not be stored, the total mass may not exceed the user’s memory score divided by two (in pounds), items to be “stored” must be in the uncontested physical possession of the user – and it requires the expenditure of one PP per pound of material put “in” or withdrawn (Items weighing 1/2 pound or less may be put “in”, or taken out, freely). Items “in” the pouch have no noticeable mass and, as far as the rest of the world is concerned, simply “do not exist” while they’re in there. What happens to items in the pouch if the user dies is at the discretion of the GM. Likely fates include disappearing, appearing on the spot, and reappearing at the character/s home, where most of his mnemonic associations are.

   Consult Akhasic Records (I) This allows the caster to tap into the “memory” of the universe. Sadly, this is a bit much to handle. Worse, popular input tends to drown out subtle secrets. It does, however, grant the user an instant “briefing” on virtually anything; the kind of thing you’d find in an encyclopedia, in a tourist guidebook – or with an hour or so of research on a subject in a (modern) library.

   Review The Minutes (I) Allows the user to “review” the events of a meeting or incident he or she did not actually attend. This requires only 1/10’th the time the actual event required – but does allow for taking notes. While this is usually limited to the past few months, exceptionally important or dramatic incidents may “resonate” for vastly longer periods.

   Pact Arcane (F) While related to “Formal Witness”, this spell creates a mystic link between those involved – permitting easy summoning, the bestowal of many types of powers, and the other “classical” effects of mystic bargains. Precise effects depend on the powers of the beings involved and the “contract” arrived at; this spell merely creates the link and enforces what- ever terms the principles have arrived at.

   Ambassadorial Binding (F) Allows the caster – when so authorized – to negotiate on behalf of another and have the terms be binding (Formal Witness and/or Pact Arcane) on everyone involved in the bargain (This may be delayed until the principles, on either side, app- rove the deal – but it is binding once they do so).

   Selective Memory (S*.) Allows the user to “forget” things whenever it’s convenient, and to remember them perfectly at other times. No truthsensor, telepathic probe, coercion, torture, or related power, including the caster’s own abilities and mental functions, will reveal that “forgotten” knowledge even exists – until it’s again convenient (Player’s call) to remember it. On the other hand, when it is convenient to remember, the user’s memory is near-perfect. As a side-effect, this adds 25 points to the user’s Memory score.

   Force Treaty (M) Allows the user, having once come up with a fair and reasonably good bargain, to browbeat everyone involved into accepting it. While this will not work unless the proposed agreement is, in fact, a reasonably good one all around, it does allow for the use of the Ambassadorial Binding spell.

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One Response

  1. […] levels can have a major impact on large-scale events. Many of its spells are based on those in the Secretarial Ways article. Domain Power: Suffer no penalties to social skills when dealing with supernatural […]

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