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The Sun's Caress (Tremere)

by: Benjamin Evans A Legacy Article from Sanguinus Curae

Created by the degenerate Ruathans, a breakaway sect of Tremere scholars in the 17th century, the Sun's Caress is a thaumaturgical path entirely concerned with reveling in the lost pleasures of the flesh - including the feeling of sunlight on one's face. It was this aspect of the path, and the fact that the Ruathans jealously guarded its secrets, that led to the destruction of the sect in the seventeenth century.

Rumors abound that Ruath and some of her servants still live; in any case, this path is dangerous, for it is addictive and consumes large amounts of vitae in its use.

System: Any Kindred on the path of Humanity who is exposed to the effects of the Sun's Caress runs an extremely high risk of becoming addicted to the portions of mortal life it restores; the vampire must make a Willpower roll at a difficulty of their Humanity, plus the power's level, minus their Self-Control to avoid being addicted to that power. This should be raised or lowered according to the vampire's personality.

Unwilling targets of the Sun's Caress may try to resist a power's affects by spending a blood point and making a willpower roll at a difficulty equal to their Humanity. A botch indicates that the Kindred has accidentally directed their blood to aid instead of hinder the effects of the power, and adds one success to the caster's activation roll.

Vampires following other paths of enlightenment do not automatically run a risk of addiction to the Sun's Caress, although it's not out of the question, especially for Sate the Thirst.

Example: Jamie, a disciple of Ruath, casts Pulse of Life on Marcus the Malkavian. Jamie scores three successes on her activation roll - enough to make Marcus feel blood pumping in his veins for the duration of the scene. Marcus doesn't wish to be tempted by Jamie's sorcery, so he spends a blood point and rolls his Willpower against a difficulty of his Humanity, which is 7. Marcus botches, adding one success to Jamie's roll - he'll feel alive until sunrise, and must pay five blood points for the privilege!

After the effects wear off, Marcus rolls Willpower again to determine if he will become addicted to the effects of Pulse of Life. His difficulty is 7 (his Humanity) plus 2 for the level of the power, minus 3 for his Self-Control - a final difficulty of 6. Marcus rolls just one success; he has managed not to succumb to the lure of the Caress... this time.

Epicure's Delight
For Kindred, food equals blood. But it was not always so, and through the use of Epicure's Delight a Cainite may once again not only taste food, but feel the satisfaction of a full belly.
System: The target of Epicure's Delight must expend two blood points; she may now eat, taste and digest anything edible for the duration of the scene. This process is more magical than biological; the entire contents of her meal will suffuse into her vitae, leaving behind no waste products and having the same effect as feeding from a mortal who has consumed the same food. A botch on the activation roll causes the vampire's stomach to atrophy, causing two levels of unsoakable bashing damage. Epicure's Delight lasts for one scene.

Pulse of Life ●●
For Kindred, vitae is the stuff of life, but despite its revered status Kindred blood is dead and sterile. Vampire hearts do not beat, veins and arteries do not throb, and the warmth of living vitae is foreign to Cainites. With this power, however, a Kindred's circulatory system may be reactivated, providing an exquisite feeling of being alive that it is hard to appreciate unless one has been dead for a few centuries. (Note that when a Kindred spends a blood point to appear human, they are willing their heart to beat and their veins to pulse - their vitae is still cold and dead, and it is a mechanical semblance of circulation only.)
System: The number of successes on the activation roll indicates the duration and number of blood points expended by the target:
1 success = One blood point, 10 minutes
2 successes = Two blood points, one hour
3 successes = Four blood points, one scene
4 or more successes = Five blood points, until sunrise
Whilst the target is affected, any Kindred who do not know them will recognize them as human - they have the scent, heat signature and of food. Aura Sight will reveal them as having a brighter aura than the average vampire, and any Kindred drinking less than the number of blood points spent for the power will not be blood bound; those points have effectively become living mortal blood.

Fuel the Passion ●●●
Sex is nothing but a tool to a vampire - there is no gratification in it, and most Kindred will tell you that the Kiss is a more exquisite pleasure than sex ever was. But it is the Beast that enjoys this pleasure, not the mortal part of the vampire. and Kindred with high humanity have merely forgotten the true ecstasy of a more loving embrace. Fuel the Passion allows a Kindred to once again experience sex as humans do - and not just go through the motions. It is rumored that combining orgasm and the Kiss is such an exquisite pleasure that no mortal can survive experiencing it, but it is uncertain whether anyone has actually tried this.
System: Fuel the Passion must be cast within an hour of the beginning of the sex act, and lasts one night or until the Kindred experiences orgasm, whichever is shorter. The target must spend two blood points; a male vampire may spend three points if he wishes to ejaculate, in which case the extra point will be converted into semen. Note that a vampire cannot conceive a child through the use of this power, although it may increase the chance of pregnancy if used on 15th generation vampires.

Sate the Thirst ●●●●
Whereas the lower levels of the Sun's Caress deal with natural vices and pleasures, many vampires remember other things they enjoyed in their breathing days; things which they can only enjoy vicariously through the vitae of mortal users and addicts. Sate the Thirst allows a Kindred to experience any form of chemical stimulation as mortals do, but it also enhances the effects of drugs to levels unknown to mortals.
System: The target must spend two blood points; for the duration of the scene, the vampire may then use any drug in its usual manner (drink alcohol, smoke marijuana, swallow acid, etc.) and experience greatly enhanced effects. (See Vampire: The Masquerade page 231 for details of the effects of some common drugs.) The Storyteller should emphasize the pleasant effects of the drug; hallucinogens should produce visions more beautiful and less disorienting, alcohol should make a character more mellow and uninhibited than depressed, etc. Kindred cannot suffer any permanent or long-lasting effects from the use of drugs, but addiction is certainly - and easily - possible. This power can potentially addict vampires on other paths of enlightenment, and will almost certainly reawaken or strengthen any existing addictions, though most drugs will not hook a new user the first time; addiction to Sate the Thirst and any drugs used are better role-played than rolled.
Note that while a Kindred may enjoy drugs when under the influence of Sate the Thirst, he is not forced or compelled to do so - although he will certainly feel the effects if his vitae is spiked...

Kiss of Sol ●●●●●
The power which gives this path both its name and its notoriety, the Kiss of Sol grants an experience many Kindred wish they could have again - walking in daylight. This power is potentially deadly, since the target of the magic cannot tell until exposed to sunlight whether the casting has been successful except by a sense of spent vitae. Dark tales from the 17th century speak of Ruathans who used Theft of Vitae to sap blood from a victim, then cast the Kiss of Sol on themselves, watching their hapless victim burn as the sun rose in the sky...
System: If the casting is successful, the vampire will not feel the need to sleep at sunrise, and will not suffer damage from sunlight for the duration listed below. However, in all other ways, the Kindred is still a vampire and suffers from vampiric weaknesses - most notably Rötschreck, which is not canceled by this power. The vampire must make a Courage roll against a difficulty of 10 minus her Self-Control; walking into direct sunlight because someone has magically made it safe for you requires a great leap of faith, and if the character does not have complete confidence in the caster the Storyteller is well within rights to make this roll more difficult.
As for Pulse of Life, the number of successes determines both the length of effect and number of blood points required. If a vampire does not have enough blood to pay for the duration given by the roll, they expend all their available blood points and the effects last as though one less success had been rolled. In addition, a vampire who spends all their blood points in this way will enter torpor after the effects of the power have dissipated.
1 success = five blood points, 10 minutes
2 successes = six blood points, 30 minutes
3 successes = eight blood points, one hour
4 successes = ten blood points, two hours
5 successes = 15 blood points four hours
each extra success = extra five blood points, extra hour
As the Kiss of Sol begins to wear off, the Kindred will begin to feel drowsy in the same manner as when the dawn is approaching. Usually there is ample warning given by this feeling, but if the vampire is busily frenzying or feeding they may not notice until it is too late...

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