Mom: An Earthdawn Tribute
Okay, sure, so Earthdawn's officially a dead system. Like that's
going to stop us? Geeze. I was thinking about the explanation for
their Disciplines the other day...professions so etched in legend and
history that they've become magically-bolstered Archtypes. Cool idea,
sure, but does anybody REALLY believe that there've been Swordsmasters
longer than Moms? Like the Tourist isn't at least as clearly defined
a phenomenon as any Archer?
Anyway, you know me. (Well, no, most of you don't. At least, I
HOPE most of you don't. I know we have at least five readers, because
I see them a couple days after we put up any new issue and quiz them
on it, and if they haven't read it they get whithering stares until
they promise to do it at their earliest opportunity. But I can't do
that for everyone.) So, okay, you may not know me, but if you've been
paying any attention at all, you know I can't resist meddling, and
this issue's main meddle is a Mundane Disciplines for
Mom's are the ultimate parental units, able to keep track of six
rampaging kids, fold laundry, and prepare dinner...all at the same
time. Note that there ARE male Moms, especially in T'Skrang society,
but Dad is a completely different Discipline. (Dads, by and large, can
play catch, but their Talents run mostly to suddenly spitting out
Important Attributes (we're back to Moms now, by the way): Dexterity,
Strength, Toughness, Perception, Willpower, Charisma
Racial Restrictions: Obsidimen. Some people think this explains an
awful lot about Obsidimen. Blood Elves, also, as Alachia has
decreed that they shouldn't need a Mom besides her.
Karma Ritual: The Mom must stand in the middle of the house, with one
hand on her hip and the other in front of her, index finger
pointed out. Shaking the finger, the Mom engages in a 15 minute
litany of such phrases as, "Don't talk with your mouth full," and,
"If you keep making that face, it's going to freeze that way."
The ritual ends when she gets a suddenly distressed look and says,
"Omigod, I'm starting to sound just like my mother."
Artisan Skill: Sewing or Things-To-Do-On-A-Rainy-Afternoon
Talents (*'d Talents are Discipline Talents):
- Direction Asking
- When a Mom gets lost, she can, unlike Dads, stop and ask for
directions. Roll Rank + Perception against the target's Social
Defense. On a Success, they tell Mom how to get where she's
going. On an Extraordinary Success, they can do this even if
they didn't KNOW how a moment ago.
- * Empathic Sense
- Just like the usual, but Moms are always attuned to their
- Karma Ritual
- * Man-euver
- This Talent lets Mom get help from passerbys. Using Rank +
Charisma, she can induce a helpful stranger to stop and do
anything from re-shoeing a horse, hunting up some food, or
helping defend against Scorchers.
- Read and Write Shorthand
- Moms have their own particular form of Shorthand, used for
To-Do lists, grocery lists, lists of improvements they'd like
made on the house, etc.
- From years of hide-and-go-seek.
- Durability (10/8)
- * Borrow Cents
- Spare change. Sugar. A warm cloak. By rolling Rank +
Willpower, Mom can borrow, from anyone, an item with a cost in
silver pieces less than the total. Better yet, there's no
real expectation of these things being returned. This *can*
apply to services as well as goods.
- Evidence Analysis
- Jes' the same. Moms can tell at a glance what you've been up
- Argument Recall
- The Mom can remember every line of every argument she's ever
been in, and quote back the stupid things you said verbatim.
- * Abate Cursing
- Works best with a bit of soap. If the soap is applied to the
cursing character's mouth within a number of hours equal to
the Mom's Rank in Abate Cursing, the Curse is retracted. This
applies to magical curses as well as general swearing.
- Thread Weaving (Home Weaving)
- Down Fluff
- Using Rank + Dexterity, against the object's Armor Rating, Mom
can fluff pillows perfectly. Even pillows that,
technically speaking, are rocks. This won't help Recovery
Tests, per se, but it will let someone sleep comfortably under
any environmental conditions.
- Sense Dirt
- Technically, not just crumbled earth; this Talent applies,
basically, to anything messily out of place. Dirt on the
ground doesn't count; dirt in the house does. Water in a
glass doesn't; spilled water does. Dead bodies in graves
don't; dead bodies up and walking around do. Roll Rank +
Perception against the Spell Defense of whatever might be
- * White Picket Fence
- Moms have an information network that spans the world. The
Mom must hang out at a white picket fence for about ten
minutes. (ANY white picket fence. Some Moms venturing out
into the wilderness have been known to carry a few whitewashed
boards, just in case. They then use Man-euver to get someone
to build a small fence out of it, and presto.) After that
time, another Mom will kind of wander up, as if they just had
something minor to do there. The two Moms can then pass along
whatever gossip they know.
- Spot Story Flaw
- Never try lying to a Mom. She'll know.
- Steely Stare
- Resist Tantrum
- This improves a Mom's Social Defense against attempts to
manipulate by anger. It also improves her Defense ratings
against Thrown items, and Talents like Whirlwind, Claw Frenzy,
Battle Shout...anything that involves pushing people around in
a big emotional release.
- Temper Temper
- This Talent is used to calm down an angry child, or, as the
case may be, an angry Troll Sky Raider. Whatever. It's
Rank + Charisma against their Social Defense, and if it works,
they can't feel really *angry* for a number of minutes equal
to Mom's Rank. Instead, they feel kind of sheepish if they
- Laundry Strike
- By the time a Mom has reached Eighth Circle, she's usually
taken for granted around the house. By not doing any cleaning
for a couple weeks, she can remind everyone who keeps
- * Engagement Barter
- Also by the time a Mom has reached Eighth Circle, her first
child, at least, is usually ready to be married off. Rolling
Rank + Willpower + the child's Charisma Step, Mom can arrange
for a suitable mate. When two Moms with this ability are both
involved, both roll. Otherwise, the potential spouse's parent
`resists' with a base Charisma default. After the deal is
struck, BOTH Children roll their Willpower; if either beats
the Mom's total, they rebel, and it probably ends up with some
zany mixup with some fake poison and before you know it
- Water Dancing
- Well, any kid'll tell you; of course Mom could walk on water
if she really tried.
- * Mother's Voice
- Even Horrors respond to the sudden sharp tones of Mom. Roll
Rank + Willpower against the highest Social Defense targeted,
+1 for anyone else Mom wants to include. On a Good or better
success, they'll all instinctively obey one sharp command,
like, "Cut that out".
- Assign Blame
- Moms can use their Rank + Perception to spot who's really
behind something. This really messes up the Slough Blame
- * Sharp Tongue
- A Mom in a bad mood knows *just* the worst thing to say. This
works like an attack, with a range of up to 10 yards, rolling
Rank + Perception for the attack and using Mom's Charisma Step
as the Damage roll. The GM may add Steps if the player comes
up with a telling comment.
- Forge Amour
- By the time a Mom is reaching 11th Circle, it's not uncommon
for some of the, well, spark to go out of the marriage. But a
Mom with this Talent can at least pretend, using Rank +
- Develop Sixth Sense
- It's not a myth. High Circle Moms really DO have eyes in the
back of their head. Eyes that can see through walls.
- Egg Beater
- The perfect omlette or souffle.
- * Screaming Heebie-Jeebies
- When Mom's kids are in imminent danger, she'll know. Wherever
she is, she'll know. And she'll go into such hysterics that
everyone around will immediately mount up to go fix the
problem. Rather, up to one person per Rank.
- Blood Guilt
- This only works on family members, but boy does it work. Mom
can use her Rank + Toughness to remind them that they never
write, they don't send Light Sprites even though she knows
those glowing men they've been hanging out with lately have
shown them how, but no, no, that's alright, don't trouble
yourself, she's sure tracking down one more Horror is more
important than your dear, old, lonely mother whose house is
only falling down, that's all, nothing to worry about.
- * Move Earth
- Er, this is something only Dads should know the details about.
- Share Network
- Truly legendary Moms can convince not only their own, but an
entire neighborhood of kids that sharing really IS good. This
good example then inspires the adults. Pretty soon, the whole
town is sharing...and they all get a bonus to their Social
Defense equal to the initiating Mom's Rank against any
attempts, even by Horrors, to break their community up.
- Thick Skin
- A combination of Resist Taunt and Wood Skin, Thick Skin does
- Confront Horror
- Just like the Bardic Talent, but requiring Mother's Voice
instead. Legends are still told of Momma Kass Skybender, the
Troll Mom, who looked Mageslayer right in the eyes and said,
"Go back to your Netherplane this INSTANT, you horrible
beast!" Without supper, no less.
- Plan Surprise
- Hey, for all that Moms always know what their kids are up to,
kids usually know their birthday presents three weeks in
advance. It's HARD to surprise a Kid. Mom has to roll her
Rank + Dexterity to keep something secret if it involves the
kid directly. Years of learning how to do this can also be
applied to springing other surprises on other people. Like
j n m ( m n j
"There is hope for any one who can look in a mirror and
laugh at what they see."
-- we're just full of unattributed proverbs tonight!