EMBODIED FAMILIAR TRAITS
Attributes: 5/4/3 (divide among Mental, Physical and Social)
Skills: 9/6/3 (divide among Mental, Physical and Social); the familiar receives a free dot in Brawl, Larceny, or Stealth
Willpower: Equal to Resolve + Composure
Essence: 10 (10 max)
Initiative: Equal to Dexterity + Composure
Defense: Equal to lowest of Dexterity and Wits
Speed: Strength + Dexterity + “species factor” (based on its animal type)
Virtue: Choose Virtue
Vice: Any. Most familiars share their master’s Vice, but not all. A familiar regains all spent Willpower by fulfilling its Vice once per chapter, just as a mortal does for fulfilling her Virtue.
Morality: Familiars have no Morality score.
Size: 5 or less (based on its animal type)
Health: Equal to Stamina + Size
Dread Powers: Assign four dots among Dread Powers.
Ban: The familiar has one Ban, chosen by the Storyteller. (See “The Demon’s Ban,” p. 284.)
Innocuous: Embodied familiars are very good at not being noticed by others. Anyone but its bonded master suffers a -2 penalty on perception rolls to notice the familiar, unless it does something to draw attention to itself.
Through the Eyes: By spending a point of Willpower, the master of an embodied familiar can shift his perceptions to the familiar. He sees what the familiar sees, hears what it hears, and so on. He is oblivious to his own surroundings while viewing through his familiar, but still possesses tactile sensation (thus he is aware of any damage or physical sensation to his own body). Ending this viewing is a reﬂexive action and requires no roll.
Familiar Descendants of Lucifer often attract tiny, lesser demons to themselves, willingly or unwillingly. These imps and familiars are drawn to the infernal spark in the blood of a Lucifuge, and are compelled by the divine right of Lucifer’s blood to serve and obey. Some do so willingly, so slavish in their devotion to their earthly masters that they are willing to oppose the edicts of Hell. Others serve reluctantly, disgusted to see the seed of the Morningstar debase itself as a servant of humanity but nevertheless bound by their master’s blood. Still others are insidious, pretending to give loyal service while seeking every opportunity to seduce their “masters” into the open service of evil.
A familiar comes in one of two forms, Twilight or embodied. The Lucifuge chooses which type he will have when he learns this rite; the only way to change the type of a character’s familiar is to unlearn the Familiar ritual and then relearn it later. At the player’s choice, this might represent the dismissal of one servant and the summoning of another, or the swap might represent an elaborate ritual to clothe a Twilight familiar in ﬂesh (or release an embodied one from its ﬂeshy prison). The altered familiar might have similar Traits in its new form, but it might just as easily be radically different in form and powers, with only the personality and memories remaining the same. A character may only have one familiar at a time.
A Twilight familiar is a spiritual entity with no proper physical body of its own. A Twilight familiar is also known as a “fetch.” Twilight familiars can temporarily manifest like ghosts (see “Manifestations,” p. 210 in The World of Darkness Rulebook), but their ephemeral bodies are otherwise invisible and intangible to the physical world. A Twilight familiar must manifest or use Dread Powers to affect anything in the physical world — except for its master, whom it can touch at will (its master can also see and speak with the familiar freely, even if he cannot see or hear into Twilight). A Twilight familiar often leaves behind a subtle sign of its presence, even when it is not manifested. A whiff of brimstone might waft from its location, or its shadow might brieﬂy ﬂicker in the corner of an observer’s eye. Twilight familiars can take any form imaginable: most are small, impish creatures that resemble classical devils or mythological monsters, but they can be as large as man-sized. A Twilight familiar often represents its master’s Vice: a Wrathful hunter might have a familiar built like a bull, all spines and blood-drenched fangs, while a Lustful character might be served in a more personal capacity by a sultry, ﬁ ery-eyed succubus or incubus.
An embodied familiar has a physical body and takes the form of an earthly creature. Many of the legendary stories of witches with cunning animal companions — cats, rats, bats — are actually references to embodied familiars. An embodied familiar often has eyes that gleam an unusual color when they catch the light or that display a peculiar intelligence. Many times, the creature’s markings in some way reﬂect its master’s appearance. A Lucifuge with an ugly scar across his cheek might attract a catlike creature with an odd stripe of a contrasting color on its jaw. This sometimes leads to the misconception that a Lucifuge can physically transform into an animal. Remember also that an embodied familiar is a demon in animal form, not a true animal; many embodied familiars have one or two unnatural traits, like paws with a sickening resemblance to human hands or a vocalization that comes close to being actual speech. If an embodied familiar is slain, its infernal spirit usually discorporates and returns to the Hell from whence it came. Sometimes, though, it latches onto its master and feeds off his memories, drinking deep of the hunter’s soul to sustain itself in ethereal form. In game terms, a Lucifuge’s player may, upon the destruction of his embodied familiar, choose to immediately spend two experience points as a reﬂexive action to preserve the demon as a Twilight familiar. Effectively, the Lucifuge sacriﬁces these experience points to swap out his Familiar ritual without going through the usual extended Resolve + Occult roll.The Storyteller designs the demon’s traits, with the player’s participation. Each familiar begins play with at least one dot in each Attribute, with extra dots as listed in the sidebars. Twilight familiar Traits follow the same rules as those for ghosts, as described on page 208 of The World of Darkness Rulebook, except as noted in the Twilight Familiar Traits sidebar. Embodied familiars are treated as normal animals, except as described in the Embodied Familiar Traits sidebar.
The master and familiar have an empathic connection; each can automatically feel the emotions of the other. (Magical effects that damage or manipulate the familiar through an emotional attack don’t damage or manipulate the master.) The familiar can always understand its master, no matter what language the master speaks, and vice versa.