Kinfolk rites

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Kinfolk rites

Post by Dealer on Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:40 pm

Many Garou tribes include Kinfolk in a number of their rites. These rites usually honor Gaia, mark seasonal changes, or address milestones in the life of an individual or family. Some rites, of course, are for Garou only. In the same fashion, Kinfolk have devised their own rites intended to bring them closer to each other as Kinfolk or to mark gatherings of Kinfolk from a number of different tribes. While most of these rites do not require Gnosis and do not involve mystic powers, they do serve to renew Kinfolk’s connections to their tribes, to Gaia, and to one another.

Usually, a Kinfolk elder acts as ritemaster to enact the rite. If a Garou is present, she is often asked to lead the rite or participate in it as a matter of courtesy or respect. Garou are free to refuse to lead the rite with no negative implications, since these rites are properly led by Kinfolk. For a Garou to refuse participation in a rite when asked might imply some sort of criticism. Therefore, such requests never happen lightly.

Many of these rites are versions of Garou rites of the same name, but a few are unique to Kinfolk, or to Kin of certain tribes. Kinfolk group their unique rites under the same categories as the Garou use, for convenience. The following list of Kinfolk rites present a sampling of ceremonies and does not purport to be exhaustive. Players and Storytellers should feel free to create their own rites for Kinfolk chronicles.

One rite common to many kenning Kinfolk is the Baptism of Fire (p. 210, W20 Corebook), whereby a Kin family can assign a Kin Fetch spirit to one of their offspring. Although the Kin ritemaster cannot summon the spirit, a Kin Fetch that is already present to the family can be used. Such a spirit can make itself known and visible to the ritemaster.

Kinfolk Rites Chart










TypeRollDiff
AccordCharisma+Rituals7
Homesteadvaries7
MilestonesCharisma+Rituals7
PunishmentCharisma+Rituals7
RenownCharisma+Rituals6
SeasonalStamina+Ritualsvaries
Minornonenone
Where Gnosis is necessary, its use and related difficulty is indicated in the rite description.

Rites of Accord


Rites of Accord for Kinfolk seek to restore or create harmony within a Kinfolk family or group. An element of symbolic rebirth or new beginning is usually present in these rites. They have no supernatural power attached unless the Kin acting as ritemaster possesses Gnosis and chooses to spend it to add to the rite. They are usually quite psychologically and spiritually effective for Kin who practice them.

Rite of Apology
Level One
When members of a Kinfolk family have a serious disagreement and wish to make amends and permanently put animosity behind them, they may enact the Rite of Apology. The concerned individuals stand facing one another and forswear any feelings of anger or blame, declaring that no disagreement, whoever is at fault, is worth enmity between Kin. Each person focuses on transferring her anger or blame or negative feeling onto a single sheet of good writing paper. Once this is done, each person enacting the rite exchanges papers so that each person touches each piece of paper. The papers are put together and each person takes a turn at ripping the paper in half. With each tear, the anger dissipates. The torn paper is burned and discarded, along with the ill feeling.
System: Nothing needs to be written on the paper, but the Kinfolk must spend a point of Willpower to transfer her feeling onto it. No roll needs to be made, but the Willpower point cannot be regained for 24 hours. The effect is permanent for that quarrel.

Rite of Unity of Purpose
Level Two
This rite is enacted on one of two occasions. Either some major issue has divided a Kinfolk family and needs to be reconciled, or the family is about to undertake some major project as a group. This can involve moving from one location to another, or going into combat as a family unit.

Sway the Hand of Anger
Level Two
This Garou rite protects a related Kinfolk from a Garou’s frenzy. The ritemaster convinces a protective trickster-spirit to bond to the Kin. If the designated Garou (who must be related to the Kin by blood or tribe) loses control and attempts to attack or threatens the Kin (or if the Kinfolk feels threatened), the spirit awakens and redirects the Garou to attack other targets. Once this has happened, the spirit is freed. The rite must be repeated each time to continue to provide the Kinfolk with protection.
System: The ritemaster locates a household or trickster-spirit (usually with help from a Garou, a fetish, or through personal encounter) and, through gifts or persuasion, convinces it to latch onto the Kinfolk who is the subject of the rite. The ritemaster spends a point of Gnosis and rolls Charisma + Rituals (difficulty of the spirit’s Willpower).

Rites of the Milestones


These rites do not use any mystic power nor do they require the expenditure of Gnosis. Willpower helps strengthen the impression the rite leaves on its participants but is not absolutely necessary. Kinfolk use these rites to mark various stages in their lives, to acknowledge and reaffirm their identities as Kinfolk and as individuals. Tribal variations may distinguish the rites from those of other Garou tribes, but the enactment of each rite differs from household to household. Some Kinfolk do not see the necessity of these rites, while others hold them very near and dear to their hearts.

Rite of Welcoming (Birth)
Level One
The birth of a new Kinfolk is a cause for rejoicing. This rite takes place as soon as mother and child return home from the hospital (if the child is born there) or, if the child is born at home, as soon as mother and child are rested and aware.
The family gathers in one room of the house. One of the Kinfolk elders, usually the father, but sometimes a grandparent, aunt, or uncle, takes the infant from the mother and holds him up for everyone to see. The ritemaster introduces the child by his name, first to Gaia, then to the tribe totem, and, finally, to the other family members, by name and relationship. If non-family members are present by invitation and expect to stand in relationship to the child as god-parent, protector, etc., that individual is also introduced to the child by name and relationship.
The child is returned to the mother’s arms after that, and, unless any tribe-specific events occur, the rite concludes, usually with a ceremonial meal or a toast. Fianna Kinfolk generally throw a party, while Silver Fangs usually spend time discussing the child’s lineage or drawing up an individual family tree. One Silver Fang family adds a stylized leaf-painting with the child’s name and birth date to a mural of the family tree. Bone Gnawers sometimes give the child some sort of trinket so that she will not be entirely without resources, while Silent Strider Kinfolk take the child for his first official “outing,” even if it is just around the yard.
(This rite is entirely separate from the Garou rite that attaches a Fetch to the child.)
System: The ritemaster conducts the rite using whatever steps and formulae customary to the family or the tribe. A point of Willpower may be used to reinforce the ceremony on the memories of the participants, including that of the infant.

Vow of Partnership (Mating)
Level One
While many Kinfolk undergo standard marriage rites, depending on their religious beliefs, as well as the requisite civil ceremony, some also want to solemnify their union under the eyes of Gaia. The Vow of Partnership establishes the nature and duration of the relationship between two Kinfolk or between a Kinfolk and a Garou.
The ceremony usually takes place in the home or on the ground of one of the Kinfolk. Sometimes a location outside the home is used, such as a national or state park, a community center or arboretum. Occasionally, a wilderness site serves as the venue for this rite. If the site is anywhere other than the home of a Kinfolk or on territory claimed by Garou (i.e., the caern or its bawn), someone who can perform the Rite of Cleansing should do so to ensure the place is free of Wyrm-taint.
Once the site is ready, the family and friends gather around the couple to witness their vows to one another. The commitment may be a life-bond, or may have some specific time or condition, such as “until we have a child,” or “for a year and a day.”
After the recitation of the vows, the ritemaster pronounces the couple bound to one another in the eyes of Gaia, the Garou, and Kinfolk. Again, each tribe may have a variant to add to the ceremony. The rite ends when the ritemaster introduces the couple to the attendees.
System: No rolls are necessary. The couple may spend a point of Willpower each to seal their vow.

Wake for the Departed (Death)
Level One
This rite honoring a Kinfolk or Garou who has recently died takes place after any official services, such as a funeral or graveside ceremony. The form this rite takes varies from tribe to tribe, and from family to family. Fianna Kinfolk usually hold a wake that might last for days, with music, dancing, stories, songs, and lots of alcohol. Silent Striders may make a pilgrimage, visiting the deceased’s favorite or most meaningful places. Silver Fangs hold a more somber version of a wake with the deceased’s genealogy recited and discussed ad infinitum. Likewise, the Get of Fenris hold a supper honoring the deceased with much touting of the honoree’s most memorable actions, testimonials, and solemn drinking. Glass Walkers celebrate their dead Kin through online meetings. Wendigo usually hold a potlatch in honor of the departed during which the family gives many of their relative’s possessions to those who knew and honored him. Children of Gaia Kinfolk might establish a scholarship fund or make a donation to a charity or cause dear to the heart of the departed, while individuals might pledge volunteer hours in the deceased’s name.
System: No rolls are necessary.

Rites of the Homestead


These rites revolve around the places where Kinfolk reside and serve to dedicate their living places to Gaia, to declare themselves as a household of Kinfolk, and to ask for protection from the spirits. Whenever possible, a ritemaster who possesses Gnosis should perform these rites; otherwise Willpower in sufficient amounts can substitute.

Rite of Homestead Dedication
Level Two
Whenever a Kinfolk builds, buys, or otherwise acquires a new residence, this rite dedicates the structure and surrounding area to the service of Gaia, much as the Garou Rite of Caern Building, though less powerful. This rite may be performed several times, as appropriate: when a site is purchased or acquired, when building starts, when a manufactured home is put in place, when the structure is complete before the family moves in, and on the first evening in the new home.
The details may vary according to the building stage, but the rite usually involves making a circle around the perimeter of the land as well as around the house itself, while calling upon Gaia and the tribe’s totem spirit (and any other spirit that might have attached themselves to the Kin family) to recognize the house in the Umbra and look upon it with favor.
A talisman representing all the family members along with either some building material from the house or yard is buried near the door of the house. At the end of the final ceremony, the family enters the house and offers thanks to Gaia for their home.
System: A point of Gnosis must be spent (or two points of Willpower). The player rolls Charisma + Rituals, difficulty 7. One success is needed.

Rite of Protection
Level Two
When the home or family of a Kinfolk comes under threat, whether from human agents or from the supernatural community, this rite can give the house and property of a Kinfolk family some temporary protection until their Garou kin can set some better protections or until the family can get to a safe place. When there is time to prepare, the ritemaster takes a talisman or pouch containing symbols of every person to be protected as well as something of the household (pets, too!) and asks the tribe’s totem spirit or a spirit of protection to prevent anyone who intends harm to the family from entering the house or its grounds. The rite master makes a paste from his own blood and the “blood” of the land around the house (i.e., blood and dirt) and daubs the talisman with the paste while asking the spirit’s help. If the rite succeeds, the talisman disappears, taken into the Umbra by the spirit.
System: The ritemaster must possess Gnosis or an item that allows her to use Gnosis. She must speak a chant composed when she learned the rite while making the paste, another chant while applying the paste to the talisman, and a third chant while she spends a point of Gnosis and rolls Charisma + Rituals (Difficulty 7). Only one success is necessary, but more successes provide stronger protections.
The effects are largely up to the Storyteller, but usually involve making the rolls of any who intend harm to suffer higher difficulties. Attempts to set fire to a protected home might find matches won’t light or the wind snuffs out flame. Those sneaking into a protected home might slip on the steps or accidentally break a window, alerting those inside.
The rite lasts for 24 hours per success, and may be repeated as necessary until no more Gnosis exists. Since the enactment of the rite also notifies the nearest Garou kin of the danger to his Kinfolk, the rite generally does not need to be performed more than once or twice.

Rite of True Seeing
Level Two
This rite needs to be performed by a Garou for the appropriate individual. It allows a non-Kinfolk who has married or partnered into a Kinfolk or Garou family to gain temporary immunity to the Delirium. To enact the rite, the Garou must work with the subject of the rite to create a talisman from some strands of that individual’s hair and a few strands of the Garou’s hair from his Crinos form. The ritemaster explains to the subject that she must burn the talisman while the ritemaster imbues the burning talisman with power. The result grants the individual immunity to the Delirium for seven days, after which the rite must either be repeated or a more permanent solution found.
System: After making the talisman, the ritemaster spends a point of Gnosis and rolls Charisma + Rituals (difficulty 7). Only one success is necessary.

Rites of Punishment


As with most families, punishment is usually handled within the family as the offense occurs, and usually involves only misbehavior and minor wrongdoings by the children. Depending on the nature of the parents and their philosophy of child-rearing, the external mores exerted by schools and society, and the general tendencies of the tribe, the types of punishment meted out to children vary from extensive lectures (with or without a hefty dose of guilt tripping — Children of Gaia, Bone Gnawers, Stargazers, Uktena), revocation of privileges or allowance (Silver Fangs, Shadow Lords, Glass Walkers),  to more corporal methods of punishment (Get of Fenris, Fianna, Wendigo). Kinfolk children already grow up with the weight of Kin responsibilities to some extent, so punishment is just another normal occurrence in a life that most parents want to seem as normal as possible.
When an adult or older teen Kinfolk commits serious or chronic behaviors that threaten the family’s ability to function as Kinfolk, of these rites might be used to impress upon the errant Kin his need to change his ways. Again, these rites are not enacted at the drop of a hat. Most family problems are just that — family problems.

Rite of Exile
Level Three
When a member of a Kinfolk family has proven so disruptive as to destroy the family’s unity and interfere with its duty to tribe and to Gaia, the head of the family may choose to enact this rite to send the offending member away, usually for a fixed period of time. In order for this to
happen, every member of the Kinfolk’s household who is at least 12 years old (or two years old, if a lupus Garou is part of the household) must agree that nothing further can be done to change the Kinfolk’s bad behavior.
Once a household has made this decision, the ritemaster calls the offending Kinfolk before her for one last chance at change. She reads or lists the bad behavior, usually such things as serious drug or alcohol usage with no intention of reforming, physical abuse of family members, inexcusable criminal behavior, consorting with infernal beings or Wyrmspawn, and the like. The subject of the rite then has a chance to speak for himself, either explaining his behavior or promising under oath to change his actions. During the rite, the subject’s words either have the ring of truth or they sound flat and tinny, indicating lies or insincerity.
If the Kinfolk can successfully explain why he offended the family (“I was enthralled by a vampire,” or “if I didn’t do what they wanted, they were going to hurt you,” or even “I really screwed up because I didn’t think anyone cared about me, and I promise it won’t happen again,” the ritemaster declares the rite over without completion and works with the rest of the family to help the Kinfolk.
If, on the other hand, the Kinfolk shows no remorse, the ritemaster continues with the rite and declares the subject of the rite exiled from the family for a certain period of time — usually at least a year and a day, and sometimes as long as five years or more. The conditions for reinstatement into the family are stated at that time. “You must prove that you are no longer subject to chronic drunkenness,” for example. The rite ends with the subject physically leaving the home. Usually, the family will allow the exiled individual to return to the house long enough to pack a couple of bags and a bedroll. Sometimes these things are prepared before the rite, so that once the subject leaves the house he cannot return until the time of exile is over. If he attempts to do so, he suffers bouts of sickness, crippling anxiety, and general bad luck until he is swayed from his course.
System: This rite takes some preparation. The ritemaster prepares a candle to symbolize the person to be exiled. He inscribes the name of the Kinfolk on the candle and places it in a holder in the room where he will hold the rite. When the rite begins, the ritemaster spends a point of Gnosis and lights the candle, which burns throughout the ceremony. The ritemaster rolls Charisma + Rituals (Difficulty 7). Success enables the candle to continue burning as long as it needs to and creates the aura of truthfulness within which the words of condemnation and defense are spoken. If the rite is ended without completion, the ritemaster carefully releases the candle to burn out naturally. If the ritemaster completes the rite, he blows out the candle forcefully and snaps it in half. The gesture physically compels the Kinfolk toward the door and, with the exception of a grace period to gather his things, acts as a barrier to prevent the exile from returning within one mile of the household until the time of exile is ended.

Rite of Intervention
Level One
A Kinfolk family may enact this rite when one of their family needs to face some truth about herself or take a course of action that she would otherwise refuse to take. Not unlike interventions in the outside world, this rite differs in that it has the force of Gnosis behind it.
Situations that might warrant a rite of intervention might include convincing a family member to take charge of a chronic disease or affliction and seek help to manage it, to advise a family member to seek counseling for depression or some other mental or emotional disorder, to bring chronically quarrelling family members (siblings, or husband and wife, etc.) together to work out their differences, and other repairable situations.
System: The family arranges for the subject or subjects to be present and confronts them. The ritemaster announces she is beginning the Rite of Intervention. Each family member is expected to contribute to the discussion as well as to express their caring for the rite’s subject. The ritemaster spends a point of Gnosis or two points of Willpower and rolls Charisma + Rituals. The more successes, the more persuasive the intervention, though one success is enough to complete the rite.

Rites of Renown


These rites mark acts of heroism or brave deeds in defense of the family or the tribe or any other of Gaia’s children. While they do not confer Renown among Garou, unless the Garou agree to award temporary Renown, these rites have meaning among other Kinfolk.

Rite of Challenge
Level One
During a family gathering or a Kinfolk gathering, one Kinfolk may issue a Rite of Challenge to another Kinfolk. The challenge can be a simple one: I challenge you to a race to see which of us is faster, or complex: I challenge you to go to the cave at the foot of Slickback Mountain and stay the night, and bring me proof you’ve been inside the cave.
If the challenged one accepts the challenge, the challenger and challenged work out the details of the challenge, who is to judge it, and how to determine success or failure. Both Kinfolk spend a Willpower point to seal the challenge.
When the action is completed, the second half of the rite takes place. In the presence of the same Kinfolk who witnessed the challenge, the challenged individual makes his claim of success or admits failure. If he succeeds, he gets back the point of Willpower he spent. If he fails, his challenger gets back the point she spent.
System: Willpower is expended in both parts of this rite. No rolls are necessary.

Seasonal Rites


The Garou honor the passing of the year at the solstices and the equinoxes. In most cases, Kinfolk can participate in all or part of these season celebrating rites.

Minor Rites  (Individual Rites)


Minor rites take place throughout the day in the life of a Kinfolk who wishes to reinforce his dedication to Gaia, tribe and family. These rites take half the time to learn and cost half as much. They usually require no expenditures of Gnosis or Willpower and do not have to take place in secret.

Rite of the Morning Song
The Kinfolk rises before dawn and prepares to greet the first rays of morning fire. Starting with the first true sun rays (not just the lightening of the sky), the Kinfolk offers praise to Helios. She may sing (words are optional), read or speak a poem, intone and chant syllables, or otherwise vocalize her greeting. If she does this for nine straight sunrises, like the Garou Rite Greet the Sun, the Kinfolk gains the ability to Sense Wyrm for the next nine days as if she possessed the Garou Gift. If she misses even one morning, she must begin again for the effect to take place.

Rite of Evening Chant
This rite requires the Kinfolk to sing Luna’s praises through one entire phase of the moon. Songs, poetry, stories, and other verbalizations must be made for at least 15 minutes. After the Kinfolk has completed the requirement, he receives an additional die on all Social interactions with Garou of the same auspice as the moon was when the rite was performed. This rite is sometimes performed with other Kinfolk, but the results are separate for each Kinfolk. This effect lasts until that moon phase comes around again (either waxing or waning).
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