Changing the Wall
This is not for discussion outside the party, at Shen Wei Han's request. I make the request out of a general sense of caution, not for any specific reason. Should you need to discuss it with somebody and not have time to talk to him, please use your judgement.
Out of respect for Master Zhou, please keep the fact that he is the source secret: I would rather consequences of our efforts fall on me than on him.
After a having completed a set of tasks for Master Zhou, he discussed changing Wei Han's nature.
"The second thing you must know is how to change your nature.
"Your nature is as it is now because the Wall is as it is now. For you to resist your own nature through stubbornness and force of will, as you seek to do, will not work - a wall cannot protect itself from itself. You can only be changed externally, and only if you permit it.
"One way to do this is by something akin to a magic ritual. You must invite the Earth of the Wall, Transformation, and the three spirits of Winter.
"First, you must go and get a piece of rock from the North Wall, and carry it with you; ideally in your hand as you do the ritual actions. Concentrate on this rock being a core, and focus that which you wish to change. You must then get another rock from elsewhere in the Empire that you find significant to the change you wish, and concentrate on that rock being a core, and focus of the new specified state. You should keep both rocks until you have completed the actions of the 'ritual'. At that point, the pieces of rock will transform, and so will the Wall."
Master Zhou then goes into a more technical discussion, which I take out of the character context and into the mechanic context:
The ritual must invoke:
- Water / Fire / Wood / Metal
- Creation / Destruction / Control / Seeking
- Tiger / Tortoise / Monkey / Butterfly / Phoenix / Serpent / Fox / Spider / Magpie
There must be sixteen actions (a grid of the elements and the verbs), performed by the nine cycle aspects - so two each from the Summer trio, while for Fall and Spring, two aspects each should do two and one only one. In other words, everyone should do two except Winter (who do none) and Spring and Fall (one Spring aspect and one Fall aspect can get away with only doing one).
As far as what the actions are, each action has to get enough successes to beat Wei Han's Resistance (so at the moment, greater than 10). Destruction is basically just "damage using this element" (and it does have to actually do damage, not bounce off of toughness). Control can include non-damage effects in combat like nerve strike or knockback (though nerve strike doesn't have a clear element), or could involve non-combat effects like greater than ten successes of metal shackles. Creation is easiest to do with a magical effect, but doesn't have to be; Seeking is "find Wei Han using elemental tools or in an elemental milieu". (Using the Knife Returns is seeking him with metal, for example; tracking him through the Strand could be seeking him in Wood or Water, depending on the terrain).
Anyone may do the actions, if they are touched by the appropriate spirit, but before they do them, they need to spend a yin and a yang on each of the two rocks you have acquired, and spend a chi to make the final roll.
Trying to come up with examples of actions. Foo of Bar is really Foo Wei Han with Bar. If you have ideas for who might be able to do it (and their aspect) please include that.
- Control of Fire
- Creation of Fire - Could this be cooking something for him?
- Destruction of Fire - Throw a firebolt at Wei Han.
- Seeking of Fire
- Control of Metal - Anto grabs without grasping vines
- Creation of Metal
- Destruction of Metal - Hit Wei Han with a metal weapon
- Seeking of Metal
- Control of Water
- Creation of Water
- Destruction of Water - Does ice count?
- Seeking of Water
- Control of Wood - grasping vines from Anto
- Creation of Wood
- Destruction of Wood - Again, hit Wei Han with a weapon. Wooden, this time.
- Seeking of Wood - Play cards with Cai Wen (he's figuring out what cards you have) or read tea leaves.