Word Dealers

“You don’t believe on what is happening now… I know…

But believe me: you have a power that can be used to help others.

Since the very past, before the written history, time after time, people are chosen by someone or something, which neither I know. They are able to travel through the memories of others … memories written in stationary paper like the one you hold in your hand. Furthermore, they can assume stanger forms, like those drawn on the papers.

How do I know that? I am a stationery paper. And you’re not crazy.

Your parents also doubted when I shown myself to them…

I know it’s weird… But have you never wondered why your mother hold that large folder with sheets and more sheets of stationery paper? We can say that that folder is the source of her power, that she uses to help people.

And you might be asking yourself: “She fights what?”

She didn’t fight something physical … at least not normally.

Sometimes, people drown themselves into sadness and depression; anger, and hatred and rancor; envy and excessive ambition; and when they write all this in the stationery paper, thinking they can send such negative feelings to others, they may end up trapping themselves into turning grotesque representations of what the hate or despise more, their worst fears and ambitions. We call these forms that they take Projections

And is them that your mother faced and fought against … And now you must face and fight against.

“And how I’ll do it?” you might be asking?

I’ll be your guide on this journey: call me Lully the little cat

Everything you write and draw in paper, each drop of ink dipped into it, has power. The words, the pictures made on them, have power. Never wondered you when sometimes you say “I just want him to get hurt” and that person got hurt? In your modern times, people have lost the feeling about the power of words. But in the ancient times, people took very careful about what they said: “Promises are as good as gold” is an old saying with much more reason than you can understand … This is why the Fairies never take promises that easy, because once they made one, they must kept them.

“And there are really fairies?” (giggles) Of course they are! The case is that humans no longer accept them. In the rational, logical, mathematical world with that people surronded themselves with due to fear of the unknown, they don’t find explanations, therefore being end up “eliminated” by common sense. The normal attitude is: if you can’t explain something, it does not exist within that rational mathematical world. Or … How is that saying? Ah … “Among competing hypotheses, the one with the fewest assumptions should be selected.” Occam’s Razor, or lex parsimoniae. This is a really true fact in many things. But for those who understand The Power of Words about saying the right word the right way and in the right place, as you will still understand sooner or later, these creatures, aliens to those concepts, still exist and have power, a power that is accessible to those who understand the Power of the Words.

Is this power magic? No more than send someone into the space with a rocket or using a cellphone to communicate with people around the world. What you’re learning, in fact, is something that anyone can learn. We can say that this is, in fact, Science, although onenot yet tamed, or that was pioneered and ignored by those who feared the Unknown. You are only being chosen by a fact: you listen more than talk and read more than write, so is more willing to understand that Power.

Take my paw … Don’t worry, you will not be hurt. I’m putting my stationery on the floor. Come on. We’ll get into my world …

Welcome to The World Within the Stationery … Are you wondering why you’re into this cat form? Don’t worry: in this world, within what you call stationery paper, your current form is the one of a cat, bacuse it’s a representation of the original intention the stationery artist wanted to give to this world, so you, like me, are subject to such representation. We can say that, unconsciously, these Rules are part of a isolated “reality”, where we could live. After all, in the mathematical “main” reality, cats can’t normally speak.

You got so cute in that Angora form. Take some moments understanding your form before we continue. By the rules of this world you are subject to be in this form. You could be asking yourself what would happen if we had get into a stationary with dogs drawn into it. Then we should be subject to those representations and rules, but also in a manner that respects our own personality. The Rules don’t overcome your personality at all. In my case, probablyI would had taken the shape of a cute little Schnautzer puppy. And about you … How about a little gracious basset? Not your cup of tea? Well, maybe a Dalmatian, I don’t know …

Anyway, each stationery World partially restricts your power. You see, your power involves the representations of something. Not only by creating them, but by understanding them. That’s the most important part of this power and that’s this way you will face and fight against Projections.

Why am I showing you all this? The best way to fight the Projections is by entering into their past. Dealing with them through the common methods of the logical-mathematical reality, by simply trying to eliminate them in the fastest way, is ineffective: being pushed apart from it, they don’t comply with its rules, so those rules don’t work against them, although they can use them the when they are convenient. Thus, you need to outsmart them, and use the principle of mathematical logical elimination will not eliminate the problem, which is in fact to discover and remove the Factors that led to the Projection showing itself. There are methods to solve this, to facilitate the discovery and removal of the projection. They are many ways to do this, and I’ll show you now of the most effective.

That is be bringing them into a Stationery World and trying to understand what kind of negative feelings materialized and growing to a level that could be converted into such force capable of, by breaking through the reality rules, bringing the Projection on. Having done so, you can face them and thus having a chance to rescue the real person engulfed into the Projection, breaking the negative feelings’ illusion.

Yes, it is exactly this, because, in fact, there’s no negative feelings: as the name implies, negative feelings in fact are the absence of a positive feeling: hatred arising by the absence of love, while anger arises by the absence of peace, and so on. If you read about Francis of Assisi, you’ll understand a lot this and whi he was one of the most powerful Among Those Who Deal with Words.

How strong the Projections are? Well, the big majority of them are easy to be defeated, but there are some so powerful and evil that existed since the Time Before History, being Stuff of Legends. And here we have something important: Projections feed on fear, hate, greed and other negative feelings. Many powerful Projections lives since ancient times through the power of myths and legends. Gobelins, Redcaps, Hags… They all exist because their words exists.

And are against those monsters that you will fight.

Let’s keep going … I see you are more comfortable now with the cat form … You can lick yourself clean if you want, no problem. By walking into this little Stationery World, your “natural” form is this one, then there is nothing wrong on it. You are subject to the rules of this reality, and thus the desire to lick yourself in this cat form, as part of this rule, is completely valid.

You see that creature there? That little green monster? It’s probably a someone else’s Projection. Let get out to to find what made it …

See that little purse which it’s clinging with itself? It must be something he didn’t want to give someone else. Probably a toy or candy. Anyway, our goal is to break down this barrier of him and make him let this feeling bad go away, by giving away that. Because otherwise that bad feeling will grow, and the more it grows, the more “real” and powerful the Projection is.

Come on. We can do this all by choosing the right words.

And soon you will learn to master the Power of Words.

Our world is logical-mathematical: everything is measured, classified, valued, taxed. Everyone and everything must be measured and classified, and everything not measured or below the ideal should be ignored and even discarded as inefficient or obsolete. Things, objects, values, ideals, people … Everything and everyone can (and will eventually be) left behind if seen as ineffective or obsolete.

To leave something behind to rot don’t make it disappear, however. It’ll still be there, somewhere, hidden in the shadows and corners of the minds. Whispering, lurking, voices. Enticing those who were lost or ignored. Those who have lost their value. Those neglected by society.

These people get into desperation, the absence of good feelings leading them to pain, and against that pain they form a Projection to “protect” themselves.

The problem is that they lose control over themselves to the Projection, that takes your body and mind “borrowed” to do harm against others.

You should never, ever, try to attack them with knives, missiles or any other kind of brute force: the Projections don’t suffer anything against it. Because they need to “protect” their host, that somehow keeps them in the physical world. And to protect themselves, both physically and mentally, they create an Inaction Field, which prevents anything to touch the target, because it works on the basis of the total resistance, applying as much resistance as necessary to prevent damage to the thing.

Similarly, the Projections have many kinds of attack modes, from thorns that keeps their targets far away and hurt them, to screams that knocks out their targets by causing panic on those who hear it.

However, there is a small group of people that are able to face the Projections. Chosen from childhood, they can see the harms that brought the Projections and understand their host’s pain. Thus, they are capable of curing such pain, making the Project disappear .

Interestingly, their symbol is something simple and old-fashioned: stationery paper.

This is because many of those stationery have images that for the right eye are not only images, but are symbols of a power that is not quantifiable, and so was forgotten.

The Power of Words.

Problems and Issues

Places and People

Character Creation

Except said other way, as by Fate Accelerated Edition (FAE)

Character Example - David Cesar

Aspects

Aspect Type Aspect
High Concept Heir of Magic Words
Trouble Don’t Stir up with a Hornet’s Nest
Epiphany I saw my best friend becoming a Projection
Vision There are of those creatures everywhere
Free Lully is a good friend Guardian, but a too much goody two-shoes

Approaches

Those in italics are Good ones, those in bold are Bad Ones

Approach Level
Castity Fair (+2)
Charity Fair (+2)
Temperance Average (+1)
Kindness Good (+3)
Envy Average (+1)
Wrath Average (+1)
Humility Mediocre (+0)

Stunts [ Refresh: 3 ]

Projections

Every Projection has a number of aspects (called Factors) that shows what happened to her, and why she became what she is now. To defeat a Projection, the characters must detect and remove each of the Factors of a Projection. However, Projections are very powerful when Dealing with Words: for each Factor that applies to a situation, they can add +1 in their tests (this is not considered an Aspect Invoke - it’s similar the Three Rocketeers system)

A Projection has the same Approaches the PCs have, distributed normally. However, they can’t use any Good Approach, and has a Bad Approach for each Factor they have

Projection Example - The destroyer

Factors

Approaches

Those in italics are Good ones, those in bold are Bad Ones. As a Projection, the Destroyer can’t use any of their Good Approaches.

Approach Level
Lust Average (+1)
Avarice Fair (+2)
Temperance Average (+1)
Kindness Fair (+2)
Envy Average (+1)
Wrath Good (+3)
Humility Mediocre (+0)

Stunts

The Destroyer is one of the most common and dangerous Projections that can be seen: it reveals itself when a person suffers a lot of humiliation, specially those made gratuitally, as in bullying. In modern times, it is one of the ones who shows themselves most. Usually it will attack with violence, using his Wrath to hurt their target almost he can. Or perhaps she will try to turn back the pain she suffered by using Envy and Greed to shun or desmorilize their target.

When a Projection arises, it usually target (at least in theory) the one that caused the most pain and/or those who did “the last straw.” As an optional rule, the Storyteller can create projections on thugs system Fate Accelerated, the aspects being the same factors. However, she will never stop, and you start to expand their targets to everyone and everything else nearby.

Turning into a Projection

Every time a character flips one of their Good Approaches to a Bad one (see below, in Flipping Approaches), it has a chance to become a Projection. Make a Dilligence/Laziness roll against the number of Bad Approaches the character has at the time an Approach is flipped to Bad. If the character fails, it will turn into a Projection, receiving a Factor for each Bad Approach it have at the time.

By the way, every time a Projection take out or make someone Concede for him, and at that results a Approach Flipping, the Projection can try to Flip one of the Good Approaches it still have. It does the roll as normal, using the Good Approach it wants to Flip. If it Fails, the Projection grew stronger, by Flipping another Approach and receiving another Factor.

Reversing Approaches

Reverse an approach normally represents a sudden and painful break into the person’s paradigm. Generally only through continuous and systematic suffering a person suffers a Flip from a Good Approach to a Bad one. Similarly, only many time beside good examples allows an approach to be Flipped from Bad to Good.

Consider that the Good Approaches act as Conditions as in Fate System Toolkit, page 18, being they all, for healing effect, Sticky. When a character suffers an attack, he can choose to Reverse an Approach, if this make sense at the time, to absorb a number of stress steps equals to the Approach bonus. The GM has the final word on whether the character can or not Flip or a particular Approach, and can make suggestions of Approaches to be Flipped, according to the table below:

Good approach Bad approach
Charity Greed
Patience Wrath
Temperance Gluttony
Humility Pride
Kindness Envy
Dilligence Laziness
Castity Lust

Example: Renato is being constantly bullied at school and is decided that he will no more. When one of the school bullies gives you a very harsh beating, he has to Absorb a 3 steps hits due a punch. Curiously, this is his compassion level, Good (+3). He decides that that was enough and asks the GM if he can Flip his Patience to Wrath. The GM decides it’s a reasonable explanation for that Flip the character exploding in anger. Therefore, it absorbs the punch the bully gave and looks at it with bloodshot eyes, revealing there’s now only Wrath at his heart, with no more Patience

Reversing an Approach from Bad to Goos is a very long and difficult process, although. First of all, the character must observe or be observed by a character with the Good Aapproach to be Flipped Back. Then, the “recovering” character must make a resisted roll between his Bad Approach against the Good Approach of the character who is watching him. In this case, if the character fails, he will start the Good Approach Flipping, it being Flipped Back at the end of the scene. However, he can not do any roll using this Approach during this scen, otherwise he will need to restart the process. Alternatively, the character can:

Example: Renato had done lots of mischief and hurt after Flipping his Patience to Wrath. However, his best friend Marina decided to help him back and begins to “treat” him. She has Patience Fair (+2), and spends some time talking with Renato. It soon becomes clear to him that he was being stupid, so he decided to Flip Back his Wrath to Patience . He makes a resisted roll, rolling +--- for a Average (+1) result, while she gets a +00- to a Fair (+2) result. With that, he will “heal” the anger in his heart at the end of this scene. However, the GM decided it will not let the things be that simple: at that time, the bully who made him full of Wrath came back, with a strong urge to beat the crap from Renato. Renato can’t use his Wrath, or everything Marina did will go down with the flush. So he decides to concede: he describes that Renato put himself in front of Marina and tells the bully “Alright. If you want that so much, go ahead, but do not touch her!” He accepts being trashed by the bully (accepting a Mild Consequence in the proccess), while Marina run for the beadle. When she returns, Renato is lying in the ground, his whole body full of bruises and a swollen eye, but with a smile showing that he has now get back his Patience with those who can onle resort into violence for solving their problems.

You can reverse as many Good Approaches you want to absorb Stress, but you can only Flip Back a Bad Approach by scene. However, the Approach level don’t change in the process. So, you can’t Flip a Good Approach to absorb stress if it is Mediocre (+0). However, you can Flip Back a Bad Approach that is for some reason Mediocre (+0)(such as being switched with anothe Approach during a Minor Milestone), rolling normally. Because of this, as an optional rule the GM can not allow switching levels between two Approaches that are not from the same group, (like switching your Dilligence and Lust ratings)

Actions using the Reverse Approach

The Good and Bad Approaches are heads and tails from the same thing: a character with lots of Wrath can also has moments of Patience and vice-versa. So, if for any reason you need to do a roll from one Approach, and the character has the Reverse of the same, the character can in general do the roll, with those caveats:

However, he can still uses the Aspects and Fate Points as normal at this roll.

The only exception to this rule is when you whant to Flip Back a character Bad Approach: this can only be done by characters with that Good Approach.

The GM can also define a roll that can be rolled by the two Approaches, like in the Projection roll, that can be done with Dilligence/Lazyness. In this case, there’s no penalties.

Projections and Stationary Papers

Projections don’t always assume their “real form” in our world. In fact, normally a Projection retains the “normal” form of those who generated him, with maybe something that show the Bad Approaches he haver, like a disheveled hair in the case of Laziness, bloodshot eyes in the case of Wrath or a bad-guy smile on case of Lust. It’s very uncommon that a Projection take its real form in our world. So, the Characters and their Guardians are able to bring the Projection into some kind of writing paper (commonly but not necessarily a Stationery Paper) with a Create Advatage roll of any of their Good Approaches opposed by the most powerful Bad Approach from the Projection (Teamwork bonuses applies).

Within this Stationary World, the character will assume a Construct Form, based on thing related with the design and the characteristics of the paper used (for example, a notebook with Fairies as cover art will make the characters take a Fairy Form). In this world, Projections will be forced to take their “Real Form”: if this don’t happen, the target in is not a Projection, and therefore can’t enter this Stationary World. The GM will describe the world as he sees it fits, always taking into account the object where the characters “entered”.

In terms of rules there are no changes in the tests, but the characters are affected to the elements of this world (being them treated as Aspects): this explains why it is so dangerous to go into objects that have a more hostile theme (as in a Batman notebook) as they would subject themselves to such rules (not that they have a choice), and so their ability to affect the Projections could fall, while the Projections influence against the characters could rise.

This “world” can be attacked by the Projections normally. Consider that they have a normal stress track of three boxes and two Conditions: Damaged (1) and Useless (4). The problem is that the conditions in question are NOT RECOVERABLE. And worse, the “world” has no way to defend itself: the characters must protect it. If the world is Defeated, the Projection will be free and can add a new Factor as Aspect, by Flipping another of the victim’s Approaches. And the characters are “ejected” from the Defeated (normally Destroyed) Stationary Paper, being Disoriented (as a Mild Consequence) and will have to start the whole process again.

An option to “defeat” of a Projection is a Knockout: if the Projection surrender or is Defeated in a purely physical conflict, the Projection will retreat, “freeing” temporarily his victim, but still whispering in his mind: as soon as an Aspect of him is forced (including the Projection’s Factors), the projection take the control back. The only way to Defeat a Projection for good is to discover and remove (via Create Advantages and Overcome actions) its Factors, one by one. Just by Defeat a Projection the PCs can get out a Stationary World normally.

The Stationary World Rules are considered as Scenario Aspects while the characters are inside of it. Eache World has several Rules: the GM can set as many as he want, at least one. Any change that a Rule could apply not imply into personality changes of thos involved. Curiously, the Projections are immune to the shapeshifting effects that some rules can do. We advise something between 1 to 3 Aspects as Rules. Rules can be known by normal Create Advantages rolls with suitable Approaches.

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