Saturday, October 31, 2015

All Hallows Eve #5: The Werewolf Bit You -- Now What?

Odds of Infection

The bite of a werewolf (French: loup garou) can turn someone into a werewolf. And if so desired, that can be automatic, but I prefer to allow a chance for a mighty hero to resist the effects. To avoid contagion the victim must make a Might roll. There is a penalty to the roll based on the severity of the bite. The penalty is one half the bite damage (round down). Treat multiple bites as separate events and rolls.

Example: Gaston is bitten twice by a loup garou for eight points and five points of damage to his Lifeblood. He must make two Might rolls. The first roll has a penalty of -4 (8/2). The second roll has a penalty of -2 (5/2 rounded down). Success in H+I is an adjusted roll of 9+. Gaston has Might 2, so for the first bite that means a roll of 9-2+4=11 or better to avoid infection. For the second bite the roll is 9-2+2=9 or better to avoid infection.

Option: Use the bite damage after initial healing and recovery.

Saint Hubertus

Saint Hubertus or Hubert (c. 656–727 A.D.) was the first Bishop of Liège. He was a Christian saint who was the patron saint of hunters, mathematicians, opticians, and metalworkers. A devotion to St. Hubert has also been cited as both cure for and protection from lycanthropes. Known as the Apostle of the Ardennes, he was called upon to cure the madness caused by dog and wolf bites through the use of St Hubert's Key.

St Hubert’s Key takes the form of a blessed silver nail or bar with a decorative head. The key is heated, and the head pressed to the area where a person had been bitten by a dog or wolf. If performed soon after the bite has occurred, the heat will cauterize the wound and cure the victim. The practice is endorsed by the Church, and such keys are used by priests at places with which St Hubert is associated.

Ritual of the Key of St. Hubertus

Performed by a priest, the ritual of St. Hubertus requires a successful roll of Clergy+Flair. The bite damage does not act as a penalty to this roll. Roll for the ritual before making any Might rolls.

Example: Father Signoret uses the ritual of Key of St. Hubertus on Gaston's bites. Signoret has  Clergy 1 and Flair 2 so he needs to roll 6+ to succeed. He rolls a 7 vs the first wound and succeeds. He rolls a 5 vs the second wound and fails. Gaston will need to make his Might roll or else he will succumb to the curse and turn into a loup garou.

EDIT (25-02-2016): Updated with a link to a follow up post related to the present day, real world, Order of St. Hubertus.

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Here's a link to a post from Hari Ragat Games on shamanistic shapeshifting.

Shape Shifting in Sword & Sorcery Games >>

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