The Cleansing Fire: A Campaign Setting for In Nomine
The hum of either army stilly sounds,
--Henry V, Act IV Chorus
After the battle which redeemed Belial into the Archangel of Cleansing, Gabriel found herself adrift in the fires of Pele. For the first time in millennia of conflict, her Word was silent, the jangling discord of her Hellish counterpart silenced. Fire was hers, in toto, and she did not have to scream to hear herself.
Rising from the underwater Volcano, Gabriel flew to her strongest Tether, within the Sun itself, and rested in its eternal nuclear fires. She drank in the Essence needed from the fight, and recovered from her injuries. And she pondered herself and communed with the Holy Spark within her, regarding this new world.
In what seemed the blink of an eye, Gabriel felt the new Archangel of Cleansing taking up the mantle against cruelty (in the name of making things clean, naturally). Where Belial's violent energy had sapped and hurt Gabriel and clouded her Word before, now his actions strengthened her... and made it possible to focus her attentions elsewhere. She regarded the warmth of Fire, it's hearth and comfort, it's bright beacons in the night and its candlelight in their completeness for the first time in what seemed eons.
She descended back to Earth, and walked the streets in a female vessel. Catching sight of Aluriel and Mordekial, the "Firemen" Yves had attuned to her to moderate and contain her flights of insanity, she called the pair to her, and asked them to walk with her. Surprised at her serenity (though always with an Ofanite's energy), they kept up as best they could as she made her way through cities and forests alike. It was on this walk that Yves found her, and the two withdrew to talk. When Yves returned to the pair, he told them their task was done, and done well, and now they were to return with him. When Aluriel asked if Gabriel would be returning to Heaven, Yves looked distant, and perhaps wistful. "In a way she already has," he said, "and in a way perhaps she will never." And that is all the Archangel of Destiny would say on that subject. It is worth noting that Gabriel has not returned to Heaven or the Seraphim Council since regaining her sanity and perspective, however. This concerns many, as her presence and support might go far to allay the suspicions and frustrations surrounding Belial's crusade.
Gabriel then began to visit each of her Servitors in turn, listening to them and attending to them as she had not in many years, and adjusting their Attunements to reflect their new missions. As she conducted her affairs, a corona of Holy Fire could almost be perceived, and the hopes and passionate love of her Servitors were rekindled anew. Those Servitors too passionately dedicated to the destruction of cruelty were sent to Belial -- the rest formed a new core of Inspirers.
Gabriel's mission, having disposed of her ancient enemy in the best possible way -- his redemption -- is once again centered on inspiration. Gabriel seeks to rekindle the fires of faith in this all-too-secular world, and flies the globe seeking to awaken and inspire those who can light the world with Faith in the Lord.
While Gabriel continues to eschew Heaven, her Servitors do not, and they have been instructed to work closely with Jean's Servitors and Janus's. Further, her Servitors have been told to support, work with and protect Eli's Servitors whenever possible -- which infuriates Dominic. Gabriel's hostility to Dominic is unabated, however, and her return to lucidity has added fuel to it. Between Belial's crusade and Gabriel's renewed wrath, the Divine Inquisition is at its least secure since the trial of Michael.
In appearance, Gabriel maintains her female form. Her clothes are trendy -- red dresses, bike shorts and jeans and a tee shirt all as likely to appear as any other -- and her look shifts as often as her locale. Her smile is fast, but her eyes remain fiery -- Gabriel's passions are freer now, not banked -- and her patience is thin. If invoked, she will assume her Servitor has a pressing reason. However, should she just show up she might be conversational or even chatty, and the Servitor may find himself pressed into a whirlwind of activity with her for a day, a week or a year....
Gabriel inspires the world. Her Angels are therefore charged with lighting the fires of faith, hope and inspiration. Those selfsame fires burn the selfish and insular, who cruelly treat those around them. Therefore, Angels of Fire take dissonance whenever they discourage selfless faith or hope.
Furthermore, Gabriel's Servitors are expected to punish the cruel, as cruelty dims the fires of faith in its victims. While no longer bound to seek out and deal with cruelty as their sole mission, any time the angel acts in a cruel way himself he receives two points of dissonance, and when they encounter a victim of cruelty whose faith and inspiration is wavering, they must deal with their tormentor or receive dissonance.
Since reclaiming the whole of the Word of Fire, Gabriel's priorities have changed and with them her Attunements. It is possible some of her Servitors will keep their older Attunements, though it is more likely Gabriel will permit them to keep their old Choir Attunement but send them into Belial's service.
The Seraphim of Fire now seek those who deceive themselves about their own spirituality. They find the hypocrites -- especially religious hypocrites -- and liars who hide behind their religion (or lack thereof) and bring down or mock the spirituality of others. A Seraph of Gabriel can look a person in the eye and, with a Perception roll (resisted by Will) see the balance between the public and private beliefs of the person.
Fire may burn, but it also warms, and the hearth gathers many closer together. Gabriel's Cherubim are dedicated to the unity that Fire brings, and the love that Fire can inspire. Where before the Cherubim of Fire punished those who betrayed those close to them, now their mission is to forge new relationships and purify old ones, before betrayal can happen. Cherubim of Fire may attune to two people in a true relationship as though they were attuning to just one. It is the relationship itself the Cherub attunes to, and with a perception roll the Cherub may determine danger to that relationship -- whether from exterior forces or the lies, selfishness or deception by one or both partners in the relationship. The Cherub may use his resonance to find either partner. If the relationship fails, the Cherub takes dissonance, though rekindling the relationship will negate it. Note that if one of the partners dies in such a way that the other partner is inspired and assured of his fallen love's devotion, the Cherub will not take dissonance (though they are likely to be very unhappy).
Ofanim of Fire are used as couriers and messangers, as well as their long-standing role of pursuers of those who flee justice. Their attunement remains the same as in In Nomine, p. 119.
Trained to find the middle paths between extremes, the Elohim of Fire must walk the tightrope between the twin aspects of Divine Fire. They have been charged with maintaining the balance between Inspiration and Punishing the Cruel. When using their resonance, Elohim of Fire can sense those who delight in inflicting psychological and emotional pain on others, as per their old attunement (In Nomine, p.119), but now they can also sense those who delight in fueling and inspiring others to greater achievements. A single person can register in both ways, of course.
The Malakim of Fire still use the same attunement as before (In Nomine p.119). Fire can warm, but it also can burn, and sometimes the Divine Flame must scour.
While a good number of Kyriotates still enjoy punishing those who inflict physical pain on others, Gabriel now uses her Kyriotates to reflect the many different faces of fire. Kyriotates can possess flames -- up to one square yard per Force they apply to this possession. They may control the burn of the flame, as well as protect things caught in those flames. (It is worth noting that this attunement is almost identical to Belial's pre-Redemption Shedim of Fire attunement -- a fact that makes some Kyriotates of Fire uncomfortable. In those cases, Gabriel is willing to allow those Kyriotates to retain their older attunement instead.)
The Mercurians of Fire have changed the least of all Gabriel's Servitors. Their traditional charge -- the elimination of self-cruelty -- still perfectly matches Gabriel's mission, and their attunement remains the same (In Nomine, p.119).
Dance of the Atoms
While Gabriel has begun to develop and offer new (or very old) Servitor Attunements that reflect her renewed mission, her basic Servitor Attunements remain the same.
Gabriel has not changed many opinions, either for or against others. Perhaps the most significant is Dominc -- while Gabriel still despises the Archangel of Judgement (especially since she believes Belial's redemption also vindicates Gabriel's entire existence), Dominic can clearly see the Archangel of Fire is no longer the unstable threat she once was. He still wants to investigate and try her, to establish some answers over Belial and to assess her recovery, but he is now confident Gabriel withstand that scrutiny with little difficulty. Not that Gabriel intends to give him the chance.
Gabriel's basic distinctions have not changed, though she seems to have created some new ones. In particular, Gabriel has created a new Vassel of the Stars Distinction, which seems to be equal in rank to her Vassal of Fire Distinction. A Vassal of the Stars can use a small source of natural light (be it a candle, a small campfire, or the nighttime stars themselves) to inspire and enthrall. For a cost of 1 Essence, the Angel can make a person focus on the fire source for a number of rounds equal to the Vassal's Celestial Forces. The target may make a Will roll to resist.
There are rumors of some Gabrielite Angels of higher Distinction having varients of the Vassal of the Stars ability, capable not only of enthralling a target but -- when used against a demon -- actually inflicts dissonance as the Divine Flame forces them to acknowledge the true Symphony. This has not been verified, however.
CHANCE OF INVOCATION: 4
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