I’ve been toying around with ways to make Castle Falkenstein suitable for a more contemporary game – and one of the most obvious that occurs to me is the introduction of additional Sorcerous Orders.
So without further ado:
The Order of the Age of Sin
The Age of Sin is a relatively new “organization” dedicated to amassing arcane lore useful in undermining public conceptions of gender and upholding individual gender identities. They are not the only such Sorcerous Order, but they are easily one of the most flagrant.
Traditional hierarchies are not particularly enforced within the order, but anyone who is both cisgender and gender conforming is unlikely to accepted as a chapter president or viewed as a “master” of the art.
Members of the order are know for using both the transgender symbol and the radiological hazard sign as their Blazons.
History & Secret Knowledge: A sterilized copy of this text can be found online or in second hand book shops. The missing pieces have never been formally published, but transgender and non-binary practitioners of The Art have been able to use their own experiences to fill in the missing blanks. Zines, scrap books, and crumpled envelopes containing the missing pieces can be found getting passed from one member of the order to the next in the back corners of punk shows, mechanics’ shops, and cafes – though without proper knowledge of the order, finding the right ones to frequent might be difficult.
- First You Die, Then You Get Their Attention (2♠) is a binding that renames the subject. In addition to the subject responding to the new name naturally, they will be considered “unknown” to any other sorcerer who has not been re-introduced. This superscedes sympathetic magic and the effect is permanent if the subject willingly accepts the new name before the end of the spell.
- Abandon Your Tedious Search (6♥) makes it so that the subjects will not see anything done by the caster as being out of the ordinary.
- Gender Interrogatory (4♥) renders the sex and gender of the sorcerer indeterminable, though some practitioners learn a variation which instead renders the subjects unable to remember their own genders.
- Naming the Parts (4♦) allows the sorcerer to name any part of the anatomy along with it’s form and function – this may help someone with the Physician ability, but cannot be used to heal on its own.
Scripta Varia of the Pontifical Academy of The Art’s Bio Ethics Division
History & Secret Knowledge: This Scripta Varia was initially compiled by the Vatican in an attempt to anticipate how sorcery might evolve if the Holy See were to embrace transgender individuals and nonbinary gender identities – it is not quite clear how it got from the Papal Vaults into the hands of the very people it was investigating (and ultimately condemning). The original is in Latin, and translations rarely leave the hideouts that serve as chapter houses for the order.
- Disfigure the Face of Man and Woman (8♦) allows the sorcerer to freely reshape the body of a willing humanoid subject so long as the end result is still humanoid. Complexity increases with the number of changes made and if any of them involve adding inhuman features. The spell cannot exactly duplicate another’s form unless the sorcerer independently has ability as a Sculptor and Forger.
- Reject the Order of Creation (14♦) allows the sorcerer to grant a transformed subject form-appropriate abilities so long as they are either familiar with the abilities or have a detailed description of them and the manner of their functioning complete with illustration (Naming the Parts can grant this familiarity).
- Revel in the Annihilation of Man (6♥) is a binding and a curse which undermines the subject man’s authority. Depending on how the spell is Defined it can undermine Charisma, Connections, Exchequer, or Social Graces (the more areas undermined, the more complex the spell).
- Plot Designs of Death (14♦) seems ill suited to the rest of the manuscript, but is too powerful to ignore. The spell allows the sorcerer to unerringly target and operate a Defined engine of destruction once. If the device is not present, the sorcerer must instead have detailed schematics.