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The Arcana of Time governs the viewing of and interaction with the flow of time as it is understood within the Fallen World. Spells within the purview of this Arcanum grant the mage a wide range of abilities influencing such things as knowledge of future events and the ability to see into the past. A mage skilled in the use of this Arcanum can look backwards or forwards in time, alter time’s flow around herself or others, and, in extreme cases, travel backwards and forwards in time or rewrite her own history. This Arcanum is commonly found in the hands of the Acanthus, whose fortunes always hang by a thread, and thus require some knowledge of potential outcomes.
Divination, prophecy, temporal acceleration/deceleration.
Nature and Power
The Arcanum of Time is the Gross Arcana of the Supernal Realm of Arcadia, a realm that also generates the powers of the Arcanum of Fate. The realm of Arcadia is saturated with a feeling of timelessness. This is not to be confused with timelessness in the sense of temporal stillness; rather, time has a peculiar quality that puts it outside the normal vagaries of Fallen World time. Stories abound of mortals settling down in a cave or spot in the woods to rest, only to wake up and find decades or centuries have passed in the material world; the Awakened theorise that such experiences come from contact with Arcadia’s warped temporality. Time’s flow is erratic in Arcadia; it seems as though many times exist at once, each at the same time true. To make sense of such altered time, one must have the ability to understand and manipulate time’s flow. This power is also readily useable in the Fallen World, where time is easier to predict and therefore easier to control. The power of the Arcanum of Time is reduced in the Fallen World, but as with all the Gross Arcana, its field of influence remains on this side of the Abyss and the Gauntlet.
Time is a concept of great importance to the Awakened. Four of the Pentacle Orders constantly look back to the past, obsessed with the idea of reclaiming their former glory; the other has its eyes fixed firmly upon the potential future, envisaging a world where their ideals of democracy and universal Awakening are made fully manifest. Mages in the modern world live and die over the scraps of the past, whether fabricating themselves a grandiose history or scrapping for an Atlantean artefact of untold power and significance. The Arcanum of Time gives them a step up in such subterfuges and treasure-grabs, and it has its uses outside merely the politics, propaganda, and petty squabbles of the Awakened.
A mage well versed in the Arcanum of Time has a great number of advantages over her peers in mundane life and Awakened business alike. The abilities possessed by such mages allow them to divine the future with great clarity; an expedient mage should not need to be informed of the advantages of such power, but they are multifarious and often highly detrimental to one’s Wisdom. Likewise, the ability to look directly into the past confers a great deal of advantages upon the user; one can watch past events to aid in research, help find artefacts, determine the guilty party in the case of crimes committed by the Awakened, or simply observe for the sake of amusement. Objects can be sent forward in time, so that they are not available to an enemy until the time is right for their usage. The mage may cause herself or others to experience an unusual flow of time, making enemies slower or giving her more time to work on a complex task. At the highest levels of mastery, a mage can even rewrite her past or freeze a target within the flow of time altogether.
Levels of Mastery
Having learned the powers of the first level of mastery, an Initiate of Time gains the Mage Sight with respect to the way resonance clings to objects in time it has interacted with, and gains the ability to tell perfect time. She can sense temporal disturbances, knowing any power that has altered time's natural flow. She can gain insight into an event that happened a few seconds ago, is happening, or will happen momentarily, and discover whether it will be beneficial or harmful to her. She also gains a sense of improved timing, allowing her to act at just the right moment for maximum effect.
- Spells: Counterspell, Momentary Flux, Perfect Timing, Precise Dating, Temporal Eddies, Temporal Wrinkles, Tempus Fugit, Time Limit, Times Mark, Times Mask
- House Ruled:
- Banned: Time Limit
An Apprentice of Time with the second level of mastery can grant her perceptions of the lingering effects of resonance to others. She may discern the outcome of a very simple undertaking, one where only two options are available, gain answers to simple questions about a single facet of the future, or get a more detailed look at the outcome of a single action she is performing. She can glimpse into her past or that of an object she holds with precision and clarity. Her powers can shield her against divinations by others into her past or future, or form a more literal shield against oncoming attacks by speeding the mage up in time or slowing incoming attacks down.
- Spells: Augury, Flip of the Coin, Glimpsing the Future, Library of Time, Postcognition, Prepared Spells, Shield of Chronos, Sympathetic Spells, Temporal Dodge, Temporal Phantasm, Temporal flow
- House Ruled: Temporal Dodge
The powers of the third level of mastery grant a Disciple of Time the ability to bestow her ability to bestow her protection by the forces of time on others. She can gain more specific knowledge of the future, allowing her to get answers to questions with more than a few simple outcomes. She can speed up her movement in the flow of time, allowing her to move and act far faster than is normally possible. Finally, she can take limited steps back in time, allowing her to re-enact an action she just performed.
- Spells: Acceleration, Borrow From the Future, Defer Conscience, Divination, Falsify Temporal Presence, Prophetic Dream, Rapid Fire, Review History, Shifting Sands, Strike in the Perfect Moment, Temporal Shift, Time Out of Mind
- House Ruled: Strike in the Perfect Moment
- Banned: Defer Conscience
An Adept of Time can use the fourth level of mastery to predict the events of the near future with exact precision, allowing her to anticipate every move anyone nearby is just about to make. Her ability to divine the further future increases to the point where she can not only ask questions about what will come to pass but also as to how to alter these events or stop them from happening. She can briefly ‘stutter’ forward in time, appearing a few seconds into the future, or allow another to do the same. She can make other creatures experience a disrupted flow of time, making them act more slowly than they normally would, or briefly slip into an area of subjective time where the temporal flow is faster or slower than on the outside.
- Spells: Chronos Curse, Erase History, Eternal Object, Precognitive Ordeal, Present as Past, Prophecy, Temporal Pocket, Temporal Stutter
- House Ruled: Eternal Object, Precognitive Ordeal
The fifth level of mastery grants a Master of Time the ability to catapult objects into the future, to avoid capture by enemies or to only make them available when their intended recipient is prepared to wield them. She can temporarily cease the time flow around a person, freezing them in the middle of whatever they were doing (even if unsupported by the ground) until the spell ends. Her powers can warp local time, creating pockets of unusual temporality in which time moves slower or faster than it does on the outside. Finally, the mage can rewrite her personal history, changing the events of her past (though only temporarily) to give herself a completely different set of capabilities (though the history of her soul cannot be changed; all her magical traits remain the same).
- Spells: Duplicate, Faerie Glade, Future Legacy, Legacy of Power, Rewrite History, Stop Time, Temporal Lifeline
- House Ruled:
- Banned: Temporal Lifeline
An Apprentice of Time gains the power to suspend the workings of spells of any Arcana as they are cast, storing the energies of the spell and saving its completion for a later time. This costs additional Mana but allows a mage to quickly use a spell without needing to perform any rituals or extravagant flourishes.