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Feel no pain

A gift from Gnora, the goddess of logic and balance, Severing is absolute control over one's feelings and eventually the ability to dampen pain at will. Conversely, a cursed mark brings imbalance and distortion. Those cursed will not be able to sense when enough is enough and are plagued by their excesses.


Gnora and the Mark

A follower of Gnora must learn to be selfless, attaining perfect order and balance even at the cost of her own desires. She looks beyond immediate pangs and tempers towards a higher, nobler goal. But sometimes the dictates of the body and the tempers of the heart cannot be overcome.

Unlike the goddess, her followers are physical beings with all the trappings of flesh. To help ease this battle, Gnora grants her devout followers the Severing.

Conversely, an enemy of Gnora is one who has no respect for temperance or the complex balance of the world. They approach everything with broad strokes and thrive on chaos. An effective follower of Rhysol might be an appropriate irritant to the goddess. It is not the evil nature that Gnora loathes, for "evil" can be a nebulous concept. Rather, it is purposeless chaos that the goddess abhors.

The Mechanics

Image:Scroll2.png "Imagine a mind that cannot be deceived, a heart that cannot be twisted, and a gut that feels no hunger. That is freedom."
- Counterweight Eramen

The gnosis is triggered two ways. The first, and most lauded, way to trigger Severing is through meditation. A follower will meditate on some idea or image of perfect balance or logic. Some followers mentally balance scales, work through a specific mathematics problem or envision a perfect sphere in detail. Adept followers can do this exercise quickly.

A goddess veiled

The second way to activate the mark is involuntary. When measurable fear begins to flood the body, the gnosis flares. If the follower can hold on to this immediate sensation of calm, the gnosis will continue to work.

To grant the mark Gnora will manifest in the garb of an Ano Cultist. She wears the veil of a Counterweight but hers is a diaphanous fabric, allowing a glimpse of her features.

For the first mark, she wears the silver veil and asks a question regarding the follower’s mind. For the second she wears the white veil and asks about the desires of the follower’s heart. For the third she wears the black veil and asks a question that endeavors to discern the nature of follower’s Djed. For the fourth and final mark, Gnora’s face is uncovered and no more questions are asked. Instead the follower is subjected to the goddess’s full scrutiny within the Ukalas. A process some do not survive.

When the follower answers Gnora’s question to her satisfaction, the mark appears. The manifestation of the mark is a painful experience since it is a physical change to the makeup of the body. After granting the first mark, Gnora will sometimes linger to help ease the transition.


An inner change

Practitioners of Severing are recognized by the unique manifestation of the mark on their limbs. The mark brings a true structural change to the body. Beginning with the left forearm, certain bones become denser and twist into elaborate patterns, as if etched under the skin. Each design is unique to the bearer, but rarely have recognizable symbols or shapes. These patterns are often visible through the skin and can be easily discerned by touch.

While the mark’s creation is accompanied by great pain, the benefits are substantial. These reformed bones become tools, possessing enhanced resistance and density. An arm may now provide the last desperate defense against a blade or extra strength in the follower’s blows.

The bones of marked Ano Cultist are sometimes reclaimed and fashioned into macabre weapons or tools that resemble beautifully carved ivory.

A negative mark has a simple appearance. On the inner part of the wrist, black lopsided scales appear. With each negative mark the scales grow more out of balance.

Mark Progression

Marked [Cursed] - 1 Gnosis Mark

With the first mark, followers are able to temporarily dampen feelings of pain and hunger. Pain is not entirely absent, but it is reduced to half its power.

The follower can also put a rein on some emotions, suspending them for a few minutes daily in order to get a clearer idea of situations they find themselves in. Perhaps the ill-will they perceived in a person turns out to be inflated, or their affection clouded proper judgment of another’s motives. Overwhelming emotions such as grief and rage, are still difficult to resist. Activating this aspect of the gnosis allows followers to maintain just and accurate appraisals.

At this level, the bones of the left forearm (or forearms in the case of an Eypharian) are changed.


A cursed individual begins to have a very hard time saying “no” to their wants and desires. They indulge in sensory experiences too much, often growing childish and reckless. They also feel an increase of feeling and find themselves behaving inappropriately in many situations. It becomes difficult to have roles of leadership or control.

Favored [Despised] - 2 Gnosis Marks

One favored by the goddess begins to have a stronger influence over their will and body. While pain and hunger cannot be eradicated, they can exist in a half-state for as long as the Favored one wills it.

All emotion can be controlled for bells at a time and under even dire circumstances. However, it is not recommended this suppression be activated for too long. Gnora does not encourage the eradication of emotion, but wishes to see it in balance with the mind and body.

At this stage the right forearm(s) will be changed.


With the second negative gnosis the Despised begins a true downward spiral. What may have once appeared to be an unchecked personality is now one riddled with vice. A Despised one is swayed by his emotions and becomes a slave to his appetites. Even when he knows he ought to resist, he is often overpowered by his own lusts. Many Despised ones develop an addiction. Their longevity is usually based on the nature of that addiction.

Priest/Priestess [Adversary] - 3 Gnosis Marks
Priest or Priestess

A Priestess of Gnora is a default member of the Ano Cult and must possess the rank of Measure or higher. With the third mark, a Priestess can entirely dampen feelings of pain and hunger for however long she deems wise. Of course, this will not be for too long, as such impulses are necessary and beneficial. Also, emotion is easily overcome at any time.

What is especially unique about a Priestess, is her ability to temporarily influence the desires of others in her presence. While she cannot obliterate or cover the will of another, she can create a greater sense of calm and relief. Those she affects may be cognizant of the change as they feel a new evenness of temper or dulling of acute pain.

With the third mark the left shin changes shape and density.


At this juncture, an Adversary is either fat and/or wanton. He is perpetually following the dictates of his body, destroying himself in the process. Where before the wants of the cursed one still revolved around pleasure, now the compulsions are unfiltered. Any wild thought that passes through the mind takes root and demands action.

Emotions begin to be amplified. A peevish temper is inflated to a murderous rage and disappointment becomes mourning. Their life is chaotic and nonsensical with only fleeting physical pleasure for consolation. An Adversary can fight compulsion only through monumental effort.

Champion [Nemesis] - 4 Gnosis Marks

A Champion is able to control pain, hunger and emotion at will, but she is also able to completely remove these feelings from others. The power to change a person’s desires is within her grasp. There is no limit as to the duration of her self-control or influence. This makes a formidable ally and a perilous enemy of Gnora’s Champion.

Blessedly, Gnora’s Champions are strictly governed by the aims of the goddess, keeping them from wreaking havoc. Their will and the goddess’s have aligned, so their purposes are all in pursuit of balance and order.

Currently, there is only one known Champion among the Counterweights, but she is circumspect in the use of her abilities.

At this level, the right shin transform.


Gnora’s Nemesis is not long for the world. He is a consummate glutton and thrill seeker with no concept of restraint or higher purpose than serving his belly. Every idle whim is ballooned into an irresistible drive that exists long after the pleasure has passed.

Paired with this compulsion is the inflated sense of feeling, not only within himself but what he perceives from others. Every minor slight is a profound insult to honor and tiny indications of affection become proclamations of undying love. Nemeses live in a perpetual emotional storm and become largely useless for anything except very bad poetry.

Many Nemeses eat themselves to death or soon die in some destructive undertaking,