Many ages ago, when the world still believed in magics and the power of spirits, the gods ruled from above through their earthly proxies. Chosen for their exemplary abilities and invested with divine power, these Chosen acted on Earth where the gods could not. To aid them in their efforts, the gods bestowed upon them the secrets of forging magical metals far superior to any earthly ores. Though these Chosen have since vanished from the world, their presence is still felt through the materials they left scattered across the world. The items constructed of these metals were stronger and more durable than their mundane counterparts, having survived the rise and fall of many nations, but their true power rests in their innate mystical properties. These powers could be bestowed only on the item’s bearer or those in contact with the magical item.
Three such items are listed below. Though their history is largely lost to the sands of time, the Keys of Atlantis are powerful artifacts of a bygone era. They secured a once mighty city of power and learning, considered by some to have been the true beginnings of civilization in this world. These enlightened people worshipped the gods of old, and through them, may have learned the secrets of forging the magical materials.
The greatest of the ancient gods were the sky gods, known to modern mages as the Celestial Incarna, and arguably the greatest among them was Sol Invictus, god of the ever-present sun. It was Sol who shone his divine light into the dark places of the world, bringing illumination to those who sought it and bestowing a fraction of his greatness to those deserving of it. The inhabitants of Atlantis no doubt worshipped him above all others, as the key to the great capital city of the ruined island nation is forged of his magical metal, orichalcum.
The Sunstone is a round disc that looks and feels almost exactly like copper, save for its fiery inner glow. Immaculately smooth and perfectly rounded, one flat side is marked with symbols that represent the five phases of the sun: Dawn, Noon, Twilight, Night and the Solar Eclipse. When combined with the other two stones, they would create a combination lock that would open the gates to proud Atlantis.
System: The Sunstone grants its possessor access to a pool of 5 Quintessence, to be used in her magics. When exhausted, this pool may be replenished by leaving the disc undisturbed under a clear sky for 24 hours. In addition, the difficulty for all magical rolls by the mage is considered to be three less than normal, as if the caster were near a Node. To gain these benefits, the bearer must have the Sunstone somewhere on her person (leaving it locked away at home does not count as possessing it in this instance; carrying it in a pouch or backpack does). These benefits may not be extended to others – only the individual in possession of the key may access its powers.
Ever changing, Luna represents flexibility of body and mind. Tied as it is with lunacy and shapeshifting, it comes as no surprise that the Moonstone aids in freeing one from the constraints of the Static Pattern. Forged from moonsilver in a manner similar to the Sunstone, this key to Atlantis is marked by the five phases of the moon: New, Waxing, Full, Waning and the Lunar Eclipse. This disc differs from its solar-themed counterpart in another noteworthy way – its shimmering silvery form is slightly larger than the orichalcum version.
Discovered deep within a northern African retreat that may have been the sanctuary of Atlantean survivors after the island’s ultimate demise, the Moonstone was crucial to unlocking the outer defenses that guarded the sunken island’s resting place. It’s unknown if there are any duplicates to this integral key, but if others do exist, they have since been lost to the world.
System: This key grants its possessor the Natural Shapeshifter Merit from p. 70 of Traditionbook: Verbena Revised. As per those rules, the mage need never worry about losing herself to her animal-form, and the difficulty of shapeshifting Arete rolls are two less than normal. To gain these benefits, the bearer must have the Moonstone somewhere on her person (leaving it locked away at home does not count as possessing it in this instance; carrying it in a pouch or backpack does). These benefits may also be extended to as many people in the mage’s company equal to half her Arete should others come into contact with the disc.
It is known that in Earth’s distant past, there was no barrier between our world and the spirit realm. Though the Gauntlet was nonexistent, the threat of disembodiment was still present in this bygone age. The Earthstone appears to contain magical properties that anchor the physical form of the bearer, protecting the possessor from the ill effects of dwelling in such fluid landscapes. This key, as with the others, is a round disc carved with several symbols, again slightly larger than the previous two. Unlike the others, the Earthstone is a rough-hewn artifact composed of a weave of various minerals and marked by the five signs of the elements: Water, Air, Wood, Fire and of course, Earth.
Due to the number of Atlantean outposts scattered across the world that require the Earthstone to grant access, there may have been other discs of its kind in existence. It would be foolish to assume that a single key in the possession of a lone individual secured all of these structures and cities, many of which are located on separate continents. However, if such duplicate keys do exist, there is no way to know if any of the others have survived the ravages of time.
System: The disc grants its possessor the Umbral Affinity Merit from p. 187 of The Infinite Tapestry. As per those rules, the mage is able to remain in the spirit world one month longer than normal and does not suffer from the full effects of Acclimation. To gain these benefits, the bearer must have the Earthstone somewhere on her person (leaving it locked away at home does not count as possessing it in this instance; carrying it in a pouch or backpack does). These benefits may also be extended to as many people in the mage’s company equal to her Arete should others come into contact with the disc.