HOMUNCULUS GUIDE This guide is OPTIONAL READING that characters and even Panta Rhei itself may or may not know, or won't for several sessions. I originally didn't provide this so that it could be part of the mystery for the players who weren't familiar with the source material. But for players who want a deeper relationship with the plot, and are unfamiliar with the material, read on! Atlas Academy Atlas is technically a branch of the Mage's Association, but is very distant from the Clock Tower and other bodies of magi. It is located in Egypt, and Alchemy is the primary study. They are extremely secluded from the outside world - it is law within Atlas that whatever happens there, stays there. Magi from Atlas are generally weak in terms of magic circuits and combat ability. Alchemy in general doesn't have much combat application as a field of magic/science. However, Alchemists of Atlas have developed the ability of immense computational power, essentially turning their brains into supercomputers. This backfired in a sense, when they managed to calculate the end of the world - or more accurately, that there is no avoiding the destruction of the world by some source. TATARI The Dead Apostle Ancestors are the most powerful of vampires that terrorize the world. The Night of Wallachia is one such vampire. He was originally an alchemist of Atlas, who became obsessed with preventing the results of Atlas' calculations which guarantee the end of the world. Driven mad by this revelation, he sought to become something that could fall outside of his own calculations, and become a variable to modify the equation, thus possibly creating a different end. This 'something' ended up being a Dead Apostle - a vampire. TATARI manifests in pre-calculated areas when certain conditions are met, and feeds off of rumors and fear. Though he has no form of his own, he can take the forms of others, and bring shadows of the deceased to life from their memories - or even create hypothetical existences based on rumors that circulate within an area. He is completely insane, and a threat to all life in the city that he manifests in - in this case, Tokyo. Panta Rhei will mobilize to counteract the threat immediately. Hakkesshu Servants of the Yamata-no-Orochi who was sealed 1800 years ago by the three clans, Kusanagi, Yagami, and Yata. They seek to revive their master. They are named the Hakkesshu because there are eight of them, but three are sealed, so only five are left. As of 1999, all save one were dead. However, the ones who were not sealed have the ability to reincarnate. They have been doing so for millenia, faithfully serving Orochi throughout every time period. Three Sacred Treasures The Kusanagi Sword, the Yasakani Gem, and the Yata Mirror. These were the three items used to seal Orochi. They can only be wielded by those with heritage of those clans. The Kusanagi and Yagami clans are both hereditary Fire Phantasmals, while the Yata clan are more traditional shrine maiden-types. Due to plot reasons, the Yata Mirror is already in possession of the bad guys. They are looking for the other two, which may or may not be held by the PCs if they make a character from one of those clans.