The Cantharide

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The Cantharide
Cat.289-Nacer-De-Nuevo-1960.jpg
"We call upon the Cantharide, who breaketh through."
Origin Flesh
Titles Countless: the Blistering Grace, the Emphasis, the Damsel-In-Relief, the Apophenian, The Name of Names, but most of all...
The Vain Glory
Names Helen of Sparta (the Cloud-Made)
Lucrezia Borgia
Aspects Moth Lantern Grail
Date of arrival unsure yet
Owner(s) Erised

When she first descended from the Glory, she was perhaps the literal embodiment of the undeserving Hour - having avoided the same process that all others From-Flesh have braved. She was known to only utter cryptic statements and make impressive, yet ultimately pointless miracles take place. The other Hours didn't expect more of her, in fact, they almost had a tinge of admiration in their disdain, because in their eyes, she was faking it, though expertly. Most human cultists crave transcendence and high wisdom - meaning - more than true occult knowledge, thus the Cantharide, dispenser of infinite "wisdom", drew followers naturally. She was good at keeping the masquerade of Hours being benefactors to mankind, simultaneously not being powerful enough to be a menace in her own right - a perfect PR.

...But of late, this has changed. The Cantharide's pseudo-truths actually seem to hold more and more occult truth, as if she was truly channeling the immense powers she claimed she did. And to only make it worse, even she seems to have no clue why.

Appearance

Principles

Moth is for the Name-as-Self, as much a core feature of the being as it is a simple mask, removable and replaceable in a whim. Most human words and titles are of this category, which the Cantharide excels at affecting. When a lawyer or a politician plays upon words to get away, when a spy creates a cover, or a writer designs a character so fake it’s real, their phrases are anthems to the Cantharide.

The Mechanism and the Cantharide both are oracles, bound to reveal truths to those who beseech them, but also able to warp the truth they scry.

Lantern is for the Name-As-Truth. The Lantern is the platonic ideal, the un-stainable and perfect Truth hidden in the meaning. Those are not the mere names used by humans and their mutable selves: those are the names and titles of deities, the transcendent tenets of their legend, be they awe-inspiring or terrible, alluring or gruesome. Such appellations are true and unchanging in any point of any History. The Cantharide can’t modify or replace them, for they're written in the ink of the Glory, but it’s within her power to exalt them, or subvert them, ever so slightly. For beings involved in the occult, When poets or scholars sing praises, when journalists slander, there grows the seeds of the Cantharide.

The Captain discovers the truth during his journeys: but for to those truths, he gives no Names. The Abbess purges the souls of the deceased: but save for their sins, she doesn't name any part of them. The Eye sees all, but speaks not.

Grail (or Knock) is for the Name-As-Call. In all esoteric traditions, the true name of a being is a way to bind it, to appeal to it, to access its secret nature. The Name-as-Call is Ecstasy when shouted in pleasure: it is Addiction when obsessively repeated. When your lover calls to you in a muffled moan of pleasure (or a shrieking shrill of fear), when a witch spits it in a curse or whispers it in blessing, the weight of their claims on you is the Cantharide’s.

The Fruitbat takes your desire and makes you forget it, by making you happy with what you have. The Dongolopticon takes your desire, becomes an even-better version of it, and makes you realize what you truly need. The Pain takes your desire and uses it to torture you, so that you'll become less guilty for your desire. The Cantharide takes your desire, and makes it so big and all-encompassing that you're not its subject anymore, just its spectator.

Worship

Cults

Mark

  1. Temptation: Immanence:
  2. Dedication: Immanence:
  3. Ascension: Immanence: A beacon shines upon my brow, not alight itself, but spreading darkness wherever my eyes don’t abide. I know this to be the First Mark.
  4. Ascension: Immanence:
  5. Ascension: Immanence:
  6. Ascension: Immanence:

Servants

The Bassarides amongst the trees. The Nepheliads over the sea.

Locations

The Fansus

The Histories

Cretan Minoan Era? Renaissance? Libertine Era in France?

Items

Tools

Ingredients

Influences

Books

Rites

About the Wassail

How They Feel

Who They Blame

What They Hide

It's an open secret that the Cantharide is changing, since her sudden arrival in the Mansus.

Her power does not wane, however, in any shape of form. In fact, it's rather the opposite: it seems to keep taking forms more and more refined and exalted.... whose complexity seems to baffle even herself.

Her followers also indicate a shift. Dhile initially drawn to each other Hour like a moth to a flame, eager to see how her stimulating powers would influence them, she now seems to restrain herself, talking to each Hour only in secret, and individually, as if she had grown ashamed of her insistent need for symbiosis.

And of course, all the other Hours wonder. If it only took a couple minutes to turn a human witch into a full-fledged Hour, how stable (and more importantly, how sustainable) is such a metamorphosis ?

Relationships