Blood Magic

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You believe you gain magical power by spilling blood to appease higher powers. The classic example of this tradition are the ancient Aztecs, who practiced many blood sacrifices.

Benefit: You gain the Attack, Defend, Summon, and Transform arcana. Your Attack spells deal death damage.

If you have a sharp weapon handy, you can choose to deal 1d6 points of damage to yourself when you cast a spell. If you do, you gain a +1 blood bonus to the magical skill check for that spell. You also gain this bonus if you took damage within the past round or while casting the spell.

Alternately, you may choose to deliver a coup de grace to a helpless creature, gaining a +1 blood bonus to your skill check, or +2 if it was a sentient creature, if you begin casting your spell immediately after killing the creature.

Rituals: At least one living creature must be bloodletted or sacrificed. Rituals of 10th level or higher require the sacrifice of a sentient creature.

Mishaps: You take 2 points of Constitution damage, and also take damage equal to the spell’s level.

Modern Horror

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