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Contacting the spirit of a specific person


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One of my players has asked the clan shaman if she can contact his Uncle, who is missing and he is afraid is dead. Summon Ancestor only works on the caster's ancestors, so that isn't helpful. The character and his two siblings are the closest living relatives that they know of and they haven't seen the Uncle in over 10 years. How difficult would this be? What would the shaman need from the character? What would they charge the character?

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Summon specific ancestor summons an ancestor the caster knows. If the adventurer tells the shaman about his uncle, then the shaman knows the ancestor:

Quote

This spell must be stacked with a 1-point Summon Ancestor spell. It calls a specific ancestor spirit already known to the summoner. Otherwise it is as Summon Ancestor.

be aware that it won't work if the uncle hasn't been dead for more than seven days or isn't dead.

Cost (page 406), two points of Rune magic = 40L (two cows / 14 sheep / five amphorae of mead)

Edited by David Scott
added cost
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It might be in order to do a Divination first, asking whether the uncle is alive or dead.  How to do that would depend on what cult the uncle is in, since Divination can only tell you what is known to your god.  I would assume that a god would know whether one of his own cultists was alive.  Perhaps this would be the shaman's professional advice.  Kind of a "You need to consult a specialist" answer.

If the uncle is dead then the shaman could search for the uncle's spirit to question it, if someone wanted to know when, where, or how the uncle died.  If alive of course that would be a fruitless search, and how would the shaman know when to call the search off?  I would say it's the GM's call how difficult the shaman sees a search for a specific spirit being.  Me, I've never personally searched for any spirit. 

 

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9 minutes ago, David Scott said:

Summon specific ancestor summons an ancestor the caster knows. If the adventurer tells the shaman about his uncle, then the shaman knows the ancestor:

be aware that it won't work if the uncle hasn't been dead for more than seven days or isn't dead.

 Or his spirit hasn't been bound to an artefact or otherwise trapped someplace...

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2 hours ago, Scorus said:

Summon Ancestor only works on the caster's ancestors, so that isn't helpful.

In Glorantha, your ancestors are not always direct ancestors, your uncle (brother of your mother or father) definitely counts as an ancestor, but your uncle (husband of your mother's/father's sister) might not, depending on how the clan dynamics work.

2 hours ago, Scorus said:

How difficult would this be?

As difficult as you want it to be.

All the shaman needs to do is to travel to the Land of the Dead and hunt around a bit to find the uncle. That's what shamans do, after all. They need to know which part of the land of the Dead the uncle is probably in, but that normally depends on the uncle's cult. If they know the sacred words and rituals, they should be able to get past the gatekeepers and into that portion of the Underworld. Then, the shaman just needs to find the uncle among the thousands of spirits there.

2 hours ago, Scorus said:

What would the shaman need from the character?

Something that belonged to the uncle, maybe an heirloom. Something of the character, preferably a lock of hair or fingernail clippings, perhaps some blood.

2 hours ago, Scorus said:

What would they charge the character?

Just a promise of service in the future, maybe an offer of assistance or the shaman can call on them for a simple task.

 

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