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Prior to his treachery, Gorol was among the foremost grandmasters of Solar Hero Style and one of the first to develop more custom Charms for that style. Following his surrender and enslavement to the Yozis, he returned to Creation armed with new Charms that mocked his former accomplishments and the noble purity of his former style. These obscene fighting techniques allowed him to best his circle once his crimes became known. If the natural fighting arts of the Lawgivers equip them to bravely strike down the mightiest devils with whatever lies at hand, then Infernal Monster Style exists to create monsters worthy of needing Solar Hero Style. Exalted who study this art learn to use their rage as a lens, focusing Essence toward acts of unthinkable brutality and savagery. There is nothing noble about this art except the refreshing simplicity with which it grinds enemies into sticky red paste.

Infernal Monster Style is only compatible with armorcreated by Infernal Charms. Its form weapons are the cestus, fighting gauntlet, boot and all improvised weapons (see Exalted, p. 242), as well as artifact versions thereof.

Despite this style’s name, it is the “hero” style of the Infernal Exalted and is sometimes called Infernal Hero Style by those who view Creation’s Exalted as worse monsters than themselves.Infernal-only expansions to this style are Ability-based Martial Arts Charms rather than Infernal Charms, extrapolating the themes and imagery of the Infernal Monster rather than expressing the esoteric powers of any particular Yozi. Both Green Sun Princes and akuma may access and develop new extensions. As normal, non-Infernals can learn the base Charms of this style as a formal Celestial art.

Retribution Will Follow

Cost: 1m; Mins: Martial Arts 2, Essence 2;
Type: Reflexive (Step 10)
Keywords: Combo-OK
Duration: One scene
Prerequisite Charms: None

Striking an Infernal Monster stylist makes him angry. This is unwise. Whenever the martial artist suffers one or more levels of damage, his player may activate this Charm. Doing so causes him to enter a savage killing frenzy for a scene like that imposed by an uncontrolled Berserk Anger Limit Break (Exalted, p. 105). The enraged character is immune to all negative effects from wound penalties (including dice penalties and slowing) and treats all forms of mental influence from beings of equal or lesser Essence as unacceptable orders. He regains no Willpower points from the rampage. Characters who have Limit tracks bleed off a single point of accrued Limit from this induced catharsis rather than resetting to zero, but this only happens once the character kills or horribly maims someone with an unarmed attack during the scene. Characters do not gain or require any conscious knowledge of the Great Curse to use this Charm.

Raging Behemoth Charge

Cost: 4m; Mins: Martial Arts 3, Essence 2;
Type: Reflexive
Keywords: Combo-OK
Duration: One scene
Prerequisite Charms: Retribution Will Follow

Like all monsters, the Infernal Monster is predisposed to giving chase. He adds his Martial Arts rating to the number of yards per tick he can cover with a Move or Dash action, provided he heads toward a character he observed physically attacking him this scene. He must be able to perceive the character he charges toward. Enhanced dashes enjoy a -0 DV penalty.

Infernal Monster Form

Cost: 6m; Mins: Martial Arts 4, Essence 3; Type: Simple
Keywords: Form-type, Obvious
Duration: One scene
Prerequisite Charms: Raging Behemoth Charge

The Infernal’s eyes close and his face assumes a curiously sad expression, as if he almost regrets the carnage about to follow. When they open, they burn vivid emerald and his muscles swell impossibly, increasing his overall size and mass by 10%. Stylecompatible armor resizes with him, but most clothes tear unless
very loose-fitting. Use of this Charm is compatible with Lunar tattoos. The martial artist gains the benefits listed below.

  • Every unarmed attack inflicts piercing damage and grants the monster a cumulative dot of Strength for the scene. This dot does increase the damage of the attack that provided it. No combination of Charms including Infernal Monster Form can provide more than (Essence) additional dots, and this bonus is treated as a dice bonus from Charms. This Strength gain occurs even if the attack misses but only occurs once per attack regardless of the number of targets.
  • He can parry lethal and ranged attacks unarmed without a stunt.
  • He decreases the Speed of all unarmed attacks by -1, to a minimum of Speed 3, provided he attacks once rather than as part of a flurry.
  • His body expands metaphysically as well as physically, causing him to exist outside of fate and as a creature of darkness native to Malfeas for the duration of the Charm. These states carry all the usual advantages and disadvantages. In addition to basic removal from fate, the character’s presence imposes automatic failure on all thaumaturgical divination methods (such as astrology) used within a mile, causing them to return a single disturbing result: “The monster is here.”

God-Smashing Blow

Cost: 3m (or 3m, 1wp); Mins: Martial Arts 4, Essence 3;
Type: Supplemental
Keywords: Combo-OK, Knockback
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: Infernal Monster Form

The Infernal raises one or both arms and brings her fist(s) down like a hammer, driving a target into the ground. This Charm enhances an unarmed attack, causing the target to suffer automatic knockdown with no roll to resist if the attack hits. Additionally, every other character apart from the Charm user within (Martial Arts) yards of the impact must check for knockdown at a difficulty of (the Exalt’s Essence).

The surface beneath the target also suffers the raw damage of the attack, though this damage is always bashing and automatically piercing. Normally, Storytellers can dispense with calculating damage to the ground and simply assume this Charm leaves the target in a small crater. However, targets standing on flimsy structures may find their footing blasted out from under them, especially from high-damage attacks. If an Exalt uses this Charm to successfully strike a materialized god or demon with equal or lesser Essence, she may pay an additional Willpower. This strews the victim’s body as splatters of ephemera and gobbets of divine flesh in the usual crater. Although it appears to witnesses that the spirit died—messily—it is no more harmed than normal from the attack, save for being forcibly returned to its natural dema- terialized state in addition to being knocked prone.

Fists of the Old Ones

Cost: —; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 3;
Type: Permanent
Keywords: Knockback, Obvious
Duration: Permanent
Prerequisite Charms: God-Smashing Blow

Those hurled away by the unholy might of an Infernal Monster’s blows may count themselves fortunate. It is always possible they will land out of sight and not die, just as it is always possible that the monster will forget about them in favor of new prey. Such are the limits of their hope. Whenever the martial artist hits a target with a fierce blow (seeExalted, p. 158) enhanced with God-Smashing Blow, she may use any type of closed-fist striking technique instead of relying solely upon overhand hammer-fists. The opponent flies back in the direction of the blow, so the attacker may choose any remotely plausible vector. Fists of the Old Ones launches victims (Strength x 5) yards in the chosen direction. Upon landing or striking any barrier in the path of flight, the character suffers falling damage as if he had plummeted straight down by the distance he actually traversed before being interrupted. Unlike conventional falls, victims can’t arrest their momentum with a (Wits + Athletics) roll, although they can mitigate damage by tumbling as normal. A successful roll also keeps characters blasted back into high barriers from bouncing off and falling again for a third round of damage from the attack. All of the usual effects of God-Smashing Blow go into effect at the victim’s final destination point after any bounce. This Charm is subject to the normal limits of falling damage.

Glory to the Demon Monster

Cost: —; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 3;
Type: Permanent
Keywords: None
Duration: Permanent
Prerequisite Charms: Infernal Monster Form

The Infernal Monster draws power from its limitless anger. Whenever the character has Retribution Will Follow and Infernal Monster Form simultaneously active, the cost to activate all Infernal Monster Style Charms and Infernal-only expansions to the style decreases by one mote (or two motes if the martial artist has Essence 6+ and knows One Hand Fury). This reduction is cumulative with other cost reductions, but it cannot reduce the Essence cost of a Charm activation below zero motes. If magic allows Infernal Monster Form to coexist with another Form-Style Charm, then that style’s Charms benefit as if they were Infernal Monster Style Charms.

Joyful Cessation of Restraint

Cost: 3m, 1wp; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 3;
Type: Extra Action
Keywords: Combo-OK
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: Glory to the Demon-Monster

The martial artist allows the way of the Infernal Monster to possess him utterly, quickening his movements into a blur of ultraviolence. This Charm is a magical flurry of (Essence) unarmed attacks against a single target. These attacks ignore rate limitations, suffer no multiple action penalties and impose a DV penalty equal to the highest penalty for any one attack. If the target is an animate being who is prone as of sequentially resolving the final attack in this cascade, the Infernal can make two additional attacks as part of the flurry, and these final attacks can’t be dodged.

World-Breaker Grip

Cost: 5m, 1wp; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 3;
Type: Supplemental
Keywords: Combo-OK
Duration: Until released
Prerequisite Charms: Infernal Monster Form

The Infernal Monster holds its prey like a beast’s chew toy, dragging it around effortlessly. This Charm enhances a grapple attack against an opponent light enough to drag around (see sidebar), substituting Martial Arts for Athletics for the feat of strength. The Exalt grapples using a single limb of his choice without any off-hand penalties. If the attack succeeds, he can only hold the opponent and may not break hold or crush with that attack. However, the grapple no longer requires any effort apart from tying up the non-reflexive use of the attacking limb.

Consequently, the attacker may defend and fight as if carrying any other large weapon without the usual restrictions placed on grapplers, but he may not make further physical attacks against the foe in hand. He must still roll to maintain control each action, but this roll is reflexive for him, so he always applies his full dice pool regardless of whatever other actions he takes. The Charm immediately ends if the held opponent escapes or if the martial artist uses control of the grapple to do anything besides hold the enemy to continue the effect. The martial artist can use a held enemy as an improvised one-handed weapon to strike or parry (the restriction on parrying while grappling is lifted for this purpose) using the following statistics: Speed 6; Accuracy -3; Damage (Strength x 2)B + attack successes; Defense -3; Rate 2; Tags: P, R.

Whenever a wielded character hits a target or blocks an attack, she suffers (the martial artist’s Strength) dice of piercing damage from the impact. This damage is bashing unless the held character is used to block a lethal or aggravated attack. If this punishment kills a held victim, her corpse remains a useful weapon for the rest of the Charm’s duration.

Screaming Meat Shield

Cost: 5m; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 3;
Type: Reflexive (Step 2)
Keywords: Combo-OK
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: World-Breaker Grip

The best defense is to break an enemy’s will to fight. Gorol learned this the hardest possible way when he overheard the Neverborn whisper the Great Curse and sought to integrate the lesson into Infernal Monster Style. This Charm may defend against any perceived physical attack by changing the target from the martial artist to a victim she is holding with World-Breaker Grip. The attack is resolved as if the new target were its original target and cannot be aborted. If an attacker kills a held character toward whom she has a positive Intimacy as a result of this attack redirection, the attacker loses one Willpower from despair. A mortal who inadvertently kills a close loved one this way (such as a spouse or child) loses all remaining Willpower points as his will breaks along with his heart (see Exalted, p. 174).

One Hand Fury

Cost: — (1wp); Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 5;
Type: Permanent
Keywords: Obvious
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: Fists of the Old Ones, Joyful Cessation of Restraint, Screaming Meat Shield

Masters of Infernal Monster Style gain a new and terrible form weapon. Purchase of this Charm permanently transforms one of the character’s hands into a demonic artifact weapon. This change is explicitly compatible with Lunar tattoos. The hand doesn’t have to look different, but many stylists consider it a mark of pride and deliberately choose for it to permanently assume some unnatural qualities such as disproportionate size or transmutation into black stone inlaid with brass, etc.

The weapon permanently adds three bashing damage to the hand’s punch and clinch statistics. Furthermore, the artifact is completely indestructible while the martial artist lives. If somehow amputated, the weapon disintegrates and the character regenerates the limb to full functionality after five days of healing. A regenerated limb and hand always show inhuman disfigurements of the player’s choice. Activating Infernal Monster Form or any Sidereal style Form automatically causes Old Realm characters to smolder into existence over the weapon’s entire surface, narrating the Scripture of the One-Handed Maiden in runes ornamented with spiraling whorls of green flame (see sidebar). Leather gloves made from human or demon skin can hide this. These runes provide the following powers and drawbacks:

  • The character’s punch attacks have the following striking statistics in lieu of the basic damage bonus above: Speed 5, Accuracy (+Essence), Damage +(Essence + Willpower)B, Rate Infinite, Tags: N, P. The weapon’s clinch stats are Speed 6, Accuracy +0, Damage +(Essence + Willpower)B, Rate 1, Tags: C, N, P. The weapon is considered in-form for all Sidereal styles in addition to Infernal Monster Style.
  • If the character would gain a temporary dot of Strength from Infernal Monster Form and has already reached the maximumnumber of dots the Charm can bestow, she gains a cumulative +1 raw damage bonus to attacks using the hand instead. There is no limit on how high the bonus can go, save that it resets to zero when the character deactivates the Form (or the scene ends). Normal Charm limits on bonus dice caps do not apply.
  • All social attacks by Yozis and Third Circle demons against the martial artist are undodgeable for one full day following any flaring of the runes. The character may argue against the Yozis or their core aspects (i.e., parry) but can’t ignore or reject the nature of the weapon she has become. Worse, once in the lifetime of any Infernal Monster Style master, the Yozis may telepathically command her to act as they please for one scene across any distance or realms of existence. Resistance is not possible, and defenses that trump this control merely postpone it to another time. The character can be ordered to betray her Motivation but can’t be given an unacceptable order. This effect is a closely guarded secret of the Yozis and remains unknown to their Infernal Exalted and the Fivescore Fellowship alike. If any individual masters suspect the danger or have discovered this curse the hard way, they have kept the knowledge to
    themselves. Anys Syn, elder aide to Chejop Kejak and chief architect of the Immaculate Dragon Styles, would personally prosecute any of the Maidens’ Chosen found to be compromised in such a manner, her own predilection for wearing gloves to major battles notwithstanding.

Oath-Shattering Strike

Cost: 60m, 6wp; Mins: Martial Arts 5, Essence 5;
Type: Simple
Keywords: Blasphemy, Obvious, Sorcerous, Touch
Duration: Instant
Prerequisite Charms: One Hand Fury

The Green Sun Prince may liberate others from their ill-considered promises, though doing so is not without price. Akuma cannot learn this Charm, for its nature is metaphysically antithetical to the vows that enslave them. Oath-Shattering Strike may only be activated after flaring the runes of One Hand Fury through an activation of Infernal Monster Style. The Exalt must also know the terms of the magical oath he intends to shatter, and that oath must have been sanctified by a being with an Essence no greater than the Infernal’s own unmodified permanent rating.

The Infernal strikes the target who swore the oath with an unarmed blow. Runes of power explode around the target, depicting the terms and authority of the oath in the moments before they dissolve into emerald fire and sand. The target is freed from the oath, but the burden for breaking it falls upon the Infernal in full as if he had sworn and deliberately broken the vow. Whether this Charm is powerful enough to fulfill its ultimate purpose remains to be seen, as no Green Sun Princes with Essence 10 exist to test it against the promises the Unconquered Sun exacted from his defeated masters.