The world is full of magic, but there are gradations in its mysteries. Many of the supernatural creatures in the world require no special leap of understanding: they’re beasts with a touch of magic that makes them more dangerous, but still comprehensible in motives and means. Other beings, however, defy mortal intuition in their goals and capabilities. These immortal threats captivate the curiosity of those that know of them, inevitably inspiring organizations to assemble that seek to limit—or obtain—their power.

You may have been raised by members of such an occult lodge, or perhaps you stumbled across one and were taken in after your own brush with the inexplicable. They’ve taught you ways of dealing with these creatures… not safely, but perhaps more safely than otherwise. Moreover, they’ve given you a mandate to learn more about these creatures to add to the lodge’s archives. Information is a weapon, and understanding is a shield: you’ve seen too many of the blissfully ignorant devoured by creatures they could not comprehend.

Skill Proficiencies: Two chosen based on Fields of Study (below)
Languages: Two chosen based on Fields of Study (below)
Equipment: A holy symbol, a notebook with quill and ink, cryptic instructions and passphrases for making contact with friendly occultist lodges in other cities, a set of traveler’s clothes, and a belt pouch containing 10 gp

Fields of Study

Occultist lodges tend to specialize in a particular domain of the larger occult world. Roll or choose two areas that your lodge focuses upon from the options below, and take the skill and language listed for each.

  1. Aberrations (Arcana and Deep Speech)
  2. Celestials (Religion and Celestial)
  3. Demons (Religion and Abyssal)
  4. Devils (Arcana and Infernal)
  5. Dragons (History and Draconic)
  6. Elementals (Nature and Primordial)
  7. Fey (Nature and Sylvan)
  8. Undead (History and an ancient dead language)

Feature: Warding Techniques

Occultists have disseminated a wide array of simple rituals and materials useful in dealing with immortal threats.

You may cast Protection from Good and Evil as a ritual (even though it cannot normally be cast in this way) and automatically gain it as a known spell in any of your spellcasting classes.

You start with a case full of Occultist Supplies with a value of 25 gp, and may, during any downtime in a sufficiently large city to have obscure materials, pay to restock your case (up to a maximum value of 100 gp). Once you determine the nature of a supernatural threat you are facing, you can spend value from the case to immediately “purchase” supplies that the GM agrees are reasonable for you to have on hand against such an eventuality. For example, if you have a fully stocked case and encounter a demon, you might immediately withdraw two flasks of holy water from the case (leaving it with 50 gp worth of unspecified further materials).

Suggested Characteristics

d8 Personality Trait

  1. There is one type of immortal creature that I’m obsessed with academically, and won’t shut up about.
  2. I’m almost compulsive in my paranoia about supernatural threats, especially when it comes to trying to protect my sleeping spaces.
  3. I will not begin to trust a new acquaintance until subjecting that person to a battery of tests to reveal occult influence.
  4. I’m a bit of an occult groupie, actually, and love to adorn myself with clothing and jewelry that evokes my interests.
  5. My conspiracy theories about occult infiltration into all levels of government would annoy, if they didn’t sometimes wind up true.
  6. I’m very particular about my diet, avoiding dishes where I don’t know the cook, and always eating my own strange blend of spices that I believe makes me supernaturally unappetizing.
  7. Every time I explain the powers and weaknesses of a creature, that explanation comes with a story of the hard-won nature of this lore.
  8. I don’t believe in coincidences, and seek to work out how anything that looks like one is actually the machinations of the divine or immortal.

d6 Ideal

  1. Safety. The common folk should not fear the things that go bump in the night; I will protect them. (Good)
  2. Power. My study of the occult leads me to the most advantageous way of gaining immortality for myself. (Evil)
  3. Mortality. Mortal society deserves to make its own decisions free from the influence of immortal powers. (Lawful)
  4. Courage. Facing down the supernatural is the greatest way to prove your own freedom from fear. (Chaotic)
  5. Knowledge. The morality of the immortal is not as important as cataloging it for future study. (Neutral)
  6. Tradition. In a very real way, these immortal beings would have no meaning without the occultists that watch and chronicle them. (Any)

d6 Bond

  1. A particularly powerful creature killed my mentor, and I’m learning all I can to eventually end its existence.
  2. A family member went missing in a supernatural attack, and I’ll eventually track them down, though I fear I won’t like what I find.
  3. I’ve been ground down by doing this for what seems like my whole life, and I need to have a big success to prove that I can actually make an impact in a world of immortal monsters.
  4. I’m tracking a lost tome that should have many secrets valuable to my lodge and my journey.
  5. I’m worried that my lodge’s leadership has been suborned by the occult, and am seeking a way to reveal and deal with this threat.
  6. I was the sole survivor of a monster attack, and I’m trying to find out whether there’s some reason I survived… or that they left me alive.

d6 Flaw

  1. There’s a type of creature that I study that would absolutely terrify me were I to encounter it in person.
  2. I’m too secure in my own rituals and preparations, and tend to underrate threats to my own person.
  3. If an immortal creature is willing to talk, so am I, even if that gives it time to learn my weaknesses.
  4. I will never fully trust anyone until they’ve died helping me… and even then, I’ll want to burn the body.
  5. I over-plan because I’m actually a bit of a coward about facing down creatures I don’t feel fully prepared for.
  6. I think people that bargain with or otherwise gain power from occult sources are fools to think that power isn’t corrupting, and have a hard time containing my contempt.