Shadows of Vulcan
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About Trods and Paths

Paths through the Dreaming vary as vastly as the Dreaming itself does. Most in the Near Dreaming are recognizable as paths of some sort, but are more esoteric in the farther Dreamrealms. The Silver Path protects most Trods known to Changelings, and hostile chimera, Dark-Kin, and others are kept from it by the Ban of Silver. Those Trods that do not have the Silver Path are called Twilight Roads. Like the Paths of Balor, many of the Twilight Roads are one-way. The Paths of Balor predate the Silver Path, and like the Twilight Roads do not have the Silver Path. The most common are the Green Paths of Balor, though travelers have also reported Gold and Black Paths of Balor. The one-way Green and Black Paths of Balor wind through the Near Dreaming, and elsewhere, and are even rumored to go to the spirit-worlds of the Prodigals and Restless Dead.

Types of Trods

  • Land
    Land trods may be anything from a wide superhighway to a narrow path along a precipice. They may pass through idyllic faerie towns, literally burning deserts or through forests of mists and moaning trees. A changeling may walk, ride or drive along these trods; travel is limited only by terrain.
  • Water
    These trods may be small as a mountain stream or as vast as a thousand oceans. Due of the lack of recognizable landmarks, travelers, travelers on this type of trod must rely on charts and other navigational treasure to travel these watery path safely.
  • Sun
    Sun trods are sky trods that are open during the day. Only those changelings who can fly (even in a balloon) may travel these ethereal highways. Sun trods may appear as shafts of focused sunlight or as paths along sun-lit clouds. A changeling traveling a sun trod must find a moon trod to continue his journey after dark.
  • Moon
    Moon trods are sky trods that are open only at night. Only those changelings who can fly may travel these phantom trails. Moon trods may appear as dust motes dancing in shafts of pale moonlight or as paths along nightsky clouds.
  • Cursed
    Cursed trods have been corrupted by some means. Perhaps a powerful chimera, changeling brigands or a wicked monarch has taken up residence beside it, and kills all who travel it. Banality may block or sever some trods, trapping travelers in gray pitfalls where their Arts are of little use. These areas of the Dreaming are often home to feral chimera and other monstrosities. Any type of trod may become cursed.
  • Chimerical
    Chimerical trods are far too ethereal for material creatures such as the fae to travel, but chimeras have little trouble using these Glamour-rich roads. Some arcane Arts may allow changelings entry to these alien trods. Such paths are extraordinarily dangerous, even to the most potent Kithain. The Silver Path does not extend into these trods.
  • Nightmares
    The Nightmares Realms fester in the Deep Dreaming like an insatiable cancer. Dark and twisted trods spiral from them, touching almost every other part of the Dreaming. Malignant chimera and even darker creatures travel these fearsome roads. Some Unseelie changelings use these trods on secret errands, but these paths are dangerous even to them. The Silver Path exists along some of these trods. Most believe the Tuatha de Danaan built the path there during their wars in the Nightmares Realms. In recent decades, these trods have disgorged increasing numbers of malign chimera into the Near Dreaming and the mundane.

Types of Freeholds

  • Glade
    Glades are sylvan glens, typically located deep in a forest. Changelings favor glades as sites for their festivals. Unlike most freeholds, glades are naturally occurring wellsprings of Glamour. Glades have a sacred stone instead of a balefire as their heart.
  • Hearth
    A faerie tavern, bar of coffeehouse, usually with a back-alley entrance. Many speakeasies from the 1920s are now hearths. All changelings are welcome, as long as they have something to trade.
  • Lodge
    Cottages, houses and mansions, collectively considered lodges, can be freeholds. Lodges are typically the strongholds of nobles, who spend much of their time in residence.
  • Manor
    A manor is a small glen surrounding a cabin or other building, and is usually located in the wilderness.
  • Eyrie
    Eyries are high mountain freeholds, and are typically the refuges of outcasts.
  • Grotto
    Grottos are often overgrown sylvan glades or abandoned mines. Sluagh and nockers often gather in such out of the way freeholds, though others use them as well.
  • Faerie Ring
    A very small glen found deep in the forest. These naturally occurring freeholds grow increasingly rare as the wild places of the world dwindle.
  • Isle
    These enchanted islands are rarely on maps or sullied by mortal feet. Isles are private refuges, and are among the most prized freeholds.
  • Thorpe
    Thorpes are the faerie towns. They are rare these days. One of the most famous is a mining ghost town known as Mother Lode, located somewhere in Nevada, while Ireland boasts the village of Glenlea.
  • Urban
    Only the hardiest Kithain dare to live in the World of Darkness choking urban sprawls. Banality is at its highest here, and untainted Glamour is scarce. These freeholds are on the edge of the coming Winter.
  • Market
    Faerie markets are places, often freeholds, where changelings come to buy, sell and trade strange treasures from a thousand realms. These places often share space with human markets covertly, though some may exist wholly in the Dreaming. A human may purchase a piece o f faerie craft "accidentally" on occasion. Such transactions may be lucky or disastrous for the unwary human.
  • Lost One Freehold
    Most sidhe left Earth for Arcadia during the Shattering and stayed away for over 600 years. Some stayed behind, however, immersing themselves in their freeholds. These are rich in Glamour, but dangerous because of the Bedlam- inspiring qualities.
  • Homestead
    Homestead are freeholds that are wholly in the Dreaming, yet without access to a rath. They do not have the dual nature of most freeholds; their prime virtue is stability. The Kithain build homesteads to withstand the rigors of the Dreaming. Homesteaders are few, but fiercely independent. Some changelings from every kith set up homesteads (even small villages) in the Near Dreaming. There is currently some tension between long term homesteaders and changelings who entered the Dreaming after the Resurgence.
  • Nunnehi Freehold
    Nunnehi freeholds are inherently different from any other kind, and are misunderstood by European fae. Severed from the Higher Hunting Grounds (their aspect of the Dreaming), Nunnehi freeholds may nevertheless have access to the "Upper" and "Lower" Worlds. They share many characteristics of werewolf caerns and mage nodes; some Nunnehi find themselves in conflict with Garou or mages who covet their freeholds for their spiritual energies. Nunnehi freeholds vary widely in appearance, and conform to the cultural conventions of the local tribe.
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