"I can only tell you what every one has heard,
I can only tell you what every one knows,
I can only tell you what every one has seen.
For secrets are the unborn children of Melanda."
- Cadrac the Master summoner, Anda Kai highest.
As roleplayer my instincts are to use spirit contact and summoning for everything from cooking an egg, to having a spirit companion for a camping trip. But the truth is,
Melanda is a unusually poetic world, so using a spirit as a companion is not as simple as a DND levitate spell, and it is infinitely dangerous.
Its not just summoning, what you are really doing is pulling a being from the ether plain (spirit plane), who can easily affect the prime material plane and in most cases aggravate it beyond belief. If you want to contact a spirit there’s a nice 3 to 5 hour ceremony which you should outline in game play. Dramatize is a better word, because flavor is rewarded in Melanda.
A spirit cannot tell you a secret that only one person knows. A spirit can not tell you a secret that has gone to the grave with someone. This makes it a little harder to abuse.
Spirit Contact and Summoning
This excerpt is taken from Melanda (c) 1981 John Corradin and Lee McCormick. These rules don’t have a Fantasy Hero (tm) equivalent. You will need to look through these rules and the Rune Science rules and come up with a Fantasy hero equivalent.
Herein lies the secrets of the closely guarded science of contacts with spirits. It is divided into two sections: Contact with Andashi (spirits of the Living) and Contact with the Daneshi (spirits of the dead).
The system is basically the same for both although the runes and methods of dealing with the spirits once contacted differ. Firstly, it is imperative that you master a little vocabulary and understanding of the intent of the science before learning technique.
Andashi - This refers to the part of the Essence (which men call the Ether) in all living things. This part of any living thing carries the creature or plants personality, memory, etc. It is for these reasons that one might contact them, so as to learn what the creature or plant has seen, experienced, etc. (also to learn of proper ways of dealing with these creatures/plants in the flesh -- so to speak).
Daneshi - This refers to the part of the Essence (which men call the Nether) in all living things. Depending on the strength of character, life span, etc. of the thing in question, this Nether can often contain lingering aspects of the personality and memory of the no longer living entity. Also summon or contacted for reasons of data gathering, these spirits take many forms differing in appearance, strength,
Priwedur - The first born of each and every species was blessed by the immediacy of contact with the Essence. Each species then has a guardian spirit as well as the spirits of once-living brethren dwelling on the Netherworld.
Anda Kai - Means literally Essence summoning or contact. It is necessary, in order for the practicing *scientist* to communicate with the spirit, that this select portion of essence be summoned to his/her location.
The first portion of this training involves at least one year of schooling in Rune Science, for one must learn to understand the concept behind runes and how they affect the world before learning the employment of such Runes in Anda Kai.
The second portion of training in Anda Kai takes in 2 phases: 1) Learning the truth behind the terminology above; 2) Learning how to combine Runes with special glyphs (picture symbols) in order to protect one’s self, as well as properly attract the various members of the spirit kingdom. During this portion, the student will learn the species names for some lesser beings and their Runes (The Priwedur may only be summoned if the individual spirit's real name is obtained. He may choose to show himself at his discretion)
Reaching the third portion of instruction the disciple is trained in the proper names of many specific species (for example: at second stage one may have learned to contact tree spirits or cat spirits; Now, one can learn with birch or oak spirits and or lion or leopard spirits) depending on the relationships between tutor and disciple, specific Runes may be offered which the tutor has learned for creatures in specific locations.
The final stage of education is to assume tutelage once self which involved dedicating one’s life to protection of the secrets of spirit communion and the seeking out of means to destroy spirit bane – The Detana... The Unholy... The Devil Spirit
Once the Glyphs and runes are learned, it's simple.
1) Inscribe on the earth or stone, the Circle of life which stands for the never ending cycle of beginnings, endings, and new beginnings which comprise the immortal nature of Melandians
2)Inside this circle, touching only where it comes to its three points, is the Triangle of Spirit Planes. This divides the circle into thirds.
3)Along the outer edge of the circle section facing the Ether Glyph, goes the rune for "summon" or "Contact". (Apprentices should use Contact if interested in their own safety.)
4)Along the edge of the circle section facing the Nether glyph, goes the rune for "Protection". (Great care is advised in the making of this rune, for the spell could go awry.... and then?)
5) At this point the spell caster should put the Rune for himself(usually one of the first know) into the center of the triangle and step inside.
6) Along the remaining edge goes the rune(s) for the species or spirit with whom contact is being sought.
7) Now concentrate and utter the words of activation. In practices Anda Kai works thusly. The practitioner goes through the process, step by step, as prescribed. The Runes, glyphs, circle and triangle must be meticulously drawn taking time and careful concentration. The choice of spirit must be made based on the Runes know, purpose and power of the summoner.
Affinity: A Heroes Quest for Self Enlightenment.
Please comment me so that I know I am not talking into the void.