On Madness And Archangels

By S.D.


Now, I've been looking through the (canon) Superior lists for In Nomine. And as anyone can see, there are several blatant 'counterparts'. War and the War, Divine and Infernal Fire, Divine and Infernal Death (see Night Music for the first), Lightning and Technology, Judgement and the Game, Revelation and Secrets, Dreams and Nightmares, Destiny and Fate, and, of course, Wind and Theft...

Some of these connections are easily explained; a former ally or Servitor of their current 'counterpart' (Baal and Michael were Valor and War; I shouldn't need to explain Blandine and Beleth; Belial, Asmodeus, and Alaemon were Servitors; etc.) But what of the others? Yves and Kronos, Janus and Valefor, Jean and Vapula...

Well, first, note that in each case the two involved are of the same Band/Choir pair (except Yves and Kronos, but we'll get to that.) And, IIRC, all three were either pre-Fall, or appeared around the same time, or the Prince appeared after the Archangel.

Secondly, I'll draw your attention to the recent 'Consider (x)' series of Superiors' points of view. Keep in mind that each of these is in terms of their Word. Laurence sees his fellows as blades, Michael and Baal think in terms of combat, Haagenti speaks of consuming and Vapula is Habbalite-mad... Just remember these for now.

Thirdly, recall Gabriel's madness. What was the cause? Word-friction. Well, what if it happened backwards? What if the madness came first, and then the corrupted Word? And Celestials can lose Forces - or replace them - can't they?

Imagine it. An Archangel, viewing the world through the lens of his/her/its Word, suddenly realizes that the Word and God's Will are not the only possiblities. Gabriel and Belial are perfect examples of opposites; what can happen when there is a Divine and Infernal conception of a single Word. And the Archangel cannot or will not believe this is true. So Ethereal (mental) and possibly Celestial (spiritual) or Corporeal (physical) Forces are torn from the Archangel's being instinctively; the Forces that let the Superior realize...and, with no welcome in Heaven, no solace in the Marches, and no place on Earth, what is left but Hell? And Vapula was Hellborn...

Of course, a reaction like this might not work for Janus or Yves. Jean, possibly, though it is subjective. But maybe the Dissonance went with the Forces.

So, for Janus...One epiphany is followed by a sudden urge to see what his Infernal counterpart would be like. And he decides to start on the greatest masquerade of all - an Archangel playing the role of a Prince. (Of course, it's suspected Dominic is doing the reverse, but not at the same time.) Songs provide the needed cosmetic changes, and Janus is an Ofanite, meaning he could therefore get from Heaven to Hell to Earth faster than anyone else, and thereby cover his tracks.

(An alternate idea is that Janus played Kyrio and split in half, one part with the angelic side, and the other with the demonic urges.)

As for Yves? Well, perhaps, at heart, he agreed with the Lightbringer that a Choice was necessary. But perhaps a different type of Choice...Thus was born Kronos, Yves' other half, Balseraphic in form only because he continues to lie to himself that he is no part of Yves, and is more than the mere offspring of a spirit's Forces.

This can be applied to most of the Superiors, if you don't mind going actively against canon. If your RP is set appropriately or you want more Princes, perhaps a campaign could be set up around a character finding out that another Archangel is contemplating this, and the angelic PCs trying desperately to 1: keep it a secret from Hell (and maybe Heaven...) and 2: stop it at all costs, whereas demonic PCs might try to make sure it happens...

On the other hand, perhaps Jean manages to remember what he did. And the Archangel of Lightning has an idea about how to undo it. Of course, it'll require getting to Vapula...somehow. The PCs either are recruited to help him or a Prince recruits them to stop him... (I'd save this for relatively late in a campaign series; when the characters are fairly powerful. Or the job could be to have angels persuade the other Archangels to help, and demons try to warn Vapula...)

Put whatever spin on it you like, if you don't have a Lightning/Technology servitor among your PCs and would prefer to use one of their Superiors. (Or for a really strange game, have Vapula want to Redeem, and say that if he did, he'd go back to being part of Jean...so PCs have to persuade him not to!)


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