Minor Choir of Judgment: The Ishim
By Moe Lane
(The Emphatic, The Doppelgangers)
The poor guy was thoroughly maudlin by now: drunk,
too. Hard to blame him - not that I would. "Nobody
understands what I'm going through," he muttered, his
eyes staring into his glass as if the answer to his
problems was inscribed on the bottom.
I cleared my throat as I refilled both of our glasses.
"Oh, I wouldn't say that."
His gaze wavered, then picked the me in the middle.
"Really?" I smiled, carefully keeping the bitter
tears from showing.
"Trust me on this one."
This minor Choir of Dominic's exemplifies the human
cliche about not Judging a man until you have walked a
mile in his shoes. They strive to understand their
charges by becoming them, in a sense: they are able to
experience a subject's emotions, fears and desires
as if they had come from the angel. This makes them
easily the most merciful of the Dominicans, as they
can uniquely feel the seductive strength of a human's
particular inner demons. It makes blind condemnation
The Ishim's (singular 'Ishite') resonance is for
sympathy, in the sense of 'being able to share
another's emotions or desires'. With a successful
resonance roll, an Ishite can commune with their
charge's mind: this can range from low-grade empathy
to true telepathy. In all cases, the act of communion
will also result in the angel exhibiting whatever
emotional state the subject is currently
The Ishim are often called "anti-Habbalah", as they
are receivers of emotional stimuli (instead of
transmitters). Indeed, it is dissonant for them to
force their current emotional state onto a human.
This applies to both supernatural and mundane methods:
the Choir are very careful to avoid losing their
tempers, or even displaying a bad mood.
Manner and Appearance
The Ishim have no set preferences for their corporeal
seeming: they are listeners, first and foremost, and
are only concerned with appearance when it would
benefit/interfere with that all-important task. They
are good listeners - which means that they have a
reputation for not talking much. On the other hand,
most of Heaven agrees that the Ishim have the most
beautiful eyes of all the Host: beautiful, warm and
In their celestial forms, Ishim appear as indistinct,
winged humanoids: however, their eyes are even more
beautiful and their wings are twinned, sweeping
rainbows. Needless to say, Ishim try to stay on
fairly good terms with everyone: the closest thing
that they have to a group enmity is their polite
inability to quite understand the Elohim.
Aside from the Choir's dissonance conditions, an
Ishite's major worry is that he might someday lose
track of himself in his quest to understand others.
While this is not dissonant, in and of itself, it can
lead to dissonance: more than one Ishite has suddenly
realized just too late that he or she is actually
projecting an emotion on a charge, not reflecting it.
If this detachment remains untreated, it can
eventually lead to madness... and a Fall into a state
where the ego itself is rejected utterly, resulting in
the minor Band of Maragalim - and a new career in the
Game as the ultimate infiltrator.
Essentially, a successful Perception roll allows an
Ishite to attune his mind and emotions to match that
of his target: this will result in a varying amount of
access. Note that the difference between 's u b
vocalized' and 'surface' thoughts is fairly arbitrary:
generally, the former are mostly either 'silent
narratives' and/or recognizable speech/text, while the
latter can also include other types of sensory input.
Duration is for CD hours.
Resonance Check Digit Table
- The angel has a general idea of the emotional
state of the subject (happy, sad, bored, lonely,
- As above, plus the ability to access the s u b
vocalized thoughts of the subject.
- The angel is able to determine which emotional
state is currently of dominant importance in the
- As for CD 3, plus the ability to read the surface
thoughts of the subject; this will include
memories, provided that they are associated with said
- The angel is able to track the most active s u b
conscious emotional state of the target, and how it is
affecting his or her behavior.
- As for CD 5; the angel is also able to access any
of the target's memories with a successful
Intelligence roll (one attempt per minute).
Deliberately blocked memories must first be detected
(roll versus Perception -3).
Ishim in the Host
Ishim are mostly assigned by the Inquisition to Triads
that have regular contact with Soldiers of God, Saints
or any individuals deemed by Heaven as requiring a
less than rigorous touch (Ishim universally embrace
the ethos of Judgement's Merciful Faction, which can
lead to some interesting 'discussions').
While their abilities are evocative of elements from
the Elohite, Malakite and Mercurian resonance, they
are not as powerful as any of them - but it can be
often better than nothing. However, they are not too
common, as Dominic must create Ishim fully-fledged.
Dominic very much prefers that this Choir not serve
other Archangels, but will sometimes let one seek
service with Yves or Laurence. Invariably, those few
that Redeem from Maragalim will be assigned to one of
the above three Archangels.
Ishite of Judgement (restricted): When encountering a dissonant or Discordant celestial,
an Ishite of Judgement will always know the emotional
state that was most prominent in the acquisition of
that unfortunate condition.
Ishite of Destiny (restricted): Ishim serving Yves add half their Ethereal Forces
(rounded down) to all reaction rolls.
Ishite of the Sword (restricted): There are few Ishim serving the Sword; Laurence just
doesn't need them much. He usually gives those that
he does have a variant of the Elohite of the Sword
Attunement. This will allow them to detect the
emotional state of an area, but not telepathic abilities.
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