Decani: The Carriers (Samingan Minor Band)

By Michael Walton


Virula seethed inwardly at the delay. As a demon, she was made for better things than emptying bedpans and giving sponge baths. She took comfort in the knowledge that her dread lord Saminga only required her to keep up this pretense for a single day. At least she hadn’t had to dispense medications or do anything that would actually heal these pitiful humans. She suppressed a shudder at the thought of gaining Dissonance that way.

After what seemed like an eternity of waiting, two Secret Service men came around the corner. They scanned their surroundings looking for potential threats to their charge, then motioned the rest of the party ahead. They naturally expected to see a nurse in a hospital, so the fools had no idea that Virula was dangerous. Seconds later, the target came into view. Senator Hector Reyes was flanked by a third agent on one side and his angelic press secretary on the other. Virula pasted a smile on her face and stepped forward. The bodyguards tried to wave her off, but Reyes himself -- man of the people that he was -- commanded them to let her through. The demon’s smile broadened as her victim signed his own death warrant.

"Senator Reyes," she said, "It's an honor to have you visiting our hospital. I wish that more of the people who made the laws about health care understood what we do from the inside." Virula inwardly congratulated herself on that wording; even the most vigilant Seraph would've found no falsehood there.

"The honor is mine, miss," he replied, "The men and women who risk their own health to care for the critically ill are greater heroes than politicians like me will ever be." Reyes extended his hand, which was exactly what Virula was waiting for. She took the proffered hand in her own and called upon her Resonance. Power flowed from her into the doomed man. More pleasantries were uttered, then the bodyguards ushered their charge down the hall.

Virula exulted in the completion of her work. Very soon, Hector Reyes' fame as an AIDS research advocate would pale before his infamy as an AIDS patient.

Decani are agents of death by disease. Saminga considers them his masterwork, but he can't really take credit for them; the first Decani were Fallen members of Novalis' minor Choir. Even now, Saminga's Dissonance condition makes it unpleasant for him to foster life by creating new demons -- he prefers to 'recruit' from the ranks of Flowers.

Saminga jealously guards his special Servitors from poaching by other Princes and swears that he will kill any Decani that leaves his service. The Prince of Death needn't worry on that score; no other Prince wants these disgusting creatures. Few Decani have the inclination to defect to another Word, and none have had the opportunity so far.


Decani Resonate with disease. If the demon can touch a person who is infected with some form of sickness, a Will roll allows the Decani to absorb the disease and become a carrier thereof (this does not cure the original sufferer). Touching a second person and succeeding on another Will roll lets the demon transmit the disease. The virulence of the illness varies according to the CD of the absorption roll; the demon can absorb any one disease that the subject carries up to the most virulent one allowed by the CD (consult the Decani Check Digit Results chart below).

Transmitting a disease requires a CD at least equal to that of the absorption roll. A failed absorption roll robs the demon of the use of its Resonance for a number of minutes equal to the CD of the failed roll. A failed transmission roll inflicts the disease on the demon's current Vessel for a number of hours equal to the CD! A successful roll with an insufficient CD has no effect.

Once a Decani has absorbed a disease, it cannot absorb other diseases until that sickness has been successfully transmitted. Likewise, successfully transmitting an illness drains all disease from the demon's system; it must absorb another disease before it can infect anyone else. Although this use of Resonance is destructive, it only disturbs the Symphony if and when the victim dies.

Decani Check Digit Results
1 a minor ailment (chicken pox, the common cold)
2 a moderate sickness (mild flu, rubella)
3 a disfiguring or debilitating disease (arthritis, lupus)
4 a serious illness (virulent flu, pneumonia; anything that is potentially fatal)
5 a deadly malady (Ebola, polio; anything that is usually fatal)
6 a disease that is incurable or invariably fatal if untreated (AIDS, cancer, leprosy)

More Sophisticated Uses of Resonance

A Decani may infect Vessels with its Resonance. Any attempt to do so has a penalty of -3 to the CD unless the target is a Servitor of Creation or Flowers; then the penalty is increased to -4. This penalty even applies to Soldiers of those Words.


These demons must spread disease or become disconnected from their personal Symphonies. A Decani gains a note of Dissonance for every day that it fails to infect someone with disease. This Dissonance disappears if the Decani makes up the difference within one week. Decani who aren't diligent enough in spreading sickness may find themselves becoming Erelim, but Saminga usually kills them before that happens.

Manner and Appearance

Decani have much in common with Djinn and Calabim. They tend to slouch and are rarely well-groomed. A mess seems to follow these demons wherever they go; their surroundings inevitably become squalid. Hell's neat freaks remark that Carriers can make one sick just by describing their apartments. Decani often have Roles as hospital orderlies; their slovenly ways make them stand out too much as doctors or nurses, at least in the long term. Most Decani, being Fallen Erelim, see themselves as feminine. The Hellborn usually prefer male Vessels.

The Celestial form of the Decani is a disgusting parody of the human form; many find them even more vile than Shedim. They appear as masses of gangrenous flesh covered with suppurating sores, oozing boils and pulsating tumors. The closest thing that the Carriers have to a musical analog is the incessant droning of flies.

Band Attunement (Restricted)

Saminga grants his Carriers the ability to detect illness. The demon must succeed on a Perception roll to detect all sick mortals within a radius of (Celestial Forces x CD) yards. If the Decani wants to detect a specific disease, she may do so with a -2 penalty to the CD (treat results less than 1 as 1). A Decani may add its level of Medicine skill to the TN of this roll. Using Medicine to heal still violates Saminga's Dissonance condition.


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