By Moe Lane


Zombies (note the variant spelling) are an interesting example of what happens when you take a notion to its logical conclusion. The reasoning was as follows: it is possible to reanimate a human body after the soul departs from it. The result is a Zombi: a sort of biological construct animated and maintained by Sorcery. All in all, Zombis are useful, as they are immune to pain and fear - but they are also too short 'lived', thanks to both the fundamental limitations inherent in the human body and the Need to fuel the Sorcery that keeps them going. All in all, it would be better to use a higher grade of raw materials: finding some that were effectively 'unnatural' anyway would be a bonus.

In other words, Vessels: certainly, angels and demons tend to go through them at a high enough rate...

Creating Your Zombie

First, scrounge up a celestial Vessel. This is harder than it looks: Superiors on both sides are usually careful to craft Vessels that cannot be distinguished from regular humans, and neither Heaven nor Hell are known to look favorably on those that have a use for their discarded corporeal husks, to put it mildly. Also, Remnants are not suitable candidates for this type of zombification: something about the loss of their Celestial Forces will invariably interfere with the process. Still, getting an appropriate corpse is not necessarily impossible.

Once the Vessel is acquired, it has to be prepped. What decay has taken place must be reversed: luckily, Vessels usually have sophisticated repair systems already in place on the cellular level. Reactivating them can be done with a Necromancy -4 roll, 2 Essence and an hour's work. Once reactivated, the rejuvenated systems will function for about three days before renewal: many prospective Zombies are buried during this time period, the better to avoid suspicion.

The actual ritual may be attempted at any point after the preparatory work has been completed: Create Zombie is essentially a more elaborate version of Create Zombi. As it is easier to reawaken the unnatural to a semblance of Unlife, the Sorcerer rolls at (Necromancy + Enchantment - [Total Forces/2]): the ritual takes a straight eight hours to perform, with the new Zombie rising at the end of it. Essence cost remains equivalent to the total number of Forces of the target: this ritual can be very loud.

Maintaining Your Zombie

No Zombie possesses Celestial Forces: however, unlike Zombis those Forces may be transferred into either Corporeal or Ethereal Forces (why a Zombie would need Ethereal Forces is addressed below). Just where those Forces are allocated is normally a GM call: however, for every -2 taken to the creation roll the Sorcerer may dictate the allocation of one Force. Any Forces above the twelfth are lost.

Unlike their more mundane counterparts, Zombies retain at least some of their abilities. All Attunements and Celestial skills are lost, of course: divide Corporeal and Ethereal skills by 3 (rounded down). Zombies also retain their highest-level Corporeal and highest-level Ethereal Song (level divided by 2, rounded up). The Zombie, having no free will or sentience, will exercise their remaining abilities upon command by anyone: many Sorcerers make sure to set up some sort of system to make sure that their new servant cannot hear any orders but their own.

The weakness of a Zombie is likewise quite different from that of a Zombi, as the former does not suffer from a Need: the peculiar nature of Vessels does not need constant Sorcerous reinforcement in order to stay stable. However, this stability is oddly fragile: a Zombie starts play with a 3 point Vulnerability (level equal to its Corporeal Forces).

Keeping Everybody from Ganging Up on Your Zombie

As noted above, neither Heaven nor Hell find this sort of thing to be amusing - unfortunately, they can't always stamp out the practice. The Loa in particular are widely suspected of making sure that the Create Zombie ritual is available to some of their worshippers: this has done nothing to help their relations with the Host. On Hell's side... well, it's not safe for a Sorcerer to even know that the Create Zombie ritual exists, let alone know it. Hatiphas isn't known for her sense of humor. Still, there's no denying that Zombies can be useful - and, as long as Baal and Michael have any say on how to run the War, that means that there's always a few of them floating around somewhere.

There's also the serendipitous effect that the existence of Zombies tends to encourage celestials to avoid leaving discarded Vessels around. Nobody likes having to explain to Dominic or Asmodeus about just why their old bodies have been seen walking around...


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