M is for Minotaur

M is for Minotaur, man-bull in his maze,
Missing his mother, emotionally crazed.


Faerie Might: 20 (Mentem)
Characteristics: Int —1, Per +1, Pre —3, Com +3, Str +3, Sta +1, Dex +2, Qik —2
Size: +1
Virtues & Flaws: Negative Reaction; Greater Power, Increased Faerie Might (Major); Faerie Speech, Highly Cognizant, Large, 2 x Personal Power; Hatred (those who abandon children), Might Recovery Requires Vitality; Traditional Ward (mirrors), Obsessed (eating human flesh)
Personality Traits: Emotionally Volatile +3, Lost +2
Axe: Init —1, Atk +11, Dfn +3, Dam +9
Dodge: Init —2, Atk n/a, Dfn +1, Dam n/a
Horns: Init —1, Atk +10, Dfn +1, Dam +5
Soak: +1
Wound Penalties: —1 (1—6), —3 (7—12), — 5 (13—18), Incapacitated (19— 24), Dead (25+)
Pretenses: Artes Liberales 1 (logic), Awareness 3 (maidens), Brawl 4 (horns), Faerie Speech 5 (psychiatric terms), Hunt 3 (tracking), Penetration 2 (Mentem), Philosophiae 3 (moral philosophy), Single Weapon 4 (axe), Stealth 3 (stalking)
The Labyrinth of Isolation, 2 points, Init —4, Mentem: This power turns a person insane, making him so frightened and paranoid that he can only cower in fear. The damaged mind will eventually restore itself; treat the insanity as healing as a Heavy Wound.
(Base 15, +1 Touch)

The Grip of Agoraphobia, 2 points, Init —4, Mentem: Gives the target an overwhelming fear of open spaces.
(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Sun)

The Kiss of Claustrophobia, 2 points, Init —4, Mentem: Gives the target an overwhelming fear of closed spaces.
(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Sun)

Eyes of the Bat, 4 points, Init —5, Corpus: The target’s eyes change into bat eyes, allowing him to see in total darkness. According to medieval thought, bats had incredible vision that allowed them to see in the night.
(Base 20, +2 Sun, +1 Part)

Silence of the Smothered Sound, 1 points, Init —3, Imaginem: A Range: Personal version of the Hermetic spell of the same name.
(Base 3, +2 Sun, +1 changing image)
Equipment: a labrys, a double-headed axe
Vis: Four pawns of Mentem in his two hooves.
Appearance: A large, muscular man with the head of a bull.

The Minotaur is a tragic figure. The offspring of Poseidon the sea god and Pasiphaë, the queen of Crete, the Minotaur was neither desired nor loved once born. A mark of his mother’s shameful union, the creature was immediately hidden away in a vast underground maze. Imprisoned with wet nurses, whom he later ate once his teeth grew in, the Minotaur never knew his parents. Growing up isolated and abandoned, he yearned for his mother’s touch.

His cries at night for motherly attention were so loud that King Minos of Crete sent soldiers into the maze to kill the creature. But the Minotaur was an expert in moving silently through the dark labyrinth, and was never caught. Instead he would inflict the same psychological terrors that he had experienced upon the soldiers, before killing them and eating their flesh. Word of Minos’ monstrous half-son spread and his kingdom suffered as a result, until the mercenary warrior Theseus arrived to free Minos’ hall from its monster. Penetrating the labyrinth, Theseus and his men ate a large feast before retiring for bed. Stripping off his armor, Theseus pretended to sleep. When the Minotaur arrived to kill Theseus and his thanes, Theseus surprised the beast, and in a grappling match pulled off the Minotaur’s arm. The Minotaur fled. Some say he returned to his mother’s room and died in her arms, finally achieving his wish.

But a faerie creature cannot die. The Minotaur left Create and wandered from underground maze to subterranean dungeon, perfecting his psychological terrors. He still yearns for a mother’s love, almost as much as he craves human flesh. He is a mentally twisted fearie, uncertain of how to get exactly what he wants.

The Minotaur is designed as a companion-level player character, although I’d like to see the saga that he somehow fits into as a player’s character.

This entry was posted in A Faerie a Day, Ars Magica. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to M is for Minotaur

  1. Timothy says:

    This is a really great take on the minotaur. Congratulations on this. I can see a great story pitting a Devouring Son like this against one of the Devouring Mothers.

    • Matt Ryan says:

      Thank you, Timothy, your comment means a lot. This is an example of the beauty of churning these things out every day. Once in a while something cool happens. I’m now toying a short story that confuses the Theseus and the Beowulf myths. Making the Minotaur a sympathetic character reminds me of John Gardner’s Grendel.

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