“The essence is life, and the essence is death.”
The Gwagaruh were the first species to show native manipulation of PSI and have proven repeatedly over the centuries their deadly precision of psionic powers. Unlike the implants of Stem-Tek, Gwarish genics mutate a series of biological nodes that allow them to hone heir power. The actual mutation itself is considered an honorable change in status and its result, the Dwola Caste, are some of the highly ranked members of Gwarish society. Like Stem-Tek, Warp-Tek nodes can be found in the limbs, along the spine and at the base of the neck.
Warp-Tek mutates further to gift a Gwagaruh with a certain Cræft or how a Dwola warrior accesses the different Artes of Tek.
A few choice Faeru are at times gifted as members of an Infernal House to become agents of the Gwagaruh in more than simply name. Able to access the very dark powers of the void itself these “Crossridden” are implant with Dwolic Nodes and are able to use Psi in a similar pattern to their Gwarish counterparts.
Cræft is an innate thing to a Dwola as any Branwigan knows they can wield PSI powers through their weapons, or a Deathscuan through auras. Unlike Stem-Tek or Meta, the power is simply a muscle that must be trained. Years of training can be required at times or only a few months depending upon the level of accuracy and strength wanted by the overseers of the Dwola in question. Warp-Tek users summon Psi as a torrent of energy which can cause either pain or ecstasy when answered. By Summoning their Psi the Dwola must usher the energy into their implants as it builds to a ever increasing crescendo of volume. Then upon reaching a designated point, it must be unleashed upon a target or it will consume the user in burning pain.
The violent nature of Warp-Tek means that users must be ever vigilant lest the Lurking Folly (Psi-Burn) overtakes them by holding the energy for far too long. Even when their power is “unleashed” it leaves as a storm of energy and often quickly without warning meaning a user must concentration and maintain composure. The very chaotic nature of their abilities means that Crossridden and Gwagaruh have developed a preference for quick decisive action rather than long-term strategy in Psi usage. It only makes sense for every second held back can easily result in pain.
The afatermath of a Warp-Tek powers usage is as violent as its usage. The air pressure around the user seems to change pressure and their Psi-Field will feel far more aggressive than others. Most veteran users learn to temper these aftereffects lest they draw the attention of the Reiver’s Guld. Many call it the “Eye of the Storm” and some even claim it can show visions of the future though this idea has yet to be proven by any reputable member of the Gwarish Kindreds.
Mimicry and Hiding
Both Crossridden and Dwola when acting in plain sight must hide themselves to the best of their ability. Because to either be Gwagaurh or serve them means either an instant execution or a painful interrogation. Within the confines of the Empire and in many polities beyond to wield Warp-Tek is considered an instant act of treasong against the state. Even more the Reiver’s Guild who are tasked with the complete eradication of all Gwarish influence actively hunt any and all who dabble or consult with the powers of the void.
In response most learn to mimic the actions and the results of Stem-Tek users and if it takes years of training so be it.
There are two key abilities gifted to all Stem-Tek users and are accessible across the three Cræft. These abilities deal directly with how a user views and experiences an opponents or allies Psi-Field.
- Dom – Called the “Doom Judgement” by some, Dom allows a user to detect the Art of an opponent when the user is within sixteen mevres of them. These usually appear as tastes: bitter for Tarot, sour for Thaumaturgy, and sweet for Invocation. Usually only applicable when an opponent brims with Psi energy a trained user of Dom can also partially ascertain current strength (or if it is failing them) of a users well by the strength of the taste.
- Ness – The High Devotion or “Ness” is an ability allowing a Dwola or Crossridden to temporarily machines or the senses of a target for a limited period of time. By storing and unleashing a charge of pure Psi energy Ness overwhelms the target and can result in spasming of muscles or even partial paralyzation. The more trained an opponent is however, the more likely they can resist the power.