A Hitchhicker's Guide to the Planes
The Bleak Cabal
“Madness takes its toll. Please have exact change.”
- Graffiti near the entrance to the Bleaker Gatehouse
Oh, what’s the sodding point?
A faction who don’t even bother to preach, the Bleakers just resign themselves to facing life as it heaps its woes upon them. There’s no Grand Meaning of Life, no Hidden Truth, not even a morsel of Hope left. Life just happens, and then it stops. Happy now?
Being slapped in the face with your own insignificance and mortality doesn’t do most cutters much good. In fact, the Bleakers take it upon themselves to look after the ones whose tiny insignificant egos couldn’t face being pointless and lost the plot. They’re all cared for in the Bleaker’s Madhouse. Charitable sods, the factioneers also set up soup kitchens throughout the poorest areas of the Cage to care for the poor, the destitute and the down-on-their-luck. Just because there’s no meaning to life, it don’t mean you shouldn’t help feed a hungry mouth, berk!
So the Bleak Cabal take events as they come, trying to keep a grip on their sanity in a Multiverse slowly losing its own head. In time people will realise, when they finally get sick of looking for the elusive Answers. They’ll never be found because they were never lost, see? They never even existed. And the sooner cutters realise this, the less suffering there’ll be in the end…
Philosophy: The multiverse ain’t supposed to make sense; there’s no grand scheme, no deep meaning, no elusive order. The only truth worth finding lies within.
Sigil HQ: The Gatehouse (Hive Ward).
Home Field: Pandemonium.
Allies: Doomguard, Dustmen, Revolutionary League
Enemies: Fraternity of Order, Harmonium, Mercykillers
Already Mad [Namer] (Ex): You gain immunity to all madness-inducing magical effects, including confusion, lesser confusion, feeblemind, insanity, Otto’s irresistible dance, symbol of insanity, and Tasha’s hideous laughter.
Burden of Existence [Namer] (Ex): Course, members of the Cabal have to endure a few setbacks along with their new abilities. The most immediate problem is the daily ld20 roll against futility. A Bleaker who fails the roll three days in a row (or five days during a single month) may be considered for incarceration in the Mad Bleaker wing of the Gatehouse.
’Course, it’s up to him whether or not he wants to commit himself to the asylum. But if he chooses to postpone or forgo the trip, he faces the possibility of extended madness – the very next time his daily ld20 roll results in either a 1 or a 20, the Bleaker immediately goes insane and will remain in that condition until he’s taken to the Gatehouse for treatment. What’s more, the player must make the roll secretly, so other players won’t automat idly know if the Bleaker’s gone mad. While insane, the Bleaker may wander off if left alone, may try to lead his group into trouble, won’t be able to take direction or cast spells, and won’t make a distinction between enemies and friends in combat.
Absorb Madness [Factotum] (Su): You can absorb madness from others during an exhausting 6-hour ritual. All of the above spells, plus madness caused by magical curses, can be permanently removed from a victim, and naturally occurring mental illness can be relieved for 1d4 days. Afterwards, you are afflicted by the Burden of Existence for 24 hours while you try to sort out the absorbed insanity.
Comfortably Numb [Factor] (Su): Bleakers don’t believe that anything really matters, and because of that belief things do matter less to them. Bleaker factors gain DR X/—, where X is half their level, rounded down.