Mage: The Ascension - Hawthorne Heights
The Currency of Hawthorne Heights -
One of the strangest aspects of Hawthorne is how its supernatural inhabitants (especially Will Workers) seem to trade one another in Favors. This is simply referred to as the Law of Favors.
Favors are taken very seriously by the people who owe or are owed them, and are never broken.
This is due to the fact that for whatever reason, in Hawthorne Heights, reality’s consensus/attention is turned towards these Favors.
Either through tradition over time or through metaphysical means a contract involving a Favor is never to be broken.
Favors come in 2 essential forms -
The first is a contract.
A simple exchange of this for that is the simplest and most common form of Favor.
Promising to teach someone else how to learn a Sphere in exchange for their aid in rescuing a loved one from certain death for instance.
This type of Favor does not garner debt as both parties are compensated for their work.
The second is the open ended Favor, more commonly known as debt.
The more daunting of the two forms of Favor, this is when one party transfers some of their debt to the other in exchange for a Favor.
In exchange for taking some of my debt I will teach you how to use the 3rd level of a Sphere.
This type of Favor is much less common, especially outside of the Will Worker community.
All Favors are eventually paid off, but not everyone is quite sure who the originator of this form of debt is.
For those in the know, Rose is the originator of all Favor and creates this currency simply by dealing with other Will Workers.
When someone pays off a Favor to Rose, that amount Favor is taken out of existence entirely; however, more is just as easily created.
The only other way to relieve a character of that debt is to trade it off to someone else with a Favor of equal value.
The next question one may ask is how much Favor is traded/appropriate for any task.
The depth of a Favor depends upon 2 aspects -
First is the importance of the Favor to the one requesting it or giving it.
A small favor such as buying someone else a drink has virtually no value to either party, and will trade off only the smallest amount of debt.
On the other hand, helping to resurrect someone’s recently deceased loved one will trade off practically all Favor on the grounds that the task is so vital to the one asking for it to be performed.
Second is the difficulty of the Favor being asked.
Again, buying someone a drink is a very simple task, and will eliminate virtually no debt whatsoever.
On the other hand, breaking into a Technocratic Union is a dangerous task and will take a great deal of debt from the one doing so, regardless of its importance to the one asking.
This also works in reverse-
If a mutual loved one is dying and someone asks the Favor of saving them, the recipient of the Favor garners almost no debt whatsoever because both parties desire the same thing.
For Players -
For players this means that a special place on your character profile visible only to you and the Story Tellers in charge, there your Favor will be accumulated and traded off accordingly.
Often times Quests are performed in exchange for Favors, and story line can be advanced, in the mean time the character involved may benefit from taking these Favors or having someone owe them.
You are compelled to pay off your debt and keep up your end of the bargain, for whatever reason in Hawthorne a deal is a deal and it will be upheld either pleasantly or through magical manipulation and compulsion that enforces these contracts and deals.
If Favors are traded between characters a Story Teller must be notified immediately, and the appropriate modifications will be made to both profiles.
A note of Caution -
The scale of Favors will only run from 0/100 in either direction, once one has gotten to 0 Favor, the only way to go negative is to somehow convince Rose to owe you a Favor, and Rose will not make deals with someone who is too deeply indebted already.
Once you have gone to 0 any Favors you promise to do are only enforced by your word, and the opposing party is free to break their end of the bargain as well.
Another character who has ever been indebted will know instinctively if you are not bound by the Law of Favors to your word.
Similarly, once a character has gotten to 100 they cannot take on any further Favor, other characters will instinctively know that you cannot accept any more Favor as their Favor whispers into their ear your secret.
Keeping all of this in mind accepting a Favor from someone is optional.
Paying those favors off to Rose, however, is not.