Created by Chris W. Acers


Hand Size:
4 (25)


Masque is one half of Alpert Smithingale, a man who was mystically split in twain as an infant. The magic which bisected Alpert clung to him, which ultimately brought him to the attention of a strange wizard known as Old Faceless, who then trained him in the ways of magic. Almost a master of magic himself these days, Alpert has grown into an individual (quite) distinct from his counterpart!


Schooling: Alpert is a student in the school of Philosophical magics, leaning on the sphere of goodness in his various studies. As of this date, he has progressed to the level of adept, having mastered at least ten distinct magical spells. While he's constantly working on learning more, Alpert has demonstrated the ability to reliably manifest these magical effects so far:

Astral Projection (p) (w): Alpert's mind can shed its physical anchor and soar about the universe unimpeded via the astral plane, with intensity 7 skill. This allows him to observe events around the world unseen, though folks that can sense an astral form may not like being spied upon. Furthermore, Alpert can attempt to use the astral plane to cross the dimensions, though this is highly risky.

Bands (u) (a): this powerful spell allows Alpert to bind a target, as per a grappling attack, with intensity 15 skill. These bands, once they get a hold of a target, will last until either Alpert dispels them or the target can pass a Strength action opposed by the intensity of this spell (to break them). This makes it particularly easy for Alpert to neutralize a foe without killing him or her.

Dimensional Interface (d) (i): a more recent addition to his mystic arsenal, this spell allows Alpert to use his very body as a conduit between one universe and another. In other words, this spell transforms his body into a passage between planes of existence, one which he can use to create a direct link between our universe and the astral plane. He can do this with intensity 5 ability.

Primarily, this spell allows him to vent energies back and forth between the two planes. For example, he could walk into a room lit up with intensity 5 fire and simply allow that danger to pass into the astral plane, or he could even vent spectral flames into our universe to inflict intensity 5 karmic damage... the spell is really quite versatile. In fact, it lends itself to power stunts, one of which includes:

* Astral Casting (i): typically, when a wizard's astral form is abroad, his spells cannot directly affect the real world, sensory magic aside. However, by casting his dimensional interface spell while astrally projecting, Alpert can actually manipulate the 'real world' as if he were physically there with his spells, which is awfully handy - and more than a little bit sneaky - but it works quite well! *

Eldritch Bolt (u) (i): Alpert can focus his magical energies into a coherent beam of power, an intensity 7 blast of magical energies that inflicts like damage against his opponents. Sure, this doesn't sound like much, but even at such a relatively low level of power, this attack is quite a valuable addition to Alpert's arsenal of magical tricks.

Hoggoth Entreaties (e) (w): Alpert has spent much time contemplating the existence of powerful extradimensional entities, though the first one he ha managed to draw power from is Hoggoth, one of the three beings that are the Vishanti. Since both Hoggoth and Alpert are essentially good-minded beings, Alpert can entreat him for power if he finds the need.

In game terms, this offers him an intensity 4 enhancement to any action he is currently attempting, though he must do this sparsely, or hey may become annoying to Hoggoth. In addition to these effects however, Alpert has studied several 'stock' spells that Hoggoth offers to those who entreat him for power, and has demonstrated a proper mastery of the following:

* Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth (i): this entreaty is a powerful spell of banishment. When cast, the target will be banished elsewhere by Alpert on a successful spell (Willpower) action made at intensity 9. The specific duration and location of a successful banishment are determined by a second action made after the first. Alpert can, of course, 'pull his punches' if his card play is particularly successful, however.

* Hook of Hoggoth (s): Alpert's favorite attack spell, this entreaty conjures forth a mystical scythe, which manifests in his hands. This hook, then, can be wielded by him like any sort of melee weapon. This is a +4 weapon, though it is particularly effective against evil folks; against them, it completely ignores their defenses, regardless of the form such defense may take.

* Mists of Hoggoth (i): this unusual entreaty is used to open a doorway between the dimensions, or provide a safe passageway away from the various psionic realms of the Between. While walking this path, a body gains spell +10 resistance to evil enchantments, which comes in handy when trying to escape opponents of a darker bent.

Furthermore, it should be noted that Alpert uses his mists of Hoggoth to not only make portals between the planes, but between different locations within a single universe. Whether this is a power stunt or simply by dint of the fact that he and Hoggoth are on such good terms, karmically speaking, has yet to be revealed. Regardless, he has this mysterious ability, so it is noted here.

Individual Shield (p) (i): this essential spell effect allows Alpert to construct a 3' diameter shield, centered on the end of his hand. While this shield provides intensity 5 protection from attacks, it will completely absorb any attack which breaks it during the course of play - no matter how intense the power behind it. This alone make Alpert's shield quite valuable!

Invisibility / Self (p) (i): another spell useful for observing events, this spell renders Alpert invisible to standard vision, functioning at intensity 8. Unless he does something to inadvertently reveal himself (like sneezing, or hitting somebody), he can remain unnoticed by others. If he does reveal himself, however, people in his immediate area can attempt a Willpower (invisibility) action to detect him.

Magic Sense (p) (w): having trained long and hard to recognize the energetic 'fingerprint' of magical power, Alpert can attempt an action at intensity 8 (this spell's power) to detect its presence in a person, object, or location. This is usually of easy difficulty, unless the magic itself has been actively masked somehow, at which point Alpert must pass a magic sensing action against the intensity of the disguise.

Hindrances / Augmentations:



Masque (w): this half-mask (a'la Phantom of the Opera) is a powerful magical item, in that it grants Alpert several potent abilities that he doesn't yet have access to with his magical spells. The masque itself is made from unknown materials, though it is of at least m.s. 20; it has easily survived a similarly intense hit. The masque grants Alpert these abilities:

* Charm (u) (w): this magical power can create an aura of good will that pervades Alpert's area. If Alpert passes an easy difficulty Charm (willpower) action against people within far missile distance of his person with this intensity 10 power, they will have a generally favorable attitude towards him, and will stay that way until Alpert harms them in any way, or they pass an average difficulty Willpower (charm) action.

* Luck (d) (w): this effect, generated by the masque, allows Alpert to curse a body with bad luck, for as long as he wishes! While his target is affected by bad luck, Alpert can draw a card from the top of the deck and, if he so chooses, replace any card in use by the currently unlucky victim - though the inherent danger involves is that he may draw a Doom card, which may be used against him!

* Regeneration (p) (s): being physically frail, as opposed to most other super-types, wizards often need every edge that they can get their hands on. Luckily for Alpert, his masque offers such a physical edge for him, as it provides him intensity 8 regeneration; each turn, he can recover one card if, when he draws it, it has a non-negative aura and is of lower value than this power intensity.

* Summoning / Demon Steeds (d) (i): this power allows Alpert to pull forth, from some other, unknown plane, a sort of spectral mount for himself. This mount moves with intensity 4 ground speed (sixty miles per hour), and will remain with Alpert until it is sent home or slain somehow. This intensity 12 power allows him to summon up to eight such mounts for him and his allies.


Lore 2 (i): Alpert's extensive studies of magic has given him considerable knowledge of its particularly dark, musty secrets. He is an expert on magical books, scrolls and so on, as well as various occult phenomenon such as hauntings, ley lines, and so forth. He may make Intellect actions regarding such knowledge at a reduced difficulty, resolving such with either his Intellect or Willpower score.

Sleight of Hand (i): well-trained in the magic of the stage by his circus-employed foster parents, Alpert has learned how to make things apparently disappear into thin air, using a combination of misdirection and fancy finger moves. He can also pick a person's pockets with a mere easy difficulty Agility action, opposed by his target's intellect.


Idealist: Alpert truly believes that magic is the Way of the Future, and as such, he pushes his beliefs upon everybody, at every good opportunity (say, when somebody's blaster peters out, or some such). In such situations, or especially when somebody starts insulting magic, Alpert must usually has to strain hard to keep his mouth shut should he even want to...).


Masque wears a crimson red cape over the rest of his costume, which includes an off-white tunic with blue sleeves, raven black pants, and a sharp set of leather boots. Of course, his suit is also adorned with various belts, ropes, and pouches to contain minor magical materials necessary for his spellcasting, as well as to simply look cool - this is the new millennium, after all.

Personality (in the words of Chris):

Masque is a bit naive to social ways. Being brought up in that circus atmosphere, he just assumes that's what the rest of the world is like. He is quite talkative really. It's just that nobody wants to listen. This verbosity he unwittingly utilizes only helps him in driving his enemies to confusion and his allies to insanity. Some would say that he is right on the Edge of Sanity if only because he has seen things that no mortal should see.

He is....Unhinged.

Real Name: Alpert Smithingale
Occupation: adventurer, student of mystic sciences
Legal Status: American citizen with no known criminal record
Marital Status: single
Alias(es), if any: none
Group Affiliation: Masque is a member of an unnamed vigilante squad

Height: 5' 8"
Hair: none (he's totally bald)
Eyes: brown
Weight: 180 lbs
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: none


The life of Alpert Smithingale is definitely an interesting one, if anything else. Abandoned as an infant, he was cared for by various circus performers, performers who raised him to be one of their own. Nobody knows why they cared enough to do this, but they did so nonetheless, and as such Alpert managed to live on to become a stage magician, mastering the art by the time he was thirteen.

However, Alpert wasn't destined to stay in the circus forever, as one night, while performing, he was heckled by an old man and several youthful followers. This old man was a real mage you see, and wanted to show his disciples just how silly this whole stage magic thing was. The trick was that the old man sensed a potential within young Alpert, and came to him later that night with an offer.

The ancient man offered to teach Alpert magic beyond his wildest dreams, magic that would help him to change the world. Amused by these silly claims, Alpert agreed to become Old Faceless's disciple, and over the next ten years, was proven wrong about the man. Dead wrong. By the time the aged wizard was done with him, Alpert was actually quite a competent wizard in his own right.

Once he'd learned his first six spells, Old Faceless thought that Alpert, who'd taken to calling himself Masque, was ready for his first mystical mission. As such, he sent his star pupil out to see the world, and try to show others just how superior his magics were to mere technological know-how. So, he preached the gospel throughout New York State, though nobody really listened to him.

His garish costume probably had something to do with that. Undaunted, Alpert nonetheless decided to continue his mission, though in the background. You see, some rather odd things were going on around his Albany home, and he'd decided to check them out. Of course, these bizarre phenomenon have opened several doorways to adventure, doorways Alpert couldn't help but walk through.

On one such adventure, Alpert stumbled into a group of vaguely heroic individuals who seemed somewhat capable of accepting him for who and what he is, and he's sort of stuck with them ever since. With these fellows, Alpert has gone through one madcap escapade after another, and even saved the world once or twice. Of course, these experiences aren't just for fun; they've helped Alpert's mystic studies considerably!

* Note: While he had quite a few magic spells under his control when he began game play, Masque did not possess his dimensional interface spell when starting out. It took him awhile, but his player experienced enough action to purchase that devil - not to mention the particularly dangerous power stunt he's worked out with it. With this spell, he's closer than ever to mystic mastery!

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