The Unconventional Combatant Part 5: The Doctor

Modern living is dangerous, even deadly every major city across the globe has a body count that seems to grow daily. For a Lucid the difficulty and danger of modern life has been turned up to eleven.

Medical science like so many other technologies was crippled by the Purge. Next to data centers and libraries, hospitals and labs were one of the highest targets for Reclaimer attacks. Since the fall of the church medical science has advanced by leaps and bounds. Or perhaps recovered by leaps and bounds as it’s still impossible to say what the state of medicine was before the Purge with complete accuracy.

Even so, cutting edge medicine today is capable amazing feats, from regrowing limbs and organs to critical surgeries conducted by pumping machine assemblers into the blood stream. Of course that level of technology is reserved only for the super-rich. Our Doctor may have floated in the clouds before their Elucidation or worked eighteen hour days in a public ER, either way they’re in the mire with everyone else now.

Beginning with core Characteristics for the Doctor we add the following Skills and Traits: Education, Perception and the Specialty Fine Details, Long Shot, Biology, Chemistry and the Specialty Drugs, Genetics, Logic & Math, Medical, Meditation, Debate and Subterfuge.

These Characteristics give the Doctor an understanding of not just basic medicine but how the human body reacts to drugs and other stimulus, genetic complications and tools to help them spot complications. Additionally, the Doctor has some social skills for dealing with patients and Meditation to help them focus in high pressure situations. The core Medical Skill can be a game changer in a combat situation as it modifies the effectiveness of Slap Patches and Medifoam. With only these tools and the possible addition of a medical kit the Doctor is able to serve at least once critical function in combat. However, that’s simply mundane Skill. What many would consider the obvious choice for a Doctor character are healing powers and that would take us into the Verdant. While a viable option for any Character it is the classic choice and the Doctor deals with death and disease every day so instead out Unconventional Combatant shall be walking the Grave path. Looking at the Boons available to the Grave Lucid one quickly bubbles up to the surface.

Wither and Rot – Grave
Infusing the target with the necrotic force of the Grave, the character causes their victim to rot from the inside.
Using Wither and Rot: One target touched by the character suffers a Wound.

Requiring the Medical Skill and the Nail The Coffin Closed Ability this Boon sets a tone for the Doctor. So lets look at some other sickness and rot styled Boons.

Debilitating Touch – Grave
Through its link with the Grave, the character’s body has become a hive of disease and pestilence. The character’s very touch can ravage the bodies of the living.

This is another easy selection for our plague ridden Doctor although it has a few other Requirements.

Hearty – Supernatural
The character’s constitution is unnaturally strong, allowing them to shrug off the ill effects of many weaker toxins.
Using Hearty: The character may ignore a number of doses of Negligible drugs or toxins equal to their Constitution attribute.

Flesh Eater – Grave Verdant
The character is a predator, sustained by the flesh of recent kills.

Drug resistance is a natural fit for any Doctor but the Flesh Eater Boon plays into the concept that something has gone wrong. What did they have to do to survive? It also opens up some additional interesting Boons for the Character along with Debilitating Touch.

Predator and Prey – Grave, Verdant
Animals see the Lucid for what they are. The character will not be attacked by them unless provoked, and sometimes not even then.
Wild animals will never attack the character unless forced to, always choosing to flee if threatened.

Sickening Breath – Grave
The foulest stench of death lingers on the lips of the Grave Lucid.
Using Sickening Breath: The character may use their Debilitating Touch boon at range.

Closing the Coffin – Grave
Those who suffer serious wounds in the presence of the Grave Lucid may soon learn recovery is not an option.

Prolong the Pain
As their body takes to disease, the Grave Lucid learns ways to prolong the suffering of others, keeping them from rest.
Using Prolong the Pain: The character can prevent a target from dying. While using this boon, the target cannot heal by natural means.

Sickening Breath allows the Doctor to cripple targets from a distance while Closing the Coffin and Prolong the Pain make it easier to dispatch foes or save other, no matter how much it may hurt. These Boons allow the Grave Lucid to intervene on death. Continuing down this path opens a series of devastating Boons.

Withering Touch – Grave
The powers of the Grave are varied, but there is one that cannot be escaped. By touching their victim, the character steals a fragment of life force, causing the target to age uncontrollably.

Aging Curse – Grave
The Withering Touch grows in potency; victims age much faster with each passing day.
Using Aging Curse: Each night that passes, victims of the character’s Withering Touch age progressively faster. Each night, add 1 additional year to the aging effect. So, on the second night of the effect, the target ages 2 years, and on the third they will age 3. Allowing victims to age for 10 days under the Aging Curse will take 55 years from their lives.

No Waiting – Grave
The Lucid’s Withering Touch acts in seconds, not days.
Using No Waiting: The victim ages a year (or a night’s worth of years) each turn instead of each night.

The Doctor no longer needs to clumsily fail away at foes until one of them keels over. With a single touch the Character forces the target to shrivel, decay and fade away. No armor in the world can protect you from the suffering this Doctor may inflict.

However, while these Boons bypass mundane defenses some Players may want to take advantage of the Character’s potent Nail The Coffin Closed Ability and medical training. While they could add traditional combat skills to supplement their supernatural abilities Nail The Coffin Closed makes up a large difference there. With their focus on the Intelligence Tree though the Internal Style representing martial arts such as Tia Chi both fits the Doctor concept for general heath and adds to their offensive capabilities. With that the Character may also pick up:

Lingering Strike: (Various) – Grave
Knowing how to hit is only as important as knowing where to hit. The character is an expert at striking a foe where it will hurt the most.
Using Lingering Strike: When selecting this boon, the character chooses a type of attack (Firearms, Melee, Unarmed, etc). The target of a successful attack of the chosen type from the character suffers 1 Wound regardless of damage.

Bleeder: (Various) – Mundane
In a fight, slowing a foe down is just as critical as anything else. The character has a knack for leaving wounds that bleed or cause intense pain to their foes.

These two Boons capitalize on the health draining effects of the Weathering Touch and the Character’s medical training.

In the next Unconventional Combatant we’ll look at the Concert Kid.