The Emperor's New Clothes (Presence ????? ?)

The social politics of Kindred existence can sometimes be more powerful than any military action; more effective than any physical battle. As such, shrewd Kindred know that a simple misuse of a word, or a misplaced gesture, can bring alliances crashing down, or form solid unions. A small slip-up in how others perceive someone can have a disastrous effect upon a Kindred's reputation and could, indeed, scar them socially for the rest of their unlife.

Those who have mastered the art of Presence have an innate understanding of how that power of supernatural charisma operates and, with enough practice, can learn to negate its effects as used by another Kindred of lesser ability. This effectively turns the tides of emotion back upon the target, reversing the desired effect and potentially endangering their social standing, if not their very unlives as well.

Essentially, this power has the potential to reverse the effects of the first five levels of the Presence Discipline, resulting in a negative backlash against a target that the character knows is using a Presence power. How or if the character is actually aware that Presence is being used is completely up to the Storyteller, but one who has reached this level of mastery should be at least allowed to make an educated guess.

Once it has been determined that a target is employing Presence, the player rolls Manipulation + Subterfuge (difficulty 7). In regards to the fist four levels of the Presence Discipline, the player need only gain more successes on this roll than the target did on his or her initial Presence roll.

For example, Ann uses Awe on a mortal, and gains 3 successes on her roll for that power. Tom, employing Emperor's New Clothes, needs to roll at least 4 successes for his power to take effect on Ann, and thus upon Ann's target mortal.

Storytellers should consider a successful use of this power as equating to the target having botched his Presence roll, and all the wonderfully evil consequences that follow from such an event.

In the case of Majesty however, things get a bit more complicated. First of all, the character herself must resist the target's use of Majesty to even begin trying to use Emperor's New Clothes. If the character resists, and is then able to take an action against the target who is using Majesty, the player must spend a Willpower point and make a Manipulation + Subterfuge roll. The difficulty of the roll is the target's permanent Willpower score and the player must score at least as many successes as the difference between the two characters' permanent Willpower.

If the reversal is successful, the target's use of Majesty is made obvious to other Kindred in the area, although most vampires will have neither the experience nor the language to understand that, "s/he's using the fifth level of Presence in order to impress me." Instead, they're filled with a sense of distaste and disapproval, seeing the targeted Kindred as a socially awkward poseur. In the social arena of vampire society, this can be devastating, irreversibly undermining one's status.