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Knight of Gastronomy/Knight de Cuisine
Exotic gourmands, these Knights of Gastronomy wage battle in the kitchen, striving for victory of the palate. Gourmands always experimenting with new foods and ingredients. Usually outlandish.
A Knight's duty is not always found on a proper battlefield, fought by those noble members of a freehold who seek to bring the finest, rarest meals to the table. They must always top themselves, and each other. What else is there to do, after eating the finest meal you've ever had, but to make a better one?
And so, these chefs and cooks and restaurateurs go deep, deep into the cosmos to the find the most exquisite ingredients, the most rare of fruits, and the most challenging of master chefs.
Purpose: Be ultimate cooks using ingredients of the Cosmos.
Privilege: Tracking Those Tenuous Tastes (bonus to finding cosmic ingredients for a dish)
Joining: Near anyone can attempt to join, but only those that have shown more than the basic competency are allowed to continue. Simple challenges, such as "make your best potato dish", begin the training- but then, more exotic dishes require more and more exotic recipes and ingredients.
Mien: The changeling's tongue changes, to become a unique symbol of her order and personal style. Further, there is an aroma of food; this qualities of this aroma, however, is psychoactive. Those that like the Knight smell a pleasant dish, and those that dislike the Knight smell a foul, mean concoction. As a symbol of their order, all Knights de Cuisine have white chef jackets. The times to be used and other qualities of these jackets are up to the individual, however.
Backgrounds: Anyone can cook. But Knights of the Knowledge of the Tongue typically have a taste that was somehow refined, either in their mortal life or during their durance.
Organization: The Knights of Gastronomy do not give themselves over to a great deal of formalized organization. Each chef works as both competitor and cooperator with one another, forming intense rivalries and alliances.
The biggest way they separate themselves is by preferred school of cooking; many changelings possess different gifts for cooking depending on their natures, their skills, or their durances. A super-genius might be a gifted saucier, using intense molecular gastronomy to create chemically enhanced sauces. A super-strength with fists like ham hocks might pound his own flour (with those aforementioned fists), making for a hulking pâtissier. A Chirurgeon works as a cleaver-wielding butcher, while a Brewer whips up the strangest cocktails known to man and fae. A Muse works as a sommelier, a Draconic is renowned for his knife skills in the act of charcuterie (sausage-making), and a Fireheart rules the fiery barbecue pit like the king of Hell.
Above them all is the Most Eminent Chef, determined by which of the Knights of Gastronomy is most in tune with the weave and weft of fate . The Knights never speak the Most Eminent Chef's name, only calling him "Chef" or, in some freeholds, "Sir." The Most Eminent helps distribute the talents of those within his order. After all, what good is a noble order of cooks if they aren't cooking for an audience? The Most Eminent goes among the Courts and offers the services of his people to the rulers for various celebrations and ceremonies. He also throws various celebrations himself, including, a vast experimental food and wine festival open to all changelings. It's a wonderland of flavors both miraculous and vile, and the lords over it. Depending on his personality, he might act the fickle gourmand or the glutton with spit-flecked lips.
Rome walks in on a kitchen in ruins, with blood and body parts strewn about, and automatically assume the kitchen staff have met a grim fate. So the classmates can still be fed, Alice, a novice cook, takes up food duties and immediately is overwhelmed by the amount of ingredients he finds and has no idea how to work with (this is depicted in a great scene where Rome looks around mouth agape in confusion as names of spices swirl around his head). He grabs a cookbook, gets to work on the cafetaria's dinner, and ends up making food so good that the College of Arcanobiology decides to give a recommendation letter to the Knights of Gastronomy, settling on giving a classmate the best last meal ever at an upcoming yearly death rite ritual exam.
A Knight of Gastronomy gains an instuitive knowledge of how to find ingredients in the cosmos, whether it deals with Hobgoblins, fruits, or any other element within the hedge. This sense is weakened slightly is the Knight does not know exactly what he is looking for. (He is a magic knight in this aspect)
- Food Manipulation: He controls meat, and likely other types of food.
- Food Summoning: he offers to his prize specimens cookies and cakes, those desserts seem to appear out of nowhere, also he summoned a giant chicken wing to fight against the undead, in the riot.
- Calzone Golem: A six foot tall creature that seems to be made entirely out of pastry. A few reddish smears mar its well baked crust. It looks like a doughy humanoid and smells of cheese and tomatoes. The calzone golem is a strange construct created through a delicate process that mixes alchemy and bakery in ways never before imagined by mortal beings. A calzone golem’s body is created from a mixture of fine ingredients, including approximately 100 pounds of flour, 50 pounds of cheese, four gallons of tomato sauce, and large quantities of salt, yeast, and sugar. Mushrooms, olives, or other ingredients may be added to the tomato sauce as desired. Season with oregano and black pepper to taste. All ingredients must be fresh and of the highest quality.
- Cooking - For any recipe that the mage knows of, no matter how fancy, can be created as long as he has the proper ingredients.
- Create Food - Cost is 1 per meal if the material was previously edible or was closely associated with something edible (e.g. bones, wheat straw, spoiled food). For 5 points per meal metallic items can be made edible, but they taste horrible. Unwholesome material (including poison) can be made safe to eat using this spell but it tastes terrible. An object which is turned into food doesn't change its properties in any way except that a person can chew and digest it - clubs still work as clubs, rocks still hurt if you throw them.
- Decay (Food) - Food destroyed by means of this spell is thoroughly ruined. It will smell and look terrible and will cause anyone who tastes it to suffer as if Retch spell had been cast on them unless they have the Cast Iron Stomach advantage.
- Distill - This spell can be used on hydrocarbons to create petroleum and similar products. This spell can be used to remove water from any food leaving behind a more potent residue, cane syrup can be turned into syrup, maple sap can be turned into maple syrup, soft-cheese can be turned into hard cheese, fruit can be dried and so forth. The quality of the resulting brew depends on the cooking or Distilling skill of the mage and the quality of the original liquor. This spell is also a Water spell. It is the weaker version of the Destroy Water spell.
- Ferment - This spell can also be used on milk to make yogurt, cheese, koumiss and the like. Honey can be turned into mead. Pure, high-quality fruit juice becomes fruit wine. Diluted fruit juice becomes "coolers" or slightly fizzy fruit-juice with mild alcoholic kick. Grains become beer or ale. Sugar-water becomes a sticky sweet "wine" which can be distilled into pure alcohol. Other foods which rely on long-term chemical or bacterial action such as vinegar, gefilte fish, kimchee, or Tabasco sauce can be created using this spell. Distilled liquor or wine can be "aged" for about 3 months per application of this spell. In all cases, the quality of the beverage depends on the Cooking or Brewing skill of the mage and the quality of the ingredients he has on hand. You can't get good booze if you don't have good ingredients and a decent recipe.
- Poison Food - Purify Food will cancel this spell without destroying the poisoned portions.
- Purify Food - decayed portions of spoiled food are not removed but are instead returned to a wholesome state.
- Seek Food - The mage can specify what sort of food he is looking for.
- Water to Wine - If cast on low-quality wine or unfermented beverages this spell turns them into high quality wine.
He is obsessed with force-feeding his delicious food to subjects to fatten them up, believing that a log that is too fat to move can't get into trouble.
Food is also a very important part of the lives of the Knights. They haven't gained their famous bellies by merely singing and dancing all day, after all! Cooking and meal-times have become an extremely important part of the culture, such to the point that most Knights learn to cook before they even learn their letters. It is said that the best cooks are Knights, but also that Knights are the best eaters. They commonly eat at least five meals a day.
Knights will eat just about any edible thing that will grow around them. They are especially fond of vegetables, such as carrots and peas, which they will grow happily in their gardens. They also love giga shrooms and gold apples, and are overall very fond of things that grow from the hollow earth. Gardening is a very common Knight pasttime and, sometimes, occupation. Hobbits do eat meat as well, such as that of cattle and ram that they have grazing in their pastures, as well as dodos that cluck about in their front yards. However, fresh fruits and vegetables are commonly their favorite.
Knights also have a taste for beer, and will happily drink down glasses of it, which they often do at parties and celebrations. Many Knights take great care in making beer, being sure to brew it so that it comes out just right, with the best flavor. Indeed, every bar and tavern is not always judged on how good the food is, how cute the waitresses are, or how quick the service is, but rather, how good the beer is that they serve.
Great chefs also make great poisoners. Poorly prepare the glands of the blackjack toad, and what do you get? A throat so swollen that it closes and kills. What happens if you "accidentally" leave in one of the teensy-tiny seeds found in those tongue-numbing pilfer fruits you can only seem to find at goblin market stalls? First a coma, and then when you wake up, boom, amnesia. The whispers say that the Knights de Cuisine started out as poisoners working for some king or queen, truly functioning as secret knights: destroying enemies instead of pleasing the papates of friends. Do the current Knights know this? Probably not. But some poisoners may still linger withing their brigade of obsessed chefs.
One of the group's secret goals is to find what they refer to as the Perfect Recipe. This is not an ambiguous list of ingredients, but supposedly an actual recipe that occasionally pops up in freeholds, a set of instructions that is said to have existed for hundreds of years. Some say it originated in France, others Tangiers, others still claim in Szechuan Province. Of course, nobody knows just what the recipe is. A mind-boggling dessert? A one-bite amuse bouche? Further rumors persist, suggesting that one bite from a meal prepared perfectly from the recipe is supernaturally sublime: Some say one's Wyrd might increase upon consumption, while other less pleasant stories claim that it's a quick way for a changeling to become one of the dreaded Keepers...
Within the noble order exists a kind of...sub-entitlement, a secret cabal of chefs who thrill at truly grotesque feats of culinary hedonism: hunting down lycanthropes to chill and eat their brains, drinking cocktails made from the blood of captured kings, making deals with Keepers to procure ingredients that are truly rara avis. Some say these lustful gluttons belong to a group called the "Abbey," and it may have ensorcelled those who belong to its ranks.