Ansad, those without form
Ansaid have no permanent form; their bodies are composed of mutable plasm, allowing them to shift into whatever form they need. Ansaid on Earth adopt a long-term disguise, appearing perfectly human to all but the deepest scrutiny. However, the focus on maintaining a single form makes it difficult for them to fully use their natural capabilities.
Ansaid are peerless in the physical aspects of Cover, with little to reveal their true nature providing they are careful. However, stability is unnatural to them, and they often find it difficult to remain in human form. They may similarly find that building and maintaining relationships with human neighbours is a serious challenge. In a race whose instinct is always to change, consistency isn't easy. Adapting easily to the moment, they sink readily into human personas, but recoil just as readily; as a result their Cohesion often changes rapidly.
Ansaid are shapechangers, but that doesn’t mean they have perfect memories. They’re evolved to take on varied types of form, not imitate specific details. An ansad can look like broad categories of people or creature, but they have no innate ability to flawlessly impersonate individuals. Even learning the parameters that make up “human” took time, while training to maintain their specific human guise in the long term was a major feat. Like anyone else, ansaid use skills if they wish to disguise themselves. Their main advantage is that they don’t require any tools to do so.
Most ansaid spend time each day using checklists and photographs to remind themselves exactly how they should look. The tendency to glance in mirrors and carry pictures of themselves makes many seem vain and narcissistic.
Mimicry: Ansaid can adopt the approximate form of most species of similar size, but cannot match the features of a specific individual. They can imitate a large canine or crocodilian, but any close examination reveals strange anomalies. Transformation takes a full turn and clothing can present a problem.
Vacuole: An ansad has a highly flexible internal structure, and can create voids within its flesh to store items. An ansad can absorb objects of Size 1 or below, storing them within a body part large enough to accommodate the item. The character might store a hacksaw in their torso, a key in their palm or a mobile phone in their head. Capacity is limited by biology: a character can store a maximum of one item of Size 1, and up to five smaller items. Items suffer no ill-effects from absorption. The tissue rejects damaging substances, including hot, cold, corrosive or very sharp items. Absorbing living creatures will result in their death, internal injury or both.
Living Weapon: When danger strikes, an ansad can grow weapons from its own body. When using this ability, the ansad may produce vicious claws, a bladed arm, a gaping maw of fangs, large spines, or other weaponry. Its Brawl delivers Lethal damage with a rating of 1L.
Ansaid have no permanent Tell. An ansad's human guise is biologically flawless, including accurate replication of organs and tissue structure. Only microscopic examination or DNA testing can reveal the deception.
Tissue Spasm: Under stressful circumstances, an ansad may be forced to make a Stamina + Subterfuge + Focus roll or temporarily lose control of their form. This is typically when they sustain Lethal or Aggravated damage or suffer severe emotional strain. A simple failure typically involves a limited spasm, such as one limb briefly reverting to protoplasm or changing colour, and may pass undetected by others. A dramatic failure may mean their facial features melt away, large spines emerge from their shoulders, or the whole body warps into a writhing sphere. The ansad must pass a Resolve + Subterfuge + Focus roll to regain their form after a dramatic failure, but can take other actions in the meanwhile.
Transformation: Any ansad transformation is a potential Tell. Superficial changes in appearance may be Subtle Tells, but any form of shapechanging or alteration of anatomy, including use of Vacuole or Living Weapon, is an Inhuman Tell.
The Ansad Gift pools are Guise and Protoplasm.
Ansaid are highly adaptable, and have affinity for Finesse Attributes.