A Defender Ring is a ring that has been endowed with certain special qualities, most notably endowing the wearer with skills that resemble metahuman ("superhero") powers. The people who wield them are named Ringbearers.
Defender Rings figure prominently in the Tales of the Ringbearers series, Doggieboy's "A Little Vacation" and "The Cynic and The Defender," LSauchelli's "Avenging," and the "Judith Saga" series "Judith Strikes!" and "Worldburner".
Defender Rings are incredibly powerful items of alchemical origin. They were created through the advanced scientific discipline of alchemic technology in the dimension D-476, a world at least a thousand years more advanced than our own and having scientific disciplines considered heretical or fantastical in other worlds. Alchemic technology sprang from a primary focus upon the the discipline of chemistry as philosophy, scientific discipline and art form, and the application of such advances within that discipline towards and within other disciplines in order to create effects and constructs that seemingly defy the norms of conventional scientific thought.
The creators of the first Defender Rings (who would be come to be known as the Ringmasters) did so in order to fend off an inter-dimensional zombie infestation that was beginning to consume their world, despite the advanced weaponry the inhabitants used to defend themselves (as shown in the Tales of the Ringbearers fic 'Michael'). After purging their world or the undead threat, they realised that most other alternate Earths would be overrun by such threats (especially since they found that the incident was an attack on their world by (as-yet unidentified) alien forces; it was decided to proliferate the Rings throughout the multiverse, for the purpose of defending humanity from overt supernatural threats. It was further decided not to reveal the source of the Rings, as many of the technologies on D-476 could be destructive (to the point of planetary obliteration) in the wrong hands. This was also the motivation behind the "morality" endowment upon each Ring: only people with an innate sense of honorable morality (otherwise known as Good) could use the Rings (see below).
The most common misconception about the Rings is that they have a magical origin and ability; most Ringbearers have simply given up trying to explain how the Rings are not magical artifacts.
The First Rings
The first generation of Defender Rings (known as the 'First Rings') were more powerful than their descendants, with fewer restrictions on their use and lacking the "morality" endowment. Only one thousand of these rings were created and given out to a group of one thousand volunteers who wished to fight against the zombie menace.
They also possess endowments that later Rings did not, including the ability to establish a direct connection with D-476, either portals or direct communication channels to the Ringmasters. This is not known by most Ringbearers: only the most urgent of matters will compel the Ringmasters to contact Ringbearers directly, let alone allow even First Ringbearers access to D-476.
As of present, less than one hundred of these Rings exist outside of the Ringmasters' headquarters. The rest were returned to D-476 - sometimes by force.
Defender Rings appear as plain silver bands, but modify themselves to fit their wearer's tastes. The Rings possess a number of endowments which are passed along to the wearers, who are known as Ringbearers. When using the Ring's endowments, all energy emissions and/or effects (unless specifically noted otherwise) will generate a light blue hue.
The Morality Interlock
The primary safeguard meant to not only keep Rings from being used for evil purposes, but also as a way to find potential new Ringbearers. The Ringbearer's own subconscious is the moderating authority in such matters: the wearer must already have a set of honorable moral beliefs to guide his/her actions. In Dungeons And Dragons terms, call it "Neutral Good" - Lawful Good and Lawful Neutral can rarely use them.
If a person who lacks the specific moral alignment even attempts to put a Ring on, let alone use it for selfish or evil purposes, the Ring will not allow them to; if forced, it will simply disappear and reappear elsewhere; if that is impossible, the wearer will be flooded with great pain until they stop. If the wearer still persists, the Ring begins to attack its wearerwith lightning, fire, or intense cold.
In the case of Ringbearers who do wrong, if the former wearer truly repents his or her misdeeds with the Ring, it will return to it's wearer's hand.
As a result of the Nova Valdris Accords, a specific morality, as required by the Ringmasters, was imposed on the Defender Rings, after incidents where Ringbearers committed atrocities for "the greater good" or that were acceptable and encouraged in their own cultures.
Restrictions under the Nova Valdris Accords
Feeling that the Ringbearers were becoming too powerful (and demonstrating this in their continuing activities outside their stated mandate in far too many instances), operatives of The Agency acted during the recent crisis with the Dominator Ring to curtail the scope of power levels and endowments placed upon all Defender Rings (and by extension, the Vengeance Rings). This attempted interference resulted in several conferences between the Ringmasters and The Agency, which resulted in the Nova Valdris Accords. As a result of the Accords, the standardized power levels of the Rings have been lessened and made more dependent upon the wearer's force of will; several endowments were changed or removed.
Two Defender Rings do not have the new restrictions, even though they have the new endowments: Danielle Todds's Ring, as she was outside reality at the time of the line-wide change (it is now known as the Alpha Ring), and the First Ring (known as the Beta Ring) carried by a Jane Lane that was created before the reality reset that instituted the restrictions.
Only a bare few on a need-to-know basis are aware of the temporal reset and the restrictions.
Active Ring Endowments
- The wearer has the ability to detect, manifest and control the seven mythological 'elements': Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Wood, Metal, and Aether (Quintessence - usually manifesting as 'lightning', but also used as a reference to the life-force of living beings). The wearer cannot use more than two elements at one time, but can switch between the elements instantly. This ability is limited only by the wearer's willpower, intellect, creativity and physical endurance. While wearing the Ring, the wearer will have a pronounced affinity for one element (see metahuman ability creation) and a higher level of control/ability of manifestation towards that element than the other six elements. While in contact with a Ring, the wearer is invulnerable to anything made of (or from) the element that they have an affinity towards (as well as the secondary effects of potentially lethal exposure to/deprivation of that element), and greatly enhanced resistances to the remaining elements (Example: Ringbearers with an Earth elemental affinity are immune to radiation poisoning).
- The wearer of a Defender Ring can instantly and completely destroy, through molecular combustion, any undead beings in his/her line of sight within a 100-yard radius, leaving nothing but a dust residue behind. When used on a possessed being, the entity is destroyed as it is expelled; the possessed being is temporarily stunned but unharmed. The Ring can also destroy ectoplasmic, spiritual-based and astral-form beings by disrupting the cohesive forces that maintains their energy fields; in the case of astral forms, the being projecting the astral form is knocked unconscious and unable to reform that astral form for 24 hours. Using this ability affects the Ringbearer in the manner of physical activity.
- The wearer can immediately banish an extra-planar being, creature or item from the reality it has manifested in, back to its dimension/plane or origin, or into an inter-dimensional void between realities. This endowment can also be used to send lost or stranded inter-dimensional or time travelers back to their own place of origin, or upon the Ring's wearer as a last-ditch escape mechanism from an alternate reality: a noted use of this for Ringbearers is to escape from the temporary alternate dimensions (created from the greater Dream Dimension) while sleeping.
- The Ring can create a astral form simulacrum of itself, to go with the astral form of its wearer. This simulacrum is every bit as powerful as its actual form. This can only be created by its physical form's actual wearer, will disappear when ending the astral form, and can only be generated by conscious action before entering the astral plane.
- The Ring confers the ability to heal any disease, condition or injury, regardless of cause or origin, save those related to the aging process. The Ring can also resurrect a victim if deceased for less than ten minutes but doing so will drain the Ring's power levels. The ring can also perform these functions on its wearer and protects the wearers' life-force. The Ring neutralizes any infection that may turn a user undead (i.e. zombie bites). Injuries caused by weapons, effects, and environments of a mystic nature are more difficult for the healing endowment to work upon; while the Ring can still heal these injuries, the amount of time needed to do so is greater. In such cases, Ringbearers may choose to treat such injuries with the Elixor of Life (see below), or simply stabilize the injured being and find them medical treatment.
- It has also recently been shown that the Ring can cause a body-wide regeneration of a person's body into peak physical condition (in relation to the standard for their height/weight/age) free of any genetic, physical or mental defects and possessing peak agility, strength and endurance.
- The Ring can also 'disinfect' people, areas and objects by transmuting environmental contaminants into inert matter, and restoring them to their pre-contaminated state (though it can't restore machines, like computers). This has been used to purify immense quantities of water and food sources for consumption in disaster zones.
- The ability to transmute any form of matter (but not living beings) into any of the following: sulfur, salt, amber, honey, paper, glass, quartz, silk, coal, wood, marble, water (or its separate components of hydrogen and oxygen), metals (copper, iron, tin, silver, platinum, iron and gold), precious stones (diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds) and the alchemical 'base' element of lead. The Ring has no limitation on how much material can be transmuted into any of these elements or materials, and is limited only by the wearer's imagination and endurance.
- The Ring allows its wearer to access and manipulate the extra-dimensional energies known as the 'Living Light' and the Darkforce. The effects possible with these energies are:
(a.) The Ring can generate a powerful beam or an omnidirectional emanation of pure light, in any color in the visible spectrum (the Ring can also generate infra-red and ultraviolet light), which can reach up to solar levels of illumination or heat-intensity (but cannot affect the wearer). The light acts upon all life-forms, including sun-sensitive undead, in the same manner as natural sunlight. When fired at ultra-high intensities to generate either light or heat, a solar beam (Ringbearers call it 'Starbow') fully depletes one-quarter of a Ring's energy charge. Experienced wearers have learned to use this endowment primarily for illumination or low-output beams which can slice through objects such as armored warship hulls and incredibly dense mineral formations.
(b.) The Ring can also produce smaller, softball-sized globes, which can last for up to a year without renewal. These can also be used as makeshift thermal charges (doing heat-related damage capable of severely damaging or destroying main battle tanks in a fifty-yard radius) or for illumination (capable of simulating daylight conditions in a radius of up to one mile). The globes have limited anti-gravity and produce radiant heat equal to a small bonfire. The globes can be set as sentry buoys which can generate force-fields, and detect/destroy hostile and infected beings.
(c.) The ability to travel through the 'inner light' or 'travel through shadow' [the Darkforce]: in effect, instantaneous travel that resembles teleportation. The Ring's ability to perform this is limited, and the further the wearer travels, the further off-target they will be from their intended destination. The average wearer can travel about 100 miles without going 'off-course'. Wearers can take passengers through with them through the 'inner light'; the passengers will be momentarily disoriented afterwards.
- The Ring has the ability to act as a near-limitless power source, providing electrical energy to any chosen device within a given area via broadcast power: either fully recharging depleted energy storage or actively replacing the energy system. The ring can also create 'solid light' objects that can act as power cells for any electrical device, which will last six months of usage.
- The Ring allows its wearer to seek out people who are suffering and dispel the physical or emotional 'pain' of others for short periods of time. The Ring can also perform the 'dispel' function on its wearer.
- In the TotR fic "Balance", it was revealed that the Ring confers empathy upon the wearer, but only when actually wearing the Ring.
- The Ring can generate an energy field that controls the vibrations of anything within that field. (Ringbearers primarily use this ability with zombies to negate the moaning sound they make). A Ring can generate a vibration-control field over a one half-mile radius, and shape the field in any manner that they wish. 'Tiger Cruise' showed that the Ring's vibration-control ability can be used to affect solid matter and living beings. It can also affect objects in various forms of temporal flux or phasing, in order to bring the object into normal time. Larger fields can be created when several Rings use the ability in concert. The vibrational field the Rings create can be used to place objects in a state of phase of temporal flux, which lasts as long as the field is actively engaged, or up to one hour after the field is no longer maintained. This field-effect does not stop the abilities of other Rings to move through time.
- The ability to create omnicloth - an alchemy-based, all-purpose material that is a equivalent to 'unstable molecules'. Clothing made from omnicloth allows the wearer to remain warm or cool as needed; the material is water- and corrosion resistant to the point of invulnerability, non-fading, impervious to punctures, fire, tearing, or wear, conforms to the wearer's body shape, and adapts to any special powers that the wearer may have. If large enough amount of omnicloth is used, omnicloth is capable of resisting extreme environmental conditions and massive shifts in pressure & inertia, as well as sustaining conditions in an area sealed with the material that can allow organic beings to sustain their existence indefinitely (ex. a survival sphere fashioned with omnicloth panels around a solid frame could keep the occupants alive if adrift in outer space or at sea, underwater, during re-entry, or from a great height). A Ring can transmute other materials to create the material, or transform existing clothing materials into omnicloth; there is no limit to the amount of material a Ring can transform.
- The wearer of a Defender Ring can, through concentration, duplicate his/her ring to create more. The Ring can only duplicate itself if its owner has a specific person in mind to wear the ring, or encounters someone (even if the wearer does not realize it) that is worthy of wearing one. The ring can only duplicate itself once per every 24-hour period, and this drains fully one-half of the Ring's current level.
- The Ring allows two-way voice-only or holographic communication between Ringbearers. The Ring cannot communicate through other dimensions or in real-time outside a solar system. The Ring does have the ability to project a very powerful signal pulse that has the capacity to be detected by other Rings, and is powerful enough to bridge dimensional barriers when enabled.
- In The Last Stand of Odell Jones, it was demonstrated that several Defender Rings operating in unison can create a "Ring-link" - a powerful communication link that allows instantaneous real-time communication with any world with a major Corps communications access system (such as Beacon Terra One, or the various communication sustainer arrays located throughout the Daria Multiverse). In cases of extreme emergency, the "Ring-link" can be used to open up a one-way transport portal that can send beings or materials through; regardless of how many Rings are used, every Ring involved will use up fully one-half of its full energy capacity after creating a "Ring-link".
- The Ring has the ability to act as a inter-dimensional/time-space anchor, allowing the wearer the following abilities:
- (a.) if in another time or dimension, to know the location of their home period/place and to open a portal to it
- (b.) the ability to sense and locate incursions from another time or dimension. The Ring can localize on a disturbance with an accuracy of one meter.
- (c.) to place a 'trace' on all individuals who travel through the portals and actively track them through space and alternate realities; the 'trace' can't be followed through time, but the Ringbearer will be aware that the time-travel has happened. Any Ringbearer may access the 'trace' in order to return the traveler to return to their point of origin (Legion of Lawndale Heroes, when Archangel returned Tom Sloane and Mack Mackenzie to their own reality). The trace becomes inactive after a year. Skilled Ringbearers may travel to any time, location or reality that anyone who has received a 'trace' has existed in.
- (d.) to open portals to any point in space, in other dimensions, or parallel universes that the wearer desires, or to simply transport themselves across dimensions. The wearer can transport numerous living beings as long as they're in physical contact with the wearer, or within the energy cordon created when a portal opens; if you have ever traveled through the Ring's portal, it can open another to send you home. When a portal is opened to leave an area, the portal is purple in color; when a portal opens to allow travelers egress, it is pink in color.
- (e.) the ability to create and access 'hammerspace' portals, where the wearer can store and retrieve materials as she/he chooses.
- The Ring has the ability to create force fields of various size (including large static fortifications), or project fields that can trap/contain beings or substances; they are capable of withstanding incredible forces (A Necessary Loss, Anton Davidson was able to survive the supernova detonation of Earth's sun without harm), including mystical energies (i.e. mystical-based attacks, and the immediate/ongoing/long-term effects encountered within mystically-based/empowered areas & environments). They have a slight blue sheen (visible when encountering powerful forces) but are otherwise invisible to the naked eye and most sensory devices/abilities. The fields are powered by the Ring, and will fail if the Ring runs out of power. In cases where a large static force field is raised, the field can stay active as long as a Ringbearer remains within the field and their Ring is charged. PFT Weapons will penetrate the fields and were designed specifically for that purpose.
- As a secondary endowment, the Ring can create 'personal shields' to place around other individuals (shown in The Cynic and The Defender). The shielded person can travel freely, but is under the same limitations on the shield.
- The ability to transmute matter into a number of alchemical substances. This includes the following:
- Aqua Vitae - an alcohol-based fluid also known as the 'water of life'. The fluid can be used for many purposes, including fuel for heating, fires, medicinal uses (as it is naturally sterile), and as fuel in internal combustion engines. You can also get drunk on it! The Ring's wearer can spontaneously generate up to their body weight in aqua vitae per day or transmute nearly unlimited quantities of other fluids into the substance.
- Alkahest - a universal solvent. Alkahest breaks down and dissipates completely after sixty seconds, but can be contained/preserved indefinitely in a temporal stasis field. Only two gallons of Alkahest can be created per day, regardless whether spontaneously generated or transmuted. (Ringbearers have to use their force fields or telekinesis in order to contain and use the alkahest.)
- Ambrosia - a nutrient-rich, psychoactive substance which appears as a gelatinous blue material, with the consistency of semi-hard cheese. It can sustain organic forms in the same manner as normal foods. Ambrosia both be eaten as it is (it tastes bland) and can transmute into any food that the person dining wishes to consume. Ambrosia can be stored and transported easily, as it does not spoil, and can last for centuries. (Though it does travel and store better if either kept frozen or in airtight packaging.) A Ringbearer can spontaneously generate up to their own body weight of ambrosia per day with the Ring; however, unlimited amounts of other substances can be transmuted into ambrosia(with negligible energy drain on the Ring).
- The Elixir of Life - the second most difficult of the alchemical chemicals for a Ringbearer to transmute (see below). The Elixir is a slightly-thickened, golden fluid which can heal any injury or disease or resurrect a recently deceased being within ten minutes of death. It can be used by being drunk, applied topically or through injection/IV use (three drops will have the desired effect). The Elixir can also prolong life indefinitely: first by drinking one ounce per year, then once per month (or die) after the user is three times older than their average life span. A single use of one ounce of the Elixir can regress a human back to roughly his/her post-adolescent appearance - 17-22 years of age - but will not affect any new genetic alterations (i.e. superpowers) or cause any mental/psychological regression, if the user chooses to be de-aged. Any undead creature exposed to even a single drop will be immediately destroyed. The Elixir is nigh-indestructible (before use), and the ability of the Ring to transmute fluids into Elixir is extremely limited. Only two litres of the fluid can be created per 24 hour period, and each litre drains 10% of the Ring's power. Ringbearers rarely create the Elixir while on assignments.
- Lethe - an incredibly potent variant of the Elixor of Life, created for use in cases of catastrophic contamination of organic beings. Lethe is described as being an incredibly brilliant golden-yellow in color, and can exist only as a gelatinous, semi-solid compound that also possesses immediate soporific properties. Lethe is used only in cases of extreme or long-term cases of physical contamination of organic beings by supernatural or trans/extra-dimensional properties, contaminants that are capable of surviving prolonged periods inside a Ringbearer (even when wearing a fully-powered and active Defender Ring), and to facilitate 'temporal resets' involving single beings of historical note (due to the high level of chronometric radiation-stabilizing properties possessed by the solution, which allows realignment with vastly lowered chance of random x-factors occurring as a result). The most difficult of the alchemical chemicals for a Ringbearer to transmute, only a miniscule number of Ringbearers are even allowed to know of Lethe's existence, let alone authorized to create it. The creation of Lethe takes up fully one third of a Ring's full charge, the Ringbearer is strongly encouraged to immediately recharge their Ring after Lethe creation, and any remaining Lethe must be either transferred immediately to a secure Corps of Ringbearers facility, or subject to several transmutations to ensure its complete removal from existence. (At present, the only Ringbearer known with knowledge of/authorization to create Lethe is Priscilla Henry, as seen in the TotR fic Spirit Stick.)
- Nectar - a clear, nutrient-rich psychoactive fluid that sustains in the same way as pure water (and it tastes the same), but the drinker can transmute it into any fluid-based substance fit for organic ingestion (this includes fluid-based foods, such as soups, gravies and coffee, and liquid forms of various medicinal substances) that they have been in the presence of (as opposed to ambrosia, which they must have personally consumed). Any trace of nectar can instantly replicate itself to fill the container it is held in, if the user wants some, but only within a 24 hour period as it evaporates quickly. Four gallons of nectar can be spontaneously generated per day by the Ring; however, unlimited amounts of other fluids can be transmuted into nectar by the Ring's wearer (with negligible energy drain on the Ring).
- Panacea - a psychoactive substance that has light medicinal properties (it acts as a moderate-level antibiotic that can also quickly alleviate the symptoms of any form of illness or promote healing of injuries in any organic beings or creatures. Panacea can convert lesser medication supplies into more effective ones (so undercover Ringbearers could covertly present it as an effective form of "herbal remedy" or "folk medicine"; one standard tactic is to mix flakes of Panacea into liquids for drinking). In its standard from, Panacea is almost identical to gold in appearance (but shaves into flakes easily), radiates at a constant temperature of ninety-five degrees Fahrenheit and has a slightly bitter taste (to discourage casual use); however, Panacea can take on the taste of a medicine it enhances/replaces. This endowment was added in order to honor the informal agreement on non-interference made with The Agency, so Ringbearers could provide supportive medical care on worlds that had no experience of other realities or alien/superhuman beings, and still go unnoticed.
- The Ring has the ability to generate a permanent endowment upon small items that allows them the ability to produce nectar and Panacea upon demand. These artifacts are known as 'cornucopias', and are almost always some sort of common fluid-containment item (items such as covered water containers, thermos bottles and flasks are commonly chosen). A cornucopia can produce conditionally unlimited supplies of nectar and Panacea for transformation into consumable and medicinal substances (see below), and is powered by the residual body heat and/or mental energies of the user (this does not harm the user in any way). The user must remember to not completely empty the cornucopia, and then concentrate for several seconds on creating more within the cornucopia before continuing to pour. If the user fails to do this, they must either completely refill the cornucopia with some form of fluid (preferably water) and concentrate on the transformation, or wait for the cornucopia to spontaneously regenerate a full container of pure nectar (a process that takes one hour, regardless of the cornucopia's size). The cornucopia can also spontaneously transform the nectar within into any chosen fluid-based or semi-solid/gelatinous foods (such as soups, gravies, chili, honey and gelatin-based dishes), beverages (such as coffee, teas or alcoholic fluids like whiskey) or fluid-form medicinal substances (cough syrups, liquid-form aspirin, etc.). Cornucopias can be used by any being (as long as they understand what the artifact is); due to their incredible utility, they are considered invaluable artifacts that can fetch literally any price that a seller wishes to command.
- The Ring can view, alter and record the memories of other beings. This is used primarily by Ringbearers to gain information, as well as modify or erase peoples' memories on worlds where the Corps want to act in secret. Many Ringbearers choose not to use this endowment unless absolutely necessary; even those who do use it do not approve of using this endowment in a casual fashion.
- The Ring has the ability to create a 'temporal stasis' (freezing time) field around an object or encompassing an area - potentially an entire Earth-sized planet. It can be maintained for up to three hours, but after more than one hour (or after containing any area greater than a continent), the wearer must recharge the Ring immediately after deactivating the field. The Ring's wearer can actively move about inside the field and can free others from the stasis by touching them. The wearer must make a conscious effort to activate the field. The wearer of a Ring cannot be affected by a stasis field (even one erected by another Ring).
Passive Ring Endowments
(NOTE: Unless expressly stated otherwise, the range of these endowments is within one planetary hemisphere (while on a planet) or out to 10,000 miles (while in space).
- A Defender Ring cannot be removed from a wearer by anyone or anything doing so with intent to inflict harm on anyone.
- Defender Rings are indestructible, even against reality alteration, magical effects, or time manipulation. (In the case of alkahest, the Ring dissolves and then reappears on the wearer's finger.)
- Defender Rings possess a low-level computational ability: the wearer recieves information from the Ring for a small number of tasks, such as training protocols, information on their Ring endowments, and access to a great number of archival materials (including various forms of entertainment and educational materials). (Daylight fic A Good Deed Repaid)
- The Ring can detect any form of supernatural, metaphysical or alchemical creatures and activity within a 5,000-mile radius. The Ring can instantly allow its wearer to determine the location, general type and intensity of the source (example: general number of zombies/vampires), and can lead the wearer directly to them.
- While wearing the Ring, a wearer appears to any scans or relevant detection powers as a normal human. The Ring can be made to appear invisible.
- The Ring has an 'early-warning ability', which allows it to detect any approaching potential threats (twenty seconds in advance). It must be activated by the wearer. Anyone and anything that the wearer does not consider to be a threat - such as loved ones and pets - do not register as threats.
- The Ring has the ability to cloak its wearer (and anything/one in a ten metre radius) in a 'Glamour' - an alchemically-based personal illusion. This is often used to make a wearer invisible. The 'Glamour' can be pierced by reasonably simple anti-cloaking technology and similar powers.
- The ability to unerringly know one's own location (relative to his current position in any reality/universe). This ability will also detect the location of other Ringbearers within a 250,000 mile radius (approx. the distance between the Earth and the Moon).
- The Ring can also project illusory/holographic maps, 'virtual reality' data-input screens and information displays of any given area that it is in, which can focus, zoom in or out, and provide incredibly precise detail and information about all features, objects and persons in the area. This is used for battle coordination. Reasonably simple anti-cloaking technology and similar powers (including the glamour) prevent objects/people from appearing on the map. In the Tales of the Ringbearers fic The Aeon Interdict, it was shown that the Ring can recieve messages of supreme importance and project them to the wearer through the form of a person/being the wearer has a profound emotional bond with.
- The Ring possesses incredibly powerful, highly sensitive sensor capability that allows the wearer to keep track of events within an area roughly the size of the inner planets of Earth's solar system (from the Sun to the Sol asteroid belt) The input from the sensors can be projected through the Ring's holo-capability, and can be transmitted to any system that has visual or holographic capability.
- The Ring possesses several specialized filtering systems tasked to protect the wearers' physical senses and psyche, automatically engaged in response to threats in the environment. These filters include illumination and auditory filters; 'perception filters', filtering any form of sensory input from sources that would cause psychological damage, such as Lovecraftian multi-dimensional entities, into a form that the wearer can safely percieve.
- The Ring instantly translates any form of communication, no matter how basic or complex, to allow its wearer to communicate with anyone they encounters.
- Should a wearer be killed, the wearer's final minute of life may be retained by the Ring as a form of psychic imprinting, as well as of anyone killed at the same time within one meter of the Ring's wearer. This ability can be activated by the Rings early-warning ability.
- The Ring provides the wearer with the ability to resist mental invasion and control. The level of effectiveness of this endowment varies according to the wearer's force of will.
- The Ring possesses the ability to absorb any form of radiation from any environment, as well as the lifeforms and items within; it can also absorb radiation from radiation victims and reverse any radiation damage. (In the case of metagene activation due to radiation, the ring will repair the damage without affecting the powers)
Metahuman ability creation
- Donning a Defender Ring gives the wearer telekinesis as an independent power, seperate to having a Ring. Telekinetic abilities and levels are limited by the Ringbearer's own willpower and imagination. TK-shield creation is one of the first abilities new Ringbearers are instructed in.
- All living things possess a natural affinity towards one of the seven mythological elements: the Defender Ring turns this affinity into a seperate superpower. The Ringbearer possesses the ability to generate, manipulate and control that element without the Ring; the Ring enhances this to a staggering degree. Ringbearers may also find themselves capable of other related abilities - i.e. Ringbearers with a natural affinity towards water can naturally create steam, fog or ice.
- The Ring also confers upon its owner the ability to fly of their own accord. With this ability, the Ringbearer can fly at any speed and height that they can physically endure; this ability can also be used underwater to increase their movement speed. (The Ring ensures they land safely to the ground if knocked unconscious or wounded and will create a force field for protection in flight)
- The Ring can confer a number of metahuman abilities upon another being ("gifting"). The Ringbearer can bestow powers on up to three 'gifted humans' per 24-hour period; each time the process occurs, the Ring is drained of fully one-quarter of its current energy stores.
Defender Rings have a number of inherent limitations:
- In order to be recharged, a Defender Ring must be exposed to natural sunlight for at least thirty seconds, once every twenty-four hours. In cases where this does not happen, using the Ring will drain the wearer's own life force. (The Ring prevents this from killing but users can fall into comas, which the Ring will take months to heal.) The Ring can receive limited amounts of energy from highly active sources of radiation, but after a certain point or exposure, the Ring's decontamination endowment will automatically activate and neutralize the radiation source.
- Defender Rings have no effect on any form of electronic-based technology, or any devices, vehicles, weapons, etc. that use such technology in an inherent fashion, due to a fundamental incompatibility exists between 'altech' devices and electronic-based technology. There are three exceptions to this rule: (1.) using aether as a power source for electrical goods (which can short-circuit or burn them out, if the Ringbearer is not careful); (2.) generating a 'altech feedback pulse' that will jam all functions of all technology (including the Ring) within 4,000 miles for a period of one hour; (3.) Ringbearers who possess the aether affinity can use their Rings in concert with electrical devices or even imbue such devices with a semblance of life and sentience. They may only do so for a period of one hour, before the fundamental incompatibly burns out the device being used.)
- Defender Rings possesses time-and energy constraints upon their ability to perform several endowments (creation of several altech fluids, revival of organic beings, and transmutation of certain materials). The twenty-four hour limit on these endowments is a security feature placed upon the Rings by the Ringmasters; it is a primary reason why many choose to focus on their elemental affinities, or become a specialist in the use of certain applications of Ring usage. In addition, recharging the Ring to full power does not reset the Ring's twenty-four hour limit upon endowment usage; the time limit on any endowment begins upon its first use within that time limit.
- Defender Rings can be confined in non-causality fields for twelve hours, as they disrupt the altech nature of the Ring's abilities. Ringbearers cannot escape such fields; use of a Ring inside such fields will result in a random effect being generated by the ring. After twelve hours, fundamental incompatibilities between the two will result in the collapse of any such field.
- If the wearer of a Ring is killed, the Ring will return to the Ringbearer whose Ring it was created from. This endowment is negated if the Ring is completely drained of power, passed on to another worthy person, or trapped in a non-causality field.
- No Defender Ring is capable of drawing upon the forbidden energy source know as 'black sunlight', or of attempting to channel it. If a wearer tries this, the Ring disappears and appears before the Ringmasters. (This endowment has never been made known to any Ringbearer, to cover up knowledge of black sunlight's existence).