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Essential Salts

School necromancy; Level 5


Casting Time 2 hours (no penalty for interruption, but disturbing the remains causes automatic failure)
Components V, S, M (alchemical metal shavings worth 5,000 gp for diagram)
Optional Components F (the Necronomicon gives a +5 insight bonus on casting skill checks; at the GM’s discretion, other texts with hints might give +1 to +3), SC (up to 10, chanting from text; +1 bonus on non-diagram ritual skill checks for every 2)
Skill Checks Knowledge (arcana) or Profession (Yog-Sothothery philosopher) DC 15, 1 success (diagram); Knowledge (nature) or Profession (Yog-Sothothery philosopher) DC 15 + target’s HD, 1 success
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Diagram an outline of the target, generally filling its space
Target one creature or its remains
Duration permanent
Saving Throw none; Spell Resistance no


This ritual enchants a creature or corpse so that it can be reduced to a small amount of finely powdered essential salts at any time by reciting an incantation called dragon descending. While in salt form, the target can be restored to life by reciting dragon ascending or by spilling a few drops of blood from a creature of the same species as the enchanted corpse on the salts. Incomplete remains will return as a creature whose body is as incomplete as when they were first enchanted, similar to the spell raise dead. This ritual may be cast upon the mere dust or ashes of a creature, such as an incinerated body, but unless the skill check results exceed the DCs by an amount equal to the victim’s Hit Dice, the revived creature is so incomplete that it dies immediately. If essential salts is dispelled, the creature or dust returns to the form of a living creature or remains, as it was when essential salts took effect.

When a creature resurrected by this ritual dies again, it must succeed at a Fortitude saving throw or the ritual’s duration ends (at which point the creature is simply a mundane corpse). The DC is 10 + subject’s HD. Even if the creature succeeds, it gains 1 permanent negative level and remains dead until it is again reduced to essential salts and revived.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Sandy Petersen’s Cthulhu Mythos, © 2017, Petersen Games; Authors: Sandy Petersen, Arthur Petersen, Ian Starcher.