Circles indicate your ability to find contacts within various strata of society. A player may have up to three circles from his or her past. For example, an adventuring noble wizard might have an “Adventurers’ Circle,” a “Nobility Circle,” and a “Mystical Circle” representing the three social groups he has spent much of his time around.
To make use of your Circles, you specify what sort of NPC you’re looking for and make a roll. In some cases, the DM may declare the attempt impossible and no roll will be made. Once a roll is called for, it is not to see if you find the requested contact but rather to determine the contact’s disposition toward the PC. The range of attitudes can land anywhere from friendly to nemesis.
Roll a d20 and add (an appropriate skill) + (Influence over the target, if any) + (an appropriate Reputation, if any). The DC of the roll varies depending on various factors, with more specific parameters for the NPC yielding higher DCs; the DC to find “a Puritan knight of the One God who’s knowledgeable about Griffon Castle” is much higher than it would be to find “a wizard.” If the roll succeeds, the target is friendly. If the roll fails, the target is unfriendly. Also, finding a wizard in a month is easier than finding one immediately.