Jan
15
2018
1

Item seed: The Staff of Memphis.

Staff of Memphis – Google Docs

Staff of Memphis

(The Mesmeric Phrenological Induction Stimulator)

([MEMPHIS])

 

Typically called “The Staff of Memphis,” this fine piece of Victorian pseudo-engineering combines the dubious theories of mesmerism with the dubious practices of phrenology to create a highly dubious, but frustratingly functional, short-range mental dominator.  To use, simply point the Staff of Memphis — ah, the “Mesmeric Phrenological Induction Stimulator” — at the victim, concentrate on the emotion that one wishes to induce, and the gem on the Staff will focus a mesmeric ray that can be trained upon the portion of the brain that governs that emotion.  There’s even a faint green glow as the gem does its work.

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Jan
09
2018
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Item Seed: Ghost Coins

Ghost Coins – Google Docs

Ghost Coins

 

Many kinds of magic withered and died in the 20th Century; Ghost Coins, in contrast, blossomed in power. It’s one of those ‘power in contradiction’ things; it used to be that even when a nation fell apart its coinage would still have some inherent value. After all, a Byzantine gold solidus still had precisely the same amount of gold in it the day after Constantinople finally fell as it did the day before.  But with the rise of paper money and coins made out of non-precious metal, well, once the country was gone then so was the value.

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Jan
07
2018
2

Item Seed: Red Carpet Fragment #17.

Red Carpet Fragment #17 – Google Docs

 

Red Carpet Fragment #17

 

This artifact consists of a woven piece of wool, one foot by two feet, dyed red. Legend and carbon dating both date the Carpet at about BC 1300-1200; further legend indicates that this was a piece of the carpet spread before Agamemnon by Clytemnestra, upon his return to Greece.  There is currently no materialist way to determine the accuracy of that, but metaphysical probes suggest at least a strong symbolic link between the Carpet and that event.

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Jan
06
2018
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Item Seed: Brane Food.

Brane Food – Google Docs

Brane Food

 

This unsubtle assassination tool is banned in most planes of existence for being remarkably indiscriminate. Brane Food is essentially a magically mutated form of the cashew apple that has been further been manipulated in space-time until it’s just plain wrong. Then it gets steeped in a pool of evil for a week or two.  When it starts to bubble and look for a victim, congratulations; the Brane Food is ready.

 

Brane Food works by being frighteningly appealing to human brains.  Extremely so.  So extremely so that the brain will itself attempt to break through its own skull and ‘attack’ the Brane Food.  This, of course, never actually happens except under the highest of magical background levels; which is good, because the sight of a disembodied brain flopping around with two eyestalks while trying to crawl to its quarry is a sight that most people don’t want in their heads.

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Jan
04
2018
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Item Seed: Squeeze.

Squeeze – Google Docs

 

Squeeze

 

This stuff is half a party drug, and half an existential threat to humanity’s fundamental understanding of the nature of reality itself. That’s not a joke: analyzing Squeeze has already put at least three biochemists into a mental health facility, although fortunately the poor unfortunates aren’t violent. Just mostly catatonic.

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Dec
19
2017
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Item Seed: Frankenstein Thread.

Frankenstein Thread – Google Docs

Frankenstein Thread

 

Frankenstein Thread is a magically-treated silk thread originally used to patch up Undead, constructs, patchwork golems, and other Abominations of Mad Science or Magic.  It’s very thin, but surprisingly easy to manipulate — and almost impossible to accidentally break.  And it can be used on anything: blood vessels, brains, sinews, limbs, entire torsos. If it can be sewn together, it will be, with no loss of function or bodily fluids.  It can even sew Undead flesh onto a living body without it immediately turning into what necromancers euphemistically call an Unfortunate Incident, although no reputable or ethical necromancer would actually do something like that anyway. At least, not anymore, in this new era where the prejudices and misunderstandings of previous generations no longer holds sway.

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Dec
11
2017
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Item Seed: The Alexandria Prototype.

Alexandria Prototype – Google Docs

The Alexandria Prototype

Simply put, the Alexandria Prototype is a flintlock rifled musket that can be reliably dated to the First Century AD. It’s made out of bronze and wood, used something around .80 caliber lead balls, and the gunpowder residue has an unique composition to it, but the basic gun design is sound enough.  The Prototype was found last year in a hitherto unknown tomb or subterranean complex; it had been preserved as well as first-century technology could manage, and the gun itself could probably even still fire, if anybody was daft enough to try.

But there isn’t anything otherwise intrinsically special about the Prototype.  It is merely a weapon about a thousand years before its time, presumably designed and created by a single unsung genius, and for whatever reason the Roman Empire never got ahold of a copy to duplicate it. Those researchers cleared for the Prototype have tentatively concluded that it must have been seen by the locals as a potent magic weapon to be feared, and not a mechanism to be duplicated. Or possibly it was an assassination tool. Or maybe it was never actually fired, beyond testing purposes? Certainly there’s been a lot of research of surviving artifacts from that time period to see if there are any hints as to the Prototype’s ‘story.’  However, no clues are yet forthcoming. (more…)

Dec
09
2017
8

Item Seed: The Caramelizator.

Caramelizator – Google Docs

The Caramelizator

This handy-dandy device caramelizes onions. To operate, simply fill the hopper at the front of the Caramelizator with chopped onions, pull the trigger — well, yes, it has a trigger. Well, sure, that does make it look like a gun. OK, fine, the entire thing looks like a 1950s movie ray gun with a big ball on one end. But the ball is there just to hold the onions. And before you ask: good luck trying to yank that sucker off.

And even if you could get the ball off, what’s the point? The Caramelizator is such a low-power item it runs on batteries. It can’t be plugged into a wall — YOU MUST ABSOLUTELY NOT ADAPT IT TO LET IT BE PLUGGED IT INTO A WALL, LEST IT VIOLATE YOUR WARRANTY — so if you pull off the ball all you’ll have then is a defective, broken Caramelizator. Although the odd blue light that you can now see coming from inside the device might at least prove interesting. And… oddly tanning. (more…)

Oct
30
2017
2

Item Seed: Tim Burton’s Scary Christmas (1993).

Tim Burton’s Scary Christmas (1993) – Google Docs

Tim Burton’s Scary Christmas (1993)

Description: A standard movie DVD and case, apparently printed in 2003.  The full title is Tim Burton’s Scary Christmas: Tenth Year Anniversary Edition.  The cover shows an animated Santa Claus wearing a skeleton mask; beneath is the legend “Boo Boo Boo.”

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Oct
18
2017
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Item Seed: Jack O’Lantern Pie.

Jack O’Lantern Pie – Google Docs

 

Jack O’Lantern Pie
…Never make this.

If you must make this, don’t ever eat it yourself. Or give it to someone whom you hate less than the post-corporeal spirit who is going to ruthlessly possess the body of one of the people who ate of the pie.  Which might be a problem, because the possession is going to be “first come, first served,” as it were: you might get anybody taking over the body. Or anything.

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Oct
17
2017
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Item Seed: The Geniture Surveyance.

Geniture Surveyance – Google Docs

The Geniture Surveyance

 

Links to this website pops up on social media of all sorts with remarkable frequency. It resembles a fairly standard online quiz, “What kind of [Oddball Thing] are you?” edition.  People who take the test are asked a set of ten apparently-unrelated questions, then they’re told that they’re most like a Labrador Retriever or whatnot. The questions change, and the results, but there are about six or seven similar tests that all come from the same website.

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Oct
03
2017
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Item Seed: Devil’s Needle.

Devil’s Needle – Google Docs

Devil’s Needle

 

History, in fact, does give us the name of the person who first figured out how to zombify the San Pedro cactus.  His name was Leopold Frederick Danvers-Greenly; and his dark fate for creating such a horrible thing was to peacefully die, in his bed, at the age of eighty-seven.  They say that the wages of sin are death, but in Leopold’s case the benefits package included a baronetcy, a rather nice townhouse in a respectable London neighborhood, and any number of grieving grandchildren.

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