Apr
26
2017
1

Item Seed: The Apocalypse Trunk.

Apocalypse Trunk – Google Docs

The Apocalypse Trunk

 

The Apocalypse Trunk resembles an old-style steamer trunk, albeit one with wheels.  Trying to move it around quickly demonstrates why it has wheels: the trunk is heavy, weighing in at around 350 pounds.  It can technically be opened, but in that particular way that’s reserved for items that people are not really supposed to open unless they’re are specifically-trained technical personnel.  There are numerous data ports installed on the side of the Trunk, and a heavy-duty power cord attached to it, so it doesn’t need to be opened to be used anyway.

 

Anyone who does open it will discover that the inside is packed with the latest word in hard drives.  The total storage capacity of the Apocalypse Trunk is about 75 petabytes, which is insane.  That’s enough for Google’s abortive 25 million book library archive – which is convenient, because that’s what’s precisely on the drives.  Which means that this is already one of the problematical items: stolen merchandise that is priceless in both the positive and negative senses. That library is theoretically worth hundreds of millions if not billions, but there’s nobody out there who it could be fenced to.

(more…)

Apr
24
2017
1

Item Seed: Cryptoid Autopsy! #5.

Cryptoid Autopsy! #5 – Google Docs

 

Cryptoid Autopsy! #5

 

This VHS tape comes in an oversized case, with a cover that could best be described as ‘garish’ and ‘busy:’ ‘Cryptoid Autopsy!’ is, for example, in all-caps, and in a particular color of green usually only seen at EPA Superfund sites.   The packaging gives a copyright date of 1987, from a company that quietly went out of business in 1994.  Extremely diligent research will find a 1989 company catalogue that lists this tape — it’s actually one of eight — but there’s pretty much nothing else available about this series otherwise.

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Apr
11
2017
1

Item Seed: Octavian Doom Candles.

Octavian Doom Candles – Google Docs

 

Octavian Doom Candles

 

This somewhat esoteric protective artifact is supposed to not really be ominous, aside from the name. Unless you’re a minor auto-scripted, semi-autonomous post-corporeal soul fragment (or, sure, ‘ghost’), of course.  Then it’s a big, heaping serving of Doom..

 

The Octavian Doom Candle (the origin of the name is slightly obscure) operates as a two-stage incendiary device: lighting the top causes the candle to eventually ‘unfold’ into a rotating wheel of eight large candles (and a second tier of six smaller ones).  In the mundane world, this is mostly used as a gimmick for birthday cakes.  In the esoteric world, the interaction of the flames and the movement is absolutely irresistible to minor ghosts.  They get entranced, get sucked into the center flame, and then get burned up.

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Apr
09
2017
1

Item Seed: Creepify.exe.

Creepify – Google Docs

 

Creepify.exe

 

This free PC browser extension would be strictly mythical, except that it appears just a little too often for that to happen. Its exact form varies from incarnation to incarnation; the browser used and the type of files it processes is never the same twice. So far, the only computer type that a version will appear is the PC. This equally relieves and offends Apple-using occultists.

 

For roughly 99.999% of the population, the only thing that Creepify.exe does is take an e-book’s text and ‘creepifies’ it by adding scary adverbs at random, switching out innocuous adjectives for alarming ones, and replacing all the proper nouns with names and places that are considered to be more baroque and unsettling. Creepify.exe is a free app; which is good, because the end result is usually extremely stupid and sometimes not even comprehensible.  

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Apr
03
2017
--

Item Seed: Leabhar Maidin Glas.

 

Leabhar Maidin Glas – Google Docs

Leabhar Maidin Glas

(Green Morning Book)

 

This somewhat unlucky tome — well, unlucky for its readers — was the target of numerous thefts, the occasional assassination, at least one war; and even today it’s still valuable as a historical heirloom.  The book is in Middle Irish, and dates back to the 10th Century AD; and for its time the Leabhar Maidin Glas was a potent tome full of fell rituals and practices.  However, the practices in question were all in the field of agriculture, if you’ll pardon the pun; there’s absolutely nothing magical and esoteric in the book at all.  Well, nothing magical or esoteric, here in the modern era. Back in the day before scientific agronomy the tips found in the book would be remarkably good at increasing crop yields and breeding livestock, which is why so many petty noblemen kept raiding each other in order to get their hands on the only copy.

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Apr
03
2017
--

Item Seed: The Kirby Tester.

Kirby Tester – Google Docs

 

The Kirby Tester

 

This shrinkwrapped package consists of a handheld item resembling a portable taser; a CD containing a variety of diagnostic software programs; and an illustrated (four color, naturally) pamphlet explaining how to use both the item and the software.  Retail value $79.99, five dollar rebate coupon inside, a couple of links on the cover to websites that require an account to access. The package does not reek of extradimensional origin, assuming that somebody nearby has the ability to detect that sort of thing.

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Apr
01
2017
1

Item Seed: Beruang H-40 Laptop.

Beruang H-40 Laptop – Google Docs

 

Beruang H-40 Laptop

 

This item was found in Borneo’s Tanjung Puting National Park, and the first interesting thing about the Beruang Laptop is that it is in excellent condition. The item was apparently designed to be humidity-resistant, effectively waterproof, rustproof, corrosion free, acclimated for jungle use, and just generally rugged.  There is one section of the laptop case that seems to have been regularly gnawed, or at least bitten — but that section has been heavily rubberized. It’s almost as if the laptop was supposed to be carried around in one’s mouth.  Oh, and the laptop is powered by a solar panel system that has the folks in the lab taking notes.

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Mar
31
2017
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Item Seed: Ghost Canoes.

Ghost Canoes – Google Docs

Ghost Canoes

 

These incredibly handy artifacts can only be made from wood from a tree that died, and was then left strictly alone for a full century.  This makes them available only from Elves, a similarly long-lived species, or a community of incredibly patient mortals. Fortunately, once constructed Ghost Canoes can be repaired with regular wood.

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Mar
26
2017
1

Item Seed: The Vita-Inversion Assembly Chamber.

Vita-Inversion Assembly Chamber – Google Docs

 

The Vita-Inversion Assembly Chamber

 

This device exists in the worlds where the Mad Scientists of the Victorian Era thrived, crowded out all the non-Mad scientists (non-Mad engineers, too), and went on to be the backbone of scientific and technological progress in the Interstellar Era. And, hoo, boy, was there progress. It’s amazing what you can accomplish if there’s no little voice inside anybody’s head that says “Is this wise?” It certainly makes peer review a more… dynamic experience. And quite exciting, at least from outside of the blast radius.

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Mar
18
2017
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Item Seed [heh]: Lachnimloth.

Lachnimloth – Google Docs

 

Lachnimloth

 

This actually refers to an entire order of trees that grow primarily on lava.  Note that the word ‘trees’ is very much an approximation; lachnimloth are ‘organic’ in the sense that they have a recognizable life cycle, and obey universal biological imperatives.  They are absolutely neither carbon-based, nor part of an oxy-nitrogen ecosystem.

 

But lachnimloth are still very pretty.  Extremely dangerous to humans in their living form, thanks to the heat, but very pretty. It’s all due to their makeup: the various species of lachnimloth are made up of a complicated mix of glass and trace materials. When alive it has molten glass for sap and various  translucent silicates for bark and ‘flowers.’  

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Mar
13
2017
1

Item SEed: the Strategic National Ontological Weapon (SNOW).

Strategic National Ontological Weapon (SNOW) – Google Docs

Strategic National Ontological Weapon (SNOW)

 

SNOW is a suitcase-sized product of early Cold War Weird Science, and it shows: everything about it is glass and dials and a steel casing that can absolutely shrug off a bullet. It was ‘invented’ in 1946 by the State Department’s Interim Research and Intelligence Service (IRIS).  More accurately, it was invented in 1942 by a tame mad scientist seconded to the Office of Strategic Services’ Research and Analysis branch, who then got transferred over to State in 1945, along with the rest of what would become IRIS.  Once that happened, the State Department felt comfortable officially telling Harry S Truman that he happened to have a single-use cosmic reset button.

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Mar
01
2017
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Creature/Item Seed: Gunpowder Wasps.

Gunpowder Wasps – Google Docs

Gunpowder Wasps

Never allow the sophonts at the Galactic Uplift Bureau’s Surreptitious Assistance Department too much free time.  Or access to trashy Old Earth vidshows, apparently.  GUB-SAD operatives can get themselves into all sorts of trouble that way.

The basic problem is this: most oxygen-nitrogen water worlds in the Milky Way galaxy have roughly similar biospheres, and that’s not even remotely accidental.  A standard biological package of photosynthetic bacteria was apparently introduced to every planet that looked like it could support it (don’t ask anybody in the various Galactic governments who, or Who, did that). So, you can introduce new species into a particular planetary mix.  If you have that sort of mind.

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