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Comments: 10
Ideas: 0
Rating: 3.75
Condition: Normal
ID: 1513


November 11, 2005, 3:06 pm

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The Mask of Sebak


This is a large, heavy mask of Ahursian make, made with tarnished gold and lapiz-lazuli, as well as ivory. It has the appearance of a great crocodile head.

Full Item Description
This is a large, heavy mask of Ahursian make, made with tarnished gold and lapiz-lazuli, as well as ivory. It has the appearance of a great crocodile head, and requires a harness to wear properly (i.e., without falling over). The teeth, such as they are, are made of real crocodile teeth, but many of these are missing. The one remaining eye is a ruby. Many of the slats of lapiz and ivory have been pried out at some time.

Legends attribute many abilities to the Mask, or make reference to using the Mask as focus for spells or as a component for spells. Most of these references are old.

The Mask has no magic. It was originally a relic of an obscure Ahursian cult called the Children of Sebak, who worshipped a crocodile god. The Children of Sebak were destroyed in the Ahursian War of Priests, in which cult slaughtered cult, and their holiest item, the Mask of Sebak, was stolen by marauding Gedrosi. It disappeared for 200 years.

It reappeared in the hands of the Gedrosi chieftan Monster-of-Gaddi, who wore it as his battle garb. Monster-of-Gaddi was slain on the borders of Parsis, however, and the Mask was taken to the Parsi capitol, Suza, where it mouldered among the Parsi Emperor’s other countless treasures for 20 years.

It was sent as a gift to the King of Braza-Jaha in Izada, who, likewise, sent it as a gift to the King of Mysia. The Mask was then lost in the palace fire in the Mysian capitol of Hartacon.

In its current state, in the belongings of a former evil mastermind, the Mask is slightly smoke-stained, and needs a good cleaning and polishing. If properly cleaned, it would be incredibly valuable, despite missing jewels and overall poor condition.

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Comments ( 10 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Mourngrymn
November 11, 2005, 16:21
I like it. I almost seems as if it cursed since it has passed through so many hands in its time. Would be interesting to see something come from that.
November 11, 2005, 17:03
It would. It would also be interesting, in a world where curses occurred, if people thought it was cursed but it wasn't: they might start blaming all kinds of things on the non-existent curse.
Voted Iain
November 11, 2005, 17:02
Only voted
Voted Pariah
November 11, 2005, 20:21
I like it. If it was cursed what would it be, like "doomed to not stay lost for all eternity"?
Voted Ancient Gamer
November 12, 2005, 5:27
The history of this item, and the fact that it is a normal piece of treasure (even in a poor state) makes this item WAY more useful to me than many of the uber items the 5.0 harvesters post. Unfortunately it is a bit short and seems sketchy, but any GM should sense the kazillion uses this item will have. This is something WE CAN USE without fearing for the power balance. I love the ancient cultures inspiration by the way!

WHEN I use this item in my campaign, it will appear time and time again. I will have several generations of PCs spot it and some even may gain it as loot. I will use the (modified) history to its full extent. Yes!

Had you taken your time to fully flesh out this item, I would have given you 5 and hall of honour.
No doubt in my heart
November 12, 2005, 18:47
Hey, that's cool, man. ;)
I never meant this for the front page anyway... I think Moon must have moved it up from the forum, that sneaky bastard.
Ancient Gamer
November 13, 2005, 10:03
Yes, everything is being moved from the forums. It is the new way of things around here. The creativity will be moved here it seems.
October 6, 2006, 13:26
Bump, I thought this was cool...
Voted Wulfhere
March 14, 2007, 13:57
I've always had a soft spot for masks...

Especially archaic masks with a creepy history and interesting details...

Very evocative!
Voted valadaar
March 14, 2007, 14:52
I like it as well....

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       By: Raptyr

Nine times out of ten, it’s the undead that do the running.

Not strictly animal or vegetable, the Corpse bud is a peculiar individual that shares characteristics from multiple kingdoms and species. In appearance, all corpse buds bear a shape of a large rounded top bud divided into four lateral segments, and a much longer, narrower bottom bud, also divided into four segments. Between the two halves are a set of four radial limbs, rounded on top and flat on the bottom, covered with tiny serrated hooks facing towards the body. In overall size, it’s limbs reach as wide as a spread hand, with the body being as thick as a fist. It is as long as a human hand from top to bottom.

Internally, the top bud of the corpse bud contains a bacteria filled membrane that produces the hydrogen that the corpse bud uses to stay aloft, and a series of fungal gills for the dispersal of spores for reproduction. The lower half of the bud contains a number of fine filaments, as well as a sharp barbed stinger containing a powerful local anaesthesia.

The Corpse Bud mobilizes by inflating its top bud, and steers by rotating its arms rapidly about its body. The corpse bud ordinarily drifts with the wind, orienting towards the scent of recent decay and death. It preys on the recently dead, burrowing the lower bud into the victim, using the anaesthesia in case the victim is dying, and not truly deceased. Once embedded, it releases its filaments into the body, replacing the current nervous system. This gives it full animation of the body, and allows the corpse bud to direct it.

Corpse buds are not a malevolent species, being primarily concerned with breaking down the host body for food, and infecting the reproductive cycle with spores in order to mate with other corpse-bud bodies. To preserve the corpse for this purpose, Corpse buds will seek out dry locations to prevent bacteria from destroying the corpses. This often causes a large number of corpse buds to gather in a single location.

In culture, Corpse buds are used to repair broken spines or degenerative diseases, as the sentient mind will easily overcome the mind of the non-sentient corpse bud. Once infected by a corpse bud, however, removal is usually fatal, and the infected individual cannot reproduce, or risk infecting another. Thus, it is a technique often reserved for the elderly, or a last resort.

Necromancers and other dark sorcerers will often preserve the corpses of their victims magically, and infect them with corpse buds, creating traditional undead as well, so as to seed their lairs with undead both offensive and non, in order to throw their enemies off balance. They will also enslave the rudimentary minds of the corpse buds, and transform the docile things into a plague. There have also been accounts of magically transformed corpse buds with stronger minds and a taste for living flesh, but thus far all accounts are unproven rumors.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | October 12, 2011 | View | UpVote 3xp

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