Gold Wind Weed
Invented by the great mage Calypso ages ago, Gold Wind Weed was his solution to find his golden spectacles (which he was always misplacing.) Upon smoking, this weed's smoke moves away in straight tendrils of glowing gold smoke, leading the way toward gold. Each puff will form up to three tendrils of smoke pointing toward the three closest sources, and the smoke will hang in place for five minutes if there is no breeze (only a few seconds if there is any amount of wind.)
The weed itself is typically only purchasable in shops that deal in mining supplies, but a few alchemical shops also trade in it. It's value ranges from 50 gold per pinch to 500, depending upon the perceived naivetÃ© of the buyer. Those that use it know that the draw back is if you are carrying any gold yourself: three gold coins in your pocket will eliminate the value completely.
A single pinch will last for 10 minutes of tracking, and in still air each tendril will extend about 20' visibly (or 50' if you have an exceptional sense of smell.) The weed will remain effective for years, though each year the flavor will deepen to be more like breathing dirt (Dwarves do not actually love this, but Gnomes find it a delicious smoke.)
Strangely it has been discovered by a rare few that chewing this weed and swallowing the juices causes the person's skin to be very sensitive to gold; contact with gold for several hours after this causes extreme pleasure and has a slight healing effect. It has become a 'drug of choice' in a few of the wealthiest circles.
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? Responses (8)
I bet Dwarves will love to get this weed, would make their task finding new gold ores much easier... ;0)
You'd have to convince them to remove all gold items before trying it, and Dwarves can be persnickety about their precious things.
Despite a non-smoker myself, I have quite a fondness for this item since I'm of a forgetful personality myself and tend to misplace things.
Me too. That, and I love using it as a plot hook. Hunting a dragon?
Good, but it could use some more detail. How many puffs do you get per pinch (important if this stuff costs that much)? How long are the tendrils -- a few feet, a few meters?
I agree that this sounds like a dwarven item.
Update: Added details and a side note.
Nice extra detail! One more question, while I'm thinking of it: will piling all of your gold in one corner count as one 'source' of gold, or as many? Having 3 gold coins in a pouch together seems like it should only count as one source, but that's just my opinion.
This is neat! I like simple items like this. Good stuff.