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Postfest XVIII (Richfest 2016): Talako Mambenorn - Of the Figurines Of Wondrou
Posted on Sat, July 02, 2016 by LordCeb
Syzygyst writes "Postfest XVIII (Richfest 2016): Talako Mambenorn - Of the Figurines Of Wondrous Power

An excerpt from one Talako Mambenorn, mage, to the infamous Rary (The Traitor). Among other things, it concerns the Figurines Of Wondrous Power.

The following is an excerpt from a correspondence written by the capable mage Talako Mambenorn, intended as his own introduction to the infamous mage Rary, called The Traitor. His true motivations for such a treatise are unknown. Items (usually game-related) that do not appear in Talako's text are demarked by [*...*].

Of Maeralt Abatrix:

The University of Magic Arts in Greyhawk is a renowned school of the arcane. Mages of considerable prowess have graduated from its granite walls. There are a few practitioners, however, who fail to pass their final exams. One such individual is Maeralt Abatrix. The school record has him hailing from Bissel -- Thornward in particular. Not a great student, by any means, was Maeralt, which contributed to his failure at graduating. But he was, nonetheless, an ardent artificer. In fact, he was expelled for crafting a small golem of hardened iron that managed to destroy one of the school's alchemical laboritories.

I mention Maeralt as I am now turning attention to the fabled Figurines of Wondrous Power. Maeralt, in fact, fashioned two items of similar design. Whether these items may be considered true members of the Figurines is in question, but they are so like them that I would be hard pressed to exclude them. More fascinating, is how Maeralt managed to make such items. Though that tale is interesting in its own right, i'll simply come to the point and say that Maeralt used an item of considerable potency in helping him to craft these strange items. But before I get to that, I’ll detail the two items.

Of The Lodestone Sloth:

This strange figurine is fully 2 inches in height. It is made of lodestone [* magnetized magnetite *] and acts similar to a Stone of Weight (Loadstone), except it is not cursed: the bearer may discard it at any time. The statuette depicts a sloth [* similar to Earth's brown-throated, three-toed sloth *]. This specific creature, bearing 3 talon-toes, is of a species indigenous to Hepmonaland. The creature produced by the token is about 2 feet in length and weighs about 10 pounds (average for its species, I believe). It has a movement (crawling/climbing) of approximately 2 meters per second, which I have measured.

Why would one carry such an item? The interesting properties of this item are in regard to the Loadstone function. As one bears the Sloth stone, the counter-inertia is actually stored as a potential in   the figurine: it charges. One may then, upon bringing the Sloth to life, expend those charges, possibly any number of them, to speed up the Sloth to incredibly fast levels. I believe it may be a doubling of the sloth's speed per time-frame per charge, without any effect on the sloth's precision of movement. Methinks I have tried up to 8 charges, and the sloth was, indeed, no longer slothful. I have perceived, however, a slight anomaly in the mana-flow during higher rates of movement. I shall have to investigate further.

[* For every round that the wearer experiences the effects of the Loadstone, a charge (round-charge) is added to the figurine. The sloth-stone can hold up to 100 charges at a time. The charge remains even if the item changes hands. When the sloth is active (alive) up to 10 charges can be expended per round by the owner. Each round-charge may confer extra motion to the sloth, doubling it's speed. The sloth's normal movement rate (crawling or climbing), is 2 meters (m) per minute. Any number or charges can be expended per round. There is one caveat. Expending charges induces a risk, called Burnout, that the magic will misfire, 'killing' the sloth and rendering it back to its inert state, the dweomer being forever lost.

The following data list is in the format:

# charges (per round): xX speed multipler = rate (per min. / per sec.) % chance of burnout.

0: x1 speed = 2 m per min.; 0%

1: x2 speed = 4 m per min.; 1%

2: x4 speed = 8 m per min.; 2%

3: x8 speed = 16 m per min.; 3%

4: x16 speed = 32 m/min.; 4%

5: x32 speed = 64 m/min. (~ 1 m/sec.); 5%

6: x64 speed = 128 m/min. (~ 2 m/s); 6%

7: x128 speed = 256 m/min. (~ 4 m/s): 7%

8: x256 speed = 512 m/min. (~ 9 m/s): 8%

9: x512 speed = 1024 m/min. (~ 17 m/s): 9%

10: x1024 speed = 2056 m/min (~ 34 m/s): 10%

These are actual (real-world) rates, so the speed per game-round will depend on the edition and the GM's interpretation. When the sloth is moving via charges, it moves with as much precision as it would at its normal speed. Without expending any charges (or if no charges exist to expend), the sloth moves as a normal example of the species. The exact stats for the sloth are up to the GM/game-version, but it should be treated as a normal animal, but of Low, rather than Animal, intelligence. It is meant to run errands only. And note, the creature can spend no more than 6 hours a day in its live form.*]

Of The Sardonyx Pseudo-Dragon:

A mere 1/2-inch in size, comprised of bands of red sard and black onyx, this tiny statuette can become a pseudo-dragon that will obey the owner's telepathic commands. It can only spend 1/3rd of each day (8 hours) as a live pseudo-dragon. It will immediately revert to the minimal, inert form if that time limit is reached. This item differs from the common figurines in that when the pseudo-dragon is killed, it returns to its iconic form, completely sable in color (no longer banded), and the pseudo-dragon aspect can never be reborn: it is dead, forever a mere token. Also, the pseudo-dragon will heal wounds at the rate of 1 hit-point per hour when returned to its statue-state, and will reflect that degree (which may be total) of healing upon being re-animated.

And here I now return my attention to the tool with which Maeralt crafted his personal figurines...

Of The Stylus Of Faunal Figurines:

I know not the creator of this item. What is known, however, is that this item is of extreme assistance in crafting items like the Figurines. Not many know of its existence. I doubt that even your exalted self has heard of it. This implement may have been fashioned by none other than the legendary Queen Ehlissa, also said to have been the progenitor of many, if not all, of the storied Figurines. Perhaps this item even predates the first of those statuettes. Whatever its origin, it is an exquisite tool.

The Stylus is a shaft of bone, some 14" in length, magically hardened. My own researches indicate the bone is from the femur of a weretiger. Upon one end, covering about 6 inches of the length of the shaft, are uniformly arrayed a series of beautiful feathers. As far as i can ascertain, they are a mixture of plumage from a young phoenix, a cockatrice, and a couatl. Upon the tip of the opposite end is fashioned a most unusual etching bit: a small blade, like the tip of a chisel that is both pointed and edged, made from the most unique substance. It took me great effort and to determine the nature of this tip. I am calling it diamantite, for it is an alchemical composite of diamond and adamantite. I know of no harder substance on Oerth. It is a translucent, dark silver in appearance that shimmers and sparkles in any light. It even seems to cast tiny "rainbows" about its surface. Soon I will pursue a full discourse on the material. But I digress.

Given proper magical guidance and effort of both hand and will, this tool can cut anything I have placed before it. Indeed, this magical tool actually seems to "melt" materials as it cuts through them, aiding the user to mold items to a near perfect resemblance of that, which resides in his mind's eye.

Master Rary, how I know these details is that I am currently residing in Maeralt's humble manor and tower, after having laid him low with a little spell I have titled Talako's Terrible Transgasm. I let you know this so that I might beseech..."
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Re: Postfest XVIII (Richfest 2016): Talako Mambenorn - Of the Figurines Of Wondrous P (Score: 1)
by Kraftwerk ( on Sun, July 03, 2016
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I love the Lodestone Sloth!  Definitely something I'll appropriate for my own Greyhawk Campaign.  Also, I thought your inclusion of the Stylus with which the Figurines were created to be a novel idea.  I wish I would have thought of that!

Strong work!

-- K.

Re: Postfest XVIII (Richfest 2016): Talako Mambenorn - Of the Figurines Of Wondrous P (Score: 1)
by mortellan on Tue, July 05, 2016
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Brilliant ideas Syz! I can't wait to promote these on my blog.

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