WORMSKIN

11/26/2013

Underworld Lore #6 | Arcane Dwellings


Given the frequency that your average semi-retired magic-user finds himself pestered by the demands of johnny-come-lately adventurer-types, it's no surprise that the "wizard tower" has seen a steady decline in popularity. For one, it's ostentatious. A tower practically screams "MAGIC STUFF HERE! COME ON IN!" to any and all vagrant treasure-seekers who happen to spy its undeniably phallic stone shape from afar. Once upon a time, a wizard's tower was a place to be avoided, but no more. Most of them have now been abandoned by all but the most vain of magic-users (I'm looking at you, sorceresses!) for more secretive accommodations. These dwellings may be remote -- located in areas nigh-impossible to reach by non-magical means. On the other hand, they may be secreted under the noses of urban passerbys, hidden away through cunning use of arcane geometries, so that not even the most astute of thieves would suspect their existence. What follows are thirty examples of such unreal estates.


D30 TABLE OF ARCANE DWELLINGS
  • Fill in the blanks in the table below by commenting. Designate a result number to go with your entry. 
  • Describe the dwelling as if it were for sale (but omit the price).
  • Specify any unusual conditions or hazards related to living there.
  • This table is designated open-source gaming content. No rights reserved. 
  • Names of contributors with links to their respective blogs (if any) will appear next to their entries.  

1
Gelatinous Cubicle: More of an office space than a dwelling proper, the cubicle is actually a living gelatinous cube with a roughly 10' x 10' x 10' hollow inside it that contains a lead-lined chamber. Various metal tubes extend from this chamber through the creature's translucent body, providing the interior with ample air to breathe. A circular port-hole can be found on one of the cube's sides that is large enough for a man to pass through and step inside the chamber. The door to this port-hole resembles that of a safe and usually features a trap-loaded combination lock. [Gorgonmilk] 
2
Hollow Giant: The Hollow Giant is the result of an Animate Dead spell cast on the stitched-together flesh of Titanic Humanoids wrapped around an iron housing. Along with the Hollow Giant proper comes the Command Ring that allow the Wizard to direct the actions of the Hollow Giant, as well as stay in communication with it when away from the dwelling. The entrance to the Hollow Giant's chamber is through the mouth, which will unhinge to accomodate the entrance and exit of the Wizard -- with a directive through the Command Ring, of course. Once inside, the resident-Wizard will find that within the Giant's enormous ironclad belly is a finely furnished and provisioned single-person dwelling -- fit for study, respite or simply isolating oneself from the Mundane World.The resident-Wizard within the Hollow Giant should take care and bring plenty of scented oils and salts into the iron housing. The Animation spell, while complete, does nothing for the horrible stench of the dead that the Giant continues to exude. Caveat Emptor! [Dane Black]
3
The Watch Maker's Alcove: This lovely little pocket dimension, once the abode of a "Lord of Order", is now up for sale with the over 20,000 tools of the trade of such a lord. Long abandoned, this lovely plane takes  the form of a deserted shop or office space belonging to a professional merchant. Seated between the "real world" and the other of the astral plane this space has enough room for both the busy on-the-go wizard, his tools, familiars, and family. The wizard should be familiar with both the school of Order and the issues that its magic can cause. Any broken or mismanaged machine brought inside will fix itself within 1d20 hours as the magic of the place heals all broken mechanical imperfections. The place has a 60% resistance rating to the magics of chaos. These safeguards may be improved with time, patience, and sacrifice of the proper rites. Those wishing to purchase this wonderful dimensional property should contact the real state offices of Vance, Lovecraft, and Moorcock through the usual Astral Channels. [Needles]   
 4 Earnest Jan's Well-worn Wizardly Workplaces [see sub-table below] [Porky]
 5 The "Hallenbruck-Brewery-Front": This well established brewery in (next big city in your campaign) not only produces one of the finest ales in the known kingdoms, it also comes with a inebriation-fueled mirror-dimensional arcane facility (you may remember the positive review in "Potion Weekly" a couple of years ago), complete with an occult library (value not known), a fully equipped laboratoy (with minor fire damages due to recent unfortunate events) and the recipe for the "secret ingredient" that makes this place so special. This clandestine extra-dimensional space is a perfect copy of the brewery (and in the same place, sort of), with all the necessary changes to realize big projects and all the comforts needed for after hours relaxation. And no smell. There is no smell. In the interest of full disclosure: Apparitions of drunkards are a bare possibility. They are harmless and their songs are decent. Rumors that our dearly departed uncle and his highly sophisticated recipes (which are all part of the deal!) are responsible for a local zombie outbreak, cases of mind control, demonic possession or mutations are overly exaggerated. Interested parties are welcome to send their references. [JD]
 6
 7
 8
 9
 10
 11
 12
 13
 14
 15
 16
 17
 18
 19
 20
 21
 22
 23
 24
 25
 26
 27
 28
 29
 30

D10 Sub-Table
Earnest Jan's Well-worn Wizardly Workplaces

Step right up my good being and get yourself a bewitching bargain - the bargain of the very age! I saw you coming a mile off - right here through my crystal ball. Now, gaze deep. I've got just the place for you. Do you see it? A fine arcane abode priced for the pocket of the discerning prestidigitator but fit for a minor deity. Did I say minor? Middling even! It's (roll 1d10):

 1
anchored along sunbeams in a shaft of unusually vivid light and accessible only by means of a reconfigured spell for illumination adjusted to the given wavelength. A stellar opportunity!
 2
zipped up in a dimensional hollow; the hollow itself and/or the careful - ahem - current owner may be a braner
 3
strung taut up into the heavens, space elevator-like; import/export offworld or keep a personal space fleet - or lure someone else's from afar! The choice is yours! 
 4
inside an exceptionally dense body orbiting within the atmosphere of its host world. Spectacular views! Accessible using convection currents, perhaps in the eternally elegant style of that impeccable sorceress Ms Mary Poppins. 
 5
tightly woven from thick silver cord and suspended somewhere on an astral plane. Classy. 
 6
built upside down into the ground, the foundations showing flush with the surface. Now that's workmanship, and by nameless ancient artisans to boot! 
 7
compressed into a pointed hat. How's that for imagination - worthy even of the indefatigable arch demiurge jasons
 8
one fractal scale further down, easily mistaken for an intricately carven staff, just as you - its new proud owner - could easily be mistaken for a woodworm while within. Confound your foes - at no extra charge! 
 9
the original inspiration for the old British police box, a classic design recognised across the dimensions. Often imitated, never bettered. 
 10
sewn from the outer skins of gas giants and bobbing like a cork on a lost sea of stars. Hideous hellhole and holiday home in one!  

22 comments:

  1. THE THIEF'S PLAN OF SALVATION

    Can men living in the 21st century steal the thief's plan of salvation and be saved? No they cannot. The thief was the one and only person saved by his plan.

    What did the thief do to be saved?

    1. The thief obviously believed that Jesus was the Christ.(Luke 23:39)
    2. The thief feared God.(Luke 23:40)

    3. The thief asked Jesus to remember him when He came into His kingdom.(Like 23:42)

    THAT WAS THE THIEF'S PLAN OF SALVATION! Yes he was saved (Luke 23:43)

    What was not in the thief's plan of salvation?
    1. The thief did not believe in his heart that Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father.(Romans 10:9 that if you confess with they mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead , you will be saved;) The thief could not believe that God raised Jesus from the dead; because Jesus was sill alive when the he was saved.

    2. The thief was not baptized for the forgiveness of sins. (Acts 2:38)

    3. The thief could not be baptized in water in order to be saved. (Mark 16:16, 1 Peter 3:21)

    THE THIEF DIED UNDER THE OLD COVENANT AND GOT A DIRECT PARDON FROM JESUS. Men living today can only be save by the terms of pardon under the New Covenant.
    The terms of pardon are: FAITH John 3:16---REPENTANCE Acts 2:38---CONFESSION Romans 10:9-10---WATER BAPTISM Acts 2:38, 1 Peter 3:21, Mark 16:16.


    PEOPLE OF THE 21 CENTURY CANNOT STEAL THE THIEF'S PLAN OF SALVATION AND BE SAVED!


    YOU ARE INVITED TO FOLLOW MY BLOG. http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The important question, did Christ opt for the d4 or d6 thief?

      Delete
    2. d6. He was, after all, the good thief.

      Delete
    3. That's the worst nested d3 table I've seen in a long time!

      I do like the idea of magical verses from scripture, especially Leviticus. That book is totally gameable.

      And man, we could make a d100 crazy prophet vision table out of Revelations.

      Esther has a good plot, but there's too many rolls on the harlot table.

      Delete
    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    5. 8. Empty Tomb. This is a rough-hewn tomb with a 1/2-ton round boulder for a door. The door is guarded by two angelic beings wielding swords of flame who will roll away the boulder if you ask nicely or if your name just happens to be Mary. The tomb itself appears empty, with only a leftover body wrapping laying on the ground. Picking up the shroud and giving it a good shake will reveal the true nature of the tomb: it is a large palatial estate, square in shape, with three doors at every side. The estate is laid out like a square, as long as it was wide; roughly 140 miles on each side, with walls 200 feet thick. The walls are decorated with every kind of precious stone: jasper, sapphire, agate, emerald, onyx, ruby, chrysolite, beryl, topaz, turquoise, jacinth, and amethyst. There is no sun nor moon but an ever-radiant, unceasing light.

      Unfortunately, only the truly Lawful Good may enter the estate and PCs must have a personal invitation; there is an old man with a large reservation book who guards the way, and two more angelic being wielding swords of flame to eject any non-Lawful Good PCs. Those whose names are found in the book (1-in-12 chance if Lawful Good) will be invited in for a personal audience with the all-powerful lord of the estate. All others will be forcibly ejected whence they came.

      The wizard sits upon a throne of pure gold in the center of the estate, and has hundreds if not thousands of conjured minions singing his name in an unceasing chorus (they are kept to the west side of the estate, so you can barely hear them near the throne). The wizard appears uninterested in surroundings, and can be seen reading an ancient tome (roll on some weird book table) or fiddling with some sort of obscure and unknown device (roll on some sort of "what is this werid tech" table) on a lap desk made of blackest ebony. If approached, the wizard will be friendly, but disinterested, as if he has had this conversation before and already knows the outcome. He has ink stains on his fingers and the longest, most gorgeous beard anyone in the party has ever seen.

      Delete
  2. 6. Down the Rabbit Hole Rathik the Wise comes to town every now and then for groceries or to sell off his custom made +1 daggers. The greedy have attempted to track him back to his home in the woods, but he has evaded even the most powerful of adventurers. When followed several miles into the forest, Rathik steps behind a tree and completely disappears. Anyone bothering to look at the base of the tree will see a well used animal burrow but nothing more.

    Rathik's lair consists of a clever twisting of space inside and under the tree. To enter one must be shrunk to tiny size and enter the animal burrow. From there one will enter a foyer where they will find themselves in giant room. This room and the rest of structure is of normal size, but thanks to the twisted space, these normal size rooms all fit inside the tree. The walls and floor are all made of the wood of the tree. Windows consist of scrying portals rather than actual openings in the wood. The upper rooms, inside the tree trunk are made up by Rathik's bedroom, a library and study, a drawing room and a dining room. In the upper notch of the main branches, many feet above the ground is an outdoor patio and garden. This is the only part of the home visible from the outside. Anybody climbing the tree will easily be able to see it but it is protected from physical intrusion by powerful spells of warding. The lower floors are under the tree, among the earth and roots, and consist of storage vaults, cages, and a room with a furnace and forge.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The Thief's Plan for Salvation:

    Ezrem Masolial is an elfish Thief/Magic User with a strange plan to achieve some form of afterlife, a fate that is mostly barred from people of his race in popular believe - he steals from temples and resolds the stolen artifacts and relicts against absolution and as well as the goodwill of the temple for returning as a "poor sinner with a change of heart".
    He does this frequently in different temples and different places. Sometimes, though, he steals from a temple and for some reason or another can't return the artifact.
    Anxious that the theft of this pieces could spell his doom and the eternal damnation, he finally settled down and built an oecumenical shrine for this relicts and artifacts to be housed in, and that the Gods he stole from could be placated.
    What not one of the priests realises, that uses this shrine to give praisers to their respective gods and to gossip with colleagues of friendly or at least neutral persuasions, is that Ezrem built a secret dungeon level under the shrine, filled with spyholes in walls and floors to eavesdrop on them and their conservations - and learn of possible new targests for his heists.
    A keen observer of the shrine could see smoke coming out of the chimney, even though nobody heats a shrine in the middle of summer. The dungeon level is a lavishly decorated affair with a few spare bedrooms and a central chamber dominated by a large fireplace, a lot of literature on different religions in big book shelfs, and an enormous armchair amidst a lot of copper tubes ending above it, that can be used to hear what in any of the niches and confessional boxes in the shrine above is said.
    Ezrem has a few low level thieves as followers, mostly elves and halfelves, and a hunchbacked, ugly human apprentice named Gin, obviously a Nickname.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Boshkar's Basement. It's a dusty, filthy sty of a place; half the floor is flooded with some dark muck, and several sets of rickety old shelves totter just on the brink of collapse. The smell is horrible and lends credence to the rumor that the landlord used to use this place as a second cess-pit not long ago. Past the shelves and mounds of trash, in one of the corners near a window that doesn't correspond to the alley on the otherside, there's a green-patined brass ring set into the wall. Pushing or pulling the ring releases a cloud of toxic green gas. Rotating the thing clockwise opens the way to an old wizard's hidden laboratory. No one's seen the previous tenant in decades. If you can convince the extremely bored golem keeping watch on the otherside of the corner-ring that you aren't really trespassing, maybe it'll give you a quick tour. It is bored, after all. And it has been a dreadfully long time since their master left for an excursion to some minor plane or other. With a little conniving and some deft use of Charisma and fast talking, it could be possible to bamboozle the nigh-senile golem into recognizing a long lost heir or something...

    ReplyDelete
  5. 9. Isolated Yurt
    A tavern may have an ugly hat hanging on the wall that no one is fool enough to claim (roll for specific kind of hat). Unbenownest to all, this hat is a portal to a wizard's lair in located on the High Steppes of the Wandering Waste. Donning the hat is enough to transport the wearer to the doorway of the yurt, sans hat (the hat will magically replace itself on the wall). The door to the yurt is warded with many spells so only the true owner of the yurt may enter.

    The yurt itself is made of a hornbeam circular frame covered in heavy felt, which itself is then covered with canvas and suncovers decorated with magical sigils to ward against scrying. The frame is held together by physical rather than magical means, as the weight of the covers keeps the frame under pressure.

    Inside, the yurt is extremely tidy; every object is kept in neatly arranged chests and boxes. See various possible floorplans here.

    Leaving the yurt requires a teleportation spell.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Claiming slot 7 'cause 7s are cool. Listing inbound soon. So soon.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The Slaughtered Miner - This literal hole in the wall located in a walk in subbasement of an isolated alley. This establishment caters to the wives, sons, and daughters of fallen miners. They host the families of such victims giving food, advice, and a bit of gold coin. This place seems to work behind the scenes with the mining guild. They conduct addition investigations into matters such as cave ins, monster sightings, and much more.
    The place is run by human agents working for 'powers from below'. There have been rumors of families who have gone into the wood paneled and quaint planked establishment never to return. The place also has a small stall store for adventurers and those venture into the Earth. A small trade area for relics and curiosities. And an on staff scribe of Earth lore. They do have a selection of rooms for rent or hire but these are spartan affairs at best. The place is often remarked by Dwarves and the like as smelling like home. There are rumors among the Dwarves that the place is run by an exiled Dwarven king but there are not any who have survived in the area. The staff changes from time to time but then there is the mystery of the door.
    The Slaughtered Miner is protected and locked by a complicated three foot thick metal door with the most incredibly complex lock mechanisms. No one has been yet able to identify the manufacture or make. A teleport or dimensional gate will allow an exit from the place but not an entrance once the establishment is closed. The lock down mode allows no one short of a god entrance
    The place has been in the city for hundreds of years and has no signs of leaving.Yet its many mysteries remain in tact.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Pavilion of Innumerable Veils - A large pavilion or carnival style tent, appearing big enough from the outside to hold a few hundred people shoulder to shoulder. Within the tent are layers after layers of drapery: velvet curtains, calico sheets, moth eaten tapestry, etc, all arranged in apparent randomness in concentric circles around the tent pole. Partitions in the curtains occur at varying intervals, creating a circular labyrinth of fabric.
    An unenlightened interloper could easily pass through the pavilion with little difficulty, either groping their way through the folds of the structure or lifting each curtain to pass under. However; the pavilion's proprietor will know that when two incongruous draperies are held together, a key word spoken, and then quickly drawn apart, they open portals to pocket dimensions with in the tent's structure, which may be outfitted to a wizards needs and wants.

    There is, of course, no actual tent pole at the center of the mass; rather the layers of fabric become so dense as to prevent further progress. It is probable that a drapery generating automaton or demon exists at the hart of the tent, creating a micro cosmos in felt.

    ReplyDelete
  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  10. 12. Legendary Snail Shell

    This revisioning of undersea wizard lairs was originally built by a multi-stalked mucous-gliding creature of momentous proportions that enjoyed 8,967 years of reigning over the dwellers of the Ellin oceanic basin. The original owner was forcibly evicted by Octavian the Multitudinous, who ingeniously teleported a steam elemental lord to the inside of the shell (but don't worry, not a lick of structural damage to the place...rather sanitized the place, I'd say). After contracting the triton city of Klarsyyth to provide workers to excavate for over a month, Octavian was able to move in.

    This fashionable piece of property now boasts a jellyfish defense system surrounding a tiered 100 room layout served by 19 air elemental retainers who tirelessly scrub the air. Highlights include a game room including a Tik-Tik-Arthee array for hosting triton lords, a lounge centered around a reverse shell (for listening to the land), a mother-of-pearl throne room, and a giant pearl said to be useful for scrying anywhere below the ocean.

    To tour the property please place an inquiry with Yamul the Gnome in Klarsyyth.

    ReplyDelete
  11. By one count I make it 13 done and no. 7 reserved, making room for 16 more, so here's five for the second half. The fifth assumes more obvious potential crossovers are allowed...

    16. Lune Dimune

    High in the upper foothills of a liminal range of crags, so lofty below the low-hanging moon, juts a gust-raked promontory over a void. There the honed eye might discern a line of perspective unhooked from the vanishing point and anchored to a distant summit, and the bold may step out into the field of vision to grow grotesquely disproportioned and vast. The line of peaks is now but a stair and the moon a balcony upon which to scrabble. A pioneer has dug out the further side, cut deep caverns and drilled peering holes down on the corners of the earth. Horrors called down from the rearward dark may lurk yet in the core chambers, and devices roam openly on the craterscape, but much fine cheese remains unmined.

    19. Infernice

    Streaming a constant reek of steam, this slender chimney of stained stone rises thousands of feet through the twisted floors of a former urban spire, roost now to flocks of migrating beasts from far spaces, as alien as what lurks below. Perhaps. For beneath the sparse and barely recovered land around, down below the blasted strata of age-encrusted waste and past unutterable undegraded filth and lost wonders, lie the habdomes and meander the labyrinthine ways of a once mighty city, its name famed across the cosmos. And forgotten. The collapsed, compressed and drowned spaces are haunted by the wracks of what once lived and could not crawl out, and by what grew or crawled in over the millennia, from deep sumps and decayed matters, through ancient gates to other natures. Unbearably deep in this vast eldritch waste, toxic and beyond toxic, through slick and crushing rubbles on the twenty-seven hundredth level below, there nestles against the warmth of the chimney wall a complex of well-appointed living quarters and unparalleled investigative chambers carved in hardened liminal efluvia, all now long locked by outer rites and runes. The strange is on the very doorstep and has its foot in the door.

    22. The Heap Unseen

    A fallen star that never shone, this invisible mound cloaked by unearthly technologies bars imperceptibly the path across a lonely field, long unploughed and gone far to seed. The rare passersby nurse their bumps, bounces and falls and learn to circle wide, and do so wide-eyed and wonderstruck. Regular visitors learn to count their paces in from the dawnward hedgerow. (For you, bizarre bipedal loper - what a freak you are! - the count is perhaps fifty; no, fifty-one.) Beyond the mound's angled airtight threshold, and the elegant pillars so artfully installed, the interiors with their sloping floors of crumpled metal and plastic matter thrum with a stellar power. The crystals of the walls speak of distant worlds and this hopefully careful owner studies with intent their gigatomes of sleekly folded data. And I gasp, I admit, at what our world too may yet become...

    25. Ingrew Brew

    A prime example of liquid architecture, this architectonic recipe of only moderately fantastical ingredients needs but a fair-size tureen or cauldron and is very forgiving in terms of ritual and heavenly conjunction. Mix it all up on a good heat and in you step. Dry as a bone - that's the skull component - and more secret and spacious than a private sea - that'll be the conch. But keep the outside simmering or there's no getting back...

    28. The Entrails of the Progue Rams

    This is the bell-pull, the knocker, the rat-a-tat-tatter. This simple icon, this chirruping caller: 'Hallowed Egg One' I cry and there I am. The endless fluid heaven of the great and fecund goddess Kompuda where every dream becomes real and the ways of a milliard worlds may be known or made.

    ReplyDelete
  12. 15. Offalmongers' Folly

    Those are no faultlines shaking our homes, nor true hills running with slides of mud, but the buried folds of the hide of a sleeping beast that lies across the worlds, a beast enclosed by skin on this side of the void, and maybe on the other; its viscera somewhere in between. We know because we climbed in - down the rabbit hole and out through one of the pores; we found the offalmongers' mark and copies in triplicate of the commission: to feed this world by teasing living tissue in from the beings of an outer realm. But the organs spilled, and flooded the land, and the 'mongers commissioned next a retaining membrane, fine and tight; and gave form to a new form of life. And what a growth spurt it's putting on! It's down there now, squirming and fit to burst. Brooding supervolcanoes? Interplanetary megaweapons? Nothing, our friend, to the bang when this goes up! In the meantime there's fine dining, and warmth all year round, not to mention that versatile pseudodermis, its delicate capillaries pumping otherworldly ichors. For research or revelry? You choose! Mining facility, manufactory and palace in one - what an abode! Might we interest you in a chamber..?

    ReplyDelete
  13. 23. Threshold of Eternity (thanks to Seventh Sanctum for the name, I used their Room/Location generator)

    This is the room of a Magic User who has studied the elements and their relationship to everything in the universe. The double doors are finely-made of an unknown dark wood and have inlaid upon them a diamond-shaped pattern in a silvery metal suggesting the elements. Beside them - conveniently at waist-height for an approaching humanoid, no matter what their height - is a shelf on which sometimes stand a candle and cup of water. Beside the door is a mat, on which, perhaps, a pair of ornate shoes is sitting. The doors will open at a push; but stepping through them could prove hazardous.

    Thanks to its elaborate geometry, this room contains everything in the universe. Inside is, quite literally, the outside. Glancing into the room will reveal views of distant lands - steaming jungles, freezing wastes, teeming streets of alien cities, blazing deserts; stepping through the doorway will transport the unprepared to any other place on Earth or perhaps another world altogether. Only those who know the secret to deactivating the room's defence mechanism (enter barefoot, holding one's breath, with a burning torch or candle in one hand and a container of water in the other) will be able to avoid the room linking itself to a far-away location.

    Those who successfully determine the combination will find a comfortable suite of rooms; a reception room with couches, bookshelves, and aethereal music provided by elementals of the air, opening onto two bedrooms each with its own en suite bathroom, a dining balcony with views over the streets of the city below, and a small but well-fitted kitchen with all ancient conveniences (hot and cold running water elementals, a tame fire-elemental-powered cooker, a small rock-golem for crushing garlic).

    Unfortunately, due to the nature of the room, it is extremely difficult to tell if the wizard has actually left it.

    ReplyDelete
  14. 17. The Osteolix

    Have we got an astounding self-timeshare opportunity for you! Our insane arcane architects will bend time and space and reason itself to construct for you a fine retreat - within your very own body! That's right: a spacious home in any single bone, internal deposit or exoskeletal plate of your choosing! Be in even when you're out! Shelter from the chill within your very own marrow! Look inside yourself and see your essential nature in a whole new mood lighting! Expensive? It can hardly cost an arm or a leg when you keep the limb and the limb keeps you! Arrange a looping today!

    18. Scribble

    Begun as a modest chalk circle on an oddly vulnerable site and expanded by innumerable frantic arcanists down the ages, this complex system of trans-Euclidian lines in a range of materials has become a labyrinthine fortress capable of resisting any imaginable onslaught at least somewhere within its extent, up to and including the onslaught of reason, as many of its most rational architects have found if the signs are to be believed. For messages smuggled out via dimension and plane, by ingenious means, suggest the sanctuary has become a nigh on unnavigable nightmare, a hungry honeycomb sucking in those seeking only a safe place to hole up, occupied by maddened figures in flight and hybrid populations of the traumatised, hunted through crazy spaces by unlikely beings summoned into existence in final acts of desperation, or trapped in their turn while sheltering from still greater threats. Hide by all means, but careful where...

    20. Waterborne

    Fed by essential waters bubbling up from deep springs, this creek will dissolve a persistent swimmer over a period of 1d3 turns per HD, once a turnly save is first failed; gathering oneself together once dissolved and pulling free takes twice as long. While protected amid its reed banks, a guest can rest easily on the silty bed, rising and falling with the tide and quite literally mingling with fellow waders and wallowers. However, the life of a solution is no solution for life: the evaporated salts of the surrounding flood plains speak drily of the existential risk of lingering out of season...

    21. The Salt Cellar

    Hidden among the whispering dunes alongside Waterborne is a shallow pit half-filled with the local salts, gathered, sieved and compacted by the once-pitying former hands of a husk now sprawled nearby. This glittering mass constitutes an underworld in which the essences of 1d100 x 10 evaporated and leeched beings merge and live on, knowing each other almost innately but rarely able to form true compounds. It yearns in many hundreds of voices, and burns even several yards away, leeching the essence of the inquisitive into itself at a rate of one level per turn, once a turnly save is first failed. Restoration requires rehydration, with each of the evaporated or leeched beings then popping back into existence, albeit heavily intermixed, with each initial being now scattered among 1d100 new.

    24. The Wandering Chamber

    This well-travelled set of polished stalk panels is usually chanced upon in transit or temporary storage, often close by a thoroughfare, in a coach house, distribution centre or buffer, more rarely buried or otherwise concealed to prevent discovery, as at times of war. When assembled to its tattered plans, more or less accurate copies of which exist in many lands, it frames a room out of time in which all past, present and future occupants again coexist, breaking off their ageless discussions only to write out the export licences, packing notes and directions for the next leg.

    ReplyDelete
  15. 26. CMY

    Abandoned now for long years and heavily rotted despite its lamination, this stiffened wood pulp villa consisting of three geographically remote single-room cabins is in fact one structure refracted into three constituent colours and scattered to the vertices of the world. Each cabin has but one hue, either 1) cyan, 2) magenta or 3) yellow, with an occupant able to leap from one to the other by use of a suitable chromatic magic. Unfortunately, each set of walls, door, floor and roof form a physical barrier to the given constituent colour only, and only to the extent that the colour is present, allowing entities reflecting less in this hue to force access more easily, perhaps explaining the abandonment. Rumour persists of three further cabins, combinations of the hues, while wilder speculation claims that a previous owner resides even now within a unified seventh, entirely black.

    27. The Skyscratcher

    This well-appointed crow's nest several miles above the countryside is entirely invisible, as is the mast upon which it rises. If the base can be found and the long ladder climbed, or access gained by another means, ownership can be taken back from the creatures of the upper skies. A little lacking in privacy perhaps, and breezy too, with sphincter-clenching swings through arcs of several hundred yards at a time - but what a view!

    29. The Co-Riddor and the Junk Room

    Hoarding instinct out of control? Contemptible home furnishing decisions? Simple inability to get on with your fellow residents? Live with your failings no longer! Just plug your dwelling into the Co-Riddor and we'll carry them off through our intracosmic back passage! And that's not all. You want a new life? We'll bring you one! It's not the rats in the walls - it's us! The Co-Riddor! And now, introducing the Junk Room! Feel like trash? Just want to live in a world of your own? We've got the pocket universe for you!

    30. The Inner Clumps

    As the dusts of upholsteries, insulations and tissues is ground down fine by the action of deep dwelling itself, they may pass out through the fabric of the cosmos and whirl in the crawlspaces beyond, where none but the subtler spirits make their homes. There the true nature of living beings and their furnishings grows apparent in impossible structures born of dreams of shelter, warmth and bliss, but wracked by decay, tension and catastrophic failure. While these outer clumps may be reached through a heart of hearts, and even occupied by those so inclined, they have their counterparts in the dusts trickling back in opposite directions, particles flowing in from other worlds - perhaps drawn for certain ends - to coalesce in warped reflections of those peri-homes and stand in all their beauty and horror in plain sight here, among and within the most intimate of spaces...


    Done. But if anyone does want to add more of their own before #4 gets finished up, we can just bump the equivalent number of mine out of the running. Sixteen is plenty.

    ReplyDelete