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Thursday, March 13, 2003

Embrace Your Inner Geek

Right now I'm working on an Excel spreadsheet, one that describes, once and for all, the names, appearances, origins, and abilities of the canonical Paladins of O.R.D.E.R. and Minions of C.H.A.O.S. In an effort to ensure accuracy, I must of course do some research. So I've been perusing my old binders, and I discovered some old character sheets from my Dungeons & Dragons days. Among these sheets is a cryptic piece of paper that lists "Turtle Treasure." Apparently, one of my characters managed to haul the following items out of some demon-infested dungeon:

"Robe, brown - radiates evocation/alteration magic
Horn of fog production
Girdle of many pouches
A wooden sword: a folding boat
Cube of frost resistance
A net of sharing
Quall's Feather Token of the Fan
Cloak of the Elvenkind
Stone - unidentified grey rock, radiates high magic
Mirror of past scrying"

All this was found in "room #71," or so another scribbled note suggests. (There's also a phone number for "Halls of Adv. + Magic." I don't dare call...)

This many years removed, I can only guess what amazing properties these items may have possessed. The brown robe, radiating evocation/alteration magic, seems as though it may have been useful in such mischief as casting fireballs or turning people into badgers.The horn of fog production doesn't seem very useful, unless you're working as a special effects man on a John Carpenter movie, or if you need some fast cover for a hasty retreat. "A wooden sword: a folding boat" was written exactly that way, colon and all, so it seems that the wooden sword somehow turned into a folding boat...or maybe it's some kind of cryptic Zen koan, who knows?

Cube of frost resistance...not an ice cube, I guess. "Quall's Feather Token of the Fan." Is this one item, or two? Let's see...either Quall (whoever he or she may have been) had a token representing a fan made of a feather, or I simply stolle Quall's Feather, along with a Token of the Fan...a fan? Isn't that sort of anachronistic? I guess it could have been one of those manual fans like geishas have...maybe it was a token of a fanatic...I'm getting a headache.

Cloak of the Elvenkind seems simple enough - a cloak giving me some sort of elven abilities, maybe the ability to see in the dark or what have you. The mirror of past scrying seems self-explanatory, too; presumably, if you looked into the mirror, you could catch a glimpse of the past.

Mind you, given the limitations of the speed of light, you're looking into the past every time you peer into a mirror anyway, even if it is only a nanosecond or so...

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