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Enigma's Travelling Variations:

by Carl Quaif

This is a standard travelling spellbook, with leather covers and vellum sheets bound within. The book is in a state of extreme disrepair; the covers are scuffed and stained with blood (and other, less identifiable fluids), whilst many the pages are torn, creased, and soiled. Despite its dilapidated condition, however, the book is remarkably resistant to further damage, thanks to repeated applications of "Enigma's Preservative" (see below). Much of the book is filled up with brief diary notes, half-finished speeches, charcoal drawings (mostly costume designs) and other random scrawls.

Amongst this dross are half-a-dozen spells (and one recipe) devised by the Dilettante Mage, Enigma, in her first decade after leaving the Great School of Magic in Glantri. During this time, she made a (fairly poor) living as public entertainer, with the occasional job as a caravan guard or messenger to keep the wolves (and creditors) from the door; occasional magical commissions from naive (or desperate) Noble Patrons allowed her time and resources to indulge her passion for magical invention.

Enigma's Slingback
Level: 2
Range: touch
Duration: 1d6 turns
Effect: protects the recipient from small missiles
Enigma devised this minor improvement on the Protection from Normal Missiles spell for travelling through bandit country North of Darokin. The spell draws any non-magical missile (sling stone, quarrel, or arrow) fired at the recipient into an accelerating orbit around them for 1-3 rounds; at any time during this period, the protected person may select a target foe and send the missile hurtling towards them. Missiles slung back during the first round have normal chances to hit; each round spent in the Slingback effect improves this chance by +1. Any missile not released by the end of the third round reaches critical velocity, and fires randomly away from the recipient; all individuals, whether friend or foe, must save vs. Breath Weapon or be hit by 1-2 missiles for full potential damage (for example, 8 points of damage for an arrow). This unfortunate side-effect is what caused Enigma to be run out of Darokin (the first time, anyway), when the Very Important Personage she was helping to protect received a Slingback arrow in the posterior (the only part of him sticking out from under the cart).

The spell has the interesting side-effect that all small missiles, including thrown bricks, shoes, flower pots etc, will be caught up in the field and returned - Enigma has used this facility often for protection from less-than-satisfied audiences, relying on the critical velocity effect to let her beat a hasty retreat.

Enigma's Chorus Line
Level: 2
Range: caster/10' (see below)
Duration: up to 6 rounds
Effect: creates programmable images of the caster
Enigma designed this Mirror Image variant as a flashy, impressive, but above all cheap method of providing background entertainers for her shows. The spell has two settings (one word difference in the spell). The first, "record", functions very much like a standard Mirror Image spell, creating 3-6 identical images of the caster who mimic her every action. These images vanish when struck, after 6 rounds, or when the caster says "stop". Thereafter, if the Chorus Line spell is cast using the second setting, "playback", it recreates the images (in exactly the same clothing) who perform the same sequence of moves, vanishing at the end of the sequence. The caster need not be part of this line-up; she can manifest the Chorus Line anywhere within 10' of her current position. This spell enables Enigma, a dancer of mild skill (but enormous enthusiasm!) to conjure a line of "dancing girls" to precede her on stage.

Both versions of the spell have some useful combat functions - for instance, a mage dresses up as an armed warrior, casts the recording spell, and marches purposefully forward for a few rounds; she later casts the playback spell, conjuring a line of mean-looking fighters to drive an enemy towards a concealed pit or the edge of a cliff....

Enigma's Blazing Banner
Level: 3
Range: 50'
Duration: 1 round
Effect: produces a message of fire
This Fireball-derived spell is flashy, impressive, but almost completely useless in combat. The caster releases a small, fiery missile from her hands, which streaks away in the chosen direction - usually straight up - to the limit of its range, whereupon it explodes with a deafening crash and resolves into a message written in letters of fire three feet high. Any message of no more than 12 letters may be created (example: "EAT AT RADU'S"). The wording must be coded into the spell; therefore the message to be created is set when the spell is memorised, and cannot be thought up on the fly. The message is visible up to a mile away on a clear day, or three miles at night (additional range might be achieved if the caster stands on a tall building, a hilltop, etc), and lasts for 1 round before burning out. Although created for advertising purposes (Enigma uses it to advertise her performances - much cheaper and gaudier than handbills or posters), the Blazing Banner has been used to send coded messages between army divisions, or as a distress signal ("OVER HERE!", etc). In extremes, it can even be used as a weapon if fired at enemies within range - all targets within 15' of the explosion suffer 2d6 damage from the blast (save vs. Spells for half damage).

Enigma's Trick Goblet
Level: 3
Range: touch
Duration: 4 hours
Effect: protection from liquids
This spell, loosely based on the Water Breathing enchantment, allows the recipient to swallow or inhale any type of fluid without fear of it reaching her stomach or lungs. The spell creates a shielding effect on the interior surfaces of the body, allowing only breathable gasses to permeate into the lungs, and nothing at all to reach the stomach regions. Consequently, the recipient may swallow any liquid, potion, etc. without fear of ill effect - the fluid is safely held in suspension below the gullet until the spell ends or the liquid is gouted back up by the recipient. Enigma devised this spell for use in her stage show, allowing her to safely swallow any liquid suggested by the audience, but she quickly realised its usefulness in protecting the enchanted person from ingested poisons. Her use of the spell in this manner to protect Lord Forein of Thyatis from an assassination attempt earned her a rich reward and a place in his retinue, although the latter was unfortunately short-lived....

The Trick Goblet spell still enables the recipient to "breathe water" - actually, it filters oxygen from the water through the shield - but it is less efficient if used this way; the recipient cannot remain underwater for more than 1 hour at a time without surfacing for air.

Enigma's Mystic Surgery
Level: 3
Range: 5'
Duration: permanent
Effect: alters one physical feature
This spell, a minor version of the Polymorph Other spell, allows the caster to transform one single feature of a person's appearance (eyes, ears, nose, etc) in any way they desire. An Elf could be given rounded ears, for example, to allow him to blend in more easily amongst humans. Multiple applications can completely alter the face, letting a human look exactly like an Orc (and vice versa). The target is entitled to a saving throw vs. spells; if he is a willing recipient, of course, he may choose to waive the saving throw. The change is permanent until dispelled, and detects as magical. The spell is sometimes used as a minor Curse; Enigma particularly likes giving asses' ears to importunate suitors, or pigs' snouts to vain, unpleasant ladies (which has seen her run out of town on more than one occasion). The new features must be functional (the caster cannot cause the target's eyes to seal over, rendering them blind, for instance), or the spell fails. Only appearance is altered; no additional abilities are gained.

A 4th level variant, Enigma's Mystic Mutation, enables some special sensory abilities to be acquired; Elvish infravision or bat-like hearing are good examples (DMs should take care if allowing this version to be used by PCs; the acquisition of Vampiric Charm powers, or a Nucklavee's death-gaze, should not be permitted).

Enigma's Mystic Surgery was created to allow the Darokin Merchant Warris Erbolt to marry off his daughter to a wealthy husband. Ursalla Erbolt was an otherwise-attractive girl who was unfortunate enough to inherit her father's rather prominent nose, which rather put a damper on her marriage chances. Enigma gave her a cute button nose, making her extremely attractive, and her marriage was scheduled for 25 Kaldmont, 1014 - three days before the Day of Dread....the price on Enigma's head, as posted by the furious Erbolt family, currently stand at 10,000gp.

Enigma's Fly-on-the-Wall
Level: 4
Range: touch
Duration: special
Effect: enchants a Fly-Spy
Enigma was once invited to the Callarii woods by her fellow thespian and occasional partner, the Elven Minstrel Ymarien; whilst there, she studied Elven magic, and taught a few of her own spells in return (resulting in some bizarre spell-choices for young adventurer-Elves on their first missions). Being congenitally unable to leave well enough alone, she later adapted the Callarii "Beast Trace" spell, creating this interesting 4th-level variant.

Before casting Enigma's Fly-on-the-Wall, the caster must sculpt or mould a small piece of clay into the shape of a fly or other small insect or beetle (roll under Dexterity to shape it correctly; alternatively, an Artistic Skill roll might be applicable, if skills are used in your campaign. A failed construct will not animate when enchanted). The spell is cast on the model, creating a temporary insect-Golem called a Fly-Spy. The creature is then placed somewhere near the place it is to "bug", where it scuttles (or flies, if it has wings) into the best vantage point. The creature will then record everything it "hears" during the next hour, after which it will scuttle or fly back to the caster, replay its recording on command, then crumble into dust.

The Fly-Spy has one hit point, and is easily destroyed if discovered.

"Enigma's Preservative":

This peculiar substance is a rare example of a magical item created (or adapted) by Enigma. The Preservative, in its raw state, is a thick, foul-smelling, grey-green gunk (its ingredients include Green Slime and Troll blood). When heated for three hours over a hot flame, however, it becomes a clear, varnish-like fluid, and remains so for one hour after removing it from the heat - after that, it reverts to its former state until reheated. During this time, the Preservative may be used to coat natural substances such as leather, hide, and paper (or their equivalents), using a fine brush. Once it dries, the treated item gains +1 to its saving throws vs. any form of damage, and can slowly regenerate itself so long as at least half the material remains (the process takes between 1-8 days, depending on the damage taken). Only damage taken since the preservative was applied can be regenerated; rips, tears, burns and stains which were part of the item when it was coated cannot be repaired by the Preservative. Unfortunately, the coating also prevents further writings from being added.

The recipe contained within "Enigma's Travelling Variations" makes enough Preservative to coat three normal-sized, or up to five travelling spellbooks (assuming they are of standard proportions). A batch of Preservative takes three weeks to make. If made available for purchase, a batch could be bought for between 5,000-10,000gp.