Kenyan Mythos Artifacts

Taan Kaur’s Ring 

Location: on Taan Kaur’s person.

Description: a thick gold band bearing a red gemstone, a Burmese pigeon’s blood ruby, which flares during the absorption of magic points, as described below. The magic ring is otherwise well hidden amongst the mundane rings adorning all of  Kaur’s other fingers.

Use: stores up to 30 magic points. When held against the head of the dying, the ring absorbs half the person’s remaining magic points as it releases a red glow. Grants the wearer immunity from fire and heat. 

Depiction in Game: use for dramatic effect in the dark. In particular, it allows the investigators to spot Taan Kaur as she briefly pauses to drain Magic points from a victim of collateral damage during a nighttime train attack before fleeing the scene. Witnessing the ring’s power provides a clue to identifying Kaur as their attacker later in the chapter (assuming she escapes).

With the use of her ring, Taan Kaur can potentially perform the spell Strike Blind without risk of physical harm (p.442).  

When investigators don the ring, they experience flashes of traumatic memories glimpsed by the eyes of the dying. Many are charred, burning forms of Taan Kaur’s victims or sacrificial offerings subjected to horrific torture in the tea shop cellar. Consider invoking a Sanity check (0/1D3) during one of these episodes, which may intensify when exposed to direct heat or fire.  Defeating Kaur on the train gains access to the ring, which potentially contains revealing memories that lead back to Kaur’s tea shop and hidden secrets in her subterranean chamber, such as the Black Tome

Prior Edition: Taan Kaur replaces Tandoor Singh, who possessed no ring, no fire vampires, and wielded a meat cleaver. This edition’s modification adds depth and interest to a previously poorly developed character.  The meat cleaver has moved to Kaur’s cellar for sacrificial killings.

The Incense of Other Planes

Location: Taan Kaur’s cellar in Nairobi.

Description: a small packet of 12 incense cones, which exhibit an unearthly iridescent shimmer and contain impossibly black flecks of unidentifiable material.

Use: when burned and inhaled it permits one to view the planes on which the Outer Gods reside (Sanity Loss 1D3/1D10). Inhaling the vapor adds 1 percentile to an investigator’s Cthulhu Mythos skill. A single cone affects up to 50 people at once. 

Depiction in Game: consider having the remnants of one of these cones burning in Kaur’s cellar. An investigator examining the smoldering cone receives a less substantial effect (Sanity Loss 1/1D3), but still gains a 1 percentile to their Cthulhu Mythos skill. Incautious investigators may steal the remaining cones for future experimentation. Perhaps the incense contains Liao, the mind-altering substance derived from the black lotus, and large doses result in the inadvertent summoning of a Hound of Tindalos. Clever investigators potentially burn the incense to create a distraction or incapacitate the Mythos naive. 

Bundari’s Fly Whisk 

Location: a gift from Old Bundari in his small village outside of Nairobi.

Description: This valuable Kikuyu status symbol features an ebony handle intended to protect against evil spirits. The handle features a detailed carving of Kirinyaga, the Sacred Mountain (also Mount Kenya), which opposes the dark power of the Mountain of the Black Wind.  The carvings also depict useful wayfinding landmarks marking the path between Kirinyaga and the Mountain of the Black Wind. 

Use: the whisk grants a bonus die on opposed POW rolls to resist the effects of magic. Additionally, it is used to find hidden evil and offers a bonus die to Spot Hidden. Alternatively, the cow-tail strands begin to move when approaching evil and result in the whisk stirring in a bag or smacking against the thigh of the investigator carrying the artifact. This may help the investigators detect the presence of an evil NPC. 

Depiction in Game: the artifact twitches more frequently as it approaches the Mountain of the Black Wind, almost in concert with the increasing frenzy of Bundari’s accompanying chameleon gift. Consequently, the whisk serves well to swat flies for feeding the increasingly restless caged chameleon. 

The Caged Chameleon – Who-Is-Not-What-She-Seems

Location: a gift from Old Bundari in his small village outside of Nairobi.

Description: a small wooden cage containing an unusual chameleon, which appears warty and brownish-gray with three horns arising from its head. Unlike a normal lizard, the mouth is aligned on a vertical axis, and the forelimbs duplicate at the elbow joint. While typically maintaining its drab color to hide in her cage, the chameleon assumes brilliant hues depending on situations, such as after feeding or when danger at the Mountain of the Black Wind. As denoted in the campaign book, Who is truly a rageful Gug with an unusually prehensile, sticky tongue. 

Use: Assuming the investigators responsibly cared for Who according to Bundari’s instructions, she serves as a valuable investigator weapon during the assault on the Mountain of the Black Wind. In addition to Who, the cage itself is a magical containment artifact, and investigators may use it to neutralize small creatures or contain the effects of magical artifacts. 

Depiction in Game: As a denizen of the Dreamlands, Who reaches out to investigators during their dreams. We used this to form a relationship and broker an arrangement with our investigators. By creating a bond between Who and the investigators, their level of concern and sympathy for the captive Gug increases. If Who survives the Mountain of the Black Wind, the creature potentially returns to the investigators in their dreams during later chapters. It potentially allows the incorporation of Who during future forays into the Dreamlands as an ally. This works nicely in campaigns adding content from The Sense of the Sleight of Hand Man or setting up a Dreamlands conflict with Huston. Especially diplomatic investigators might calm the blood-thirsty Gug and unleash it during another chapter. 

Prior Edition: Who simply underwent enlargement to a SIZ 64 lizard. If the investigators delay releasing Who, Nyarlathotep saps the magic surrounding Who, and she returns to her ground state at Boyovu (a Kenyan village) thus disappearing from the mountain.