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BigfordWorks Featured By Owner Apr 3, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
LOT #1: THE PHILOSOPHER’S STONE.

“An item created in this very city. In 1523 Swiss magister Johannus Gertz had quietly fled his native city of Bern over growing suspicion of witchcraft and travelled to the south and east extensively. His travels took him far into Eurasia, India and back along the trade winds to the Arabian Peninsula. In that time, he amassed an impressive library and fortune with his ever-expanding skills. From a distance in those travelling years he’d purchased a well-fortified home in Basel and routinely sent his books and possessions there to await his triumphant arrival from exile in 1566. No longer a “sorcerer” as his home town had declared. Now a famous Doctor Philosopher. Except that he very much WAS still a sorcerer. His prime concern was perfecting a reagent mentioned in several extremely blasphemous and illegal tomes referred to as the “Powder of Ibn Ghazi”. An Arab formulae, it purported to make the “Invisible visible”. It was his belief one could use this powder to see Heaven, Hell and all the secrets of the Angels and Demons. His work however was shall we say, “imperfect but innovative”? On 7 August 1566 his tower laboratory exploded and the powder he had been preparing drifted across the late afternoon sky. And it did indeed open a window onto other planes. But whereas Ibn Gahzis powder allowed VISIBILITY, Johannus Gertz’s botched formulae allowed visibility AND INTERACTION.”

“What happened?”

“In deeply Christian Europe in the 16th century? All hell broke loose.”

“Gertz’s variation of the Gahzi powder revealed a cosmic interaction between seemingly warring entities in the otherwise unseen eathar that separates the worlds.”

“The result was blasted minds, religious hysteria and chaos. There were reports at first of “holy battle of Christ and his angels against the Evil One in the skies over Basel” and such. Ultimately The event proved SO traumatic to the citizens of Basel that they collectively wiped it from their memories. Refusing to even accept that they had witnessed the phenomenon. Only a few men, made of sterner stuff dared to record the event.”

Historian Samuel Coccius wrote a pamphlet reporting “The citizenry beheld a religious event.” writing of "miracles" and "sky spectacles” at odd intervals for the next several days.”

"It happened in 1566 three times, on 27 and 28 of July, and on August 7, against the sunrise and sunset; we saw strange shapes in the sky above Basel. During the year 1566, on the 27th of August we saw black and red spheres of all sizes coming and going with great speed and precipitation before the sun and chattered as if they led a fight. Many of them were fiery red and, soon crumbled and then extinguished in the afternoon sun."

“These spheres were said to have "fought" one another in the form of numerous red and black balls in the sky before the afternoon sun. Many of the smaller spheres, which seemed to act as ammunition, were observed being fired to and from the larger spheres, or vessels, or beings. Many of these “rounds” due to their haphazard trajectories were able to pass THROUGH the powder induced rift in space and into our reality. Falling to earth. Most dissolved instantly upon landing. Apparently our sunlight was destructive to them.  These spheres transmuting into blobs of molten lead. These blobs of lead that scattered throughout the town are still in some of the window panes and stonework in this town to this very day.”

“What WERE they?”

“Impossible to determine. Gertz’s powder opened a rift into a different reality. The motivations of those objects are beyond human comprehension. What is important is that Johannus Gertz was able to collect a specimen from the battle. Whereas even a few minutes exposure to daylight destroyed the spheres upon landing, one landed in his ruined lab. Specifically, his lead crucible. He did not discover this until weeks later when restoring his lab, he remelted the metal and discovered the sphere within it. He cultivated the sphere in lead bath and crystal bed to grow into what you see now.”

“Which is what…?”

“As far as we have ascertained the sphere was a living thing. Whether Gertz’s cultivation was necessary to create this stage in its development or whether this is a birth defect is impossible to know. What IS known is that there is a living creature in the base of this crystalline structure and that the points you see are its feeding prongs erupting from the surface. We believe this is a pupa stage.”

“To become what?”

“We have no way of knowing.”

“How long will it grow?”

“Again, no way of knowing. It CAN stand light in this form. And in fact, is often viewed as nothing more than an odd geological specimen. But the creature has some remarkable abilities. “

“Like?”

“Granting immortality and changing lead into gold of course. Just as the legends proclaim.
The feeding prongs, once fed Produce the elixir of life.”

“Fed?”

“Yes. It feeds on human blood. Then it produces the elixir as a by-product.”

“How do you use it?”

“You drink it. After you’ve originally donated. After that a mere taste extends your life, youth and vigor for 5 years.”

“After…I’ve donated?”

“Yes. The stone is currently in its dormant state. A condition it reverts to after a missed feeding. To gain a new master it must puncture the new owner’s veins. Anywhere will do.”

“Why?”

“It will draw off a certain amount of your blood and infuse you with its enzymes to allow you to process the elixir. After that I’m afraid you have to kill regularly.”

“What? Why?”

“While the stone is active it can only feed once from the master. This “pairs” the owner with the stone. After that its elixir is produced by feeding the stone with fresh blood of a different person every five years. And again, only ONCE per individual. The Prongs are stuck into victim’s artery. It will entirely drain the victim of blood to the point of death. Which incidentally comes within minutes to produce approximately 15 milliliters amount of elixir after 4 days. Which you then either consume and/or use grow your wealth.”

“Once every 5 years?”

“Correct.”

“Unfortunately, the nature of the kills requires the owner to be an occasional, but highly PATTERNED serial killer.”

“How so?”

“The repetition of the kills, the reliable and predictable killing windows, the marks on the corpse, and the fact that the feeding leaves certain odd trace chemical residues that are unmistakable. There has in fact been a sort of unofficial “on-going manhunt” for this one serial killer who has in fact been many men, for the better part of four hundred years. Disposal of donor bodies in their entirety is highly recommended.”

“A man of means” could surely procure “unwilling donors” …?

“I’m afraid not. The kill must be by surprise. There are copious testaments to this you will be provided, should you buy, accounts of how sacrifices that had been captured produced too much adrenaline.”

“And?”

“The stone did not produce. In fact, the stone seems to go dormant after the attempted feeding from a captured victim.”

“For how long?”

“It varies. But it seems to punish the parasite by almost letting it die before returning to production. The stamina of each parasite varies but it always seems to push them to the brink of death. A second transgression has resulted in death in all cases.”

“What IS this “parasite”?”

“Why YOU sir, should you buy. Like many before you, you will grow strong and powerful on the food excretions of a more advanced being. This is the food chain at work. You are a parasite to the creature in the stone.”  

"But it also provides you with means to become quite anonymous through power and wealth. Because in addition to granting you immortality even a tiny drop will transmute thousands of pounds of lead into gold."

“How many thousands of pounds?"

“Depending on the donor, and the stone DOES appear to have certain “tastes” which will be provided to you in the testimonial documents, should you buy, the current record is 4,790 pounds from 3 milliliters of elixir.”

“Why does this “elixir” do only these two specific things…?”

“Unknowable sir, we are dealing with trans-dimensional life. There is no way to understand it.”

INSPIRATION: Legendary Alchemical Object/Substance
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