Tuesday, April 23, 2013

P is for Paula's Apron Strings

And we continue to design our way through the alphabet here at NUELOW Games, as part of our bumbling, stumbling unofficial participation in the A to Z April Blogging Challenge. This post is presented under the Open Gaming License, with the text under the header "OGL d20 System Game Rules" being Open Gaming content. Enjoy!

Paula's Apron Strings (By Steve Miller)
Paula Noreville was one of America's premiere coven leaders of the 1950s and early 1960s. From behind the facade of the perfect housewife, she led her band of witches and warlocks to victory against dark forces time and again. But for all the good she did, Paula was a domineering woman whose kind smiles and mom-and-apple-pie attitude also concealed a pathological need to have absolute control over everyone in her life.
   Paula dominated her coven and family with clever and sugar-coated psychological manipulation and the occasional application of an oven mitt-covered iron fist. As her children grew into adulthood, rebelled against her, and eventually struck out on their own, she resorted to magic in order to guarantee they would never be far from her control.
   Using the strings from her favorite apron, Paula created two unique magic items, one for each of her children. They consist of two matched sets of three-inch light blue strips of cloth cut from the apron's strings and enchanted. She hid one string in each of her children's homes and whenever she held its counterpart, the child was compelled to return home to Paula, no matter where they might be in the world.
   Paula was eventually murdered by her son after, presumably, he discovered how she had been interfering with his life. His own family had been killed shortly in a car crash after his wife decided to follow him on one of his sudden trips back to his childhood home.

OGL d20 and OpenD6 System Rules
Paula's Apron Strings consists of a matched set of two light blue strips of cloth, each 2 inches in length, They radiate faint Summoning and Necromantic magic. The user hides one of the strings in the home of the target. When he or she holds the counterpart and concentrates on the target for a full two minutes, the target is filled with an overwhelming need to the user's home and to help him or her with whatever challenges that might be facing her.
   The target can ignore the urge, but for each day of not making an effort to travel to the user, the target suffers a cumulative -1 penalty to all skill checks and attack rolls. The progression of the penalty can be stopped for a single day by target phoning or writing and sending a letter to the user, but existing penalties are not removed and it continues to grow the next day.
   The only way to be released from the bond of Paula's Apron Strings is for the target to find the one in his home and return it to the user who hid it there. The user need not willingly accept it from the target, but he or she is free of the magic once this step has been taken.

Drawback: The target of Paula's Apron Strings gradually comes to loathe the user. After being compelled three times, he or she holds a level of resentment equal to a character that has been misused while under the influence of a charm person spell. After six times, the target so dislikes the user that only the Apron Strings can even make him or her think about the user. After 12 times, the target so hates the user that a small provocation will cause him or her to become violent toward the user.

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