Your Obedient Serpent (athelind) wrote,
Your Obedient Serpent

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Soylent Gem!

A year or so ago, jordangreywolf and I pondered the necromantic implications of LifeGems: industrial diamonds made from the cremated remains of a human being as an "eternal memorial".

This is one of the most disturbing, morbid, freaky, and strangely cool concepts I have ever encountered. When I first stumbled across this company, my brain immediately came up with half a dozen Modern Fantasy/Modern Horror/High Fantasy/Sci Fi plot lines.

All things considered, you could visit the web site of a company that makes tombstones, and it would be *morbid*. There's just no avoiding it. But that's MERELY morbid. There's no Steal Your Soul resonance in there. No thoughts of Really Disturbing Ways to make Psychic Power Crystals. No thoughts of, gee, if they can make over a hundred LifeGems from one person, but you can only afford to buy one or two, how do you know that the rest aren't being channeled into some Infernal Device?

Since I often refer to good "adventure seeds" as "gems", this is especially appropriate. Consider this a Jewelry Store version of the Night Gallery, where frozen fragments of nightmare take on a tangible form...

  • Me: Nothing says you have to limit yourself to a SINGLE BODY. Many souls squished into one! Like The Devil's Rain, only worse!

  • Greywolf: A cursed gem, made from all the victims of this psychopath....
    Maybe he's this occultist who chose his victims because of various supernatural hand-wavey details (blood type? Birth sign? "harmonic resonance"?) -- otherwise seemingly chosen at random -- to be "components" for the "perfect stone".

  • Greywolf: Imagine some guy who's obsessed with beauty. His obsession is this actress, say. Movie star, even. But she's getting older. Well ... he finds a way to ensure that her beauty will never be spoiled, never fade ... *forever*....

  • Greywolf: Say, it's the future, and this place went out of business ages ago. Perhaps some big economic crisis hit, and the place just shut down, like that, owners gone. Much later, the place is being torn down, and someone finds this cache of diamonds. Hoo! Diamonds! Nabs them, pawns them off. They get put into a necklace. Some unwitting fellow makes this lovely necklace as a gift for his bride to be. But little does he know that there are spirits trapped in the gems, and they aren't very happy....

  • Me: Someone who's STILL ALIVE, but has PART of their body turned into a Lifegem. Maybe someone in an accident whose limb gets amuputated. Or maybe someone does it on PURPOSE, for reasons left to the class.
    Possible reasons a living person could have for lifegemming his own body parts: Maybe it makes a much more powerful Magic/Psionic Power Stone. Or maybe it lets him control a Phantom Limb, like the Long Arm of Gil Hamilton.

  • Greywolf: A freaky new collectible game for kids of the future: summoning battling gem-spirits! Yes, YOU can have your very own Soul-GemTM that has within it the trapped spirit of a Battle BeastTM, or a mighty Soul WarriorTM! "Call them forth to do battle in the Crystal ArenaTM, in the ultimate Battle for the Fate of the WorldTM!"
    (Batteries not included. Each sold separately.)

    Me: Oh my, that's even NASTIER, if you think of it as Some Nefarious Mystic Plot for a Modern Horror-Fantasy Game.

  • Me: The Necromantic Diamond Optical Computer.

  • Me: Components for a Portal into the Spirit World.

  • Me: Holograms etched in the crystal! Soulograms!!

  • Me: How do you know the stone you're getting really belongs to your relative? It might be some OTHER person -- or THING. And the stones might have an agenda of their own. This works well with the "body parts" idea, above -- perhaps the sorcerer who's sacriviced a limb to create these crystals can use them to sense what's around them -- or even to influence or possess those who wear them. This works exceptionally well in a Cyberpunk setting with magic, as the "sacrifice" of a limb can be replaced...

Me: The technological/technomantic aspects are part of the weird appeal. Just having a "Transmute Person Into Soul Gem" spell isn't nearly as intriguing. It's almost gotta be Modern Horror or Steampunk or something, or at least that Great Huge Furnace out of the Two Towers. I think part of the horror is making it an IMPERSONAL process.

Greywolf: It's the pseudo-science/mysticism process that makes it so creepy. This is so MODERN, made possible through TECHNOLOGY ... yet the conceit seems so basic, primal.

Feel free to contribute your own Creepy Ideas.
Tags: gaming, lifegems, mad science, magick, rpg

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