Zombies

The nature of zombies is that they have the ‘big good angel’, which is that part of a person that governs understanding and reaction, but no longer have the ‘little good angel’, which is the part that governs memory, awareness and personality. Thus they are capable of understanding and carrying out instructions, but not of reflecting upon those instructions or having motivations of their own. Lunatics, by contrast, have the ‘little good angel’ but not the ‘big good angel’, which is why they cannot be turned into zombies.

Ectoplasmic Animals

It is said that some sorcerers turn their souls into animals, which then live outside the body. The wizard thereby gains the powers that the animal would have, if it were a natural creature. Thus a wizard who turns their soul into a snake will have a poisonous bite, while if it was turned into a bird they would be able to fly. The animal-shaped soul itself will have no such abilities. The great danger is that the soul may be directly destroyed, corrupted or stolen.

Silken Shirts of Doom

These brightly-coloured red shirts are used by certain wicked and sorcerously-inclined ship’s captains. If a crew member wears one they will be filled with a false confidence, such that they will volunteer for any dangerous mission on shore. Alas, the shirt also curses the wearer with bad luck, so that they are unlikely to survive.

The Great Galactic Ghoul

The Great Galactic Ghoul is a term jokingly used by commentators to ‘explain’ the high failure rate of missions to Mars. The Ghoul is said to be a Martian creature which lives on probes from Earth. In some variants of the joke it lives in space between Earth and Mars.

Other commentators speak of a ‘Martian Curse’ which has the same result.

Cairo

Cairo is named for the Arabic al-Qahira, meaning ‘The Conquerer’ or ‘The Vanquisher’.

Likewise the Chi Ro, a symbol formed from two Greek letters, is said to have been adopted by the Emperor Constantine as a battle-standard after he received a vision of the symbol, accompanied by the words en touto nika, or “in this, win.” He did indeed win the battle.

Finally Cairo is the birthplace of Boutros Boutros-Ghali, the former Secretary-General of the United Nations.

Thus there is clearly some magical force of conquest influencing Cairo. Though whether this is because of the place’s location, or because of its name, I do not know.

Vampires, Crosses and Fire

All vampires have a deep fear of the sign of the cross (and of the similar symbol known to the Vikings as the Hammer of Thor), so long as certain conditions are met, such as that the symbol be of metal, and form a single structure, and be of at least a given weight and symmetry. They are also terribly afraid of fire.

Some might see their aversion to the cross as proof of the truth of the Christian religion. However I believe that the cross does not repel vampires because of its association with Christianity; but rather that it became a symbol of Christianity because of its ability to repel vampires. It is notable that the Hammer of Thor, the cross, and the fire which is the holy symbol of Zoroastrianism, are traditional across the same area where one hears legends of vampires.

Dunn’s Tower

This tall, ruined tower stands on the outskirts of Teleleli. It is abandoned, and indeed has stood abandoned for so long that no one knows what it was used for, or who Dunn may have been.

It is said that ghosts are allowed to climb Dunn’s Tower for one last look at the city. Thus it is believed that anyone who enters the tower at night will find it easy to contact the recently dead. It is believed, however, that many who try fall to their deaths; whether from falling, suicide or being pushed none can say.

It is said that demons never require payment to allow a petitioner to speak with the shade of a dead person. This is because they can charge a higher price when the petitioner begs to have their memory of the conversation erased.

>Nadifa’s Nominative Navigation

>This spell allows the wizard to transport themselves, and perhaps even companions, over an unlimited distance. However it only allows travel between places with the same name. For example, someone on our world would be able to travel from Perth, Scotland to Perth, Australia. The names must be exactly the same (it would not allow travel from Main Street to Main Road, or from Mount Albert to Mont Albert). However the similarity may be in the names of countries, cities, streets, or even individual buildings (for example, two taverns with the same name).