Poozen is a cursed magical artefact. It has no discernible function except inflict mass-death in a most horrific manner.

The cursed magical artefact colloquially known as Poozen came into the possession of the Magisterium Golden Fleece several decades ago, after having been found in The Cursed Region in the further Northern Kingdom. The term Poozen is a crude Onomatopoeia for an indistinct suggestion of a sound first imagined being heard emanating from the object, something akin to ‘Prwrzrw’. 

This object is potentially extremely dangerous and one of the magical artefacts against almost no defense exists, once triggered into activation. 

Triggering Poozen

Poezen has been triggered several times, all with horrific and catastrophic consequences. The main keys to triggering are alleged to be

  • Ignoring or hiding the artefact for an extended period (months) of time,
  • Loud noises near the artefact for more than several minutes,
  • Displays of strong emotion near the artefact for several minutes,
  • Studying the object for a length of time, 
  • Physically attacking the object in any way,
  • Throwing of moving the object fast or irregularly.

Description of Poozen

Poozen weights about 0.9 kilograms and seems to be composed of a metal analogue to Aluminium, and is a central rectangle of solid metal, surrounded by melted irregular angular shapes. It  seems to have no discernible modes of interaction. Studying the object seems to instill a subtle feeling of dizzyness, discomfort and when any of these sensations occurs the object should immediately be left alone as the observer is close to triggering the initial activation stage.

Those who fear they have been affected must flee to the various stone receptacle cells adjacent to where Poozen is currently secured. Do NOT move to other people, as the effect emanated by Poozen is highly contaminating. The best is to secure one-self in one  of the available stone cells and if you still have the sentience to do so, drink from the goblets placed in these cells. These goblets contain a fast acting painless poison that kills in under 15 seconds. Dying by poison is the decidedly better alternative. 

Those potentially affected have the duty to avoid spreading the effect by isolating immediately. None should bear witness to their lonely and miserable demise. 

Activation of Poozen

When Poozen activates, the effects are nearly always deadly and only few people had the wherewithall to escape it’s nefarious mental effects. The emanation has been triggered seven times, ‘that we know of’ and is consistent and always after somehow Poozen is ‘provoked’ by sentient observers.

When triggered the person or persons that did this may experience very subtle and fleeting multiple sensations of discomfort. These may be analogue to an unpleasant sensation of thirst, slight nausea or vertigo, a choking warmth, itching, a sense of irritation, an unpleasant but indistinct smell (such as lactic acid), an unpleasant memory that is almost but not quite recalled, mounting frustration or depression

The effects experienced increase over time and appear to reach maximum destructiveness about 30 minutes after onset. A component of this deep distress is a steadily mounting sensation of depression and “no longer giving a damn about anything”. This passive recalcitrance extends to True Love or True Faith. 

Anyone nearby this area effect, which appears to be mostly line of sight (to about 30 meters), or a room or space where those triggering are present. The effect seems to actively “try” to spread, but doesn’t always succeed. Anyone who perceived the object or anyone nearby, by means of sight or sound or smell is almost certain to be affected. Animals will be triggered in to acute hysteria and will try leave the area of effect (and will have a higher chance to succeed) but in particular conscious observers (i.e. those with intelligence, self-awareness, sapience) will have a markedly higher incidence of being “caught” in the area of effect. Those who know what Poozen is and what it does have at the beginning stage about a 90% chance to be able to escape, but this panicked retreat has a chance of actually spreading the destructive area of effect of Poozen. 

Those people affected will experience increasing discomfort, after five or so minutes being comparable to a severe migraine, and not long after will become incapable to any level of agency, ability to respond. Those affected will increasingly complain, mutter incoherently, vocalize curses or vulgarities, lose all control of bodily functions. Those affected in this early stage allegedly “smell horrible”, their appearance achieves an unhealthy, unkempt, ‘disgusting’, dirty, intensely annoying quality. Multiple people may respond in different manner, with old frustrations, sadness, lingering grief, latent mental problems boiling to the surface.

The area of effect is an extremely virulent cognitive hazzard where people some distance away perceiving the ongoing effect will also be affected, albeit with some delay. 

Nobody known as survived the active area of effect of Poozen for more than 17 minutes. Once people are in the area of effect for 12 or so minutes, ‘mortality’ rates are 99%. The damned who are under the curse of Poozen will deteriorate as beings, suffering a degree of existential discomfort, seeping dread, ache, misery, despair that can scarcely be described in words that make any sense. Around the 15 minute mark the bodies of those affected “allegedly” start exhibiting distortions, and the area of effect becomes optically oppague, as if “misty” – but actively observing this ‘duffuse optical opacity’ runs the risk of spreading the effect. Theoretically, as long as there are adjecent observers that consciously acknowledge ‘something is happening’, the effect is likely to convey to a new set of targets, potentially indefinitely.

The effect reduces functional intelligence, affecting both demons, intelligent spell affects, humans, elves, humanoids, an assortment of monsters, dragons, all. The only folks exhibiting a minor degree of resistence are those imbued of great psionic discipline, those of the greatest faith and those of the greatest martial discipline – and then only counting minutes in time needed to flee the effects.

In theory magical effects such as rituals of teleportation, augury, etc. would be able to spread the effects, were it not that well before this could happen, these spell effects tend to produce utter white noise chaos. In the below case of Coobal, two people were telepathically linked by a magical item, where one was inside Coobal pregnant with child and the other half of this connection was a day’s travel fishing trout adjacent to a river – the effect spread through the telepathic connection, completely erasing both’s existence completely

Final Result

After this less-than-an-hour storm of ‘destruction by white noise’ the effects quiets down, the area of affect is in shambles. All devices, machines, instruments and lesser magical items have been destroyed. Doors, latches, windows, cranes, carts, even clothes are reduced to rags or debris. It is as if there was a violent riot but for one thing – no corpse remains, no blood was spilled.  All people and souls (and even Undead) in the area of effect were functionally desintegrated and upon close inspection all that is left is a faint smelly grey-brown grease scattered here and there with at best some hairs embedded inside. In one case a rotten human molar was found in the area of effect. Those slain therein are slain body, mind, soul, essence, pattern – and effectively irretrievable. Projections of the last minutes of the effect upon those in the wracking woes of Poozen is conjectured to be hellish beyond words – an unspeakable ennui of despair and desorientation, all above effects taken to an infernal degree. Those who die therein die under circumstances best not long contemplated. Death by torture for a day seems comparatively a lesser death. It is regarded as a particularly vile for of “Pattern ecay”, where the victims swell and bulge, distort, parts of the bodies come off in uneven floating globules or shreds, limbs distort, facial expressions become a mask of utter confused despair and seething discomfort that subjectively is stretched out to be experienced for days. Then gradually all victims flow into one another as a fog cloud of organic debris – that remains at some level conscious of all that transpires to the very end.  Then nothing but filth remains. 

Aftereffects of this dreadful curse is that even the memory of those destroyed suffers, and its victims are comparatively faster forgotten, or are remembered in a haze of confusion, with misremembered details, or ‘dismissal’ or be held in a somewhat more negative light. Attempts to scry what happened in the area effect produce a particular  sense of foulness, sadness, an indecipherable ache and nothing else. The event leaves a metaphysical hole in time and space.

The Death of Shmee (Apocryphal)

 In the year 2912, some 500 years hence, the Arch Magician and terrible pest, Shmee waged a centuries of vengeance on the Kingdom, wreaking terrible suffering on millions. Shmee was known to “test” his spells on the unwitting populace and became an arch-fiend of great ingenuity, cunning and cruelty. His last thus experimental playfulness was to testride Poozen in the then town of Coobal. He cast an assortment of defensive spells on one of his lieutenants, ordered him by force of ensorcelled mind-control to the town where at that time the Festival of Hooves was transpiring, swelling the original population from  8000 very gentle folks to a joyous celebration of Goodness and Civilization of over 18 thousand people. It was a marketplace, a giant potlatch, a dance, a place where lovers would meet, a place where diplomats secured peace and where good omens were revealed. 

Shmee took place on the roof of a farm, food and drinks at hand as if watching a spectacle, from about a kilometer distance, using a telescope. Shortly before he murdered the owners of the farm. Having installed himself to firsthand witness the effects of Poozen, Shmee saw the effects triggered and a strange wailing emanating from the amassed crowd in the town square. Feeling something amiss, Shmee cast a spell of protection, and added another – to no avail. The entire town and celebrations was well caught in the intense suffering contained therein in 15 minutes and spread quickly from person to person to the wider outskirts of the town.  Only five people succeeded in fleeing, one on a galloping panicked horse. 

Shmee considered himself impervious, and glanced through his telescope trying to understand at all his might what manner of strange effect exactly Poozen was instilling on the poor townsfolk of Poozen. Shmee was promtly affected by the effect himself, attempted to retreat stumbling off the roof and breaking a leg. He tried crawling away for some thirty meters, infecting his bodyguards and apprentice in the process. If this actually happened, which is widely believed it did, little else was left of diabolical miscreant than the effect of a half glass of stinking brown earwax and some rags.