Puppet Mushrooms

Mushrooms growing in a humid environment make sense, but maybe not right by the water in an active harbor. And yet, people have found this odd variety of mushroom growing around Fellport Harbor over the past few weeks. Experimentation shows that it causes blackouts when ingested more often than not.

The main grey stalk sprouts two smaller stalks that curve upward like a pitchfork, and the caps come in a variety of colors and patterns. The first samples had 5 large black dots around the reddish-puurple cap, looking like eyes. Couple that with two smaller stalks that resemble arms wearing smaller caps like mittens, and the name Puppet Mushroom stuck.

The name also holds a darker meaning. When prepared correctly, it makes the imbiber susceptible to influence as if targeted by the suggestion spell. Paired with its native ability to interfere with memory creation, you have an ideal drug for using someone with access as a tool to cause mayhem in restricted locations. Its effects last no more than 10  minutes, but that's more than enough time to frame someone who won't remember what happened.

600 year old notebooks made by explorers mention similar mushrooms around the coastline, but no reference to them exist after approximately 500 years ago, around the time Ionian settlers came to Fellport. So why were they here so long ago? And why did they come back?

Puppet Infusion (Ingested). A creature that ingests this poison must succeed on a DC 18 Constitution saving throw. On a successful save, the poison has no effect at all, other than a mild feeling of euphoria. On a failed save, the creature effectively becomes unconscious while their body remains active, unable to remember anything while under the influence of the poison. Furthermore, the creature must succeed on a DC18 Wisdom saving throw or become receptive to performing actions as if under the effect of a suggestion spell. The creature may repeat the Wisdom saving throw once every minute to resist the effects of the suggestion.

Both of the poison's effects last for 5-10 (1d6+4) minutes, whereupon the creature "wakes up", possibly in a compromising position, unable to remember anything about their time spent under the influence. In Fellport, Puppet Infusion costs 200 gp per dose because Fellport contains the only source in the world for these mushrooms, but it may fetch 1,000 gp per dose or more outside of the city, especially to those interested in forcing people to perform acts of assassination, infiltration, or espionage.

Designer's Note: I have some misgivings about writing this, basically making roofies available in a fantasy game. Suffice to say that they're growing gain because of a powerful aberration in the area and its weakening prison, and yes, it's all sorts of Bad News. I hope the 5-10 minute time limit and multiple saves prevents using Puppet Infusion against Player Characters, but bad actors are gonna act badly if they put their minds to it. I suppose it's no different from using dominate creature when you come right down to it.

Part of T.W.Wombat's Lore 24 project, detailing the world around Fellport.
For all city posts, see the Fellport Index. For posts about the wider world, see the Beneterra Index.

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