Uncle Hyena (unclehyena) wrote,
Uncle Hyena


I fear I was something of a disappointment to my first master; he was a battle mage, and he had the most raw power of any pure human I have ever encountered. I, on the other hand, was drawn to ritual and teaching, and had so little power that I would have failed my apprenticeship if I had not proven useful as a tutor for my more powerful but less clever fellow apprentices. I was never much of a spell caster; I finally achieved journeyman status on the strength of my ability with rituals and enchantments. I can only think I took the better path; my former master died with an arrow in his eye, and I have changed the world. It was a small change, made indirectly and quite by accident, but a change none the less.

I was still an apprentice when I conceived of the gadget that was to be my masterpiece. It started as a moderately difficult mechanical puzzle, but when I was done with it, it was a test for magical aptitude. The final version was enchanted to make anyone who came near it curious, and then, when it was touched, it would cast a small spell that would make the toucher want to solve the puzzle. As long as you were in contact with the puzzle, it drained away magical power into its "batteries" at regular intervals, and when you had no more to give, it cast a spell on you that made you want to put the puzzle back where you found it, and then be very far away, very fast. If you solved the puzzle before that happened, it cast a small geas on you to show the solved puzzle to me. I never had to recruit students, or deal with talentless applicants; I just hung the puzzle outside my shop, and let the qualified students find me.

One evening I was called to the door, and found myself facing a young gnoll with the solved puzzle in his hands. I invited him in, explained what had happened, and then offered him an apprenticeship; my thought was that even if he were untrainable, I would learn a great deal about gnolls. He was, in fact, VERY trainable, but I STILL learned a great deal about gnolls.

I was something over 60 years old when I accidentally killed myself; given the nature of the accident, I didn't actually notice for several days. The spell that was supposed to keep me supplied with food and drink without needing to actually eat had been misconstructed, and instead just kept me animated and functional. I had no apprentices at the time, and was deep in some very complicated research; when I finally finished, I had occasion to look in a mirror and found that I had mummified myself. Fortunately, it was not particularly difficult to arrange the glamours necessary to make me socially functional. It took a VERY long time to figure out how to enjoy womanizing again...
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