Gorgonism reconsidered...

There are things out there, in the weirder reaches of space-time where reality is an optional extra. Horrible things, usually with tentacles. Good thing there's a bureaucracy to deal with them. Based on the Laundry Files novels by Charles Stross. Learn more at our website: http://www.cubicle7.co.uk/our-games/the-laundry/
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SBRPearce
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Dec 06, 2013 1:30 am
Location: Ohio, USA

Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by SBRPearce » Tue Jul 12, 2016 7:13 pm

If you restrained a human (or animal) gorgon long enough to perform enucleation (removal) of one of their eyeballs, would you have effectively defused them?

Just curious, since this situation might arise in an upcoming mission...knowing how sneaky my players are!

wickeddarkman
Posts: 195
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:21 am

Re: Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by wickeddarkman » Wed Jul 13, 2016 2:02 pm

As far as I remember it, gorgonism is a large tumor-like growth in the brain, which causes both eyes to "stone" Also it was based on the quantum-mechanics of "observing" something, so if the gorgon could somehow gain extra senses based on observating something somehow, the gorgonism should work.

Then there's regeneration, ressurrection, ubbo-sathla healing tissue, magical glasses and so on, which might enable a gorgon to regain lost vision.

SBRPearce
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Dec 06, 2013 1:30 am
Location: Ohio, USA

Re: Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by SBRPearce » Fri Jul 22, 2016 1:04 pm

IIRC, the gorgon effect is an 'observer mediated' whim-wham, which (in its technological incarnation) requires two points of view - for SCORPION STARE weapons, you have to be caught by two cameras to initiate the effect. Remember, in The Jennifer Morgue, Bob had to jack a external camera into his PDA to run the SS software function.

Perhaps the same thing applies to organic, naturally-occurring gorgons... If it requires a pair of overlapping observations both feeding into the same central processing node and you eliminate one of those possible observations, you've disarmed your gorgon.

Of course, the naturally-occurring gorgons cause much worse damage, with a lot more of the target's carbon transformed to silicon and a resulting increase in both waste-heat and radiation shed into the local environment. Prosecuting one of those contacts would be a case in which the Laundry's often-used cover as officers of the Civil Nuclear Constabulary would be entirely appropriate, and useful.

wickeddarkman
Posts: 195
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:21 am

Re: Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by wickeddarkman » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:00 pm

A two point foci could be "quantum"-based...

So I agree on the cutting out of an eye would shut down a gorgon.

Interresstingly enough this gave me the idea of a "cyclops curse" which would merge a setup of close eyebulbs into one.
I love spells that can mess with a few abilities, so I will make a general spell that can be cast at anyone, and which has some downsides, but also a few upsides.

curse of the cyclops:
for the duration of this spell, the target loses any "stoning"-abilities and all skills demanding sight to work become difficult. The target gains the ability to see thaumic radiation and will therefore see invisible or glamoured beings outlined.

SBRPearce
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Dec 06, 2013 1:30 am
Location: Ohio, USA

Re: Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by SBRPearce » Tue Nov 29, 2016 9:57 pm

So, I spent a little time looking up "classical" Gorgonism and came across the description of a cockatrice - a lizard/chicken mutation with a killing gaze.

So what happens when you get a naturally-occurring gorgonism outbreak in a factory poultry operation? To the uninitiated, it looks like arson with a creepy side-order of radiological terrorism targeting Great Britain's food supply.

[After some more Google/Wikipedia research]: Well, it appears that chicken manure makes great base-stock for explosives manufacture. Ammonia, nitrates, etc. I'll bet it burns beautifully when subjected to the carbon-silicon cascade reaction you get when a natural gorgon cooks off a target. Most of these industrial poultry operations need to take major steps to contain their regular output of chicken waste (3.5-5.0 kg/month/bird), which means one of these factory-farms could pose a major hazard if the carbon-silicon cascade reaction caused by gorgon exposure lights off the storage siloes...

Gives a whole new meaning to getting sent out on a "chicken-shit" incident...

wickeddarkman
Posts: 195
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:21 am

Re: Gorgonism reconsidered...

Post by wickeddarkman » Wed Nov 30, 2016 6:25 am

I remember that some cockatrices were hatched by frogs nesting on an egg laid by a cock, so theres a chance that byatis may be involved with "gorgons".

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