1670 BC
Pharaoh Amenhotep VI decides that the eclipse is a sign of Ra’s anger and immediately vows to disband his brief flirtation with representative parliamentary democracy.

951 BC

Armies battling in central China pause their slaughter for an awestruck moment during the eclipse. Upon its expiry, the battle resumes as if nothing had happened.

217 BC
The Roman general Trivius witnesses an eclipse after praying to Jupiter for a sign of what to do in order to achieve victory. Inspired, he leads his men into battle blindfolded, resulting in a disastrous defeat.

5 AD
An African eclipse leads to a stampede of frightened wildebeest, trampling King Odayo II of Senemali and his court.

900 AD

An eclipse over the Yucatan convinces a Mayan ruler that the end of the world is at hand. He orders that all of his worldly possessions be hurled into a cenote, and then joins them after failing to pay his workers.

1491 AD
This widely observed Mesoamerican eclipse was dismissed at the time as portending anything ominous.

1603 AD

This eclipse is believed to be the inspiration for a lost Shakespeare play mentioned in the MacDunnagh Register: The Tragedie of the Sunne Blocke.

1962 AD
An eclipse over Antarctica leads a colony of Emperor Penguins to revert to their winter heat-retention behavior. Hundreds die of heatstroke on the ice.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

Turnicus totalis
Forces the driver to make the next safe turn in the direction their blinker is pointing.

Signalicon permanatus
Turn signals will automatically activate, even outside of the car–disembodied signals will hover about the buttocks of any on-foot drivers for the duration.

Cut-innocenti reversi
Drivers who zoom ahead where one lane is closed only to try and cut in at the last possible second find themselves at the back of the line.

Contracti lorrius
Large white trucks that have never done an honest day’s work will contract each day they are not hauling a load or driving off-road until they reach a size appropriate for their daily workload (such as a Fiat 500).

Reflectus responsibilius
Cell phones will only show a forward view from the cab while driving.

Paradoxian fatalis
You will suffer a real version of the accident you just almost caused, in such a way that you will be the only one injured and no other vehicles will be damaged.

Emeraldia xenoptic
Since you can’t seem to see green lights, you will only be able to see the color green.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

SKIT stores, your source for affordable modular furniture from Åland, is proud to present its new catalog item for fall 2017:

Name: RYLEH
Type: Mirror
Article Number: 13.1289.66

The latest addition to the RYLEH line of home furnishings from SKIT, the RYLEH Mirror is made out of 100% ethically sourced cosmic matter that is impervious to any interaction with normal matter. It is imperishable, indestructible, will float in the void long after out sun has cooled to ash, and can be cleaned with a damp cloth. Through the artisan-crafted electromatter glass, you can see not only reflections of that is, but also what might be and what cannot be stopped. SKIT is not responsible for madness caused by the RYLEH, and recommends that you gaze into its abyss no more than twice a day for 30 seconds or less.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

With the disappearance of the land bridge, bunyips lost access to their most favored prey, and with the arrival of aboriginal Australians and their dogs, bunyips were no longer free to roam as apex predators any longer.

As any biologist will tell you,a bunyip is completely unable to withstand being seen, and the mere gaze of another being is enough to kill it instantly. It evolved to combat this by lurking in muddy rivers and coastal waters, but humans and dogs had no intrinsic fear of the bunyip and often would gawk at it, turning what might have been a survivable peek into a fatal gaze.

Official Australian government estimates are that less than 10 wild bunyips survive, and despite some promising advances made using blind or blindfolded captors, none have ever lived in captivity for more than a few days. Add to that the bunyip’s peculiar reproduction, which somehow requires both a newly-dead host to incubate eggs and a live birth on dry sand, and there are few reasons to be optimistic about the species’ chances for survival.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

Are you a Scotsman who is both proud of himself and his figure? Are you tired of itchy, stuffy, traditional kilts that make you cut an unflattering figure?

Introducing the new PENCIL KILT™ by Eddie Borough!

Slim and slimming, made from a fully lined double-serge cotton blend that is as airy as it is warm, the Eddie Borough Pencil Kilt™ is a new milestone in men’s fashion. With a banded waist, invisible back zip, vented back hem, the Pencil Kilt™ is a clean, modern looking kilt–one you’ll wear from season to season. We’ve even added a bit of stretch for comfort and ease!

Eddie Borough’s Pencil Kilt™ is available in sizes 00 to 4. Chunkier Scotsman need not apply. Get yours today!

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

On July 9, 1997, the state of Massachusetts declared the chocolate chip cookie to be their official state cookie.

It replaced the previous state confection, the barley-and-oat cookie, which had been adopted in 1697 by the legislature of the Province of Massachusetts. The barley-and-oat cookie was a deliberately bitter and unpleasant-tasting baked good, with the whole oats providing a particularly unpleasant mouthfeel.

This was deliberate, as the Puritans who had invented the cookie thought that its poor taste and texture would present “a bulwarke againste Idleness” and that sweet treats were “tooles of the Devil and temptations to Sinne.” By limiting themselves to unpleasant cookies, the Puritans thought, they could resist sin and temptation.

It is worth noting that a contemporary account, from 1698, notes that “as poore as these Cookys are” that they are still “bettere by a League than thee usual Fare” at a Puritan dinner table.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

“Bring them forth.”

The cultists shoved John and Mary forward, bruised and bloodied from where they’d been torn from their station wagon.

“Bow before the Gourd God!” one of the cultists snarled.

“Why have you come to this place?” cried the apparition in the center of the field, a pumpkin-headed man in a scarecrow’s vestments that was not consumed by the flames that encircled it.

“We…we just wanted directions,” John whimpered. “We were going to Gatlinburg and got lost.”

“Oh, well that’s easy,” said the Gourd God. “You get back on 33 and follow it east until it meets up with I-32. Just make sure you get off at Exit 185, or you’ll get caught up in construction.”

John looked around, confused. “Can you…can you write that down?”

“Sure.” One of the cultist’s eyes glowed and they scrawled out the directions, in their own blood, on a page torn from a holy book.

“T-thanks,” said Mary.

“Hey, don’t mention it,” said the Gourd God. “I’m sorry about the kids roughing you up, they have a little more passion than sense sometimes. Safe travels!”

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

“Tell me,” Schmidt said. “How did you get your automatic car to drive itself so well?”

“That’s for me to know,” Ellen said. “And you not to know.”

She returned to the garage where the Silver Torpedo was sitting idle. Opening the control panel, she revealed a pigeon strapped in to an old pigeon-guided bomb control.

“Mommy’s little chickie did good today,” she cooed. “Who wants some nummy seeds, huh?”

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

Mouse of Farts
A mouse made of living flautus comes into being at the point the caster designates. It will roam, randomly farting, throughout the combat area for a number of rounds equal to 1d6 + caster’s level. All creatures of less than 4 hit dice must perform a fortitude save with a DC15 or lose their next action to uncontrollable retching. This includes both hostiles and party members as well as the caster. Party members and creatures with more than 4 hit dice save at a +10 and may still make free actions while retching.

Fomend’s Beating Sphere
A small sphere of solid metal comes into being at the caster’s fingertips and flies directly for the crotch of the targeted enemy. It will beat at the targeted crotch for 1d4 + caster’s level rounds. If the target is male or otherwise has vulnerable genitalia, each beating will cause 1d4 damage and has a 25% chance of immobilizing the target with pain for 1 round. If the target is female or has genital armor, the beating sphere has no effect. Targets of 4 hit dice or greater may make a reflex save at DC 18 to swat the sphere out of the air to avoid its effects.

Barking Stones
2d8 stones in the vicinity begin loudly barking and snarling as if they were highly agitated guard dogs. The sound will cause creatures of 2 hit dice or less to make a morale check or flee in terror. The stones gain +1 to their effect if they are behind a fortification such as a wall or door, as it is more difficult to trace the source of the noise. The effect lasts for 1d12 rounds and cannot be extended. Stones are required for the effect but may be carried by the caster. Smashing the stones ends the effect.

Q’s Invisibility
The caster or a being they designate becomes invisible for 1d4 + caster’s level rounds. The invisibility only affects the bring itself, not any of their clothing or gear. It also prevents the affected from interacting with any matter, including their clothing or gear. The affected may wander at the same height above (or below) sea level that they were at when the spell was cast, but will move through any higher ground and will hover above any lower ground. If the affected is in the air when the spell dissipates, they will incur the appropriate falling damage. If they are in the ground, they will violently displace any matter occupying the same space and may suffer from suffocation.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!

Burping Light Sin
The caster designates a target within eyesight. If the target fails a will save, target will begin burping uncontrollably for 1d6 rounds. If the target is 3 hit dice or less, the constant burping will inflict a -1 to hit penalty and a -1 to armor class, as well as -1 to all saving throws. Targets with 4 hit dice or more will only suffer a save penalty. Stealth is impossible while the spell is in effect. At the GM’s discretion, creatures with noxious properties may expel a burp cloud with negative effects while enchanted.

Vicious Markers
A series of 1d4 magic markers will appear at the caster’s fingertips. At the caster’s command they will engage a target and mark it up for 2d6 rounds. The marks made will be randomly selected from the following list for each round the spell is in effect:

-dinosaurs
-random scribbles
-curse words
-flying saucers
-Blarney the Friendly Purple Orc
-The Musical Thrones™ series
-barnyard animals
-stick figures

Marks made on unliving surfaces are indelible and will only wear off with the passage of time (6 months-1 year) while marks made on living tissue may be scrubbed off (10 rounds scriubbing per square foot). The marks do not impede combat unless they get in a target creature’s eyes, but they will make it more difficult to see and serve as a distraction (-1 to perception rolls, -1 to saving throws, -1 to ranged attack rolls). Creatures without a sense of humor and creatures that are easily distracted may also suffer a -1 to armor class.

Cow of Auraly
At the caster’s command a large magical cow (2000 lbs) will appear at the spot designated. The magical cow will have the stats of a Herd Animal, Bison, although it will not attack. It will, however, follow the directions of the caster in moving around the battlefield, and can attempt to push away melee attackers as a grappling action. The cow will otherwise act as an obstacle, and grant +10 AC versus missile weapons to characters hiding behind it. The cow can and will take damage and it will dissipate when its hit points are exhausted. The cow may also be ridden or used to bear burdens, but it will only last for a number of rounds equal to 1d12 + the caster’s level.

Gland Growth
This spell has a range of 10 feet. Any target within the spell radius designated by the caster will have a random gland in their body swell to many times its original size. The effect will last for 1d4 rounds and will vary based on the gland that is enlarged:

Salivary gland – target will drool uncontrollably and choke
Pancreas – target’s abdoment will expand painfully and they may go into glycemic shock
Liver – target’s abdomen will swell painfully and they may be affected with jaundice
Lacrimal glands – target will be blinded and weep uncontrollably
Mamary glands – target (male or female) will lactate uncontrollably
Pituitary gland/Hypothalamus – target’s head will painfully enlarge and brain functions may be impaired
Thyroid – target will develop a large goiter that will make it difficult to move their head and neck
Testes/ovaries – target’s lower abdomen will swell painfully and they may be unable to move and more vulnerable to critical hits

The target must have a gland of the type chosen for the spell to work, and the magic will fail if no suitable gland exists.

  • Like what you see? Purchase a print or ebook version!