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Fourth Low of Nihilum

October 27th, 1999

 

A bleaker's stories are always spooky, filled with dreary images of misty fog, hope lost, and bleak spirit. None more so then the stories told by Eve, her soft voice filling the young kiddies and old alike with a sense of slippery despair but awe struck hope. And on this night, the Barmy Shorts Company is proud to present one of her most thrilling tales, Eve's Hallow.

 

Fourth Clerk of Nihilum

October 25th, 1999

 

Barmy Spotlight of the Week
Murska

From: Planes of Chaos Monstrous Appendix, page 18.
About: Sometimes known as the Anarchist's Bug or the bloody furry thing that ate pour Snookims, murskas are large beetle like creatures that crawl around the tunnels of Pandemonium. Though practically nothing is native to the plane, the murskas make up for it by being lots of things. See, the murska after it eats something starts to become that something, it's hard shell being replaced by the hide of what creature it ate. Not only does it show an impeccable fashion sense, the murska also gains the characteristics of it's lunch. A murska that had a few lamb chops for lunch grows a wooly hide and stands still baahing in a tunnel, while a murska that dined on adventure soufflé, well, it gets a nice pinkish skin with spiral tattoos and it's lunch's intelligence. Not only is this a good deal for the beetle itself, it gets to try out lots of different things and get a nice meal as a bonus, but a smart cutter will figure out useful the murska can be, for example if his horse doesn't make that last tunnel feed it to a murska and get a murska-horse! Of course the murska eventually digests its meal and grows it's usually chitinous shell again, but all the better to go try a new flavor. Though scholars say the murska itself has very little intelligence naturally, it obviously knows a good deal when it sees one, and I'm sure once one of these bugs eats a scholar he'll be sure to correct the error. 
Barminess: It's a barmy Pandemonium beetle that looks like it's lunch. 
Quote: "I'mzzzz not hungryzzz, I'mzz *clicking of mandibles* beatifulzzz!"
Likes: When furs are fashionable. Being one of the only native beasties of Pandemonium, it makes them feel important, and they can hob nob with the likes of aasimon and fiends at diplomatic functions. Well, that's a slaad story there, they'd just eat everyone.
Dislikes: Mixed all you can eat buffets, suffice to say the murska doesn't feel well afterward and anyone looking at it would lose their lunch. Anarchists who come and ask it's aid, thinking the murska are some type of spirits of former disguise stealing revolutionaries, and then it has to eat the sods.

Barmy Bonus:
Scent of Murska

"Life is pointless, but even more pointless with someone to share it
from the howling tunnels of Pandemonium, with a flare for the dark
the favorable scent of murska will drive your love barmy."

- Label on a Scent of Murska bottle.

A popular item among bleakers and the down-trodden, this stylish black bottle has recently been passing like a rage through the hive. It's said to be the musk of a murska, or maybe that was a murska that ate a mink, or possibly something to do with a murska love dance. Either way it seems to smells pretty good for something said to come from a six foot long beetle, and we do have that whole thing with bees. The bottle itself is dark black with a picture of what a very fashionable cutter would look like if eaten by a murska, and inside sloshes a slightly gray liquid that wooshs and bubbles when the cork is removed. The weird thing is it seems to change it's scent depending on who smells it, a young tiefling lady will smell the fragrance of burning flowers, but a barmy in the gatehouse will smell the appealing aroma of cabbage. And as the label says, it does seem to drive everyone barmy, even more so then normally those who hang out in the hive and would put a bugs slime extract on as a perfume.

The real chant is that the reason it's spread through the hive is because nobodies actually paying for the bottles, they're just showing up. Some point the finger at some celestial that wants the hive to smell better, while others say it's obviously some barmy bottler on Pandemonium. One fellow at the Gatehouse said it's a conspiracy theory be an intelligent murska to drive everyone on the planes barmy, but then he also had twenty bottles he was splattering on himself and giggling at the smell.

 

Fourth Lady of Nihilum

October 22nd, 1999

 

Faces of Barmies
I I I

More sketchs of everyones favirote barmies of the planes, and from three artists to boot!

Faces of Barmies can be used both by DMs for NPC concepts, or by players as new characters. The pictures above link to larger for-print versions, and can be used freely for personal use. Thanks to Vicki Hood, Tom Bubul, and me, Jeremiah Golden,  for drawing them.

Lady Emily Sturas (upper left) (Pl / Air Genasi / W(Air Elementalist)1 / Sensate / NG ) Emily is well, a lady of the Lady's Ward. Her mother was the famous Sensate Madam Sturas who shockingly fell in love with her own aerial servant. Brought up as a bit of a posh bint, Emily is known in all the circles of the Sigilian aristocracy. However, her airy nature longs to be free, and she doesn't fit in well with the other snotty rich kids and so has few friends. The truth of the matter is she's taken to the closest thing she sees as family - all the air of Sigil. She scoops it up in pretty colored bottles and treats them as her children and friends, singing lullabies or telling bedtime stories to the little swirls of captured air. Though she loves them all, from the swirling currents around the Weather Tower to the grumpy smog of the Lower ward, she's always sure to free them after a few days in the bottle.

Thana Thorsdaughter (upper center) (Pl / Bariaur / P12 / Indep / CG ) Thana's been a big sight around the chaotic good gatetowns lately, seems she's been doing some adventuring work. The whole dark of it though is Thana styles herself a super-adventurer. She's out to slay dragons, topple trolls, and behead giants all by her little self. Though she seems to handle that part just fine, she's gotten a bit barmy about the other stuff. She has a costume, a nice sensible plate armor with spiky armor pads yes, but it also has a fancy 'T' engraved in it. She has a battle cry, a nice goaty yodel followed by "I am Thana, defender of all that is Good, spreader of all that is Chaotic!" She doesn't have a sidekick, but she's put an ad in the latest Lady's Sharper Eye for a "Adventure/Sidekick, must be chaotic good and a baritone. Cape optional".

Wen S'tahw (upper right) (Pl / Quasit / B1 /  Xaositects / CE) A famed news reporter for the Stuffed Slaadi newsrag, Wen cant help constantly rushing up to people and blatantly demanding they tell him what sort of interesting things happened to them today. And what's truly barmy is the small quasit hanging from someone's coat and demanding what's new in scramblespeak often gets results. Unfortunately the thing that's often new with the person he's interviewing is, of course, that they have a gained a new clothing accessory of a small screaming quasit and are having an interesting xaositect culture experience.

Unk (lower left) (Pl / Bladeling / T8 / N) A wild bladeling, the chant goes that he was raised by quills on the Outlands. He learned one day though that he was not a quill as he though, but a bladeling, well, when a group of Hinterlands bandits decided to try and eat him. This of course did not go as they planned, but luckily there cook was an expert and refused to cook anything that was all oily and rusty. His life spared, Unk joined the group of bandits as his new family. He now is an expert rider as all the bandits are, and having a spiny pin cushion on your back can make a horse run, I can tell you. Though his whiney creaky movements make him a bad thief in the traditional sense, he instead simply rides barreling through an encampment and pulls all the loot from his blades when he's done.

Asic Neweight (lower center) (Pl / Goblin / Mathmatician / LN) A small goblin from Acheron, he joined the few Mathematicians who were calculating the cubes rotation as soon as he found that sin(1) was a allot less scarier then a spear in the side. He was a bit paranoid though, being in Acheron could do that to you, and had a deep fear of the sky falling, often quite literally with a 'clang'. His fears were further pushed when he was visiting a nice boring conference on planar boundaries in Sigil, when a bloody Acheron cube came flying through the place. At least that's how S.I.G.I.S reported it, and either way the image of the cube falling in Sigil sent Asic off his rocker. Since then he's been spending some nice quite time in the Gatehouse teaching some barmies about circles.

Blum Bout (lower right) (Pl / Kelubar / CN) Truly a barmy, this ghereleth was 'summoned' to Sigil, or more accurately kicked out of Carceria. Prancing, giggling, and pretending he was a small eladrin fairy, all these added up to conduct unbecoming an immortal entity of evil, and so his superiors sold his true name to the first bidder or maybe paid them to take it. They took away his triangle, practically guided the wizzing spell crystal to him, and now Blum works in Sigil under Harry Hatchis of all people. It seems the spinning and dancing ghereleth is a bit of an idiot savant, and can write so fast the quill starts to burn. Thus for some wire wings and a bag of glitter each month Harry has cut his production times in half with this slimy employee. The big ghereleth will happily sit around and write like a fiend with a big grin on his face, occasionally stopping to giggle and throw some glitter around.

 

Last Week's Chant

All content copyright 1999 Jeremiah Golden or credited authors.