This “article” was originally sent to a friend as a sort of holiday card accompanying — what else — a batch of gingersnaps. We decided to post them as they’re rather amusing, and the occasional very rare batch of gingersnaps might wreak some unusual havoc in your HackMaster campaign. Note that the art of creating magical gingersnaps is a rare and poorly-understood thing. Much can go wrong with it…
by Perkysmack Moonkiss
Translated and Annotated by Heather Grove and Jeffrey Howard
When people think of consumable magic, they think of potions. I, however, have created something new and entirely different: magical gingersnaps. Through my genius a young, impressionable pixie fairy was turned into a powerful berserker, capable of dispatching trash ogres without breaking a sweat.
[NOTE: later texts indicate that this was Bittersnap Moonkiss, Perkysmack’s niece. No tales indicate what ultimately became of her, but most accounts describe her as “crazed” and “vacant.” This could have been a side effect of Perkysmack’s methods, so we present them here only for the edification of modern wizards — not as recommended practice.]
Without further ado I present you with some of my more promising batches of cookies. Err, magical research. Most of these gingersnaps come in batches [10d10 cookies per batch], and must be stored in airtight containers in order to retain their efficacy for more than one week. When an entire batch must be eaten in order to gain a certain effect, it must be eaten in one sitting.
Gingersnaps of Healing: These gingersnaps help to restore a good pixie fairy’s health after hard times. [Each gingersnap restores 1d4-1 hit points.]
Gingersnaps of Infinite Consumption: An infinite bag of nourishing gingersnaps.
Gingersnaps of Infinite Consumption, Cursed: Like a cursed weapon, this bag will always come to the hand of the poor sap who first used it whenever he wants to eat. If he lifts a leg of lamb to his mouth, he will find himself crunching gingersnaps instead. No matter what he does he will only be able to eat gingersnaps [NOTE: It’s even worse than it sounds. While the victim of this curse can only eat gingersnaps, he can only drink milk. What a blow to an adventurer’s image!]
Gingersnaps of Intestinal Fortitude: One of these gingersnaps eaten with or after a meal will help to combat any digestive discomfort arising from overeating, natural intestinal problems, or tainted food. (The cookies do not neutralize poison. If someone eats an entire batch at once they gain one point of Constitution, permanently. If they eat more than one at a time but less than the batch, they lose one point of Comeliness due to developing skin problems.)
Gingersnaps of Map Sense: These gingersnaps come in batches. You can use them like markers, leaving a trail by which you can find your way out of the worst maze of passages. As long as you pick them up on your way out and put them back in the bag they came in, they’re re-usable. [They are guaranteed to remain where they were put, untouched, for 2d6 days. During that time only the person holding the pouch they came in can see them, smell them or pick them up again.]
Gingersnaps of Map Sense, Cursed (Also known as Gingersnaps of the Lost Child): These look like Gingersnaps of Map Sense in all respects. However, within a short time of being placed they attract vermin, which will eat the cookies. [Within 2d10 rounds any vermin in the area will be attracted to the cookies. They will also be attracted to the adventurer with the bag, as his hands smell like gingersnaps.]
Gingersnaps of Masonry: These gingersnaps are so solid and weather-proof that they can be used as long-lasting building material. [NOTE: We do not recommend eating them.]
Gingersnaps of Preservation: Everyone has heard of the legendary preserving power of spices. Well, put one of these gingersnaps into a bag or barrel of food, and that food will remain fresh and safe far beyond its usual time! [The effect lasts for 4d8 weeks. If someone tries to eat the cookie after this time, it will make them sick.]
Gingersnaps of Strength: Eating a full batch of these cookies will fortify a man, perhaps increasing his strength even beyond what one would think possible. [Strength +1, permanently. If the person does not eat the entire batch of cookies he loses one point of Intelligence instead. Some batches tainted with an excess of cinnamon can cause the loss of both Intelligence and Wisdom if the entire batch is not eaten.]
Gingersnaps of Toxic Vengeance: These gingersnaps cause agonizing intestinal pain, vomiting, and heartburn [for 1d4 days].
Pixie Fairy Way-Gingersnaps: One gingersnap fills the stomach of a grown pixie fairy for a day, with adequate nourishment for a busy traveler.
Sling-Bullet Gingersnaps +1: These gingersnaps can be used as highly effective sling bullets. Not only do they do damage as a normal sling bullet +1, but they cause pain and burning around the wound. [If the victim does not save vs. paralyzation he will be unable to cast spells or do anything else that requires concentration. Lasts 1d6 rounds.] [NOTE: Again we do not recommend eating these. They might break your teeth. (Firkin’ ding blast!)]
Wuss-of-Heart Gingersnaps: These gingersnaps were created for cretins who can’t take the full heat of ginger in a real gingersnap. They’re effectively sugar cookies. [They convey the Wuss-of-Heart flaw for 1d4 days.]
Creating magical gingersnaps is a tricky process. I recommend trying them out on friends and family until you perfect the process. You may run out of friends and family, of course, in which case you can move on to co-workers and apprentices. [NOTE: This could explain why no descendants of Perkysmack’s village survive into the present day…]