Frightening February Day 26: Potion

#Frightening February
Immortality Potion Number 9
Elixir of Luck
“I just wanted to grow some hair.”

This trope doesn’t come up enough in horror movies, but it might come up in TTRPG use.

We all know the story of how love potions work, especially in horror type situations, right? Obsessed guy goes to creepy witch for a love potion. He manages to give it to girl of his dreams. And then:

Scenario A: She becomes super possessive to the point of murderous rage.
Scenario B: For whatever reason she decides she can never be with him, so she uh, deletes herself. Tragic.
Scenario C: He discovers he gave the potion to the wrong person and it becomes super obsessive and possessive. Passionate to the point of tragedy in dream girl’s life and that of others.

So basically, love potions are right out. What else is there?

Content Warning: Occult, Substance Abuse, Body Horror, Nazi, Gore, Dark Web. 

Plot Idea 1: Immortality Potion Number 9.
Meet LeAnn Ulbrecht, a woman obsessed with staying young and beautiful forever. She had a large cosmetic company built up around the local area. It was a large online mail order business that employed a couple of hundred people. While the company is still running strong, LeAnn is no longer a company figurehead.

LeAnn hired a chemist, Michael Strock, to create a chemical formula that would grant immortality. Strock was more than the average chemist, however. He was more of an alchemist. And unfortunately for LeAnn, he learned of her rather sketchy social and political leanings.

Given that Strock’s family suffered greatly under Hitler during WW2, he wasn’t about to grant immortally to someone with those sketchy political leanings and decided to alter the formula slightly. When LeAnn Ulbrecht drank the final product, she immediately knew something had gone horribly wrong.

LeAnn’s face melted along with the rest of her skin, hair and muscle. She would live forever as a sort of un-dead abomination. She had given most of her assets to Strock who kept demanding more payments and more money as she grew more desperate with every promise of success. Strock laughed as he threw the match that set the lab on fire and walked out that night.

But LeAnn was not about to be done. She hired a new chemist to work off of Strock’s lab notes she managed to salvage from the fire. Wearing a hood and mask, she planned to make a new army of undead beasts just like her. That’s where our Investigators come in.

One of LeAnn’s newest test subjects has managed to escape and is running through the streets begging for help from anyone who will listen. Of course, being an alchemically animated walking corpse makes it a little hard to get medical treatment and no one believes him. The group will probably want to get the situation under control before moving onto the bigger problem posed by LeAnn’s lab experiments.

Plot Idea 2: Elixir of Luck.
Mike Ulbrecht was a down on his luck factory worker before he went to see Ms Leann the Psychic. His tarot reading was a frightful mess, including the Fool and the Death cards. LeAnn had such frightful news, but a solution, too. She sold him an entire case of her Elixir of Luck, which cost him an entire week’s worth of wages.

Mike was told to only drink a little bit at a time for the magic to work. But his fortune reading was so frightfully bad, he drank half of the bottles in one night. The stuff tasted of black licorice and cheap vodka. He wasn’t sure how he was going to get lucky, but he could feel his fortune changing right away. Also, he felt slightly intoxicated.

The next morning, things were looking up. He was on time to work. The floor manager even greeted him on his way in the door. His assignment of the day was in packaging, which everyone knew was a cushy gig. He checked his latest pay stub and there was a $1.30 hourly incentive bonus attached. Rhonda from dispatch slipped a note in his locker with her number on it. Things were great.

After lunch, however, Ms Leann’s predictions started coming true. He discovered the sandwich he ate from the vending machine was over a week expired. His floor manager re-assigned him to trash detail after lunch Things were only worsened when he threw up all over the boss’ desk. On the way out of the parking lot, his car blew a tire. While changing it, the jack slipped and dropped the car on his foot.

After discovering his spare tire was flat and borrowing a doughnut tire from one of the guys, he drove himself to the nearest emergency room only to discover his insurance was declined. Upon arriving at home he discovered his rent check bounced and rent was going up. He called Rhonda only to have her husband answer the phone. Desperate, terrified, and in pain, he puts out a call for help. That’s where the Investigators come in.

Plot Idea 3: “I just wanted to grow hair and cure my baldness.”
Meet Harvey Murray, a single used car salesman in his late 50s. He began going bald at the tender young age of 28 and has tried a myriad of products to cure it. Nothing works, or nothing works for long. In his desperation, he placed several inquiries on social media for help.

An anonymous benefactor from a shadier part of the Interwebs offered Harvey a one-time special cure for only $500. Out of sheer desperation, Harvey paid. A few days later, a test tube full of an oily dark red liquid arrived in the mail. The handwritten label on the vial said, “Drink me.”

The day had finally arrived. He would have hair again. The business would pick up. The girls would call him back. Hair to comb and go to the barber with. It was all finally real! Harvey eagerly popped the cork and consumed the contents of the vial. He could have never predicted what happened next.

Harvey flopped to the floor as if an unseen force had thrown him down. He twitched and shuddered as handfuls of thick, dark, red hair sprouted from every part of his body imaginable. He cried out in agony as his limbs began to extend while his finger and toenails grew excessively. When the changes finally stopped, he stood up and carefully stumbled to the bathroom.

He looked in the mirror, sobbing in shock. No tears came out. He parted all of his head/face hair and looked in the mirror. His eyes were sunken deep into his transfigured skull. His teeth were now sharp, pointed fangs in what appeared to be his large skull with hair growing from every pore in his face. Growling with dismay, he hobbled into the kitchen and grabbed a cleaver.

He hacked his new, thicker, almost bony toenails and fingernails off to a functional length. His hands were no longer recognizable as human, looking more like long, bony, hairy claws. He couldn’t even open his lock screen on this iPhone to call for help. What would he even say?

Gossamer, c/o Looney Tones on Pintrest.

Unfortunately, his new hair made the decision for him. It stood him up, almost as if every hair were a strand of powerful muscle. Harvey had become a prisoner inside an 8 1/2 foot tall snarling monster. He burst through the door of his apartment and began a murderous rampage through his building.

Can he be cured? Can the group get to him in time to stop a massacre? What will stop him or even slow him down? Who sold him the stuff? Will it happen again?

Be careful what you buy from the shadier portion of the Internet, my friends. Thanks for stopping by. Hope you had fun. See you tomorrow.

Author: Jeff Craigmile

I'm a tabletop role-playing game writer and designer from Des Moines, Iowa. I'm the father of four boys and human to three cats.

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