You're Fucking Doomed...
Think of this article as a suggestion for a new way of implementing traps. Nasty, messed up traps. These are lingering pitfalls for those not wary or cautious enough and the trap follows you around once you've sprung it. Over time it just continues to get worse...and it spreads, It spreads DOOM! Doom All Over The World!
As for the prudes out there, who stumbled on to this blog by accident: including venereal diseases both real and horrifically imaginary shouldn't be viewed as offensive, humiliating, or intentionally provocative. It's intended to simply add a greater depth of adult quality to PC conduct....even though some body out there is gonna snicker and find it fucking hilarious when someone's sex organ unexpectedly balloons, then spontaneously combusts. Sorry.
The following tables and descriptions can be used to introduce various venereal diseases discreetly into your campaign. Some are relatively real, while others are just horrific fictions. Also included are 'possible' cures and a few ideas for prevention, again, some real ones based on medieval history, and others just pure fantasy.
Lucky Sex Roll:
If a PC is in a tavern or another situation where a Judge decides
there's potential for sexual contact, roll a D6.
1 - 4 = No
5 - 6 = Yes
Modifiers to the Lucky Sex Roll:
+1 for each of the following:
High charisma, lotsa luck, exceptional wealth, moderately drunk
(Roll D4 for state of drunkenness, moderately drunk = 1 on a D4)
-1 for the following:
Low charisma, crappy luck, completely shit faced drunk (a 4 on a D4), piss poor
If yes then roll D6 to determine if infected:
1 - 3 = No infection
4 - 6 = Infectious disease contracted
Sexually Transmitted Disease Random Table - D20:
1 + 2 Syphilis
3 + 4: Gonorrhea
5 + 6: Herpes
7 - 9: Pubic Lice
10: Genital Warts
11: Withering Black
12:Sexually Transmitted Brain Parasites
13: Festering Goat Crotch Rash
14: Venereal Maggots
15: Urethra Eating Bacterium
16: The Grandgore
17: Flaming Lion
18: Putrid Pips
16: Fungal Urethral Tumors
Descriptions and Treatments:
Symptoms - Within 2 weeks a small, itchy sore will develop on area of contact. 3 weeks later a rash of reddish brown sores develops in the mouth, genitals and/or anus. Other symptoms include fatigue, fever, headache, hair loss. 1 week later brown spots develop on palms of hand and bottom of feet becoming increasingly painful every day. Within 2 weeks PC can not walk on own feet unassisted due to pain. 6 months after contact sever ulcers will form over the body. Ulcers are noticeably eating away the lips, nose, tongue, ears, genitals and fingers. Also the infected will develop symptoms such as paralysis, blindness and dementia at this time. Internal organs begin to break down resulting in death.
Treatment - Mercury ointment offers relief from skin lesions. While not a treatment, infected males may be subjected to a procedure called the 'bull roarer' which is a barbed catheter that is inserted into the tip of the penis and up the urethra, then quickly yanked back out, all without anesthesia. The purpose is to prevent the spread of the disease by destroying the penis.
A Witch may have a spell infused tea and ointment that will help reduce symptoms. A Witch's cure will come at an incredible expense, most likely a quest for an eldritch occult item, rare ingredient, or another dangerous mission. There's it's 50% chance that it won't work. Other healing magick can be effective.
GonorrheaSymptoms - Within 2 weeks of contact one develops anal itch, burning, bleeding., and a yellow, green discharge from genitals. Pain when urinating. Males will experience swollen testicles while females will experience extreme bleeding between periods. Sore infected throat will develop if oral sex was point of contact. Within 3 months of contact urinating will become difficult due to formation of scar tissue in urethra and on genitals. Joints will also begin to painfully swell. Within 6 months of contact the body will be over run by a systemic infection that develops into sepsis.Sores and warts will have covered the back and genitals and will begin spreading onto the face and extremities. Death is likely after one year of initial infection.
As the disease progresses the PC's ability scores will diminish permanently at the rate of 1 point per month for the first 3 months, 1.5 points per month thereafter.
Treatment - A metal catheter is inserted into the urinary tract to remove the blockage and then mercury is squirted into the opening. A mixture of pepper, balsam and other ingredients is used for relief of urinary discharge.
A Witch may have an ointment available that can cure the infected. A Witch's cure will come at an incredible expense, most likely a quest for an eldritch occult item, rare ingredient, or another dangerous mission. Healing magick can cure the disease.
Herpes (aka, Cankers, Loin Pimples)Symptoms - Painful blisters on the lips and genitals. Infected feels sick and fatigued during outbreaks that can last up to one month. Unpredictable periodic recurrence.
Strength and constitution are affected by -2 during outbreaks. Especially bad outbreaks of sores will hamper the PCs ability scores even more significantly..
Treatment - Treatment usually involves cauterizing cankers and blisters with hot irons. Sometimes leeches will be employed to suck out bad blood. Neither treatment does anything to cure the disease.
A Witch may have a healing balm that relieves symptoms and/or prevents scarring from blisters. The disease can never be cured except through healing magick.
Pubic Lice (aka, The Nittys)Symptoms - Tiny insects that infest animal bodies nesting in hair covered areas on which they also lay their eggs. They bite the host to feed on it's blood. The biting causes a severe rash and burning itch. Left untreated they will cover the hosts body with bites which can become severely infected.
Because of the distraction presented by the lice infestation, -1 to infected PC's ability scores. Close contact can infect other party members with lice.
Treatment - Local customs dictate how to handle pubic lice. Special combs to remove lice and eggs are available. Salves to apply to hair that suffocate the bugs exist. Simply shaving the pubes is the most common means of eradicating the nits from one's nether region. Although, some local governments worried about the spread of disease carrying lice insist the pubic hair be removed by fire. This involves holding the infested carrier down, dowsing their pubes and head with kerosene and igniting the areas, then quickly extinguishing the fire. They also confiscate and burn all of the infected's clothes....ALL of their clothes. Leaving the poor souls to wander around naked with 3rd degree burns.
Symptoms - Warts begin to develop at the point of sexual contact within 2 weeks. Warts can grow to the size of a fist within 6 months. Warts look like knotted, bumpy, pointed wart covered, cauliflower-like, hardened lumps on the genitals, anus, or mouth. They are not painful but if multiple warts of larger sizes develop together, they can severely restrict movement. Number, of warts can be determined on a D6. Size can be determined with a D8: 1- almost not visible. 2 - pimple sized, 3 - 1/2 inch, 4 - 1 inch, 5 - 2 inches, 6 - 3 inches, 7 - 4 inches, 8 - ignore any previous rolls, each wart is shaped like a 3 inch sharp spike.
Treatment - Cauterizing warts with a hot iron, or lancing them off with a hot knife are the only options for removal. Risk of infection or bleeding to death is high.
Withering BlackSymptoms - Painful urination begins within 1 day of sexual contact. The genitals begin turning grey in color within 5 days and turn black 1 week after. Blackened flakes of skin then start peeling off and the genitals stop functioning. Within 1 month of the start of the blackening, the genitals become dry and brittle and can crack and snap off in chunks.If left untreated the Black Withering will spread over the entire body. Death from a bladder burst causing the body to go into toxic shock will happen before it can spread over the entire body.
Strength, dexterity and constitution decrease -2 second week, then an additional -1 every other week there after.
Treatment - The infected genitals must be removed before the black withering spreads. For that reason, pretty much everyone who contracts it, dies. The disease spreads very slowly through the population due to how quickly offending symptoms occur. Obtaining a cure from a Witch is unlikely since the disease is virtually systemic by the time any alarming symptoms appear.
Sexually Transmitted Brain Parasites (aka, Brain Worms)
Symptoms - Without sewer systems in the cities, many citizens publicly stoop over the drainage ditches that run through the city street and excrete there. Disease and pestilence are bred in these open sewers. Brain parasites have evolved into needle thin long worms that slide up exposed rectums when people are crapping in the open sewers. Once inside a host's body the female worm lays her eggs which eventually circulate through the blood stream and get deposited in the host's brain where the larva devour the brain. The worms can also be transmitted during anal intercourse and anal oral sex.
Treatment - Some have bred Black Rat Snakes and raised them from birth on a diet of adult male Brain Parasite Worms. If the infection is established within a day or 2 the snake can be inserted in the rectum head first up to about 1 - 2 feet of the snake's body length. The snake should be able to find and devour the worm.
Another more common treatment of a clyster (a funnel inserted in the rectum and a liquid poured in) of melted wax is used if caught within 1 or 2 days. Wax hardens encasing the worm then it is extracted. Otherwise, a funnel is placed in the rectum and thick black smoke is blown into it, intended to smoke out the parasite. If this doesn't work trepanning (opening the skull of a conscious patient) once brain is infected, with the intent of pulling parasite worms out of the skull.
Festering Goat Crotch Rash
Symptoms - A multitude of different bacteriums can cause this condition. The most predominant bacteria of this malady comes from goat feces. Goat herders introduced this disease into society during ancient times. The disease creates a genital rash within 2 weeks, but quickly becomes painful, open weeping sores (about 3 weeks). Left untreated the sores will become ulcers and abscess causing infection and ultimately, death (6 months to 1 year).
Initially -1 to dexterity, strength and constitution.
Treatment - Washing immediately after contact helps. Once the disease is established skin scraping is the most effective measures to slow it's spread. Care must be taken not to break the skin during daily scrapings, if skin is broken internal infection occurs. Internal infection must be handled like any other blood infection...usually blood letting by leeches.
Symptoms - Venereal maggots live on the hosts testicles or ovaries. Hormones released by the hosts body prior to sex makes the maggots release eggs into the sex organ of the host, thereby transmitting the infection from one to another. Venereal maggots release a hormone that interacts with human bodies much like endorphin. So being infected actually makes a person feel better, healthier, more vibrant. This is an addictive chemical which, for the infected, becomes associated with sex. The host becomes a sexually obsessed beast spreading venereal maggots profusely. There are no ill health side affects to this parasite. The maggots maintain small colonies in the host body living off an insignificant quantity of blood. The only danger is the addictive obsessive sex demanded by the infected. Many wind up in prison after attempting rape, or murdered by jealous spouses.
+1 to strength and constitution.
Treatment - No treatment exists.
Urethra Eating Bacterium (aka, Bull Roarer)
-1 to strength and constitution.
Treatment - the first stage of treatment is inject Mercury into the genital glands and fill the urinary tract with mercury, holding it there for 2 hours. Once the mercury is drained out a tincture made of witchgrass, garlic, ginger, and canker root is injected into the urinary tract. This actually DOES kill the disease, IF it is done daily for 2 weeks.
-3 to dexterity.
Treatment - Amputation of affected areas is tremendously more painful than the disease itself and often does not extend the life of the affected much longer than if left untreated. Additionally, the inability to work and be self supporting post amputation deters many people from choosing treatment.
Flaming Lion (Aka, the Devil's Breath)
Symptoms - The Flaming Lion manifests as red, fevered and blistered skin. It is Sensitive to the touch. As the disease progresses it is often described as feeling as though the genitals are on fire. The flare up can last up to 2 weeks. The affected is usually unable to perform any functions during this time. This condition comes and goes just like herpes. Sometimes dormant for years.
Strength and constitution are affected by -2 during outbreaks. Especially bad outbreaks of sores will hamper the PCs ability scores even more significantly.Treatment - Typically the symptoms of this condition are treated with cold water baths. This is an issue in towns and villages due to the fear of an infected individual could infect the town's well, streams, ponds or lakes by bathing in them for symptom relief. Those infected are often jailed during flare ups, banished from civilized areas or burned at the stake. Compassionate Apothecaries sometimes administer a clyster of boar's bile, urine, ginger garlic, and witchgrass. This seems to offer a slight relief to the symptoms.
Putrid Pips (aka, Fuck Pox)
Minus Fucking everything to all of the affected PC's ability scores, or, whatever the hell you want to do 'cause they are doomed.
Treatment - If the disease is diagnosed early a combination of blood letting and a corrosive bath are usually employed.The corrosive bath is essentially a weak 'acid bath' that burns a few layers of skin from the entire body. The infected sits in this bath for a few painful hours and is then rinsed off and dried. This has only a temporary affect on the pips and pus. If the blood letting and acid bath are repeated more than twice, death usually occurs. If the affected is banished from civilization to live in the woods and is able to survive on their own, they will usually appear to be cured of the disease in 6 months to a year. Unfortunately, the disease lays dormant in the system and can pop up again every 2 years or so. The face and body of the 'cured' are usually so disfigured from scarring caused by the pips that integrating back into society during the dormant period is nearly impossible.
Symptoms - A rapidly growing fungal infection that colonizes in the the urinary tract. The fungus quickly grows in spongy balls attached to the urethra wall. This clogs the urinary tract within 2 - 3 weeks. Fungal tumors left untreated will swell a penis to the point of ripping open. In women the fungus typically colonizes in the bladder. Left untreated the bladder will burst causing death.
-2 constitution once clogging begins.
Treatment - A tiny corkscrew shaped auger is used to reach down through the urethra and bore into fungal tumors which are then extracted. Painful? OMG, YES!! Effective?...only temporarily. The fungus will eventually grow back in 2/3 of the time it took the initial infection took to show up.
Petrification (aka, Dead Woods)
-2 strength, dexterity and constitution at 1 month. Additional -1 each month thereafter.
Treatment - Removal of affected flesh is necessary. Often the afflicted will postpone seeking treatment until the entire member is affected and must be removed (male), entire uterus removed (women) usually resulting in death.
Goat's Bladder - Female CondomA goat's bladder may be used as a female condom. This item can be created by PC if a goat is available or purchased from a local Witch.
Lamb's Intestine - Male Condom.A lamb's intestine may be used for a male condom. This item can be home made or is often available at a Tavern, Inn, Butcher or Apothecary Shop. Taverns often have a large jar of lamb intestine in fluid behind the bar. Sections are cut off, the end knotted and sold as needed.
Magick Cast for Sexual Protection:
Talismans may be a magickal aid for sexual protection - The preserved sexual organ of a deceased family member who was sexually healthy at the time of death is sometimes employed as a talisman against STDs. Worn on a silver chain around the neck after being blessed by a Priest, or in some societies the local Coven's High Priestess or another powerful and respected Witch. This practice has led to numerous grave robberies where only the sex organ of the deceased has been stolen.
-1 to infection roll for each talisman worn, up to a total of 3 talismans.
Local Witches: Their cures and protections - Obtaining a cure or protective support from a Witch or a Coven depends on a couple of variables. First, if this is the PCs local town, then what is the local's attitude towards the Craft? If it is positive, then there is no problem securing a Witch's help. If it's antagonistic towards Witchcraft then, unless the PC has an established affiliation with the Witch or Coven, finding help will be difficult.
Second, solo Witches, especially those in hiding, may just be batshit crazy folk with no authentic knowledge of the Craft, nor powers. Securing protection or a cure may not just be ineffective, it could potentially making a bigger mess of the situation...even causing death.
Witches protection may include consecration of the talisman mentioned above, herbal ointments that can be applied before and after for protection, incantations to be mentally repeated during the act, and other herbal and spell related protections.
Disease banishment is a rare art. Judges may make this option available to their PCs at their own peril. Perhaps we can cover it at another time when the moon is in the proper alignment.
So how the fuck would you use this?
A player does not need to announce they intend on 'getting with' anyone. You're the Judge. You can use your own discretion concerning whether or not a PC might engage in sexual coupling under certain circumstances. The following is a list of situations that may result in 'Ba-Da-Bing', i.e., coitus. You can either offer the possibility of being involved, or you can assume a consensual encounter happened THEN inform the player.
Note: This is NOT intended to be a random encounter table.
1) Your in a tavern with tons of cash. You drank too much, or did too many drugs and did not have full control of your actions.
2) You are attempting to gain info from a very charismatic / very persuasive / very enchanting NPC whom is obviously sexually attracted to you.
3) You are engaged in an exchange of sex for drugs or cash.
4) You are participating in your cult or coven's ritual magick ceremony involving sex.
5) You have hired a prostitute.
Generally speaking, good advice to follow is: Use a properly knotted lamb's intestine and see your Barber if anything looks suspicious and needs to be surgically removed..
I searched online for articles about how others may have used venereal diseases in RPG settings but turned up nada. I do know Alex Clements has written an article on lingering disease for The Undercroft, a LotFP fanzine, and he included venereal diseases among others in that article. I'm looking forward to receiving my print copy of that for a review later on. The Undercroft is available from: http://www.whatwouldconando.blogspot.com/
*The photo accompanying this article is of the Dragon King miniature from the game, Kingdom Death: Monster, created and produced by Adam Poots. The quote comes from a comment Adam made on the KD:M Kickstarter comment board.