Doc Tempest VS The Killer Cloud

…From the March, 1953 issue

The Doclopedia #510

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Snowballs

What good is a ring that can shoot out fist sized snowballs 30 feet, you ask? Well, they are good for putting out fires, distracting fire based monsters, cooling you off in hot climates or just as a source for meltable snow to provide you with water.

What it looks like: Crystal ring etched with snowflake designs.

The Doclopedia #511

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Facial Hair

If you need a quick shave or a quick disguise, this is the ring for you! At your command, it will adjust the length, color and amount of your facial hair. Go from clean shaven to a long grey beard in the blink of an eye. Don’t like grey? Make it black, brown, blond, red…whichever natural colors you do like. This ring will also work on women, although in most cases, their facial hair will be much softer than a man would have.

What it looks like: Woven from assorted colors of human hair, then lacquered until hard.

The Doclopedia #512

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Refreshment

This ring is simple: It can store up to a gallon of any single type of beverage, which will maintain the exact temperature it was at when poured into the ring. True, ale is the most popular beverage poured into the ring, but you can have milk, wine, brandy, fruit juice…even water.

What it looks like: Gold and silver ring with cups and glasses engraved on it and a pitcher on the front.

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Not In This Issue: Corrupt Politicians, Quilting Patterns Or Cole Slaw Recipes

…sorry, quilters

The Doclopedia #508

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Bathroom Quickness

It never fails: there you are, in the dungeon, and you need to answer the call of nature. Not too difficult to do if you’re a guy just taking a leak…unless you’re all suited up in armor. And no matter your sex or what you’re wearing, if you have to take a dump, things get bothersome and potentially dangerous, because you just know that right in the middle of things is when that roaming monster is going to show up.

But, with a Ring of Bathroom Quickness, you can do everything from start to finish at 20 times normal speed! From unbuckling your belt to pulling up your pants can take just a few seconds of time as far as the outside world is concerned, but for you, things move at the normal speed. Get done doing your business and then get back to exploring! Please note that the ring cannot be fooled, so don’t even try to use it for speedy movement at other times.

What it looks like: Ivory ring with three tiny rubies set in a triangle.

The Doclopedia #509

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Food Seasoning

Typical rations for any party of adventurers generally taste like crap. Even if you’re out doors and can catch some fish or hunt some game, there usually isn’t much in the way of seasoning. Fortunately, this ring will season everything you eat so as to make it taste great. Big chunk of jerky and some hard as hell biscuit for dinner in the dungeon? The Ring of Food Seasoning will have that jerky tasting spicy and that biscuit sweat and buttery. Of course, the texture doesn’t change, but it will taste so good, you won’t care!

What it looks like: Silver ring, engraved with runes and images of food.

No Devils Here!

…despite the rumors you’ve heard.

Today, we start a new theme on the Doclopedia: Sort Of Cool Magical Rings. You know, rings that do fairly useful stuff, but aren’t in the same class as the One Ring or a Ring of Fireballs.

The Doclopedia #506

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Clean Feet

This wonderful ring will ensure that no matter have far you walk, no matter what you walk through and no matter what sort of footwear you wear, your feet will always be dry, clean and nice smelling. Believe us, at the end of a day looting a dungeon or tramping around a big city or walking into the home country of some Dark Lord, you’ll appreciate having nice clean feet. For that matter, your traveling companions will appreciate it even more.

What it looks like: Gold & onyx ring with a foot symbol engraved on it.

The Doclopedia #507

Sort Of Cool Magical Rings: Ring of Simple Juggling

Even if you have no talent as a juggler, this ring will allows you to juggle three ordinary objects perfectly. Please note that swords, hand grenades, cats and watermelons are not “ordinary objects”. Also, juggling perfectly means no fancy tricks and no partners.

What it looks like: Braided copper wire with an opal set in it.

Communist Squirrels Scandalized My Basset Hound

…and she is not easily scandalized

The Doclopedia #503

The Potawango Island Bestiary, Part One: Flower Headed Land Jellyfish

From the notebook of Dr. Thaddeus Silkmelon:

This island is full to overflowing with rare and beautiful creatures, but today we were privileged to view one of the rarest and most beautiful. The Flower Headed Land Jellyfish is rarely seen even by the natives, since it usually stays in the forests of the interior. Measuring from 3 to 6 feet across and 6 to 10 inches thick, this creature floats along a few dozen feet above the ground with its long string like tentacles hanging below it. The “head” does indeed look like a huge flower made up of translucent petals with an opalescent sheen. In general, it eats flying insects, but will also devour any small bird or bat that is unlucky enough to get caught in those tentacles. It is said that the creatures poison will paralyze a small bird in seconds.

At first, the one we saw was merely floating with the breeze, but as the wind picked up, it altered it’s course by using the petals as sails until it was running across the wind and then into the forest. My, what a wonderful creature!

The Doclopedia #504

The Potawango Island Bestiary, Part One: Variegated Marching Roses

From the notebook of Dr. Thaddeus Silkmelon:

Potawango Island is a place where the line between plant and animal is often blurred and this morning, we observed a sterling example of that. It was just after breakfast and I was taking a post meal stroll with Abner, Miss Abigail, Pagoona and Percy. We had just crested a small rise when we saw the most beautiful group of rosebushes lit up by the morning sun. They were of the variegated type of rose, in this case bright yellow flowers were streaked with crimson. Abner had just begun to explain that these were a floribunda variety when the lot of them began to move. As you might expect, this stopped all conversation.

Below us, 36 rosebushes slowly marched by in 6 rows of 6. The movement was in perfect cadence and they seemed to be heading towards a small pond in the distance. I asked Pagoona about them and he said that he had only heard of them in legend. As the story goes, groups of these roses will march to good soil or a water source, then stay there for a day or two. After that, they are on the march again. Sometimes, or so the legend goes, great numbers of them will gather together and march past one another for days. Nobody is sure why this happens.

And to think that our day has barely begun!

The Doclopedia #505

The Potawango Island Bestiary, Part One: Butterfly Winged Skunk

From the notebook of Dr. Thaddeus Silkmelon:

Our activities for the day have been brought to an abrupt and odoriferous halt. As I write this, most of our party are nude and covered in a paste made of various plant extracts that Pagoona has kindly provided. Our clothing is being burned.

We encountered a skunk.

But not just any skunk, oh no, for this one can fly about using large butterfly type wings.

We were just returning to our base camp from an afternoon of collecting insect specimens, when we noticed what we at first took to be a huge butterfly near the kitchen area used by Mrs. Hardapple. The wings were huge, easily 4 feet from top to bottom and half that in width. The coloring was not unlike that of a Tiger Swallowtail, vivid yellow with black veining. I was beside myself with joy and had the others start circling around it with the mist net we had brought for collecting bird specimens.

We were just about to throw the net when, fortunately for our food stores, the “butterfly” moved quickly to a small bush some 20 feet away. It was not until we were all rushing it that I noticed that the body of the creature was that of a skunk, not any species of butterfly. Alas, it was too late, we were upon the poor beast and it did what all skunks do when threatened.

I do not know in which direction it fled, because I was too busy choking and gagging. I do know that Colonel Orpington possesses an unparalleled knowledge of curse words and Miss Abigail is not far behind on that count. Fortunately for us, Mrs. Hardapple, Pagoona, most of the natives, Percy and Fanny were spared the skunking. As for the rest of us, I can only hope that our foul perfumage does not frighten off the animals we came here to see.

Baking Bread On Mars

…it really rises well there.

The Doclopedia #502

The Potawango Island Bestiary, Part One: Vampire Ducks

From the notebook of Dr. Thaddeus Silkmelon:

There exists on this incredible island a creature that is strange even by the standards we find here. When I first heard of it, I scoffed at the idea. Too ridiculous, I said to our native guides. Surely it must be a creature created solely to frighten naughty children. But I was quite wrong in my assumptions.

Vampire Ducks do indeed exist.

Late last night Pagoona, our head guide, took me too a clearing in the Great Woods where a heard of Cerulean Wombats had bed down for the night. Within minutes of our arrival, we saw about a dozen black and red feathered ducks emerge from the forest. This variety of ducks was of the upright standing nature that one finds in the common Indian Runner breed. However, no Indian Runner ever had those red glowing eyes or that beak tipped with two small razor sharp fangs. I must say that I am very glad that Abner Porkwaffle was not with us, as I am very sure this would have caused him to have a bad attack of nerves.

We watched in fascination as each duck slowly crept up to a sleeping wombat (which, I might note, outweighs even the largest Vampire Duck by 250 pounds or more) and gently nipped it on the ear or ankle. Then, the ducks lapped at the blood until their stomachs bulged. I would guess they drank perhaps a pint and a half, on average. When they finished, the ducks walked back into the forest with Pagoona and I following from a discreet distance.

Pagoona whispered to me that the Vampire Ducks fed on many large quadrupedal herbivores, but never on carnivores or humans. They also seldom fed on the same creatures more than twice in a week. So far as Pagoona knew, Vampire Ducks have no natural predators. He knew nothing of their reproductive habits.

We followed the ducks to a large hollow tree with a crack on it just large enough for each duck to squeeze through. They all entered the tree and Pagoona told me that we must wait for sunrise before proceeding further.

Come the rising sun, we ventured over to the tree and Pagoona reached in and pulled out a duck. He kept it in the shade, saying that the sunlight bothered them, though it would not kill them. Naturally, the first thing I did was to confirm that these ducks were indeed living creatures, not some form of undead as the legends about vampires state. The heart was beating, albeit quite slowly, and there was a pulse. The body temperature seemed a bit low and the duck was in a deep state of slumber. I took a blood and feather sample, then we replaced the strange fowl into his bedchamber.

I have made up my mind that before I leave this island, I shall learn much more about these Vampire Ducks, including where how and when they breed.

We Support Gay Abortions!

…Huh?

The Doclopedia #501

The Potawango Island Bestiary, Part One: Farting Marmosets

From the notebook of Dr. Thaddeus Silkmelon:

As we walked through the jungle today, we disturbed a rather large colony of small Marmosets. These beautiful little creatures were a soft grey color with white paws and a while chest and stomach. They could not have been more than 6 inches long, with slender tails of equal length.

They soon realized we were not a threat, and so resumed their hunt for fruit and insects. However, when Percy, my dog, rejoined us after having stopped to answer nature’s call, the Marmosets reacted in a wholly unexpected manner: they began to fart.

Now, one or two of these creatures passing gas would have had little or no effect, but having nearly 50 of them doing it all at once was indeed an unpleasant situation. Soon, we were all gagging, choking and retreating. Even Percy, who is not one easily deterred by foul odors, left the area.

When I pursue further study of these creatures, I shall wear a proper gas mask.

The East Pidwin Fish Watchers Journal

…with a circulation of over 40!

The Doclopedia #500

Five Hundredth Entry: Alternate Doclopedias

Since the very essence of our Doclopedia is covering subjects from many alternate universes, it stands to reason there should be other Doclopedias. Here are a few of them.

The Doc Doclopedia: This version covers only those people of interest who use the nickname “Doc”. Since it comes from a world where pulp type heroes are still going strong in the 21st century, there are a bunch of entries.

The Dark Doclopedia: This one has only entries of the foulest, most malign sort. The Doc Cross who created is a well known worshiper of Elder Gods and other strange beings. If you were to read even a small part of it, you would go quite insane.

The Erotic Doclopedia: The Doc who wrote this one decided to look only at sexual practices across the multiverse. It’s a real eye opener, you bet. Did you know that Klingons have no term for “rough sex”?

The Feminine Doclopedia: There are, of course, female versions of Doc Cross. Most of them are quite homely and all of them are a bit mental, but one has written a very interesting version of the Doclopedia, with a point of view as feminine as this one is masculine.

The Doc Cross Doclopedia: Yeah, you guessed it, this one is just about the various iterations of Your Humble Narrator. Not quite as mind roasting as the Dark Doclopedia, nor as hormone stimulating as the Erotic Doclopedia, it is nonetheless suggested for readers over the age of 40.

The Dog Doclopedia: As we’ve seen in our Doclopedia, there are countless worlds where dogs and/or cats rule the roost. On at least one of them, there is a canine version of Doc Cross. His Doclopedia is written from a decidedly doggish point of view.

The Dociverse Doclopedia: In the universe where Doc is the big deity on the block (hey, DOCiverse?), they call this book “The Holy Bible”. Every religion uses it, because there are no Non-Docian religions. Doc don’t play that game.