Here’s another bit about the setting of Tapestry:
In working out the historical background for the current campaign, I wanted magic to play a role. So I came up with a specific magical feat: The making of a set of magical rings, one for each of the sapient races. The basic idea was that a brilliant dwarf craftsman, but one who was an only son and therefore handicapped in accumulating enough wealth to prove his worth as a potential husband, went on a long quest to gain wealth through selling his skills to non-dwarves; and in the process he discovered the principle that different metals corresponded to different races, and being a little obsessive (not uncommon in dwarves), ended up making one ring for every race.
In GURPS terms, these rings are Gadgets, with different Gadget modifiers based on the DR of their materials. Each ring grants powers suited to (a) the symbolism of its metal, (b) the favored habitat of its wearer, © the natural qualities of its wearer’s race, and (d) the individual interests of its wearer. So I have the following:
Nixies have the Ring of Mercury, which grants enhanced mobility in water, enhanced bodily flexibility, and enhanced mental and cultural adaptibility. It’s been passed down in a successful mercantile family of the largest nixie city.
Elves have the Ring of Gold, which grants longevity, resistance to disease and corruption, and skill in biological manipulation. It’s still held by the original owner, an elder stateself in the emerging elven empire of the north.
Trolls have the Ring of Lead, which gives endurance of cold and darkness and ability to call on the great spirits of arctic lands. It’s been passed down in the lineage of the Winter Queen. Given troll reliance on memory, it hasn’t been used very innovatively, but the current Winter Queen is changing this, working to alter the climate on a large scale and give herself a land where it’s always winter and never Christmas, as it were.
Selkies have the Ring of Silver, which allows them to navigate the rough seas of the outer ocean, and let its original owner found a pirate empire.
Men have the Ring of Copper, which grants improved running or horsemanship, skill in battle, and above all charisma. One of its wearers led his plains nomad clan in conquering a nixie city, now called Urbs Hominorum. It’s now worn by his granddaughter, who has ambitions of her own toward further conquests.
Dwarves have the Ring of Tin, which increases craft skills and can be used to produce superior materials. Its maker offered it to his intended bride when he returned, and they went on to develop such products as porcelain and blown glass, whose secrets she shared with several daughters, enabling them to form advantageous marriages in turn. (I haven’t worked out the details of how this fits into the system of seven endogamous clans—earth, sand/glass, clay/pottery, stone, gems, metal, dwarf—that that culture is based on.) Dwarves are the most introverted of the races, seeking not to conquer anything but to mine deeper and manufacture better products; but their products are major trade goods.
Ghouls, finally, got the Ring of Iron, made from a piece of rare meteoric iron. It confers ferocity, high pain threshold, and command of fire. It was stolen by one of the player characters a number of years back, and then passed on to a different ghoul matrilineage, whose leader is now carrying on a campaign of firestick farming at the edges of the adjacent elven lands.
At this point I haven’t tried to write up any of the Rings as a Gadget; I’m treating them narrativistically. But conceivably I might have to if the players ever get their hands on one, or meet its owner. So far their characters know about the Rings of Mercury, Lead, Silver, Copper, and Iron, though they’ve only heard of the Ring of Mercury as a figure of speech in nixie songs. They don’t seem to have gotten the idea of the seven classical metals being involved, or thought of asking what the elves and dwarves got—which is all part of “player characters aren’t good at riddles.”