Blueprints of the Emperor Machine
In appearance the blueprints seem to be just a short stack of dusty faded papers. Even under casual magical scrutiny they appear entirely mundane. It is only when the ideas within them are explored that the enchantment becomes apparent.
Back when Detroit’s Hedge was asphalt, broken glass and jagged bits of metal, a Keeper called the Emperor Machine claimed it as his private domain. He built a massive factory on the border between the Hedge and Motor City. There he worked captured Changelings and Hobs to death, slaving away on ever more elaborate automobiles and machines. These enchanted devices would in turn hunt down new workers for the factory, bringing home new minds and bodies to sacrifice for the sake of innovation.
But a revolt in the works. The Emperor Machine constantly upgraded himself, adding new mechanisms and tools to his body of oil and gears. One of the workers at the factory, an Ogre called Sam Steelskin, forged a gear of cold iron to kill his master, slipping it into his next upgrade.
The cog took time to do its damage. It started with an internal motor catching fire then spread as the cold iron shattered internal gears, sending slivers of grease caked metal through the Emperor Machine’s systems. By the time Gentry managed to pry the toxic piece from his heart, he was mortally wounded, bleeding oil and bits of metal from the wounds he had inflicted in his struggle to save himself.
His former slaves turned on him, slaying their Keeper and burning down the factory. They hunted down his faithful creations down one by one. Soon the survivors had fled to the farthest edges of the Hedge, there to die of rust and neglect.
The Emperor had the last laugh though. As his gears wound down, he cursed the fledgeling Freehold and his killers. Within a few years those responsible were dead or taken to Arcadia. Their achievements turned to dust. Detroit itself was poisoned by the curse, crumbling into ruin and poverty.
The Emperor Machine isn’t gone however. Secreted in the depths of his factory he seeded a scheme for his resurrection. In the record room lay the plans puzzled out by a thousand slaves: designs for magical machines, enchanted tools, and state of the art weapons. The Emperor’s intellect and power infused the plans, waiting for a suitable inventor to find them.