Mechanic: Scarab Tokens
To mark the growing severity of the Curse Delusion on your character over the course of the game, you will receive Curse Delusion markers - represented by a scarab token. You will be handed the marker either by the organisers or by one of your fellow players over the course of the LARP. With each scarab marker you carry, your character feels the unnatural allure of the Mummy more, as both their fascination with its undead body and its effect on their psyche grow stronger.
When you are carrying one scarab token, your character is starting to be affected by the Curse Delusion. They will feel that the influence of the Mummy’s presence makes them feel stronger, more powerful and charismatic. As a consequence, your character will act bolder and more confident, but also be more willing to break social and religious taboos.
Your character begins to lose hold of themselves and their public persona, but they're not spreading the Curse Delusion yet.
When you are carrying two scarab tokens, the grasp of the Curse Delusion becomes a compulsion. Your character’s boldness becomes recklessness, their confidence a dark need to follow their desires and urges, even if it might be harmful for themselves or others. It will seem to the character as if they are losing control to the ever-strengthening grasp of the Mummy’s will.
At this stage, the delusion becomes contagious: when your character has had an intense norm-breaking interaction with another character, they pass the curse on - and experience some relief for a short time. This transgression can take many forms, social, physical, sexual or artistic, as long as its intensity is high enough to infect the other character. Give one of your scarab tokens to the other player, as the curse weakens its grip from your character’s heart. However, you will always keep one scarab token for yourself.
When you are carrying three and more scarab tokens, the delusion takes full control of your character for a scene. Your character will feel like they are being possessed by the royal spirit of the Mummy. Their confidence and recklessness will be pushed to the most extreme as they imagine themselves to be a divine sovereign who is to be adored, praised and feared. The other characters present in the scene - sharing the same collective delusion, no matter how many scarab tokens they are carrying - will find it nearly impossible to resist their sway as they feel the need to please and obey them.
Mechanically, you signal your three-scarab-status by loudly proclaiming “Heed my words, mortals!” and stretching out your arms towards other players. Your character will then be the centre of play for the group of the present characters for a scene. You don’t necessarily have to use the signal right after you have received your third token. Feel free to wait a short while until the moment seems right.
As soon as the scene ends, the delusion infestation spreads - distribute all the scarab tokens you have to players involved in the scene. You will keep no tokens for yourself in this case. For a short time, your character will be free from the effects of the Curse Delusion and feel themselves again, as the crushing realisation of what they have done in their feverish state comes back in painful detail.
Take a scarab, leave a scarab: At any point during play, if you want to modulate your playing experience, you can decide to either leave scarab tokens on the Mummy when you don’t feel like escalating yet, or take a spare scarab from there when you feel you want to intensify the Curse Delusion for yourself. In either case, play out a brief interaction with the Mummy.