It’s Showtime

Magic Lantern. Willem Jacob’s Gravesande, Physices Elementa Mathematica ~ 1721

The Unfathomable Professor Mesmerismo was the first to discover the somewhat unusual properties of burning fuels other than the standard quicklime in a magic lantern. Other mineral compounds would open windows onto one of any number of other planes. Most were infernal – not a surprise considering the revolting stench of the resulting fumes – but certain incense blends revealed more benign afterlives.

The windows were hard to use as a method of communication, since the moving images had no accompanying sound. Those in the lantern image could hold up written messages to the viewer, but they had to be prompted to do so by some other means since all they saw of the magic lantern was a small globe of flickering light hanging in the air.

One operator is said to have discovered a blend of solvents & lubricant oils that would cause a lantern to show a view of Mechanus, but no one has been able to confirm whether it actually works since the exhaust from the lamp is so toxic everyone in the darkroom was poisoned dead within minutes.

The Groaning Board

Le Kalendrier des bergers ~ 1493 BnF

Along with the better known Decanters of Endless Water & Daily Bread Pouches (which produce enough fruit bread to keep four people fed for a day), you’ll occasionally find larger serving boards that can conjure a whole feast.

Unfortunately what you’ve stumbled across may also turn out to be a Groaning Board. It isn’t the board that’ll be doing the groaning, though – it’ll be the diners. Anyone seated at the board when it’s activated will be assailed by a low-level demon that proceeds to strip them of their gear & then force feed them toads & jagged rocks, chased with ladles of boiling vinegar.

You can fight off your Abyssal server with moderate effort, but they just keep on coming unless you & your wannabe dining companions manage to smash the board.