For Magic Mondays this week we give you an array that could quite literally save you in the nick of time.

This week we show you the Time Saver array.

Notation: Stop Time, in an area as wide across as the array with a depth one tenth the array’s diameter, if Fire, Iron, Wood, Gold, Silver, Lead, Tin or Copper is present.

Description: They say that time is a thief that steals from us everything we love. Every heartfelt moment of joy, gladness, love or sadness is snatched away by time. Our youth, our vigour, our strength is all stolen by time. And even our friends and loved ones will be taken, one by one, by time until he comes to take our very lives. For something so cruel, yet so powerful, it seemed only fitting that man himself bring time to heel and force time to save what it also takes.

The Time Saver array, other than being a pretty exercise in radial symmetry, works in a straightforward manner, but as we have come to learn about the runes and arrays, it is not in their design and function but in their application that they truly come into their own as ingenious tools for survival and profit.

This array works by stopping time if it senses any of the four materials. That’s it. The trick here, though, is that by creating eight functions in the array that do precisely the same thing but with different If-Then triggers, we create a situation best described as “stop time If this Or that” where if we simply had one function with all eight triggers it would have been “stop time If this And that And the other thing”. Laying out the functions in this manner give this defensive array a much greater flexibility.

This array is most commonly seen on bucklers and shields where it can be expertly wielded to target incoming musket and pistol rounds and melee weapons; however the skilled at heart and deft at hands could of course wear this on their clothing, they had best be careful not to accidentally stop time in any part of their body they wish to keep.

While stopping time would indeed stop any round, arrow, blade or cudgel coming your way, logically they would continue on their path was this effect wore off. This is why you should be quick on your feet if you choose to use this array as it will only give you a few seconds at best to move out of the way before the energy in the array wears off. This few seconds should be all the time you need, though, to turn the tables on your opponents. A blade aimed at you that is now suddenly frozen in midair will surprise the most cynical of killers, if only for a heartbeat, but that is all the time you need to end the fight. Similarly, a musket round caught in midair in front of your chest can easily be sent on its way once you’ve stepped aside, and if you managed to position yourself between two opponents then they have done the job for you.

The Time Saver array requires a lot of skill to be used properly, but the rewards are well worth the time put in.

If you want to get more arrays, check out our Journal of Array Design over on DriveThruRPG, now also available as a deck of magic cards.

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