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I swear I heard about this a long time ago but I can't remember it for the life of me (to the point that I am beginning to doubt if it exists). I faintly remember some type of monster that was able to mimic or outright steal the abilities of other people... Can anyone help me out here?

  • @LaurenIpsum I didn't think it wasI was just saying in general – SemperAmbroscus Apr 9 '17 at 17:07
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    @SemperAmbroscus Don't bother with the downvote, that is life on Stack XD Description here is vague enough, could be any shapeshifter here and there. Because basically "the abilities of other people", what is that? (S)He can steal the abilties out of a carpenter? And become a carpenter? XD Or are we talking about stealing some godlike power (the X-men Rogue way). – Gibet Apr 10 '17 at 7:23
  • @Gibet as I remember it it was more like stealing talents than superpowers, like if you were good at basketball and they touched you then they stole your basketball skill – SemperAmbroscus Apr 10 '17 at 9:54
  • There is a theory that defeating an enemy (and possible eating body parts such as the heart or liver) confers the power of the fallen to the victor. Not a specific entity, but give some weight to your claim. (However, it is possible you are conflating this with some contemporary source that took the form of canonical mythology...) – DukeZhou Apr 10 '17 at 17:38
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    @SemperAmbroscus But just because we haven't found anything yet, doesn't mean it isn't there. I'm going to do a little answer from Norse Mythology. – DukeZhou Apr 11 '17 at 16:14
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Kvasir was a man considered most wise, who is murdered by a pair of dwarves. The motivation of the dwarves is to create a magic potion that would confer this wisdom to any who drank it.

Odin, likely not content to allow such a power to be freely accessed, uses trickery to steal the mead, and is mostly successful. (The part that spilled confered a lower form of capability in simple rhyming, while Odin himself keeps the greatest form of the gift to bestow at his discretion.)

  • Mimir is another such example:

When Mimir's severed head is sent to Asgard, Odin uses magic to re-animate it, and afterwards benefits from Mimir's knowledge and secrets.

  • This is more than I could have hoped for, I find it interesting how you immediately knew to look in Norse Mythology – SemperAmbroscus Apr 12 '17 at 20:03
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    @SemperAmbroscus I'm far from the leading Norse expert here, but this material is very well known in that canon. (I was lucky to have very good teachers--the way they trained me to analyze stories from a fundamental perspective has been useful in a number of endeavors.) I suspect there are other examples from other canons, and I will keep this question in the back of my mind and add more examples should they occur to me. – DukeZhou Apr 12 '17 at 20:42
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"If that's what you want," the Patriarch replied, "come here and I'll teach you the spells." Thereupon he whispered into Sun Wukong's ear, and who knows what miraculous spells he taught him? The Monkey King was the sort of person who understands everything once he is told a tiny part, and he learned the spells on the spot. He practiced and trained until he had mastered all seventy−two transformations. One day the Patriarch and all his disciples were enjoying the sunset outside the Three Stars Cave.

Journey to the West-Chapter 2 Things like Sasuke's Sharingan come only from this part of Journey to the West. And all the 'eyes with powers' and power to 'copy abilities'

here, 72 is not an assigned limit to Sun Wukong's power, but a number often used to denote infinity.

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