But if the Merchant lands on someone and says, "I am going to trade with you, let me see what you've got," then the person can say, "I have everything except for this Rod of Ruin that I am now using to take away two strength points from you."
I partially agree with this. If the Merchant lands on someone and says, "I am going to trade my Water Bottle for your Rod of Ruin," then yes, the Merchant's ability takes precedence.
|Set Name:||Magic 2014 (M14)|
|Rarity, #:||U, 217|
|Description:||3, T: Rod of Ruin deals 1 damage to target creature or player.|
|Flavor:||The good news is it's so simple a goblin could use it. The bad news is it's so simple a goblin could use it.|
Simply declaring that he is going to trade does not put an automatic halt to all other abilities. He must declare specific intent to trade for the Rod of Ruin. Otherwise, since the Rod of Ruin may be used at any time, the character with the Rod of Ruin may still use it while the Merchant is perusing his items trying to make up his mind.
If he lands on another character and declares he is "trading" with another character who has the Rod of Ruin, can that player decide he is going to use the Rod of Ruin before he has to trade the Rod of Ruin with the Merchant?