Monday, November 10, 2008

A Sword and a Whatchamacallit

The Broadsword of Comedy and Mirth

Description: This blade is a 4’ long broadsword of seemingly expert construction. The blade is marked by whorls of black embedded in the steel. The grip of the sword is wrapped with worn and stained leather banding. The pommel of the weapon is decorated with a stylized depiction of a jester’s head wearing a five-pointed cap ’n’ bells. It is unaccompanied by a scabbard or baldric.

History: Little is known about this weapon prior to its first appearance in the hands of Grϋntre, the barbarian companion of Justin Darkcloud – the man who now holds the Seat of Thorn in the Invisible College. As both men are known world-walkers, the origins of the blade perhaps lie on some world unknown to both sages and wizards. The circumstances of its forging will most likely never be revealed.

What is known is that prior to Darkcloud’s ascension to the Invisible College, he and Grϋntre had a parting of ways. Grϋntre headed to the northeast, where he sought employment as a sword-for-hire in the lands of Cochlerin, a land known for its appreciation of good viska and a hearty joke. It is said that Grϋntre served under several of the local chieftains in that region, working as a bodyguard and war-master during the seasonal skirmishes along the Dak-Rom border. It was during that time that the special property of the sword was first witnessed and entered into songs sung by the bards of Cochlerin.

In 1588, Grϋntre learned of the devastation being wrought by the green wyrm Razor’s Kiss of Heath and Holly on settlements along the Douwell Freshet. Emboldened by a great volume of viska and ale, Grϋntre left the town of Karin’s Knee and vanished into the Superstition Wilderness. This was to be the last time Grϋntre was seen alive. Some speculate that, once the quantity of spirits that the barbarian had consumed wore off, he collected his wits and sought employment in other lands. Companions-in-arms of the well-liked off-worlder maintain that, drunk or sober, Grϋntre would never abandon a task he’d set out to do. These men then shake their heads sadly and conclude that Grϋntre’s bones lay somewhere in the Superstition Wilderness and that the Broadsword of Comedy and Mirth is now part of the dragon’s hoard.

Game Notes: The Broadsword of Comedy and Mirth is a +1 broadsword that sheds no illumination. In addition, it possesses one special power, usable once per day. Prior to striking an opponent, the wielder may speak the command word, “Quip” aloud. If the sword successfully strikes its target, both the person struck by the sword and all foes within 10’ of the wielder must save vs. spells or be affected as if the victims of Tasha’s uncontrollable hideous laughter (incapable of action the following round, minuses to Strength or hit/damage rolls for the successive two rounds; normal Intelligence modifiers to saving throw apply). If the sword misses its opponent, no effect occurs and the wielder may not invoke the sword’s power until the following day.

Experience Point Value: 500
Gold Piece Value: 2,500

Note for the referee: Depending on the type of campaign one runs and/or the personalities and likes of your players, you could replace the need for speaking the command word aloud by having the wielder speak a short (extremely short!) joke in place of it. Another option would be that the wielder must make a Schwarzenegger -esque “witty” remark – i.e. “Nice to slay you,” or “I’ll get hack to you in a minute” – in order to invoke the sword’s power. I accept no responsibility should you go down that path, however.

Ekim’s Long-burning Torch Sconce

This odd-looking device appears to be a round, blunt iron sheath of some type, measuring 6” long. Two wing-nut screws are present in the sides of the sheath and may be adjusted to tightly hold whatever is placed within the sheath. It radiates a form of alteration magic.

The sconce does nothing unless the handle of a torch is placed within the round sheath and the screws are tightened into place. Once a torch is held in the sconce, it will burn as normal –shedding light and burning that which comes into contact with it. However, the duration of the torch will be noticeably longer, lasting a full 36 turns instead of the normal six. After the 36 turns have elapsed, the torch burns out as normal. The sconce remains cool to the touch and may be carried easily, providing no more encumbrance or inconvenience than is normally accrued by bearing a torch.

Ekim always enjoyed the benefits of having a open flame available during his dungeon-delving career, but was always bothered by a torch’s short duration and sheer number needed for lengthy exploration. He created these sconces as a solution to that problem and shared several copies of the original with fellow adventurers prior to his retirement.

Experience Point Value: 100
Gold Piece Value: 500


Anonymous said...

My goal in life is now to have a Seat in the Invisible College.

Michael Curtis said...

It's a civil service position, but once you pass the test, you're pretty much set for life. :-)