Magic Relic: The Demon’s Tooth

Near the end of the dark days now known as the Shadow Wars, great heroes from the human nations of Kalendia, Pelagus and rebels from Tendaria worked with the noble elves and resolute dwarves to overthrow the Shadow King and those in league with him.  The Shadow King’s ultimate weapon, the Doom Furnace, was neutralized, and the two Demon Lord generals of the dark army had their essences ripped from their physical bodies and were banished back into the abyss.

Looking to claim a trophy of victory from the occasion, a dwarven warrior snatched a single fang from the snake-headed Demon Lord Kraal.  Over the next generations, this tooth – grey and dark and hard as steel – was fashioned into a short sword now appropriately known as The Demon’s Tooth.

(C) 2012 John Wilson

The Demon’s Tooth appears as an ornate short sword forged of a dark metal of unknown origin.  Dark magic can be detected on the blade by those with the power, though they can not discern it’s nature or purpose.  In the hands of a player character, it acts as a -1 cursed weapon, though there is no compulsion to maintain ownership of the sword, as some cursed items are wont to do.

During combat, once the sword gets a taste of a target (that is, once the character scores a hit with the blade), that character forevermore has combat advantage against that opponent.   Combat advantage in our game is a +2 attack bonus that is granted by flanking an enemy, fighting a blinded foe or one who is on uneven ground or distracting terrain, or dazed, confused or otherwise hindered.  This is a singular effect, and does not stack with itself regardless of multiple causes (ie, you still only get a +2 advantage bonus even if you’re flanking a blinded foe who’s standing on an uneven surface).   Once a target has been struck, the sword is effectively has a +1 to attack rolls against that opponent (-1 curse coupled with the +2 advantage), and any other abilities that key off combat advantage can be used against that foe (for example, a thief’s backstab ability requires advantage in combat before additional damage can be dealt).

The true, dark nature of the blade becomes evident any time the player rolls a natural “1″ on an attack roll with the weapon.  While the essence of the demon lords Kraal and Bakaal were indeed torn from their physical bodies, shredded into pieces and hurled back to the abyss from which they came, the spirit-fragments joined together to form a new being, Bakraal, a malevolent entity that seeks to regain a link to the physical world and return to cause destruction amongst the good peoples of Karathis.

Whenever the player rolls a “1″ on an attack roll with the blade, the presence of the blade has been felt by Bakraal, and it sends a minion to recapture the sword, which is a powerful physical link between the demon and the world.  On the missed attack, the demon’s presence can be felt by one of the six nearest beings to the wielder (roll 1d6 to determine randomly).  That person immediately begins to cough up ichor and spectral plasma, which will form into a minion of Bakraal in an area adjacent to the unfortunate victim.  After a single round, enough bile has been forcibly expelled to create a threatening physical presence, which immediately attacks the sword-wielder in an effort to recapture the blade.  The victim of the demon’s touch must make a moderate Constitution check, or become weakened from the ordeal.

Though it appears as a slimy, mucous-coated creature of vomit and rage, the summoned minion’s ability reflects the level of the creature that spat it out into the world.  A 1st or 2nd-level character would spew forth a creature with the abilities of a dretch;  a 3rd- or 4th-level victim would create a quasit-replica;  a 5th- or 6th-level character would result in a minion with the abilities of a babau, and so on up to a 20th-level character vomiting up what is effectively a balor.

Should Bakraal’s minion defeat the wielder and take the blade, the Cult of Bakraal, an evil sect of sorcerers and unholy priests, would certainly use it as part of a vile ritual that would summon Bakraal back to the mortal realm.  If the characters defeat the summoned demon, the location of the sword will again be unknown to the demon lord, but it’s existence will be shared with the Cult’s hierarchy, who will surely investigate and try to claim the blade.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.