He struck out hard with the blade, cutting his foe down to the bone in the arm that held the weapon , only to feel agony in his own sword arm as if it too had been cut right down to the bone. As he dropped his blade due to the shock and two more opponents closed in to cut him down, he realised to his horror that his blade was a Feeling Sword and that he was unlikely to survive this fight.
William Marshall was a wealthy wizard-weaponsmith, with a genuine license to make weapons for the King of Karnivhal and his royal army and navy. Some condemmed him for making his money from weaponry, but he was a nice and honest enough person who stayed away from crime and sedition and loyally served his royal master without complaint, even on occasion willingly donating money to the royal treasury over and above the taxes that he had to pay. Now the King of Karnivhal was a warrior-king, delighting in warfare to the point that he would frequently expose himself to danger, once to the point where the tip of his royal sword was broken off and only his sheild and armour, and a handful of trusted bodyguards, spared his life. So he decided to have magical swords made for him and them to stop such a thing from happening again.
It was in that year that William's sons grew old enough to be conscripted into the royal army, and William, confident that the King would be pleased with him for his many years of faithful service, decided to ask his Majesty to give desk jobs in the rear to his sons. Sadly, he had made a dreadful misjudgement and the angry king announced that they would instead be placed in the very front ranks of whatever battle their regiment ended up fighting in;as officers they were expected to lead from the front as the King himself so often did. Soon after that one of the many small wars, so called because they were limited in size and civilians were not often directly harmed, broke out between Karnivhal and Vallermoore over a trade dispute. The battle that followed was a bloody one, and both of the hacked and slashed bodies of William's sons came back in coffins. Rather then making a fuss, the weaponsmith quietly added an extra spell to the seven magical swords he was making;one for the King, the rest for his royal bodyguards.
The finished weapons were tested on chunks of beef, on old suits of armour,and even against other weapons and they worked well enough even to cut through a discarded Dragon scale. Technicly, these could even slay dragons with a hit in the right place,although getting close enough to make such a hit would be almost impossible. In the next battle the King himself rode into the ranks of his foes, something they had often done before,striking out left and right with their swords. But this time they were to have a shock, for as their blades bit into flesh, so they felt as if they themselves were being cut. He who slashed an arm, felt as if his own arm was being slashed, he who pierced a body as if his own body was being pierced. They dropped their swords,such was the pain they felt, and weaponless were surrounded and cut down, their bodies hacked and slashed just like William's sons had been.
Only one of the swords was recovered offically from the battlefield, and that was buried with the dead King;it is thought the other six were fliched when the battle was over, but it is unlikely they have brought any luck to their new owners.
These swords are indeed deadly weapons, enchanted to parry better, strike harder and cut deeper then an ordinary sword, but when they cut into living flesh, in the short term the sword's owner feels all the pain inflicted on the other person. A strike to the heart may induce a heart attack in the sword's owner, one to the neck, short-term paralysing and blindness, one to a limb or to the torso pain and shock. The effect, if not fatal, is only short term;given a few minutes the sword's user will recover, but time is not something one generally has in a fight, paticulaly one against multiple foes, be it a pub brawl or a full scale military battle, or one where your blow has only hurt your opponent but not killed or rendered him or her hors de combat.
Strikes against the Undead reduce the effect by two thirds, as no living blood runs in the struck one, and there is no effect against metal or things that are inanimate and never were alive. It is possible that for one aware of the downside of this weapon, they can mentally prepare for the pain, which does not last for a long time unlike the pain caused by a real blow, but is in the mind instead. Few are those able to get used to the downside however as the first time it is used is normally fatal for it's owner when he or she drops it because of the short-term shock.
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? Responses (12)
I'm sure many players will feel that these are cursed, and I can't imagine much use for them within a campaign outside of their detrimental effects in battle.
Good execution, but the basic idea, a sword that wounds the wielder doesn't feel fresh. I have no problem with the cursed sword that turns on it's user, but I'd like to see something fresh!
I quite like it, and I really like the story. If you have seen or read the Sword of Truth series it reminds me of the ageals. Something like this would be quite powerful in the hands of a maschoist.
I like it alot - I could see use for this for a defender type character, who becomes adept at non-lethal pommel strikes, using his blade only to defend and parry.
I think you may have forgotten to vote.
I quite like it, because I can imagine several characters that would use one of these as their weapon of choice. My favorite is a paladin, of course, because feeling the pain of those one fights would help moderate the paladin's blood lust, as well as create compassion for the enemy even in the heat of battle.
Do people usually feel debilitating pain in battle? I thought that most pain is delayed in the first few minutes of serious injury. I have personal experience with a broken arm, that felt fine for almost 20 minutes, but was bent the wrong way.
This is good. While the concept may not be new, the backstory really brought it to life for me.
I would probably put these in an area where the previous owners (having lived) discarded them. Then, I would herd the players to this spot, without weapons of their own (perhaps they were captured and are attempting to escape.) Ok, this sub brings out the evil GM in me, but I like to keep my players on their toes.
These would also be a good tool for conmen. Sell them to unsuspecting adventurers, impressing them with the cutting ability, then set upon them on the road, knowing that they would be hampered. Steal from the corpses, and repeat.
I think this is an effective cursed weapon that could be worked around by some.
It does play into the Nobility - especially Kings - are total suckers for cursed items/weaponry that seems to be relatively common.
The most effective wielder of a weapon like this would be the Combat Sadomasochist. Look it up on TV Tropes. Basically from the way you describe it, it was made for them.