Endless Blue – Week 129 – Coveted Trinkets and Cursed Treasures   1 comment

Archaeology

Coveted Trinkets and Cursed Treasures

The races of the Endless Blue have accomplished so much in history. By their very will and ingenuity, the created architectural marvels and innovative philosophies that have made Elqua the world it is today. But not everything has been the result of inspiration and perspiration. Magic has left its mark indelibly in the chronicles of Elqua. Wondrous magical items can be found among the waves of the water world.

Aboleth Skum Doll — A fetish replica made by Aboleth to control their Skum slaves.  They are created in the same process that alters the victim into a unresistant servant, and aids in enforcing that domination.  The unethical would desire to use these voodoo dolls for their own nefarious purposes.

Conch Horn of Sending — Made in pairs, these conch shells are magically linked. There is no known limit to the range of these wondrous items, and as such are highly prized by military organizations and governments.

Blowing into one will make its mate emit a sound.  Placing the now sounding shell to the ear allows a verbal message to be received. There is no limit to the length of these messages, but each time the speaker and listener switch roles, the conch horn held by the speaker must be blown into again. This makes dialogs difficult, but listening to a monologue extremely easy.

Delphiz Fife — A magical dolphin whistle, where by playing one of three tunes will summon 1 dolphin, 1d2 irrawaddy, or 1d3 vaquita. The animals must be within four hundred + 50 feet per uninterrupted round of playing.  For each 50 feet the dolphin(s) need to travel delays their arrival by 1 round.  The tune must be played continually until the dolphins appear.  Once arrived, the piscean must make a DC 10 Perform (hydrocurrent) check.  Success means the dolphin(s) will obey the summoner; failure results in them frenzying and attacking the summoner.  The DC increases by +5 for each time the delphiz fife was used in the previous 28 hour-period.

Ephemeral Fins — This set of thin, gossamer ribbers are worn over the tail fins. They mask any traceable taste/odor left behind the wearer.  Makes the use of Bloodscent or Currentsense when tracking the wearer impossible, dispersing the scent in the water until it is undetectable.

Ephod of the Currents — This apron-like piece of clothing is worn over the pelvis and attached to the belt.  It is embroidered in a soothing, wavy pattern.  The wearer of an ephod of the currents never tires while traveling on the currents under their own power.  Useful for scouts that escort merchants along the trade streams, the Liga Synarr not only use them regularly on the Pecuniary Stream, but personalize them with the Liga Synarr crest.

Gizzard Stones — At first glance, these seem to just be some well worn stones found anywhere along the ocean floor. But on closer inspection, each of these one-inch stones has the unmistakable markings of having been ground against each other.

An indispensable tool for culinists, gizzard stones are small, smooth oval rocks, coming in sets of three or more.  Swallowing the stones prevents the swallower from suffering the effect of poison as the gizzard stones absorb the toxin.  However, the stones also absorb any other “unnatural” material, thus preventing the sought after effects of alcohol, potions, or kelaguen.

Goggles of Ultravision — One of the key creations by the Rebellion during the Occupation, these goggles are sturdily made lenses of obsidian set into frames that are held if in front of the eyes by a strap of anglerfish leather.

The goggles give the wearer the ability to see into the ultraviolet spectrum.  If the wearer already has that ability, the goggles extend its range by 15 feet.

With ultravision, the piscean can pick out items and creatures that are camouflaged — ie, their disguise is derived from pigmentation that matches the surroundings.  A source of ultraviolet light is still required for this power to work. These are prized wondrous items, and often have become family heirlooms passed down by survivors of the Occupation.

Harpoon of Holding — This item can be any spear, trident, or halberd. This weapon can be identified by the multitude of rear-facing barbs on each tine and the rope attached to the other end. When used in combat, upon a successful damage roll the harpoon embeds into the flesh of a target. No amount of force will pull the harpoon free; instead, the victim must cut his own flesh to pry the barbed-head out. The attacker can use the rope as a leash, preventing the escape of the victim. Or course, there is nothing stopping the victim from heading straight toward the piscean holding the other end of the rope…

Net of Capture — This magic net appears as a masterpiece of artisanship, with crossing ropes woven into each other instead of knotted around each other. The hem is double-stiched, with a pull cord to tighten the net closed.

The net of capture possesses two distinct powers: the first negates the drag of any creature trapped within, making it extremely easy to overcome the thrashing of even the most powerful swimmer. The second power is it bestows a -5 penalty to escape artist checks to free one’s self from the net’s grasp.

Portable Blow Hole — A crude name for a crude creation, this item takes the form of a thick band of inorganic material in the shape of an oval. A truly vile item, this clamps over the mouth of a piscean and wraps around the head, locking seamlessly in place. It prevents its victim from breathing in water. In order not to asphyxiate, they must travel to the surface of the ocean and expose the clamp to the Vastness. With the intake vent located on the back of the head, this leaves the bearer in a vulnerable position while breathing — exposed to the openness of the Vastness, and facing away from any possible encroach of the surface aberrations. It is removed via either a remove curse spell or the death of the bearer.

Puffercloak — These cloaks have highly mottled coloration, covered in spots or swirls like a finger print.  When the wearer suffers a successful hit, the cloak instantly inflates like a balloon, giving the wearer +10 temporary hit points.  When inflated, the spots/swirls on the puffercloak expand proportionately, and shrink in size with each lost hit point.  After losing those hit points, the cloak ruptures and deflates, requiring it to be repaired in order to function again.

Ring of Buoyancy — Easily confused with the ring of depth, a ring of buoyancy makes the wearer immune to the effects of decompression sickness (known to most pisceans as “the Pull” or “the bends”).  Bearers automatically pass any Pull (bends) test, but must still make Concentration checks to act under the increased/decreased water pressure.  The ring appears made of an intricate weaving of blue-tinged silver wires in an irregular pattern.

Ring of Depth — This ring consists of three different layers of solid gemstone — blue chalcedony, turquoise, and lapis lazuli — polished to a glass smooth texture.  Anyone wearing a ring of depth gains the ability to adjust to different depths.  This magical ring allows races that are native to the Shore or Shoals to survive the tremendous pressures of the Shelf, and vice versa.  It allows the wearer to perform actions without the need to constantly make Concentration checks to adjusting their internal swim bladder(s).  A secondary effect of the item will indicate what aquatic zone the wearer is currently in, as the bands magically switch places, with the outermost layer indicating Shore (chalcedony), Shoals (turquoise), or Shelf (lapis).

Scintillating Nautilus — This is a huge helmet with a visor that extends down to the clavicle. It is festooned with a myriad of pearlescent fish scales whose pattern sparkle and shift in idle water, cascading waves of color, one after another. The scales catch the light and daze those near the wearer, heightening the ambient light. Once per day, as a full round action, the scintillating nautilus can be used to mesmerize any opponent that looks upon it’s glittering patterns. This is the equivalent of a gaze attack with a 30 foot range. Those that look into the swirling color are dazed for 1d4+1 rounds. This is a mind-affecting pattern effect, and a Will save of 16 negates the effect. If an active ultraviolet light source is within 10 feet of the scintillating nautilus, the dazed effect becomes a blindness effect instead.

Sea Hag Crown — Each sea hag crown is unique, and is made by the individual sea hag with detritus found in the hag’s territory.  Sea shells and coral are most common components, but can also include scales, teeth, hide, rock, wrack, and even hair.  Despite the gruesome description of the parts, assembled crowns are quite magnificent in their artistry.  A sea hag crown grants the wearer a fearsome image and a significant boost to their attempts at hostile intimidation.  However, the crown will also exacerbate the wearer’s flaws (such as jingoism or greed) to an equivalent level.  Finally, any Sea Hag can sense the presence of a sea hag crown in their territory, and view it as an affront to them (unless they are the hag that created it).

Spinercloak — Indistinguishable from a puffercloak, this variant works in exactly the same manner, but will also create magical spikes appear when its bearer is struck.  Opponents that strike the spinercloak take 1d3 points of piercing damage unless the attack had reach.

SuddenTide Flask — Other than being constructed of expensive material, there is nothing to indicate a suddentide flask is anything out of the ordinary. Twice per day can be opened to create a sudden surge of water capable of capturing a piscean in its wake. The first time the flask is used, the geyser of water pushes anything caught in it away on the current. Successful swim check each turn to avoid being caught/escape the torrential current. On the second use, the water current is drawn into the flask like an undertow, pulling a hapless piscean toward the flask’s user. Again, a successful swim check must be made each turn the flask is pointed at the victim to keep from being pulled inward. If both uses are not used in the same day, the item will reset 28 hours after the previous use to “geyser”: the first use of the day is always a geyser; the second — if at all — is always an undertow.

Tarp of the Endless Blue — This magical sheet of woven textile has a deep blue coloration, hinting at its powers.  When wrapped around a stationary cart, pack animal, or piscean, the tarp blends into the background water and appearing to vanish.  This is not an invisibility effect, so true seeing and other magics will not reveal the hidden subject’s location.  The tarp however is vulnerable to ultravision, a necessary flaw needed so groups of rebels wrapped in these tarps could locate each other during the Rebellion.  Movement while the tarp is in effect will result in a wavering mirage like ripple that can be spotted (DC 10).

Teeth of Utterance — These are the nondescript teeth of a shark, barracuda, or other predatory creature.  They radiate magic when detected for, but otherwise betray no hint as their power.

When pressed into the character’s gums, the tooth will take root.  This gives the bearer an unsettling appearance, similar to dental prosthesis.  Once the user as attuned himself to the new arrangement of teeth, the magical tooth grans the user the ability to talk to that type of creature.  Created by Resurrectionists and coveted by Packbreeders, it does not grant any additional intelligence to the animals spoken with, meaning the user is limited by the animal’s natural cognitive ability.

Totem Masks — Created by the mercurial Fry of the Black Mangroves, totem masks imbue the wearer with the abilities of the imitated creature. Carved from the black mangrove trees’ bark from above the surface of the water, the masks are terrifying visages with their craggy, dark ebony wood that seem to absorb all light and their pale, translucent green eyes that bioluminesse.

Only one Totem Mask can be worn at a time, but its effects are enhanced by similar magical items.  Due to the intrinsic link between the creation of these masks and the Fry of the Black Mangroves, pisceans possessing a totem mask are often view as having committed an atrocity to procure it. Some sahaguin, however, find such conjecture actually enhances their reputation.

Angler — The angler totem mask acts like goggles of ultravision, but with a built in ultraviolet light source situated in the middle of the forehead. The effects of goggles of ultravision and an angler totem mask stack, with the stealthy advantage of the goggles blocking the bioluminescence glow of the mask’s eyes.

Flounder — With a successful Concentration check (DC 10), the wearer of a flounder totem mask gains 360° vision, and can see everything behind, above, and below as easily as everything before the piscean, so long as nothing obscures that view.

Hammerhead — The wide set eyes and grinning mouth of a hammerhead totem mask grants a +5 bonus to Intimidation checks, as well as extends the wearer’s vision by 10′. Unfortunately, due to the position of the mask’s eyes, they cannot be used in conjunction with goggles of any kind.

Icarfish — An icarfish totem mask is roughly bullet-shaped with a cowl around the shoulders that covers the back. This mask grants the unique skill Jump, thus allowing a piscean swimming along the surface of the water to leap into the Vastness and dive back into the safe ocean. The pack slides apart in the void above the water and acts as gliding wings.

Manta — This totem mask has two lobes, one from each temple, protruding upward from the head, and tapers down widely to the shoulder blades, where a half-cloak is attached. The manta totem mask doubles the amount of travel possible before the wearer becomes fatigued. When used in conjunction with an ephod of the currents, the wearer can travel at a forced march without becoming fatigued.

Marlin — One of the most basic, therefore most common of the the totem masks, the marlin totem mask covers the face and looks as if the upper lip was pinched and pulled outward to a sharp point. A marlin totem mask grants a 1d3+1 gore attack.  Many Icth Masks in private collections are actually this inferior item.

Piranha — Much like the marlin mask, the piranha totem mask is a frequently encountered variant. It possesses an extended chin and hinged underbite that grants a 1d3+1 bite attack

Puffer — This globe shaped mask adds poison to all natural attacks. A Fort save DC 15 is needed, otherwise lose 1d2+1 points of Dexterity as the victim suffers tingling and numbness in their extremities. When a puffer totem mask is paired with a puffercloak, the temporary hit points are increased by 5; with a spinercloak, the poison extends to the cloaks spines as well as the bonus for a puffercloak.

Squid — A squid totem mask is bulbous at the back of the head, and come down to cover the shoulders in a mantel that has a series of weighted leather straps hanging from the fringe. This totem mask enhances grappling attacks, granting a +5 bonus to grapple or pin an opponent.

Sucker — Notable for the large discus with straps that covers the chest, this totem mask reduces the effects of encumbrance. Meant to be used by multiple pisceans in co-ordination, the straps and disc act as a scaffolding to allow encumbrance penalties to be reduced one step for each participating sucker totem mask beyond the first. Thus, two sucker totem masks working in tandem can carry the equivalent of a Medium load for an individual that had a strength equal to the sum of their Strength stats with no penalty, and three can carry the equivalent of a Heavy load for an individual that had the strength of the three of them combined.

Trillobite of Protection – Made of nephrite, this piece of jewelry resembles a fossilized trillobite. It performs as a scarab of protection, absorbing 12 energy-draining, negative energy, or death effect attacks. In addition, it can absorb petrification and flesh to coral spells, but at the normal cost of charges.

“Stoics say that belongings only act as chains, crippling the mind…
To de-clutter your possessions is to de-clutter your soul.
Those people do not comprehend the power that ownership bestows.”
— Overheard at the Grand Bazaar of the Yaun-Teel Bights.

One response to “Endless Blue – Week 129 – Coveted Trinkets and Cursed Treasures

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  1. Pingback: Endless Blue – Week 130 – Fossa Gull, the Fool Drowner | Endless Blue

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