In fey court life, hurting your rivals by means of magic is a common, and even expected, way of achieving social and political dominance. Harmful magic plays an important part in fey life. This month's Fey Feature examinesbaneful spells and cursed magic items.
Petty, vindictive, or simply bored fey (usually chaotic or evil) will sometimes gift mortals with cursed items and enjoy the mayhem that ensues. Altruistic fey (usually good) may take a special interest in mortals and reward these favored pets with interesting magic items. (See last month's article.)
Level: Drd 3, Sor/Wiz 4
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target: One portal
Duration: 1 hour/level (D)
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No
You temporarily cause a crossroads and backroad to cease functioning for the duration of the spell. The spell itself has no effect upon the crossroads guardian, but guardians with hostile attitudes toward the caster generally view having their crossroad blocked as a personal affront and may well attack.
*This spell complements the crossroads and backroads spells in Magic of Faerūn.
The Sky is Falling
Level: Sor/Wiz 3
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: 30 ft.
Area: Cylinder (20 ft. radius, 40ft. high), centered on you
Saving Throw: Reflex half
Spell Resistance: Yes
You create a shower of pebbles that fall from the sky around you. (The bottom of the cylinder is centered on you.) The shower deals 1d6 points of bludgeoning damage per caster level (maximum 10d6) to every creature except the caster within the area. Unattended objects also take this damage. The pebbles dissipate immediately upon striking.
Material Component: A pebble.
Basket of Tainted Delights: This cursed item appears identical to a basket of delights. Once a day, when activated with a command word, this basket fills with all manner of ripe, delicious-looking fruit, sufficient to feed three adult humans for one day. One piece of fruit is specially tainted and exceptionally beautiful. A creature that comes within 10 feet of the basket experiences a suggestion that it immediately eat the pretty fruit (DC 22 Will save negates). A creature that comes within 10 feet of the basket experiences a suggestion that it immediately eat the pretty fruit (DC 22 Will save negates); once a creature has made a successful save against this effect, it cannot be affected by the suggestion power of the same basket of tainted delights for one day. Creatures that bite into the fruit must make a DC 22 Fortitude save or fall into a state of temporal stasis, which functions as though cast by a 15th-level caster.
After the tainted fruit is bitten into or one day passes, the fruit becomes nonmagical. The owner of the basket is immune to the allure of the tainted fruit and knows which piece it is.
Aura: Faint conjuration; Caster Level: 15th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, create food and water, suggestion, temporal stasis; Market Price: 67,080 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Decorative Statue: This statue was created by a cruel fey sorcerer. Originally, the statue was a servant who angered the sorcerer by breaking one of his figurines while dusting. In a fit of rage, he turned her into a statue. She remained in that state until the master's dog wandered into the library. When the canine brushed the statue, the spell transferred to him, and the dog became stone, freeing the servant. This pattern continues, so whenever a living creature of medium or large size (including invisible creatures) touches the statue, the trapped creature becomes free and the new creature turns to stone. The statue can be indoors or outside, such as in a garden or mausoleum.
Aura: Strong transmutation; Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, flesh to stone; Market Price: 132,000 gp; Weight: 100 lbs.
Figurine of Horrific Power: Identical in appearance to figurines of wondrous power, the creatures created by figurines of horrific power do not serve and obey their owners; they attempt to kill them. A figurine activates 1d4 hours after acquiring a new owner; it ceaselessly pursues and attacks the owner. Remove curse cast on the new owner or on the figurine will return it to its miniature, inanimate state.
Aura: Identical to noncursed figure; Caster Level: 11th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, animate objects, bestow curse; Market Price: Half that of the noncursed figure.
Storytellers speak of beautiful M'Ara, a lady-in-waiting to the Queen of Air and Darkness. While at court, M'Ara dared to love Shadowsigh, one of the queen's dark hunters. Shadowsigh returned her love and planned for them to leave the fey realms during the festivities on the night of the New Moon Celebration.
The unseelie queen discovered their deception, but let them continue it. On the day of the gala, she gifted M'Ara with an elaborate costume to wear to the masquerade. The ensemble included a pair of exquisite leather slippers.
The moment M'Ara donned the shoes, she began to dance uncontrollably. She cried, she suffered, she tried to remove the shoes, all to no avail. On she danced, growing more and more tired. By midnight, she was dead.
What of Shadowsigh? He still serves as a dark hunter of the Unseelie Court. The queen seems to have entirely ignored or forgiven his indiscretion except that on each New Moon Celebration, she sends him a pair of finely crafted leather shoes that he must wear to the masquerade.
Jewel of Deceit: This pendant is a large, tear-shaped jewel attached to a chain. When a creature puts on this pendant, her soul becomes trapped in the gem per the magic jar spell, except that the victim can't leave the gem on her own. The victim's soul is sucked into the gem, leaving her body alive, but soulless and unconscious. In addition, a doppelganger takes her place and endeavors to impersonate her. The doppelganger does its best to hide the body. .A successful dispel evil or dispel magic cast on the gem frees the trapped character, who can return to her body, provided its still in range of the gem.
Aura: Strong transmutation; Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, magic jar; Market Price: 90,000 gp; Weight: ---.
M'Ara's Shoes: These appear to be nothing more than finely crafted leather shoes. A creature that puts on a pair of M'Ara's shoes immediately begins moving, subject to the effects of Otto's irresistible dance with no saving throw and no duration. The shoes may be removed with a remove curse spell. For every hour the creature wears the cursed item, she takes one point of Constitution damage. If the creature dies while wearing the shoes, her feet will continue to twitch for 1d4 minutes after death.
Aura: Faint transmutation; Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, bestow curse, Otto's irresistible dance; Market Price: 2,500 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Mask of the Beast: This item appears to be an animal-shaped mask worn over the face at masquerade balls such as that held during the New Moon Celebration. Once donned, the wearer must make a DC 17 Will save or suffer the effects of a baleful polymorph spell, becoming the kind of creature the mask depicts. After it has transformed a creature, the mask becomes nonmagical.
Aura: Moderate transmutation; Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, bestow curse, polymorph other or baleful polymorph; Market Price: 2,250 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Staff of Disintegration (Perverse): This staff casts the spell disintegrate and appears normal in all respects. When first created, it has 50 charges. Each activation of the staff costs one charge.
However, after the staff is used 1d8 times, instead of the spell being cast at the target creature, it targets the caster and automatically seems to hit. A green ray springs from the staff to strike the holder. If the caster succeeds at a Will save (DC 19), nothing else happens. If she fails, she is transported to a location designated by the creator, such as a dungeon, or a cage in the unseelie queen's court.
Aura: Strong transmutation; Caster Level: 13th; Prerequisites: Craft Staff, disintegrate, greater teleport; Market Price: 105,375 gp; Weight: ---.
Kira's Necklace: This necklace, when touched by a creature with an Intelligence of 9 or higher, drains 1 point of Intelligence from the creature upon contact. The wearer of the necklace gains a bonus arcane spell slot of the highest level the wearer can cast for each point of Intelligence the necklace holds. The necklace is an intelligent item, base scores: AL NE; Int 10, Wis 18, Cha 18, blindsense and hearing; Ego score 22. Its Intelligence and Ego increase as more victims touch it. Victims lose 1 point of Intelligence per wearing -- that is, as long as the victim keeps the necklace on, it does not continue to drain Intelligence unless removed and worn again later. Destroying the necklace restores the lost Intelligence to its victims.
About the Authors
Gwendolyn F. M. Kestrelis an editor for Wizards of the Coast's Roleplaying Games R&D department. Recent credits include editingFaiths and Pantheons,Oriental Adventures, andMagic of Faerūn, and designing part of theBook of Challenges. She's a frequent contributor to the Wizards of the Coast website. Also, check out the website she created for her fiancé, Andy Collins, at www.andycollins.net.
Faith M. Price accidentally fell into the adventure game industry nine years ago. Since then she has worked for two game manufacturers, and has written for numerous magazines. She currently lives in Washington with two RPG designers and two cats, all of whom require regular feeding and attention.