A Gift For Needles

by mshrm

A few more magical items that might be of particular interest to a thief. Needles, particularly, in a couple of cases.

First, three swords.  All three are fine, balanced short swords weighing 2 lbs. Each one is a custom creation, not something one would find readily for sale in the local market. Suitable for being a quest object, for example.

  • Sword of Quickness: This sword comes with silver inlay on the hilt and includes two 2 caret emeralds, one on either side of the ricasso. It has been enchanted with Penetrating Weapon and Defending Weapon to give a (2) armor divisor and a +1 to Parry. Furthermore, the wielder can cast Haste upon himself. This takes 2 seconds of Concentration, costs 4 Fatigue to activate for 1 minute and half that for each additional minute, and bestows +2 to the wielder’s Move and Dodge scores. If one is unaware of its enchantments, it appears to be worth  $6,440, including the gems. Actual value: $31,440
  • Thieves’ Bow: The blade appears unremarkable, aside from a 4.5 caret bloodstone in its pommel in an elaborate silver setting. It is enchanted with Penetrating Weapon, giving a (2) armor divisor to normal attacks. Its name comes from its power of Distant Blow, however. At a cost of 3 Fatigue and 3 seconds Concentration, the wielder can strike at a distance with the short sword, taking normal range penalties, for up to 5 seconds. The armor divisor does not apply to distant blows. Still, unless there’s something I’m overlooking, a skilled thief could activate this power and strike from stealth, using Rapid Strike to effectively backstab several opponents in a single blood-drenched second. It appears to be worth $6,748; actual value $51,748
  • Unseen Blade: This one has a plain, leather-wrapped hilt, but its blade is invisible. Anyone attempting a disarm against it is at a -6 for the attempt. Unless the wielder is also invisible, anyone attacked with the Unseen Blade defends normally, once the natural of the weapon becomes apparent. The first time an unaware opponent faces the Blade, it should count as a dirty trick (see Bp405); I would use a Quick Contest of IQ, giving a -2 to the defender’s defense rolls if the Contest comes out in the attacker’s favor. Aside from the blade itself, the matching, rather plain scabbard is enchanted with Hideaway to hold the entire blade, though it is sized for a small knife. The sheathed sword’s weight is not reduced in any way, only its apparent size. This can simplify the problem of carrying military-grade weapons in certain situations. Mainly, all of these enchantments are aimed at confusing witnesses; between the invisible, impossible blade and a little Sleight of Hand, one might be able to pull off a backstab in plain sight. As a mundane weapon, it appears to be worth $3,200; actual value $13,275

Plus, a couple of semi-random bonus items:

  • Self-Cocking Bow: This is just a balanced ST 15 crossbow, enchanted with to re-cock itself when needed, without any input from the wielder. This property is automatic, and becomes obvious to anyone working the mechanism. (In the past, Needles has gotten some use from a ST 15 crossbow, but it’s a fire-and-forget-it weapon. He hands it over to Alric, after the right, to get it re-cocked. I suspect he’s better off sneaking, skulking, and shiv-ing, rather than playing archer, but when that’s not an option — like, when the flying enemies show up — Needles might get some value from having more than one shot.) This is a relatively common enchantment, which can be had second-hand through the local markets. $9,250; 6 lbs.
  • Valda’s Eye: A 2 foot long gold chain supporting a pendant with a 10 caret cat’s-eye surrounded by five ½ caret pieces of jade in a pentagonal arrangement. At will, the wearer can cause the pendant to glow with a cold light equivalent to a candle’s flame. The wearer can activate various spells upon himself by lifting the pendant to his eye and Concentrating. Each effect lasts for 1 minute, and can be maintained at a reduced cost. The available spell effects are See Secrets (4 to cast, 1 to maintain), See Invisible (cast 3, maintain 1), Mage Sight, and Night Vision (both cast 2, maintain 1). See Secrets takes 5 seconds of concentration to activate, while the others only require a single second. This is one of several legendary items associated with the (in)famous thief and rogue, Valda Dije. Mundane value $7,785; actual value with enchantments, $41,845; 0.2 lbs.