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Friday, January 2, 2009

Ironhead

This steel three-quarters helm is sized to fit a normal human. It is ornately worked into the likeness of a rearing scorpion, tail coiled above the rear of the helm. The scorpion's legs form a border along either side of the face while the claws protrude above the brow. A pair of rubies and six small diamonds represent the scorpion's eyes. The base helm is dull gray in color, while the scorpion's form is enameled in black and red. Despite the rather overwrought decoration, the helm is fairly lightweight.

Attempts to identify the magical properties of the item will reveal:

  • Superb physical protection
  • Superb protection against poison
  • Good poison magic
  • Good vision enhancement
  • Epic cursed nature
  • Ironhead radiates neither good nor evil

When donned the helm will instantly come to life. The eyes will glow with inner fire, while the scorpion's claws, legs and tail all animate. The wearer can take exactly one action before Ironhead strikes. Any action other than pulling the helm from their head will allow it to complete its attack, impaling the wearer with claws, legs and tail. The tail lashes down the character's back, burying itself in their neck and spine. The legs lash forward, digging in to cheek, temple and brow. The creature's main claws impale the wearer's forehead. The strike does an Epic damage and incapacitates the wearer. The magical nature of the damage inflicted makes it difficult to heal (Great healing required). Once Ironhead has attached itself it can only be removed by cutting off the wearer's head, a wish or similar Epic magic.

The helm imbues the wearer with the following:

  • Terrible modifier to appearance and charisma. Most people will avoid the wearer if possible. The helm's gemstone eyes might be tempting to a thief, but the fact that they seem to shift and watch anyone that speaks with the wearer will deter all but the boldest.
  • Superb protection from physical harm. Attacks seem to slide off the wearer without any effort on his or her part.
  • Superb protection from poison. Most poisons simply have no effect on Ironhead's wearer. Very deadly poisons might make him or her ill for a short time.
  • Good vision enhancement. The wearer can see in low light conditions as if it were day, and see faint outlines and shapes even in total darkness.
  • Once per week Ironhead can spew forth a jet of Great contact poison, striking one target in front of the wearer. This poison is both damaging and painful. The wearer can control this effect, but it great anger may cause it to fire unintentionally.

Over the long term the helm's terrible appearance is likely to weigh heavily upon the wearer. They may be driven to great lengths to find a means to remove the helm. The somewhat uncontrollable nature of the poison spray may also cause problems for the wearer.
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