The Breath of Death (Holy Sword of Evil):

It is said that this sword is dedicated to the God "Utu," the God who's job it is to lead the dead to the realms of the dead. Some consider Utu to be evil while others consider the god to be a benevolent force. If he did not guide their dead to their final destinations, there would be lost souls wandering everywhere in the world. No matter how you judge Utu, the deity has a huge following on the Palladium World. This sword is one of the most prized weapons of the church and often carried by a great "hero" of the Church of Utu. Stories of the sword go back millenniums. It has been lost and stolen a few times during its known history and each time the church has gone on major quests to recover the blade. Virtual wars have been fought for this sword. Those responsible are said to be given to Utu in secret gruesome rituals within the dark shadows of the temples dedicated to the Lord of the Dead. It is said that a member of the church who loses the sword receives a similar fate at the hands of the priests of Utu.

The sword is a matt grey almost dingy looking weapon. Even so, the blade is incredibly sharp as if brand new and shows no real signs of wear. A long sword, the weapon is double bladed and comes to a stabbing point. The guard of the sword is in the design of a human skull with the cross guards in the design of human bones, finger bones. The hilt itself is also in the pattern of a bone, most likely an arm bone with the bottom of the pommel appears to be the ball joint of a humerus bone. The hilt is wrapped in some sort of hide, some think that it is human hide. Many individuals are disturbed by just the appearance of the weapon and is even more disturbing to be touched. Worshipers of Utu either are not effected or ignore the feeling. The long blade is extremely well balanced, equal to those crafted by a master Dwarven weapon smith.

Like many holy weapons, the sword inflicts a deeper blow than one normally expects from the weight of the blade. It cuts even deeper against supernatural creatures. As well, the wielder of the sword can animate the dead. The animation of dead appears to be limited to around thirty dead and can be activated up to three times on a daily basis. Still, this is not what the sword is best known for. No, what the sword is best know for is that when a person is killed with the sword, priests and wizards find it incredibly difficult to raise from the dead. As well, if the person is at death's door, it is much harder for the person to be saved even by a skilled healer. For that reason, the sword is called "The Breath of Death." A secondary effect is that the body cannot be animated and cannot be turned into a mummy or a zombie.

It is said by some scholars that the sword is cursed although this is denied by most priests of Utu. The reason for this is that the curse only effects those who are not worshipers of Utu. A wielder of the sword who is not a worshiper of Utu will feel paranoia that everybody is out to get them. This will start after around a month of possessing the sword and gets worse as they carry the sword. Of course, with the church usually hunting down the wielder, this paranoia is not completely unfounded. Few ever possess the sword more than a few months or so before priests of Utu manage to track down the being in question. Still, it is said that one possessor had the sword for several years before being tracked down by the church. He is said to have fled from the city and kept running from city to city.

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2007, Kitsune. All rights reserved.