The Swordaxe of Bath’un Ra
It was very sad when the town smith went mad. He’d been kind, well liked, and exceptionally skilled. Then one day he began babbling loudly at all hours, and throwing himself into walls. The man had no family, and there was some discussion about whether he ought to be locked up, or given a merciful death.
Then it was discovered that if he was allowed into his workshop, his babbling ceased. He moved about like his old self, working steel as competently as he ever had. He didn’t speak at all, but he seemed happy and competent enough, so the townsfolk kept an eye on him and hoped he’d come out of his dementia eventually. No one paid particular attention to the sword he was crafting, festooned with half the gems and precious metals he had in his stores.
What the others had taken for madness, was in fact a horrific possession by a dark thing that had survived from when the world was young. A creature called Bath’un Ra that had enslaved man before written history, and which had only now grown powerful enough to do so again.
Before leaving to inhabit the swordaxe, the spirit of Bath’un Ra forced the smith to throw himself upon his creation so that he could not reveal Bath’un Ra’s secrets once the spirit had left him. The next day the smith was found dead beside the swordaxe, along with a scroll covered in incomprehensible symbols. The village buried all three together, well outside the edge of town.
The swordaxe of Bath’un Ra is a one handed weapon that deals 1d8 damage. Bath’un Ra does not immediately reveal its presence to the wielder, but subtly communicates the weapon’s magical properties to whomever holds it.
If they wish, they may make an attack roll against an opponent with a +2 to hit roll. If the attack hits, no damage is dealt, but the weapon bursts into flame. Each time the wielder does this, the weapon charges up further, and the flame grows larger.
Once the swordaxe has been charged 3 times, the character can spend the charges to make an auto-hit attack dealing 3d10 damage. After the swordaxe has been charged 5 times, the wielder can spend the charges to make an auto-hit attack for 5d12. (Additional charges after 5 merely add an extra 1d12).
Note that the charges can only be spent on the specific foe they were gained from. The spirit of Bath’un Ra is learning the weaknesses of their soul during each non-damaging attack.
When the Swordaxe deals a killing blow, roll 1d12. On a roll of 1, Bath’un Ra’s spirit has grown powerful enough to place the wielder under a Geas. (save v. magic to resist). If the save is successful, and the character continues using the swordaxe, the referee should continue to roll 1d12 to determine when Bath’un Ra can attempt his Geas again. If the save fails, then disobeying the Geas is punished by death. (No save)
Those under Bath’un Ra’s spell must uncover an ancient temple from eons past, which has been buried beneath millennia of desert sands. Within they must find the demon king statue, and place the Swordaxe in the statue’s hand. Once this is done, the statue will turn to flesh, and Bath’Un Ra will return to the world.
The scroll found with the swordaxe is written in the nonsensical language of maddness. Because it was only ever understood by a single person (the smith,) Comprehend Language as cast by a 3rd level magic user is required to decipher it. Written there is Bath’un Ra’s true name, and the words of binding that will keep him subdued. Reading this scroll allows the wielder to use the swordaxe without any risk of being placed under a Geas.