Friday, March 20, 2009

Two Second Level Spells: Bleeding Edge, Tears of Crimson

[found inked in gold in a trembling hand on sheets of heavy parchment, clasped within a folio made of broad leaves of ivory tied with black silk cords]


Bleeding Edge
Range: 0
Duration: 1 turn or until all blades are produced
Effect: Creates throwing knives from the caster's blood

Casting this spell causes blood to ooze from the Magic-User's flesh (or from an existing wound, if there is one) and congeal into crystalline, blood-red shards usable as throwing knives. One knife may be produced per round; and each knife inflicts 1-4 hit points of damage, counting as an enchanted weapon, with a range of 10'. Bleeding edge will produce 1-6 knives per casting. The knives may only be wielded by the Magic-User.


Tears of Crimson
Range: 25'
Duration: 1 round
Effect: Leeches life from one target

Casting tears of crimson draws lifeforce from one target in range in a stream of glistening red orbs and flickers of spirit-fire, inflicting 2-8 hit points of damage and healing the Magic-User of half the damage caused. The Magic-User cannot gain more hit points than the target currently possesses, and cannot exceed their own maximum hit points. Casting tears of crimson on an undead creature will cause the spell to backlash, wounding the caster and "healing" the undead.

10 comments:

Hamlet said...

Nifty, but definately kind of dark.

Something I'd put in the hands of an oponent but would seriously question a PC if he tried to use.

taichara said...

@Hamlet:

Dark, certainly, if one takes blood/life symbolism as automatically dark; and they would make for interesting reactions (I hope!) if PCs saw them cast, or had them cast on them.

I have to disagree with the idea of restricting them, though, unless the campaign had specific resistrictions on certain "types" of magic already built in. Certainly they aren't any worse in theme, to me, than spells such as chill touch and vampiric touch, both of which are in the 2e Player's Handbook sitting on my bookshelf.

Out of curiosity, what about them would make you want to question any PC that used them?

Hamlet said...

I shouldn't say I find them neccessarily evil, just . . . gruesome I suppose, in a way.

Blood may be associated with life and such, but its draining and use as a weapon is associated with vampirism at least, and other things as well, even if that is not the intent or fact. I would find that any player/PC who grabbed up one of these spells and started using it immediately without pause would have deeper issues at play and might find them coming to the fore later in the campaign.

And for the record, I find chill touch and vapiric touch to be borderline as well. Not really immediately evil, just questionable if used without consideration.

taichara said...

@Hamlet:

Ah. I can understand that point of view; I just happen to sit on the other side of the fence I suppose.

I don't find anything intrinsically wrong with those sorts of effects -- or, rather, no more than burning enemies to a crisp with a well-placed fireball and leaving behind the charred corpses.

(that may bother me more, even. damned forensics course ...)

But thank you muchly for explaining your interpretation! I enjoy hearing other points of view on this sort of thing.

Badelaire said...

I think the spells are pretty boss, myself. Like you say - "dark" is relative.

The Holy Cleric of Sweetness and Light shaking the brains and blood from the last Orc she skull-smashed off her mace...cuz clerics can't use edged weapons (too bloody!).

The Mage hitting a target with a Lightning Bolt and blowing the poor unfortunate apart in a spray of charred gore.

The Thief "backstabbing" someone by coming up behind them and sawing open their throat commando-style in a sheeting fan of bright arterial blood.

(One of these days I need to finish my random Fatality! chart for D&D and put it up on my blog. You want dark and disturbing...)

taichara said...

@Badelaire:

Yes, exactly. And let's not forget the uncountable ways your average sword-swinger will inflict mayhem and be drenched in gore --

I'm thinking of the first character I ever played, half-elf figher-mage in 2e. First time I managed a critical hit ... I must've had awesome damage, because the DM said I cleaved the orc from the crown of his head to his navel.

With a halberd *grins*

Just like fire and all the rest, blood can make for epic imagery. It's a shame to pass that up, says I.

trollsmyth said...

I agree. Blood = life too, of course, can be a physical manifestation of the lifeforce, and in the right culture can have strong feminine connotations. In my LL campaign, where Tiamat embodies both the generative and destructive feminine, blood is an excellent symbol for her and hers. In fact, I think these sorts of spells are perfect for the nagpa in my campaign to cast.

Er, not that there are any left, of course. Everyone knows they all got wiped out in the purge after the last War Against the Monsters.

taichara said...

@trollsmyth:

I agree. Blood = life too, of course, can be a physical manifestation of the lifeforce, and in the right culture can have strong feminine connotations. In my LL campaign, where Tiamat embodies both the generative and destructive feminine, blood is an excellent symbol for her and hers. In fact, I think these sorts of spells are perfect for the nagpa in my campaign to cast.

Exactly -- different cultures have different outlooks on blood and its associations, much as they do earth, moon, fire, bone, and about everything else under the sun. And the sun for that matter.

Variety is good, says I!

(also, awesome for using a rather more mythologically-based iteration of Tiamat.)


Er, not that there are any left, of course. Everyone knows they all got wiped out in the purge after the last War Against the Monsters.

Hehehehe ;3

trollsmyth said...

(also, awesome for using a rather more mythologically-based iteration of Tiamat.)

Thanks. The story is too good, and too human, not to use. I remember the shock I felt when one of my college group pointed out to me that D&D's Tiamat was Lawful Evil. D:<

taichara said...

@trollsmyth:

Thanks. The story is too good, and too human, not to use. I remember the shock I felt when one of my college group pointed out to me that D&D's Tiamat was Lawful Evil. D:<

You're welcome! And yeh, the D&D iteration is wtf-inducing. Much like the D&D Set ... or, well, most all of their interpretation of Egyptian mythos really ...