DCC RPG: The Empty Barrow
In a cleft near the back of Norhead Canyon lies the empty grave of an unknown person. The cleft was once bricked, though these were broken away by some tomb robber ages ago. Now thick thorny bushes grow over and in the cleft itself, though some of the ancient clay bricks may be spotted by alert parties.
Should the bushes be hacked back (or otherwise removed), the cleft opens into a very cramped space with a natural chimney at the back. Scattered bones lie in the dust, as well as animal and plant detritus. Searching through the space requires a full turn, revealing two strange artifacts that may tell part of the story of the empty barrow. In the dust are a severed rotting finger still wearing a plain silver ring and a skeletal hand still holding a silver knife.
The Ring of Re’Yune
(art by JE Shields) Some know vagaries surrounding the story of Vendel Re’Yune, a wizard summarily trapped within the depths of Hellraker Mines. A very few have taken the spirit of the wizard as a supernatural patron. Though it is believed that the wizard never visited Norhead Canyon or the empty barrow, one of his magical rings lies here, attached to a rotting finger, and covered in the dust and detritus of the empty barrow.
This unadorned silver ring provides those that wear it a +1 to AC. If the ring is carried still attached to the rotting finger, the bearer receives a +2 to Will saves, instead. Note that the finger remains in a rotting state, the stench of which causes no further effects, but is quite disgusting.
Possessing the Ring of Re’Yune may have disastrous consequences for those that utilize magic to move about. The bearer of the ring receives a -2 to all Spell Checks related to spells or magical items that provide movement (teleport, featherfall, fly, etc.). Additionally, clerics of lawful gods opposed to Vendel Re’Yune receive automatic deity disapproval for using the ring or the rotting finger, though carrying it with the intention of destroying the abominable artifact does not impart such punishment. Author's Note: You might recognize Vendel Re'Yune from Angels, Daemons and Beings Between.
Wither is a silver knife with a hilt made of discolored antler or bone. The knife is magical, though it imparts no attack bonus. Against normal opponents, Wither deals 1d3 damage on a successful hit (the knife harms those affected by magical weapons). Against an undead opponent, Wither deals an additional 1d4 damage.
Those that keep Wither on their person for more than 24 hours develop painful boils on their face and neck. Though this condition does not physically hinder the victim, he or she suffers a -1d to socially-based Personality checks, as the Judge deems appropriate. The boils remain as long as the knife is borne, appear to resist any form of magical or natural healing, but disappear 1d3 days after the knife is no longer carried.