Fifth Anniversary Magic Items 3

Today is the fifth anniversary of my wedding with the wonderful Kainenchen. In celebration, here’s a collection of magic items corresponding to the traditional anniversary gifts of the first five years. And how should I begin?

1st: Paper

Scrolls of the Aegis Maleficarum. Scroll, rare.

The learned sages of the Imperial City, who work in the light of the Holy Fire, pen these delicate scrolls – fragile, precious, and as terrible as angels. The scroll itself is three inches wide and two to three feet long. To use the scroll, wrap it loosely around your forearm as an action. When you would take damage from a spell, you can use your reaction to roll an Intelligence saving throw with a DC equal to 10 or half the damage you would take, whichever is higher. On a success, the scroll crumbles to ash, you take no damage, and the spell’s caster can’t cast spells of that energy type until the end of their next turn. On a failure, the scroll is not expended.


2nd: Cotton

The Tattered Coat. Wondrous item, very rare (requires attunement).

This light coat would scarcely have kept out the cold when it was new; now it is a paltry old thing, made as much of holes as cloth. Its properties are most unusual:

  • Upon command, it can rise into the air, as if worn by a Medium humanoid, and begin to dance. An unearthly voice sings for as long as it dances. It can dance and make music in this way for up to an hour each day.
  • Between dusk and dawn, you can ignore the effects of environmental cold, and gain resistance to cold.
  • Between dawn and dusk, you can ignore the effects of environmental heat, and gain resistance to fire.
  • As an action, you can ask the soul within the coat to manifest. It is a specter, except that it both requires and is protected by the coat, thus losing both Incorporeal Movement and Sunlight Sensitivity. The specter is unaligned and obeys your verbal commands, expressing more interest in conversation and remembering its long-ago life than in violence. If the specter is killed, this feature of the coat cannot be used for 2d10 days, or until you return the coat to the Imperial City for 1 full day.


3rd: Leather

The Skin of Sarlacha. Leather armor, legendary (requires attunement).

While wearing this leather armor, you gain a +3 bonus to AC, and to saving throws against the paralyzed or petrified conditions. Though as supple as leather, the armor looks like steel, sometimes blackened and sometimes silvery: it is the skin of the legendary gorgon, Sarlacha.

As an action, you can exhale a cloud of petrifying gas in a 30-foot cone. Each creature in the area rolls a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, the target begins to turn to stone and is restrained. The restrained target must repeat the saving throw at the end of its next turn. On a success, the effect ends on the target. On a failure, the target is petrified for 1 day, or until freed by greater restoration or other magic. You can use this feature once, and regain use of it at sunrise.


4th: Fruit & Flowers, or Linen & Silk

The Scarf of Sunrise. Wondrous item, very rare (requires attunement).

This silk scarf is red and purple, and is invested with the momentous power of the sunrise. While wearing this scarf, you can perform a 1-minute ritual to experience personal sunrise: all magic items attuned to you regain charges or uses as if noon, dusk, midnight, and dawn have passed. Once you use this feature, you must complete a long rest and witness two sunrises before you can use it again. This rest time applies only to you. (That is, if you transfer the scarf to another character and that character attunes to it (ending your attunement), they can perform the ritual of sunrise as soon as they are attuned.)


5th: Wood

Hazel-Wand. Wand, very rare (requires attunement).

Hazel is well-known for its gifts of wisdom and inspiration. The hazel-wand has 7 charges that its user can spend on the following properties. It regains 1d4+2 charges daily at dawn.

  • Spend 1 charge and an action to choose yourself or a creature that you can see within 30 feet. Add the number of charges currently missing from the wand (that is, maximum minus current) to the next ability check that the target rolls.
  • Spend 1 charge to cast speak with animals.
  • Spend 2 charges to cast animal messenger.
  • Spend 2 charges to cast locate animals or plants.
  • Spend 3 charges to cast conjure animals.
  • Spend 3 charges to cast speak with plants.

If you expend the wand’s last charge, roll a d20. On a 1, the wand crumbles into ashes and is destroyed.


Design Notes

Most of these items are intended to be little puzzles of references to entertain Kainenchen. (Item #4 is super obscure.) The Skin of Sarlacha is a magic item from Dust to Dust, and is more straightforward in its reference.

Everything else, well, they should still be fun magic items. Um, the scarf of sunrise might be massively game-breaking in the right circumstance. I’m not really sure; it’s certainly one of the riskiest items I’ve written. And would it have been worth it, after all?

Happy anniversary to us!

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