This sturdy creation of polished steel and leather is adorned with the face of some sort of hideous demon wrought in gleaming gold. Lined with soft fur, it is remarkably comfortable and elegant, in a rakish style. Many are those who would pay richly for such an item, if it weren’t for the curse…
The Origin of the Accursed Codde-Piece
Anyone who ever met the Dwarf renegade known as Red Hatchet had to admit that he was an evil-tempered bastard. A vicious berserker without any redeeming virtues, he was a murderous beast.
The only person that Red Hatchet ever really cared about was his mother, Cradaminta, a demanding Dwarf matron known as “The Battleaxe” for several reasons. She raised Red Hatchet alone, a rarity among the conservative dwarves. Brought up by his formidable mother, Red Hatchet learned to be equally formidable; she taught him to channel insane rage into berserk fury. Before he left home, she gave him a gift, an enchanted codpiece adorned with her portrait. (Those two had more issues than I care to discuss.) The codpiece was enchanted so that it could never come loose without its owner willing it to, and while worn, it made its wearer highly resistant to injury in that area, serving as virtually perfect armor for the groin.
Later, Red Hatchet was briefly married. His wife soon realized that she could never compare to the highly unusual expectations that Red Hatchet’s mother had set and threw him out of the old salt mine that they called their home. A vengeful soul, she brought his favorite codpiece, the one with his mother’s portrait, to an elderly dwarf witch, a wicked soul who enchanted it further, twisting its magic to an entirely different end. Never the brightest of dwarves, Red Hatchet never did understand what had happened to his favorite codpiece.
Some months later, Red Hatchet heard of a bandit gang that intrigued him, a wicked band led by a cold-hearted villain called Jervoe. He attempted to scout their camp, but while he was hiding in the bushes watching them, his codpiece unfortunately fell off and glanced off a rock with an audible ‘clang’. As the bandits drew their weapons and approached the suspicious shrub, Red Hatchet knew that his stealthy approach was blown. He leapt forth from the bushes and into bandit history. The rogues were amazed by his audacity: Never before had they met a dwarf with the chutzpah to challenge them while his pride was waving in the breeze. Instead of skewering him as they’d originally planned, they escorted him to see Jervoe, who was so impressed by the dwarf’s bold approach that he hired Red Hatchet on the spot.
The Curse of the Codde
This codpiece was once enchanted so that it couldn’t accidentally come loose and the wielder’s groin was well protected. Its enchantment has now been altered so that it can’t be removed if the wearer urgently wants it off. To make matters worse, it now tends to come loose and fall off if the owner strongly doesn’t want it to come off, such as during formal occasions and in battle. Finally, Red Hatchet had suffered from a persistent fungus; the magical tampering with the codpiece has affected this disease, rendering it resistant to any known treatment as long as the codpiece is in the victim’s possession. Despite the effects of the curse, which may cause some unpleasant incidents, the codpiece itself always remains clean and exudes a pleasant musky scent.