Ranged Weapons
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Comments: 13
Ideas: 0
Rating: 4.5
Condition: Normal
ID: 2754


January 11, 2014, 3:02 pm

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Cheka Man

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Coward's Lot, the Bow of Caldwell


This item is not listed in many tombs of magic, nor is it detailed in any text books among the arcane. It is however sung about in many a tavern and bar across the coastal cities. The tale is sung more about the man who created it. His tale has been embellished time and again until he seemed more a god than the coward that he was.

The history of the bow and of its owner is written down in song only, here is the Ballad of Caldwell the Coward.

Caldwell the Brave was a cowardly man,
Skittish, and meek as any man can.
And as all the heroes rushed into battle,
Caldwell just hid and meekly prattled.

Better not to see the whites of their eyes,
said Caldwell the Coward to no ones surprise.
Hid and cowered, cowered and hid,
Caldwell the Coward fled battle in mid.

Singing songs to the fallen and brave,
Caldwell ran and hid in a cave.
Laughed and jeered, in the wake of his peers,
to have all of his pain fall down into tears.

Sat there in shame, consumed in fear,
with all of his brethren fighting near.
He sat and pondered a weapon of ease,
a weapon that brought foes to their knees.

Unbeknownst to him, a cave-troll lay dead,
in the very same cave Caldwell called his stead.
He asked, How did you die? but nothing was said.
The Cave Troll merely leered like a spectre of lead.

He prayed to his god and unstrung his strings,
Took the bone of the leg and added these things.
He put it together, bone and harp string
He prayed to his patron, the God who let him sing.

"Have me shoot true and drop thy enemy down,
let their words of pain bleed into the ground.
Let me fly the arrow straight and true
Let not my peers question my sinew!"

He drew back the string and made a wonderful sound,
And let loose the first arrow to strike into the ground.
And far away from him fell the one shot,
An arrow of bone of the Coward’s Lot.

A cry from the enemy, "Its only the Coward!"
The jeers of his brethren and Caldwell was soured.
Just then Caldwell pulled the bow saying, "Not today knaves!",
And that is how the Coward became Caldwell the Brave.

Description: The bow is crafted from the pocked marked bone of a troll, the femur to be exact. The yellow and white bone having been scraped and polished to remove any after flesh from the previous owner. The strength of the bow is rather strong, considering it is dried bone and normally brittle. It has been known to parry the blow from an angered troll, possibly a relative to the bone’s previous owner.

The bow is approximately 4’ long while strung, making only taller than average characters able to use with ease. A tuft of ragged hair hangs from the top of the bow, a testament to the bones owner and its pride in its long hair.

When the bow is used a delicate hum issues forth from the sting as if from a lute or harp. The original crafter of the bow apparently used a few of harp strings to put the finishing touches to make it work. The string is thin yet durable, able to be tested by the strongest of users without worrying the tension. This could have been due to the need to make a weapon was great and little time to find other suitable materials was available.

Magic Properties: When used, the wielder of the bow feels stronger, able to pull the bow back that extra inch to gain a little more distance or punching power. This only transfers over to the use of the bow and when not used, they feel as they always do. When damage is dealt with this weapon consider it able to do double the normal damage of a bow its size.

A special feature of the bow is that is requires no arrows, instead when the string is pulled back taunt, an arrow knocks itself. Each arrow that appears however looks as if it was made of bone as well yet punching through metal armor as a normal arrow would. While looking brittle, they can punch through the stoutest of metal plate worn by soldiers and knights, often unhorsing them or knocking them back in the process. The arrows hit as if from a force of a swinging log, knocking the wind out of the target even if the wound is not death dealing.

The biggest downside to using this bow, however, is it makes the wielder slower to think and act. They have a hard time concentrating on the simplest of tasks and difficult and complex tasks and equations frustrate them quickly. Their capacity is not compromised, just their ability to understand or formulate a complex understanding. They seem quicker to anger, often to the point of violence with prolonged use of the bow.

Thank you to Murometz for helping me with the Ballad of Caldwell the Coward.

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Comments ( 13 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

June 10, 2006, 14:27
This was inspired by a submission from fenixphire. In my comments to the sub I gave a new description of the item and when it wasn't revised I decided to use that very description to create this anew. Credit for the original inspiration goes to her but this is an entirely new sub.
Voted Cheka Man
June 10, 2006, 21:33
5/5 i really like the new version of the Bone Bow.
Voted Murometz
June 11, 2006, 0:16
I like the concept and the execution! An inspired re-invention
Voted MoonHunter
June 11, 2006, 12:28
Well done. Nicely executed, good dramatic additions to the bone bow, and it gives you a song, a legend, an item, and some history all in one post. What is not to like about this?
Voted Ancient Gamer
June 11, 2006, 13:31
Only voted
Voted Strolen
August 27, 2006, 21:23
The song is what put me over the edge. I found a multitude of tunes I could chant along with it.
Voted valadaar
October 18, 2006, 16:02
Love the ballad! Great job guys!
Voted Pariah
October 18, 2006, 22:11
Good job. I saw potential when I read the original, and you brought it out.
September 16, 2007, 2:23
BUMP, in honor of your coming, Mourn :)
September 16, 2007, 8:51
Ah yes, Caldwell the Coward... I enjoyed this one.
Voted manfred
September 16, 2007, 12:45
I must have overlooked this when it came in. It is quite a powerful thing, but not without its little downside. Best thing of all, the legend is already made. I could see bards singing this song, if they are ridiculed by their audience, or simply to inspire and entertain less-than-eager warriors.

Great submission!
Voted Dozus
April 2, 2014, 9:29
Love the accompanying ballad. This is a good reinvention of the old idea.
Voted axlerowes
April 2, 2014, 19:09

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       By: Kassil

How about a dragon how cheerfully rules over a kingdom; his people all know him for what he is, and dragons are looked upon as wise and benevolent creatures. Dragonslayers from other kingdoms coming to free it from 'tyranny' are likely to get beaten to death by peasants with cast iron skillets.

Ideas  ( NPCs ) | February 25, 2003 | View | UpVote 4xp

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