Full Item Description
The Chalice of Remorse is a large silvery chalice a handspan wide in the style of a large wine glass. The strange shard of metal that fell from the heavens that was used to create it gave it an unusual sheen. Unlike most magical vessels, it lacks intricate runes, or jewels of power. Instead, there is a bas-relief reminescent of the first kiss of the Sleeping Princess and her Prince Charming.
The Chalice of Remorse was enchanted 200 years ago by a young, but very talented Sorceress. The Sorceress had spent much of her youth locked in the trials and studies of learning the great art of magic. It had been her constant companion in many things, be it in the casting of spells or in the form of her familiar, a small tawny cat that demanded constant attention. Something she did not expect did then happen, she found herself smitten by a dashing young man. Though the intricacies of extending spellcasting and the exotic reactions of agent and reagent were understood to her, the voice of longing in her heart was a stranger.
Using her commision and the weeping shard of metal flung from the sky, the Sorceress had the chalice made by one of the better silversmiths in the city. It was not done by the best as there was neither time to wait, nor did she have the wealth or social clout to gain admission to such luminary workers of metal. Taking the finished cup, she worked her arts of divination and scrying. She enchanted the cup to look into the heart of the person who drank from it. After drinking from the cup, she would be able to look into the cup and see into the heart of the drinker.
Surprised that she could not see into her own heart, and feeling foolish for trying such an act, she took the chalice to her paramour. After much conversing and eating of small foods, she invited him to drink of the chalice, not telling him of it's powers. He was hesitant, knowing her to be a sorceress and having been warned of love tonics and enchanted potions and cursed cups. But he was true to her, and he did drink of the cup.
She then took the cup and looked into it, trusting neither herself or her paramour. Inside the vessel, reflected in the wet sheen of the bottom she saw. She saw a terrible fight, of her young paramour yelling at a woman, at the woman striking him, she saw what was a horrible domestic fight. Tearful she flung the chalice away and spoke unkind words to the young man. Deeply wounded in his heart, her paramour left her shaking with her own anger and fear. She had though to trust him, and in his heart he was a monster and a violent man.
The cup was placed on a shelf and was consulted only rarely from time to time. Each viewing was nearly the same, the heart of each man was a violent and turbulent place, their calm voices and steady hands a facade to the whirlwind of rage and anger in their hearts. The Sorceress would grow older and older, and eventually passed away, and her trove of artifacts and books were scavanged by thieves and fellow magi. Some offered pretense of honoring her memory, or safe-keeping, others simply took what they liked. In the end, her name was lost, and the true name of the Chalice was lost.
Yet it passed down, going from noble hand to noble hand. It became a legend in courtly love, for a noble knight to drink from the chalice as a token to his would be lady. Yet sorrow would always follow as the relationships that were sealed with the chalice always fell to ruin and distrust. The chalice was tucked away, buried in the treasure vault of some lord, or lost in the lucre of a merchant prince, but the stories drifted on, from mouth to mouth.
When the Chalice was created, the Sorceress's power exceeded her own self confidence. This imbalance marred the casting of the layers of spells that went into the item. The fact that the chalice was forged using a shard of the storm also poisoned the magics.
Anyone viewing into the Chalice can see into the heart of the person who last drank from it, but never their heart. They will see everything through a veneer of the battle that created the shards of the storm in the first place, a scene of violence and brooding storms. Place with this the impulse and anger of the heart, quick to love, and quicker to scorn, torn by desires and unhindered by morals. The viewer can see the history of the heart, of the loves and passions, and of the dark pains and hatreds of scorned love and poisoned trust.
This leaves an impression on the viewer, if their would be love is so violent inside, how long will it take before this violence spills out into their life. Trust is undermined and the relationship, like a leaky ship, is destined to fail even before it leaves the pier.
Scavenger Hunt - The Chalice of Remorse is required by a wizard wishing to concoct a superior love potion and wishes to study the artifact for his work. The PCs have been contacted to find the object, procure it from it's current owners who many or many not know its true nature and return with it.
Romeo and Juliet - A young prince wishes to have the Chalice of Remorse to prove his love to a princess of a rival noble/merchant house. After the PCs procure the Chalice, they are later accosted after the bitter break-up of the star-struck lovers as having provided a false, or cursed item. The PCs now have an infleuntial family or two as an enemy.
Final Destination - The ghost of the creating sorceress has been haunting about her old home, making life unbearable for the new inhabitants, as well as lamenting her love and the Chalice. The PCs are required to find the chalice, return it to the ghost of the Sorceress, if she can't be dealt with otherwise. She can and will reveal the faults of the Chalice, and will beseech the PCs to destroy it and release her from her torment.
Some time ago, I posted up the Shards of the Storm. In essence, they are fragments of a goddess's essense, containing a piece of the driven fury of the concept of the Storm. Much of their purpose, from a GMing point of view, is to provide a common thread for items of power. So? So, so far I have only been able to come up with two not-weapon items to make out of these, and I'd like to see what better minds than mine can do with them.
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? Responses (8)-8
Added plot-The PCs are sent by an Archmage of a certain country to find the Chalice of Remorse, so he can use it to prevent a royal wedding from happening, and thus prevent two other countries from uniting against his country.
What a deep idea!
Only discrepancy I thought I saw was that when she looked into the goblet and saw the domestic dispute, the wife hits him and he doesn't show retaliation or anything but at then end of the paragraph is mentions he was a monster and a violent man. That wasn't shown unless I read it wrong.
Nice item. I knida wish I'd've thought up this.
Oh wow, I missed this one! Elegant Melancholy!
This one is great! A great motivator of events, and the plot ideas are excellent.
The introduction of the Shard of Storm backstory elevates this from a conventional cursed item. The physical description of the chalice is evocative too.
Small nitpick: 'It had been her constant companion in many things, be it in the casting of spells or in the form of her familiar, a small tawny cat that demanded constant attention.' Here, I'm not sure what the 'it' refers to. At first I thought it meant the Chalice but then in this paragraph the Chalice hasn't even been created yet. The other alternative is magic but then it's also weird: of course casting spells involves magic but would someone think of magic being a companion in the casting of spells?
Somehow I missed this one during the Quest and am now reading it for the first time. I need to hit the random posts more often. I like it, very colorful for me.