Ask any dwarf about ancient bol-Pakash, a city so old there is no mention of it in any tome, and you will likely get a frosty glare in return. Ask that same dwarf about the kin-slayer daggers and it may well turn out to be the last question you ever ask. They are the reason dwarves shy away from carrying dirks or daggers in the first place, and look upon those weapons as those used by traitors and betrayers.
Six and thirty thousand years ago or more, bol-Pakash was a well-known Dwarven city, precariously perched beside the caldera of a massive, extinct volcano, once known as Devil's Maw in the dwarven tongue. Deep inside the caldera, fueled by bubbling fissures of flame and veins of utter ice, the dwarven forges of bol-Pakash, produced weapons and armor of such distinction that they have achieved legendary status in the minds of present-day dwarves. The Kin-slayer Knives, or the simply the Kin-slayers, were six horrid weapons such as were crafted by the masters-smiths of bol-Pakash.
The reasons for their making are lost to the mists of time, but dwarven rune-stones still found today hint at the horrors of the daggers and their origins. It was a time of great strife apparently in bol-Pakash and 'brother fought against brother with axe and hammer'. One of the clan leaders, a mad dwarf named Oporr the Lame, was said to have crafted these knives tempering the blades in the blood of one hundred un-bearded, dwarven maidens and entwining his sinister dwarven sorcery into the quivering metal as they cooled. It is further surmised that the original purpose of the knives was to help slay the 'Four Hundred Sons', prodigy of the fecund, King Grimissof. No one knows what happened next, but the Kin-slayers as they came to be called, were perhaps responsible for thousands of dwarven deaths, at the hands of their own fellow dwarves. So much blood-shed and slaughter they caused, that It became a black mark for the dwarves, a shameful chapter in their history, and one they do not wish to be reminded about. It is whispered that these blades are one of the reasons that dwarves are not fecund today, like the other races.
Regardless of what happened all those millenia ago, the Kin-slayer knives have somehow survived to this day, hidden about the great, vast world. Thankfully, the knives are currently lost and scattered to the winds. Yet any dwarf worth his stones, will know of the legends, and exhibit sincere fear and apprehension if they are ever mentioned in conversation, or worse, if the dwarf hears rumors that one or more has been found.
The Kin-slayer knives are crafted entirely of 'buttered' steel, blade and hilt, with imbedded, diamond tears forming twin eyes upon the pommel's dwarven visage.
Whenever one of the dagger's is within ten miles of any blood relative of the particular wielder or owner, the diamond eyes cloud over with what looks like old blood, and the knives' powers 'revive'.
These weapons will function the same for a wielder of any race, unbeknownst to most dwarves. such is the power embued in them.The magic inside the knives is such that whenever the weapon senses its wielder's blood in another (any relative, close or distant) it will 'animate' and begin to pore fabricated, ugly thoughts of death, revenge, and murder into the mind of the dagger's wielder. This telepathy is almost impossible for the wielder of the dagger to resist. Chances are, the wielder will then forget and drop everything else, and proceed to stalk and slay their relative. A madness overtakes them, a madness that can only be sated by the death of their blood-kin. Furthermore, once a target has been identified and attacked, only one mere stab will do the trick. As soon as any relative of the dagger's wielder is wounded with the blade, they will begin to die. A deep paralysis, which cannot be resisted suddenly seizes the victim and they fall to he ground unable to move a muscle or eyelid. The most unbearable pain that person has ever felt in their entire life is then re-visited upon the hapless victim, and after one hour of this excruciating pain, the victim's heart stops and they die.
Once the relative is killed, the wielder of the Kin-slayer knife will 'return to normal', the cloud of magical evil lifted from the mind. The wielder will now look around in wonder, having no memory of the murderous assault moments ago.
Against all other opponenets or creatures, to wit, all those that are not somehow related to the wielder, the Kin-slayer Knives function quite normally, much as any masterwork dagger, though the blades can strike even those creatures that can only be affected by magical weapons.
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? Responses (2)-2
He should have been called Oporr the Mad or perhaps some derogatory term or sobriquet like The Kin Slayer, or something like that. I like the idea, and rarely are dwarves described as fecund and having many children. I like.
I figured that for dwarves, 'the lame' already carries a strong negative connotation. Spartan-esque thinking. Born lame, he was probably a useless warrior and smith. He could not 'work'. What could he turn to, but evil?
Also, I did a piss-poor job describing these knives. Or at least describing the idea in my head. These knives are supposed to be reason that dwarves are in fact no longer fecund. I think I left this a stub because I didn't do a good job transferring this from the brain to the page.