Forged in a time long forgotten, the Thunderheart is a solid breastplate, of the most archaic of designs. No matter the conditions in which it is found, it is always the most brilliant of polished silvers, so bright that even the faintest light reflects from it with an actinic glare. In the precise center of that nigh-glowing chest is set and sealed a fragment of metal, pointed at the end and perhaps four inches long and an inch broad, bearing a gentle curve, obviously the remnants of a sword even more ancient than the armor itself. The metal itself is marked with a strange pattern of runes, a incomprehensible holy script from ages long forgotten - May she who dons Her Power have the swiftness of Lightning, the strength of the Gale, and the Heart of the Thunder.
Though in its natural state, the breastplate is sized for a smaller-than-normal human female, any sentient creature brave enough to don it will find that it fits, and well. Light as a feather, Thunderheart will not encumber its wearer, though it will still hamper motion as any other suit of mail.
Perhaps the first of the Shards of the Storm to be found, the chunk of shattered metal set in the Breastplate is also perhaps the largest, consisting of a full fifth of Typhoon. Unlike the others, the finding of this piece of the Blade was no accident, for it was found not by some rogue or curious magi, but rather, by a shaman of the Storm Queen himself, a man whom, in an organized religion, might be named the highest leader. Shortly after her horrible battle with the Mad One, he found himself near the edge of the howling, bleeding land where his Mistress had nearly perished, knowing that it was his duty to return as much of Her power to Her as he could. Trusting in his sense of the Mistress's presence, he passed through the Chaos as only one of Her minions might, unerringly homing in on the enormous shard first, the only he could sense. Yet, as he found it, and reached out for it, he found that its nigh-overwhelming power was responsible for drowning out all the others. Girding himself with ritual chant and prayer, he reached out and took it, resolving to take the blade-shards to his Mistress one by one if so required. Yet, it came to pass that this was not enough.
As he bore the shard towards the place where the North Wind leaves the Earth for the Sky, that place where the Kingdom of the Wind might be most easily accessed, the Shard's power began to overcome his mind. It was not long at all before he was quite mad indeed, his augmented magics spiraling out of his control and bringing devestation to the countryside. In this state, he was eventually captured by a small division of knights sent to investigate the mysterious destruction. The ravings of the mad-man revealed, in time, the nature of the artifact that he carried, and as it was claimed by the captain of the knights, a woman of some formidable training in the mystic, it occured to her that to give the shattered thing a new form might contain its power.
And so she commissioned a breastplate to be fashioned around it, and she himself chanted the magics that might bond the holy artifact to the steel, thinking all the while of the strength and speed of the storm that might come to the wearer. The success of her plan was beyond her wildest dreams.
As the Captain of the knights drew the finished breastplate about himself, she screamed once in pain, before falling to the floor, flailing and convulsing with a thunderous sound. It was many long minutes of thrashing and flailing at the men who attempted to remove the device from her body before she began to settle slightly, her body slowly becoming acclimated to the touch of the Storm...
And share the Breastplate with that storm the wearer does. As Thunderheart is donned, its spell begins, the wearer of the armor takes significant damage as the wind tears across his skin and the lightning slams through his flesh. To wear the armor means excruciating pain, so much so that to bear it for more than a day or three(Depending on the sturdiness and willpower of the wearer) will almost always result in death, and simply wearing it should cause frequent checks against the effects of constant agony. Natural healing and swift regeneration while Thunderheart is borne are also nigh impossible, the wind and lightning serving to hold open wounds, though instant magical healing has a chance of success. Finally, it bears all the ill mental effects of any other itm=247.
Though it exacts its uncaring price, Thunderheart is not witohut its benefits. First, the lightning that runs through the body enhances the speed of the wearer's reflexes, though it slightly hampers fine motor control, resulting in a jerky sort of highly accelerated motion. Second, the gale that storms through the armor imparts significantly additional strength to that motion. Thirdly, any time the armor is breached, the lightning will 'escape' along any metallic weapon used to open that breach, potentially shocking and stunning the wielder. Finally, the sheer pain of wearing the armor can grant a situational bonus to checks against mind reading magics and mental domination magics - the sheer presence and volume of the agony makes it difficult for another mind to bear being in contact with the wearer of Thunderheart.
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? Responses (3)
Power comes at a cost... make sure you can pay.
Good Item. I like the history of the Artifact, and the fact that it is well balanced. One thing that I would like to know is how well putting the Shard in the breastplate accualty worked in containing the maddness that aflicted the shaman? And in any case, after a few wearings of the breastplate, would not the pain caused by it drive the wearer mad.
Really neat - I need to read more of the shards now.