Type of Sword: Magic Blade of Tuath De
Replica by: Blade Culture International
Status: Prototype – made as a prize in the design a sword competition.
Designed by: SBG member and competition winner, Djinnobi
Notes: A small production run is being made to be available early 2019
An ancient sword dedicated to the moon goodness of the elfin peoples of Tuath De, the Sword of Danu was the first blade to be forged from a Coronatite alloy – techniques later adopted by the Aeultian Empire that were adapted to create the legendary Aeultian Gladius.
Unlike the Aelutian Gladius however, the Sword of Danu was forged with Druidic enchantments long forgotten, binding into the blade a powerful nature spirit and imbuing the blade with a mind and a personality of its own that has evolved and grown stronger over the millennia, and was the prototype for several other swords made by the same technique, also known as ‘Swords of Danu’ (but generally, when people refer to the ‘Sword of Danu, they are referring to this, the first and most powerful).
When the sword was actually made and who made it is either lost or a closely guarded secret known only by the inner Druidic cabal and the Faerie Queen herself, but Aelutian scholars date it back to very early in the second age, before the war in heaven – making it at least 4,500-5,000 years old and extremely advanced for its time.
Because the Sword of Danu is sentient and has inhabited the sword for thousands of years, the spirit of the blade alone decides who will be its bearer and will behave in unpredictable and uncooperative ways if used by one who has not attuned themselves to it tries to wield it in battle. In this situation, it will perform beautifully in non life threatening situations, but as soon as one who holds it without bonding to it enters combat, the blade takes on a life of its own, twisting in the owners hand at the last second to hit with the flat instead of the edge, whip up and miss the opponent on an otherwise perfectly timed strike, or even come flying out of their hands and embed itself in the ground, and has been considered cursed by those who do not make it their own.
But if one takes the time to bond to it and passes its tests and trials to determine if the would be new bearer is worthy (such tests are rarely fatal, but may prove to be humiliating as the sword tests the character of its hopeful new owner to the limits of their patience) – its full powers can be learned and unlocked, though only at night and only when the moon is in the sky..
POWERS OF THE SWORD OF DANU
The Sword of Danu stores moon energy and has 8 ‘charges’ when at full capacity.
The first of its powers is that it can store moonlight in the blade and release it to provide anything from gentle illumination to an almost blinding light that terrifies many fell creatures such as Lycanthropes, sentient undead and even Forest Trolls, forcing them to flee and try to get as far away as possible from it. It will also warn the bearer of the presence of such fell creatures by releasing a faint glow in preparation, and the bearer can never be surprised by creatures in the vicinity. Requires 1 charge to activate and lasts until dusk or dawn.
The second of its powers – the Ghost Run – allows its owner to become ethereal and trace a path they took with it, its moon blue aura leaving a faint trail in its wake that only the bearer can see. When this power is activated, the bearer can also see into the spirit world and being ethereal can move at triple their normal speed. While they cannot attack in this state, they become partially translucent and cannot be harmed by anything less than magical weapons or attacks from supernatural entities also on the spirit plane (though the sword will usually warn of any potential dangerous unseen spirits in the area before the power is activated). Using this power takes up 2 charges.
The third of its powers is healing and curing diseases. Touching the cold flat of a blade to a wound, grasping the hilt or otherwise willing it to heal is enough to make all but the most grievous wounds (such as limb loss) instantly disappear. At the same time, this powerful cleansing will also nullify poisons and almost any disease, old scars disappear, and it leaves the recipient refreshed and full of spirits. Anyone healed or cured by the blade will develop a curious side effect – a faint crescent moon ‘birthmark’ will appear on their left shoulder – and gets progressively darker each time the power is used (2 charges).
The fourth of its powers, learned only after the sword and its owner have spent enough time together and fought in a few close battles, is for the sword to be able to animate itself and fight within 30′ of its owner. Usually this power is only activated when the bearer is incapacitated – the sword will fly to their defense, and its attacks get progressively faster until it cannot be followed by the eye and will destroy normal weapons that it contacts when at full speed. There is only one known counter to this attack, and that is to drop to the ground and remain perfectly still, as the sword of Danu will not strike a prone opponent (3 charges).
A secondary effect of this power is that if within 30 meters, the sword can teleport to the owners hand at any time, and anyone other than the owner attempting to handle it without the owners (or indeed, the swords) permission will become temporarily insane until the next new moon (1 charge), while evil creatures that attempt to pick it up once bonded to this point will be cut or stabbed by it, usually in the hand.
The fifth and final power has only been attained by 2 previous bearers and will only work with those who have Tuath blood in their veins. This allows the bearer to step fully into the spirit world and can choose to become completely intangible and invisible or appear as an outline made of moon rays with a moon halo surrounding them, protecting from all magical attacks. In this state, the bearer can attack as normal, but cannot be harmed by non-magical weapons and moves with preternatural speed. Furthermore, the blade is intangible until it hits – so cannot be parried by anything other than another magical weapon or shield.. (8 charges). While most of the other powers can only be used at night and when the moon is visible in the sky, this power can be unleashed at any time, though will drain the sword of all its power until recharged.
In addition to all of these powers, the Sword of Danu can communicate telepathically with its bearer at night when in the presence of the moon. The sword has extensive knowledge of Tuath De and remembers everything that happens and is said in its presence since the day it was first made, giving it access to an amazing store of knowledge and wisdom which it dispenses according to the comprehension of its bearer and its disposition at the time a question is asked of it (it typically replies to a question in cryptic terms and will refuse to elaborate once it has answered a question). Asking a question uses up 1 charge.
The sword itself has a distinct personality – it may decide by itself who it likes and dislikes, and while usually silent can become talkative (only the bearer can hear) or sullen. At times it is stubborn, becoming old and dull looking in an instant and withholding all of its powers if it is upset or in a ‘bad mood’ (though usually only for non critical uses). It is also a jealous weapon, and will become dormant if the bearer takes on a second magical blade of any type..
Finally, like the moon herself, the Sword of Danu has a darker aspect.
While essentially good, if the bearer of the sword is killed by an evil entity capable of wielding it, they can attempt to bond with it and a battle of will ensures. If the sword wins, the would be owner is driven permanently insane as the sword scrambles their mind and causes them permanently abandon their attempt to take it over. If the sword is overpowered however, its normal personality is subverted, it changes to jet black – and its powers are reversed as follows:
- Instead of terrifying fell creatures, it can enslave them to the bearers will until the next moon cycle.
- Instead of revealing ones own path, the sword can be used to track an opponent who has at any time come within 30 meters of its radius.
- Instead of healing, it gains the power to injure – touching the blade to exposed skin causes a frostbite like wound, and anyone cut by it will find the wound will turn black and become necrotic. If they are not cured by magic, they will eventually become an animated corpse.
- Finally, once deeply bonded, a negatively charged sword of Danu can temporarily transform the owner into a killing machine bedecked in eldritch jet black armor able to move with a swiftness close to the speed of thought. Like in its pure aspect, in this state the bearer cannot be harmed by non magical weapons, and the armor absorbs and deflects magical attacks back to the caster, but the downside of this is that once all visible opponents are killed, the bearer will fall unconscious until the next days moon rises, but will be defended by the sword is a hostile party approaches or attempts to do the incapacitated bearer harm.
While exceptionally powerful in both aspects, it is not without its limitations.
Each use of its powers drains the energy reserves of the blade and it must be slowly ‘recharged’. For each hour it is exposed to moonlight, even if sheathed, the sword regains one ‘charge’ until it is full (8 charges). When all the charges are used up, it can no longer communicate with its bearer and takes on a dull, non magical appearance until it regains at least once charge (if they are all used up to use its ultimate power, this only happens AFTER the battle is over, where it goes dormant due to the effort required).
The second limitation – and it is a big one – is that its power is only accessible at night when the moon is visible in the sky – in all other conditions it functions as a standard, but very powerful, magical sword (+3).
As stated earlier, there is more than one sword of Danu in existence. A total of 5 were made, each with its own personality and appearance. This one is currently bonded to the adventurer and bastard child of the nobility, Aoife (pronounced Ee-fa) who is known outside of the De as Aofie (Ow-fee). Another is buried deep in moonrock at the ruins of Ashen cove, bonded to the stone to prevent it falling into the wrong hands and cannot be removed, nor the moonrock damaged or chipped in any way. Many have tried to remove it, but none have succeeded to date. The other 3 Swords of Danu are lost in the mists of time, their location unknown but suspected to be located in one of the many barrows that dot the Tuath De landscape.
The sword of Danu was designed by Djinnobi and the prototype made by the team at Blade Culture International.
- Overall Length: 28″ (71.12cm)
- Blade Length: 21.25″ (53.98cm)
- Handle Length: 6.75″ (17.15cm)
- Point of Balance: 3.75″ (9.53cm)
- Weight: 2.87lbs (1302g).
Summary: It has a lot of blade presence and can deliver really effective shearing cuts and a devastating thrust.