Tuesday Magic Item – Hungry Heart

23 July, 2013

Bond body and soul“I do not want to die, sorcerer.  You are the finest artificer in the Three Realms, make me something that will keep death from me,” said Avinlac, Duke of Calivily.

“It can be done, your grace,” said the masked sorcerer Valisk, “but there will be a price.”

“Name it, sorcerer, my vaults are full of silver and gold.”

“It may not be a price that can be paid in gold,” said the sorcerer, its voice just above a whisper.

Hungry Heart

These amulets are made for those who fear death most of all, they comprise a heart-shaped piece of metalwork marked with minute runes and sigila and set with a red gem.  The process forging and creating a Hungry Heart is difficult and is said to involve dark applications of the arcane arts.  The creation and possession of such items are often banned in lands aware of their existence.

They are activated by the use of blood and expenditure of life force, either the wearer’s or someone else’s, as a minimum the wearer must mark it with their blood (costing one point of Constitution damage) and sacrificing six levels of life force, either taken as negative levels to the wearer (recovered at the rate of one per week) or taken from a victim in a blood sacrifice.

Once it has been activated, the wearer gains the ability to automatically stabilize at negative hit points, heals their level in hit points every six hours and gains a +3 bonus to resist death magics, disease, poison and other such effects that try to harm the body.
But that power is minor, while wearing the Hungry Heart, the wearer can defy death:

•    If failing a saving throw would result in death, the wearer rerolls until they are successful.
•    If the wearer would die from damage, they are restored to a number of hit points equal to their level plus the higher of their Charisma or Wisdom modifier.
•    If they would die of old age, their age is reduced by 1d6 years.

Each time one of these effects is triggered, the amulet works it way further into the wearer’s flesh and it absorbs one point of the wearer’s Constitution.  This absorption has no effect until either the amulet is removed (at which point it becomes Constitution drain) or it equals the wearer’s Constitution at which point the amulet replaces the wearer’s heart and they become one of the Hungry Hearted, a form of undead.

Apply the following changes to the Hungry Hearted:

•    +2 Strength
•    +2 Natural Armor
•    All standard Undead powers
•    Hunger

The Hungry Hearted must fulfill one of the following hungers:

•    Blood, they must consume a number of liters of fresh blood directly from a living creature each week equal to the Hungry Hearted’s level.
•    Flesh, they must consume an amount of kilograms of flesh from a sentient source less than an hour dead each day equal to the Hungry Hearted’s level.  Flesh from a non-sentient being can be substituted at a five to one ratio as can older meat at an equal ratio (and at fifteen to one meat that is both old and non-sentient).
•    Soul, by touching a non-resisting person for half an hour the Hungry Hearted may inflict a negative level (that fades 1d6+1 days later) and they must consume a number of negative levels equal to the Hungry Hearted’s level every week.

Each day that the hunger is not satisfied, the Hungry Hearted permanently lose one hit point and after a week they lose a point of each Intelligence and Wisdom each day until the hunger is satisfied, if either statistic drops below three they become animalistic, seeking to sate their hunger through any means.

When the Hungry Hearted is destroyed, the amulet is ejected from their body.

Aura moderate necrourgy; CL 15th
Slot neck; Price 75,000; Weight
Construction Requirements
Craft Wondrous Item, create greater undead, false life, vampiric touch; Cost 37,500

Notes: Inspired by Trey’s comment on last week’s Hidden Heart.

Photo by Jessa Dow-Anderson and used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.


One comment

  1. Ha! Another great one–and on request, no less.

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