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Tuesday Magic Item – Murderer’s Mask

29 October, 2013

“Tribune Julius,” said the vigiles member, “there has been some trouble in the pauper’s cemetery.”

The tribune frowned, any news that started that way was likely to end badly.  “Continue, Marcus.”

“Yes, someone dug up several corpses and decapitated one,” he reported.

The tribune felt a headache coming on.  “And the decapitated body, were the hands bound or the chest pierced?”  That strangler had been executed yesterday, the one that killed for fun, this was going to be bad.

Marcus looked at the report.  “No, just the head.  No other desecration, Tribune.”

“Fetch the priest and let us go, hopefully we can stop this before it gets out of hand.”

Murderer’s Mask

These masks are made from the skin of a murderer’s head and face, they can be encased in cloth or leather to hide it, but the skin is there.  The mask feels uncomfortable when handled but such discomfort lessens the closer the person holding it comes to putting it on.

The mask does two things, one, it lets the wearer overcome their compunctions against murder and it makes determining who committed any crimes enacted while wearing the mask more difficult.

By donning the mask, the wearer suffers 1d6+1 points of Wisdom damage, this does not cause any penalties to the wearer until the mask is removed and the accrued penalties are also negated by again donning the mask.  While wearing the mask, the wearer gains the following bonuses:
•    +5 competence bonus to Perception checks to notice if there are being watched or followed
•    +5 competence bonus to Stealth checks
•    +2 resistance bonus to Will saves

They also gain proficiency in any exotic weapons that the murderer the mask was made from had proficiency with.

The wearer’s appearance shifts to match that of the person the mask was taken from, as per alter self and gaining a +10 bonus on a disguise check to appear as the murderer.  Their alignment read as that of the person the mask was made from and any magic attempting to reveal who the killer was has to succeed in a caster level check against a DC 26 or have it read as the murderer the mask was made from.

However, the mask is dangerous to use, if the wearer’s Wisdom ever drops to one or lower, they are possessed by the desires of the murderer the mask was made from and will attempt to satisfy them as best they can.  They remain a pawn of the mask’s desires until their Wisdom recovers to more than one, the mask is destroyed or the echo of the murderer’s mind is cast out by magic.

Aura moderate necrourgy [evil]; CL 11th
Slot head; Price 19,500; Weight 1 lb
Construction Requirements
Craft Wondrous Item, alter self, create undead, misdirection, speak with dead; Cost 9,750

Notes: Wanted to have at least one magic item that played into Halloween tropes.  This one is useful for mystery scenarios as it prevents certain types of magic from just solving the mystery right away.  It also allows for revenge themes to be played out, especially against player characters.

Oh, and it also allows for Scooby Doo -style villain unmasking!

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