Eloria, Bane of Oppression
Strike fear into the corrupt and oppressive, destroy them and show they have no place within this world or the next.
"As you must keep your wits about you, the Hunter must become the Prey, and the Prey the Hunter. This new Hunt will prove your worth and the worth of those before you. There is no creature outside of this divine rule, not even the gods themselves. When you are the Prey, you must defeat the Hunter lest you lose those things you hold dear. Fear not the Hunter's victory, nor the Prey's, for fear will doom you. Thus, by Anaphiel's will, let the Hunter become the Prey, the Prey the Hunter."Ancient oni tribes were once divided by a constant struggle for power, fed by the elves’ amusement at what they had considered simple-minded trifles. A dozen tribes constantly fed lies and slander warred with each other, scarring their homelands and one another in a futile effort to show their ‘greaters’ which was worthy of some blessing or other in the hopes of elevating themselves beyond their primal tribes. Strung along to near the brink of wiping themselves out, these tribes killed and slaughtered one another whilst the elves in power sat atop their thrones of glittering gold and laughed as if watching games for sport. As the tribes dwindled from this encouraged suffering, one oni refused to join it - he saw the corruption of their oppressors and sought a station higher than his own in the hopes of one day making a name for himself. As he toiled day and night on a project that could save his kin the tribes warred until they were naught but two dozen each, and as the final battle that would have wiped them out aside from lone survivors began his spark turned into a roaring flame inside of him. His work was twofold; he first had to create the means by which individuals of power could be removed and their wealth redistributed, and guided by Anaphiel’s hand he wrote the incantation of a divine rite known as ‘The Huntsman’s Call.’ The runes of power that invoke this are invisible to the naked eye, save for when the Call is invoked - then, they thrum with ancient power and glow a bright silver. Once the rite was written and there was a certainty to it, the vessel could be forged. The vessel, chosen as a mockery of a sacred elven weapon, was forged from the bark and wood of the World-Tree in the hopes that elves who saw its construction would feel their homeland violated. Each side of the stock was embedded with fine silver plates, each depicting the struggle of the oni as they fought to survive in savage lands under the rule of oppression. As the crossbow took form, there was a missing ingredient: a mediator. In any shift of political power, there must be some fairness to it lest the corruption continue and so he made the ultimate sacrifice. As the rituals for the crossbow were completed, his own life force was drawn into the weapon to power it and allow it to be the mediator. So as the first blades of his tribes’ final battle began, a single silvered bolt shot into the air towards the throne of the elves and such, Eloria's tale begun.-The Huntsman's Call, engraved in Celestial on Eloria's stock.
Mechanics & Inner Workings
Eloria functions in many ways like a normal weapon of her design, no more than them save for the power of her enchantments and ability to begin The Huntsman's Call. The Call can not be accidentally invoked; a creature must be both aware and conscious that they are being challenged in order for the magic to take place, but they need not agree to it. The terms of engagement are established by the 'Hunter,' who invokes the Call, - these rules must be fair in the eyes of the Hunter and Prey, else the magic fails - and contains either the 'Prey' or a stand-in that is determined immediately as the Call is issued. If at any point the rules are violated by either party involved, the violating party becomes bound in divine chains for thirty seconds as punishment. If they attempt to cheat again they lose immediately and are bound for a full twenty-four hours instead. Eloria's only other unique mechanism is the well of neurotoxins beneath the bolt that raises with a command word. The toxin never runs dry, produced by the very enchantments that give her powers otherwise. The consciousness inside of Eloria is also capable of identifying targets during a hunt, making them easier to hit and for bolts to strike true. This same consciousness does not try to sway its wielder unless in the sole purpose of initiating a Call against a corrupt or otherwise oppressive person of power, as it was created to do.
While the process is forgotten, lost to the ages and past tribes, some semblance of it has been reassembled by the dwarves of Gigdarohm. Over ten days and ten nights Eloria was created, though most of that time was spent infusing her with The Huntsman's Call and the creator's life force, using many techniques now common in the creation of such weapons. The only extraordinary feat in her creation outside of the magic needed is the well of toxin that rises up with a command to poison bolts fired from her to stun those unworthy of the Call.
Eloria served as the turning point for the race of the oni, taking them from a disjointed species that constantly was at war with each other and giving them unification under a single banner as they sought to destroy those that oppressed them. She dealt the final blow to the holder of their lands, earning them both their freedom to live as they please and the sum total of his wealth to distribute among themselves. Since then, Eloria has appeared in the hands of different wielders whenever there is corruption and oppression against a people; her name is not cheered and instead it is whispered, for whispers scare the corrupt more than cries from the heavens above.
Eloria is one of a kind. Though many paltry imitations exist of her, she is an artifact created by an oni who received the blessing of two separate gods in her creation.
Raw materials & Components
Eloria was forged from materials found across Epposia, ones gathered in places where the magic of ley lines is most prominent;
- The heartwood of the World-Tree makes up its body, shaping a deadly weapon whose bolts strike true against the corrupt.
- Silver from the lair of a dragon, bargained for with a favor, makes up the plates that show the struggle of the oppressed.
- Fine silk from the Great Mother-Spider in the Underdark makes her string, imbuing each bolt with magical scorn.
- The creator's soul makes the mediator, an intelligence stored away until it is needed to fight injustice once more.
Eloria required no special tools, simply those used in the craft elsewise.
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