The Queen Of Hearts
Heav'n has no Rage, like Love to Hatred turn'd,
Nor Hell a Fury, like a Woman scorn'd
A long sword with a slender hilt, this weapon is notable by the gold heart embossed in the centre of the guard. A viewer might note that the heart is flawed on one side, with a deep crack down the centre. The blade is longer than most – a full 42” from the guard, but thin and the metal seems to have a red incandescent quality. The scabbard is simple, made of wood, brass, black velvet and red lace.
The Queen of Hearts can only be held by a woman. If a man were to pick it up, he would find himself in such pain that he’d drop the weapon (d12 damage/rd held). To a woman, the sword barely has any weight and can be wielded easily in either hand. The blade is especially keen (+3 to hit and damage) and swift in its movement to block and parry (Wielder gain +2 to AC).
If the wielder is rightful angry, the blade glows red as if taken fresh from the forge, and becomes even deadlier (becomes a Vorpal Blade). This power last until the lady can overcome her emotions or after some time passes (12 rounds)
If facing a man that the wielder feels wronged, betrayed or violated by, the sword takes on a bluish colour and becomes almost incorporeal. Every strike again such a foe will pass through any armour or parry to strike deep in the heart, slowly carving pieces from it as it goes. (all attacks ignore armour and bonuses, even magical. A hit causes a 25% loss of original hit points) This attack can last only a short time despite the lady’s wrath (6 rds).
The Queen of Hearts knows all hearts including the one of those who holds her, and she does not bear disappointment or betrayal well. If the lady bearer of the Queen attempts to get angry on purpose, or proclaim a wrong against an undeserving man, she will become inert and grow too heavy to wield. The first time, the warning will last but a round, but if the offense is done again, the sword will repudiate its wielder and treat her as if she were a man forever.
There are many who believe this weapon was created by Oriana, the goddess of Love and Passion, to punish those who were wronged by love. Other stories tell of a Sylvari maiden, spurned by the one she loves who forged the weapon and virtually put her heart and soul into its creation. Whatever the origin of the blade, it has turned up in many places throughout Antaron. The tragic love song of Diantha – a Drannon “classic”, actually tells of the sword being used by the thrice wrong heroine of the story. Records exist of the Queen being in Pardinal during the Leo Dynasty, held by the female Captain of the Riders.
The current whereabouts is unknown. The wielder of the blade was a Kachirian outcast by the name of Driftwood. She used it out of necessity, having found it in the treasures of a Corian ruins. However, Driftwood traded the sword to some Pardinese sea traders for a cache of strong rum and brandy, and it was never seen again (the sword…and the rum).
Thanks to Roger (Alacrity) Briant for this contribution!