The following is an "item" I wrote up for a contest James Raggi was having about a year ago. It wouldn't have seen the light of day, but today is Awesome Gamer Day and I want to share some stuff I've made.
Appearing as a large uncut ruby (150 sp), the artifact known as the Jewel of Whispers actually a creature that steals from those poor souls in its proximity by invading their dreams and removing from reality something related to the dream. However, the Jewel of Whispers does not simply steal from its victims. It also imparts ancient occult knowledge and prophecies to those who can listen.
The Jewel of Whispers will begin to affect the sleep of anyone who looks into the ruby in such a way that his shadow falls upon the stone. From that point on, the character’s dreams will be haunted by the jewel any time he sleeps within one mile of the artifact.
If struck with a silver weapon, the ruby will become fleshy and will be cut or crushed like a simple piece of meat. This artifact is in all actuality an ancient creature known as the Dream Thief. It is unknown if there is only one Dream Thief or if there is an entire race.
Any individuals under the spell of the Jewel of Whispers will have the same dream and suffer the same effect as dictated by the table below.
Nightmare and Effect Table
A vampire drains the blood of the dreamer as they lay paralyzed in bed. Upon waking, the dreamers will find that they have lost all blood from their body and will promptly die.
Opening a small chest, dreamers find their most valued childhood possession broken. Upon waking, the dreamers find their most valuable piece of jewelry or gemstone missing.
Dreaming of a great feast of their favorite foods, the dreamers find the beetles and maggots have infested every plate. Upon waking, the dreamers will find all food within a mile of the Jewel rotten.
Crows peck and gore at the eyes of the restrained dreamers. Upon waking the dreamers will find their eyes to be missing from their sockets.
Wandering in the wilderness, the dreamers watch in horror as insects blot out the sun. Upon waking, the dreamers find that all torches, lanterns and other sources of light will not take a flame.
Running from a shadowy creature, the dreamers finds that their legs are slow and sluggish. Upon waking, the dreamers find that their footwear is missing.
The dreamers see themselves as great steeds in a herd of wild horses. The herd is attacked and slaughtered by a pack of wolves. Upon waking, the dreamers will find all mounts missing.
Wandering through a vast desert, the dreamers come across an oasis. As they try to drink from the pool, the water turns to sand in their mouths. Upon waking, the dreamers find that all drinking water within a mile has evaporated.
The dreamers suffer in agony as a legion of spiders hatch and pour from each ear. Upon waking, they find that they have been struck deaf as their eardrums are now missing.
At a great feast, the dreamers’ teeth begin to fall out as they eat and drink. Upon waking the dreamers’ teeth will be missing.
In a dream that seems to last an eternity, the dreamers plant tree after tree, only to have each one wither and die. Upon waking, all objects made of paper or wood are rotten. This includes spell books.
Finding themselves hideously deformed, the dreamers are shunned by friends and family. Children throw rocks at them and women flee from their sight. Upon waking, they will find any and all retainers missing.
Magic-Users under the spell of the Jewel of Whispers will learn a random spell each night of the Spell Level indicated by the following table. The spell learned is up to the Referee’s discretion. Each individual Magic-User roll for his own result.
Magic-User Spell Teaching Table
Spell Learned in Slumber
Random Level 9 Spell
Random Level 7 Spell
Random Level 5 Spell
Random Level 3 Spell
Random Level 1 Spell
Random Level 2 Spell
Random Level 4 Spell
Random Level 6 Spell
Random Level 8 Spell
Each Cleric under the spell of the Jewel will receive a prophecy from an avatar of their god during the dream. There is a 50% chance that the prophecy will be true, although the execution of the prophecy is up to the Referee’s discretion. Each individual Cleric rolls for his own result.
Cleric Prophecy Table
The dead will rise in the east.
The woman in white shall usher forth end.
A black cat will reveal the hidden truth.
The hermit will tell only lies, his mind clouded by the chattering of insects.
The whore will birth the queen. The queen with birth the sun.
Blood will be spilled upon the altar of the lost god.
Only the blind and the lame will see the final majesty.
Death await behind the fifth door.
A plague with rise in the west.
All great houses fall before the glory of the throne.
A blue man will bring great fortune and great sickness.
A dwarf will become king. A minstrel will become Pope.