Solar Flare (weapon)

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Solar Flare
Solar Flare, Faernethue Vrinn's mace.
Solar Flare
Aliases Formerly known as: High Priest Adrian Valarh
Home Night Falls, Silver Marches
Formerly: Temple of the Sun, Harrax, Anauroch
Gender Male personality
Race Sentient heavy mace
Formerly: Mummy
Formerly: Netherese human
Born -379 DR
Died -300 DR (age 79) (raised as undead, then bound voluntarily into his mace)
Age in 1373 DR 1,752 years
Class
3.5 ed. rules
In life: Template:Class table
Alignment Lawful good
Patron deity Amaunator
Languages Celestial, Common, Loross, Netherese

Source: Pen and Paper D&D
{{ #if:15th|
Magical Item

Solar Flare

Item Type Sentient heavy mace
Aura School Conjuration, Evocation
Caster Level 15th
Value 107,512 gp

3.5 ed. rules


Solar Flare is a sentient +2 disruption flaming light burst adamantine heavy mace wielded by the drow sunmaster Faernethue Vrinn.

It is valued at over 100,000 gold pieces.

History[edit]

Even among intelligent items, Solar Flare is unique, in that it was once a living person wielding a normal (if heavily enchanted) heavy mace.

Born in the Year of Dancing Idols, Adrian Valarh was a cleric of Amaunator in ancient Netheril, stationed in the city of Harrax. More militant than most Amaunatori, he served with distinction in several battles against the phaerimms, and eventually was named Harrax's high priest. On the side, he acted as a judge.

Harrax survived Karsus's Folly only to fall prey to a warlord named Ten-Ap, who called himself the Sand King. Ten-Ap brought with him a hoard of treasures, including several minor artifacts. No one ever bothered to catalogue them all, and when he died a few years later his son was to be crowned Sand King.

Somehow, one of the artifacts awoke then, the Dead Throne. It raised Ten-Ap from the dead as a lich, and swiftly transformed most of the inhabitants of Harrax into various forms of undead. Adrian Valarh went to sleep one night and woke up as a mummy. His force of will enabled him and some of his fellow priests to resist the Dead Throne's pull, letting them retain their sensibilities, but they could not leave the city again, and were left tending the temple without the benefit of Amaunator's divine magic.

Valarh, now 79, was furious, but had no way to defeat the power of the Dead Throne or its other undead servants. But he had not attained his rank without being a resourceful man, and he always kept a scroll of miracle handy for emergencies. He took up his mace, "Solar Flare" and cast the spell, binding his consciousness into his weapon. He slept for the next 1,600 years, only awakening when a living intelligent creature approached Harrax. Some tried to claim Solar Flare, but Valarh's consciousness would only accept a wielder who followed Amaunatori dogma (whether by intent or by coincidence), and would try to defeat Ten-Ap and the Dead Throne, thereby freeing his subordinates from their undeath. None succeeded.

Three Elves and a Kobold[edit]

Over the centuries hundreds of people fell prey to the power of the Dead Throne, be they treasure hunters, undead fighters, or Bedine nomads. Those who died in battle were lucky; few had the power to resist the artifact's magic or will. By the 1370s, Harrax was heavily populated with mummies.

In the pre-dawn hours of 8 Mirtul, in the Year of Rogue Dragons, a quartet of adventurers appeared outside Harrax. They called themselves "Three Elves and a Kobold," and a stranger team never walked the surface of Toril. For two tendays they had traveled from their home base in the Silver Marches, laying to rest the spirit of an androsphinx along the way.[1]

Valarh's consciousness awoke within Solar Flare, and he spoke to his mummy acolytes. They informed him that a group of adventurers had entered the city. They had already defeated one patrol of mummy soldiers and were battling another house-to-house on the other side of the town's ruins. They also reported that two members of the group were dark elves. Solar Flare was furious, but then an acolyte with skill as a diviner, having scryed the adventurers, observed to his astonishment that the female leader, one of the drow, had just held aloft a holy symbol of Amaunator, called out that deity's name, and incinerated several mummies at once. The sentient mace was speechless.

The adventurers, however, sustained some dangerous injuries, and fled eastward to the ruins of the temple to take shelter. Bursting in through the door, they stopped in their tracks at the sight of yet more mummies. In the lead was a moon elf with a longsword and shuriken, followed by a winged kobold holding a spear twice as tall as he was, with a bloody bandage about his head. Next to the kobold stood a short, armored drow woman with a mace and shield, and in the rear was a chainmail-clad dark elf with a rapier. To Solar Flare's utmost surprise, he heard the female swear fluently in Loross before ordering her team into "combat positions". They slowly began to advance.

The six mummified denizens of the temple, however, made no move to attack. Teniva Kaloum, one of the lower-ranked former priests, confused the adventurers even further when he took his mace from his belt and threw it to the stone floor. He then called to them in Common, "Peace be with you. I would welcome you to Harrax, but you are not welcome anywhere but this shrine."

The adventurers introduced themselves, and the kobold explained that their "fearless leader Faery Vrinn" had led them here at the behest of a Lathanderite trumpet archon named Mauriel, and they were to rededicate the temple. Faernethue Vrinn, the female drow, introduced herself as a sunmaster, and asked for aid. Teniva directed her to the altar upon which Solar Flare lay. Vrinn picked up the weapon and immediately was mentally assaulted by the persona within.

"What is this?" she ground out.
In her head she heard a masculine voice in Loross say, "You seek to wield me? You, one of the foul dark elves?"
"I am not an average drow. I am a sunmaster of Amaunator."
"A drow cannot possibly be a sunmaster."

But Vrinn disagreed. The gold sun around her neck blazed white, and she overcame Solar Flare with the aid of Lathander/Amaunator.

Once she had proven herself the stronger of the two wills, she and her allies rested for the day in the shelter of the temple, during which time she attempted to gain the intelligent weapon's trust. That night, having tended their wounds and (in Faernethue's case) prepared new spells, they set out into the ruins again, and managed to destroy Ten-Ap and all his servitor mummies.

With Valarh/Solar Flare's dearest wish acheived (and the party running low on supplies), the group gathered what loot they could and set out to the Dalelands to resupply. On the return journey to their home in the Silver Marches, they came back to Harrax to complete their mission. Vrinn prayed at the altar for the rededication of the temple. Mauriel appeared and took possession of the Dead Throne in Lathander's name. Vrinn asked Solar Flare if she could keep it, and it agreed.

Personality[edit]

Solar Flare is virtuous to a fault, and understandably despises the undead. It adheres strictly to a code of conduct that emphasizes honor and treats violence as a last resort. It is highly disciplined and unafraid to speak its mind. However, it also enjoys a good laugh, and loves to read. (This is, of course, difficult unless he is looking over someone's shoulder.)

Powers[edit]

In addition to its basic properties, Solar Flare can see in the dark for 120 feet. It can communicate by both speech and telepathy, and is literate. The wielder is able to perceive the strength of nearby creature's life-forces. Once a day, it can cast cure moderate wounds on the wielder. Finally, in defense of the servants and/or interests of Amaunator, Solar Flare can cast a mighty 10d6 fireball at will.

Since it is made of adamantine, it can stand up to much more punishment than iron or steel weapons. (Hardness 20,

Relationships[edit]

In life Adrian Valarh sired two daughters and three sons by two different wives, and over a dozen grandchildren, but as this was over 1,700 years ago the Valarh persona has no idea if any of his descendants still live. Following his transformation, his family was his mummified subordinates; now, his family is the adventuring group Three Elves and a Kobold.

Faernethue Vrinn
Solar Flare regards its wielder as a gifted daughter and student, and works to keep her on the straight and narrow. The pair are a solid team.
Aramil Galanodel
The Valarh persona is conflicted about the group's "intrusion expert," a former member of the Fire Knives. On the one hand, it dislikes Galanodel's methods and the fact that he still venerates the thief god Mask. On the other hand, it can appreciate the personal discipline and training required to master the ninja's skills, and recognizes that the elf has a good heart and wishes to atone for his bloodstained past.
Rylfal Xiluin
The only member of the group that Solar Flare really dislikes is the drow warlock/sorcerer who operates as the team's artillery. Xiluin is a vagabond of sorts who joined up with Vrinn both for some extra protection and to find a way out of his ancestor's pact with a yochlol. He is a realist, deals with fiends on a regular basis, and has little in the way of personal discipline. His sole redeeming feature in Solar Flare's eyes is that he's the only member of the group that knows more about the planes than it does.
Tetcaz Torunn
At first the Valarh persona didn't know what to make of the group's fighter, a flying kobold spearman who was raised by dwarves and worships Marthammor Duin. Now it understands that the kobold has a code not unlike its own, though it's less about honor and more about practicality. (For his part, Torunn is still trying to wrap his head around the idea of a mace that talks.)

Statistics as Adrian Valarh, 3.5E[edit]

This section is only useful to those who want to use the human Adrian Valarh in a campaign or encounter.

As the Amaunatori clergy often operated as judges and magistrates in ancient Netheril, Valarh often selected spells that were useful in the courtroom or other such environment. He would also select utility spells, and fill the remaining slots with combat spells.

Adrian Valarh: Male human (Netherese) cleric 13 of Amaunator/divine disciple 4; CR 17; Medium humanoid (human); HD 17d8+34; hp 110; Init +5; Spd 20 ft; AC 26, touch 11, flat-footed 25; Base Atk +12; Grp +14; Atk +20 melee (1d8+7, +2 disruption flaming light burst heavy mace) or +14 ranged (1d10+2/19-20, +1 flaming burst holy heavy crossbow) or Full Atk +20/+15/+10 melee (1d8+7, +2 disruption flaming light burst heavy mace) or Full Atk +14/+9/+4 ranged (1d10+2/19-20, +1 flaming burst holy heavy crossbow) or by spell; SA imbue with spell ability 1/day, spells, turn undead 7/day (+4, 2d6+17, 13th); SQ divine emissary, sacred defense +2; AL LG; SV Fort +14, Ref +6, Will +17; Str 21, Dex 12, Con 14, Int 15, Wis 27, Cha 18.

Skills and Feats: Concentration +20, Diplomacy +18, Heal +19, Jump -4, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (history) +7, Knowledge (religion) +10, Knowledge (the planes) +9, Profession (judge) +10, Spellcraft +24, Survival +9; Craft Magic Arms and Armor, Fearless[2], Heat Tolerance[3], Heighten Spell, Improved Initiative, Leadership, Spell Focus (Conjuration), Weapon Focus (heavy mace).

Languages: Celestial, Common, Loross, Netherese.

Divine Emissary (Ex): Adrian can communicate telepathically with any outsider within 60 feet that is either lawful good or serves Amaunator. (The telepathy portion of this ability is a supernatural ability.) He also gains a +4 bonus on any Charisma-based skill or ability check he makes when dealing with such outsiders.

Sacred Defense (Ex): Adrian gains a +2 bonus on saves against divine spells, or against the spell-like and supernatural abilities of outsiders.

Imbue with Spell Ability (Sp): Adrian can use imbue with spell ability once per day as a spell-like ability.

Typical Cleric Spells Prepared (caster level 17th): 0 -- create water (2), detect magic, detect poison, mending, purify food and drink; 1st -- bless, bless water, divine favor, endure elementsD, inflict light wounds, protection from chaos (CL 18th), ray of hope, ray of resurgence; 2nd -- consecrate, calm emotionsD, elation, lesser restoration (DC 22), soul ward, sun bolt, turn anathema (CL 18th), zone of truth; 3rd -- blessed sight, daylight (2), hasteD, lesser visage of the deity, searing light (2), speak with dead; 4th -- aura of the sun (2), death ward, divination, hand of Amaunator (CL 18th), order's wrathD (CL 18th), restoration (DC 24), sword of conscience; 5th -- commune, darts of life, dragon breath, flame strikeD (2), mark of justice, true seeing; 6th -- Azuth's exalted triad, crown of brilliance, hold monsterD, undeath to death, quickshift, visage of the deity; 7th -- destruction, dictumD (CL 18th), greater restoration (DC 27), resurrection, righteous smite; 8th -- greater planar ally (CL 18th if lawful), holy aura, last judgment, mass inflict critical wounds, sunburstD; 9th -- heavenly host, time stopD, undeath's eternal foe.

D: Domain spell. Domains: Law (cast law spells at +1 caster level), Sun (greater turning against undead 1/day), Time (Improved Initiative as a bonus feat).

Major Possessions: Solar Flare (+2 disruption flaming light burst heavy mace), +3 everbright spell resistance heavy fortification full plate, lion's shield, +2 flaming burst holy heavy crossbow and 20 bolts, periapt of wisdom +6, brazier of commanding fire elementals, bag of holding, starmantle cloak, ring of divine power, level 5th (2), belt of strength +6, boots of levitation, scroll of miracle (CL 17th), gold holy symbol of Amaunator.

(As a high priest of a major Netherese faith, Adrian Valarh can craft or have crafted almost any magical item, particularly those for which divine magic can be used.)

References[edit]


Notes[edit]

  1. Eckelberry, David (2001). One Last Riddle (PDF). Free Original Adventures. Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved on December 5, 2009.
  2. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player’s Guide to Faerûn, p. 38. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  3. Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South, p. 20. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
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