Grimoire of Passing (3.5e Equipment)
Rate this article |
Discuss this article
Grimoire of Passing
The Grimoire of Passing is often simply known by the general word 'Grimoire', or otherwise by the term 'Quietus', which symbolizes the ability of the owner of the book to make anyone he knows by face and name pass silently into death. A Grimoire of Passing is an exceptionally dangerous tool and it is believed that no more than three are present on the Prime Material at any time. Despite its power to impinge upon the threads of fate itself, the Grimoire is, by appearance, a quite simple, black bound booklet exactly 6 by 9 inches in size, and about a quarter of an inch thick. Although at creation its pages are lined and completely empty, the insides of the bindings themselves are engraved with a set of morbidly spelled out instructions that, by their very own nature, would serve at first sight to deter mortals from using it, but have the possibility to draw in those with more sinister desires who might use the Grimoire for their own ends.
Grimoires are relics pertaining to older deities that once reigned under the banner of 'God of the Dead'. The magic that powers this artifact is therefore divine in nature and has the power to cause the final death of any person whose name and face are known to the writer, without any saving throw to avoid the effect. Lives taken with this book are mortared firm and fast within the realm of the dead, and cannot be revived, even by a true resurrection or a wish spell. The only method in which a victim of the Grimoire of Passing can be restored to life is by either appealing to the deity that made it, by pleading the cause of the victim to a deity of equal or greater power who stands opposed to the deity that made it, or by finding the Grimoire in which the victim's name has been recorded, destroying it utterly and perform a true resurrection or wish spell afterwards.
Regardless of whether the owner would choose to use the Grimoire for selfish causes or for those promoting a personal sense of justice, or even for the sake of good, the actual using of the Grimoire is, at its very base and core, an evil act. As such, after any non-evil person has successfully used a Grimoire in their possession three times, they gain 2d4 permanent negative levels that remain until atonement is used and the Grimoire is discarded, or until the person willfully becomes of evil alignment himself.
The Grimoire of Passing may be used only once per day. When attempting to use it more than once per day, the writing of the second name onwards will disappear immediately and not take any effect.
The Grimoire’s power is activated by awareness and comprehension. In order to realize the nature of the Grimoire, a successful Knowledge check must be made, or its true purpose must be revealed to you by proxy. To anyone with no knowledge of the Grimoire, it appears as a simple black notebook with blank, lined pages, and any attempt to write in it immediately fizzles with no effect.
Divining the basic nature of the grimoire requires a DC 40 Knowledge (arcana) or a DC 40 Knowledge (religion) check. It will reveal that this booklet has been created by a god of death, and that any whose name is written inside it will die. However, any further rules remain hidden from the reader until revealed or discovered. Revealing the Grimoire’s further rules requires Knowledge checks of a higher DC, as shown in the list of rules below. Finally, every successful usage of the Grimoire grants further insights into its deeper workings and increases the user’s knowledge of it. Every person killed with the grimoire adds a cumulative +1 insight bonus to any Knowledge checks made by its current owner to further understand it.
The following rules pertain to the Grimoire and are written on its inner bindings, and become visible when sufficient knowledge of this book is gained. The bonus in parentheses refers to the increase of the Knowledge DC required to learn of it. New checks may be made every day in order to learn more about the book, but once a particular rule or article has been revealed, it will remain so. Once the basic nature of the grimoire is revealed to a particular person, they may make untrained Knowledge checks regarding it without the usual DC limit.
- To inscribe a Grimoire of Passing, one needs a valid method and substance with which to write. This usually means a quill and any sort of ink, dye, or blood. (DC +0)
- The Grimoire's inborn reserves of divine magical energy are sufficient to catalyze one usage of the Grimoire per day. Inscribing more than one name per day has no further effect past the first name written that day, and all names written that do not result in deaths fizzle from its pages, including false or misspelled names, names belonging to people who have only been seen in disguise or names inscribed past the daily limit. (DC +0)
- Only a victims's real name and real face can kill him. Those that wear anonymity as a cloak, or that use disguises and fake names are excempt from the power of this Grimoire, unless their real name and real appearance can be divined. (+0)
- To use this book, one must inscribe the name of the victim on one of the pages of this book whilst concentrating on their faces. This is to prevent the Grimoire from affecting people with the same name. Exactly 1 minute after completing the writing of the name, the victim will die. (DC +0)
- Within this 1 minute, you are allowed to specify a cause of death and, if you do, you are given an additional period of 9 minutes to specify additional details concerning the victim's death. If no cause of death and/or special circumstances surrounding the death are specified, the victim simply dies at the spot. The added details into how the victim should die should be physically possible, as well as attainable between the moment of writing and the predistinguished time of death. Writing an impossible circumstance of death causes the victim to die without fulfilling the details written. (DC +10)
- Ownership of the Grimoire is decided by the touch of the living. The first mortal that touches the Grimoire is its effective owner, until he or she dies or is slain. When the owner dies of natural causes, the Grimoire becomes without owner and passes to the first person to touch it. When the owner is killed, ownership of the Grimoire automatically passes to the killer. (DC +10)
- Ownership of the Grimoire may be discarded at will. To discard the Grimoire or to dote it upon a specific other person, the owner must simply declare to relinquish the Grimoire or, if applicable, to pass it on to said other person by his or her own verbal decree. (DC +10)
- When the specified circumstances around the victim's death would cause lethal harm to any other living being, the victim simply dies outright without fulfilling them. This is to protect the lives of unrelated mortals. (DC +15)
- It is possible to record the cause of death and any additional details prior to entering the name of the victim. Using the Grimoire in this manner allows the user to specify the actual time of passing to his own wishes. A time written down is written down in minutes and hours of a particular day. The exact Prime Material time can be divined through astrological comparison. If the time of death specified has already passed before the victim's name is entered, the victim simply dies one minute after the name is entered. (DC +20)
- To be affected by the Grimoire of Passing, the victim must have a name. A name is defined as a title given upon birth, and is henceforth inextricably bound to the person in question. When due to being born an orphan or in a particularly rare or altogether unique circumstance that leads to the person not having a name, that person is immune to the effects of the Grimoire of Passing, unless their true name can be discovered. (DC +25)
- People that have used the Grimoire can go neither to their final resting place if good or have lived according to the tenets of their deity, nor to the Hells. They are destined to be interned in the City of Judgement itself, on the Fugue Plane, and can never pass on from there. (DC +30)
- Although the book can affect creatures other than living beings - such as certain undead or outsiders - usage of this Grimoire against such beings follows different guidelines. Despite addressing themselves by a particular name in conversation or theatrise, these names are by no means real. Such powerful beings, such as liches or powerful demons and devils almost always keep their true name secret. Only when writing down their true name can these creatures be killed with this Grimoire, but when they are killed, they are killed outright without the chance of return or reincarnation. (DC +40)
- When a person uses this book for the 88th time, they themselves die. (DC +80)
Description: CL 21st, Overwhelming necromancy (DC 25)
Weight: 1 lb.
Price: 1,140,000 gp