[intelligent items]

Abat-Ne, the Blackstone Mace

Mummy's Mask #5—Slave Trenches of Hakotep
Price: 51,005 gp
Body Slot: Weapon
Caster Level: 10th
Weight: 5 lbs.
Aura: Strong abjuration

Senses: 60 ft., blindsense
Abilities: Int 11, Wis 16, Cha 12, Ego 23
Language: Telepathy (Ancient Osiriani)

This light mace appears to be of simple construction, consisting of a plain, round head carved from black stone set upon a wooden handle with a small, bronze hand guard.

Abat-Ne, better known as the Blackstone Mace, is a +2 defiant light mace named for the fist-sized mystic ebon stone that serves as the weapon's head. This stone head is set on a plain wooden handle fitted with a bronze hand guard, though closer inspection reveals that the hand guard was likely added some years after the weapon was made.

Constructed for those whose task was driving back and crushing foreigners seeking to usurp the kingdom of Osirion from its true people, the Blackstone Mace senses anyone within 60 feet who was not born in Osirion, and immediately alerts its owner of all such threats. Unfortunately, the mace is unable to distinguish between foreigners who pose legitimate threats and those with good intentions. Instead, whenever the mace detects someone non-native, it immediately presses its owner to drive that person off—or, if the encounter seems especially dangerous, to kill her. To get the mace to cease its demands, the wielder must succeed at a Will save against the mace's Ego. If the wielder fails this struggle for dominance, his only recourse is to try to convince the mace of the foreigner's innocent intentions.

Similarly, the mace fails to identify native Osirians who may pose a threat. If used against a native Osirian, the mace refuses to aid its wielder and shuts down its offensive magical properties, instead functioning as a nonmagical masterwork light mace. In order to restore its powers, the wielder must reason with the weapon and convince it that the individual or individuals that were attacked pose a serious threat to Osirion. Not only is the mace prejudiced, it is also arrogant and has the unfortunate quirk of constantly retelling the same stories about how it helped various warriors throughout the centuries achieve their victories. Still, once the mace commits to vanquishing an opponent, it proves relentless in fulfilling its purpose.

Requirements: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, Heroic Defiance, break enchantment, stabilize
Cost to Create: 40,600 gp

HISTORY

Eager to establish a stronger presence along the banks of the Junira and brace his land against the threat of Osirion's expansionist neighbors, Jetrieti III, the Pharaoh of Sighing Sands, sought an alliance with leaders of the newly formed Tekritanin League. The pharaoh sent his chief emissary to meet with one of the Tekritanin League's most powerful warlords, a charismatic warrior known only as Simret. Accompanied by a hundred of the pharaoh's personal guard, the emissary rode west to meet with the warlord. In this meeting, the emissary convinced Simret to fight for the side of Osirion in any conflicts with the Jistka Imperium. He hoped to bend members of the Tekritanin League to the side of Osirion, and use the scattered confederation as a buffer against any invasion from the west.

As a token of their new alliance, the pharaoh gifted Simret with a fist-sized black stone carved of the same sacred rock used in the capstone for the Pyramid of Jetrieti I. Not only was the spherically carved stone purported to possess magical properties that would make its possessor impossible to defeat, but it was also imbued with a sentience fanatical about the strength and survival of Osirion. No one knows where this sentience comes from. Some scholars suggest that the intelligence was embedded in the stone naturally, while others believe that an ancient pharaoh's advisors imbued the stone with the sentience of a specific person's consciousness. The latter explanation certainly makes the most sense considering the item's nationalistic point of view. Regardless, the mace now calls itself "Abat-Ne."

Upon receiving the mystical stone, the warlord Simret ordered her finest artisans to bore a hole through the middle of the stone. Then, fitting it with a wooden handle, they fashioned it into a light mace, which the warlord expertly and fervently wielded on the battlefield. True to legends, Simret stood undefeated in her campaign against the Jistka Imperium's forces, turning them back and ultimately crushing them at the battle of Red Sands.

After the victory at Red Sands, Simret and her mace became a symbol of power and authority among some groups in the Tekritanin League, and while she valued her modicum of independence from Osirion, she remained dedicated to that nation's defense and superiority. Abat- Ne was passed down from chieftain to chieftain, and each time it urged its new wielder to defend Osirion's interests.

Over time, Abat-Ne slipped into obscurity and disappeared from recorded history. While centuries have passed since any historians have seen or heard tell of the weapon, the mace is likely still in the possession of those descended from the tribes that once made up the Tekritanin League. Recently, rumors have surfaced of a tribe of violent nomadic bandits in the lifeless wilds of the Glazen Sheet who have rallied under the command of a charismatic young warlord wielding a mace with a head of pitch-black stone.