Spells that are Fucking Metal: Underneath Orion's Sword

Given that the cold, alien, deadly universe is such a theme of LotFP, it seems appropriate that it should be fleshed out. While leaving it amorphous and unknowable is fitting, in my campaign it's established that science and magic can simultaneously be true, and of course magic can contradict itself. So there's nothing wrong with adding canonical details! Since I love mythology, I wanted to include something with a classical feel and add a weird touch. Underneath Orion's Sword implies a myth, an alternate history, and uses a monster I've posted on the blog as well. Worldbuilding via spell.

This entry was inspired by a result on the table in the back of VAM!, a resource I urge you to use if you're going to write your own Weird Magic spells but just can't find a good metal song title or come up with something on your own. The song is by a band called Pyogenesis, who I hadn't heard of but are pretty fucking awesome now that I've checked them out.



Underneath Orion’s Sword
No./Area Affected: 1 person
Duration: CL/3 lunar cycles

While most of humanity’s tales are misguided or false, some hold true. A bit of knowledge of the spirits, the planets, and the stars are not just the inventions of huddled primitives as they sheltered around fires amidst the fearful dark.

The legend of the hunter Orion, placed in the stars as he died by the goddess Artemis by the plea of Atalanta contains the seeds of one of these tales. Their names were not Orion, nor Atalanta or Artemis. Before the Greeks ever existed, a mighty Warrior who had no equal in strength ruled over an oppressive empire. His harem, filled with slaves of every tribe, contained one who refused to be used as such, a fierce warrior woman who bided her time in this hell, seeking her opportunity to free herself and her sisters. When she struck, her revenge was sweeter and darker than death. Granted justice by her Goddess, he was crucified to the very heavens, made an example until his empire and that epoch faded from memory entirely. He hangs there still, the only remnant of that time, watching from the stars, bound by the will of the dead Goddess. Others like him, who rule with injustice or incur the wrath of the just may fall beneath his sword, ending their lives in starfire.

Underneath Orion’s Sword is a curse which brings a nigh-inescapable doom upon a single target. When cast upon someone, the subject may not even take note until the curse progresses. At first, they may notice a single constellation, Orion, remain in the sky out of its season. Upon the night of the next new moon, the curse will begin, progressing with each phase of the moon and producing the following effects

New Moon-First Quarter: gazing at the heavens will be as bright as staring at the sun, although no actual visible change in light takes place (night vision distances remain the same).

First Quarter-Full Moon: exposed flesh will burn under the stars similar to an intense sunburn. Exposure for an entire night risks sun poisoning unless a successful save versus Poison is made. Symptoms include severe pain, inflamed skin, and fever or chills.

Full Moon-Third Quarter: Piercing, shooting pain every night. The veins of the cursed are filled with starfire, forcing a save versus Paralysis with a penalty equal to CL/2 or be wracked with crippling pain until sunrise.

Third Quarter-New Moon: The constellation of The Warrior is no longer visible in the sky. He walks the earth, drawing closer each night until the final night before the new moon. The Warrior’s stats are as a Star Giant. If defeated, the curse will begin again at the new moon, progressing through the phases as normal. The cycle of the curse can repeat a number of times equal to CL/3. If the curse ends due to The Warrior being defeated, all memory of the spell is removed from the caster’s brain and the spell slot is lost forever.

Miscast Table
1
The Warrior will be summoned immediately, out of control and completely banished by his reflection rather than taking damage. The spell can never be used on the same subject again.
2
As normal, but the subject, when killed, is transformed into a Star Giant themselves.
3
Spell fails. Blazing rays of starlight emanate from the caster’s eyes and mouth for 2d10 days. If 2 10’s are rolled, the effect is permanent.
4
Spell fails. The caster is teleported to the cold void of space for 1d4 minutes. They are allowed a save versus Magic once per minute to return early. They suffer the effects of lack of oxygen and near-absolute zero temperatures normally, but are not immediately explosively decompressed.
5
Spell fails. The caster begins to degrade into stardust at a rate of 1hp per day. This effect can only be halted by Remove Curse or completing a task for the goddess of the moon.
6
Spell fails. A meteor containing the spawn of a timeless pseudo-deity from a fractal dimension of quantum existence and nonexistence begins to fall in the atmosphere and will make planetfall in 1d6 days.
7
As standard Miscast Table result.

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