When Worlds Collide
The Ruby Shard
Blood of an Elder Titan
The ruby shard, roughly the length of a hand and shaped like a spike was first encountered driven into the tap root of an ancient oak in a ceremonial chamber beneath a Druid’s sacred grove. The party put the gem up for sale, and it passed from a wizard by the name of Iban Kahn into the possession of Arcturis Rakov who killed the former owner to reclaim the gem he had possessed years before.
The intense interest in the gem spurred further reseach into it, and the party discovered it had a dark and dangerous history. The information below has been uncovered by the party in bits and pieces over the last years, but hasn’t been presented in a single narrative before.
After the titan Mormo was destroyed, she was dismembered by the gods; to foil her amazing regenerative powers, her blood was scattered across the multiverse. In this world, the essence stays closest to its original form, the frozen blood of the titan. The essence has the power to twist and distort life found near it and can also be used as an aid to access the faded power of the titan, and so the gods attempted to place the shards in locations where they would be difficult for mortals to find.
Mormo was worshipped by a race of ratmen who claim she liberated them from their servitude to the vicious Eldar Gnolls. Since the time of the titan’s defeat, they have been seeking methods to reconstruct their patron, or collect enough essence to empower various creations to do their evil will.
A particularly large shard was placed deep underground in a pool, which served as an interface to the elemental plane of water and was also the home for a water weird. There it lay for many centuries until discovered by an ambitious emperor, who after considerable study decided to attempt to usurp the power of the titan for himself. The emperor constructed a machine that would allow him to use the shard to concentrate and channel the titan’s power from across the multiverse into a target vessel, a person that would serve as a living battery for the emperor’s sorcerous powers. The first use of the equipment however resulted in a massive feedback loop that destroyed the city surrounding the magically reinforced tower containing the shard, and dropped the most of the city below the sea. The emperor, undeterred from his quest to gain the titan’s power, moved the shard to a well guarded tower in the middle of a desert, build a hilt to help control the power flow, and began to devise other methods to contain the power.
A clear history of the gem is unknown at this time, but it apparently had been used in several significant events throughout history. It fell into the hands of the Eldar Gnolls who attempted to use its dimensional powers to open a portal to another realm in one of their temples. Succeeding beyond their expectations, they ripped open a gate into a pocket dimension that held hoards of demons and devils exiled their for long eons by the hosts of the powers of Good from the beginning of creation.
After this incident it again disappears until it showed up in the possession of an antiquarian turned madman, Arcturis Rackov. Attempting to replicate the emperor’s experiments, Arcturis tried to use the shard to channel Mormo’s essence into David Dangers, an effort foiled by Glorfindel’s adopted grandfather, Delve Darkheart. Arcturis returned it to his home in Granite Keep under the guardianship of a mummy, and moved on to other pursuits. Years later, it was stolen by a thief, Aptik Relianer, and sold for a handsome sum to finance Aptik’s retirement.
Afer that, the gem passes from hand to hand, until it is obtained in a caravan raid by a group of ratmen. The ratmen devised a plan to utilize an oak tree at the heart of a sacred druid’s grove known for its healing properties to enhance the regenerative powers of the shard. The result was not the growth of the shard, but the pollution of the sacred grove. This perversion was ended by the intervention of a young group of adventurers, the as yet to be named New 13th Legion.
Alas, Arcturis was able to eventually achieve his dark purposes, as detailed in the Adventure Log. During this process the ruby shard was absorbed into David, and David absorbed into the new demi-god, Arkturis Rakov.