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Swords Into Plowshares Preview

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Curious about what to expect in Swords Into Plowshares? Here are two weapons appearing in the book.

Ajaal’s Iron Hand
By Sean K Reynolds
    The ogre mage Ajaal was infamous the far lands of his birth for his cruelty, his many devout followers, and his skill as a martial artist. Ajaal carved a small kingdom for himself out of the remote territories of the Celestial Emperor, and his monastery-fortress was finally breached he fled to other lands with his most trusted servants. Bearing the greatsword he called Iron Hand, Ajaal began to dominate the creatures around his new home, forming alliances and slaying those who would not bow down to him. Ajaal’s minions terrorized the nearby peoples for a dozen years, funneling their ill-gotten gains into building a new fortress high in the mountains. When a titanic battle between a young godling and a lich brought an early and severe winter to the land, the white dragons of the northlands increased their hunting range. Ajaal’s fortress was attacked by four white dragon siblings, and he and his followers were slain in battle. It is believed that the Iron Hand was taken back to one of the dragon lairs. One dwarven adventurer claims to have recently seen the sword in the hands of a half-dragon barbarian, but that barbarian is the spawn of a blue dragon and since blues and whites have very different territories it is unlikely that it is the same weapon.
    The sword is made of shining steel and carved with hundreds of delicate runes (the glyph-based writing system of Ajaal’s homeland). The translated runes are in a variant of the Giant language and tell of the greatness of Ajaal, his proud lineage, and curses that will fall upon any that dare defy him. Interspersed among the glyphs are images of coiled dragons, blossoming trees, and monstrous but beautiful faces. The hilt is of polished bronze and studded with large gems, all wrapped in layers of black cloth strips which cover all but the gems. The crossguard is bronze and has an ornate dragon spiraling around its length. The end of the hilt is plain, little more than a rounding of the main length.
    Ajaal’s Iron Hand is a +1 speed greatsword. It counts as a monk weapon for the purpose of using a monk’s favorable attack rate. When the hilt is grasped, the wearer’s skin assumes a metallic hue, although this is purely cosmetic and fades if the weapon is released.
    Caster Level: 10th, Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, cat’s grace, haste, creator must be a monk; Market Price: 98,400 gp; Cost to Create: 49,375 gp + 8,922 XP.

(Ogrebreaker illustration)
Ogrebreaker
By Alexandre van Chestein
    Ogrebreaker, the wild one from the wastelands, was a brazen youth whom age and battle tempered into an adept warrior and stout opponent of those who wish to stamp out mankind.  She met Trollrender during her travels and they formed a traveling arrangement, which evolved into a friendship, which blossomed into a bond that even death now cannot break.
    As Trollrender met his end at the hand of his namesakes, Ogrebreaker did too find death in the form of a band of ogres who had worked in concert with the green-skinned giants to bring down the duo that had killed so many of their breed.  Not going softly into that good night, she swore an oath beyond death and blood that she would be reunited with her companion and that their quest would not end. So did her spirit come to possess the magic weapon Ogrebreaker, the blade she had carried even as a child.
    Ogrebreaker is a +1 giant-bane keen greatsword of barbarian origin, but nonetheless masterfully crafted. It is not intelligent but craves for the blood of giants and the warmth of Trollrender or the bearer of that weapon. Once the two weapons are reunited, the bearers will be encouraged to share a bond much like that the two hunters knew.
    As of now, both Trollrender and Ogrebreaker lie in the hoards of trolls and ogres, who jealously guard the trophies of their greatest kill yet: the two barbarians who slew so many giant-kin that their raids into civilized lands are still hampered.
    Caster Level: 10th, Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, summon monster I, keen edge; Market Price: 32,350 gp; Cost to Create: 16,350 gp + 1,280 XP.