Sneak preview of the histories of the artefact swords in Vol.3 of Marco's Magic of Mystara. (still coming soon
) I haven't spell checked any of this yet, so there may be errors.SWORD OF DESTINYHistory:
The Sword of Destiny appears in all mortal legends and is known by different names based on the culture and the region in which its myth is told. According to the northmen it was forged by the mythic smith Volund and given to Odin who with it cut the ash tree from which he was hung to discover the secrets of the runes of power, and planted it in the remaining stump, prophesying that only a great leader would be able to take it. According to the Dunael the sword was forged by the great bard Dallbard, and whoever wields can aspire to unite and rule the Isle of Dawn. Other peoples (like the Traldarians, Traldars, Hattians, Espans or the giants), believe that it was the favourite weapon of one of their heroes (Halav, Vanya, The Eternal General, and even the giant Surtr with his flaming sword) and that whoever manages to find it becomes invincible.
There are several heroes who boast of having extracted it: the legendary Northman warrior, who thanks to the sword Balmung killed the dragon Fafnir and freed Norwold from its terror; the tenacious Ostlander explorer Frithjof, who travelled to the ends of the world in search of the fountain of life, beating every enemy thanks to the sword Angurvadal; the contemptuous and bold Beowulf, who according to the Vestlander legend killed the monstrous Grendel thanks to the power of his sword Nagelring; the valorous Hattian leader Dietrich von Bern, whose sword is known as Gram; the fearless general Rodrigo Diaz called “El Cid Campeador”, a hero of the Ispan tradition famous for his victories and magic sword Tizona; the noble knight Roland of Eusdria, whose tragic ballad is as famous as his sword Durendal; the valiant Robrenn, who thanks to his sword Cruaidìn was able to found a kingdom named after himself by pushing the humanoids and giants from the Forest of Carnuilh; Zendrolion Tatriokanitas, first emperor of Thyatis and great conqueror, famous for the sword Crocea Mors; and finally the brave King Halav, protagonist of the epic battle against the gnolls and deified by the Traldar and their Traladaran descendants, while among the Dunael he is known as Hylaw, the one who pulled from the stone the sword Caledfwylch, also called Excalibur by the Thyatians and the Redstonians of the Isle of Dawn.SWORDS OF HEAVENLY BALANCEHistory:
According to an ancient Myoshiman legend, two master swordsmiths once lived in the empire, Masamune and Murasame, who created and passed to their students the art of creating unparallelled swords, the first katanas and no-dachi. The Emperor wanted to test them to see who was superior, and ordered that they make the perfect sword, which he would then give to his, the heir to the throne. They each presented a katana made to perfection, and the Emperor entrusted the task of judging them to the wisest of his councillors, who decided to immerse along the course of a stream a short distance from the imperial palace. The sword of Murasame cut the water, every leaf and fish that passed by, and even the wind that blew over the watercourse. When it was the turn of the Masamune instead, not one leaf, fish or anything else was cut by its edge, which instead let the water pass without cleaving it. Murasame was sure he had won, but the wise councillor instead proclaimed the superiority of Masamune, explaining that the first sword was a blood thirsty item, as it had destroyed anything it had encountered in its path, while the Masamune had spared all that was truly pure and innocent. Mortified, Murasame retired with his sword, which afterwards was acquired by a pretender to the imperial throne, who then fought against the legitimate successor plunging the empire into the dark ages of civil war until the restoration of the rightful heir of the Emperor, who still carries the Masamune sword at his side as a symbol of his power. No one knows where the Murasame is, but the consensus is that if it is ever found and clashes with its twin, it could cause a new civil war.GREATSWORD CAMBHistory:
The legendary Darokinian hero Balthac became famous during the 4th century AC by freeing the Streel Plain of all the monsters and humanoid bands that until then had infested it. The last and bloodiest battle Balthac fought was against the terrible red dragon Calor, who controlled all the remaining humanoid tribes in the northern region of Darokin and the Broken Lands. The legend says that the battle lasted a day and a night, with chases and direct clashes, until Balthac, after witnessing the death of his faithful companion, the elf Sinan, because of Calor’s breath, used all the power of his sword to sap his enemy before driving Camb into the middle of its skull. Calor sank into a cavern filled with the bodies of his followers, and at that point Balthac lay beside the now cold body of Sinan, refusing to leave the cavern. The legend says that his soul still watches over the tomb of his beloved elf and hated enemy to prevent anyone reawakening the dragon by drawing the sword from its skull.