A Cultist's Membership Card & a Charm of Powerful Equine Magic
The Toadman’s Charm is a talisman carried by members of the Toadmen secret society and can be used for powerful equine magic. Possession of the charm grants the bearer the ability to use all equine skills and social skills relatable to animals, such as Handle Animal, Horse Whispering, Sense Motive, Diplomacy, Coercion, and Intimidate – from a distance, within a 60-foot radius, but as if they were in direct contact. In addition, the bearer can influence the horse in three general ways: To Anger, to Fear, and to Courage.
To do this the bearer must make a contested ability check with the horse, applying their Charisma Mod and any applicable skill Mod per above, to a DC based on the type of horse: Work horse 10, Riding horse 12, War horse or Wild horse 15.
Enrage. An Angry horse will attack anything nearby, including other horses, and will likely buck the rider off.
Terrify. A horse undergoing Fear will immediately flee at maximum speed in the opposite direction of the person bearing the charm.
Embolden. A horse affected by Courage will receive a Free Dice on all Will Saving Throws. In all three cases the effect lasts for 5 turns.
The talisman itself consists of a vial, small pouch or packet, containing a powder which is usually worn on the belt or as a pendant around the neck.
For how this powder is constructed, we turn to the following poem is from the 18th century:
“I hung the limp toad up to dry
Overnight on a blackthorn tree, like Shecky said,
Then stuffed it in an anthill for a month,
And by the full moon’s light pulled out a chain
Of bones, picked clean.
Then came the tricky part.
You carry the skeleton to a running stream
To ride the moonlit water, but you dare not
Take your eyes off it till a certain bone
Rises and floats uphill against the current;
Then grab this bone—a little crotch bone it is,
Shaped like a horse’s hoof—and take it home,
Bake it and break it up into a powder:
The power’s in the powder.”
Some records insist that Toadmen must form a pact with the devil for the charm’s power to be fully realized. Whether this charm is worth your eternal soul will depend on how unruly your horse is.
- (Concept) Codd, Daniel (2010), “Supernatural Evil: Necromancers, Wisemen and Toad-men”, Mysterious Cambridgeshice JMD Media
- (Poem) Beibetanz John (1979) “Sam Appleby, Horseman” (Full Text)
- (Art) Elizabeth Thompson (1881), “Scotland Forever!” (Link).
Modifications: Removed color & most detail, added flames