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Sickness and Disease in ZWEIHÄNDER

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SICKNESS IN ZWEIHÄNDER

Disease and miasma are a given in a grim & perilous world. An outbreak of illness can sweep across the land, wiping out the weak and elderly. Many believe that illness is borne from impiety, a cruel curse waged upon the people by uncaring Daemons or gods. The poor and unwashed beseech priests for penitence, making petty sacrifices to please the gods. The middle class cling to barber surgeons, handing over whatever riches they have to alleviate themselves from pain. The rich look to physicians, academically-trained to lance boils, bleed sores and apply unguents. Universally, physicians are no more effective than barber surgeons when it comes to treating disease. Both produce quacks of all stripes, venal charlatans who are no different than buskers who roam the street. The only differences are the lack of funds in the case of a barber surgeon or a fancy certificate illustrating to would-be patients that their physician may be trusted. Priest simply believe both camps are apostates, as vivisection is well-regarded as bordering on heresy.

EXPOSURE TO SICKNESS
When exposed to Sickness, a Character must make a successful Toughness Test (with the Difficulty Rating indicated below) or else contract its effects. It has an Onset period, and lasts over the course of its Duration. Additionally, anyone who has been infected with Sickness immediately gains Corruption Points. Only some can be treated with the Heal Skill, as indicated within the description.

SACRIFICING FATE POINTS
You may sacrifice a Fate Point in order to automatically cure yourself from Sickness. However, it does not remedy the effects you’ve already suffered up to that point or restore Corruption Points you’ve already gained.

BLOODY FLUX
Resist: (Routine +10%) Toughness Test
Corruption Points Suffered: 1
Onset: Immediately
Duration: 3 days
Blood in your feces, dehydration, general weakness and inability to focus are symptomatic of the Bloody Flux. Your stool becomes watery, causing your bowels to cramp in a most uncomfortable manner. Living within the squalid quarters of the city and amongst soldiers’ camps causes this uncomfortable sickness to spread from person to person.

TREATMENT
A barber surgeon may prescribe hourly inhalation of noxious fumes, make a recommendation to eat spicy sausages or ingest powerful purgatives to fully void your bowels of the Bloody Flux. It requires a successful (Routine +10%) Heal Test to treat the effects as below.

CURE
Bloody Flux cannot be cured.

Effect: Over the duration, you awaken each morning suffering 2D6+2 Peril from sickness. If you were treated the day before, you only suffer 1D6+1 Peril from sickness.

GREY PLAGUE
Resist: (Standard +/- 0) Toughness Test
Corruption Points Suffered: 2
Onset: 2D6+2 days
Duration: Until death
Sometimes also referred to as leprosy, the Grey Plague is a relentless disease. It tends to take hold over those who live in damp conditions, affecting the very young or very old. The afflicted exhibit oddities upon their flesh, hardening their skin like thin scales – thus its namesake. It leaves limbs dead and atrophied, causes feverish episodes periodically and even moments of epilepsy before limbs must be removed. For all of its victims, it is a death sentence – albeit a slow, painful one.

TREATMENT
The pain can be temporarily treated, but never fully cured. Scalding hot baths, treatment of the skin with lye and moisturizers can be used to soften the skin. It requires a successful (Standard +/- 0%) Heal Test to relieve the effects as below.

CURE
Grey Plague cannot be cured.

Effect: Over the duration, you awaken each morning suffering 1D6+1 Peril from sickness. If you were treated the day before, you suffer no loss of Peril. However, you must succeed a (Standard +/- 0%) Toughness Test each week or lose 1% from all your Primary Attributes. Should any of your Primary Attributes ever reach 0%, you are dead!

RED DEATH
Resist: (Challenging -10%) Toughness Test
Corruption Points Suffered: 3
Onset: 1D6+1 weeks
Duration: Until death
The Red Death discriminates indiscriminately, a violent disease that corrupts (and kills) all its infects. Unlike other diseases, it is more insidious, soul-corrupting than any other. It corrupts all it touches, driving even the most fortuitous mad with visions in their sleep. Nightmares eventually give way to physical symptoms. Over the course of a few short weeks, hemorrhaging erupts beneath the armpits, around the neck and below the eyes. The eyes and other open sores begin to “weep” blood. Victims of the Red Death tend to take their own lives at this point, given the grotesquery they have become. Finally, the afflicted loses the ability to breath, with death a certainty afterwards.

TREATMENT
There is no known treatment for Red Death.

CURE
Red Death cannot be cured.

Effect: Over the duration, you must succeed a (Challenging -10%) Discipline Test every morning or suffer 3 Corruption Points. Should your Corruption Point total ever reach 50, you immediately die…but arise upon the new moon as one of the Undead!

TOMB ROT
Resist: (Routine +10%) Toughness Test
Corruption Points Suffered: 1
Onset: 1 day
Duration: Until cured
Only the foolhardy contract this illness, particular amongst grave robbers and would-be adventurers. Infection is a tell-tale sign to healers that their patient is likely a criminal, robbing the dead of their jewels and belongings. Worse still, Tomb Rot is also passed by the corruptive touch of the Undead, their filthy claws and nails harboring this sickness. It serves as a reminder that death’s touch curses all, and that no one can escape her scythe.

TREATMENT
There is no known treatment for Tomb Rot.

CURE
Tomb Rot requires a successful (Routine +10%) Heal Test to cure it.

Effect: Over the duration, you cannot heal your Damage Condition Track or Peril Condition Track.

VENEREAL DISEASE
Resist: (Challenging -10%) Toughness Test
Corruption Points Suffered: 3
Onset: 1D6+1 days
Duration: Until death
There are many names for these sort of illnesses – the clap, sailor’s pain, the drip, great pox, syphilis or hot piss – all evocative in their own way, but the resulting discomfort is generally the same. Terribly embarrassing and potentially fatal, Venereal Diseases persist over a lifetime with no known cure.

TREATMENT
Arguably difficult to treat, some barber surgeons have had luck inserting a number of instruments into the genitalia to relieve the pain of urination (a curved iron rod, wooden catheter, lice and mites). A dull knife may be employed to scrape away any pustules or lingering warts, but only serves as a temporary solution. As the sickness continues to worsen, it may result in the necessity for the infected to take opiates or other sedatives to relieve themselves from pain. It requires a successful (Challenging -10%) Heal Test to relieve the effects as below.

CURE
Venereal Disease cannot be cured.

Effect: Over the duration, you must succeed a (Challenging -10%) Toughness Test every month or lose 3% from your Brawn Primary Attribute. If you were treated that month, you may change this into a (Standard +/00%) Toughness Test. Should your Brawn ever reach 0%, you are dead!