Aura faint divination and transmutation; CL 3rd; Slot slotless; Price 250 gp; Weight


This piece of charcoal is pressed into a stick the width of a human finger.


Similar to mundane charcoal sticks, it is used to create rubbings of engravings from the walls of ancient tombs and ruins. When used to simply transfer images or script to paper, the ciphercoal does so without expending its own substance—it never diminishes in length, no matter how often it is used. A more important function of ciphercoal, however, is translating the images it lifts off of ancient walls.

Speaking the command word before rubbing it across paper or parchment causes all rubbings of script, glyphs, or other language-based images performed within the next minute to be translated into the user’s language. These translations do not reveal hidden messages or codes, but are structured in a way that grants a +5 competence bonus on checks made to detect them. Additionally, any paper containing these translations gains a small measure of protection—the rubbing will never smudge or smear, even when wet, and the paper itself gains hardness 2 and loses the typical flammability of paper or parchment (fire only does half damage to a surface treated in this fashion, as normal for objects). A piece of ciphercoal used for translation does slowly lose substance, at a rate of one inch per 100 words translated. A typical piece of ciphercoal is five inches long when first crafted.


Feats Craft Wondrous item; Spells comprehend languages, mending; Cost 125 gp

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Treasury of the Sands. © 2014, Jon Brazer Enterprises; Authors: Jesper Andersen, Jonathan Ely, Joel Flank, Wojciech Gruchala, Scott Janke, Anthony Li, Maurice de Mare, Sean McGowan, Jacob Michaels, Adam Raner, Jacob Trier, Ian Turner, Brian Wiborg

scroll to top