An Arsonist's Curse (5e Disease)

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An Arsonist's Curse[edit]

Contracting An Arsonist's Curse[edit]

This curse is contracted usually through way of wanton destruction by fire. This is up to the DM's interpretation, but the recommended use is to punish the arsonist in a party who has burned one too many houses, NPCs, or whatever else. The curse usually manifests as the flames of the most recent burning begin to issue forth large amounts of smoke. The smoke starts to form something like a mass of agonized expressions that rise up with the heat. It is an omen that the curse has taken hold on the burner, inflicting them with the following effects.


Stage 1: Dark marks like that of ashes smeared on the body appear on the afflicted overnight, preferably on the day after they were cursed. This stage usually lasts for about three days before more serious things begin to manifest in the following stages.

Stage 2: The afflicted begins experiencing nightmarish visions of being burned alive whenever they sleep, thus reducing the quality of their rest. They need to rest for double the amount of time to gain any benefits from the rest. So, for example, they need to rest a minimum of 16 hours a day for their long rest instead of the usual 8. This stage lasts for around a week before progressing to the final stage.

Stage 3: Every time the afflicted causes fire damage, whether by magic or not, they immediately start suffocating, coughing out plumes of smoke, as if their airways are clogged with ash themselves. This effect does not affect undead or constructs, who do not need to breathe. The suffocation lasts for a number of minutes equal to the damage dealt.


The arsonist's curse is truly terrifying because there is no known surefire cure. It is believed that a shaman or high ordered religious figure in a good-aligned organization may be able to conduct rites that will forgive the arsonist for their wrongs, thus lifting the curse through penance. However, these are known to sometimes fail in assuaging the anger of those who perished. Sometimes, the curse is said to wane and fade if the afflicted proves themselves to be penitent or do some heroic thing to balance out their karma. It is recommended that the DM take this into account, and maybe use this to make a significant event in their plot for lifting this curse.

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