Steal This D&D 5e Magic Item: Bert the Canny Goldfish

A little background before we get into this one. Bert was a random addition to a pre-generated treasure locked in a trunk at the bottom of a gnoll hole that opened onto a Rakshasa lair in a campaign from about two years ago. Y’know, pretty standard stuff. That hoard included a bunch of cool stuff. There was a necklace of missiles, gloves of dexterity, slippers of spiderclimb; it was a fat haul. And, then there was Bert. Long after everything had been divvied up, my PCs were still fighting over Bert. No one really knew what his story was. Everyone wanted to know it. Everyone wanted to be a part of it. That’s a good magic item.

Without further ado, let me introduce you to:

Bert the Canny Goldfish

Wondrous item, Artifact (Requires Attunement)

You see before you a perfect sphere of glass full of murky water. A flash of gold flits from one side to the other. One dead-black eye presses against the glass for a moment and then is gone. As you bring the orb into the light, you can see a goldfish within…perhaps a little overgrown for his vessel. His one eye has a canny look. Small scratches line the bowl, and, among them, you think you can make out letters. “treB si eman yM.”

Bert understands Common but cannot speak…at least not through the sphere. He can communicate through tap-code, or other canny methods. The sphere itself is incredibly resilient, shatterproof without a handy Tarrasque heel or similar force. Bert will bond with whoever says his name first while holding the sphere. This attunement can be transferred only by a willing master.

Attunement to Bert grants the amphibious effects of an Alter Self spell for one hour per day. This effect can be dismissed at any time with the command words, “Thanks, Bert.”

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