The slayer who thinks he slays is slain.
In contrast to cathedrals, which serve to clear the flow of energy and empower it, there are relics that appear to consume it. Though they don’t really deplete energy, they de-construct it, sort of like a mulch pit. They pull in and trap energies and then bleed them back into the environment. This is the basic mechanic behind it. Sounds innocent, yes?
Not if they contort the energy. They don’t contort the energy. They arise because the energy itself was first contorted. They are the knots in muscle, blood clots. They do have their purpose, but the sensation we get when we are near them is anything but comforting. Just like seeing blood spill from an open wound in skin, we unconsciously sense the energy bleeding there, and the processes that occur there also work much like a wound. They hurt. They cause pain. They can even fester. These places scream wrong.
Can they injure our bodies? In extreme cases, yes, they can injure bodies giving rise to things like stigmata, spontaneous bruises or lacerations, even heart failure or aneurysm. The aneurysm is often mistaken for environmentally induced stroke.
Do animals intuitively stay away from these places? Yes, except for carrion eaters. The children of carrion gravitate to these places. They can thrive there. Trees in these places often show abundant moss. The leaves often display blight.
An old sword from many battles would be doing this, bleeding that energy? An old sword can wind up that way. The samurai, who was too hate filled, charges his sword with the energy of murder more than the spirit of heroism.
So war relics are dark? Yes, with little points of light found occasionally.
Perhaps unless the user purifies it as part of their routine? The same sword can be purified. It’s basically like sin eating. A holder of such a dark sword has to accept and embrace the dark energy before they can cleanse it. They have to atone for what the previous holder did, if only in spirit.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.