Redcaps aren't necessarily the most comfortable creatures when it come to weapons. They're just as happy, if not more so, to go to work with their claws and teeth as they are to go swinging a sword or axe. Those weapons they do prefer are designed for cleaving or hacking and their swords are either built for brutal chopping or are short blades designed to be pushed into an enemy's gut and twisted. Axes and cleavers are common, as are spiked shields that can be rammed into an enemy's face or stomach and popped free with little effort.
However, a great many 'caps hold a secret affection for a particular sort of weapon that one might not expect: the scythe. Perhaps they like it because it's emblematic of the peasantry or because it's devastatingly effective in the right hands. Perhaps because they see themselves as mowing down their enemies in just the same way, an inordinate number have taken to wielding these tools in the field to ruinous effect.
Most such weapons are ordinary garden implements ranging from hand-held sickles to full-blown harvest tools. There is one particular scythe, however, that stands out, even amidst the bloody havoc that every redcap wreaks. There have been countless harvest, but only one Winterblade.
Some say that winter blade is the scythe that will cut away the Summer of the world and plunge all into Winter. It will chill the earth where it touches and render permanently sterile any ground it rests on. A single nick from its blade is enough to wither a tree of centuries' growth, and the merest scratch will drain the life from a victim. Even those whom Winterblade misses feel the chill of its passage in their very bones and they're lucky if they can find the strength to crawl away before the blade returns.
Winterblade also takes a toll on its wielder, whose hands wither to clawed husks within seconds of grasping the haft. Soon the hollowing process takes the rest of their vitality as well, turning them to nothing more than a skeletal, gnarled shell. however, in some unholy way the weapon sustains its user, animating them until such time as they give up its possession. At that point, they crumble into a pile of ash and snow and blow away on a sudden wind. Winterblade does not, however, subvert the will of any redcap using it (and only a redcap can hold the blade); it merely focuses their purpose and hunger.
Winterblade has not yet made an appearance on the field of battle. This heartens some nobles who take very seriously the prophecies surrounding the blade's role in ushering in Endless Winter. Redcaps who have been captured and put to the question have denied any knowledge of its whereabouts but that does little to put anyone's mind at ease. Sooner or later, they know Winterblade will emerge to sate itself and what comes after can only be guessed in nightmares.