Return To Tegel Manor: Adventure Script
This section provides a very basic overview of the game outside of the setting and background. For those of you who have not played in one of my campaigns before, I want to set some expectations and give you a heads up on the style of campaign that I like to run. I would encourage even those CM the DM veterans out there to read this section.
- My campaigns tend to be very detailed and thus limited in the distances that you will be traveling. You will not be traversing the world, and you will not be killing kings and conquering distant lands. You are first level. You are lucky to be alive. What you will discover is a very deep, hopefully interesting, campaign set in the dark and tangled woods of the northern Dreadwood Forest. You live in the shadow of the great Manor House of the Rump family. There is evil and mystery all about you. Your goal is to stay alive, explore and have some fun.
- My plots are non-linear. You should feel like you have been dropped into a good mystery book. There are several “major” plot lines going on, including one which will lead clever adventurers to the planned follow-up campaign to this one, The Five Scales. In addition, there are dozens of smaller plots, interesting areas to be discovered, and mysteries to be solved. I would describe this campaign as “Tegel Manor meets the DaVinci Code”. The upside of this type of campaign is that there should always be something to do. If you have been pounding away at the Manor for a couple of weeks, you may decide to go hunting ghouls in the forest for a change of pace. The downside is that you can’t do everything.
- Someone needs to be Velma. Even a good mystery can get overwhelming if you can’t keep the characters and clues straight. If we played every day, it would be easy to keep the narrative going. But we play twice a month, so we need someone to keep the party records. To this chronicler I will award a 10% bonus on all experience earned if they do the following: keep a logbook up to date bringing it to each gaming session and write a brief Rathbone-style narrative of events within 48 hours of each adventure to be posted on the website. I am not looking for Shakespeare. In addition, I will provide a blank notebook with some clues already in it, and I will also provide electronic descriptions of rooms and areas that are visited after each adventure, if the chronicler needs them.
- Do not expect to meet Monty Haul. Nobody likes treasure more than I do. However, magic and wealth can very, very easily overbalance the game. The game is about the characters, not just their stuff. What I will promise is that the treasure you find will be useful and interesting. If you find a Sword of Blue Dragon Slaying, then you will probably eventually find a blue dragon. Buying magical items is very limited, although I have made a careful selection of powerful items available. This gives you some reason to save your gold. In addition, there are some very powerful items to be found. Yes, there is a vorpal weapon. And, yes, there is even a set of magical artifacts that can be combined to give the wearer awesome abilities. Just don’t expect every orc to be carrying 1000 gold pieces.
- My dungeons are carefully crafted to be challenging. Sometimes, they are very tough. I will never, ever modify a roll, room or monster to allow a character to live, a monster to die, or a catastrophe to be avoided. For me, if there is no chance of dying, then the excitement of the game is gone. The new D&D 3.5 rules have a great system for dealing with death, and there is a means of resurrection in the town, if you are willing to pay the price.
Return to Tegel Manor is designed as a D&D 3.5 adventure with a decidedly First Edition feel. We will be using the published 3.5 (not 3.0) rules from Wizards of the Coast (i.e., Player’s Handbook, Dungeon Master’s Guide and Monster Manual). If you have a 3.0 book, please throw it away. Invest the $29.95. You will be spending 300 hours playing in the campaign. Think of it as 10 cents an hour. I will allow other rules (spells, feats, etc.) to be used only with prior permission. No exceptions. It’s not that I want to stifle creativity, but there are lots of really bad, campaign-unbalancing ideas that have been published. And no, you can’t have a rifle.
Having run several D&D 3.5 campaigns, I have a few variants that we will be using. These are listed below since they might influence your choice of feats, skills, etc.
- We will be rolling initiative each round (as per page 22 in the DMG). Remember that delaying your action within a round will give you a cumulative -2 on all future initiative rolls. This means that if you keep delaying, it will become harder and harder to win initiative.
Rolling Up Characters and Building The Party
There are a few things to keep in mind when rolling up characters and building a party. Again, these are somewhat stylistic, but I think that they will prepare everyone for a fun adventure.
- The campaign is set in Tegel Village and the surrounding environs. There are a good number of indoor, outdoor and underground encounters. The whole area is haunted, so you can expect a fair amount of undead and evil critters scurrying around. I also like summoned demons, and there is that rumor about a sea monster. In addition, expect tricks and traps and a good number of puzzles.
- Dragonsford is a long ways away, so there is no city component to this campaign. Also, with only a yearly caravan, there will be little chance of becoming a merchant (other than a tradesman).
- Basic equipment is plentiful. The town won’t run out of torches. However, there is a limit to magical items. You will notice below that there are descriptions of the local shops with lists of magical items available and their costs. Now, you can buy anything in the PH (exotic weapons and the like) with the notable exceptions below. However, you will not find magical versions of bizarre items. So, if you really, really want a ranseur, buy one. Just don’t go looking for a Ranseur +1 in the halls of Tegel Manor.
- Characters are not allowed mounts of any kind. This includes horses, donkeys, mules or ponies. Read the background story to find out why. Jinkies, it’s a clue.
- The gold that you start with depends not on your class, but on your parentage. I will give you your starting gold during our initial session when we roll up characters. Characters cannot take the starting package. You must buy equipment a la carte.
- Players are allowed to be any class and any race. The campaign calls for most of the characters to be children of the villagers. In order to help you, I have developed eighteen different family backgrounds to choose from for players interesting in taking this option. Outsiders are allowed, having arrived on the caravan several years ago. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
- Town youngsters are known by the villagers. Most are trusted. This will make it easier to move unwatched about town. You are just meddling kids after all. With each family history comes a boon. For example, the son or daughter of Samuel Whetstone, may, upon killing 16 orcs (and bringing their ears back to dad), be allowed to take the treasured Sword +3 Orc’s Bane down from over the mantel and use it on adventures.
- Outsiders are strangers, although still young and inexperienced. They will be more closely watched around town, although the young ladies do like tall, dark strangers. Each character choosing to play a stranger will start with a secret. This will be a piece of information that will play a role in the campaign, most likely the reason that they have traveled to Tegel Village. Outsiders start with 100 gold pieces.
- All characters are allowed to take an apprenticeship. It is a ritual that on the day after the departure of the annual caravan that the oldest children in the village (that’s you) can choose to fill apprenticeships left vacant by departing villagers. Being a lonely, evil-infested area, young men and women tend to leave Tegel Village after they have completed their apprenticeship. This provides characters with both a monthly income, a place to sleep and maybe some fringe benefits (an apprentice brewer is a coveted position, indeed). Strangers who do not apprentice must stay at one of the two Inns. This can be expensive.
- There are several extraordinary characters that are available for play. They play a role in the plot of the campaign. If nobody plays these characters, I will run them as NPCs. These are meant for players that want a minimum of bookkeeping and a maximum amount of roleplaying. For example, you may choose to play the fey sprite, Thistledown. Thistledown has been exiled from her people because she believes that the fey Queen is under an evil enchantment. She is adventuring in Tegel Village in the hopes of finding someone to aid her in breaking the curse. Rather than advancing in levels as she accumulates experience, Thistledown has several progressions depending on meeting her campaign goals. This means no choosing spells, feats, skills and the like. Being small and uninterested in most human treasure, she can use only a few items and is not allowed to accumulate much wealth.
- Most villagers worship at the local Church of the Hearth. They are not particularly religious, but there is some comfort in law and good and the daily rising of the sun when evil and darkness are all about.
Families With Children
Thistledown is a fey creature of the court of Queen Phoebe of the Eldritch Woods. In human terms, the Eldritch Woods is tiny, just a sliver of the Dreadwood where the Darnby River forks before cascading into the Inner Sea. But to Thistledown, this small copse is her entire world.
Thistledown was born on a Midsummer’s Eve seven years ago, a sprite in service to her queen. Her days are spent guarding the fairy ring, a small circle of stones around the base of a hollow hill. While her queen, the court and the night fey sleep, Thistledown “guards” the forest, which mostly consists of playing tree tag with the other sprites, tormenting squirrels and the occasional human visitor, eating nectar, and frolicking. Each night, as the queen wakes, Thistledown makes her way to the ring and watches the splendor of the evening’s court comes into session. After some dancing and a few words from the queen, Thistledown usually falls asleep to the sound of music, soft and faint, floating up to her perch high in the trees. Near dawn, she wakes. The sound of merriment has died to the sound of rushes blowing in the wind. The day creatures of the forest are starting to stir, and Thistledown assumes her post.
The human reckoning of time does not adequately measure the passage of days and months and years in the fairy world. But, to the best of her recall, Thistledown noticed a change in her queen several months ago. It was subtle at first. The queen, always being given gifts by the denizens of the woods, was wearing a necklace which shone in a blue-black light. Each night, the darkness grew and each night the court became more somber and lethargic. Even her fellow sprites seemed to spend more time during the day napping in the sunshine than playing amongst the boughs. Only Thistledown saw the transformation.
One night, with trembling wings, Thistledown approached the queen. Timidly, she reported what she had observed. The queen looked up, her head had been drooping as Thistledown spoke. Phoebe’s words were clear and strong, but with an edge not heard before. “Thistledown, you have called me false. For that, you are banished from the Eldritch Woods!” With that proclamation, the queen fell fast asleep. As her guards and retainers began to drop in a catatonic slumber, Thistledown fled. Out of the woods she soared until she spied a human village. An ugly, sprawling mess of homes and animals. For three days, she circled the town. Each time she tried to return to the Eldritch Woods, she felt sleep starting to rush over her, and she fled. At night, she dreamt of snakes attacking her queen. Not the friendly snakes of the forest, but huge misshapen creatures from deep within the bowels of the earth. Finally, she entered Tegel Village.
In a rush, she headed to the human’s meeting place, the White Horsed Sleigh. She told her story to the human leader, as he poured her some nectar from a large spout. After a few sips of the brew, Thistledown slept. When she awoke, a dozen humans had crowded in to see her. So she has stayed for the past days. Drinking the human brew, which seems to keep the evil dreams at bay, and telling her story to the humans, begging them to help. Her queen is under an evil enchantment. Someone must help her break the curse.
Rukhs, Bookworm Ogre
The ogre, whose birth name is Zern, was born in foothills of the Shadowyarn Mountains in the area known as the Vile March, a wild and desolate land ruled by the overlord Grarg Dwarfstomper. His parents belonged to the Black Heart warband, and it was expected that their son would grow to become a great warrior. He was small for his age, but not unusually so.
Early in his life, Zern’s mother realized that her son had very poor distance vision, a death sentence in the competitive training ogres undertake to become warriors and members of the tribe. In teaching her son to hide his disability, Zern’s mother also realized that her son was unusually smart. While other ogre children were torturing dwarf prisoners, Zern would draw pictures in the sand with sticks and collect rocks of different minerals. Zern quickly learned to hide his interests and pretend to be a normal ogre boy. He even escaped detection at javelin throwing by memorizing the shapes and locations of the targets the night before his coming of age ceremony.
During this time, Zern made another discovery. At first assigned to and then later volunteering to feed the dwarven prisoners taken on Vile March raids, Zern befriended an old dwarven warrior, Billi. The grizzled veteran, familiar with the basics of the ogre language, taught Zern many dwarven words, eventually telling him of dwarven history and heroes. Zern was instantly fascinated. The ogre even bought some old dwarven books being sold by a raider returning from the destruction of a nearby village. Secretly, and with the help of his friend, Zern learned to read the dwarven language.
It was at the time of his coming of age ceremony that Zern made a life-changing decision. After being offered acceptance into the warband with the honorific Bookwurm, Zern declined, invoking instead an ancient and little-used rite. He declared himself Adhun, or alone. This rite was typically invoked when the son of a warchief wished to leave the tribe and form his own clan because the ogre population in the area was growing too numerous. Usually, the warchief’s son would be granted ownership of the appropriate number of ogre men and women to start the new tribe. In Zern’s case, he had no rights to companionship, so he left alone. Zern was exiled by Grarg Dwarfstomper, and his name was stricken from the records of the Black Heart warband. In abandoning his tribe, Zern forfeited the rights to his name taking instead the dwarven word for ogre, Rukhs.
From his homeland, Rukhs made his way across the Shadowyarn Mountains, stopping to visit several dwarven villages. At the home of Billi, Rukhs told his widow of the dwarf’s capture, torture and death. So moved was Billi’s widow of the ogre’s kindness that she gave him a weathered stone tablet. The tablet told of an ancient dwarven expedition to the Reaches during the Second Age called the migration of the Bluestone dwarves. This expedition sought mithral on the northern shores of the Inner Sea. She told Rukhs that Billi had often spoken of making an expedition to find the Bluestone dwarves once his military career was over. Now, she told Rukhs, that adventure was his. Years passed. Rukhs undertook extensive study mastering the ancient dwarven dialect and learning the ways of his adopted race. Finally, the time for adventure has come.
Making his way east, Rukhs finds himself in Tegel Village. Just west of that strange town, an ancient ruin lies in a swampy moor. Untended since the Second Age, it shows great promise to be the homestead of the Bluestone dwarves. An initial foray almost ends in disaster as Rukhs is ambushed by a party of hostile orcs. Two subsequent attempts to get to the ruins end the same way. Why are the orcs guarding the ruins? His poor eyesight and the general distrust of the villagers have given the ogre no choice but wait. Quietly, Rukh studies his books in the local pub waiting for adventurers to aid him.
Ratchet is a boy with a secret. A terrible secret. A thin, wiry youth with a ragged mustache whose small frame is of shorter than average height, Ratchet has eyes that constantly dart around and his nose and mouth twitch when he is excited. One might say he looked like a rat, and they would be right. Especially if they could see the long, hairless tail curled up inside his specially modified leather armor.
He was such a promising young man, nimble fingered and light of foot. His masters thought that he would rise high among the membership of the Dark Path. Everything was going to plan until the Hammersmith job. The place was supposed to be empty. It was a simple heist. Take the gold and get out. Who would have suspected that the blacksmiths would have wererats guarding their vault? Damn rats. Even with the guards, the job almost went off without a hitch, but for one squeaky floorboard and a wererat with uncanny reflexes. For five days, he fought the filth fever. He lived, but now exists not as a man and not as a rat, but as an afflicted hybrid - both man and rat and unable to change between forms. His brothers of the Dark Path sent him east with their best wishes and a small purse of gold. Better than having your throat slit, they said.
It was in Dwarrowdelf that Ratchet came across an old, blind man who told of another who was similarly afflicted and of a magical amulet that he wore to complete the transformation, allowing him to be both man and lycanthrope. Ah, to be free of this hybrid existence. It was a shame that the old man couldn’t see. With no description other than a deep, melodious voice, and a vague recollection of a sword banging against his leg, it was like looking for a needle in a haystack.
At last, Ratchet is arriving in Tegel Village. A rough place, certainly far away from the sophistication and opulence of Teufeldorf. But maybe this town will prove the end of his search. How many men could match the old man’s description? He should be able to find the deep-voiced man quickly. Then, his skills would come in handy. He smiled, touching the whip-like rapier at his side. Once he was whole again, maybe he would find a nice, fat farm girl and settle down and start a family. He was almost 17, after all, and his life had been quite adventurous enough.
Brownstone is a bear, and as far as he can remember, he has always been a bear. Until two months ago, that is.
Waking up one morning during the late days of summer, Brownstone knew something was wrong. First of all, there was a collar about his neck. His den was empty, although the foul stench of humans lingered. For two hours, he rubbed against trees and tried to pry the thing off with his razor-sharp claws. Then, he went down to the stream to see his reflection in its glassy surface and get a better look at the device. That is when the second thing struck him. He was thinking. It was as if he was born that day. His past life was just a jumble of vague impressions, sounds, smells and feeling - the warmth of the sun as he napped on a rock, the crunch of cold fish bones, and the fury of conflict with other bears. Feeling but no thought. Now, there was thought.
As that day progressed and over the next few, Brownstone was confused but slowly pieced together that his problems began when the collar which gave him thought was put around his head. If humans put it there, then they could take it off. So, Brownstone headed south towards the only human settlement for miles, Tegel Village. On the way, he discovered a bear trap loaded with smelly fish. How could he have ever fallen for this obvious ploy? Patiently, Brownstone waited for the hunter. As the hunter approached, Brownstone spoke to him. In the common tongue! The hunter ran shrieking from the clearing. And so did Brownstone. Both for the same reason, surprise. The collar not only gave him thought, but it gave him speech as well. This was a problem. Continuing on, Brownstone noted how his habits were changing. He was becoming less bear-like and more man-like. His form was the same, but his mind was certainly being altered.
Brownstone arrived in Tegel Village about a month ago, but he is still too intimidated to enter town. His experience with the hunter told him that he would need to find a unique kind of person to help him. Being a bear, he had managed to keep trouble at bay with a growl, but that would not go on forever. Someday, he would be caught if not by hunters, then orcs or worse. Maybe today will be day that Brownstone comes to town.
Secret Poem (orphanage)
You live in the orphanage which has been modified over the years from an ancient chapel. Your bed is very near the outside doors of the main chapel. Two years ago, you were awoken in the middle of the night by the sounds of two men arguing with Deacon Holysword. In hushed tones, the men were trying to convince your protector to allow them to search the chapel for some “historical” markings. The deacon refused explaining that the chapel was now an orphanage. The men threatened the paladin and eventually a scuffle broke out. Holysword chased the men away. In the morning, you asked about the visitors, and the usually forthright deacon denied the encounter. None of the other children seemed to have heard anything. Looking around town the next day, there were no strangers staying at the inns or any tales of outsiders wandering around the village.
Over the next year, you searched every inch of the chapel looking for some out-of-the-ordinary clue. Eventually, you found a strange verse carved in tiny letters under one of the smashed stained glass windows. The verse had been hidden behind a large chest that had been pushed under the window to store bed linens. You have kept your discovery a secret even to the deacon.
Secret Treasure Map (orphanage)
One night when cleaning The White Horsed Sleigh after a particularly long poker game, you find a folded-up piece of paper that has fallen from the pockets one of the players. Unfolding it, you discover a secret map, undoubtedly to some vast treasure. Knowing that Deacon Holysword will make you return it to its rightful owner, you decide to keep it secretly stashed in your possessions.
Secret Knowledge of the Rumps (orphanage)
You have always been interested in the strange happenings at Tegel Manor. A book that you found in your youth on the History of the Rump Family was an interesting read. After that, you began seeking out knowledge of the Rumps and have even bought a couple of volumes off of Runic when he was in need of money. Your curiosity has given you the reputation around town of being the Rump Family historian, a title which you prize but is viewed somewhat askance by others in town.
For you efforts, you gain a +5 on all knowledge rolls concerning the Rump Family and its history.
Three times during the campaign, you may begin a sentence “I really should know this about the Rumps, being their family historian and all.” This counts as an automatic knowledge roll success regardless of the difficulty. You just happened to remember reading about this somewhere....
In addition, you have been able to piece together the only known complete family tree of the Rumps. You’re not sure that anybody would buy it or even think it was valuable. But you figure that it might come in handy some day.
Secret of the Djinn (outsider)
On the eve of your sixteenth birthday, your father told you that a great surprise awaited you the next day, and a family legacy would soon be yours. He told you to think about what you most wanted in life and then sent you to bed.
That night, a thief broke into your home and committed a bizarre crime. He tore the pages out of a dusty old red leather book that had always sat in a case on your father’s desk. He stole the pages, leaving behind only the discarded binding.
The next day, you woke to find your parents deathly ill in bed. With his dying breath, your father sent you to fetch the book. You discovered the crime, the book missing, and the thief now long gone. Upon hearing the news, your father told you of the family legacy, the Book of the Djinn. It seems that the stolen book would, once in each owner’s lifetime, summon a djinn to grant any wish the reader desired. The book had six chapters and its pages numbered one hundred twenty. By reading the book and following its instructions, the Djinn would be summoned and your wish granted.
Retrieving the discarded binding, you notice a blank page accidentally slipped under the desk – obviously dropped by the thief. Showing the page to your father, he seemed puzzled. There were no blank pages in the book, he said. One night, as you are looking at the binding for the hundredth time that you notice a strange map drawn faintly on the inside cover. It was not there before.
Weeks later with the family estates settled and sold, you set out to solve the mystery of the Book of the Djinn. You track the thief, a wiry man whose name you discover is James Gables, out of town and towards the coast. Following the trail, you learn that James has taken a ship to Tegel Village on the northwestern shore of the Inner Sea. There, he plans to sell the pages to an artifact collector by the name of Rump. It is too late to catch another ship heading towards that remote village, so you follow as a guard on a trade caravan later that Fall.
Arriving in the village, you discover that James did come into the town, but he left almost immediately for the Manor and hasn’t been seen since. You also discover that none of the villagers will go near Tegel Manor. You keep the map a secret, quietly biding your time. The map clearly outlines Tegel Manor. Somehow, you have to find some accomplices to get in and find your book.
Secret of the Doppelganger (outsider)
By outwards appearance you are just a kid. A year ago, your biggest worry was finding a date to the Dragonsford town dance. You think back on those times and smile at your naiveté. It was a simpler time, and a happier one at that. That was before you saw your mother kill your father with a butcher knife, repeatedly thrusting it into his chest. That was before you watched your mother’s form start to change into that you now know as the native form of the doppelganger. The whole plot is clear to you now, or have you just begun believing your own illusions?
The doppelganger knew your family had wealth. He must have suspected that some magical item was creating the pearls that your father sold for gold every week. One day, the doppleganger surprised your mother as she returned from her usual afternoon tea with the ladies of the village. He must have killed her there, and, assuming her form, the vile creature went to your home and searched for the magic device. Unable to find it, he waited until your father returned from his shop and tried to coax the information from him. Or maybe your father surprised the creature. In either case, you came home just as the doppelganger struck. Your father was dead instantly. With all its known witnesses dead, the creature moved straight for the mantel and the old clock that sat upon it. He stuffed it into a sack. Assuming a new form, that of a kindly old man, he left. And you followed.
The journey north had been difficult. Although you were able to bring a reasonable purse of gold with you, your quarry eluded you at every turn. Sometimes turning into a bar maid and sometimes a guard. But, with grim determination you found the trail again. It led north to the last tiny village on the map. Tegel Village. You had heard wild stories of the famous Rumps and their bizarre eccentricities. But your mission is simple. Kill the doppelganger. Get revenge. And bring the family heirloom back to Dragonsford.
To date, you have determined that nobody in Tegel realizes that a doppelganger is in their midst. You keep a keen eye out for suspicious behavior. With only one caravan in and out of town, you are sure that the creature has not escaped.
Secret of the Lizard Priests (outsider)
Why did the High Master call upon you for this task? You are still a child, just a few years removed from your family. While it was a great honor, perhaps more than you could have imagined happening to you during your whole life, it was still strange. You are untrained, yet called out for a special gift that is yet to manifest itself to you. What was the legend that you were told?
Far to the south and across the world from you exists a race of lizardmen from the Forbidden Lands, a desolate desert ringed with volcanoes. These creatures have existed from the dawn of the First Age, although their subterranean existence has shrouded much of their culture in mystery and intrigue. During this ancient time, legend holds that a sect of these ancient reptiles broke off from their brethren and has been surmised by scholars to have appeared briefly in the far north. It is known that this sect worshipped an ancient evil known as the Immortal One, although the myths are very vague about its nature. The histories tell no more about the Immortal One or its followers - just a glimmer of information.
Three years ago, the legend came to the forefront of discussion in your brotherhood. All you know for sure is that a small band of priests of the Immortal One left from Ssruthu, the Scaly Mountain, traveled along the coast of the great continent, crossed the sea at the Northern Straits, and journeyed south into Teufeldorf. It is then that the wanderings of these priests came to the attention of your brotherhood. A council was held and the High Master announced that these beings must be found and stopped. Much to everyone’s surprise, you were named a Hunter. While lizardmen can be found throughout the Realm, these priests dress in ancient robes with a chasuble of blue and red stones. They are larger than their common cousins, and are thought to wield great magics.
And so you made your way across the Reaches taking a caravan from Dragonsford north to Tegel Village. You arrived in Tegel Village two years ago under the disguise of a young person out for adventure. Killing orcs is the story you have adopted. You have kept your eyes open for any signs of lizardmen to no avail. You have made some friends that you think will help you in your quest, should it ever begin. You wait also for your Master to call you back to Teufeldorf and tell you that the threat has gone away.
The Adventure Outline
Major Plot Lines
- Tegel Manor Curse – Tegel has been cursed. The party must find out the way to break the curse and clean out the Manor House.
- Silver locket
- Book of the djinn
- Rise of the Immortal One – Lizardmen have been summoned to wake the Immortal One because there is enough evil in the area.
- Bluestone Dwarf ruins – now an orc fort
- Lizardmen priests at Monastery
- Rise of the Snake Demon – Snake demon is also rising after a slumber because of the evil in the valley.
- Silver Oaks - Jeff
- Sterndale’s Body – actually still alive
- The Five Scales – Cult is trying to bring back the Age of Dragons. The party must learn the secret in order to move forward.
- Tomb of Redurn Rump
- Order of the Five Scales
- “Fake Order of the Scales” meetings
- Orc Raid on Tegel – Will be coming in the Spring.
- Brownstone is controlled by orcs
- Ruang is in league with orcs
- Silverhand’s curse is with orcs
- Fawn is sending reports
Minor Plot Lines
- Barrow King – A cult of Hate has sprung up. They are raiding the town from the south for victims. Raids will continue until stopped.
- Postings for Swiftfoot family
- Roughneck Rump – Feared highwayman
- 2 Magical Rings
- Will need to be killed to break Tegel Manor Curse
- Posting for his capture
- Ruang Rump – doppleganger
- Cliff House
- Hillman robbery
- Will need to be killed to break Tegel Manor Curse
- Other doppleganger in town – see secrets
- Part of the Orc Plot
- Dim Lighthouse – The Dim Lighthouse has been taken over by female water spirit who has tricked Dan.
- Stolen book of potions
- Rump’s Hump – This is actually the manifestation of the sea creature that is being summoned by the water spirit
- Fish priests tie back to the Dim Lighthouse plot.
- Shambler – exactly as it appears
- Shambler caves
- Covenant of Demons
- Located at the White Temple
- Bigfoot quest
- Captured dead or alive
- Other “were” creature found with amulet
- Wererat Ratchet
Other Areas of Note
- The Mines are not so much a plot line as a connector between the village, three major dungeons, and various buildings in the areas.
- Dwarven saw
- Lemon tree entrance
Tegel Village Town Notices
The Town Notices are posted on an irregular basis. These introduce new plot lines to the characters based on the backgrounds they have chosen. The initial postings for the campaign will need to be adjusted after characters are chosen.
Based on initial character selection, the notices have been modified.
- Each week, there should be a new prognostication about the orc invasion from Jensine Faintheart.
- Sterndale’s body – if nobody takes Sterndale boon
- Proof of Rump’s Hump – if nobody takes Plowman boon
- Dwarven Saw – if nobody takes Granitefist
- Find the Silver Oaks – if nobody takes the Farshot children
- Silver Elven Locket – if nobody takes the Awlman children
- Ring from Roughneck Rump – if nobody takes Goldtooth children
- Secrets – eventually
- Captured villager in G7 waiting for Pit Fiend to eat her. Tie in the cultists to the C11 temple???
This is a general-purpose catalog for tracking daily, weekly and monthly events. The major plot points - such as the orc invasion - are on a timer, so the party will need to act quickly in order to avoid being surprised by these events.
The Adventure Script
The first few sessions have an opening cinematic scene - something to get the party moving.
October 29, 888 – “It Was A Dark And Stormy Night”
The caravan is actually comprised of three covered wagons pulled by two draft horses each. The horses are dressed in chain barding, and even so there are a number of spears sticking from their armor. The coverings for the wagons are made of wood painted black and also provide an enclosure for the driver and one passenger. The rear of the wagons has a split door, allowing a guard inside to shoot arrows out of the back of the wagon while being partially covered. A scout riding a light riding horse is leading two saddled horses behind him.
The caravan is being chased by several dozen orcs. These are dressed in scale mail armor, having great axes slung across their backs, and each has a number of flaming torhces in a special quiver on their back. In their hands, they are carrying a number of spears which they are primarily lobbing at the horses.
The caravan is heading into the town square, and the orcs are approaching from the south.
The party will later learn (maybe) that the caravan dropped off two human travelers who gave their horses away just at the southern edge of the map. They then started walking up the road, following the caravan. The caravan members will say nothing. They have been paid to be silent (unless pressed or bribed).
The caravan was attacked as it passed the trees by the Boiling Brook bridge.
Spot DC 15. The party will notice two groups of orcs splitting off. One will head south to fire pitch arrows (6 orcs). The others will attack the caravan (13 orcs).
Spot DC 20. A lone orc will go north and “meet” with Doak Hillman. This of course is the doppleganger poised as Doak. Really, they are delivering a message to the jeweler who is under the curse. If the party can overhear the conversation, they will hear something about the “Bloody Claw Warchief” and “spies” and “keep quiet” and “Salmon Sterndale”. The party will go from there... Doak is the fall guy. The reference to Salmon Sterndale is that he is the form the doppleganger will use the next time the orcs come to town for information. The orcs will go to the Old Mill – which is their current hideout.
- Create characters; choose secrets or boons, etc.
- Appointment of the chronicler.
- It is typical to change your last name after you leave your family if you are no longer going to persue the profession of your parents.
- Give out coins left over after buying stuff. Explain about chips and cards.
- Players to fill out placard with their name, character name, armor class.
- What magic item does the character desire most in life?
- Caravan arrived late by three days and chased by orcs.
- Y’all (minus Grim and Rukhs) went outside and saw a single orc break from the group and a larger group of orcs with fire torches break the other way.
- Grim lingered and stole tips and a bottle of wine. (only Rukhs knows this)
- Grim followed the single orc. Shot him with a bow. When he went up to finish the job, Doak Hillman intercepted him and sent him to help the others. Grim heard them talking before Doak did the deed.
- Meanwhile, the group was pounding away at the torch-bearing orcs of the Bloody Claw. Thistledown entangled the lot, and the party mowed them down. Avery the dwarf went down. Thistledown watched him.
- Capturing an orc, you found that they were to meet at the Old Mill.
- You heard the orc’s horn call to retreat. Evan “released” the orc on his way into town.
- Returning to town, you told Hogg Keeneyes of your discovery. He told you to get lost.
- Father Goodweather healed Avery.
- On your way out of town, Evan also mentioned the orc plot to Father Goodweather.
October 29, 888 – “Down By The Old Mill Stream”
Here’s the plan. The doppleganger, disguised as Gregory Granger (little brother of Evan) will run into the party. Gregory is a sandy-haired young boy of about eight. He is dressed in rags. Gregory was “hired” by Grinder to help in the mill, where he lives when there is work to be done. It is towards the end of the season for grinding the corn, so Gregory will be living at home soon. “Orcs. Orcs are attacking the mill. Mr. Burwright is holding them off. I snuck off through a secret door in the wall of the mill. It’s in the kitchen. Near the water and away from the river.”
The real Gregory is bound in his bed at the mill, as is Grinder. Grinder will tell a story of being awoken by knocking. When he answered, nobody was there. Then, he got hit in the back of the head and went black. He woke up tied up in his bed. He will have no memory of the orc raid.
Coming Down the Road - The two cultists. They are heading for the Barrows. They were instructed to get off the caravan and walk around the town through the fields, avoiding any contact with the residents of Tegel Manor. They will flee if challenged. Otherwise, they will lead the party to the Barrows.
Subplot - Outside Influence - Father Goodweather tells Captain Reem what Ronic told him about the mill, and eventually help will come. Of course, Hogg Keeneyes will be reprimanded for not reporting to the Captain. Thus begins a long hatred of the party.
- Zeb’s name.
- Bio’s from Bruce, Jeff and Zeb.
- What magic item does the character desire most in life?
- Down By The Old Mill Stream
- The Mill was empty-ish. You investigated and found three orcs holding the fort, so to speak.
- You attacked and quickly overwhelmed them.
- Avery and Runic discover a ghost they belive to be Old Man Grigglesby, the former mill owner, in a haunted study. Depite having his room ransacked by the tapestry-tearing dwarf, he mimes some mysterious stuff. Downstairs, Grim finds a chest which is eventually claimed by Grind.
- Later, Avery discovers a secret room. He keeps this to himself.
- Also find, Gregory Granger, the millboy. He is eventually taken back to town and collected by his father Congal Granger. Grind is discovered and released. He remembers hearing a familiar voice at the door and then got knocked out.
- The rest of the orcs return, and you ambush them. They are lead by Doak Hillman. Doak escapes.
- Thistledown discovers that the orcs are going to a northern meeting point to regroup.
- While the rest of you are fighting orcs, Evan opens up a stirge-infested room and gets killed by the buggers.
- Runic and Rune haul Evan and Gregory back to town. The former to be resurrected (thanks, dad, for the cash) and the latter to be taken home. Rune also plants the spirits in Doak Hillman’s shop and tells Hasnover he has found the missing wine – which was blamed on one of the wenches, Violet. He leaves to the sounds of an argument.
- Thistledown spots two cloaked figures approaching on the southern road. They speak of their master and avoiding the town. She eventually follows them north through the woods and over the Darnby Creek to the barrows. They go inside and she returns.
- Grind tells you that an ankheg is in the loft. He will pay you 120 gold to kill it. He will also pay you 10 gold each to guard the mill for the next two weeks. You accept the latter.
- Grind takes some money from Avery at cards. Grind is very good at cards.
- Runic and Evan return. You sleep.
October 30, 888 – “Walking of the Dead”
At the service
- Missing are: Hogg Keeneyes, Hasnover (the barkeep of the White Horsed Sleigh) – in jail for fighting, Doak Hillman – in jail for fighting and having the stolen wine, Runic Rump (an empty family box), Hob Darkwing.
- Service starts with chants to Dagda and the dawn, Father Goodweather and Deacon Linus Holysword swinging incense, a short reading of lesser prayers, and just at dawn the High Prayer. Then more chanting and Father Goodweather and Linus Holysword leave.
- Captain Reem steps up to make some general announcements.
- Since Hob is sick, he will make announcements
- Orc attack has been successfully repealed. Scouts found no signs of a second strike. Don’t know why, but keep vigilant.
- Grind stands up to tell about the party’s heroic actions to rescue him and Gregory from the orcs. They are staying at the mill to protect me!
- As if outside threats are not enough, Doak Hillman and Hasnover are in jail for fighting over a bottle of wine. Hasnover will be released this afternoon. Doak tomorrow morning.
- Caravan will stay until Tuesday morning. They are locked down today except to unload for the Inns. Shopkeepers can pick up their wares and browse the goods on Sunday. Because of the orcs, anyone found near the wagons after dark will be shot first.
Runic Rump will show up in a panic.
The ghouls will keep coming from the pit in the ground. A dark red glow will be seen coming from the pit. The talisman will be found nearby (Search DC 20).
The ghouls were animated by a powerful animate undead spell. The talisman is a brass coin on a brass chain, very ancient, with a symbol on one side and a skull on the other. The etchings are currently glowing red. When touched, the holder will hear, “sing my name and the dead shall follow”. The name is BACA, a minor demon of little note. B (treble clef), A (tenor clef), C (alto clef), A (tenor clef). Saying the name will turn the coin purple (dead will follow). “Sing my name and the dead will fall.” Saying it again will turn the coin black (off) and the dead will just tumble into bones. “Sing my name and the dead will rise.” Activating it again will summon baca? The talisman radiates evil.
Baca is a minor demon known for aiding evil generals on the field of battle. Usually described as a blood red imp with bat wings and a forked tail.
Runic will beg the party to break the curse? The curse started during “the party” a hundred years ago.
Captain Reem will come by to check out the Mill. Get their story, etc. Apologize for Hogg. We wish to throw a celebration for you an hour before dusk at the White Horsed Sleigh.
- Bio’s from Bruce, Jeff and Zeb.
- What magic item does the character desire most in life? I have Thistledown’s.
- Still at the mill
- Gold pouch in common dining room
- Grind’s chest – now hidden in his room
- Haunted study – secret room – chest
October 30, 888 – "Party Time"
Things to note:
- Tell you ogre friend that I have an old rock with dwarven letters carved on it he might be interested in buying.
- Dragon scales might be spotted. DC 20
Meeting of the Scales
At midnight, cloaked figures moving to the wine cellars under “The Cellar”. They will enter in small groups. Each will have a black cloak pulled up around their faces. They move to the back of the building. There they bend over a small etched figure in the wall.
Lock DC 15.
Golden dragon keeps the room cold. Original use unknown.
Ceremony is a drink-fest to the golden dragon. Ritual pouring of the wine, etc. Singing of dragon chants to summon the beast.
13 members in all. 1 is missing (maybe 2).
- Dirk Dashing
- Doak Hillman
- Hob Darkwing
- Gustav Blackguard
- Halbert Cutsaw
- Phineous Foambringer
- Philo Plump
- Macallan Spadehigh
- Salmon Sterndale
- Winton Sweetvines
- Samuel Whetstone – whistles
Rukhs and Avery have a nightmare.
LATER DREAM: “At the base of the pedestal is written in runes wreathed with blue flames. ‘Awaken the Past with the Blood of My People and You Shall Be Justly Rewarded.’
A Robbery Plot
At 2:00am, Jason Hashsome, locksmiths son, knocks. Want to steal some treasure from the strongbox??? Two guards.
November 1, 888 - “Unloading the Goodies”
- What did Hune do with the cloak and amulet from Doak Hillman’s house?
- Who alerted Captain Reem about Jason Hashsome’s attempt to rob the caravan?
- Ruhks had a dream
- Gold pouch in common dining room
- Grind’s chest – now hidden in his room
- Haunted study – secret room – chest
- The Cellar
- Grape puzzle
- Golden dragon
- Keeps calling Ronic’s name, “Sing my name and the dead will rise.”
The Caravan Unloads
On Sunday, the caravan unloads. There are several items to note:
- Winton Sweetvines, normally impeccably dressed and groomed, looks like hell. His shirt is untucked and his hands are dirty as if he has been digging in the ground. His eyes are bloodshot, and the bags under his eyes look like they have come from a sleepless night.
- Doak Hillman is working around the caravan. He is joking with Hasnover, and they pretend to swap fake blows over a pastry that has been accidentally dropped by one of the townsfolk.
- Whispers are going around that Jason Hashsome is in jail until Wednesday because of a stunt to try and rob the caravan.
The goods are unloaded from the caravan. All three wagons are swept out (as this is the end of the line), and some minor repairs are made. The children are given rides on the big draft horses as they are exercised in the town square. There are six draft horses and three light riding horses. Each merchant brings a bag of gold to buy their wares, working with the caravan master to inspect bills of lading, update the ledger books, and settle accounts. The crates are opened in the street for inspection with crowds gathering around each crate to see its contents. A few transactions are held inside the wagon. The money is put into the strongbox after each transaction.
- 2 - Wines for The Cellar
- 2 - Bolts of Cloth for Dashing Clothiers
- 1 - Box of Magic parts for Gnobbin Tinkerer
- 8 - Lanterns, Books, etc. for Hillman including Ancient tablet of the Blue Dwarves – “We have discovered the secret entrance into the caverns below. It is a squat, dark building constructed of black stone.”
- 1 - Box of magic feathers for Silver Quiver
- 1 - Box of gems for Silverhand and Cutbeard
- 2 - Magical weapons for Whetstones and Sons
NOTE: The strongbox is still held on the caravan.
After the goods are unloaded and the boxes carried to their respective shops, the townsfolk all go around to the shops to see the new items that are available. Sunday afternoon shopping.
Rumpole Rump Strikes A Bargain
Rumpole has bought the relic for 200 gold pieces.
He will give it to you for help in cleaning out Tegel Manor of its ghosts.
- You can keep 50% of everything you take. I get the manor house at the end.
- Big brass key to open the front door. Locked down.
- A curse brought upon us during the great party of 808 in which the
- Rehian the Remorseless (great-great grandmother) had a crystal ball in the West Wing, near the Brother’s Tower. Might be useful in seeing the fairy queen.
November 1, 888 - “Saving Private Grimhaft”
At the end of the last adventure, Hune was captured by the lizardmen.
Hune Grimhaft is rescued….
Fawn Relays Her Message at Dusk
Fawn sneaks out into the woods to a Druid’s Pool. There she sends her journal pages to Dragonsford.
Date with Fawn
Fawn comes over and probes the party for more information about the orc movements. She tells the party of orcs being found near the Bluestone dwarf ruins, and she feels that there is a bigger plot afoot.
- Gold pouch in common dining room
- Grind’s chest – now hidden in his room
- Haunted study – secret room – chest
- The Cellar
- Grape puzzle
- Golden dragon
- Keeps calling Ronic’s name, “Sing my name and the dead will rise.”
November 2, 888 – “Where Are Those Bluestone Dwarves”
Crack of dawn – Adventure to the Bluestone dwarves
It is mid-morning. The party has made their first raid on the Bluestone Dwarves.
The Caravan Is Loaded
After the goods are unloaded and the wagons serviced, the caravan is loaded with the Tegel Village exports. These include:
- 100 Potkins Pots with Winterweed – 8 large crates (12 pots per crate), 4 small individual crates.
- Glassford goblets, including a large order for Henry’s father – 4 medium crates.
- Leather backpack full of letters and mail.
Loading winterweed in Potkin pots, each cradled in straw inside large wooden boxes labeled with the destination cities throughout the Reaches. Each is inspected by the caravan leader. A bill of lading is written and signed. The crates are nailed shut and sealed with wax.
November 3, 888 – “The Plays the Thing…”
The Tegel Exchange
A Play Is Coming
Shambler Attack - Of course, during the middle of the play, the Shambler will attack the town. The party can trace it back to its lair.
A large cornerstone, typical of those used in dwarven construction in the Second Age, this piece is very unusual in that it does not depict a dwarven hero of legend. Instead, the piece is of a grinning skull seated atop a heavy pick. The carving is clearly dwarven. Underneath lies some ancient dwarven runes.
November 4, 888 – “The Caravan Leaves Town”
- 16 dozen small lemon pies are ready for Avery.
- Note to Hune on front door of Mill.
- Caravan leaves town
November 5, 888 – “Apprentices Needed, Apply Within”
Postings for Apprenticeships
Zebulon will have a few puzzles for his apprentice:
Here is his prize:
Pipes of the Hunt; Artifact; Strong Conjuration; CL: 21st
The five pipes in this small wooden pan flute radiate a powerful aura of magic. The instrument’s appearance is ordinary, however, five tubes of a dark wood bound with a light brown reed.
Each pipe has a name used for summoning a creature of The Hunt. It is rumored that once each pipe is mastered individually, the wielder may play various tunes that allow for large multitudes of more powerful creatures to be brought forth. Thus, the Hunt.
A note of warning on their use, however. The pipes seem to have a life of their own and always seek to sound. Care must be taken when using the pipes outdoors or near a draft, as one or all of the pipes may suddenly sound and summon any of a variety of creatures. If the wielder cannot control the Hunt which is summoned, he will be attacked and pursued by the creatures to the far ends of the Realm. To master each new pipe, it is recommended that three successful summonings be made at the next higher pitch.
- Samll – known as the Watcher. It is the highest-pitched pipe and the easiest to master.
- Vors – known as the Whisperer.
- Achai – known as the Whistler.
- Som – known as the Passion.
- Agek – known as the Master. It is the lowest-pitched pipe and the hardest to master.
Each use of the pipe requires the caster to expend one Summon Monster spell. The spell level is irrelevant, as the resulting summoned creature is always the same. When summoned, a Will DC check is made to see if the Summoner is the Master of the Hunt.
On Samll - When played by itself as a long sustained note, Samll will summon a Shadow Mastiff to aid the wielder. The mastiff may appear anywhere within the sounds of the flute. Although it cannot be summoned inside a solid object. It will remain for 20 rounds. The mastiff can communicate rudimentary images to the wielder. The Shadow Mastiff appears as a large dog with a smooth black coat and a mouth full of sharp teeth. The mastiff is 2 feet tall at the shoulder and weighs about 200 pounds. It is almost invisible in the dark.
On Vors - When played by itself as a long sustained note, Vors will summon a Ghost Hound to aid the wielder. The hound may appear anywhere within the sounds of the flute. It will remain for 20 rounds. The hound can communicate rudimentary images to the wielder. The Ghost Hound appears as a shimmering silver-grey hound with baleful glowing eyes. The hound is 2.5 feet tall at the shoulder.
On Achaii - When played by itself as a long sustained note, Achaii will summon a Baying Hound to aid the wielder. The hound may appear anywhere within the sounds of the flute. It will remain for 20 rounds. The hound can communicate rudimentary images to the wielder. The Baying Hound appears as a shimmering chestnut brown hound with a long face and drooping features. The hound is 2 feet tall at the shoulder.
On Som - When played by itself as a long sustained note, Som will summon a Tremor Hound to aid the wielder. The hound may appear anywhere within the sounds of the flute. It will remain for 20 rounds. The hound can communicate rudimentary images to the wielder. The hound appears as a reddish brown dog with a long body and tail. The hound is 2 feet tall at the shoulder.
The tremor hound, immediately upon summoning, may set up vibrations within the body of another creature within 30 feet, causing its heart to race. Each round, after the first, the hound may attempt to cause the victim’s heart to stop. By willing the target to die (a free action), the victim must make a DC 18 Fortitude save or die. This may be done once each round until the tremor hound is successful, killed, or dismissed. Once successful, the hound will vanish. The target cannot be changed, and multiple tremor hounds cannot target the same creature. Constructs, oozes, plants, undead, incorporeal creatures, and creatures that are immune to critical hits cannot be affected.
On Agek - This is where the pipes come together. When a tune is played using all the pipes above and Agek, the Hunt will be summoned. This is the most dangerous pipe to learn, because the entire Hunt must be summoned before control of the creatures is checked.
During the summoning, the wielder may choose each round to play the tune (and summon more creatures) or stop the tune send off the Hunt. Each round will summon 3 shadow mastiffs + 1 hound (ghost, baying or tremor – wielder’s choice). These will sit patiently waiting for the tune to end and the wielder to send them off. The tune can last up to 20 rounds (summoning up to 80 creatures). Once completed, a Will DC check is made to see if the wielder is the Master of the Hunt.
If successful, the Master of the Hunt may point to any target. The Hunt will pursue the target fearlessly until dead. The Hunt is magically imbued with the ability to detect its victim anywhere in the Realm (even if it teleported). While the dogs must travel to the victim by mundane means (even swimming oceans), they will follow their quarry forever – or until every last dog is killed.
If unsuccessful, the wielder is attacked in the same manner as described above.
November 5, 888 – "Ride of the Phantom Coach"
Searching the rooftop will reveal an ancient black key wedged into a crack in the roof.
November 13, 888 - "Feast of the Dead"
The chest contains 6,000 gold pieces and a Chest of Holding. Find me pieces of 8, arrrgh. There is a simple puzzle lock:
Hedda, Queen Phoebe and the Dreck
|My dear thistledown, my child, your work with Hedda has saved my life, although I am weak I know now that will live another day to see the Eldritch Woods. However, I fear that those woods may be changed or lost forever. In my heart, I know that my guardian has died. He was a faithful ent, who had long wandered the Dreadwood and could tales of such times in his youth. I have failed our fey ring. It makes me sad, and yet I am angry at the insidious evil blackness that covers the forest. Each night, I dream of serpents, snakes of an unwholesome nature rising from the ground and striking down the forest. Hedda tells me that this is a manifestation of the dreck that seeps along the forest floor. But, this dream came to me many moons ago.
Shortly after I had the first dream, a forestral came into the glen. I spoke to him of the dream, and he smiled kindly and said he would look into the dream. But, that memory is faint for me now, and I didn’t hear back from him until this morning. He’s a nice man, Valindal Silverleaf, I believe that’s his real name, you call him Willowman. He’s found the source of the dreck. It’s coming from the village of Eventide. The villagers are dumping buckets of it down the cliff into the water and more of it is being blown on the air.
It is up to you, little one, to be the Savior of the Eldritch Woods. I can give you only two things. First, is my armor. It is made of spider-silk, woven under the blue moon. It may seem like a wisp to you, but speak your protector’s name while donning it, and its magic will protect you from all harm. It has served me well, and now you are our last hope of survival.
And second, Hedda has come up with an antidote to the dreck, some mixture of copper and magical oils. It is hard to make and cannot defeat so large of an infestation as the Eldritch Woods has suffered. You must go out and find the source of the evil. You must stop the poisoning. You must save the Eldritch Woods. I am tired now, child. I must rest again. Come back to me tomorrow and let me know of your progress. Safe wanderings, Thistledown.
And Phoebe falls into a deep sleep.
Hedda gives you six antidotes for the dreck. Bring me all the copper you can find. I will work with Father Goodweather to get the holy water I need to distill the potion.
November 17 - Research by Rukhs
During the construction of the Great Hall of the Bluestone Dwarves, a great cave pulsating with arcane magic was discovered. In the years that followed, after the initial exploration of the caves, an unusual underground river and spring were discovered. On the banks of this river the dwarves built temples for their heroes, becoming even more obsessed with death and the afterlife as they dug their tunnels deeper and deeper. At first a small seed, this constant brooding over death grew into a great dismal tree: the cult of the Lorekeeper.
The Lorekeeper was originally thought to be a guide to the dwarven halls of the ancestors, Hammerheim, appearing in his visage of death at the end of one’s life and ushering them into the great halls. Soon, sacrifice became a necessary part of religious worship. The dwarves believed that sending souls to their diety would both increase the Lorekeeper’s power and their own, and defer the day when they too would go down to the land of shades. Offerings were not for eternal spiritual existence, but an indefinite extension of material incarnation. The temptation of physical immortality, genuine or otherwise, proved too powerful for the dwarves to resist.
The slumber of the Immortal King is coming to an end. His mind already roams free, and if his body is disturbed, it shall awaken. In his current condition, he already perceives that the time to return is nearly at hand. When his people seek new dominion over the lands under the true sun, he plans to be at their forefront, and to rebuild lizard men civilization anew….
I did not meet the Lorekeeper, although it is said that he visits those who are close to death as an incarnation. To some he appears as a beautiful woman, to others a parent or sibling, to others still a terrible spectre. I think that those who are his followers, like the ogre, he will appear kind and beneficent. To others, he will appear more ghastly.
To eradicate the Lorekeeper, you must kill the Immortal King. Then, the taint of evil will be gone, and he will have nothing left to cling to….
I see around a stone table deep beneath the great volcano, a gathering of scaly priests who seek the Immortal King. One carries the staff of teleportation to the Monastery of St. Cadel. Another wears the ring, his phylactery as you call it, snatched from the Ruins of the Bluestone Dwarves just a few short days ago. Already, the power of the ring makes him ill. The priests know of the demise of the Immortal King’s physical form. They are angry at you for spoling their plans. Their army will not reach the Eastern Reaches and the Dreadwood for several months yet. Now, they must call their ships back, for the final conflict will be resolved in <1d8+1> days. Discussions have started on who to bring. Only 8 can make the journey by the staff, and it will take several days before the staff can be used again. They plot on how to best execute their plans given that they are unsure of the nature of their foe. For who can defeat a lich, even weakened from centuries of slumber, must be formidable. I don’t know who will come, but they will appear in X days in the Monastery of St. Cadel. There, they will make for the Immortal Kings tomb to bring him back to life. Then, vengeance shall be theirs…..
November 17 - "Tomb of Redurn Rump"
|My dearest Evan,
I am going to share with you a secret that I hope you will keep quietly among your friends.. This is partly because you have been a good student – although we have not had the lazy summer days chatting about magical incantations that I had hoped for. It seems your path to greatness far exceeded my expectations. No, I tell you this because I need your help.
I have spent years trying to figure out the riddle to the Tomb of Redurn Rump. At first, I attempted to get in through the front door, so to speak. We both know that the way in is via the teleporting moonstone statues. I have a strange passage that I discovered in Tegel Manor years ago. You may have discovered it already, or I may have given it to you – my memory is not what it used to be.
You have probably also discovered that others in town are also looking for the way into the Tomb – the Order of the Scales – they call themselves. Bah. Bumbling idiots.
Having failed that, I decided to go under the tomb. There, I discovered a collapsed service entrance that supposedly ran between Tegel Manor and the Tomb during its construction. It is clearly dwarf made – and dwarf destroyed. Well, I have dug out the tunnel and it now connects my home to the Tomb. However, there is a catch. At the end of the tunnel, the dwarves have put in a death trap puzzle. I cannot, for the life of me, figure it out. Tonight, I am going to try my luck. In either case, I doubt that I will see you again – although who knows what traps lie beyond the death gate.
I tell you this so that, if I fail, you can follow in my footsteps. Not because I don’t trust you, my boy, but I have trapped my own home with an explosive sun burst – to keep all intruders out. The glyph will dissipate naturally on Martyr’s Day – the next Dark Moon – which is somewhat ironic, I guess. After that, the place is yours. The tunnel is obvious, so feel free to experiment. It has been my honor to know such a talented wizard. Fondly.
P.S., Here is the death gate puzzle. Good luck.
A strange hex pattern is on the wall. Underneath, a message is written on the wall in dwarvish which says,
November 19 - "Midnight in the Rump Graveyard"
Runic Rump, comes dishelved out of the pub at 11:30pm, making his way unsteadily towards the chapel. There, he meets Father Goodweather and looks about for help to be pallbearers for the burial of Roughneck.
Along the way, the party gets attacked by six ghosts – those who don’t want Roughneck to be buried. They will bow to Runic who will return the bow, and then attack the pallbearers, but not persue. The townsfolk will flee. They will not come near Runic Rump. They are his protectors – ancestors that will keep him safe from Roughneck and Ruang. Once those two are dead, the ghosts will disappear.
Runic will point out that one more headstone has the Curse of the Wisp. After the service, he will go back to the cottage near the castle. The ghosts protect him. One is new – there have always been 5. The other, Hune may recognize as the woman from UL4 42.
During the ceremony, the party encounters the Dearth Monster of Derfingel Marsh. This is a blue dragon young one who is out with its Wyrmling brethren (from the caves). Showing off, it attacks the party.
The wyrmling will follow its big brother, even if slain. Can be captured and used as a ransom.
- Runic sets up an account with Doak Hillman.
- Willowman resurrects the cat.
- Bruce – strength bow ???
- 3000 gp for Hallow spell – Monastery
- “My guardian is dead – another champion must be chosen.
- Ronic named champion
- Dirk Dashing to dust
- Salmon Sterndale to dust
- Ronic – combine swords of orc slaying and haste ???
- 144 pumpkin scones
- Prophetic Dreamer feat
- Fairy Gem – released by Father Goodweather
November 21 - "Fire at the Mill"
- Dirk Dashing is still missing, but his bed is filled with dirt.
- The mill is on fire
- The baby dragon is waiting for Thistledown
- Ruang Rump – has escaped with lizardmen
- Six guardians – three to be sacrificed in summoning the Immortal King. – plate armor and javelins.
- Three high priests – each wearing robes and carrying a staff (all are fake) – real one is “winked out”. <only one has a backpack>
- Runic Rump has given the book to Jason Hashsome – off to Tegel !!!
- Who has recruited the pirates to look for the treasure – James Gables, Helmer Oldsalt, Gerd the Gusty, Ewen Stormwind, Rudderless Rufus, Ruggles the Scurvy
Once the Immortal King is killed
- They are in the Blueston dwarf ruins – in the old room with the Immortal King
- Hand fade from Rukhs
- Knowledge rushes from the cloak
Séance – Jensine Faintheart – Fortune Teller
- Will channel the soul of one of the dearly departed. How long the dead will talk depends on how long they have been dead. The very ancient will speak but a few words. The recently dead will babble on for hours.
- Ouija board – 15 minutes
November 23 - "Windwing"
Fawn is missing – she is scouting in the Tegel Mines. She has left a note behind for Avery at her shop. Rockhill (rocky) – has brought his two biggest hammers to the fight, and right now is collecting rocks to throw at the dragon.
Windwing will return to the Tegel Mines to gather his forces.
November 23, 888 - "The Final Attack"
|My dearest Avery,
Whatever is happening with the orcs is coming soon. I tried to find you to no avail. I have headed into the Mines, using the main tunnel entrance. It seems that orc and giant activity has greatly increased there recently. If I don’t return, please break this small magical bead. It will tell my grandfather, Dugal, what has happened – although there is not enough time for him to respond, I fear. I have been keeping him updated via a hidden teleport in the woods north of town. I do hope that we can enjoy a good venison stew when this is all over. Fondly yours.
- Red Hand
- March back through the SW entrance through the Mine Entrance.
- In the tent of one of the Giants of the Red Hand is a small cage containing Jade – the green pseudo dragon. It will call the Thistledown if seen. They attack on RED.
- Blue Eye
- March back through the SW entrance then through the Cliff House Entrance. These are the first wave of shock troops going into the manor. They attack on YELLOW.
- Green Ear
- Doppleganger is in town – will start murdering people. First body to be discovered will Father Goodweather. The next target is Captain Reem – who is going to be poisoned by the good Father. Then Hedda.
- The goblin sappers and spellcasters have set the explosives at the bottom of the well in the caves under the village. They will be set off once the signal is given. They attack on GREEN.
- Brown Foot
- This small force is with the Green Ears and will go up the NW passage to scramble up the hole made by the explosives. They attack on YELLOW.
Written in dwarvish: Warning Highly Explosive Device. To arm pull the pin. To disarm press five buttons so that the pairwise distances between the buttons pressed are all different.
Gadash is not attackable – he is a projection. At will he can become corporeal – usually to strangle someone who isn’t following orders or to cast a HUGE fireball from his staff. During that round, he is just an orc.
Each of the Captains and leaders holds a small crystal which is enchanted. When each phase of the attack starts, the crystal will glow a different color. Right now, it is a deep cerulean blue.
Firenickers, being a curious fellow, quickly became bored of his “companions” and decided to a bit of exploring on his own. Rumors of mithril in the Tegel Mines fascinated the young gnome, as he was interested in its experimental (and explosive) properties.
Being sharper than the average adventurer, he had long ago discovered the steam vents that allowed tropical lemon trees to grow in the harsh, cold climate of Tegel Village. The vents led underground, a secret way into the caves. Hoping to find a shortcut to the mines through the vents (and nicking a couple of lemons along the way), Fireknickers went down into the caves below Tegel Village.
How long he wandered those darkened pathways is not known - for he was overcome with a compulsion, a calling which he could not resist. His mind wandered. Dreams of power flourished.
He remembers stumbling along the twisting passages of the Tegel Mines down to a lake at the center of the cave.
He remembers swimming, the acrid taste of black oil in his mouth, the smell of sulfur on his clothes.
He rememebers standing on the island, the bitter cold unnatural even in this dark, underground lair.
The Crawling Evil was there, locked behind a wall of stone. Still through the small crack in that stone, the promise of power was overwhelming. It was a creature of elemental evil and cold. It needed Fireknickers – a creature of human flesh and fire. A perfect complement. It promised him so many things.
There, the gnome known as Fireknicers, trained. The Crawling Evil would bring him an occasional tutor, a goblin shaman from the orc army that was camped around the lake. The shaman, charmed and compulsed, would teach fireknickers his magical secrets and spells – only to be fed to a number of large formless black pools when his knowledge was exhausted.
The pools are guardians, the Crawing Evil told Fireknickers as his training comes to an end. They can swallow a man whole and digest him in minutes. They are difficult to see and immune to weapons - a perfect trap for those who come to the island.
Finally, the Crawling Evil tells Fireknickers of his role, his duty, that will bring him power beyond his wildest dreams. He must go out and make sure that the great battle between the orcs and the human village takes place. The attempt to bring the ghosts of the Rumps into the battle has failed. The attempt to bring the Immortal King and his lizard followers into the battle has failed. And, the attept to waken the evil of Eventide and summon the ancient snake-worshippers to Tegel has failed. The Crawling Evil has but one chance, a long, raging battle between the orcs and the humans. It might be enough – no - it will be enough to break the seal on the tomb, allowing the Crawling Evil to come into the Realm. But the destruction must be utter and complete.
What a glorious day it will be. And Fireknickers will be the King of all Humans Everywhere. Power. Fame. Revenge.
Fireknickers smiles quietly to himself as he swims back along the lake. He relishes the dark touch of the dreck. The sounds of battle have already begun – clearly his “friends” are here in the cave. His purpose set, he slowly paddles into the darkness.
Three massive ents come to town. Elmsbeard, Eldermoss, Cedarseed. They take up protective positions around the town. The Sweetvines is on fire.
- Ellindell Farshot – Fletcher
- Hobart Hornblower – guard (runner)
- Aryishia Farshot
- Barlow Bristlebow - bowyer
- Gertie and Gustav Blackguard – blacksmith (BANDED MAIL +3 OF LUCK)
- Johan Salt – saved in #9 leads the pirates (Helmer Oldsalt, Gerd the Gusty, Rudderless Rufus, Ruggles the Scurvy)
- Penelope and Rufus Awlman
- Phineous and Mirri Foambringer – brewer
- Girthsome Glenda – dairywoman
- Congal and Missy Granger
- Jason Hashsome + father – locksmith
- Blount Whalesome - Lieutenant
- Rold Flamebeard – Armorer (WINGED SHIELD +3)
- Hogg Keeneyes – guard (runner)
- Grind Burwright - miller
- Jensine Faintheart – Fortune teller
- Grinling Fulsome – Gruesome Goblin innkeeper
- Rufus and Margaret Gladhand- farmer
- Whitwell and Ami Graybeard – farmer
- Anton Greenleaf – farmer (STAFF OF HEALING)
- Lyndon Longrope – ropemaker
- Natty – gambler
- Cretin Nodcock – barkeep
- Old Man Usher – merchant
- Zafira Waghorne – playwright
- Watt Weftthread – weaver
- Woodin Whitelocks – alchemist
- Willa Wildroot – tobacconist
- Zennia - painter
- Bidwell the Brave (magic sword, chainmail) –retired captain
- Samuel Whetstone - weaponsmith
- Shamira – guard (runner)
- Doak Hillman – dolphin, falcon
- Tanya Whetstone
- Brimby and Marigold Bigfoot – hobbit cobblers (ROPE OF ENTANGLEMENT)
- Jacob Cutbeard – gemsmith
- Halbert Cutsaw - carpenter
- Thatch Billingsworth
- Aron Goodbread – baker
- Wark and Leslee Hayseed – farmer
- Jane and Peter Plowman – farmer (WAND OF ICE STORM)
- Wilman and Winton Sweetvines – vintner (BLINK DOG)
- Sullen Sam –drunk
- Shadworth – leatherworker
- Esmond Stillwater – fish monger
- Linus Holysword – Deacon
- Evarts Sharpsword – guard (runner)
- Runic Rump – next, next target
- Brian Bushell – Basketmaker
- Ghoson Ghoulslayer – farmer
- Henry Glassford – glassblower
- Gnobbin and Gurna Goldtooth – tinkerer (father of Fireknickers) (STAFF OF FIRE)
- Hasnover – innkeeper
- Jonathan Silverhand - jeweler
- Olga Oldhen – oil maker (WITH JAGUAR)
- Philo Plump – barkeep at the Hero and Hound
- Stillingworth and Vivian Granitefist – stonemason
- Rockhill – ogre stonemason
- Grotch the Gnoll - captured
- Brightaxe – the last of the Bluestone Dwarves
- Johannas Spelman – actor
- Macallan Spadehigh – gambler
- Smoky the Cat (aka Nibbler) – in BLACK PANTHER form
In The Chapel
- Hob Darkwing - Mayor
- Beatrice Beldame
- Hedda – next target
- Willowman – too weak to help
- Karin Sterndale – recovering from losing Salmon + 4 children
- Reeza Hillman – “taking care of the children”
- Roark the Resurrector – resurrections?
- At his home (with the astrolabe) – Peregrine Potkins
- At his home (drunk) – Bilgewater, Maggot
- In the water waiting for the monster – Brother Bobs – all the fishermen are OUT.
- In the graveyard sleeping – Crazy Cogsworth
- Missing – Cecil Canter, Piers Pyper, James Gable, Kirk Cederlink
- Lighthouse – Dan Dim
Impulse to kill even friends will continue to rise.
- Fawn – dead in mines (magical plate and axe)
- Blackbark the Ranger - dead
- Blackfingers the Brownie – dead
- Sterndale – dust
- Dirk Dashing – dust
- Stillingfleet – dead
- Captain August Reem – dead (assassin)
- Father Simon Goodweather – dead (assassin)
Depending on the situation, the town may award each one magic item from the Hillman Exchange for their service to the village.
Sir Runic is dead. Aye, the last of the Tegels. We should check the portrait in the Grand Hall. Who will the house name as the Fourteenth Lord of Tegel Manor. It seems that Redurn and Rinsel the Ravishing had a second son. They gave him up for adoption at an early age to Ellindell and Aryishia Farshot who put the memory of being in an orc slave camp in his mind – to protect him from the prying eyes of Ruang and Roughneck.
Jade (?), Earl the Chicken, and the baby blue dragon all come streaming towards Thistledown – clucking and chirping. The ents gather round her. Hail Thistledown, Savior of the Eldritch Woods. We return to Queen Phoebe, will you come with us or does your future lie with these humans? Your queen has released you, the choice is yours.
The town needs a wizard, what with Zebulon gone, what say you Evan Granger?
Rocky comes over and hugs you. Hi Rukhs, want to go have a beer? Thanks for the saw. It’s cool. Cuts rock like butter.
Brightaxe comes to you and bows. I thank you again, ogre, for releasing me. I am the last of the Bluestone Dwarves, but I would like to work with you to preserve our history and put the affairs of the Bluestone ruins in order. It will take lots of hard work to discover all the secrets of the ruins. And we will need some help from your friend, Rocky (Rockhill) to help us rebuild some of the rooms. What say you?
The children of the village all run to Hune. Jumping with delight. Oh, Mr. Hune, Mr. Hune you were so cool – the way you…
Smoky (Nibbler) the cat comes over (in cat form) and rubs against your leg.
“Here, here, get away from the master, you urchins.” Grotch the Gnoll comes over. Sir, I have, err, taken the liberty of purveying some of the, err, extra provisions of the town for you. I’ve hidden them out back – you know for safekeeping. I would be honored to be your humble servant. Perhaps I should go and get you the finest suite at the Inn, a hot bath, some of the finest ale, hmm. Here, let me dust you off, sir.
He moves towards Nibbler who hisses at him. “Nice kitty.”
Fawn moves over to you, slips her arm about your waist. “Well, you madcap little cook. My mission here is done, but I’m sure father will give me some time off for good behavior. With all this blue dragon meat around, we could make up quite a stew. But just to warn you, my father, Dugald, says that your intentions better be honorable or he knows a whole mess of fellows with vorpal blades.”
- Keep your characters – We may play with them again in the Skybound Lords campaign – or they may be become important NPCs in other campaigns. I would like to get scans of Thistledown and Rukhs.
- Turn in your coins. I will give you a handy dandy card with your totals on them to keep with your characters.