Campaign

WORLD FLUFF

- It's important to outline the start contrasts to the player of life inside the walls of Ebih and the world outside. These are some things that should be described to the players.

- Hushed whispers as the players leave the city by foot. Who are these brave souls? God speed. They'll probably never come back. Why would they take their chances overland?

- The city gates are 20 feet thick. It takes 60 men to open and close them. They're made of steel bars, maybe thousands of them, twisted into ornate shapes over the original stone. Lore has it that they come from the now abandoned Tehorm prison, now a mass grave since the Neoghi invasion in the reign of the previous king. The gate is a memorial to the prisoners of war who died there after the Neogi sealed the entrance after running short on food and supplies.

- An hour past the edge of the city, and all evidence of man disappears but the road. Nature has risen up and swallowed the ruins of the Great War. Only the softest impressions of crumbling fortresses can be seen beneath the spiny brush of the Ina Quabal, a dry, sandy forest infamous for its wildlife that seems to live off nothing but the pervasive, low lying fog. The fog limits visibility to about 30 paces making the world seem ghostly and pale. It's hard to say where the sun is, and without the road it would be easy to get turned around and die here.

LISTEN 25 Every once in a while, you can hear something swooping through the mist, seemingly going from tree to tree. Whatever it is doesn't sound very graceful, and sometimes it definitely seems to miss it's mark and crash through the dry, smooth branches with a very particular kind of thump, a little like an old, dried out waterbag.

NIGHTLY ENCOUNTER IN INA QABAL:

- Two halfs of a dead elephant lay in the road, severed so neatly from one another that it looks like a plate glass window was dropped on it. There's almost no sign of conflict, but deep incisions in the earth lead both to and away from the corpse, the trees in either direction clearly chopped and broken by whatever passed through here. A few dog-sized tick-like creatures slurp greedily at its insides with long tubular mouths.

- As they move deeper into the forest, the trees become more frequent and the

- Two creatures the size of houses come crashing through the woods, smashing down trees. The sound of the trees literally exploding from the impact sounds like twigs snapping compared to the loud sound of their carnal roars. The players are showered in blood before the two creatures disappear into the forest on the other side, continuing their epic combat.

The main plots

THE TRAVELER

Synopsis

An ancient being has been going around the world, stealing remote religious icons which are actually relics from Kanshai Hiveship that was sabotaged at the beginning of the Age of Destruction. His name is 'The Traveler' and he rides a retriever known as 'The Huntsman' that comes from the wreckage of the Kanshai ship. In truth, the Traveler is revered as a kind of demi-god by a powerful organization whose sole purpose is the sequestering of the relics, known as the Adamantine Hand.

Where things have gone a bit sideways, politically, is that powerful backers of the Adamantine Hand amongst the Priests of Lowhon and the Librarians of Etruria are planning to overthrow the Adamantine Hand and use the technology to fight back against the growing Aklonian threat. The Traveler has a retinue of loyal followers who are prepared to assassinate key figures within the Adamantine Hand to prevent this, and tensions within the organisation are at all all time high.

The traveler was born during the Fourth Age, and is an important mythological figure in the stories of the Heart of Creation. It is said that the traveler and the huntsman brought the king of the dwarves and his adventurers to the heart.

CHAPTER 1: THE MESSAGE FROM ON HIGH

The psion recieves a mental message from his monastery, claiming that people there are getting sick from drinking the water, and they need assistance from the outside world as the very young and the very old are quite ill.

'SEAWEED' QUEST: The children and elderly of the monastery have a disease called 'sloughing fever' that typically affects only the very young and very old, but sometimes affects adventurers who venture too deep into Eldritch ruins.

In reality, the disease is the effect of radioactive materials seeping out of the wreckage of the Kanshai ship fragment that crash landed tens of thousands of years ago in the area now known as the 'Garden of the Prince.' The breached sarcophagus has been leaking materials into the surrounding environment.

Aside from a handful of special spells meant to protect people from Sloughing Fever, the only known antidote is a dust made from dried sea vegetables, but the furthest sea is quite far away. The players must come up with a solution to save the villagers.

REWARD: One of the elders saved by the Sloughing Fever cure recently spoke with a traveling trader telling a miraculous story. According to the trader, A lone monk matching the description of an illuminator who left the monastery around the same time that the idol was stolen has been recently seen effortlessly navigating the mountain passes that lead to the forbidden Garden of the Prince. Since he must be hundreds of years old, rumors abound that he's a demon, ghost, or vampire now, roaming the forbidden pass searching for new victims who've violated the ancient covenant to stay away from the Garden.

PREDICAMENT: The pass on the way to the garden has become a refuge for bone collectors and their demon masters since the emissaries disappeared during the great flood. The area is blocked off by a great stone which must be circumvented. Moving the stone will alert the demon lord, a Glabrezu, who preys on those who attempt to reach the Garden. Beyond the rock some hours down the path, he can be found sleeping in an ancient temple. The players can either sneak by him or try to kill him or wake him.

Some climb checks later (barring any terrible failures) and the party will move on to the Garden of the Prince

THE GARDEN OF THE PRINCE

The monk is now a vampire living in the Garden of The Prince, a temperate paradise hidden in the core of the mountain-chain, kept warm by radioactive isotopes that are burning at the core of the the Monastery. Depending on how long the characters stay there, they will begin to get radiation poisoning and die. Forbidden Monastery

LOCAL MYTH CHECK

DC 10: LOCAL MYTH
Ages ago, The Prince of Enlightenment rose from the Garden as winged birds, singing songs of enlightement. Emboldened, the peasants rose up against the Bone Collectors and their Demon Lords, banishing them to the deepest and darkest of mountain passes.

DC 20: LOCAL MYTH
Legend has it that a falling star fell into the mountains, causing a great explosion that caused avalanches to seal the passes from village to village, killing many of the Demon Lords and Bone Priests whose temples were built along the harsh mountain roads. Strange, bird-like creatures came from the fallen star and spoke with the locals in the way of the psion, asking to be guided out of the mountain chain. In exchange, they would protect the locals as they dug their way out to the Land Beyond. Some left, though were presumably wiped out by the Great Flood that would mark the Age of Destruction.

DC 30: LOCAL MYTH
At the beginning of the age of destruction, a short time before the Great Flood, A comet smashed into the glacier in the center of the mountain chain, causing a great explosion that took many lives as earthquakes and avalanches buried the region. The Bone Collectors and the Demon Lords who made their temples on the steep mountain passes were buried under rock and snow, allowing a respite from terror for those who farmed the plateaus and valleys. While some did die, those who lived were contacted by emissaries of the Prince of Enlightenment, strange flying creatures with feathery, ethereal protrusions. They communicated only with those who had the strange talent of telepathy, an ability awoken by the comet. The emissaries of the Prince expanded the psychic powers of those who had talent in exchange for knowledge of the local region. Using these new powers, the psions rose up against the remnants of the Bone Priests and the Demon Lords, but were unable to win their freedom. The emissaries agreed to assist them in a final push against Demon Lords if they promised to entomb what remained of the comet, and keep away from the Garden of the Prince.

Strange creatures came from the Garden, flying the mountain passes, speaking in a strange tongue. After some time, some of the locals came to understand the creatures through a kind of 'inner dialogue' shaped by thoughts and mind-pictures.

priests and their demon-lords attempted to capture the creatures as they glinted like treasure. An ensuing conflict between the roaming creatures and the local demonlords resulted in an even larger creature emerging from the wreck a few weeks later, called 'The Huntsman'. Like the

DC 30: LOCAL MYTH
Legend has it that a falling star fell here and shoot the mountains in the Age of Destruction, before the Great Flood. Strange creatures came from the Garden, flying the mountain passes, speaking in a strange-tongue. The local priests and their demon-lords attempted to capture the creatures as they glinted like treasure. An ensuing conflict between the roaming creatures and the local demonlords resulted in an even larger creature emerging from the wreck a few weeks later, called 'The Huntsman'. Like the

alling star fell here and shook the mountains. orking for The Prince Of Enlightment once came from the garden to liberate the people of Shambala from the ancient demons that once ruled over this land, vanquishing the ancient shaman-slavers and their demon lords that ruled it.

There does seem to be an ancient and spectacular building here, no doubt saved from the Great Flood by the surrounding mountain peaks. Intricate stonework dots the ruins all over the garden, and somebody or something seems to be maintaining the wild protrusions of plants. In many places, the ancient building has begun to flag, its interior courtyards tumbled with carved stonework. Plants of every possible color seem to dominate the courtyard, ordered into a kind of rainbow.

The very interior of the monastery-like structure seems to crumbled, exposing fantastic and strange adamantium statue protruding from the earth, ostensibly once the idol that once dominated the inner chamber. A huge slab of stone is visible from even here against the base of the statue, much like the door of a tomb. A sickly, practically skeletal person has been carved into it, blood running from their mouths and eyes. This looks different than the rest of the structure, as though somebody has placed it there recently. Scripts in a dozen different alphabets are carefully illuminated across its surface. Though the languages seem to be ancient, the configuration of the words and the sigil around it definitely suggest this is a warning.

at the core of the mountain chain. who stole the village idol is a anquities collector named Ola Nabil.

THE BLACK MAZE

The Nameless City

To prepare for the coming of the Mountain, the Cult of the Black Maze has been coming in advance, killing people where the mountain is to appear. The mountain feeds off the energy of empty homes. The Cultists are secretly ancient servants of the Yellow King, is an important part of the culture of the Men of Leng, who are apparently human but secretly strange spider-like creatures related in part to the deceased Harridians. The Mountain is in fact the sarcophagus designed to contain the yellow king, and it contains the lost city of Carcosa. Over the millenia, the Yellow King's loyal servants have been tricking the wealthy elite into worshipping him. The wealthy have the resources to survive the journey to the mountain, and will also keep the affair quiet out of embarrassment.

- The bridge stretches out over the water hundreds of feet below. Its back arches high, seemingly leading to nowhere. Out of the corner of your eye you see something strange on the horizon beginning to pass into the city. It's a squat black ship that looks more like a temple than a vessel, traveling without sails. It glides through the water with a soft thrushing sound, while oddly tall men with small, strange masks for heads stand on the deck. Slaves, seemingly mindless, huddle at the stern of the ship, getting shackled in a long line. For a second, you shudder at the thought that they form some psychic anchor, even though they're probably just being readied for the market. It faintly reminds you of a nightmare you had as a young child.

KNOWLEDGE ARCANA: These are the men of Leng, who are rumored to live in a great desert to the east. Little is known of them other than persistant rumors that they are cannibals, and that they serve spider-like creatures which roam Leng's tall, yellow grass, collecting something which grows there. They are said to have brought a great curse upon the people of Shambala.

- A secret society of rich cultists worshipping some seemingly banal dark god to get chicks end up being tricked by a charismatic priest. The priest turns out to be a priest of the Dark Mountain, an ancient god from the Far Realms who appears without apparent reason in remote lands. . They must reach the Dark Mountain on a pilgrimage and make a sacrifice to it before it disappears, or it will remove them from reality and take them as emissaries to its next destination.

- The people who destroyed the remote Korahan village that Devon and Rhyland are from.

- All along the route, they will eventually recognize the same travelers, in dark robes.

THE WORM KING

The elves of Nilm Sadun have been secretly taking on parasites to deal with the Miasma. The parasites come from a creature they call The Worm King. The Worm King has escaped through the southern barrier and is stalking somebody who killed somebody who killed one of its young.

THE INEVITABLE TIDE

- Somebody seems to either be following the players or going in exactly the same route. The remains of another camp site can sometimes be found near the players, or a glimpse of a stranger in the dark. Somebody wearing a cloak with a staff with a strange looking end. The person is in fact Mazar Haneen, an orc ranger sold to Magrul by Neoghi slavers for a very special job.

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