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Credit Where Credit is Due:
This write-up borrows directly from the scenario entitled "Secrets of the Towers" by Larry Church as seen in Dungeon Magazine, issue #10. I liked the idea so much I integrated it into my Therran campaign. As a point of fact, Mr. Church designed his scenario in a very generic fashion purposefully so that it could be integrated into other campaigns, and as such, I hope that my lifting it and using it my campaign is regarded as a good thing and not plagarism. I present the scenario write-up here because I did modify it in order to fit into my campaign, and because the Towers are so central to the entire plot of the historical 2nd edition AD&D Therran campaign that it could not be left out of any collection of Therran scenarios.
Twelve towers were built by Flupnirian mages during the time of the mandarin occupation of Western Jerranq. These towers were linked to each other via a series of teleportation gates. While the towers were ostensibly designed to facilitate communication and troop movements between the mandarins as they rebelled against their Emperor, the Flupnirians had an alternative motive in mind. The towers would be the means to cull and test a group of heroes who would one day prove worthy to bear the final Gem of Power from its hidden location to the Halls of Slumber in order to awaken the Sleeping Gods and defeat the Deceiver.
History of the Towers:
In ancient times the gods created the world. In doing so, they created something that was so far beyond what any of them could create individually that it overwhelmed them and they took to fighting and quarreling over which god should rule over which piece of the world and which should refashion parts of it to fit his or her desire. As conflict raged, the immense battles threatened to destroy the world...the very thing the gods were quarreling to possess. And so, recognizing the folly of annihilating that which they warred over, the God of Cleverness proposed a solution. The gods would construct a magical hall and within it they would lay themselves to sleep and so remove them from direct interaction with the world of their creation, at the same time removing the temptations that such a world instilled into them. Within the hall, the gods would sleep and dream, and in their godly dreams they could roam the landscape of the world they had created without causing it harm. Indeed, the dreams of the gods were powerful enough, as it turned out, that they could grant spells to their priests and perform divine miracles and even direct their worshippers to further their own ends.
And all the gods judged this a good plan. They constructed the Hall of Slumber and gave to the mortal races seven gems of power which would act as keys to open the doors to the Hall of Slumber, should a great need arise and the gods need to be called forth. Then, one-by-one, the gods filed into the Hall, giving the honour of being the last to enter to the God of Cleverness, whose idea the slumber was. But the God of Cleverness had other plans, and as the last god before him filed in and lay to sleep, he revealed the deception deep within his heart and he closed the doors to the hall before him and refused to enter.
With the gods safely asleep and entrapped within the Hall of Slumber, the god, now known as the Deceiver, quickly attacked the mortals and took the seven gems that could re-open the doors and release the other gods. For a time he wore these gems on an iron crown to taunt the mortals, but when one mortal hero, Amorany, came close to siezing a gem from his very brow, the Deceiver came forth from his iron fortress of Mordasht for the last time and, in the sight of many mortals, crushed each of the seven gems to liquid and then into nothingness. In doing so, the Deceiver believed he had destroyed the only means by which the doors to Slumber could be opened and the gods released. Now, as the only divine being to dwell on Therra, the Deceiver erected a mystical barrier between Therra and the planes, so that other planar beings could not threaten his plans. Then, gathering fell armies, he proceeded to wage war on mortal kind, knowing that without the intervention of the gods, time was on his side and eventually he would control all of Therra for himself.
Fortunately, the Deceiver had been, himself, deceived. Whether by act of whimsy or by some inkling of the deception to come, Flupnir, the god of trickery, had stolen one of the seven gems of power that could open the doors to Slumber. In its place he had given to a mortal an exquisite copy, exquisite enough to fool even a god. And so it was that only six of the seven gems were destroyed. And what of the seventh?
Within slumber, Flupnir now realized that his priesthood held the last remaining Gem of Power. However, Flupnir was worried that the Deceiver was too wary and too powerful and the mortal forces too weak to reveal the existence of the gem to anyone. After all, if the Deceiver had so easily wrested the gems from the hands of mortalkind, what would stop him from doing the same with the final gem? So Flupnir directed his priesthood to hide the gem on a remote island that had been the home of the trickster god when he dwelt on Therra. There, guarded by trickster magic and held within Flupnir's own demented tower, the gem lay in refuge.
But of course, Flupnir knew at some point in time the gem might have to be used. Could the Deceiver somehow be defeated without the gem? Flupnir didn't know. Could the gods somehow be awakened without the gem? Again, he didn't know. But he was patient enough to find out. Nevertheless, the day might come when the Deceiver had ultimate victory within his grasp and the Gem of Power would be the only hope to defeat him. And so Flupnir made a plan. He designed a mechanism by which only when the Deceiver had gained so much power and controlled so much of Therra that he was on the verge of victory would the gem be locatable. And even then, the effort required to locate and gain the gem would in and of itself prove so formidable that it would serve as a test to make sure those who finally ended up wielding the gem were puissant and clever enough to have a chance of bearing the gem all the way to the Hall of Slumber, for if the Deceiver ever got his hands on the last gem, then Therra would be doomed.
When the Morakki invaded Western Jerranq, ostensibly to save Jerranq from the Deceiver, they decided to avenge themselves on the Westerners who had humiliated them in their ancient past and so they ruled the West as overlords. While the Morakki Emperor returned to the East to rule the Morakki homelands, he left twelve governors (called mandarins) in his wake. For a time these governors served the Emperor loyally, but as time went on they became more and more distant and removed from the throne at Xydlont. In addition, they resented the heavy taxes and tribute the Emperor expected to flow from the rich lands of the West. And so the mandarins started to preach revolt. The Flupnir priesthood took advantage of this discontent amongst the mandarins to enact their god's grand plan.
It was known amongst the mandarins that none of them individually could withstand the power of the Emperor and that only united could they hope to prevail. But the area ruled by the mandarins was vast, and it would be logistically impossible for the mandarinates to know precisely where to unite their forces to meet the onslaught of the Emperor. And so, when some magicians offered to build the mandarins magical towers, one for each of them, that would allow teleportation between them, the mandarins did not balk but gladly took the magicians up on their offer. These towers, said the magicians, would allow the mandarins to communicate with each other almost instantaneously. In addition, whole armies could be transported through the towers, meaning the mandarins could mass their combined armies quickly to the defense of any single mandarinate that came under attack by the Emperor. Finally, the magicians offered to weave great spells of concealment around these towers, so that the Emperor could not divine their existence and take countermeasures to thwart the newfound mobility of the mandarin forces.
Of course, these magicians were actually the priests of Flupnir, enacting his grand scheme. Twelve towers were built, one in each mandarinate, and indeed the Emperor did march against his governors and the towers were used to a limited extent. But the Deceiver chose to attack amidst the fighting Morakki and his attack united the Morakki against a common foe. When the war was over, the Emperor returned to the East and abandoned all claims to the West. The mandarins, weakned by the war and now weakened by severed ties with their homeland, suddenly found themselves confronted by uprisings amongst the Westerners. The twelve towers were useless against the Deceiver and were useless against the uprisings, and so the mandarins were defeated and pulled down and Western kingdoms built on their stead and the towers, well concealed by the wiles of Flupnir, fell into disuse and were forgotten for centuries.
But Flupnir knew that the towers would take on importance again. The towers were useless to the mandarins in their battle against the Deceiver because the towers were all within the mandarin lands and so were effectively all behind the front lines. While somewhat useful for moving up supplies and reserve troops, they were not significant enough to merit much weight to the battle. But, Flupnir knew that there would come a time when the Deceiver had conquered most of the free lands and eventually the border between lands dominated by the Deceiver and lands held by the free folk would lie between the towers. Then, Flupnir knew, the towers would take on immense strategic significance, for what better way to defeat a foe than to teleport an army from deep within your own lands to a location deep within his lands? And indeed, by the time the Deceiver was in such a position, he would be preparing for a final battle to overwhelm the last vestiges of freedom.
And so, the agents of Flupnir, when exactly what the god foresaw came to pass and the Deceiver held some towers and the free folk held others, went into action. First, they subtly allowed the forces of the Deceiver to learn about one of the towers. From there, these forces began to explore the magical links between the towers and evil began to colonize others of the towers. In this manner, Flupnir was using the forces of evil to provide the test necessary to determine which free folk would be worthy to wield the Gem of Power. Once the forces of evil had colonized some of the towers, agents of Flupnir would then choose a group of goodly heroes and would subtly draw them to one of the towers located in the free lands. The Flupnirans would then expect the goodly heroes to explore the towers and eventually find their way to the towers dominated by the forces of evil. A battle would ensue and if the goodly heroes were worth their mettle, they would prevail.
Within the final tower (the first one colonized by the forces of evil) would be a clue to the location of the Gem of Power. The goodly heroes would be given another clue early in their career which, when matched with the clue in the final tower, would reveal the location of the Gem of Power. The heroes would then have to travel to the island that served as Flupnir's home, make their way into and through Flupnir's tower, and finally prove themselves worthy to bear the gem. In this way, Flupnir believed that any group of goodly heroes capable enough to locate all of the towers, defeat the denizens lairing within, defeat the evil resident in the final tower, figure out the riddle of the clues, locate and travel to his hidden island, find a way to enter his tower, and then actually make it through his tower was certainly the most worthy group of candidates on the face of Therra to take the gem and make a run for the Hall of Slumber.
In the actual Therran Campaign, the priesthood of Flupnir did not choose the PCs as their hero group. Instead, an agent of Flupnir was fleeing an attack by a Maug (which was hunting the agent as it knew the agent was involved in anti-Deceiver activity and bore something of immense importance, but did not know exactly what it was) on the Isle of Onlor and, just before he died, happened to slip the first clue to the location of the Gem of Power, a scrap of leather with scratchings on it, into the hands of a PC. It was fortunate for the Flupnirans that the scrap of leather found its way into the hands of a group of goodly intentioned and capable heroes. Was it fate that inadvertantly caused the scrap of leather to fall into the very hands it was designed for? Or was it Flupnir working in his inscrutible fashion? No one can say.
So it was that the PCs took the scrap of leather and fled Onlor in the wake of the Maug and agents of the Deceiver. They fled to Jerranq and discovered the first of the twelve towers. Hesitantly at first, they began to explore the towers, sometimes under the covert guidance of Flupniran agents, and eventually battled the evil denizens taking up residence in many of the towers. After many years and many adventures, the PCs made it to the final tower, and there battled a powerful cambion demon who was preparing to use the tower to launch the first assault of the armies of the Deceiver against the free lands. With the cambion defeated, the PCs found that the scrap of leather, when placed beneath a set of stained glass windows built into the final tower, formed a pattern. Cutting out the pattern, they found the whole formed a jigsaw puzzle. Re-assembling the jigsaw puzzle, they found it formed a map of an island with the initials "L" and "I".
The party quickly determined that "L" and "I" stood for the Lost Isle, a place of mystery known to exist far across the Eastern Seas. The party travelled the breadth of Jerranq, through Morakki lands, and gained a ship to sail into the unknown waters east of Vingariku. There, a giant serpent servant of Flupnir took their ship to the Lost Isle.
Upon the Lost Isle, the PCs made their way to the Tower of Flupnir. There they passed through all sorts of riddles, demented guardians, and other obstacles before finally making their way to an ancient chamber where the first high priest of Flupnir, ancient beyond words, guarded the Gem of Power. The priest explained Flupnir's grand plan to the party and bestowed upon them the final gem of power and entreated them to take it to the Hall of Slumber and release the gods in order to end the reign of the Deceiver.
It should be noted that while the party knew that the scrap of leather contained something of immense import (why else would a Maug brazenly attack Algol City on the Isle of Onlor unless it were?), until they actually received the Gem of Power from the high priest on the Lost Isle, they did not know what awaited them at the end of their long quest. True, they had hints and inklings that it might somehow be a Gem of Power (perhaps an eighth one was made and never spoken about, or perhaps a new one had been somehow crafted), but they never knew for sure until they arrived at the end of the quest.
Or should I say the beginning of their next quest...for once they had the gem, the most dangerous part of their duties remained...to bear the gem into the heart of the lands of the Deceiver and place it upon the doors to the Hall of Slumber.
Many of the events described above are detailed in other Therran scenarios published to the Therran website.
How to Administer this Scenario:
If you are simply looking for some adventures, you can essentially use this scenario as a series of towers for a party to seek out and explore without any greater significance. In that case, information presented here about the leather puzzle and the stained glass windows in Tower #12 should be ignored. In this case, perhaps the PCs stumble on one tower and their natural curiousity leads them to others. Or perhaps some king wishes to know the locations of these towers, for certainly knowledge of a teleportation network would be of extreme political and strategic advantage to any ruler near to one of the towers.
If running this scenario historically, then the party should find the first tower after completion of the scenario Binding Arbitration and before the scenario First Contact. In this case the DM should be very subtle about the whole thing. When the party locates the first tower, it should be presented almost as a wandering encounter or minor side trek. As the party begins to explore the towers, they should become intrigued, but the DM should make sure to interweave other adventures amongst the search for the towers. What should eventually happen is that when Tower #5 is reached, the party will learn, during the scenario There and Back Again, that the Deceiver is planning a war soon and it should then occur to the party (or to whatever leader, patron, or liege they report to) that these towers would be of immense strategic importance during a war with the Deceiver and that it would be vital for the party to locate all of the towers, in order that the Free Folk might use them to strike at the Deceiver, but also in order that the towers could be watched so that the Deceiver could not use them to strike behind the Free Folk's lines.
After Tower #5, the party should be consciously aware that finding the remaining towers is vital to the upcoming war effort and is not merely an exploring and plundering situation.
The towers, there are 12 in all, are meant to be encountered a few at a time as characters acquire them, and are broken down into five groups (A-E) as follows:
Group A (Towers #1 and #2): 1st to 3rd level characters. The PCs should start with Tower #1.
Group B (Towers #3, #4, and #5): 3rd to 5th level characters. Tower #3 should be encountered before the others of this group.
Group C (Towers #6, #7, and #8): 5th to 7th level characters. Tower #6 should be the first here.
Group D (Towers #9, #10, and #11): 7th to 9th level characters. The characters should discover Tower #9 before the other two.
Group E (Tower #12): 10th level characters. This is also known as the Final Tower.
The towers are guarded by anti-divination magic. Anyone trying to perform a divination on them will actually notice that any divinatory magic cast at the towers doesn't simply come back blank, but shows an active effort to screen out information (for example, the difference between seeing a blank page and a page where writing has been erased).
It is recommended that the first group or two of towers be encountered with no background knowledge. If the PCs are curious about the towers after that (and they should be), let them search libraries and consult sages for information. Give them whatever clues you feel appropriate, with the following restrictions. Do not give the locations to the towers other than Tower #6, #9, and possibly #3. Let them find the rest by themselves by playing with the portals. Do not tell the players how many towers there are in total until they have gone through Tower #6 and see the Tower Map therein.
When outside information is required to locate a new tower (as mentioned above), the DM should generate new scenarios involving gaining the information. For example, historically the party learned of the location of Tower #3 by discovering an ancient buried library and fighting off some minions of the Deceiver who were also searching for the same information. The discovery of Tower #6 was by way of the party's rescue of a druid being attacked by hell hounds. The druid happened to have met Barjason Underhill once and when the party asked about any five-sided towers nearby he told them of Barjason's tower. The discovery of Tower #9 is actually the subject of an entire scenario write-up called The Mandarin's Trove (refer to that scenario write-up for more details). In addition, the long arduous trek the party will face from Tower #5 (which has only teleport gates leading into it and none going out of it) is itself the basis of an entire mini campaign called There and Back Again (refer to that adventure write-up for more details).
Historically, here is the method used to locate each tower:
|Tower #1||introduced to the party by reports of orcs in the Great Vosh Woods|
|Tower #2||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #3||from the library in Imtorr City, which leads to the town of Ferrantio at the junction of the River Calum and the tributary from the Heylor Hills (see Lurkers in the Library below)|
|Tower #4||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #5||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #6||from a traveler (a druid rescued by the party)|
|Tower #7||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #8||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #9||from an ancient Morakki tome (see "The Mandarin's Trove" scenario)|
|Tower #10||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #11||from magical portals in other towers|
|Tower #12||from magical portals in other towers|
Structure of the Towers:
All of the towers have pentagonal
bases, 20' to a side (see the diagram below) unless otherwise
noted. They have various heights and numbers of levels; these
will be noted in the descriptions of each specific tower. Unless
otherwise noted, all towers have the following features:
The Magical Portals:
On the top level of each tower are five magical portals, one on each wall. Each portal is located in the center of a wall and is indistinguishable from the rest of the wall.
These magical portals connect one tower with another. There are three kinds of portals: two-way, one-way, and nonfunctioning. All were originally two-way, but some of the enchantments have worn off over the centuries (likely by design of the Flupnirians in order to provide a better challenge to their hero candidates).
Two-way portals allow the user to go back and forth between the towers they connect as often as desired. These portal radiate strong magic of the alteration type.
One-way portals allow travel only in one direction. If you can get from A to B with one of these, it is impossible to get back from B to A. If any object (or person) is put partway through a one-way portal, it cannot be pulled back. The functional side of the one-way portal radiates strong magic just like a two-way portal, so there is no clue that travellers cannot return the way they came. On the other side, a one-way portal radiates magic only dimly (just like a nonfunctioning portal).
Nonfunctioning portals no longer work at all, but they still radiate weak magical auras (just like the nonfunctioning side of a one-way portal).
The Tower Pathway diagram (see below) shows how the portals connect the towers. Dotted lines indicate nonfunctioning portals. Solid likes show working portals, and arrows indicate one-way and two-way portals. Example: From Tower #3 there is a two-way portal to Tower #4. On the wall to the right of this two-way portal in Tower #3 there is a one-way portal going to Tower #5. Next, there are two nonfunctioning portals which once connected with Towers #7 and #6 respectively. Last, there is a portal coming from Tower #8 that cannot be used from Tower #3.
To use a portal, one must simply walk through it or pass through it. The user appears to walk into the wall, disappearing from the tower and emerging in a new one.
Each portal is 5' square. Should a solid object be placed at the other end of a teleportational connection, then those walking through will emerge as close as possible to the destination point while still on the top level of the destination tower. Only if the entire top level of the destination tower is filled solid (or enough so that the teleportee cannot fit) then the teleport will not work. There is no way practically to use these portals to force someone to teleport into a solid object or be directly harmed by the teleport.
Locations of the Towers:
Refer to the Map of Jerranq in conjunction with these locations. Where specific cities or locations not shown on the map are mentioned, use your best estimate or refer to smaller scale maps of Jerranq that have been published.
|Tower #1||In the Great Vosh Woods of Vosh-gerr about 30 miles west of the city of Flagrant (located in the middle of the Vosh-gerr Peninsula)|
|Tower #2||In the centre of the Heylor Hills in Southern Imtorr|
|Tower #3||In the foothills of the West Mountains between the Vilg High Woods and the city of Kimnos|
|Tower #4||In the Near Coast, about 75 miles northeast of where the Buildom River meets the Far Swamps|
|Tower #5||In the northern portion of the West Mountains bordering the Lost Kingdoms|
|Tower #6||Deep in the heart of the Forests of Bleton|
|Tower #7||200' off shore of an island 125 miles south of Girorium Island|
|Tower #8||A hilly, forested region in the area of Vilgum where the Death River turns east|
|Tower #9||In the forests north of the Imbar Divide and just southeast of Lake Omar|
|Tower #10||In the Aynayjor Mountains near the city of Quan-Zul, buried underground|
|Tower #11||In a remote highland portion of the Far Coast overlooking the Oto Sea and Far Isle|
|Tower#12||In Northern Jaggarth, near the eastern tip of the forests of the Imbar Divide|
About a year ago, an orc shaman of the Evil Eye tribe named Munjuk received a vision from his deity, the Maug Gruumsh, a demonlord servant of the Deceiver. Gruumsh found out about the tower from some lore uncovered by his minions, the orcs, and sent a war party of his subjects to investigate via the shaman's vision. Munjuk saw many orcs of different tribes lay down their banners and pick up the standard of the Evil Eye tribe. The orcs gathered around a magical tower where they swore allegience to the chief of the Evil Eyes, then went forth and conquered the lands of their enemies, thus bringing victory and glory to Gruumsh.
Munjuk spoke of his vision to his chief, who commanded him to search for the tower. With a small group of orcs, Munjuk set out. Several months were spent in fruitless searching, and the orcs began to grumble. Just when it looked as if the orcs would desert Munjuk (or worse), Tower #1 was discovered. Taking this as a sign, the orcs moved in and sent a messenger back to their tribe. The orcs now hold the tower, awaiting the arrival of their chief.
About 3 months after the party slays the original orcish scouting party, the orcish chief will arrive and begin to setup shop here, bringing in more of his folks. The DM can have the chieftain and his warriors appear at any convenient time while the party is using the Tower. The chief's forces are not presented here, but would include a 3HD chief, a 3rd level with doctor (combination wizard and priest), and at least 50 warriors along with the usual number of leaders and subchiefs.
The tower stands about 80' tall, with windows on at least three levels, the whole being comprised of four levels each 20' tall. Surrounding the tower is a circular ditch, a former moat which has gone dry. The front gate has long since deteriorated, and a crude bridge lies across the ditch to the opening. A curious rune is etched over the opening:
There are 14 orcs in all here. Two of them are of special note:
The leader of this group is the 4th level shaman named Munjuk.
Orc Shaman (AC 4, MV 9, CL Sh, LV 4, HD 3, hp 16, THAC0 17, #ATT 1, D by weapon, Weapons footman's flail, Amour chainmail and shield, AL LE)
Priest Spells Memorized:
Cause Light Wounds, Cause Light Wounds, Protection from Good, Augury, Chant
Pouch containing herbs, leaves, and a pearl worth 120gp.
Also here is Gripple, a subchief of the tribe. He was sent to assist Munjuk and greatly resentsit. He openly despises Munjuk and might be willing to assist the PCs in doing away with the shaman. Gripple just wants to go home and he does a lot of griping about it.
Orc Subchief (AC 4, MV 9, HD 2, hp 11, THAC0 19, #ATT 1, D by weapon, Weapons broadsword, hand axe, Armour chainmail and shield, AL LE)
Most of the other orcs sympathize with Gripple. They want to go home also, but they fear Munjuk. All of these orcs are as follows:
Orcs (12) (AC 6, MV 9, HD 1, hp see below, THAC0 19, #ATT 1, D by weapon, Weapons see below, Armour leather and shield, AL LE)
||battle axe, shortbow|
||battle axe, shortbow|
||battle axe, bardiche|
There are usually only 11 orcs at the tower at any one time. The other 3 are out hunting food. PCs might encounter the 3 hunting orcs on the way to or from the tower. Munjuk and Gripple take turns commanding the tower. Gripple by day and Munjuk by night. The others have eight hours of watch duty each day. At any given time there are 3 orcs on guard: two at the entrance and one on the third level looking out the windows (the fourth level has no windows). The rest are on the first level engaged in sleeping, eating, or resting, but with weapons close at hand.
The ceiling is 40' high. There are normally 3 orcs sleeping here and 2 more orcs awake but off duty. If surprised, these orcs are AC 9 since they are not wearing their armour. There is some partially eaten meat on the table, uncooked but fairly fresh. Half full waterskins are nearby.
The ceiling is 13' high. Munjuk and Gripple take turns sleeping here. There is a makeshift altar to Grrumsh made of local materials in one corner. Beside it is a crude bronze chalice worth 2gp.
Again, the ceiling is 13' high. There is usually 1 orc here on guard, looking out the windows and guarding any prisoners on the fourth level. Stairs lead up to a stout trapdoor.
The ceiling here is lower, only 10' high. If the PCs are subdued or captured, they will be placed here, sans weapons, armour, and obvious magical implements (including spellbooks). Munjuk will plan to sacrifice the PCs to Gruumsh. None of the orcs knows about the magical portals. A two-way portal to Tower Two is on one of the walls. If the PCs fail to discover this portal and get stuck here, the DM can have Gripple offer them their freedom in return for Mujnuk's head.
This tower has been deserted for quite some time and gives no clues to the identity of its former inhabitants. Several days ago, however, a giant constrictor snake cornered its prey on the second level of the tower. It has been docile since the meal and is just now waking up.
This short (30' tall) tower has first-floor windows on four walls and an open archway on the fifth. Over the archway is a rune:
Grass grows through the cracks in the floor below the 20' high ceiling, especially near the windows and the archway.
The ceiling is 10' high, and there is an open trapdoor in the floor. Also in the room is a giant constricting snake.
Giant Constricting Snake (AC 5, MV 6, HD 6+1, hp 22, THAC0 13, #ATT 2, D 1-4/2-8, SA constriction, AL N)
Having recently eaten, the snake is content to warily watch the PCs as long as they keep their distance and do not attack. It also moves slowly due to its semi-docile state. Unfortunately, it has chosen to curl up right next to the room's only exit (other than the magical portal to and from Tower One) and will attack anyone coming within 10'.
Discovering this Tower:
Locating this tower will involve the party doing some research at an ancient library in the town of Ferrantio in Imtorr. This bit is taken from a scenario in Dungeon Magazine called "The Lurkers in the Library" which appeared in issue 9 of Dungeon Magazine. Assuming the party has just finished Tower #2, inquiries amongst learned folk will have such persons advising the party to look for references to such towers in the library at Imtorr.
Research there will turn up an old reference dating 1,700 years ago which reads [notes regarding the text are contained in brackets]:
"...and when I didst sojourn to Wesantor [West Antorium...present day Imtorr] I saw on a chart [map] in the university bibliocile [library] at Feriasto a strange picture of a pentagram shaped keep marked with a strange rune . I essayed to journey there and see what fortune awaits, but was called to the defense of my lord in the lands of...."
Further queries can find that there is a town called Ferrantio in Imtorr that has a university. The town was at one time a large city, but was sacked and destroyed during the Fourth War with the Deceiver in 4,064 A.D. That city was known as Ferstato in ancient times and was known to be a major centre of learning in the 4th millenium.
Upon arriving at Ferrantio, the DM can follow the scenario except as outlined below.
For DMs who do not have access to the scenario, when the party arrives at the library, they will see a commotion as a bunch of scholars stand outside the doors to the library in a bemused muddle. If asked what is happening, one will tell that from nowhere, a group of big, hairy humanoids appeared in the library basement and attacked a scholar there, dragging him kicking and screaming through a secret door that no one had heretofore known about. Warriors from the univeristy barracks have been sent for, but it will take some minutes for them to arrive and the crowd is very concerned about the scholar who was kidnapped.
The bugbears were sent by Nangir to locate Tower #3 and any other information they can find about the towers. They apparently had access to similar information to that which led the party to Ferrantio from Imtorr. The bugbears found the ancient, lost library of Ferstato and therein found amny old tomes and scrolls and maps and charts. Alas for the bugbears, for they could not haul all of the items back home from the lost library, but they also were not learned enough to be able to tell which book or map contained the correct information. So they decided to kidnap a scholar from the library basement above the lost library and force him to find the proper map.
There are 8 bugbears in the library, and 5 more in their lair down the passageway to their cave some half mile away. The bugbears in the library include their leader Pulcut and his lieutenant Guggle.
Pulcut (AC 4, MV 9, HD 4, hp 23, #ATT 1, D by weapon type (+3 for strength), SA -3 to surprise rolls, Weapons morningstar; AL CE).
Amethyst worth 65gp and 15sp in his pouch.
Guggle (AC 5, MV 9, HD 3+1, hp 25, #ATT 1, D by weapon type (+2 for strength), SA -3 to surprise rolls, Weapons footman's mace, dagger, shortbow, 13 arrows, AL CE)
Bugbears (6) (AC 5, MV 9, HD 3+1, hp 17, 11, 19, 15, 7, 9, #ATT 1, D by weapon type (+2 for strength), SA -3 to surprise rolls, Weapons warhammer, footman's mace, AL CE)
Bugbears in lair (5) (AC 5, MV 9, HD3+1, hp 21, 17, 17, 16, 20, #ATT 1, D by weapon type (+2 for strength), SA -3 to surprise rolls, Weapons footman's mace, javelin, AL CE)
In their lair they have a crude campsite, pallets, and a captive scholar who will be grateful for rescue (the bugbear leader, in halting Common, asked him what the books were and had him read some of them). The map showing the location to Tower #3 is amongst the items taken from the lost library. Of course, the simple discovery of a lost library sitting right under the university and with a secret door connecting the new library basement with the lost library will be an astounding feat and will possibly merit the party much praise and some sort of reward.
A few decades ago, a band of thieves robbed a royal palace. Fleeing to the wilderness, they came upon this tower and decided to hide out here until the monarch's anger died down. The thieves placed traps in the tower and hid their booty in the top level. They did not discover the magical portals.
But the monarch's men discovered the thievs' location and laid siege to the tower. The first soldiers to enter the tower died in the traps, so their commander decided to use flaming arrows and oil to smoke out the thieves. The thieves tried to sneak out, carrying much of their treasure, but were all caught and brought to justice. Some of the treasure still remains in the tower, protected by the thieves' traps.
The tower is 65' tall. Its blackened walls give evidence of a past fire. The front gate is open, and a guillotine blade blocks the entrance. Two halves of a skeleton lie on either side of the blade. Over the entrance is the rune:
A sprung guillotine trap partially blocks the entrance. The walls and ceiling (13' above) are black with soot. There are two sets of stone stairs going up, one to the right of the entrance and another to the left. The left staircase is of newer construction; about halfway up are four pressure-plate steps. These steps, and two steps above and below them, are discoloured. Stepping on the pressure plates causes acid to drop through small holes in the ceiling, doing 3-12 damage plus the victim's AC (not counting shield unless one is held over the head). Halway up the right-hand staircase is a pressur eplate with a Leomund's Trap spell on it. A Find Traps spell shows this as only an undefinable trap (which itself is a clue as to its deceptive nature).
The walls, 10' high ceiling, and floor have soo ton them. The acid trap over the left stairs of Level One can be seen here. Only the right-hand stairs continue up to the next level, and they are not trapped.
The ceiling here is 15' high. Two-thirds of the way up the stairs is a thin trip wire. If this wire is touched, a 10' diameter cloud of poison gas spews through a crack in the stair, causing 35 hp of damage to anyone within the cloud (save vs poison for no damage; the PC is assumed to have held his breath in time). The cloud dissipates after 1 round.
A blackened wooden ladder leads up to the next level. Although it is not trapped, the ladder is obviously no longersturdy. When a PC attempts to climb the ladder, divide his fully loaded weight by 3 to get a percentage chance that the ladder will break. Hald the time, the ladder will break above the midpoint, allowing the PC a DEX check on D20 to catch the lip of the trapdoor and pull himself up. The top section of the ladder, however, is ruined for other climbers at that point. The other half of the time, the ladder will break below the midpoint, dropping the PC to the ground without injury but ruining the lower portion of the ladder. It should be obvious to the PCs that there is no chance that the ladder will hold more than 1 person (even two halflings would be too much), but if more than 1 does climb, the ladder will always break. Assess damage and chance to catch the lip of the trapdoor based on the relative positions of the climbers.
The original stone stairs have been removed. There is a sturdy trapdoor in the ceiling 10' above, at the top of the now missing staircase. Unseen from below, large stones and rocks rest on top of this trapdoor. These will do 5-50 damage to anyone standing beneath the trapdoor when it is opened (save vs petrification for 2-20 damage; add DEX bonus/penalty to this saving throw). Elsewhere on the ceiling is a secret trapdoor that is safe to open.
The six 2' wide and 3' high windows in this room are also trapped, designed to halt anyone climbing through them from the outside. Any pressure greater than 20 lbs. on the bottom of a window causes a 2' x1' x1' block of stone to fall on the victom, doing 1-12 damage. If the character is climbing in from the outside, the only way to avoid the trap once it is set off is to let go of the window and drop 40' to the ground below (doing 4D6 damage).
The ceiling is 10' high. There
is no soot in this room, If the trapdoor in the floor was not
opened from below, a pile of stone and rubble rests on the floor.
There are two functioning magical portals here, a two-way portal
to Tower Four and a one-way portal to Tower Five.
Approximately 250 years ago, a nobleman named Bela Houseman discovered this tower and decided to set up residence here. The tower was remodled according to his instructions and the Houseman family moved in. They enjoyed their new abode for 30 years, until Bela Houseman died. He was interred in the tower's basement.
Shortly after Bela's death, strange occurrences began to happen in the nearby village, and the superstitious townspeople came to the erroneous conclusion that the Housemans were vampires. A priest of the local church led a mob of residents to the tower and attacked Bela's family and retainers. The priest was killed in the resulting battle, but the townspeople were able to get to Bela's corpse and drive a wooden stake through his heart. The remaining Housemans were tried and executed.
The town has since been ransacked by thieves and the town was eventually abandoned and forgotten. There is nothing in the currently unihnabited tower which poses any threat, but the PCs will likely think they are facing a foe beyond their capabilities and will be quite afraid. In addition, the town itself poses some interesting adventures for the PCs.
The town has been in ruins now for over two centuries, and many of the buildings have fallen into disrepair. In its heyday it likely housed some 1500 residents. However, the lord mayor's castle in the centre of the town, while still a shambles, survived well enough to provide residence to a youngish mated pair of black dragons who used the ruined town as a base of operations from which to raid the coastal towns and settlments nearby. Unfortunately for these black dragons, the tower and nearby town were discovered by the cambion Nangir who rules Tower Twelve. The cambion is, like the PCs, seeking to discover the whereabouts of all of the towers, so that he can then use them in the service of his lord Orcus in the upcoming war of the Deceiver. When the cambion and his minions entered the ruined town, they encountered the black dragons sleeping off a recent meal. Not wishing to fight the dragons, but also not wishing to let them roam free, the cambion ordered his minions to collapse a portion of the castle and entrap the dragons in their cave beneath the ruins. The cambion has then ordered his minions to begin to rebuild the castle so that it can be used as a staging ground for the armies of Orcus in an attack along the Near Coast when war starts.
A precise map and detailing of the town, the castle, and the cambion, his minions, and the dragons are not provided herein, though historically, the PCs encountered them all and negotiated and fought its way through these perils. They defeated the cambion's minions, drove the cambion himself off to teleport away (and thereby earned his emnity), and decided not to free the dragons, even after some intense bargaining by the trapped dragons. It is possible the party will not even want to explore the town. That is fine. Most parties are, however, likely to be curious about this ruined town within sight of the tower and the ruined castle in its centre.
The cambion's statistics are presented in the separate scenario entitled "The Final Tower". As he is likely too powerful for the party to take on, and as he is likely not to want to draw too much attention to himself at this point in time, the DM should probably have the party encounter him briefly, have a few challenges and words spoken, perhaps let both sides cast an initial volley of spells, and then have the cambion teleport back to Tower Twelve. The DM should do his uttmost to preserve the cambion for the later scenario.
The cambions minions are spriggans, evil gnomes able to enlarge into giants (refer to the Monstrous Manual). There are about 20 spriggans in the castle, along with a few other nasties like spiders or scorpions who have taken up residence there.
Beneath the castle, in a collapsed area, is a set of caves that houses the black dragons. These dragons should have a very nice treasure trapped down there with them and they can speak through a small opening in the rubble collapse. The collapse is rather hefty, enough to stop the two dragons from pushing their way out from the bottom, for the largest stones were on the bottom of the collapse while smaller rubble fell atop those larger stones to seal in the dragons. The dragon's acid breath, for the record, cannot harm stone.
The dragons will plead, bargain, cajole, and threaten the party for their freedom. They will attempt to lie even about the fact that they are dragons if possible. They will offer parts of their treasure, etc. They will gladly swear oaths to whatever gods the party requires. Whether the dragons will keep their bargain is up to the DM, but keep in mind black dragons are chaotic evil, and a party of PCs foolish enough to trust the word of a chaotic evil dragon is probably entitled to get what they deserve!
Note: The castle and its inhabitants were taken from a Dungeon Magazine scenario entitled "The Ruins of Nol-Daer". DMs with access to that adventure can use it accordingly.
The tower is 75' tall, with windows on the various levels except the top floor. The windows are framed and apparently once held glass, now long gone. There is a flagpole on the roof. "Houseman Tower" is inscribed over the beautifully fashioned oak entrance doors, and closer observation can reveal traces of older writing which has been partially removed.
The rotting, carpeted floor and 40' tall wooden ceiling are obviously of newer construction than the tower walls, but they are still old. Shards and pieces of a rather gaudy crystal chanelier lie on the floor. Carpeted steps with a richly carved banister lead up to Level Two.
A faint scratching sound can be heard coming from below. The sound can be traced to a corner of the room. If the carpet is pulled back, a concealed trapdoor leading to the basement is doscovered.
Once the trapdoor is opened, loud scratching and chewing sounds can be heard. A ladder rests against one side of an earthen tunnel leading down into darkness.
The tunnel leads down to a small (10'x12') chamber which has wooden walls and a wooden ceiling but a dirt floor. There are several rat holes in the walls, and about 30 of the creatures are scampering about the room. A few are chewing on a wooden coffin that rests on the floor. The rats will not attack unless cornered and can be easily shooed away.
The words "Count Houseman" are inscribed on the top of the coffin. No dates are given. Rusted nails that once held the lid shut lay scattered in the dirt. Upon lifting the lid, the adventurers will see the skeletal remains of Bela Houseman. A silver piece rests over each eye socket, and a long wooden stake is lodged into the corpse's rib cage. No harm will come to anyone brave enough to steal the silver pieces or remove the stake. Bela Houseman is as dead as dead can be!
This opulent bedroom has a wooden floor and a 12' high stone ceiling (part of the original construction of the tower). A four-poster bed, devoid of pillows and sheets, rests shrouded in cobwebs. An empty dresser has pieces of broken mirror on it. One door of a closet is slightly open, creaking softly in the draft. The closet is also empty.
Adventurers entering here will startle a bat, which will fly once around the room and then out a window. The ceiling here is 8' high, and there are four chests against the walls. Three of them are open and empty; the last is closed. Closer examination reveals that the lock on the fourth chest has been broken and the chest, too, is empty.
There is a two-way portal to Tower Three and a one-way portal to Tower Five. The ceiling is 10' high and there are no windows. A skeleton lies on the floor with a borken holy symbol to Merdros near its right hand.
This tower is the basis for the scenario "There and Back Again". DMs should refer to that scenario to note the rather extensive adventure that is kicked off when the party teleports to Tower #5.
The previous inhabitants departed too long ago to leave any trace save one: the roof of the tower was removed, perhaps to make an observatory. Recently, a passing hill giant and his pet lizard too note of the tower and decided that it would be a good place to seek refuge. The giant does not know about the magical portals.
The tower is 50' tall and has windows on two levels. A hill giant sits on the doorstep, beneath an odd rune above the doorway:
A 25' high ceiling looms over a bare earthen floor. The most obvious feature is a hill giant sitting just outside the exit. His name is Thrug (which means "ugly" in Ogrish). Thrug has an ill temper and personality and didn't get along well with his family members. After murdering and eating his sibling, he fled the wrath of his parents and eventually found this tower to live in, which he has been doing for about 4 years now. The giant can squeeze through the 10' tall and 7' wide doorway (which was 5' wide before he widened it with some large rocks) by getting onto his hands and knees. Once inside, the 25' high ceiling is high enough for him to stand and wield his club if necessary.
Thrug (AC3; MV12; HD12+1-2; hp 52; #AT 1; Dmg 2-12+7; SA hurl rocks for 2-16; AL CE)
Within, on the first floor, amid tied up skinned corpses of various and dubious origins are a large pelt for sleeping and a large bag containing 5000sp, 450gp, a Potion of Treasure Finding in a wax stoppered iron flask, and a bejewelled long sword (worth 170gp) which he uses as a dagger.
5 large bricks (about 2' square) are stacked nearby for throwing.
The ceiling is 12' high, and there is little of note here. If a character pokes his head out the window above the front entrance, he can see the giant below.
The walls here are 10' tall, but they support no ceiling. None of the portals work going out of this place. Lairing on the top open floor is the giant's only friend, a pet giant lizard, which can come and go over the wall on this level and then down the outside wall. If a fight ensues on this level, the giant will be alerted, but not being able to fit upstairs, he will likely hide outside the tower and wait for someone to emerge, attack him, and then enter the tower to attack anyone else he sees.
Giant Lizard (AC5; MV 15; HD3+1; hp 19; #AT 1; Dmg 1-8; SA swallow; AL N)
About 40 years ago, a druid named Barjason Underhill got fed up with the ritualistic hierarchy of his druidic order. Feeling that he could study the ways of nature better on his own, he moved to the forest, discovered this tower, and took it as his home.
Since then, Barjason has been enjoying a hermit's life at the tower, which has been remodeled to suit his tastes and protected with spells of hiding and warding. He has gone slightly insane during the courseof his solitude, and although like most druids he has contempt for non-druids, he has taken this contempt to fanatical and dangerous extremes. He will certainly attack intruders.
Because of the care by which Barjason hides the tower, it is highly unlikely that the PCs will encounter this tower purely by chance. The DM may have to provide clues to its existence and location.
The toweris partially hidden by the surrounding forest, and especially hidden by a Hallucinatory Forest, a dense cluster of trees and vegetation. There are a few Snare spells set in the area. When the party enters the Hallucinatory Forest, roll 1D4 for an encounter:
||Barjason (in bear form)|
Roll again when the PCs are halfway through the forest, and a third time just before they enter the tower. Barjason will not be encountered more than once however. If he is not encountered prior to entering the tower, then he will definitely be encountered within the tower.
The tower itself is 55' tall. Its outer walls are decorated with bas reliefs of nature scenes (Barjason has been busy with his Stone Shape spell). These designs give purchase for the roots of thick, easily climable vines that grow all the way up to the roof. The main archway has a rune just over it:
Barjason Underhill is a 68 year old human male. He often uses his druidical shapechange ability to wander the area in the form of a black bear. If the PCs encounter him in this form, he growls at them. This is their only warning. If they do not leave the area, he will take steps to force them away or kill them if necesary.
Barjason Underhill (AC 4, MV 12, CL Dr, LV 9, hp 41, #ATT 1, D by weapon, Weapons oak staff, 3 spears (coated with Type C poison, +2 on saves), S 9, I 12, W 16, D 11, C 8, Ch 16, AL N)
Spells Memorized: Detect Poison, Entangle, Faerie Fire, Invisibility to Animals, Locate Animals, Predict Weather, Speak with Animals, Charm Person or Mammal, Create Water, Heat Metal, Locate Plants, Obscurement, Reflecting Pool, Neutralize Poison, Summon Insects, Tree, Cure Serious Wounds, Speak with Plants, Pass Plant
Torc of Defense (AC 4)
Cloak of the Woods (on command will massmorph wearer into a tree, and will reverse the transformation at the wearer's command)
When in bear form:
Black Bear (AC 7, MV 12, hp 41, #ATT 3, D 1-3/1-3/1-6, SA hugs for 2-8 if a claw hits on an 18+, AL N)
Long, thin windows reach nearly from the floor to the 30' high ceiling. The stone floor has been torn up and removed, and nourishing plants (mostly ferns) grow in the rich soil. A crude but sturdy wooden ladder leads up to a hole in the ceiling.
A soft bed of leaves and pine needles rests on the floor. There are sparse belongings here: a wooden cup, a few metal knives and forks, a battered pot half full of water, and a change of clothes. A wooden ladder comes up through a hole in the floor and continues through a hole inthe 10' high ceiling.
An interesting design is etched into the floor here:
It has been worn down by time but the runes are still readable. This design shows the relationships of the portals to each other, with Tower #6 in the center. The runes correspond to those engraved over the main entrance to each tower.
The two-way portal to Tower #8 has a wooden door hastily constructed in front of it. This door is outlined in charcoal, a clue that it is Fire Trapped. Anyone within a 5' radius of this door when it is opened takes 1D4+9 damage (half if a save vs spells is made). The other functioning portal, going to Tower #7, is not trapped as it is a means of exit only and cannot admit intruders.
This tower wa soriginally built on land, but the ocean has crept in over the centuries. It now stands about 200' offshore of a small tropical island in the Heynosht Archipelago. The air is humid and warm.
Currently, the tower is inhabited by a wereshark named Boak. He resides in the tower's upper levels while in human form, and in the flooded first level when in shark form.
Boak the wereshark in shark form (AC 0, MV sw21, HD 10+3, hp 55, #ATT 1, D 5-20, SD +1 or silver weapon to hit, AL NE)
Boak the wereshark in human form (AC 9, MV 12, CL Wa, LV 9, hp 55, #ATT 3/2, D by weapon, Weapons broadsword, S 17, I 14, W 15, D 15, C 14, Ch 8, AL NE)
Broadsword +1, +2 vs Gnolls (this is a blade that is infamous amongst gnolls and any gnollish shaman spotting the weapon will recognize it and will react very hostily to the weilder and his companions)
Boak was formerly a ranger, but he has given up fighting his curse and the evil inclinations brought thereby and is now neutral evil. He has lost his ranger abilities of course, but he still keeps a wizard scroll around int he hope that he might somehow regain his spellcasting abilities.
The top of the tower lies 50'-60' above sea level, depending upon the tides. The upper windows are large and appear to have once had glass in them. The ocean waves have worn away the rune over the main entrance, which is underwater.
It is 35' here from floor to ceiling. Most of this level is underwater, which varies from 20'-30' in depth. Boak keeps most of his treasure here: 3500ep, 2500gp, a Potion of Healing (the seal of which has partially leaked, so it only heals 3-6 damage), and a waterproof scroll case containing a wizard scroll of Tenser's Floating Disk, Knock, Dispel Magic, and Wizard Eye.
Also in the area, swimming in and out of the windows and guarding the treasure, are five sharks.
Shark (5) (AC 6, MV sw24, HD 5, hp 27, 24, 22, 21, 19, #ATT 1, D 2-8, AL N)
These sharks will obey Boak in most matters.
Stone stairs lead from this empty room 15' up to the next level. Boak sleeps here during the daylight hours, his sword by his side.
This tower was once a lighthouse, with this level serving the main function. Corroded bits of the metal lamp and gears can be found here. Stone stairs lead 15' up to the top level.
The ceiling here is 10' high. Boak does not know about the three functioning portals, none of which are operations from this side.
The party will essentially be stranded here, as they have no boat and there are no portals allowing return from this tower. The nearby island can be the source of further adventures. In the historical campaign, the party fought Boak, who eventually fled into the ocean and swamp away. The party then made it to the island where Boak, who had gathered some neraby sahuaghin friends, assaulted them come nightfall. The party defeated the sea devils and were eventually able to flag down a passing vessel. The DM can make the return from this tower as arduous or as easy as he likes.
Forgotten and irrelevant.
This 60' tall tower is in poor shape, having taken a severe beating by the elements. It has obviously been unused for a long time. There is a rune above the entrance, faint but still readable:
Top (and only) Level:
Upon entering through the portal from Tower #6, the PCs discover that the floor of this level is missing, leading to a 50' drop and 5D6 damage. On the bright side, all of the portals leading out are functional...but they, too, are 50' above ground.
The cambion Nangir (see Tower #12), realizing the potential danger of the magical portals to his plans, has placed undead guards on the "other side" of two Tower #12 portals he knew were functional (in Towers #9 and #11). This tower is occupied by shadows. They are here primarily to stop Athoz from escaping Tower #12.
The tower is 50' tall. All of its windows have been boarded up. A rune is etched over the entrance:
The ceiling is 20' above. If it is night and the PCs make noise, the shadows will come down here to attack.
This level is completely empty. Stone stairs lead 14' up to the level above.
The ceiling is 10' high. There are 20 shadows here.
Shadows (20) (AC 7, MV 12, HD 3+3, hp 19 ea, #ATT 1, D 2-5, SA strength drain, SD +1 or better weapon to hit, 90% undetectable, AL CE)
A functioning portal leads to Tower #7 and a two-way portal leads to Tower #10.
At some time in its past, this tower was engulfed by an avalanche. The tower's stricture was strong, so it was not completely disintegrated by the oncoming wave of rock. The top half of the tower broke off, however, and was carried for some distance before coming to rest on its side beneath thousands of tons of rock.
Not applicable; buried.
Because of the tower's orientation, "down" is roughly toward the portal to Tower #11. Unless precautions are taken, anyone entering through the two-way portal from Tower #9 has a 50% chance to fall through the one-way portal to Tower #11. Anyone lucky enough not to fall through takes 3D6 damage from the fall. A third portal leads in from Tower #12, but there is only a 30% chance to fall through the portal to Tower #11 when entering here (1D6 damage from the fall otherwise). There are stairs visible going to a "lower" level, now full of rock and rubble.
Nangir (see Tower #12), realizing the potential danger of the magical portals to his plans, placed undead guardians in the towers with portals leading from Tower #12 (he has not yet discovered Towers #5 and #7). This tower is occupied by wraiths and wights. They are here primarily to stop Athoz from escaping Tower #12.
This tower is 45' tall. All of its windows have been boarded up. A rune is etched over the entrance:
The ceiling is 18' high. If it is night, there will be 12 wights on this level.
Wights (12) (AC 5, MV 12, HD 4+3, hp 22 ea, #ATT 1, D 1-4, SA energy drain, SD silver or magical weapons to hit, AL LE)
The ceiling is 15' above. If it is day, the wights from Level One will be here. Otherwise, this level is empty.
The ceiling is lower here, only 10' high. There are 7 wraiths here.
Wraiths (7) (AC 4, MV 12 fl24[B], HD 5+2, hp 25 ea, #ATT 1, D 1-6, SA energy drain, SD silver or magical weapons to hit, AL LE)
Anyone "dropping in" from Tower #10 automatically loses inititaive. No portals lead out of this tower.
There is also a possibility that the chasme servant of Nangir might be here. Refer to "The Final Tower" for details.
Near the portal from Tower #12, are small pieces of a shattered stone tablet. If the pieces are placed together, writing on the tablet in wizardric language (requiring a Read Magic) shows a plea for help and promises of reward from a "captive" in return for aid in escaping. The writing mentions a tower like the one the party is in located in the east of the Imbar Forest.
The Final Tower is detailed in the scenario entitled "The Final Tower". DMs should refer to that scenario for details. The final tower is the demesne of a powerful cambion in the service of the Maug Orcus. Orcus has commanded the cambion Nangir to enact certain rituals designed to give birth to a Maug. Essentially, Nangir has created a hollow shell of a being that is designed to be implanted with some of Orcu's own malign essence. The rituals to be performed on the being would amplify that small piece of Orcus' essence tremendously and, the shell being strong enough to contain such powers, would eventually evolve into a Maug only slightly less powerful than Orcus himself. Essentially, this being would be the son of Orcus. Having Orcus' own essence within it and having been bound to Orcus body and soul by powerful rituals, Orcus hoped to use his new ally to confront and defeat Demogorgon and take the latter's place as one of the favoured of the Deceiver.
The being to be imbued with Orcus' essence is the offspring of Nangir and an Alu-fiend. For reasons germaine to the rituals necessary to contain Orcus' essence, amplify it, and bind it to Orcus, the shell of a being had to be highly supernatural, inurred to the malign forced it was to contain, and yet at the same time free of any taint of soul, personality, or ethic bent. What essentially was needed was a good hearted fiend, and to Nangir's credit he located just such a being, named Athoz.
Athoz was a goodly alu-fiend who did not adopt the evil heart of her kind. However, being both goodly and an outcast from herown society and that of mortals who feared and despised her, she was also naive and vulnerable. Nangir preyed on this and, putting on an act as a kindly fiend himself, wooed Athoz into marriage and to the marriage bed. It was only when Athoz was with child and gave birth that Nangir revealed his true self and his plans to Athoz. Athoz was aghast and vowed to stop Nangir, but she was imprisoned in his tower and warned that should she attempt to escape, her own child would be forefeit.
And so Athoz is in a bind, for she loves her baby son as a mother would and knows that time is running out, for soon the stars will be aligned and the last rituals performed that will send her child on its way towards great evil. So she has, hoping beyond hope, sent a message through a portal of Tower #11 and now awaits whatever aid will come to her.
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