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bloodveil

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Saved by Paul Wolfe
on September 12, 2011 at 3:43:58 pm
 

The Bloody Veil

 


 

In ancient days, the Bloody Veil was a portal between various realms of Hell to the mortal world. During the Age of Fiends, adherents of the Cherek, the demi-god of bears and the North, assaulted the gate and sealed it; building a shrine to the Bear God on the site in order to sanctify and guard the sealed gate. Machinations within Hell in the intervening millennia saw rise of a new demon lord, Ganelith. Of his many servants in the mortal world, Ganelith chose Urgu Fel, the geomancer, to find, unseal and secure the Bloody Veil. Fel assaulted the shrine to Cherek with his minions and secured the gate after many years. His last act, it's said, was to unseal the Veil -- a process that seemingly destroyed the geomancer. Though the gate stood open, Fel's minions could not completely destroy the shrine to the Bear God -- and the subsequent influence of the shrine prevented unfettered access to the gate from either side. The servants of Ganelith and minions of Fel built a vault to secure the gate and to wall off the shrine to Cherek. Over the centuries, Fel's minions died or were hunted down by the forces of Law, but the vault remained unknown until recently.

 

Months ago, an adherent to the Elven Queen of Thorns penetrated the vault, driven by his patron to destroy the Bloody Veil, forever sealing the world from Ganelith's influences (at least through this pathway). Unfortunately, the adherent failed so badly that the gate was ripped open, allowing simple sacrifices of mortal blood to open the gateway for a short time. Ganelith has sent the word out to his minions, who race to the Thrice Broken Hills and the Bloody Veil with victims for sacrifice. Within weeks, the lands of Law will be flooded with the demonic brood of the demon lord, Ganelith.

 

Hooks

  • Elven characters who are servants of the Queen of Thorns are contacted by their patron and directed to the Thrice Broken Hills to find and destroy the Bloody Veil.
  • Wizards and clerics with patrons/gods dedicated to Law or Neutrality are sent by their patrons to defend and seal the gate.
  • Chaotically-aligned characters may be directed to either gather sacrificial victims and make haste to the Vault for the rites to follow (if their patrons are allied with Ganelith) or to disrupt the rites and take control of the gate.

 

The Bloody Veil Level 1

The first level of the vault contains twisted corridors crawling with the servants of Ganelith. These creatures have no other purpose other than to defend the vault from intruders, regardless of whether they serve Ganelith or not.

 

Random Encounters

(1d6 per turn -- Encounter occurs on a 1)

1 – Larval Men (1d3)

2 - Sons of Ganelith (1d2)

3 - Dark Ratlings (2d4)

4 – Demon Rat Swarm (1)

5 – Ganelith’s Tortured (1d3)

6 - Tortured Hags (1d3)

7 - Skeletons (1d6)

8 - Roll Twice, ignoring this result.

 

Room Key

1 - Vault Entry -- Walls covered in carvings of demons torturing mortals hovered over by a skeletal humanoid stork (Cleric -- DC 15). Old campfire buried in the dust (INT DC 16 -- several months old). Door is stone and locked (INT DC 18 -- tracks in the dirt around the door are small humanoid (elf) and humanoid creature (ratling).

 

2 - Festering Room -- Floor is thin mud covering stone. Larval men (2) slither here. They wear the pendants of Ganelith -- skeletal stork with wings outstretched -- gold (10 gp each). The secret door can be detected, but cannot be opened from this side.

 

3 - Treasure Room -- (The stone door to enter this chamber is sealed and impassable except with the key found on Level 2, room 5) Gold and jewels spill from large chests. Each wall decorated with symbols of Ganelith. Guarded by a twisted servant of Cherek long ago captured and tortured into a creature of Ganelith. The slave resembles a huge (10') humanoid beetle with large pincer-like claws and beetle-like wings.

 

Ganelith's Slave (Init: +3; Atk +4 claws (1d6+3) or +4 bite (2d4+3); AC 18; HD 4d12; hp 42; MV 30'/60' fly; Act 2d20; SP Fear Aura, Vicious Wounds, Resistances, Regeneration 2/round; SV Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +2; AL C; XP 300+hp)

Special: Fear Aura (DC 15 Will), Vicious Wounds (wounds from slave bleed for 1d4 damage each for 1d4 rounds), Takes damage from iron or mithril weapons, no damage from normal weapons, fire, cold, or mind-effecting magicks; Regenerates 2 hp per round.

 

The chamber contains the following:

  • 13,599 cp
  • 3.224 sp
  • 534 gp
  • 20 gems of varying size (1,233 gp value total)
  • Various accoutrements made of precious metal, decorated with precious stones (1,348 gp value total)
  • The Bleeding Axe
  • The Boots of Al'Fakir

 

4 - Brood Room -- Room is muddy with muddy dirt walls with a bone altar in the center of the room. Beneath three mounds in the walls are Sons of Ganelith (3). Each wears a pendant of Ganelith (10 gp each). Upon the altar are melted gold and silver slag. Those touching the altar or the slag must make a Will save (DC 15) or they are cursed directly by Ganelith. Those that are cursed must burn 1d4 Luck points and sacrifice 50-200 gps on the altar or they suffer from waking nightmares during stressful times throughout the day (1 or 2 on a 1d6 during combat). When suffering from a waking nightmare, the subject suffers -2 to all rolls. Those that make the sacrifice to Ganelith are marked by the Demon Lord with a strange stork-like tattoo on their cheek and suffer a -2 to all rolls when dealing with the servants of Law (this penalty is -4 when dealing with servants of Cherek the Bear God).

 

5 - Shrine of the Bear God -- Secret door leading this this room is marked with a rune of Ganelith requiring either a Disable Trap (DC 20) or a Dispel Magic  (Spell Check -4). The rune of Ganelith has the same effect as the altar in room 4.

 

Dusty passageway to an unlocked stone door marked with the symbol of a bear's head in profile surrounded by a snowflake motif. Those of Lawful or Neutral alignment must make a Will save (DC 12) or find themselves back outside the secret door. Those of Chaotic alignment take 4d6  cold damage when they touch the door. This damage is doubled for creatures of the hellish planes and such creatures are not immune to this cold damage. Servants or worshippers of Cherek are immune to the effects of the door.

 

The shrine to Cherek is a simple stone chamber with a fire pit in the center and low stone benches along the walls. A taller stone bench stands by the fire pit with the spell Cherek's Feast carved into its face. The symbol of Cherek is carved on the southern wall, flanked by iron torches burning with a cold purple fire. Within the snowflake motif is carved the spell Patron Bond (Cherek). Additionally, clerics can declare themselves worshippers to Cherek by taking the vow in front of Cherek's symbol and while holding their hand within one of the coldfire torches. The cold fire deals 1d6 damage, and once the vow is taken, provides the cleric with a +1 to all rolls versus servants of Ganelith. Cherek's spells may be used by either wizards bonded to the Bear God, or his clerics.

 

6 - The Decimated - This small stone chamber is crowded with bones, rusted and broken armor and weapons, and other detritus. Searching through the trash reveals that the armor bears the markings of the Bear God, Cherek.

 

7 - Respite - This bare stone room is dusty, but otherwise empty. The secret door can be opened simply by pushing on the wall and is accessible only from this room.

 

8 - Trash - The door to this room is wooden banded with iron and is stuck shut (DC 14). The room contains smashed wooden furniture and other detritus.

 

9 - Brood Room -This room has a muddy floor over stone and muddy dirt walls. Within the mud mounds along the walls are Sons of Ganelith (4). Within a hidden panel in the northeastern corner is a leather sack of gold (200 gp) and a scroll containing the spell Repel Fiends.

 

10 - Laboratory - Small room crowded with benches and various gear. Two small statuettes of warriors stand on short stone cylinders. A Vault Guardian guards this room. A fiendish Dampening Field affects all clerical magic in this room, requiring a Will save (DC 14) or suffer -4 to all clerical spell checks (including use of magical items that use clerical magicks) while in the confines of this room.

 

The statuettes are magical relics called the Stone Mercenaries.

 

Southern Passageway

The southern passage has three traps, two in the passage to room 11 (A and B) and one in a dead end passage (C).

(A) - Grasping Hands -- Skeletal hands with rotting muscle and skin reach out of the walls and grasp everyone in a 10' square. (Find DC 15; Disable DC 18; Attack: +5 melee; If struck, Agility DC = Attack roll or take 1d3 damage per round and immobilized. Can break free with a STR DC 18).

 

(B) - Poison Cloud - A cloud of poisonous gas rises from the floor affecting all within the 10' square (Find DC 14 Disable DC 15). Fortitude DC 15 or lose 1d3 STR and 1d3 Stamina).

 

(C) - The Gathering -- A subsonic call goes out to the servants of Ganelith. For the next 1d6 rounds, wandering monsters are encountered on a 1-3 on a 1d6. (Find DC 13; Remove DC 13)

 

11 - The Sacrifice -- A massive cave bear, once the avatar of Cherek the Bear God, is crucified on a stone plinth here. Ganelith dweomered the corpse to forever rot. Below the rotting corpse of the avatar lies an idol to the Bear God that none of the hellish realms can touch. The idol is of silver and worth 350 gp.

 

12 - Empty - The door to this room is a flimsy wooden affair, easily opened. The room is otherwise empty.

 

13 - The Hag Lair -- This chamber is cluttered with rotting leather sheets (humanoid skin)hanging from the ceiling and nests of bones and rotted flesh. Ganelith's Tortured Hags (3) make their lair here.

 

14 - The Library -- Within the library lurks the familiar to Urgu Fel. Though stone shelves line the walls of this chamber they are empty, save the rotted remains of various books and scrolls. Within this filth are three Potions of Health and two platinum book bands worth 1,100 gp total.

 

In the back corner of this room is a cramped and dusty stairwell leading down to level 2. 

 

Monsters

 

Larval Men

Init: -2; Atk Pummel +3 melee (dmg 1d6+3; STR check DC =13+dmg or fly back 1d10 feet); AC 13; HD 2d8; MV 20'; Act 1d20; SV Fort +3, Ref +0, Will +2; AL C; XP 15+hp

 

The Larval Men, or hangaeric, are demonic servants of the demon lord Ganelith. They appear to be massively muscled humanoids from the waist up, with human-like arms that end in thick boney knobs. Their heads are vaguely reptilian while their lower bodies resemble that of a large ghastly larva. The larval men's knobby fists strike with the full power of their muscled frames, often knocking opponents back and off their feet. On a failed STR check (DC 13+damage dealt) the victim flies back 1d10 feet and falls prone. If the victim strikes a solid object, he or she takes an additional 1d7 damage.

 

Though demonic creatures, larval men can be struck by normal weapons. Cold iron weapons do an additional +1 damage; holy water repels them, but does no damage.

 

Sons of Ganelith

Init: +0; Atk Claws (1d3) or Bite (1d8); AC 15; HD 2d6; MV 30'; Act 2d20; SP Immunities; Fear Aura (DC 13 Will); Call of Ganelith;  SV Fort +2, Ref +1, Will +3; AL C; XP 30+hp

 

The sons of Ganelith are the chosen "children" of the demon lord. Resembling skeletal humanoid creatures with stork-like heads, the sons typically reside in broods of 1d4+1 where they burrow into the surround soil and await intruders. As such the sons receive a +2 to surprise checks.

 

A son of Ganelith takes only half damage from normal weapons, full damage from iron or mithril weapons, full damage from holy water (and must make a Will DC 12+damage or be repelled from the area of the water). Both normal heat and cold do not affect them; though they take half damage from magical fire and cold.

 

The demonic creatures are surround by an aura of Fear. Those affected must spend 1d6 rounds (1) Paralyzed with fear (2) Fleeing in terror (3) Confused and acting randomly (4) Seemingly unaffected, but collapse after combat (5)Emboldened, charging forward to attack (6) Unaffected

 

Once per turn, three sons together can initiate a Call of Ganelith -- this spell-like ability requires a spell check at +3, with the following results:

1-11 -- Failure

12-15 -- Summon 1 servant of Ganelith

16-18 -- Summon 1d3 servants of Ganelith

19 -- Strike fear into one opponent (DC 19 Will)

20 -- Strike fear into one opponent (automatic failed save)

 

Vault Guardian

Init +2; Atk Special; AC 15; HD 4d8; MV 30'; Act 1d20; SP Arcane Blast, Dimensional Travel ; SV Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +5; AL C; XP 200+hp

 

Vault Guardians are demonic servants of the demon lord Ganelith created specifically to guard the vault that protects his Bloodstained Gate. Vault Guardians are 8-12' tall skeletally thin humanoids. Their heads are elongated and covered in scaly chitin dripping with foul ichors. Their eyes and jagged mouths burn with the fires of hell.

 

Vault guardians can attempt to initiate dimensional travel each round (Spell check +5). On a success, they can teleport 10' for every point over 11 on their spell check.

 

Vault guardians do not engage in physical combat, but instead use their eldritch powers to decimate their foes. Their most used power is a blast of arcane energy that requires a Spell Check (+5) with the following results:

1-5 - Power lost for the day

6-11 - Failure

12-15 -- Ranged Touch attack +4; 2d4 damage to one target

16-18 -- 2d4 damage in 10' radius (Ref DC=spell check roll for half damage)

19 -- 2d4 damage in 10' radius (no save) and flesh warps due to the arcane energies (Fort DC spell check roll or lose 1d3 STA)

20 -- 3d4 damage in 10' radius (Ref DC =Spell check+3 for half damage) and flesh warp (Fort DC=Spell check+3 or lose 1d3 STR and 1d3 STA)

 

Once per turn, a Vault Guardian can initiate a Call of Ganelith -- this spell-like ability requires a spell check at +4, with the following results:

1-11 -- Failure

12-15 -- Summon 1 servant of Ganelith

16-18 -- Summon 1d3 servants of Ganelith

19 -- Strike fear into one opponent (DC 19 Will)

20 -- Strike fear into one opponent (automatic failed save)

 

Tortured Hags

Init: +1; Atk +3 claws (1d3+disease); AC 13; HD 3d6; MV 20'/60' fly; Act 2d20; SP Charm; Brain Fever; SV Fort +1, Ref +3, Will +2; AL C; XP 25+hp

 

Those that enter the service of Ganelith do so by sacrificing their souls and their physical forms. Some adherents that begin to transform become tortured hags, humanoid creatures the size of a child but appear to be twisted crones. Hags can fly for 1d6 rounds before needing to rest for 1d3 turns.

 

The hags attack with their jagged claws. Those struck the first time must make a Fort Save (DC 13) or contract Brain Fever. The fever takes effect 1d3 days after a failed save dealing 1d3 Int and 1d3 Per). Additionally, if three crones spend three rounds chanting (Spell Check +3), those that hear this blasphemous song must make a Will save (DC 14) or suffer the effects of a Charm spell.

 

Ganelith's Tortured

Init: -2; Atk +4 claws (1d3 + Chill Touch) or Tortured Scream (see special) ; AC 16; HD 4d6; MV 20' fly; Act 1d20; SP Tortured Scream (Will save DC 14 or Fear effects for 1d7 rounds, 60' radius); XP 80+hp

 

Tortured souls are the twisted slaves, bound to unlife, by Ganelith and his servants. Appearing as a floating collection of shattered bones, dried viscera and trailing fronds of skin, tortured souls drift through the halls of Ganelith's vaults and shrines as gentle reminders to those that resist the demon lord's service.

 

Tortured souls attack with a "claw" of shattered bones which deals physical damage and the effects of a chilling touch. Those struck by a tortured soul must make a Fort save DC 14 or lose 1d3 STR. If a torture soul chooses to unleash an existential scream, all living things within 60' must make a Will save or suffer the effects of Fear.

 

Tortured souls are undead and are affected as below by weapons and magic:

  • Normal weapons, fire= 1/2 damage.
  • Iron weapons, magical fire = normal damage.
  • All types of cold = immune.

 

Dark Ratling

Init: +4; Atk +1 claws (1d2) or +1 bite (1d4) or +1 by melee weapon or +5 by missile weapon; AC 15; HD 1d8; MV 30'; Act 1d20; SP Skills and abilities of a 3rd level Thief, +8 to Hide and Move Silently; XP 1+hp)

 

Dark ratlings are not exactly rat men -- more humanoids twisted to appear rat-like by the demon lord Ganelith. The creatures are about 4' tall with rat-like features, though nothing seems quite symmetrical about their appearance. One eye larger than the other, blunt and sharp teeth seemingly at random, arms too short or too long, legs knobby and misshapen (though it doesn't seem to affect their movement, agility, or combat abilities).

 

Ratlings typically fight with short bows and short swords and wear leather armor. They burrow throughout shrines and vaults dedicated to the demon lord, never seeming to stray far from their patron. Their burrows are typically about 2' in diameter, requiring a small creature to crawl in order to navigate them. Medium creatures can squeeze through burrows if unarmored and unencumbered, though they move a 1/8 their normal speed and must make an AGI check once per turn or become stuck, requiring a STR check DC 15 to extricate themselves.

 

Ratlings are considered to be demons, though they are affected by normal weapons.

 

The Familiar

Init: +1; Atk +3 claws (1d4 + poison) or +2 bite (1d4 + poison) or +2 spines ranged (1d3+poison); AC 14; HD 3d8; MV 30'/50' Fly; Act 2d20; SP Poison DC 14 or paralyzed for 1d7+2 turns; Spell Check -2; XP 70+hp)

 

Urgu Fel's familiar resembles a mastiff-sized winged hedgehog with a mass of quills circling its neck. The creature usually charges forward, firing its quills in all directions (Agility DC 15 to avoid) before taking to the air and diving to attack its foes. The familiar is resistant to magic, inflicting a -2 to all spell checks for spells cast against it.

 

 

Magic

 

The Bleeding Axe

Forged by the great hero-priest of Cherek, Vulsheim, the Bleeding Axe was carried into numerous wars and raids by first the priest, and then his successor, Able Wolfprint. It was Able that was tasked with protecting the Bear God's Shrine and the secret that hid beneath it. And it was Able that died at the hands of Urgu Fail. Fail and his minions could not use the axe; in fact, several of his creatures died in the trying, so it was locked away under the guard of Ganelith's Slave.

 

The Bleeding Axe serves only those that serve Law, though it bucks at serving one that does not worship Cherek. In the hands of those with the Lawful alignment, it has the following features:

  • Bearer is proficient when axes when the Bleeding Axe is carried.
  • Wounds dealt to those of Chaotic alignment continue to bleed for 1d4+2 points of damage per round, until magically healed.
  • Each time the Bleeding Axe drawn for battle, the bearer must make a Will save DC 14 or suffer 1 point of Personality loss. The loss is only healed by making a sacrifice of at least 100 gp to the Bear God, Cherek.

 

In the hands of a worshipper or servant of Cherek (those that take Cherek as a patron), the axe has these additional powers.

  • For every day that the wielder prays to Cherek and offers a sacrifice of naturally gathered food (game, berries, mushrooms, and the like) the Bleeding Axe gains a +1 to attack rolls until midnight of that same day.
  • For every day that the wielder prays to Cherek and offers a sacrifice of 50 gps worth of silver, the Bleeding Axe gains a +1 to damage rolls until midnight of that same day.
  • If both sacrifices are made, the Bleeding Axe deals an additional +3 damage to demons and those creatures of the hellish dimensions. 
  • The wielder need not make Will saves (as above) for any day that one of the two sacrifices are made.

 

The Boots of Al'Fakir

In the dusty trading cities of far off Destravia, the sneak thief Fakir Al'Fakir made a hefty profit fleecing merchant princes, grifting their lovely daughters, and winning gold from their besotted sons. One night when Al'Fakir was deep in his cups, he gambled with a strange young man of dusky hue. Though Al'Fakir usually cheated, and cheated well, something told him to play the stranger straight. Hand after hand of ivory tiles, roll after roll of ebony dice, Al'Fakir raked in winnings of silver coins from the stranger. The black eyes of the dark young man, strangely, became more and more amused, until finally, he announced that he was out of coin. His last bet was a pair of boots he claimed were made of dragonskin leather. All Al'Fakir could determine was that the buckles were pure silver and the tassels that hung from their tops were finely spun and woven thread-of-gold. Before the last turn of the tiles, the stranger also claimed that the boots were magical. Al'Fakir never remembered his final play, but woke up late the next day in a fine room, surrounded by beautiful serving wenches and, predictably, quite broke. He left the palace that he'd somehow rented with only the silken tunic on his back and the strange boots on his feet. He disappeared from the records of the great cities of Destravia, though some said that he'd set out on a great quest for a being from beyond the Universe.

 

The Boots of Al'Fakir are a strange relic of the entity known as the Shade Wight. This entity is said to approach men and women of promise and give them what they most desire. What it takes, however, is something more subtle.

 

Those that place the Boots of Al'Fakir on their feet are bound until death to wear them. No known method or magic can remove them (other than the below). From that time forth, the wearer is affected by the following magicks:

  • Luck Attribute +2
  • The wearer receives mental promptings from the Shade Wight. These promptings must be followed. If they are, the wearer's burned Luck regenerates at a rate of 1 point per week. If the wearer refuses to following the promptings, he or she suffers the following effects:
    • Prime Attribute -2 -- The attribute most associated with the character's class is permanently reduced. All spells and magic items that permanently or temporarily increase this statistic automatically fail.

 

Stone Mercenaries

During the War of the False Kings, the foul necromancer H'Vratis was tasked with providing Durevis the Pretender with an indefatigable and indomitable army. After many failed experiments with living dead, the Dread H'Vratis discovered a process by which he could imbue stone with living properties. Though he could not create full soldiers out of stone, by using living stone and animated dead. Unfortunately, the necromancer found that his new creations had appetites that made them unusable by the gold-poor Pretender. Some believe that H'Vratis made a deal with the Sometimes Prince (the Pretender's rival), while others insist that the Stone Mercenaries were all destroyed.

 

Stone Mercenaries appear to be small, poorly formed statuettes of spear-and-shield warriors. When the command word is spoken (individual command word for each Mercenary) the statuette grows to a humanoid form approximately 9' tall. The creatures are composites of flesh with armor-like stone plates. Though their faces are formless, each has a gaping, toothless mouth and crude eyeholes. The Stone Mercenary bears a long spear and a stone and bone composite shield. Once activated, the Stone Mercenary must be "fed" 200 gold piece value worth of silver by inserting the metal into their gaping mouths. It takes the Stone Mercenary a full turn to consume the metal, and then serves the one that fed it for 24 hours.

 

Stone Mercenary Init: +3; Atk Spear +4 melee (dmg 1d8+3); AC 16; HD 4d8; MV 20'; Act 1d20/1d16; SV Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +0; AL N

 

Stone Mercenaries are not destroyed when reduced to 0 hit points, though they revert to their statuette form for a week per hit point. The Stone Mercenary will not move more than 10' from the person it serves and will break off combat to move to protect its master. Stone Mercenaries are unaffected by illusions or other mind-affecting spells.

 

Potions of Health

These potions were created by a lesser minion of Urgu Fel. Though each heals 8+1d3 hit points, the imbiber must make a Fortitude save (DC 10+hp healed) or lose 1d7 STR.

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