Tuesday, January 1, 2019

The One-Eyed Man and the Forsaken Ones (part 2)

This is part 2 to a post I made a long time ago.  I'd advise you to read part 1 if you haven't in a while.  Even if you have, you might want to anyway, as I've made some key changes that will be important.

Once you have done, you'll see this is part of the Dungeon described in the post, the Catacomb level of the Palace of the Forsaken Ones.  There are three more levels to this larger dungeon, which will be described as they are finished.

                                                              From Berserk

Backstory:

The entities now called the Forsaken Ones were once a group of four Demon-Princes who ruled over a vast Empire.  Their Empires spanned from the Mountains of the Cold Gates in the South to the Grass Wastes in the North, and as far West as the lands of the Hogfolk.  They accumulated the wealth of the kingdoms they conquered, filling their palace with the plunder of a thousands lands.  But the Forsaken came not as conquerors, but as liberators.  They were just and fair at first, merciful and compassionate.  They expected that this magnanimity would be returned by their mortal subjects.  Tragically however, the mortals they now ruled over proved to be endlessly ungrateful, selfish and opportunistic.  This, along with the brutality needed to maintain such an Empire eventually corrupted the Forsaken, along with the near-limitless power they had in our Universe. 

In time, the Forsaken became brutal tyrants, demanding more and more tribute, and crushing any sign of revolt with harsher and more brutal sanctions.  Eventually, even their Courts began to fear for their own lives as the Forsaken grew increasingly malicious and blood-thirsty.  So these Courtiers enacted a plan.  Through subterfuge, they betrayed the Forsaken and sealed them in their Palace, then partially encased it in a pyramid designed to keep them out, to protect the world from them, and to take their Empire for themselves.

This latter part of the plan did fail, as without the terrible power of the Forsaken the Empire rapidly splintered, but the former did work, and the Forsaken Ones have been trapped in their Palace for centuries.  In the intervening years, as their Empire fell apart, their statues were torn down and they were selectively edited out of the histories of many lands, with even their names being forbidden to say, until few remembered them.  Still, even to this day, legends persist of the King or Kings of Demon Mount, savage beings who came from out of the desolate, savage Southern Hills to pillage the civilized lands of the West.

Who might accompany you below?


see Part 1 for more information on these folk.

Rayna the Priestess.  She will try to hire you to come down with her.  She can read the runes inscribed on many surfaces, as well as the plaques and signs still littering the Palace.  She could also communicate with those trapped inside, if the Party cannot manage any other method.  Rayna, if she enters, will pretend to be seeking out the Forsaken to destroy them when in reality she is a cultist who seeks to free them, and secure as many of their Sacred Treasures as possible.  She hates Cali, Daughter of Sejakis and would kill her, if she had the chance.

The Adventurers.  They were hired by Cali.  They will be hesitant to go below without their mistress, but could possibly be tempted with promises of easy loot.  Though they will be cautious of other Adventurers, as they've heard the stories of what sometimes happens when two groups of Adventurers meet in a dungeon.   

Cali, Daughter of Sejakis.  Cali is also going down into the dungeon to retrieve a Sacred Treasure for the One-Eyed Man, but unlike Rayna, she is not a true believer.  Cali only serves the Forsaken because she has seen their power and desires it for herself.  She is secretly fearful of death, and that after she dies she will finally be punished for all the horrors she's committed, though she will deny this.  Cali hates Rayna, as Rayna is her rival for the One-Eyed Man's favor, and would kill her, if she had the chance.

1: Stairs Down

These are the Stairs Rayna will direct you down.  The staircase is long and the steps large, almost designed for something twice your height.  The walls of the staircase are covered with impressively dangerous runes that ooze power.  These are runes that read things such as "Stop Intruder", "Target Higher Being", "Contain", "Trap Soul" and "Murder".  No Outsider or being blessed by one can descend these stairs without being torn to pieces by astral winds.  Mere mortals will be fine though, unless they have been contaminated with the power of an Outsider.

The runes continue as you descend for minutes, until you reach the bottom, until all the light fades and you are in pitch darkness, not counting whatever light you brought with you.    

2: Guard Access

This is the first hallway they enter.  It splits off into two ways.  At the entrace, the hallway forks, one path going left, to "5" (see below.  The other way forward leads to two doors, one along the left wall "3", the other directly ahead "4".

3: Changing Room

This room is dark and full of iron chests, which are full of ancient grey robes and even older red breastplates.  The grey robes are what the Philosophers wear, and if you wear one, talk quietly and seem to be educated, you can disguise yourself as one.  The red breastplates are what the guards wore.  Each one still works as armor, and might be valuable as a collector, if anyone knew what it was.  Otherwise, they are probably aren't worth the effort.

There is also a Philosopher in this room.  The Philosopher's name is Mikos, and they are practicing sensory deprivation.  They will stand really still and pretend to be a coatrack, and ignore you.  If you insist on talking to her, you will find her to be sensible, rational, and utterly mad.  She has a strange personal credo, and if you get her talking, she will try to convince you of it.  Mikos wants to convince people she is right.  She also wants to die, but cannot bring herself to kill herself, so she is looking for an excuse to start a fight.  

Mikos' personal credo: "To do is to be, to try and alter reality is the base action of existence.  Thus, if one does nothing, one does not exist."

If a fight starts, Mikos will try to get you to kill her.  She uses the Base Philosopher Statblock.  She is a Biomancer, and has the spells Adrenaline Rush, Befriend Beast, and Infantilize prepared.

Base Philosopher Statblock
HD 1  AC 13  Atk n/a

Undead: (as Arana, Daughter of Patris)

Dedicated Pacificist: (as Arana, Daughter of Patris)

Spellcaster: The Philosophers are spellcasters.  The Philosopher's spellcasting dice burn out on a "5" or "6", and he or she rolls for Chaos and Corruption as per a Wizard belong to that sub-class.  The Philosopher has 3 spellcasting dice.

Tactics:
- Cast spells to support others
- Take no direct action to hurt or kill (no attacking or damage spells)
- Flee if threatened

4: Gatehouse

This small room has two heavy iron gates, each one banded with magical runes.  Nothing magic, intangible or incorporeal can pass through the doors when they are shut, though when they are open, magic items and the like can be carried through the open doors.  The doors also have heavy locks.  The one closest to you is open, but the one behind it is closed and locked.

5: Access to the Tormentor's Office

This Hall off of "2" (see above).  It is long and dark and unadorned, and has two exits.  One almost all the way down on the left side, leading to "8", the other straight ahead to "6".  Along the walls of this hall, there are occasional glass cases and mounted displays, each one showcasing an instrument of torture.  There are leather bullwhips, cat o' nine tails, scalpels, and dozens of other ghoulish instruments.  Each one has a plaque next to it, each one displaying a simple inscription in a language you likely cannot read.  This inscription is a number, each one indicating how many people the instrument has harmed.  Every single number is high, so numbering in the hundreds.

One is of special note: an Iron Maiden, encased in glass.  The glass is etched with magical runes for "sleep", "stasis" and "hibernation", though you won't notice this if you don't look closely.  The Iron Maiden inside resembles a large, vertical coffin, gilded, the Maiden's face heavy with jewels.  This Iron Maiden is cursed, so stained with the blood of its victims it lives.  Right now it sleeps, but if the glass were broken and someone were to approach it, it would fly open and try to swallow someone.  Any person trapped inside it would be slowly skewered, then eventually die.

Cursed Iron Maiden     
HD 2  AC 9  Atk(+4) Swallow or Slam 1d8
Mor 12  Saves 9 or less is a success

Swallow: Anyone swallowed by the Iron Maiden cannot move, is trapped inside it, and takes 1d6 damage a round.  This damage bypasses FS.

Haunted: The Cursed Iron Maiden counts as an Undead and a Ghost.

Barely Mobile: The Cursed Iron Maiden cannot move faster than a man with his feet together could hop.  You can easily outrun it.

Hard to Kill: The Cursed Iron Maiden can only be hurt by something that could hurt a large, metal coffin or a Ghost.  Anything else bounces off it.

Weak point: If the rubies in the Cursed Iron Maiden's eyes are plucked out, she will de-animate and become nothing more than a hunk of metal.

Tactics:
- Swallow someone first
- Then hop away, very slowly
- Slam into anyone who tries to harm you

6: Downstairs Access


This room leads to a door, which is made of the same heavy iron as the doors in "4".  It is fastened with a chain that is knotted around the handles, to keep anything from the other side from opening it.  The chain itself is not magical, and quite rusted.  Any half-strong man could crush it with a hammer, or just untie it. 

7: Stairs down


These are a set of stones stairs, similarly oversized as the ones in "1".  These ones are also covered in cobwebs though, and don't appear to have been used in a long time.

8: Hall of Portraits

This hallway is a hall of portraits.  Each one displays a famous man or woman- kings, judges, generals, etc.  Each portrait also has a small gemstone set at the bottom of the frame.  Touching the gemstone causes the portrait to suddenly change, to reveal another painting of the person, this time of them being tortured.  Each painting also includes a plaque, engraved in a language you likely cannot read.  This plaque explains the context for the painting.  Roll below to see who you are looking at.  Each painting is of high quality, and would be worth a modest price to an art appreciator, and a significant price to a collector of rare oddities.

Who am I looking at?
1d6

1- Black Isha, Human Amazon Matriarch, Terror to the Ancient Human Patriarchs.  She met her end at the age of 29, dying of complications in child-birth.  After being whipped, having her hands and feet cut off, and gang-raped, she gave birth to a healthy pair of twin girls, who were adopted by their respective fathers.  
2- Jokos Gurrillo, Quarrian General, Conqueror of the Eastern Marches and Breaker of the 8 Moon Cult.  He met his end at the age of 43, bleeding out on the operating table.  After refusing to recant his Gods, he endured Molten Silver Torture for twelve minutes, before finally begging for death.  This request was granted, and his hands were cut off, so that his suffering would not end immediately, but shortly after.
3- Nibarah, Son of Titos, Mime Patriarch and Elder.  He met his end at the age of 51, crushed into jelly by stone crushing.  He only screamed once.  A stubborn man, foolish, yet brave.
4- Gabina, A strange, golden foreigner, missionary of a foreign religion.  She met her end at the age of ???, dying of some strange wasting sickness, where she slowly paled from gold to copper to pale white, before expiring of no apparent cause.  It was confirmed that the scourging, thumb-screws, and other minor instruments against her were not the cause of this sickness.
5- Olimozozak, a Handsome Man of unknown occupation.  Met his end at an unknown age after being disemboweled by the Tormenter in a fit of rage.  Laughed the whole time, even as he wept and soiled himself.
6- An Outsider only known as "Sun-Eater", of unknown purpose.  Died at an unknown age after being impaled.  Before this, he had his fingers clipped off and his teeth torn out.  He refused to give out any information.  It was suspected of being a spy, but it never said anything incriminating.      

9: Tormentor's Office

The office is lit with candles and lavishly appointed, designed for a very tall entity.  The desk is made of carved black marble, and must weigh several tons.  Paintings of landscapes and cute things cover the walls, along with other pieces of calming art.  Much of it is very expensive looking.

But the most important thing about this office is the person sitting behind the desk.  She is ten feet tall, beautiful and dangerous looking.  She has reddish-brown skin and hair of copper wire.  Her eyes flash like golden coins, and glow when she is angry or agitated.  She also has a tail tipped in a mass of bone needles, and a trio of three horns emerging from just below her hairline.  She has clawed fingers bony ridges and spines emerging from all over her body.  Every inch of her is a razor blade.  Touching her would cut you to ribbons.  She is wearing a translucent silk robe over her spiny body, but one quick movement from her would shred it to pieces.

This is the Red Tormentor.  Her name is unknown to you.  The Tormentor is a creature struggling to manage her own destructive impulses.  The Philosophers have convinced her that violence is not the way, and so she has abandoned torture and murder in place of virtue and education.  Or at least, she has tried.  She will gladly talk to you (she can speak any language she wishes) and ask you lots of questions about the world.  She will fidget and listen politely, but she's very clearly distracted by something.

If you wish to free the Tormentor, then you must convince her to leave.  The Tormentor is staying for two reasons.  First, "No matter where I go, I will still be myself.  So why not remain where I am comfortable."  She also gave up her passion (murder and torture) because "I learned that no matter how enjoyable, all pleasure derived from such activities eventually fades.  Thus, I now try to pursue lasting satisfaction by pursuing virtue."

If she feels you are trying to talk her into something unsavory, she will give you some of her treasure or jewels or her key to get you to leave.  Her key is magical, and can open any locked door or chest in the entire palace.

Weakness: The Red Tormentor is still as obsessed with murder and killing as she was before.  She's been repressed for so long that if she so much as caught the scent of blood, she would pursue it.  If given the chance, she would tear anyone she could apart.  She loves the red art of murder, and would gleefully indulge again, if given the option.  However, she has enough self control that she won't give in herself, and will try to resist, so she will need a little push.  She won't need much convincing though.     

If you fight the Tormentor, she is an Outsider with a Damage Threshold of 6, An AC of 12, Saves of "13 or less is a success", she fights by making two attacks with her claws and stinging tail, each one dealing 1d10 damage.  She may also roll twice and choose the higher result for damage.  She also has the power to create glowing nets of energy that are strong as steel wire and to alter someone's bones to the consistency and texture of rubber for a brief time, if she touches them.

At first, the Tormentor will merely try to escape you or dissuade you from fighting her, but her resolve is not great, and if you damage her, she will begin fighting back. As she takes damage she will get more and more into it, crying out with joy every time she is hurt or someone else is.  She revels in pain, in receiving it, but especially in inflicting it.  

Her Tactics:
- Pursue endlessly
- Pick off the weakest
- Torture your opponents before you kill them     

10: Holding Cell Hall

This hall is lit with lanterns burning soft, blue flames fueled by magic.  On either side of this hall, there are six cells "11-16", (see below).  Further down, behind a pair of columns, is "17" and at the very end is another open door, leading to a distant room "18".

11-16: Holding cells


These are all large cells, meant to hold a large number of people.  They have iron bars, stone walls, and short benches arranged around them.  Each one also has a Philosopher locked inside.  The Philosophers are all youthful looking humans, wearing grey robes.  They look totally normal, but if you study them closely, you will find something is odd about them.  This is because they are secretly Undead, though they won't reveal this fact unless somehow forced to.

Also, sitting in the hall is another Philosopher, this one an older woman wearing a necklace indicating her status as one of the ancient academics of the Mountain Academy.  The Academy has survived in the years since this place was lost and forgotten, but the iconography she is marked with is ancient, and hasn't been used in a long time, though an Investigator could easily recognize it.  Of more interest to the players is the ring of red glass hanging from her necklace.  It glimmers in the light of the torches, and if anyone has the ability to detect magic, they can feel the power coming off the ring.  It is strong, an immensely powerful magical artifact.  This is the Ring of Agony.

The Philosopher in the Hall is the Mindful Mistress, the Philosopher-Queen Arana, Daughter of Patris.  She is smart, careful, and wise beyond all measure.  She's also a little insane, but not as much as the others.  She is reasonable, and if spoken to, she will speak to you with no ill intent.  She is a dedicated pacificist, and will not hurt you.  If attacked, she will run away.  Her goal is to protect the Ring of Agony and prevent it from every leaving this palace, as well as keep the Red Tormentor from ever escaping.  Now that you've entered this place, she will try to prevent you from leaving, but non-violently.  If you prove to be too much trouble, she will allow you to leave, either this level or the Palace entirely.

Weakness: Mistress Arana is good-hearted.  She refuses to believe anyone is truly bad, and that all are merely products of their environments.  If you approach her with the appearance of good faith, or ask for her help in a sincere-seeming way, she will offer to help you.

Arana, Daughter of Patris
HD 5  AC 15  Atk n/a
Mor 8  Saves 10 or less is a success

Undead: Arana is an Undead.  She does not need to eat or drink, she does not get tired, feel pain, and she is immune to poisons.  Spells designed to affect Undead affect her.

Sunlight Vulnerability: Arana, if in sunlight or exposed to it, takes 1d6 damage a round.

Hard to Kill: Unless decapitated, burnt to ashes, or reduced to 0 HP by a magical attack or weapon, Arana has an X-in-6 chance of returning to life, where X is equal to her HD.

Dedicated Pacificist: Arana will not harm you directly, nor does she carry any weapons.  If attacked, she'll use her spells to try and dissuade you.  If that fails, she'll just run away.

Spellcaster: Arana is a spellcaster.  Her spellcasting dice burn out on a "5" or "6", and she rolls for Chaos and Corruption as per a Cosmomancer.  She has the spells Teleport and Reduce prepared, and 5 spellcasting dice.

Tactics:
- Shrink someone, then threaten to do it to everyone else
- If that fails, do so
- Teleport people away to random rooms in the dungeon
- If all else fails, run

Arana's plan if her Tactics fail:  Run until she can lose the enemy or they get distracted.  If she can get away, then Teleport to a safe location.  If she can't get away, keep going until you get to the Pit of Hate, then throw the Ring of Agony in.  Better for it to be destroyed then let it fall into the hands of sinners.

11: Sella's cell

This cell contains a Philosopher named Sella.  She is currently having a discussion with Mistress Arana about the nature of physical reality.  She is arguing that she is still as free within the cell as she was outside it, while Arana is disappointed in the direction that her pupil is going.  Sella will listen politely to others if she is stopped.

If a fight starts, she will help her Mistress.  She uses the Base Philosopher Statblock.  She is a Cthonomancer, and has the spells Grease, Feather, and Anti-Gravity prepared.

Base Philosopher Statblock
HD 1  AC 13  Atk n/a

Undead: The Philosophers are Undead.  They do not get tired, feel pain, are immune to poisons, or feel fear.  Spells designed to affect Undead affect them.

Sunlight Vulnerability: The Philosophers, if in sunlight or exposed to it, take 1d6 damage a round.

Hard to Kill: Unless decapitated, burnt to ashes, or reduced to 0 HP by a magical attack or weapon, Philosophers have an X-in-6 chance of returning to life, where X is equal to their HD.

Dedicated Pacificist: (as Arana, Daughter of Patris)

Spellcaster: The Philosophers are spellcasters.  The Philosopher's spellcasting dice burn out on a "5" or "6", and he or she rolls for Chaos and Corruption as per a Wizard belong to that sub-class.  The Philosopher has 3 spellcasting dice.

Tactics:
- Cast spells to support others
- Take no direct action to hurt or kill (no attacking or damage spells)
- Flee if threatened

12: Empty Cell #1

This cell contains a small bottle of wine, still unopened, a small pile of dense looking philosophy books, and no Philosopher.  The cell is open, and if one were to go inside it and shut it, they would be locked inside.

13: Macha and Macha's cell.

This cell contains a Philosopher named Macha.  She is a human, red-haired, and wearing one of the grey robes that all Philosophers wear.  She is sitting across from someone who looks exactly like each other, and they are whispering to each other, and occasionally giggling.  They are both locked inside.

If a fight starts, Macha will come to the aid of her Mistress.  She uses the base Philosopher statblock.  She is a Time Wizard, and has the spells Time on My Side, To Dust, and Call Previous Self prepared.

14: Empty Cell #2

This cell contains a bunch of incredibly tasty looking food.  You see an enormous white cake, a bunch of sandwiches, and a steaming, roast turkey.  You can't tell from a distance, but this food is fake, made of carved soap and is totally inedible.  It could make a decent art piece however.  The cell door is open, but if it were to be shut, it would be locked.  The only thing that could open the cell would be a key with Warden-level access.  Mistress Arana and the Red Tormentor both have one of these.  The lock isn't magical, so it could be opened with a Knock spell, or affected by some other spell.  Alternatively, one could just break through the bars with a STR check that has a DC of 20.

If a fight starts, Macha will try to get you to go into that cell, then cast Call Previous Self and summon a version of herself outside her cell to slam the door on you, and trap you inside.  

15: Okane's cell

Okane is a human woman, muscular, with a shaved head.  She is currently working out.  If a fight starts, Okane will use her magic to escape her cell and use her body as a shield to protect her Mistress.  This is because Okane wants to die, but does not want to kill herself, as she feels that would be disrespectful of her Mistress and consciousnesses itself.

Okane uses the base Philosopher statblock.  She is a Cosmomancer, and has the spells Portal and Sun Shower prepared.

16: Shawshank Cell

This cell is empty except for a large, amateurish painting of a sunlit meadow.  There is a small pile of rock dust in the corner, as if from someone slowly chipping away at the rock.  The cell door is shut and locked.  If you remove the painting, you will find an escape tunnel "20" hand-carved into the stone, leading up to the surface.  It's just large enough for a man with no pack or cumbersome object to scamper up.

17: Dumbwaiter for Supplies

This room has a small set of doors set about halfway up the wall.  Opening these doors leads to a small stone shaft that goes up and up.  There is a cable running up and down that could be climbed up, if you were strong and dexterous.  The dumbwaiter is currently at the top.

18: Prisoner Lowering Room

This room has a hole in the center of the floor.  Above the floor is a pulley, and along the wall you will find an enormous coil of thick cable, along with a couple sets of manacles and a strange rig.  If you mess around with the rig, you will find it locks around the manacles, holding anyone who inserts their chained arms into it in place.  There are also hooks that could have the cable knotted around it.  The purpose of this set-up was that a manacled prisoner would be locked into the rig and lowered down through the hole, to the sub-basement level.  Going down through the hole leads to "19".   

The room also has two massive candles.  The candles are made of maroon wax and big around as barrels, with wicks that are thick as the cable on the other side of the room.  Both candles radiate magic, and are crowned with hot pink flames.  Touching the flame or candle causes a shooting pain and slight arousal in whoever does it, but has no other effect.  The flames also cannot be extinguished, no matter what.

These Candles are linked to the Red Tormentor and the Ring of Agony.  If the Ring of Agony is taken from around Mistress Arana's neck, then one will go out.  If the Red Tormentor decides to try and leave the Palace, then the other will go out.  If this happens, Mistress Arana will attempt to reason the Tormentor back down.  If this fails, she will seek out her brethren to try and get their assistance.

19: The long way down

This is where the hole in "18" leads to.  It's a 50' drop into complete darkness.  If you jump, that'll be 1d6*1d10 damage when you reach the bottom.

20: Escape Tunnel

The escape tunnel carved in "16".  It's cramped and hand-carved, but it leads up, to the surface.  

Tormentor Floor 2- Sub-Basement Level

19: The long way down

If you survive the fall or otherwise manage to get down here, you find yourself in an almost perfectly dark space.  But as your eyes adjust, you will see there is some light down here, it's just very far away.

21: Tile Hall


This hall is bare, made of white tiles filthy with lichen, mold and other things.  Down here, it is quite warm and damp.  It feels like you're walking through a fish-market full of rotting sea life.  In the distance, you can hear blades being sharpened and footsteps.

22: Entrance to Cold Storage  

This hall branches off of "21".  It is made of the same tile, but is lit by a strange, watery green-blue light.  You can hear humming, and smell an odd, salty odor.  It smells like the sea, but not quite.  There is a sign on the wall, in a language you likely cannot read.  If you can translate it though, it says "Cold Storage".

23: Hall of the Sleeping Ones

Here you will find the tile walls covered with strange devices.  They look like oversized coffins made of glass, and full of greenish liquid that is glowing softly.  There are twenty of them, and 1d20 of them are full of bodies of Humans, Quarrians, Orzane, and 1d6 other races.  They are all unarmed, and many of them look to be from archaic time periods.  Some of the coffins are empty.  These ones are dark and empty of the strange fluid.  At the start and end of the hall, there are strange control panels that require keys to operate.

If you have a key, Warden-level access or otherwise, you can operate the control panel, though you still might not be able to read the controls.  If you can read it though, you will see that the controls have three buttons and a selector switch.  The selector switch is used to select the coffin you wish, or all of them at once.  The three buttons are labeled "Sleep", one labeled "Awake", and the other labeled "Heal".

If someone enters one of the coffins and the "Sleep" button is pressed, they will fall into a state of suspended animation and the coffin will fill with liquid.  They can breathe this liquid.  If the "Awake" button is pressed, this person will wake up and the coffin will drain, then open.  If the "Heal" button is pressed, if someone injured is placed inside, they will be healed at a rate of 1d6 HP a minute, until fully healed.  

If you escape out into this hall, Rhagel and Elezar will open all the glass coffins and release all 1d20 of the individuals in the glass coffins.  Those inside are a bunch of feral, unbound undead who will ruthlessly attack anyone they come across.  Rhagel and Elezar will then sneak back into "24", then lock themselves in, and hope the Feral Undead deal with you.

Feral Undead
HD 2  AC 10  Atk Fist 1d6
Mor 12  Saves 7 or less is a success

Undead: These creatures are Undead.  They do not get tired, feel pain, are immune to poisons, or feel fear.

Sunlight Vulnerability: These Undead, if in sunlight, take 1d6 damage a round.

Hard to Kill: Unless decapitated, burnt to ashes, or reduced to 0 HP by a magical attack or weapon, these Undead have an X-in-6 chance of returning to life, where X is equal to their HD.

Tactics:
- Attack, attack, attack
- Never retreat
- Be very dumb 
   
24: Entrance to the Maximum Security Cold Storage Wing

This area is separated from "23" by a gate and a wall of iron bars.  The gate is open, and there are a pair of Philosophers standing by the gate.  They will try to lure you inside, then escape and lock you in.

The Philosophers are named Rhagel and Elezar.  They both use the base Philosopher statblock.

Rhagel will do the talking.  He is a dark-skinned man, wearing a grey robe.  He has a key to operate the doors and glass coffins in this area, and no weapons.  He is a Soul Shaman and has the spells Rhapsody in Blue, Combustication, A Kiss in the Dark and Sweet Georgia Brown prepared.

Elezar has skin that is more in line with a local, and off-white that isn't pale, but definitely isn't brown.  He has a key as well, and is shrouded in grey.  He is a Time Wizard and has the spell Mandom prepared.       

25: Cell for the Son

Here you will find another wall of glass coffins and an identical control panel, except for the fact that these glass coffins can only be accessed with a Warden-level key.  Additionally, almost all of these coffins are empty, except for one.

A man floats in one.  He is approximately middle-aged, somewhere in his late thirties to early forties.  He has skin that a bright, lemon yellow, and hair of purest white.  His nails are long and milky, each one delicately cut and lacquered into a perfect square.  This is Iskandar, Son of the Dreamer.  He currently slumbers, but if a Warden-level key were to be used on the control panel next to his coffin, he could be awakened.  But to awaken him, you would need a Warden-level key.  Only the Mindful Mistress, Arana, Daughter of Patris and The Red Tormenter have one.

Additionally, before you would approach the Son of the Dreamer, you must contend with his dreams.  His dreams physically manifest in reality as shades made of whim and fancy.  All Dreams use the Dream Monster statblock below.  Roll on the table below to see what he is currently dreaming about- that is the beast that approaches you.

Dream Monster statblock
HD 4  AC 12  Atk 1d4 cold + 1d4 CHA damage
Mor 11  Saves 8 or less is a success

Protector: Dream Monsters will always try to protect the dreamer who generated.

Charisma Leech: If the CHA damage taken from a Dream Monster equals or exceeds a person's CHA score, they gain a Conviction as the Dream Monster "infects" their mind with a foreign idea.  CHA damage from a Dream Monster heals at a rate of 1d4 each time you get a good night's sleep.

Tactics:
- Protect the dreamer at all cost
- Target the person with the weakest will
- Have no concern for your own life

What is Iskandar dreaming about?
1d6

1- A girl he used to know, his favored concubine.  She's long dead, but she looks a lot like Cali.  If yuo've seen her recently, the resemblance is shocking.  If you've never seen her, then nothing about her seems exceptional.  If she knocsk your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction, "I love Iskandar, and I want to protect him." 
2- His mother, the Yellow Dreamer.  This Dream Monster is tall and sinister, clad in a yellow robe.  Snakes potrude from her sleeves to bite people.  She talks in a low, soothing voice, telling you how you failed her, how you're an embarrassment, how she wished she'd had a daughter.  If she knocks your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction,  "I need to work harder.  I'm not good enough."  3- The Red Tormenter.  She looks exactly like she does now (see above).  This Dream Monster constantly talks about sex, violence and torture.  She describes in graphic detail how she is going to dismember you.  She fights with her giant, clawed hands.  If she knock your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction, "I want to torture someone to death.  First chance I get, I'm going to kill someone slowly, intimately.  I will try to be discreet about this."
4- The Black Despoiler.  The Black Despoiler isn't someone Iskandar remembers well, or knows a lot about.  So he imagines the Forsaken clad in his armor, faceless under his helm, carrying an enormous shield with a washed breastplate.  All of his armor is made of a translucent black glass, gilded at the edges.  This Black Despoiler carries an enormous sword and speaks cryptic sayings about war and manhood.  If he knocks your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction, "I want to fight strong warriors, to learn about their fighting style.  It's the only way I can get stronger."
5- The Purple Seer.  It looks exactly like the One-Eyed Man, except he is clad in royal raiment and instead of an eyepatch, he has a false eye made of opals, clear crystal, white and purple quartz, and lapis lazuli.  This version of the Purple Seer  says cryptic things about the past, present and future.  Some of the Dream Monster's ramblings might even be true.  If he knocks your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction, "I am doomed to some sort of tragic fate.  What the One-Eyed Man said about me is true."
6- You.  The Dream Monster looks exactly like a member of the party.  The Dream Monster's personality is off, slightly like the party member, but something isn't quite right.  If he or she knocks your CHA score down to 0, you gain the Conviction,  "I must aid Prince Iskandar, Son of the Yellow Dreamer."

If you manage to awaken Prince Iskandar, you will find him a disagreeable sort.  Prince Iskandar is desperately insecure, constantly preening and being disagreeable.  He is proud, but not so proud he is unwilling to cooperate.  If freed, he will be very confused, as the last thing he remembers is that the castle was under siege.  He has no idea how much time has passed.

Weakness: Prince Iskandar wants to prove himself worthy of being his Mother's heir.  He mostly wants to prove this to his mother, but also to himself.  Thus, unless a challenge is obviously suicidal, he will never back down.

Prince Iskandar, Son of the Yellow Dreamer
HD 5  AC 11  Atk Claws(+2) 1d6+2/1d6+2
Mor 7  Saves 11 or less is a success

Strong: Iskandar has a STR of 16(+2).  He is an expert wrestler and great at martial combat.

Dream-Master: Iskandar can, as a free action, summon a Dream Monster in whatever form he wishes.  The Dream Monster is fueled by his will.  If he dies, it vanishes.  The Dream Monster's statblock is above.

Tactics:
- Don't fight a hopeless battle
- Try to fight one opponent at a time, use the Dream Monster to run interference
- Fight honorably, but don't throw away your life      
     
26: Trapped Hall

This is another hall that splits off of the main area.  At the end of it, pushed up against the wall, is a treasure chest.  If you enter this hall, you will swiftly encounter a concealed trip wire.  You can notice the trip wire by being careful or using magic.  But if you blunder ahead, it will trap you.  Springing the trip wire will cause an iron gate to fall behind you, preventing you from retreating back into "21".

27: Murder Corridor

This is where you must go to investigate the chest.  The chest is unlocked and empty.  If you have lights and are observant, you can notice that this hall has an occasional bone scattered down it.  Then, as you enter the hall, 1d20 Feral Undead will drop down from where they hang on the ceiling and land at the border between "26" and "27".  They will then start chasing you.  If you walked over to the chest, they will be between you and "26".

28: Dead End

Turning the corner from "27" will lead to an apparent Dead End.  If you keep going further into the dark, you might find something.

29: Half-Concealed secret tunnel


This a tunnel into the rock, half blocked with wooden boards.  The boards are incredibly rotten though, and could be hacked through easily.  They lead to a sloping tunnel that goes down.  At first, it is a mere slope, but soon becomes a slide of stone.  This leads to "31".  

30: The Hall of the Fake Tormentor


This hall has a fake Red Tormentor sitting on a throne in the center of the room, on a raised dais.  The suit of armor looks like the Red Tormentor from a distance.  It's her armor, with fake hair stuck to the back.  The armor also has a sword with a jeweled hilt laid across her lap, and a circlet of jewels clutched in her left hand.  These are both real treasures, and the suit of armor might be valuable as an art piece, but it's far too big for you to wear.

However, stepping in front of or near the dais will activate the trap door, dropping you down into "31".  The trap door shuts after 1d10 minutes.  If you know where it is though, you can avoid it and get the treasures.

The drop down is 20 feet, and does 1d6*1d4 damage.  

31: The Pit of Darkness

This a Pit full of magical darkness.  In this place, all non-magical lights are extinguished, and all magical lights suppressed.  Night vision ceases to work.  If a light generating spell of 4 spellcasting dice or stronger, or natural sunlight were brought into this chamber somehow, it would destroy the darkness permanently.  

32: Oil Slide

If you stumble around in the Pit of Darkness, you will eventually encounter this.  It is a wet ramp, a slide down into the dark.  The ramp is slick with a fluid.  If smelled, you will find it to be a type of lamp oil.  If you hop on it, it will carry you down fast.  Trying to climb back up is like trying to climb up a greased water-slide.

As you slide down it, you will pass out of the darkness, and you will see a faint red glow, and smell burning.  You will soon see "36", and the massive fire at its center.  That is your destination, if you don't do something now.

33: Downhill Hallway

This hallway leads through the shut gate on the other side of the "30".  It is spotlessly clean, as if no one has been here in a very long time.

34: Entrance to the Stairwell

This is an entrance to a flight of stairs down.  The only thing of note down here is a series of barrels next to the entrance to the stairs.  Each barrel is made of silver metal and sealed with magical runes.  If you crack open the bottle, you will find it filled with small, black-purple crystals.  If these crystals are exposed to any fire, they will begin smoking and burning, releasing a highly toxic smoke.  This smoke does 1d6 WIS damage to anyone who breathes it or is exposed to it, and floods the room.  This damage is repeated every round one is in it.  It can linger in a closed space for ages, but if it outside, it will be dispersed quickly by wind and rain.  If the WIS damage someone ever receives equals or exceeds their WIS score, they are time-locked for a time equal to the amount of burning Void Salts that they were exposed to.  

These are Void Salts.  In the event of the Forsaken threatening to escape their Palace, the Masters devised a back-up plan.  They planned on dumping these barrels of Void Salts into the Pit of Hate.  This would flood the entire Palace with Void Gas and trap everyone here in a time-locked state for the next 1d10*1000 years.  This is a measure of last resort, of course, as it would trap the Masters and all the other Guardians here with them.

The PCs won't know this, of course.  They will know, however, that Void Salts are immensely valuable to the right buyer.  Alchemists and Wizards have been known to kill for a cupful of Void Salts, and pay princely sums for much smaller amounts.  The multiple barrels of the stuff here, it would be worth more than some small cities.  Though anyone willing to buy it in such large amounts is probably planning something insane and dangerous, so be careful.  If you're going to try and become a God or build a giant doomsday weapon, you'd build it out of Occultum, and power it with Void Salts.   
 
35: Spiral Staircase

A spiral staircase carved into the stone.  Goes down and down and down.  You smell the scent of burning oil and start to catch glimpses of an immense light at the bottom.  Eventually, at the bottom, you come to a small balcony carved into the rock, overlooking an immense upside down cone of stone, a masonry Sarlacc, and at the bottom there is a massive, constantly burning fire.

36: The Pit of Hate

"32" fuels this place.  This room is a large pit, sloping toward the center, a massive stone vortex leading to a massive fire in the center.  The stones are slick with oil and ash, and if you land on them, it is very difficult to get anywhere.  There is a stone walkway cut into the far wall, which leads to "35", but if you came down from "32", you will find it enormously difficult to reach this place.

Falling into the fire would mean a slow, agonizing death, unless you can somehow survive being immersed in burning liquid and heat that can melt steel in minutes.

                                                        From Berserk

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