Adventures in the Age of Dusk: The Palace of Unquiet Repose

Mightiest of the Pre-Calamity civilisations was Tzyan. Not as far-reaching as Great Sybarra nor as culturally and technologically influential as the artificers of Nzembar, Tzyan reigned supreme by sorcery and sorcery alone. Contained within a few city-states, divided by constant squabbeling and factional infighting, it was by the legendary ability and vast knowledge of its half-human sorcerer-princes that Tzyan defeated all opposition and would eventually challenge the might of the Old Gods themselves.

Greatest of Tzyanese princes was Uyu-Jad-Mogh, legendary for his paranoia and ruthlessness even among Tzyanese. It was said his city housed hundreds of thousands and by the might of will alone he could call down the wrath of the Sun and the Moon upon his many adversaries. Mighty though he was, immortal he was not, for in those bygone days the Tzyanese were still beholden to the cycle of life and death. Obsessed with his own demise and determined that after him his empire would be no more, he ordered the construction of a great subterranean tomb, bankrupting his princedom in the process. His personal fortune was spent on the commission of hundreds of assassins and hired thugs to ensure that none of his hundreds of family members would survive his passing.

The Palace of Unquiet Repose still exists to this day. Built within a great subterranean cavern beneath what is now the Glass Wastes, the Palace squatts upon a great lake of mercury and is an exact replica of the palace Uyu-Jad-Mogh inhabited in life. Every inhabitant of the palace, from the loweliest servant to the many sons of Uyu-Jad-Mogh, is carefully duplicated in statuary form. Great parks are now overflowing with strange, colourful fungi that provide vivid and unsettling dreams when eaten.

The Palace mirrors the mind of the man who comissioned it, a maze of endless granite corridors, secret passageways, dead ends and magnificent, vaulted halls. Hidden vaults hold what fractions of his original fortune Uyu-Jad-Mogh still clung to even in death, as well as a collection of sorcerous objects and grimoires that rivals any collection in the Age of Dusk. Wary of Tomb robbers, Uyu-Jad-Mogh placed great wards and cursed objects throughout his treasury.

Though it was forgotten in the Calamity and the dreaded reign of the Harrow Kings that followed it, the Palace was rediscovered in the Age of Dusk, with fewer then a hundred men now living aware of its existence. So do greedy and foolish men seek out its location, braving the ferocious Mazhurian tribesman and the razor-storms of the Glass Wastes, only to add their corpses to the mausoleum. Perhaps you will do better.

Adversaries/Obstacles:
-The many bewildering and cruel enchantments placed upon the Palace by its master. It is only because of the disruption to the fabric that the Palace can be breached at all. Wards that rot flesh, induce madness or spawn doppelgangers of animate stone are among the many protections of the palace. This arsenal is augmented by a bewildering array of pit traps, crushing block traps and dart traps(thankfully the sorcerous poisons have long since evaporated!).
– The Palace is no longer abandoned, and as much as 4 different factions have taken it upon themselves to unearth its forbidden treasures.  None have been there longer then 3 months. Each of their leaders receives visions of the spirit of Uyu-Jahd-Mogh in his dreams, and is told he alone is worthy to inherit his immense wealth.
* A company of Sial-Atun deserters stumbled upon the place after a great battle with the Mazhurians. They are determined to leave it wealthy men, for the wrath of the Sial-Atun is not easily averted.
* A band of Tzyanese cultists, petty sorcerers all, seek the secrets of re-creating the Weapon that burned the world. Each has a retinue of servants, held in thrall by the addictive dust of the Caretaker Lotus. Their supply is running out.
* Murderous packs of Kiath, the remnants of men that have bathed in the light of the Tempest for too long, prowl the abandoned corridors of the Palace, seeking human flesh and bone.
* A strange cult led by a charismatic demagogue that believes himself to be the reincarnation of Uyu-Jat-Mogh feeds on the fungal gardens, thinking the visions they induce are a gateway to paradise.
– The assassins and thugs that claimed the family of the Uyu-Jat-Mogh wait within the dark corridors of the tomb also, their dessicated flesh dotted with the gemstones that was to be the reward for their vile deeds. They are the postmortal guardians of the Palace, bound to serve Uyu-Jat-Mogh until Final Night. Though little of their personality remains, they retain the murderous ruthlessness and boundless greed that was their doom in life and will attempt to ambush and murder the wealthiest characters first, adding their treasures to their hides.

HD: 5
AC: 5
Speed: As studded leather.
Attacks: 1 or 2(twin daggers)
Damage: By weapon(twin-daggers, throwing dagger or Garrote). 10% chance of poison(save at +2 or die).
Morale: 12
Int: 8(No speech).
Special:
-Hide in shadows and move silently as 8th level thief.
-Immune to enchantment, poison and paralysis(standard undead immunities).
-Backstab x3.
-Death attack as 5th level assasin.
-Immune to nonmagical weaponry.
– Each of the deathless guardians has 5d10 * 10 gp worth of precious stones embedded in their hide.

-It is rumoured the Prince will awaken, along with the spirits of its dead kin, if the tomb is breached. The reality is far worse. Inside the tomb is a nightmarish creature, with vestments of rotting skin(all its own) covering blackened, rune-carved bone. No longer merely the Prince, the creature ritually devoured the bodies of its slain kindred, seeking to steal their very souls before it passed away. It succeeded rather too well, and the monster that lies within the tomb is an amalgam of it and all its consumed relatives, sending fragmented telepathic commands to its unwitting catspaws within the palace, driving them into a murderous stalemate to alleviate its constant boredom and screaming madness. It is currently trapped within its heavily warded sarcophagus and will under no circumstance ever leave the palace.

The Prince
HD: 15
AC: 0
Speed: As plate.
No. Attacks: 2
Damage: Bone Talons(1d12, Spellcasters save vs spell or lose a prepared spell/ability, those without remaining spells save vs spell or lose 25% of their total hit points).
Morale: 10
Special:
-Send visions 3/day(all who consume the fungus must make a save vs spell or the vision acts as a charm person spell by a 20th level caster).
– Those under 5 HD must save vs spell or flee in terror.
– Cast spells as a 20th level Sorcerer.
-Undead immunities.
-Immune to nonmagical weaponry.
-25% magic resistance(if succesfully resisted, reflects spell)

The Treasures of the Palace of Unquiet Repose are left for the GM to decide, but some suggestions include:
-Tzyan-forged artifacts.
-Grimoires containing 1 or more rituals of Great Sorcery, ancient knowledge or the location of other ruins of Tzyanese or pre-Tzyanese origin
– Vast piles of electrum, the currency of old Tzyan.
– A single draught of the Elixer of Bodily Refinement, which extends the lifespan and raises the natural constitution of the human body by a single point. The Elixer can only be produced by sacrificing the lives of thousands, so some might have understandable moral concerns to its consumption. Multiple draughts can further increase the lifespan, but will under no circumstances increase constitution any further.
– cursed items intended to punish greedy thieves.
– a muddled and incoherent treatise providing some hint as to the true and dreadful nature of the Weapon and its origins(foreshadowing)

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “Adventures in the Age of Dusk: The Palace of Unquiet Repose

  1. You should admit that you “borrowed heavily” from a certain source for this material.

    “Uyu-Jad-Mogh” and “Uruguay” both begin with U. “Paranoia and ruthlessness” fit the personality profile of a famous Uruguayan game designer. Sure, this could have been coincidence, but “rune-carved bone” tells the tale.:-)

    Like

    1. I must protest vehemently at this grotesque distortion of the truth of the matter. I am 100% responsible for the ruleset, setting and the books i read that i use as inspiration that i wrote under a pseudonym. Anyone who claims otherwise risks opening the floodgates to rampant doxxing, anarchy, storygames and time-travelling plagiarism!

      Like

  2. . It succeeded rather too well, and the monster that lies within the tomb is an amalgam of it and all its consumed relatives

    That’s the consequence of too much alzabo extract!

    Like

    1. The terrific Book of the New Sun should probably also be listed under my hypothetical Appendix N, alongside Vance, Ashton Smith and various others. Few authors pull off weird better then Wolfe imho.

      Like

  3. Excellent. Actual gameables. I endorse this.

    To business and detail now: I am surprised that you did not make more of the mind-altering properties of mercury, and emphasise the effect that the reek of liquid brain poison will have on adventurers who spend protracted periods of time within the Palace. I am gratified, though, that you populated it with rival explorers rather than arbitrary silliness: this is dungeon engineering after my own heart.

    Like

    1. The mind-altering properties of the mercury were indeed a factor in my hindbrain but in my old age i must have overlooked them as i was writing down the adventure outline. I have taken some minor pointers of the irreproachable tenfootpole.org in designing the adventure outline, hence a plethora of factions for the players to negotiate/scheme with.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s