Thursday, October 18, 2007

Lost Empire Ruin 1 -- The Island Tomb

Created: February 9, 2007
The Island Tomb
An ancient, ruined tomb of a minor king from the Lost Empire.

PCs sent here by Taevin, who has a collector willing to pay 1,000 gp for any “relics” they can find.

There was an ancient empire.
This empire was powerful.
This empire was obsessed with death.
This empire was destroyed somehow, mysteriously.
Hint at the floating platform thing.

1. The Beach (EL 5)
The island is small and desolate, basically just a sandbar. The most obvious features are the sound of surf and the smell of sea air. There is also a building of some kind, made of smooth stone, half buried under the sands, and a giant stone head a few yards away.

Near the entrance are three medium monstrous crabs (Stormwrack p. 142) who attack anyone who ventures near. If they don’t see the party, they will eventually wander away, into the waves. (Spot distance is 6d6x20 feet, though.)

The entrance is two large stone doors. Above these doors, on the roof of the building, are two legs, all that remains of the statue the head came from. Across the doors is an inscription that reads: “My name is Ozymandius, king of kings: Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair.”

2. Entrance Hall
The only light in this room is what comes in from outside. The walls are covered with relief carvings, likely of the exploits of the aforementioned Ozymandius. They show, variously, a robed figure being crowned, leading an army, surrounded by courtiers, dispensing wisdom from a throne, and being given various things. The figure of Ozymandius is distinguishable because he is decorated with inlaid colored stone that has in places fallen away.

A short hallway leads into a much larger room.

3. Walkway
The walls of the chamber are covered with scenes similar to the ones in the entrance, except that they mostly depict various happenings of an empire, rather than the personal exploits of a king.

A semi-circular runs around one side of the chamber. The central part of the chamber, between the walkway and the central island, is dark pit. (20’ deep, then water.) The central island is about 20’ away from the walkway. (See 6 for details.) This is a puzzle: the players will need to figure out some way to get from the walkway to the central island. One solution: use telekinesis (lesser) to loop a rope around the sarcophagus thing in the center, and then climb across.

In the center of the walkway is a detachable platform that would float back and forth between the island and the walkway if it were operable. Which it isn’t. The only clue that it is detachable, currently, is an indentation that runs around its edge on the walkway and down the side of the pit. It’s also covered with shallower lines and complex patterns, and three pits evenly spaced across its middle.

4. Right Chamber
This chamber contains three things: a statue made of black stone with gold details, murals depicting the same figure as the statue, and reliquary in the wall. This has been hidden with some care (Search DC 15) but it should be fairly obvious that something is there: the statue faces it, most of the figures on the wall are facing it, and the spot itself is marked with a crossed bar of translucent golden stone. (Like a plus sign, except the horizontal is four or five times as wide as the vertical.)

Inside the reliquary is a longsword with a hilt of black stone, decorated with gold, and a small gold box.

The long sword is completely ordinary, but it counts as a relic for the collector.

5. Left Chamber
Just rubble, basically. Part of this section of the chamber collapsed. The PCs can clear it, if they want; three or four Strength checks, DC 15, if they fail by five points or more they have to avoid falling rubble, Ref 17, 1d6 damage. If they get through, all they find is an empty version of 4.

6. Central Island, EL 6
Another statue of Ozymandius. (Actually an upright sarcophagus, if they really want to break it open.)

On its head is a crown, set in indentations at its feet are the pieces of a broken scepter. All three are just art objects, the kind of thing Taevin’s rich collector is interested in. Moving these objects causes the back wall to slide open, and 2 stone bears enter. (Not that this makes any sense.)

7. Stone Bear Chamber
The inscriptions in this room look like they were added some time after the others; they’re fresher, more distinct. The carvings are more stylized, less detailed, and unadorned by colored stone. They show warriors, mages, and demon dragons; scenes of war and death.

Every few seconds, a narrow band of light moves across the floor, from one side of the chamber to the other. It starts at the feet of the largest dragon figure, and crosses over to a detailed temple, the non-war type figure on the walls.
An inscription runs around the room and through the designs—it’s not written in any recognizable language, but it’s still understandable. (Yay, magic.)

Keep these words,
Who finds them here,
Beneath a bitter moon,
Your path is found,
By dragon bound,
By ritual and rune.

The temple is on the north east side of the chamber, to the right of the opening. The light thing points in this direction; it’s intended as a sign that they should sail that way.

Search DC 25:
Inset chamber similar to the one in 4
Bastard sword (magical, but has no active properties)
5 warm, sparking blue stones (Detonations, electric loop, 150 gp each, 750 gp total )
5 warm, sparking blue stones (Detonations, shock, 75 gp each, 375 gp total)
5 warm, sparking blue stones (Detonations, electric jolt, 12 gp 5 sp each, 62 gp 5 sp total)

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