Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Obelisk - Extras


The Hook
Dawn - Vintage Pin-Up, (by Wilson?)
While party is loitering in some den of inequity or passing through a small town, an attractive, young, rural woman approaches the least menacing member of the party and begins a casual chat about the adventuring life.  This is "Dawn" the daughter of a well-off local farmer who seeks to connive, trick or lure the adventurers into performing a daring raid on the Obelisk grounds for her.  Dawn is no simple village flirt, she is a moderately talented young witch from a long line of local practitioners.  Dawn's grandmother was the village herb-woman but died a year or so ago.  Dawn's family, finally successful in the giant beet farming business, would much rather that Dawn marry a member of the local gentry or another successful farmer, as opposed to Dawn and her Grandmother's desire for Dawn to enter the witching trade.  As such, when Dawn's grandma died, her sons pooled some money and had her buried, along with all her mystical paraphernalia at the Obelisk, partially so Dawn would have no way of learning (any more of) her Grandmother's trade.

Dawn sees the adventurers as a way to get the magical equipment back. She specifically wants a magical bat shaped locket her grandmother had that makes any woman who wears it more alluring and mysterious, though she's also interested in the silver athame and book of spells buried with the witch.  Dawn will use whatever means at her disposal to get the party to agree to recovering the items, her first approach is likely flirtation and seduction, though she's smart enough to be coy about it and will switch to describing the wealth of the Obelisk if mere flirtation isn't working.  Dawn will reveal what she knows about the Obelisk grounds if asked.  She can describe the general layout (obelisk, pool, masuoleum) as she visited briefly with her family, and knows her Grandma's remains should be in a crypt in the Mausoleum.  She also knows that a disreputable cult has taken over the Obelisk, as this information is filtering out via pilgrims who have been turned away, and that this means the buried treasure of several hundreds of years of special burials should be relatively unprotected.  Dawn will under no circumstances hire on with the party or otherwise go to the Obelisk herself.  If unduly harassed Dawn is a well liked member of the community and her family has enough resources to cause the party some serious risk should she be harmed.

The items Dawn seeks are sealed in a a crypt in Area 7f a lucky and resourceful party might be able to figure out which one by reading the records in Area 7c but trial and error should work as well.  The items are found on the dessicated mummy of a tiny elderly woman wearing a black dress and bonnet.  The Inky Wings of Allurement is still around the corpses neck, while the Witch's Spellbook is piled at her feet with a silver athame (worth 300GP).

If these items a returned to Dawn and she is dealt with fairly and politely she can make a useful ally to the party.  Her current level of skill is not high, but she has a great deal of natural magical ability.  Once she has received the spell book Dawn will be able to identify items and may be able to provide other services such as curse removal, and the manufacture of healing potions with additional time.  Dawn will not work for free, but will provide her services for a good price and will pay for magical materials and artifacts is the party wishes to sell them to her.  If allowed to study and practice her craft Dawn will become more established and powerful over time, eventually becoming as powerful as a minor Wizard - it is up to the GM to decide if Dawn develops the megalomaniacal insanity common with wizards or is content to remain a local fixture of hidden power.

If Dawn doesn't fit with your campaign other options for a hook include meeting battered pilgrims or refugee guards escaping from the Obelisk, A Treasure Map to a grave in the graveyard, or as a mission from the temple in Denethix/A rich person with a magical relative that needs burying to determine what's happened at the Obelisk. 

Rumors of the Fog Shrouded Necropolis
In the towns South and East of Denethix the Obelisk of Forgotten Memories is a well known location.  Its general location (you can see it towering about the forest for miles), use and a bit of its history is easy to glean from every local.  Additional rumors and bits of advice abound, though they are not all true.  That the Obelisk has been taken over by a cult is also well known closer to the Obelisk, but the exact nature of the cult and its goals are a mystery.

Rumors Generally known about the Obelisk
There is a giant monster made of bones buried beneath the Obelisk, he can be controlled by offering him the skin of a cat. (False)
 The Gods are stronger on the Obelisk grounds than most places. (True – They’re more present at least)
 Bandits and worse can be found down that way, the Fist doesn’t patrol that far East very often. (True)
The Obelisk is almost in Wizard country, look out for the armies of the fen Woman. (True)
 You can placate the spirits in the graveyard with a bit of fresh blood for them to feed on (False)
The present shrine was built by a giant cannibal king named Torpo, but the obelisk is much older. (True)
 The magical dead buried in the obelisk crypts come back to life under the full moon (False)
There’s a complex of old chambers under the Mausoleum, it is filled with bejeweled mummies that will attack if disturbed. (True/False)
The spirits of the Sasquatch do not rest easily. (True)
There’s a caretaker at the Obelisk, a bit of an odd-duck, but he’ll sell you grave offerings and is a weak magician (Formerly True)
They used to drown virgins in the pond at the Obelisk, to placate the spirit of the cannibal king. The vengeful spirits of the virgins are still there, as are the golden and ruby jewelry they were sacrificed while wearing. (False)
The cultists that have overrun the Obelisk are in the service of foreign powers, and consort with demons, if you look into their eyes they can control you mind (False)

Witch's Spellbook
A basic spellbook made of tough bark paper pages and written brown and indigo in plant dyesIt is protected by stamped copper covers and bound with leather straps.  Inside there are recipes, herb notes and alchemical diagrams as well as several spells.  The majority of the spells aren't usable by anyone not a member of the specific witch's bloodline, having been carefully crafted over the generations to rely on a unique way of accessing the magical world.  A few generally applicable spells exist within: Sleep, Magic Missile, Floating Disc, Mirror Image, and Levitate.

Inky Wings of Allurement
A small pendant in the shape of a black enameled bat on a black velvet ribbon. The bat's eyes are small emerald chips, but the charm, while well made, does not appear to be worth more than a couple GP.  When worn by a woman the charm confers a strange power of allurement, making the wearer appear dark, mysterious, exotic and fascinating.  This generally increases Charisma by two points, but it can backfire in some cases, such as when dealing with puritanical xenophobes or similarly dreadful individuals.


  1. Very cool. I particularly like the inky wings of allurement.

    1. I am a fan of semi-useless magical treasures. The "Jeroboam of Ranine Abundance" is even less useful than the Wings, it intrigues me to see what players will do with strange 'useless' magic and how excited they get about it.